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Sample records for antarctic regions

  1. 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

  2. Regional Antarctic snow accumulation over the past 1000 years

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    E. R. Thomas

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Here we present Antarctic snow accumulation variability at the regional scale over the past 1000 years. A total of 79 ice core snow accumulation records were gathered and assigned to seven geographical regions, separating the high-accumulation coastal zones below 2000 m of elevation from the dry central Antarctic Plateau. The regional composites of annual snow accumulation were evaluated against modelled surface mass balance (SMB from RACMO2.3p2 and precipitation from ERA-Interim reanalysis. With the exception of the Weddell Sea coast, the low-elevation composites capture the regional precipitation and SMB variability as defined by the models. The central Antarctic sites lack coherency and either do not represent regional precipitation or indicate the model inability to capture relevant precipitation processes in the cold, dry central plateau. Our results show that SMB for the total Antarctic Ice Sheet (including ice shelves has increased at a rate of 7 ± 0.13 Gt decade−1 since 1800 AD, representing a net reduction in sea level of ∼ 0.02 mm decade−1 since 1800 and ∼ 0.04 mm decade−1 since 1900 AD. The largest contribution is from the Antarctic Peninsula (∼ 75 % where the annual average SMB during the most recent decade (2001–2010 is 123 ± 44 Gt yr−1 higher than the annual average during the first decade of the 19th century. Only four ice core records cover the full 1000 years, and they suggest a decrease in snow accumulation during this period. However, our study emphasizes the importance of low-elevation coastal zones, which have been under-represented in previous investigations of temporal snow accumulation.

  3. [Microbiological analysis of terrestrial biotopes of the Antarctic region].

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    Tashirev, A B; Romanovskaia, V A; Rokitko, P V; Shilin, S O; Chernaia, N A; Tashireva, A A

    2010-01-01

    Microbiological analysis has been made of 120 samples from biotopes of the western coast of the Antarctic peninsula (Rasmussen cope, Tuxen cope, Waugh mountain), Argentine archipelago islands (Galindez, Skua, Corner, Barchans, Irizar, Uruguay, Cluls, Three Little Pigs, King-George), as well as neighbouring islands (Petermann--on the north, a group of Jalour islands--on the east, Berthelot--on the south-east); and more remote islands (Darboux, Lippmann, Booth). It was found out that the total number of chemoorganotrophic aerobic microorganisms was 10(6) - 10(8) cells/g of soil, that was by 2-3 orders lower than in the regions with temperate climate. One can observe a tendency of decreasing the quantity of chemoorganotrophic microorganisms in the Antartic biotopes (cells/g of a sample) in the following order: soil (1 x 10(7) - 8 x 10(8)), underground part of moss (1 x 10(6) - 5 x 10(7)), grass Deschampsia antarctica (10(6) - 10(8), slit of fresh-water reservoir (10(5) - 10(7)), ground part of moss (10(3) - 10(6)), lichens (10(3) - 10(6)). Representatives of several phylogenetic lines: Proteobacteria (genera Pseudomonas, Methylobacterium, Enterobacter), Firmicutes (genera Bacillus, Staphylococcus), Actinobacteria (genera Brevibacterium, Actinomyces, Streptomyces) have been found in the Antarctic samples. As a rule, genera of bacteria found in the Antarctic Region are widely distributed in different regions of the Earth with temperate climate. Microorganisms similar to the species Exophiala nigra (Issatsch.) Haats et de Hoog 1999, which was first detected 100 years ago by Academician B.L. Isachenko in the Arctic region water, were also isolated from biofilms on vertical rocks of the Galindez Island as well as from the soil of the Irizar Island.

  4. Development of a Regional Glycerol Dialkyl Glycerol Tetraether (GDGT) - Temperature Calibration for Antarctic and sub-Antarctic Lakes

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    Roberts, S. J.; Foster, L. C.; Pearson, E. J.; Steve, J.; Hodgson, D.; Saunders, K. M.; Verleyen, E.

    2016-12-01

    Temperature calibration models based on the relative abundances of sedimentary glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (GDGTs) have been used to reconstruct past temperatures in both marine and terrestrial environments, but have not been widely applied in high latitude environments. This is mainly because the performance of GDGT-temperature calibrations at lower temperatures and GDGT provenance in many lacustrine settings remains uncertain. To address these issues, we examined surface sediments from 32 Antarctic, sub-Antarctic and Southern Chilean lakes. First, we quantified GDGT compositions present and then investigated modern-day environmental controls on GDGT composition. GDGTs were found in all 32 lakes studied. Branched GDGTs (brGDGTs) were dominant in 31 lakes and statistical analyses showed that their composition was strongly correlated with mean summer air temperature (MSAT) rather than pH, conductivity or water depth. Second, we developed the first regional brGDGT-temperature calibration for Antarctic and sub-Antarctic lakes based on four brGDGT compounds (GDGT-Ib, GDGT-II, GDGT-III and GDGT-IIIb). Of these, GDGT-IIIb proved particularly important in cold lacustrine environments. Our brGDGT-Antarctic temperature calibration dataset has an improved statistical performance at low temperatures compared to previous global calibrations (r2=0.83, RMSE=1.45°C, RMSEP-LOO=1.68°C, n=36 samples), highlighting the importance of basing palaeotemperature reconstructions on regional GDGT-temperature calibrations, especially if specific compounds lead to improved model performance. Finally, we applied the new Antarctic brGDGT-temperature calibration to two key lake records from the Antarctic Peninsula and South Georgia. In both, downcore temperature reconstructions show similarities to known Holocene warm periods, providing proof of concept for the new Antarctic calibration model.

  5. New and interesting small-celled naviculoid diatoms (Bacillariophyta) from the Maritime Antarctic Region

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Van de Vijver, B.; Kopalová, Kateřina; Zidarova, R.; Cox, E. J.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 97, 1-2 (2013), s. 189-208 ISSN 0029-5035 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : Bacillariophyta * Diatoms * Maritime Antarctic Region Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.989, year: 2013

  6. Genetic signature of Last Glacial Maximum regional refugia in a circum-Antarctic sea spider

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    Soler-Membrives, Anna; Linse, Katrin; Miller, Karen J.; Arango, Claudia P.

    2017-10-01

    The evolutionary history of Antarctic organisms is becoming increasingly important to understand and manage population trajectories under rapid environmental change. The Antarctic sea spider Nymphon australe, with an apparently large population size compared with other sea spider species, is an ideal target to look for molecular signatures of past climatic events. We analysed mitochondrial DNA of specimens collected from the Antarctic continent and two Antarctic islands (AI) to infer past population processes and understand current genetic structure. Demographic history analyses suggest populations survived in refugia during the Last Glacial Maximum. The high genetic diversity found in the Antarctic Peninsula and East Antarctic (EA) seems related to multiple demographic contraction-expansion events associated with deep-sea refugia, while the low genetic diversity in the Weddell Sea points to a more recent expansion from a shelf refugium. We suggest the genetic structure of N. australe from AI reflects recent colonization from the continent. At a local level, EA populations reveal generally low genetic differentiation, geographically and bathymetrically, suggesting limited restrictions to dispersal. Results highlight regional differences in demographic histories and how these relate to the variation in intensity of glaciation-deglaciation events around Antarctica, critical for the study of local evolutionary processes. These are valuable data for understanding the remarkable success of Antarctic pycnogonids, and how environmental changes have shaped the evolution and diversification of Southern Ocean benthic biodiversity.

  7. The Antarctic is a region where the largest human- induced ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    induced perturbation of the marine ecosystem in the world has ... and minke whales feed mainly on krill, and they share a similar feeding area near the Antarctic ice edge. In the .... a result of improved analytical techniques). ...... of this functional response, and further field studies ... ASH, C. E. 1962 — The Whaler's Eye.

  8. Antarctic climate variability on regional and continental scales over the last 2000 years

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    B. Stenni

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Climate trends in the Antarctic region remain poorly characterized, owing to the brevity and scarcity of direct climate observations and the large magnitude of interannual to decadal-scale climate variability. Here, within the framework of the PAGES Antarctica2k working group, we build an enlarged database of ice core water stable isotope records from Antarctica, consisting of 112 records. We produce both unweighted and weighted isotopic (δ18O composites and temperature reconstructions since 0 CE, binned at 5- and 10-year resolution, for seven climatically distinct regions covering the Antarctic continent. Following earlier work of the Antarctica2k working group, we also produce composites and reconstructions for the broader regions of East Antarctica, West Antarctica and the whole continent. We use three methods for our temperature reconstructions: (i a temperature scaling based on the δ18O–temperature relationship output from an ECHAM5-wiso model simulation nudged to ERA-Interim atmospheric reanalyses from 1979 to 2013, and adjusted for the West Antarctic Ice Sheet region to borehole temperature data, (ii a temperature scaling of the isotopic normalized anomalies to the variance of the regional reanalysis temperature and (iii a composite-plus-scaling approach used in a previous continent-scale reconstruction of Antarctic temperature since 1 CE but applied to the new Antarctic ice core database. Our new reconstructions confirm a significant cooling trend from 0 to 1900 CE across all Antarctic regions where records extend back into the 1st millennium, with the exception of the Wilkes Land coast and Weddell Sea coast regions. Within this long-term cooling trend from 0 to 1900 CE, we find that the warmest period occurs between 300 and 1000 CE, and the coldest interval occurs from 1200 to 1900 CE. Since 1900 CE, significant warming trends are identified for the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, the Dronning Maud Land coast and the

  9. Regional pattern of snow characteristics around Antarctic Lake Vostok

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    Vladimirova, Diana; Ekaykin, Alexey; Popov, Sergey; Shibaev, Yuriy; Kozachek, Anna; Lipenkov, Vladimir

    2015-04-01

    Since 1998 Russian Antarctic Expedition has organized several scientific traverses in the region of subglacial Lake Vostok mainly devoted to the radar echo and seismic sounding of the glacier and water (the results have been published elsewhere). Along with the geophysical studies, a number of glaciological investigations have been carried out: snow pit digging, installation of accumulation stakes, snow sampling to study the stable water isotope content. Here we for the first time present a synthesis of these works and demonstrate a series of maps that characterize the snow density, isotope content and accumulation rate the studied region. A general tendency of the snow accumulation rate and isotope content is a significant increase from south (south-west) to north (north-east) from 35 to 23 mm w.e. per year and from -53,3 ‰ to -57,3 ‰ for delta oxygen-18 respectively, which likely reflects the continental-scale pattern, i.e., increase from inland to the coast. Deuterium excess varies from 11,7 ‰ to 16,3 ‰ is negatively correlated with the isotope content, which is typical for central Antarctica. The snow density demonstrate different pattern: higher values offshore the lake (up to 0,356 g/cm^3), and lower values within the lake's shoreline (lower limit is 0,328 g/cm^3). We suggest that this is related to the katabatic wind activity: very flat nearly horizontal surface of the glacier above the lake is not favorable for the strong winds, which leads to lower surface snow density. Superimposed on the main trend is the regional pattern, namely, curved contour lines in the middle part of the lake. We suggest that it may be related to the local anomalies of the snow drift by wind. Indeed, on the satellite images of the lake one can easily see a snowdrift stretching from the lake's western shore downwind in the middle part of the lake. The isolines of delta oxygen-18 and deuterium excess become perpendicular to each other in the north part of the lake which also

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

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    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.

