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Sample records for antarctic peninsula ice

  1. Speedup and fracturing of George VI Ice Shelf, Antarctic Peninsula

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    T. O. Holt

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available George VI Ice Shelf (GVIIS is located on the Antarctic Peninsula, a region where several ice shelves have undergone rapid breakup in response to atmospheric and oceanic warming. We use a combination of optical (Landsat, radar (ERS 1/2 SAR and laser altimetry (GLAS datasets to examine the response of GVIIS to environmental change and to offer an assessment on its future stability. The spatial and structural changes of GVIIS (ca. 1973 to ca. 2010 are mapped and surface velocities are calculated at different time periods (InSAR and optical feature tracking from 1989 to 2009 to document changes in the ice shelf's flow regime. Surface elevation changes are recorded between 2003 and 2008 using repeat track ICESat acquisitions. We note an increase in fracture extent and distribution at the south ice front, ice-shelf acceleration towards both the north and south ice fronts and spatially varied negative surface elevation change throughout, with greater variations observed towards the central and southern regions of the ice shelf. We propose that whilst GVIIS is in no imminent danger of collapse, it is vulnerable to ongoing atmospheric and oceanic warming and is more susceptible to breakup along its southern margin in ice preconditioned for further retreat.

  2. Recent increase in Antarctic Peninsula ice core uranium concentrations

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    Potocki, Mariusz; Mayewski, Paul A.; Kurbatov, Andrei V.; Simões, Jefferson C.; Dixon, Daniel A.; Goodwin, Ian; Carleton, Andrew M.; Handley, Michael J.; Jaña, Ricardo; Korotkikh, Elena V.

    2016-09-01

    Understanding the distribution of airborne uranium is important because it can result in both chemical and radiological toxicity. Ice cores offer the most robust reconstruction of past atmospheric levels of toxic substances. Here we present the first sub-annually dated, continuously sampled ice core documenting change in U levels in the Southern Hemisphere. The ice core was recovered from the Detroit Plateau, northern Antarctic Peninsula, in 2007 by a joint Brazilian-Chilean-US team. It displays a significant increase in U concentration that coincides with reported mining activities in the Southern Hemisphere, notably Australia. Raw U concentrations in the Detroit Plateau ice core increased by as much as 102 between the 1980s and 2000s accompanied by increased variability in recent years. Decadal mean U concentrations increased by a factor of ∼3 from 1980 to 2007, reaching a mean of 205 pg/L from 2000 to 2007. The fact that other terrestrial source dust elements such as Ce, La, Pr, and Ti do not show a similar increase and that the increased U concentrations are enriched above natural crustal levels, supports an anthropogenic source for the U as opposed to a change in atmospheric circulation.

  3. Detailed ice loss pattern in the northern Antarctic Peninsula: widespread decline driven by ice front retreats

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    T. A. Scambos

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The northern Antarctic Peninsula (nAP, 3 a−1 and 24.9 ± 7.8 Gt a−1. This mass loss is compatible with recent gravimetric assessments, but it implies that almost all the gravimetry-inferred loss lies in the nAP sector. Mass loss is highest for eastern glaciers affected by major ice shelf collapses in 1995 and 2002, where twelve glaciers account for 60% of the total imbalance. However, losses at smaller rates occur throughout the nAP, and at high and low elevation, despite increased snow accumulation along the western coast and at high elevations. We interpret the widespread mass loss to be driven by decades of ice front retreats on both sides of the nAP, and by the propagation of kinematic waves triggered at the fronts into the interior.

  4. Mass Balance of the Northern Antarctic Peninsula and its Ongoing Response to Ice Shelf Loss

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    Scambos, T. A.; Berthier, E.; Haran, T. M.; Shuman, C. A.; Cook, A. J.; Bohlander, J. A.

    2012-12-01

    An assessment of the most rapidly changing areas of the Antarctic Peninsula (north of 66°S) shows that ice mass loss for the region is dominated by areas affected by eastern-Peninsula ice shelf losses in the past 20 years. Little if any of the mass loss is compensated by increased snowfall in the northwestern or far northern areas. We combined satellite stereo-image DEM differencing and ICESat-derived along-track elevation changes to measure ice mass loss for the Antarctic Peninsula north of 66°S between 2001-2010, focusing on the ICESat-1 period of operation (2003-2009). This mapping includes all ice drainages affected by recent ice shelf loss in the northeastern Peninsula (Prince Gustav, Larsen Inlet, Larsen A, and Larsen B) as well as James Ross Island, Vega Island, Anvers Island, Brabant Island and the adjacent west-flowing glaciers. Polaris Glacier (feeding the Larsen Inlet, which collapsed in 1986) is an exception, and may have stabilized. Our method uses ASTER and SPOT-5 stereo-image DEMs to determine dh/dt for elevations below 800 m; at higher elevations ICESat along-track elevation differencing is used. To adjust along-track path offsets between its 2003-2009 campaigns, we use a recent DEM of the Peninsula to establish and correct for cross-track slope (Cook et al., 2012, doi:10.5194/essdd-5-365-2012; http://nsidc.org/data/nsidc-0516.html) . We reduce the effect of possible seasonal variations in elevation by using only integer-year repeats of the ICESat tracks for comparison. Mass losses are dominated by the major glaciers that had flowed into the Prince Gustav (Boydell, Sjorgren, Röhss), Larsen A (Edgeworth, Bombardier, Dinsmoor, Drygalski), and Larsen B (Hektoria, Jorum, and Crane) embayments. The pattern of mass loss emphasizes the significant and multi-decadal response to ice shelf loss. Areas with shelf losses occurring 30 to 100s of years ago seem to be relatively stable or losing mass only slowly (western glaciers, northernmost areas). The

  5. In-situ aircraft observations of ice concentrations within clouds over the Antarctic Peninsula and Larsen Ice Shelf

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    D. P. Grosvenor

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available In-situ aircraft observations of ice crystal concentrations in Antarctic clouds are presented for the first time. Orographic, layer and wave clouds around the Antarctic Peninsula and Larsen Ice shelf regions were penetrated by the British Antarctic Survey's Twin Otter aircraft, which was equipped with modern cloud physics probes. The clouds studied were mostly in the free troposphere and hence ice crystals blown from the surface are unlikely to have been a major source for the ice phase. The temperature range covered by the experiments was 0 to −21 °C. The clouds were found to contain supercooled liquid water in most regions and at heterogeneous ice formation temperatures ice crystal concentrations (60 s averages were often less than 0.07 l−1, although values up to 0.22 l−1 were observed. Estimates of observed aerosol concentrations were used as input into the DeMott et al. (2010 ice nuclei (IN parameterisation. The observed ice crystal number concentrations were generally in broad agreement with the IN predictions, although on the whole the predicted values were higher. Possible reasons for this are discussed and include the lack of IN observations in this region with which to characterise the parameterisation, and/or problems in relating ice concentration measurements to IN concentrations. Other IN parameterisations significantly overestimated the number of ice particles. Generally ice particle concentrations were much lower than found in clouds in middle latitudes for a given temperature.

    Higher ice crystal concentrations were sometimes observed at temperatures warmer than −9 °C, with values of several per litre reached. These were attributable to secondary ice particle production by the Hallett Mossop process. Even in this temperature range it was observed that there were regions with little or no ice that were dominated by supercooled liquid water. It is likely that in some cases this was due to a

  6. Thirty years of elevation change on Antarctic Peninsula ice shelves from multimission satellite radar altimetry

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    Fricker, Helen Amanda; Padman, Laurie

    2012-02-01

    We use data acquired between 1978 and 2008 by four satellite radar altimeter missions (Seasat, ERS-1, ERS-2 and Envisat) to determine multidecadal elevation change rates (dhi/dt) for six major Antarctic Peninsula (AP) ice shelves. In areas covered by the Seasat orbit (to 72.16°S), regional-averaged 30-year trends were negative (surface lowering), with rates between -0.03 and -0.16 m a-1. Surface lowering preceded the start of near-continuous radar altimeter operations that began with ERS-1 in 1992. The average rate of lowering for the first 14 years of the period was typically smaller than the 30-year average; the exception was the southern Wilkins Ice Shelf, which experienced negligible lowering between 2000 and 2008, when a series of large calving events began. Analyses of the continuous ERS/Envisat time series (to 81.5°) for 1992-2008 reveal a period of strong negative dhi/dt on most ice shelves between 1992 and 1995. Based on prior studies of regional atmospheric and oceanic conditions, we hypothesize that the observed elevation changes on Larsen C Ice Shelf are driven primarily by firn compaction while the western AP ice shelves are responding to changes in both surface mass balance and basal melt rates. Our time series also show that large changes in dhi/dt can occur on interannual time scales, reinforcing the importance of long time series altimetry to separate long-term trends associated with climate change from interannual to interdecadal natural variability.

  7. Future sea-level rise from tidewater and ice-shelf tributary glaciers of the Antarctic Peninsula

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    Schannwell, Clemens; Barrand, Nicholas E.; Radić, Valentina

    2016-11-01

    Iceberg calving and increased ice discharge from ice-shelf tributary glaciers contribute significant amounts to global sea-level rise (SLR) from the Antarctic Peninsula (AP). Owing to ongoing ice dynamical changes (collapse of buttressing ice shelves), these contributions have accelerated in recent years. As the AP is one of the fastest warming regions on Earth, further ice dynamical adjustment (increased ice discharge) is expected over the next two centuries. In this paper, the first regional SLR projection of the AP from both iceberg calving and increased ice discharge from ice-shelf tributary glaciers in response to ice-shelf collapse is presented. An ice-sheet model forced by temperature output from 13 global climate models (GCMs), in response to the high greenhouse gas emission scenario (RCP8.5), projects AP contribution to SLR of 28 ± 16 to 32 ± 16 mm by 2300, partitioned approximately equally between contributions from tidewater glaciers and ice-shelf tributary glaciers. In the RCP4.5 scenario, sea-level rise projections to 2300 are dominated by tidewater glaciers (∼8-18 mm). In this cooler scenario, 2.4 ± 1 mm is added to global sea levels from ice-shelf tributary drainage basins as fewer ice-shelves are projected to collapse. Sea-level projections from ice-shelf tributary glaciers are dominated by drainage basins feeding George VI Ice Shelf, accounting for ∼70% of simulated SLR. Combined total ice dynamical SLR projections to 2300 from the AP vary between 11 ± 2 and 32 ± 16 mm sea-level equivalent (SLE), depending on the emission scenario used. These simulations suggest that omission of tidewater glaciers could lead to a substantial underestimation of the ice-sheet's contribution to regional SLR.

  8. Ice-Core Study of the Link between Sea-Salt Aerosol, Sea-Ice Cover and Climate in the Antarctic Peninsula Area

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    Aristarain, A.J. [Laboratorio de Estratigrafia Glaciar y Geoquimica del Agua y de la Nieve LEGAN, Instituto Antartico Argentino, Mendoza (Argentina); Delmas, R.J. [Laboratoire de Glaciologie et Geophysique de l' Environnement LGGE, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, BP 96, 38402 St. Martin d' Heres Cedex (France); Stievenard, M. [Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l' Environnement LSCE, Centre d' Etudes de Saclay, 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette, Cedex (France)

    2004-11-01

    Three ice cores and a set of snow pit samples collected on James Ross Island, Antarctic Peninsula, in 1979, 1981 and 1991 have been analyzed for water stable isotope content D or 18O (isotopic temperature) and major chemical species. A reliable and detailed chronological scale has been established first for the upper 24.5 m of water equivalent (1990-1943) where various data sets can be compared, then extended down to 59.5 m of water equivalent (1847) with the aid of seasonal variations and the sulphate peak reflecting the 1883 Krakatoa volcanic eruption. At James Ross Island, sea-salt aerosol is generally produced by ice-free marine surfaces during the summer months, although some winter sea-salt events have been observed. For the upper part of the core (1990-1943), correlations (positive or negative) were calculated between isotopic temperature, chloride content (a sea-salt indicator), sea-ice extent, regional atmospheric temperature changes and atmospheric circulation. The D and chloride content correlation was then extended back to 1847, making it possible to estimate decadal sea-ice cover fluctuations over the study period. Our findings suggest that ice-core records from James Ross Island reflect the recent warming and sea-ice decrease trends observed in the Antarctic Peninsula area from the mid-1940s.

  9. Seasonality of blue and fin whale calls and the influence of sea ice in the Western Antarctic Peninsula

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    Širović, Ana; Hildebrand, John A.; Wiggins, Sean M.; McDonald, Mark A.; Moore, Sue E.; Thiele, Deborah

    2004-08-01

    The calling seasonality of blue ( Balaenoptera musculus) and fin ( B. physalus) whales was assessed using acoustic data recorded on seven autonomous acoustic recording packages (ARPs) deployed from March 2001 to February 2003 in the Western Antarctic Peninsula. Automatic detection and acoustic power analysis methods were used for determining presence and absence of whale calls. Blue whale calls were detected year round, on average 177 days per year, with peak calling in March and April, and a secondary peak in October and November. Lowest calling rates occurred between June and September, and in December. Fin whale calling rates were seasonal with calls detected between February and June (on average 51 days/year), and peak calling in May. Sea ice formed a month later and retreated a month earlier in 2001 than in 2002 over all recording sites. During the entire deployment period, detected calls of both species of whales showed negative correlation with sea ice concentrations at all sites, suggesting an absence of blue and fin whales in areas covered with sea ice. A conservative density estimate of calling whales from the acoustic data yields 0.43 calling blue whales per 1000 n mi 2 and 1.30 calling fin whales per 1000 n mi 2, which is about one-third higher than the density of blue whales and approximately equal to the density of fin whales estimated from the visual surveys.

  10. The history of Antarctic Peninsula glaciation

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    Barker, Peter F.

    2007-01-01

    As Co-Chief Scientist on DSDP Leg 35 in 1974, Cam Craddock (1930-2006) produced the first useful information on Cenozoic Antarctic Peninsula glaciation - an early middle Miocene (15-17 Ma) apparent glacial onset. Subsequent work, onshore and offshore, has greatly extended our knowledge but that early conclusion stands today. Cenozoic Antarctic Peninsula palaeoclimate as presently known is broadly consistent with global palaeoclimate proxies. Initial glacial onset was within the Eocene-Oligocene boundary interval (although earlier, short-lived glaciations have been proposed, from indirect measurements) and the peninsula probably became deglaciated in the earliest Miocene (ca. 24 Ma). The renewed middle Miocene glaciation probably continued to the present and, for the last 9 Myr at least, has persisted through glacial (orbital) cycles, with grounded ice advance to the shelf edge during maxima. Although orbital cyclicity affected earlier AP palaeoclimate also, the level of glaciation through a complete cycle is uncertain.

  11. Computing the volume response of the Antarctic Peninsula ice sheet to warming scenarios to 2200

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    Beaudon, E.; Moore, J.C.; Martma, T.; Pohjola, V.A.; van de Wal, R.S.W.; Kohler, J.; Isaksson, E.

    2013-01-01

    An ice core extracted from Holtedahlfonna ice cap, western Spitsbergen, record spanning the period 1700–2005, was analyzed for major ions. The leading empirical orthogonal function (EOF) component is correlated with an index of summer melt (log([Na+]/[Mg2+]) from 1850 and shows that almost 50% of th

  12. The imbalance of glaciers after disintegration of Larsen-B ice shelf, Antarctic Peninsula

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    H. Rott

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The outlet glaciers to the embayment of the Larsen-B Ice Shelf started to accelerate soon after the ice shelf disintegrated in March 2002. We analyse high resolution radar images of the TerraSAR-X satellite, launched in June 2007, to map the motion of outlet glaciers in detail. The frontal velocities are used to estimate the calving fluxes for 2008/2009. As reference for pre-collapse conditions, when the glaciers were in balanced state, the ice fluxes through the same gates are computed using ice motion maps derived from interferometric data of the ERS-1/ERS-2 satellites in 1995 and 1999. Profiles of satellite laser altimetry from ICESat, crossing the terminus of several glaciers, indicate considerable glacier thinning between 2003 and 2007/2008. This is taken into account for defining the calving cross sections. The difference between the pre- and post-collapse fluxes provides an estimate on the mass imbalance. For the Larsen-B embayment the 2008 mass deficit is estimated at 4.34 ± 1.64 Gt a−1, significantly lower than previously published values. The ice flow acceleration follows a similar pattern on the various glaciers, gradually decreasing in magnitude with distance upstream from the calving front. This suggests stress perturbation at the glacier front being the main factor for acceleration. So far there are no signs of slow-down indicating that dynamic thinning and frontal retreat will go on.

  13. Evaluation of high-resolution MetUM and AMPS forecasts of near-surface meteorological variables over Larsen C ice shelf and northern Antarctic Peninsula

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    Orr, Andrew; Kirchgaessner, Amelie; King, John; Weeks, Mark; Gadian, Alan; Kuipers Munneke, Peter; van den Broeke, Michiel; Steffen, Konrad

    2016-04-01

    High-resolution weather forecasts are an important tool for understanding the detailed patterns of surface melt on the Larsen C ice shelf (LCIS), Antarctic Peninsula. We investigate the skill of UK Met Office Unified Model (MetUM) and Antarctic Mesoscale Prediction System (AMPS) forecasts with horizontal grid spacing of 4-5 km for a 1 month period during January-February 2011 by comparing near-surface model output to automatic weather station measurements at 5 sites on the LCIS and 3 on the northern Antarctic Peninsula. Forecasts for the range 12-24 h showed a fairly homogeneous performance over the LCIS. The 2 m temperature simulated by AMPS has a correlation with observations of 0.5-0.6 and a systematic cold bias of around -1 degrees centigrade. By comparison, the MetUM had a higher correlation and was less negatively biased. The simulated surface pressure has a correlation of 0.99 and small biases in both models. AMPS yielded better results than the MetUM for 10 m wind speed, being able to capture particularly well synoptically-driven high wind speeds which the MetUM systematically underestimated. Both models struggle to simulate the 10 m wind direction when the wind conditions are highly variable. The simulation of specific humidity by both models was poor. Both models showed a general reduction in performance over the northern Antarctic Peninsula compared to the LCIS. Extending the analysis to consider the 12-36 h forecast range demonstrated a relatively weak dependence of model skill to the length of the forecast. The study focuses particularly on the representation of foehn wind events, which are an important contributor to surface melt over the LCIS, by examining additional ~1 km scale forecasts using the MetUM.

  14. Surface energy budget on Larsen and Wilkins ice shelves in the Antarctic Peninsula: results based on reanalyses in 1989–2010

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    I. Välisuo

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Ice shelves in the Antarctic Peninsula have significantly disintegrated during the recent decades. To better understand the atmospheric contribution in the process, we have analysed the inter-annual variations in radiative and turbulent surface fluxes and weather conditions over Larsen C Ice Shelf (LCIS and Wilkins Ice Shelf (WIS in the Antarctic Peninsula in 1989–2010. Three atmospheric reanalyses were applied: ERA-Interim by ECMWF, Climate Forecast System Reanalysis (CFSR by NCEP, and JRA-25/JCDAS by the Japan Meteorological Agency. In addition, in situ observations from an automatic weather station (AWS on LCIS were applied, mainly for validation of the reanalyses. The AWS observations on LCIS did not show any significant temperature trend, and the reanalyses showed warming trends only over WIS: ERA-Interim in winter (0.23 °C yr−1 and JRA in autumn (0.13 °C yr−1. In LCIS from December through August and in WIS from March through August, the variations of surface net flux were partly explained by the combined effects of atmospheric pressure, wind, and cloud fraction. The explained variance was much higher in LCIS (up to 80% than in WIS (26–27%. Summer melting on LCIS varied between 0 and 45 cm water equivalent (w.e., which is comparable to previous results. The mean amount of melt days per summer on LCIS was only 17. The high values of melting in summer 2001–2002 presented in previous studies on the basis of simple calculations were not supported by our study. Instead, our calculations based on ERA-Interim yielded strongest melting in summer 1992–1993 on both ice shelves. On WIS the summer melting ranged between 2 and 40 cm w.e., and the peak values coincided with the largest disintegrations of the ice shelf.

  15. Holocene climate variations in the western Antarctic Peninsula: evidence for sea ice extent predominantly controlled by insolation and ENSO variability changes

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    J. Etourneau

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The West Antarctic ice sheet is particularly sensitive to global warming and its evolution and impact on global climate over the next few decades remains difficult to predict. In this context, investigating past sea ice conditions around Antarctica is of primary importance. Here, we document changes in sea ice presence, upper water column temperatures (0–200 m and primary productivity over the last 9000 yr BP (before present in the western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP margin from a sedimentary core collected in the Palmer Deep basin. Employing a multi-proxy approach, we derived new Holocene records of sea ice conditions and upper water column temperatures, based on the combination of two biomarkers proxies (highly branched isoprenoid (HBI alkenes for sea ice and TEXL86 for temperature and micropaleontological data (diatom assemblages. The early Holocene (9000–7000 yr BP was characterized by a cooling phase with a short sea ice season. During the mid-Holocene (~ 7000–3000 yr BP, local climate evolved towards slightly colder conditions and a prominent extension of the sea ice season occurred, promoting a favorable environment for intensive diatom growth. The late Holocene (the last ~ 3000 yr was characterized by more variable temperatures and increased sea ice presence, accompanied by reduced local primary productivity likely in response to a shorter growing season compared to the early or mid-Holocene. The stepwise increase in annual sea ice duration over the last 7000 yr might have been influenced by decreasing mean annual and spring insolation despite an increasing summer insolation. We postulate that in addition to precessional changes in insolation, seasonal variability, via changes in the strength of the circumpolar Westerlies and upwelling activity, was further amplified by the increasing frequency/amplitude of El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO. However, between 4000 and 2100 yr BP, the lack of correlation between

  16. Characterisation of the nematode community of a low-activity cold seep in the recently ice-shelf free Larsen B area, Eastern Antarctic Peninsula.

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    Freija Hauquier

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Recent climate-induced ice-shelf disintegration in the Larsen A (1995 and B (2002 areas along the Eastern Antarctic Peninsula formed a unique opportunity to assess sub-ice-shelf benthic community structure and led to the discovery of unexplored habitats, including a low-activity methane seep beneath the former Larsen B ice shelf. Since both limited particle sedimentation under previously permanent ice coverage and reduced cold-seep activity are likely to influence benthic meiofauna communities, we characterised the nematode assemblage of this low-activity cold seep and compared it with other, now seasonally ice-free, Larsen A and B stations and other Antarctic shelf areas (Weddell Sea and Drake Passage, as well as cold-seep ecosystems world-wide. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The nematode community at the Larsen B seep site differed significantly from other Antarctic sites in terms of dominant genera, diversity and abundance. Densities in the seep samples were high (>2000 individuals per 10 cm(2 and showed below-surface maxima at a sediment depth of 2-3 cm in three out of four replicates. All samples were dominated by one species of the family Monhysteridae, which was identified as a Halomonhystera species that comprised between 80 and 86% of the total community. The combination of high densities, deeper density maxima and dominance of one species is shared by many cold-seep ecosystems world-wide and suggested a possible dependence upon a chemosynthetic food source. Yet stable (13C isotopic signals (ranging between -21.97±0.86‰ and -24.85±1.89‰ were indicative of a phytoplankton-derived food source. CONCLUSION: The recent ice-shelf collapse and enhanced food input from surface phytoplankton blooms were responsible for the shift from oligotrophic pre-collapse conditions to a phytodetritus-based community with high densities and low diversity. The parthenogenetic reproduction of the highly dominant Halomonhystera species is rather unusual

  17. Surface energy budget on Larsen and Wilkins ice shelves in the Antarctic Peninsula: results based on reanalyses in 1989-2010

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    Välisuo, I.; Vihma, T.; King, J. C.

    2014-08-01

    Ice shelves in the Antarctic Peninsula have significantly disintegrated during recent decades. To better understand the atmospheric contribution in the process, we have analysed the inter-annual variations in radiative and turbulent surface fluxes and weather conditions over Larsen C Ice Shelf (LCIS) and Wilkins Ice Shelf (WIS) in the Antarctic Peninsula in 1989-2010. Three atmospheric reanalyses were applied: ERA-Interim by ECMWF, Climate Forecast System Reanalysis (CFSR) by NCEP, and JRA-25/JCDAS by the Japan Meteorological Agency. In addition, in situ observations from an automatic weather station (AWS) on LCIS were applied, mainly for validation of the reanalyses. The AWS observations on LCIS did not show any significant temperature trend, and the reanalyses showed warming trends only over WIS: ERA-Interim in winter (0.23 °C yr-1) and JRA-25/JCDAS in autumn (0.13 °C yr-1). In LCIS from December through August and in WIS from March through August, the variations of surface net flux were partly explained by the combined effects of atmospheric pressure, wind and cloud fraction. The explained variance was much higher in LCIS (up to 80%) than in WIS (26-27%). Summer melting on LCIS varied between 11 and 58 cm water equivalent (w.e.), which is comparable to previous results. The mean amount of melt days per summer on LCIS was 69. The high values of melting in summer 2001-2002 presented in previous studies on the basis of simple calculations were not supported by our study. Instead, our calculations based on ERA-Interim yielded strongest melting in summer 1992-1993 on both ice shelves. On WIS the summer melting ranged between 10 and 23 cm w.e., and the peak values coincided with the largest disintegrations of the ice shelf. The amount of melt on WIS may, however, be underestimated by ERA-Interim, as previously published satellite observations suggest that it suffers from a significant bias over WIS.

  18. Breakup of Pack Ice, Antarctic Ice Shelf

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    1991-01-01

    Breakup of Pack Ice along the periphery of the Antarctic Ice Shelf (53.5S, 3.0E) produced this mosaic of ice floes off the Antarctic Ice Shelf. Strong offshore winds, probably associated with strong katabatic downdrafts from the interior of the continent, are seen peeling off the edges of the ice shelf into long filamets of sea ice, icebergs, bergy bits and growlers to flow northward into the South Atlantic Ocean. 53.5S, 3.0E

  19. Recent Rapid Regional Climate Warming on the Antarctic Peninsula

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    Vaughan, D. G.; Marshall, G. J.; Connolley, W. M.; Parkinson, C.; Mulvaney, R.; Hodgson, D. A.; King, J. C.; Pudsey, C. J.; Turner, J.

    2002-12-01

    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) confirmed that global warming was 0.6 ñ 0.2 degrees C during the 20th Century and cited increases in greenhouse gases as a likely contributor. But this average conceals the complexity of observed climate change, which is seasonally biased, decadally variable and geographically patchy. In particular, over the last 50 years three high-latitude areas have undergone recent rapid regional (RRR) warming ? substantially more rapid than the global mean. We discuss the spatial and temporal significance of RRR warming in one area, the Antarctic Peninsula. New analyses of station records show no ubiquitous polar amplification of global warming but significant RRR warming on the Antarctic Peninsula. We investigate the likelihood that this could be amplification of a global warming, and use climate-proxy data to indicate that this RRR warming on the Antarctic Peninsula is unprecedented over the last two millennia and unlikely to be a natural mode of variability. We can show a strong connection between RRR warming and reduced sea-ice duration in an area on the west of the Antarctic Peninsula, but here we cannot yet distinguish cause and effect. Thus for the present we cannot determine which process causes the RRR warming, and until the mechanism initiating and sustaining it is understood, and is convincingly reproduced in climate models, we lack a sound basis for predicting climate change in this region over the coming century.

  20. Modelling the Antarctic Ice Sheet

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    Pedersen, Jens Olaf Pepke; Holm, A.

    2015-01-01

    The Antarctic ice sheet is a major player in the Earth’s climate system and is by far the largest depository of fresh water on the planet. Ice stored in the Antarctic ice sheet (AIS) contains enough water to raise sea level by about 58 m, and ice loss from Antarctica contributed significantly...... Science) Antarctic Ice Sheet (DAIS) model (Shaffer 2014) is forced by reconstructed time series of Antarctic temperature, global sea level and ocean subsurface temperature over the last two glacial cycles. In this talk a modelling work of the Antarctic ice sheet over most of the Cenozoic era using...... the DAIS model will be presented. G. Shaffer (2014) Formulation, calibration and validation of the DAIS model (version 1), a simple Antarctic ice sheet model sensitive to variations of sea level and ocean subsurface temperature, Geosci. Model Dev., 7, 1803‐1818...

  1. Soil thermal regime on ice-free areas in Livingston Island and James Ross Island, Antarctic Peninsula region

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    Hrbáček, Filip; Oliva, Marc; Láska, Kamil; Ruiz-Fernández, Jesús; Ángel de Pablo, Miguel; Vieira, Gonçalo; Ramos, Miguel; Nývlt, Daniel

    2016-04-01

    Permafrost and active layer are considered prominent components of the Cryosphere, which react very sensitively to small climate variations. The Antarctic Peninsula (AP) region is considered as one of the fastest warming regions on Earth, where mean annual air temperature locally increased more than 2.5°C over the last 60 years. Significant climate differences are found between the eastern and western sides of the AP. While mean annual air temperatures (MAAT) oscillate around -1 to -2 °C and precipitation reach 800 mm w.e. year-1 in the western AP, the MAAT in the eastern AP are below -6 °C and precipitation does not exceed 500 mm. These differences determine different permafrost thickness and spatial distribution in these two regions, as well as diverse patterns of active layer dynamics. With the purpose to better understand the factors controlling the soil thermal regime in maritime permafrost environments, we examine data from 2014 acquired from several sites in Livingston Island (western AP) and James Ross Island (eastern AP). The study sites show similar characteristics in terms of topography (slope Ross Island ranged from -7.0 to -7.9 °C. Mean soil temperature at 5 cm depth was slightly higher than air temperature in both areas: -0.7 to -1.3 °C in Livingston Island and -6.2 to -6.3 °C in James Ross Island; the same occurred for soil temperature at 75 cm: -0.4 to -0.7 °C in Livingston Island and -6.0 to -6.6 °C James Ross Island. Significantly lower values of mean daily amplitude of soil temperature at 5 cm depth and the freezing n-factor values observed during the freezing season on Livingston Island suggest a pronounced insulating effect of snow cover in this area in comparison to James Ross Island. The mean daily amplitude of soil temperature at 5 cm ranged from 0.9 to 1.7 °C in Livingston Island, while it reached 3.0 to 4.0 °C in James Ross Island. The freezing n-factor reached 0.33 and 0.63 on Livingston Island, while 0.88 and 0.98 were

  2. Holocene climate variations in the western Antarctic Peninsula: evidence for sea ice extent predominantly controlled by changes in insolation and ENSO variability

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    Etourneau, J.; Collins, L.G.; Willmott, V.; Barbara, L.; Leventer, A.; Schouten, S.; Sinninghe Damsté, J.S.; Bianchini, A.; Klein, V.; Crosta, X.; Massé, G.

    2013-01-01

    The West Antarctic ice sheet is particularly sensitive to global warming and its evolution and impact on global climate over the next few decades remains difficult to predict. In this context, investigating past sea ice conditions around Antarctica is of primary importance. Here, we document changes

  3. A paleomagnetic study of the Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poblete, F.; Arriagada, C.; Roperch, P.

    2009-05-01

    In the Paleozoic, South America, South Africa and Antarctica were part of Gondwana. The Weddell Sea began to form at about 146 Ma, after rifting between the Antarctic Peninsula and southernmost South America. Much uncertainty still exists about the geometrical fit and subsequent drift history between Patagonia and Antarctica. Geophysical and geological data which describe the tectonic history are sparsely distributed and often of poor quality. During the last two years we have collected more than 1000 paleomagnetic samples from 70 sites at several localities (King George Island, Robert Island, Yankee Bay, Half Moon Island, Byers Peninsula and Snow Island) from the South Shetland Islands and Anderson Island in the northern tip of Antarctic Peninsula. Our main objective was to provide first-order constraints on latitudinal displacements and the amount of tectonic rotations as an essential test of published tectonic models. Paleomagnetic results were obtained from 50 sites. All samples from sites in volcanic and intrusive rocks have well-defined univectorial magnetizations. Unfortunately, all sites in late Paleozoic sediments have been remagnetized and the magnetizations are often unstable upon thermal demagnetization. Cretaceous and Cenozoic units display very little apparent polar wander. Results from intrusive rocks of expected Jurassic age do not confirm the expected relative rotation betwen the Antarctic Peninsula and East Antarctica. Further radiometric dating are needed to confirm the age of these units.

  4. On high-resolution sampling of short ice cores: dating and temperature information recovery from Antarctic Peninsula virtual cores

    OpenAIRE

    Sime, Louise; Lang, Nicola; Thomas, Elizabeth; Benton, Ailsa; Mulvaney, Robert

    2011-01-01

    Recent developments in ice melter systems and continuous flow analysis (CFA) techniques now allow higher-resolution ice core analysis. Here, we present a new method to aid interpretation of high-resolution ice core stable water isotope records. Using a set of simple isotopic recording and postdepositional assumptions, the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts' 40 year reanalysis time series of temperature and precipitation are converted to “virtual core” depth series across the A...

  5. Age, geographical distribution and taphonomy of an unusual occurrence of mummified crabeater seals on James Ross Island, Antarctic Peninsula

    OpenAIRE

    Nelson, A. E.; Smellie, J. L.; Williams, M.; Moreton, S.

    2008-01-01

    An unusually dense collection of some 150 dead crabeater seals (Family Phocidae), in various stages of decay, occurs in the Brandy Bay hinterland, north-western James Ross Island, northern Antarctic Peninsula. Throughout the past 100 years, the presence of shelf ice (no longer present today) and sea ice in Prince Gustav Channel, between James Ross Island and the Antarctic Peninsula, has prevented seals from readily accessing the western side of James Ross Island. However, open water pools, so...

  6. Spatial-temporal characters of Antarctic sea ice variation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ma Lijuan; Lu Longhua; Bian Lingen

    2004-01-01

    Using sea ice concentration dataset covering the period of 1968-2002 obtained from the Hadley Center of UK, this paper investigates characters of Antarctic sea ice variations .The finding demonstrates that the change of mean sea-ice extent is almost consistent with that of sea-ice area, so sea-ice extent can be chosen to go on this research. The maximum and the minimum of Antarctic sea ice appear in September and February respectively. The maximum and the maximal variation of sea ice appear in Weddell Sea and Ross Sea, while the minimum and the minimal variation of sea-ice appear in Antarctic Peninsula. In recent 35 years, as a whole, Antarctic sea ice decreased distinctly. Moreover, there are 5 subdivision characteristic regions considering their different variations. Hereinto, the sea-ice extent of Weddell Sea and Ross Sea regions extends and area increases, while the sea-ice extent of the other three regions contracts and area decreases. They are all of obvious 2-4 years and 5-7 years significant oscillation periods. It is of significance for further understanding the sea-ice-air interaction in Antarctica region and discussing the relationship between sea-ice variation and atmospheric circulation.

  7. Is the Wilkins Ice Shelf a Firn Aquifer? Spaceborne Observation of Subsurface Winter Season Liquid Meltwater Storage on the Antarctic Peninsula using Multi-Frequency Active and Passive Microwave Remote Sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, J.; Scambos, T.; Forster, R. R.; Long, D. G.; Ligtenberg, S.; van den Broeke, M.; Vaughan, D. G.

    2015-12-01

    Near-surface liquid meltwater on ice shelves has been inferred to influence ice shelf stability if it induces hydrofracture and is linked to disintegration events on the Larsen B and the Wilkins ice shelves on the Antarctic Peninsula during the summer months. While the initial Wilkins disintegration event occurred in March of 2009, two smaller disintegration events followed in May and in July of that year. It has long been assumed meltwater refreezes soon after surface melt processes cease. Given this assumption, an earlier hypothesis for the two winter season disintegration events was hydrofracture via a brine infiltration layer. Two lines of evidence supported this hypothesis 1) early airborne radar surveys did not record a reflection from the bottom of the ice shelf, and 2) a shallow core drilled in 1972 on the Wilkins encountered liquid water at a depth of ~7 m. The salinity of the water and the temperature at the base of the core, however, were not described. The recent discovery of winter season liquid meltwater storage on the Greenland ice sheet has changed perceptions on meltwater longevity at depth in firn. Evidence of Greenland's firn aquifer includes liquid meltwater encountered in shallow firn cores at 5 m depth and a lack of reflections from the base of the ice sheet in airborne surveys. Thus, previous lines of evidence suggesting brine infiltration may alternatively suggest the presence of a perennial firn aquifer. We recently demonstrated the capability for observation of Greenland's firn aquifer from space using multi-frequency active and passive microwave remote sensing. This research exploits the retrieval technique developed for Greenland to provide the first spaceborne mappings of winter season liquid meltwater storage on the Wilkins. We combine L-band brightness temperature and backscatter data from the MIRAS instrument (1.4 GHz) aboard ESA's Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity mission and the radar (1.3 GHZ) and radiometer(1.4 GHz) aboard NASA

  8. The seasonal cycle of ocean-atmosphere CO2 Flux in Ryder Bay, West Antarctic Peninsula.

    OpenAIRE

    Legge, Oliver J.; Bakker, Dorothee C. E.; Johnson, Martin T.; Meredith, Michael P.; Venables, Hugh J.; Brown, Peter J.; Lee, Gareth A.

    2015-01-01

    Approximately 15 million km2 of the Southern Ocean is seasonally ice covered, yet the processes affecting carbon cycling and gas exchange in this climatically important region remain inadequately understood. Here, 3 years of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) measurements and carbon dioxide (CO2) fluxes from Ryder Bay on the west Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) are presented. During spring and summer, primary production in the surface ocean promotes atmospheric CO2 uptake. In winter, higher DIC, caus...

  9. Antarctic Sea Ice Patterns and Its Relationship with Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barreira, S.

    2015-12-01

    Antarctic sea ice concentration fields show a strong seasonal and interannual variation closely tied to changes in climate patterns. The Ross, Amundsen, Bellingshausen, and Weddell Seas during Summer-Autumn and the Southern Ocean regions north of these areas during Winter-Spring have the greatest sea ice variability. Principal components analysis in T- mode, Varimax-rotated applied on Antarctic monthly sea ice concentration anomaly (SICA) fields for 1979-2015 (NASA Team algorithm data sets available at nsidc.org) revealed the main spatial characteristics of Antarctic sea ice patterns and their relationship with atmospheric circulation. This analysis yielded five patterns of sea ice for winter-spring and three patterns for summer-autumn, each of which has a positive and negative phase. To understand the links between the SICA patterns and climate, we extracted the mean pressure and temperature fields for the months with high loadings (positive or negative) of the sea ice patterns. The first pattern of winter-spring sea ice concentration is a dipole structure between the Drake Passage and northern regions of the Bellingshausen and Weddell Seas and, the South Atlantic Ocean. The negative phase shows a strong negative SICA over the Atlantic basin. This pattern can be associated with to the atmospheric structures related to a positive SAM index and a wave-3 arrangement around the continent. That is, a strong negative pressure anomaly centered over the Bellingshausen Sea accompanied by three positive pressure anomalies in middle-latitudes. For summer-autumn, the first pattern shows two strong positive SICA areas, in the eastern Weddell Sea and the northwestern Ross Sea. A negative SICA covers the Amundsen-Bellingshausen Seas and northwest of the Antarctic Peninsula. This pattern, frequently seen in summers since 2008, is associated with cool conditions over the Weddell Sea but warmer temperatures and high surface air pressure west, north and northwest of the Peninsula.

  10. Global dynamics of the Antarctic ice sheet

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oerlemans, J.

    2002-01-01

    The total mass budget of the Antarctic ice sheet is studied with a simple axi-symmetrical model. The ice-sheet has a parabolic profile resting on a bed that slopes linearly downwards from the centre of the ice sheet into the ocean. The mean ice velocity at the grounding line is assumed to be proport

  11. Concentration and environmental significance of lead in surface snow of Antarctic ice sheet (III)

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    秦大河; 任贾文; 孙俊英; 陈瓞延; 文克玲; 李良权

    1995-01-01

    Lead as an ultra-trace heavy metal becomes one of popular topics in glaciochemistry of the Antarctic ice sheet, because of its very low concertration (pg·g-1) and background and its sensitivity to the quality of the environment. The lead concentration of surface snow of the Antarctic ice sheet (corresponding to modern precipitation) applying LEAF technique by Chinese scholars has systematically been studied for the first time in the world. The distribution principle of lead concentration of surface snow of the Antarctic ice sheet is "low in the west and high in the east" along the route of 1990 International Trans-Antarctic Expedition (ITAE). The concentration of lead in East Antarctica is 2 - 3 fold higher than that in Larsen ice shelf and Antarctic Peninsula, which majorly results from the activity of pre-Soviet Antarctic Expedition The concentration of lead in Larsen ice shelf and Antarctic Peninsula can be regarded as the background value of modern precipitation of the Antarctic ice sheet in the en

  12. Biodiversity change after climate-induced ice-shelf collapse in the Antarctic

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gutt, J.; Barratt, I.; Domack, E.; Scheidat, M.

    2011-01-01

    The marine ecosystem on the eastern shelf of the Antarctic Peninsula was surveyed 5 and 12 years after the climate-induced collapse of the Larsen A and B ice shelves. An impoverished benthic fauna was discovered, that included deep-sea species presumed to be remnants from ice-covered conditions. The

  13. Geodetic implications on block formation and geodynamic domains in the South Shetland Islands, Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berrocoso, M.; Fernández-Ros, A.; Prates, G.; García, A.; Kraus, S.

    2016-01-01

    The South Shetland Islands archipelago is dynamically complex due to its tectonic surroundings. Most islands are part of a formerly active volcanic arc, although Deception, Penguin and Bridgeman Islands, as well as several submarine volcanoes, are characterized by active back-arc volcanism. Geodetic benchmarks were deployed and the movement of the lithosphere to which they were fixed measured to provide geodynamic insight for the South Shetland Islands, Bransfield Basin and Antarctic Peninsula area based on surface deformation. These benchmarks' data add spatial and temporal coverage to previous results. The results reveal two different geodynamic patterns, each confined to a distinct part of the South Shetland Islands archipelago. The inferred absolute horizontal velocity vectors for the benchmarks in the northeastern part of the archipelago are consistent with the opening of the Bransfield Basin, while benchmark vectors in the southwestern part of the archipelago are similar to those of the benchmarks on the Antarctic Peninsula. In between, Snow, Deception and Livingston Islands represent a transition zone. In this area, the horizontal velocity vectors relative to the Antarctic plate shift northeastwards from N to NW. Furthermore, the South Shetland Islands benchmarks, except for that at Gibbs (Elephant) Islands, indicate subsidence, which might be a consequence of the slab roll-back at the South Shetland Trench. In contrast, the uplift revealed by the Antarctic Peninsula benchmarks suggests glacial isostatic adjustment after the Larson B ice-shelf breakup.

  14. Contrasting Arctic and Antarctic sea ice temperatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vancoppenolle, Martin; Raphael, Marilyn; Rousset, Clément; Vivier, Frédéric; Moreau, Sébastien; Delille, Bruno; Tison, Jean-Louis

    2016-04-01

    Sea ice temperature affects the sea ice growth rate, heat content, permeability and habitability for ice algae. Large-scale simulations with NEMO-LIM suggest large ice temperature contrasts between the Arctic and the Antarctic sea ice. First, Antarctic sea ice proves generally warmer than in the Arctic, in particular during winter, where differences reach up to ~10°C. Second, the seasonality of temperature is different among the two hemispheres: Antarctic ice temperatures are 2-3°C higher in spring than they are in fall, whereas the opposite is true in the Arctic. These two key differences are supported by the available ice core and mass balance buoys temperature observations, and can be attributed to differences in air temperature and snow depth. As a result, the ice is found to be habitable and permeable over much larger areas and much earlier in late spring in the Antarctic as compared with the Arctic, which consequences on biogeochemical exchanges in the sea ice zone remain to be evaluated.

  15. Impact of the El Nino on the Variability of the Antarctic Sea Ice Extent

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陈锦年; 褚健婷; 徐兰英

    2004-01-01

    In this paper, the spreading way in the southern hemisphere that anomalous warm water piled in tropical eastern Pacific is analysed and then impact of El Nino on the variability of the Antarctic sea ice extent is investigated by using a dataset from 1970 to 2002. The analysis result show that in El Nino event the anomalous warm water piled in tropical eastern Pacific is poleward propagation yet the westward propagation along southern equator current hasn 't been discovered . The poleward propagation time of the anomalous warm water is about 1 year or so. El Nino event has a close relationship with the sea ice extent in the Amundsen sea , Bellingshausen sea and Antarctic peninsula. After El Nino appears , there is a lag of two years that the sea ice in the Amundsen sea , Bellingshausea sea, especially in the Antarctic peninsula decreases obviously. The processes that El Nino has influence with Antarctic sea ice extent is the warm water piled in tropical eastern Pacific poleward propagation along off the coast of southern America and cause the anomalous temperature raise in near pole and then lead the sea ice in Amundsen sea , Bellingshausen sea and Antarctic peninsula to decrease where the obvious decrease of the sea ice since 80 'decade has close relation to the frequently appearance of El Nino.

  16. Tephrochronology : Methodology and correlations, Antarctic Peninsula Area

    OpenAIRE

    Molén, Mats

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Methods for tephrochronology are evaluated, in the following way: Lake sediments <500 years old from three small Antarctic lakes were analysed for identification of tephras. Subsamples were analysed for a) grain size, and identification and concentration of volcanogenic grains, b) identification of tephra horizons, c) element abundance by EPMA WDS/EDS and LA-ICP-MS, and d) possible correlations between lakes and volcanoes. Volcanogenic minerals and shards were found all through th...

  17. Blue and fin whale acoustics and ecology off Antarctic Peninsula

    OpenAIRE

    Sirovic, Ana

    2006-01-01

    Blue (Balaenoptera musculus) and fin whales (B. physalus) in the Southern Ocean were subjects of extensive whaling industry during the twentieth century. Their current population numbers remain low, making population monitoring using traditional visual surveys difficult. Both blue and fin whales produce low frequency, regularly repeated calls and are suitable for acoustic monitoring. Eight, continuously recording acoustic recorders were deployed off the Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) betwe...

  18. Sediment fluxes of an Antarctic palaeo-ice stream system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hogan, Kelly; Larter, Robert; Smith, James; Hillenbrand, Claus-Dieter

    2016-04-01

    New marine-geophysical data (multibeam bathymetry, high-resolution acoustic profiles) acquired in 2014 have been integrated with heritage multichannel seismic-reflection and deep-tow boomer profiles from Anvers-Hugo Trough, western Antarctic Peninsula. From these datasets we have identified seismic facies relating to ice-stream advance and flow, ice-stream retreat, and post-glacial sedimentation processes. We identify multiple subglacial seismic units forming MSGL and other streamlined landforms at a variety of size scales. This may be indicative of multiple generations of ice-flow through the confluent ice-stream system. We also calculate the sediment volumes of a series of grounding-zone wedges (GZWs) located on the outer and mid-shelf that were produced during several stillstands in the trough as the grounded ice margin retreated through the system during deglaciation around c. 15-13 ka (from published core chronologies). Based on these volumes we consider the likely rates of subglacial sediment delivery by the Anvers Trough palaeo-ice stream and compare these to inferred flux rates from other palaeo- and modern Antarctic ice streams. In addition, we map the post-glacial glacimarine sediment package in the trough. Large mapped sediment thicknesses of this unit across the trough are consistent with high post-glacial sediment accumulation rates reported from cores acquired in the Anvers-Hugo Trough system. Previous authors have attributed this to exceptionally high primary productivity in a calving-bay re-entrant settings produced as ice retreated across the shelf on this part of the Antarctic margin.

  19. Distributions of surface sediments surrounding the Antarctic Peninsula and its environmental significance

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Chunjuan; CHEN Zhihua; LI Chunshun; DU Dewen; YAN Shijuan; ZHU Zhiwei

    2014-01-01

    We analyzed grain size composition to provide information on the types and distributions as well as depositional varieties of marine surface sediments from the area surrounding the Antarctic Peninsula. The samples retrieved from the study area contain gravel, sand, silt and clay. As suggested by bathymetry and morphology, the study area is characterized by neritic, hemipelagic and pelagic deposits. The glacial-marine sediments can be divided into two types, residual paratill and compound paratill, which are primarily transported by glaciers and as ice-rafted debris. Ocean current effects on deposition are more obvious, and the deposit types are distributed consistently with terrain variations.

  20. Absence of 21st century warming on Antarctic Peninsula consistent with natural variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, John; Lu, Hua; White, Ian; King, John C; Phillips, Tony; Hosking, J Scott; Bracegirdle, Thomas J; Marshall, Gareth J; Mulvaney, Robert; Deb, Pranab

    2016-07-21

    Since the 1950s, research stations on the Antarctic Peninsula have recorded some of the largest increases in near-surface air temperature in the Southern Hemisphere. This warming has contributed to the regional retreat of glaciers, disintegration of floating ice shelves and a 'greening' through the expansion in range of various flora. Several interlinked processes have been suggested as contributing to the warming, including stratospheric ozone depletion, local sea-ice loss, an increase in westerly winds, and changes in the strength and location of low-high-latitude atmospheric teleconnections. Here we use a stacked temperature record to show an absence of regional warming since the late 1990s. The annual mean temperature has decreased at a statistically significant rate, with the most rapid cooling during the Austral summer. Temperatures have decreased as a consequence of a greater frequency of cold, east-to-southeasterly winds, resulting from more cyclonic conditions in the northern Weddell Sea associated with a strengthening mid-latitude jet. These circulation changes have also increased the advection of sea ice towards the east coast of the peninsula, amplifying their effects. Our findings cover only 1% of the Antarctic continent and emphasize that decadal temperature changes in this region are not primarily associated with the drivers of global temperature change but, rather, reflect the extreme natural internal variability of the regional atmospheric circulation.

  1. Absence of 21st century warming on Antarctic Peninsula consistent with natural variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, John; Lu, Hua; White, Ian; King, John C.; Phillips, Tony; Hosking, J. Scott; Bracegirdle, Thomas J.; Marshall, Gareth J.; Mulvaney, Robert; Deb, Pranab

    2016-07-01

    Since the 1950s, research stations on the Antarctic Peninsula have recorded some of the largest increases in near-surface air temperature in the Southern Hemisphere. This warming has contributed to the regional retreat of glaciers, disintegration of floating ice shelves and a ‘greening’ through the expansion in range of various flora. Several interlinked processes have been suggested as contributing to the warming, including stratospheric ozone depletion, local sea-ice loss, an increase in westerly winds, and changes in the strength and location of low–high-latitude atmospheric teleconnections. Here we use a stacked temperature record to show an absence of regional warming since the late 1990s. The annual mean temperature has decreased at a statistically significant rate, with the most rapid cooling during the Austral summer. Temperatures have decreased as a consequence of a greater frequency of cold, east-to-southeasterly winds, resulting from more cyclonic conditions in the northern Weddell Sea associated with a strengthening mid-latitude jet. These circulation changes have also increased the advection of sea ice towards the east coast of the peninsula, amplifying their effects. Our findings cover only 1% of the Antarctic continent and emphasize that decadal temperature changes in this region are not primarily associated with the drivers of global temperature change but, rather, reflect the extreme natural internal variability of the regional atmospheric circulation.

  2. Absence of 21st century warming on Antarctic Peninsula consistent with natural variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, John; Lu, Hua; White, Ian; King, John C; Phillips, Tony; Hosking, J Scott; Bracegirdle, Thomas J; Marshall, Gareth J; Mulvaney, Robert; Deb, Pranab

    2016-07-21

    Since the 1950s, research stations on the Antarctic Peninsula have recorded some of the largest increases in near-surface air temperature in the Southern Hemisphere. This warming has contributed to the regional retreat of glaciers, disintegration of floating ice shelves and a 'greening' through the expansion in range of various flora. Several interlinked processes have been suggested as contributing to the warming, including stratospheric ozone depletion, local sea-ice loss, an increase in westerly winds, and changes in the strength and location of low-high-latitude atmospheric teleconnections. Here we use a stacked temperature record to show an absence of regional warming since the late 1990s. The annual mean temperature has decreased at a statistically significant rate, with the most rapid cooling during the Austral summer. Temperatures have decreased as a consequence of a greater frequency of cold, east-to-southeasterly winds, resulting from more cyclonic conditions in the northern Weddell Sea associated with a strengthening mid-latitude jet. These circulation changes have also increased the advection of sea ice towards the east coast of the peninsula, amplifying their effects. Our findings cover only 1% of the Antarctic continent and emphasize that decadal temperature changes in this region are not primarily associated with the drivers of global temperature change but, rather, reflect the extreme natural internal variability of the regional atmospheric circulation. PMID:27443743

  3. Spatial and temporal characteristics of the little ice age: The Antarctic ice core record

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recently, ice core records from both hemispheres, in conjunction with other proxy records (e.g., tree rings, speleothems and corals), have shown that the Little Ice Age (LIA) was spatially extensive, extending to the Antarctic. This paper examines the temporal and spatial characteristics of the dust and δ18O information from Antarctic ice cores. Substantial differences exist in the records. For example, a 550- year record of δ18O and dust concentrations from Siple Station, Antarctica suggests that warmer, less dusty conditions prevailed from A.D. 1600 to 1830. Alternately, dust and δ118O data from South Pole Station indicate that opposite conditions (e.g., cooler and more dusty) were prevalent during the LIA. Three additional Antarctic δ18O records are integrated with the Siple and South Pole histories for a more comprehensive picture of LIA conditions. The records provide additional support for the LIA temperature opposition between the Antarctic Peninsula region and East Antarctica. In addition, periods of strongest LIA cooling are not temporally synchronous over East Antarctica. These strong regional differences demonstrate that a suite of spatially distributed, high resolution ice core records will be necessary to characterize the LIA in Antarctica

  4. Microbial mercury methylation in Antarctic sea ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gionfriddo, Caitlin M; Tate, Michael T; Wick, Ryan R; Schultz, Mark B; Zemla, Adam; Thelen, Michael P; Schofield, Robyn; Krabbenhoft, David P; Holt, Kathryn E; Moreau, John W

    2016-01-01

    Atmospheric deposition of mercury onto sea ice and circumpolar sea water provides mercury for microbial methylation, and contributes to the bioaccumulation of the potent neurotoxin methylmercury in the marine food web. Little is known about the abiotic and biotic controls on microbial mercury methylation in polar marine systems. However, mercury methylation is known to occur alongside photochemical and microbial mercury reduction and subsequent volatilization. Here, we combine mercury speciation measurements of total and methylated mercury with metagenomic analysis of whole-community microbial DNA from Antarctic snow, brine, sea ice and sea water to elucidate potential microbially mediated mercury methylation and volatilization pathways in polar marine environments. Our results identify the marine microaerophilic bacterium Nitrospina as a potential mercury methylator within sea ice. Anaerobic bacteria known to methylate mercury were notably absent from sea-ice metagenomes. We propose that Antarctic sea ice can harbour a microbial source of methylmercury in the Southern Ocean. PMID:27670112

  5. Environmental responses of the Northeast Antarctic Peninsula to the Holocene climate variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbara, Loïc.; Crosta, Xavier; Leventer, Amy; Schmidt, Sabine; Etourneau, Johan; Domack, Eugene; Massé, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

    In this study, we present a unique high-resolution Holocene record of oceanographic and climatic change based on analyses of diatom assemblages combined with biomarker data from a sediment core collected from the Vega Drift, eastern Antarctic Peninsula (EAP). These data add to the climate framework already established by high-resolution marine sedimentary records from the Palmer Deep, western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP). Heavy sea ice conditions and reduced primary productivity were observed prior to 7.4 ka B.P. in relation with the proximity of the glacial ice melt and calving. Subsequent Holocene oceanographic conditions were controlled by the interactions between the Westerlies-Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC)-Weddell Gyre dynamics. A warm period characterized by short seasonal sea ice duration associated with a southern shift of both ACC and Westerlies field persisted until 5 ka B.P. This warm episode was then followed by climate deterioration during the middle-to-late Holocene (5 to 1.9 ka B.P.) with a gradual increase in annual sea ice duration triggered by the expansion of the Weddell Gyre and a strong oceanic connection from the EAP to the WAP. Increase of benthic diatom species during this period was indicative of more summer/autumn storms, which was consistent with changes in synoptic atmospheric circulation and the establishment of low- to high-latitude teleconnections. Finally, the multicentennial scale variability of the Weddell Gyre intensity and storm frequency during the late Holocene appeared to be associated with the increased El Niño-Southern Oscillation frequency.

  6. Distribution of clay minerals in drift sediments on the continental rise west of the Antarctic Peninsula, ODP Leg 178, Sites 1095 and 1096

    OpenAIRE

    Hillenbrand, C.-D.; W. Ehrmann

    2001-01-01

    The clay mineral compositions of upper Miocene to Quaternary sediments recovered at Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Leg 178, Sites 1095 and 1096, from the continental rise west of the Antarctic Peninsula were analyzed in order to reconstruct the Neogene and Quaternary Antarctic paleoclimate and ice dynamics. The clay mineral assemblages are dominated by smectite, illite, and chlorite. Kaolinite occurs only in trace amounts. Analysis of a surface-sample data set facilitates the assignment of thes...

  7. Marine Ecosystem Response to Rapid Climate Warming on the West Antarctic Peninsula (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ducklow, H.; Baker, K. S.; Doney, S. C.; Fraser, B.; Martinson, D. G.; Meredith, M. P.; Montes-Hugo, M. A.; Sailley, S.; Schofield, O.; Sherrell, R. M.; Stammerjohn, S. E.; Steinberg, D. K.

    2010-12-01

    The Palmer, Antarctica LTER builds on meteorological, ocean color and seabird observations since the late 1970s. It occupies annually in summer a regional-scale grid extending 700 km northward from Charcot Island to Anvers Island, and 200 km cross-shelf from the coast to the shelfbreak. In addition to routine CTD profiles and zooplankton tows throughout the grid, the observing system also includes Slocum Glider surveys and thermistor moorings. Geophysical changes include +6C atmospheric warming in winter since 1950, a 20% increase in heat content over the continental shelf since 1990, a surface ocean warming of +1C since 1950, an 83-day reduction in sea ice duration (advance 48 days later, retreat 35 days earlier) over the greater southern Bellingshausen Sea region from 1979-2007, intensification of westerly winds and differential changes in cloudiness. In response to these large changes in the regional climate, the marine ecosystem of the western Peninsula is changing at all trophic levels from diatoms to penguins. Ocean color indicates differential changes in phytoplankton stocks in response to regional decreases in sea ice cover. Surface chlorophyll has declined 89% in the north and increased 67% in the south. Antarctic krill and salps have declined and increased in our study area, respectively. Penguin diet sampling suggests changes in populations or distributions of the Antarctic Silverfish in the Anvers Island vicinity, possibly in response to ocean warming. Adélie penguins have declined 75% from 15000 to food availability and increased late spring snow accumulation. Changes in pygoscelid penguin breeding populations in the Anvers Island vicinity of the West Antarctic Peninsula

  8. Land Ice: Greenland & Antarctic ice mass anomaly

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Data from NASA's Grace satellites show that the land ice sheets in both Antarctica and Greenland are losing mass. The continent of Antarctica (left chart) has been...

  9. Late Holocene tephrochronology of the northern Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Björck, Svante; Sandgren, Per; Zale, Rolf

    1991-11-01

    Andesitic and basaltic andesitic tephra layers are abundant in Holocene deposits from the Antarctic Peninsula. Visually discernible tephra horizons occur in three lakes on Livingston Island. Tephra in two other lakes and in a moss bank on Elephant Island, with very low ash concentrations, were detected magnetically. Deception Island is the most likely volcanic source for the tephra. With direct 14C dating, age/depth curves, and cross-correlations at least 14 tephra horizons dating to between ca. 4700 and 250 yr B.P. were identified and now form the basis for a preliminary regional tephrochronology that will be a valuable dating tool for investigating the Holocene climatic history of Antarctica.

  10. Ocean forcing of glacier retreat in the western Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, A J; Holland, P R; Meredith, M P; Murray, T; Luckman, A; Vaughan, D G

    2016-07-15

    In recent decades, hundreds of glaciers draining the Antarctic Peninsula (63° to 70°S) have undergone systematic and progressive change. These changes are widely attributed to rapid increases in regional surface air temperature, but it is now clear that this cannot be the sole driver. Here, we identify a strong correspondence between mid-depth ocean temperatures and glacier-front changes along the ~1000-kilometer western coastline. In the south, glaciers that terminate in warm Circumpolar Deep Water have undergone considerable retreat, whereas those in the far northwest, which terminate in cooler waters, have not. Furthermore, a mid-ocean warming since the 1990s in the south is coincident with widespread acceleration of glacier retreat. We conclude that changes in ocean-induced melting are the primary cause of retreat for glaciers in this region. PMID:27418507

  11. Antarctic Ice-Sheet Mass Balance from Satellite Altimetry 1992 to 2001

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwally, H. Jay; Brenner, Anita C.; Cornejo, Helen; Giovinetto, Mario; Saba, Jack L.; Yi, Donghui

    2003-01-01

    A major uncertainty in understanding the causes of the current rate of sea level rise is the potential contributions from mass imbalances of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. Estimates of the current mass balance of the Antarctic ice sheet are derived from surface- elevation changes obtained from 9 years of ERS - 1 & 2 radar altimeter data. Elevation time-series are created from altimeter crossovers among 90-day data periods on a 50 km grid to 81.5 S. The time series are fit with a multivariate linear/sinusoidal function to give the average rate of elevation change (dH/dt). On the major Rome-Filchner, Ross, and Amery ice shelves, the W d t are small or near zero. In contrast, the ice shelves of the Antarctic Peninsula and along the West Antarctic coast appear to be thinning significantly, with a 23 +/- 3 cm per year surface elevation decrease on the Larsen ice shelf and a 65 +/- 4 cm per year decrease on the Dotson ice shelf. On the grounded ice, significant elevation decreases are obtained over most of the drainage basins of the Pine Island and Thwaites glaciers in West Antarctica and inland of Law Dome in East Antarctica. Significant elevation increases are observed within about 200 km of the coast around much of the rest of the ice sheet. Farther inland, the changes are a mixed pattern of increases and decreases with increases of a few centimeters per year at the highest elevations of the East Antarctic plateau. The derived elevation changes are combined with estimates of the bedrock uplift from several models to provide maps of ice thickness change. The ice thickness changes enable estimates of the ice mass balances for the major drainage basins, the overall mass balance, and the current contribution of the ice sheet to global sea level change.

  12. Transformations of landscape and peat-forming ecosystems in response to late Holocene climate change in the western Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Zicheng; Beilman, David W.; Loisel, Julie

    2016-07-01

    We used subfossil mosses and peats to document changes in regional climate, cryosphere, and terrestrial ecosystems in the western Antarctic Peninsula at ~65°S latitude. We find that most peat forming ecosystems have initiated since 2800 cal B.P., in response to warmer summers and increasing summer insolation. The period at 900-600 cal B.P. was coldest as indicated by ice advance, abundance of kill ages from ice-entombed mosses exposed recently from retreating glacial ice, and apparent gap in peatbank initiation. Furthermore, the discovery of a novel Antarctic hairgrass (Deschampsia antarctica) peatland at 2300-1200 cal B.P. from the mainland Antarctic Peninsula suggests a much warmer climate than the present. A warming and wetting climate in the 1980s caused very high carbon accumulation in a Polytrichum strictum moss peatbank. Our results document dramatic transformations of landscape and ecosystems in response to past warmer climate, providing a telltale sign for what may come in the future.

  13. Multichannel Seismic Investigations of Sediment Drifts off West Antarctica and the Antarctic Peninsula: Preliminary Results from Research Cruise JR298

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larter, R. D.; Graham, A. G. C.; Hernandez-Molina, J.; Channell, J. E. T.; Hillenbrand, C. D.; Hogan, K. A.; Uenzelmann-Neben, G.; Gohl, K.; Rebesco, M.; Hodell, D. A.

    2015-12-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) and Antarctic Peninsula Ice Sheet (APIS) have exhibited significant changes over recent decades but there is still great uncertainty about how rapidly and how far they will retreat in a warmer climate. For example, it remains unclear whether or not the marine-based WAIS "collapsed" during the last interglacial period, resulting in a global sea-level rise contribution of more than 3 m. Previous studies, including Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Leg 178, have shown that sediment drifts on the continental rise west of the Antarctic Peninsula contain a rich high-resolution archive of Antarctic margin paleoceanography and APIS history that extends back to at least the Late Miocene. The potential of existing ODP cores from the drifts is, however, compromised by the fact that composite sections are incomplete and lack of precise chronological control. A new drilling proposal (732-Full2) has been scientifically approved and is with the JOIDES Resolution Facilities Board of the International Ocean Discovery Program for scheduling. The main aims of the proposal are to obtain continuous, high-resolution records from sites on sediment drifts off both the Antarctic Peninsula and West Antarctica (southern Bellingshausen Sea) and to achieve good chronological control on them using a range of techniques. We present preliminary results from a recent site survey investigation cruise on RRS James Clark Ross (JR298) that obtained high-resolution multichannel seismic reflection data over the proposed sites and adjacent working areas. The new data provide a basis for interpretation of (i) sedimentary processes that operated during the development of the drifts, and (ii) links between depositional systems on the continental rise, paleo-ice-sheet dynamics and paleoceanographic processes. Through further analyses of seismic and other geophysical data, in combination with marine sediment cores retrieved from the proposed sites, we aim to provide insight into

  14. Multichannel Seismic Reflection Data - SCAR - Antarctic Peninsula - 1988-1989, SDLS CD-ROM vol 25

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data are stacked multichannel marine seismic reflection data recorded during 1988-89 in the Antarctic Peninsula, Antarctica, by the Japan National Oil...

  15. Multichannel Seismic Reflection Data - SCAR - Antarctic Peninsula 1987-88, SDLS CD-ROM vol 24

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data are stacked multichannel marine seismic reflection data recorded during 1987-88 in the Antarctic Peninsula, Antarctica, by the Japan National Oil...

  16. Multichannel Seismic Reflection Data - SCAR - Antarctic Peninsula - 1985, SDLS CD-ROM vol 16

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data are stacked multichannel marine seismic reflection data recorded during 1985 field season along the north side of the Antarctic-Peninsula by the British...

  17. Snow chemistry measurements on James Ross Island (Antarctic Peninsula) showing sea-salt aerosol modifications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aristarain, A.J. [Instituto Antartico Argentino (Argentina). Lab. de Estratigrafia Glaciar y Geoquimica de la Nieve; Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Cientificas y Tecnicas, Mendoza (Argentina); Delmas, R.J. [Laboratoire de Glaciologie et Geophysique de l' Environnement du CNRS, St Martin d' Heres (France)

    2002-07-01

    The fractionation of atmospheric sea-salt has been investigated by glaciochemical analysis of the sea-salt deposited on the snow covering the small ice cap of James Ross Island, Antarctic Peninsula, at an elevation of 1640m. The data show that, generally, but not always, the sea-salt deposited at this location most likely originates directly from seawater, as is the case at lower latitudes. It is found that the original chemical composition of the sea-salt aerosol is significantly modified, in particular by the reaction of sea-salt particles in the atmosphere with acid species. A ternary diagram (sodium, chloride, sulfate) is used to enlighten the involved modification processes. The study points out the frequent formation of HCl in the regional atmosphere. (Author)

  18. Tropical pacing of Antarctic sea ice increase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, D. P.

    2015-12-01

    One reason why coupled climate model simulations generally do not reproduce the observed increase in Antarctic sea ice extent may be that their internally generated climate variability does not sync with the observed phases of phenomena like the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) and ENSO. For example, it is unlikely for a free-running coupled model simulation to capture the shift of the PDO from its positive to negative phase during 1998, and the subsequent ~15 year duration of the negative PDO phase. In previously presented work based on atmospheric models forced by observed tropical SSTs and stratospheric ozone, we demonstrated that tropical variability is key to explaining the wind trends over the Southern Ocean during the past ~35 years, particularly in the Ross, Amundsen and Bellingshausen Seas, the regions of the largest trends in sea ice extent and ice season duration. Here, we extend this idea to coupled model simulations with the Community Earth System Model (CESM) in which the evolution of SST anomalies in the central and eastern tropical Pacific is constrained to match the observations. This ensemble of 10 "tropical pacemaker" simulations shows a more realistic evolution of Antarctic sea ice anomalies than does its unconstrained counterpart, the CESM Large Ensemble (both sets of runs include stratospheric ozone depletion and other time-dependent radiative forcings). In particular, the pacemaker runs show that increased sea ice in the eastern Ross Sea is associated with a deeper Amundsen Sea Low (ASL) and stronger westerlies over the south Pacific. These circulation patterns in turn are linked with the negative phase of the PDO, characterized by negative SST anomalies in the central and eastern Pacific. The timing of tropical decadal variability with respect to ozone depletion further suggests a strong role for tropical variability in the recent acceleration of the Antarctic sea ice trend, as ozone depletion stabilized by late 1990s, prior to the most

  19. The Marine Record of Holocene Deglaciation and Paleoclimate Change, Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minzoni, R. L.; Anderson, J. B.; Kirshner, A. E.; Wellner, J. S.; Fernandez-Vasquez, R. A.

    2010-12-01

    The Antarctic Peninsula Ice Cap (APIC) has undergone significant retreat since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). Several recent studies, including those of Lallemand Fjord (Shevenell, et al., 1996), Palmer Deep (Domack, et al., 2001), Bransfield Basin (Heroy, et al., 2008), Firth of Tay (Michalchuck, et al., 2009), Maxwell Bay (Milliken, et al., 2009), and Neny Fjord (Allen, et al., 2010), have applied multiple proxies to reconstruct glacial history from sediment cores. The regional trend of post-LGM retreat from marine and onshore records (e.g. Hjort et al., 1997; Ingolfsson et al., 1998) is characterized by deglaciation of the outer and mid-shelf areas mainly before 12 ka, with significant landward steps at ~14 and 11 ka that were most likely caused by rapid sea-level rise (Heroy and Anderson, 2007). This was followed by highly diachronous retreat from the rugged inner-shelf and inland areas after ~10 ka. This marks the demise of the Antarctic Peninsula Ice Sheet. Subsequently, the glacial systems became more isolated, and factors such as latitudinal climate variability, orographic effects, oceanographic effects, the size and altitude of glacial drainage basins, as well as bathymetry of individual bays and fjords, became more influential on glacial dynamics. For example, Firth of Tay, the northern-most fjord on the eastern side of Antarctic Peninsula (AP), became ice-free ~9 ka, but Herbert Sound, just to the south, was not ice-free until ~7.4 ka. On the western side of AP, however, Maxwell Bay, located in the South Shetland Islands just north of the APIC, was free of grounded ice ~14 ka, whereas Marguerite Bay, on the southwestern-most edge of the APIC, experienced rapid grounding line and ice shelf retreat ~9 ka. These records suggest a north to south component in the timing of retreat. The lag in retreat from west to east APIC indicates that a strong orographic effect insulated the eastern AP, but also implies that other influencing factors such as oceanographic

  20. Evolution of the Antarctic Peninsula lithosphere: Evidence from Mesozoic mafic rocks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riley, T. R.; Curtis, M. L.; Flowerdew, M. J.; Whitehouse, M. J.

    2016-02-01

    New geochronology from a thick (> 800 m) basaltic succession along the eastern margin of the Antarctic Peninsula confirm a Middle Jurassic age (178 ± 1 Ma). This marginally postdates the adjacent Ferrar large igneous province of the Transantarctic Mountains and predates the extensive silicic volcanism of the Mapple Formation (~ 170 Ma) of the Antarctic Peninsula. The geochemistry of other rare, but broadly contemporaneous, basaltic successions of the Antarctic Peninsula, along with Cretaceous-age mafic dykes, are used to interpret the influences of lithospheric and asthenospheric mantle sources during the Mesozoic. Two significant high magmatic addition rate events occurred along the Antarctic Peninsula continental margin at 170 and 110 Ma and can be correlated to events along the South American Cordillera. These 'flare-up' events are characterised by extensive silicic (mostly ignimbrite) volcanism of the Chon Aike Province (V2 event: 170 Ma) and significant granitoid batholith emplacement of the Lassiter Coast intrusive suite (110 Ma). The 170 Ma event is exposed across large parts of the northern Antarctic Peninsula, whilst the 110 Ma event is more widespread across the southern Antarctic Peninsula. The basaltic volcanism described here precedes the 'flare-up' event at 170 Ma and has geochemical characteristics that indicate a thickened lithosphere prevailed. A major dyke swarm that followed the 170 Ma event indicates that extensive lithospheric thinning had occurred, which allowed the ascent of depleted mafic melts. The thinning was the direct result of widespread lower crustal/upper lithospheric melting associated with the silicic volcanism. In the southern Antarctic Peninsula, the lithosphere remained over thickened until the emplacement of the major batholiths of the Lassiter Coast intrusive suite at 110 Ma and was then immediately followed by the emplacement of more asthenosphere-like melts indicating extensive lithospheric thinning.

  1. Metatranscriptomes reveal functional variation in diatom communities from the Antarctic Peninsula

    KAUST Repository

    Pearson, Gareth A

    2015-04-14

    Functional genomics of diatom-dominated communities fromthe Antarctic Peninsula was studied using comparative metatranscriptomics. Samples obtained from diatom-rich communities in the Bransfield Strait, the western Weddell Sea and sea ice in the Bellingshausen Sea/Wilkins Ice Shelf yielded more than 500K pyrosequencing reads that were combined to produce a global metatranscriptome assembly. Multi-gene phylogenies recovered three distinct communities, and diatom-assigned contigs further indicated little read-sharing between communities, validating an assembly-based annotation and analysis approach. Although functional analysis recovered a core of abundant shared annotations that were expressed across the three diatom communities, over 40% of annotations (but accounting for <10% of sequences) were community-specific. The two pelagic communities differed in their expression of N-metabolism and acquisition genes, which was almost absent in post-bloom conditions in the Weddell Sea community, while enrichment of transporters for ammonia and urea in Bransfield Strait diatoms suggests a physiological stance towards acquisition of reduced N-sources. The depletion of carbohydrate and energy metabolism pathways in sea ice relative to pelagic communities, together with increased light energy dissipation (via LHCSR proteins), photorespiration, and NO3 - uptake and utilization all pointed to irradiance stress and/or inorganic carbon limitation within sea ice. Ice-binding proteins and cold-shock transcription factors were also enriched in sea ice diatoms. Surprisingly, the abundance of gene transcripts for the translational machinery tracked decreasing environmental temperature across only a 4 °C range, possibly reflecting constraints on translational efficiency and protein production in cold environments. © 2015 International Society for Microbial Ecology All rights reserved.

