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Latest Ice sheet Stories

2010-08-31 20:26:44

A tiny marine filter-feeder, that anchors itself to the sea bed, offers new clues to scientists studying the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet "“ a region that is thought to be vulnerable to collapse(1). As part of a study for the Census of Antarctic Marine Life (CAML), scientists from British Antarctic Survey (BAS) analysed sea-bed colonies of bryozoans from coastal and deep sea regions around the continent and from further afield. They found striking similarities in particular...

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2010-08-08 22:33:37

A University of Delaware researcher reports that an "ice island" four times the size of Manhattan has calved from Greenland's Petermann Glacier. The last time the Arctic lost such a large chunk of ice was in 1962."In the early morning hours of August 5, 2010, an ice island four times the size of Manhattan was born in northern Greenland," said Andreas Muenchow, associate professor of physical ocean science and engineering at the University of Delaware's College of Earth, Ocean, and...

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2010-07-28 07:19:48

Antarctica may not be the world's largest landmass -- it's the fifth-largest continent -- but resting on top of that land is the world's largest ice sheet. That ice holds more than 60 percent of Earth's fresh water and carries the potential to significantly raise sea level. The continent is losing ice to the sea, and scientists want to know how much. Antarctica's ice generally flows from the middle of the continent toward the edge, dipping toward the sea before lifting back up and floating....

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2010-07-12 09:46:04

NASA-funded researchers monitoring Greenland's Jakobshavn Isbrae glacier report that a 7 square kilometer (2.7 square mile) section of the glacier broke up on July 6 and 7. The calving front "“ where the ice sheet meets the ocean "“ retreated nearly 1.5 kilometers (a mile) in one day and is now further inland than at any time previously observed. The chunk of lost ice is roughly one-eighth the size of Manhattan Island, New York. Research teams led by Ian Howat of the Byrd Polar...

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2010-06-30 07:05:00

To the untrained eye, University of Colorado at Boulder Research Associate Craig Lee's recent discovery of a 10,000-year-old wooden hunting weapon might look like a small branch that blew off a tree in a windstorm. Nothing could be further from the truth, according to Lee, a research associate with CU-Boulder's Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research who found the atlatl dart, a spear-like hunting weapon, melting out of an ice patch high in the Rocky Mountains close to Yellowstone National...

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2010-06-21 06:00:00

A robotic yellow submarine that has been launched deep beneath the Pine Island Glacier has helped to solve a mystery about one of Antarctica's fastest-melting glaciers, adding to unease about how climate change may lead to higher world sea levels, scientists reported on Sunday in the journal Nature Geoscience. Scientists captured ocean and sea-floor measurements using the robotic submarine, called Autosub. The team found that the glacier was no longer resting on a sub-sea ridge that had...

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2010-05-18 13:25:00

Scientists from the University of Miami are surprised at how rapidly the ice is melting in Greenland and how quickly the land is rising in response. Their findings are published in Nature Geoscience. Greenland is situated in the Atlantic Ocean to the northeast of Canada. It has stunning fjords on its rocky coast formed by moving glaciers, and a dense icecap up to 2 km thick that covers much of the island--pressing down the land beneath and lowering its elevation. Now, scientists at the...

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2010-04-28 13:36:49

Scientists have discovered that changes in the amount of ice floating in the polar oceans are causing sea levels to rise. The research, published this week in Geophysical Research Letters, is the first assessment of how quickly floating ice is being lost today. According to Archimedes' principle, any floating object displaces its own weight of fluid. For example, an ice cube in a glass of water does not cause the glass to overflow as it melts. But because sea water is warmer and more salty...

2010-03-18 13:48:00

WASHINGTON, March 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA's Operation IceBridge mission, the largest airborne survey ever flown of Earth's polar ice, kicks off its second year of study when NASA aircraft arrive in Greenland March 22. (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO) The IceBridge mission allows scientists to track changes in the extent and thickness of polar ice, which is important for understanding ice dynamics. IceBridge began in March 2009 as a means to fill...

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2010-03-18 14:21:04

NASA's Operation IceBridge mission, the largest airborne survey ever flown of Earth's polar ice, kicks off its second year of study when NASA aircraft arrive in Greenland March 22. The IceBridge mission allows scientists to track changes in the extent and thickness of polar ice, which is important for understanding ice dynamics. IceBridge began in March 2009 as a means to fill the gap in polar observations between the loss of NASA's Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite, or ICESat, and the...