  11. On the distribution of decapod crustaceans from the Magellan Biogeographic Province and the Antarctic region

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    Enrique E. Boschi

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available The distribution of decapod crustaceans in the southernmost areas of South America and the Antarctic is assessed considering the Magellan Biogeographic Province instead of the antiboreal region. Possible associations between decapod crustaceans from the Magellan Biogeographic Province and those from the Antarctic region are analysed. Species records were assigned to seven geographic regions that were clustered using multivariate analyses based on species presence/absence and Bray-Curtis similarity. The results showed two well-established clusters, one of which included the Pacific and Atlantic areas of the Magellan Province, the southern tip of South America and the Kerguelen Arc islands, with the highest similarity between the southern tip and the Atlantic area. Another cluster was well separated and included the Antarctic and South Georgia with the highest similarity index. Earlier studies and results obtained here suggest that the faunas of southern Chile and southern Argentina are biogeographically related. There is a low level of association among decapod species from the circum-Antarctic region and the Magellan Province.

  12. [Distribution of bacteria of Methylobacterium genus in the terrestrial biotopes of the Antarctic region].

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    Romanovskaia, V A; Rokitko, P V; Shilin, S O; Chernaia, N A; Tashirev, A B

    2009-01-01

    Methylotrophs distribution has been studied in the terrestrial biotopes (moss, lichen, grass, soil, sludge of lakes) on the islands of Galindez, Barkhans, Irizar, Uruguay, Jalour, Petermann, Berthelot, Cruls, King George, Corner, Skua located in the Pacific sector of the Antarctic Region, as well as in analogous biotopes on the western shore of the Antarctic peninsula Basing on a complex of diagnosis features the isolated pink-pigmented strains, which facultatively use methanol and realize the serine cycle of assimilation of one-carbon compounds, are attributed to Methylobacterium genus. Methylobacterium strains occur more often in mosses, grass Deschampsia antarctica and lichens, than in the soil and lake sludge. Some regions ofAntarctica are comparable by the number of Methylobacterium cells with the same in the regions with moderate climate. An analysis of gene sequences 16S rRNA of the Antarctic methylobacteria with those of GenBank has shown a high extent of similarity with Methylobacterium extorquens (99.4-99.7%). Notwithstanding that the strains of Methylobacterium are resistant to the broad range of extreme factors (gamma-irradiation, UV-irradiation, dehydration), the Antarctic and collection strains of the genus were sensitive to the ions of such heavy metals as Cu, Hg, Cd, Cr (10 mg/l).

  13. Ferocia gen. nov., a new centric diatom genus (Bacillariophyceae) from the sub-Antarctic region

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Van de Vijver, B.; Chattová, B.; Lebouvier, M.; Houk, Václav

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 332, č. 1 (2017), s. 22-30 ISSN 1179-3155 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/05/0204 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : centric diatoms * new genus * Melosira * Ferocia * sub-Antarctic Region Subject RIV: EF - Botanics OBOR OECD: Plant sciences, botany Impact factor: 1.240, year: 2016

  14. Invited review: climate change impacts in polar regions: lessons from Antarctic moss bank archives.

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    Royles, Jessica; Griffiths, Howard

    2015-03-01

    Mosses are the dominant plants in polar and boreal regions, areas which are experiencing rapid impacts of regional warming. Long-term monitoring programmes provide some records of the rate of recent climate change, but moss peat banks contain an unrivalled temporal record of past climate change on terrestrial plant Antarctic systems. We summarise the current understanding of climatic proxies and determinants of moss growth for contrasting continental and maritime Antarctic regions, as informed by 13C and 18O signals in organic material. Rates of moss accumulation are more than three times higher in the maritime Antarctic than continental Antarctica with growing season length being a critical determinant of growth rate, and high carbon isotope discrimination values reflecting optimal hydration conditions. Correlation plots of 13C and 18O values show that species (Chorisodontium aciphyllum / Polytrichum strictum) and growth form (hummock / bank) are the major determinants of measured isotope ratios. The interplay between moss growth form, photosynthetic physiology, water status and isotope composition are compared with developments of secondary proxies, such as chlorophyll fluorescence. These approaches provide a framework to consider the potential impact of climate change on terrestrial Antarctic habitats as well as having implications for future studies of temperate, boreal and Arctic peatlands. There are many urgent ecological and environmental problems in the Arctic related to mosses in a changing climate, but the geographical ranges of species and life-forms are difficult to track individually. Our goal was to translate what we have learned from the more simple systems in Antarctica, for application to Arctic habitats. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Morphology of bottom surfaces of glacier ice tongues in the East Antarctic region

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    Bianchi, C.; Chiappini, M.; Zirizzotti, A.; Zuccheretti, E. [Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Rome (Italy); Tabacco, I. E. [Milan Univ., Milan (Italy). Sez. Geofisica; Passerini, A. [Milan Univ. Bicocca, Milan (Italy). Dipt. di Fisica

    2001-02-01

    During three Antarctic summer campaigns (1995/97/99) Radio Echo Sounding (RES) system data from some glacier ice tongues in the East Antarctic regions between Victoria Land and George 5. Land were collected. The morphology and structure of the bottom surfaces deduced from the electromagnetic interpretation of echo signal were observed. The bottom surfaces at the ice/water interface show either irregular or flat contours or both. Some ice tongues are nearly perfectly flat, others show clear signs of irregularities while three of them have good regular spaced rippled bottom surfaces. The latter structures are well-evident in the longitudinal traverse of the tongues, whereas the transversal paths do not show the same features. This particular shape of the bottom surfaces related to the ablation process and detachment mechanism could be interesting especially to determine some physical characteristics and the possible fracture points of the ice tongues.

  16. Morphology of bottom surfaces of glacier ice tongues in the East Antarctic region

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    E. Zuccheretti

    2001-06-01

    Full Text Available During three Antarctic summer campaigns (1995/97/99 Radio Echo Sounding (RES system data from some glacier ice tongues in the East Antarctic regions between Victoria Land and George V Land were collected. The morphology and structure of the bottom surfaces deduced from the electromagnetic interpretation of echo signal were observed. The bottom surfaces at the ice/water interface show either irregular or flat contours or both. Some ice tongues are nearly perfectly flat, others show clear signs of irregularities while three of them have good regular spaced rippled bottom surfaces. The latter structures are well-evident in the longitudinal traverse of the tongues, whereas the transversal paths do not show the same features. This particular shape of the bottom surfaces related to the ablation process and detachment mechanism could be interesting especially to determine some physical characteristics and the possible fracture points of the ice tongues.

  17. Antarctic 20th Century Accumulation Changes Based on Regional Climate Model Simulations

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    Klaus Dethloff

    2010-01-01

    investigated on the basis of ERA-40 data and HIRHAM simulations. It is shown that the regional accumulation changes are largely driven by changes in the transient activity around the Antarctic coasts due to the varying AAO phases. During positive AAO, more transient pressure systems travelling towards the continent, and Western Antarctica and parts of South-Eastern Antarctica gain more precipitation and mass. Over central Antarctica the prevailing anticyclone causes a strengthening of polar desertification connected with a reduced surface mass balance in the northern part of East Antarctica.

  18. Newcastle disease virus in penguins from King George Island on the Antarctic region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomazelli, Luciano M; Araujo, Jansen; Oliveira, Danielle B; Sanfilippo, Luiz; Ferreira, Carolina S; Brentano, Liana; Pelizari, Vivian H; Nakayama, Cristiane; Duarte, Rubens; Hurtado, Renata; Branco, Joaquim O; Walker, David; Durigon, Edison L

    2010-11-20

    Here we report the isolation of Newcastle disease virus (NDV) from cloacal swabs obtained from penguins in the South Atlantic Antarctic region (62°08S, 58°25W). Samples of 100 penguins from King George Island were tested by real-time PCR, of which 2 (2%) were positive for NDV. The positive samples were isolated in embryonated chicken eggs and their matrix and fusion proteins genes were partially sequenced. This was complemented by the serological study performed on the blood of the same specimens, which resulted in a 33.3% rate of positivity. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. 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. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Restricted regions of enhanced growth of Antarctic krill in the circumpolar Southern Ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Eugene J; Thorpe, Sally E; Tarling, Geraint A; Watkins, Jonathan L; Fielding, Sophie; Underwood, Philip

    2017-07-31

    Food webs in high-latitude oceans are dominated by relatively few species. Future ocean and sea-ice changes affecting the distribution of such species will impact the structure and functioning of whole ecosystems. Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) is a key species in Southern Ocean food webs, but there is little understanding of the factors influencing its success throughout much of the ocean. The capacity of a habitat to maintain growth will be crucial and here we use an empirical relationship of growth rate to assess seasonal spatial variability. Over much of the ocean, potential for growth is limited, with three restricted oceanic regions where seasonal conditions permit high growth rates, and only a few areas around the Scotia Sea and Antarctic Peninsula suitable for growth of the largest krill (>60 mm). Our study demonstrates that projections of impacts of future change need to account for spatial and seasonal variability of key ecological processes within ocean ecosystems.

  1. Productivity and linkages of the food web of the southern region of the western Antarctic Peninsula continental shelf

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    Ballerini, Tosca; Hofmann, Eileen E.; Ainley, David G.; Daly, Kendra L.; Marrari, Marina; Ribic, Christine A.; Smith, Walker O.; Steele, John H.

    2014-01-01

    The productivity and linkages in the food web of the southern region of the west Antarctic Peninsula continental shelf were investigated using a multi-trophic level mass balance model. Data collected during the Southern Ocean Global Ocean Ecosystem Dynamics field program were combined with data from the literature on the abundance and diet composition of zooplankton, fish, seabirds and marine mammals to calculate energy flows in the food web and to infer the overall food web structure at the annual level. Sensitivity analyses investigated the effects of variability in growth and biomass of Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) and in the biomass of Antarctic krill predators on the structure and energy fluxes in the food web. Scenario simulations provided insights into the potential responses of the food web to a reduced contribution of large phytoplankton (diatom) production to total primary production, and to reduced consumption of primary production by Antarctic krill and mesozooplankton coincident with increased consumption by microzooplankton and salps. Model-derived estimates of primary production were 187–207 g C m−2 y−1, which are consistent with observed values (47–351 g C m−2 y−1). Simulations showed that Antarctic krill provide the majority of energy needed to sustain seabird and marine mammal production, thereby exerting a bottom-up control on higher trophic level predators. Energy transfer to top predators via mesozooplanton was a less efficient pathway, and salps were a production loss pathway because little of the primary production they consumed was passed to higher trophic levels. Increased predominance of small phytoplankton (nanoflagellates and cryptophytes) reduced the production of Antarctic krill and of its predators, including seabirds and seals.

  2. Productivity and linkages of the food web of the southern region of the western Antarctic Peninsula continental shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballerini, Tosca; Hofmann, Eileen E.; Ainley, David G.; Daly, Kendra; Marrari, Marina; Ribic, Christine A.; Smith, Walker O.; Steele, John H.

