When writing about Fashion, Life and Science at the Last Frontier, it is sometimes unavoidable to use some technical terms. Since it’s normal that even a highly educated person may not be familiar with the definition, I created this glossary for you. It helps to explain the terms without disturbing the flow of reading. Thus, you hopefully get a great reader experience. Links from this glossary open in a new window. All terms are explained in alphabetic order. Note this is work in progress. If there is a term you are looking for and can’t find, please let me know by email. Thanks for helping improving this glossary.

  1. Alphabetic list
  2. Fashion and science terms and definitions
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J |
K | L | M | N | O | P | R | S | T | U |
V | W | X | Y | Z |




was the lead dog of Gunnar Kaasen, who delivered the serum against diphteria in Nome on Front Street. Read the story on the serum run here.


Mary Shields

see Shields, Mary


Particulate matter
refers to airborne particles that can be from natural sources like dust, silicates, pollen, sea-salt, volcanic ash and gas-to-particle conversion (a process similar to droplet formation by condensation) and anthropogenic sources. Particles are emitted by any combustion process. Depending on the fuel composition, the particles can be a mix of all kind of stuff. This means they are not a chemical element or a molecule. Particulate matter can be sulfate, nitrate, amonium, elemental carbon, and various combination. Particles can grow by collection of each other as well as by water vapor or other gases depositing on them. Most particulate matter can serve as cloud condensation nuclei.
is defined as a soil layer that stay frozen for at least two consecutive years. The layer above the permafrost starts thawing every spring and refreezes in fall. This layer is called the active layer. In this layer, plants can root and grow. The deeper this layer is, the taller vegetation can grow. Consequently, you can recognize permafrost without measuring the soil temperatures. Permafrost can destroy constructions.

A plugin is an electricity outlet that provides to get electricity for the block heater of cars in the sub-Arctic. The heater and plugin are connected by an extension cord while parking for an extended time at temperatures below zero Fahrenheit (-18oC). Plugins help to reduce emissions from cold-starts and that the car starts at all. For photos see What’s a plugin?



Shields, Mary,

is an Alaskan heroine. She was the first woman to finish the Iditarod, a sled dog race in remembrance of the serum run to Nome. Today she lives out in Gold Stream and provides tours thru her kennel for tourists in summer and offers sled dog rides in winter.



The Trans-Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS) encompasses about 800 miles (1,300 km) of pipeline, several hundred miles of feeder pipelines, 12 pump stations, and the Valdez Marine Terminal. In some places, the pipeline is above the ground, while in other places it is below the ground. See this post to learn about insider travel tips and pipeline facts.

was Leonhard Seppala’s lead dog. During the diphteria serum run, Seppela trusted his dog’s nose to smell open water. Togo’s experience to recognize thin sea-ice permitted Seppla to take the short-cut over the Norton Sound. This shortcut saved them a day, but is a very hazardous stretch due to the currents in the sound. For Alaskans, Togo is the real hero of the serum run. There is even a monument of him in Anchorage.


Vegan fashion

encompasses clothes, shoes, bags and accessories made from non-animal sources. The material of vegan fashion varies widely. Vegan leather, for instance, maybe made from cork. See this post for the procedure to make Super Hide from cork. For more on where to find vegan fashion see this link. In case of jewelry and watches, often wood from downed trees is used.

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Photos of me: G. Kramm

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