  2. Obliquity-paced Pliocene West Antarctic ice sheet oscillations

    OpenAIRE

    Naish, T.; Antarctic Research Centre, Victoria University of Wellington, Kelburn Parade, PO Box 600, Wellington 6012, New Zealand; Powell, R.; Department of Geology & Environmental Geosciences, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, Illinois 60115, USA.; Levy, R.; ANDRILL Science Management Office, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, USA; Wilson, G.; University of Otago, Department of Geology, PO Box 56, Leith Street, Dunedin, Otago 9001, New Zealand; Scherer, R.; Department of Geology & Environmental Geosciences, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, Illinois 60115, USA.; Talarico, F.; Universita` di Siena, Dipartimento di Scienze delle Terra, Via Laterina 8, I-53100 Siena, Italy; Krissek, L.; Ohio State University, Department of Geological Sciences, 275 Mendenhall Lab, 125 South Oval Mall, Columbus, Ohio 43210, USA; Niessen, F.; Alfred Wegener Institute, Department of Geosciences, Postfach 12 01 6, Am Alten Hafen 26, D-27515 Bremerhaven, Germany; Pompilio, M.; Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Sezione Pisa, Pisa, Italia; Wilson, T.; Ohio State University, Department of Geological Sciences, 275 Mendenhall Lab, 125 South Oval Mall, Columbus, Ohio 43210, USA; Carter, L.; Antarctic Research Centre, Victoria University of Wellington, Kelburn Parade, PO Box 600, Wellington 6012, New Zealand; DeConto, R.; Department of Geosciences, 233 Morrell Science Centre, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts 01003-9297, USA; Huybers, P.; Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, Massachusetts 02138, USA; McKay, R.; Antarctic Research Centre, Victoria University of Wellington, PO Box 600, Wellington - New Zealand; Pollard, D.; Earth and Environmental Systems Institute, 2217 Earth-Engineering Science Bldg, University Park, PA 16802, USA

    2009-01-01

    Thirty years after oxygen isotope records frommicrofossils deposited in ocean sediments confirmed the hypothesis that variations in the Earth’s orbital geometry control the ice ages1, fundamental questions remain over the response of the Antarctic ice sheets to orbital cycles2. Furthermore, an understanding of the behaviour of the marine-based West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) during the ‘warmer-than- present’ early-Pliocene epoch (̃5–3Myr ago) is needed to better constrain the possibl...

  3. Penguin eggshell membranes reflect homogeneity of mercury in the marine food web surrounding the Antarctic Peninsula

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Remote regions such as the Antarctic have become increasingly important for investigations into far-reaching anthropogenic impacts on the environment, most recently in regard to the global mercury cycle. Spatial patterns of mercury availability in four regions of the Antarctic Peninsula were investigated using three species of sympatrically breeding Pygoscelis penguins as biomonitors. Eggshells with intact membranes from Adélie, Gentoo, and Chinstrap penguins were collected at 24 breeding colonies in the South Orkney Islands, South Shetland Islands, eastern Antarctic Peninsula, and western Antarctic Peninsula during the 2006/2007 austral summer. In addition, we compared eggshell membrane mercury concentrations with eggshell stable isotope values (δ15N and δ13C) to determine if species-specific trophic or foraging habitat preferences influenced female mercury exposure prior to breeding. With few exceptions, mercury concentrations were found to be fairly homogeneous throughout the Antarctic Peninsula suggesting little spatial variation in the risk of exposure to dietary mercury in this food web. Mercury concentrations in Gentoo and Adélie penguins were similar while Chinstrap penguins tended to have higher eggshell membrane mercury concentrations than their congeners. However, inter and intra-specific differences in eggshell membrane mercury concentration were not related to eggshell δ15N or δ13C values, a likely result of all three species foraging at similar trophic positions. The lack of regional-scale differences in mercury availability in this marine ecosystem may be a reflection of generally uniform atmospheric deposition and upwelling of regionally homogeneous deep water rather than from geographically distinct point sources. -- Highlights: ► We examined regional patterns of mercury availability in the Antarctic Peninsula. ► Three species of Pygoscelis penguins were used as biomonitors. ► Chinstrap penguins tended to have higher mercury than Ad

  4. Penguin eggshell membranes reflect homogeneity of mercury in the marine food web surrounding the Antarctic Peninsula

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brasso, Rebecka L., E-mail: rlb1196@uncw.edu [University of North Carolina Wilmington, Department of Biology and Marine Biology, 601 South College Road, Wilmington, NC 28403 (United States); Polito, Michael J. [University of North Carolina Wilmington, Department of Biology and Marine Biology, 601 South College Road, Wilmington, NC 28403 (United States); Lynch, Heather J. [Ecology and Evolution Department, 640 Life Sciences Bldg., Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11794 (United States); Naveen, R. [Oceanites Inc., PO Box 15259, Chevy Chase, MD 20825 (United States); Emslie, Steven D. [University of North Carolina Wilmington, Department of Biology and Marine Biology, 601 South College Road, Wilmington, NC 28403 (United States)

    2012-11-15

    Remote regions such as the Antarctic have become increasingly important for investigations into far-reaching anthropogenic impacts on the environment, most recently in regard to the global mercury cycle. Spatial patterns of mercury availability in four regions of the Antarctic Peninsula were investigated using three species of sympatrically breeding Pygoscelis penguins as biomonitors. Eggshells with intact membranes from Adelie, Gentoo, and Chinstrap penguins were collected at 24 breeding colonies in the South Orkney Islands, South Shetland Islands, eastern Antarctic Peninsula, and western Antarctic Peninsula during the 2006/2007 austral summer. In addition, we compared eggshell membrane mercury concentrations with eggshell stable isotope values ({delta}{sup 15}N and {delta}{sup 13}C) to determine if species-specific trophic or foraging habitat preferences influenced female mercury exposure prior to breeding. With few exceptions, mercury concentrations were found to be fairly homogeneous throughout the Antarctic Peninsula suggesting little spatial variation in the risk of exposure to dietary mercury in this food web. Mercury concentrations in Gentoo and Adelie penguins were similar while Chinstrap penguins tended to have higher eggshell membrane mercury concentrations than their congeners. However, inter and intra-specific differences in eggshell membrane mercury concentration were not related to eggshell {delta}{sup 15}N or {delta}{sup 13}C values, a likely result of all three species foraging at similar trophic positions. The lack of regional-scale differences in mercury availability in this marine ecosystem may be a reflection of generally uniform atmospheric deposition and upwelling of regionally homogeneous deep water rather than from geographically distinct point sources. -- Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We examined regional patterns of mercury availability in the Antarctic Peninsula. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Three species of Pygoscelis

  5. Antarctic ice volume for the last 740 ka calculated with a simple ice sheet model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oerlemans, J.

    2005-01-01

    Fluctuations in the volume of the Antarctic ice sheet for the last 740 ka are calculated by forcing a simple ice sheet model with a sea-level history (from a composite deep sea δ18O record) and a temperature history (from the Dome C deuterium record). Antarctic ice volume reaches maximum values of a

  6. Super-aggregations of krill and humpback whales in Wilhelmina Bay, Antarctic Peninsula.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Douglas P Nowacek

    Full Text Available Ecological relationships of krill and whales have not been explored in the Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP, and have only rarely been studied elsewhere in the Southern Ocean. In the austral autumn we observed an extremely high density (5.1 whales per km(2 of humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae feeding on a super-aggregation of Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba in Wilhelmina Bay. The krill biomass was approximately 2 million tons, distributed over an area of 100 km(2 at densities of up to 2000 individuals m(-3; reports of such 'super-aggregations' of krill have been absent in the scientific literature for >20 years. Retentive circulation patterns in the Bay entrained phytoplankton and meso-zooplankton that were grazed by the krill. Tagged whales rested during daylight hours and fed intensively throughout the night as krill migrated toward the surface. We infer that the previously unstudied WAP embayments are important foraging areas for whales during autumn and, furthermore, that meso-scale variation in the distribution of whales and their prey are important features of this system. Recent decreases in the abundance of Antarctic krill around the WAP have been linked to reductions in sea ice, mediated by rapid climate change in this area. At the same time, baleen whale populations in the Southern Ocean, which feed primarily on krill, are recovering from past exploitation. Consideration of these features and the effects of climate change on krill dynamics are critical to managing both krill harvests and the recovery of baleen whales in the Southern Ocean.

  7. Monitoring of land-based glaciers on James Ross Island, Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laska, Kamil; Nyvlt, Daniel; Engel, Zbynek; Stachon, Zdenek

    2015-04-01

    Antarctic Peninsula has been considered one of the most rapidly warming parts of our planet during the second half of the 20th century. Therefore, James Ross Island located near the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, represents a unique place to study the sensitivity of glacier systems to regional atmospheric warming. Since 2006, an integrated multidisciplinary study of glaciers and terrestrial ecosystems has been carried out in the northern part of Ulu Peninsula, James Ross Island. In this contribution, glacier monitoring network consisting of four dominant land-based glaciers at the Ulu Peninsula is presented. Davies Dome (DD) is an ice dome, which originates on the surface of a flat volcanic mesa at >400 m a.s.l. and terminates as a single 700 m wide outlet in Whisky Bay. In 2006, Davies Dome had an area of 6.5 km2 and lay in the altitude range 0-514 m a.s.l. Whisky Glacier (WG) is a cold-based land-terminating valley glacier, which is surrounded by an extensive area of debris-covered ice. WG covered an area of 2.4 km2 and ranged from 215 to 520 m a.s.l. Triangular Glacier (TG) is a southwest-facing land-terminating glacier with an area of 0.6 km2 ranging from 302 to 107 m a.s.l. with well-developed ice-cored terminal moraine. San Jose Glacier (SJG) is a south-facing land-terminating piedmont glacier rejuvenated from the above lying Lachman Crags Dome (~640 m a.s.l.). SJG covers an area of 0.6 km2 and extends between 138 and 310 m a.s.l. Moreover, monitoring network consists of five automatic weather stations (AWS) placed in the central and marginal parts of the selected glaciers. Each AWS was equipped with the EMS33 air temperature and humidity probes placed inside the radiation shields. Apart from that, additional instruments, e.g. albedometer, propeller anemometer, snow depth sensors were installed on the central part of DD and WG. Since 2009, annual mass balance measurements have been realized on the DD, WG and TG glaciers. In 2010, ice thickness and

  8. Antarctic ice rises and rumples : Their properties and significance for ice-sheet dynamics and evolution

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Matsuoka, Kenichi; Hindmarsh, Richard C A; Moholdt, Geir; Bentley, Michael J.; Pritchard, Hamish D.; Brown, Joel; Conway, Howard; Drews, Reinhard; Durand, Gaël; Goldberg, Daniel; Hattermann, Tore; Kingslake, Jonathan; Lenaerts, Jan T M; Martín, Carlos; Mulvaney, Robert; Nicholls, Keith W.; Pattyn, Frank; Ross, Neil; Scambos, Ted; Whitehouse, Pippa L.

    2015-01-01

    Locally grounded features in ice shelves, called ice rises and rumples, play a key role buttressing discharge from the Antarctic Ice Sheet and regulating its contribution to sea level. Ice rises typically rise several hundreds of meters above the surrounding ice shelf; shelf flow is diverted around

  9. Stable water isotopes of precipitation and firn cores from the northern Antarctic Peninsula region as a proxy for climate reconstruction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Fernandoy

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available In order to investigate the climate variability in the northern Antarctic Peninsula region, this paper focuses on the relationship between stable isotope content of precipitation and firn, and main meteorological variables (air temperature, relative humidity, sea surface temperature, and sea ice extent. Between 2008 and 2010, we collected precipitation samples and retrieved firn cores from several key sites in this region. We conclude that the deuterium excess oscillation represents a robust indicator of the meteorological variability on a seasonal to sub-seasonal scale. Low absolute deuterium excess values and the synchronous variation of both deuterium excess and air temperature imply that the evaporation of moisture occurs in the adjacent Southern Ocean. The δ18O-air temperature relationship is complicated and significant only at a (multiseasonal scale. Backward trajectory calculations show that air-parcels arriving at the region during precipitation events predominantly originate at the South Pacific Ocean and Bellingshausen Sea. These investigations will be used as a calibration for ongoing and future research in the area, suggesting that appropriate locations for future ice core research are located above 600 m a.s.l. We selected the Plateau Laclavere, Antarctic Peninsula as the most promising site for a deeper drilling campaign.

  10. A Comparative Study of Antarctic Arctic and Himalayan Ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. C. Pathak

    1989-07-01

    Full Text Available Arctic, Antarctic and inaccessible lofty regions of Himalayas,which are geographically diverse areas and have been a constant source of inspiration, envisages a challenging field of study 'by early adventurers and scientists of the world. Characteristics of ice obtained at Arctic and Antarctic do not possess similar properties. Even thesalient properties of snow and ice of western and central Himalayas vary due to its differing free water content. A study has been carriedout based on recent Antarctic Expedition by Indian scientists and the data gathered along litha-tectonic regions of Himalayas and their characteristics have been compared, wkich brings out stratigraphic and metamorphic characteristics of the ice and snow. In the present paper,an analysis of the ice and snow properties of Arctic, Antarctic and Himalayan regions has been presented.

  11. A new 100-m Digital Elevation Model of the Antarctic Peninsula derived from ASTER Global DEM: methods and accuracy assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. J. Cook

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available A high resolution surface topography Digital Elevation Model (DEM is required to underpin studies of the complex glacier system on the Antarctic Peninsula. A complete DEM with better than 200 m pixel size and high positional and vertical accuracy would enable mapping of all significant glacial basins and provide a dataset for glacier morphology analyses. No currently available DEM meets these specifications. We present a new 100-m DEM of the Antarctic Peninsula (63–70° S, based on ASTER Global Digital Elevation Model (GDEM data. The raw GDEM products are of high-quality on the rugged terrain and coastal-regions of the Antarctic Peninsula and have good geospatial accuracy, but they also contain large errors on ice-covered terrain and we seek to minimise these artefacts. Conventional data correction techniques do not work so we have developed a method that significantly improves the dataset, smoothing the erroneous regions and hence creating a DEM with a pixel size of 100 m that will be suitable for many glaciological applications. We evaluate the new DEM using ICESat-derived elevations, and perform horizontal and vertical accuracy assessments based on GPS positions, SPOT-5 DEMs and the Landsat Image Mosaic of Antarctica (LIMA imagery. The new DEM has a mean elevation difference of −4 m (± 25 m RMSE from ICESat (compared to −13 m mean and ±97 m RMSE for the original ASTER GDEM, and a horizontal error of less than 2 pixels, although elevation accuracies are lower on mountain peaks and steep-sided slopes. The correction method significantly reduces errors on low relief slopes and therefore the DEM can be regarded as suitable for topographical studies such as measuring the geometry and ice flow properties of glaciers on the Antarctic Peninsula. The DEM is available for download from the NSIDC website: http://nsidc.org/data/nsidc-0516.html (Spatial distribution and characteristics of permafrost in Hurd Peninsula, Livingston Island, Maritime Antarctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieira, G.; Ramos, M.; Trindade, A.; Gruber, S.; Hauck, C.; Mora, C.; Batista, V.; Neves, M.; Pimpirev, C.; Kenderova, R.

    2009-04-01

    The Antarctic Peninsula is one of Earth's regions experiencing a faster increase on temperatures, with Mean Annual Air Temperatures (MAAT) rising ca. 2.5 °C in the last 50 years. The northerly location of the Antarctic Peninsula in respect to the Antarctic and its oceanic setting originate a milder and moister climate than in the Antarctic continent. The Northern Antarctic Peninsula is roughly located between the isotherms of MAAT of -1 °C to -8 °C at sea-level and therefore the northern tip and especially the South Shetlands are close to the limits of permafrost occurrence. If the observed warming trend is to continue in the near future, the region might suffer widespread permafrost degradation. Research on the permafrost environment of Hurd Peninsula has been taking place with systematical measurements by our group since January 2000 and currently we are able to provide a good overview of the spatial distribution and characteristics of permafrost terrain in Hurd Peninsula. Our research is based on shallow boreholes (Collado Ramos (115m). In 2006 Electrical Tomography Resistivity and refraction seismic profiles have been performed, providing us with a good overview of the general conditions of the permafrost terrain in the area. Air temperatures are measured at different sites accounting for altitude since a few years and during 3 summer campaigns the radiation balance was monitored continuously at two sites. Detailed geomorphological mapping of periglacial features has been conducted at a scale 1:5,000 providing important information about the geomorphological dynamics. Using the data gathered since 2000 it is now possible to present the general characteristics of the permafrost distribution in Hurd Peninsula as a first step towards a more comprehensive approach that is now starting that involves empirico-statistical modeling, remote sensing, as well as downscaling of mesoscale climate data.

  12. 'Unlocking the archive': Using digital photogrammetry of modern and historic aerial photography to reconstruct 60 years of volumetric change on the Moider Glacier, Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Lucy; Miller, Pauline; Ireland, Louise; Fox, Adrian; Mills, Jon; Fieber, Karolina

    2016-04-01

    The Antarctic Peninsula is a mountain glacier system comprised of over 400 glaciers, and is an important contributor to historical and future sea level rise. Assessment and monitoring of AP glaciers is crucial for understanding sensitivity to climate change. Changes to glacier fronts and ice shelves and glacier acceleration are well documented, but there are almost no data on mass changes on the Antarctic Peninsula. Satellite data have been used to calculate change over the last 3 decades, but methods to quantify this over longer timescales have eluded researchers. However there is an archive of aerial photography dating back to the 1940s, this has been largely ignored due to the range of technical problems associated with deriving quantitative data from historic imagery and the lack of ground control data. This presentation demonstrates how advances in photogrammetric processing and capture of modern aerial photography has allowed this archive to be 'unlocked'. Accurate photogrammetric reconstruction from aerial photographs traditionally requires known ground control points acquired in the field; in remote and inaccessible areas, such as the Antarctic Peninsula, this is often impossible. A method for providing control for historic photos without fieldwork, by linking them to a newly acquired, highly accurate photogrammetric model adjusted through direct kinematic GPS positioning of the camera has been applied to a number of glaciers across the Antarctic Peninsula. This presentation will outline the photogrammetric workflow with focus on the Moider Glacier in the Marguerite Bay region of the western Antarctic Peninsula to investigate the quality of data that can be obtained. Volumetric changes on the glaciers from the 1950s to present day (2015) have been reconstructed and can be used to explore the spatial and temporal changes that have occurred on this glacier. In particular, there is near-annual data over the last 5 years recording a period when there has been

  13. Sources and levels of ambient ocean sound near the Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dziak, Robert P; Bohnenstiehl, DelWayne R; Stafford, Kathleen M; Matsumoto, Haruyoshi; Park, Minkyu; Lee, Won Sang; Fowler, Matt J; Lau, Tai-Kwan; Haxel, Joseph H; Mellinger, David K

    2015-01-01

    Arrays of hydrophones were deployed within the Bransfield Strait and Scotia Sea (Antarctic Peninsula region) from 2005 to 2009 to record ambient ocean sound at frequencies of up to 125 and 500 Hz. Icequakes, which are broadband, short duration signals derived from fracturing of large free-floating icebergs, are a prominent feature of the ocean soundscape. Icequake activity peaks during austral summer and is minimum during winter, likely following freeze-thaw cycles. Iceberg grounding and rapid disintegration also releases significant acoustic energy, equivalent to large-scale geophysical events. Overall ambient sound levels can be as much as ~10-20 dB higher in the open, deep ocean of the Scotia Sea compared to the relatively shallow Bransfield Strait. Noise levels become lowest during the austral winter, as sea-ice cover suppresses wind and wave noise. Ambient noise levels are highest during austral spring and summer, as surface noise, ice cracking and biological activity intensifies. Vocalizations of blue (Balaenoptera musculus) and fin (B. physalus) whales also dominate the long-term spectra records in the 15-28 and 89 Hz bands. Blue whale call energy is a maximum during austral summer-fall in the Drake Passage and Bransfield Strait when ambient noise levels are a maximum and sea-ice cover is a minimum. Fin whale vocalizations were also most common during austral summer-early fall months in both the Bransfield Strait and Scotia Sea. The hydrophone data overall do not show sustained anthropogenic sources (ships and airguns), likely due to low coastal traffic and the typically rough weather and sea conditions of the Southern Ocean. PMID:25875205

  14. Ecological controls on biogeochemical lfuxes in the western Antarctic Peninsula studied with an inverse foodweb model

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Hugh W Ducklow; S C Doney; S F Sailley

    2015-01-01

    Sea ice in the western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) region is both highly variable and rapidly changing. In the Palmer Station region, the ice season duration has decreased by 92 d since 1978. The sea-ice changes affect ocean stratification and freshwater balance and in turn impact every component of the polar marine ecosystem. Long-term observations from the WAP nearshore and offshore regions show a pattern of chlorophyll (Chl) variability with three to ifve years of negative Chl anomalies interrupted by one or two years of positive anomalies (high and low Chl regimes). Both ifeld observations and results from an inverse food-web model show that these high and low Chl regimes differed significantly from each other, with high primary productivity and net community production (NCP) and other rates associated with the high Chl years and low rates with low Chl years. Gross primary production rates (GPP) averaged 30 mmolC.m-2.d-1 in the low Chl years and 100 mmolC.m-2.d-1 in the high Chl years. Both large and small phytoplankton were more abundant and more productive in high Chl years than in low Chl years. Similarly, krill were more important as grazers in high Chl years, but did not differ from microzooplankton in high or low Chl years. Microzooplankton did not differ between high and low Chl years. Net community production differed signiifcantly between high and low Chl years, but mobilized a similar proportion of GPP in both high and low Chl years. The composition of the NCP was uniform in high and low Chl years. These results emphasize the importance of microbial components in the WAP plankton system and suggest that food webs dominated by small phytoplankton can have pathways that funnel production into NCP, and likely, export.

  15. Sources and levels of ambient ocean sound near the Antarctic Peninsula.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert P Dziak

    Full Text Available Arrays of hydrophones were deployed within the Bransfield Strait and Scotia Sea (Antarctic Peninsula region from 2005 to 2009 to record ambient ocean sound at frequencies of up to 125 and 500 Hz. Icequakes, which are broadband, short duration signals derived from fracturing of large free-floating icebergs, are a prominent feature of the ocean soundscape. Icequake activity peaks during austral summer and is minimum during winter, likely following freeze-thaw cycles. Iceberg grounding and rapid disintegration also releases significant acoustic energy, equivalent to large-scale geophysical events. Overall ambient sound levels can be as much as ~10-20 dB higher in the open, deep ocean of the Scotia Sea compared to the relatively shallow Bransfield Strait. Noise levels become lowest during the austral winter, as sea-ice cover suppresses wind and wave noise. Ambient noise levels are highest during austral spring and summer, as surface noise, ice cracking and biological activity intensifies. Vocalizations of blue (Balaenoptera musculus and fin (B. physalus whales also dominate the long-term spectra records in the 15-28 and 89 Hz bands. Blue whale call energy is a maximum during austral summer-fall in the Drake Passage and Bransfield Strait when ambient noise levels are a maximum and sea-ice cover is a minimum. Fin whale vocalizations were also most common during austral summer-early fall months in both the Bransfield Strait and Scotia Sea. The hydrophone data overall do not show sustained anthropogenic sources (ships and airguns, likely due to low coastal traffic and the typically rough weather and sea conditions of the Southern Ocean.

  16. The Freshwater System West of the Antarctic Peninsula: Spatial and Temporal Changes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meredith, M.; venables, H.J.; Clarke, A.; Ducklow, H.W.; Erickson, M.; Leng, M.J.; Lenaerts, J.T.M.; van den Broeke, M.R.

    2013-01-01

    Climate change west of the Antarctic Peninsula is the most rapid of anywhere in the Southern Hemisphere, with associated changes in the rates and distributions of freshwater inputs to the ocean. Here, results from the first comprehensive survey of oxygen isotopes in seawater in this region are used

  17. The Antarctic Ice Sheet, Sea Ice, and the Ozone Hole: Satellite Observations of how they are Changing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, Claire L.

    2012-01-01

    Antarctica is the Earth's coldest and highest continent and has major impacts on the climate and life of the south polar vicinity. It is covered almost entirely by the Earth's largest ice sheet by far, with a volume of ice so great that if all the Antarctic ice were to go into the ocean (as ice or liquid water), this would produce a global sea level rise of about 60 meters (197 feet). The continent is surrounded by sea ice that in the wintertime is even more expansive than the continent itself and in the summertime reduces to only about a sixth of its wintertime extent. Like the continent, the expansive sea ice cover has major impacts, reflecting the sun's radiation back to space, blocking exchanges between the ocean and the atmosphere, and providing a platform for some animal species while impeding other species. Far above the continent, the Antarctic ozone hole is a major atmospheric phenomenon recognized as human-caused and potentially quite serious to many different life forms. Satellites are providing us with remarkable information about the ice sheet, the sea ice, and the ozone hole. Satellite visible and radar imagery are providing views of the large scale structure of the ice sheet never seen before; satellite laser altimetry has produced detailed maps of the topography of the ice sheet; and an innovative gravity-measuring two-part satellite has allowed mapping of regions of mass loss and mass gain on the ice sheet. The surrounding sea ice cover has a satellite record that goes back to the 1970s, allowing trend studies that show a decreasing sea ice presence in the region of the Bellingshausen and Amundsen seas, to the west of the prominent Antarctic Peninsula, but increasing sea ice presence around much of the rest of the continent. Overall, sea ice extent around Antarctica has increased at an average rate of about 17,000 square kilometers per year since the late 1970s, as determined from satellite microwave data that can be collected under both light and

  18. Mercury accumulation in sediments and seabird feathers from the Antarctic Peninsula

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: • We assessed mercury bioaccumulation in seabirds in the Antarctic Peninsula. • Levels of Hg were higher in gentoo penguins & brown skuas than chinstrap penguins. • Mercury BMF in the brown skua/penguins relationship was higher than 1. • Long-range environmental transport is the likely mercury route in Antarctic. - Abstract: In an effort to assess the impact of mercury in the Antarctic Peninsula, we conducted ecotoxicological research in this region during the summer of 2012 and 2013. The objectives were to assess: (a) mercury levels in sediment samples; (b) mercury accumulation in Antarctic seabird feathers: Catharacta lonnbergi (brown skua), Pygoscelis papua (gentoo penguin) and Pygoscelis antarctica (chinstrap penguin); and (c) biomagnification (BMF predator/prey) and biota sediment accumulation (BSAF skuas/sediment) factors. Mercury concentrations in sediment were relatively low. Mercury concentrations were significantly higher in brown skuas and gentoo penguins than in chinstrap penguins (2012), and significantly higher in brown skuas than in both penguins (2013). BMF indicated 2–7.5 times greater mercury levels in brown skuas than in penguins. BSAF values suggested an apparent temporal decrease of 18.2% of this ratio from 2012 to 2013. Long-range environmental transport is the likely route of entry of mercury into the Antarctic Peninsula

  19. Obliquity-paced Pliocene West Antarctic ice sheet oscillations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naish, T.; Powell, R.; Levy, R.; Wilson, G.; Scherer, R.; Talarico, F.; Krissek, L.; Niessen, F.; Pompilio, M.; Wilson, T.; Carter, L.; DeConto, R.; Huybers, P.; McKay, R.; Pollard, D.; Ross, J.; Winter, D.; Barrett, P.; Browne, G.; Cody, R.; Cowan, E.; Crampton, J.; Dunbar, G.; Dunbar, N.; Florindo, F.; Gebhardt, C.; Graham, I.; Hannah, M.; Hansaraj, D.; Harwood, D.; Helling, D.; Henrys, S.; Hinnov, L.; Kuhn, G.; Kyle, P.; Laufer, A.; Maffioli, P.; Magens, D.; Mandernack, K.; McIntosh, W.; Millan, C.; Morin, R.; Ohneiser, C.; Paulsen, T.; Persico, D.; Raine, I.; Reed, J.; Riesselman, C.; Sagnotti, L.; Schmitt, D.; Sjunneskog, C.; Strong, P.; Taviani, M.; Vogel, S.; Wilch, T.; Williams, T.

    2009-01-01

    Thirty years after oxygen isotope records from microfossils deposited in ocean sediments confirmed the hypothesis that variations in the Earth's orbital geometry control the ice ages, fundamental questions remain over the response of the Antarctic ice sheets to orbital cycles. Furthermore, an understanding of the behaviour of the marine-based West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) during the 'warmer-than-present' early-Pliocene epoch (???5-3 Myr ago) is needed to better constrain the possible range of ice-sheet behaviour in the context of future global warming. Here we present a marine glacial record from the upper 600 m of the AND-1B sediment core recovered from beneath the northwest part of the Ross ice shelf by the ANDRILL programme and demonstrate well-dated, ???40-kyr cyclic variations in ice-sheet extent linked to cycles in insolation influenced by changes in the Earth's axial tilt (obliquity) during the Pliocene. Our data provide direct evidence for orbitally induced oscillations in the WAIS, which periodically collapsed, resulting in a switch from grounded ice, or ice shelves, to open waters in the Ross embayment when planetary temperatures were up to ???3??C warmer than today and atmospheric CO 2 concentration was as high as ???400 p.p.m.v. (refs 5, 6). The evidence is consistent with a new ice-sheet/ice-shelf model that simulates fluctuations in Antarctic ice volume of up to +7 m in equivalent sea level associated with the loss of the WAIS and up to +3 m in equivalent sea level from the East Antarctic ice sheet, in response to ocean-induced melting paced by obliquity. During interglacial times, diatomaceous sediments indicate high surface-water productivity, minimal summer sea ice and air temperatures above freezing, suggesting an additional influence of surface melt under conditions of elevated CO2. ??2009 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

  1. Definition of Arctic and Antarctic Sea Ice Variation Index

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chen Hongxia; Liu Na; Pan Zengdi; Zhang Qinghua

    2004-01-01

    It is well known that varying of the sea ice not only in the Antarctic but also in the Arctic has an active influence on the globe atmosphere and ocean. In order to understand the sea ice variation in detail, for the first time, an objective index of the Arctic and Antarctic sea ice variation is defined by projecting the monthly sea ice concentration anomalies poleward of 20°N or 20°S onto the EOF (empirical orthogonal function)-1 spatial pattern. Comparing with some work in former studies of polar sea ice, the index has the potential for clarifying the variability of sea ice in northern and southern high latitudes.

  2. Arctic and Antarctic Sea Ice Changes and Impacts (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nghiem, S. V.

    2013-12-01

    The extent of springtime Arctic perennial sea ice, important to preconditioning summer melt and to polar sunrise photochemistry, continues its precipitous reduction in the last decade marked by a record low in 2012, as the Bromine, Ozone, and Mercury Experiment (BROMEX) was conducted around Barrow, Alaska, to investigate impacts of sea ice reduction on photochemical processes, transport, and distribution in the polar environment. In spring 2013, there was further loss of perennial sea ice, as it was not observed in the ocean region adjacent to the Alaskan north coast, where there was a stretch of perennial sea ice in 2012 in the Beaufort Sea and Chukchi Sea. In contrast to the rapid and extensive loss of sea ice in the Arctic, Antarctic sea ice has a trend of a slight increase in the past three decades. Given the significant variability in time and in space together with uncertainties in satellite observations, the increasing trend of Antarctic sea ice may arguably be considered as having a low confidence level; however, there was no overall reduction of Antarctic sea ice extent anywhere close to the decreasing rate of Arctic sea ice. There exist publications presenting various factors driving changes in Arctic and Antarctic sea ice. After a short review of these published factors, new observations and atmospheric, oceanic, hydrological, and geological mechanisms contributed to different behaviors of sea ice changes in the Arctic and Antarctic are presented. The contribution from of hydrologic factors may provide a linkage to and enhance thermal impacts from lower latitudes. While geological factors may affect the sensitivity of sea ice response to climate change, these factors can serve as the long-term memory in the system that should be exploited to improve future projections or predictions of sea ice changes. Furthermore, similarities and differences in chemical impacts of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice changes are discussed. Understanding sea ice changes and

  3. Antarctic Ice Sheet and Radar Altimetry: A Review

    OpenAIRE

    Frédérique Rémy; Soazig Parouty

    2009-01-01

    International audience Altimetry is probably one of the most powerful tools for ice sheet observation. Our vision of the Antarctic ice sheet has been deeply transformed since the launch of the ERS1 satellite in 1991. With the launch of ERS2 and Envisat, the series of altimetric observations now provides 19 years of continuous and homogeneous observations that allow monitoring of the shape and volume of ice sheets. The topography deduced from altimetry is one of the relevant parameters reve...

  4. Holocene climate variability along the Antarctic Peninsula and linkage with a terrestrial paleoclimate record from South America

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Full text: The Antarctic Peninsula is highly sensitive to climate change and is currently experiencing rapid and unusual warming. Here we examine Holocene variability as seen in a multi-tracer stable isotopic study using a 50 m sedimentary section spanning the past 12,000 years from the west coast of the Antarctic Peninsula. In our synthesis, we make use of the Palmer Deep ODP site 1098 drill core. These sediments comprise the first high resolution, continuous, Late Pleistocene through Holocene sediment record from the Antarctic continental margin. We analyzed biogenic opal, organic C and N concentrations, and 13C/12C and 15N/14N isotopic ratios of sedimentary organic matter every 2.5 cm downcore (1600 samples, sample interval of about 7 years). We interpret the main changes in these downcore parameters as indicating substantial variability in productivity. We note that 1) that the lowest productivity of the Holocene occurred during the past 1.5 kyrs BP, 2) Holocene variability in productivity is large, about a factor of 3, 3) A mid-Holocene productivity maximum is coeval with many mid- and low-latitude Holocene paleoclimate records, and 4) evidence is strong for solar forcing via both total irradiance and precessional effects. Given the modern link between sea ice and net annual primary production along the Antarctic margin, it seems likely that episodes of enhanced productivity, both during the middle Holocene and during centennial productivity peaks were associated with reduced ice cover. We explore several mechanisms by which sea ice cover might respond in an fashion consistent with our observations: 1) reduced westerly winds (less evaporative cooling), 2) South Pacific gyre spin-up (less pole-equator T contrast), 3) more local warm deep water upwelling. It is possible that the basic ENSO dynamic we know from studies of interannual variability in the tropical and North Pacific also regulates climate change at decadal to millennial timescales in the South

  5. Holocene climate variability along the Antarctic Peninsula and linkage with a terrestrial paleoclimate record from South America

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Full text: The Antarctic Peninsula is highly sensitive to climate change and is currently experiencing rapid and unusual warming. Here we examine Holocene variability as seen in a multi-tracer stable isotopic study using a 50 m sedimentary section spanning the past 12,000 years from the west coast of the Antarctic Peninsula. In our synthesis, we make use of the Palmer Deep ODP site 1098 drill core. These sediments comprise the first high resolution, continuous, Late Pleistocene through Holocene sediment record from the Antarctic continental margin. We analyzed biogenic opal, organic C and N concentrations, and 13C/12C and 15N/14N isotopic ratios of sedimentary organic matter every 2.5 cm downcore (1600 samples, sample interval of about 7 years). We interpret the main changes in these downcore parameters as indicating substantial variability in productivity. We note that 1) that the lowest productivity of the Holocene occurred during the past 1.5 kyrs BP; 2) Holocene variability in productivity is large, about a factor of 3; 3) A mid-Holocene productivity maximum is coeval with many mid- and low-latitude Holocene paleoclimate records; and 4) evidence is strong for solar forcing via both total irradiance and precessional effects. Given the modern link between sea ice and net annual primary production along the Antarctic margin, it seems likely that episodes of enhanced productivity, both during the middle Holocene and during centennial productivity peaks were associated with reduced ice cover. We explore several mechanisms by which sea ice cover might respond in an fashion consistent with our observations: 1) reduced westerly winds (less evaporative cooling); 2) South Pacific gyre spin- up (less pole-equator T contrast); 3) more local warm deep water upwelling. It is possible that the basic ENSO dynamic we know from studies of interannual variability in the tropical and North Pacific also regulates climate change at decadal to millennial timescales in the South

  6. Characterization of winter foraging locations of Adélie penguins along the Western Antarctic Peninsula, 2001-2002

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erdmann, Eric S.; Ribic, Christine A.; Patterson-Fraser, Donna L.; Fraser, William R.

    2011-07-01

    In accord with the hypotheses driving the Southern Ocean Global Ocean Ecosystems Dynamics (SO GLOBEC) program, we tested the hypothesis that the winter foraging ecology of a major top predator in waters off the Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP), the Adélie penguin ( Pygoscelis adeliae), is constrained by oceanographic features related to the physiography of the region. This hypothesis grew from the supposition that breeding colonies in the WAP during summer are located adjacent to areas of complex bathymetry where circulation and upwelling processes appear to ensure predictable food resources. Therefore, we tested the additional hypothesis that these areas continue to contribute to the foraging strategy of this species throughout the non-breeding winter season. We used satellite telemetry data collected as part of the SO GLOBEC program during the austral winters of 2001 and 2002 to characterize individual penguin foraging locations in relation to bathymetry, sea ice variability within the pack ice, and wind velocity and divergence (as a proxy for potential areas with cracks and leads). We also explored differences between males and females in core foraging area overlap. Ocean depth was the most influential variable in the determination of foraging location, with most birds focusing their effort on shallow (penguin's foraging, the analysis of sea ice data of a higher resolution than was available for this study may help elucidate the role of sea ice in affecting Adélie penguin winter foraging behavior within the pack ice.

  7. Characterization of winter foraging locations of Adélie penguins along the Western Antarctic Peninsula, 2001–2002

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erdmann, Eric S.; Ribic, Christine; Patterson-Fraser, Donna L.; Fraser, William R.

    2011-01-01

    In accord with the hypotheses driving the Southern Ocean Global Ocean Ecosystems Dynamics (SO GLOBEC) program, we tested the hypothesis that the winter foraging ecology of a major top predator in waters off the Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP), the Adélie penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae), is constrained by oceanographic features related to the physiography of the region. This hypothesis grew from the supposition that breeding colonies in the WAP during summer are located adjacent to areas of complex bathymetry where circulation and upwelling processes appear to ensure predictable food resources. Therefore, we tested the additional hypothesis that these areas continue to contribute to the foraging strategy of this species throughout the non-breeding winter season. We used satellite telemetry data collected as part of the SO GLOBEC program during the austral winters of 2001 and 2002 to characterize individual penguin foraging locations in relation to bathymetry, sea ice variability within the pack ice, and wind velocity and divergence (as a proxy for potential areas with cracks and leads). We also explored differences between males and females in core foraging area overlap. Ocean depth was the most influential variable in the determination of foraging location, with most birds focusing their effort on shallow (penguin's foraging, the analysis of sea ice data of a higher resolution than was available for this study may help elucidate the role of sea ice in affecting Adélie penguin winter foraging behavior within the pack ice.

  8. Holocene accumulation and ice flow near the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide ice core site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koutnik, Michelle R.; Fudge, T. J.; Conway, Howard; Waddington, Edwin D.; Neumann, Thomas A.; Cuffey, Kurt M.; Buizert, Christo; Taylor, Kendrick C.

    2016-05-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide Core (WDC) provided a high-resolution climate record from near the Ross-Amundsen Divide in Central West Antarctica. In addition, radar-detected internal layers in the vicinity of the WDC site have been dated directly from the ice core to provide spatial variations in the age structure of the region. Using these two data sets together, we first infer a high-resolution Holocene accumulation-rate history from 9.2 kyr of the ice-core timescale and then confirm that this climate history is consistent with internal layers upstream of the core site. Even though the WDC was drilled only 24 km from the modern ice divide, advection of ice from upstream must be taken into account. We evaluate histories of accumulation rate by using a flowband model to generate internal layers that we compare to observed layers. Results show that the centennially averaged accumulation rate was over 20% lower than modern at 9.2 kyr before present (B.P.), increased by 40% from 9.2 to 2.3 kyr B.P., and decreased by at least 10% over the past 2 kyr B.P. to the modern values; these Holocene accumulation-rate changes in Central West Antarctica are larger than changes inferred from East Antarctic ice-core records. Despite significant changes in accumulation rate, throughout the Holocene the regional accumulation pattern has likely remained similar to today, and the ice-divide position has likely remained on average within 5 km of its modern position. Continent-scale ice-sheet models used for reconstructions of West Antarctic ice volume should incorporate this accumulation history.

  9. Investigations of fungal diversity in wooden structures and soils at historic sites on the Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arenz, Brett E; Blanchette, Robert A

    2009-01-01

    Investigations of microbial diversity in Antarctic are important to begin to understand ecosystem functioning and decomposition processes. This study documents fungi at 9 historic sites on the Antarctic Peninsula collected from wooden structures, other organic materials, and soils during a joint National Science Foundation and British Antarctic Survey expedition in 2007. Many of these sites had wooden structures built by the British during the World War II Operation Tabarin, but others visited included the American "East Base" on Stonington Island and the Swedish hut on Snow Hill Island. Fungi were cultured on several different media and pure cultures were obtained and identified by DNA sequencing of the internal transcribed spacer region. Cadophora species previously found to attack historic wooden structures on Ross Island, Antarctica, were found at all but 1 location sampled in the Peninsula region. Fungi causing decay in the historic wooden structures and artifacts and those causing mold problems inside the structures are of great concern, and conservation efforts are urgently needed to help preserve these important polar heritage structures. The results presented also expand our knowledge on the identity of fungi present throughout the Antarctic Peninsula region and provide insights into the organisms responsible for decomposition and nutrient recycling.

  10. A multivariate analysis of Antarctic sea ice since 1979

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Magalhaes Neto, Newton de; Evangelista, Heitor [Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (Uerj), LARAMG - Laboratorio de Radioecologia e Mudancas Globais, Maracana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Tanizaki-Fonseca, Kenny [Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (Uerj), LARAMG - Laboratorio de Radioecologia e Mudancas Globais, Maracana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF), Dept. Analise Geoambiental, Inst. de Geociencias, Niteroi, RJ (Brazil); Penello Meirelles, Margareth Simoes [Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (UERJ)/Geomatica, Maracana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Garcia, Carlos Eiras [Universidade Federal do Rio Grande (FURG), Laboratorio de Oceanografia Fisica, Rio Grande, RS (Brazil)

    2012-03-15

    Recent satellite observations have shown an increase in the total extent of Antarctic sea ice, during periods when the atmosphere and oceans tend to be warmer surrounding a significant part of the continent. Despite an increase in total sea ice, regional analyses depict negative trends in the Bellingshausen-Amundsen Sea and positive trends in the Ross Sea. Although several climate parameters are believed to drive the formation of Antarctic sea ice and the local atmosphere, a descriptive mechanism that could trigger such differences in trends are still unknown. In this study we employed a multivariate analysis in order to identify the response of the Antarctic sea ice with respect to commonly utilized climate forcings/parameters, as follows: (1) The global air surface temperature, (2) The global sea surface temperature, (3) The atmospheric CO{sub 2} concentration, (4) The South Annular Mode, (5) The Nino 3, (6) The Nino (3 + 4, 7) The Nino 4, (8) The Southern Oscillation Index, (9) The Multivariate ENSO Index, (10) the Total Solar Irradiance, (11) The maximum O{sub 3} depletion area, and (12) The minimum O{sub 3} concentration over Antarctica. Our results indicate that western Antarctic sea ice is simultaneously impacted by several parameters; and that the minimum, mean, and maximum sea ice extent may respond to a separate set of climatic/geochemical parameters. (orig.)

  11. Mapping and Assessing Variability in the Antarctic Marginal Ice Zone, the Pack Ice and Coastal Polynyas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stroeve, Julienne; Jenouvrier, Stephanie

    2016-04-01

    Sea ice variability within the marginal ice zone (MIZ) and polynyas plays an important role for phytoplankton productivity and krill abundance. Therefore mapping their spatial extent, seasonal and interannual variability is essential for understanding how current and future changes in these biological active regions may impact the Antarctic marine ecosystem. Knowledge of the distribution of different ice types to the total Antarctic sea ice cover may also help to shed light on the factors contributing towards recent expansion of the Antarctic ice cover in some regions and contraction in others. The long-term passive microwave satellite data record provides the longest and most consistent data record for assessing different ice types. However, estimates of the amount of MIZ, consolidated pack ice and polynyas depends strongly on what sea ice algorithm is used. This study uses two popular passive microwave sea ice algorithms, the NASA Team and Bootstrap to evaluate the distribution and variability in the MIZ, the consolidated pack ice and coastal polynyas. Results reveal the NASA Team algorithm has on average twice the MIZ and half the consolidated pack ice area as the Bootstrap algorithm. Polynya area is also larger in the NASA Team algorithm, and the timing of maximum polynya area may differ by as much as 5 months between algorithms. These differences lead to different relationships between sea ice characteristics and biological processes, as illustrated here with the breeding success of an Antarctic seabird.

  12. Measurements of 36Cl in Antarctic meteorites and Antarctic ice using a Van de Graaff accelerator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cosmic-ray produced 36Cl(tsub(1/2) = 3.0 X 105 years) has been measured in four Antarctic meteorites and one sample of Antarctic ice using a tandem Van de Graaff accelerator as an ultrasensitive mass spectrometer with the extremely low background level of 36Cl/Cl -16. Results from this ion counting technique (applied here to extraterrestrial materials for the first time) are used to support a two-stage irradiation model for the Yamato-7301and Allan Hills-76008 meteorites and to show a long terrestrial age (0.7 +- 0.1 m.y.) for Allan Hills-77002. Yamato-7304 has a terrestrial age of less than 0.1 m.y. The 36Cl content of the Antarctic ice sample from the Yamato Mountain area implies that the age of the ice cap at this site is less than one 36Cl half-life. (Auth.)

  13. Sources and Levels of Ambient Ocean Sound near the Antarctic Peninsula

    OpenAIRE

    Dziak, Robert P.; Bohnenstiehl, DelWayne R.; Stafford, Kathleen M.; Haruyoshi Matsumoto; Minkyu Park; Won Sang Lee; Fowler, Matt J.; Tai-Kwan Lau; Haxel, Joseph H.; Mellinger, David K.

    2015-01-01

    Arrays of hydrophones were deployed within the Bransfield Strait and Scotia Sea (Antarctic Peninsula region) from 2005 to 2009 to record ambient ocean sound at frequencies of up to 125 and 500 Hz. Icequakes, which are broadband, short duration signals derived from fracturing of large free-floating icebergs, are a prominent feature of the ocean soundscape. Icequake activity peaks during austral summer and is minimum during winter, likely following freeze-thaw cycles. Iceberg grounding and rapi...

  14. Comparative roles of upwelling and glacial iron sources in Ryder Bay, coastal western Antarctic Peninsula

    OpenAIRE

    Annett, Amber; Skiba, Marta; Henley, Sian; Venables, Hugh J.; Meredith, Michael P.; Statham, Peter; Ganeshram, Raja

    2015-01-01

    Iron (Fe) is an essential micronutrient for phytoplankton, and is scarce in many regions including the open Southern Ocean. The western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP), an important source region of Fe to the wider Southern Ocean, is also the fastest warming region of the Southern Hemisphere. The relative importance of glacial versus marine Fe sources is currently poorly constrained, hindering projections of how changing oceanic circulation, productivity, and glacial dynamics may affect the balance...

  15. Functional Diversity of Microbial Communities in Soils in the Vicinity of Wanda Glacier, Antarctic Peninsula

    OpenAIRE

    Pessi, Igor Stelmach; de Oliveira Elias, Susana; Simões, Felipe Lorenz; Simões, Jefferson Cardia; Macedo, Alexandre José

    2011-01-01

    Microbial functional diversity in four soils sampled in the vicinity of Wanda Glacier, Antarctic Peninsula, was determined using Biolog EcoPlates at 5°C and 25°C. Comparisons of the patterns of substrate utilization and the diversity index showed differences in community composition, reflecting the heterogeneous distribution of microorganisms in this environment. Differences in microbial diversity may be related to soil chemical properties. Higher incubation temperature influenced the overall...

  16. Regional Changes in the Sea Ice Cover and Ice Production in the Antarctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comiso, Josefino C.

    2011-01-01

    Coastal polynyas around the Antarctic continent have been regarded as sea ice factories because of high ice production rates in these regions. The observation of a positive trend in the extent of Antarctic sea ice during the satellite era has been intriguing in light of the observed rapid decline of the ice extent in the Arctic. The results of analysis of the time series of passive microwave data indicate large regional variability with the trends being strongly positive in the Ross Sea, strongly negative in the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas and close to zero in the other regions. The atmospheric circulation in the Antarctic is controlled mainly by the Southern Annular Mode (SAM) and the marginal ice zone around the continent shows an alternating pattern of advance and retreat suggesting the presence of a propagating wave (called Antarctic Circumpolar Wave) around the circumpolar region. The results of analysis of the passive microwave data suggest that the positive trend in the Antarctic sea ice cover could be caused primarily by enhanced ice production in the Ross Sea that may be associated with more persistent and larger coastal polynyas in the region. Over the Ross Sea shelf, analysis of sea ice drift data from 1992 to 2008 yields a positive rate-of-increase in the net ice export of about 30,000 km2 per year. For a characteristic ice thickness of 0.6 m, this yields a volume transport of about 20 km3/year, which is almost identical, within error bars, to our estimate of the trend in ice production. In addition to the possibility of changes in SAM, modeling studies have also indicated that the ozone hole may have a role in that it causes the deepening of the lows in the western Antarctic region thereby causing strong winds to occur offthe Ross-ice shelf.

  17. Validation of the Antarctic Snow Accumulation and Ice Discharge Basal Stress Boundary in the South Eastern Region of the Ross Ice Shelf, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, C. B.; King, K.

    2015-12-01

    The largest ice shelf in Antarctic, Ross Ice Shelf, was investigated over the years of (1970-2015). Near the basal stress boundary between the ice shelf and the West Antarctic ice sheet, ice velocity ranges from a few meters per year to several hundred meters per year in ice streams. Most of the drainage from West Antarctica into the Ross Ice Shelf flows down two major ice streams, each of which discharges more than 20 km3 of ice each year. Along with velocity changes, the warmest water below parts of the Ross Ice Shelf resides in the lowest portion of the water column because of its high salinity. Vertical mixing caused by tidal stirring can thus induce ablation by lifting the warm water into contact with the ice shelf. This process can cause melting over a period of time and eventually cause breakup of ice shelf. With changes occurring over many years a validation is needed for the Antarctic Snow Accumulation and Ice Discharge (ASAID) basal stress boundary created in 2003. After the 2002 Larsen B Ice Shelf disintegration, nearby glaciers in the Antarctic Peninsula accelerated up to eight times their original speed over the next 18 months. Similar losses of ice tongues in Greenland have caused speed-ups of two to three times the flow rates in just one year. Rapid changes occurring in regions surrounding Antarctica are causing concern in the polar science community to research changes occurring in coastal zones over time. During the research, the team completed study on the Ross Ice Shelf located on the south western coast of the Antarctic. The study included a validation of the ABSB vs. the natural basal stress boundary (NBSB) along the Ross Ice Shelf. The ASAID BSB was created in 2003 by a team of researchers headed by National Aeronautics and Space Administration Goddard Space Flight Center (NASA GSFC), with an aim of studying coastal deviations as it pertains to the mass balance of the entire continent. The point data file was aimed at creating a replica of the

  18. Particle flux on the continental shelf in the Amundsen Sea Polynya and Western Antarctic Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hugh W. Ducklow

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract We report results from a yearlong, moored sediment trap in the Amundsen Sea Polynya (ASP, the first such time series in this remote and productive ecosystem. Results are compared to a long-term (1992–2013 time series from the western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP. The ASP trap was deployed from December 2010 to December 2011 at 350 m depth. We observed two brief, but high flux events, peaking at 8 and 5 mmol C m−2 d−1 in January and December 2011, respectively, with a total annual capture of 315 mmol C m−2. Both peak fluxes and annual capture exceeded the comparable WAP observations. Like the overlying phytoplankton bloom observed during the cruise in the ASP (December 2010 to January 2011, particle flux was dominated by Phaeocystis antarctica, which produced phytodetrital aggregates. Particles at the start of the bloom were highly depleted in 13C, indicating their origin in the cold, CO2-rich winter waters exposed by retreating sea ice. As the bloom progressed, microscope visualization and stable isotopic composition provided evidence for an increasing contribution by zooplankton fecal material. Incubation experiments and zooplankton observations suggested that fecal pellet production likely contributed 10–40% of the total flux during the first flux event, and could be very high during episodic krill swarms. Independent estimates of export from the surface (100 m were about 5–10 times that captured in the trap at 350 m. Estimated bacterial respiration was sufficient to account for much of the decline in the flux between 50 and 350 m, whereas zooplankton respiration was much lower. The ASP system appears to export only a small fraction of its production deeper than 350 m within the polynya region. The export efficiency was comparable to other polar regions where phytoplankton blooms were not dominated by diatoms.

  19. Two decades of inorganic carbon dynamics along the Western Antarctic Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Hauri

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available We present 20 years of seawater inorganic carbon measurements collected along the western shelf and slope of the Antarctic Peninsula. Water column observations from summertime cruises and seasonal surface underway pCO2 measurements provide unique insights into the spatial, seasonal and interannual variability of the dynamic system. The discrete measurements from depths > 2000 m align well with World Ocean Circulation Experiment observations across the time-series and underline the consistency of the data set. Analysis shows large spatial gradients in surface alkalinity and dissolved inorganic carbon content, with a concomitant wide range of Ωarag from values arag despite glacial and sea-ice melt water input. In support of previous studies, we observed Redfield behavior of regional C / N nutrient utilization, while the C / P (80.5 ± 2.5 and N / P (11.7 ± 0.3 molar ratios were significantly lower than the Redfield elemental stoichiometric values. Seasonal predictions of Ωarag suggest that surface waters remained mostly supersaturated with regard to aragonite throughout the study. However, more than a third of the predictions for winters between 1999 and 2013 resulted in Ωarag arag may have implications for important organisms such as pteropods. Despite large interannual variability, surface pCO2 measurements indicate a statistically significant increasing trend of up to 23 μatm per decade in fall and spring and a concomitant decreasing pH, pointing towards first signs of ocean acidification in the region. The combination of ongoing ocean acidification and freshwater input may soon provoke more unfavorable conditions than what the ecosystem experiences today.

  20. Abundance and breeding distribution of seabirds in the northern part of the Danco Coast, Antarctic Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariana A. Juáres

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Seabird abundances and breeding distribution have the potential to serve as ecological indicators. The western Antarctic Peninsula is one of the three sites in the world with the greatest increases in local temperature during the last 50 years. The aim of this study was to monitor the distribution and abundance of breeding populations of seabirds in the northern sector of the Danco Coast, north-west of the Antarctic Peninsula, during the breeding season 2010/11. The birds were the Wilson′s storm petrel (Oceanites oceanicus, South Polar skua (Stercorarius maccormicki, kelp gull (Larus dominicanus, Antarctic tern (Sterna vittata, snowy sheathbill (Chionis alba, chinstrap penguin (Pygoscelis antarctica, southern giant petrel (Macronectes giganteus, gentoo penguin (Pygoscelis papua, Cape petrel (Daption capense and Antarctic shag (Phalacrocorax bransfieldensis. Annual breeding population growth increased in pygoscelids, southern giant petrel and sheathbill, and for the remaining species, breeding population trends were stable. Given that seabird populations can provide valuable information on the conditions of their feeding and nesting environments, this study highlights the need to maintain basics monitoring studies.

  1. Thermal regime of active layer at two lithologically contrasting sites on James Ross Island, Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hrbáček, Filip; Nývlt, Daniel; Láska, Kamil

    2016-04-01

    Antarctic Peninsula region (AP) represents one of the most rapidly warming parts of our planet in the last 50 years. Despite increasing research activities along both western and eastern sides of AP in last decades, there is still a lot of gaps in our knowledge relating to permafrost, active layer and its thermal and physical properties. This study brings new results of active layer monitoring on James Ross Island, which is the largest island in northern AP. Its northern part, Ulu Peninsula, is the largest ice-free area (more than 200 km2) in the region. Due its large area, we focused this study on sites located in different lithologies, which would affect local thermal regime of active layer. Study site (1) at Abernethy Flats area (41 m a.s.l.) lies ~7 km from northern coast. Lithologically is formed by disintegrated Cretaceous calcareous sandstones and siltstones of the Santa Marta Formation. Study site (2) is located at the northern slopes of Berry Hill (56 m a.s.l.), about 0.4 km from northern coastline. Lithology is composed of muddy to intermediate diamictites, tuffaceous siltstones to fine grained sandstones of the Mendel Formation. Data of air temperature at 2 meters above ground and the active layer temperatures at 75 cm deep profiles were obtained from both sites in period 1 January 2012 to 31 December 2014. Small differences were found when comparing mean air temperatures and active temperatures at 5 and 75 cm depth in the period 2012-2014. While the mean air temperatures varied between -7.7 °C and -7.0 °C, the mean ground temperatures fluctuated between -6.6 °C and -6.1 °C at 5 cm and -6.9 °C and -6.0 °C at 75 cm at Abernethy Flats and Berry Hill slopes respectively. Even though ground temperature differences along the profiles weren't pronounced during thawing seasons, the maximum active layer thickness was significantly larger at Berry Hill slopes (80 to 82 cm) than at Abernethy Flats (52 to 64 cm). We assume this differences are affected by

  2. Emplacement of Antarctic ice sheet mass affects circumpolar ocean flow

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rugenstein, M.; Stocchi, P.; van der Heydt, A.; Brinkhuis, H.

    2014-01-01

    During the Cenozoic the Antarctic continent experienced large fluctuations in ice-sheet volume. We investigate the effects of Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA) on Southern Ocean circulation for the first continental scale glaciation of Antarctica (~ 34 Myr) by combining solid Earth and ocean dynami

  3. MT soundings in south Shetland Islands and Antarctic Peninsula (Antarctica). Constraints to the crustal structure of the Bransfield strait conjugated continental margins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Complete text of publication follows. The South Shetland Block was separated from the Antarctic Peninsula during the opening of the Bransfield Strait since the Pliocene (about 3.3 Ma). The Bransfield basin is developed by the interaction of two tectonic processes that continue active up to Present: the back-arc extension related to the subduction of the former Phoenix plate oceanic crust along the South Shetland trench and the transtensional deformation associated to the western end of the sinistral Scotia-Antarctic plate boundary along the South Scotia Ridge fault zone. In this tectonic framework 12 MT broadband data (BBMT) were recorded along a NW-SE transect orthogonal to the Bransfield Strait, with Metronix ADU-06 equipments, during 2008 and 2009 International Polar Year field surveys. Due to the difficult access of the region and in order to compare the resistivity crustal features, MT soundings were grouped in three sectors representing the different tectonic settings. In the South Shetland Block 4 MT soundings were located in Livingston Island (3 in Byers Peninsula and one in Hurd Peninsula) and suggest the presence of conductive Cretaceous to Cenozoic sedimentary and volcanic rocks above the resistive and heterogeneous metamorphic basement that outcrop in Hurd Peninsula. Southwards, 7 MT sounding were situated around the Quaternary volcanic caldera of Deception Island, formed on the fault system separating the South Shetland Block and the Bransfield basin. Conductive bodies highlight the location of the main magma chambers. Finally, in the Antarctic Peninsula northern margin a MT sounding was obtained in Isla Larga, near the O'Higgins base that constitutes one of the scarce islands of this region not covered by ice during the summer. This MT sounding suggest a 3D complex resistivity structure related to the metamorphic rocks intruded by basic dykes. These MT soundings may contribute to improve the scarce available data on the crustal structure of this

  4. Iron biogeochemistry in Antarctic pack ice during SIPEX-2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lannuzel, Delphine; Chever, Fanny; van der Merwe, Pier C.; Janssens, Julie; Roukaerts, Arnout; Cavagna, Anne-Julie; Townsend, Ashley T.; Bowie, Andrew R.; Meiners, Klaus M.

    2016-09-01

    Our study quantified the spatial and temporal distribution of Fe and ancillary biogeochemical parameters at six stations visited during an interdisciplinary Australian Antarctic marine science voyage (SIPEX-2) within the East Antarctic first-year pack ice zone during September-October 2012. Unlike previous studies in the area, the sea ice Chlorophyll a, Particulate Organic Carbon and Nitrogen (POC and PON) maxima did not occur at the ice/water interface because of the snow loading and dynamic processes under which the sea ice formed. Iron in sea ice ranged from 0.9 to 17.4 nM for the dissolved (0.2 μm) fraction. Our results highlight that the concentration of particulate Fe in sea ice was highest when approaching the continent. The high POC concentration and high particulate iron to aluminium ratio in sea ice samples demonstrate that 71% of the particulate Fe was biogenic in composition. Our estimated Fe flux from melting pack ice to East Antarctic surface waters over a 30 day melting period was 0.2 μmol/m2/d of DFe, 2.7 μmol/m2/d of biogenic PFe and 1.3 μmol/m2/d of lithogenic PFe. These estimates suggest that the fertilization potential of the particulate fraction of Fe may have been previously underestimated due to the assumption that it is primarily lithogenic in composition. Our new measurements and calculated fluxes indicate that a large fraction of the total Fe pool within sea ice may be bioavailable and therefore, effective in promoting primary productivity in the marginal ice zone.

  5. Kelp gulls, Larus dominicanus (Aves: Laridae, breeding in Keller Peninsula, King George Island, Antarctic Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joaquim O. Branco

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available We examined the distribution, abundance and density of the Kelp Gull, Larus dominicanus (Lichtenstein, 1823, at Keller Peninsula on two occasions during the breeding season of 2007-2008 (once for incubation and once for chick stages and compared our results with previously published data. We present information on the number of eggs, incubation success, and initial development of L. dominicanus chicks in the studied sites. The abundance and density of the species has remained statistically similar in Keller Peninsula over the last 30 years (since 1978-1979. Although the abundance and density were almost unchanged, we recorded alterations in the occupation of the breeding areas by L. dominicanus, mainly the abandonment of breeding sites in the eastern portion of Keller Peninsula. The results of the present study compared with similar previous investigations on the abundance of L. dominicanus indicate that the populations have been in equilibrium over the years.

  6. Antarctic last interglacial isotope peak in response to sea ice retreat not ice-sheet collapse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holloway, Max D; Sime, Louise C; Singarayer, Joy S; Tindall, Julia C; Bunch, Pete; Valdes, Paul J

    2016-01-01

    Several studies have suggested that sea-level rise during the last interglacial implies retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). The prevalent hypothesis is that the retreat coincided with the peak Antarctic temperature and stable water isotope values from 128,000 years ago (128 ka); very early in the last interglacial. Here, by analysing climate model simulations of last interglacial WAIS loss featuring water isotopes, we show instead that the isotopic response to WAIS loss is in opposition to the isotopic evidence at 128 ka. Instead, a reduction in winter sea ice area of 65±7% fully explains the 128 ka ice core evidence. Our finding of a marked retreat of the sea ice at 128 ka demonstrates the sensitivity of Antarctic sea ice extent to climate warming. PMID:27526639

  7. Antarctic last interglacial isotope peak in response to sea ice retreat not ice-sheet collapse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holloway, Max D; Sime, Louise C; Singarayer, Joy S; Tindall, Julia C; Bunch, Pete; Valdes, Paul J

    2016-01-01

    Several studies have suggested that sea-level rise during the last interglacial implies retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). The prevalent hypothesis is that the retreat coincided with the peak Antarctic temperature and stable water isotope values from 128,000 years ago (128 ka); very early in the last interglacial. Here, by analysing climate model simulations of last interglacial WAIS loss featuring water isotopes, we show instead that the isotopic response to WAIS loss is in opposition to the isotopic evidence at 128 ka. Instead, a reduction in winter sea ice area of 65±7% fully explains the 128 ka ice core evidence. Our finding of a marked retreat of the sea ice at 128 ka demonstrates the sensitivity of Antarctic sea ice extent to climate warming.

  8. Antarctic last interglacial isotope peak in response to sea ice retreat not ice-sheet collapse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holloway, Max D.; Sime, Louise C.; Singarayer, Joy S.; Tindall, Julia C.; Bunch, Pete; Valdes, Paul J.

    2016-01-01

    Several studies have suggested that sea-level rise during the last interglacial implies retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). The prevalent hypothesis is that the retreat coincided with the peak Antarctic temperature and stable water isotope values from 128,000 years ago (128 ka); very early in the last interglacial. Here, by analysing climate model simulations of last interglacial WAIS loss featuring water isotopes, we show instead that the isotopic response to WAIS loss is in opposition to the isotopic evidence at 128 ka. Instead, a reduction in winter sea ice area of 65±7% fully explains the 128 ka ice core evidence. Our finding of a marked retreat of the sea ice at 128 ka demonstrates the sensitivity of Antarctic sea ice extent to climate warming. PMID:27526639

  9. A model of the Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oerlemans, J.

    1982-01-01

    Numerical modelling of ice sheets and glaciers has become a useful tool in glaciological research. A model described here deals with the vertical mean ice velocity, is time dependent, computes bedrock adjustment and uses an empirical diagnostic relationship to derive the distribution of ice thicknes

  10. Thickening and Thinning of Antarctic Ice Shelves and Tongues and Mass Balance Estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwally, H. Jay; Li, Jun; Giovinetto, Mario; Robbins, John; Saba, Jack L.; Yi, Donghui

    2011-01-01

    Previous analysis of elevation changes for 1992 to 2002 obtained from measurements by radar altimeters on ERS-l and 2 showed that the shelves in the Antarctic Peninsula (AP) and along the coast of West Antarctica (WA), including the eastern part of the Ross Ice Shelf, were mostly thinning and losing mass whereas the Ronne Ice shelf also in WA was mostly thickening. The estimated total mass loss for the floating ice shelves and ice tongues from ice draining WA and the AP was 95 Gt/a. In contrast, the floating ice shelves and ice tongues from ice draining East Antarctica (EA), including the Filchner, Fimbul, Amery, and Western Ross, were mostly thickening with a total estimated mass gain of 142 Gt/a. Data from ICESat laser altimetry for 2003-2008 gives new surface elevation changes (dH/dt) with some similar values for the earlier and latter periods, including -27.6 and -26.9 cm a-Ion the West Getz ice shelf and -42.4 and - 27.2 cm/a on the East Getz ice shelf, and some values that indicate more thinning in the latter period, including -17.9 and -36.2 cm/a on the Larsen C ice shelf, -35.5 and -76.0 cm/a on the Pine Island Glacier floating, -60.5 and -125.7 .cm/a on the Smith Glacier floating, and -34.4 and -108.9 cm/a on the Thwaites Glacier floating. Maps of measured dH/dt and estimated thickness change are produced along with mass change estimates for 2003 - 2008.

  11. Neogene kinematic history of Nazca-Antarctic-Phoenix slab windows beneath Patagonia and the Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breitsprecher, Katrin; Thorkelson, Derek J.

    2009-01-01

    The Patagonian slab window is a subsurface tectonic feature resulting from subduction of the Nazca-Antarctic spreading-ridge system (Chile Rise) beneath southern South America. The geometry of the slab window had not been rigorously defined, in part because of the complex nature of the history of ridge subduction in the southeast Pacific region, which includes four interrelated spreading-ridge systems since 20 Ma: first, the Nazca-Phoenix ridge beneath South America, then simultaneous subduction of the Nazca-Antarctic and the northern Phoenix-Antarctic spreading-ridge systems beneath South America, and the southern Phoenix-Antarctic spreading-ridge system beneath Antarctica. Spreading-ridge paleo-geographies and rotation poles for all relevant plate pairs (Nazca, Phoenix, Antarctic, South America) are available from 20 Ma onward, and form the mathematical basis of our kinematic reconstruction of the geometry of the Patagonia and Antarctic slab windows through Neogene time. At approximately 18 Ma, the Nazca-Phoenix-Antarctic oceanic (ridge-ridge-ridge) triple junction enters the South American trench; we recognize this condition as an unstable quadruple junction. Heat flow at this junction and for some distance beneath the forearc would be considerably higher than is generally recognized in cases of ridge subduction. From 16 Ma onward, the geometry of the Patagonia slab window developed from the subduction of the trailing arms of the former oceanic triple junction. The majority of the slab window's areal extent and geometry is controlled by the highly oblique (near-parallel) subduction angle of the Nazca-Antarctic ridge system, and by the high contrast in relative convergence rates between these two plates relative to South America. The very slow convergence rate of the Antarctic slab is manifested by the shallow levels achieved by the slab edge (< 45 km); thus no point on the Antarctic slab is sufficiently deep to generate "normal" mantle-derived arc-type magmas

  12. Antarctic ice-sheet loss driven by basal melting of ice shelves

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pritchard, H.D.; Ligtenberg, S.R.M.; Fricker, H.A.; Vaughan, D.G.; van den Broeke, M.R.; Padman, L.

    2012-01-01

    Accurate prediction of global sea-level rise requires that we understand the cause of recent, widespread and intensifying1,2 glacier acceleration along Antarctic ice-sheet coastal margins3. Atmospheric and oceanic forcing have the potential to reduce the thickness and extent of floating ice shelves,

  13. A reversal of fortunes: climate change 'winners' and 'losers' in Antarctic Peninsula penguins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clucas, Gemma V; Dunn, Michael J; Dyke, Gareth; Emslie, Steven D; Naveen, Ron; Polito, Michael J; Pybus, Oliver G; Rogers, Alex D; Hart, Tom

    2014-06-12

    Climate change is a major threat to global biodiversity. Antarctic ecosystems are no exception. Investigating past species responses to climatic events can distinguish natural from anthropogenic impacts. Climate change produces 'winners', species that benefit from these events and 'losers', species that decline or become extinct. Using molecular techniques, we assess the demographic history and population structure of Pygoscelis penguins in the Scotia Arc related to climate warming after the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). All three pygoscelid penguins responded positively to post-LGM warming by expanding from glacial refugia, with those breeding at higher latitudes expanding most. Northern (Pygoscelis papua papua) and Southern (Pygoscelis papua ellsworthii) gentoo sub-species likely diverged during the LGM. Comparing historical responses with the literature on current trends, we see Southern gentoo penguins are responding to current warming as they did during post-LGM warming, expanding their range southwards. Conversely, Adélie and chinstrap penguins are experiencing a 'reversal of fortunes' as they are now declining in the Antarctic Peninsula, the opposite of their response to post-LGM warming. This suggests current climate warming has decoupled historic population responses in the Antarctic Peninsula, favoring generalist gentoo penguins as climate change 'winners', while Adélie and chinstrap penguins have become climate change 'losers'.

  14. Remotely-Sensed Glacier Change Estimation: a Case Study at Lindblad Cove, Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fieber, K. D.; Mills, J. P.; Miller, P. E.; Fox, A. J.

    2016-06-01

    This study builds on existing literature of glacier change estimation in polar regions and is a continuation of efforts aimed at unlocking the information encapsulated in archival aerial photography of Antarctic Peninsula glaciers. Historical aerial imagery acquired in 1957 over three marine-terminating glaciers at Lindblad Cove on the West Coast of Trinity Peninsula is processed to extract digital elevation models (DEMs) which are subsequently compared to DEMs generated from present day (2014) WorldView-2 satellite stereo-imagery. The new WorldView-2 images offer unprecedented sub-metre resolution of the Antarctic Peninsula and are explored here to facilitate improved registration and higher accuracy analysis of glacier changes. Unlike many studies, which focus on glacier fronts or only restricted regions of glaciers, this paper presents a complete coverage of elevation changes across the glacier surfaces for two of the studied glaciers. The study utilises a robust least squares matching technique to ensure precise registration of the archival and modern DEMs, which is applied due to lack of existing ground control in this remote region. This case study reveals that, while many glaciers in polar regions are reported as experiencing significant mass loss, some glaciers are stable or even demonstrate mass gain. All three glaciers reported here demonstrated overall mean increases in surface elevation, indicative of positive mass balance ranging from 0.6 to 5.8 metre water equivalent between 1957 and 2014.

  15. REMOTELY-SENSED GLACIER CHANGE ESTIMATION: A CASE STUDY AT LINDBLAD COVE, ANTARCTIC PENINSULA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. D. Fieber

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available This study builds on existing literature of glacier change estimation in polar regions and is a continuation of efforts aimed at unlocking the information encapsulated in archival aerial photography of Antarctic Peninsula glaciers. Historical aerial imagery acquired in 1957 over three marine-terminating glaciers at Lindblad Cove on the West Coast of Trinity Peninsula is processed to extract digital elevation models (DEMs which are subsequently compared to DEMs generated from present day (2014 WorldView-2 satellite stereo-imagery. The new WorldView-2 images offer unprecedented sub-metre resolution of the Antarctic Peninsula and are explored here to facilitate improved registration and higher accuracy analysis of glacier changes. Unlike many studies, which focus on glacier fronts or only restricted regions of glaciers, this paper presents a complete coverage of elevation changes across the glacier surfaces for two of the studied glaciers. The study utilises a robust least squares matching technique to ensure precise registration of the archival and modern DEMs, which is applied due to lack of existing ground control in this remote region. This case study reveals that, while many glaciers in polar regions are reported as experiencing significant mass loss, some glaciers are stable or even demonstrate mass gain. All three glaciers reported here demonstrated overall mean increases in surface elevation, indicative of positive mass balance ranging from 0.6 to 5.8 metre water equivalent between 1957 and 2014.

  16. Antarctic Sea Ice Variability and Trends, 1979-2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, C. L.; Cavalieri, D. J.