    2014-03-01

    The productivity and linkages in the food web of the southern region of the west Antarctic Peninsula continental shelf were investigated using a multi-trophic level mass balance model. Data collected during the Southern Ocean Global Ocean Ecosystem Dynamics field program were combined with data from the literature on the abundance and diet composition of zooplankton, fish, seabirds and marine mammals to calculate energy flows in the food web and to infer the overall food web structure at the annual level. Sensitivity analyses investigated the effects of variability in growth and biomass of Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) and in the biomass of Antarctic krill predators on the structure and energy fluxes in the food web. Scenario simulations provided insights into the potential responses of the food web to a reduced contribution of large phytoplankton (diatom) production to total primary production, and to reduced consumption of primary production by Antarctic krill and mesozooplankton coincident with increased consumption by microzooplankton and salps. Model-derived estimates of primary production were 187-207 g C m-2 y-1, which are consistent with observed values (47-351 g C m-2 y-1). Simulations showed that Antarctic krill provide the majority of energy needed to sustain seabird and marine mammal production, thereby exerting a bottom-up control on higher trophic level predators. Energy transfer to top predators via mesozooplanton was a less efficient pathway, and salps were a production loss pathway because little of the primary production they consumed was passed to higher trophic levels. Increased predominance of small phytoplankton (nanoflagellates and cryptophytes) reduced the production of Antarctic krill and of its predators, including seabirds and seals.

  3. Regional Geological Mapping in the Graham Land of Antarctic Peninsula Using LANDSAT-8 Remote Sensing Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pour, A. B.; Hashim, M.; Park, Y.

    2017-10-01

    Geological investigations in Antarctica confront many difficulties due to its remoteness and extreme environmental conditions. In this study, the applications of Landsat-8 data were investigated to extract geological information for lithological and alteration mineral mapping in poorly exposed lithologies in inaccessible domains such in Antarctica. The north-eastern Graham Land, Antarctic Peninsula (AP) was selected in this study to conduct a satellite-based remote sensing mapping technique. Continuum Removal (CR) spectral mapping tool and Independent Components Analysis (ICA) were applied to Landsat-8 spectral bands to map poorly exposed lithologies at regional scale. Pixels composed of distinctive absorption features of alteration mineral assemblages associated with poorly exposed lithological units were detected by applying CR mapping tool to VNIR and SWIR bands of Landsat-8.Pixels related to Si-O bond emission minima features were identified using CR mapping tool to TIR bands in poorly mapped andunmapped zones in north-eastern Graham Land at regional scale. Anomaly pixels in the ICA image maps related to spectral featuresof Al-O-H, Fe, Mg-O-H and CO3 groups and well-constrained lithological attributions from felsic to mafic rocks were detectedusing VNIR, SWIR and TIR datasets of Landsat-8. The approach used in this study performed very well for lithological andalteration mineral mapping with little available geological data or without prior information of the study region.

  4. Regionally Optimized GRACE Processing and Inter-comparison on the Antarctic Ice Sheet

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    Mohajerani, Y.; Velicogna, I.; Sutterley, T. C.; Rignot, E. J.

    2017-12-01

    The Antarctic ice sheet is losing mass at an accelerating rate, with a sea level contribution that changed from 0.08mm/yr from 1992 to 2001 to 0.4mm/yr from 2002 to 2011. While most of this contribution comes from West Antarctica, Totten Glacier has the largest discharge of ice in East Antarctica, with a sea level rise potential of 3.9 m. Furthermore, the drainage basin of Totten Glacier, along the neighboring Moscow University Glacier are below sea level, extending hundreds of kilometers inland. Therefore, obtaining regional estimates of both western and eastern Antarctic basins are of critical importance. The GRACE (Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment) satellite has been providing mass balance time-series from geoid changes since 2002. Several mascon and harmonic GRACE solutions are available from different processing centers. Here, we evaluate the various solutions across the ice sheet and a new set of regionally optimized mascons to study the mass balance of Totten and Moscow University glaciers. We obtain a trend of -16.5±4.1Gt/yr with an acceleration of -2.0±1.8Gt/yr2 for the two glaciers for the period April 2002 to December 2016 using the Ivins et al (2013) GIA model (errors include leakage, GIA, and regression errors). We compare the results with the Mass Budget Method that combines ice discharge (D) and surface mass balance (SMB) from two models: 1) RACMO2.3, and 2) MAR3.6.4. MBM/RACMO2.3 shows the best agreement with the GRACE estimates. Within the common period from April 2002 to December 2015, the MBM/RACMO2.3 and MAR3.6.4 results are -15.6±1.8Gt/yr and -6.7±1.5Gt/yr respectively, while the GRACE time-series has a trend of -14.8±2.7 Gt/yr. We extend the study to the Getz Ice Shelf, the third largest ice shelf in West Antarctica after Ronne and Ross West ice shelves. We compare our gravity-derived mass estimates, the mass budget estimates, and the volume changes from altimetry data to compare the estimates and obtain a multi-sensor assessment

  5. Impact of increasing antarctic glacial freshwater release on regional sea-ice cover in the Southern Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merino, Nacho; Jourdain, Nicolas C.; Le Sommer, Julien; Goosse, Hugues; Mathiot, Pierre; Durand, Gael

    2018-01-01

    The sensitivity of Antarctic sea-ice to increasing glacial freshwater release into the Southern Ocean is studied in a series of 31-year ocean/sea-ice/iceberg model simulations. Glaciological estimates of ice-shelf melting and iceberg calving are used to better constrain the spatial distribution and magnitude of freshwater forcing around Antarctica. Two scenarios of glacial freshwater forcing have been designed to account for a decadal perturbation in glacial freshwater release to the Southern Ocean. For the first time, this perturbation explicitly takes into consideration the spatial distribution of changes in the volume of Antarctic ice shelves, which is found to be a key component of changes in freshwater release. In addition, glacial freshwater-induced changes in sea ice are compared to typical changes induced by the decadal evolution of atmospheric states. Our results show that, in general, the increase in glacial freshwater release increases Antarctic sea ice extent. But the response is opposite in some regions like the coastal Amundsen Sea, implying that distinct physical mechanisms are involved in the response. We also show that changes in freshwater forcing may induce large changes in sea-ice thickness, explaining about one half of the total change due to the combination of atmospheric and freshwater changes. The regional contrasts in our results suggest a need for improving the representation of freshwater sources and their evolution in climate models.

  6. Faunal diversity of the benthic amphipods (Crustacea of the Magellan region as compared to the Antarctic (preliminary results

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claude de Broyer

    1999-12-01

    Full Text Available To investigate the marine benthic ecosystems of the Magellan region and to compare them with the better known Antarctic systems, three campaigns were recently carried out in this area: the Joint Magellan Victor Hensen Campaign 1994, the Polarstern ANT XIII/4 cruise 1996, and the Vidal Gormaz CIMAR FIORDO II cruise 1996. Numerous and diverse zoobenthos samples were collected mostly with an Agassiz trawl and with a small dredge, an epibenthic sledge, with baited traps or by diving. All gears together gathered more than 132,000 specimens of gammaridean and caprellidean amphipods. 137 species of gammaridean amphipods have been identified from the material to date. About 20% of these species appear to be new for science. This taxonomic work takes place in the framework of a general revision of the Southern Ocean amphipod fauna undertaken by theAntarctic Amphipodologists Network. A complete list of the benthic species of gammaridean and caprellidean amphipods is presented, including the zoogeographical distribution and the new records. The new abundant material collected, still under study, will allow a comparison of faunal diversity, zoogeographical and ecological traits of the Magellan benthic amphipod taxocoenoses with those of the West and East Antarctic benthos.

  7. New and interesting species of the genus Muelleria (Bacillariophyta) from the Antarctic region and South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van De Vijver, B.; Mataloni, G.; Stanish, L.; Spaulding, S.A.

    2010-01-01

    During a survey of the terrestrial diatom flora of some sub-Antarctic islands in the southern Indian and Atlantic Oceans and of the Antarctic continent, more than 15 taxa belonging to the genus Muelleria were observed. Nine of these taxa are described as new species using light and scanning electron microscopy. Comments are made on their systematic position and how they are distinguished from other species in the genus. Additionally, two previously unrecognized taxa within the genus were discovered in samples from South Africa. One of these, Muelleria taylorii Van de Vijver & Cocquyt sp. nov., is new to science; the other, Muelleria vandermerwei (Cholnoky) Van de Vijver & Cocquyt nov. comb., had been included in the genus Diploneis. The large number of new Muelleria taxa on the (sub)-Antarctic locations is not surprising. Species in Muelleria occur rarely in collections; in many habitats, it is unusual to find more than 1-2 valves in any slide preparation. As a result, records are scarce. The practice of "force-fitting" (shoehorning) specimens into descriptions from common taxonomic keys (and species drift) results in European species, such as M. gibbula and M. linearis, being applied to Antarctic forms in ecological studies. Finally, the typical terrestrial habitats of soils, mosses and ephemeral water bodies of most of these taxa have been poorly studied in the past.

  8. Rapid ice unloading in the Fleming Glacier region, southern Antarctic Peninsula, and its effect on bedrock uplift rates

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhao, Chen; King, Matt A.; Watson, Christopher S.

    2017-01-01

    deformation. We subtract modeled elastic deformation rates, and a suite of modeled viscous rates, from GPS-derived three-dimensional bedrock velocities at sites to the south of Fleming Glacier to infer properties of Earth rheology. Assuming the pre-breakup bedrock uplift was positive due to post-Last Glacial...... Maximum (LGM) ice retreat, our viscoelastic-corrected GPS uplift rates suggest upper mantle viscosities are >2×1019 Pas and likely >1×1020 Pas in this region, 1–2 orders of magnitude greater than previously found for the northern Antarctic Peninsula. Horizontal velocities at the GPS site nearest...

  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. Seabed images from Southern Ocean shelf regions off the northern Antarctic Peninsula and in the southeastern Weddell Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piepenburg, Dieter; Buschmann, Alexander; Driemel, Amelie; Grobe, Hannes; Gutt, Julian; Schumacher, Stefanie; Segelken-Voigt, Alexandra; Sieger, Rainer

    2017-07-01

    Recent advances in underwater imaging technology allow for the gathering of invaluable scientific information on seafloor ecosystems, such as direct in situ views of seabed habitats and quantitative data on the composition, diversity, abundance, and distribution of epibenthic fauna. The imaging approach has been extensively used within the research project DynAMo (Dynamics of Antarctic Marine Shelf Ecosystems) at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research Bremerhaven (AWI), which aimed to comparatively assess the pace and quality of the dynamics of Southern Ocean benthos. Within this framework, epibenthic spatial distribution patterns have been comparatively investigated in two regions in the Atlantic sector of the Southern Ocean: the shelf areas off the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, representing a region with above-average warming of surface waters and sea-ice reduction, and the shelves of the eastern Weddell Sea as an example of a stable high-Antarctic marine environment that is not (yet) affected by climate change. The AWI Ocean Floor Observation System (OFOS) was used to collect seabed imagery during two cruises of the German research vessel Polarstern, ANT-XXIX/3 (PS81) to the Antarctic Peninsula from January to March 2013 and ANT-XXXI/2 (PS96) to the Weddell Sea from December 2015 to February 2016. Here, we report on the image and data collections gathered during these cruises. During PS81, OFOS was successfully deployed at a total of 31 stations at water depths between 29 and 784 m. At most stations, series of 500 to 530 pictures ( > 15 000 in total, each depicting a seabed area of approximately 3.45 m2 or 2.3 × 1.5 m) were taken along transects approximately 3.7 km in length. During PS96, OFOS was used at a total of 13 stations at water depths between 200 and 754 m, yielding series of 110 to 293 photos (2670 in total) along transects 0.9 to 2.6 km in length. All seabed images taken during the two cruises

  11. Passive warming effect on soil microbial community and humic substance degradation in maritime Antarctic region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Dockyu; Park, Ha Ju; Kim, Jung Ho; Youn, Ui Joung; Yang, Yung Hun; Casanova-Katny, Angélica; Vargas, Cristina Muñoz; Venegas, Erick Zagal; Park, Hyun; Hong, Soon Gyu

