This paper presents a surface heat balance simulator that models the complex heat-exchange mechanisms (e.g., radiation, convection) that govern the amount of heat flowing through the ground surface. It can be used integrally with a 2-D Permafrost Heat Transfer Program [6] to implicitly calculate ground surface temperatures based on climatic conditions, surface characteristics, and soil thermal properties. Thus it provides a rational means of predicting disturbed permafrost temperatures and of designing thermal protection systems to minimize thermal disturbances. The power of the surface simulator method is demonstrated by investigating thermal disturbances and various permafrost protection schemes for both arctic and subarctic conditions, and these demonstrations show some unique differences in permafrost thermal behavior in these two regimes.

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