    2012-01-01

    In sharp contrast to the decreasing sea ice coverage of the Arctic, in the Antarctic the sea ice cover has, on average, expanded since the late 1970s. More specifically, satellite passive-microwave data for the period November 1978 - December 2010 reveal an overall positive trend in ice extents of 17,100 +/- 2,300 square km/yr. Much of the increase, at 13,700 +/- 1,500 square km/yr, has occurred in the region of the Ross Sea, with lesser contributions from the Weddell Sea and Indian Ocean. One region, that of the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas, has, like the Arctic, instead experienced significant sea ice decreases, with an overall ice extent trend of -8,200 +/- 1,200 square km/yr. When examined through the annual cycle over the 32-year period 1979-2010, the Southern Hemisphere sea ice cover as a whole experienced positive ice extent trends in every month, ranging in magnitude from a low of 9,100 +/- 6,300 square km/yr in February to a high of 24,700 +/- 10,000 square km/yr in May. The Ross Sea and Indian Ocean also had positive trends in each month, while the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas had negative trends in each month, and the Weddell Sea and Western Pacific Ocean had a mixture of positive and negative trends. Comparing ice-area results to ice-extent results, in each case the ice-area trend has the same sign as the ice-extent trend, but differences in the magnitudes of the two trends identify regions with overall increasing ice concentrations and others with overall decreasing ice concentrations. The strong pattern of decreasing ice coverage in the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas region and increasing ice coverage in the Ross Sea region is suggestive of changes in atmospheric circulation. This is a key topic for future research.

  17. Antarctic sea ice variability and trends, 1979–2010

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. J. Cavalieri

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available In sharp contrast to the decreasing sea ice coverage of the Arctic, in the Antarctic the sea ice cover has, on average, expanded since the late 1970s. More specifically, satellite passive-microwave data for the period November 1978–December 2010 reveal an overall positive trend in ice extents of 17 100 ± 2300 km2 yr−1. Much of the increase, at 13 700 ± 1500 km2 yr−1, has occurred in the region of the Ross Sea, with lesser contributions from the Weddell Sea and Indian Ocean. One region, that of the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas, has, like the Arctic, instead experienced significant sea ice decreases, with an overall ice extent trend of −8200 ± 1200 km2 yr−1. When examined through the annual cycle over the 32-yr period 1979–2010, the Southern Hemisphere sea ice cover as a whole experienced positive ice extent trends in every month, ranging in magnitude from a low of 9100 ± 6300 km2 yr−1 in February to a high of 24 700 ± 10 000 km2 yr−1 in May. The Ross Sea and Indian Ocean also had positive trends in each month, while the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas had negative trends in each month, and the Weddell Sea and Western Pacific Ocean had a mixture of positive and negative trends. Comparing ice-area results to ice-extent results, in each case the ice-area trend has the same sign as the ice-extent trend, but differences in the magnitudes of the two trends identify regions with overall increasing ice concentrations and others with overall decreasing ice concentrations. The strong pattern of decreasing ice coverage in the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas region and increasing ice coverage in the Ross Sea region is suggestive of changes in atmospheric circulation. This is a key topic for future research.

  18. Antarctic sea ice variability and trends, 1979–2010

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. J. Cavalieri

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available In sharp contrast to the decreasing sea ice coverage of the Arctic, in the Antarctic the sea ice cover has, on average, expanded since the late 1970s. More specifically, satellite passive-microwave data for the period November 1978–December 2010 reveal an overall positive trend in ice extents of 17 100 ± 2300 km2 yr−1. Much of the increase, at 13 700 ± 1500 km2 yr−1, has occurred in the region of the Ross Sea, with lesser contributions from the Weddell Sea and Indian Ocean. One region, that of the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas, has (like the Arctic instead experienced significant sea ice decreases, with an overall ice extent trend of −8200 ± 1200 km2 yr−1. When examined through the annual cycle over the 32-yr period 1979–2010, the Southern Hemisphere sea ice cover as a whole experienced positive ice extent trends in every month, ranging in magnitude from a low of 9100 ± 6300 km2 yr−1 in February to a high of 24 700 ± 10 000 km2 yr−1 in May. The Ross Sea and Indian Ocean also had positive trends in each month, while the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas had negative trends in each month, and the Weddell Sea and western Pacific Ocean had a mixture of positive and negative trends. Comparing ice-area results to ice-extent results, in each case the ice-area trend has the same sign as the ice-extent trend, but the magnitudes of the two trends differ, and in some cases these differences allow inferences about the corresponding changes in sea ice concentrations. The strong pattern of decreasing ice coverage in the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas region and increasing ice coverage in the Ross Sea region is suggestive of changes in atmospheric circulation. This is a key topic for future research.

  19. Windblown Pliocene diatoms and East Antarctic Ice Sheet retreat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scherer, Reed P.; DeConto, Robert M.; Pollard, David; Alley, Richard B.

    2016-01-01

    Marine diatoms in tillites along the Transantarctic Mountains (TAMs) have been used to suggest a diminished East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) during Pliocene warm periods. Updated ice-sheet modelling shows significant Pliocene EAIS retreat, creating marine embayments into the Wilkes and Aurora basins that were conducive to high diatom productivity and rapid accumulation of diatomaceous sediments. Here we show that subsequent isostatic uplift exposed accumulated unconsolidated marine deposits to wind erosion. We report new atmospheric modelling utilizing Pliocene climate and derived Antarctic landscapes indicating that prevailing mid-altitude winds transported diatoms towards the TAMs, dominantly from extensive emerged coastal deposits of the Aurora Basin. This result unifies leading ideas from competing sides of a contentious debate about the origin of the diatoms in the TAMs and their link to EAIS history, supporting the view that parts of the EAIS are vulnerable to relatively modest warming, with possible implications for future sea-level rise. PMID:27649516

  20. Phylogenetic analysis and in vitro culture of mosses from the Antarctic Fildes Peninsula

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LIU Shenghao; ZHANG Zhaohui; WANG Nengfei; CONG Bailin; ZHANG Pengying; LIN Xuezheng; HUANG Xiaohang

    2014-01-01

    Molecular genetic techniques have proven very useful for initial analysis of the extent of genetic variation and dispersal in several Antarctic moss species. In the present study, the small subunit ribosomal RNA (SSU rDNA) and internal transcribed spacers of the nuclear ribosomal DNA (ITS rDNA) were sequenced in nine individuals of different mosses from the Fildes Peninsula of Antarctica. Sequence alignment showed that the extreme environment tended to increase the genetic diversity of Antarctic mosses. In addition, in our phylogenetic analysis, one previously unidentiifed Antarctic moss species was characterized by comparison with SSU and ITS rDNA sequences of known moss species. Moreover, the optimal culture medium and conditions for surface explant sterilization and protonemata induction in tissue culture of Pohlia nutans were investigated. The successful establishment of a tissue culture protocol together with the phylogenetic analysis of Antarctic mosses will provide technological support to establish an effective resource regeneration method for discovering new functional genes and gaining novel insights into the mechanisms of stress acclimation.

  1. Ecological niche modeling of sympatric krill predators around Marguerite Bay, Western Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedlaender, Ari S.; Johnston, David W.; Fraser, William R.; Burns, Jennifer; Halpin, Patrick N.; Costa, Daniel P.

    2011-07-01

    Adélie penguins ( Pygoscelis adeliae), carabeater seals ( Lobodon carcinophagus), humpback ( Megaptera novaeangliae), and minke whales ( Balaenoptera bonaernsis) are found in the waters surrounding the Western Antarctic Peninsula. Each species relies primarily on Antarctic krill ( Euphausia superba) and has physiological constraints and foraging behaviors that dictate their ecological niches. Understanding the degree of ecological overlap between sympatric krill predators is critical to understanding and predicting the impacts on climate-driven changes to the Antarctic marine ecosystem. To explore ecological relationships amongst sympatric krill predators, we developed ecological niche models using a maximum entropy modeling approach (Maxent) that allows the integration of data collected by a variety of means (e.g. satellite-based locations and visual observations). We created spatially explicit probability distributions for the four krill predators in fall 2001 and 2002 in conjunction with a suite of environmental variables. We find areas within Marguerite Bay with high krill predator occurrence rates or biological hot spots. We find the modeled ecological niches for Adélie penguins and crabeater seals may be affected by their physiological needs to haul-out on substrate. Thus, their distributions may be less dictated by proximity to prey and more so by physical features that over time provide adequate access to prey. Humpback and minke whales, being fully marine and having greater energetic demands, occupy ecological niches more directly proximate to prey. We also find evidence to suggest that the amount of overlap between modeled niches is relatively low, even for species with similar energetic requirements. In a rapidly changing and variable environment, our modeling work shows little indication that krill predators maintain similar ecological niches across years around Marguerite Bay. Given the amount of variability in the marine environment around the

  2. Mass Balance Changes and Ice Dynamics of Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets from Laser Altimetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babonis, G. S.; Csatho, B.; Schenk, T.

    2016-06-01

    During the past few decades the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have lost ice at accelerating rates, caused by increasing surface temperature. The melting of the two big ice sheets has a big impact on global sea level rise. If the ice sheets would melt down entirely, the sea level would rise more than 60 m. Even a much smaller rise would cause dramatic damage along coastal regions. In this paper we report about a major upgrade of surface elevation changes derived from laser altimetry data, acquired by NASA's Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite mission (ICESat) and airborne laser campaigns, such as Airborne Topographic Mapper (ATM) and Land, Vegetation and Ice Sensor (LVIS). For detecting changes in ice sheet elevations we have developed the Surface Elevation Reconstruction And Change detection (SERAC) method. It computes elevation changes of small surface patches by keeping the surface shape constant and considering the absolute values as surface elevations. We report about important upgrades of earlier results, for example the inclusion of local ice caps and the temporal extension from 1993 to 2014 for the Greenland Ice Sheet and for a comprehensive reconstruction of ice thickness and mass changes for the Antarctic Ice Sheets.

  3. Borehole temperatures reveal details of 20th century warming at Bruce Plateau, Antarctic Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Zagorodnov

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Two ice core boreholes of 143.74 m and 447.65 m (bedrock were drilled during the 2009–2010 austral summer on the Bruce Plateau at a location named LARISSA Site Beta (66°02' S, 64°04' W, 1975.5 m a.s.l.. Both boreholes were logged with thermistors shortly after drilling. The shallow borehole was instrumented for 4 months with a series of resistance thermometers with satellite uplink. Surface temperature proxy data derived from an inversion of the borehole temperature profiles are compared to available multi-decadal records from weather stations and ice cores located along a latitudinal transect of the Antarctic Peninsula to West Antarctica. The LARISSA Site Beta profiles show temperatures decreasing from the surface downward through the upper third of the ice, and warming thereafter to the bed. The average temperature for the most recent year is −14.78 °C (measured at 15 m depth, abbreviated T15. A minimum temperature of −15.8 °C is measured at 173 m depth and basal temperature is estimated to be −10.2 °C. Current mean annual temperature and the gradient in the lower part of the measured temperature profile have a best fit with an accumulation rate of 1.9 × 103 kg m−2 a−1 and basal heat flux (q of 88 mW m−2, if steady-state conditions are assumed. However, the mid-level temperature variations show that recent temperature has varied significantly. Reconstructed surface temperatures (Ts=T15 over the last 200 yr are derived by an inversion technique. From this, we find that cold temperatures (minimum Ts=−16.2 °C prevailed from ~1920 to ~1940, followed by a gradual rise of temperature to −14.2 °C around 1995, then cooling over the following decade and warming in the last few years. The coldest period was preceded by a relatively warm 19th century at T15 ≥ −15 °C. To facilitate

  4. Borehole temperatures reveal details of 20th century warming at Bruce Plateau, Antarctic Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Zagorodnov

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Two ice core boreholes of 143.18 m and 447.73 m (bedrock were drilled during the 2009–2010 austral summer on the Bruce Plateau at a location named LARISSA Site Beta (66°02' S, 64°04' W, 1975.5 m a.s.l.. Both boreholes were logged with thermistors shortly after drilling. The shallow borehole was instrumented for 4 months with a series of resistance thermometers with satellite uplink. Surface temperature proxy data derived from an inversion of the borehole temperature profiles are compared to available multi-decadal records from weather stations and ice cores located along a latitudinal transect of the Antarctic Peninsula to West Antarctica. The LARISSA Site Beta profiles show temperatures decreasing from the surface downward through the upper third of the ice, and warming thereafter to the bed. The average temperature for the most recent year is −14.78°C (measured at 15 m depth, abbreviated T15. A minimum temperature of −15.8°C is measured at 173 m depth, and basal temperature is estimated to be −10.2°C. Current mean annual temperature and the gradient in the lower part of the measured temperature profile have a best fit with an accumulation rate of 1.9×103 kg m−2 a−1 and basal heat flux (q of 88 mW m−2, if steady-state conditions are assumed. However, the mid-level temperature variations show that recent temperature has varied significantly. Reconstructed surface temperatures (Ts=T15 over the last 200 yr are derived by an inversion technique (Tikhonov and Samarskii, 1990. From this, we find that cold temperatures (minimum Ts=−16.2°C prevailed from ~1920 to ~1940, followed by a gradual rise of temperature to −14.2°C around 1995, then cooling over the following decade and warming in the last few years. The coldest period was preceded by a relatively warm 19th century at T15≥−15

  5. Geochemical evolution of Pliocene-Recent post-subduction alkalic basalts from Seal Nunataks, Antarctic Peninsula

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Following more than 200 Ma of subduction of Pacific oceanic crust beneath the west coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, subduction ceased by a series of ridge crest-trench collisions. However, magmatism continued after the cessation of subduction with basaltic rocks of the intraplate alkalic association being erupted from centres scattered along the whole length of the peninsula. In the northeast, at Seal Nunataks, a suite of intraplate basalts ranging in composition from tholeiite to alkali basalt was erupted less than 4 Ma ago, almost synchronously with the cessation of subduction in that area (4-6 Ma). LREE-enrichment [(La/Yb)n 4.7-11.5] but consistency of HREE abundances for all the basalts suggest they were generated by partial melting in the garnet stability field of the mantle. A number of trace-element ratios [e.g. Zr/Nb (4.9-8.4), Hf/Ta (1.5-3.3), Sr/Nb (15-26), Ti/Nb (390-800)] are likely to have been fractionated during partial melting/melt extraction, although they do exhibit some correlation with isotope ratios, suggesting variations in these ratios may have been controlled by both partial melting and source heterogeneity. However, Th/Ta (0.87-2.31), La/Th (5.4-10.5) and K/Rb (275-1330) ratios also exhibit considerable variations within the suite and show strong correlations with 87Sr/86Sr ratios (0.7028-0.7033). These trace-element-isotope covariations are explained by a model involving mixing of a LILE-, 87Sr-depleted end-member, broadly similar to the source for non-Dupal OIB and N-type MORB, and upper-mantle material with high LILE/HFSE and 87Sr/86Sr ratios. This high-LILE/HFSE, high-87Sr component may represent mantle material which was enriched during the previous 200 Ma of subduction-related magmatism within the Antarctic Peninsula. Post-subduction high-Mg andesites (''bajaites''), which are associated with the cessation of subduction long other continental margins, are apparently absent within the Antarctic Peninsula. (orig./WB)

  6. Softs of Fildes Peninsula, King George Island, the maritime Antarctic: Part I. Formation processes and pedogenetic particularities

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2000-01-01

    Based on the data obtained from tens of the investigated soil profiles scattered over the Fildes Peninsula, King George Island, the maritime Antarctic, the soil-forming processes were discussed. It was concluded that on the weathering crusts resulted from various physical courses, the strong freeze-thaw action within regolith, significant organic matter accumulation, evident leaching and illuviation, as well as initial argillification dominated the formation and development of the soils on the Fildes Peninsula. Furthermore, this study indicated that the juvenility of genesis, poor profile-expression, variation in column thickness, etc. characterized the pedogenetic features of the soils of the Fildes Peninsula.

  7. A Maturing Tephra Record in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunbar, N. W.; Kurbatov, A.; McIntosh, W. C.

    2011-12-01

    Tephra layers found in many Antarctic ice cores range from sub-centimeter thick, visible layers to cryptotephra consisting of sparse, fine-grained (Takahe, tephra from which have also been recognized in the marine record (Hillenbrand et al., 1988). A well-defined ash layer is found at a depth of between 190.37-190.39 m depth in the WAIS Divide core, containing 20 um ash shards that are chemically correlated to the the Pleaides volcanoes, in northern Victoria Land. This tephra layer correlates to one found in a Siple Dome (B) ice core (97.2 to 97.7 m depth) and in the Taylor Dome ice core (79.2 m depth). Deeper parts of the WAIS Divide ice core correspond to a time interval of abundant regional volcanism, represented by the large number of visible dust bands and cloudy layers in the core (A. Orsi, pers. comm., 2010). A distinct "visible brown layer" at a depth of 1586.363 m. (8.279 Ky BP preliminary age) is very likely to be from a major eruption of the West Antarctic volcano Mt. Takahe (8.2±5.4 , Wilch et al., 1999). This layer is found at a depth of 503.58-503.87 m in the Siple Dome A core (SMDA) corresponding to 8.167-8.181 Ky before 1950, and almost certainly to a visible layer identified and analyzed in the Byrd ice core at 788 m (Palais et al., 1988). A visible double layer at 1741.246 m (9.57 KyBP preliminary age) may correspond to a very distinct tephra layer in the SDMA core at a depth of around 550 m (corresponding to an age of around 9.7 Ky before 1950). This layer is derived from the West Antarctic stratovolcano, Mt. Berlin. In the segment of WAIS Divide ice core between 2251 and 2557 m depth (15.2 to 20.6 preliminary age), numerous dust bands and cloudy layers are reported in the ice. This corresponds to the age of ice in the Byrd Core that contained many volcanic layers (Gow and Williamson, 1971), and also an interval in the SDMA where numerous distinct tephra layers associated with highly explosive eruptions of Mt. Berlin were found. Detailed

  8. Response of Peat-forming Ecosystems of the Western Antarctic Peninsula to Recent Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tardona, M.; Beilman, D.; Yu, Z.; Loisel, J.

    2014-12-01

    Amplified warming and related environmental changes in the high latitudes have a complex geographic pattern, with the Western Antarctic Peninsula experiencing one of the fastest rates of recent warming globally. To better understand the response of terrestrial Antarctic ecosystems to polar change, we applied a paleoscience approach to organic soil profiles from 13 aerobic peatbank ecosystems on 7 islands along the peninsula from 67.6 to 64.2°S. Peatbank ecosystem ages were obtained by Radiocarbon measurements of organic matter from the base of these profiles and cluster in three groups: older than 1000 years old (as old as 2750 years old), 400-500 years old, and younger than 65 years with fixed bomb-spike carbon. Three of these peatbank profiles were studied in detail, and show growth rates over the last 65 years of ~2.5 mm yr-1. This rate is faster than those observed during previous periods but is similar to other recent nearby studies that report recent growth rates of ~2.6 mm yr-1. Organic carbon storage ranged from 6.1 to 21.3 kgC m-2. Values of moss bank organic matter δ13C show progressively more depleted δ13C values; in which depletion increases 3.0‰ over recent decades. Overall increase in source-independent discrimination is 1.7‰, consistent with published records from other locations and an increase in photosynthetic activity at the regional scale. Source-independent discrimination displays substantial variations corresponding negatively to variation of organic matter C:N values. Our results imply several recent changes in Antarctic peat forming ecosystem processes including formation of new moss banks, increased accumulation rates, and high variability in source-independent discrimination. These changes are complex but affected by contemporary climate changes of the region including increasing temperatures over the past century.

  9. Distribution of metals and trace elements in adult and juvenile penguins from the Antarctic Peninsula area.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jerez, Silvia; Motas, Miguel; Benzal, Jesús; Diaz, Julia; Vidal, Virginia; D'Amico, Verónica; Barbosa, Andrés

    2013-05-01

    The presence of metals in the Antarctic environment is principally a natural phenomenon caused by geochemical characteristics of the region, although some anthropogenic activities can increase these natural levels. Antarctic penguins present several of the characteristics of useful sentinels of pollution in Antarctica such as they are long-lived species situated at the top of food web. The concentrations of Al, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Se, Cd, and Pb were determined by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry in samples of liver, kidney, muscle, bone, feather, and stomach contents of gentoo, chinstrap, and Adélie penguin (12 adults, five juveniles) from carcasses of naturally dead individuals collected opportunistically in the Antarctic Peninsula area. The obtained results showed that accumulation and magnification of several elements can be occurring, so that Cd and Se reached levels potentially toxic in some specimens. The presence of human activities seems to be increasing the presence of toxic metals such as Mn, Cr, Ni, or Pb in penguins.

  10. Synchronicity between ice retreat and phytoplankton bloom in circum-Antarctic polynyas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yun; Ji, Rubao; Jenouvrier, Stephanie; Jin, Meibing; Stroeve, Julienne

    2016-03-01

    Phytoplankton in Antarctic coastal polynyas has a temporally short yet spatially variant growth window constrained by ice cover and day length. Using 18-year satellite measurements (1997-2015) of sea ice and chlorophyll concentrations, we assessed the synchronicity between the spring phytoplankton bloom and light availability, taking into account the ice cover and the incident solar irradiance, for 50 circum-Antarctic coastal polynyas. The synchronicity was strong (i.e., earlier ice-adjusted light onset leads to earlier bloom and vice versa) in most of the western Antarctic polynyas but weak in a majority of the eastern Antarctic polynyas. The west-east asymmetry is related to sea ice production rate: the formation of many eastern Antarctic polynyas is associated with strong katabatic wind and high sea ice production rate, leading to stronger water column mixing that could damp phytoplankton blooms and weaken the synchronicity.

  11. Thermodynamics of slush and snow-ice formation in the Antarctic sea-ice zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jutras, Mathilde; Vancoppenolle, Martin; Lourenço, Antonio; Vivier, Frédéric; Carnat, Gauthier; Madec, Gurvan; Rousset, Clément; Tison, Jean-Louis

    2016-09-01

    Snow over Antarctic sea ice is often flooded by brine or seawater, particularly in spring, forming slush and snow ice. Here, we evaluate the representation of the thermodynamics of slush and snow-ice formation in large-scale sea-ice models, using laboratory experiments (NaCl solutions poured into grated ice in an isolated container). Scaling analysis highlights latent heat as the main term of the energy budget. The temperature of the new sea ice immediately after flooding is found very close to the saltwater freezing point, whereas its bulk salinity is typically > 20 g / kg. Large-scale sea-ice models faithfully represent such physics, yet the uncertainty on the origin of flooding saltwater impacts the calculated new ice temperature, because of the different salinities of seawater and brine. The laboratory experiments also suggest a potential limitation to the existing physical representations of flooding: for brine fractions > 60 %, ice crystals start floating upon saltwater. Natural sea-ice observations suggest that the isolated system assumption holds for a few hours at most, after which rapid heat and salt exchanges mostly destroy the initial flooding signature on temperature and salinity. A small footprint on ice salinity remains however, natural snow ice is found 3-5 g/kg more saline than other forms of sea ice.

  12. Commitments to future retreat of Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeConto, Robert; Pollard, David

    2016-04-01

    The agreement reached at the COP21 United Nations Conference on Climate Change is aimed at limiting future increases in global mean temperature below 2°C. Here, we use a continental ice sheet/shelf model with new treatments of meltwater-enhanced calving (hydrofracturing) and marine terminating ice-cliffs, to explore future commitments to sea-level rise given limits of global mean warming between 1 and 3°C. In this case, ice-sheet model physics are calibrated against past ice-sheet response to temperatures warmer than today. The ice-sheet model is coupled to highly resolved atmosphere and ocean-model components, with imposed limits on future warming designed to mimic the idealized limits discussed at COP21. Both the short and long-term potential rise in global mean sea level are discussed in light of the range of allowances agreed in Paris. We also explore the sensitivity of Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets to plausible ranges of atmospheric versus ocean warming consistent with global mean temperatures between 1 and 3°C; and the resulting long-term commitments to sea-level rise over the coming centuries and millennia.

  13. Satellite Observations of Antarctic Sea Ice Thickness and Volume

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurtz, Nathan; Markus, Thorsten

    2012-01-01

    We utilize satellite laser altimetry data from ICESat combined with passive microwave measurements to analyze basin-wide changes in Antarctic sea ice thickness and volume over a 5 year period from 2003-2008. Sea ice thickness exhibits a small negative trend while area increases in the summer and fall balanced losses in thickness leading to small overall volume changes. Using a five year time-series, we show that only small ice thickness changes of less than -0.03 m/yr and volume changes of -266 cu km/yr and 160 cu km/yr occurred for the spring and summer periods, respectively. The calculated thickness and volume trends are small compared to the observational time period and interannual variability which masks the determination of long-term trend or cyclical variability in the sea ice cover. These results are in stark contrast to the much greater observed losses in Arctic sea ice volume and illustrate the different hemispheric changes of the polar sea ice covers in recent years.

  14. Evaluation of soil bioremediation techniques in an aged diesel spill at the Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Jesus, Hugo E; Peixoto, Raquel S; Cury, Juliano C; van Elsas, Jan D; Rosado, Alexandre S

    2015-12-01

    Many areas on the Antarctic continent already suffer from the direct and indirect influences of human activities. The main cause of contamination is petroleum hydrocarbons because this compound is used as a source of energy at the many research stations around the continent. Thus, the current study aims to evaluate treatments for bioremediation (biostimulation, bioaugmentation, and bioaugmentation + biostimulation) using soils from around the Brazilian Antarctic Station "Comandante Ferraz" (EACF), King George Island, Antarctic Peninsula. The experiment lasted for 45 days, and at the end of this period, chemical and molecular analyses were performed. Those analyses included the quantification of carbon and nitrogen, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) analysis (with gradient denaturation), real-time PCR, and quantification of total hydrocarbons and polyaromatics. Molecular tests evaluated changes in the profile and quantity of the rrs genes of archaea and bacteria and also the alkB gene. The influence of the treatments tested was directly related to the type of soil used. The work confirmed that despite the extreme conditions found in Antarctic soils, the bacterial strains degraded hydrocarbons and bioremediation treatments directly influenced the microbial communities present in these soils even in short periods. Although the majority of the previous studies demonstrate that the addition of fertilizer seems to be most effective at promoting bioremediation, our results show that for some conditions, autochthonous bioaugmentation (ABA) treatment is indicated. This work highlights the importance of understanding the processes of recovery of contaminated environments in polar regions because time is crucial to the soil recovery and to choosing the appropriate treatment. PMID:26286513

  15. Evaluation of soil bioremediation techniques in an aged diesel spill at the Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Jesus, Hugo E; Peixoto, Raquel S; Cury, Juliano C; van Elsas, Jan D; Rosado, Alexandre S

    2015-12-01

    Many areas on the Antarctic continent already suffer from the direct and indirect influences of human activities. The main cause of contamination is petroleum hydrocarbons because this compound is used as a source of energy at the many research stations around the continent. Thus, the current study aims to evaluate treatments for bioremediation (biostimulation, bioaugmentation, and bioaugmentation + biostimulation) using soils from around the Brazilian Antarctic Station "Comandante Ferraz" (EACF), King George Island, Antarctic Peninsula. The experiment lasted for 45 days, and at the end of this period, chemical and molecular analyses were performed. Those analyses included the quantification of carbon and nitrogen, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) analysis (with gradient denaturation), real-time PCR, and quantification of total hydrocarbons and polyaromatics. Molecular tests evaluated changes in the profile and quantity of the rrs genes of archaea and bacteria and also the alkB gene. The influence of the treatments tested was directly related to the type of soil used. The work confirmed that despite the extreme conditions found in Antarctic soils, the bacterial strains degraded hydrocarbons and bioremediation treatments directly influenced the microbial communities present in these soils even in short periods. Although the majority of the previous studies demonstrate that the addition of fertilizer seems to be most effective at promoting bioremediation, our results show that for some conditions, autochthonous bioaugmentation (ABA) treatment is indicated. This work highlights the importance of understanding the processes of recovery of contaminated environments in polar regions because time is crucial to the soil recovery and to choosing the appropriate treatment.

  16. Antarctic ice sheet GLIMMER model test and its simplified model on 2-dimensional ice flow

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xueyuan Tang; Zhanhai Zhang; Bo Sun; Yuansheng Li; Na Li; Bangbing Wang; Xiangpei Zhang

    2008-01-01

    The 3-dimensional finite difference thermodynamic coupled model on Antarctic ice sheet, GLIMMER model, is described. An ide-alized ice sheet numerical test was conducted under the EISMINT-I benchmark, and the characteristic curves of ice sheets under steady state were obtained. Based on this, this model was simplified from a 3-dimensional one to 2-dimensional one. Improvement of the dif-ference method and coordinate system was proposed. Evolution of the 2-dimensional ice flow was simulated under coupled temperature field conditions. The results showed that the characteristic curves deriving from the conservation of the mass, momentum and energy agree with the results of ice sheet profile simulated with GLIMMER model and with the theoretical results. The application prospect of the simplified 2-dimensional ice flow model to simulate the relation of age-depth-accumulation in Dome A region was discussed.

  17. Impact of the variability of the seasonal snow cover on the ground surface regimes in Hurd Peninsula (Livingston Island, Antarctic)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nieuwendam, Alexandre; Ramos, Miguel; Vieira, Gonçalo

    2014-05-01

    Seasonally snow cover has a great impact on the thermal regime of the active layer and permafrost. Ground temperatures over a year are strongly affected by the timing, duration, thickness, structure and physical and thermal properties of snow cover. The purpose of this communication is to characterize the shallow ground thermal regimes, with special reference to the understanding of the influence snow cover in permafrost spatial distribution, in the ice-free areas of the north western part of Hurd Peninsula in the vicinity of the Spanish Antarctic Station "Juan Carlos I" and Bulgarian Antarctic Station "St. Kliment Ohridski". We have analyzed and ground temperatures as well as snow thickness data in four sites distributed along an altitudinal transect in Hurd Peninsula from 2007 to 2013: Nuevo Incinerador (25 m asl), Collado Ramos (110 m), Ohridski (140 m) and Reina Sofia Peak (275 m). At each study site, data loggers were installed for the monitoring of air temperatures (at 1.5 m high), ground temperatures (5, 20 and 40 cm depth) and for snow depth (2, 5, 10, 20, 40, 80 and 160 cm) at 4-hour intervals. The winter data suggests the existence of three types of seasonal stages regarding the ground surface thermal regime and the thickness of snow cover: (a) shallow snow cover with intense ground temperatures oscillations; (b) thick snow cover and low variations of soil temperatures; and (c) stability of ground temperatures. Ground thermal conditions are also conditioned by a strong variability. Winter data indicates that Nuevo Incinerador site experiences more often thicker snow cover with higher ground temperatures and absence of ground temperatures oscillations. Collado Ramos and Ohridski show frequent variations of snow cover thickness, alternating between shallow snow cover with high ground temperature fluctuation and thick snow cover and low ground temperature fluctuation. Reina Sofia in all the years has thick snow cover with little variations in soil

  18. Variability in the Antarctic Marginal Ice Zone and Pack Ice in Observations and NCAR CESM

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stroeve, J. C.; Campbell, G. G.; Holland, M. M.; Landrum, L.

    2015-12-01

    Sea ice around Antarctica reached another record high extent in September 2014, recording a maximum extent of more than 20 million km2 for the first time since the modern satellite data record began in October 1978. This follows previous record maxima in 2012 and 2013, resulting in an overall increase in Antarctic September sea ice extent of 1.3% per decade since 1979. Several explanations have been put forward to explain the increasing trends, such as anomalous short-term wind patterns that both grow and spread out the ice, and freshening of the surface ocean layer from increased melting of floating ice from the continent. These positive trends in Antarctic sea ice are at odds with climate model forecasts that suggest the sea ice should be declining in response to increasing greenhouse gases and stratospheric ozone depletion. While the reasons for the increases in total extent remain poorly understood, it is likely that these changes are not just impacting the total ice extent, but also the distribution of pack ice, the marginal ice zone (MIZ) and polynyas, with important ramifications for phytoplankton productivity that in turn impact zooplankton, fish, sea birds and marine mammals. This study evaluates changes in the distribution of the pack ice, polynyas and the marginal ice zone around Antarctica from two sea ice algorithms, the NASA Team and the Bootstrap. These results are further compared with climate model simulations from the CESM large ensemble output. Seasonal analysis of the different ice types using NASA Team and Bootstrap shows that during ice advance, the ice advances as pack ice, with a seasonal peak in September (broader peak for Bootstrap), and as the pack ice begins to retreat, it first converts to a wide area of MIZ, that reaches its peak around November (NASA Team) or December (Bootstrap). CESM also shows a similar seasonal cycle, with a peak in the pack ice in August, and a December/January peak in the MIZ. Seasonal variability and trends are

  19. Decadal trends in the Antarctic sea ice extent ultimately controlled by ice-ocean feedback

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Goosse

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available The large natural variability of the Antarctic sea ice is a key characteristic of the system that might be responsible for the small positive trend in sea ice extent observed since 1979. In order to gain insight in the processes responsible for this variability, we have analysed in a control simulation performed with a coupled climate model a strong positive ice-ocean feedback that amplifies sea ice variations. When sea ice concentration increases in a region, in particular close to the ice edge, the mixed layer depth tends to decrease. This can be caused by a net inflow of ice and thus of freshwater that stabilizes the water column. Another stabilizing mechanism at interannual time scales that appears more widespread in our simulation is associated with the downward salt transport due to the seasonal cycle of ice formation: brine is released in winter when ice is formed and mixed over a deep layer while the freshwater flux caused by ice melting is included in a shallow layer, resulting in a net vertical transport of salt. Because of this stronger stratification due to the presence of sea ice, more heat is stored at depth in the ocean and the vertical oceanic heat flux is reduced, which contributes to maintain a higher ice extent. This positive feedback is not associated with a particular spatial pattern. Consequently, the spatial distribution of the trend in ice concentration is largely imposed by the wind changes that can provide the initial perturbation. A positive freshwater flux could alternatively be the initial trigger but the amplitude of the final response of the sea ice extent is finally set up by the amplification related to ice-ocean feedback. Initial conditions have also an influence as the chance to have a large increase in ice extent is higher if starting from a state characterized by a low value.

  20. Microwave emissivity of fresh water ice--Lake ice and Antarctic ice pack--Radiative transfer simulations versus satellite radiances

    CERN Document Server

    Mills, Peter

    2012-01-01

    Microwave emissivity models of sea ice are poorly validated empirically. Typical validation studies involve using averaged or stereotyped profiles of ice parameters against averaged radiance measurements. Measurement sites are rarely matched and even less often point-by-point. Because of saline content, complex permittivity of sea ice is highly variable and difficult to predict. Therefore, to check the validity of a typical, plane-parallel, radiative-transfer-based ice emissivity model, we apply it to fresh water ice instead of salt-water ice. Radiance simulations for lake ice are compared with measurements over Lake Superior from the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer on EOS (AMSR-E). AMSR-E measurements are also collected over Antarctic icepack. For each pixel, a thermodynamic model is driven by four years of European Center for Medium Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) reanalysis data and the resulting temperature profiles used to drive the emissivity model. The results suggest that the relatively simple ...

  1. Metagenomic analysis of lacustrine viral diversity along a latitudinal transect of the Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguirre de Cárcer, Daniel; López-Bueno, Alberto; Alonso-Lobo, Juan M; Quesada, Antonio; Alcamí, Antonio

    2016-06-01

    Environmental viruses constitute the most abundant biological entities on earth, and harbor an enormous genetic diversity. While their strong influence on the ecosystem is widely acknowledged, current knowledge about their diversity and distribution remains limited. Here we present the metagenomic study of viral communities from freshwater bodies located along a transect of the Antarctic Peninsula. These ecosystems were chosen on the basis of environmental and biogeographical variation. The results obtained indicate that the virus assemblages were diverse, and that the larger fraction represented viruses with no close relatives in the databases. Comparisons to existing metaviromes showed that the communities studied were dissimilar to other freshwater viromes including those from the Arctic. Finally, we observed no indication of there being a reduction in either viral richness or diversity estimates with increasing latitude along the studied transect, further adding to the controversy regarding the possible existence of latitudinal gradients of diversity in the microbial world. PMID:27059864

  2. The 2014 high record of Antarctic sea ice extent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massonnet, Francois; Guemas, Virginie; Fuckar, Neven; Doblas-Reyes, Francisco

    2016-04-01

    In September 2014, Antarctic sea ice extent exceeded the symbolic level of 20 million km²for the first time since 1978, when reliable satellite measurements became available. After the successive records of 2012 and 2013, sea ice extent in 2014 once again reinforced the positive trend observed since the late 1970s. We conduct here a dedicated study to elucidate the origins of a major, and perhaps the most intriguing, event that happened at our Poles recently. Observations, reanalyses and model results all point towards the important role of winds in modifying near-surface heat advection patterns around Antarctica. The role of pre-conditioning (summer conditions) is found to be of lesser importance. Finally, we find no evidence that anomalous freshwater forcing (from atmospheric or continental origin) could have explained the record extent of 2014.

  3. A stacked record of relative geomagnetic paleointensity for the past 270 kyr from the western continental rise of the Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macrì, Patrizia; Sagnotti, Leonardo; Lucchi, Renata Giulia; Rebesco, Michele

    2006-11-01

    Paleomagnetic and rock magnetic investigations were carried out on four gravity cores recovered from the western continental rise of the Antarctic Peninsula during the SEDANO II cruise of RV OGS-Explora. The studied cores, each about 6.5 m-long, were collected at a depth of 3700-4100 m below the sea level, on the distal gentle side of sediment Drift 7, and consist of very fine-grained sediments spanning through various glacial-interglacial cycles. Detailed analysis of the paleomagnetic and rock magnetic data allowed to reconstruct relative paleointensity (RPI) records (NRM20 mT/ARM20 mT) for each core. We established a refined age model for the studied sequences by correlating individual SEDANO RPI curves to the global RPI stack SINT-800 [Y. Guyodo, J.-P. Valet, Global changes in intensity of the Earth's magnetic field during the past 800 kyr, Nature 399 (1999) 249-252]. The individual normalized SEDANO RPI records are in mutual close agreement; they were thus merged in a RPI stacking curve spanning the last 270 kyr and showing a low standard deviation. This study also points out that RPI records may provide a viable tool to date otherwise difficult-to-date sedimentary sequences, such as those deposited along peri-Antarctic margins. The new RPI chronology indicates that the sampled sedimentary sequence is younger than previously thought and allows a new high-resolution correlation to oxygen isotope stages. Furthermore, we recognized variations in the rock magnetic parameters that appear to be climatically-driven, with changes in the relative proportion of two magnetic mineral populations with distinct coercivities. Rock magnetic and lithological trends observed in the SEDANO cores indicate that during the climatic cycles of the Late Pleistocene this sector of the peri-Antarctic margin was subjected to subtle, yet identifiable, environmental changes, confirming a relatively higher instability of the West Antarctic ice sheet with respect to the East Antarctic

  4. Antarctic winter mercury and ozone depletion events over sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nerentorp Mastromonaco, M.; Gårdfeldt, K.; Jourdain, B.; Abrahamsson, K.; Granfors, A.; Ahnoff, M.; Dommergue, A.; Méjean, G.; Jacobi, H.-W.

    2016-03-01

    During atmospheric mercury and ozone depletion events in the springtime in polar regions gaseous elemental mercury and ozone undergo rapid declines. Mercury is quickly transformed into oxidation products, which are subsequently removed by deposition. Here we show that such events also occur during Antarctic winter over sea ice areas, leading to additional deposition of mercury. Over four months in the Weddell Sea we measured gaseous elemental, oxidized, and particulate-bound mercury, as well as ozone in the troposphere and total and elemental mercury concentrations in snow, demonstrating a series of depletion and deposition events between July and September. The winter depletions in July were characterized by stronger correlations between mercury and ozone and larger formation of particulate-bound mercury in air compared to later spring events. It appears that light at large solar zenith angles is sufficient to initiate the photolytic formation of halogen radicals. We also propose a dark mechanism that could explain observed events in air masses coming from dark regions. Br2 that could be the main actor in dark conditions was possibly formed in high concentrations in the marine boundary layer in the dark. These high concentrations may also have caused the formation of high concentrations of CHBr3 and CH2I2 in the top layers of the Antarctic sea ice observed during winter. These new findings show that the extent of depletion events is larger than previously believed and that winter depletions result in additional deposition of mercury that could be transferred to marine and terrestrial ecosystems.

  5. Stable isotope and sea-level data from New Guinea supports Antarctic ice-surge theory of ice ages

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Two theories of glaciation which have received considerable attention, the Milankovitch orbital theory and the Antarctic surge hypothesis, are discussed. Oxygen-18 and sea-level data obtained from the coral reefs of Huon Peninsula, Papua New Guinea which contain a particularly good record of the interval 140-105 kyr, are presented. These seem to require an Antarctic surge at 120 kyr and also have a bearing on the role of the Milankovitch factor. (UK)

  6. Assessment of trace metals in droppings of Adélie penguins (Pygoscelis adeliae) from different locations of the Antarctic Peninsula area

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jos E Celis; Winfred Espejo; Ricardo Barra; Daniel Gonzalez-Acua; Francisca Gonzalez; Solange Jara

    2015-01-01

    In recent decades, polar regions of the planet have witnessed an increase in human presence. Antarctica is considered one of the most pristine regions of the world, but it could be affected by pollution owing to anthropogenic activities, particularly in the Antarctic Peninsula. Human presence can increase the levels of some trace metals in Antarctic environments, an issue that needs to be evaluated. To acquire data of trace metal contamination in the Antarctic Peninsula region, concentrations (dry weight) of Cd, Pb, As, Cu, Hg and Zn in fresh excrement of Adélie penguins were determined by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. During the 2012/2013 austral summer, samples were collected from four important nesting sites on the Antarctic Peninsula:Arctowski Base, Kopaitic Island (both sites in the northern Antarctic Peninsula), Yalour Island and Avian Island (both sites in the southern Antarctic Peninsula). Data showed that Adélie penguin excreta had significantly higher levels (mg·kg-1) of As, Cd, Hg, Pb and Cu at Arctowski Base and Kopaitic Island, both sites that have major anthropogenic activities that probably contributed to increased metal levels. The levels of trace metals in Adélie penguins were similar to those reported in excreta of Antarctic species in previous studies, and lower than those in excreta of other Antarctic animals. Data suggest that metals ingested by these penguin species that feed in the sea, end up in terrestrial ecosystems.

  7. PHOTOPROTECTION OF SEA-ICE MICROALGAL COMMUNITIES FROM THE EAST ANTARCTIC PACK ICE(1).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrou, Katherina; Hill, Ross; Doblin, Martina A; McMinn, Andrew; Johnson, Robert; Wright, Simon W; Ralph, Peter J

    2011-02-01

    All photosynthetic organisms endeavor to balance energy supply with demand. For sea-ice diatoms, as with all marine photoautotrophs, light is the most important factor for determining growth and carbon-fixation rates. Light varies from extremely low to often relatively high irradiances within the sea-ice environment, meaning that sea-ice algae require moderate physiological plasticity that is necessary for rapid light acclimation and photoprotection. This study investigated photoprotective mechanisms employed by bottom Antarctic sea-ice algae in response to relatively high irradiances to understand how they acclimate to the environmental conditions presented during early spring, as the light climate begins to intensify and snow and sea-ice thinning commences. The sea-ice microalgae displayed high photosynthetic plasticity to increased irradiance, with a rapid decline in photochemical efficiency that was completely reversible when placed under low light. Similarly, the photoprotective xanthophyll pigment diatoxanthin (Dt) was immediately activated but reversed during recovery under low light. The xanthophyll inhibitor dithiothreitol (DTT) and state transition inhibitor sodium fluoride (NaF) were used in under-ice in situ incubations and revealed that nonphotochemical quenching (NPQ) via xanthophyll-cycle activation was the preferred method for light acclimation and photoprotection by bottom sea-ice algae. This study showed that bottom sea-ice algae from the east Antarctic possess a high level of plasticity in their light-acclimation capabilities and identified the xanthophyll cycle as a critical mechanism in photoprotection and the preferred means by which sea-ice diatoms regulate energy flow to PSII. PMID:27021712

  8. Role of Lichens in Weathering and Soil—Forming Processes in Fildes Peninsula,Antarctic

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHENJIE; GONGZi-TONG

    1995-01-01

    Lichens play an unparalleledly vital role in weathering and soil-forming processes in Antarctic region,In this study some related chemical components and micromorphological analyses have been carried out on the samples of the weathered rocks and the lichens grown on them from Files Peninsula,Antarctic,The results indicatied that the major chemical components in the bioweathering surface layer of the sampled rocks have been obviously altered and the weathering potential in this layer has greatly decreased by and average range around 4.66 percent in 4 samples,In the weathering surface layer ferruginiztion of some minerals in varying degress was seen by means of microscopic examination through the thin section of the weathered rocks,and its products proved to be dominated by hematitie,limonite,goethite and free iron oxides Meanwhile,the study suggested that the dissolution and absorption of lichens by their secretion accelerated the process of calcitization of minerals in the bio-weathering suface layer,Eventually,the results also show that different species of lichens play different roles in weathering and soil-forming proesses.

  9. What shapes edaphic communities in mineral and ornithogenic soils of Cierva Point, Antarctic Peninsula?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mataloni, G.; Garraza, G. González; Bölter, M.; Convey, P.; Fermani, P.

    2010-08-01

    Three mineral soil and four ornithogenic soil sites were sampled during summer 2006 at Cierva Point (Antarctic Peninsula) to study their bacterial, microalgal and faunal communities in relation to abiotic and biotic features. Soil moisture, pH, conductivity, organic matter and nutrient contents were consistently lower and more homogeneous in mineral soils. Ornithogenic soils supported larger and more variable bacterial abundances than mineral ones. Algal communities from mineral soils were more diverse than those from ornithogenic soils, although chlorophyll- a concentrations were significantly higher in the latter. This parameter and bacterial abundance were correlated with nutrient and organic matter contents. The meiofauna obtained from mineral soils was homogeneous, with one nematode species dominating all samples. The fauna of ornithogenic soils varied widely in composition and abundance. Tardigrades and rotifers dominated the meiofauna at eutrophic O2, where they supported a large population of the predatory nematode Coomansus gerlachei. At site O3, high bacterial abundance was consistent with high densities of the bacterivorous nematodes Plectus spp. This study provides evidence that Antarctic soils are complex and diverse systems, and suggests that biotic interactions (e.g. competition and predation) may have a stronger and more direct influence on community variability in space and time than previously thought.

  10. Signals of Antarctic Circum-polar Wave over the Southern Indian Ocean as recorded in an Antarctica ice core

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XIAO Cunde; CHENG Yanjie; REN Jiawen; LU Longhua; LI Zhongqin; QIN Dahe; ZHOU Xiuji

    2005-01-01

    Oxygen stable isotopic and ionic records, covering a period of 1745-1996, are recovered in DT001 ice core drilled in Princess Elizabeth Land, East Antarctica. Using empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis of the annually resolved glaciochemical time series, we find the first EOF (EOF1) represents sea-salt aerosols and is the proxy of sea level pressure (SLP) over a quasi-stationary low in the Southern Indian Ocean (SIO).δ18O represents the sea surface temperature (SST) of the same ocean area. In the past two decades, four climatic waves as represented by SLP and SST proxies are found in the DT001 ice core, which in coincident with four Antarctic Circum-polar Waves (ACW) as revealed by NCEP/NCAR reanalysis. The phase difference between SST and SLP in the ice core is also coincident with that in ACW. Both ice-core record and reanalysis suggest that there were no signals of ACW during 1958-1980, none during the overall recording period between 1745-1996, as there is no regular phase difference between SST and SLP. The ACW signal after early 1980s is probably attributable to the climate shift occurring over Antarctic Peninsula-Drake Passage region.

  11. Change Analysis of Antarctic Ice Shelves Based on Multiple Remote Sensing Products

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, Yixiang; Weng, Hexia; Lv, Da; Tong, Xiaohua; Li, Rongxing

    2016-06-01

    The Antarctic ice sheet is well known as the most sensitive and key issue in the global climate change research and is playing a more and more important role for the global sea level change. Measurement of changes in area and mass of the Antarctic ice sheet is critically important and has been made by using different remote sensing technologies and ground exploration data. Sequential mapping of Antarctic boundaries provides a simple and direct method for measuring the area and volume if ice sheet or ice shelves advances or retreats in the Antarctic coasts. Our results show that the total ice shelf area is retreated between 1963 and 2009. However, the trend for each ice shelf is quite different.

  12. Presence of endocrine disruptors in freshwater in the northern Antarctic Peninsula region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esteban, S; Moreno-Merino, L; Matellanes, R; Catalá, M; Gorga, M; Petrovic, M; López de Alda, M; Barceló, D; Silva, A; Durán, J J; López-Martínez, J; Valcárcel, Y

    2016-05-01

    The increasing human presence in Antarctica and the waste it generates is causing an impact on the environment at local and border scale. The main sources of anthropic pollution have a mainly local effect, and include the burning of fossil fuels, waste incineration, accidental spillage and wastewater effluents, even when treated. The aim of this work is to determine the presence and origin of 30 substances of anthropogenic origin considered to be, or suspected of being, endocrine disruptors in the continental waters of the Antarctic Peninsula region. We also studied a group of toxic metals, metalloids and other elements with possible endocrine activity. Ten water samples were analyzed from a wide range of sources, including streams, ponds, glacier drain, and an urban wastewater discharge into the sea. Surprisingly, the concentrations detected are generally similar to those found in other studies on continental waters in other parts of the world. The highest concentrations of micropollutants found correspond to the group of organophosphate flame retardants (19.60-9209ngL(-1)) and alkylphenols (1.14-7225ngL(-1)); and among toxic elements the presence of aluminum (a possible hormonal modifier) (1.7-127µgL(-1)) is significant. The concentrations detected are very low and insufficient to cause acute or subacute toxicity in aquatic organisms. However, little is known as yet of the potential sublethal and chronic effects of this type of pollutants and their capacity for bioaccumulation. These results point to the need for an ongoing system of environmental monitoring of these substances in Antarctic continental waters, and the advisability of regulating at least the most environmentally hazardous of these in the Antarctic legislation. PMID:26882535

  13. Presence of endocrine disruptors in freshwater in the northern Antarctic Peninsula region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esteban, S; Moreno-Merino, L; Matellanes, R; Catalá, M; Gorga, M; Petrovic, M; López de Alda, M; Barceló, D; Silva, A; Durán, J J; López-Martínez, J; Valcárcel, Y

    2016-05-01

    The increasing human presence in Antarctica and the waste it generates is causing an impact on the environment at local and border scale. The main sources of anthropic pollution have a mainly local effect, and include the burning of fossil fuels, waste incineration, accidental spillage and wastewater effluents, even when treated. The aim of this work is to determine the presence and origin of 30 substances of anthropogenic origin considered to be, or suspected of being, endocrine disruptors in the continental waters of the Antarctic Peninsula region. We also studied a group of toxic metals, metalloids and other elements with possible endocrine activity. Ten water samples were analyzed from a wide range of sources, including streams, ponds, glacier drain, and an urban wastewater discharge into the sea. Surprisingly, the concentrations detected are generally similar to those found in other studies on continental waters in other parts of the world. The highest concentrations of micropollutants found correspond to the group of organophosphate flame retardants (19.60-9209ngL(-1)) and alkylphenols (1.14-7225ngL(-1)); and among toxic elements the presence of aluminum (a possible hormonal modifier) (1.7-127µgL(-1)) is significant. The concentrations detected are very low and insufficient to cause acute or subacute toxicity in aquatic organisms. However, little is known as yet of the potential sublethal and chronic effects of this type of pollutants and their capacity for bioaccumulation. These results point to the need for an ongoing system of environmental monitoring of these substances in Antarctic continental waters, and the advisability of regulating at least the most environmentally hazardous of these in the Antarctic legislation.

  14. Interhemispheric coupling, the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and warm Antarctic interglacials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. B. Holden

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Ice core evidence indicates that even though atmospheric CO2 concentrations did not exceed ~300 ppm at any point during the last 800 000 years, East Antarctica was at least ~3–4 °C warmer than preindustrial (CO2~280 ppm in each of the last four interglacials. During the previous three interglacials, this anomalous warming was short lived (~3000 years and apparently occurred before the completion of Northern Hemisphere deglaciation. Hereafter, we refer to these periods as "Warmer than Present Transients" (WPTs. We present a series of experiments to investigate the impact of deglacial meltwater on the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC and Antarctic temperature. It is well known that a slowed AMOC would increase southern sea surface temperature (SST through the bipolar seesaw and observational data suggests that the AMOC remained weak throughout the terminations preceding WPTs, strengthening rapidly at a time which coincides closely with peak Antarctic temperature. We present two 800 kyr transient simulations using the Intermediate Complexity model GENIE-1 which demonstrate that meltwater forcing generates transient southern warming that is consistent with the timing of WPTs, but is not sufficient (in this single parameterisation to reproduce the magnitude of observed warmth. In order to investigate model and boundary condition uncertainty, we present three ensembles of transient GENIE-1 simulations across Termination II (135 000 to 124 000 BP and three snapshot HadCM3 simulations at 130 000 BP. Only with consideration of the possible feedback of West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS retreat does it become possible to simulate the magnitude of observed warming.

  15. Combustion of available fossil-fuel resources sufficient to eliminate the Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winkelmann, R.; Levermann, A.; Ridgwell, A.; Caldeira, K.

    2015-12-01

    The Antarctic Ice Sheet stores water equivalent to 58 meters in global sea-level rise. Here we show in simulations with the Parallel Ice Sheet Model that burning the currently attainable fossil-fuel resources is sufficient to eliminate the ice sheet. With cumulative fossil-fuel emissions of 10 000 GtC, Antarctica is projected to become almost ice-free with an average contribution to sea-level rise exceeding 3 meters per century during the first millennium. Consistent with recent observations and simulations, the West Antarctic Ice Sheet becomes unstable with 600 to 800 GtC of additional carbon emissions. Beyond this additional carbon release, the destabilization of ice basins in both West- and East Antarctica results in a threshold-increase in global sea level. Unabated carbon emissions thus threaten the Antarctic Ice Sheet in its entirety with associated sea-level rise that far exceeds that of all other possible sources.

  16. A Palaeohydrological Shift during Neogene East Antarctic Ice Sheet Retreat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rees-Owen, R. L.; Newton, R.; Ivanovic, R. F.; Francis, J.; Tindall, J. C.; Riding, J. B.

    2015-12-01

    The East Antarctic Ice Sheet is an important driver of global climate, playing a particular role in governing albedo and atmospheric circulation (eg. Singh et al., 2013). Recent evidence from marine sediment and terrestrial glaciovolcanic sequences suggests that the EAIS underwent periodic retreat and collapse in response to warmer climates during the late Neogene (14 to 3 million years ago). Mummified prostrate trees recovered from palaeosols at Oliver Bluffs in the Beardmore Glacier region, Transantarctic Mountains (85° S), represent a rare insight into the terrestrial palaeoclimate during one of these periods of retreat. Prostrate trees are an understudied but useful tool for interrogating endmember (e.g. periglacial) environments at high altitudes and latitudes. We present exciting new palaeoclimate data from the sequence at Oliver Bluffs. δ18O analysis of tree ring cellulose suggests that Antarctic summer palaeoprecipitation was enriched relative to today (-25 to -5‰ for ancient, -35 to -20‰ for modern); consistent with our isotope-enabled general circulation model simulations. The MBT/CBT palaeothermometer gives a summer temperature of 3-6ºC, consistent with other palaeobotanical climate indices. These geological and model data have wide-ranging implications for our understanding of the hydrological cycle during this time period. We present data suggesting that changes in moisture recycling and source region indicate a markedly different hydrological cycle.

  17. Rapid Access Ice Drill: A New Tool for Exploration of the Deep Antarctic Ice Sheets and Subglacial Geology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodge, J. W.; Severinghaus, J. P.

    2014-12-01

    The Rapid Access Ice Drill (RAID) will penetrate the Antarctic ice sheets in order to core through deep ice, the glacial bed, and into bedrock below. This new technology will provide a critical first look at the interface between major ice caps and their subglacial geology. Currently in construction, RAID is a mobile drilling system capable of making several long boreholes in a single field season in Antarctica. RAID is interdisciplinary and will allow access to polar paleoclimate records in ice >1 Ma, direct observation at the base of the ice sheets, and recovery of rock cores from the ice-covered East Antarctic craton. RAID uses a diamond rock-coring system as in mineral exploration. Threaded drill-pipe with hardened metal bits will cut through ice using reverse circulation of Estisol for pressure-compensation, maintenance of temperature, and removal of ice cuttings. Near the bottom of the ice sheet, a wireline bottom-hole assembly will enable diamond coring of ice, the glacial bed, and bedrock below. Once complete, boreholes will be kept open with fluid, capped, and made available for future down-hole measurement of thermal gradient, heat flow, ice chronology, and ice deformation. RAID will also sample for extremophile microorganisms. RAID is designed to penetrate up to 3,300 meters of ice and take sample cores in less than 200 hours. This rapid performance will allow completion of a borehole in about 10 days before moving to the next drilling site. RAID is unique because it can provide fast borehole access through thick ice; take short ice cores for paleoclimate study; sample the glacial bed to determine ice-flow conditions; take cores of subglacial bedrock for age dating and crustal history; and create boreholes for use as an observatory in the ice sheets. Together, the rapid drilling capability and mobility of the drilling system, along with ice-penetrating imaging methods, will provide a unique 3D picture of the interior Antarctic ice sheets.

  18. Response of the Antarctic Ice Sheet to a climatic warming: a model study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oerlemans, J.

    1982-01-01

    It is generally believed that the increasing C02 content of the atmosphere will lead to a substantial climatic warming in the polar regions. In this study the effect of consequent changes in the ice accumulation rate over the Antarctic Ice Sheet is investigated by means of a numerical ice flow model

  19. Projecting Antarctic ice discharge using response functions from SeaRISE ice-sheet models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Levermann

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available The largest uncertainty in projections of future sea-level change still results from the potentially changing dynamical ice discharge from Antarctica. While ice discharge can alter through a number of processes, basal ice-shelf melting induced by a warming ocean has been identified as a major if not the major cause for possible additional ice flow across the grounding line. Here we derive dynamic ice-sheet response functions for basal ice-shelf melting using experiments carried out within the Sea-level Response to Ice Sheet Evolution (SeaRISE intercomparison project with five different Antarctic ice-sheet models. As used here these response functions provide separate contributions for four different Antarctic drainage regions. Under the assumptions of linear-response theory we project future ice-discharge for each model, each region and each of the four Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP using oceanic temperatures from 19 comprehensive climate models of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project, CMIP-5, and two ocean models from the EU-project Ice2Sea. Uncertainty in the climatic forcing, the oceanic response and the ice-model differences is combined into an uncertainty range of future Antarctic ice-discharge induced from basal ice-shelf melt. The additional ice-loss (Table 6 is clearly scenario-dependent and results in a median of 0.07 m (66%-range: 0.04–0.10 m; 90%-range: −0.01–0.26 m of global sea-level equivalent for the low-emission RCP-2.6 scenario and yields 0.1 m (66%-range: 0.06–0.14 m; 90%-range: −0.01–0.45 m for the strongest RCP-8.5. If only models with an explicit representation of ice-shelves are taken into account the scenario dependence remains and the values change to: 0.05 m (66%-range: 0.03–0.08 m for RCP-2.6 and 0.07 m (66%-range: 0.04–0.11 m for RCP-8.5. These results were obtained using a time delay between the surface warming signal and the subsurface oceanic warming as observed in the CMIP-5 models

  20. Observational Evidence of a Hemispheric-wide Ice-ocean Albedo Feedback Effect on Antarctic Sea-ice Decay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nihashi, Sohey; Cavalieri, Donald J.

    2007-01-01

    The effect of ice-ocean albedo feedback (a kind of ice-albedo feedback) on sea-ice decay is demonstrated over the Antarctic sea-ice zone from an analysis of satellite-derived hemispheric sea ice concentration and European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ERA-40) atmospheric data for the period 1979-2001. Sea ice concentration in December (time of most active melt) correlates better with the meridional component of the wind-forced ice drift (MID) in November (beginning of the melt season) than the MID in December. This 1 month lagged correlation is observed in most of the Antarctic sea-ice covered ocean. Daily time series of ice , concentration show that the ice concentration anomaly increases toward the time of maximum sea-ice melt. These findings can be explained by the following positive feedback effect: once ice concentration decreases (increases) at the beginning of the melt season, solar heating of the upper ocean through the increased (decreased) open water fraction is enhanced (reduced), leading to (suppressing) a further decrease in ice concentration by the oceanic heat. Results obtained fi-om a simple ice-ocean coupled model also support our interpretation of the observational results. This positive feedback mechanism explains in part the large interannual variability of the sea-ice cover in summer.

  1. Firn compaction modelling of the Antarctic ice sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kallenberg, Bianca; Tregoning, Paul

    2013-04-01

    Satellite altimetry missions detect elevation changes in ice sheets that are not only related to variations in ice mass balance, but also to snow densification. The compaction of snow induces a change in thickness but not in mass and therefore has to be removed from the altimetry measurements when estimating mass loss from height changes. The densification of snow is time dependent and varies with temperature, accumulation rate and depth. Different types of densification processes occur in Antarctica due to the climatic differences from warm and moist coastal areas to a cold and dry desert in the Antarctic interior. The intermediate product between snow and ice is called firn and the transition from snow to ice is a slow process that can take up to millennia in some areas. During the compression snow grains undergo different stages with a density change from around 300 kg/m3 for fresh snow to around 900 kg/m3 for glacier ice. The change in density with temperature and depth is not well known and can only be compared with some snow pits that have been taken at a few locations in Antarctica, thus the density profile is of great importance. The lack of data complicates the generation of an accurate firn compaction model and so far only a few models have been established about expected firn densification processes in Antarctica. We present a time-dependent firn compaction model for Antarctica based on the standard heat-transfer equation after Paterson (1994)* for the temperature profile, and the concept of firn compaction after Zwally & Li (2002)*. By incorporating a time-dependent accumulation rate, our numerical multilayer model considers not only existing snow layers but also freshly deposited accumulation at the surface as a new introduced layer. The initial density profile as been obtained by spinning up the model until the entire firn layer is refreshed. We compare our results with previous firn compaction models and available in-situ measurements of snow pits

  2. Rock weathering Tendency at Different Stages of Soil—Forming Processes in Fildes Peninsula,Antarctic

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHENJIE; GONGZITONG

    1996-01-01

    From the view of energy state of material,this paper introduces a concept a concept of weathering potential in carrying out quantitative calculation of the relevant products at different stages of rock-weathering and primary soil-forming processes,elaborates respectively on weathering degree in the bio-weathering layer of rocks and during the formation of soil material and clay,and evaluats the further tendency of weathering in the above-mentioned stages.The authors have discovered that the scales of weathering potential of the materials increase successively in the three stages,which indicates that the products in the above-mentioned three stages must have undergone stronger and stronger weathering in the primitive forming process of soil in Fildes Peninsula,Antarctic.But,Because of relatively weak chemical weathering,it is reasonable that there are much more skeleton grains and little clay in priamry soils in this region.Meanwhile the authors have also verified that the weathering potential of crde rock determines to some extent decrease in the products' weathering potential in the different stages in primary soil-forming,thereby plays an important role in the genesis and development of the primary soil in the studied area.

  3. Overview and Assessment of Antarctic Ice-Sheet Mass Balance Estimates: 1992-2009

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwally, H. Jay; Giovinetto, Mario B.

    2011-01-01

    Mass balance estimates for the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) in the 2007 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and in more recent reports lie between approximately ?50 to -250 Gt/year for 1992 to 2009. The 300 Gt/year range is approximately 15% of the annual mass input and 0.8 mm/year Sea Level Equivalent (SLE). Two estimates from radar altimeter measurements of elevation change by European Remote-sensing Satellites (ERS) (?28 and -31 Gt/year) lie in the upper part, whereas estimates from the Input-minus-Output Method (IOM) and the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) lie in the lower part (-40 to -246 Gt/year). We compare the various estimates, discuss the methodology used, and critically assess the results. We also modify the IOM estimate using (1) an alternate extrapolation to estimate the discharge from the non-observed 15% of the periphery, and (2) substitution of input from a field data compilation for input from an atmospheric model in 6% of area. The modified IOM estimate reduces the loss from 136 Gt/year to 13 Gt/year. Two ERS-based estimates, the modified IOM, and a GRACE-based estimate for observations within 1992 2005 lie in a narrowed range of ?27 to -40 Gt/year, which is about 3% of the annual mass input and only 0.2 mm/year SLE. Our preferred estimate for 1992 2001 is -47 Gt/year for West Antarctica, ?16 Gt/year for East Antarctica, and -31 Gt/year overall (?0.1 mm/year SLE), not including part of the Antarctic Peninsula (1.07% of the AIS area). Although recent reports of large and increasing rates of mass loss with time from GRACE-based studies cite agreement with IOM results, our evaluation does not support that conclusion

  4. Polythermal modelling of steady states of the Antarctic ice sheet in comparison with the real world

    OpenAIRE

    Hansen, I.; Greve, Ralf

    1996-01-01

    An approach to simulate the present Antarctic ice sheet with respect to its thermomechanical behaviour and the resulting features is made with the three-dimensional polythermal ice-sheet model designed by Greve and Hutter. It treats zones of cold and temperate ice as different materials with their own properties and dynamics. This is important becausc an underlying layer of temperate ice can influence the ice sheet as a whole, e.g. the cold ice may slide upon the less viscous binary ice-water...

  5. Assessment of Antarctic Ice-Sheet Mass Balance Estimates: 1992 - 2009

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwally, H. Jay; Giovinetto, Mario B.

    2011-01-01

    Published mass balance estimates for the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) lie between approximately +50 to -250 Gt/year for 1992 to 2009, which span a range equivalent to 15% of the annual mass input and 0.8 mm/year Sea Level Equivalent (SLE). Two estimates from radar-altimeter measurements of elevation change by European Remote-sensing Satellites (ERS) (+28 and -31 Gt/year) lie in the upper part, whereas estimates from the Input-minus-Output Method (IOM) and the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) lie in the lower part (-40 to -246 Gt/year). We compare the various estimates, discuss the methodology used, and critically assess the results. Although recent reports of large and accelerating rates of mass loss from GRACE=based studies cite agreement with IOM results, our evaluation does not support that conclusion. We find that the extrapolation used in the published IOM estimates for the 15 % of the periphery for which discharge velocities are not observed gives twice the rate of discharge per unit of associated ice-sheet area than the 85% faster-moving parts. Our calculations show that the published extrapolation overestimates the ice discharge by 282 Gt/yr compared to our assumption that the slower moving areas have 70% as much discharge per area as the faster moving parts. Also, published data on the time-series of discharge velocities and accumulation/precipitation do not support mass output increases or input decreases with time, respectively. Our modified IOM estimate, using the 70% discharge assumption and substituting input from a field-data compilation for input from an atmospheric model over 6% of area, gives a loss of only 13 Gt/year (versus 136 Gt/year) for the period around 2000. Two ERS-based estimates, our modified IOM, and a GRACE-based estimate for observations within 1992 to 2005 lie in a narrowed range of +27 to - 40 Gt/year, which is about 3% of the annual mass input and only 0.2 mm/year SLE. Our preferred estimate for 1992-2001 is - 47 Gt

  6. The signature analysis of summer Antarctic sea-ice distribution by ship-based sea-ice observation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2009-01-01

    Based on the Chinese 19th National Antarctic Research Expedition,we carried out ship-based Antarctic sea-ice observa-tion on icebreaker Xue Long using Antarctic sea-ice process and climate (ASPeCt) criteria during austral summer.Sea-ice distribution data were obtained along nearly 6,500 km of the ship’s track.The measurement parameters included sea-ice thickness,sea-ice concentration,snow thickness,and floe size.Analysis showed the presence of the large spatial varia-tions of the observed sea-ice characteristics.Sea-ice concentration varied between 0 and 80 percent and reached its peak value in Weddell Sea because of the specific dynamical process affecting in summer sea-ice melting.There are large areas of open water along the study section.Sea ice and the upper snow thickness of the section varied between 10 cm and 210 cm and 2 cm and 80 cm,respectively,and each reaches its peak values near Amery ice shelf.The floe size varied from less than 10 cm and the maximum of more than 2,000 km along the section.

  7. Feedbacks between ice and ocean dynamics at the West Antarctic Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf in future global warming scenarios

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goeller, Sebastian; Timmermann, Ralph

    2016-04-01

    The ice flow at the margins of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet is moderated by large ice shelves. Their buttressing effect substantially controls the mass balance of the WAIS and thus its contribution to sea level rise. The stability of these ice shelves results from the balance of mass gain by accumulation and ice flow from the adjacent ice sheet and mass loss by calving and basal melting due to the ocean heat flux. Recent results of ocean circulation models indicate that warm circumpolar water of the Southern Ocean may override the submarine slope front of the Antarctic Continent and boost basal ice shelf melting. In particular, ocean simulations for several of the IPCC's future climate scenarios demonstrate the redirection of a warm coastal current into the Filchner Trough and underneath the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf within the next decades. In this study, we couple the finite elements ocean circulation model FESOM and the three-dimensional thermomechanical ice flow model RIMBAY to investigate the complex interactions between ocean and ice dynamics at the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf. We focus on the impact of a changing ice shelf cavity on ocean dynamics as well as the feedback of the resulting sub-shelf melting rates on the ice shelf geometry and implications for the dynamics of the adjacent marine-based Westantarctic Ice Sheet. Our simulations reveal the high sensitivity of grounding line migration to ice-ocean interactions within the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf and emphasize the importance of coupled model studies for realistic assessments of the Antarctic mass balance in future global warming scenarios.

  8. Ice age aerosol content from east Antarctic ice core samples and past wind strength

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The possible link between the aerosol content from the 905 deep Dome C ice core (East Antartica) which spans some 32,000 yr (Lorius et al. Nature; 280:644 (1979)) and climate, is considered. No evidence of major global or local volcanic activity was found though large marine and continental inputs (respectively 5 and 20 times higher than present) were observed at the end of the last Glacial stage. It is considered that they reflect glacial age climate with stronger atmospheric circulation, enhanced aridity and faster aerosol transport towards the Antarctic continent. (U.K.)

  9. The LARsen Ice Shelf System, Antarctica, LARISSA a Model for Antarctic Integrated System Science (AISS) Investigations using Marine Platforms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domack, E. W.; Huber, B. A.; Vernet, M.; Leventer, A.; Scambos, T. A.; Mosley-Thompson, E. S.; Smith, C. R.; de Batist, M. A.; Yoon, H.; Larissa

    2010-12-01

    The LARISSA program is the first interdisciplinary project funded in the AISS program of the NSF Office of Polar Programs and was officially launched in the closing days of the IPY. This program brings together investigators, students, and media to address the rapid and fundamental changes taking place in the region of the Larsen Ice Shelf and surrounding areas. Scientific foci include: glaciologic and oceanographic interactions, the response of pelagic and benthic ecosystems to ice shelf decay, sedimentary record of ice shelf break disintegration, the geologic evolution of ice shelf systems over the last 100,000 years, paleoclimate/environmental records from marine sediment and ice cores, and the crustal response to ice mass loss at decade to millennial time scales. The first major field season took place this past austral summer aboard the NB Palmer (cruise NBP10-01) which deployed with a multi-layered logistical infrastructure that included: two Bell 220 aircraft, a multifunctional deep water ROV, video guided sediment corer, jumbo piston core, and an array of oceanographic and biological sensors and instruments. In tandem with this ship based operation Twin Otter aircraft supported an ice core team upon the crest of the Bruce Plateau with logistic support provided by the BAS at Rothera Station. Although unusually heavy sea ice prevented much of the original work from being completed in the Larsen Embayment the interdisciplinary approach proved useful. Further the logistical model of ship based aircraft to support interdisciplinary work proved viable, again despite an unusually severe summer meterologic pattern across the northern Antarctic Peninsula. As the program moves forward other vessels will come into play and the model can be applied to interdisciplinary objectives in other regions of Antarctica which are remote and lack land based infrastructure to support coastal field programs in glaciology, geology, or meteorology. This work could then be completed

  10. Assemblages of micronektonic fishes and invertebrates in a gradient of regional warming along the Western Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Melanie L.; Fraser, William R.; Ashford, Julian; Patarnello, Tomaso; Zane, Lorenzo; Torres, Joseph J.

    2015-12-01

    Micronektonic fishes and invertebrates were sampled with 32 midwater trawls at nine sites along the Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) in the austral fall (March-April) of 2010. Study sites were located within four hypothesized hydrographic regions: near Joinville Island in Region I, at Croker Passage, near Anvers Island, and near Renaud Island in Region II, within Marguerite Bay and the Marguerite Trough in Region III, and near Charcot Island in Region IV. A total of 62 taxa representing 12 taxonomic groups of pelagic invertebrates and 9 families of fish were captured, but assemblages were dominated by only a few species. The most numerically abundant taxa were the euphausiids, Thysanoessa macrura, Euphausia superba, and E. crystallorophias, combining to contribute nearly 79% of the total catch. Biomass dominants included E. superba, which contributed more than 44% of the total catch, the notothenioid Pleuragramma antarctica, and the salp, Salpa thompsoni. A comparison of total catches among sites revealed that the largest volumetric abundances and biomasses were captured at the Marguerite Bay site. Cluster analysis of abundance data identified distinct multispecies assemblages at Joinville Island in Region I, Croker Passage in Region II, Marguerite Bay in Region III, and Charcot Island in Region IV. A fifth distinct assemblage included samples from sites near Anvers and Renaud Island in Region II, and from the Marguerite Trough in Region III. Assemblages at Joinville Island and Croker Passage were both dominated by E. superba and S. thompsoni, but hydrographic conditions at Joinville Island favored a neritic assemblage, underscored by substantial numbers of P. antarctica. The assemblage at Croker Passage was more oceanic in nature with major inputs from the myctophid, Electrona antarctica and the hyperiid amphipod, Themisto gaudichaudii. Marguerite Bay and Charcot Island were well-mixed assemblages with strong representation by both neritic and oceanic fauna. The

  11. Holocene records of geomagnetic field behavior from a north-south transect along the western Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brachfeld, S. A.; Shah, D. P.; St-Onge, M.; St-Onge, G.