    2018-06-01

    Although the maritime Antarctic has undergone rapid warming, the effects on indigenous soil-inhabiting microorganisms are not well known. Passive warming experiments using open-top chamber (OTC) have been performed on the Fildes Peninsula in the maritime Antarctic since 2008. When the soil temperature was measured at a depth of 2-5 cm during the 2013-2015 summer seasons, the mean temperature inside OTC (OTC-In) increased by approximately 0.8 °C compared with outside OTC (OTC-Out), while soil chemical and physical characteristics did not change. Soils (2015 summer) from OTC-In and OTC-Out were subjected to analysis for change in microbial community and degradation rate of humic substances (HS, the largest pool of recalcitrant organic carbon in soil). Archaeal and bacterial communities in OTC-In were minimally affected by warming compared with those in OTC-Out, with archaeal methanogenic Thermoplasmata slightly increased in abundance. The abundance of heterotrophic fungi Ascomycota was significantly altered in OTC-In. Total bacterial and fungal biomass in OTC-In increased by 20% compared to OTC-Out, indicating that this may be due to increased microbial degradation activity for soil organic matter (SOM) including HS, which would result in the release of more low-molecular-weight growth substrates from SOM. Despite the effects of warming on the microbial community over the 8-years-experiments warming did not induce any detectable change in content or structure of polymeric HS. These results suggest that increased temperature may have significant and direct effects on soil microbial communities inhabiting maritime Antarctic and that soil microbes would subsequently provide more available carbon sources for other indigenous microbes. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  12. First recorded loss of an emperor penguin colony in the recent period of Antarctic regional warming: implications for other colonies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philip N Trathan

    Full Text Available In 1948, a small colony of emperor penguins Aptenodytes forsteri was discovered breeding on Emperor Island (67° 51' 52″ S, 68° 42' 20″ W, in the Dion Islands, close to the West Antarctic Peninsula (Stonehouse 1952. When discovered, the colony comprised approximately 150 breeding pairs; these numbers were maintained until 1970, after which time the colony showed a continuous decline. By 1999 there were fewer than 20 pairs, and in 2009 high-resolution aerial photography revealed no remaining trace of the colony. Here we relate the decline and loss of the Emperor Island colony to a well-documented rise in local mean annual air temperature and coincident decline in seasonal sea ice duration. The loss of this colony provides empirical support for recent studies (Barbraud & Weimerskirch 2001; Jenouvrier et al 2005, 2009; Ainley et al 2010; Barber-Meyer et al 2005 that have highlighted the vulnerability of emperor penguins to changes in sea ice duration and distribution. These studies suggest that continued climate change is likely to impact upon future breeding success and colony viability for this species. Furthermore, a recent circumpolar study by Fretwell & Trathan (2009 highlighted those Antarctic coastal regions where colonies appear most vulnerable to such changes. Here we examine which other colonies might be at risk, discussing various ecological factors, some previously unexplored, that may also contribute to future declines. The implications of this are important for future modelling work and for understanding which colonies actually are most vulnerable.

  13. Spatial-temporal variations in surface ozone over Ushuaia and the Antarctic region: observations from in situ measurements, satellite data, and global models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadzir, Mohd Shahrul Mohd; Ashfold, Matthew J; Khan, Md Firoz; Robinson, Andrew D; Bolas, Conor; Latif, Mohd Talib; Wallis, Benjamin M; Mead, Mohammed Iqbal; Hamid, Haris Hafizal Abdul; Harris, Neil R P; Ramly, Zamzam Tuah Ahmad; Lai, Goh Thian; Liew, Ju Neng; Ahamad, Fatimah; Uning, Royston; Samah, Azizan Abu; Maulud, Khairul Nizam; Suparta, Wayan; Zainudin, Siti Khalijah; Wahab, Muhammad Ikram Abdul; Sahani, Mazrura; Müller, Moritz; Yeok, Foong Swee; Rahman, Nasaruddin Abdul; Mujahid, Aazani; Morris, Kenobi Isima; Sasso, Nicholas Dal

    2018-01-01

    The Antarctic continent is known to be an unpopulated region due to its extreme weather and climate conditions. However, the air quality over this continent can be affected by long-lived anthropogenic pollutants from the mainland. The Argentinian region of Ushuaia is often the main source area of accumulated hazardous gases over the Antarctic Peninsula. The main objective of this study is to report the first in situ observations yet known of surface ozone (O 3 ) over Ushuaia, the Drake Passage, and Coastal Antarctic Peninsula (CAP) on board the RV Australis during the Malaysian Antarctic Scientific Expedition Cruise 2016 (MASEC'16). Hourly O 3 data was measured continuously for 23 days using an EcoTech O 3 analyzer. To understand more about the distribution of surface O 3 over the Antarctic, we present the spatial and temporal of surface O 3 of long-term data (2009-2015) obtained online from the World Meteorology Organization of World Data Centre for greenhouse gases (WMO WDCGG). Furthermore, surface O 3 satellite data from the free online NOAA-Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) database and online data assimilation from the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF)-Monitoring Atmospheric Composition and Climate (MACC) were used. The data from both online products are compared to document the data sets and to give an indication of its quality towards in situ data. Finally, we used past carbon monoxide (CO) data as a proxy of surface O 3 formation over Ushuaia and the Antarctic region. Our key findings were that the surface O 3 mixing ratio during MASEC'16 increased from a minimum of 5 ppb to ~ 10-13 ppb approaching the Drake Passage and the Coastal Antarctic Peninsula (CAP) region. The anthropogenic and biogenic O 3 precursors from Ushuaia and the marine region influenced the mixing ratio of surface O 3 over the Drake Passage and CAP region. The past data from WDCGG showed that the annual O 3 cycle has a maximum during the winter of 30 to 35

  14. Geostatistical analysis and isoscape of ice core derived water stable isotope records in an Antarctic macro region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hatvani, István Gábor; Leuenberger, Markus; Kohán, Balázs; Kern, Zoltán

    2017-09-01

    Water stable isotopes preserved in ice cores provide essential information about polar precipitation. In the present study, multivariate regression and variogram analyses were conducted on 22 δ2H and 53 δ18O records from 60 ice cores covering the second half of the 20th century. Taking the multicollinearity of the explanatory variables into account, as also the model's adjusted R2 and its mean absolute error, longitude, elevation and distance from the coast were found to be the main independent geographical driving factors governing the spatial δ18O variability of firn/ice in the chosen Antarctic macro region. After diminishing the effects of these factors, using variography, the weights for interpolation with kriging were obtained and the spatial autocorrelation structure of the dataset was revealed. This indicates an average area of influence with a radius of 350 km. This allows the determination of the areas which are as yet not covered by the spatial variability of the existing network of ice cores. Finally, the regional isoscape was obtained for the study area, and this may be considered the first step towards a geostatistically improved isoscape for Antarctica.

  15. Determination of the crust thickness in the active margin of the Antarctic region; Determinacao da estrutura crustal na margem ativa da regiao antartica

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Torres, Luiz Carlos; Gamboa, Luiz Antonio Pierantoni [Universidade Federal Fluminense, Niteroi, RJ (Brazil). Lagemar; Gomes, Benedito Souza [PETROBRAS, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    1997-07-01

    Seismic multichannel, gravity and magnetometry measurements were carried out in the region of West coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, Bransfield Strait, South Shetland Islands and South Shetland Trench, by Brazilian Antarctic Program during the summers of 1987 and 1988. The present work, using a continue seismic and gravity and gravity data profile crossing the area, intends to present a two-dimensional model of the crust thickness in this region. By this model, the Moho discontinuity would lie at a depth of 14.5 km below the axis of the Bransfield trough. This anomalous behaviour in addition to compressional processes identified in the accretionary prism and trench, was interpreted as an evidence of the continued opening of the Bransfield basin. (author)

  16. 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

  17. Mechanisms controlling rock coast evolution in paraglacial landscapes - examples from Arctic, Antarctic and Scandinavian regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strzelecki, M. C.; Lim, M.; Kasprzek, M.; Swirad, Z. M.; Rachlewicz, G.; Migoń, P.; Pawlowski, L.; Jaskolski, M.

    2017-12-01

    This paper presents the results of an investigation into the processes controlling development of paraglacial rock coast systems in Hornsund, Svalbard, Admiralty Bay, South Shetland Islands and Gotland Island, Scandinavia. A suite of nested geomorphological and geophysical methods have been applied to characterize the functioning of rock cliffs, shore platforms and stacks influenced by lithological control and geomorphic processes driven by paraglacial coast environments - both in glaciated and deglaciated study sites. Rock hardness, quantified by Schmidt hammer rebound tests, demonstrate strong spatial control on the degree of rock weathering (rock strength) along studied rock coasts. Elevation controlled geomorphic zones are identified and linked to distinct processes and mechanisms, transitioning from peak hardness values at the icefoot/sea-ice through the wave and storm dominated scour zones to the lowest values on the cliff tops, where the effects of periglacial weathering dominate. Observations of rock surface change using a traversing micro-erosion meter (TMEM) indicate that significant changes in erosion rates occur at the junction between shore platform and the cliff toe, where rock erosion is facilitated by frequent wetting and drying and operation of nivation and sea ice processes (formation and melting of snow patches and icefoot complexes). Electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) surveys have been used to investigate frozen ground control on rock coast dynamics and reveal the strong interaction with marine processes in polar coastal settings. In Gotland, Scandinavia the morphology of rocky coastal landforms (rauks) bear traces of numerous environmental changes that occurred in Baltic region over the Holocene including salinity, temperature, ice-cover/storminess and relative sea-level. The results are synthesised to propose a new conceptual model of paraglacial rock coast systems, with the aim of contributing towards a unifying concept of cold region

  18. Antarctic aerosols - A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaw, Glenn E.

    1988-02-01

    Tropospheric aerosols with the diameter range of half a micron reside in the atmosphere for tens of days and teleconnect Antarctica with other regions by transport that reaches planetary scales of distances; thus, the aerosol on the Antarctic ice represents 'memory modules' of events that took place at regions separated from Antarctica by tens of thousands of kilometers. In terms of aerosol mass, the aerosol species include insoluble crustal products (less than 5 percent), transported sea-salt residues (highly variable but averaging about 10 percent), Ni-rich meteoric material, and anomalously enriched material with an unknown origin. Most (70-90 percent by mass) of the aerosol over the Antarctic ice shield, however, is the 'natural acid sulfate aerosol', apparently deriving from biological processes taking place in the surrounding oceans.

  19. Stochastic modelling of basal temperatures in divide regions of the Antarctic ice sheet over the last 1.5 million years

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Liefferinge, Brice; Pattyn, Frank; Cavitte, Marie G. P.; Young, Duncan A.; Roberts, Jason L.

