Life found in the sediments of an Antarctic subglacial lake for the first time

Video: What Lies Beneath: NASA Antarctic Sub Goes Subglacial NASA / JPL February 28, 2013: When researcher Alberto Behar from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., joined an international Antarctic expedition last month on a trek to investigate a subglacial lake, he brought with him a unique instrument designed and funded by NASA to help…

NASA Operation IceBridge: Stunning Aircraft Travel – Documenting Antarctic and Greenland Change

Published on YouTube Aug 16, 2013: The views from the cockpit of NASA’s P-3B aircraft on an Operation IceBridge campaign are truly stunning. The mission doesn’t travel to both ends of the Earth for the scenery of course — the airborne mission is there to collect radar, laser altimetry, and other data on the changing…

Glaciers and Global Warming

Published on YouTube Nov 21, 2012: Ice shelves that have lived for more than 10,000 years are disintegrating rapidly — in 6 weeks or less. U-M professor Jeremy Bassis is exploring how global warming is effecting glacial calving, and what impact these events will have on the rise of sea level. Related Greenland And Antarctica…

A new inventory of mountain glaciers and ice caps for the Antarctic periphery

Andrew Bliss, Regine Hock, J. Graham Cogley | Source Abstract Although the glaciers in the Antarctic periphery make up a large fraction of all mountain glaciers and ice caps on Earth, a detailed glacier inventory of the region is lacking. We compile such an inventory, recording areas, area–altitude distributions, terminus characteristics and volume estimates.Glaciers on…

Subglacial Lakes

By Bethan Davies / AntarcticGlaciers.org Introduction | Radio echo sounding | Satellite altimetry: elevation changes | Effects of active lakes on ice dynamics | Drilling projects | References Introduction The Antarctic continent is underlain by subglacial lakes. Despite the fact that they are overlain by several kilometres of ice, these lakes are interconnected and water…

A closer look at subglacial glacier cavities and water pressure

A collection of science around subglacial glacier’s, cavities and about water pressure/water flow. Though someone pointed out that most of the items are focused on land based glaciers, rather than on the WAIS which is a marine ice sheet. However, i welcome all contribution in the comment section which helps to better understand marine ice…

Under the Ice: A closer look at recent Antarctica and Greenland Ice Melt

Source: Polar science news in brief “Environ Earth Sci (2013) 68:1813–1821 DOI 10.1007/s12665-012-2185-y by David Carlson Summary Antarctica Satellite radar altimetry since 2002 shows accelerated thinning (Amundsen Sea, Pine Island and Thwaites glacial ice streams) Laser altimetry shows thinning on 20 of 54 Antarctic ice shelves Ice shelves buttress their tributary glaciers, melt-induced thinning of…

Stable Antarctic Permafrost Melting Faster than Expected

University of Texas: July 24, 2013 AUSTIN, Texas — For the first time, scientists have documented an acceleration in the melt rate of permafrost, or ground ice, in a section of Antarctica where the ice had been considered stable. The melt rates are comparable with the Arctic, where accelerated melting of permafrost has become a…

Last Time Carbon Dioxide Levels Were This High: 15 Million Years Ago

By analyzing the chemistry of bubbles of ancient air trapped in Antarctic ice, scientists have been able to determine the composition of Earth’s atmosphere going back as far as 800,000 years, and they have developed a good understanding of how carbon dioxide levels have varied in the atmosphere since that time. But there has been…

Climate Change Linked to Ozone Loss: May Result in More Skin Cancer

A newly-discovered connection between climate change and depletion of the ozone layer over the U.S. could allow more damaging ultraviolet (UV) radiation to reach the Earth’s surface. As reported in a paper published in the July 27 issue of Science, a team of researchers led by James G. Anderson, the Philip S. Weld Professor of…

Catastrophic sea levels ‘distinct possibility’ this century

A breakthrough study of fluctuations in sea levels the last time Earth was between ice ages, as it is now, shows that oceans rose some three meters in only decades due to collapsing ice sheets. The findings suggest that such an scenario — which would redraw coastlines worldwide and unleash colossal human misery — is…

First evidence of under-ice volcanic eruption in Antarctica

The first evidence of a volcanic eruption from beneath Antarctica’s most rapidly changing ice sheet. The volcano on the West Antarctic Ice Sheet erupted 2000 years ago (325BC) and remains active. Using airborne ice-sounding radar, scientists from British Antarctic Survey (BAS) discovered a layer of ash produced by a ‘subglacial’ volcano. It extends across an…

Potential methane reservoirs beneath Antarctica

We calculate that the sub-Antarctic hydrate inventory could be of the same order of magnitude as that of recent estimates made for Arctic permafrost. Once thought to be devoid of life, the ice-covered parts of Antarctica are now known to be a reservoir of metabolically active microbial cells and organic carbon. The potential for methanogenic…

Central West Antarctica among the most rapidly warming regions on Earth

There is clear evidence that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet is contributing to sea-level rise. In contrast, West Antarctic temperature changes in recent decades remain uncertain. West Antarctica has probably warmed since the 1950s, but there is disagreement regarding the magnitude, seasonality and spatial extent of this warming. This is primarily because long-term near-surface temperature…