    2013-12-01

    Geochronology is inherently difficult when working with Antarctic margin sediments. Radiocarbon dating and oxygen isotope stratigraphy are challenging or impossible in sites with poor preservation of biogenic calcite. Radiocarbon dating of the acid insoluble organic matter (AIOM) is further complicated by organically lean sediment and the presence of reworked organic carbon or detrital carbon from sedimentary rocks. These complications limit the ability to interpret a paleoclimate record. Geomagnetic paleointensity dating is a proven 'tuning' technique that has been successfully applied in several studies around the Antarctic margin. However, the reference curves to which these sites were tuned were constructed primarily from Northern Hemisphere data. Here we present paleomagnetic secular variation (PSV) and relative paleointensity (RPI) data from three Antarctic Peninsula sites that possess independent chronologies and which have moderate to ultra-high sedimentation rates (40 - 700 cm/ka). Maxwell Bay, located in the volcanic South Shetland Islands, is an ultra-high-resolution site with strongly magnetic sediments from which the Shallow Drilling (SHALDRIL) program recovered a 108-m record spanning the last 14 ka. Outer Barilari Bay and Hugo Island Trough, which lie to the South along the western Antarctic Peninsula, are moderate resolution sites with a high proportion of biogenic silica. Maxwell Bay and Bariliari Bay are unique in that they possess homogenous sediment and uniform magnetic mineral assemblages, while also preserving biogenic calcite, a rare combination on the Antarctic margin. All three sites preserve strong, stable remanent magnetizations with an easily isolated characteristic component and MAD values generally < 2°, with the exception of turbidites, intervals with abundant dropstones, and biosiliceous ooze intervals. Inclination values fluctuate between the present-day value at the cores sites (-58°) and the geomagnetic axial dipole inclination

  12. Future Antarctic bed topography and its implications for ice sheet dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Adhikari

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The Antarctic bedrock is evolving as the solid Earth responds to the past and ongoing evolution of the ice sheet. A~recently improved ice loading history suggests that the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS is generally losing its mass since the last glacial maximum (LGM. In a sustained warming climate, the AIS is predicted to retreat at a greater pace primarily via melting beneath the ice shelves. We employ the glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA capability of the Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM to combine these past and future ice loadings and provide the new solid Earth computations for the AIS. We find that the past loading is relatively less important than future loading on the evolution of the future bed topography. Our computations predict that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS may uplift by a few meters and a few tens of meters at years 2100 and 2500 AD, respectively, and that the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS is likely to remain unchanged or subside minimally except around the Amery Ice Shelf. The Amundsen Sea Sector in particular is predicted to rise at the greatest rate; one hundred years of ice evolution in this region, for example, predicts that the coastline of Pine Island Bay approaches roughly 45 mm yr−1 in viscoelastic vertical motion. Of particular importance, we systematically demonstrate that the effect of a pervasive and large GIA uplift in the WAIS is associated with the flattening of reverse bed, reduction of local sea depth, and thus the extension of grounding line (GL towards the continental shelf. Using the 3-D higher-order ice flow capability of ISSM, such a migration of GL is shown to inhibit the ice flow. This negative feedback between the ice sheet and the solid Earth may promote the stability to marine portions of the ice sheet in future.

  13. Future Antarctic Bed Topography and Its Implications for Ice Sheet Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adhikari, Surendra; Ivins, Erik R.; Larour, Eric Y.; Seroussi, Helene L.; Morlighem, Mathieu; Nowicki, S.

    2014-01-01

    The Antarctic bedrock is evolving as the solid Earth responds to the past and ongoing evolution of the ice sheet. A recently improved ice loading history suggests that the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) has generally been losing its mass since the Last Glacial Maximum. In a sustained warming climate, the AIS is predicted to retreat at a greater pace, primarily via melting beneath the ice shelves.We employ the glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) capability of the Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM) to combine these past and future ice loadings and provide the new solid Earth computations for the AIS.We find that past loading is relatively less important than future loading for the evolution of the future bed topography. Our computations predict that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) may uplift by a few meters and a few tens of meters at years AD 2100 and 2500, respectively, and that the East Antarctic Ice Sheet is likely to remain unchanged or subside minimally except around the Amery Ice Shelf. The Amundsen Sea Sector in particular is predicted to rise at the greatest rate; one hundred years of ice evolution in this region, for example, predicts that the coastline of Pine Island Bay will approach roughly 45mmyr-1 in viscoelastic vertical motion. Of particular importance, we systematically demonstrate that the effect of a pervasive and large GIA uplift in the WAIS is generally associated with the flattening of reverse bed slope, reduction of local sea depth, and thus the extension of grounding line (GL) towards the continental shelf. Using the 3-D higher-order ice flow capability of ISSM, such a migration of GL is shown to inhibit the ice flow. This negative feedback between the ice sheet and the solid Earth may promote stability in marine portions of the ice sheet in the future.

  14. Changes in Arctic and Antarctic Sea Ice as a Microcosm of Global Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, Claire L.

    2014-01-01

    Polar sea ice is a key element of the climate system and has now been monitored through satellite observations for over three and a half decades. The satellite observations reveal considerable information about polar ice and its changes since the late 1970s, including a prominent downward trend in Arctic sea ice coverage and a much lesser upward trend in Antarctic sea ice coverage, illustrative of the important fact that climate change entails spatial contrasts. The decreasing ice coverage in the Arctic corresponds well with contemporaneous Arctic warming and exhibits particularly large decreases in the summers of 2007 and 2012, influenced by both preconditioning and atmospheric conditions. The increasing ice coverage in the Antarctic is not as readily explained, but spatial differences in the Antarctic trends suggest a possible connection with atmospheric circulation changes that have perhaps been influenced by the Antarctic ozone hole. The changes in the polar ice covers and the issues surrounding those changes have many commonalities with broader climate changes and their surrounding issues, allowing the sea ice changes to be viewed in some important ways as a microcosm of global climate change.

  15. Antarctic ice volume and deep-sea temperature during the last 50 Myr: a model study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oerlemans, J.

    2004-01-01

    A simple quasi-analytical model is used to study the sensitivity of the Antarctic ice sheet to climate change. The model is axisymmetrical and has a profile that only depends on the ice-sheet radius. The climatic conditions are represented by three parameters: the altitude of the runoff line, the ac

  16. Ice calving and deformation from Antarctic Ice margins using RISAT-1 circular polarization SAR data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayaprasad, P.; Rajak, D. R.; Singh, R. K.; Oza, S. R.; Sharma, R.; Kumar, R.

    2014-11-01

    In the present study, quantification of spatial and temporal changes has been carried out between Indian Antarctic Research station Bharati and Amery ice shelf by monitoring the ice margins using RISAT-1 Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) data. Spatio-temporal change detection was carried out by comparing the feature's geographic locations from geometrically rectified SAR data from RISAT-1 (Dec. 2013), Radarsat-2 (Feb. 2013), and Antarctic Mapping Mission products of Radarsat-1 (1997 & 2000). We report large scale disintegrations at two prominent glacier tongues namely Polar Record Glacier (PRG) and Polar Times Glacier(PTG). The results are verified against in-situ ground observations made during Summer period of 33rd ISEA (Dec. 2013-Feb. 2014) and MODIS images from NSIDC archive. Polar Record Glacier Tongue (PRGT) was drastically deformed by 135.8 km2 and Polar Times Glacier Tongue (PTGT) was partly calved by ~195.6 km2 and moved away by ~23 km especially between February and December 2013.

  17. The potential macroalgae habitat shifts in an Antarctic Peninsula fjord due to climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jerosch, Kerstin; Scharf, Frauke; Deregibus, Dolores; Campana, Gabriela; Zacher, Katharina; Hass, Christian; Quartino, Liliana; Abele, Doris

    2016-04-01

    The Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) region is one of the most rapidly warming on earth since the last 50 yr. The WAP glaciers currently contribute one third of the melt water to global sea level rise. Climate warming is supposed to induce important changes in polar ecosystems, from microbial communities to apex predators' levels. Macroalgae are the main biomass producers in Potter Cove located at King George Island, the biggest island of the South Shetland Arc. They are sensitive to climate change factors such as suspended particulate matter (SPM). Macroalgae presence and absence data were used to test SDMs suitability and, simultaneously, to assess the environmental response of macroalgae as well as to model four scenarios of distribution shifts by varying SPM conditions due to climate change. Species distribution models (SDM) predict species occurrence based on statistical relationships with environmental conditions. The R-package 'biomod2' which includes 10 different SDM techniques and 10 different evaluation methods was used in this study. According to the averaged evaluation scores of Relative Operating Characteristics (ROC) and True scale statistics (TSS) by models, those methods based on a multitude of decision trees such as Random Forest and Classification Tree Analysis, reached the highest predictive power followed by generalized boosted models (GBM) and maximum-entropy approaches (Maxent). The final ensemble model (EM) used 135 of 200 calculated models (TSS > 0.7) and identified hard substrate and SPM as the most influencing parameters followed by distance to glacier, total organic carbon (TOC), bathymetry and slope. The modeled current status of macroalgae distribution results in only 18.25% of earlier estimated areas populated by macroalgae in Potter Cove. The climate change scenarios show an invasive reaction of the macroalgae in case of less SPM and a retreat of the macroalgae in case of higher assumed SPM values.

  18. Dynamic Antarctic ice sheet during the early to mid-Miocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gasson, Edward; DeConto, Robert M.; Pollard, David; Levy, Richard H.

    2016-03-01

    Geological data indicate that there were major variations in Antarctic ice sheet volume and extent during the early to mid-Miocene. Simulating such large-scale changes is problematic because of a strong hysteresis effect, which results in stability once the ice sheets have reached continental size. A relatively narrow range of atmospheric CO2 concentrations indicated by proxy records exacerbates this problem. Here, we are able to simulate large-scale variability of the early to mid-Miocene Antarctic ice sheet because of three developments in our modeling approach. (i) We use a climate-ice sheet coupling method utilizing a high-resolution atmospheric component to account for ice sheet-climate feedbacks. (ii) The ice sheet model includes recently proposed mechanisms for retreat into deep subglacial basins caused by ice-cliff failure and ice-shelf hydrofracture. (iii) We account for changes in the oxygen isotopic composition of the ice sheet by using isotope-enabled climate and ice sheet models. We compare our modeling results with ice-proximal records emerging from a sedimentological drill core from the Ross Sea (Andrill-2A) that is presented in a companion article. The variability in Antarctic ice volume that we simulate is equivalent to a seawater oxygen isotope signal of 0.52-0.66‰, or a sea level equivalent change of 30-36 m, for a range of atmospheric CO2 between 280 and 500 ppm and a changing astronomical configuration. This result represents a substantial advance in resolving the long-standing model data conflict of Miocene Antarctic ice sheet and sea level variability.

  19. Climate Model Dependency and Understanding the Antarctic Ice Sheet during the Warm Late Pliocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dolan, Aisling; de Boer, Bas; Bernales, Jorge; Hunter, Stephen; Haywood, Alan

    2016-04-01

    In the context of future climate change, understanding the nature and behaviour of ice sheets during warm intervals of Earth history is fundamentally important. A warm period in the Late Pliocene (3.264 to 3.025 million years before present) can serve as a potential analogue for projected future climates. Although Pliocene ice locations and extents are still poorly constrained, a significant contribution to sea-level rise should be expected from both the Greenland ice sheet and the West and East Antarctic ice sheets based on palaeo sea-level reconstructions and geological evidence. Following a five year international project PLISMIP (Pliocene Ice Sheet Modeling Intercomparison Project) we present the final set of results which quantify uncertainty in climate model-based predictions of the Antarctic ice sheet. In this study we use an ensemble of climate model forcings within a multi-ice sheet model framework to assess the climate (model) dependency of large scale features of the Antarctic ice sheet. Seven coupled atmosphere-ocean climate models are used to derive surface temperature, precipitation and oceanic forcing that drive three ice sheet models (over the grounded and floating domain). Similar to results presented over Greenland, we show that the reconstruction of the Antarctic ice sheet is sensitive to which climate model is used to provide the forcing field. Key areas of uncertainty include West Antarctica, the large subglacial basins of East Antarctica and the overall thickness of the continental interior of East Antarctica. We relate the results back to geological proxy data, such as those relating to exposure rates which provide information on potential ice sheet thickness. Finally we discuss as to whether the choice of modelling framework (i.e. climate model and ice sheet model used) or the choice of boundary conditions causes the greatest uncertainty in ice sheet reconstructions of the warm Pliocene.

  20. Dynamic Antarctic ice sheet during the early to mid-Miocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gasson, Edward; DeConto, Robert M; Pollard, David; Levy, Richard H

    2016-03-29

    Geological data indicate that there were major variations in Antarctic ice sheet volume and extent during the early to mid-Miocene. Simulating such large-scale changes is problematic because of a strong hysteresis effect, which results in stability once the ice sheets have reached continental size. A relatively narrow range of atmospheric CO2 concentrations indicated by proxy records exacerbates this problem. Here, we are able to simulate large-scale variability of the early to mid-Miocene Antarctic ice sheet because of three developments in our modeling approach. (i) We use a climate-ice sheet coupling method utilizing a high-resolution atmospheric component to account for ice sheet-climate feedbacks. (ii) The ice sheet model includes recently proposed mechanisms for retreat into deep subglacial basins caused by ice-cliff failure and ice-shelf hydrofracture. (iii) We account for changes in the oxygen isotopic composition of the ice sheet by using isotope-enabled climate and ice sheet models. We compare our modeling results with ice-proximal records emerging from a sedimentological drill core from the Ross Sea (Andrill-2A) that is presented in a companion article. The variability in Antarctic ice volume that we simulate is equivalent to a seawater oxygen isotope signal of 0.52-0.66‰, or a sea level equivalent change of 30-36 m, for a range of atmospheric CO2 between 280 and 500 ppm and a changing astronomical configuration. This result represents a substantial advance in resolving the long-standing model data conflict of Miocene Antarctic ice sheet and sea level variability.

  1. Measurement of the fracture toughness of polycrystalline bubbly ice from an Antarctic ice core

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Christmann

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The critical fracture toughness is a material parameter describing the resistance of a cracked body to further crack extension. It is an important parameter for simulating and predicting the breakup behavior of ice shelves from the calving of single icebergs to the disintegration of entire ice shelves over a wide range of length scales. The fracture toughness values are calculated with equations that are derived from an elastic stress analysis. Additionally, an X-ray computer tomography (CT scanner was used to identify the density as a function of depth. The critical fracture toughness of 91 Antarctic bubbly ice samples with densities between 840 and 870 kg m−3 has been determined by applying a four-point bending technique on single-edge v-notched beam samples. The examined ice core was drilled 70 m north of Kohnen Station, Dronnning Maud Land (75°00' S, 00°04' E; 2882 m. Supplementary data are available at doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.835321.

  2. Model studies of the effects of global warming and Antarctic sea ice changes on Antarctic and global climates

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The authors discuss the results obtained in three experiments by changing the global ocean temperatures and the concentration and distribution of Antarctic sea ice in a General Circulation Model of July climate, with a view to determining the local and global impacts of Antarctic sea ice variations alone, as distinct with those coupled with global scale temperature changes which may be associated with global warming. In all cases there were significant changes in the upward flux of sensible heat over the sea ice zone associated with the reductions of sea ice. The response of weaker westerlies between 40 and 65 degree S was common to all three experiments. Their analyses suggest that a significant proportion of this is a response to the change in sea ice concentration alone. (Not surprisingly, further north of this region most of the changes induced in the wind structure in the global forcing experiment can be seen as due unambiguously to the differential changes in ocean temperatures.). This weakening of the westerlies means there is less mechanical forcing of the ocean in this region. From this they suggest that when consideration is given to the possible impact of feedbacks not considered in these experiments, sea ice changes alone, and particularly those in the Southern Hemisphere, have the potential to induce changes on a hemispheric scale

  3. A spurious jump in the satellite record: is Antarctic sea ice really expanding?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. Eisenman

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Recent estimates indicate that the Antarctic sea ice cover is expanding at a statistically significant rate with a magnitude one third as large as the rapid rate of sea ice retreat in the Arctic. However, during the mid-2000s, with several fewer years in the observational record, the trend in Antarctic sea ice extent was reported to be considerably smaller and statistically indistinguishable from zero. Here, we show that the increase in the reported trend occurred primarily due to the effect of a previously undocumented change in the way the satellite sea ice observations are processed for the widely-used Bootstrap algorithm dataset, rather than a physical increase in the rate of ice advance. Although our analysis does not definitively identify whether this undocumented change introduced an error or removed one, the resulting difference in the trends suggests that a substantial error exists in either the current dataset or the version that was used prior to the mid-2000s, and numerous studies that have relied on these observations should be reexamined to determine the sensitivity of their results to this change in the dataset. Furthermore, a number of recent studies have investigated physical mechanisms for the observed expansion of the Antarctic sea ice cover. The results of this analysis raise the possibility that this expansion may be a spurious artifact of an error in the satellite observations, and that the actual Antarctic sea ice cover may not be expanding at all.

  4. Measurements beneath an Antarctic ice shelf using an autonomous underwater vehicle

    OpenAIRE

    Nicholls, K.W.; Abrahamsen, E.P.; Buck, J.J.H.; P. A. Dodd; Goldblatt, C.; Griffiths, G; K. J. Heywood; Hughes, N.E.; Kaletzky, A.; Lane-Serff, G.F.; McPhail, S.D.; Millard, N. W.; Oliver, K. I. C.; Perrett, J; Price, M. R.

    2006-01-01

    The cavities beneath Antarctic ice shelves are among the least studied regions of the World Ocean, yet they are sites of globally important water mass transformations. Here we report results from a mission beneath Fimbul Ice Shelf of an autonomous underwater vehicle. The data reveal a spatially complex oceanographic environment, an ice base with widely varying roughness, and a cavity periodically exposed to water with a temperature significantly above the surface freezing point. The result...

  5. Incorporation of iron and organic matter into young Antarctic sea ice during its initial growth stages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie Janssens

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract This study reports concentrations of iron (Fe and organic matter in young Antarctic pack ice and during its initial growth stages in situ. Although the importance of sea ice as an Fe reservoir for oceanic waters of the Southern Ocean has been clearly established, the processes leading to the enrichment of Fe in sea ice have yet to be investigated and quantified. We conducted two in situ sea-ice growth experiments during a winter cruise in the Weddell Sea. Our aim was to improve the understanding of the processes responsible for the accumulation of dissolved Fe (DFe and particulate Fe (PFe in sea ice, and of particulate organic carbon and nitrogen, dissolved organic carbon, extracellular polymeric substances, inorganic macro-nutrients (silicic acid, nitrate and nitrite, phosphate and ammonium, chlorophyll a and bacteria. Enrichment indices, calculated for natural young ice and ice newly formed in situ, indicate that during Antarctic winter all of the measured forms of particulate matter were enriched in sea ice compared to underlying seawater, and that enrichment started from the initial stages of sea-ice formation. Some dissolved material (DFe and ammonium was also enriched in the ice but at lower enrichment indices than the particulate phase, suggesting that size is a key factor for the incorporation of impurities in sea ice. Low chlorophyll a concentrations and the fit of the macro-nutrients (with the exception of ammonium with their theoretical dilution lines indicated low biological activity in the ice. From these and additional results we conclude that physical processes are the dominant mechanisms leading to the enrichment of DFe, PFe, organic matter and bacteria in young sea ice, and that PFe and DFe are decoupled during sea-ice formation. Our study thus provides unique quantitative insight into the initial incorporation of impurities, in particular DFe and PFe, into Antarctic sea ice.

  6. DMSP and DMS cycling within Antarctic sea ice during the winter-spring transition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Damm, E.; Nomura, D.; Martin, A.; Dieckmann, G. S.; Meiners, K. M.

    2016-09-01

    This study describes within-ice concentrations of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), its degradation product dimethylsulphide (DMS), as well as nutrients and chlorophyll a, that were sampled during the Sea Ice Physics and Ecosystems eXperiment-2 (SIPEX-2) in 2012. DMSP is a methylated substrate produced in large amounts annually by ice-associated microalgae, while DMS plays a significant role in carbon and sulphur cycling in the Southern Ocean. In the East Antarctic study area between 115-125°E and 64-66°S, ice and slush cores, brine, under-ice seawater and zooplankton (Antarctic krill) samples were collected at 6 ice stations. The pack-ice was characterised by high snow loading which initiated flooding events and triggered nutrient supply to the sea-ice surface, while variation in ice conditions influenced sea-ice permeability. This ranged from impermeable surface and middle sections of the sea ice, to completely permeable ice cores at some stations. Chlorophyll a maxima shifted from the sea-ice surface horizon at the first station to the sea ice bottom layer at the last station. Highest DMSP concentrations were detected in brine samples at the sea-ice surface, reflecting a mismatch with respect to the distribution of chlorophyll a. Our data suggest enhanced DMSP production by sea-ice surface algal communities and its release into brine during freezing and melting, which in turn is coupled to flooding events early in the season. A time-cycle of DMS production by DMSP degradation and DMS efflux is evident at the sea ice-snow interface when slush is formed during melt. Seawater under the ice contained only low concentrations of DMSP and DMS, even when brine drainage was evident and the sea ice became permeable. We postulate that in situ grazing by zooplankton may act as sink for the DMSP produced early in the season.

  7. Using blue-ice moraines to constrain elevation changes of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet in the southern Ellsworth Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugden, David; Woodward, John; Dunning, Stuart; Hein, Andy; Marrero, Shasta; Le-Brocq, Anne

    2014-05-01

    Observations in the Weddell Sea sector of the Antarctic Ice Sheet have not yet allowed the dating of elevated glacier trimlines and associated deposits in the Ellsworth Mountains. This uncertainty limits the value of models of changing ice-sheet configuration, volume and, by extension, sea level during glacial cycles and earlier. Here we present the emerging results of a study into the origin and evolution of blue-ice moraines in the Heritage Range, southern Ellsworth Mountains, and begin to unravel the long record of ice-sheet history they hold. Our findings so far are: (a) Ground Penetrating Radar shows that the blue-ice moraines are equilibrium forms bringing basal debris to the ice surface; the compressive ice flow is caused by enhanced ablation at the mountain foot. (b) Moraines are concentrated in embayments that focus katabatic winds and their location is largely controlled by topography. (c) The elevated blue-ice moraines in the southern Ellsworth Mountains hold a continuous record of West Antarctic Ice Sheet history going back 600,000 years; so far we have not found evidence of de-glacial intervals. (d) Thinning since the LGM (~40 ka?) is blue-ice moraine formation.

  8. Effect of Cd on GSH and GSH-related enzymes of Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L existing in Antarctic ice

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    DING Yu; MIAO Jin-lai; LI Guang-you; WANG Quan-fu; KAN Guang-feng; WANG Guo-dong

    2005-01-01

    Glutathione(GSH) and GSH-related enzymes play a great role in protecting organisms from oxidative damage. The GSH level and GSH-related enzymes activities were investigated as well as the growth yield and malonyldialdehyde(MDA) content in the Antarctic ice microalga Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L exposure to the different cadmium concentration in this paper. The results showed that the higher concentration Cd inhibited the growth of ICE-L significantly and Cd would induce formation of MDA. At the same time, it is clear that GSH level, glutathione peroxidases(GPx) activity and glutathione S-transferases(GST), activity were higher in ICE-L exposed to Cd than the control. But GR activity dropped notably when ICE-L were cultured in the medium containing Cd. Increase of GSH level, GPx and GST activities acclimate to oxidative stress induced by Cd and protect Antarctic ice microalga Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L from toxicity caused by Cd exposure. These parameters may be used to assess the biological impact of Cd in the Antarctic pole region environment.

  9. The suppression of Antarctic bottom water formation by melting ice shelves in Prydz Bay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, G D; Herraiz-Borreguero, L; Roquet, F; Tamura, T; Ohshima, K I; Fukamachi, Y; Fraser, A D; Gao, L; Chen, H; McMahon, C R; Harcourt, R; Hindell, M

    2016-01-01

    A fourth production region for the globally important Antarctic bottom water has been attributed to dense shelf water formation in the Cape Darnley Polynya, adjoining Prydz Bay in East Antarctica. Here we show new observations from CTD-instrumented elephant seals in 2011-2013 that provide the first complete assessment of dense shelf water formation in Prydz Bay. After a complex evolution involving opposing contributions from three polynyas (positive) and two ice shelves (negative), dense shelf water (salinity 34.65-34.7) is exported through Prydz Channel. This provides a distinct, relatively fresh contribution to Cape Darnley bottom water. Elsewhere, dense water formation is hindered by the freshwater input from the Amery and West Ice Shelves into the Prydz Bay Gyre. This study highlights the susceptibility of Antarctic bottom water to increased freshwater input from the enhanced melting of ice shelves, and ultimately the potential collapse of Antarctic bottom water formation in a warming climate.

  10. The Brazilian research contribution to knowledge of the plant communities from Antarctic ice free areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Antonio B; Putzke, Jair

    2013-09-01

    This work aims to summarize the results of research carried out by Brazilian researchers on the plant communities of Antarctic ice free areas during the last twenty five years. Since 1988 field work has been carried out in Elephant Island, King George Island, Nelson Island and Deception Island. During this period six papers were published on the chemistry of lichens, seven papers on plant taxonomy, five papers on plant biology, two studies on UVB photoprotection, three studies about the relationships between plant communities and bird colonies and eleven papers on plant communities from ice free areas. At the present, Brazilian botanists are researching the plant communities of Antarctic ice free areas in order to understand their relationships to soil microbial communities, the biodiversity, the distribution of the plants populations and their relationship with birds colonies. In addition to these activities, a group of Brazilian researchers are undertaking studies related to Antarctic plant genetic diversity, plant chemistry and their biotechnological applications. PMID:24068084

  11. The suppression of Antarctic bottom water formation by melting ice shelves in Prydz Bay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, G. D.; Herraiz-Borreguero, L.; Roquet, F.; Tamura, T.; Ohshima, K. I.; Fukamachi, Y.; Fraser, A. D.; Gao, L.; Chen, H.; McMahon, C. R.; Harcourt, R.; Hindell, M.

    2016-08-01

    A fourth production region for the globally important Antarctic bottom water has been attributed to dense shelf water formation in the Cape Darnley Polynya, adjoining Prydz Bay in East Antarctica. Here we show new observations from CTD-instrumented elephant seals in 2011-2013 that provide the first complete assessment of dense shelf water formation in Prydz Bay. After a complex evolution involving opposing contributions from three polynyas (positive) and two ice shelves (negative), dense shelf water (salinity 34.65-34.7) is exported through Prydz Channel. This provides a distinct, relatively fresh contribution to Cape Darnley bottom water. Elsewhere, dense water formation is hindered by the freshwater input from the Amery and West Ice Shelves into the Prydz Bay Gyre. This study highlights the susceptibility of Antarctic bottom water to increased freshwater input from the enhanced melting of ice shelves, and ultimately the potential collapse of Antarctic bottom water formation in a warming climate.

  12. Developmental History of an Intriguing Peat-Forming Community Along the West Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loisel, J.; Yu, Z.; Beilman, D.; Kaiser, K.

    2014-12-01

    Permafrost peatbanks along the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) have become valuable high-resolution archives for late-Holocene climatic conditions recently. We recently observed and studied a few water-saturated peatlands that had formed in rocky depressions near Vernadsky Station and in mainland Antarctica (~ 65°S, 64°W). Remarkably, we seem to be the very first ones to analyze these systems for environmental reconstructions. The similarity between these peatlands and fens from the lower latitudes is striking, and the rarity of these systems along the WAP is intriguing. We present a high-resolution, multi-proxy record of ecosystem development and paleoenvironmental conditions for Rasmussen peatland. The ecosystem is ~100 m2 in size and is characterized by a shallow water table depth at 7 cm below the surface. Surface vegetation is dominated by Calliergon spp., a wet-adapted moss found along the WAP. The studied moss deposit is 50 cm thick and has a high organic matter content (> 90% dry weight). Plant macrofossil analysis reveals that the peatland was initially a wet Sanionia spp. carpet and that a sharp transition to Calliergon spp. occurred about half way through the deposit. A distinct layer of highly decomposed organic matter was observed from 32 to 40 cm and could indicate a period of slowed peat formation, potentially due to dry conditions (enhanced peat decay) or perennial snow cover (limited plant growth). Biochemical decomposition indicators such as carbohydrate yields, acid:aldehyde ratios of lignin phenols, and hydroxyproline yields are being determined to better understand the extent of peat decay that has occurred at this site throughout its development, particularly to further address the nature of the observed stratigraphic changes. Preliminary results indicate that carbohydrate yields of the bottom half of the core are about 1/3 smaller than those of the top half, indicating substantial carbon loss due to decomposition. Overall, these peatlands

  13. Simulating a dynamic Antarctic ice sheet in the early to middle Miocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gasson, Edward; DeConto, Robert; Pollard, David; Levy, Richard

    2016-04-01

    A variety of sources of geological data suggest that there were major variations in Antarctic ice sheet volume and extent during the early to middle Miocene. Simulating such large-scale changes is problematic due to a strong hysteresis effect, which results in limited retreat of the terrestrial ice sheet once it has reached continental size. A relatively narrow range of atmospheric CO2 concentrations shown by proxy records exacerbates this problem. Here we use a new asynchronous climate-ice sheet coupling method, using a high-resolution atmospheric component, to account for ice sheet-climate feedbacks. Accounting for these processes results in increased retreat when compared with standard offline simulations. Combined with recently proposed mechanisms for ice retreat into deep subglacial basins, we are able to simulate large-scale variability of the Miocene Antarctic ice sheet. This variability is equivalent to a seawater oxygen isotope signal of 0.52 - 0.66 ‰, or a sea level equivalent change of 30 - 36 m, for a range of atmospheric CO2 between 280 - 500 ppm and a changing astronomical configuration. This result represents a substantial advance in resolving the long-standing model-data conflict of Miocene Antarctic ice sheet and sea level variability, and provides a mechanistic explanation for new ice-proximal records emerging from sedimentological drill cores.

  14. Evaluating Antarctic sea ice predictability at seasonal to interannual timescales in global climate models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marchi, Sylvain; Fichefet, Thierry; Goosse, Hugues; Zunz, Violette; Tietsche, Steffen; Day, Jonny; Hawkins, Ed

    2016-04-01

    Unlike the rapid sea ice losses reported in the Arctic, satellite observations show an overall increase in Antarctic sea ice extent over recent decades. Although many processes have already been suggested to explain this positive trend, it remains the subject of current investigations. Understanding the evolution of the Antarctic sea ice turns out to be more complicated than for the Arctic for two reasons: the lack of observations and the well-known biases of climate models in the Southern Ocean. Irrespective of those issues, another one is to determine whether the positive trend in sea ice extent would have been predictable if adequate observations and models were available some decades ago. This study of Antarctic sea ice predictability is carried out using 6 global climate models (HadGEM1.2, MPI-ESM-LR, GFDL CM3, EC-Earth V2, MIROC 5.2 and ECHAM 6-FESOM) which are all part of the APPOSITE project. These models are used to perform hindcast simulations in a perfect model approach. The predictive skill is estimated thanks to the PPP (Potential Prognostic Predictability) and the ACC (Anomaly Correlation Coefficient). The former is a measure of the uncertainty of the ensemble while the latter assesses the accuracy of the prediction. These two indicators are applied to different variables related to sea ice, in particular the total sea ice extent and the ice edge location. This first model intercomparison study about sea ice predictability in the Southern Ocean aims at giving a general overview of Antarctic sea ice predictability in current global climate models.

  15. Experimental studies of ice nucleation in an Antarctic springtail (Collembola, Isotomidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Block, W; Worland, M R

    2001-05-01

    Ice nucleation was studied in field-fresh and acclimated (4 degrees C without food for 11-20 days) samples of the springtail Cryptopygus antarcticus Willem (Collembola, Isotomidae) at Rothera Research Station, Adelaide Island on the Antarctic Peninsula. Ice nucleator activity (INA) was measured by a freezing droplet technique in addition to supercooling point (SCP) profiles and polyol, sugar, and water contents. Field and acclimated samples showed bimodal SCP distributions with a distinct high group (HG; mean SCP -8 to -10 degrees C) and low group (LG: mean SCP -23 to -25 degrees C), which were significantly different. Acclimation at 4 degrees C increased the proportion of individuals in the LG relative to that in the HG without significant effects on the mean SCP of both groups. INA of the HG was significantly greater than that of the LG, and acclimation further reduced the INA of the LG. The number of active ice nucleator agents (INAs) calculated for the HG of field samples increased by 23-100 times over the temperature range -5 to -8 degrees C compared to only 7 times for the LG over the same range. These differences were accentuated in the acclimation experiments. Glucose and galactose were the main carbohydrates in both field and acclimated springtails, with the latter compound occurring in almost twice the concentration in the LG compared with that in the HG. Acclimation reduced the concentration of both compounds (glucose by 77% and galactose by 54%), whereas water content increased significantly. Digestion of food may have continued during acclimation at 4 degrees C, which could reduce the LG INA. Lowering of temperature over time is more likely to elicit a cold hardening response than constant temperature acclimation. INA numbers calculated at the nucleation temperatures for C. antarcticus samples were higher in the LG than in the HG. However, inactivation of INAs may be a key mechanism underlying cold hardening in this species, either by sequestration

  16. Ocean-atmosphere exchange of organic carbon and CO2 in the Antarctic Peninsula – physical and biological controls

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Ruiz-Halpern

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Exchangeable organic carbon (OC dynamics and CO2 fluxes in the Antarctic Peninsula region during austral summer are highly variable. By stations, the region is a weak source of CO2 to the atmosphere, however, continuous records of CO2 revealed this area as a weak sink. OC fluxes are also in both directions but generally towards the ocean and much higher than CO2 fluxes, sometimes by a factor of 10. Surface exchangeable dissolved organic carbon (EDOC measurements had a 43 ± 3 μmol C L−1 overall mean, while the gaseous organic carbon equilibrated in water as given by the Henry's Law constant (H' resulted in (GOC H'−1 concentrations of 46 ± 3 μmol C L−1. EDOC represents around 66% of surface dissolved organic carbon (DOC in Antarctic waters. There is a tendency towards low partial pressures of CO2 in waters with high Chlorophyll a (Chl a content and high fCO2 in areas with high krill densities. However, such relationships were not found for EDOC. Depth profiles of EDOC were also quite variable and followed Chl a profiles, but only in some instances, while diel cycles of EDOC revealed two distinct peaks around midday and middle of the short austral dark period concurrent with solar radiation maxima and krill night migration patterns. However, there was no evident diel pattern for GOC H'−1. The pool of exchangeable OC reveals itself as an important compartment of the carbon budget in the Antarctic Peninsula and adds to previous studies highlighting its importance in the redistribution of carbon in marine environments.

  17. Design and test of an aircraft deployable sensor for the Antarctic peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, D.; Robinson, C.; Causton, B.; Gudmundsson, H.

    2012-04-01

    There remains large areas of scientific interest in the Antarctic that are not instrumented. These include highly dynamic ice sheets and glaciers that are difficult or impossible to reach by ground via overland treks, due to heavy crevassing, or through aircraft landing. We have developed an alternative strategy for instrumenting these regions: a sensor probe that can be dropped from aircraft , partially bury itself in the snow whilst protruding high above the surface to ensure a long operating life. Our probe is shaped like a 2.5m long missile that can be dropped through a standard sonar-buoy launch tube. In order to achieve a consistent impact depth in different snow densities the case is fitted with fold-out fins one metre from the nose cone. This ensures a large step-change in impact surface area when one metre of the device is embedded in the snow. A disk-gap-band parachute design reduces the impact speed, improves the angle of impact while damping probe oscillations. To prevent strong winds from knocking the sensor over the parts of the sensor that protrude above the snow are narrow, the parts of the sensor that are buried are much wider and the parachute separates from the sensor after impact. The sensor is cheap to make (approximately £ 500) and has a minimal environmental impact. An extensive series of tests conducted this season about the Rothera research station and the forward operating base Sky Blu have validated this sensor design in different snow and weather conditions. We intend to deploy a network of these sensors across Pine Island Glacier next year.

  18. Spring–summer albedo variations of Antarctic sea ice from 1982 to 2009

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This study examined the spring–summer (November, December, January and February) albedo averages and trends using a dataset consisting of 28 years of homogenized satellite data for the entire Antarctic sea ice region and for five longitudinal sectors around Antarctica: the Weddell Sea (WS), the Indian Ocean sector (IO), the Pacific Ocean sector (PO), the Ross Sea (RS) and the Bellingshausen–Amundsen Sea (BS). Time series data of the sea ice concentrations and sea surface temperatures were used to analyse their relations to the albedo. The results indicated that the sea ice albedo increased slightly during the study period, at a rate of 0.314% per decade, over the Antarctic sea ice region. The sea ice albedos in the PO, the IO and the WS increased at rates of 2.599% per decade (confidence level 99.86%), 0.824% per decade and 0.413% per decade, respectively, and the steepest increase occurred in the PO. However, the sea ice albedo in the BS decreased at a rate of −1.617% per decade (confidence level 95.05%) and was near zero in the RS. The spring–summer average albedo over the Antarctic sea ice region was 50.24%. The highest albedo values were mainly found on the continental coast and in the WS; in contrast, the lowest albedo values were found on the outer edge of the sea ice, the RS and the Amery Ice Shelf. The average albedo in the western Antarctic sea ice region was distinctly higher than that in the east. The albedo was significantly positively correlated with sea ice concentration (SIC) and was significantly negatively correlated with sea surface temperature (SST); these scenarios held true for all five longitudinal sectors. Spatially, the higher surface albedos follow the higher SICs and lower SST patterns. The increasing albedo means that Antarctic sea ice region reflects more solar radiation and absorbs less, leading to a decrease in temperature and much snowfall on sea ice, and further resulted in an increase in albedo. Conversely, the decreasing

  19. Levels, sources and chemical fate of persistent organic pollutants in the atmosphere and snow along the western Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khairy, Mohammed A; Luek, Jenna L; Dickhut, Rebecca; Lohmann, Rainer

    2016-09-01

    The Antarctic continent is among the most pristine regions; yet various organic contaminants have been measured there routinely. Air and snow samples were collected during the austral spring (October-November, 2010) along the western Antarctic Peninsula and analyzed for organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) to assess the relative importance of long-range transport versus local primary or secondary emissions. Highest concentrations of PCBs, PBDEs and DDTs were observed in the glacier's snow sample, highlighting the importance of melting glaciers as a possible secondary source of legacy pollutants to the Antarctic. In the atmosphere, contaminants were mainly found in the vapor phase (>65%). Hexachlorobenzene (33.6 pg/m(3)), PCBs (11.6 pg/m(3)), heptachlor (5.64 pg/m(3)), PBDEs (4.22 pg/m(3)) and cis-chlordane (2.43 pg/m(3)) were the most abundant contaminants. In contrast to other compounds, PBDEs seem to have originated from local sources, possibly the research station itself. Gas-particle partitioning for analytes were better predicted using the adsorption partitioning model than an octanol-based absorption approach. Diffusive flux calculations indicated that net deposition is the dominant pathway for PBDEs and chlordanes, whereas re-volatilization from snow (during melting or metamorphosis) was observed for PCBs and some OCPs.

  20. Antarctic icebergs melt over the Southern Ocean : Climatology and impact on sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merino, Nacho; Le Sommer, Julien; Durand, Gael; Jourdain, Nicolas C.; Madec, Gurvan; Mathiot, Pierre; Tournadre, Jean

    2016-08-01

    Recent increase in Antarctic freshwater release to the Southern Ocean is suggested to contribute to change in water masses and sea ice. However, climate models differ in their representation of the freshwater sources. Recent improvements in altimetry-based detection of small icebergs and in estimates of the mass loss of Antarctica may help better constrain the values of Antarctic freshwater releases. We propose a model-based seasonal climatology of iceberg melt over the Southern Ocean using state-of-the-art observed glaciological estimates of the Antarctic mass loss. An improved version of a Lagrangian iceberg model is coupled with a global, eddy-permitting ocean/sea ice model and compared to small icebergs observations. Iceberg melt increases sea ice cover, about 10% in annual mean sea ice volume, and decreases sea surface temperature over most of the Southern Ocean, but with distinctive regional patterns. Our results underline the importance of improving the representation of Antarctic freshwater sources. This can be achieved by forcing ocean/sea ice models with a climatological iceberg fresh-water flux.

  1. Physicochemical control of bacterial and protist community composition and diversity in Antarctic sea ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torstensson, Anders; Dinasquet, Julie; Chierici, Melissa; Fransson, Agneta; Riemann, Lasse; Wulff, Angela

    2015-10-01

    Due to climate change, sea ice experiences changes in terms of extent and physical properties. In order to understand how sea ice microbial communities are affected by changes in physicochemical properties of the ice, we used 454-sequencing of 16S and 18S rRNA genes to examine environmental control of microbial diversity and composition in Antarctic sea ice. We observed a high diversity and richness of bacteria, which were strongly negatively correlated with temperature and positively with brine salinity. We suggest that bacterial diversity in sea ice is mainly controlled by physicochemical properties of the ice, such as temperature and salinity, and that sea ice bacterial communities are sensitive to seasonal and environmental changes. For the first time in Antarctic interior sea ice, we observed a strong eukaryotic dominance of the dinoflagellate phylotype SL163A10, comprising 63% of the total sequences. This phylotype is known to be kleptoplastic and could be a significant primary producer in sea ice. We conclude that mixotrophic flagellates may play a greater role in the sea ice microbial ecosystem than previously believed, and not only during the polar night but also during summer when potential food sources are abundant.

  2. In situ expression of eukaryotic ice-binding proteins in microbial communities of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uhlig, Christiane; Kilpert, Fabian; Frickenhaus, Stephan; Kegel, Jessica U; Krell, Andreas; Mock, Thomas; Valentin, Klaus; Beszteri, Bánk

    2015-11-01

    Ice-binding proteins (IBPs) have been isolated from various sea-ice organisms. Their characterisation points to a crucial role in protecting the organisms in sub-zero environments. However, their in situ abundance and diversity in natural sea-ice microbial communities is largely unknown. In this study, we analysed the expression and phylogenetic diversity of eukaryotic IBP transcripts from microbial communities of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice. IBP transcripts were found in abundances similar to those of proteins involved in core cellular processes such as photosynthesis. Eighty-nine percent of the IBP transcripts grouped with known IBP sequences from diatoms, haptophytes and crustaceans, but the majority represented novel sequences not previously characterized in cultured organisms. The observed high eukaryotic IBP expression in natural eukaryotic sea ice communities underlines the essential role of IBPs for survival of many microorganisms in communities living under the extreme conditions of polar sea ice. PMID:25885562

  3. Estimating small-scale snow depth and ice thickness from total freeboard for East Antarctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steer, Adam; Heil, Petra; Watson, Christopher; Massom, Robert A.; Lieser, Jan L.; Ozsoy-Cicek, Burcu

    2016-09-01

    Deriving the snow depth on Antarctic sea ice is a key factor in estimating sea-ice thickness distributions from space or airborne altimeters. Using a linear regression to model snow depth from observed 'total freeboard', or the snow/ice surface elevation relative to sea level is an efficient and promising method for the estimation of snow depth for instruments which only detect the uppermost surface of the sea-ice conglomerate (e.g. laser altimetry). However the Antarctic pack-ice zone is subject to substantial variability due to synoptic-scale weather forcing. Ice formation, motion and melt undergo large spatio-temporal variability throughout the year. In this paper we estimate snow depth from total freeboard for the ARISE (2003), SIPEX (2007) and SIPEX-II (2012) research voyages to the East Antarctic pack-ice zone. Using in situ data we investigate variability in snow depth and show that for East Antarctica, relationships between snow depth and total freeboard vary between each voyage. At a resolution of metres to tens of metres, we show how regression-based snow-depth models track total freeboard and generally over-estimate snow depth, especially on highly deformed sea ice and at sites where ice freeboard makes a substantial contribution to total freeboard. For a set of 3192 records we obtain an in situ mean snow depth of 0.21 m (σ = 0.19 m). Using a regression model derived from all in situ points we obtain the same mean, with a slightly lower variability (σ = 0.16 m). Using voyage-specific subsets of the data to derive regression models and estimate snow depth, mean snow depths ranged from 0.19 m (model derived from SIPEX observations) to 0.25 m (model derived from SIPEX-II observations). While small, these discrepancies impact ice thickness estimation using the assumption of hydrostatic equilibrium. Mean in situ ice thickness for all samples is 1.44 m (σ = 1.19 m). Using empirical models for snow depth, ice thickness varies from 1.0 to 1.8 m with the best

  4. Direct linking of Greenland and Antarctic ice cores at the Toba eruption (74 kyr BP

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Svensson

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The Toba eruption that occurred some 74 kyr ago in Sumatra, Indonesia, is among the largest volcanic events on Earth over the last 2 million years. Tephra from this eruption has been spread over vast areas in Asia where it constitutes a major time marker close to the Marine Isotope Stage 4/5 boundary. As yet, no tephra associated with Toba has been identified in Greenland or Antarctic ice cores. Based on new accurate dating of Toba tephra from Malaysia and on accurately dated European stalagmites the Toba event is known to occur between the onsets of Greenland Interstadials (GI 19 and 20. Furthermore, the existing linking of Greenland and Antarctic ice cores by gas records and by the bipolar seesaw hypothesis suggests that the Antarctic counterpart is situated between Antarctic Isotope Maxima (AIM 19 and 20.

    In this work we suggest a direct synchronization of Greenland (NGRIP and Antarctic (EDML ice cores at the Toba eruption based on matching of a pattern of bipolar volcanic spikes. Annual layer counting between volcanic spikes in both cores allows for a unique match. We first demonstrate this bipolar matching technique at the already synchronized Laschamp geomagnetic excursion (41 kyr BP before we apply it to the suggested Toba interval. The Toba synchronization pattern covers some 2000 yr in GI-20 and AIM 19/20 and includes nine acidity peaks that are recognized in both ice cores.

    The suggested bipolar Toba synchronization has decadal precision. It thus allows a determination of the exact phasing of inter-hemispheric climate in a time interval of poorly constrained ice core records, and it allows for a discussion of the climatic impact of the Toba eruption in a global perspective. Furthermore, our bipolar match provides a way to place paleo-environmental records other than ice cores into a precise climatic context.

  5. Direct linking of Greenland and Antarctic ice cores at the Toba eruption (74 ka BP)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svensson, A.; Bigler, M.; Blunier, T.; Clausen, H. B.; Dahl-Jensen, D.; Fischer, H.; Fujita, S.; Goto-Azuma, K.; Johnsen, S. J.; Kawamura, K.; Kipfstuhl, S.; Kohno, M.; Parrenin, F.; Popp, T.; Rasmussen, S. O.; Schwander, J.; Seierstad, I.; Severi, M.; Steffensen, J. P.; Udisti, R.; Uemura, R.; Vallelonga, P.; Vinther, B. M.; Wegner, A.; Wilhelms, F.; Winstrup, M.

    2013-03-01

    The Toba eruption that occurred some 74 ka ago in Sumatra, Indonesia, is among the largest volcanic events on Earth over the last 2 million years. Tephra from this eruption has been spread over vast areas in Asia, where it constitutes a major time marker close to the Marine Isotope Stage 4/5 boundary. As yet, no tephra associated with Toba has been identified in Greenland or Antarctic ice cores. Based on new accurate dating of Toba tephra and on accurately dated European stalagmites, the Toba event is known to occur between the onsets of Greenland interstadials (GI) 19 and 20. Furthermore, the existing linking of Greenland and Antarctic ice cores by gas records and by the bipolar seesaw hypothesis suggests that the Antarctic counterpart is situated between Antarctic Isotope Maxima (AIM) 19 and 20. In this work we suggest a direct synchronization of Greenland (NGRIP) and Antarctic (EDML) ice cores at the Toba eruption based on matching of a pattern of bipolar volcanic spikes. Annual layer counting between volcanic spikes in both cores allows for a unique match. We first demonstrate this bipolar matching technique at the already synchronized Laschamp geomagnetic excursion (41 ka BP) before we apply it to the suggested Toba interval. The Toba synchronization pattern covers some 2000 yr in GI-20 and AIM-19/20 and includes nine acidity peaks that are recognized in both ice cores. The suggested bipolar Toba synchronization has decadal precision. It thus allows a determination of the exact phasing of inter-hemispheric climate in a time interval of poorly constrained ice core records, and it allows for a discussion of the climatic impact of the Toba eruption in a global perspective. The bipolar linking gives no support for a long-term global cooling caused by the Toba eruption as Antarctica experiences a major warming shortly after the event. Furthermore, our bipolar match provides a way to place palaeo-environmental records other than ice cores into a precise climatic

  6. Footprints of the Newly-Discovered Vela Supernova in Antarctic Ice Cores?

    OpenAIRE

    Burgess, C. P.; Zuber, K.

    1999-01-01

    The recently-discovered, nearby young supernova remnant in the southeast corner of the older Vela supernova remnant may have been seen in measurements of nitrate abundances in Antarctic ice cores. Such an interpretation of this twenty-year-old ice-core data would provide a more accurate dating of this supernova than is possible purely using astrophysical techniques. It permits an inference of the supernova4s ${}^{44}$Ti yield purely on an observational basis, without reference to supernova mo...

  7. Mapping and assessing variability in the Antarctic marginal ice zone, pack ice and coastal polynyas in two sea ice algorithms with implications on breeding success of snow petrels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stroeve, Julienne C.; Jenouvrier, Stephanie; Campbell, G. Garrett; Barbraud, Christophe; Delord, Karine

    2016-08-01

    Sea ice variability within the marginal ice zone (MIZ) and polynyas plays an important role for phytoplankton productivity and krill abundance. Therefore, mapping their spatial extent as well as seasonal and interannual variability is essential for understanding how current and future changes in these biologically active regions may impact the Antarctic marine ecosystem. Knowledge of the distribution of MIZ, consolidated pack ice and coastal polynyas in the total Antarctic sea ice cover may also help to shed light on the factors contributing towards recent expansion of the Antarctic ice cover in some regions and contraction in others. The long-term passive microwave satellite data record provides the longest and most consistent record for assessing the proportion of the sea ice cover that is covered by each of these ice categories. However, estimates of the amount of MIZ, consolidated pack ice and polynyas depend strongly on which sea ice algorithm is used. This study uses two popular passive microwave sea ice algorithms, the NASA Team and Bootstrap, and applies the same thresholds to the sea ice concentrations to evaluate the distribution and variability in the MIZ, the consolidated pack ice and coastal polynyas. Results reveal that the seasonal cycle in the MIZ and pack ice is generally similar between both algorithms, yet the NASA Team algorithm has on average twice the MIZ and half the consolidated pack ice area as the Bootstrap algorithm. Trends also differ, with the Bootstrap algorithm suggesting statistically significant trends towards increased pack ice area and no statistically significant trends in the MIZ. The NASA Team algorithm on the other hand indicates statistically significant positive trends in the MIZ during spring. Potential coastal polynya area and amount of broken ice within the consolidated ice pack are also larger in the NASA Team algorithm. The timing of maximum polynya area may differ by as much as 5 months between algorithms. These

  8. A Microbial Community in Sediments Beneath the Western Antarctic Ice Sheet, Ice Stream C (Kamb)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skidmore, M.; Han, S.; Foo, W.; Bui, D.; Lanoil, B.

    2004-12-01

    In 2000, an ice-drilling project focusing on the "sticky spot" of Ice Stream C recovered cores of sub-glacial sediments from beneath the Western Antarctic Ice Sheet. We have characterized several chemical and microbiological parameters of the sole intact sediment core. Pore waters extracted from these sediments were brackish and some were supersaturated with respect to calcite. Ion chromatography demonstrated the presence of several organic acids at low, but detectable, levels in the pore water. DAPI direct cell counts were approximately 107 cells g-1. Aerobic viable plate counts were much lower than direct cell counts; however, they were two orders of magnitude higher on plates incubated at low temperature (4 ° C; 3.63 x 105 CFU ml-1) than at higher temperatures (ca. 22° C; 1.5 x 103 CFU ml-1); no colonies were detected on plates incubated anaerobically at either temperature. 16S rDNA clone library analysis indicates extremely limited bacterial diversity in these samples: six phylogenetic clades were detected. The three dominant bacterial phylogenetic clades in the clone libraries (252 clones total) were most closely related to Thiobacillus thioparus (180 clones), Polaromonas vacuolata (34 clones), and Gallionella ferruginea (35 clones) and their relatives; one clone each represented the other three phylogenetic clades (most closely related to Ralstonia pickettii, Lysobacter antibioticus, and Xylella fastidiosa, respectively). These sequences match closely with sequences previously obtained from other subglacial environments in Alaska, Ellesmere Island, Canada and New Zealand. Implications of this microbial community to subglacial chemistry and microbial biogeography will be discussed.

  9. Bio-optical properties of Antarctic pack ice in the early austral spring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fritsen, Christian H.; Wirthlin, Eric D.; Momberg, Diane K.; Lewis, Michael J.; Ackley, Stephen F.

    2011-05-01

    Pack ice in the Bellingshausen Sea contained moderate to high stocks of microalgal biomass (3-10 mg Chl a m -2) spanning the range of general sea-ice microalgal microhabitats (e.g., bottom, interior and surface) during the International Polar Year (IPY) Sea Ice Mass Balance in the Antarctic (SIMBA) studies. Measurements of irradiance above and beneath the ice as well as optical properties of the microalgae therein demonstrated that absorption of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) by particulates (microalgae and detritus) had a substantial influence on attenuation of PAR and irradiance transmission in areas with moderate snow covers (0.2-0.3 m) and more moderate effects in areas with low snow cover. Particulates contributed an estimated 25 to 90% of the attenuation coefficients for the first-year sea ice at wavelengths less than 500 nm. Strong ultraviolet radiation (UVR) absorption by particulates was prevalent in the ice habitats where solar radiation was highest—with absorption coefficients by ice algae often being as large as that of the sea ice. Strong UVR-absorption features were associated with an abundance of dinoflagellates and a general lack of diatoms—perhaps suggesting UVR may be influencing the structure of some parts of the sea-ice microbial communities in the pack ice during spring. We also evaluated the time-varying changes in the spectra of under-ice irradiances in the austral spring and showed dynamics associated with changes that could be attributed to coupled changes in the ice thickness (mass balance) and microalgal biomass. All results are indicative of radiation-induced changes in the absorption properties of the pack ice and highlight the non-linear, time-varying, bio-physical interactions operating within the Antarctic pack ice ecosystem.

  10. Acclimation of Antarctic Chlamydomonas to the sea-ice environment: a transcriptomic analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Chenlin; Wang, Xiuliang; Wang, Xingna; Sun, Chengjun

    2016-07-01

    The Antarctic green alga Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L was isolated from sea ice. As a psychrophilic microalga, it can tolerate the environmental stress in the sea-ice brine, such as freezing temperature and high salinity. We performed a transcriptome analysis to identify freezing stress responding genes and explore the extreme environmental acclimation-related strategies. Here, we show that many genes in ICE-L transcriptome that encoding PUFA synthesis enzymes, molecular chaperon proteins, and cell membrane transport proteins have high similarity to the gens from Antarctic bacteria. These ICE-L genes are supposed to be acquired through horizontal gene transfer from its symbiotic microbes in the sea-ice brine. The presence of these genes in both sea-ice microalgae and bacteria indicated the biological processes they involved in are possibly contributing to ICE-L success in sea ice. In addition, the biological pathways were compared between ICE-L and its closely related sister species, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and Volvox carteri. In ICE-L transcripome, many sequences homologous to the plant or bacteria proteins in the post-transcriptional, post-translational modification, and signal-transduction KEGG pathways, are absent in the nonpsychrophilic green algae. These complex structural components might imply enhanced stress adaptation capacity. At last, differential gene expression analysis at the transcriptome level of ICE-L indicated that genes that associated with post-translational modification, lipid metabolism, and nitrogen metabolism are responding to the freezing treatment. In conclusion, the transcriptome of Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L is very useful for exploring the mutualistic interaction between microalgae and bacteria in sea ice; and discovering the specific genes and metabolism pathways responding to the freezing acclimation in psychrophilic microalgae.

  11. Acclimation of Antarctic Chlamydomonas to the sea-ice environment: a transcriptomic analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Chenlin; Wang, Xiuliang; Wang, Xingna; Sun, Chengjun

    2016-07-01

    The Antarctic green alga Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L was isolated from sea ice. As a psychrophilic microalga, it can tolerate the environmental stress in the sea-ice brine, such as freezing temperature and high salinity. We performed a transcriptome analysis to identify freezing stress responding genes and explore the extreme environmental acclimation-related strategies. Here, we show that many genes in ICE-L transcriptome that encoding PUFA synthesis enzymes, molecular chaperon proteins, and cell membrane transport proteins have high similarity to the gens from Antarctic bacteria. These ICE-L genes are supposed to be acquired through horizontal gene transfer from its symbiotic microbes in the sea-ice brine. The presence of these genes in both sea-ice microalgae and bacteria indicated the biological processes they involved in are possibly contributing to ICE-L success in sea ice. In addition, the biological pathways were compared between ICE-L and its closely related sister species, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and Volvox carteri. In ICE-L transcripome, many sequences homologous to the plant or bacteria proteins in the post-transcriptional, post-translational modification, and signal-transduction KEGG pathways, are absent in the nonpsychrophilic green algae. These complex structural components might imply enhanced stress adaptation capacity. At last, differential gene expression analysis at the transcriptome level of ICE-L indicated that genes that associated with post-translational modification, lipid metabolism, and nitrogen metabolism are responding to the freezing treatment. In conclusion, the transcriptome of Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L is very useful for exploring the mutualistic interaction between microalgae and bacteria in sea ice; and discovering the specific genes and metabolism pathways responding to the freezing acclimation in psychrophilic microalgae. PMID:27161450

  12. The sub-ice platelet layer and its influence on freeboard to thickness conversion of Antarctic sea ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Price

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available This is an investigation to quantify the influence of the sub-ice platelet layer on satellite measurements of total freeboard and their conversion to thickness of Antarctic sea ice. The sub-ice platelet layer forms as a result of the seaward advection of supercooled ice shelf water from beneath ice shelves. This ice shelf water provides an oceanic heat sink promoting the formation of platelet crystals which accumulate at the sea ice–ocean interface. The build-up of this porous layer increases sea ice freeboard, and if not accounted for, leads to overestimates of sea ice thickness from surface elevation measurements. In order to quantify this buoyant effect, the solid fraction of the sub-ice platelet layer must be estimated. An extensive in situ data set measured in 2011 in McMurdo Sound in the south-western Ross Sea is used to achieve this. We use drill-hole measurements and the hydrostatic equilibrium assumption to estimate a mean value for the solid fraction of this sub-ice platelet layer of 0.16. This is highly dependent upon the uncertainty in sea ice density. We test this value with independent Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS surface elevation data to estimate sea ice thickness. We find that sea ice thickness can be overestimated by up to 19%, with a mean deviation of 12% as a result of the influence of the sub-ice platelet layer. It is concluded that in close proximity to ice shelves this influence should be considered universally when undertaking sea ice thickness investigations using remote sensing surface elevation measurements.

  13. Response of the Antarctic ice sheet to ocean forcing using the POPSICLES coupled ice sheet-ocean model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, D. F.; Asay-Davis, X.; Price, S. F.; Cornford, S. L.; Maltrud, M. E.; Ng, E. G.; Collins, W.

    2014-12-01

    We present the response of the continental Antarctic ice sheet to sub-shelf-melt forcing derived from POPSICLES simulation results covering the full Antarctic Ice Sheet and the Southern Ocean spanning the period 1990 to 2010. Simulations are performed at 0.1 degree (~5 km) ocean resolution and ice sheet resolution as fine as 500 m using adaptive mesh refinement. A comparison of fully-coupled and comparable standalone ice-sheet model results demonstrates the importance of two-way coupling between the ice sheet and the ocean. The POPSICLES model couples the POP2x ocean model, a modified version of the Parallel Ocean Program (Smith and Gent, 2002), and the BISICLES ice-sheet model (Cornford et al., 2012). BISICLES makes use of adaptive mesh refinement to fully resolve dynamically-important regions like grounding lines and employs a momentum balance similar to the vertically-integrated formulation of Schoof and Hindmarsh (2009). Results of BISICLES simulations have compared favorably to comparable simulations with a Stokes momentum balance in both idealized tests like MISMIP3D (Pattyn et al., 2013) and realistic configurations (Favier et al. 2014). POP2x includes sub-ice-shelf circulation using partial top cells (Losch, 2008) and boundary layer physics following Holland and Jenkins (1999), Jenkins (2001), and Jenkins et al. (2010). Standalone POP2x output compares well with standard ice-ocean test cases (e.g., ISOMIP; Losch, 2008) and other continental-scale simulations and melt-rate observations (Kimura et al., 2013; Rignot et al., 2013). A companion presentation, "Present-day circum-Antarctic simulations using the POPSICLES coupled land ice-ocean model" in session C027 describes the ocean-model perspective of this work, while we focus on the response of the ice sheet and on details of the model. The figure shows the BISICLES-computed vertically-integrated ice velocity field about 1 month into a 20-year coupled Antarctic run. Groundling lines are shown in green.

  14. Development and Applications of Dome A-DEM in Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LIU Jiying; WEN Jiahong; WANG Yafeng; WANG Weili; Beata M CATHSO; Kenneth C JEZEK

    2007-01-01

    Dome A, the highest dome of East Antarctic Ice Sheet, is being an area focused by international Antarctic community after Chinese Antarctic Expedition finally reached there in 2005, and with the ongoing International Polar Year (IPY) during August 2007. In this paper two data processing methods are used together to generate two 100-m cell size digital elevation models (DEMs) of the Dome A region (Dome A-DEM) by using Cokriging method to interpolate the ICESat GLAS data, with Ihde-DEM as a constraint. It provides fundamental data to glaciological and geophysical investigation in this area. The Dome A-DEM was applied to determining the ice-sheet surface elevations and coordinates of the south and north summits, defining boundaries of basins and ice flowlines, deducing subglacial topography, and mapping surface slope and aspect in Dome A region. The DEM shows there are two (north and south) summits in Dome A region. The coordinate and the surface elevation of the highest point (the north summit) are 80°21'29.86"S, 77°21'50.29"E and 4092.71±1.43m, respectively. The ice thickness and sub-ice bedrock elevation at north summit are 2420m and 1672m, respectively. Dome A region contains four drainage basins that meet together near the south summit. Ice flowlines, slope and aspect in detail are also derived using the DEM.

  15. Impacts of warm water on Antarctic ice shelf stability through basal channel formation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alley, Karen E.; Scambos, Ted A.; Siegfried, Matthew R.; Fricker, Helen Amanda

    2016-04-01

    Antarctica's ice shelves provide resistance to the flow of grounded ice towards the ocean. If this resistance is decreased as a result of ice shelf thinning or disintegration, acceleration of grounded ice can occur, increasing rates of sea-level rise. Loss of ice shelf mass is accelerating, especially in West Antarctica, where warm seawater is reaching ocean cavities beneath ice shelves. Here we use satellite imagery, airborne ice-penetrating radar and satellite laser altimetry spanning the period from 2002 to 2014 to map extensive basal channels in the ice shelves surrounding Antarctica. The highest density of basal channels is found in West Antarctic ice shelves. Within the channels, warm water flows northwards, eroding the ice shelf base and driving channel evolution on annual to decadal timescales. Our observations show that basal channels are associated with the development of new zones of crevassing, suggesting that these channels may cause ice fracture. We conclude that basal channels can form and grow quickly as a result of warm ocean water intrusion, and that they can structurally weaken ice shelves, potentially leading to rapid ice shelf loss in some areas.

  16. 36Cl and 53Mn in Antarctic meteorites and 10Be-36Cl dating of Antarctic ice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cosmic-ray-produced 53Mn (tsub(1/2)=3.7x106 years) has been measured in twenty Antarctic meteorites by neutron activation analysis. 36Cl (tsub(1/2)=3.0x105 years) has been measured in fourteen of these objects by tandem accelerator mass spectrometry. Cosmic ray exposure ages and terrestrial ages of the meteorites are calculated from these results and from gases. 14C (tsub(1/2)=5740 years) and 26Al(tsub(1/2)=7.2x105 years) data. The terrestrial ages range from 3x104 to 5x105 years. Many of the L3-Allan Hills chrondrites seem to be a single fall based on these results. In addition, 10Be (tsub(1/2)=1.6x106 years) and 36Cl have been measured in six Antarctic ice samples. The first measurements of 10Be/36Cl ratios in the ice core samples demonstrate a new dating method for ice. (orig.)

  17. Antarctic Sea Ice-a Habitat for Extremophiles

    OpenAIRE

    D. Thomas; Dieckmann, Gerhard

    2002-01-01

    The pack ice of Earth's polar oceans appears to be frozen white desert, devoid of life. However, beneath the snow lies a unique habitat for a group of bacteria and microscopic plants and animals that are encased in an ice matrix at low temperatures and light levels, with the only liquid being pockets of concentrated brines. Survival in these conditions requires a complex suite of physiological and metabolic adaptations, but sea-ice organisms thrive in the ice, and their prolific growth ensure...

  18. Consistent dating for Antarctic and Greenland ice cores

    OpenAIRE

    Lemieux-Dudon, Bénédicte; Blayo, Eric; Petit, Jean-Robert; Waelbroeck, Claire; Svensson, Anders; Ritz, Catherine; Barnola, Jean-Marc; Narcisi, Bianca Maria; PARRENIN, Frédéric

    2010-01-01

    International audience; We are hereby presenting a new dating method based on inverse techniques, which aims at calculating consistent gas and ice chronologies for several ice cores. The proposed method yields new dating scenarios simultaneously for several cores by making a compromise between the chronological information brought by glaciological modeling (i.e., ice flow model, firn densification model, accumulation rate model), and by gas and ice stratigraphic constraints. This method enabl...

  19. Ice core melt features in relation to Antarctic coastal climate

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kaczmarska, M.; Isaksson, E.; Karlöf, L.; Brandt, O.; Winther, J.G.; van de Wal, R.S.W.; van den Broeke, M.R.; Johnsen, S.J.

    2006-01-01

    Measurement of light intensity transmission was carried out on an ice core S100 from coastal Dronning Maud Land (DML). Ice lenses were observed in digital pictures of the core and recorded as peaks in the light transmittance record. The frequency of ice layer occurrence was compared with climate pro

  20. Sea-level response to abrupt ocean warming of Antarctic ice shelves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pattyn, Frank

    2016-04-01

    Antarctica's contribution to global sea-level rise increases steadily. A fundamental question remains whether the ice discharge will lead to marine ice sheet instability (MISI) and collapse of certain sectors of the ice sheet or whether ice loss will increase linearly with the warming trends. Therefore, we employ a newly developed ice sheet model of the Antarctic ice sheet, called f.ETISh (fast Elementary Thermomechanical Ice Sheet model) to simulate ice sheet response to abrupt perturbations in ocean and atmospheric temperature. The f.ETISh model is a vertically integrated hybrid (SSA/SIA) ice sheet model including ice shelves. Although vertically integrated, thermomechanical coupling is ensured through a simplified representation of ice sheet thermodynamics based on an analytical solution of the vertical temperature profile, including strain heating and horizontal advection. The marine boundary is represented by a flux condition either coherent with power-law basal sliding (Pollard & Deconto (2012) based on Schoof (2007)) or according to Coulomb basal friction (Tsai et al., 2015), both taking into account ice-shelf buttressing. Model initialization is based on optimization of the basal friction field. Besides the traditional MISMIP tests, new tests with respect to MISI in plan-view models have been devised. The model is forced with stepwise ocean and atmosphere temperature perturbations. The former is based on a parametrised sub-shelf melt (limited to ice shelves), while the latter is based on present-day mass balance/surface temperature and corrected for elevation changes. Surface melting is introduced using a PDD model. Results show a general linear response in mass loss to ocean warming. Nonlinear response due to MISI occurs under specific conditions and is highly sensitive to the basal conditions near the grounding line, governed by both the initial conditions and the basal sliding/deformation model. The Coulomb friction model leads to significantly higher

  1. Snow depth on Arctic and Antarctic sea ice derived from autonomous (Snow Buoy) measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicolaus, Marcel; Arndt, Stefanie; Hendricks, Stefan; Heygster, Georg; Huntemann, Marcus; Katlein, Christian; Langevin, Danielle; Rossmann, Leonard; Schwegmann, Sandra

    2016-04-01

    The snow cover on sea ice received more and more attention in recent sea ice studies and model simulations, because its physical properties dominate many sea ice and upper ocean processes. In particular; the temporal and spatial distribution of snow depth is of crucial importance for the energy and mass budgets of sea ice, as well as for the interaction with the atmosphere and the oceanic freshwater budget. Snow depth is also a crucial parameter for sea ice thickness retrieval algorithms from satellite altimetry data. Recent time series of Arctic sea ice volume only use monthly snow depth climatology, which cannot take into account annual changes of the snow depth and its properties. For Antarctic sea ice, no such climatology is available. With a few exceptions, snow depth on sea ice is determined from manual in-situ measurements with very limited coverage of space and time. Hence the need for more consistent observational data sets of snow depth on sea ice is frequently highlighted. Here, we present time series measurements of snow depths on Antarctic and Arctic sea ice, recorded by an innovative and affordable platform. This Snow Buoy is optimized to autonomously monitor the evolution of snow depth on sea ice and will allow new insights into its seasonality. In addition, the instruments report air temperature and atmospheric pressure directly into different international networks, e.g. the Global Telecommunication System (GTS) and the International Arctic Buoy Programme (IABP). We introduce the Snow Buoy concept together with technical specifications and results on data quality, reliability, and performance of the units. We highlight the findings from four buoys, which simultaneously drifted through the Weddell Sea for more than 1.5 years, revealing unique information on characteristic regional and seasonal differences. Finally, results from seven snow buoys co-deployed on Arctic sea ice throughout the winter season 2015/16 suggest the great importance of local

  2. Impact of surface wind biases on the Antarctic sea ice concentration budget in climate models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lecomte, O.; Goosse, H.; Fichefet, T.; Holland, P. R.; Uotila, P.; Zunz, V.; Kimura, N.

    2016-09-01

    We derive the terms in the Antarctic sea ice concentration budget from the output of three models, and compare them to observations of the same terms. Those models include two climate models from the 5th Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) and one ocean-sea ice coupled model with prescribed atmospheric forcing. Sea ice drift and wind fields from those models, in average over April-October 1992-2005, all exhibit large differences with the available observational or reanalysis datasets. However, the discrepancies between the two distinct ice drift products or the two wind reanalyses used here are sometimes even greater than those differences. Two major findings stand out from the analysis. Firstly, large biases in sea ice drift speed and direction in exterior sectors of the sea ice covered region tend to be systematic and consistent with those in winds. This suggests that sea ice errors in these areas are most likely wind-driven, so as errors in the simulated ice motion vectors. The systematic nature of these biases is less prominent in interior sectors, nearer the coast, where sea ice is mechanically constrained and its motion in response to the wind forcing more depending on the model rheology. Second, the intimate relationship between winds, sea ice drift and the sea ice concentration budget gives insight on ways to categorize models with regard to errors in their ice dynamics. In exterior regions, models with seemingly too weak winds and slow ice drift consistently yield a lack of ice velocity divergence and hence a wrong wintertime sea ice growth rate. In interior sectors, too slow ice drift, presumably originating from issues in the physical representation of sea ice dynamics as much as from errors in surface winds, leads to wrong timing of the late winter ice retreat. Those results illustrate that the applied methodology provides a valuable tool for prioritizing model improvements based on the ice concentration budget-ice drift biases-wind biases

  3. The East Antarctic Ice Sheet and the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, R. E.; Studinger, M.; Ferraccioli, F.; Damaske, D.; Finn, C.; Braaten, D. A.; Fahnestock, M. A.; Jordan, T. A.; Corr, H.; Elieff, S.; Frearson, N.; Block, A. E.; Rose, K.

    2009-12-01

    Models of the onset of glaciation in Antarctica routinely document the early growth of the ice sheet on the summit of the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains in the center of the East Antarctic Craton. While ice sheet models replicate the formation of the East Antarctic ice sheet 35 million years ago, the age, evolution and structure of the Gamburtsev Mountains remain completely unresolved. During the International Polar Year scientists from seven nations have launched a major collaborative program (AGAP) to explore the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains buried by the East Antarctic ice sheet and bounded by numerous subglacial lakes. The AGAP umbrella is a multi-national, multi-disciplinary effort and includes aerogeophysics, passive seismology, traverse programs and will be complimented by future ice core and bedrock drilling. A major new airborne data set including gravity; magnetics; ice thickness; SAR images of the ice-bed interface; near-surface and deep internal layers; and ice surface elevation is providing insights into a more dynamic East Antarctica. More than 120,000 km of aerogeophysical data have been acquired from two remote field camps during the 2008/09 field season. AGAP effort was designed to address several fundamental questions including: 1) What role does topography play in the nucleation of continental ice sheets? 2) How do tectonic processes control the formation, distribution, and stability of subglacial lakes? The preliminary analysis of this major new data set indicated these 3000m high mountains are deeply dissected by a dendritic system. The northern margin of the mountain range terminates against the inland extent of the Lambert Graben. Evidence of the onset of glaciation is preserved as cirques and U shaped valleys along the axis of the uplifted massifs. The geomorphology reflects the interaction between the ice sheet and the Gamburtsev Mountains. Bright reflectors in the radar data in the deep valleys indicate the presence of water that has

  4. Detection of temperature and sea ice extent changes in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Some global climate models indicate that future global warming from increased atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases may be greatest in the polar regions, over areas where the sea ice cover is reduced. The reduction of sea ice area in the models also gives rise to a strong positive feedback to the warming. From the increase of atmospheric greenhouse gas concentration to date and the results of transient climate models, an estimate of the expected change in the Antarctic temperatures and sea ice extent can be made. The existing data for observed changes in temperatures of the Antarctic and Southern Ocean (extending back to ∼1956 and ∼1945 respectively) are analyzed along with the data of sea ice cover (commencing in 1973) to examine the extent to which the anticipated warming trends and sea ice decrease are being realized. In spite of high temporal and spatial variability, the data does support small significant trends of temperature increase and sea ice cover decrease compatible in magnitude to those expected as a consequence of atmospheric greenhouse gas increase. The seasonal cycle shows a delayed period of autumn-winter sea ice growth with a longer period of open water. This supports a mechanism for positive feedback between decreasing sea ice cover and increasing temperature

  5. Evidence for link between modelled trends in Antarctic sea ice and underestimated westerly wind changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purich, Ariaan; Cai, Wenju; England, Matthew H.; Cowan, Tim

    2016-02-01

    Despite global warming, total Antarctic sea ice coverage increased over 1979-2013. However, the majority of Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 5 models simulate a decline. Mechanisms causing this discrepancy have so far remained elusive. Here we show that weaker trends in the intensification of the Southern Hemisphere westerly wind jet simulated by the models may contribute to this disparity. During austral summer, a strengthened jet leads to increased upwelling of cooler subsurface water and strengthened equatorward transport, conducive to increased sea ice. As the majority of models underestimate summer jet trends, this cooling process is underestimated compared with observations and is insufficient to offset warming in the models. Through the sea ice-albedo feedback, models produce a high-latitude surface ocean warming and sea ice decline, contrasting the observed net cooling and sea ice increase. A realistic simulation of observed wind changes may be crucial for reproducing the recent observed sea ice increase.