    2017-04-01

    The quest for oldest ice in Antarctica has recently been launched through an EU H2020 project (Beyond EPICA - Oldest Ice) and aims at identifying suitable areas for a potential future drilling. Retrieving an ice core of such age is essential to understand the relation between orbital changes and atmospheric composition during the mid-Pliocene transition. However, sites for a potential undisturbed record of 1.5 million-year old ice in Antarctica are difficult to find and require slow-moving ice (preferably an ice divide) and basal conditions that are not disturbed by large topographic variations. Furthermore, ice should be sufficiently thick but cold basal conditions should still prevail, since basal melting would destroy the bottom layers. Therefore, ice-flow conditions and thermodynamic characteristics are crucial for identifying potential locations of undisturbed ice. Van Liefferinge and Pattyn (2013) identified suitable areas based on a pan-Antarctic simplified thermodynamic ice sheet model and demonstrated that uncertainty in geothermal conditions remain a major unknown. In order to refine these estimates, and provide uncertainties, we employ a full thermo-mechanically coupled higher-order ice sheet model (Pattyn, 2003; Pattyn et al., 2004). Initial conditions for the calculations are based on an inversion of basal slipperiness, based on observed surface topography (Pollard and DeConto, 2012; Pattyn, in prep.). Uncertainties in geothermal conditions are introduced using the convolution of two Gaussian probability density functions: (a) the reconstruction of the Antarctic ice sheet geometry and testing ice thickness variability over the last 2 million years (Pollard and DeConto, 2009) and (b) the surface temperature reconstruction over the same period (Snyder et al., 2016). The standard deviation, the skewness and the kurtosis of the whole Antarctic ice sheet are analyzed to observe likely probable melt conditions. Finally, we focus on model results in the

  20. New insights into the use of stable water isotopes at the northern Antarctic Peninsula as a tool for regional climate studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandoy, Francisco; Tetzner, Dieter; Meyer, Hanno; Gacitúa, Guisella; Hoffmann, Kirstin; Falk, Ulrike; Lambert, Fabrice; MacDonell, Shelley

    2018-03-01

    Due to recent atmospheric and oceanic warming, the Antarctic Peninsula is one of the most challenging regions of Antarctica to understand in terms of both local- and regional-scale climate signals. Steep topography and a lack of long-term and in situ meteorological observations complicate the extrapolation of existing climate models to the sub-regional scale. Therefore, new techniques must be developed to better understand processes operating in the region. Isotope signals are traditionally related mainly to atmospheric conditions, but a detailed analysis of individual components can give new insight into oceanic and atmospheric processes. This paper aims to use new isotopic records collected from snow and firn cores in conjunction with existing meteorological and oceanic datasets to determine changes at the climatic scale in the northern extent of the Antarctic Peninsula. In particular, a discernible effect of sea ice cover on local temperatures and the expression of climatic modes, especially the Southern Annular Mode (SAM), is demonstrated. In years with a large sea ice extension in winter (negative SAM anomaly), an inversion layer in the lower troposphere develops at the coastal zone. Therefore, an isotope-temperature relationship (δ-T) valid for all periods cannot be obtained, and instead the δ-T depends on the seasonal variability of oceanic conditions. Comparatively, transitional seasons (autumn and spring) have a consistent isotope-temperature gradient of +0.69 ‰ °C-1. As shown by firn core analysis, the near-surface temperature in the northern-most portion of the Antarctic Peninsula shows a decreasing trend (-0.33 °C year-1) between 2008 and 2014. In addition, the deuterium excess (dexcess) is demonstrated to be a reliable indicator of seasonal oceanic conditions, and therefore suitable to improve a firn age model based on seasonal dexcess variability. The annual accumulation rate in this region is highly variable, ranging between 1060 and 2470 kg m

  1. Environmental radioactivity in the antarctic station

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gonzalez, S.; Osores, J.; Martinez, J.; Lopez, E.; Jara, R.

    1998-01-01

    Study about environmental radioactivity in the Peruvian antarctic station Machu Pichu they were carried out during the last three periods to the southern summer. The objective of the project it is to evaluate environmental component in order to elaborate a study it base on the levels background radioactivity and artificial in the antarctic region

  2. South African antarctic biological research programme

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    SASCAR

    1981-07-01

    Full Text Available This document provides a description of the past, current and planned South African biological research activities in the sub-Antarctic and Antarctic regions. Future activities will fall under one of the five components of the research programme...

  3. Antarctic science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Summerhayes, Colin

    Once upon a time, dinosaurs roamed Antarctica and swam in its seas. Since then, life evolved as the climate cooled into the ice ages. Life will no doubt continue to evolve there as the globe now warms. But nowadays, humans are having a profound and direct effect on life in Antarctica, the sub-Antarctic islands, and the surrounding Southern Ocean, which are being invaded by a wide range of alien species including microbes, algae, fungi, bryophytes, land plants, invertebrates, fish, birds, and mammals.

  4. Observations of sea-ice conditions in the Antarctic coastal region using ship-board video cameras

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haruhito Shimoda

    1997-03-01

    Full Text Available During the 30th, 31st, and 32nd Japanese Antarctic Research Expeditions (JARE-30,JARE-31,and JARE-32, sea-ice conditions were recorded by video camera on board the SHIRASE. Then, the sea-ice images were used to estimate compactness and thickness quantitatively. Analyzed legs are those toward Breid Bay and from Breid Bay to Syowa Station during JARE-30 and JARE-31,and those toward the Prince Olav Coast, from the Prince Olav Coast to Breid Bay, and from Breid Bay to Syowa Station during JARE-32. The results show yearly variations of ice compactness and thickness, latitudinal variations of thickness, and differences in thickness histograms between JARE-30 and JARE-32 in Lutzow-Holm Bay. Albedo values were measured simultaneously by a shortwave radiometer. These values are proportional to those of ice compactness. Finally, we examined the relationship between ice compactness and vertical gradient of air temperature above sea ice.

  5. Population-Level Transcriptomic Responses of the Southern Ocean Salp Salpa thompsoni to Environment Variability of the Western Antarctic Peninsula Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bucklin, A. C.; Batta Lona, P. G.; Maas, A. E.; O'Neill, R. J.; Wiebe, P. H.

    2015-12-01

    In response to the changing Antarctic climate, the Southern Ocean salp Salpa thompsoni has shown altered patterns of distribution and abundance that are anticipated to have profound impacts on pelagic food webs and ecosystem dynamics. The physiological and molecular processes that underlay ecological function and biogeographical distribution are key to understanding present-day dynamics and predicting future trajectories. This study examined transcriptome-wide patterns of gene expression in relation to biological and physical oceanographic conditions in coastal, shelf and offshore waters of the Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) region during austral spring and summer 2011. Based on field observations and collections, seasonal changes in the distribution and abundance of salps of different life stages were associated with differences in water mass structure of the WAP. Our observations are consistent with previous suggestions that bathymetry and currents in Bransfield Strait could generate a retentive cell for an overwintering population of S. thompsoni, which may generate the characteristic salp blooms found throughout the region later in summer. The statistical analysis of transcriptome-wide patterns of gene expression revealed differences among salps collected in different seasons and from different habitats (i.e., coastal versus offshore) in the WAP. Gene expression patterns also clustered by station in austral spring - but not summer - collections, suggesting stronger heterogeneity of environmental conditions. During the summer, differentially expressed genes covered a wider range of functions, including those associated with stress responses. Future research using novel molecular transcriptomic / genomic characterization of S. thompsoni will allow more complete understanding of individual-, population-, and species-level responses to environmental variability and prediction of future dynamics of Southern Ocean food webs and ecosystems.

  6. Environmental contamination in Antarctic ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bargagli, R

    2008-08-01

    Although the remote continent of Antarctica is perceived as the symbol of the last great wilderness, the human presence in the Southern Ocean and the continent began in the early 1900s for hunting, fishing and exploration, and many invasive plant and animal species have been deliberately introduced in several sub-Antarctic islands. Over the last 50 years, the development of research and tourism have locally affected terrestrial and marine coastal ecosystems through fuel combustion (for transportation and energy production), accidental oil spills, waste incineration and sewage. Although natural "barriers" such as oceanic and atmospheric circulation protect Antarctica from lower latitude water and air masses, available data on concentrations of metals, pesticides and other persistent pollutants in air, snow, mosses, lichens and marine organisms show that most persistent contaminants in the Antarctic environment are transported from other continents in the Southern Hemisphere. At present, levels of most contaminants in Antarctic organisms are lower than those in related species from other remote regions, except for the natural accumulation of Cd and Hg in several marine organisms and especially in albatrosses and petrels. The concentrations of organic pollutants in the eggs of an opportunistic top predator such as the south polar skua are close to those that may cause adverse health effects. Population growth and industrial development in several countries of the Southern Hemisphere are changing the global pattern of persistent anthropogenic contaminants and new classes of chemicals have already been detected in the Antarctic environment. Although the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty provides strict guidelines for the protection of the Antarctic environment and establishes obligations for all human activity in the continent and the Southern Ocean, global warming, population growth and industrial development in countries of the Southern

  7. Abundance, viability and culturability of Antarctic bacteria

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    LokaBharathi, P.A.; DeSouza, M.J.B.D.; Nair, S.; Chandramohan, D.

    The viability of total number of bacteria decide the mineralisation rate in any ecosystem and ultimately the fertility of the region. This study aims at establishing the extent of viability in the standing stock of the Antarctic bacterial population...

  8. South African Antarctic earth science research programme

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    SASCAR

    1984-02-01

    Full Text Available This document describes the past, current and planned future South African earth science research programme in the Antarctic, Southern Ocean and subantarctic regions. The scientific programme comprises five components into which present and future...

  9. Large-scale dynamical influence of a gravity wave generated over the Antarctic Peninsula – regional modelling and budget analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JOEL Arnault

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The case study of a mountain wave triggered by the Antarctic Peninsula on 6 October 2005, which has already been documented in the literature, is chosen here to quantify the associated gravity wave forcing on the large-scale flow, with a budget analysis of the horizontal wind components and horizontal kinetic energy. In particular, a numerical simulation using the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF model is compared to a control simulation with flat orography to separate the contribution of the mountain wave from that of other synoptic processes of non-orographic origin. The so-called differential budgets of horizontal wind components and horizontal kinetic energy (after subtracting the results from the simulation without orography are then averaged horizontally and vertically in the inner domain of the simulation to quantify the mountain wave dynamical influence at this scale. This allows for a quantitative analysis of the simulated mountain wave's dynamical influence, including the orographically induced pressure drag, the counterbalancing wave-induced vertical transport of momentum from the flow aloft, the momentum and energy exchanges with the outer flow at the lateral and upper boundaries, the effect of turbulent mixing, the dynamics associated with geostrophic re-adjustment of the inner flow, the deceleration of the inner flow, the secondary generation of an inertia–gravity wave and the so-called baroclinic conversion of energy between potential energy and kinetic energy.

  10. Chilean Antarctic Stations on King George Island

    OpenAIRE

    Katsutada Kaminuma

    2000-01-01

    The purpose of my visit to Chilean Antarctic Stations was to assess the present status of geophysical observations and research, as the South Shetland Island, West Antarctica, where the stations are located, are one of the most active tectonic regions on the Antarctic plate. The Instituto Antartico Chileno (INACH) kindly gave me a chance to stay in Frei/Escudero Bases as an exchange scientist under the Antarctic Treaty for two weeks in January 2000. I stayed in Frei Base as a member of a geol...

