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15 March 2018

New study helps explain Greenland glaciers’ varied vulnerability to melting

Using data from NASA missions observing Earth, researchers at the University of California, Irvine have created new maps of the bed topography beneath a score of glaciers in southeast Greenland, thereby gaining a much better understanding of why some are undergoing rapid retreat and others are relatively stable.

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13 March 2018

How much snow accumulates in North America each year? More than scientists thought

There’s a lot more snow piling up in the mountains of North America than anyone knew, according to a first-of-its-kind study. Scientists have revised an estimate of snow volume for the entire continent, and they’ve discovered that snow accumulation in a typical year is 50 percent higher than previously thought.

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6 March 2018

Ice-age echoes affect present-day sea level

A new study has, for the first time, cut a clear path through a nettlesome problem: accurately measuring a powerful effect on global sea level that lingers from the last ice age. Just how quickly Earth’s deep, rocky mantle is rebounding from the heavy burden of ancient ice sheets and oceans remains somewhat uncertain. But this rebound effect, known as glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA), is critical to properly understanding the causes of sea level change.

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25 January 2018

New study reveals how icy surface ponds on Himalayan glaciers influence water flow

The flow of water that supports hydro-electric and irrigation infrastructure in the mountain regions of Nepal and India is regulated by hundreds of large icy ponds on the surface of some of the world’s highest glaciers, scientists have revealed.

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17 January 2018

Glacial moulin formation triggered by rapid lake drainage

Scientists are uncovering the mystery of how, where and when important glacial features called moulins form on the Greenland Ice Sheet. Moulins, vertical conduits that penetrate through the half-mile-deep ice, efficiently funnel the majority of summer meltwater from the ice surface to the base of the ice sheet.

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13 November 2017

New Antarctic heat map reveals sub-ice hotspots

An international team of scientists, led by British Antarctic Survey (BAS), has produced a new map showing how much heat from the Earth’s interior is reaching the base of the Antarctic Ice Sheet.

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11 October 2017

Secrets of hidden ice canyons revealed

In a new study, scientists have discovered huge canyons cutting through the underbelly of Antarctica’s ice shelves, meaning they may be more fragile than previously thought. Thanks to the CryoSat and Sentinel-1 missions, new light is being shed on this hidden world.

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20 September 2017

Tracking driftwood gives researchers insight into past Arctic Ocean changes

Wood from trees that fell into Arctic-draining rivers thousands of years ago is giving scientists a detailed look at how Arctic Ocean circulation has changed over the past 12,000 years. In a new study, researchers used nearly 1,000 pieces of driftwood collected from Arctic shorelines since the 1950s to track Arctic sea ice extent and ocean circulation since the start of the Holocene.

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19 September 2017

Researchers take on atmospheric effects of Arctic snowmelt

Researchers at the University of Alaska Fairbanks’ Geophysical Institute are exploring the changing chemistry of the Arctic’s atmosphere to help answer the question of what happens as snow and ice begin to melt. The research is concerned with the Arctic’s reactive bromine season, the period of time when bromine is consuming ozone, producing bromine monoxide and oxidizing mercury.

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31 August 2017

Record-low 2016 Antarctic sea ice due to ‘perfect storm’ of tropical, polar conditions

While winter sea ice in the Arctic is declining so dramatically that ships can now navigate those waters without any icebreaker escort, the scene in the Southern Hemisphere is very different. Sea ice area around Antarctica has actually increased slightly in winter — that is, until last year. A new study shows the lack of Antarctic sea ice in 2016 was in part due to a unique one-two punch from atmospheric conditions both in the tropical Pacific Ocean and around the South Pole.

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