  6. Evidence for link between modelled trends in Antarctic sea ice and underestimated westerly wind changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purich, Ariaan; Cai, Wenju; England, Matthew H; Cowan, Tim

    2016-01-01

    Despite global warming, total Antarctic sea ice coverage increased over 1979-2013. However, the majority of Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 5 models simulate a decline. Mechanisms causing this discrepancy have so far remained elusive. Here we show that weaker trends in the intensification of the Southern Hemisphere westerly wind jet simulated by the models may contribute to this disparity. During austral summer, a strengthened jet leads to increased upwelling of cooler subsurface water and strengthened equatorward transport, conducive to increased sea ice. As the majority of models underestimate summer jet trends, this cooling process is underestimated compared with observations and is insufficient to offset warming in the models. Through the sea ice-albedo feedback, models produce a high-latitude surface ocean warming and sea ice decline, contrasting the observed net cooling and sea ice increase. A realistic simulation of observed wind changes may be crucial for reproducing the recent observed sea ice increase. PMID:26842498

  7. A GIS-BASED GLACIER INVENTORY FOR THE ANTARCTIC PENINSULA AND THE SOUTH SHETLAND ISLANDS ——A FIRST CASE STUDY ON KING GEORGE ISLAND

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2001-01-01

    The aim of the international project “Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS)" headed by the US Geological Survey is to establish a world wide glacier inventory based on satellite imagery.This data set will form a first digital baseline study for future glacier monitoring.The presented GIS_based glacier inventory for King George Island is a case study for the area of the Antarctic Peninsula.In the database of the glacier inventory topographic information,specific glaciological parameters as well as metadata will be included.The topographic data consists of drainage basin limits,basin areas,altitudinal ranges,perimeters and mean lengths.Glaciological data sets should comprise information on glacier retreat in different periods,glacier velocities,ice thickness and bedrock topography as well as derived parameters.Modelled and measured mass balance parameters could be included as additional data layers.In particular,these metadata records must comprise background information on data accuracy and data sources and should be compatible with a future data model for the King George Island GIS (KGIS).Three examples illustrate that the GLIMS database will not only contain information valuable for glaciological applications,but also other environmental studies on the island will benefit from this standardised remote sensing data sets.Therefore,a very close link between the data models of KGIS and GLIMS has to be established to enable these synergisms.Finally,better access to historic aerial photography would enable a continuous record of glacier retreat from the beginning of the 1950's onward.

  8. Proteomic Alterations of Antarctic Ice Microalga Chlamydomonas sp. Under Low-Temperature Stress

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Guang-Feng Kan; Jin-Lai Miao; Cui-Juan Shi; Guang-You Li

    2006-01-01

    Antarctic ice microalga can survive and thrive in cold channels or pores in the Antarctic ice layer. In order to understand the adaptive mechanisms to low temperature, in the present study we compared two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2-DE) profiles of normal and low temperature-stressed Antarctic ice microalga Chlamydomonas sp. cells. In addition, new protein spots induced by low temperature were identified with peptide mass fingerprinting based on matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS) and database searching. Well-resolved and reproducible 2-DE patterns of both normal and low temperature-stressed cells were acquired. A total of 626 spots was detected in control cells and 652 spots were detected in the corresponding low temperature-stressed cells. A total of 598 spots was matched between normal and stressed cells. Two newly synthesized proteins (a and b) in low temperature-stressed cells were characterized. Protein spot A (53 kDa, pI 6.0) was similar to isopropylmalate/homocitrate/citramalate synthases, which act in the transport and metabolism of amino acids. Protein spot b (25 kDa, pI 8.0) was related to glutathione S-transferase, which functions as a scavenger of active oxygen, free radicals, and noxious metabolites. The present study is valuable for the application of ice microalgae, establishing an ice microalga Chlamydomonas sp. proteome database, and screening molecular biomarkers for further studies.

  9. Evidence for elevated and spatially variable geothermal flux beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Dustin M; Blankenship, Donald D; Young, Duncan A; Quartini, Enrica

    2014-06-24

    Heterogeneous hydrologic, lithologic, and geologic basal boundary conditions can exert strong control on the evolution, stability, and sea level contribution of marine ice sheets. Geothermal flux is one of the most dynamically critical ice sheet boundary conditions but is extremely difficult to constrain at the scale required to understand and predict the behavior of rapidly changing glaciers. This lack of observational constraint on geothermal flux is particularly problematic for the glacier catchments of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet within the low topography of the West Antarctic Rift System where geothermal fluxes are expected to be high, heterogeneous, and possibly transient. We use airborne radar sounding data with a subglacial water routing model to estimate the distribution of basal melting and geothermal flux beneath Thwaites Glacier, West Antarctica. We show that the Thwaites Glacier catchment has a minimum average geothermal flux of ∼ 114 ± 10 mW/m(2) with areas of high flux exceeding 200 mW/m(2) consistent with hypothesized rift-associated magmatic migration and volcanism. These areas of highest geothermal flux include the westernmost tributary of Thwaites Glacier adjacent to the subaerial Mount Takahe volcano and the upper reaches of the central tributary near the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide ice core drilling site. PMID:24927578

  10. Final Report. Coupled simulations of Antarctic Ice-sheet/ocean interactions using POP and CISM

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Asay-Davis, Xylar Storm [Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Potdam (Germany)

    2015-12-30

    The project performed under this award, referred to from here on as CLARION (CoupLed simulations of Antarctic Ice-sheet/Ocean iNteractions), included important advances in two models of ice sheet and ocean interactions. Despite its short duration (one year), the project made significant progress on its three major foci. First, together with collaborator Daniel Martin at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), I developed the POPSICLES coupled ice sheet-ocean model to the point where it could perform a number of pan-Antarctic simulations under various forcing conditions. The results were presented at a number of major conferences and workshops worldwide, and are currently being incorporated into two manuscripts in preparation.

  11. Source-specific diatom lipid biomarkers as proxies for Arctic and Antarctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belt, Simon

    2016-04-01

    Sea ice plays a key role in controlling global climate due its influence over heat and gas exchange between the oceans and the atmosphere. In addition, sea ice exerts a strong influence over the absorption of incoming radiation at the ocean surface as a result of its high reflectivity or albedo. Driven, in part, by the recent dramatic changes to sea ice cover in both the Arctic and the Antarctic, the development of proxies for sea ice has received growing attention over the last 10 years or so. Amongst these, some so-called highly branched isoprenoid (HBI) lipid biomarkers have attracted considerable interest, not least, because they are derived from certain diatoms that reside and bloom within the sea ice matrix itself, thus providing a more direct indication of sea ice presence compared with some other proxies. The signature HBI sea proxies are a mono-unsaturated HBI (IP25) for the Arctic and a di-unsaturated HBI (C25:2) for the Antarctic, with different source organisms for each. Although the variability in sedimentary abundances of IP25 and C25:2 in Arctic and Antarctic sediments generally reflect the corresponding changes in sea ice conditions, a more complete picture of reconstructing sea ice conditions likely requires a multi-proxy approach involving, for example, other lipid biomarkers that serve as proxy measures of nearby open water conditions or sea surface temperature. By adoption of such an approach, a research strategy aimed at improving estimates of sea ice concentrations or better definitions of sea ice conditions (e.g. marginal ice zone, polynyas, permanent ice cover) represents the next stage in lipid-based sea ice proxy development. This presentation will focus on recent developments and future plans that involve a multi-proxy approach to improving sea ice reconstruction. An understanding of sources, ecology and environmental fate of various HBIs and other diatom lipids will likely be key in shaping the future direction of lipid-based sea ice

  12. Antarctic Sea Ice-a Habitat for Extremophiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, D. N.; Dieckmann, G. S.

    2002-01-01

    The pack ice of Earth's polar oceans appears to be frozen white desert, devoid of life. However, beneath the snow lies a unique habitat for a group of bacteria and microscopic plants and animals that are encased in an ice matrix at low temperatures and light levels, with the only liquid being pockets of concentrated brines. Survival in these conditions requires a complex suite of physiological and metabolic adaptations, but sea-ice organisms thrive in the ice, and their prolific growth ensures they play a fundamental role in polar ecosystems. Apart from their ecological importance, the bacterial and algae species found in sea ice have become the focus for novel biotechnology, as well as being considered proxies for possible life forms on ice-covered extraterrestrial bodies.

  13. Antarctic Sea ice--a habitat for extremophiles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, D N; Dieckmann, G S

    2002-01-25

    The pack ice of Earth's polar oceans appears to be frozen white desert, devoid of life. However, beneath the snow lies a unique habitat for a group of bacteria and microscopic plants and animals that are encased in an ice matrix at low temperatures and light levels, with the only liquid being pockets of concentrated brines. Survival in these conditions requires a complex suite of physiological and metabolic adaptations, but sea-ice organisms thrive in the ice, and their prolific growth ensures they play a fundamental role in polar ecosystems. Apart from their ecological importance, the bacterial and algae species found in sea ice have become the focus for novel biotechnology, as well as being considered proxies for possible life forms on ice-covered extraterrestrial bodies. PMID:11809961

  14. Impacts of marine instability across the East Antarctic Ice Sheet on Southern Ocean dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phipps, Steven J.; Fogwill, Christopher J.; Turney, Christian S. M.

    2016-09-01

    Recent observations and modelling studies have demonstrated the potential for rapid and substantial retreat of large sectors of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS). This has major implications for ocean circulation and global sea level. Here we examine the effects of increasing meltwater from the Wilkes Basin, one of the major marine-based sectors of the EAIS, on Southern Ocean dynamics. Climate model simulations reveal that the meltwater flux rapidly stratifies surface waters, leading to a dramatic decrease in the rate of Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW) formation. The surface ocean cools but, critically, the Southern Ocean warms by more than 1 °C at depth. This warming is accompanied by a Southern Ocean-wide "domino effect", whereby the warming signal propagates westward with depth. Our results suggest that melting of one sector of the EAIS could result in accelerated warming across other sectors, including the Weddell Sea sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Thus, localised melting of the EAIS could potentially destabilise the wider Antarctic Ice Sheet.

  15. Effects of injected ice particles in the lower stratosphere on the Antarctic ozone hole

    OpenAIRE

    Nagase, H.; Kinnison, D.; Petersen, A.; F. Vitt; Brasseur, G.

    2015-01-01

    The Antarctic ozone hole will continue to be observed in the next 35-50 years, although the emissions of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) have gradually been phased out during the last two decades. In this paper, we suggest a geo-engineering approach that will remove substantial amounts of hydrogen chloride (HCl) from the lower stratosphere in fall, and hence limit the formation of the Antarctic ozone hole in late winter and early spring. HCl will be removed by ice from the atmosphere at temperatur...

  16. Concentrating Antarctic Meteorites on Blue ice Fields: The Frontier Mountain Meteorite Trap

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandford, Scott A.; DeVincenzi, D. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The collection of meteorites in Antarctica has greatly stimulated advancement in the field of meteoritics by providing the community with significant numbers of rare and unique meteorites types and by yielding large numbers of meteorites that sample older infall epochs (Grady et al., 1998). The majority of Antarctic meteorites are found on blue ice fields, where they are thought to be concentrated by wind and glacial drift (cf. Cassidy et al., 1992). The basic "ice flow model" describes the concentration of meteorites by the stagnation or slowing of ice as it moves against a barrier located in a zone with low snow accumulation. However, our limited knowledge of the details of the actual concentration mechanisms prevents establishing firm conclusions concerning the past meteorite flux from the Antarctic record (Zolensky, 1998). The terrestrial ages of Antarctic meteorites indicate that their concentration occurs on time scales of tens to hundreds of thousands of years (Nishiizumi et al., 1989). It is a challenge to measure a mechanism that operates so slowly, and since such time scales can span more than one glacial epoch one cannot assume that the snow accumulation rates, ice velocities and directions, etc. that are measured today are representative of those extant over the age of the trap. Testing the basic "ice flow model" therefore requires the careful measurement of meteorite locations, glacialogical ice flow data, ice thicknesses, bedrock and surface topology, ice ablation and snow accumulation rates, and mass transport by wind over an extended period of time in a location where these quantities can be interpreted in the context of past glacialogical history.

  17. Unexpectedly high ultrafine aerosol concentrations above East Antarctic sea-ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. S. Humphries

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The effect of aerosols on clouds and their radiative properties is one of the largest uncertainties in our understanding of radiative forcing. A recent study has concluded that better characterisation of pristine, natural aerosol processes leads to the largest reduction in these uncertainties. Antarctica, being far from anthropogenic activities, is an ideal location for the study of natural aerosol processes. Aerosol measurements in Antarctica are often limited to boundary layer air-masses at spatially sparse coastal and continental research stations, with only a handful of studies in the sea ice region. In this paper, the first observational study of sub-micron aerosols in the East Antarctic sea ice region is presented. Measurements were conducted aboard the ice-breaker Aurora Australis in spring 2012 and found that boundary layer condensation nuclei (CN3 concentrations exhibited a five-fold increase moving across the Polar Front, with mean Polar Cell concentrations of 1130 cm−3 – higher than any observed elsewhere in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean region. The absence of evidence for aerosol growth suggested that nucleation was unlikely to be local. Air parcel trajectories indicated significant influence from the free troposphere above the Antarctic continent, implicating this as the likely nucleation region for surface aerosol, a similar conclusion to previous Antarctic aerosol studies. The highest aerosol concentrations were found to correlate with low pressure systems, suggesting that the passage of cyclones provided an accelerated pathway, delivering air-masses quickly from the free-troposphere to the surface. After descent from the Antarctic free troposphere, trajectories suggest that sea ice boundary layer air-masses travelled equator-ward into the low albedo Southern Ocean region, transporting with them emissions and these aerosol nuclei where, after growth, may potentially impact on the region's radiative balance. The high aerosol

  18. Unexpectedly high ultrafine aerosol concentrations above East Antarctic sea-ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Humphries, R. S.; Klekociuk, A. R.; Schofield, R.; Keywood, M.; Ward, J.; Wilson, S. R.

    2015-10-01

    The effect of aerosols on clouds and their radiative properties is one of the largest uncertainties in our understanding of radiative forcing. A recent study has concluded that better characterisation of pristine, natural aerosol processes leads to the largest reduction in these uncertainties. Antarctica, being far from anthropogenic activities, is an ideal location for the study of natural aerosol processes. Aerosol measurements in Antarctica are often limited to boundary layer air-masses at spatially sparse coastal and continental research stations, with only a handful of studies in the sea ice region. In this paper, the first observational study of sub-micron aerosols in the East Antarctic sea ice region is presented. Measurements were conducted aboard the ice-breaker Aurora Australis in spring 2012 and found that boundary layer condensation nuclei (CN3) concentrations exhibited a five-fold increase moving across the Polar Front, with mean Polar Cell concentrations of 1130 cm-3 - higher than any observed elsewhere in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean region. The absence of evidence for aerosol growth suggested that nucleation was unlikely to be local. Air parcel trajectories indicated significant influence from the free troposphere above the Antarctic continent, implicating this as the likely nucleation region for surface aerosol, a similar conclusion to previous Antarctic aerosol studies. The highest aerosol concentrations were found to correlate with low pressure systems, suggesting that the passage of cyclones provided an accelerated pathway, delivering air-masses quickly from the free-troposphere to the surface. After descent from the Antarctic free troposphere, trajectories suggest that sea ice boundary layer air-masses travelled equator-ward into the low albedo Southern Ocean region, transporting with them emissions and these aerosol nuclei where, after growth, may potentially impact on the region's radiative balance. The high aerosol concentrations and

  19. Bacteria Biomass and Chlorophyll-a depth profiles from bottle casts off the western Antarctic Peninsula from the R/V LAURENCE M. GOULD from 23 April 2001 to 01 September 2001 (NODC Accession 0000820)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Bacteria and Chlorophyll data were collected from bottle cast of the western Antarctic peninsula from the R/V Laurence M. Gould. Data were collected by the...

  20. Ice-dynamical constraints on the existence and impact of subglacial volcanism on West Antarctic ice sheet stability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogel, Stefan W.; Tulaczyk, Slawek

    2006-12-01

    Subglacial volcanism in West Antarctica may play a crucial role in the dynamics and stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). Evidence supporting the existence of an individual subglacial volcanic center (Mt. Casertz) in the upper catchments of Whillans and Kamb Ice Stream (WIS and KIS), comes from a comparison of ice sheet modeling results with measured ice velocities. Lubrication of an area, which otherwise should be frozen to its bed, is best explained by basal melt water generated in the vicinity of Mt. Casertz. The estimated melt water production of Mt. Casertz corresponds to ~8 % of the total melt water production in the two catchments. This would be sufficient to offset basal freezing in the dormant KIS, relubricating its bed and potentially causing a restart. Near future volcanic activity changes are speculative, but would have far reaching implications on the dynamics and stability of the WAIS requiring further investigation.

  1. Evaluation of soil bioremediation techniques in an aged diesel spill at the Antarctic Peninsula

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Jesus, Hugo E.; Peixoto, Raquel S.; Cury, Juliano C.; van Elsas, Jan D.; Rosado, Alexandre S.

    2015-01-01

    Many areas on the Antarctic continent already suffer from the direct and indirect influences of human activities. The main cause of contamination is petroleum hydrocarbons because this compound is used as a source of energy at the many research stations around the continent. Thus, the current study

  2. Comparing ice discharge through West Antarctic Gateways: Weddell vs. Amundsen Sea warming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. A. Martin

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Future changes in Antarctic ice discharge will be largely controlled by the fate of the floating ice shelves, which exert a back-stress onto Antarctica's marine outlet glaciers. Ice loss in response to warming of the Amundsen Sea has been observed and investigated as a potential trigger for the marine ice-sheet instability. Recent observations and simulations suggest that the Amundsen Sea Sector might already be unstable which would have strong implications for global sea-level rise. At the same time, regional ocean projections show much stronger warm-water intrusion into ice-shelf cavities in the Weddell Sea compared to the observed Amundsen warming. Here we present results of numerical ice sheet modelling with the Parallel Ice Sheet Model (PISM which show that idealized, step-function type ocean warming in the Weddell Sea leads to more immediate ice discharge with a higher sensitivity to small warming levels than the same warming in the Amundsen Sea. This is consistent with the specific combination of bedrock and ice topography in the Weddell Sea Sector which results in an ice sheet close to floatation. In response to even slight ocean warming, ice loss increases rapidly, peaks and declines within one century. While the cumulative ice loss in the Amundsen Sea Sector is of similar magnitude after five centuries of continued warming, ice loss increases at a slower pace and only for significantly higher warming levels. Although there is more marine ice stored above sea level in close vicinity of the grounding line compared to the Weddell Sea Sector, the ice sheet is farther from floatation and the grounding line initially retreats more slowly.

  3. Present-day Circum-Antarctic Simulations using the POPSICLES Coupled Ice Sheet-Ocean Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asay-Davis, X.; Martin, D. F.; Price, S. F.; Maltrud, M. E.; Collins, W.

    2014-12-01

    We present POPSICLES simulation results covering the full Antarctic Ice Sheet and the Southern Ocean spanning the period 1990 to 2010. Simulations are performed at 0.1o (~5 km) ocean resolution and with adaptive ice-sheet model resolution as fine as 500 m. We compare time-averaged melt rates below a number of major ice shelves with those reported by Rignot et al. (2013) as well as other recent studies. We also present seasonal variability and decadal trends in submarine melting from several Antarctic regions. Finally, we explore the influence on basal melting and system dynamics resulting from two different choices of climate forcing: a "normal-year" climatology and the CORE v. 2 forcing data (Large and Yeager 2008).POPSICLES couples the POP2x ocean model, a modified version of the Parallel Ocean Program (Smith and Gent, 2002), and the BISICLES ice-sheet model (Cornford et al., 2012). POP2x includes sub-ice-shelf circulation using partial top cells (Losch, 2008) and boundary layer physics following Holland and Jenkins (1999), Jenkins (2001), and Jenkins et al. (2010). Standalone POP2x output compares well with standard ice-ocean test cases (e.g., ISOMIP; Losch, 2008) and other continental-scale simulations and melt-rate observations (Kimura et al., 2013; Rignot et al., 2013). BISICLES makes use of adaptive mesh refinement and a 1st-order accurate momentum balance similar to the L1L2 model of Schoof and Hindmarsh (2009) to accurately model regions of dynamic complexity, such as ice streams, outlet glaciers, and grounding lines. Results of BISICLES simulations have compared favorably to comparable simulations with a Stokes momentum balance in both idealized tests (MISMIP-3D; Pattyn et al., 2013) and realistic configurations (Favier et al. 2014).A companion presentation, "Response of the Antarctic Ice Sheet to ocean forcing using the POPSICLES coupled ice sheet-ocean model" in session C024 covers the ice-sheet response to these melt rates in the coupled simulation

  4. Deep Radiostratigraphy of the East Antarctic Plateau: Connecting the Dome C and Vostok Ice Core Sites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavitte, Marie G. P.; Blankenship, Donald D.; Young, Duncan A.; Schroeder, Dustin M.; Parrenin, Frederic; Lemeur, Emmanuel; Macgregor, Joseph A.; Siegert, Martin J.

    2016-01-01

    Several airborne radar-sounding surveys are used to trace internal reflections around the European Project for Ice Coring in Antarctica Dome C and Vostok ice core sites. Thirteen reflections, spanning the last two glacial cycles, are traced within 200 km of Dome C, a promising region for million-year-old ice, using the University of Texas Institute for Geophysics High-Capacity Radar Sounder. This provides a dated stratigraphy to 2318 m depth at Dome C. Reflection age uncertainties are calculated from the radar range precision and signal-to-noise ratio of the internal reflections. The radar stratigraphy matches well with the Multichannel Coherent Radar Depth Sounder (MCoRDS) radar stratigraphy obtained independently. We show that radar sounding enables the extension of ice core ages through the ice sheet with an additional radar-related age uncertainty of approximately 1/3-1/2 that of the ice cores. Reflections are extended along the Byrd-Totten Glacier divide, using University of Texas/Technical University of Denmark and MCoRDS surveys. However, core-to-core connection is impeded by pervasive aeolian terranes, and Lake Vostok's influence on reflection geometry. Poor radar connection of the two ice cores is attributed to these effects and suboptimal survey design in affected areas. We demonstrate that, while ice sheet internal radar reflections are generally isochronal and can be mapped over large distances, careful survey planning is necessary to extend ice core chronologies to distant regions of the East Antarctic ice sheet.

  5. RTOPO-1: A consistent dataset for Antarctic ice shelf topography and global ocean bathymetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timmermann, Ralph

    2010-05-01

    Sub-ice shelf circulation and freezing/melting rates depend critically on an accurate and consistent representation of cavity geometry (i.e. ice-shelf draft and ocean bathymetry). Existing global or pan-Antarctic data sets have turned out to contain various inconsistencies and inaccuracies. The goal of this work is to compile independent regional fields into a global data set. We use the S-2004 global 1-minute bathymetry as the backbone and add an improved version of the BEDMAP topography for an area that roughly coincides with the Antarctic continental shelf. Locations of the merging line have been carefully adjusted in order to get the best out of each data set. High-resolution gridded data for the Amery, Fimbul, Filchner-Ronne, Larsen C and George VI Ice Shelves and for Pine Island Glacier have been carefully merged into the ambient ice and ocean topographies. Multibeam ship survey data for bathymetry in the former Larsen B cavity and the southeastern Bellingshausen Sea have been obtained from the data centers of Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI), British Antarctic Survey (BAS) and Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO), gridded, and again carefully merged into the existing bathymetry map. The resulting global 1-minute data set contains consistent masks for open ocean, grounded ice, floating ice, and bare land surface. The Ice Shelf Cavern Geometry Team: Anne Le Brocq, Tara Deen, Eugene Domack, Pierre Dutrieux, Ben Galton-Fenzi, Dorothea Graffe, Hartmut Hellmer, Angelika Humbert, Daniela Jansen, Adrian Jenkins, Astrid Lambrecht, Keith Makinson, Fred Niederjasper, Frank Nitsche, Ole Anders Nøst, Lars Henrik Smedsrud, and Walter Smith

  6. A consistent data set of Antarctic ice sheet topography, cavity geometry, and global bathymetry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Timmermann

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Sub-ice shelf circulation and freezing/melting rates in ocean general circulation models depend critically on an accurate and consistent representation of cavity geometry. Existing global or pan-Antarctic topography data sets have turned out to contain various inconsistencies and inaccuracies. The goal of this work is to compile independent regional surveys and maps into a global data set. We use the S-2004 global 1-min bathymetry as the backbone and add an improved version of the BEDMAP topography (ALBMAP bedrock topography for an area that roughly coincides with the Antarctic continental shelf. The position of the merging line is individually chosen in different sectors in order to capture the best of both data sets. High-resolution gridded data for ice shelf topography and cavity geometry of the Amery, Fimbul, Filchner-Ronne, Larsen C and George VI Ice Shelves, and for Pine Island Glacier are carefully merged into the ambient ice and ocean topographies. Multibeam survey data for bathymetry in the former Larsen B cavity and the southeastern Bellingshausen Sea have been obtained from the data centers of Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI, British Antarctic Survey (BAS and Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO, gridded, and blended into the existing bathymetry map. The resulting global 1-min Refined Topography data set (RTopo-1 contains self-consistent maps for upper and lower ice surface heights, bedrock topography, and surface type (open ocean, grounded ice, floating ice, bare land surface. The data set is available in NetCDF format from the PANGAEA database at doi:10.1594/pangaea.741917.

  7. Effects of injected ice particles in the lower stratosphere on the Antarctic ozone hole

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagase, H.; Kinnison, D. E.; Petersen, A. K.; Vitt, F.; Brasseur, G. P.

    2015-05-01

    The Antarctic ozone hole will continue to be observed in the next 35-50 years, although the emissions of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) have gradually been phased out during the last two decades. In this paper, we suggest a geo-engineering approach that will remove substantial amounts of hydrogen chloride (HCl) from the lower stratosphere in fall, and hence limit the formation of the Antarctic ozone hole in late winter and early spring. HCl will be removed by ice from the atmosphere at temperatures higher than the threshold under which polar stratospheric clouds (PSCs) are formed if sufficiently large amounts of ice are supplied to produce water saturation. A detailed chemical-climate numerical model is used to assess the expected efficiency of the proposed geo-engineering method, and specifically to calculate the removal of HCl by ice particles. The size of ice particles appears to be a key parameter: larger particles (with a radius between 10 and 100 µm) appear to be most efficient for removing HCl. Sensitivity studies lead to the conclusions that the ozone recovery is effective when ice particles are supplied during May and June in the latitude band ranging from 70°S to 90°S and in the altitude layer ranging from 10 to 26 km. It appears, therefore, that supplying ice particles to the Antarctic lower stratosphere could be effective in reducing the depth of the ozone hole. In addition, photodegradation of CFCs might be accelerated when ice is supplied due to enhanced vertical transport of this efficient greenhouse gas.

  8. Advances in Measuring Antarctic Sea-Ice Thickness and Ice-Sheet Elevations with ICESat Laser Altimetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwally, H. Jay

    2004-01-01

    NASA's Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) has been measuring elevations of the Antarctic ice sheet and sea-ice freeboard elevations with unprecedented accuracy. Since February 20,2003, data has been acquired during three periods of laser operation varying from 36 to 54 days, which is less than the continuous operation of 3 to 5 years planned for the mission. The primary purpose of ICESat is to measure time-series of ice-sheet elevation changes for determination of the present-day mass balance of the ice sheets, study of associations between observed ice changes and polar climate, and estimation of the present and future contributions of the ice sheets to global sea level rise. ICESat data will continue to be acquired for approximately 33 days periods at 3 to 6 month intervals with the second of ICESat's three lasers, and eventually with the third laser. The laser footprints are about 70 m on the surface and are spaced at 172 m along-track. The on-board GPS receiver enables radial orbit determinations to an accuracy better than 5 cm. The orbital altitude is around 600 km at an inclination of 94 degrees with a 8-day repeat pattern for the calibration and validation period, followed by a 91 -day repeat period for the rest of the mission. The expected range precision of single footprint measurements was 10 cm, but the actual range precision of the data has been shown to be much better at 2 to 3 cm. The star-tracking attitude-determination system should enable footprints to be located to 6 m horizontally when attitude calibrations are completed. With the present attitude calibration, the elevation accuracy over the ice sheets ranges from about 30 cm over the low-slope areas to about 80 cm over areas with slopes of 1 to 2 degrees, which is much better than radar altimetry. After the first period of data collection, the spacecraft attitude was controlled to point the laser beam to within 50 m of reference surface tracks over the ice sheets. Detection of ice

  9. Origin of spherule samples recovered from antarctic ice sheet-Terrestrial or extraterrestrial?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sekimoto, Shun; Takamiya, Koichi; Shibata, Seiichi [Research Reactor Institute, Kyoto University, Osaka (Japan); Kobayashi, Takayuki [College of Humanities and Sciences, Nihon University, Tokyo (Japan); Ebihara, Mitsuru [Dept. of Chemistry, Tokyo Metropolitan University, Tokyo (Japan)

    2016-04-15

    Thirty-eight spherules from the Antarctic ice sheet were analyzed using neutron activation analysis under two different conditions to investigate their origin. In almost all of these spherules, the contents of iron, cobalt, and manganese were determined to be 31% to 88%, 17 mg/kg to 810 mg/kg, and 0.017% to 7%, respectively. A detectable iridium content of 0.84 mg/kg was found in only one spherule, which was judged to be extraterrestrial in origin. A comparison of elemental compositions of the Antarctic spherules analyzed in this study with those of deep-sea sediment spherules and those of terrestrial materials revealed that most of the Antarctic spherules except for the sample in which iridium was detected could not be identified as extraterrestrial in origin.

  10. Historical whaling records reveal major regional retreat of Antarctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotté, Cédric; Guinet, Christophe

    2007-02-01

    Several studies have provided evidence of a reduction of the Antarctic sea ice extent. However, these studies were conducted either at a global scale or at a regional scale, and possible inter-regional differences were not analysed. Using the long-term whaling database we investigated circum-Antarctic changes in summer sea ice extent from 1931 to 1987. Accounting for bias inherent in the whaling method, this analysis provides new insight into the historical ice edge reconstruction and inter-regional differences. We highlight a reduction of the sea ice extent occurring in the 1960s, mainly in the Weddell sector where the change ranged from 3° to 7.9° latitude through summer. Although the whaling method may not be appropriate for detecting fine-scale change, these results provide evidence for a heterogeneous circumpolar change of the sea ice extent. The shift is temporally and spatially consistent with other environmental changes detected in the Weddell sector and also with a shift in the Southern Hemisphere annular mode. The large reduction of the sea ice extent has probably influenced the ecosystem of the Weddell Sea, particularly the krill biomass.

  11. Source identification and distribution reveals the potential of the geochemical Antarctic sea ice proxy IPSO25

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belt, S. T.; Smik, L.; Brown, T. A.; Kim, J.-H.; Rowland, S. J.; Allen, C. S.; Gal, J.-K.; Shin, K.-H.; Lee, J. I.; Taylor, K. W. R.

    2016-01-01

    The presence of a di-unsaturated highly branched isoprenoid (HBI) lipid biomarker (diene II) in Southern Ocean sediments has previously been proposed as a proxy measure of palaeo Antarctic sea ice. Here we show that a source of diene II is the sympagic diatom Berkeleya adeliensis Medlin. Furthermore, the propensity for B. adeliensis to flourish in platelet ice is reflected by an offshore downward gradient in diene II concentration in >100 surface sediments from Antarctic coastal and near-coastal environments. Since platelet ice formation is strongly associated with super-cooled freshwater inflow, we further hypothesize that sedimentary diene II provides a potentially sensitive proxy indicator of landfast sea ice influenced by meltwater discharge from nearby glaciers and ice shelves, and re-examination of some previous diene II downcore records supports this hypothesis. The term IPSO25—Ice Proxy for the Southern Ocean with 25 carbon atoms—is proposed as a proxy name for diene II. PMID:27573030

  12. Antarctic Ice-Shelf Front Dynamics from ICESat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbins, John W.; Zwally, H. Jay; Saba, Jack L.; Yi, Donghui

    2012-01-01

    Time variable elevation profiles from ICESat Laser Altimetry over the period 2003-2009 provide a means to quantitatively detect and track topographic features on polar ice surfaces. The results of this study provide a measure of the horizontal motion of ice-shelf fronts. We examine the time histories of elevation profiles crossing the ice fronts of the Ross, Ronne, Filchner, Riiser-Larson and Fimbul shelves. This provides a basis for estimating dynamics in two dimensions, i.e. in elevation and horizontally in the along-track direction. Ice front velocities, corrected for ground-track intersection angle, range from nearly static to 1.1 km/yr. In many examples, a decrease in elevation up to 1 m/yr near the shelf frontis also detectable. Examples of tabular calving along shelf fronts are seen in some elevation profiles and are confirmed by corresponding MODIS imagery.

  13. Late Miocene-Pliocene Asian monsoon intensification linked to Antarctic ice-sheet growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ao, Hong; Roberts, Andrew P.; Dekkers, Mark J.; Liu, Xiaodong; Rohling, Eelco J.; Shi, Zhengguo; An, Zhisheng; Zhao, Xiang

    2016-06-01

    Environmental conditions in one of Earth's most densely populated regions, East Asia, are dominated by the monsoon. While Quaternary monsoon variability is reasonably well understood, pre-Quaternary monsoon variability and dynamics remain enigmatic. In particular, little is known about potential relationships between northern hemispheric monsoon response and major Cenozoic changes in Antarctic ice cover. Here we document long-term East Asian summer monsoon (EASM) intensification through the Late Miocene-Pliocene (∼8.2 to 2.6 Ma), and attribute this to progressive Antarctic glaciation. Our new high-resolution magnetic records of long-term EASM intensification come from the Late Miocene-Pliocene Red Clay sequence on the Chinese Loess Plateau; we identify underlying mechanisms using a numerical climate-model simulation of EASM response to an idealized stepwise increase in Antarctic ice volume. We infer that progressive Antarctic glaciation caused intensification of the cross-equatorial pressure gradient between an atmospheric high-pressure cell over Australia and a low-pressure cell over mid-latitude East Asia, as well as intensification of the cross-equatorial sea-surface temperature (SST) gradient. These combined atmospheric and oceanic adjustments led to EASM intensification. Our findings offer a new and more global perspective on the controls behind long-term Asian monsoon evolution.

  14. Aerosols in King George Island (Antarctic peninsula) using PIXE and alpha spectrometry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dias da Cunha, K.; Medeiros, G., E-mail: kenya@ird.gov.b, E-mail: kenya@vdg.fis.puc-rio.b [Instituto de Radioprotecao e Dosimetria (IRD/CNEN-RJ), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Leal, M.A.; Lima, C. [Instituto Militar de Engenharia (IME), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Dalia, K.C. [Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), RJ (Brazil). Centro de Ciencias da Saude; Barros Leite, C.V. [Pontificia Universidade Catolica do Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    2009-07-01

    The aim of this study was to characterize the airborne particles and particles deposited in the recent snow samples collected at King George Island (Admiralty Bay) in order to evaluate the possible local sources of airborne particles and the aerosol transport from South America to Antarctic at sea level. Airborne particles samples were collected using a cascade impactor and cyclones at several sampling points at Admiralty Bay. Airborne particles were also collected during the ship travel from Rio de Janeiro to Antarctica. The recent snow samples and aerosols collected at several sampling points at Admiralty Bay were analyzed by PIXE for the determination of the elemental mass concentration. Snow samples were analyzed by alpha spectrometry to determine the 232Th, 228Th, 238U and 234U concentrations in snow. The Mass Median Aerodynamic Diameter of airborne particles was determined. The results suggest that there is a correlation between the aerosol samples and the particles deposited in the snow, but the elemental mass distributions are not equal. The snow elemental concentration can be used as an indicator of the elements present in the aerosols. The local aerosol sources (natural and anthropogenic) have been considered to characterize the aerosol transport to Antarctic, mainly King George Island. The main aerosol sources are the marine spray, weathering of local rocks and anthropogenic sources, as the diesel burning in the island. Besides the local aerosol sources the transport of airborne particles from south Atlantic to Antarctic is an important source of airborne particles at King George Island. (author)

  15. Applicability of ERTS to Antarctic iceberg resources. [harvesting sea ice for fresh water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hult, J. L. (Principal Investigator); Ostrander, N. C.

    1973-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. This investigation explorers the applicability of ERTS to (1) determine the Antarctic sea ice and environmental behavior that may influence the harvesting of icebergs, and (2) monitor iceberg locations, characteristics, and evolution. Imagery has shown that the potential applicability of ERTS to the research, planning, and harvesting operations can contribute importantly to the glowing promise derived from broader scope studies for the use of Antarctic icebergs to relieve a growing global thirst for fresh water. Several years of comprehensive monitoring will be necessary to characterize sea ice and environmental behavior and iceberg evolution. Live ERTS services will assist harvesting control and claiming operations and offer a means of harmonizing entitlements of iceberg resources. The valuable ERTS services will be more cost effective than other means will be easily justified and borne by the iceberg harvesting operations.

  16. Subglacial hydrology indicates a major shift in dynamics of the West Antarctic Ross Ice Streams within the next two centuries

    OpenAIRE

    Goeller, S.; V. Helm; Thoma, M; Grosfeld, K.

    2015-01-01

    The mass export of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) is dominated by fast flowing ice streams. Understanding their dynamics is a key to estimate the future integrity of the WAIS and its contributions to global sea level rise. This study focuses on the Ross Ice Streams (RIS) at the Siple Coast. In this sector, observations reveal a high variability of ice stream pathways and velocities which is assumed to be driven by subglacial hydrology...

  17. Horizontal niche partitioning of humpback and fin whales around the West Antarctic Peninsula: evidence from a concurrent whale and krill survey

    OpenAIRE

    Herr, Helena; Viquerat, Sacha; Siegel, Volker; Kock, Karl-Hermann; Dorschel, Boris; Huneke, Wilma; Bracher, Astrid; Schröder, Michael; Gutt, Julian

    2016-01-01

    A dedicated aerial cetacean survey was con- ducted concurrently to a standardised net trawl survey for krill in order to investigate distribution patterns of large whales and different krill species and to investigate relationships of these. Distance sampling data were used to produce density surface models for humpback (Megaptera novaeangliae) and fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) around the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP). Abundance for both species was estimated over two strata in the B...

  18. Modeling brine and nutrient dynamics in Antarctic sea ice: The case of dissolved silica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vancoppenolle, Martin; Goosse, Hugues; de Montety, Anne; Fichefet, Thierry; Tremblay, Bruno; Tison, Jean-Louis

    2010-02-01

    Sea ice ecosystems are characterized by microalgae living in brine inclusions. The growth rate of ice algae depends on light and nutrient supply. Here, the interactions between nutrients and brine dynamics under the influence of algae are investigated using a one-dimensional model. The model includes snow and ice thermodynamics with brine physics and an idealized sea ice biological component, characterized by one nutrient, namely, dissolved silica (DSi). In the model, DSi follows brine motion and is consumed by ice algae. Depending on physical ice characteristics, the brine flow is either advective, diffusive, or turbulent. The vertical profiles of ice salinity and DSi concentration are solutions of advection-diffusion equations. The model is configured to simulate the typical thermodynamic regimes of first-year Antarctic pack ice. The simulated vertical profiles of salinity and DSi qualitatively reproduce observations. Analysis of results highlights the role of convection in the lowermost 5-10 cm of ice. Convection mixes saline, nutrient-poor brine with comparatively fresh, nutrient-rich seawater. This implies a rejection of salt to the ocean and a flux of DSi to the ice. In the presence of growing algae, the simulated ocean-to-ice DSi flux increases by 0-115% compared to an abiotic situation. In turn, primary production and brine convection act in synergy to form a nutrient pump. The other important processes are the flooding of the surface by seawater and the percolation of meltwater. The former refills nutrients near the ice surface in spring. The latter, if present, tends to expell nutrients from the ice in summer.

  19. Direct linking of Greenland and Antarctic ice cores at the Toba eruption (74 ka BP

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Svensson

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The Toba eruption that occurred some 74 ka ago in Sumatra, Indonesia, is among the largest volcanic events on Earth over the last 2 million years. Tephra from this eruption has been spread over vast areas in Asia, where it constitutes a major time marker close to the Marine Isotope Stage 4/5 boundary. As yet, no tephra associated with Toba has been identified in Greenland or Antarctic ice cores. Based on new accurate dating of Toba tephra and on accurately dated European stalagmites, the Toba event is known to occur between the onsets of Greenland interstadials (GI 19 and 20. Furthermore, the existing linking of Greenland and Antarctic ice cores by gas records and by the bipolar seesaw hypothesis suggests that the Antarctic counterpart is situated between Antarctic Isotope Maxima (AIM 19 and 20. In this work we suggest a direct synchronization of Greenland (NGRIP and Antarctic (EDML ice cores at the Toba eruption based on matching of a pattern of bipolar volcanic spikes. Annual layer counting between volcanic spikes in both cores allows for a unique match. We first demonstrate this bipolar matching technique at the already synchronized Laschamp geomagnetic excursion (41 ka BP before we apply it to the suggested Toba interval. The Toba synchronization pattern covers some 2000 yr in GI-20 and AIM-19/20 and includes nine acidity peaks that are recognized in both ice cores. The suggested bipolar Toba synchronization has decadal precision. It thus allows a determination of the exact phasing of inter-hemispheric climate in a time interval of poorly constrained ice core records, and it allows for a discussion of the climatic impact of the Toba eruption in a global perspective. The bipolar linking gives no support for a long-term global cooling caused by the Toba eruption as Antarctica experiences a major warming shortly after the event. Furthermore, our bipolar match provides a way to place palaeo-environmental records other than ice cores into a

  20. In situ produced 14C by cosmic ray muons in ablating Antarctic ice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Samples of a core (52 m) of ablating Antarctic ice were analyzed for 14CO and 14CO2 by accelerator mass spectrometry. The data were compared with a 14C in situ production model that includes muon capture in addition to oxygen spallation by neutrons. The analysis reveals significant in situ 14C at depths below 10 m, which we attribute to 14C production by cosmic ray muons. The age of the ice was determined as 9.3 ± 0.4 14C ka BP

  1. MAGIC-DML: Mapping/Measuring/Modeling Antarctic Geomorphology & Ice Change in Dronning Maud Land

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogozhina, Irina; Bernales, Jorge; Newall, Jennifer; Stroeven, Arjen; Harbor, Jonathan; Glasser, Neil; Fredin, Ola; Fabel, Derek; Hättestrand, Class; Lifton, Nat

    2016-04-01

    Reconstructing and predicting the response of the Antarctic Ice Sheet to climate change is one of the major challenges facing the Earth Science community. There are critical gaps in our knowledge of past changes in ice elevation and extent in many regions of East Antarctica, including a large area of Dronning Maud Land. An international Swedish-UK-US-Norwegian-German project MAGIC-DML aims to reconstruct the timing and pattern of ice surface elevation (thus ice sheet volume) fluctuations since the mid-Pliocene warm period on the Dronning Maud Land margin of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet. A combination of remotely sensed geomorphological mapping, field investigations, surface exposure dating and numerical modelling are being used in an iterative manner to produce a comprehensive reconstruction of the glacial history of Dronning Maud Land. Here we present the results from the first phase of this project, which involves high-resolution numerical simulations of the past glacial geometries and mapping of the field area using historic and recent aerial imagery together with a range of satellite acquired data.

  2. A seismological examination of the structure and tectonics of southernmost South America and the Antarctic Peninsula region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maurice, Stacey Diane Robertson

    Three different seismological investigations of southernmost South America and the Antarctic Peninsula region are presented in this thesis. Using new data obtained from the Seismic Experiment in Patagonia and Antarctica, I invert regional waveforms, locate earthquake hypocenters, calculate focal mechanisms, and investigate Rayleigh wave phase velocities. These techniques all provide insight into the structure and tectonics of these unique regions. The crustal and upper mantle structure of southern South America is determined using a regional waveform inversion method that incorporates a niching genetic algorithm. This technique performs a broad search of the model space and enables examination of alternative local error minima. The vertical and transverse waveforms are used, and anisotropy is identified by solving for separate SV and SH structures in the upper mantle. Results indicate crustal thickness varies from 26 to 36 km, with thicker values towards the northeast, suggesting little crustal thickening beneath the Austral Andes. The average upper mantle velocities are similar to PREM, except in the southernmost region where velocities are 5% slower than PREM. The upper mantle has up to 5% polarization anisotropy. The anisotropic signature is limited to lithospheric depths and may imply the absence of a strong mantle flow pattern in the asthenosphere. In the Antarctic Peninsula region 150 local earthquake hypocenters are determined (mb 2--5), with locations and depths indicative of ongoing subduction. A local focal mechanism indicates shallow angle thrusting. The South Shetland trench thus represents an extreme end member of hot subduction resulting from slow convergence of young lithosphere, and the absence of intermediate depth earthquakes is consistent with thermal assimilation of the slab at shallow depths. Earthquake locations in the backarc are consistent with the propagation of spreading from northeast to southwest. Rayleigh wave phase velocity dispersion

  3. The role of organic ligands in iron cycling and primary productivity in the Antarctic Peninsula: A modeling study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Mingshun; Barbeau, Katherine A.; Selph, Karen E.; Measures, Christopher I.; Buck, Kristen N.; Azam, Farooq; Greg Mitchell, B.; Zhou, Meng

    2013-06-01

    Iron (Fe) is the limiting nutrient for primary productivity in the Southern Ocean, with much of the dissolved iron (dFe) bound to organic ligands or colloids. A Fe model for the Southern Ocean (SOFe) is developed to understand the role of bacteria and organic ligands in controlling Fe cycling and productivity. The model resolves the classical food web and microbial loop, including three types of nutrients (N, Si, Fe) and two types of Fe ligands. Simulations of the zero-dimensional (0-D) model are calibrated with detailed results of shipboard grow-out incubation experiments conducted with Antarctic Peninsula phytoplankton communities during winter 2006 to provide the best estimate of key biological parameters. Then a one-dimensional (1-D) model is developed by coupling the biological model with the Regional Oceanic Modeling System (ROMS) for a site on the Antarctic Peninsula shelf, and the model parameters are further calibrated with data collected from two surveys (summer 2004 and winter 2006) in the area. The results of the numerical simulations agree reasonably well with observations. An analysis of the 1-D model results suggests that bacteria and organic ligands may play an important role in Fe cycling, which can be categorized into a relatively fast mode within the euphotic zone dominated by photo-reactions (summer d Fe residence time about 600 days) and complexation and a slow mode below with most of the dFe biologically complexed (summer dFe residence time >10 years). The dFe removal from the euphotic zone is dominated by colloidal formation and further aggregations with additional contribution from biological uptake, and an increase of organic ligands would reduce Fe export. The decrease of Fe removal rate over depth is due to the continuous dissolution and remineralization of particulate Fe. A number of sensitivity experiments are carried out for both 0-D and 1-D models to understand the importance of photo-reactive processes in primary productivity

  4. Elemental and Isotopic Signatures in the Sediments Influenced by Seal Excrement on Antarctic Fildes Peninsula and Their Potential Paleoecological Applications

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    The elemental and isotopic signatures in the sediments influenced by seal excrement on Antarctic Fildes Peninsula are examined for their potential palaeoecological applications. The seal hair abundance in sediments exhibits remarkable fluctuation versus depth, indicating similar changes in historical populations of the seals visiting the marine terrace. The combination of δ13 C, total organic carbon concentration (TOC), total nitrogen concentration (TN) and atomic C/N ratio shows that the organic matters in sediments with numerous seal hairs have a marine origin and are predominantly derived from seal excrements. The large δ15 N values in sediments are attributed to trophic enrichment and NH3 volatilization processes. The large variations in the δ15 N values and the negative correlation between the δ15 N values and the seal hair abundances seem to be the results of changes in the paleoclimates and the volatilization rates of the ammonia produced in the seal excrements. The 87 Sr/86 Sr ratios in the acid-soluble fraction of sediments are interpreted as a mixture of the ones from the seal excrements (30 %-50%) and the chemically weathered local bedrocks (70%-50%). The calculated proportion of seal-derived Sr based on the 87 Sr/86 Sr ratios has a significant correlation with seal hair abundances in sediments. These results suggest that δ15 N values and the 87 Sr/86 Sr ratios in the acid-soluble fraction of sediments were influenced by seal excrements, similar to seal hair numbers, and thus can potentially be used to estimate the historical seal population in the Antarctic region.

  5. Penguin response to the Eocene climate and ecosystem change in the northern Antarctic Peninsula region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jadwiszczak, Piotr

    2010-08-01

    Eocene Antarctic penguins are known solely from the La Meseta Formation (Seymour Island, James Ross Basin). They are most numerous and taxonomically diverse (at least ten species present) within strata formed at the end of this epoch, which is concomitant with a significant cooling trend and biotic turnover prior to the onset of glaciation. Moreover, all newly appeared taxa were small-bodied, and most probably evolved in situ. Interestingly, some chemical proxies suggest enhanced nutrient upwelling events that coincided with obvious changes in the record of La Meseta penguins.

  6. An Antarctic ice core recording both supernovae and solar cycles

    CERN Document Server

    Motizuki, Yuko; Makishima, Kazuo; Bamba, Aya; Nakai, Yoichi; Yano, Yasushige; Igarashi, Makoto; Motoyama, Hideaki; Kamiyama, Kokichi; Suzuki, Keisuke; Imamura, Takashi

    2009-01-01

    Ice cores are known to be rich in information regarding past climates, and the possibility that they record astronomical phenomena has also been discussed. Rood et al. were the first to suggest, in 1979, that nitrate ion (NO3-) concentration spikes observed in the depth profile of a South Pole ice core might correlate with the known historical supernovae (SNe), Tycho (AD 1572), Kepler (AD 1604), and SN 1181 (AD 1181). Their findings, however, were not supported by subsequent examinations by different groups using different ice cores, and the results have remained controversial and confusing. Here we present a precision analysis of an ice core drilled in 2001 at Dome Fuji station in Antarctica. It revealed highly significant three NO3- spikes dating from the 10th to the 11th century. Two of them are coincident with SN 1006 (AD 1006) and the Crab Nebula SN (AD 1054), within the uncertainty of our absolute dating based on known volcanic signals. Moreover, by applying time-series analyses to the measured NO3- con...

  7. Rapid bottom melting widespread near Antarctic ice sheet grounding lines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rignot, E.; Jacobs, S.

    2002-01-01

    As continental ice from Antartica reaches the grounding line and begins to float, its underside melts into the ocean. Results obtained with satellite radar interferometry reveal that bottom melt rates experienced by large outlet glaciers near their grounding lines are far higher than generally assumed.

  8. Critical Fracture Toughness Measurements of an Antarctic Ice Core

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christmann, Julia; Müller, Ralf; Webber, Kyle; Isaia, Daniel; Schader, Florian; Kippstuhl, Sepp; Freitag, Johannes; Humbert, Angelika

    2014-05-01

    Fracture toughness is a material parameter describing the resistance of a pre-existing defect in a body to further crack extension. The fracture toughness of glacial ice as a function of density is important for modeling efforts aspire to predict calving behavior. In the presented experiments this fracture toughness is measured using an ice core from Kohnen Station, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. The samples were sawed in an ice lab at the Alfred Wegener Institute in Bremerhaven at -20°C and had the dimensions of standard test samples with thickness 14 mm, width 28 mm and length 126 mm. The samples originate from a depth of 94.6 m to 96 m. The grain size of the samples was also identified. The grain size was found to be rather uniform. The critical fracture toughness is determined in a four-point bending approach using single edge V-notch beam samples. The initial notch length was around 2.5 mm and was prepared using a drilling machine. The experimental setup was designed at the Institute of Materials Science at Darmstadt. In this setup the force increases linearly, until the maximum force is reached, where the specific sample fractures. This procedure was done in an ice lab with a temperature of -15°C. The equations to calculate the fracture toughness for pure bending are derived from an elastic stress analysis and are given as a standard test method to detect the fracture toughness. An X-ray computer tomography (CT scanner) was used to determine the ice core densities. The tests cover densities from 843 kg m-3 to 871 kg m-3. Thereby the influence of the fracture toughness on the density was analyzed and compared to previous investigations of this material parameter. Finally the dependence of the measured toughness on thickness, width, and position in the core cross-section was investigated.

  9. Separate origins of ice-binding proteins in antarctic chlamydomonas species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James A Raymond

    Full Text Available The green alga Chlamydomonas raudensis is an important primary producer in a number of ice-covered lakes and ponds in Antarctica. A C. raudensis isolate (UWO241 from Lake Bonney in the McMurdo Dry Valleys, like many other Antarctic algae, was found to secrete ice-binding proteins (IBPs, which appear to be essential for survival in icy environments. The IBPs of several Antarctic algae (diatoms, a prymesiophyte, and a prasinophyte are similar to each other (here designated as type I IBPs and have been proposed to have bacterial origins. Other IBPs (type II IBPs that bear no resemblance to type I IBPs, have been found in the Antarctic Chlamydomonas sp. CCMP681, a putative snow alga, raising the possibility that chlamydomonad IBPs developed separately from the IBPs of other algae. To test this idea, we obtained the IBP sequences of C. raudensis UWO241 by sequencing the transcriptome. A large number of transcripts revealed no sequences resembling type II IBPs. Instead, many isoforms resembling type I IBPs were found, and these most closely matched a hypothetical protein from the bacterium Stigmatella aurantiaca. The sequences were confirmed to encode IBPs by the activity of a recombinant protein and by the matching of predicted and observed isoelectric points and molecular weights. Furthermore, a mesophilic sister species, C. raudensis SAG49.72, showed no ice-binding activity or PCR products from UWO241 IBP primers. These results confirm that algal IBPs are required for survival in icy habitats and demonstrate that they have diverse origins that are unrelated to the taxonomic positions of the algae. Last, we show that the C. raudensis UWO241 IBPs can change the structure of ice in a way that could increase the survivability of cells trapped in the ice.

  10. Separate origins of ice-binding proteins in antarctic chlamydomonas species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raymond, James A; Morgan-Kiss, Rachael

    2013-01-01

    The green alga Chlamydomonas raudensis is an important primary producer in a number of ice-covered lakes and ponds in Antarctica. A C. raudensis isolate (UWO241) from Lake Bonney in the McMurdo Dry Valleys, like many other Antarctic algae, was found to secrete ice-binding proteins (IBPs), which appear to be essential for survival in icy environments. The IBPs of several Antarctic algae (diatoms, a prymesiophyte, and a prasinophyte) are similar to each other (here designated as type I IBPs) and have been proposed to have bacterial origins. Other IBPs (type II IBPs) that bear no resemblance to type I IBPs, have been found in the Antarctic Chlamydomonas sp. CCMP681, a putative snow alga, raising the possibility that chlamydomonad IBPs developed separately from the IBPs of other algae. To test this idea, we obtained the IBP sequences of C. raudensis UWO241 by sequencing the transcriptome. A large number of transcripts revealed no sequences resembling type II IBPs. Instead, many isoforms resembling type I IBPs were found, and these most closely matched a hypothetical protein from the bacterium Stigmatella aurantiaca. The sequences were confirmed to encode IBPs by the activity of a recombinant protein and by the matching of predicted and observed isoelectric points and molecular weights. Furthermore, a mesophilic sister species, C. raudensis SAG49.72, showed no ice-binding activity or PCR products from UWO241 IBP primers. These results confirm that algal IBPs are required for survival in icy habitats and demonstrate that they have diverse origins that are unrelated to the taxonomic positions of the algae. Last, we show that the C. raudensis UWO241 IBPs can change the structure of ice in a way that could increase the survivability of cells trapped in the ice. PMID:23536869

  11. Present-day and future Antarctic ice sheet climate and surface mass balance in the Community Earth System Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenaerts, Jan T. M.; Vizcaino, Miren; Fyke, Jeremy; van Kampenhout, Leo; van den Broeke, Michiel R.

    2016-09-01

    We present climate and surface mass balance (SMB) of the Antarctic ice sheet (AIS) as simulated by the global, coupled ocean-atmosphere-land Community Earth System Model (CESM) with a horizontal resolution of {˜ }1° in the past, present and future (1850-2100). CESM correctly simulates present-day Antarctic sea ice extent, large-scale atmospheric circulation and near-surface climate, but fails to simulate the recent expansion of Antarctic sea ice. The present-day Antarctic ice sheet SMB equals 2280 ± 131 {Gt year^{-1}}, which concurs with existing independent estimates of AIS SMB. When forced by two CMIP5 climate change scenarios (high mitigation scenario RCP2.6 and high-emission scenario RCP8.5), CESM projects an increase of Antarctic ice sheet SMB of about 70 {Gt year^{-1}} per degree warming. This increase is driven by enhanced snowfall, which is partially counteracted by more surface melt and runoff along the ice sheet's edges. This intensifying hydrological cycle is predominantly driven by atmospheric warming, which increases (1) the moisture-carrying capacity of the atmosphere, (2) oceanic source region evaporation, and (3) summer AIS cloud liquid water content.

  12. New Visualizations Highlight New Information on the Contrasting Arctic and Antarctic Sea-Ice Trends Since the Late 1970s

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, Claire L.; DiGirolamo, Nicolo E.

    2016-01-01

    Month-by-month ranking of 37 years (1979-2015) of satellite-derived sea-ice extents in the Arctic and Antarctic reveals interesting new details in the overall trends toward decreasing sea-ice coverage in the Arctic and increasing sea-ice coverage in the Antarctic. The Arctic decreases are so definitive that there has not been a monthly record high in Arctic sea-ice extents in any month since 1986, a time period during which there have been 75 monthly record lows. The Antarctic, with the opposite but weaker trend toward increased ice extents, experienced monthly record lows in 5 months of 1986, then 6 later monthly record lows scattered through the dataset, with the last two occurring in 2006, versus 45 record highs since 1986. However, in the last three years of the 1979-2015 dataset, the downward trends in Arctic sea-ice extents eased up, with no new record lows in any month of 2013 or 2014 and only one record low in 2015,while the upward trends in Antarctic ice extents notably strengthened, with new record high ice extents in 4 months (August-November) of 2013, in 6 months (April- September) of 2014, and in 3 months (January, April, and May) of 2015. Globally, there have been only 3 monthly record highs since 1986 (only one since 1988), whereas there have been 43 record lows, although the last record lows (in the 1979-2015 dataset) occurred in 2012.

  13. Boundary layer new particle formation over East Antarctic sea ice – possible Hg-driven nucleation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. S. Humphries

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Aerosol observations above the Southern Ocean and Antarctic sea ice are scarce. Measurements of aerosols and atmospheric composition were made in East Antarctic pack ice on board the Australian icebreaker Aurora Australis during the spring of 2012. One particle formation event was observed during the 32 days of observations. This event occurred on the only day to exhibit extended periods of global irradiance in excess of 600 W m−2. Within the single air mass influencing the measurements, number concentrations of particles larger than 3 nm (CN3 reached almost 7700 cm−3 within a few hours of clouds clearing, and grew at rates of 5.6 nm h−1. Formation rates of 3 nm particles were in the range of those measured at other Antarctic locations at 0.2–1.1 ± 0.1 cm−3 s−1. Our investigations into the nucleation chemistry found that there were insufficient precursor concentrations for known halogen or organic chemistry to explain the nucleation event. Modelling studies utilising known sulfuric acid nucleation schemes could not simultaneously reproduce both particle formation or growth rates. Surprising correlations with total gaseous mercury (TGM were found that, together with other data, suggest a mercury-driven photochemical nucleation mechanism may be responsible for aerosol nucleation. Given the very low vapour pressures of the mercury species involved, this nucleation chemistry is likely only possible where pre-existing aerosol concentrations are low and both TGM concentrations and solar radiation levels are relatively high (∼ 1.5 ng m−3 and ≥ 600 W m−2, respectively, such as those observed in the Antarctic sea ice boundary layer in this study or in the global free troposphere, particularly in the Northern Hemisphere.

  14. Discovery of a recent, natural whale fall on the continental slope off Anvers Island, western Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Kathryn E.; Thatje, Sven; Singh, Hanumant; Amsler, Margaret O.; Vos, Stephanie C.; McClintock, James B.; Brothers, Cecilia J.; Brown, Alastair; Ellis, Daniel; Anderson, Jeffrey S.; Aronson, Richard B.

    2014-08-01

    Whale falls provide a substantial, nutrient-rich resource for species in areas of the ocean that may otherwise be largely devoid of food. We report the discovery of a natural whale fall at 1430 m depth in the cold waters of the continental slope off the western Antarctic Peninsula. This is the highest-latitude whale fall reported to date. The section of the carcass we observed-the tail fluke-was more complete than any previously reported natural whale fall from the deep sea and in the early stages of decomposition. We estimate the entire cetacean to measure 5-8 m in length. The flesh remained almost intact on the carcass but the skin was missing from the entire section except for the end of the fluke, clearly exposing blubber and soft tissue. The absence of skin indicates rapid and Homogeneous loss. The dominant macrofauna present were crustaceans, including most prominently the lithodid crab Paralomis birsteini, and zoarcid fish typical of the ‘mobile-scavenger' successional stage. The density of mobile macrofauna was greatest on the carcass and declined to background levels within 100 m, indicating that they were attracted to the whale fall. This whale fall offers an important opportunity to examine the decomposition of a carcass under deep-sea conditions at polar latitudes.

  15. Regional genetic diversity patterns in Antarctic hairgrass (Deschampsia antartica Desv.)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van de Wouw, M.J.; Van Dijk, P.J.; Huiskes, A.H.L.

    2008-01-01

    Aim To determine patterns in diversity of a major Antarctic plant species, including relationships of Antarctic populations with those outside the Antarctic zone. Location Antarctic Peninsula, Maritime Antarctica, sub-Antarctic islands, Falkland Islands and South America. Methods Amplified fragment

  16. THE EFFECTS OF ULTRAVIOLET-B RADIATION ON ANTARCTIC SEA-ICE ALGAE(1).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryan, Ken G; McMinn, Andrew; Hegseth, Else N; Davy, Simon K

    2012-02-01

    The impacts of ultraviolet-B radiation (UVB) on polar sea-ice algal communities have not yet been demonstrated. We assess the impacts of UV on these communities using both laboratory experiments on algal isolates and by modification of the in situ spectral distribution of the under-ice irradiance. In the latter experiment, filters were attached to the upper surface of the ice so that the algae were exposed in situ to treatments of ambient levels of PAR and UV radiation, ambient radiation minus UVB, and ambient radiation minus all UV. After 16 d, significant increases in chl a and cell numbers were recorded for all treatments, but there were no significant differences among the different treatments. Bottom-ice algae exposed in vitro were considerably less tolerant to UVB than those in situ, but this tolerance improved when algae were retained within a solid block of ice. In addition, algae extracted from brine channels in the upper meter of sea ice and exposed to PAR and UVB in the laboratory were much more tolerant of high UVB doses than were any bottom-ice isolates. This finding indicates that brine algae may be better adapted to high PAR and UVB than are bottom-ice algae. The data indicate that the impact of increased levels of UVB resulting from springtime ozone depletion on Antarctic bottom-ice communities is likely to be minimal. These algae are likely protected by strong UVB attenuation by the overlying ice and snow, by other inorganic and organic substances in the ice matrix, and by algal cells closer to the surface. PMID:27009652

  17. Heterogeneous Heat Flow and Groundwater Effects on East Antarctic Ice Sheet Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gooch, B. T.; Soderlund, K. M.; Young, D. A.; Blankenship, D. D.

    2015-12-01

    We present the results numerical models describing the potential contributions groundwater and heterogeneous heat sources might have on ice dynamics. A two-phase, 1D hydrothermal model demonstrates the importance of groundwater flow in heat flux advection near the ice-bed interface. Typical, conservative vertical groundwater volume fluxes on the order of +/- 1-10 mm/yr can alter vertical heat flux by +/- 50-500 mW/m2 that could produce considerable volumes of meltwater depending on basin geometry and geothermal heat production. A 1D hydromechanical model demonstrates that during ice advance groundwater is mainly recharged into saturated sedimentary aquifers and during retreat groundwater discharges into the ice-bed interface, potentially contributing to subglacial water budgets on the order of 0.1-1 mm/yr during ice retreat. A map of most-likely elevated heat production provinces, estimated sedimentary basin depths, and radar-derived bed roughness are compared together to delineate areas of greatest potential to ice sheet instability in East Antarctica. Finally, a 2D numerical model of crustal fluid and heat flow typical to recently estimated sedimentary basins under the East Antarctic Ice Sheet is coupled to a 2.5D Full Stokes ice sheet model (with simple basal hydrology) to test for the sensitivity of hydrodynamic processes on ice sheet dynamics. Preliminary results show that the enhanced fluid flow can dramatically alter the basal heating of the ice and its temperature profile, as well as, the sliding rate, which heavily alter ice dynamics.

  18. Effect of elevated CO2 concentration on microalgal communities in Antarctic pack ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coad, Thomas; McMinn, Andrew; Nomura, Daiki; Martin, Andrew

    2016-09-01

    Increased anthropogenic CO2 emissions are causing changes to oceanic pH and CO2 concentrations that will impact many marine organisms, including microalgae. Phytoplankton taxa have shown mixed responses to these changes with some doing well while others have been adversely affected. Here, the photosynthetic response of sea-ice algal communities from Antarctic pack ice (brine and infiltration microbial communities) to a range of CO2 concentrations (400 ppm to 11,000 ppm in brine algae experiments, 400 ppm to 20,000 ppm in the infiltration ice algae experiment) was investigated. Incubations were conducted as part of the Sea-Ice Physics and Ecosystem Experiment II (SIPEX-2) voyage, in the austral spring (September-November), 2012. In the brine incubations, maximum quantum yield (Fv/Fm) and relative electron transfer rate (rETRmax) were highest at ambient and 0.049% (experiment 1) and 0.19% (experiment 2) CO2 concentrations, although, Fv/Fm was consistently between 0.53±0.10-0.68±0.01 across all treatments in both experiments. Highest rETRmax was exhibited by brine cultures exposed to ambient CO2 concentrations (60.15). In a third experiment infiltration ice algal communities were allowed to melt into seawater modified to simulate the changed pH and CO2 concentrations of future springtime ice-edge conditions. Ambient and 0.1% CO2 treatments had the highest growth rates and Fv/Fm values but only the highest CO2 concentration produced a significantly lower rETRmax. These experiments, conducted on natural Antarctic sea-ice algal communities, indicate a strong level of tolerance to elevated CO2 concentrations and suggest that these communities might not be adversely affected by predicted changes in CO2 concentration over the next century.

  19. Antarctic ice-rafted detritus (IRD) in the South Atlantic: Indicators of iceshelf dynamics or ocean surface conditions?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielsen, Simon H.H.; Hodell, D.A.

    2007-01-01

    Ocean sediment core TN057-13PC4/ODP1094, from the Atlantic sector of the Southern Ocean, contains elevated lithogenic material in sections representing the last glacial period compared to the Holocene. This ice-rafted detritus is mainly comprised of volcanic glass and ash, but has a significant input of what was previously interpreted as quartz during peak intervals (Kanfoush et al., 2000, 2002). Our analysis of these clear mineral grains indicates that most are plagioclase, and that South Sandwich Islands is the predominant source, similar to that inferred for the volcanic glass (Nielsen et al., in review). In addition, quartz and feldspar with possible Antarctic origin occur in conjunction with postulated episodes of Antarctic deglaciation. We conclude that while sea ice was the dominant ice rafting agent in the Polar Frontal Zone of the South Atlantic during the last glacial period, the Holocene IRD variability may reflect Antarctic ice sheet dynamics.

  20. Measurement of 26Al in Antarctic ice with the MALT-AMS system at the University of Tokyo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horiuchi, Kazuho; Matsuzaki, Hiroyuki; Ohta, Aoi; Shibata, Yasuyuki; Motoyama, Hideaki

    2007-06-01

    We have attempted to determine the 26Al concentration of Antarctic ice sampled from the vicinity of the Dome Fuji Research Station using accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) at MALT (MicroAnalysis Laboratory, Tandem accelerator) of the University of Tokyo. Because the expected concentration of 26Al in ice is very low, our standard procedure for the AMS measurement was re-examined and refined. The observed 26Al concentration ranged between 160 and 210 atoms g-1. The averaged value of the 26Al/10Be ratio from two samples was 1.75 ± 0.19 × 10-3, which agrees well with recently reported values for the meteoric 26Al/10Be ratio from Antarctic ice and air filter residues. This result implies the possibility of future 26Al/10Be dating of old Antarctic ice.

  1. Postglacial relative sea level change at Fildes Peninsula, King George Island (West Antarctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. V. Polishchuk

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Analysis and integration of data obtained in our field and laboratory investigations of 2008–2012 together with results of previous paleogeographic studies were conducted to reveal parameters and factors of the post-glacial changes in the relative sea-level on the Fildes Peninsula and the King George Island. Results of dating of organic material taken from cross-sections of Quaternary deposits, data on morphology of marine landforms as well as on bottom sediments in lakes were used to construct a curve of changes in the relative sea-level.Our research has shown that the rapid rise of relative sea level in the area (since the beginning of the Holocene decelerated about 8000 years BP, achieving its maximum about 7000 years BP. This was followed by the fall of relative sea-level (the land elevation by 18–20  m in total, and it was characterized by relatively high rate of fall during periods of 6000– 5000 years BP, 4000–2500 years BP, and during the last 1500 years; the rate decreased in 5000–4000 years BP and 2500– 1600 years BP. The changes in relative sea level in this region were determined by the following factors: the eustatic component of the global changes in sea-level and, possibly, oscillations in the global sea level of another nature; local parameters of the Last glacial maximum; a course of the Peninsula deglaciation; regional physical characteristics of the Earth's crust and the mantle substances; local tectonic processes, including the isostatic rebound. Since the beginning of the Holocene up to about 7000 years BP, the main contribution to changes of the relative sea-level in this area was made by the global eustatic factor. The subsequent fall of the relative sea-level (elevation of the Peninsula surface proceeded under condition of reduced role of the eustatic factor and predominance of other factors.

  2. Flow speed within the Antarctic ice sheet and its controls inferred from satellite observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arthern, Robert J.; Hindmarsh, Richard C. A.; Williams, C. Rosie

    2015-07-01

    Accurate dynamical models of the Antarctic ice sheet with carefully specified initial conditions and well-calibrated rheological parameters are needed to forecast global sea level. By adapting an inverse method previously used in electric impedance tomography, we infer present-day flow speeds within the ice sheet. This inversion uses satellite observations of surface velocity, snow accumulation rate, and rate of change of surface elevation to estimate the basal drag coefficient and an ice stiffness parameter that influences viscosity. We represent interior ice motion using a vertically integrated approximation to incompressible Stokes flow. This model represents vertical shearing within the ice and membrane stresses caused by horizontal stretching and shearing. Combining observations and model, we recover marked geographical variations in the basal drag coefficient. Relative changes in basal shear stress are smaller. No simple sliding law adequately represents basal shear stress as a function of sliding speed. Low basal shear stress predominates in central East Antarctica, where thick insulating ice allows liquid water at the base to lubricate sliding. Higher shear stress occurs in coastal East Antarctica, where a frozen bed is more likely. Examining Thwaites glacier in more detail shows that the slowest sliding often coincides with elevated basal topography. Differences between our results and a similar adjoint-based inversion suggest that inversion or regularization methods can influence recovered parameters for slow sliding and finer scales; on broader scales we recover a similar pattern of low basal drag underneath major ice streams and extensive regions in East Antarctica that move by basal sliding.

  3. Large-Ensemble modeling of last deglacial and future variations of the Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollard, David; DeConto, Robert; Chang, Won; Applegate, Patrick; Haran, Murali

    2015-04-01

    Recent observations of thinning and retreat of the Pine Island and Thwaites Glaciers identify the Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) sector of West Antarctica as particularly vulnerable to future climate change. To date, most future modeling of these glaciers has been calibrated using recent and modern observations. As an alternate approach, we apply a hybrid 3-D ice sheet-shelf model to the last deglacial retreat of Antarctica, making use of geologic data from ~20,000 years BP to present, focusing on the ASE but including other sectors of Antarctica. Following several recent ice-sheet studies, we use Large-Ensemble statistical techniques, performing sets of ~500 to 1000 runs with varying model parameters. The model is run for the last 40 kyrs on 10 to 20-km grids, both on continental domains and also on nested domains over West Antarctica. Various types of objective scores for each run are calculated using reconstructed past grounding lines, relative sea level records, measured uplift rates, and cosmogenic elevation-age data. Runs are extended into the future few millennia using RCP scenarios. The goal is to produce calibrated probabilistic ranges of model parameter values and quantified envelopes of future ice retreat. Preliminary results are presented for Large Ensembles with (i) Latin HyperCube sampling in high-dimensional parameter space, using statistical emulators and Markov Chain Monte Carlo techniques, and (ii) dense "factorial" sampling with a smaller number of parameters. Different ways of combining the types of scores listed above are explored. One robust conclusion is that for the warmer future RCP scenarios, most reasonable parameter combinations produce retreat deep into the West Antarctic interior. Recently proposed mechanisms of hydrofracturing and ice-cliff failure accelerate future West Antarctic retreat, and later produce retreat into East Antarctic basins.