  11. Antarctic snow and global climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Granberg, H.B.

    2001-01-01

    Global circulation models (GCM) indicate that global warming will be most pronounced at polar regions and high latitudes, causing concern about the stability of the Antarctic ice cap. A project entitled the Seasonal Snow in Antarctica examined the properties of the near surface snow to determine the current conditions that influence snow cover development. The goal was to assess the response of the snow cover in Queen Maud Land (QML) to an increased atmospheric carbon dioxide content. The Antarctic snow cover in QML was examined as part of the FINNARP expeditions in 1999 and 2000 which examined the processes that influence the snow cover. Its energy and mass balance were also assessed by examining the near surface snow strata in shallow (1-2 m) pits and by taking measurements of environmental variables. This made it possible to determine if the glacier is in danger of melting at this northerly location in the Antarctic. The study also made it possible to determine which variables need to change and by how much, for significant melting to occur. It was shown that the Antarctic anticyclone creates particular conditions that protect the snow cover from melting. The anticyclone brings dry air from the stratosphere during most of the year and is exempt from the water vapour feedback. It was concluded that even a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide will not produce major snow melt runoff. 8 refs

  12. 78 FR 28000 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-05-13

    ... 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and Conservation Act of 1996, has... facilities and equipment. Location Antarctic Peninsula region, ASPA 117-Avian Island, ASPA 128 Cape...

  13. Antarctic research today

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hempel, G.

    1982-01-01

    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.)

  14. Environmental constraints on West Antarctic ice-sheet formation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lindstrom, D R; MacAyeal, D R

    1987-01-01

    Small perturbations in Antarctic environmental conditions can culminate in the demise of the Antarctic ice sheet's western sector. This may have happened during the last interglacial period, and could recur within the next millennium due to atmospheric warming from trace gas and CO/sub 2/ increases. In this study, we investigate the importance of sea-level, accumulation rate, and ice influx from the East Antarctic ice sheet in the re-establishment of the West Antarctic ice sheet from a thin cover using a time-dependent numerical ice-shelf model. Our results show that a precursor to the West Antarctic ice sheet can form within 3000 years. Sea-level lowering caused by ice-sheet development in the Northern Hemisphere has the greatest environmental influence. Under favorable conditions, ice grounding occurs over all parts of the West Antarctic ice sheet except up-stream of Thwaites Glacier and in the Ross Sea region.

  15. 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

  16. Isolation and characterization of Campylobacter spp. from Antarctic fur seals (Arctocephalus gazella) at Deception Island, Antarctica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Peña, F J; Pérez-Boto, D; Jiménez, C; San Miguel, E; Echeita, A; Rengifo-Herrera, C; García-Párraga, D; Ortega-Mora, L M; Pedraza-Díaz, S

    2010-09-01

    The presence of Campylobacter spp. was investigated in 41 Antarctic fur seals (Arctocephalus gazella) and 9 Weddell seals (Leptonychotes weddellii) at Deception Island, Antarctica. Infections were encountered in six Antarctic fur seals. The isolates, the first reported from marine mammals in the Antarctic region, were identified as Campylobacter insulaenigrae and Campylobacter lari.

  17. Geomorphology and vegetation mapping the ice-free terrains of the Western Antarctic Peninsula region using very high resolution imagery from an UAV

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieira, G.; Mora, C.; Pina, P.; Bandeira, L.; Hong, S. G.

    2014-12-01

    The West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) is one of the Earth's regions with a fastest warming signal since the 1950's with an increase of over +2.5 ºC in MAAT. Significant changes have been reported for glaciers, ice-shelves, sea-ice and also for the permafrost environment. Mapping and monitoring the ice-free areas of the WAP has been until recently limited by the available aerial photo surveys, but also by the scarce high resolution satellite imagery (e.g. QuickBird, WorldView, etc.) that are seriously constrained by the high cloudiness of the region. Recent developments in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV's), which have seen significant technological advances and price reduction in the last few years, allow for its systematical use for mapping and monitoring in remote environments. In the framework of projects PERMANTAR-3 (PTDC/AAG-GLO/3908/2012 - FCT) and 3DAntártida (Ciência Viva), we complement traditional terrain surveying and mapping, satellite remote sensing (SAR and optical) and D-GPS deformation monitoring, with the application of an UAV. In this communication, we present the results from the application of a Sensefly ebee UAV in mapping the vegetation and geomorphological processes (e.g. sorted circles), as well as for digital elevation model generation in a test site in Barton Pen., King George Isl.. The UAV is a lightweight (ci. 700g) aircraft, with a 96 cm wingspan, which is portable and easy to transport. It allows for up to 40 min flight time, with application of RGB or NIR cameras. We have tested the ebee successfully with winds up to 10 m/s and obtained aerial photos with a ground resolution of 4 cm/pixel. The digital orthophotomaps, high resolution DEM's together with field observations have allowed for deriving geomorphological maps with unprecedented detail and accuracy, providing new insight into the controls on the spatial distribution of geomorphological processes. The talk will focus on the first results from the field surveys of February and

  18. Reconsidering connectivity in the sub-Antarctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moon, Katherine L; Chown, Steven L; Fraser, Ceridwen I

    2017-11-01

    Extreme and remote environments provide useful settings to test ideas about the ecological and evolutionary drivers of biological diversity. In the sub-Antarctic, isolation by geographic, geological and glaciological processes has long been thought to underpin patterns in the region's terrestrial and marine diversity. Molecular studies using increasingly high-resolution data are, however, challenging this perspective, demonstrating that many taxa disperse among distant sub-Antarctic landmasses. Here, we reconsider connectivity in the sub-Antarctic region, identifying which taxa are relatively isolated, which are well connected, and the scales across which this connectivity occurs in both terrestrial and marine systems. Although many organisms show evidence of occasional long-distance, trans-oceanic dispersal, these events are often insufficient to maintain gene flow across the region. Species that do show evidence of connectivity across large distances include both active dispersers and more sedentary species. Overall, connectivity patterns in the sub-Antarctic at intra- and inter-island scales are highly complex, influenced by life-history traits and local dynamics such as relative dispersal capacity and propagule pressure, natal philopatry, feeding associations, the extent of human exploitation, past climate cycles, contemporary climate, and physical barriers to movement. An increasing use of molecular data - particularly genomic data sets that can reveal fine-scale patterns - and more effective international collaboration and communication that facilitates integration of data from across the sub-Antarctic, are providing fresh insights into the processes driving patterns of diversity in the region. These insights offer a platform for assessing the ways in which changing dispersal mechanisms, such as through increasing human activity and changes to wind and ocean circulation, may alter sub-Antarctic biodiversity patterns in the future. © 2017 Cambridge

  19. Airspace: Antarctic Sound Transmission

    OpenAIRE

    Polli, Andrea

    2009-01-01

    This paper investigates how sound transmission can contribute to the public understanding of climate change within the context of the Poles. How have such transmission-based projects developed specifically in the Arctic and Antarctic, and how do these works create alternative pathways in order to help audiences better understand climate change? The author has created the media project Sonic Antarctica from a personal experience of the Antarctic. The work combines soundscape recordings and son...

  20. Meteorological observatory for Antarctic data collection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grigioni, P.; De Silvestri, L.

    1996-01-01

    In the last years, a great number of automatic weather stations was installed in Antarctica, with the aim to examine closely the weather and climate of this region and to improve the coverage of measuring points on the Antarctic surface. In 1987 the Italian Antarctic Project started to set up a meteorological network, in an area not completely covered by other countries. Some of the activities performed by the meteorological observatory, concerning technical functions such as maintenance of the AWS's and the execution of radio soundings, or relating to scientific purposes such as validation and elaboration of collected data, are exposed. Finally, some climatological considerations on the thermal behaviour of the Antarctic troposphere such as 'coreless winter', and on the wind field, including katabatic flows in North Victoria Land are described

  1. Relative sea level in the Western Mediterranean basin: A regional test of the ICE-7G_NA (VM7) model and a constraint on late Holocene Antarctic deglaciation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Keven; Peltier, W. R.

    2018-03-01

    The Mediterranean Basin is a region of special interest in the study of past and present relative sea level evolution, given its location south of the ice sheets that covered large fractions of Northern Europe during the last glaciation, the large number of biological, geological and archaeological sea level indicators that have been retrieved from its coastal regions, as well as its high density of modern coastal infrastructure. Models of the Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA) process provide reconstructions of past relative sea level evolution, and can be tested for validity against past sea level indicators from the region. It is demonstrated herein that the latest ICE-7G_NA (VM7) model of the GIA process, the North American component of which was refined using a full suite of geophysical observables, is able to reconcile the vast majority of uniformly analyzed relative sea level constraints available for the Western part of the Mediterranean basin, a region to which it was not tuned. We also revisit herein the previously published interpretations of relative sea level information obtained from Roman-era coastal Mediterranean "fish tanks", analyze the far-field influence of the rate of late Holocene Antarctic ice sheet melting history on the exceptionally detailed relative sea level history available from southern Tunisia, and extend the analysis to complementary constraints on the history of Antarctic ice-sheet melting available from islands in the equatorial Pacific Ocean. The analyses reported herein provide strong support for the global "exportability" of the ICE-7G_NA (VM7) model, a result that speaks directly to the ability of spherically symmetric models of the internal viscoelastic structure to explain globally distributed observations, while also identifying isolated regions of remaining misfit which will benefit from further study.

  2. A method for assessing the physical recovery of Antarctic desert pavements following human-induced disturbances: a case study in the Ross Sea region of Antarctica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neill, Tanya A; Balks, Megan R; López-Martínez, Jerónimo; McWhirter, Judi L

    2012-12-15

    With increasing visitor numbers an understanding of the impacts of human activities in Antarctic terrestrial environments has become important. The objective of this study was to develop a means for assessing recovery of the ground surface desert pavement following physical disturbance. A set of 11 criteria were identified to assess desert pavement recovery. Assessed criteria were: embeddedness of surface clasts; impressions of removed clasts; degree of clast surface weathering; % overturned clasts; salt on underside of clasts; development of salt coatings; armouring per m(2); colour contrast; evidence of subsidence/melt out; accumulation of salt on cut surfaces; and evidence of patterned ground development. Recovery criteria were assigned a severity/extent rating on a scale from zero to four, zero being highly disturbed, and four being undisturbed. A relative % recovery for each criteria was calculated for each site by comparison with a nearby undisturbed control area, and an overall Mean Recovery Index (MRI) was assigned to each pavement surface. To test the method, 54 sites in the Ross Sea region of Antarctica were investigated including areas disturbed by: bulldozer scraping for road-fill, contouring for infrastructure, geotechnical investigations, and experimental treading trial sites. Disturbances had occurred at timescales ranging from one week to 50 years prior to assessment. The extent of desert pavement recovery at the sites investigated in this study was higher than anticipated. Fifty of the 54 sites investigated were in an intermediate, or higher, stage of desert pavement recovery, 30 sites were in an advanced stage of recovery, and four sites were indistinguishable from adjacent control sites (MRI = 100%). It was found that active surfaces, such as the gravel beach deposits at the Greenpeace World Park Base site at Cape Evans, the aeolian sand deposits at Bull Pass, and the alluvial fan deposits of the Loop Moraine field campsite, recovered relatively

  3. Chilean Antarctic Stations on King George Island

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katsutada Kaminuma

    2000-07-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of my visit to Chilean Antarctic Stations was to assess the present status of geophysical observations and research, as the South Shetland Island, West Antarctica, where the stations are located, are one of the most active tectonic regions on the Antarctic plate. The Instituto Antartico Chileno (INACH kindly gave me a chance to stay in Frei/Escudero Bases as an exchange scientist under the Antarctic Treaty for two weeks in January 2000. I stayed in Frei Base as a member of a geological survey group named "Tectonic Evolution of the Antarctic Peninsula" which was organized by Prof. F. Herve, University of Chile, from January 05 to 19,2000. All my activity in the Antarctic was organized by INACH. During my stay in Frei Base, I also visited Bellingshausen (Russian, Great Wall (China and Artigas (Uruguay stations. All these stations are located within walking distance of Frei Base. King Sejong Station (Korea, located 10km east from Frei Base, and Jubany Base (Argentine, another 6km south-east from King Sejong Station, were also visited with the aid of a zodiac boat that was kindly operated for us by King Sejong Station. All stations except Escudero Base carry out meteorological observations. The seismological observations in Frei Base are operated by Washington State University of the U. S. monitoring of earthquake activity and three-component geomagnetic observations are done at King Sejong and Great Wall stations. Earth tide is monitored at Artigas Base. Continuous monitoring of GPS and gravity change are planned at King Sejong Station in the near future. Scientific research activities of each country in the area in the 1999/2000 Antarctic summer season were studied and the logistic ability of all stations was also assessed for our future international cooperation.

