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Holding Up Vostok
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Holding Up Vostok

July 1, 2010
Holding Up Vostok Eric Cravens, assistant curator at the National Ice Core Lab (NICL) in Littleton, Colo., holds up a piece of ice taken from above Lake Vostok, a remote region of Antarctica. The cores are recovered and studied for a variety of scientific investigations, most of which focus on the reconstruction of past climate states of the Earth. Ice cores give researchers a glance at hundreds of thousands of years of geologic history. The NICL is a facility for storing, curating and studying ice cores drilled from the polar regions of the world. The facility currently houses over 14,000 meters of ice cores from 34 drill sites in Greenland, Antarctica and high mountain glaciers in the Western United States. The lab provides scientists with the capability to conduct examinations and measurements on ice cores, and it preserves the integrity of these ice cores in a long-term repository for current and future investigations. By studying past climate fluctuations, scientists hope to be able to understand the mechanisms by which climate change is accomplished and in so doing, they hope to develop predictive capabilities for future climate change. The National Ice Core Laboratory (NICL) is a joint facility funded and operated by the U.S. Geological Survey and NSF. Scientific management is provided by the University of New Hampshire. To learn more about the facility, visit the the NICL Web site. (Date of Image: Oct. 2, 2002)


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