  4. The neglect of cliff instability can underestimate warming period melting in Antarctic ice sheet models

    CERN Document Server

    Ruckert, Kelsey L; Pollard, Dave; Guan, Yawen; Wong, Tony E; Forest, Chris E; Keller, Klaus

    2016-01-01

    The response of the Antarctic ice sheet (AIS) to changing climate forcings is an important driver of sea-level changes. Anthropogenic climate changes may drive a sizeable AIS tipping point response with subsequent increases in coastal flooding risks. Many studies analyzing flood risks use simple models to project the future responses of AIS and its sea-level contributions. These analyses have provided important new insights, but they are often silent on the effects of potentially important processes such as Marine Ice Sheet Instability (MISI) or Marine Ice Cliff Instability (MICI). These approximations can be well justified and result in more parsimonious and transparent model structures. This raises the question how this approximation impacts hindcasts and projections. Here, we calibrate a previously published AIS model, which neglects the effects of MICI, using a combination of observational constraints and a Bayesian inversion method. Specifically, we approximate the effects of missing MICI by comparing ou...

  5. Footprints of the Newly-Discovered Vela Supernova in Antarctic Ice Cores?

    CERN Document Server

    Burgess, C P

    2000-01-01

    The recently-discovered, nearby young supernova remnant in the southeast corner of the older Vela supernova remnant may have been seen in measurements of nitrate abundances in Antarctic ice cores. Such an interpretation of this twenty-year-old ice-core data would provide a more accurate dating of this supernova than is possible purely using astrophysical techniques. The resulting estimates of the supernova distance and light-arrival time are 200 pc and 700 years ago, implying an expansion speed of 5,000 km/s for the supernova remnant. Such an expansion speed has been argued elsewhere to imply the explosion to have been a 15 solar mass Type II supernova. This interpretation also adds new evidence to the debate as to whether nearby supernovae can measurably affect nitrate abundances in polar ice cores.

  6. Antarctic Ice Sheet variability across the Eocene-Oligocene boundary climate transition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galeotti, Simone; DeConto, Robert; Naish, Timothy; Stocchi, Paolo; Florindo, Fabio; Pagani, Mark; Barrett, Peter; Bohaty, Steven M; Lanci, Luca; Pollard, David; Sandroni, Sonia; Talarico, Franco M; Zachos, James C

    2016-04-01

    About 34 million years ago, Earth's climate cooled and an ice sheet formed on Antarctica as atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) fell below ~750 parts per million (ppm). Sedimentary cycles from a drill core in the western Ross Sea provide direct evidence of orbitally controlled glacial cycles between 34 million and 31 million years ago. Initially, under atmospheric CO2 levels of ≥600 ppm, a smaller Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS), restricted to the terrestrial continent, was highly responsive to local insolation forcing. A more stable, continental-scale ice sheet calving at the coastline did not form until ~32.8 million years ago, coincident with the earliest time that atmospheric CO2 levels fell below ~600 ppm. Our results provide insight into the potential of the AIS for threshold behavior and have implications for its sensitivity to atmospheric CO2 concentrations above present-day levels. PMID:27034370

  7. Antarctic ice sheet sensitivity to atmospheric CO2 variations in the early to mid-Miocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Richard; Harwood, David; Florindo, Fabio; Sangiorgi, Francesca; Tripati, Robert; von Eynatten, Hilmar; Gasson, Edward; Kuhn, Gerhard; Tripati, Aradhna; DeConto, Robert; Fielding, Christopher; Field, Brad; Golledge, Nicholas; McKay, Robert; Naish, Timothy; Olney, Matthew; Pollard, David; Schouten, Stefan; Talarico, Franco; Warny, Sophie; Willmott, Veronica; Acton, Gary; Panter, Kurt; Paulsen, Timothy; Taviani, Marco

    2016-03-29

    Geological records from the Antarctic margin offer direct evidence of environmental variability at high southern latitudes and provide insight regarding ice sheet sensitivity to past climate change. The early to mid-Miocene (23-14 Mya) is a compelling interval to study as global temperatures and atmospheric CO2 concentrations were similar to those projected for coming centuries. Importantly, this time interval includes the Miocene Climatic Optimum, a period of global warmth during which average surface temperatures were 3-4 °C higher than today. Miocene sediments in the ANDRILL-2A drill core from the Western Ross Sea, Antarctica, indicate that the Antarctic ice sheet (AIS) was highly variable through this key time interval. A multiproxy dataset derived from the core identifies four distinct environmental motifs based on changes in sedimentary facies, fossil assemblages, geochemistry, and paleotemperature. Four major disconformities in the drill core coincide with regional seismic discontinuities and reflect transient expansion of grounded ice across the Ross Sea. They correlate with major positive shifts in benthic oxygen isotope records and generally coincide with intervals when atmospheric CO2 concentrations were at or below preindustrial levels (∼280 ppm). Five intervals reflect ice sheet minima and air temperatures warm enough for substantial ice mass loss during episodes of high (∼500 ppm) atmospheric CO2 These new drill core data and associated ice sheet modeling experiments indicate that polar climate and the AIS were highly sensitive to relatively small changes in atmospheric CO2 during the early to mid-Miocene. PMID:26903644

  8. About the consistency between Envisat and CryoSat-2 radar freeboard retrieval over Antarctic sea ice

    OpenAIRE

    Schwegmann, S.; E. Rinne; Ricker, R.; Hendricks, S.; V. Helm

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge about Antarctic sea-ice volume and its changes over the past decades has been sparse due to the lack of systematic sea-ice thickness measurements in this remote area. Recently, first attempts have been made to develop a sea-ice thickness product over the Southern Ocean from space-borne radar altimetry and results look promising. Today, more than 20 years of radar altimeter data are potentially available for such products. However, data come from di...

  9. Detecting extra-galactic supernova neutrinos in the Antarctic ice

    CERN Document Server

    Böser, Sebastian; Schulte, Lukas; Strotjohann, Nora Linn; Voge, Markus

    2013-01-01

    Building on the technological success of the IceCube neutrino telescope, we outline a prospective low-energy extension that utilizes the clear ice of the South Pole. Aiming at a 10 Mton effective volume and a 10 MeV threshold, the detector would provide sufficient sensitivity to detect neutrino bursts from core-collapse supernovae (SNe) in nearby galaxies. The detector geometry and required density of instrumentation are discussed along with the requirements to control the various sources of background. We find that the resulting detector will be able to detect SNe from beyond 10 Mpc, delivering between 11 and 46 regular core-collapse SN detections per decade. It would further allow to study more speculative phenomena, such as optically dark (failed) SNe, where the collapse proceeds directly to a black hole, at a detection rate similar to the regular SNe. We find that the biggest technological challenge lies in the required large number of large area photo-sensors, with simultaneous strict limits on the allow...

  10. Climate change on the Yucatan Peninsula during the Little Ice Age

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodell, David A.; Brenner, Mark; Curtis, Jason H.; Medina-González, Roger; Ildefonso-Chan Can, Enrique; Albornaz-Pat, Alma; Guilderson, Thomas P.

    2005-03-01

    We studied a 5.1-m sediment core from Aguada X'caamal (20° 36.6'N, 89° 42.9'W), a small sinkhole lake in northwest Yucatan, Mexico. Between 1400 and 1500 A.D., oxygen isotope ratios of ostracod and gastropod carbonate increased by an average of 2.2‰ and the benthic foraminifer Ammonia beccarii parkinsoniana appeared in the sediment profile, indicating a hydrologic change that included increased lake water salinity. Pollen from a core in nearby Cenote San José Chulchacá showed a decrease in mesic forest taxa during the same period. Oxygen isotopes of shell carbonate in sediment cores from Lakes Chichancanab (19° 53.0'N, 88° 46.0'W) and Salpeten (16° 58.6'N, 89° 40.5'W) to the south also increased in the mid-15th century, but less so than in Aguada X'caamal. Climate change in the 15th century is also supported by historical accounts of cold and famine described in Maya and Aztec chronicles. We conclude that climate became drier on the Yucatan Peninsula in the 15th century A.D. near the onset of the Little Ice Age (LIA). Comparison of results from the Yucatan Peninsula with other circum-Caribbean paleoclimate records indicates a coherent climate response for this region at the beginning of the LIA. At that time, sea surface temperatures cooled and aridity in the circum-Caribbean region increased.

  11. Sea-level feedback lowers projections of future Antarctic Ice-Sheet mass loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomez, Natalya; Pollard, David; Holland, David

    2015-11-10

    The stability of marine sectors of the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) in a warming climate has been identified as the largest source of uncertainty in projections of future sea-level rise. Sea-level fall near the grounding line of a retreating marine ice sheet has a stabilizing influence on the ice sheets, and previous studies have established the importance of this feedback on ice age AIS evolution. Here we use a coupled ice sheet-sea-level model to investigate the impact of the feedback mechanism on future AIS retreat over centennial and millennial timescales for a range of emission scenarios. We show that the combination of bedrock uplift and sea-surface drop associated with ice-sheet retreat significantly reduces AIS mass loss relative to a simulation without these effects included. Sensitivity analyses show that the stabilization tends to be greatest for lower emission scenarios and Earth models characterized by a thin elastic lithosphere and low-viscosity upper mantle, as is the case for West Antarctica.

  12. A Method for Continuous (239)Pu Determinations in Arctic and Antarctic Ice Cores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arienzo, M M; McConnell, J R; Chellman, N; Criscitiello, A S; Curran, M; Fritzsche, D; Kipfstuhl, S; Mulvaney, R; Nolan, M; Opel, T; Sigl, M; Steffensen, J P

    2016-07-01

    Atmospheric nuclear weapons testing (NWT) resulted in the injection of plutonium (Pu) into the atmosphere and subsequent global deposition. We present a new method for continuous semiquantitative measurement of (239)Pu in ice cores, which was used to develop annual records of fallout from NWT in ten ice cores from Greenland and Antarctica. The (239)Pu was measured directly using an inductively coupled plasma-sector field mass spectrometer, thereby reducing analysis time and increasing depth-resolution with respect to previous methods. To validate this method, we compared our one year averaged results to published (239)Pu records and other records of NWT. The (239)Pu profiles from the Arctic ice cores reflected global trends in NWT and were in agreement with discrete Pu profiles from lower latitude ice cores. The (239)Pu measurements in the Antarctic ice cores tracked low latitude NWT, consistent with previously published discrete records from Antarctica. Advantages of the continuous (239)Pu measurement method are (1) reduced sample preparation and analysis time; (2) no requirement for additional ice samples for NWT fallout determinations; (3) measurements are exactly coregistered with all other chemical, elemental, isotopic, and gas measurements from the continuous analytical system; and (4) the long half-life means the (239)Pu record is stable through time. PMID:27244483

  13. Impact of Greenland and Antarctic ice sheet interactions on climate sensitivity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Goelzer, H.; Huybrechts, P. [Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Earth System Sciences and Departement Geografie, Brussels (Belgium); Loutre, M.F.; Goosse, H.; Fichefet, T. [Universite Catholique de Louvain, Georges Lemaitre Centre for Earth and Climate Research (TECLIM), Earth and Life Institute, Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium); Mouchet, A. [Universite de Liege, Laboratoire de Physique Atmospherique et Planetaire, Liege (Belgium)

    2011-09-15

    We use the Earth system model of intermediate complexity LOVECLIM to show the effect of coupling interactive ice sheets on the climate sensitivity of the model on a millennial time scale. We compare the response to a 2 x CO{sub 2} warming scenario between fully coupled model versions including interactive Greenland and Antarctic ice sheet models and model versions with fixed ice sheets. For this purpose an ensemble of different parameter sets have been defined for LOVECLIM, covering a wide range of the model's sensitivity to greenhouse warming, while still simulating the present-day climate and the climate evolution over the last millennium within observational uncertainties. Additional freshwater fluxes from the melting ice sheets have a mitigating effect on the model's temperature response, leading to generally lower climate sensitivities of the fully coupled model versions. The mitigation is effectuated by changes in heat exchange within the ocean and at the sea-air interface, driven by freshening of the surface ocean and amplified by sea-ice-related feedbacks. The strength of the effect depends on the response of the ice sheets to the warming and on the model's climate sensitivity itself. The effect is relatively strong in model versions with higher climate sensitivity due to the relatively large polar amplification of LOVECLIM. With the ensemble approach in this study we cover a wide range of possible model responses. (orig.)

  14. A Method for Continuous (239)Pu Determinations in Arctic and Antarctic Ice Cores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arienzo, M M; McConnell, J R; Chellman, N; Criscitiello, A S; Curran, M; Fritzsche, D; Kipfstuhl, S; Mulvaney, R; Nolan, M; Opel, T; Sigl, M; Steffensen, J P

    2016-07-01

    Atmospheric nuclear weapons testing (NWT) resulted in the injection of plutonium (Pu) into the atmosphere and subsequent global deposition. We present a new method for continuous semiquantitative measurement of (239)Pu in ice cores, which was used to develop annual records of fallout from NWT in ten ice cores from Greenland and Antarctica. The (239)Pu was measured directly using an inductively coupled plasma-sector field mass spectrometer, thereby reducing analysis time and increasing depth-resolution with respect to previous methods. To validate this method, we compared our one year averaged results to published (239)Pu records and other records of NWT. The (239)Pu profiles from the Arctic ice cores reflected global trends in NWT and were in agreement with discrete Pu profiles from lower latitude ice cores. The (239)Pu measurements in the Antarctic ice cores tracked low latitude NWT, consistent with previously published discrete records from Antarctica. Advantages of the continuous (239)Pu measurement method are (1) reduced sample preparation and analysis time; (2) no requirement for additional ice samples for NWT fallout determinations; (3) measurements are exactly coregistered with all other chemical, elemental, isotopic, and gas measurements from the continuous analytical system; and (4) the long half-life means the (239)Pu record is stable through time.

  15. Multi-frequency observations of seawater carbonate chemistry on the central coast of the western Antarctic Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie B. Schram

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Assessments of benthic coastal seawater carbonate chemistry in Antarctica are sparse. The studies have generally been short in duration, during the austral spring/summer, under sea ice, or offshore in ice-free water. Herein we present multi-frequency measurements for seawater collected from the shallow coastal benthos on a weekly schedule over one year (May 2012–May 2013, daily schedule over three months (March–May 2013 and semidiurnal schedule over five weeks (March–April 2013. A notable pH increase (max pH = 8.62 occurred in the late austral spring/summer (November–December 2012, coinciding with sea-ice break-out and subsequent increase in primary productivity. We detected semidiurnal variation in seawater pH with a maximum variation of 0.13 pH units during the day and 0.11 pH units during the night. Daily variation in pH is likely related to biological activity, consistent with previous research. We calculated the variation in dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC over each seawater measurement frequency, focusing on the primary DIC drivers in the Palmer Station region. From this, we estimated net biological activity and found it accounts for the greatest variations in DIC. Our seasonal data suggest that this coastal region tends to act as a carbon dioxide source during austral winter months and as a strong sink during the summer. These data characterize present-day seawater carbonate chemistry and the extent to which these measures vary over multiple time scales. This information will inform future experiments designed to evaluate the vulnerability of coastal benthic Antarctic marine organisms to ocean acidification.

  16. Retrieving the antarctic sea-ice concentration based on AMSR-E 89 GHz data

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YU Qinglong; WANG Hui; WAN Liying; BI Haibo

    2013-01-01

    Sea-ice concentration is a key item in global climate change research. Recent progress in remotely sensed sea-ice concentration product has been stimulated by the use of a new sensor, advanced microwave scan-ning radiometer for EOS (AMSR-E), which offers a spatial resolution of 6 km×4 km at 89GHz. A new inver-sion algorithm named LASI (linear ASI) using AMSR-E 89GHz data was proposed and applied in the antarc-tic sea areas. And then comparisons between the LASI ice concentration products and those retrieved by the other two standard algorithms, ASI (arctic radiation and turbulence interaction study sea-ice algorithm) and bootstrap, were made. Both the spatial and temporal variability patterns of ice concentration differ-ences, LASI minus ASI and LASI minus bootstrap, were investigated. Comparative data suggest a high result consistency, especially between LASI and ASI. On the other hand, in order to estimate the LASI ice concen-tration errors introduced by the tie-points uncertainties, a sensitivity analysis was carried out. Additionally an LASI algorithm error estimation based on the field measurements was also completed. The errors suggest that the moderate to high ice concentration areas (>70%) are less affected (never exceeding 10%) than those in the low ice concentration. LASI and ASI consume 75 and 112 s respectively when processing the same AMSR-E time series thourghout the year 2010. To conclude, by using the LASI algorithm, not only the sea-ice concentration can be retrieved with at least an equal quality as that of the two extensively demonstrated operational algorithms, ASI and bootstrap, but also in a more efficient way than ASI.

  17. Origin and Phylogeny of Microbes Living in Permanent Antarctic Lake Ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gordon, D. A.; Priscu, J.; Giovannoni, S.

    2000-04-01

    A BSTRACTThe phylogenetic diversity of bacteria and cyanobacteria colonizing sediment particles in the permanent ice cover of an Antarctic lake was characterized by analyses of 16S rRNA genes amplified from environmental DNA. Samples of mineral particles were collected from a depth of 2.5 m in the 4-m-thick ice cover of Lake Bonney, McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica. A rRNA gene clone library of 198 clones was made and characterized by sequencing and oligonucleotide probe hybridization. The library was dominated by representatives of the cyanobacteria, proteobacteria, and Planctomycetales, but also contained diverse clones representing many other microbial groups, including the Acidobacterium/Holophaga division, the Green Non-Sulfur division, and the Actinobacteria. Six oligonucleotide probes were made for the most abundant clades recovered in the library. To determine whether the ice microbial community might originate from wind dispersal of the algal mats found elsewhere in Taylor Valley, the probes were hybridized to 16S rDNAs amplified from three samples of terrestrial cyanobacterial mats collected at nearby sites, as well as to bacterial 16S rDNAs from the lake ice community. The results demonstrate the presence of a diverse microbial community dominated by cyanobacteria in the lake ice, and also show that the dominant members of the lake ice microbial community are found in terrestrial mats elsewhere in the area. The lake ice microbial community appears to be dominated by organisms that are not uniquely adapted to the lake ice ecosystem, but instead are species that originate elsewhere in the surrounding region and opportunistically colonize the unusual habitat provided by the sediments suspended in lake ice. PMID:12035096

  18. Behaviours of Main Elements in Soil—Forming Processes of Fildes Peninsula,the Maritime Antarctic

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHENJIE; H.P.BLUME; 等

    1999-01-01

    Nine horizon samples of three soil profiles representative of Dystri-gelic Cambisol,Fibri-gelic Histosol and Relic Ornithosol were taken from Fildes Peninsula of King George Island,Antarctica,to quantitatively demonstrate the enrichment,migration and loss of the elements (Si,Al,Fe,Mg,Mn,K,Na and P) in soil horizons and their behaviours within profiles by application of the concept of the enrichment coeffcient calculated in terms of the abundance of Ti,Besides,six horizon samples of 4 other profiles randomly taken from the studied area were examined for calculation of the redistributing enrichment coefficient,which was applied for a better understanding of the element redistribution between soil and clay fraction along with soil development.The results showed that the enrichment,migration and redistribution of the elements varied strongly among the investigated soils and horizons,due to the differences of weathering degrees and moisture status,influences of sea bird activities,etc.

  19. Antarctic sea-ice expansion between 2000 and 2014 driven by tropical Pacific decadal climate variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meehl, Gerald A.; Arblaster, Julie M.; Bitz, Cecilia M.; Chung, Christine T. Y.; Teng, Haiyan

    2016-08-01

    Antarctic sea-ice extent has been slowly increasing in the satellite record that began in 1979. Since the late 1990s, the increase has accelerated, but the average of all climate models shows a decline. Meanwhile, the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation, an internally generated mode of climate variability, transitioned from positive to negative, with an average cooling of tropical Pacific sea surface temperatures, a slowdown of the global warming trend and a deepening of the Amundsen Sea Low near Antarctica that has contributed to regional circulation changes in the Ross Sea region and expansion of sea ice. Here we show that the negative phase of the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation in global coupled climate models is characterized by anomalies similar to the observed sea-level pressure and near-surface 850 hPa wind changes near Antarctica since 2000 that are conducive to expanding Antarctic sea-ice extent, particularly in the Ross Sea region in all seasons, involving a deepening of the Amundsen Sea Low. These atmospheric circulation changes are shown to be mainly driven by precipitation and convective heating anomalies related to the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation in the equatorial eastern Pacific, with additional contributions from convective heating anomalies in the South Pacific convergence zone and tropical Atlantic regions.

  20. A PRELIMINARY REPORT ON PERMAFROST OCCURRENCE IN SEYMOUR ISLAND (MARAMBIO ISLAND), ANTARCTIC PENINSULA REGION

    OpenAIRE

    フクダ, マサミ; Masami, FUKUDA; Arturo E., CORTE

    1989-01-01

    Seymour Island (Marambio Island, 64°S 56°W) in the Weddel Sea is located near James Ross Island. As there was no ice-sheet over the island during and after the last glaciation period, the ground has remained frozen and permafrost of considerable depth has developed in the ground. The authors conducted the field survey related to the genesis and occurrence of permafrost in the island. The Japan-Argentina joint expedition was established by the support of Grant-in-Aid for Overseas Scientific Re...

  1. Quaternary Antarctic ice-sheet fluctuations and Southern Ocean palaeoceanography: natural variability studies at the Antarctic CRC

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In its first three years, the Antarctic Co-operative Research Centre's Natural Variability Program has focussed research effort on understanding changes in the extent of the East Antarctic ice sheet, the sedimentary processes and biogeochemical cycles affecting shelf sedimentation and the palaeoceanography of the Southern Ocean. Seismic data from the Prydz trough-mouth fan indicate that it contains a high-resolution time series of the Plio-Pleistocene activity of the Lambert Glacier system. The fan has been prograding from the eastern side of Prydz Bay at least since the Miocene and it contains Plio-Pleistocene sediments, which are 0.8-1.2 s TWT thick beneath the current shelf break. Radiocarbon dating of shelf sediments indicates that deposition of a Holocene siliceous mud and ooze layer N as initiated at about 10 ka BP on the Mac Robertson Shelf, which is interpreted as coinciding with the retreat of an expanded ice sheet from the shelf break. Geochemical analyses of sediment cores from the Mac Robertson Shelf suggest significant differences in sediment accumulation between the inner and outer shelf during the Holocene. In contrast, results for a core from the inner shelf suggest an approximately 7-fold increase in average sediment accumulation rate from the mid to late Holocene, with roughly comparable increases in the accumulation of both biogenic and lithogenic material. Palaeoceanographic studies of the Southern Ocean, using planktonic foraminifera, diatoms and alkenone unsaturation ratios, indicate larger sea surface temperature amplitudes over wider areas of the Southern Ocean during the last glacial maximum than previously suggested by CLIMAP. Our studies offer the possibility of improvements to reconstructed glacial boundary conditions, with wider areal coverage, greater reliability of estimates, and the opportunity for estimation of seasonal dynamics. The cores under study contain, essentially, no biogenic carbonates, precluding use of δ18O stratigraphy

  2. Geología del Nunatak Ramírez, Península Jason, Península Antártica Geology of the Ramírez Nunatak, Jason Peninsula, Antarctic Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R.A. del Valle

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available La sucesión volcánica de 118 m de espesor expuesta en el nunatak Ramírez, península Jason (65°57'S, 60°33'O, península Antártica, está compuesta de una sección inferior donde abundan tobas y areniscas volcánicas, y una sección superior dominada por ignimbritas riolíticas. Los sedimentos volcaniclásticos de la sección inferior contienen moldes de hojas asignadas a Hausmannia de-ferrariisi Feruglio que indica una edad jurásica media. Las rocas del nunatak Ramírez se correlacionan con la Formación Maple de similar edad, la cual aflora típicamente en los alrededores del cabo Disappointment, ubicado a unos 60 km al norte de la península Jason. Estas rocas forman parte de una extensa provincia ígnea silícica desarrollada en Patagonia y la península Antártica en relación con la ruptura de Gondwana.The 118 m thick volcanic sequence exposed at the Ramírez Nunatak, western Jason Peninsula (65°57'S, 60°33'W, Antarctic Peninsula, is composed of a lower section where ash fall tuffs and volcanic sandstones are exposed, and an upper section dominated by rhyolithic ignimbrites. The volcaniclastic sediments of the lower section show imprints of lives assigned to Hausmannia de-ferrariisi Feruglio, which indicates a Mid-Jurassic age. The rocks from Ramírez Nunatak are correlated with Maple Formation of the same age, which is typically exposed at the surroundings of Cape Disappointment, located about 60 km northward from Jason Peninsula. These rocks form part of a siliceous large igneous province developed in Patagonia and Antarctic Peninsula in relation to the Gondwana break-up.

  3. West Antarctic Ice Sheet dynamics recorded in Plio-Pleistocene strata of the Ross Sea, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loth, A. S.; Bartek, L. R.; Luyendyk, B. P.; Wilson, D. S.

    2008-12-01

    Within the 100,000 square kilometer Eastern Basin of the Ross Sea, a 290 km section, oriented parallel to depostional dip along with 10 intersecting seismic sections that are oriented parallel to depositional strike were analyzed. Using Single-Channel Seismic (SCS) data from three different seismic surveys (NBP 0306, PD9022, and NBP 9308) 36 Plio-Pleistocene sequences were correlated across the basin from the modern ice shelf edge to the contemporary shelf break. Few of the sequences are continuous across the shelf, the majority of the sequences are of limited lateral extent. The facies within the sequences were analyzed to determine ice sheet behavior at the time of deposition. Three distinct depositional environments were interpreted based upon variations in the reflection attributes within the seismic data. Subglacial facies have a spectrum of reflection attributes from reflection-free to parallel, low-amplitude, discontinuous facies. The Grounding Line Zone facies are characterized by high amplitude, mildly discontinuous reflections. Proglacial environments are distinguished by parallel, high amplitude, continuous reflection packages. The facies distribution within many of the sequences consists of Subglacial facies in updip locales, Grounding Line Zone facies widely distributed across the shelf, and Proglacial facies present at downdip sites. The facies distribution within the sequences provides a record of the variation of the extent of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) throughout the Plio-Pleistocene. Not all sequences have a consecutive facies relationship, which may have resulted from several causes: 1) changes in the flow of the WAIS, 2) interplay between the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) with the WAIS, or 3) additional grounding of the WAIS on paleobasin highs. Understanding the short-lived glacial events, whether they are a function of non-deposition or cannibalization of previous deposits, provides insight into the dynamics of marine based ice

  4. Potential sea-level rise from Antarctic ice-sheet instability constrained by observations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritz, Catherine; Edwards, Tamsin L; Durand, Gaël; Payne, Antony J; Peyaud, Vincent; Hindmarsh, Richard C A

    2015-12-01

    Large parts of the Antarctic ice sheet lying on bedrock below sea level may be vulnerable to marine-ice-sheet instability (MISI), a self-sustaining retreat of the grounding line triggered by oceanic or atmospheric changes. There is growing evidence that MISI may be underway throughout the Amundsen Sea embayment (ASE), which contains ice equivalent to more than a metre of global sea-level rise. If triggered in other regions, the centennial to millennial contribution could be several metres. Physically plausible projections are challenging: numerical models with sufficient spatial resolution to simulate grounding-line processes have been too computationally expensive to generate large ensembles for uncertainty assessment, and lower-resolution model projections rely on parameterizations that are only loosely constrained by present day changes. Here we project that the Antarctic ice sheet will contribute up to 30 cm sea-level equivalent by 2100 and 72 cm by 2200 (95% quantiles) where the ASE dominates. Our process-based, statistical approach gives skewed and complex probability distributions (single mode, 10 cm, at 2100; two modes, 49 cm and 6 cm, at 2200). The dependence of sliding on basal friction is a key unknown: nonlinear relationships favour higher contributions. Results are conditional on assessments of MISI risk on the basis of projected triggers under the climate scenario A1B (ref. 9), although sensitivity to these is limited by theoretical and topographical constraints on the rate and extent of ice loss. We find that contributions are restricted by a combination of these constraints, calibration with success in simulating observed ASE losses, and low assessed risk in some basins. Our assessment suggests that upper-bound estimates from low-resolution models and physical arguments (up to a metre by 2100 and around one and a half by 2200) are implausible under current understanding of physical mechanisms and potential triggers. PMID:26580020

  5. Geochemical characteristics and zones of surface snow on east Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    KANG Jiancheng; LIU Leibao; QIN Dahe; WANG Dali; WEN Jiahong; TAN Dejun; LI Zhongqin; LI Jun; ZHANG Xiaowei

    2004-01-01

    The surface-snow geochemical characteristics are discussed on the East Antarctic Ice Sheet, depending on the stable isotopes ratios of oxygen and hydrogen, concentration of impurities (soluble-ions and insoluble micro-particle) in surface snow collected on the ice sheet. The purpose is to study geochemical zones on the East Antarctic Ice Sheet and to research sources and transportation route of the water vapor and the impurities in surface snow. It has been found that the ratio coefficients, as S1, d1 in the equation δD = S1δ18O + d1, are changed near the elevation 2000 m on the ice sheet. The weight ratio of Cl(-)/Na+ at the area below the elevation of 2000 m is close to the ratio in the sea salt; but it is about 2 times that of the sea salt, at the inland area up to the elevation of 2000 m. The concentrations of non-sea-salt Ca2+ ion (nssCa2+) and fine-particle increase at the interior up to the elevation 2000 m. At the region below the elevation of 2000 m, the impurity concentration is decreasing with the elevation increasing. Near coastal region, the surface snow has a high concentration of impurity, where the elevation is below 800 m. Combining the translating processes of water-vapor and impurities, it suggests that the region up to the elevation 2000 m is affected by large-scale circulation with longitude-direction, and that water-vapor and impurities in surface snow come from long sources. The region below the elevation 2000 m is affected by some strong cyclones acting at peripheral region of the ice sheet, and the sources of water and impurities could be at high latitude sea and coast. The area below elevation 800 m is affected by local coastal cyclones.

  6. Formulation, calibration and validation of the DAIS model (version 1), a simple Antarctic ice sheet model sensitive to variations of sea level and ocean subsurface temperature

    OpenAIRE

    Shaffer, G.

    2014-01-01

    The DCESS (Danish Center for Earth System Science) Antarctic Ice Sheet (DAIS) model is presented. Model hindcasts of Antarctic ice sheet (AIS) sea level equivalent are forced by reconstructed Antarctic temperatures, global mean sea level and high-latitude, ocean subsurface temperatures, the latter calculated using the DCESS model forced by reconstructed global mean atmospheric temperatures. The model is calibrated by comparing such hindcasts for different model configurations w...

  7. Antarctic ice-mass balance 2002 to 2011: regional re-analysis of GRACE satellite gravimetry measurements with improved estimate of glacial-isostatic adjustment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. Sasgen

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available We present regional-scale mass balances for 25 drainage basins of the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS from satellite observations of the Gravity and Climate Experiment (GRACE for the years 2002–2011. Satellite gravimetry estimates of the AIS mass balance are strongly influenced by mass movement in the Earth interior caused by ice advance and retreat during the last glacial cycle. Here, we develop an improved glacial-isostatic adjustment (GIA estimate for Antarctica using newly available GPS uplift rates, allowing us to more accurately separate GIA-induced trends in the GRACE gravity fields from those caused by current imbalances of the AIS. Our revised GIA estimate is considerably lower than previous predictions, yielding an (upper estimate of apparent mass change of 48 ± 18 Gt yr−1. Therefore, our AIS mass balance of −103 ± 23 Gt yr−1 is considerably less negative than previous GRACE estimates. The Northern Antarctic Peninsula and the Amundsen Sea Sector exhibit the largest mass loss (−25 ± 6 Gt yr−1 and −126 ± 11 Gt yr−1, respectively. In contrast, East Antarctica exhibits a slightly positive mass balance (19 ± 16 Gt yr−1, which is, however, mostly the consequence of compensating mass anomalies in Dronning Maud and Enderby Land (positive and Wilkes and George V Land (negative due to interannual accumulation variations. In total, 7% of the area constitute more than half of the AIS imbalance (53%, contributing −151 ± 9 Gt yr−1 to global mean sea-level change. Most of this imbalance is caused by long-term ice-dynamic speed up expected to prevail in the future.

  8. Late Cretaceous-early Eocene counterclockwise rotation of the Fueguian Andes and evolution of the Patagonia-Antarctic Peninsula system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poblete, F.; Roperch, P.; Arriagada, C.; Ruffet, G.; Ramírez de Arellano, C.; Hervé, F.; Poujol, M.

    2016-02-01

    The southernmost Andes of Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego present a prominent arc-shaped structure: the Patagonian Bend. Whether the bending is a primary curvature or an orocline is still matter of controversy. New paleomagnetic data have been obtained south of the Beagle Channel in 39 out of 61 sites. They have been drilled in Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous sediments and interbedded volcanics and in mid-Cretaceous to Eocene intrusives of the Fuegian Batholith. The anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility was measured at each site and the influence of magnetic fabric on the characteristic remanent magnetizations (ChRM) in plutonic rocks was corrected using inverse tensors of anisotropy of remanent magnetizations. Normal polarity secondary magnetizations with west-directed declination were obtained in the sediments and they did not pass the fold test. These characteristic directions are similar to those recorded by mid Cretaceous intrusives suggesting a remagnetization event during the normal Cretaceous superchron and describe a large (> 90°) counterclockwise rotation. Late Cretaceous to Eocene rocks of the Fueguian Batholith, record decreasing counterclockwise rotations of 45° to 30°. These paleomagnetic results are interpreted as evidence of a large counterclockwise rotation of the Fueguian Andes related to the closure of the Rocas Verdes Basin and the formation of the Darwin Cordillera during the Late Cretaceous and Paleocene. The tectonic evolution of the Patagonian Bend can thus be described as the formation of a progressive arc from an oroclinal stage during the closure of the Rocas Verdes basin to a mainly primary arc during the final stages of deformation of the Magallanes fold and thrust belt. Plate reconstructions show that the Antarctic Peninsula would have formed a continuous margin with Patagonia between the Early Cretaceous and the Eocene, and acted as a non-rotational rigid block facilitating the development of the Patagonian Bend.

  9. Tectonics, Microbes and Ice: Subglacial volcanism as a generator for microbial habitat beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skidmore, M. L.; Blankenship, D. D.; Carter, S. P.

    2010-12-01

    Glaciological processes under ice masses, including ice sheets provide sustainable habitat for microbes, forming an aquatic environment through basal melting and providing nutrients and energy from bedrock comminution. In all subglacial settings investigated to date, viable microbes have been documented. Tectonic activity beneath ice masses, including volcanism is associated with an elevated heat flux, leading to enhanced basal ice melt and may also be accompanied by hydrothermal fluids, often rich in reduced metals including Fe and gases such as CO2, H2 and H2S that are potential chemical energy sources for microbes. However, the importance of subglacial volcanism beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) in terms of increasing both water and chemical energy fluxes remains unknown despite evidence for subglacial volcanic features and enhanced heat flux. The role of subglacial volcanism in supporting subglacial microbial communities has been documented in Icelandic caldera lake systems, indicating crustal carbon and energy sources, could support a microbial ecosystem independent of photosynthetic carbon. Further, phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences from WAIS subglacial sediments suggests that organisms with Fe and S oxidizing metabolisms may be important members of the microbial community in these environments. Given the abundance and interconnectivity of water beneath the WAIS, the distribution of volcanism relative to the subglacial hydrologic catchments could have a significant role in contributing to the water and chemical energy fluxes for downstream environments. Therefore, tectonics may modulate the critical hydrologic and geochemical balance that determines subglacial microbial habitat distribution. We will present potential biological implications of an updated geophysical and hydrological context for West Antarctica’s Whillans and Kamb ice streams with an emphasis on selecting targets for further characterization.

  10. Modelling acoustic propagation beneath Antarctic sea ice using measured environmental parameters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexander, Polly; Duncan, Alec; Bose, Neil; Williams, Guy

    2016-09-01

    Autonomous underwater vehicles are improving and expanding in situ observations of sea ice for the validation of satellite remote sensing and climate models. Missions under sea ice, particularly over large distances (up to 100 km) away from the immediate vicinity of a ship or base, require accurate acoustic communication for monitoring, emergency response and some navigation systems. We investigate the propagation of acoustic signals in the Antarctic seasonal ice zone using the BELLHOP model, examining the influence of ocean and sea ice properties. We processed available observations from around Antarctica to generate input variables such as sound speed, surface reflection coefficient (R) and roughness parameters. The results show that changes in the sound speed profile make the most significant difference to the propagation of the direct path signal. The inclusion of the surface reflected signals from a flat ice surface was found to greatly decrease the transmission loss with range. When ice roughness was added, the transmission loss increased with roughness, in a manner similar to the direct path transmission loss results. The conclusions of this work are that: (1) the accuracy of acoustic modelling in this environment is greatly increased by using realistic sound speed data; (2) a risk averse ranging model would use only the direct path signal transmission; and (3) in a flat ice scenario, much greater ranges can be achieved if the surface reflected transmission paths are included. As autonomous missions under sea ice increase in scale and complexity, it will be increasingly important for operational procedures to include effective modelling of acoustic propagation with representative environmental data.

  11. High geothermal heat flux measured below the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Andrew T; Mankoff, Kenneth D; Tulaczyk, Slawek M; Tyler, Scott W; Foley, Neil

    2015-07-01

    The geothermal heat flux is a critical thermal boundary condition that influences the melting, flow, and mass balance of ice sheets, but measurements of this parameter are difficult to make in ice-covered regions. We report the first direct measurement of geothermal heat flux into the base of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS), below Subglacial Lake Whillans, determined from the thermal gradient and the thermal conductivity of sediment under the lake. The heat flux at this site is 285 ± 80 mW/m(2), significantly higher than the continental and regional averages estimated for this site using regional geophysical and glaciological models. Independent temperature measurements in the ice indicate an upward heat flux through the WAIS of 105 ± 13 mW/m(2). The difference between these heat flux values could contribute to basal melting and/or be advected from Subglacial Lake Whillans by flowing water. The high geothermal heat flux may help to explain why ice streams and subglacial lakes are so abundant and dynamic in this region.

  12. Antarctic climate variability from ice core records over the last two millennia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braida, Martina; Stenni, Barbara; Masson-Delmotte, Valerie; Dreossi, Giuliano; Oerter, Hans; Selmo, Enricomaria; Severi, Mirko; Goosse, Hugues; Mezgec, Karin

    2013-04-01

    The climate of the past can be successfully investigated through the study of polar ice sheets. Paleotemperature reconstructions from Antarctic ice cores are based on water isotope profiles, thanks to the existing relationship between δ18O (or δD) and the temperature at the site. Here we present the climate record of the past 2000 years resulting from the stable isotope analysis of the ice core drilled at Talos Dome in East Antarctica from 2003 to 2007 in the framework of the European TALDICE (TALos Dome Ice CorE) project. Talos Dome (72°49'S, 159°11'E; 2315 m; -41°C) is an ice dome on the edge of the East Antarctic plateau. The snow accumulation rate of the site (80 kg m-2 yr-1) allows extracting high-resolution data for the past millennia. The main moisture sources of snow precipitation at this near-coastal site are located in the Indian Ocean and the Ross Sea. Isotopic analyses of TALDICE detailed (10 cm) samples have been performed in the framework of the ESF-HOLOCLIP project, whose main objective is to integrate the ice core, the marine core and the modeling data to investigate the climate variability of the high latitude southern hemisphere over the Holocene. The isotopic record obtained from the TALDICE ice core is here compared with a shallow firn core (89 m long) previously drilled at Talos Dome, at a 5 km distance, and covering the past 800 years. The two isotopic records are stacked to reduce the stratigraphic noise and compared with other available isotopic records from Antarctica to highlight common trends and regional variability in the climatic signal over the past two millennia. We compare the data with a simulation performed with a three-dimensional earth system model of intermediate complexity (LOVECLIM) with and without data assimilation. Considering the δ18O profile from the TALDICE ice core and comparing it with the ones from the other available records we can observe common negative isotopic anomalies in the period from about 1450 to

  13. Antarctic ozone depletion chemistry - Reactions of N2O5 with H2O and HCl on ice surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tolbert, Margaret A.; Rossi, Michel J.; Golden, David M.

    1988-01-01

    In a study concerning Antarctic ozone depletion, reactions of dinitrogen pentoxide with water and hydrochloric acid were studied on ice surfaces in a Knudsen cell flow reactor. The N2O5 reacted on ice at 185 K to form condensed-phase nitric acid (HNO3). This reaction may provide a sink for odd nitrogen, NO(x), during the polar winter, a requirement in nearly all models of Antarctic ozone depletion. The reaction of N2O5 on HCl-ice surfaces at 185 K produced gaseous nitryl chloride (ClNO2) and condensed-phase HNO3 and proceeded until all of the HCl within the ice was depleted. The ClNO2 which did not react or condense on ice at 185 K, can be readily photolyzed in the Antarctic spring to form atomic chlorine for catalytic ozone destruction cycles. The other photolysis product, gaseous nitrogen dioxide may be important in the partitioning of NO(x) between gaseous and condensed phases in the Antarctic winter.

  14. Changes in the occurence of heavy metals in Antarctic ice during the last climatic cycles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabrielli, P.; Barbante, C.; Planchon, F.; Ferrari, C.; Delmonte, B.; Boutron, C. F.

    2003-04-01

    During the last decades ice cores drilled in Antarctica and in Greenland have provided time series of data that have allowed the characterisation of variations of natural and anthropogenic heavy metals in the past atmosphere. Nevertheless, the interactions of heavy metals with climate change and their transport patterns remain largely unknown for the last climatic cycles. Our aim is to assess past changes of various heavy metals in polar ice during the past ª500 kyr. Special emphasis is given to Pt, Pd, Rh, Ir, Os and Ru which are tracers of interplanetary dust particles (IDPs). It has in fact been shown that the accretion flux of IDPs would change in parallel with the period of 100 kyr, possibly affecting climate and/or contributing to the observed 100 kyr cycle in climate records. These tracers could also allow us to identify the impact of larger size bodies which might have strongly influenced the stratospheric ozone layer. Tracers of crustal material (Pb isotopes, Pb, Ba, Fe, Co, Ti, Mn, V), volcanic activity (Cd, Bi, Sb, As) and ocean paleoproductivity (Hg, Se) are also investigated. At the moment we are focusing especially on the ongoing EPICA Dome C Antarctic ice core. We are decontaminating mechanically each section and we are performing preliminary measurements of Zn and Al using Graphite Furnace Atomic Absorption Spectrometry and ultraclean procedures. These data confirm the prominent continental origin of Zn in the East Antarctic ice during the last and penultimate glacial period back to about 200,,000 years B.P.. The other analyses are going to be performed using Inductively Coupled Plasma Sector Field Mass Spectrometry, Thermal Ionisation Mass Spectrometry, and Cold Vapour Atomic Absorption Spectrometry, adopting ultraclean procedures.

  15. New Cysteine-Rich Ice-Binding Protein Secreted from Antarctic Microalga, Chloromonas sp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Woongsic; Campbell, Robert L; Gwak, Yunho; Kim, Jong Im; Davies, Peter L; Jin, EonSeon

    2016-01-01

    Many microorganisms in Antarctica survive in the cold environment there by producing ice-binding proteins (IBPs) to control the growth of ice around them. An IBP from the Antarctic freshwater microalga, Chloromonas sp., was identified and characterized. The length of the Chloromonas sp. IBP (ChloroIBP) gene was 3.2 kb with 12 exons, and the molecular weight of the protein deduced from the ChloroIBP cDNA was 34.0 kDa. Expression of the ChloroIBP gene was up- and down-regulated by freezing and warming conditions, respectively. Western blot analysis revealed that native ChloroIBP was secreted into the culture medium. This protein has fifteen cysteines and is extensively disulfide bonded as shown by in-gel mobility shifts between oxidizing and reducing conditions. The open-reading frame of ChloroIBP was cloned and over-expressed in Escherichia coli to investigate the IBP's biochemical characteristics. Recombinant ChloroIBP produced as a fusion protein with thioredoxin was purified by affinity chromatography and formed single ice crystals of a dendritic shape with a thermal hysteresis activity of 0.4±0.02°C at a concentration of 5 mg/ml. In silico structural modeling indicated that the three-dimensional structure of ChloroIBP was that of a right-handed β-helix. Site-directed mutagenesis of ChloroIBP showed that a conserved region of six parallel T-X-T motifs on the β-2 face was the ice-binding region, as predicted from the model. In addition to disulfide bonding, hydrophobic interactions between inward-pointing residues on the β-1 and β-2 faces, in the region of ice-binding motifs, were crucial to maintaining the structural conformation of ice-binding site and the ice-binding activity of ChloroIBP. PMID:27097164

  16. Relationship among latest Miocene oxygen isotopic enrichment, antarctic ice volume, and the Messinian salinity crisis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hodell, D.A.; Elmstrom, K.M.; Kennett, J.P.

    1985-01-01

    An interval of high variable, enriched benthic /sup 18/O values was found to bracket the Miocene/Pliocene boundary, between 5.6 and 5.1 Ma, in five sites from the Southwest Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. The duration of this enrichment event was less than 500,000 years, and is shown by paleomagnetic correlation to be equivalent in time with the deposition of Messinian evaporites. The /sup 18/O enrichment occurred in two main stages separated by a brief interval of relatively depleted /sup 18/O values. Between 5.5 and 5.3 Ma, glacioeustatic lowering of sea level due to increased Antarctic ice volume isolated the Mediterranean basin, and resulted in the deposition of the lower evaporite unit (Main Salt unit). A temporary decrease in ice volume occurred between 5.3 and 5.2 Ma, and corresponded to the intra-Messinian transgression where evaporite deposition ceased temporarily. Between 5.2 and 5.1 Ma, a second Antarctic glacial advance lowered sea level again and resulted in the deposition of the upper evaporite unit. A rapid decreased in delta/sup 18/O values occurred in all sites during the early Pliocene at 5.0 Ma. This depletion marks a glacial retreat and marine transgression, which refilled the Mediterranean Basin and permanently terminated evaporite deposition.

  17. Antarctic Mirabilite Mounds as Mars Analogs: The Lewis Cliffs Ice Tongue Revisited

    Science.gov (United States)

    Socki, Richard A.; Sun, Tao; Niles, Paul B.; Harvey, Ralph P.; Bish, David L.; Tonui, Eric

    2012-01-01

    It has been proposed, based on geomorphic and geochemical arguments, that subsurface water has played an important role in the history of water on the planet Mars [1]. Subsurface water, if present, could provide a protected and long lived environment for potential life. Discovery of gullies [2] and recurring slopes [3] on Mars suggest the potential for subsurface liquid water or brines. Recent attention has also focused on small (Tongue (LCIT) [6] in the Transantarctic Mountains, Antarctica, and are potential terrestrial analogs for mounds observed on the martian surface. The following characteristics distinguish LCIT evaporite mounds from other evaporite mounds found in Antarctic coastal environments and/or the McMurdo Dry Valleys: (1) much greater distance from the open ocean (approx.500 km); (2) higher elevation (approx.2200 meters); and (3) colder average annual temperature (average annual temperature = -30 C for LCIT [7] vs. 20 C at sea level in the McMurdo region [8]. Furthermore, the recent detection of subsurface water ice (inferred as debris-covered glacial ice) by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter [9] supports the use of an Antarctic glacial environment, particularly with respect to the mirabilite deposits described in this work, as an ideal terrestrial analog for understanding the geochemistry associated with near-surface martian processes. S and O isotopic compositions.

  18. Decadal-Scale Response of the Antarctic Ice sheet to a Warming Ocean using the POPSICLES Coupled Ice Sheet-Ocean model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, D. F.; Asay-Davis, X.; Cornford, S. L.; Price, S. F.; Ng, E. G.; Collins, W.

    2015-12-01

    We present POPSICLES simulation results covering the full Antarctic Ice Sheet and the Southern Ocean spanning the period from 1990 to 2010. We use the CORE v. 2 interannual forcing data to force the ocean model. Simulations are performed at 0.1o(~5 km) ocean resolution with adaptive ice sheet resolution as fine as 500 m to adequately resolve the grounding line dynamics. We discuss the effect of improved ocean mixing and subshelf bathymetry (vs. the standard Bedmap2 bathymetry) on the behavior of the coupled system, comparing time-averaged melt rates below a number of major ice shelves with those reported in the literature. We also present seasonal variability and decadal melting trends from several Antarctic regions, along with the response of the ice shelves and the consequent dynamic response of the grounded ice sheet.POPSICLES couples the POP2x ocean model, a modified version of the Parallel Ocean Program, and the BISICLES ice-sheet model. POP2x includes sub-ice-shelf circulation using partial top cells and the commonly used three-equation boundary layer physics. Standalone POP2x output compares well with standard ice-ocean test cases (e.g., ISOMIP) and other continental-scale simulations and melt-rate observations. BISICLES makes use of adaptive mesh refinement and a 1st-order accurate momentum balance similar to the L1L2 model of Schoof and Hindmarsh to accurately model regions of dynamic complexity, such as ice streams, outlet glaciers, and grounding lines. Results of BISICLES simulations have compared favorably to comparable simulations with a Stokes momentum balance in both idealized tests (MISMIP-3d) and realistic configurations.The figure shows the BISICLES-computed vertically-integrated grounded ice velocity field 5 years into a 20-year coupled full-continent Antarctic-Southern-Ocean simulation. Submarine melt rates are painted onto the surface of the floating ice shelves. Grounding lines are shown in green.

  19. The response of Antarctic sea ice algae to changes in pH and CO2.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew McMinn

    Full Text Available Ocean acidification substantially alters ocean carbon chemistry and hence pH but the effects on sea ice formation and the CO2 concentration in the enclosed brine channels are unknown. Microbial communities inhabiting sea ice ecosystems currently contribute 10-50% of the annual primary production of polar seas, supporting overwintering zooplankton species, especially Antarctic krill, and seeding spring phytoplankton blooms. Ocean acidification is occurring in all surface waters but the strongest effects will be experienced in polar ecosystems with significant effects on all trophic levels. Brine algae collected from McMurdo Sound (Antarctica sea ice was incubated in situ under various carbonate chemistry conditions. The carbon chemistry was manipulated with acid, bicarbonate and bases to produce a pCO2 and pH range from 238 to 6066 µatm and 7.19 to 8.66, respectively. Elevated pCO2 positively affected the growth rate of the brine algal community, dominated by the unique ice dinoflagellate, Polarella glacialis. Growth rates were significantly reduced when pH dropped below 7.6. However, when the pH was held constant and the pCO2 increased, growth rates of the brine algae increased by more than 20% and showed no decline at pCO2 values more than five times current ambient levels. We suggest that projected increases in seawater pCO2, associated with OA, will not adversely impact brine algal communities.

  20. Phase relationships between orbital forcing and the composition of air trapped in Antarctic ice cores

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    L. Bazin

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Orbital tuning is central for ice core chronologies beyond annual layer counting, available back to 60 ka (i.e. thousand of years before 1950 for Greenland ice cores. While several complementary orbital tuning tools have recently been developed using δ18Oatm, δO2/N2 and air content with different orbital targets, quantifying their uncertainties remains a challenge. Indeed, the exact processes linking variations of these parameters, measured in the air trapped in ice, to their orbital targets are not yet fully understood. Here, we provide new series of δO2/N2 and δ18Oatm data encompassing Marine Isotopic Stage (MIS 5 (between 100–160 ka and the oldest part (380–800 ka of the East Antarctic EPICA Dome C (EDC ice core. For the first time, the measurements over MIS 5 allow an inter-comparison of δO2/N2 and δ18Oatm records from three East Antarctic ice core sites (EDC, Vostok and Dome F. This comparison highlights a site-specific relationship between δO2/N2 and its local summer solstice insolation. Such a relationship increases the uncertainty associated with the use of δO2/N2 as a tool for orbital tuning. Combining records of δ18Oatm and δO2/N2 from Vostok and EDC, we evidence a loss of orbital signature for these two parameters during periods of minimum eccentricity (∼400, ∼720–800 ka. Our dataset reveals a time-varying lag between δO2/N2 and δ18Oatm over the last 800 ka that we interpret as variations of the lag between δ18Oatm and precession. Large lags of ∼5 ka are identified during Terminations I and II, associated with strong Heinrich events. On the opposite, minimal lags (∼1–2 ka are identified during four periods characterized by high eccentricity, intermediate ice volume and no Heinrich events (MIS 6–7, the end of MIS 9, MIS 15 and MIS 17. We therefore suggest that the occurrence of Heinrich events influences the response of δ18Oatm to precession.

  1. El Grupo Trinity Peninsula en la península Tabarin, extremo norte de la península Antártica The Trinity Peninsula Group in the Tabarin Peninsula, northern end of the Antarctic Peninsula

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    R.A. del Valle

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available La península Tabarin, Antártida Occidental, exhibe rocas deformadas durante los ciclos orogénicos gondwánico y ándico. La Formación Hope Bay y Formación Düse Bay (Carbonífero tardío-Triásico están incluidas dentro del Grupo Trinity Peninsula, registrando el ciclo orogénico gondwánico. Las estructuras sedimentarias, asociaciones de facies y rasgos deposicionales de la Formación Hope Bay, sugieren sedimentación en ambientes marinos someros. La presencia de capas calcáreas con morfología build-up y matas calcáreas, y rocas piroclásticas, incluyendo ignimbritas, peperitas y depósitos ricos es escoria volcánica, también indican escasa profundidad del mar para la sedimentación de la Formación Düse Bay. El área de aporte del Grupo Trinity Peninsula estaba compuesta por rocas volcánicas y plutónicas con cantidades menores de rocas sedimentarias y metamórficas, probablemente ubicadas hacia el este para la parte inferior Formación Hope Bay de la secuencia, y hacia el oeste para la parte superior de la Formación Düse Bay, con mayor participación volcánica en el último caso. El ambiente de sedimentación más probable para la Formación Hope Bay fue una plataforma silícicoclástica somera y de baja energía, y una cuenca de retroarco de antepaís, relacionada con la orogenia gondwánica, en el caso de la Formación Düse Bay.The Tabarin Peninsula, West Antarctica, showsrocks deformed by both the Gondwanic and Andean orogenic cycles. The Hope Bay Formation and Düse Bay Formation (Late Carboniferous-Triassic are included within the Trinity Peninsula Group, recording the Gondwanic orogenic cycle. Sedimentary structures, facies associations and depositional features of Hope Bay Formation, suggest shallow marine deposition. The presence in the Düse Bay Formation of calcareous beds with build-up morphology and algal mats, and primary pyroclastic rocks including: ignimbrites, peperites and scoria-rich fall deposits, also

  2. Southern elephant seals from Kerguelen Islands confronted by Antarctic Sea ice. Changes in movements and in diving behaviour

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bailleul, Frédéric; Charrassin, Jean-Benoıˆt; Ezraty, Robert; Girard-Ardhuin, Fanny; McMahon, Clive R.; Field, Iain C.; Guinet, Christophe

    2007-02-01

    The behaviour of southern elephant seals from Kerguelen Island ( 49∘50'S, 70∘30'E) was investigated in relation to the oceanographic regions of the Southern Ocean. The oceanographic and the seal behaviour data, including location and diving activity, were collected using a new generation of satellite-relayed devices measuring and transmitting pressure, temperature, and salinity along with locations. Dive duration, maximum diving depth, time spent at the bottom of the dives, and shape of dive profiles were compared between male and female seals, and were related to the oceanographic characteristics of areas prospected by the seals. Most animals travelled to the Antarctic shelf. However, during winter, adult females travelled away from the continent, remained and foraged within the marginal sea-ice zone, while juvenile males remained within the pack ice to forage mainly on the Antarctic shelf. Therefore, as the ice expanded females appeared to shift from benthic to pelagic foraging farther north, while males continued to forage almost exclusively benthically on the continental shelf. This difference is likely related to the different energetic requirements between the two sexes, but also may be related to pregnant females having to return to Kerguelen in early spring in order to give birth and successfully raise their pups, while males can remain in the ice. Our results show an important link between elephant seals and Antarctic sea ice and suggest that changes in sea-ice conditions could strongly affect the behaviour of this species.

  3. The two-timescale response of Antarctic sea-surface temperature and sea-ice cover to ozone depletion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, D.; Marshall, J.; Hausmann, U.

    2015-12-01

    In recent modelling work, we showed that the response of Antarctic sea-surface temperature and sea-ice cover to abrupt ozone depletion has two phases: a fast inter-annual (~1-5y) adjustment in which the surface ocean cools and sea-ice cover increases, followed by a slower decadal trend leading to a warming of the surface ocean and a reduction of sea-ice cover. I will first summarize the dynamics behind the two-timescale response and how it can help reconcile diverging views on the relationship between ozone depletion and Antarctic sea ice changes. Using numerical experiments, I will then show that knowledge of the two-timescale response can be used to predict how the coupled climate responds to a time-varying ozone distribution, such as one of depletion and recovery. These ideas will then be used to evaluate how 1) ozone depletion might have contributed to recent observed decadal Antarctic sea-ice trends and 2) the ozone-driven signal can emerge from natural variability. Finally, implications for the ability of coupled climate models to reproduce observed sea-ice trends will be discussed.

  4. Inclusion of mountain wave-induced cooling for the formation of PSCs over the Antarctic Peninsula in a chemistry–climate model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Orr

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available An important source of polar stratospheric clouds (PSCs, which play a crucial role in controlling polar stratospheric ozone depletion, is from the temperature fluctuations induced by mountain waves. However, this formation mechanism is usually missing in chemistry–climate models because these temperature fluctuations are neither resolved nor parameterised. Here, we investigate the representation of stratospheric mountain wave-induced temperature fluctuations by the UK Met Office Unified Model (UM at high and low spatial resolution against Atmospheric Infrared Sounder satellite observations for three case studies over the Antarctic Peninsula. At a high horizontal resolution (4 km the mesoscale configuration of the UM correctly simulates the magnitude, timing, and location of the measured temperature fluctuations. By comparison, at a low horizontal resolution (2.5° × 3.75° the climate configuration fails to resolve such disturbances. However, it is demonstrated that the temperature fluctuations computed by a mountain wave parameterisation scheme inserted into the climate configuration (which computes the temperature fluctuations due to unresolved mountain waves are in excellent agreement with the mesoscale configuration responses. The parameterisation was subsequently used to compute the local mountain wave-induced cooling phases in the chemistry–climate configuration of the UM. This increased stratospheric cooling was passed to the PSC scheme of the chemistry–climate model, and caused a 30–50% increase in PSC surface area density over the Antarctic Peninsula compared to a 30 year control simulation.

  5. Empirical estimation of present-day Antarctic glacial isostatic adjustment and ice mass change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. C. Gunter

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available This study explores an approach that simultaneously estimates Antarctic mass balance and glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA through the combination of satellite gravity and altimetry data sets. The results improve upon previous efforts by incorporating reprocessed data sets over a longer period of time, and now include a firn densification model to account for firn compaction and surface processes. A range of different GRACE gravity models were evaluated, as well as a new ICESat surface height trend map computed using an overlapping footprint approach. When the GIA models created from the combination approach were compared to in-situ GPS ground station displacements, the vertical rates estimated showed consistently better agreement than existing GIA models. In addition, the new empirically derived GIA rates suggest the presence of strong uplift in the Amundsen Sea and Philippi/Denman sectors, as well as subsidence in large parts of East Antarctica. The total GIA mass change estimates for the entire Antarctic ice sheet ranged from 53 to 100 Gt yr−1, depending on the GRACE solution used, and with an estimated uncertainty of ±40 Gt yr−1. Over the time frame February 2003–October 2009, the corresponding ice mass change showed an average value of −100 ± 44 Gt yr−1 (EA: 5 ± 38, WA: −105 ± 22, consistent with other recent estimates in the literature, with the mass loss mostly concentrated in West Antarctica. The refined approach presented in this study shows the contribution that such data combinations can make towards improving estimates of present day GIA and ice mass change, particularly with respect to determining more reliable uncertainties.

  6. First geomorphological record and glacial history of an inter-ice stream ridge on the West Antarctic continental shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klages, J. P.; Kuhn, G.; Hillenbrand, C.-D.; Graham, A. G. C.; Smith, J. A.; Larter, R. D.; Gohl, K.

    2013-02-01

    Inter-ice stream areas cover significant portions of Antarctica's formerly glaciated shelves, but have been largely neglected in past geological studies because of overprinting by iceberg scours. Here, we present results of the first detailed survey of an inter-ice stream ridge from the West Antarctic continental shelf. Well-preserved sub- and proglacial bedforms on the seafloor of the ridge in the eastern Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) provide new insights into the flow dynamics of this sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) during the Last Glacial cycle. Multibeam swath bathymetry and PARASOUND acoustic sub-bottom profiler data acquired across a mid-shelf bank, between the troughs of the Pine Island-Thwaites (PITPIS) and Cosgrove palaeo-ice streams (COPIS), reveal large-scale ribbed moraines, hill-hole pairs, terminal moraines, and crevasse-squeeze ridges. Together, these features form an assemblage of landforms that is entirely different from that in the adjacent ice-stream troughs, and appears to be unique in the context of previous studies of Antarctic seafloor geomorphology. From this assemblage, the history of ice flow and retreat from the inter-ice stream ridge is reconstructed. The bedforms indicate that ice flow was significantly slower on the inter-ice stream ridge than in the neighbouring troughs. While terminal moraines record at least two re-advances or stillstands of the ice sheet during deglaciation, an extensive field of crevasse-squeeze ridges indicates ice stagnation subsequent to re-advancing ice, which deposited the field of terminal moraines in the NE. The presented data suggest that the ice flow behaviour on the inter-ice stream ridge was substantially different from that in the adjacent troughs. However, newly obtained radiocarbon ages on two sediment cores recovered from the inter-ice stream ridge suggest a similar timing in the deglaciation of both areas. This information closes an important gap in the understanding of past WAIS

  7. Mass Balance of the West Antarctic Ice-Sheet from ICESat Measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwally, H. Jay; Li, Jun; Robins, John; Saba, Jack L.; Yi, Donghui

    2011-01-01

    Mass balance estimates for 2003-2008 are derived from ICESat laser altimetry and compared with estimates for 1992-2002 derived from ERS radar altimetry. The net mass balance of 3 drainage systems (Pine Island, Thwaites/Smith, and the coast of Marie Bryd) for 2003-2008 is a loss of 100 Gt/yr, which increased from a loss of 70 Gt/yr for the earlier period. The DS including the Bindschadler and MacAyeal ice streams draining into the Ross Ice Shelf has a mass gain of 11 Gt/yr for 2003-2008, compared to an earlier loss of 70 Gt/yr. The DS including the Whillans and Kamb ice streams has a mass gain of 12 Gt/yr, including a significant thickening on the upper part of the Kamb DS, compared to a earlier gain of 6 Gt/yr (includes interpolation for a large portion of the DS). The other two DS discharging into the Ronne Ice Shelf and the northern Ellsworth Coast have a mass gain of 39 Gt/yr, compared to a gain of 4 Gt/yr for the earlier period. Overall, the increased losses of 30 Gt/yr in the Pine Island, Thwaites/Smith, and the coast of Marie Bryd DSs are exceeded by increased gains of 59 Gt/yr in the other 4 DS. Overall, the mass loss from the West Antarctic ice sheet has decreased to 38 Gt/yr from the earlier loss of 67 Gt/yr, reducing the contribution to sea level rise to 0.11 mm/yr from 0.19 mm/yr

  8. Cenozoic ice sheet history from East Antarctic Wilkes Land continental margin sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escutia, C.; De Santis, L.; Donda, F.; Dunbar, R.B.; Cooper, A. K.; Brancolini, Giuliano; Eittreim, S.L.

    2005-01-01

    The long-term history of glaciation along the East Antarctic Wilkes Land margin, from the time of the first arrival of the ice sheet to the margin, through the significant periods of Cenozoic climate change is inferred using an integrated geophysical and geological approach. We postulate that the first arrival of the ice sheet to the Wilkes Land margin resulted in the development of a large unconformity (WL-U3) between 33.42 and 30 Ma during the early Oligocene cooling climate trend. Above WL-U3, substantial margin progradation takes place with early glacial strata (e.g., outwash deposits) deposited as low-angle prograding foresets by temperate glaciers. The change in geometry of the prograding wedge across unconformity WL-U8 is interpreted to represent the transition, at the end of the middle Miocene "climatic optimum" (14-10 Ma), from a subpolar regime with dynamic ice sheets (i.e., ice sheets come and go) to a regime with persistent but oscillatory ice sheets. The steep foresets above WL-U8 likely consist of ice proximal sediments (i.e., water-lain till and debris flows) deposited when grounded ice-sheets extended into the shelf. On the continental rise, shelf progradation above WL-U3 results in an up-section increase in the energy of the depositional environment (i.e., seismic facies indicative of more proximal turbidite and of bottom contour current deposition from the deposition of the lower WL-S5 sequence to WL-S7). Maximum rates of sediment delivery to the rise occur during the development of sequences WL-S6 and WL-S7, which we infer to be of middle Miocene age. During deposition of the two uppermost sequences, WL-S8 and WL-S9, there is a marked decrease in the sediment supply to the lower continental rise and a shift in the depocenters to more proximal areas of the margin. We believe WL-S8 records sedimentation during the final transition from a dynamic to a persistent but oscillatory ice sheet in this margin (14-10 Ma). Sequence WL-S9 forms under a polar

  9. Cascading water underneath Wilkes Land, East Antarctic Ice Sheet, observed using altimetry and digital elevation models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Flament

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available We describe a major subglacial lake drainage close to the ice divide in Wilkes Land, East Antarctica, and the subsequent cascading of water underneath the ice sheet toward the coast. To analyze the event, we combined altimetry data from several sources and bedrock data. We estimated the total volume of water that drained from Lake CookE2 by differencing digital elevation models (DEM derived from ASTER and SPOT5 stereo-imagery. With 5.2 ± 0.5 km3, this is the largest single subglacial drainage event reported so far in Antarctica. Elevation differences between ICESat laser altimetry and the SPOT5 DEM indicate that the discharge lasted approximately 2 yr. A 13-m uplift of the surface, corresponding to a refilling of about 0.64 ± 0.32 km3, was observed between the end of the discharge in October 2008 and February 2012. Using Envisat radar altimetry, with its high 35-day temporal resolution, we monitored the subsequent filling and drainage of connected subglacial lakes located downstream. In particular, a transient temporal signal can be detected within the theoretical 500-km long flow paths computed with the BEDMAP2 data set. The volume of water traveling in this wave is in agreement with the volume that drained from Lake CookE2. These observations contribute to a better understanding of the water transport beneath the East Antarctic ice sheet.

  10. Forecasting Antarctic Sea Ice Concentrations Using Results of Temporal Mixture Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chi, Junhwa; Kim, Hyun-Cheol

    2016-06-01

    Sea ice concentration (SIC) data acquired by passive microwave sensors at daily temporal frequencies over extended areas provide seasonal characteristics of sea ice dynamics and play a key role as an indicator of global climate trends; however, it is typically challenging to study long-term time series. Of the various advanced remote sensing techniques that address this issue, temporal mixture analysis (TMA) methods are often used to investigate the temporal characteristics of environmental factors, including SICs in the case of the present study. This study aims to forecast daily SICs for one year using a combination of TMA and time series modeling in two stages. First, we identify temporally meaningful sea ice signatures, referred to as temporal endmembers, using machine learning algorithms, and then we decompose each pixel into a linear combination of temporal endmembers. Using these corresponding fractional abundances of endmembers, we apply a autoregressive model that generally fits all Antarctic SIC data for 1979 to 2013 to forecast SIC values for 2014. We compare our results using the proposed approach based on daily SIC data reconstructed from real fractional abundances derived from a pixel unmixing method and temporal endmember signatures. The proposed method successfully forecasts new fractional abundance values, and the resulting images are qualitatively and quantitatively similar to the reference data.

  11. Quasi-parabolic reflecting bottom surfaces of the Drygalski Antarctic floating ice tongue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Zuccheretti

    2001-06-01

    Full Text Available Very high frequency deep radio sounding systems for ice thickness measurements are practically the only useful apparatuses for large scale radar flight surveys in polar regions. The morphology of the bottom surface of an Antarctic floating ice tongue, in the Ross Sea area, East Antarctica, was studied using the arrival times of signal echoes of the radio sounding system. The amplitude variations of radar signals from the reflecting surface were analyzed to determine the gain or the loss of the reflectors. Such surfaces show quasi-parabolic geometrical shapes at the ice/water interface with both concave and convex faces towards the sounding system. Electromagnetic analysis performed on radar echoes indicates that amplitude variations detected by the antenna are focusing or defocusing effects only due to the reflector's shape. A factor in the radar equation that represents the surface shape when coherent reflectors are involved is introduced. This factor allows us to determine more precisely the morphology and electromagnetic characteristics of the interface between the media investigated by means of radio echo sounding.

  12. The influence of continental shelf bathymetry on Antarctic Ice Sheet response to climate forcing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bart, Philip J.; Mullally, Dan; Golledge, Nicholas R.

    2016-07-01

    We investigated whether shelf-depth changes would have influenced Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) response to climate forcing using the Parallel Ice Sheet Model (PISM). The simulations confirm that this would have indeed been the case. For the last-glacial-cycle (LGC) type forcing we prescribed, a modern-like polar AIS surrounded by shallow and intermediate bathymetries experiences rapid grounding-line advance early during the transition from interglacial to glacial forcing. This is in contrast to our baseline simulation of AIS response on the currently overdeepened bathymetry, which showed the expected gradual advance of grounding lines to the same climatic forcing. In the simulation, the more-positive mass balance for the shallower bathymetry is primarily a result of significantly lower calving fluxes from smaller-area ice shelves. On the basis of these results, we suggest that shelf bathymetry is an important boundary condition that should be considered when reconstructing AIS behavior since at least the middle Miocene. We note that caution should be used when applying these concepts because the particular way in which AIS mass balance is altered by shelf depth depends on how the changes in accumulation and ablation at the marine terminations combine with accumulation and ablation on land.

  13. Could a new ice core offer an insight into the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet during the last interglacial?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulvaney, R.; Hindmarsh, R. C.

    2013-12-01

    Vaughan et al., in their 2011 paper 'Potential Seaways across West Antarctica' (Geochem. Geophys. Geosyst., 12, Q10004, doi:10.1029/2011GC003688), offer the intriguing prospect that substantial ice loss from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet during the previous interglacial period might have resulted in the opening of a seaway between the Weddell Sea and the Amundsen Sea. One of their potential seaways passes between the south western corner of the present Ronne Ice Shelf and the Pine Island Bay, through what is currently the course of the Rutford Ice Stream, between the Ellsworth Mountains and the Fletcher Promontory. To investigate whether this seaway could have existed (and to recover a paleoclimate and ice sheet history from the Weddell Sea), a team from the British Antarctic Survey and the Laboratoire de Glaciologie et Géophysique de l'Environnement drilled an ice core from a close to a topographic dome in the ice surface on the Fletcher Promontory in January 2012, reaching the bedrock at 654.3m depth from the surface. The site was selected to penetrate directly through the centre of a Raymond cupola observed in internal radar reflections from the ice sheet, with the intention that this would ensure we obtained the oldest ice available from the Fletcher Promontory. The basal ice sheet temperature measured was -18°C, implying the oldest ice would not have melted away from the base, while the configuration of the Raymond cupola in the radar horizons suggested stability in the ice dome topography during the majority of the Holocene. Our hypothesis is that chemical analysis of the ice core will reveal whether the site was ever relatively close to open sea water or ice shelf in the Rutford channel 20 km distant, rather than the current 700 km distance to sea ice/open water in either the Weddell Sea or the Amundsen Sea. While we do not yet have the chemistry data to test this hypothesis, in this poster we will discuss whether there is in reality any potential local

  14. Antarctic sea ice increase consistent with intrinsic variability of the Amundsen Sea Low

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, John; Hosking, J. Scott; Marshall, Gareth J.; Phillips, Tony; Bracegirdle, Thomas J.

    2016-04-01

    We investigate the relationship between atmospheric circulation variability and the recent trends in Antarctic sea ice extent (SIE) using Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) atmospheric data, ECMWF Interim reanalysis fields and passive microwave satellite data processed with the Bootstrap version 2 algorithm. Over 1979-2013 the annual mean total Antarctic SIE increased at a rate of 195 × 103 km2 dec-1 (1.6 % dec-1), p 4.0 % dec-1) has been in the Ross Sea sector. Off West Antarctica there is a high correlation between trends in SIE and trends in the near-surface winds. The Ross Sea SIE seasonal trends are positive throughout the year, but largest in spring. The stronger meridional flow over the Ross Sea has been driven by a deepening of the Amundsen Sea Low (ASL). Pre-industrial control and historical simulations from CMIP5 indicate that the observed deepening of the ASL and stronger southerly flow over the Ross Sea are within the bounds of modeled intrinsic variability. The spring trend would need to continue for another 11 years for it to fall outside the 2 standard deviation range seen in 90 % of the simulations.

  15. Study on changes of plasmalemma permeability and some primary inorganic ions of Antarctic ice microalgae (Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L) in the low-temperature stress

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zheng Zhou; Miao Jinlai; Chen Hao; Zhang Botao; Li Guangyou

    2006-01-01

    The changes of plasrnalemma permeability and some primary inorganic ions of Antarctic ice microalgae (Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L) in the low-temperature stress were examined. The plasmalemma of ICE-L could maintain the stability at the freezing condition of -6℃. That signifies that it could maintain the proper function of plasmalemma and stability of the intracellular environment during sea ice formation. The function of inorganic ions on low-temperature adaptation of ICE-L was investigated by using the X-ray microanalysis method. Low temperature (0~-6℃) induces Ca2 + concentration increment of cytoplasm, but after 24 h the content decrease quickly to normal value. As a matter of fact, Ca2 + plays an important role as the second messenger in the low temperature adaptation of ICE-L. In addition, low temperature also influences on the other primary inorganic ions transfer and the cell maintains activity by keeping ratio balance among different ions. Above all, it is necessary for Antarctic ice microalgae to survive and breed by maintaining the stability of K + content and the balance of Na +/Cl-.