  4. Testing oils in antarctic soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leufkens, D.

    2001-01-01

    The resident seals, whales and penguins in Antarctica's Ross Sea region have only environmentally friendly ways of getting around. In contrast, wherever humans go in the Antarctic and whatever they do, be it research, tourism or fishing, they need fuel for their planes, icebreaker ships, land vehicles and generators. Because of this, petroleum hydrocarbons are the most likely source of pollution in the Antarctic. Accidental oil spills often occur near scientific stations, where storage and refuelling of aircraft and vehicles can result in spills. Spills also occur as a consequence of drilling activities. Dr Jackie Aislabie, a microbiologist from the New Zealand government's research company Landcare Research, is leading a program aimed at understanding how oil spills impact on Antarctic soils. The properties of pristine soils were compared with oil-contaminated soil at three locations: Scott Base, Marble Point and in the Wright Valley at Bull Pass. Soils in the Scott Base area are impacted by the establishment and continuous habitation of the base over 40 years, and a hydrocarbon-contaminated site was sampled near a former storage area for drums of mixed oils. Soil sampled from Marble Point was taken from near the old Marble Point camp, which was inhabited from 1957 to about 1963. Oil stains were visible on the soil surface, and are assumed to have been there for more than 30 years. The samples selected for analysis from the Wright Valley came from a spill site near Bull Pass that occurred during seismic bore-hole drilling activities in 1985. The contamination levels ranged from below detection to just over 29,000 μg/g of soil. Descriptions and analyse results are included into a Geographic Information System and associated soils database

  5. The Pleistocene evolution of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet in the Prydz bay region: Stable isotopic evidence from ODP Site 1167

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theissen, K.M.; Dunbar, R.B.; Cooper, A. K.; Mucciarone, D.A.; Hoffmann, D.

    2003-01-01

    Ocean Drilling Program Leg 188, Prydz Bay, East Antarctica is part of a larger initiative to explore the Cenozoic history of the Antarctic Ice Sheet through direct drilling and sampling of the continental margins. In this paper, we present stable isotopic results from Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Site 1167 located on the Prydz Channel Trough Mouth Fan (TMF), the first Antarctic TMF to be drilled. The foraminifer-based ??18O record is interpreted along with sedimentary and downhole logging evidence to reconstruct the Quaternary glacial history of Prydz Bay and the adjacent Lambert Glacier Amery Ice Shelf System (LGAISS). We report an electron spin resonance age date of 36. 9 ?? 3.3 ka at 0.45 m below sea floor and correlate suspected glacial-interglacial cycles with the global isotopic stratigraphy to improve the chronology for Site 1167. The ??18O record based on planktonic (Neogloboquadrina pachyderma (s.)) and limited benthic results (Globocassidulina crassa), indicates a trend of ice sheet expansion that was interrupted by a period of reduced ice volume and possibly warmer conditions during the early-mid-Pleistocene (0.9-1.38 Ma). An increase in ?? 18O values after ??? 900 ka appears to coincide with the mid-Pleistocene climate transition and the expansion of the northern hemisphere ice sheet. The ??18O record in the upper 50 m of the stratigraphic section indicates as few as three glacial-interglacial cycles, tentatively assigned as marine isotopic stages (MIS) 16-21, are preserved since the Brunhes/Matuyama paleomagnetic reversal (780 ka). This suggests that there is a large unconformity near the top of the section and/or that there may have been few extreme advances of the ice sheet since the mid-Pleistocene climate transition resulting in lowered sedimentation rates on the Prydz Channel TMF. The stable isotopic record from Site 1167 is one of the few available from the area south of the Antarctic Polar Front that has been linked with the global isotopic

  6. Glacier History of the Northern Antarctic Peninsula Region Since the End of the Last Ice Age and Implications for Southern Hemisphere Westerly-Climate Changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaplan, M. R.; Schaefer, J. M.; Strelin, J. A.; Peltier, C.; Southon, J. R.; Lepper, K. E.; Winckler, G.

    2017-12-01

    For the area around James Ross Island, we present new cosmogenic 10Be exposure ages on glacial deposits, and 14C ages on associated fossil materials. These data allow us to reconstruct in detail when and how the Antarctic Peninsula Ice Sheet retreated around the Island as the last Ice Age ended, and afterward when local land-based glaciers fluctuated. Similar to other studies, we found widespread deglaciation during the earliest Holocene, with fjords and bays becoming ice free between about 11,000 and 8,000 years ago. After 7,000 years ago, neoglacial type advances initiated. Then, both expansions and ice free periods occurred from the middle to late Holocene. We compare the new glacier record to those in southern Patagonia, which is on the other side of the Drake Passage, and published Southern Ocean marine records, in order to infer past middle to high latitude changes in the Southern Hemisphere Westerlies. Widespread warmth in the earliest Holocene, to the north and south of the Drake Passage, led to small glacier systems in Patagonia and wide-ranging glacier recession around the northern Antarctic Peninsula. We infer that this early Holocene period of overall glacier recession - from Patagonia to the northern Peninsula - was caused by a persistent far-southerly setting of the westerlies and accompanying warm climates. Subsequently, during the middle Holocene renewed glacier expansions occurred on both sides of the Drake Passage, which reflects that the Westerlies and associated colder climate systems were generally more equatorward. From the middle to late Holocene, glacier expansions and ice free periods (and likely related ice shelf behavior) document how the Westerlies and associated higher-latitude climate systems varied.

  7. Glacial morphology and depositional sequences of the Antarctic Continental Shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    ten Brink, Uri S.; Schneider, Christopher

    1995-01-01

    Proposes a simple model for the unusual depositional sequences and morphology of the Antarctic continental shelf. It considers the regional stratal geometry and the reversed morphology to be principally the results of time-integrated effects of glacial erosion and sedimentation related to the location of the ice grounding line. The model offers several guidelines for stratigraphic interpretation of the Antarctic shelf and a Northern Hemisphere shelf, both of which were subject to many glacial advances and retreats. -Authors

  8. Emerging spatial patterns in Antarctic prokaryotes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chong, Chun-Wie; Pearce, David A; Convey, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in knowledge of patterns of biogeography in terrestrial eukaryotic organisms have led to a fundamental paradigm shift in understanding of the controls and history of life on land in Antarctica, and its interactions over the long term with the glaciological and geological processes that have shaped the continent. However, while it has long been recognized that the terrestrial ecosystems of Antarctica are dominated by microbes and their processes, knowledge of microbial diversity and distributions has lagged far behind that of the macroscopic eukaryote organisms. Increasing human contact with and activity in the continent is leading to risks of biological contamination and change in a region whose isolation has protected it for millions of years at least; these risks may be particularly acute for microbial communities which have, as yet, received scant recognition and attention. Even a matter apparently as straightforward as Protected Area designation in Antarctica requires robust biodiversity data which, in most parts of the continent, remain almost completely unavailable. A range of important contributing factors mean that it is now timely to reconsider the state of knowledge of Antarctic terrestrial prokaryotes. Rapid advances in molecular biological approaches are increasingly demonstrating that bacterial diversity in Antarctica may be far greater than previously thought, and that there is overlap in the environmental controls affecting both Antarctic prokaryotic and eukaryotic communities. Bacterial dispersal mechanisms and colonization patterns remain largely unaddressed, although evidence for regional evolutionary differentiation is rapidly accruing and, with this, there is increasing appreciation of patterns in regional bacterial biogeography in this large part of the globe. In this review, we set out to describe the state of knowledge of Antarctic prokaryote diversity patterns, drawing analogy with those of eukaryote groups where appropriate

  9. Biological invasions in the Antarctic: extent, impacts and implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frenot, Yves; Chown, Steven L; Whinam, Jennie; Selkirk, Patricia M; Convey, Peter; Skotnicki, Mary; Bergstrom, Dana M

    2005-02-01

    Alien microbes, fungi, plants and animals occur on most of the sub-Antarctic islands and some parts of the Antarctic continent. These have arrived over approximately the last two centuries, coincident with human activity in the region. Introduction routes have varied, but are largely associated with movement of people and cargo in connection with industrial, national scientific program and tourist operations. The large majority of aliens are European in origin. They have both direct and indirect impacts on the functioning of species-poor Antarctic ecosystems, in particular including substantial loss of local biodiversity and changes to ecosystem processes. With rapid climate change occurring in some parts of Antarctica, elevated numbers of introductions and enhanced success of colonization by aliens are likely, with consequent increases in impacts on ecosystems. Mitigation measures that will substantially reduce the risk of introductions to Antarctica and the sub-Antarctic must focus on reducing propagule loads on humans, and their food, cargo, and transport vessels.

  10. Antarctic Meteorite Newsletter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindstrom, Marilyn

    2000-01-01

    This newsletter contains something for everyone! It lists classifications of about 440 meteorites mostly from the 1997 and 1998 ANSMET (Antarctic Search for Meteorites) seasons. It also gives descriptions of about 45 meteorites of special petrologic type. These include 1 iron, 17 chondrites (7 CC, 1 EC, 9 OC) and 27 achondrites (25 HED, UR). Most notable are an acapoloite (GRA98028) and an olivine diogenite (GRA98108).

  11. Unveiling the Antarctic subglacial landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warner, Roland; Roberts, Jason

    2010-05-01

    Better knowledge of the subglacial landscape of Antarctica is vital to reducing uncertainties regarding prediction of the evolution of the ice sheet. These uncertainties are associated with bedrock geometry for ice sheet dynamics, including possible marine ice sheet instabilities and subglacial hydrological pathways (e.g. Wright et al., 2008). Major collaborative aerogeophysics surveys motivated by the International Polar Year (e.g. ICECAP and AGAP), and continuing large scale radar echo sounding campaigns (ICECAP and NASA Ice Bridge) are significantly improving the coverage. However, the vast size of Antarctica and logistic difficulties mean that data gaps persist, and ice thickness data remains spatially inhomogeneous. The physics governing large scale ice sheet flow enables ice thickness, and hence bedrock topography, to be inferred from knowledge of ice sheet surface topography and considerations of ice sheet mass balance, even in areas with sparse ice thickness measurements (Warner and Budd, 2000). We have developed a robust physically motivated interpolation scheme, based on these methods, and used it to generate a comprehensive map of Antarctic bedrock topography, using along-track ice thickness data assembled for the BEDMAP project (Lythe et al., 2001). This approach reduces ice thickness biases, compared to traditional inverse distance interpolation schemes which ignore the information available from considerations of ice sheet flow. In addition, the use of improved balance fluxes, calculated using a Lagrangian scheme, eliminates the grid orientation biases in ice fluxes associated with finite difference methods (Budd and Warner, 1996, Le Brocq et al., 2006). The present map was generated using a recent surface DEM (Bamber et al., 2009, Griggs and Bamber, 2009) and accumulation distribution (van de Berg et al., 2006). Comparing our results with recent high resolution regional surveys gives confidence that all major subglacial topographic features are

  12. Basin-scale heterogeneity in Antarctic precipitation and its impact on surface mass variability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Fyke

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Annually averaged precipitation in the form of snow, the dominant term of the Antarctic Ice Sheet surface mass balance, displays large spatial and temporal variability. Here we present an analysis of spatial patterns of regional Antarctic precipitation variability and their impact on integrated Antarctic surface mass balance variability simulated as part of a preindustrial 1800-year global, fully coupled Community Earth System Model simulation. Correlation and composite analyses based on this output allow for a robust exploration of Antarctic precipitation variability. We identify statistically significant relationships between precipitation patterns across Antarctica that are corroborated by climate reanalyses, regional modeling and ice core records. These patterns are driven by variability in large-scale atmospheric moisture transport, which itself is characterized by decadal- to centennial-scale oscillations around the long-term mean. We suggest that this heterogeneity in Antarctic precipitation variability has a dampening effect on overall Antarctic surface mass balance variability, with implications for regulation of Antarctic-sourced sea level variability, detection of an emergent anthropogenic signal in Antarctic mass trends and identification of Antarctic mass loss accelerations.

