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Last updated on April 18, 2014 at 7:23 EDT

Latest Ice sheets Stories

2009-08-31 11:26:19

The conference showed that the Arctic climate is changing rapidly in a number of different ways: The recent rate of decrease in thickness and volume of the Arctic sea ice has been faster than the rate of aerial shrinkage determined from satellites. Given that the present trend of melt continues, some models indicate that it is quite likely that the Arctic Ocean could be ice free in the summer time as early as 2015-16. There has been a rapid increase in the mass-loss from the Greenland ice...

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2009-08-25 15:10:00

Lakes in Antarctica, concealed under miles of ice, require scientists to come up with creative ways to identify and analyze these hidden features. Now, researchers using space-based lasers on a NASA satellite have created the most comprehensive inventory of lakes that actively drain or fill under Antarctica's ice. They have revealed a continental plumbing system that is more dynamic than scientists thought."Even though Antarctica's ice sheet looks static, the more we watch it, the more we see...

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2009-06-21 12:40:00

Findings are relevant to modern Greenland ice sheet, says UB researcher Modern glaciers, such as those making up the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, are capable of undergoing periods of rapid shrinkage or retreat, according to new findings by paleoclimatologists at the University at Buffalo. The paper, published on June 21 in Nature Geoscience, describes fieldwork demonstrating that a prehistoric glacier in the Canadian Arctic rapidly retreated in just a few hundred years. The proof of...

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2009-06-12 08:32:52

The Greenland ice sheet is melting faster than expected according to a new study led by a University of Alaska Fairbanks researcher and published in the journal Hydrological Processes. Study results indicate that the ice sheet may be responsible for nearly 25 percent of global sea rise in the past 13 years. The study also shows that seas now are rising by more than 3 millimeters a year--more than 50 percent faster than the average for the 20th century. UAF researcher Sebastian H. Mernild and...

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2009-06-03 17:25:00

New research by scientists in Britain and China reveals evidence of how the East Antarctic ice sheet initially formed. The work provides a snapshot of terrain that has lain hidden miles beneath the ice for millions of years, when rivers ran through mountain valleys that were oddly similar to the modern European Alps. The scientists used radar to map an area of the Gamburtsev mountains, believed to be where the ice originated. The region would have been cold enough to support the...

2009-05-14 14:24:41

The potential contribution to sea level rise from a collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) have been greatly overestimated, according to a new study published in the journal Science. Scientists estimate global sea level would rise 3.3 metres, not five or six, as previously thought. The Atlantic and Pacific seaboards of the US, even in the case of a partial collapse, would experience the largest increases, threatening cities such as New York, Washington DC and San Francisco.Long...

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2009-05-05 10:38:55

Most comprehensive seabed image of Amundsen Sea Embayment Motorway-sized troughs and channels carved into Antarctica's continental shelves by glaciers thousands of years ago could help scientists to predict future sea-level rise according to a report in the journal Geology this month (May). Using sonar technology from onboard ships, scientists from British Antarctic Survey (BAS) and the German Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI) captured the most extensive, continuous set of images of the seafloor...

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2009-03-30 07:40:00

Dust trapped deep in Antarctic ice sheets is helping scientists unravel details of past climate change. Researchers have found that dust blown south to Antarctica from the windy plains of Patagonia "“ and deposited in the ice periodically over 80,000 years "“ provides vital information about glacier activity. Scientists hope the findings will help them to better understand how the global climate has changed during the past ice age, and so help predict environmental changes in the...

2009-03-18 13:54:57

U.S. climatologists say they've determined the West Antarctic ice sheet changes rapidly over the eons, most influenced by ocean temperatures. Researchers at Pennsylvania State University and the University of Massachusetts said their findings were based on modeling 5 million years of changes in the ice sheet. We found that the West Antarctic ice sheet varied a lot, collapsed and regrew multiple times over that period, said Penn State senior scientist David Pollard. The ice sheets in our model...

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2009-03-18 15:45:00

Two new reports published in the journal Nature illustrate possible flooding due to climate change and a meltdown of the massive West Antarctic ice sheet. In one study, researchers used soil cores below the Ross ice shelf to show that the massive melt took place between 3 million and 5 million years ago. That collapse amounted to an increase of more than 16 feet to global sea level, researchers noted. "What we're seeing in the past would lead us to believe that we are on track for losing...