  16. Contribution of liquid, NAT and ice particles to chlorine activation and ozone depletion during Antarctic winter and spring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. Kirner

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Heterogeneous reactions in the Antarctic stratosphere are the cause of chlorine activation and ozone depletion, but the relative roles of different types of PSCs in chlorine activation is an open question. We use multi-year simulations of the chemistry-climate model EMAC to investigate the impact that the various types of PSCs have on Antarctic chlorine activation and ozone loss. One standard and three sensitivity EMAC simulations have been performed. The results of these simulations show that the significance of heterogeneous reactions on NAT and ice particles, in comparison to liquid particles, is subordinate regarding chlorine activation and ozone depletion in Antarctic winter and spring. The heterogeneous chemistry on liquid particles is sufficient to activate at least 90% of the chlorine reservoir species. With the exception of the upper PSC regions between 10 and 30 hPa where temporarily the ice particles have a relevant contribution to the chlorine activation and during the initial PSC occurrence with short NAT contributions the liquid particles alone are sufficient to activate almost all of the available chlorine. In the model simulations heterogeneous chemistry on liquid particles is responsible for more than 90% of the ozone depletion in Antarctic spring. Only up to 5 DU of column ozone in high southern latitudes is depleted by chlorine activation due to additional heterogeneous chemistry on ice particles and less than 0.5 DU due to additional heterogeneous chemistry on NAT particles.

  17. Rapid bedrock uplift in the Antarctic Peninsula explained by viscoelastic response to recent ice unloading

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nield, Grace A.; Barletta, Valentina Roberta; Bordoni, Andrea;

    2014-01-01

    thickness. We further constrain the best fitting Earth model by including six cGPS stations deployed after 2009 (the LARISSA network), with vertical velocities in the range 1.7 to 14.9 mm/yr. This results in a best fitting Earth model with lithospheric thickness of 100–140 km and upper mantle viscosity of 6...

  18. Uplift of the Transantarctic Mountains and the bedrock beneath the East Antarctic ice sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    ten Brink, U.S.; Hackney, R.I.; Bannister, S.; Stern, T.A.; Makovsky, Y.

    1997-01-01

    In recent years the Transantarctic Mountains (TAM), the largest noncontractional mountain belt in the world, have become the focus of modelers who explained their uplift by a variety of isostatic and thermal mechanisms. A problem with these models is a lack of available data to compare with model predictions. We report here the results of a 312-km-long geophysical traverse conducted in 1993/1994 in the hinterland of the TAM. Using detailed subglacial topography and gravity measurements, we confirm the origin of the TAM as a flexural uplift of the edge of East Antarctica. Using an elastic model with a free edge, we can jointly fit the topography and the gravity with a plate having an elastic thickness of 85 ?? 15 km and a preuplift elevation of 700 ?? 50 m for East Antarctica. Using a variety of evidence, we argue that the uplift is coincident with a relatively minor tectonic event of transtensional motion between East and West Antarctica during the Eocene rather than the Late Cretaceous rifting event that created the Ross Embayment. We suggest that this transtensional motion caused the continuous plate to break, which created an escarpment that significantly increased the rates of erosion and exhumation. Results from the geophysical traverse also extend our knowledge of the bedrock geology from the exposures within the TAM to the ice covered interior. Our interpretation suggests that the Ferrar flood basalts extend at least 100 km westward under the ice. The Beacon Supergroup of Paleozoic and Mesozoic sediments thins gradually under the ice and its reconstructed thickness is reminiscent of profiles of foreland basins. Finally, there is no indication in the gravity field for an incomplete rebound due to significant melting of the East Antarctic ice sheet since the last glacial period.

  19. The bivalve Laternula elliptica: physiological and molecular response to changing coastal Antarctic environments

    OpenAIRE

    Husmann, Gunnar

    2013-01-01

    Increasing temperatures and glacier-disintegration at the Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) are presently altering environmental conditions in shallow coastal areas. Rising water temperatures, enhanced ice scouring impacts as well as increasing input of inorganic sediments from melt water runoff are anticipated to particularly affect slow growing sessile benthic filter feeders like the Antarctic soft shell clam Laternula elliptica, a long-lived species which is a major component of the nearsh...

  20. Seasonal climate information preserved in West Antarctic ice core water isotopes: relationships to temperature, large-scale circulation, and sea ice

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kuettel, Marcel; Steig, Eric J.; Ding, Qinghua [University of Washington, Department of Earth and Space Sciences and Quaternary Research Center, Seattle, WA (United States); Monaghan, Andrew J. [National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO (United States); Battisti, David S. [University of Washington, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Seattle, WA (United States)

    2012-10-15

    As part of the United States' contribution to the International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition (ITASE), a network of precisely dated and highly resolved ice cores was retrieved from West Antarctica. The ITASE dataset provides a unique record of spatial and temporal variations of stable water isotopes ({delta}{sup 18}O and {delta}D) across West Antarctica. We demonstrate that, after accounting for water vapor diffusion, seasonal information can be successfully extracted from the ITASE cores. We use meteorological reanalysis, weather station, and sea ice data to assess the role of temperature, sea ice, and the state of the large-scale atmospheric circulation in controlling seasonal average water isotope variations in West Antarctica. The strongest relationships for all variables are found in the cores on and west of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide and during austral fall. During this season positive isotope anomalies in the westernmost ITASE cores are strongly related to a positive pressure anomaly over West Antarctica, low sea ice concentrations in the Ross and Amundsen Seas, and above normal temperatures. Analyses suggest that this seasonally distinct climate signal is due to the pronounced meridional oriented circulation and its linkage to enhanced sea ice variations in the adjacent Southern Ocean during fall, both of which also influence local to regional temperatures. (orig.)

  1. Geo-Spatial Browse and Distribution of NSF-OPP's Antarctic Ice and Climate Data via the Web: Antarctic Cryosphere Access Portal (A-CAP)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, R.; Scambos, T.; Haran, T.; Maurer, J.; Bohlander, J.

    2008-12-01

    A prototype of the Antarctic Cryosphere Access Portal (A-CAP) has been released for public use. Developed at the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) Antarctic Glaciological Data Center (AGDC), A-CAP aims to be a geo-visualization and data download tool for AGDC data and other Antarctic-wide parameters, including glaciology, ice core data, snow accumulation, satellite imagery, digital elevation models (DEMs), sea ice concentration, and many other cryosphere-related scientific measurements. The user can zoom in to a specific region as well as overlay coastlines, placenames, latitude/longitude, and other geographic information. In addition to providing an interactive Web interface, customizable A-CAP map images and source data are also accessible via specific Uniform Resource Locator strings (URLs) to a standard suite of Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) services: Web Map Service (WMS), Web Feature Service (WFS), and Web Coverage Service (WCS). The international specifications of these services provide an interoperable framework for sharing maps and geospatial data over the Internet, allowing A-CAP products to be easily exchanged with other data centers worldwide and enabling remote access for users through OGC-compliant software applications such as ArcGIS, Google Earth, ENVI, and many others. A-CAP is built on MapServer, an Open Source development environment for building spatially-enabled Internet applications. MapServer uses data sets that have been formatted as GeoTIFF or Shapefile to allow rapid sub-setting and over-the-Web presentation of large geospatial data files, and has no requirement for a user-installed client software package (besides a Web browser).

  2. Siple Dome Ice Cores: Implications for West Antarctic Climate and ENSO Events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, T.; White, J. W.

    2010-12-01

    Ice cores at Siple Dome, West Antarctic receive the majority of their precipitation from Pacific Ocean moisture sources. Pacific climate patterns, particularly the El Niño-Southern Oscillation, affect the local temperature, atmospheric circulation, and snow accumulation at Siple Dome, as well as isotopic signals (∂D and ∂18O). We examined isotopes, accumulation and borehole temperatures from a number of shallow ice cores distributed 60km across the Dome. The data reveal a strong microclimate heavily influenced by South Pacific climate and the location of the Amundsen Sea Low Pressure Area. The Dome Summit and Pacific Flank respond to La Niña conditions by warming, increasing isotope ratios and increased snowfall. The Inland Flank responds to El Niño conditions and cold interior air masses by cooling, decreasing isotope ratios and decreased snowfall. Spectral analysis of the ∂D record shows a distinct shift in ocean-atmosphere climate dynamics in the late 19th century, where scattered bi-decadal to decadal periodicities change to include more intensely grouped and decreasing periodicities as low as two years at the end of the 20th century. Similar changes are seen in South Pacific coral isotope records. Map of Siple Dome including local grid locations for the seven shallow cores B-H. Note the Pacific Ocean and Inland (South Pole) oriented cores. [Modified after Bertler et al., 2006].

  3. Evidence for a substantial West Antarctic ice sheet contribution to meltwater pulses and abrupt global sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fogwill, C. J.; Turney, C. S.; Golledge, N. R.; Etheridge, D. M.; Rubino, M.; Thornton, D.; Woodward, J.; Winter, K.; van Ommen, T. D.; Moy, A. D.; Curran, M. A.; Rootes, C.; Rivera, A.; Millman, H.

    2015-12-01

    During the last deglaciation (21,000 to 7,000years ago) global sea level rise was punctuated by several abrupt meltwater spikes triggered by the retreat of ice sheets and glaciers world-wide. However, the debate regarding the relative timing, geographical source and the physical mechanisms driving these rapid increases in sea level has catalyzed debate critical to predicting future sea level rise and climate. Here we present a unique record of West Antarctic Ice Sheet elevation change derived from the Patriot Hills blue ice area, located close to the modern day grounding line of the Institute Ice Stream in the Weddell Sea Embayment. Combined isotopic signatures and gas volume analysis from the ice allows us to develop a record of local ice sheet palaeo-altitude that is assessed against independent regional high-resolution ice sheet modeling studies, allowing us to demonstrate that past ice sheet elevations across this sector of the WSE were considerably higher than those suggested by current terrestrial reconstructions. We argue that ice in the WSE had a significant influence on both pre and post LGM sea level rise including MWP-1A (~14.6 ka) and during MWP-1B (11.7-11.6 ka), reconciling past sea level rise and demonstrating for the first time that this sector of the WAIS made a significant and direct contribution to post LGM sea level rise.

  4. Influence of temperature on glutathione level and glutathione-related enzyme activities of Antarctic ice microalgae Chlamydomonas sp.ICE-L

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    GSH system plays a role in the control of the redox balance state, anti-oxidation and protecting life from injury of ROS (reactive oxygen species).In present paper, the possible GSH system of Chlamydomonas sp.ICE-L has been investigated by evaluating GSH and GSH-related enzymatic responses at different temperatures using speetrophotometer methods.The results showed that the GSH system is correlated positively to low temperature, and other factors but GR are correlated negatively to high temperature.So GSH and GSH-related enzymes play an important role in the adaptation of Antarctic ice microulgae to low temperature.

  5. Emperors in hiding: when ice-breakers and satellites complement each other in Antarctic exploration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André Ancel

    Full Text Available Evaluating the demographic trends of marine top predators is critical to understanding the processes involved in the ongoing rapid changes in Antarctic ecosystems. However, the remoteness and logistical complexity of operating in Antarctica, especially during winter, make such an assessment difficult. Satellite imaging is increasingly recognised as a valuable method for remote animal population monitoring, yet its accuracy and reliability are still to be fully evaluated. We report here the first ground visit of an emperor penguin colony first discovered by satellite, but also the discovery of a second one not indicated by satellite survey at that time. Several successive remote surveys in this coastal region of East Antarctica, both before and after sudden local changes, had indeed only identified one colony. These two colonies (with a total of ca. 7,400 breeding pairs are located near the Mertz Glacier in an area that underwent tremendous habitat change after the glacier tongue broke off in February 2010. Our findings therefore suggest that a satellite survey, although offering a major advance since it allows a global imaging of emperor penguin colonies, may miss certain colony locations when challenged by certain features of polar ecosystems, such as snow cover, evolving ice topology, and rapidly changing habitat. Moreover our survey shows that this large seabird has considerable potential for rapid adaptation to sudden habitat loss, as the colony detected in 2009 may have moved and settled on new breeding grounds. Overall, the ability of emperor penguin colonies to relocate following habitat modification underlines the continued need for a mix of remote sensing and field surveys (aerial photography and ground counts, especially in the less-frequented parts of Antarctica, to gain reliable knowledge about the population demography and dynamics of this flagship species of the Antarctic ecosystem.

  6. INVESTIGATION ON MASS CHANGE OF ICE SHEET IN ANTARCTIC FROM GRACE TIME-VARIABLE GRAVITY DATA%基于GRACE时变重力场反演南极冰盖质量变化

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李军海; 刘焕玲; 文汉江; 朱广彬; 方爱平

    2011-01-01

    利用UTCSR发布的GRACE Level-2 RL04版本2003-01-2008-08月的重力场模型估计南极冰盖质量变化.由于GRACE提供的C20项不准确,利用SLR测得的C20项进行替换.对于经度方向上出现的条纹状信号,采用去相关滤波处理.选择去掉其中某一个月的位模型重新反演南极冰盖质量变化,发现相同区域的质量变化率并没有发生很大的变化.联合得到的位模型、滤波技术以及ICE-5G冰后回弹模型观测到的西南极Amundsen地区和南极半岛的冰盖质量消融现象,其等效水高变化分别为-5.28±0.95 cm/a、-1.82±0.77 cm/a;而Ronne冰架以及东部Enderby地区冰盖质量在增加,分别为1.42±0.69cm/a、1.43±0.72 cm/a.与已有研究结果比较发现:西南极冰盖质量在加速融化,而Ronne冰架以及东部Enderby地区冰盖等效水高变化率没有发生大的变化.%The rates of Antarctic ice mass change have been estimated by use of the gravity solutions from GRACE level-2 RL04 for the period of January 2003 to August 2008 released by UTCSR. Because C20 of GRACE is not accurate enough, C20 from Satellite Laser Ranging (SLR) is adopted instead. The decorrelation filter technique is used for the stripe shape signal presenting in the longitude direction. Antarctic ice mass change rates are investigated again when the gravity in some one month has been chosen to get rid of, and the results are that the rates of Antarctic ice mass do not change a lot in the same area. Gravity model, filtering technique and ICE-5G postglacial rebound model are combined to observe the ice loss in the west Amundsen Sea Embayment and the northern Antarctic Peninsula, the rates are -5.28 ±0.95 cm/a and -1.82 ±0.77cm/a respectively. Whereas ice mass rates in Southern Ronne Ice Shelf and Enderby land in east Antarctic are positive, and the rates are 1.42 ± 0.69 cm/a and 1.43 ± 0.72 cm/a respectively. Compared with the existing research results, the mass in the west Amundsen Sea

  7. A 3-D model for the Antarctic ice sheet: a sensitivity study on the glacial-interglacial contrast

    OpenAIRE

    Huybrechts, Philippe

    1990-01-01

    On the longer climatic time scales, changes in the elevation and extent of the Antarctic ice sheet have an important role in modulating global atmospheric andoceanographic processes, and contribute significantly to world-wide sea levels. In this paper, a 3-D time-dependent thermomechanical model for the entire icesheet is presented that is subsequently used to examine the effects of glacial-interglacial shifts in environmental boundary conditions on its geometry. Themodel takes into account a...

  8. Subglacial hydrology indicates a major shift in dynamics of the West Antarctic Ross Ice Streams within the next two centuries

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Goeller

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The mass export of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS is dominated by fast flowing ice streams. Understanding their dynamics is a key to estimate the future integrity of the WAIS and its contributions to global sea level rise. This study focuses on the Ross Ice Streams (RIS at the Siple Coast. In this sector, observations reveal a high variability of ice stream pathways and velocities which is assumed to be driven by subglacial hydrology. We compute subglacial water pathways for the present-day ice sheet and verify this assumption by finding high correlations between areas of enhanced basal water flow and the locations of the RIS. Moreover, we reveal that the ice flow velocities of the individual ice streams are correlated with the sizes of the water catchment areas draining underneath. The future development of the subglacial hydraulic environment is estimated by applying ice surface elevation change rates observed by ICESat and CryoSat-2 to the present-day ice sheet geometry and thus assessing prognostic basal pressure conditions. Our simulations consistently indicate that a major hydraulic tributary of the Kamb and Whillans Ice Stream (KIS and WIS will be redirected underneath the Bindschadler Ice Stream (BIS within the next two centuries. The water catchment area feeding underneath the BIS is estimated to grow by about 50 % while the lower part of the stagnated KIS becomes increasingly separated from its upper hydraulic tributaries. We conclude, that this might be a continuation of the subglacial hydraulic processes which caused the past stagnation of the KIS. The simulated hydraulic rerouting is also capable to explain the observed deceleration of the WIS and indicates a possible future acceleration of the BIS accompanied by an increased ice drainage of the corresponding ice sheet interior.

  9. Changes of proteins in the Antarctic ice microalga Chlamydomonas sp. cultured under UV-B radiation stress

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    KAN Guangfeng; MIAO Jinlai; SHI Cuijuan; LI Guangyou

    2006-01-01

    Antarctic ice microalga Chlamydomonas sp. can thrive undisturbed under high UV radiation in the Antarctic ice layer. However, it is unknown that the initial adaptation mechanisms in protein level occurring in response to high UV radiation. Global-expression profiling of proteins in response to stress was analyzed by two-dimensional electrophoresis (2-DE) and image analysis. In the 2-DE analysis,protein preparation is the key step. Three different protein extract methods were compared, and the results showed that the trichloroacetic acid (TCA)-acetone fractional precipitation method was the fittest one. At the same time, the proteins in Chlamydomonas sp. were compared in 2-DE way, and the synthesis of seven protein spots was found disappeared and 18 decreased after exposed to UV-B radiation. In addition, 14 protein spots were enhanced or induced, among which two new peptides (20 and 21 kDa) appeared whose isoelectric point (pI) was 7.05 and 4.60 respectively. These changed proteins might act as key role in the acclimation of Antarctic ice microalga to UV-B radiation

  10. Preliminary research on the transmission path of nssSO2-4- and NO-3 in Antarctic ice sheet

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2001-01-01

    The main sources of nssSO24- and NO-3 were summarized in this paper. By analyzing the spatial distribution features of major ions in Antarctic ice sheet and studying on the different time of the same volcanic event recorded by different ice cores from different regions in Antarctica, this paper intends to study the transmission path of nssSO24- and NO-3. Results show that nssSO24- and NO-3 are transmitted to the ice sheet through long distance and high altitude. The procedure of the transmission is that nssSO24- and NO-2 are transmitted to the level between the top of troposphere and the bottom of stratosphere, then subsided to the ice sheet surface and spread to other regions.

  11. A one-dimensional heat transfer model of the Antarctic Ice Sheet and modeling of snow temperatures at Dome A, the summit of Antarctic Plateau

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2010-01-01

    A vertical one-dimensional numerical model for heat transferring within the near-surface snow layer of the Antarctic Ice Sheet was developed based on simplified parameterizations of associated physical processes for the atmosphere, radiation, and snow/ice systems. Using the meteorological data of an automatic weather station (AWS) at Dome A (80°22′S, 70°22′E), we applied the model to simulate the seasonal temperature variation within a depth of 20 m. Comparison of modeled results with observed snow temperatures at 4 measurement depths (0.1, 1, 3, 10 m) shows good agreement and consistent seasonal variations. The model results reveal the vertical temperature structure within the near-surface snow layer and its seasonal variance with more details than those by limited measurements. Analyses on the model outputs of the surface energy fluxes show that: 1) the surface energy balance at Dome A is characterized by the compensation between negative net radiation and the positive sensible fluxes, and 2) the sensible heat is on average transported from the atmosphere to the snow, and has an evident increase in spring. The results are considered well representative for the highest interior Antarctic Plateau.

  12. The use of long-lived radionuclides in antarctic ice as tracers and chronometers in global climate change studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This collaborative project between the Physics Division at ANSTO, the CSIRO Division of Atmospheric Research [DAR], the Australian Antarctic Division [AAD] and the Antarctic Cooperative Research Centre is focused upon the record found in the ice and firn from Law Dome, Antarctica. The combined physical and intellectual resources of these organisations result in a potent and effective mix for climate change research which has already been demonstrated in a successful collaborative study entitled 'Determination of the Age and Age Spread of Air in Ice Cores', funded under a National Greenhouse Advisory Committee [NGAC] Grant. The broad objectives of this collaboration are to determine the global atmospheric methane and carbon dioxide budget and to correlate the variability in solar activity and historical climate change in the southern hemisphere. The aim is to define the levels of 'natural' variability in global climate change in the Holocene and to identify the mechanisms controlling the variations, with the emphasis on species which force or reflect global environmental change. Clearly answering all of these questions is beyond the scope of a short project, however we hope to develop the techniques and abilities which will allow us to investigate these matters in future studies. The combined effort by the collaborating organisations will result in a precise, high-time resolution, multi species record from Antarctic ice cores which will complement other southern hemisphere palaeo records throughout the Holocene and into the last Glacial. ANSTO's role is the examination of cosmogenic and bio-geochemical forcing of the atmospheric radionuclides 14C and 10Be in Antarctic ice. Specifically, we are using the ANTARES AMS facility for the measurement of 14C in carbon dioxide and methane contained in air extracted from the porous firn layer overlying the ice and from bubbles trapped within the ice. We are also using AMS to measure 10Be from the firn and ice. An indication

  13. Oceanic an climatic consequences of a sudden large-scale West Antarctic Ice Sheet collapse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scarff, Katie; Green, Mattias; Schmittner, Andreas

    2015-04-01

    Atmospheric warming is progressing to the point where the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) will experience an elevated rate of discharge. The current discharge rate of WAIS is around 0.005Sv, but this rate will most likely accelerate over this century. The input of freshwater, in the form of ice, may have a profound effect on oceanic circulation systems, including potentially reducing the formation of deep water in the Southern Ocean and thus triggering or enhancing the bipolar seesaw. Using UVic - an intermediate complexity ocean-climate model - we investigate how various hosing rates from the WAIS will impact of the present and future ocean circulation and climate. These scenarios range from observed hosing rates (~0.005Sv) being applied for 100 years, to a total collapse of the WAIS over the next 100 years (the equivalent to a0.7Sv hosing). We show that even the present day observed rates can have a significant impact on the ocean and atmospheric temperatures, and that the bipolar seesaw may indeed be enhanced by the Southern Ocean hosing. Consequently, there is a speed-up of the Meridional Overturning Circulation (MOC) early on during the hosing, which leads to a warming over the North Atlantic, and a subsequent reduction in the MOC on centennial scales. The larger hosing cases show more dramatic effects with near-complete shutdowns of the MOC during the hosing. Furthermore, global warming scenarios based on the IPCC "business as usual" scenario show that the atmospheric warming will change the response of the ocean to Southern Ocean hosing and that the warming will dominate the perturbation. The potential feedback between changes in the ocean stratification in the scenarios and tidally driven abyssal mixing via tidal conversion is also explored.

  14. Mass change detection in Antarctic ice sheet using ICESat block analysis techniques from 2003~2008%基于ICESat块域分析法探测2003~2008年南极冰盖质量变化

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    史红岭; 陆洋; 杜宗亮; 贾路路; 张子占; 周春霞

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, the ICESat laser altimetry data is used to obtain an estimate of the mass balance of Antarctic ice sheet from February 2003 to March 2008. The time series of elevation change in Antarctic ice sheet are derived by the block crossover analysis using the ICESat nadir ground track, and the calculation of the campaign basis is discussed. A least square regression of crossover difference is applied to calculate the average elevation change trend and the seasonal cycle, and then the mass changes of Antarctic ice sheet are estimated by combining the elevation change rate with the surface firn density model. The result shows that seasonal cycle signals are obvious in Antarctic ice sheet height changes, and the average annual amplitude is about 2.21 cm. On the coast of the Antarctica continent, there are significant thinning and thickening, especially near the Amundsen Sea embayment of west Antarctic and Antarctic Peninsula. Considering the influence of GIA (three public GIA models), our best estimate of the mass change in Antarctic ice sheet is about -82~-73Gt/yr. For the ICESat, the ice sheet surface firn density model and the GIA model are the main factors in the mass change estimates.%利用2003~2008年间的ICESat卫星激光测高数据,通过块域交叉点分析提取南极大陆冰盖表面高程变化信息,同时探讨了卫星激光测高不同任务间的系统偏差,结合冰盖地表粒雪密度模型探测南极大陆冰盖质量变化,并对其原因做了初步分析.结果显示南极大陆冰盖高度变化具有明显的年周期信号,平均周年振幅为2.21 cm.在南极大陆的边缘,存在着明显的消融和增长,尤其是在西南极阿蒙森海湾附近的冰川和南极半岛.利用目前常用的三种不同的冰后回弹模型,计算得到南极大陆冰盖整体平均质量变化趋势约为-82~-73 Gt/yr.在由ICESat高度变化到质量变化过程中,冰盖地表粒雪密度和冰后回弹模型的不确定性是

  15. Characteristics of Gravity Waves over an Antarctic Ice Sheet during an Austral Summer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Cava

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available While occurrences of wavelike motion in the stable boundary layer due to the presence of a significant restoring buoyancy force are rarely disputed, their modalities and interaction with turbulence remain a subject of active research. In this work, the characteristics of gravity waves and their impact on flow statistics, including turbulent fluxes, are presented using data collected above an Antarctic Ice sheet during an Austral Summer. Antarctica is an ideal location for exploring the characteristics of gravity waves because of persistent conditions of strong atmospheric stability in the lower troposphere. Periods dominated by wavelike motion have been identified by analysing time series measured by fast response instrumentation. The nature and characteristic of the dominant wavy motions are investigated using Fourier cross-spectral indicators. Moreover, a multi-resolution decomposition has been applied to separate gravity waves from turbulent fluctuations in case of a sufficiently defined spectral gap. Statistics computed after removing wavy disturbances highlight the large impact of gravity waves on second order turbulent quantities including turbulent flux calculations.

  16. A view of Antarctic ice-sheet evolution from sea-level and deep-sea Isotope Changes During the Late Cretaceous-Cenozoic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, K.G.; Wright, J.D.; Katz, M.E.; Browning, J.V.; Cramer, B.S.; Wade, B.S.; Mizintseva, S.F.

    2007-01-01

    The imperfect direct record of Antarctic glaciation has led to the delayed recognition of the initiation of a continentsized ice sheet. Early studies interpreted initiation in the middle Miocene (ca 15 Ma). Most current studies place the first ice sheet in the earliest Oligocene (33.55 Ma), but there is physical evidence for glaciation in the Eocene. Though there are inherent limitations in sea-level and deep-sea isotope records, both place constraints on the size and extent of Late Cretaceous to Cenozoic Antarctic ice sheets. Sealevel records argue that small- to medium-size (typically 10-12 × 106 km3

  17. Boundary conditions of an active West Antarctic subglacial lake: implications for storage of water beneath the ice sheet

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. J. Siegert

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Repeat-pass IceSat altimetry has revealed 124 discrete surface height changes across the Antarctic Ice Sheet, interpreted to be caused by subglacial lake discharges (surface lowering and inputs (surface uplift. Few of these active lakes have been confirmed by radio-echo sounding (RES despite several attempts (notable exceptions are Lake Whillans and three in the Adventure Subglacial Trench. Here we present targeted RES and radar altimeter data from an "active lake" location within the upstream Institute Ice Stream, into which 0.12 km3 of water is calculated to have flowed between October 2003 and February 2008. We use a series of transects to establish an accurate appreciation of the influences of bed topography and ice-surface elevation on water storage potential. The location of surface height change is over the downslope flank of a distinct topographic hollow, where RES reveals no obvious evidence for deep (> 10 m water. The regional hydropotential reveals a sink coincident with the surface change, however. Governed by the location of the hydrological sink, basal water will likely "drape" over existing topography in a manner dissimilar to subglacial lakes where flat strong specular RES reflections are measured. The inability of RES to detect the active lake means that more of the Antarctic ice sheet bed may contain stored water than is currently appreciated. Variation in ice surface elevation datasets leads to significant alteration in calculations of the local flow of basal water indicating the value of, and need for, high resolution RES datasets in both space and time to establish and characterise subglacial hydrological processes.

  18. CEDEX research activities in Antarctica. Aquatic ecosystems in Byers Peninsula (Livingston Island, maritime Antarctica); Actividad investigadora del CEDEX en la Antartida. Ecosistemas acuaticos de la Peninsula Byers (Isla Livingston, Antartida)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Toro, M.; Quesada, A.; Camacho, A.; Oliva, M.; Alcami, A.; Antoniades, D.; Banon, M.; Fassnacht, S.; Fernandez-Valiente, E.; Galan, L.; Giralt, S.; Granados, I.; Justel, A.; Liu, E. J.; Lopez-Bravo, A.; Martinez-Cortizas, A.; Pla-Rabes, S.; Rastrojo, A.; Rico, E.; Rochera, C.; Van de Vijver, B.; Velazquez, D.; Villaescusa, J. A.; Vicent, W. F.

    2015-07-01

    Since 2001 CEDEX has taken part in many Antarctic joint research projects with different institutions from Spain and other countries, developing scientific activities in the International Camp of Byers Peninsular (Livingston Island, South Shetland Islands, Antarctica). This place was designed as an Antarctic Specially Protected Area (No.126) because the importance and value of its terrestrial and aquatic habitats. It is one of the largest ice-free areas of maritime Antarctica, with the highest diversity of environments and geological, hydrological and biological processes in the whole region, all of them in a pristine state. Byers Peninsula is considered the most significant limnological area in the Antarctic Peninsula region because it hosts a high number of lakes, ponds and streams, with an exceptional fauna and flora diversity, including the most singular, representative or endemic Antarctic species. Furthermore, the lakes sedimentary record is one of the widest and complete archives in Antarctic Peninsula region for the palaeocological and climatic study of the Holocene. Because Byers Peninsula is an Antarctic biodiversity hotspot, and it is located in one of the areas in the Earth where global warming is being more significant, it must be considered as a suitable international reference site for limnetic, terrestrial and coastal studies, and long term monitoring programmes. (Author)

  19. An Improved Method for Modeling Spatial Distribution of δD in Surface Snow over Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Yetang; HOU Shugui; Bjorn GRIGHOLM; SONG Linlin

    2009-01-01

    Using the recent compilation of the isotopic composition data of surface snow of Antarctic ice sheet, we proposed an improved interpolation method of δD, which utilizes geographical factors (i.e., latitude and altitude) as the primary predictors and incorporates inverse distance weighting (IDW) technique. The method was applied to a high-resolution digital elevation model (DEM) to produce a grid map of multi-year mean δD values with 1km spatial resolution for Antarctic& The mean absolute deviation between observed and estimated data in the map is about 5.4‰, and the standard deviation is 9‰. The resulting δD pattern resembles well known characteristics such as the depletion of the heavy isotopes with increasing latitude and distance from coast line, but also reveals the complex topographic effects.

  20. Ice-nucleating bacteria from the guts of two sub-antarctic beetles, hydromedion sparsutum and perimylops antarcticus (Perimylopidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Worland; Block

    1999-02-01

    The site of ice nucleation in the freeze-tolerant, sub-Antarctic beetle Hydromedion sparsutum has been investigated. Ice+ bacteria, active at above -2.0 degrees C, were isolated from the guts of beetles and identified as a fluorescent Pseudomonas species. Other possible sites of nucleation, including the hemolymph, were examined but had a lower activity. Ice+ bacteria were isolated from mixed populations, isolated from the guts of adult beetles, and grown on nutrient agar plates and in nutrient broth. Nucleation activity of the broth culture peaked after only 2 days although the number of live cells continued to increase until day 6. These cultures were used to determine the maximum nucleation activity of a bacterial suspension in sterile distilled water (-3.4 degrees C) and the dilution factor required to cause a 50% reduction in activity (10(4)). The original bacterial suspension had an absorbance of 0.5 measured at 660 nm and contained 6 x 10(11) bacteria per milliliter. From this it is estimated that only 1 in 10(6) bacteria possessed the highest levels of ice-nucleating activity. Other insect species, including Perimylops antarcticus, which are found in habitats similar to that of H. sparsutum, were examined for the presence of ice+ bacteria. All contained ice-nucleating bacteria in their guts but with a lower level of activity than in H. sparsutum. Copyright 1999 Academic Press. PMID:10079130

  1. Non-climatic signal in ice core records: lessons from Antarctic megadunes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ekaykin, Alexey; Eberlein, Lutz; Lipenkov, Vladimir; Popov, Sergey; Scheinert, Mirko; Schröder, Ludwig; Turkeev, Alexey

    2016-06-01

    We present the results of glaciological investigations in the megadune area located 30 km to the east of Vostok Station (central East Antarctica) implemented during the 58th, 59th and 60th Russian Antarctic Expedition (January 2013-2015). Snow accumulation rate and isotope content (δD, δ18O and δ17O) were measured along the 2 km profile across the megadune ridge accompanied by precise GPS altitude measurements and ground penetrating radar (GPR) survey. It is shown that the spatial variability of snow accumulation and isotope content covaries with the surface slope. The accumulation rate regularly changes by 1 order of magnitude within the distance negative correlation with the snow accumulation. Analysing dxs / δD and 17O-excess / δD slopes (where dxs = δD - 8 ṡ δ18O and 17O-excess = ln(δ17O / 1000 + 1) -0.528 ṡ ln (δ18O / 1000 + 1)), we conclude that the spatial variability of the snow isotopic composition in the megadune area could be explained by post-depositional snow modifications. Using the GPR data, we estimated the apparent dune drift velocity (4.6 ± 1.1 m yr-1). The full cycle of the dune drift is thus about 410 years. Since the spatial anomalies of snow accumulation and isotopic composition are supposed to drift with the dune, a core drilled in the megadune area would exhibit the non-climatic 410-year cycle of these two parameters. We simulated a vertical profile of snow isotopic composition with such a non-climatic variability, using the data on the dune size and velocity. This artificial profile is then compared with the real vertical profile of snow isotopic composition obtained from a core drilled in the megadune area. We note that the two profiles are very similar. The obtained results are discussed in terms of interpretation of data obtained from ice cores drilled beyond the megadune areas.

  2. Gravity Waves characteristics and their impact on turbulent transport above an Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cava, Daniela; Giostra, Umberto; Katul, Gabriel

    2016-04-01

    Turbulence within the stable boundary layer (SBL) remains a ubiquitous feature of many geophysical flows, especially over glaciers and ice-sheets. Although numerous studies have investigated various aspects of the boundary layer motion during stable atmospheric conditions, a unified picture of turbulent transport within the SBL remains elusive. In a strongly stratified SBL, turbulence generation is frequently associated with interactions with sub-meso scale motions that are often a combination of gravity waves (GWs) and horizontal modes. While some progress has been made in the inclusion of GW parameterisation within global models, description and parameterisation of the turbulence-wave interaction remain an open question. The discrimination between waves and turbulence is a focal point needed to make progress as these two motions have different properties with regards to heat, moisture and pollutant transport. In fact, the occurrence of GWs can cause significant differences and ambiguities in the interpretation of turbulence statistics and fluxes if not a priori filtered from the analysis. In this work, the characteristics of GW and their impact on turbulent statistics were investigated using wind velocity components and scalars collected above an Antarctic Ice sheet during an Austral Summer. Antarctica is an ideal location for exploring the characteristics of GW because of persistent conditions of strongly stable atmospheric stability in the lower troposphere. Periods dominated by wavy motions have been identified by analysing time series measured by fast response instrumentation. The GWs nature and features have been investigated using Fourier cross-spectral indicators. The detected waves were frequently characterised by variable amplitude and period; moreover, they often produced non-stationarity and large intermittency in turbulent fluctuations that can significantly alter the estimation of turbulence statistics in general and fluxes in particular. A multi

  3. Global estimates of the impact of a collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet: An application of FUND

    OpenAIRE

    Nicholls, R J; Tol, R.S.J.; Vafeidis, A.T.

    2008-01-01

    The threat of an abrupt and extreme rise in sea level is widely discussed in the media, but little understood in practise, including the likely impacts of such a rise. This paper explores for the first time the global impacts of extreme sea-level rise, triggered by a hypothetical collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). As the potential contributions remain uncertain, a wide range of scenarios are explored: WAIS contributions to sea-level rise of between 0.5m/century up to 5m/century....

  4. Moss stable isotopes (carbon-13, oxygen-18) and testate amoebae reflect environmental inputs and microclimate along a latitudinal gradient on the Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Royles, Jessica; Amesbury, Matthew J; Roland, Thomas P; Jones, Glyn D; Convey, Peter; Griffiths, Howard; Hodgson, Dominic A; Charman, Dan J

    2016-07-01

    The stable isotope compositions of moss tissue water (δ(2)H and δ(18)O) and cellulose (δ(13)C and δ(18)O), and testate amoebae populations were sampled from 61 contemporary surface samples along a 600-km latitudinal gradient of the Antarctic Peninsula (AP) to provide a spatial record of environmental change. The isotopic composition of moss tissue water represented an annually integrated precipitation signal with the expected isotopic depletion with increasing latitude. There was a weak, but significant, relationship between cellulose δ(18)O and latitude, with predicted source water inputs isotopically enriched compared to measured precipitation. Cellulose δ(13)C values were dependent on moss species and water content, and may reflect site exposure to strong winds. Testate amoebae assemblages were characterised by low concentrations and taxonomic diversity, with Corythion dubium and Microcorycia radiata types the most cosmopolitan taxa. The similarity between the intra- and inter-site ranges measured in all proxies suggests that microclimate and micro-topographical conditions around the moss surface were important determinants of proxy values. Isotope and testate amoebae analyses have proven value as palaeoclimatic, temporal proxies of climate change, whereas this study demonstrates that variations in isotopic and amoeboid proxies between microsites can be beyond the bounds of the current spatial variability in AP climate. PMID:27003701

  5. Moss stable isotopes (carbon-13, oxygen-18) and testate amoebae reflect environmental inputs and microclimate along a latitudinal gradient on the Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Royles, Jessica; Amesbury, Matthew J; Roland, Thomas P; Jones, Glyn D; Convey, Peter; Griffiths, Howard; Hodgson, Dominic A; Charman, Dan J

    2016-07-01

    The stable isotope compositions of moss tissue water (δ(2)H and δ(18)O) and cellulose (δ(13)C and δ(18)O), and testate amoebae populations were sampled from 61 contemporary surface samples along a 600-km latitudinal gradient of the Antarctic Peninsula (AP) to provide a spatial record of environmental change. The isotopic composition of moss tissue water represented an annually integrated precipitation signal with the expected isotopic depletion with increasing latitude. There was a weak, but significant, relationship between cellulose δ(18)O and latitude, with predicted source water inputs isotopically enriched compared to measured precipitation. Cellulose δ(13)C values were dependent on moss species and water content, and may reflect site exposure to strong winds. Testate amoebae assemblages were characterised by low concentrations and taxonomic diversity, with Corythion dubium and Microcorycia radiata types the most cosmopolitan taxa. The similarity between the intra- and inter-site ranges measured in all proxies suggests that microclimate and micro-topographical conditions around the moss surface were important determinants of proxy values. Isotope and testate amoebae analyses have proven value as palaeoclimatic, temporal proxies of climate change, whereas this study demonstrates that variations in isotopic and amoeboid proxies between microsites can be beyond the bounds of the current spatial variability in AP climate.

  6. Long-term experiment on physiological responses to synergetic effects of ocean acidification and photoperiod in the Antarctic sea ice algae Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Dong; Wang, Yitao; Fan, Xiao; Wang, Dongsheng; Ye, Naihao; Zhang, Xiaowen; Mou, Shanli; Guan, Zheng; Zhuang, Zhimeng

    2014-07-15

    Studies on ocean acidification have mostly been based on short-term experiments of low latitude with few investigations of the long-term influence on sea ice communities. Here, the combined effects of ocean acidification and photoperiod on the physiological response of the Antarctic sea ice microalgae Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L were examined. There was a general increase in growth, PSII photosynthetic parameters, and N and P uptake in continuous light, compared to those exposed to regular dark and light cycles. Elevated pCO2 showed no consistent effect on growth rate (p=0.8) and N uptake (p=0.38) during exponential phrase, depending on the photoperiod but had a positive effect on PSII photosynthetic capacity and P uptake. Continuous dark reduced growth, photosynthesis, and nutrient uptake. Moreover, intracellular lipid, mainly in the form of PUFA, was consumed at 80% and 63% in low and high pCO2 in darkness. However, long-term culture under high pCO2 gave a more significant inhibition of growth and Fv/Fm to high light stress. In summary, ocean acidification may have significant effects on Chlamydomonas sp. ICE-L survival in polar winter. The current study contributes to an understanding of how a sea ice algae-based community may respond to global climate change at high latitudes.

  7. An optimized multi-proxy, multi-site Antarctic ice and gas orbital chronology (AICC2012: 120–800 ka

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Fischer

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available An accurate and coherent chronological framework is essential for the interpretation of climatic and environmental records obtained from deep polar ice cores. Until now, one common ice core age scale has been developed based on an inverse dating method (Datice combining glaciological modelling with absolute and stratigraphic markers between 4 ice cores covering the last 50 ka (thousand of years before present (Lemieux-Dudon et al., 2010. In this paper, together with the companion paper of Veres et al. (2012, we present an extension of this work back to 800 ka for the NGRIP, TALDICE, EDML, Vostok and EDC ice cores using an improved version of the Datice tool. The AICC2012 (Antarctic Ice Core Chronology 2012 chronology includes numerous new gas and ice stratigraphic links as well as improved evaluation of background and associated variance scenarios. This paper concentrates on the long timescales between 120–800 ka. In this frame, new measurements of δ18Oatm over Marine Isotope Stage (MIS 11–12 on EDC and a complete δ18Oatm record of the TALDICE ice cores permit us to derive new orbital gas age constraints. The coherency of the different orbitally deduced ages (from δ18Oatm, δO2/N2 and air content has been verified before implementation in AICC2012. The new chronology shows only small differences, well within the original uncertainty range, when compared with the previous ice core reference age scale EDC3. For instance, the duration of the last four interglacial periods is not affected by more than 5%. The largest deviation between AICC2012 and EDC3 (4.4 ka is obtained around MIS 12. Despite significant modifications of the chronological constraints around MIS 5, now independent of speleothem records in AICC2012, the date of Termination II is very close to the EDC3 one.

  8. Distribution and characteristics of overdeepenings beneath the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets: Implications for overdeepening origin and evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patton, H.; Swift, D. A.; Clark, C. D.; Livingstone, S. J.; Cook, S. J.

    2016-09-01

    Glacier bed overdeepenings are ubiquitous in glacier systems and likely exert significant influence on ice dynamics, subglacial hydrology, and ice stability. Understanding of overdeepening formation and evolution has been hampered by an absence of quantitative empirical studies of their distribution and morphology, with process insights having been drawn largely from theoretical or numerical studies. To address this shortcoming, we first map the distribution of potential overdeepenings beneath the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets using a GIS-based algorithm that identifies closed-contours in the bed topography and then describe and analyse the characteristics and metrics of a subset of overdeepenings that pass further quality control criteria. Overdeepenings are found to be widespread, but are particularly associated with areas of topographically laterally constrained ice flow, notably near the ice sheet margins where outlet systems follow deeply incised troughs. Overdeepenings also occur in regions of topographically unconstrained ice flow (for example, beneath the Siple Coast ice streams and on the Greenland continental shelf). Metrics indicate that overdeepening growth is generally allometric and that topographic confinement of ice flow in general enhances overdeepening depth. However, overdeepening depth is skewed towards shallow values - typically 200-300 m - indicating that the rate of deepening slows with overdeepening age. This is reflected in a decline in adverse slope steepness with increasing overdeepening planform size. Finally, overdeepening long-profiles are found to support headward quarrying as the primary factor in overdeepening development. These observations support proposed negative feedbacks related to hydrology and sediment transport that stabilise overdeepening growth through sedimentation on the adverse slope but permit continued overdeepening planform enlargement by processes of headward erosion.

  9. NOAA/NMC/CAC Arctic and Antarctic Monthly Sea Ice Extent, 1973-1990

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Sea ice extent from January 1973 through August 1990 was digitized from weekly operational sea ice charts produced by the Navy/NOAA Joint Ice Center. Charts were...

  10. Did the continent and sea have different temperatures in the northern Antarctic Peninsula during the Middle Eocene?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A.L. Cione

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available The Seymour Island beds include a remarkable representation of the continental flora and fauna and marine fauna of Eocene in southern high latitudes. We suggest that, at least during the deposition of the best sampled unit, the Cucullaea I Allomember of the La Meseta Alloformation in the Seymour Island area, a cold temperate terrestrial environment co-existed with relatively warmer temperatures in the adjacent shallow shelf sea. This is suggested by the fish and invertebrate fauna and could have been due to the presence of warmer waters of a current reaching the region from the north. The temperature drop proposed for the time of deposition of the uppermost part of the La Meseta Formation (Submeseta Allomember appears to correspond to the global drop of the end of the Eocene and beginning of Oligocene and not to the establishment of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current.

  11. Longitudinal surface structures (flowstripes on Antarctic glaciers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. F. Glasser

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Longitudinal surface structures (''flowstripes'' are common on many glaciers but their origin and significance are poorly understood. In this paper we present observations of the development of these longitudinal structures from four different Antarctic glacier systems (the Lambert Glacier/Amery Ice Shelf area, outlet glaciers in the Ross Sea sector, ice-shelf tributary glaciers on the Antarctic Peninsula, and the onset zone of a tributary to the Recovery Glacier Ice Stream in the Filchner Ice Shelf area. Mapping from optical satellite images demonstrates that longitudinal surface structures develop in two main situations: (1 as relatively wide flow stripes within glacier flow units and (2 as relatively narrow flow stripes where there is convergent flow around nunataks or at glacier confluence zones. Our observations indicate that the confluence features are narrower, sharper, and more clearly defined features. They are characterised by linear troughs or depressions on the ice surface and are much more common than the former type. Longitudinal surface structures within glacier flow units have previously been explained as the surface expression of localised bed perturbations but a universal explanation for those forming at glacier confluences is lacking. Here we propose that these features are formed at zones of ice acceleration and extensional flow at glacier confluences. We provide a schematic model for the development of longitudinal surface structures based on extensional flow that can explain their ridge and trough morphology as well as their down-ice persistence.

  12. Albedo of the ice covered Weddell and Bellingshausen Seas

    OpenAIRE

    Weiss, A.I.; J. C. King; Lachlan-Cope, T.A.; R. S. Ladkin

    2012-01-01

    This study investigates the surface albedo of the sea ice areas adjacent to the Antarctic Peninsula during the austral summer. Aircraft measurements of the surface albedo, which were conducted in the sea ice areas of the Weddell and Bellingshausen Seas show significant differences between these two regions. The averaged surface albedo varied between 0.13 and 0.81. The ice cover of the Bellingshausen Sea consisted mainly of first year ice and the sea surface showed an averaged sea ice albedo o...

  13. Ice core reconstruction of sea ice change in the Amundsen-Ross Seas since 1702 A.D.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Elizabeth R.; Abram, Nerilie J.

    2016-05-01

    Antarctic sea ice has been increasing in recent decades, but with strong regional differences in the expression of sea ice change. Declining sea ice in the Bellingshausen Sea since 1979 (the satellite era) has been linked to the observed warming on the Antarctic Peninsula, while the Ross Sea sector has seen a marked increase in sea ice during this period. Here we present a 308 year record of methansulphonic acid from coastal West Antarctica, representing sea ice conditions in the Amundsen-Ross Sea. We demonstrate that the recent increase in sea ice in this region is part of a longer trend, with an estimated ~1° northward expansion in winter sea ice extent (SIE) during the twentieth century and a total expansion of ~1.3° since 1702. The greatest reconstructed SIE occurred during the mid-1990s, with five of the past 30 years considered exceptional in the context of the past three centuries.

  14. About the consistency between Envisat and CryoSat-2 radar freeboard retrieval over Antarctic sea ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Schwegmann

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Knowledge about Antarctic sea-ice volume and its changes over the past decades has been sparse due to the lack of systematic sea-ice thickness measurements in this remote area. Recently, first attempts have been made to develop a sea-ice thickness product over the Southern Ocean from space-borne radar altimetry and results look promising. Today, more than 20 years of radar altimeter data are potentially available for such products. However, data come from different sources, and the characteristics of individual sensors differ. Hence, it is important to study the consistency between single sensors in order to develop long and consistent time series over the potentially available measurement period. Here, the consistency between freeboard measurements of the Radar Altimeter 2 on-board Envisat and freeboard measurements from the Synthetic-Aperture Interferometric Radar Altimeter on-board CryoSat-2 is tested for their overlap period in 2011. Results indicate that mean and modal values are comparable over the sea-ice growth season (May–October and partly also beyond. In general, Envisat data shows higher freeboards in the seasonal ice zone while CryoSat-2 freeboards are higher in the perennial ice zone and near the coasts. This has consequences for the agreement in individual sectors of the Southern Ocean, where one or the other ice class may dominate. Nevertheless, over the growth season, mean freeboard for the entire (regional separated Southern Ocean differs generally by not more than 2 cm (5 cm, except for the Amundsen/Bellingshausen Sea between Envisat and CryoSat-2, and the differences between modal freeboard lie generally within ±10 cm and often even below.

  15. Extent of Low-accumulation 'Wind Glaze' Areas on the East Antarctic Plateau: Implications for Continental Ice Mass Balance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scambos, Theodore A.; Frezzotti, Massimo; Haran, T.; Bohlander, J.; Lenaerts, J. T. M.; Van Den Broeke, M. R.; Jezek, K.; Long, D.; Urbini, S.; Farness, K.; Neumann, T.; Albert, M.; Winther, J.-G.

    2012-01-01

    Persistent katabatic winds form widely distributed localized areas of near-zero net surface accumulation on the East Antarctic ice sheet (EAIS) plateau. These areas have been called 'glaze' surfaces due to their polished appearance. They are typically 2-200 square kilometers in area and are found on leeward slopes of ice-sheet undulations and megadunes. Adjacent, leeward high-accumulation regions (isolated dunes) are generally smaller and do not compensate for the local low in surface mass balance (SMB). We use a combination of satellite remote sensing and field-gathered datasets to map the extent of wind glaze in the EAIS above 1500m elevation. Mapping criteria are derived from distinctive surface and subsurface characteristics of glaze areas resulting from many years of intense annual temperature cycling without significant burial. Our results show that 11.2 plus or minus 1.7%, or 950 plus or minus 143 x 10(exp 3) square kilometers, of the EAIS above 1500m is wind glaze. Studies of SMB interpolate values across glaze regions, leading to overestimates of net mass input. Using our derived wind-glaze extent, we estimate this excess in three recent models of Antarctic SMB at 46-82 Gt. The lowest-input model appears to best match the mean in regions of extensive wind glaze.

  16. Large ensemble modeling of last deglacial retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet: comparison of simple and advanced statistical techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Pollard

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available A 3-D hybrid ice-sheet model is applied to the last deglacial retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet over the last ~ 20 000 years. A large ensemble of 625 model runs is used to calibrate the model to modern and geologic data, including reconstructed grounding lines, relative sea-level records, elevation-age data and uplift rates, with an aggregate score computed for each run that measures overall model-data misfit. Two types of statistical methods are used to analyze the large-ensemble results: simple averaging weighted by the aggregate score, and more advanced Bayesian techniques involving Gaussian process-based emulation and calibration, and Markov chain Monte Carlo. Results for best-fit parameter ranges and envelopes of equivalent sea-level rise with the simple averaging method agree quite well with the more advanced techniques, but only for a large ensemble with full factorial parameter sampling. Best-fit parameter ranges confirm earlier values expected from prior model tuning, including large basal sliding coefficients on modern ocean beds. Each run is extended 5000 years into the "future" with idealized ramped climate warming. In the majority of runs with reasonable scores, this produces grounding-line retreat deep into the West Antarctic interior, and the analysis provides sea-level-rise envelopes with well defined parametric uncertainty bounds.

  17. Large ensemble modeling of last deglacial retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet: comparison of simple and advanced statistical techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollard, D.; Chang, W.; Haran, M.; Applegate, P.; DeConto, R.

    2015-11-01

    A 3-D hybrid ice-sheet model is applied to the last deglacial retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet over the last ~ 20 000 years. A large ensemble of 625 model runs is used to calibrate the model to modern and geologic data, including reconstructed grounding lines, relative sea-level records, elevation-age data and uplift rates, with an aggregate score computed for each run that measures overall model-data misfit. Two types of statistical methods are used to analyze the large-ensemble results: simple averaging weighted by the aggregate score, and more advanced Bayesian techniques involving Gaussian process-based emulation and calibration, and Markov chain Monte Carlo. Results for best-fit parameter ranges and envelopes of equivalent sea-level rise with the simple averaging method agree quite well with the more advanced techniques, but only for a large ensemble with full factorial parameter sampling. Best-fit parameter ranges confirm earlier values expected from prior model tuning, including large basal sliding coefficients on modern ocean beds. Each run is extended 5000 years into the "future" with idealized ramped climate warming. In the majority of runs with reasonable scores, this produces grounding-line retreat deep into the West Antarctic interior, and the analysis provides sea-level-rise envelopes with well defined parametric uncertainty bounds.

  18. A glimpse beneath Antarctic sea ice: observation of platelet-layer thickness and ice-volume fraction with multifrequency EM

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoppmann, Mario; Hunkeler, Priska A.; Hendricks, Stefan; Kalscheuer, Thomas; Gerdes, Rüdiger

    2016-04-01

    In Antarctica, ice crystals (platelets) form and grow in supercooled waters below ice shelves. These platelets rise, accumulate beneath nearby sea ice, and subsequently form a several meter thick, porous sub-ice platelet layer. This special ice type is a unique habitat, influences sea-ice mass and energy balance, and its volume can be interpreted as an indicator of the health of an ice shelf. Although progress has been made in determining and understanding its spatio-temporal variability based on point measurements, an investigation of this phenomenon on a larger scale remains a challenge due to logistical constraints and a lack of suitable methodology. In the present study, we applied a lateral constrained Marquardt-Levenberg inversion to a unique multi-frequency electromagnetic (EM) induction sounding dataset obtained on the ice-shelf influenced fast-ice regime of Atka Bay, eastern Weddell Sea. We adapted the inversion algorithm to incorporate a sensor specific signal bias, and confirmed the reliability of the algorithm by performing a sensitivity study using synthetic data. We inverted the field data for sea-ice and platelet-layer thickness and electrical conductivity, and calculated ice-volume fractions within the platelet layer using Archie's Law. The thickness results agreed well with drillhole validation datasets within the uncertainty range, and the ice-volume fraction yielded results comparable to other studies. Both parameters together enable an estimation of the total ice volume within the platelet layer, which was found to be comparable to the volume of landfast sea ice in this region, and corresponded to more than a quarter of the annual basal melt volume of the nearby Ekström Ice Shelf. Our findings show that multi-frequency EM induction sounding is a suitable approach to efficiently map sea-ice and platelet-layer properties, with important implications for research into ocean/ice-shelf/sea-ice interactions. However, a successful application of this

  19. Invited Article: SUBGLACIOR: An optical analyzer embedded in an Antarctic ice probe for exploring the past climate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grilli, R.; Marrocco, N.; Desbois, T. [CNRS, LIPhy, F-38000 Grenoble (France); Guillerm, C. [DT INSU CNRS, Bât. IPEV BP 74, Technopole Brest Iroise, 29280 Plouzané (France); Triest, J. [CNRS, LGGE, F-38000 Grenoble (France); Kerstel, E.; Romanini, D. [CNRS, LIPhy, F-38000 Grenoble (France); Univ. Grenoble Alpes, LIPhy, F-38000 Grenoble (France)

    2014-11-15

    This article describes the advances made in the development of a specific optical spectrometer based on the Optical Feedback-Cavity Enhanced Absorption Spectroscopy technique for exploring past climate by probing the original composition of the atmosphere stored in the ice sheet of a glacier. Based on significant technological progresses and unconventional approaches, SUBGLACIOR will be a revolutionary tool for ice-core research: the optical spectrometer, directly embedded in the drilling probe, will provide in situ real-time measurements of deuterium isotopic variations (δ{sup 2}H ) and CH{sub 4} concentrations down to 3500 m of ice depth within a single Antarctic season. The instrument will provide simultaneous and real-time vertical profiles of these two key climate signatures in order to evaluate if a target site can offer ice cores as old as 1.5 million years by providing direct insight into past temperatures and climate cycles. The spectrometer has a noise equivalent absorption coefficient of 2.8 × 10{sup −10} cm{sup −1} Hz{sup −1/2}, corresponding to a detection limit of 0.2 ppbv for CH{sub 4} and a precision of 0.2‰ on the δ{sup 2}H of H{sub 2}O within 1 min acquisition time.

  20. Invited Article: SUBGLACIOR: An optical analyzer embedded in an Antarctic ice probe for exploring the past climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This article describes the advances made in the development of a specific optical spectrometer based on the Optical Feedback-Cavity Enhanced Absorption Spectroscopy technique for exploring past climate by probing the original composition of the atmosphere stored in the ice sheet of a glacier. Based on significant technological progresses and unconventional approaches, SUBGLACIOR will be a revolutionary tool for ice-core research: the optical spectrometer, directly embedded in the drilling probe, will provide in situ real-time measurements of deuterium isotopic variations (δ2H ) and CH4 concentrations down to 3500 m of ice depth within a single Antarctic season. The instrument will provide simultaneous and real-time vertical profiles of these two key climate signatures in order to evaluate if a target site can offer ice cores as old as 1.5 million years by providing direct insight into past temperatures and climate cycles. The spectrometer has a noise equivalent absorption coefficient of 2.8 × 10−10 cm−1 Hz−1/2, corresponding to a detection limit of 0.2 ppbv for CH4 and a precision of 0.2‰ on the δ2H of H2O within 1 min acquisition time

  1. Invited article: SUBGLACIOR: an optical analyzer embedded in an Antarctic ice probe for exploring the past climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grilli, R; Marrocco, N; Desbois, T; Guillerm, C; Triest, J; Kerstel, E; Romanini, D

    2014-11-01

    This article describes the advances made in the development of a specific optical spectrometer based on the Optical Feedback-Cavity Enhanced Absorption Spectroscopy technique for exploring past climate by probing the original composition of the atmosphere stored in the ice sheet of a glacier. Based on significant technological progresses and unconventional approaches, SUBGLACIOR will be a revolutionary tool for ice-core research: the optical spectrometer, directly embedded in the drilling probe, will provide in situ real-time measurements of deuterium isotopic variations (δ(2)H ) and CH4 concentrations down to 3500 m of ice depth within a single Antarctic season. The instrument will provide simultaneous and real-time vertical profiles of these two key climate signatures in order to evaluate if a target site can offer ice cores as old as 1.5 million years by providing direct insight into past temperatures and climate cycles. The spectrometer has a noise equivalent absorption coefficient of 2.8 × 10(-10) cm(-1) Hz(-1/2), corresponding to a detection limit of 0.2 ppbv for CH4 and a precision of 0.2‰ on the δ(2)H of H2O within 1 min acquisition time. PMID:25430089

  2. Anomalously high arsenic concentration in a West Antarctic ice core and its relationship to copper mining in Chile

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwanck, Franciele; Simões, Jefferson C.; Handley, Michael; Mayewski, Paul A.; Bernardo, Ronaldo T.; Aquino, Francisco E.

    2016-01-01

    Arsenic variability records are preserved in snow and ice cores and can be utilized to reconstruct air pollution history. The Mount Johns ice core (79°55‧S; 94°23‧W and 91.2 m depth) was collected from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet in the 2008/09 austral summer. Here, we report the As concentration variability as determined by 2137 samples from the upper 45 m of this core using ICP-SFMS (CCI, University of Maine, USA). The record covers approximately 125 years (1883-2008) showing a mean concentration of 4.32 pg g-1. The arsenic concentration in the core follows global copper mining evolution, particularly in Chile (the largest producer of Cu). From 1940 to 1990, copper-mining production increased along with arsenic concentrations in the MJ core, from 1.92 pg g-1 (before 1900) to 7.94 pg g-1 (1950). In the last two decades, environmental regulations for As emissions have been implemented, forcing smelters to treat their gases to conform to national and international environmental standards. In Chile, decontamination plants required by the government started operating from 1993 to 2000. Thereafter, Chilean copper production more than doubled while As emission levels declined, and the same reduction was observed in the Mount Johns ice core. After 1999, arsenic concentrations in our samples decreased to levels comparable to the period before 1900.

  3. Mid-Holocene pulse of thinning in the Weddell Sea sector of the West Antarctic ice sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hein, Andrew S.; Marrero, Shasta M.; Woodward, John; Dunning, Stuart A.; Winter, Kate; Westoby, Matthew J.; Freeman, Stewart P. H. T.; Shanks, Richard P.; Sugden, David E.

    2016-08-01

    Establishing the trajectory of thinning of the West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) since the last glacial maximum (LGM) is important for addressing questions concerning ice sheet (in)stability and changes in global sea level. Here we present detailed geomorphological and cosmogenic nuclide data from the southern Ellsworth Mountains in the heart of the Weddell Sea embayment that suggest the ice sheet, nourished by increased snowfall until the early Holocene, was close to its LGM thickness at 10 ka. A pulse of rapid thinning caused the ice elevation to fall ~400 m to the present level at 6.5-3.5 ka, and could have contributed 1.4-2 m to global sea-level rise. These results imply that the Weddell Sea sector of the WAIS contributed little to late-glacial pulses in sea-level rise but was involved in mid-Holocene rises. The stepped decline is argued to reflect marine downdraw triggered by grounding line retreat into Hercules Inlet.

  4. Post-coring entrapment of modern air in some shallow ice cores collected near the firn-ice transition: evidence from CFC-12 measurements in Antarctic firn air and ice cores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Aydin

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we report measurements of CFC-12 (CCl2F2 in firn air and in air extracted from shallow ice cores from three Antarctic sites. The firn air data are consistent with the known atmospheric history of CFC-12. In contrast, some of the ice core samples collected near the firn-ice transition exhibit anomalously high CFC-12 levels. Together, the ice core and firn air data provide evidence for the presence of modern air entrapped in the shallow ice core samples that likely contained open pores at the time of collection. We propose that this is due to closure of the open pores after drilling, entrapping modern air and resulting in elevated CFC-12 mixing ratios. Our results reveal that open porosity can exist below the maximum depth at which firn air samples can be collected, particularly at sites with lower accumulation rates. CFC-12 measurements demonstrate that post-drilling closure of open pores can lead to a change in the composition of bubble air in shallow ice cores through purely physical processes. The results have implications for investigations involving trace gas composition of bubbles in shallow ice cores collected near the firn-ice transition.

  5. Enhanced tropospheric BrO concentrations over the Antarctic sea ice belt in mid winter observed from MAX-DOAS observations on board the research vessel Polarstern

    OpenAIRE

    Wagner, T.; Ibrahim, O.; R. Sinreich; Frieß, U.; Platt, U.

    2007-01-01

    We present Multi AXis-Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (MAX-DOAS) observations of tropospheric BrO carried out on board the German research vessel Polarstern during the Antarctic winter 2006. Polarstern entered the area of first year sea ice around Antarctica on 24 June 2006 and stayed within this area until 15 August 2006. For the period when the ship cruised inside the first year sea ice belt, enhanced BrO concentrations were almost continuously observed. One interesting excepti...

  6. Enhanced tropospheric BrO over Antarctic sea ice in mid winter observed by MAX-DOAS on board the research vessel Polarstern

    OpenAIRE

    Wagner, T.; Ibrahim, O.; R. Sinreich; Frieß, U.; Glasow, R.; Platt, U.

    2007-01-01

    We present Multi AXis-Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (MAX-DOAS) observations of tropospheric BrO carried out on board the German research vessel Polarstern during the Antarctic winter 2006. Polarstern entered the area of first year sea ice around Antarctica on 24 June 2006 and stayed within this area until 15 August 2006. For the period when the ship cruised inside the first year sea ice belt, enhanced BrO concentrations were almost continuously observed. Outside the first year ...

  7. Meteorites constrain the age of Antarctic ice at the Frontier Mountain blue ice field (northern Victoria Land)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Folco, L.; Welten, K. C.; Jull, A. J. T.; Nishiizumi, K.; Zeoli, A.

    2006-08-01

    We show that meteorites can provide chronological constraints upon the age of the ice cropping out at the Frontier Mountain meteorite trap (Antarctica) when their terrestrial age is placed in a glaciological context. Amongst the over 700 meteorites found so far, Frontier Mountain (FRO) 84001, 99028, 93005 and 93054 were most likely not wind-drifted across the ice field, since their masses (772-1665 g) are much heavier than the local ˜ 200 g wind transport threshold. The four meteorites were found along a stretch of ice where a representative section of the Frontier Mountain blue ice crops out. Based on the bedding of englacial tephra layers, the structure of the ice along the section appears to be essentially an up-glacier dipping monocline. The 14C terrestrial age of FRO 8401, 99028 and 93005 are 13 ± 2, 21 ± 3 and 27 ± 2 ky, respectively; the 41Ca/ 36Cl age of FRO 93054 is 40 ± 10 ky. The terrestrial ages of the four meteorites increase from the top to the bottom layers of the monocline. This geographic distribution is best explained by delivery of meteorites at the ice surface through the "ice-flow model" (i.e., englacial transport from the snow accumulation zone and exhumation in the blue ice area through ablation) rather than direct fall. Since the effect of ablation in decoupling terrestrial ages of meteorites and the age of the ice on which they sit must have been minor (most likely ≤ 7 ky) based on the local ice dynamics, we conclude that the age of the bulk of the ice body currently under ablation at Frontier Mountain is up to ˜ 50 ky old. This result has implications on both the meteorite concentrations mechanism at Frontier Mountain and the regional ice dynamics.

  8. Warming, Contraction, and Freshening of Antarctic Bottom Water since the 1990s, with a Potential Ice-Sheet Melt Feedback.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Gregory; Purkey, Sarah; Rintoul, Stephen; Swift, James

    2013-04-01

    We analyze changes in Antarctic Bottom Waters (AABW) around the deep Southern Ocean using repeat section data collected between 1981 and 2012. The international World Ocean Circulation Experiment (WOCE) Hydrographic Program collected a global high-quality baseline of full-depth, accurate oceanographic transects in the 1980s and 1990s. Since the 2000s, some of these transects are being reoccupied, again through international collaboration, as part of GO-SHIP (The Global Ocean Ship-Based Hydrographic Investigations Program). The average dates of the first and last data used to estimate these trends are circa 1991 and 2008. Temperature analyses reveal a nearly global-scale signature of warming in the abyssal ocean ventilated from the Antarctic. In the deep basins around Antarctica, AABW warmed at a rate of 0.02 to 0.05 °C per decade below 4000 m. In addition, the waters between 1000 and 4000 m within and south of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current warmed at a rate of about 0.03 °C per decade. With this warming, cold, deep isotherms are sinking in the Southern Ocean. The 0 °C potential isotherm sinking rate is around 100 m per decade, implying a 8.2 (±2.6) Sv contraction rate of AABW, about 7% per decade. In addition to this contraction, AABW freshening is observed within the Indian and Pacific sectors of the Southern Ocean. The freshening signal is stronger closer to AABW sources. Its spatial pattern implies recent changes in AABW formation, perhaps partly owing to freshening of the shelf waters, which has been linked to increases in glacial ice sheet melt. The observed rate of water-mass freshening for AABW colder than 0°C in the Indian and Pacific Sectors of the Southern Ocean is about half of the estimated increase in mass lost by glacial ice sheets there in recent years. A positive feedback loop might link the AABW contraction and ice sheet melt-influenced freshening as follows: Increased ocean heat flux drives enhanced basal melt of floating ice shelves

  9. A record of Antarctic sea ice extent in the Southern Indian Ocean for the past 300 yr and its relationship with global mean temperature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Xiao

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The differing response of ice extent in the Arctic and Antarctic to global average temperature change, over approximately the last three decades, highlights the importance of reconstructing long-term sea ice history. Here, using high-resolution ice core records of methanesulfonate (MS− from the East Antarctic Ice Sheet in Princess Elizabeth Land, we reconstruct southern Indian Ocean sea ice extent (SIE for the sector 70° E–100° E for the period 1708–2000 A.D. Annual MS− concentration positively correlates in this sector with satellite-derived SIE for the period 1973–2000 (P − record of proxy SIE shows multi-decadal variations, with large decreases occurring in two warm intervals during the Little Ice Age, and during the 1940s. However, after the 1980s there is a change in phase between Antarctic SIE and global temperature change, with both increasing. This paradox is probably attributable to the strong anomaly in the Southern Annular Mode (SAM in the recent three decades.

  10. Application of remotely piloted aircraft systems in observing the atmospheric boundary layer over Antarctic sea ice in winter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marius O. Jonassen

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The main aim of this paper is to explore the potential of combining measurements from fixed- and rotary-wing remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS to complement data sets from radio soundings as well as ship and sea-ice-based instrumentation for atmospheric boundary layer (ABL profiling. This study represents a proof-of-concept of RPAS observations in the Antarctic sea-ice zone. We present first results from the RV Polarstern Antarctic winter expedition in the Weddell Sea in June–August 2013, during which three RPAS were operated to measure temperature, humidity and wind; a fixed-wing small unmanned meteorological observer (SUMO, a fixed-wing meteorological mini-aerial vehicle, and an advanced mission and operation research quadcopter. A total of 86 RPAS flights showed a strongly varying ABL structure ranging from slightly unstable temperature stratification near the surface to conditions with strong surface-based temperature inversions. The RPAS observations supplement the regular upper air soundings and standard meteorological measurements made during the campaign. The SUMO and quadcopter temperature profiles agree very well and, excluding cases with strong temperature inversions, 70% of the variance in the difference between the SUMO and quadcopter temperature profiles can be explained by natural, temporal, temperature fluctuations. Strong temperature inversions cause the largest differences, which are induced by SUMO's high climb rates and slow sensor response. Under such conditions, the quadcopter, with its slower climb rate and faster sensor, is very useful in obtaining accurate temperature profiles in the lowest 100 m above the sea ice.

  11. A new Eemian record of Antarctic tephra layers retrieved from the Talos Dome ice core (Northern Victoria Land)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narcisi, Biancamaria; Petit, Jean Robert; Langone, Antonio; Stenni, Barbara

    2016-02-01

    Polar ice sheets are remarkable repositories of tephra layers. The Talos Dome ice core (72°49‧S, 159°11‧E), drilled at the edge of the East Antarctic Plateau, close to Late Quaternary volcanoes, offers considerable potential to extend the current tephra time-stratigraphic framework. A tephrochronological study was undertaken of the ice core sections related to the Last Interglacial and the transition to the subsequent glacial period. Thirteen macroscopically visible layers, interpreted to be related to primary deposition of fallout tephra, have been analysed for quantitative grain size and glass shard geochemistry. The layers, precisely framed within the climate (δ18O) record for the core, span in age from 111.6 ± 1.9 to 123.3 ± 2.2 ka. Coarse particle size suggests origin from regional sources. Indeed, the vast majority of the samples display an alkaline affinity and trachytic composition that are both typical geochemical features of rifting Antarctic volcanism. Using subtle differences in the geochemical signatures and the comparison with data from previous studies, a few layers are attributed to known coeval Mt. Melbourne eruptions. Another sample subset is consistent with derivation from The Pleiades and Mt. Rittmann volcanoes. One peculiar trachytic glass population appears to be related to activity of the more distant Marie Byrd Land volcanoes. The newly detected tephras provide stratigraphic markers that could facilitate future synchronisation and dating of palaeoclimatic records. The Talos Dome tephra inventory also contributes significantly to the reconstruction of the Northern Victoria Land explosive volcanism, for which chronostratigraphic data for the Last Interglacial temporal segment are poor.

  12. Future surface mass balance of the Antarctic ice sheet and its influence on sea level change, simulated by a regional atmospheric climate model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ligtenberg, S.R.M.; van de Berg, W.J.; van den Broeke, M.R.; Rae, J.G.L.; van Meijgaard, E.

    2013-01-01

    A regional atmospheric climate model with multi-layer snow module (RACMO2) is forced at the lateral boundaries by global climate model (GCM) data to assess the future climate and surface mass balance (SMB) of the Antarctic ice sheet (AIS). Two different GCMs (ECHAM5 until 2100 and HadCM3 until 2200)

  13. Negative magnetic anomaly over Mt. Resnik, a subaerially erupted volcanic peak beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Behrendt, John C.; Finn, C.; Morse, D.L.; Blankenship, D.D.

    2006-01-01

    Mt. Resnik is one of the previously reported 18 subaerially erupted volcanoes (in the West Antarctic rift system), which have high elevation and high bed relief beneath the WAIS in the Central West Antarctica (CWA) aerogeophysical survey. Mt. Resnik lies 300 m below the surface of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS); it has 1.6 km topographic relief, and a conical form defined by radar ice-sounding of bed topography. It has an associated complex negative magnetic anomaly revealed by the CWA survey. We calculated and interpreted magnetic models fit to the Mt. Resnik anomaly as a volcanic source comprising both reversely and normally magnetized (in the present field direction) volcanic flows, 0.5-2.5-km thick, erupted subaerially during a time of magnetic field reversal. The Mt. Resnik 305-nT anomaly is part of an approximately 50- by 40-km positive anomaly complex extending about 30 km to the west of the Mt. Resnik peak, associated with an underlying source complex of about the same area, whose top is at the bed of the WAIS. The bed relief of this shallow source complex has a maximum of only about 400 m, whereas the modeled source is >3 km thick. From the spatial relationship we interpret that this source and Mt Resnik are approximately contemporaneous. Any subglacially (older?) erupted edifices comprising hyaloclastite or other volcanic debris, which formerly overlaid the source to the west, were removed by the moving WAIS into which they were injected as is the general case for the ???1000 volcanic centers at the base of the WAIS. The presence of the magnetic field reversal modeled for Mt. Resnik may represent the Bruhnes-Matayama reversal at 780 ka (or an earlier reversal). There are ???100 short-wavelength, steep-gradient, negative magnetic anomalies observed over the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS), or about 10% of the approximately 1000 short-wavelength, shallow-source, high-amplitude (50- >1000 nT) "volcanic" magnetic anomalies in the CWA survey. These

  14. GLAS/ICESat L2 Global Antarctic and Greenland Ice Sheet Altimetry Data V033

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — GLA12 contains the ice sheet elevation and elevation distribution corrected for geodetic and atmospheric affects calculated from algorithms fine-tuned for ice sheet...

  15. High variability of climate and surface mass balance induced by Antarctic ice rises

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lenaerts, Jan; Brown, Joel; van den Broeke, Michiel; Matsuoka, Kenichi; Drews, Reinhard; Callens, Denis; Philippe, Morgane; Gorodetskaya, I.V.; van Meijgaard, E.; Tijm - Reijmer, Catharina; Pattyn, F.; van Lipzig, N.P.M.

    2014-01-01

    Ice rises play key roles in buttressing the neighbouring ice shelves and potentially provide palaeoclimate proxies from ice cores drilled near their divides. Little is known, however, about their influence on local climate and surface mass balance (SMB). Here we combine 12 years (2001–12) of regiona

  16. Post-coring entrapment of modern air in polar ice cores collected near the firn-ice transition: evidence from CFC-12 measurements in Antarctic firn air and shallow ice cores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Aydin

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we report the first measurements of CFC-12 (CCl2F2 in air extracted from shallow ice cores along with firn air CFC-12 measurements from three Antarctic sites. The firn air data are consistent with the known atmospheric history of CFC-12. In contrast, the ice core samples collected near the firn-ice transition exhibit anomalously high CFC-12 levels. Together, the ice core and firn air data provide evidence for presence of modern air entrapped in shallow ice core samples. We propose that this is due to closure of open pores after drilling, entrapping modern air and resulting in elevated CFC-12 mixing ratios. Our measurements reveal the presence of open porosity below the depth at which firn air samples can be collected and demonstrate how the composition of bubble air in shallow ice cores can be altered during the post-drilling period through purely physical processes. These results have implications for investigations involving trace gas composition of bubbles in shallow ice cores.

  17. Estimating the extent of Antarctic summer sea ice during the Heroic Age of Exploration

    OpenAIRE

    Edinburgh, Tom; Day, Jonathan J.

    2016-01-01

    In stark contrast to the sharp decline in Arctic sea ice, there has been a steady increase in ice extent around Antarctica during the last three decades, especially in the Weddell and Ross Seas. In general, climate models do not to capture this trend and a lack of information about sea ice coverage in the pre-satellite period limits our ability to quantify the sensitivity of sea ice to climate change and robustly validate climate models. However, evidence of the presence and nature of sea ice...

  18. 南半球降水对南极海冰涛动异常的响应%RESPONSE OF SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE PRECIPITATION TO ANTARCTIC SEA ICE OSCILLATION ANOMALIES

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    窦挺峰; 效存德

    2013-01-01

    We analyzed the impact of Antarctic sea ice oscillation anomalies on Southern Hemisphere precipitation patterns using the global atmospheric general circulation model, NCAR/CAM3, and a climatic diagnosis method. We also conducted a preliminary investigation into the possible mechanism of action. Results showed that there was a significant response of precipitation to Antarctic sea ice oscillation anomalies, with a positive center over the Atlantic Ocean to the east of South America and a negative center over the Pacific Ocean to the west of South America. The spatial pattern was similar to the Antarctic sea ice oscillation. The results of numerical experiments indicated that sea ice oscillation anomalies can affect the middle troposphere by changing the surface heat flux which could drive the ascending branch of the Ferrel cell, strengthen or weaken the intensity of the Ferrel cell, and then influence the distribution of Southern Hemisphere precipitation. In the peripheral waters of the Amundsen-Bellingshausen Sea where sea ice concentration is lower than normal, upward heat flux could increase, making the ascending branch of the Ferrel cell abnormally strong. As a result, meridional transport would be enhanced and the descending branch strengthened, which would restrain the formation of precipitation in middle- and lower-latitude areas. In the peripheral waters of the Weddell Sea, where sea ice concentration is higher than normal, the responses of meridional transport and precipitation are almost the opposite. However, the response is much weaker at this longitude because of the land surface effect from the West Antarctic Peninsula and South America.%运用NCAR/CAM3全球大气环流模式,结合气候学诊断方法,分析了南极海冰涛动异常对南半球降水的影响,并对可能的作用机理进行了初步探讨.结果表明,南半球中纬度降水对海冰涛动异常的响应较为显著,且异常响应的空间分布与海冰涛动类似,分别

  19. Bimodal pattern of seismicity detected at the ocean margin of an Antarctic ice shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombardi, Denis; Benoit, Lionel; Camelbeeck, Thierry; Martin, Olivier; Meynard, Christophe; Thom, Christian

    2016-08-01

    In Antarctica, locally grounded ice, such as ice rises bordering floating ice shelves, plays a major role in the ice mass balance as it stabilizes the ice sheet flow from the hinterland. When in direct contact with the ocean, the ice rise buttressing effect may be altered in response of changing ocean forcing. To investigate this vulnerable zone, four sites near the boundary of an ice shelf with an ice rise promontory in Dronning Maud Land, East-Antarctica were monitored for a month in early 2014 with new instruments that include both seismic and GPS sensors. Our study indicated that this transition zone experiences periodic seismic activity resulting from surface crevassing during oceanic tide-induced flexure of the ice shelf. The most significant finding is the observation of apparent fortnightly tide-modulated low-frequency, long-duration seismic events at the seaward front of the ice rise promontory. A basal origin of these events is postulated with the ocean water surge at each new spring tide triggering basal crevassing or basal slip on a local bedrock asperity. Detection and monitoring of such seismicity may help identifying ice rise zones vulnerable to intensified ocean forcing.

  20. On the influence of model physics on simulations of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Massonnet

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Two hindcast (1983–2007 simulations are performed with the global, ocean-sea ice models NEMO-LIM2 and NEMO-LIM3 driven by atmospheric reanalyses and climatologies. The two simulations differ only in their sea ice component, while all other elements of experimental design (resolution, initial conditions, atmospheric forcing are kept identical. The main differences in the sea ice models lie in the formulation of the subgrid-scale ice thickness distribution, of the thermodynamic processes, of the sea ice salinity and of the sea ice rheology. To assess the differences in model skill over the period of investigation, we develop a set of metrics for both hemispheres, comparing the main sea ice variables (concentration, thickness and drift to available observations and focusing on both mean state and seasonal to interannual variability. Based upon these metrics, we discuss the physical processes potentially responsible for the differences in model skill. In particular, we suggest that (i a detailed representation of the ice thickness distribution increases the seasonal to interannual variability of ice extent, with spectacular improvement for the simulation of the recent observed summer Arctic sea ice retreats, (ii the elastic-viscous-plastic rheology enhances the response of ice to wind stress, compared to the classical viscous-plastic approach, (iii the grid formulation and the air-sea ice drag coefficient affect the simulated ice export through Fram Strait and the ice accumulation along the Canadian Archipelago, and (iv both models show less skill in the Southern Ocean, probably due to the low quality of the reanalyses in this region and to the absence of important small-scale oceanic processes at the models' resolution (~1°.

  1. Interdecadal oscillations of temperatures in 1903 - 2002 over the Antarctic Peninula

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    In the paper, by use of the monthly mean temperature data of 12 stations in the vicinity of Antarctic Peninsula, the temperature series during 1903-2000 is founded and the interdecadal oscillation of the temperature are discussed.The results indicate that 1) There are three jumps during 1919 - 1923, 1947-1953 and 1976 - 1982 in recent hundred years and the stable climate step between two jump points lasted about 30 years. 2) Annual mean temperature is increased by 0. 730℃ in an echelon during 1903 -2000, the warming extent is dissimilarity in each season, the maximum of warming is in the winter and the minimum of warming is in summer. 3) The ice decline trend is presented in the index of Ice concentration in the vicinity sea of Antarctic Peninsula, which shows a - 0.2053/10a drop, and the decrease trend of the ice concentration index in summer half year (Dee-May) is found much more obviously than that in winter half year (Jun-Nov). 4) There is better negative relationship between the temperature and the Ice concentration index in Antarctic Peninsula and its vicinity sea, which correlation coefficient of is exceed the significance level of 5% in summer, autumn and annual.

  2. Controls and variability of solute and sedimentary fluxes in Antarctic and sub-Antarctic Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwolinski, Zbigniew

    2015-04-01

    The currently prepared SEDIBUD Book on "Source-to-Sink Fluxes in Undisturbed Cold Environments" (edited by Achim A. Beylich, John C. Dixon and Zbigniew Zwolinski and published by Cambridge University Press) is summarizing and synthesizing the achievements of the International Association of Geomorphologists` (I.A.G./A.I.G.) Working Group SEDIBUD (Sediment Budgets in Cold Environments), which has been active since 2005 (http://www.geomorph.org/wg/wgsb.html). The book comprises five parts. One of them is part about sub-Antarctic and Antarctic Environments. This part "Sub-Antarctic and Antarctic Environments" describes two different environments, namely oceanic and continental ones. Each part contains results of research on environmental drivers and rates of contemporary solute and sedimentary fluxes in selected sites. Apart from describing the environmental conditions of the whole continent of Antarctica and sub-Antarctic islands (Zb.Zwolinski, M.Kejna, A.N.Lastochkin, A.Zhirov, S.Boltramovich) this part of the book characterizes terrestrial polar oases free from multi-year ice and snow covers (Zb.Zwolinski). The detailed results of geoecological and sedimentological research come from different parts of Antarctica. Antarctic continental shelf (E.Isla) is an example of sub-Antarctic oceanic environment. South Shetlands, especially King George Island (Zb.Zwolinski, M.Kejna, G.Rachlewicz, I.Sobota, J.Szpikowski), is an example of sub-Antarctic terrestrial environment. Antarctic Peninsula (G.Vieira, M.Francelino, J.C.Fernandes) and surroundings of McMurdo Dry Valleys (W.B.Lyons, K.A.Welch, J.Levy, A.Fountain, D.McKnight) are examples of Antarctic continental environments. The key goals of the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic book chapters are following: (i) identify the main environmental drivers and rates of contemporary solute and sedimentary fluxes, and (ii) model possible effects of projected climate change on solute and sedimentary fluxes in cold climate environments

  3. Subsurface imaging reveals a confined aquifer beneath an ice-sealed Antarctic lake

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dugan, H. A.; Doran, P. T.; Tulaczyk, S.;

    2015-01-01

    Liquid water oases are rare under extreme cold desert conditions found in the Antarctic McMurdo Dry Valleys. Here we report geophysical results that indicate that Lake Vida, one of the largest lakes in the region, is nearly frozen and underlain by widespread cryoconcentrated brine. A ground...

  4. Terrestrial evidence of melting of the Antarctic ice sheet during the last glacial period

    OpenAIRE

    Sawagaki, Takanobu; Hirakawa,Kazuomi

    2002-01-01

    Antarctica at the close of a millennium : proceedings of the 8th international symposium on Antarctic earth sciences, Wellington, New Zealand, July 1999, Edited by: J.A. Gamble, D.N.B. Skinner, and S. Henrys (Royal Society of New Zealand Bulletin, 35), ISBN: 1-877264-06-7, pp.404-414

  5. Seasonal evolution of supraglacial lakes on an East Antarctic outlet glacier

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langley, Emily S.; Leeson, Amber A.; Stokes, Chris R.; Jamieson, Stewart S. R.

    2016-08-01

    Supraglacial lakes are known to influence ice melt and ice flow on the Greenland ice sheet and potentially cause ice shelf disintegration on the Antarctic Peninsula. In East Antarctica, however, our understanding of their behavior and impact is more limited. Using >150 optical satellite images and meteorological records from 2000 to 2013, we provide the first multiyear analysis of lake evolution on Langhovde Glacier, Dronning Maud Land (69°11'S, 39°32'E). We mapped 7990 lakes and 855 surface channels up to 18.1 km inland (~670 m above sea level) from the grounding line and document three pathways of lake demise: (i) refreezing, (ii) drainage to the englacial/subglacial environment (on the floating ice), and (iii) overflow into surface channels (on both the floating and grounded ice). The parallels between these mechanisms, and those observed on Greenland and the Antarctic Peninsula, suggest that lakes may similarly affect rates and patterns of ice melt, ice flow, and ice shelf disintegration in East Antarctica.

  6. The Ice Core Data Gateway: The one stop gateway to ice core data held at the Antarctic Glaciological Data Center (AGDC), the World Data Center for Paleoclimatology, and the Arctic System Science's Data Coordination Center (ADCC).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, R.; Scambos, T.; Eakin, M.; Anderson, D.; McNeave, C.

    2002-12-01

    The Ice Core Data Gateway archives and distributes physical and geochemical data from ice cores collected in both the northern and southern hemispheres. Typical data sets include age-depth relationships, oxygen and hydrogen isotope concentrations, major element chemistry, accumulation rates and pollen. The data are in general presented as ASCII files with a short text metadata description. The archive is designed to provide access to ice core data sets over the long term, thereby making them available for comparison with future data: a critical component of change detection studies. By facilitating broad data access, the center promotes interdisciplinary scientific research. Investigators are encouraged to contribute data sets derived from ice cores to the Ice Core Data Gateway. Data center staff will work with you to compile data set documentation prior to making the data available to users. Contributing scientists are given prominent recognition in the documentation, and while the data center answers technical questions about format, citations for usage, etc., it can refer scientific questions to contributors if requested. Contributing your data to the Ice Core Data Gateway and associated data centers directly supports to NSF Office of Polar Programs Guidelines and Award Conditions for Scientific Data (http://www.nsf.gov/pubsys/ods/getpub.cfm?opp991). This effort is being coordinated with the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) Initiative and U.S. component of the International Trans Antarctic Science Expedition (ITASE), and includes data from the Arctic System Science Program's Greenland Ice Sheet Project 2 (GISP2) ice core.

  7. Surface undulations of Antarctic ice streams tightly controlled by bedrock topography

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. De Rydt

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Full Stokes models predict that fast-flowing ice streams transmit information about their bedrock topography most efficiently to the surface for basal undulations with length scales between 1 and 20 times the mean ice thickness. This typical behaviour is independent on the precise values of the flow law and sliding law exponents, and should be universally observable. However, no experimental evidence for this important theoretical prediction has been obtained so far, hence ignoring an important test for the physical validity of current-day ice flow models. In our work we use recently acquired airborne radar data for the Rutford Ice Stream and Evans Ice Stream, and we show that the surface response of fast-flowing ice is highly sensitive to bedrock irregularities with wavelengths of several ice thicknesses. The sensitivity depends on the slip ratio, i.e. the ratio between mean basal sliding velocity and mean deformational velocity. We find that higher values of the slip ratio generally lead to a more efficient transfer, whereas the transfer is significantly dampened for ice that attains most of its surface velocity by creep. Our findings underline the importance of bedrock topography for ice stream dynamics on spatial scales up to 20 times the mean ice thickness. Our results also suggest that local variations in the flow regime and surface topography at this spatial scale cannot be explained by variations in basal slipperiness.

  8. The zooplankton food web under East Antarctic pack ice - A stable isotope study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Zhongnan; Swadling, Kerrie M.; Meiners, Klaus M.; Kawaguchi, So; Virtue, Patti

    2016-09-01

    Understanding how sea ice serves zooplankton species during the food-limited season is crucial information to evaluate the potential responses of pelagic food webs to changes in sea-ice conditions in the Southern Ocean. Stable isotope analyses (13C/12C and 15N/14N) were used to compare the dietary preferences and trophic relationships of major zooplankton species under pack ice during two winter-spring transitions (2007 and 2012). During sampling, furcilia of Euphausia superba demonstrated dietary plasticity between years, herbivory when feeding on sea-ice biota, and with a more heterotrophic diet when feeding from both the sea ice and the water column. Carbon isotope signatures suggested that the pteropod Limacina helicina, small copepods Oithona spp., ostracods and amphipods relied heavily on sea-ice biota. Post larval E. superba and omnivorous krill Thysanoessa macrura consumed both water column and ice biota, but further investigations are needed to estimate the contribution from each source. Large copepods and chaetognaths overwintered on a water column-based diet. Our study suggests that warm and permeable sea ice is more likely to provide food for zooplankton species under the ice than the colder ice.

  9. Dry extraction of 14C02 and 14C0 from Antarctic ice

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roijen, J.J. van; Bintanja, R.; Borg, R. van den; Broeke, M.R. van den; Jong, A.F.M. de; Oerlemans, J.

    1994-01-01

    A dry extraction method was used to obtain trapped CO, of 2-5 kg ice samples from a blue ice zone in East Antarctica. In situ produced 14C was also extracted in 14C0, and 14C0 concentrations at a ratio of 3.4 f 0.9. Correction of trapped 14C0, from in situ resulted in ice dates in the range 5-15 ka.

  10. Phase relationships between orbital forcing and the composition of air trapped in Antarctic ice cores

    OpenAIRE

    Bazin, Lucie; Landais, Amaelle; Capron, Emilie; Masson-Delmotte, Valérie; Ritz, Catherine; Picard, Ghislain; Jouzel, Jean; Dumont, Marie; Leuenberger, Markus; Prié, Frédéric

    2016-01-01

    Orbital tuning is central for ice core chronologies beyond annual layer counting, available back to 60 ka (i.e. thousands of years before 1950) for Greenland ice cores. While several complementary orbital tuning tools have recently been developed using δ18Oatm, δO2⁄N2 and air content with different orbital targets, quantifying their uncertainties remains a challenge. Indeed, the exact processes linking variations of these parameters, measured in the air trapped in ice,...

  11. Phase relationships between orbital forcing and the composition of air trapped in Antarctic ice cores

    OpenAIRE

    Bazin, Lucie; Landais, Amaelle; Capron, Emilie; Masson-Delmotte, Valérie; Ritz, Catherine; Picard, Ghislain; Jouzel, Jean; Dumont, Marie; Leuenberger, Markus; Prié, Frédéric

    2016-01-01

    Orbital tuning is central for ice core chronologies beyond annual layer counting, available back to 60 ka (i.e. thousands of years before 1950) for Greenland ice cores. While several complementary orbital tuning tools have recently been developed using δ¹⁸Oatm, δO₂⁄N₂ and air content with different orbital targets, quantifying their uncertainties remains a challenge. Indeed, the exact processes linking variations of these parameters, measured in the air trapped in ice, to their orbital target...

  12. Modelling the mass balance and salinity of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice

    OpenAIRE

    Vancoppenolle, Martin

    2008-01-01

    Ice formed from seawater, called sea ice, is both an important actor in and a sensitive indicator of climate change. Covering 7% of the World Ocean, sea ice damps the atmosphere-ocean exchanges of heat, radiation and momentum in polar regions. It also affects the oceanic circulation at a global scale. Recent satellite and submarine observations systems indicate a sharp decrease in the extent and volume of Arctic sea ice over the last 30 years. In addition, climate models project drastic sea i...

  13. A 30,000-yr isotope climatic record from Antarctic ice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Simple glaciological conditions at Dome C in East Antarctica have made possible a more detailed and accurate interpretation of an ice core to 950 m depth spanning some 32,000 yr than that obtained from earlier ice cores. Measurements were made of the 180/160 ratios with a fully automatic mass spectrometer. 14C events in comparable marine core has enabled the reduction of accumulation rate during the last ice age to be estimated. Climatic events recorded in the ice core indicate that the warmest Holcene period in the Southern Hemisphere occurred at an earlier date than in the Northern Hemisphere. (author)

  14. Phase-sensitive radar on thick Antarctic ice - how well does it work?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binder, Tobias; Eisen, Olaf; Helm, Veit; Humbert, Angelika; Steinhage, Daniel

    2016-04-01

    Phase-sensitive radar (pRES) has become one of the mostly used tools to determine basal melt rates as well as vertical strain in ice sheets. Whereas most applications are performed on ice shelves, only few experiments were conducted on thick ice in Greenland or Antarctica. The technical constrains on an ice shelf to deduce basal melt rates are less demanding than on inland ice of more than 2 km thickness. First, the ice itself is usually only several 100s of meters thick; and, second, the reflection coefficient at the basal interface between sea water and ice is the second strongest one possible. Although the presence of marine ice with higher conductivities might increase attenuation in the lower parts, most experiments on shelves were successful. To transfer this technology to inland regions, either for the investigation of basal melt rates of subglacial hydrological networks or for determining vertical strain rates in basal regions, a reliable estimate of the current system performance is necessary. To this end we conducted an experiment at and in the vicinity of the EPICA deep ice core drill site EDML in Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. That site has been explored in extraordinary detail with different geophysical methods and provides an already well-studied ice core and borehole, in particular with respect to physical properties like crystal orientation fabric, dielectric properties and matching of internal radar horizons with conductivity signals. We present data from a commercially available pRES system initially recorded in January 2015 and repeated measurements in January 2016. The pRES data are matched to existing and already depth-calibrated airborne radar data. Apart from identifying prominent internal layers, e.g. the one originating from the deposits of the Toba eruption at around 75 ka, we put special focus on the identification of the basal reflection at multiple polarizations. We discuss the potential uncertainty estimates and requirements to

  15. Synergism between elevated pCO2 and temperature on the Antarctic sea ice diatom Nitzschia lecointei

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Torstensson

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Polar oceans are particularly susceptible to ocean acidification and warming. Diatoms play a significant role in sea ice biogeochemistry and provide an important food source to grazers in ice-covered oceans, especially during early spring. However, the ecophysiology of ice living organisms has received little attention in terms of ocean acidification. In this study, the synergism between temperature and partial pressure of CO2 (pCO2 was investigated in relationship to the optimal growth temperature of the Antarctic sea ice diatom Nitzschia lecointei. Diatoms were kept in cultures at controlled levels of pCO2 (∼390 and ∼960 μatm} and temperature (−1.8 and 2.5 °C for 14 days. Synergism between temperature and pCO2 was detected in growth rate and acyl lipid fatty acid content. Carbon enrichment only promoted (3% growth rate closer to the optimal growth, but not at the control temperature (−1.8 °C. Optimal growth rate was observed around 5 °C in a separate experiment. Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA comprised up to 98% of the total acyl lipid fatty acid pool at −1.8 °C. However, the total content of fatty acids was reduced by 39% at elevated pCO2, but only at the control temperature. PUFAs were reduced by 30% at high pCO2. Effects of carbon enrichment may be different depending on ocean warming scenario or season, e.g. reduced food quality for higher trophic levels during spring. Synergy between temperature and pCO2 may be particularly important in polar areas since a narrow thermal window generally limits cold-water organisms.

  16. Antarctic Ice Sheet Surface Mass Balance Estimates from 2003 TO 2015 Using Icesat and CRYOSAT-2 Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Huan; Hai, Gang; Chen, Lei; Liu, Shijie; Liu, Jun; Tong, Xiaohua; Li, Rongxing

    2016-06-01

    An assessment of Antarctic ice sheet surface mass balance from 2003 to 2015 has been carried out using a combination of ICESat data from 2003 to 2009 and CryoSat-2 data from 2010 to 2015. Both data sets are of L2 and are currently processed separately using different models. First, a repeat-track processing method that includes terms accounting for the trend and the first order fit of topography is applied to repeat-track measurements of all ICESat Campaigns. It uses the Least Squares fitting of the model to all observations in a box of 500 m x 500 m. The estimated trends in these boxes are then averaged inside a 30 km x 30 km cell. Similarly, the cells are used to estimate basin and ice sheet level surface elevation change trends. Mass balance calculating is performed at the cell level by multiplying the ice density by the volume change and then extended to the basin and the ice sheet level. Second, in CryoSat-2 data processing we applied a model within a cell of 5 km x 5 km considering that CryoSat-2 does not maintain repeated tracks. In this model the elevation trend, and a higher order topography are solved in an iterative way using the least squares technique. The mass change is computed at the cell level in the same way as the ICESat data. GIA correction is applied for both ICESat and CryoSat-2 estimates. Detailed information about the data processing, elevation and mass balance changes, and comparison with other studies will be introduced.

  17. Health aspects of Antarctic tourism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prociv, P

    1998-12-01

    Increasing numbers of seaborne tourists are visiting Antarctica, with most coming from the United States (3503 in 1996-97), Germany (777), and Australia (680; cf. 356 in 1994-95 and 410 in 1995-96). The impression among travel medicine clinicians is that, each year, more prospective travelers seek advice about the health demands of this type of adventure, mostly relating to fitness for travel, exposure to extreme cold, hazards in ice and snow, and other potential health risks. This is a recent phenomenon. While a regular shipping service had been established between the Falklands and the subantarctic islands of South Georgia and the South Shetlands by 1924, the first documented tourists accompanied an Argentine expedition to the South Orkneys in 1933.1 Commercial airline flights over these islands and the Antarctic Peninsula began in 1956, from Chile, and recreational cruises to the Peninsula began in 1958. Tourist numbers subsequently grew slowly, for what was clearly an exclusive and very expensive undertaking, with few ships available for these hazardous voyages. From 1957 to 1993, 37,000 tourists visited by sea, most seeing only the Peninsula.2 The dramatic recent growth in numbers is a consequence of the collapse of the Soviet Union. The small fleet of ice-strengthened research vessels and working icebreakers, which was made redundant by withdrawal of central government support from isolated communities and military activities along the northern coast of Siberia (and from Antarctic research bases), now accounts for the bulk of charter-cruise tourism to Antarctica, at competitive prices. According to the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators,3 7322 people traveled to Antarctica on commercially organized voyages in the 1996-97 season, and a record 10,000 shipborne visitors were expected for the 1997-98 season (November-March), traveling mainly from South America to the Peninsula on 15 ice-reinforced vessels, each carrying between 36 and 180

  18. Development of a Passive Microwave Surface Melt Record for Antarctica and Antarctic Ice Shelves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karmosky, C. C.; Reasons, J.; Morgan, N. J.

    2015-12-01

    Antarctica contains the largest mass of ice in the world and much time and energy has gone into researching the ice-ocean-atmosphere-land dynamics that, in a warming climate, have the potential to significantly affect sea levels throughout the world. While there are many datasets currently available to researchers examining sea ice extent and volume, glacier thickness, ice shelf retreat and expansion, and atmospheric variables such as temperature and wind speeds, there is not currently a dataset that offers surface melt extent of land ice in the southern hemisphere. The database outlined here uses the Cross-Polarized Gradient Ratio (XPGR) to show surface melt extent on a daily basis for all of Antarctica. XPGR utilizes passive microwave satellite imagery in the 19 GHz and 37GHz frequencies to determine the presence or absence of greater than 1% liquid water in the top layers of ice. Daily XPGR melt occurrence (1987-2014) was calculated for both the ice sheet as well as ice shelves on Antarctica, and is available as a GIS shapefile or asci text file.

  19. GLIMMER Antarctic Ice Sheet Model,an experimental research of moving boundary condition

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Tang Xueyuan; Sun Bo; Zhang Zhanhai; Li Yuansheng; Yang Qinghua

    2008-01-01

    A 3 D coupled ice sheet model,GLIMMER model is introduced,and an idealized ice sheet experiment under the EISMINT 1 criterion of moving boundary condition is presented.The results of the experiment reveal that for a steady state ice sheet profile the characteristic curves describe the process of evolution which are accordant with theoretical estimates.By solving the coupled thermodynamics equations of ice sheet,one may find the characteristic curves which derived from the conservation of the mass,energy and momentum to the ice flow profile.At the same time,an agreement,approximate to the GLIMMER case and the confirmed theoretical results,is found.Present study is explorihg work to introduceand discuss the handicaps of EISMINT criterion and GLIMMER,and prospect a few directions of the GLIMMER model.

  20. Influence of Antarctic Ice Sheet Lowering on the Southern Hemisphere Climate: Model Experiments Mimicking the Mid-Miocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Justino, Flavio; Stordal, Frode

    2013-04-01

    Conditions in Antarctica have varied substantially in the Earth's climate history. During the early Miocene (23-17 Ma), as suggested by records from the Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Sites 1090 and 1218, the ice volume was approximately 50%-125% of its present-day values. It has been argued that the rapid Cenozoic glaciation of Antarctica was induced by a decline in atmospheric CO2 from 4 times to 2 times preindustrial atmospheric level over a 10-Myr period. Minor contributions to this glaciation have also been associated with the opening of Southern Ocean gateways between Antarctica and the Australia-Tasmanian Passage, and Antarctica and the South America-Drake Passage, although it has been argued that the total amount of water owing in the Drake passage during the Eocene/Oligocene boundary may have been insufficient for reducing the poleward heat transport. The AIS is responsible for the greater amount of reflected solar radiation in the SH, and has significantly influenced meridional circulation due to its role in the characterization of the latitudinal thermal gradient. Moreover significant interaction between the polar and tropical regions through the link between the ENSO and West Antarctica has been demonstrated. It has been suggested that warming episodes during the Miocene were closely related to small changes in the Southern Ocean's freshwater balance. Paleorecords (ODP Sites 1090 and 1218) have also been utilized to disentangle the nature of deep-sea water mass. The analyses have demonstrated that warmer bottom water coexisted with increased production of Antarctic Bottom Water during the Plio-Pleistocene (1.6Ma) compared to today. We have investigated impacts of changes to the AIS topography on the climate system by using a coupled climate model, an Earth Model of Intermediate Complexity (EMIC), namely Speedy-Ocean (SPEEDO). We have designed experiments to inter-compare the nature of the atmospheric and oceanic circulation under modern conditions and

  1. Characteristics of change of the SST in the tropical western Pacific and the tropical Indian Ocean and its response to the change of the Antarctic ice area

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2000-01-01

    In this paper, by using ocean surface temperature data (COADS), the study is made of the characteristics of the monthly and annual changes of the SST in the tropical western Pacific and Indian Oceans, which have important influences on the climate change of the whole globe and the relation between ENSO(E1 Nino-Southern Oscillation) and the Antarctic ice area is also discussed. The result indicates that in the tropical western Pacific and the Indian Oceans the change of Sea Surface Temperture (SST) is conspicuous both monthly and armaully, and shows different change tendency between them. This result may be due to different relation in the vibration period of SST between the two Oceans. The better corresponding relationship is obvious in the annual change of SST in the tropical Indian Ocean with the occurrence El Nino and LaNlra. The change of the SST in the tropical western Pacific and the tropical Indian Oceans has a close relation to the Antarctic ice area, especially to the ice areas in the eastern-south Pole and Ross Sea, and its notable correlative relationship appears in 16 months when the SST of the tropical western Pacific and the Indian Oceans lag back the Antarctic ice area.

  2. Geoologic controls on the architecture of the Antarctic Ice Sheet's basal interface: New results from West and East Antarctica from long range geophysics (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, D. A.; Blankenship, D. D.; Greenbaum, J. S.; Richter, T.; Aitken, A.; Siegert, M. J.; Roberts, J. L.

    2013-12-01

    The ice-rock interface underlying the Antarctic Ice Sheet was shaped by interactions between underlying gondwanan geology and the overlying ice sheet. The ice sheet now preserves from sedimentary infill an incredibly rugged terrain which now plays a critical role in shaping subglacial hydrology, and thus shape ice sheet behavior. This terrain can by imaged through aerogeophysical means, in particular through ice penetrating radar, while airborne potential fields measurements provide insight into the geological framework that controlled erosion. Over the post IPY era, the density of airborne coverage is only now reaching the point where small scale structure can be identified and placed in context. Of particular importance is understanding the formation of focused erosional valleys, 30-50 km wide, representing now buried subglacial fjords. After initial data from the GIMBLE project in West Antarctica, and five years of sustained long range ICECAP surveys over East Antarctica , we now have a better view of the diversity of these features. The local erosion of these valleys, often cutting through significant topographic barriers, irregularly samples the underlying geology, provided a complex story in the sediment to the Antarctic margin. These valleys now provide the subglacial conduits for significant ice sheet catchments, in particular for subglacial water, including the inland catchments of DeVicq, Thwaites, and Pine Island Glaciers in West Antarctica, and Denman Glacier, Totten Glacier, Byrd Glacier and Cook Ice Shelf in East Antarctica. We find that these features, now sometimes hundreds of kilometers inland of the modern grounding line, often nucleate on or are aligned with structure inherited from the assembly of the Antarctic continent. While many of these features currently host active outlet glaciers or their tributaries, some do not, implying avenues for ice sheet change. In West Antarctica, we find a new deep connection between the coast and interior basin

  3. Relationship between Antarctic sea ice and the climate in summer of China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ma Lijuan; Lu Longhua; Bian Lingen

    2006-01-01

    The variations of sea ice are different in different regions in Antarctica,thus have different impacts on local atmospheric circulation and global climatic system. The relationships between the sea ice in Ross Sea and Weddell Sea regions and the synoptic climate in summer of China are investigated in this paper via diagnostic analysis methods by using global sea ice concentration gridded data covering Jan. 1968through Dec. 2002 obtained from Hadley Center, combined with Geopotential Height on 500hPa and 100hPa over North Hemisphere and monthly precipitation and air temperatures data covering the corresponding period over 160 meteorological stations in China obtained from CMA (China Meteorological Administration). Results disclose that both these two regions are of indicative meanings to the climate in summer of China. The Ross Sea Region is the key sea ice region to the precipitation in Northeast China in summer. More sea ice in this region in September will result in less precipitation in Northeast China in the following June. Weddell Sea Region is the key sea ice region to the air temperature in Northeast China in summer. More sea ice in this region in September will contribute to lower air temperature in Northeast China in the following June.

  4. Kinetics of conversion of air bubbles to air-hydrate crystals in antarctic ice

    CERN Document Server

    Price, P B

    1995-01-01

    The depth-dependence of bubble concentration at pressures above the transition to the air hydrate phase and the optical scattering length due to bubbles in deep ice at the South Pole are modeled using diffusion-growth data from the laboratory, taking into account the dependence of age and temperature on depth in the ice. The model fits the available data on bubbles in cores from Vostok and Byrd and on scattering length in deep ice at the South Pole. It explains why bubbles and air hydrate crystals co-exist in deep ice over a range of depths as great as 800 m and predicts that at depths below \\rm \\sim 1400 m the AMANDA neutrino observatory at the South Pole will operate unimpaired by light scattering from bubbles.

  5. Recent sea-level contributions of the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shepherd, Andrew; Wingham, Duncan

    2007-03-16

    After a century of polar exploration, the past decade of satellite measurements has painted an altogether new picture of how Earth's ice sheets are changing. As global temperatures have risen, so have rates of snowfall, ice melting, and glacier flow. Although the balance between these opposing processes has varied considerably on a regional scale, data show that Antarctica and Greenland are each losing mass overall. Our best estimate of their combined imbalance is about 125 gigatons per year of ice, enough to raise sea level by 0.35 millimeters per year. This is only a modest contribution to the present rate of sea-level rise of 3.0 millimeters per year. However, much of the loss from Antarctica and Greenland is the result of the flow of ice to the ocean from ice streams and glaciers, which has accelerated over the past decade. In both continents, there are suspected triggers for the accelerated ice discharge-surface and ocean warming, respectively-and, over the course of the 21st century, these processes could rapidly counteract the snowfall gains predicted by present coupled climate models. PMID:17363663

  6. The aeromagnetic method as a tool to identify Cenozoic magmatism in the West Antarctic Rift System beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet: a review; Thiel subglacial volcano as possible source of the ash layer in the WAISCOR

    Science.gov (United States)

    Behrendt, John C.

    2013-01-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) flows through the volcanically active West Antarctic Rift System (WARS). The aeromagnetic method has been the most useful geophysical tool for identification of subglacial volcanic rocks, since 1959–64 surveys, particularly combined with 1978 radar ice-sounding. The unique 1991–97 Central West Antarctica (CWA) aerogeophysical survey covering 354,000 km2 over the WAIS, (5-km line-spaced, orthogonal lines of aeromagnetic, radar ice-sounding, and aerogravity measurements), still provides invaluable information on subglacial volcanic rocks, particularly combined with the older aeromagnetic profiles. These data indicate numerous 100–>1000 nT, 5–50-km width, shallow-source, magnetic anomalies over an area greater than 1.2 × 106 km2, mostly from subglacial volcanic sources. I interpreted the CWA anomalies as defining about 1000 “volcanic centers” requiring high remanent normal magnetizations in the present field direction. About 400 anomaly sources correlate with bed topography. At least 80% of these sources have less than 200 m relief at the WAIS bed. They appear modified by moving ice, requiring a younger age than the WAIS (about 25 Ma). Exposed volcanoes in the WARS are The present rapid changes resulting from global warming, could be accelerated by subglacial volcanism.

  7. Identifying the AD 1257 Salamas volcanic event from micron-size tephra composition in two East Antarctic ice cores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petit, Jean Robert; Narcisi, Biancamaria; Batanova, Valentina G.; Joël, Savarino; Komorowski, Jean Christophe; Michel, Agnes; Metrich, Nicole; Besson, Pascale; Vidal, Celine; Sobolev, Alexander V.

    2016-04-01

    A wealth of valuable data about the history of explosive volcanic history can be extracted from polar ice successions. Both the volatile by-products and the solid silicate (tephra) components of volcanic plumes can be incorporated into snow layers, providing tools for chronostratigraphic correlations and for interpretation of climate-volcanism interactions. Volcanic events from low-latitude regions are of particular interest as the related sulphate aerosol travelling through the stratosphere can reach the polar sheets forming inter-hemispheric (Greenland and Antarctica) signals preserved in the ice. Within the glaciological record of globally significant volcanic markers, the AD1259 signal represents one of most prominent events over the last thousands years. Its source has been long debated. On the basis of recent field investigations (Lavigne et al., 2013; Vidal et al., 2015), it has been proposed that Mount Samalas on Lombok Island (Indonesia) represents the source responsible for the polar event. With the goal of bringing distal tephrochronological evidence to source identification, we have attempted to identify volcanic ash associated to the AD 1259 sulphate pulse. To this purpose we used firn and ice-core samples from two East Antarctic Plateau sites: Concordia-Dome C (75°06' S, 123°20' E, 3233 m) and Talos Dome (72°49'S, 159°11'E, 2315 m). Our high-resolution studies included sample processing in a Class 100 clean room using established ultra-clean procedures for insoluble microparticle analyses, Coulter counter grain size measurements, scanning electron microscope observations and the geochemical (major elements) composition from the recently set ISTERRE Jeol JXA 8230 Superprobe and calibrated for small particles analysis. Despite the difficulty of studying such minute fragments, within both cores we located and characterised multiple tiny (micron-size) glass shards concomitant with the volcanic peak. We present preliminary results alongside comparison

  8. Applicability of ERTS to Antarctic iceberg resources. [harvesting icebergs for fresh water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hult, J. L.; Ostrander, N. C.

    1974-01-01

    This investigation explores the applicability of ERTS to: (1) determine the Antarctic sea ice and environmental behavior that may influence the harvesting of icebergs, and (2) monitor iceberg locations, characteristics, and evolution. Imagery sampling in the western Antarctic between the Peninsula and the Ross Sea is used in the analysis. It is found that the potential applicability of ERTS to the research, planning, and harvesting operations can contribute importantly to the glowing promise derived from broader scope studies for the use of Antarctic icebergs to relieve a growing global thirst for fresh water. Several years of comprehensive monitoring will be necessary to characterize sea-ice and environmental behavior and iceberg evolution. Live ERTS services will assist harvesting control and claiming operations and offer a means for harmonizing entitlements to iceberg resources.

  9. Comparison of Surface Elevation Changes of the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets from Radar and Laser Altimetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwally, H. Jay; Brenner, Anita C.; Barbieri, Kristine; DiMarzio, John P.; Li, Jun; Robbins, John; Saba, Jack L.; Yi, Donghui

    2012-01-01

    A primary purpose of satellite altimeter measurements is determination of the mass balances of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets and changes with time by measurement of changes in the surface elevations. Since the early 1990's, important measurements for this purpose have been made by radar altimeters on ERS-l and 2, Envisat, and CryoSat and a laser altimeter on ICESat. One principal factor limiting direct comparisons between radar and laser measurements is the variable penetration depth of the radar signal and the corresponding location of the effective depth of the radar-measured elevation beneath the surface, in contrast to the laser-measured surface elevation. Although the radar penetration depth varies significantly both spatially and temporally, empirical corrections have been developed to account for this effect. Another limiting factor in direct comparisons is caused by differences in the size of the laser and radar footprints and their respective horizontal locations on the surface. Nevertheless, derived changes in elevation, dHldt, and time-series of elevation, H(t), have been shown to be comparable. For comparisons at different times, corrections for elevation changes caused by variations in the rate offrrn compaction have also been developed. Comparisons between the H(t) and the average dH/dt at some specific locations, such as the Vostok region of East Antarctic, show good agreement among results from ERS-l and 2, Envisat, and ICESat. However, Greenland maps of dHidt from Envisat and ICESat for the same time periods (2003-2008) show some areas of significant differences as well as areas of good agreement. Possible causes of residual differences are investigated and described.

  10. Nitrate and chloride in Antarctic ice cores - postdepositional effects and the preservation of atmospheric signals (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasteris, D.; McConnell, J. R.; Edwards, R.; Isaksson, E. D.; Albert, M. R.

    2013-12-01

    Continuous nitrate and chloride measurements have been made from an array of ice cores located in interior Dronning Maud Land that cover the last 2000 years. The average snow accumulation rates at the ice core sites range from 2.7 to 10 cm weq yr-1, which has enabled the study of how accumulation rate affects the preservation and diffusion of nitrate and chloride in the snow. High-resolution dating of the ice cores by tie-point matching with the WAIS Divide ice core has allowed the effects of temporal changes in accumulation rate to also be observed. Results show a strong linear dependence of nitrate concentration on site-average accumulation rate, suggesting that fresh snow concentrations and reemission rates of nitrate from the snowpack are homogenous across the study area. Bulk chloride to sodium ratios over scales greater than 1 m are close to bulk sea salt composition at all of the sites, suggesting that little net gain or loss of volatile chloride has occurred. However, the chloride signal is heavily diffused relative to sodium and the extent of diffusion does not increase with depth in the ice cores, suggesting that it is a near-surface phenomenon. Possible mechanisms behind the observed chloride diffusion pattern will be discussed. Lastly, a sustained decline in nitrate concentration occurred during the Little Ice Age (LIA, 1500-1900 C.E.), but the high-resolution snow accumulation records show that it is not caused by a decrease in accumulation rate during that time. The nitrate record is highly correlated with published methane isotope data from Antarctica (δ13CH4), suggesting that the decline during the LIA was caused by a decrease in a biomass burning nitrate source. Average nitrate concentration versus site-average inverse accumulation rate Composite time series of nitrate (thick black line), δ13CH4 (thin red line with diamonds), and black carbon (dashed black line).

  11. Historic cartographic evidence for Holocene changes in the Antarctic ice cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weihaupt, John G.

    1984-04-01

    Roughly 125,000 years ago, the earth underwent a climatic warming trend [Bergen and Van Couvering, 1979] called the Sangamon. This occurred more than 1 million years after the commencement of the Pleistocene time of great glacial advances which brought ice sheets of continental proportions to North America, northern Europe, and Siberia. That interglacial warming trend is the most pronounced climatic warming that we know during the period of the Ice Ages [Mitchell, 1977]. The Sangamon was followed, however, by a time of lower worldwide temperatures when the glaciers advanced once more and until a new warming trend commenced some 20,000-30,000 years ago. Earth's glaciers and ice sheets then began to retreat again, and about 10,000 years ago the last vestiges of these northern continental ice sheets withdrew as the latest warm interglacial, the Holocene, began. The Holocene continues today. Earth's atmospheric and oceanic temperatures rose in this time, well after Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon men lived in Asia and in Europe. The Holocene warming has been synchronous in both hemispheres and led to a worldwide climatic optimum, called the Hypsithermal interval, between 9,000 and 2,500 years ago [Deevey, 1957]. The Hypsithermal interval was the warmest part of the Holocene to date, and it largely preceded the Bronze Age, which commenced about 3,000 years ago. While the continental ice sheets of North America, Europe, and Asia disintegrated with the approach of the Holocene, the great ice sheets that cover Greenland and Antartica remained stable and largely unchanged at least since the warm Sangamon interglacial of 125,000 years ago.

  12. Autonomy Software Architecture for LORAX (Life On ice Robotic Antarctic eXplorer)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonsson, Ari; McGann, Conor; Pedersen, Liam; Iatauro, Michael; Rajagopalan, Srikanth

    2005-01-01

    LORAX is a robotic astrobiological study of the ice field surrounding the Carapace Nunatak near the Allan Hills in Antarctica. The study culminates in a l00km traverse, sampling the ice at various depths (from surface to 10cm) at over 100 sites to survey microbial ecology and to record environmental parameters. The autonomy requirements from LORAX are shared by many robotic exploration tasks. Consequently, the LORAX autonomy architecture is a general architecture for on-board planning and execution in environments where science return is to be maximized against resource limitations and other constraints.

  13. Proxies and measurement techinques for mineral dust in antarctic ice cores

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ruth..[], Urs; Bigler, Matthias

    2008-01-01

    To improve quantitative interpretation of ice core aeolian dust records, a systematic methodological comparison was made. This involved methods for water-insoluble particle counting (Coulter counter and laser-sensing particle detector), soluble ion analysis (ion chromatography and continuous flow...

  14. Population genetic variation of the Southern Ocean krill, Euphausia superba, in the Western Antarctic Peninsula region based on mitochondrial single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batta-Lona, Paola G.; Bucklin, Ann; Wiebe, Peter H.; Patarnello, Tomaso; Copley, Nancy J.

    2011-07-01

    The Southern Ocean krill, Euphausia superba, is one of the best-studied marine zooplankton species in terms of population genetic diversity and structure; with few exceptions, previous studies have shown the species to be genetically homogeneous at larger spatial scales. The goals of this study are to examine sub-regional scale population genetic diversity and structure of E. superba using molecular characters selected with this goal in mind, and to thereby examine hypotheses of the source(s) of recruitment for krill populations of the Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP). Collections were made throughout the WAP region during US GLOBEC cruises in austral fall, 2001 and 2002. A total of 585 E. superba (including all 6 furcilia larval stages, juveniles, and adults) was analyzed after confirmation of species identification using a competitive multiplexed species-specific PCR (SS-PCR) reaction based on mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (mtCOI) sequences. The molecular markers used were allele frequencies at single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) sites in the gene encoding mitochondrial Cytochrome b (cyt b). Four SNP sites that showed desirable patterns of allelic variation were selected; alleles were detected using a multiplexed single-base extension PCR protocol. A total of 22 SNP haplotypes (i.e., strings of polymorphisms at the four SNP sites) was observed; haplotype diversity (Hd)=0.811 (s.d.=0.008). Analysis of molecular variation within and among samples, areas (i.e., Marguerite Bay, Crystal Sound, shelf, and offshore) and collection years revealed no difference between 2001 and 2002 collections overall, although differences between 2001 and 2002 collections from Marguerite Bay explained 7.4% of the variance ( FST=0.072; p=0.002±0.001). Most of the variation (96.3%) occurred within samples each year, with no significant differentiation among areas. There was small, but significant differentiation among samples within areas in 2001 (4.6%; FST=0.045; p=0.015±0

  15. Synergism between elevated pCO2 and temperature on the Antarctic sea ice diatom Nitzschia lecointei

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Torstensson

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Polar oceans are particularly susceptible to ocean acidification and warming. Diatoms play a significant role in sea ice biogeochemistry and provide an important food source to grazers in ice-covered oceans, especially during early spring. However, the ecophysiology of ice-living organisms has received little attention in terms of ocean acidification. In this study, the synergism between temperature and partial pressure of CO2 (pCO2 was investigated in relationship to the optimal growth temperature of the Antarctic sea ice diatom Nitzschia lecointei. Diatoms were kept in cultures at controlled levels of pCO2 (∼390 and ∼960 μatm and temperature (−1.8 and 2.5 °C for 14 days. Synergism between temperature and pCO2 was detected in growth rate and acyl lipid fatty acid (FA content. Optimal growth rate was observed around 5 °C in a separate experiment. Carbon enrichment only promoted (6% growth rate closer to the optimal growth, but not at the control temperature (−1.8 °C. At −1.8 °C and at ∼960 μatm pCO2, the total FA content was reduced relative to the ∼390 μatm treatment, although no difference between pCO2 treatments was observed at 2.5 °C. A large proportion (97% of the total FAs comprised on average of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA at −1.8 °C. Cellular PUFA content was reduced at ∼960 relative to ∼390 μatm pCO2. Effects of carbon enrichment may be different depending on ocean warming scenario or season, e.g. reduced cellular FA content in response to elevated CO2 at low temperatures only, reflected as reduced food quality for higher trophic levels. Synergy between warming and acidification may be particularly important in polar areas since a narrow thermal window generally limits cold-water organisms.

  16. Beryllium-10 in the Taylor Dome ice core: Applications to Antarctic glaciology and paleoclimatology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Steig, E.J.

    1996-12-31

    An ice core was drilled at Taylor dome, East Antarctica, reaching to bedrock at 554 meters. Oxygen-isotope measurements reveal climatic fluctuations through the last interglacial period. To facilitate comparison of the Taylor Dome paleoclimate record with geologic data and results from other deep ice cores, several glaciological issues need to be addressed. In particular, accumulation data are necessary as input for numerical ice-flow-models, for determining the flux of chemical constituents from measured concentrations, and for calculation of the offset in age between ice and trapped air in the core. The analysis of cosmogenic beryllium-10 provides a geochemical method for constraining the accumulation-rate history at Taylor Dome. High-resolution measurements were made in shallow firn cores and snow pits to determine the relationship among beryllium-10 concentrations, wet and dry deposition mechanisms, and snow-accumulation rates. Comparison between theoretical and measured variations in deposition over the last 75 years constrains the relationship between beryllium-10 deposition and global average production rates. The results indicate that variations in geomagnetically-modulated production-rate do not strongly influence beryllium-10 deposition at Taylor Dome. Although solar modulation of production rate is important for time scales of years to centuries, snow-accumulation rate is the dominant control on ice-core beryllium-10 concentrations for longer periods. Results show that the Taylor Dome core can be used to provide new constraints on regional climate over the last 130,000 years, complementing the terrestrial and marine geological record from the Dry Valley, Transantarctic Mountains and western Ross Sea.

  17. Expedition to the Antarctic Peninsula in the 2012-2013 campaign with participation of the CIEMAT; Expedicion a la Peninsula Antartica en la campana 2012-2013 con participacion del CIEMAT

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schmid, T.; Lopez Martinez, J.; Duran Valsero, J. J.; O' Neill, T.

    2013-07-01

    Antarctica is the most remote, hostile and uninhabited continent on Earth. It is key to understand how our planet works and the impact we have on it. The Antarctic has many unique geological, glaciological and biological features. Its environment and its biological communities have a limited natural capacity for recovery from the alterations they undergo and therefore can be easily and irreversibly damaged. This is why the Antarctic Treaty and, in particular, the Protocol on Environmental Protection of the Antarctic Treaty (the Madrid Protocol) pay special attention to these matters. In this context, the effects of climate change and also the growing pressure of human activities, including scientific research and tourist visits, are reason for this attention. (Author)

  18. The importance of sea ice area biases in 21st century multimodel projections of Antarctic temperature and precipitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bracegirdle, Thomas J.; Stephenson, David B.; Turner, John; Phillips, Tony

    2015-12-01

    Climate models exhibit large biases in sea ice area (SIA) in their historical simulations. This study explores the impacts of these biases on multimodel uncertainty in Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 5 (CMIP5) ensemble projections of 21st century change in Antarctic surface temperature, net precipitation, and SIA. The analysis is based on time slice climatologies in the Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 future scenario (2070-2099) and historical (1970-1999) simulations across 37 different CMIP5 models. Projected changes in net precipitation, temperature, and SIA are found to be strongly associated with simulated historical mean SIA (e.g., cross-model correlations of r = 0.77, 0.71, and -0.85, respectively). Furthermore, historical SIA bias is found to have a large impact on the simulated ratio between net precipitation response and temperature response. This ratio is smaller in models with smaller-than-observed SIA. These strong emergent relationships on SIA bias could, if found to be physically robust, be exploited to give more precise climate projections for Antarctica.

  19. Cloning, Expression, Purification, and Characterization of Glutaredoxin from Antarctic Sea-Ice Bacterium Pseudoalteromonas sp. AN178

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quanfu Wang

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Glutaredoxins (Grxs are small ubiquitous redox enzymes that catalyze glutathione-dependent reactions to reduce protein disulfide. In this study, a full-length Grx gene (PsGrx with 270 nucleotides was isolated from Antarctic sea-ice bacterium Pseudoalteromonas sp. AN178. It encoded deduced 89 amino acid residues with the molecular weight 9.8 kDa. Sequence analysis of the amino acid sequence revealed the catalytic motif CPYC. Recombinant PsGrx (rPsGrx stably expressed in E. coli BL21 was purified to apparent homogeneity by Ni-affinity chromatography. rPsGrx exhibited optimal activity at 30°C and pH 8.0 and showed 25.5% of the activity at 0°C. It retained 65.0% of activity after incubation at 40°C for 20 min and still exhibited 37.0% activity in 1.0 M NaCl. These results indicated that rPsGrx was a typical cold active protein with low thermostability.

  20. Antarctic news clips, 1991

    Science.gov (United States)

    1991-08-01

    Published stories are presented that sample a year's news coverage of Antarctica. The intent is to provide the U.S. Antarctic Program participants with a digest of current issues as presented by a variety of writers and popular publications. The subject areas covered include the following: earth science; ice studies; stratospheric ozone; astrophysics; life science; operations; education; antarctic treaty issues; and tourism

  1. Surface energy balance, clouds and radiation over Antarctic sea ice during Austral spring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vancoppenolle, M.; Ackley, S. F.; Perovich, D. K.; Tison, J.-L.

    2009-04-01

    In Sept-Oct 2007, a sea ice drift station, Ice Station Belgica, was established in the Bellingshausen Sea. Over twenty-seven days, measurements of meteorological variables, radiation and surface albedo were performed by combining ship-based and in situ data, in order to assess the surface energy balance. Visual observations of the state of the sky (clear or overcast) were also done. The sampled floe was characterized by thin (0.6m) and medium thick (1.1m) first-year ice and older, second-year ice of greater than 2m mean thickness. Snow cover depth varied from zero cm over the new ice to > 0.8m on the second year ice. The weather at Ice Station Belgica was characterized by typical spring conditions. Synoptic variability was mostly driven by the wind direction, which determines the origin - continental or oceanic - of the air masses. Under northerly winds, warm (from -5 to 0 °C) and wet (relative humidity from 90 to 100%) oceanic air was advected on the floe. Under southerlies, cold (from -20 to -10°C) and dry (70-85 %) continental air was brought on site. In turn, this also determined the state of the sky, with clear (overcast) skies mostly associated to continental (oceanic) weather. The incoming solar radiation was on average 124 W/m², with a trend of 3.5 W/m² over the ice station, while the incoming longwave radiation was on average 227 W/m², with no trend. As expected, the incoming solar radiation shows a marked diurnal cycle, while LW does not. The day-to-day variability in radiation is largely determined by changes in the state of the sky. Broadband surface albedo was measured in situ, using a bidirectional pyranometer, on two sites respectively covered by thin (10-15 cm) and deep (30-40 cm) snow. Both sites were visited every 5 days and albedo was measured on 6 points, spaced by 5 m on an 25-m long "albedo" line. Snow depth was also monitored every meter along the albedo line. The mean albedo is 0.83 ± 0.05. Variations around this mean value are

  2. Interannual surface evolution of an Antarctic blue-ice moraine using multi-temporal DEMs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westoby, Matthew J.; Dunning, Stuart A.; Woodward, John; Hein, Andrew S.; Marrero, Shasta M.; Winter, Kate; Sugden, David E.

    2016-06-01

    Multi-temporal and fine-resolution topographic data products are increasingly used to quantify surface elevation change in glacial environments. In this study, we employ 3-D digital elevation model (DEM) differencing to quantify the topographic evolution of a blue-ice moraine complex in front of Patriot Hills, Heritage Range, Antarctica. Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) was used to acquire multiple topographic datasets of the moraine surface at the beginning and end of the austral summer season in 2012/2013 and during a resurvey field campaign in 2014. A complementary topographic dataset was acquired at the end of season 1 through the application of structure from motion with multi-view stereo (SfM-MVS) photogrammetry to a set of aerial photographs acquired from an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). Three-dimensional cloud-to-cloud differencing was undertaken using the Multiscale Model to Model Cloud Comparison (M3C2) algorithm. DEM differencing revealed net uplift and lateral movement of the moraine crests within season 1 (mean uplift ~ 0.10 m) and surface lowering of a similar magnitude in some inter-moraine depressions and close to the current ice margin, although we are unable to validate the latter. Our results indicate net uplift across the site between seasons 1 and 2 (mean 0.07 m). This research demonstrates that it is possible to detect dynamic surface topographical change across glacial moraines over short (annual to intra-annual) timescales through the acquisition and differencing of fine-resolution topographic datasets. Such data offer new opportunities to understand the process linkages between surface ablation, ice flow and debris supply within moraine ice.

  3. Very little in situ produced radiocarbon retained in accumulating Antarctic ice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ice samples from Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica, were analyzed for 14CO2 and 14CO by accelerator mass spectrometry. Only a small amount (∼2%) of in situ produced radiocarbon was detected. The calibrated radiocarbon ages, corrected for in situ produced 14C, are in fair agreement with age estimates obtained from stratigraphical methods added to a gas inclusion model. The ages of the entrapped air range from recent to ca. 1200 AD

  4. Getting around Antarctica: new high-resolution mappings of the grounded and freely-floating boundaries of the Antarctic ice sheet created for the International Polar Year

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Bindschadler

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Two ice-dynamic transitions of the Antarctic ice sheet – the boundary of grounded ice features and the freely-floating boundary – are mapped at 15-m resolution by participants of the International Polar Year project ASAID using customized software combining Landsat-7 imagery and ICESat/GLAS laser altimetry. The grounded ice boundary is 53 610 km long; 74 % abuts to floating ice shelves or outlet glaciers, 19 % is adjacent to open or sea-ice covered ocean, and 7 % of the boundary ice terminates on land. The freely-floating boundary, called here the hydrostatic line, is the most landward position on ice shelves that expresses the full amplitude of oscillating ocean tides. It extends 27 521 km and is discontinuous. Positional (one-sigma accuracies of the grounded ice boundary vary an order of magnitude ranging from ±52 m for the land and open-ocean terminating segments to ±502 m for the outlet glaciers. The hydrostatic line is less well positioned with errors over 2 km. Elevations along each line are selected from 6 candidate digital elevation models based on their agreement with ICESat elevation values and surface shape inferred from the Landsat imagery. Elevations along the hydrostatic line are converted to ice thicknesses by applying a firn-correction factor and a flotation criterion. BEDMAP-compiled data and other airborne data are compared to the ASAID elevations and ice thicknesses to arrive at quantitative (one-sigma uncertainties of surface elevations of ±3.6, ±9.6, ±11.4, ±30 and ±100 m for five ASAID-assigned confidence levels. Over one-half of the surface elevations along the grounded ice boundary and over one-third of the hydrostatic line elevations are ranked in the highest two confidence categories. A comparison between ASAID-calculated ice shelf thicknesses and BEDMAP-compiled data indicate a thin-ice bias of 41.2 ± 71.3 m for the ASAID ice thicknesses. The relationship between the seaward offset of the hydrostatic line

  5. Getting around Antarctica: New High-Resolution Mappings of the Grounded and Freely-Floating Boundaries of the Antarctic Ice Sheet Created for the International Polar Year

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bindschadler, R.; Choi, H.; Wichlacz, A.; Bingham, R.; Bohlander, J.; Brunt, K.; Corr, H.; Drews, R.; Fricker, H.; Hall, M.; Hindmarsh, R.; Kohler, J.; Padman, L.; Rack, W.; Rotschkly, G.; Urbini, S.; Vornberger, P.; Young, N.

    2011-01-01

    Two ice-dynamic transitions of the Antarctic ice sheet - the boundary of grounded ice features and the freely-floating boundary - are mapped at 15-m resolution by participants of the International Polar Year project ASAID using customized software combining Landsat-7 imagery and ICESat/GLAS laser altimetry. The grounded ice boundary is 53 610 km long; 74% abuts to floating ice shelves or outlet glaciers, 19% is adjacent to open or sea-ice covered ocean, and 7% of the boundary ice terminates on land. The freely-floating boundary, called here the hydrostatic line, is the most landward position on ice shelves that expresses the full amplitude of oscillating ocean tides. It extends 27 521 km and is discontinuous. Positional (one-sigma) accuracies of the grounded ice boundary vary an order of magnitude ranging from +/- 52m for the land and open-ocean terminating segments to +/- 502m for the outlet glaciers. The hydrostatic line is less well positioned with errors over 2 km. Elevations along each line are selected from 6 candidate digital elevation models based on their agreement with ICESat elevation values and surface shape inferred from the Landsat imagery. Elevations along the hydrostatic line are converted to ice thicknesses by applying a firn-correction factor and a flotation criterion. BEDMAP-compiled data and other airborne data are compared to the ASAID elevations and ice thicknesses to arrive at quantitative (one-sigma) uncertainties of surface elevations of +/-3.6, +/-9.6, +/-11.4, +/-30 and +/-100m for five ASAID-assigned confidence levels. Over one-half of the surface elevations along the grounded ice boundary and over one-third of the hydrostatic line elevations are ranked in the highest two confidence categories. A comparison between ASAID-calculated ice shelf thicknesses and BEDMAP-compiled data indicate a thin-ice bias of 41.2+/-71.3m for the ASAID ice thicknesses. The relationship between the seaward offset of the hydrostatic line from the grounded ice

  6. Micrometeorites in Antarctic ice detected by Ir. Estimation of 120k year old accretion rate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The accretion rate of micrometeorites (MMs) was estimated from Ir contents in snow around Dome Fuji Station and ice shards obtained during ice core drilling at Dome Fuji Station, Antarctica. The snow and ice shards were melted and filtered from the residues. Although MMs were not found on filters, we tried to detect them from the residues as Ir peaks determined by instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA). Although Ir is very rare in the earth's crust, its concentration is high in extraterrestrial matter (e.g., chondrites). Trace amounts of Ir can be easily detected by INAA, because the cross section of Ir is relatively large (e.g., 309 barn). The accretion rates were estimated for 120k year ago, 5k year ago and at present, as (3.2 ± 0.9) x 102 t/year (8.6 ± 0.18) x 103 t/year and (1.3 ± 0.10) x 103 t/year, respectively. These estimates were comparable to those of previous studies, however the rate of 120k year ago was approximately an order of magnitudes lower than the others. (author)

  7. What Can Sea Ice Reconstructions Tell Us About Recent Regional Trends in Sea Ice Around Antarctica?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abram, N.; Mulvaney, R.; Murphy, E. J.

    2014-12-01

    Satellite observations of recent sea ice changes around Antarctica reveal regionally heterogeneous trends, but with an overall increasing trend in Antarctic-wide sea ice extent. Proposed mechanisms to account for increasing sea ice extent around Antarctica include freshening of the ocean surface due to melting of land ice and northward wind drift associated with strengthening of the Southern Ocean westerly winds. In this study we use extended, regional reconstructions of Antarctic sea ice changes from ice core chemistry and reanalysis of the South Orkney fast ice series to examine long-term relationships between Antarctic regional sea ice changes and surface winds. The formation and breakout of fast ice at the South Orkney islands (Murphy et al., 2014) indicates that westerly wind strength is an important factor in determining spring sea ice retreat in the Weddell Sea region. In contrast, autumn sea ice formation is more strongly influenced by long-lived ocean temperature anomalies and sea ice migration from the previous year, highlighting the multiple influences that act at different times of the year to determine the overall extent of winter sea ice. To assess the hypothesized role of westerly wind changes in driving opposing patterns of recent sea ice change between the Ross Sea and Bellingshausen Sea, we also present a comparison of ice core MSA evidence for sea ice changes derived from the James Ross Island (Mulvaney et al., 2012) and Erebus Saddle (Rhodes et al., 2012) ice cores, and view this in the context of trends in the Southern Annular Mode (Abram et al., 2014) over the last 200 years. References: Abram et al., 2014. Evolution of the Southern Annular Mode over the past millennium. Nature Climate Change. doi: 10.1038/nclimate2235 Mulvaney et al., 2012. Recent Antarctic Peninsula warming relative to Holocene temperature and ice-shelf history. Nature. doi: 10.1038/nature11391 Murphy et al., 2014. Variability of sea ice in the northern Weddell Sea during

  8. Capillary ion chromatography with on-column focusing for ultra-trace analysis of methanesulfonate and inorganic anions in limited volume Antarctic ice core samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, Estrella Sanz; Poynter, Sam; Curran, Mark; Haddad, Paul R; Shellie, Robert A; Nesterenko, Pavel N; Paull, Brett

    2015-08-28

    Preservation of ionic species within Antarctic ice yields a unique proxy record of the Earth's climate history. Studies have been focused until now on two proxies: the ionic components of sea salt aerosol and methanesulfonic acid. Measurement of the all of the major ionic species in ice core samples is typically carried out by ion chromatography. Former methods, whilst providing suitable detection limits, have been based upon off-column preconcentration techniques, requiring larger sample volumes, with potential for sample contamination and/or carryover. Here, a new capillary ion chromatography based analytical method has been developed for quantitative analysis of limited volume Antarctic ice core samples. The developed analytical protocol applies capillary ion chromatography (with suppressed conductivity detection) and direct on-column sample injection and focusing, thus eliminating the requirement for off-column sample preconcentration. This limits the total sample volume needed to 300μL per analysis, allowing for triplicate sample analysis with <1mL of sample. This new approach provides a reliable and robust analytical method for the simultaneous determination of organic and inorganic anions, including fluoride, methanesulfonate, chloride, sulfate and nitrate anions. Application to composite ice-core samples is demonstrated, with coupling of the capillary ion chromatograph to high resolution mass spectrometry used to confirm the presence and purity of the observed methanesulfonate peak.

  9. Ranges of moisture-source temperatures estimated from Antarctic ice core stable isotope records over the glacial-interglacial cycles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Uemura

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available A single isotope ratio (δD or δ18O of water is widely used as an air-temperature proxy in Antarctic ice cores. These isotope ratios, however, do not solely depend on air-temperature but also on the extent of distillation of heavy isotopes out of atmospheric water vapor from an oceanic moisture source to a precipitation site. The temperature changes at the oceanic moisture source (ΔTsource and at the precipitation site (ΔTsite can be retrieved by using deuterium-excess (d data. A new d record from Dome Fuji, Antarctica is produced spanning the past 360 000 yr and compared with records from Vostok and EPICA Dome C ice cores. To retrieve ΔTsource and ΔTsite information, different linear regression equations have been proposed using theoretical isotope distillation models. A major source of uncertainty lies in the coefficient of regression, βsite which is related to the sensitivity of d to ΔTsite. We show that different ranges of temperature and selections of isotopic model outputs may increase the value of βsite by a factor of two. To explore the impacts of this coefficient on the reconstructed temperatures, we apply for the first time the exact same methodology to the isotope records from the three Antarctica ice cores. We show that uncertainties in the βsite coefficient strongly affect (i the glacial-interglacial magnitude of ΔTsource; (ii the imprint of obliquity in ΔTsource and in the site-source temperature gradient. By contrast, we highlight the robustness of ΔTsite reconstruction using water isotopes records.

  10. Rift in Antarctic Glacier: a Unique Chance to Study Ice Shelf Retreat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howat, Ian M.; Jezek, Ken; Studinger, Michael; Macgregor, Joseph A.; Paden, John; Floricioiu, Dana; Russell, Rob; Linkswiler, Matt; Dominguez, Roseanne T.

    2012-01-01

    It happened again, but this time it was caught in the act. During the last week of September 2011 a large transverse rift developed across thefloating terminus of West Antarcticas PineIsland Glacier, less than 5 years after its lastlarge calving event, in 2007 (Figure 1). PineIsland Glaciers retreat has accelerated substantiallyin the past 2 decades, and it is nowlosing 50 gigatons of ice per year, or roughly 25 of Antarcticas total annual contributionto sea level rise [Rignot et al., 2008]. The glaciers recent accelerated retreat is likely triggered by ocean warming and increased submarine melting. As such, it is of significant interest to glaciologists and of heightened societal relevance.

  11. Analysis of Antarctic Ice-Sheet Mass Balance from ICESat Measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwally, H. Jay; Li, Jun; Robbins, John; Saba, Jack L.; Yi, Donghui

    2011-01-01

    If protoplanets formed from 10 to 20 kilometer diameter planetesimals in a runaway accretion process prior to their oligarchic growth into the terrestrial planets, it is only logical to ask where these planetesimals may have formed in order to assess the initial composition of the Earth. We have used Weidenschilling's model for the formation of comets (1997) to calculate an efficiency factor for the formation of planetesimals from the solar nebula, then used this factor to calculate the feeding zones that contribute to material contained within 10, 15 and 20 kilometer diameter planetesimals at 1 A.V. as a function of nebular mass. We find that for all reasonable nebular masses, these planetesimals contain a minimum of 3% water as ice by mass. The fraction of ice increases as the planetesimals increase in size and as the nebular mass decreases, since both factors increase the feeding zones from which solids in the final planetesimals are drawn. Is there really a problem with the current accretion scenario that makes the Earth too dry, or is it possible that the nascent Earth lost significant quantities of water in the final stages of accretion?

  12. Antarctic research today

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    With the appetite for living and dead natural resources, the political and economical interest concerning the Antarctic increases throughout the world. There are three interrelated main subjects accounting for the international interest: The shelf tectonic puzzle of the original continent of Gondwana, where the Antarctic is situated in the centre, between Australia, South Africa and South America, and the hopes concerning the existence of mineral resources under the ice of the Antarctic are based thereon. The Antarctic forms the biggest unified living space of the world. (orig.)

  13. Early spawning of Antarctic krill in the Scotia Sea is fuelled by “superfluous” feeding on non-ice associated phytoplankton blooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Katrin; Atkinson, Angus; Venables, Hugh J.; Pond, David W.

    2012-01-01

    The spawning success of Antarctic krill ( Euphausia superba) is generally assumed to depend on substantial winter sea ice extent, as ice biota can serve as a food source during winter/spring and the seasonal ice melt conditions the upper water column for extensive phytoplankton blooms. However, direct observations during spring are rare. Here we studied krill body condition and maturity stage in relation to feeding (i.e. stomach fullness, diet, absorption of individual fatty acids and defecation rate) across the Scotia Sea in November 2006. The phytoplankton concentrations were low at the marginal ice zone (MIZ) in the southern Scotia Sea (Stn. 1, 2, and 3), high in open waters of the Southern Antarctic Circumpolar Current Front (SACCF) in the central Scotia Sea (Stn. 5), and moderate further north (Stn. 6 and 7). Krill had low lipid reserves (˜6.5% of dry mass, DM), low mass:length ratios (˜1.7 mg DM mm -1), and small digestive glands (˜7% of total DM) near the ice edge. The stomachs contained lithogenic particles, diatom debris, and bacterial fatty acids, but low proportions of diatom-indicating fatty acids, which suggest that these krill were feeding on detritus rather than on fresh ice algae. In the SACCF, krill had higher lipid reserves (˜10% of DM), high mass:length ratios (˜2.2 mg DM mm -1), and large digestive glands (˜16% of total DM). Stomach content and tissue composition indicate feeding on diatoms. In the north, moderate food concentrations co-occurred with low lipid reserves in krill, and moderate mass:length ratios and digestive gland sizes. Only in the phytoplankton bloom in the SACCF had the mating season already started and some females were about to spawn. Based on the way krill processed their food at the different stations, we indicate two mechanisms that can lead to fast regeneration of body reserves and oocyte maturation in E. superba. One is "superfluous" feeding at high food concentrations, which maximises the overall nutrient gain

  14. Use of high frequency radiometer and altimeter on board AMSU-B, AMSR-E and Altika/SARAL for observations of the Antarctic ice sheet surface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adodo, Fifi; Picard, Ghislain; Remy, Frederique

    2016-04-01

    Snow surface properties quickly evolved according to local weather conditions, therefore are climate change indicator. These snow surface properties such as grain size, density, accumulation rate etc... are very important for evaluation and monitoring of the impact of global warming on the polar ice sheet. In order to retrieve these snowpack properties, we explore the high frequency microwave radiometer variable( Brightness Temperature (Tb)) on the Antarctic ice sheet on-board AMSU-B , AMSR-E in combination with the ALTIKA altimeter (37GHz) waveform parameters (Backscatter coefficient, Trailing edge Slope(TeS) and Leading edge Width(LeW)). We compare the radiometer brightness temperature to calculations with the DMRT- ML radiative transfer model which simulates brightness temperature in vertical and horizontal polarizations. With some assumptions, this combination allows a good retrieval of snowpack properties. We showed positive trend of the grains size on the Antarctic plateau especially at Dome C during the two last decades. This work will provide a higher accuracy of the estimation of snowpack surfaces properties and contribute to monitoring the ice sheet surface mass balance, well constraining of meteorological and glaciological models.

  15. Solution structures, dynamics, and ice growth inhibitory activity of peptide fragments derived from an antarctic yeast protein.

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    Syed Hussinien H Shah

    Full Text Available Exotic functions of antifreeze proteins (AFP and antifreeze glycopeptides (AFGP have recently been attracted with much interest to develop them as commercial products. AFPs and AFGPs inhibit ice crystal growth by lowering the water freezing point without changing the water melting point. Our group isolated the Antarctic yeast Glaciozyma antarctica that expresses antifreeze protein to assist it in its survival mechanism at sub-zero temperatures. The protein is unique and novel, indicated by its low sequence homology compared to those of other AFPs. We explore the structure-function relationship of G. antarctica AFP using various approaches ranging from protein structure prediction, peptide design and an