  13. The genome of the Antarctic-endemic copepod, Tigriopus kingsejongensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Seunghyun; Ahn, Do-Hwan; Lee, Jun Hyuck; Lee, Sung Gu; Shin, Seung Chul; Lee, Jungeun; Min, Gi-Sik; Lee, Hyoungseok; Kim, Hyun-Woo; Kim, Sanghee; Park, Hyun

    2017-01-01

    The Antarctic intertidal zone is continuously subjected to extremely fluctuating biotic and abiotic stressors. The West Antarctic Peninsula is the most rapidly warming region on Earth. Organisms living in Antarctic intertidal pools are therefore interesting for research into evolutionary adaptation to extreme environments and the effects of climate change. We report the whole genome sequence of the Antarctic-endemic harpacticoid copepod Tigriopus kingsejongensi . The 37 Gb raw DNA sequence was generated using the Illumina Miseq platform. Libraries were prepared with 65-fold coverage and a total length of 295 Mb. The final assembly consists of 48 368 contigs with an N50 contig length of 17.5 kb, and 27 823 scaffolds with an N50 contig length of 159.2 kb. A total of 12 772 coding genes were inferred using the MAKER annotation pipeline. Comparative genome analysis revealed that T. kingsejongensis -specific genes are enriched in transport and metabolism processes. Furthermore, rapidly evolving genes related to energy metabolism showed positive selection signatures. The T. kingsejongensis genome provides an interesting example of an evolutionary strategy for Antarctic cold adaptation, and offers new genetic insights into Antarctic intertidal biota. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  14. Unexpectedly high ultrafine aerosol concentrations above East Antarctic sea ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. S. Humphries

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Better characterisation of aerosol processes in pristine, natural environments, such as Antarctica, have recently been shown to lead to the largest reduction in uncertainties in our understanding of radiative forcing. Our understanding of aerosols in the Antarctic region is currently based on measurements that are often limited to boundary layer air masses at spatially sparse coastal and continental research stations, with only a handful of studies in the vast 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 icebreaker 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 equatorward into the low-albedo Southern Ocean region, transporting with them emissions and these aerosol nuclei which, after growth, may potentially impact on the region's radiative balance. The high aerosol concentrations and their transport pathways described here, could help reduce the discrepancy currently present between

  15. 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.

    2016-02-01

    Better characterisation of aerosol processes in pristine, natural environments, such as Antarctica, have recently been shown to lead to the largest reduction in uncertainties in our understanding of radiative forcing. Our understanding of aerosols in the Antarctic region is currently based on measurements that are often limited to boundary layer air masses at spatially sparse coastal and continental research stations, with only a handful of studies in the vast 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 icebreaker 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 equatorward into the low-albedo Southern Ocean region, transporting with them emissions and these aerosol nuclei which, after growth, may potentially impact on the region's radiative balance. The high aerosol concentrations and their transport pathways described here, could help reduce the discrepancy currently present between simulations and observations of

  16. Spatial structures in the heat budget of the Antarctic Atmospheric Boundary Layer

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Berg, W.J.; van den Broeke, M.R.; van Meijgaard, E.

    2008-01-01

    Output from the regional climate model RACMO2/ANT is used to calculate the heat budget of the Antarctic atmospheric boundary layer (ABL). The main feature of the wintertime Antarctic ABL is a persistent temperature deficit compared to the free atmosphere. The magnitude of this deficit is controlled

  17. Spatial pattern in Antarctica: what can we learn from Antarctic bacterial isolates?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chong, Chun Wie; Goh, Yuh Shan; Convey, Peter; Pearce, David; Tan, Irene Kit Ping

    2013-09-01

    A range of small- to moderate-scale studies of patterns in bacterial biodiversity have been conducted in Antarctica over the last two decades, most suggesting strong correlations between the described bacterial communities and elements of local environmental heterogeneity. However, very few of these studies have advanced interpretations in terms of spatially associated patterns, despite increasing evidence of patterns in bacterial biogeography globally. This is likely to be a consequence of restricted sampling coverage, with most studies to date focusing only on a few localities within a specific Antarctic region. Clearly, there is now a need for synthesis over a much larger spatial to consolidate the available data. In this study, we collated Antarctic bacterial culture identities based on the 16S rRNA gene information available in the literature and the GenBank database (n > 2,000 sequences). In contrast to some recent evidence for a distinct Antarctic microbiome, our phylogenetic comparisons show that a majority (~75 %) of Antarctic bacterial isolates were highly similar (≥99 % sequence similarity) to those retrieved from tropical and temperate regions, suggesting widespread distribution of eurythermal mesophiles in Antarctic environments. However, across different Antarctic regions, the dominant bacterial genera exhibit some spatially distinct diversity patterns analogous to those recently proposed for Antarctic terrestrial macroorganisms. Taken together, our results highlight the threat of cross-regional homogenisation in Antarctic biodiversity, and the imperative to include microbiota within the framework of biosecurity measures for Antarctica.

  18. Satellite magnetic anomalies of the Antarctic crust

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. E. Alsdorf

    2000-06-01

    Full Text Available Spatially and temporally static crustal magnetic anomalies are contaminated by static core field effects above spherical harmonic degree 12 and dynamic, large-amplitude external fields. To extract crustal magnetic anomalies from the measurements of NASA's Magsat mission, we separate crustal signals from both core and external field effects. In particular, we define Magsat anomalies relative to the degree 11 field and use spectral correlation theory to reduce them for external field effects. We obtain a model of Antarctic crustal thickness by comparing the region's terrain gravity effects to free-air gravity anomalies derived from the Earth Gravity Model 1996 (EGM96. To separate core and crustal magnetic effects, we obtain the pseudo-magnetic effect of the crustal thickness variations from their gravity effect via Poisson's theorem for correlative potentials. We compare the pseudo-magnetic effect of the crustal thickness variations to field differences between degrees 11 and 13 by spectral correlation analysis. We thus identify and remove possible residual core field effects in the Magsat anomalies relative to the degree 11 core field. The resultant anomalies reflect possible Antarctic contrasts due both to crustal thickness and intracrustal variations of magnetization. In addition, they provide important constraints on the geologic interpretation of aeromagnetic survey data, such as are available for the Weddell Province. These crustal anomalies also may be used to correct for long wavelength errors in regional compilations of near-surface magnetic survey data. However, the validity of these applications is limited by the poor quality of the Antarctic Magsat data that were obtained during austral Summer and Fall when south polar external field activity was maximum. Hence an important test and supplement for the Antarctic crustal Magsat anomaly map will be provided by the data from the recently launched Ørsted mission, which will yield coverage

  19. Revisiting Antarctic Ozone Depletion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grooß, Jens-Uwe; Tritscher, Ines; Müller, Rolf

    2015-04-01

    Antarctic ozone depletion is known for almost three decades and it has been well settled that it is caused by chlorine catalysed ozone depletion inside the polar vortex. However, there are still some details, which need to be clarified. In particular, there is a current debate on the relative importance of liquid aerosol and crystalline NAT and ice particles for chlorine activation. Particles have a threefold impact on polar chlorine chemistry, temporary removal of HNO3 from the gas-phase (uptake), permanent removal of HNO3 from the atmosphere (denitrification), and chlorine activation through heterogeneous reactions. We have performed simulations with the Chemical Lagrangian Model of the Stratosphere (CLaMS) employing a recently developed algorithm for saturation-dependent NAT nucleation for the Antarctic winters 2011 and 2012. The simulation results are compared with different satellite observations. With the help of these simulations, we investigate the role of the different processes responsible for chlorine activation and ozone depletion. Especially the sensitivity with respect to the particle type has been investigated. If temperatures are artificially forced to only allow cold binary liquid aerosol, the simulation still shows significant chlorine activation and ozone depletion. The results of the 3-D Chemical Transport Model CLaMS simulations differ from purely Lagrangian longtime trajectory box model simulations which indicates the importance of mixing processes.

  20. Ecuadorian antarctic act

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-02-01

    To develop research in this continent involves to take communion with earth where the cold pole of the planet is located, the stormiest sea of the world surround it and where the capricious continental and geographical distribution permits the pass of meteorological violent and continuous systems. The Ecuador, in execution of the acquired commitments like Full Member of the System of the Antarctic Treaty, carried out the VII Expedition to the White Continent with an extensive program of scientific investigation in the field of: Sciences of Life, Sciences of the Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, so much in the environment of the Pacific Southeast, the Drake Pass, Bransfield Strait and the nearby ecosystems antarctic to Point Fort William in the Greenwich Island, site where the Ecuadorian station Pedro Vicente Maldonado is located. The scientific articles, result of the fruitful work of national investigator is consigned in this fourth edition. This publication constitutes our contribution to the world in the knowledge, understanding and handling of the marvelous White Continent from the middle of our planet, Ecuador

  1. Balance of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-01-01

    For several decades, measurements of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet showed it to be retreating rapidly. But new data derived from satellite-borne radar sensors show the ice sheet to be growing. Changing Antarctic ice sheets remains an area of high scientific interest, particularly in light of recent global warming concerns. These new findings are significant because scientists estimate that sea level would rise 5-6 meters (16-20 feet) if the ice sheet collapsed into the sea. Do these new measurements signal the end of the ice sheet's 10,000-year retreat? Or, are these new satellite data simply much more accurate than the sparse ice core and surface measurements that produced the previous estimates? Another possibility is that the ice accumulation may simply indicate that the ice sheet naturally expands and retreats in regular cycles. Cryologists will grapple with these questions, and many others, as they examine the new data. The image above depicts the region of West Antarctica where scientists measured ice speed. The fast-moving central ice streams are shown in red. Slower tributaries feeding the ice streams are shown in blue. Green areas depict slow-moving, stable areas. Thick black lines depict the areas that collect snowfall to feed their respective ice streams. Reference: Ian Joughin and Slawek Tulaczyk Science Jan 18 2002: 476-480. Image courtesy RADARSAT Antarctic Mapping Project

  2. RADARSAT: The Antarctic Mapping Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jezek, Kenneth C.; Lindstrom, E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The first Antarctic Imaging Campaign (AIC) occurred during the period September 9, 1997 through October 20, 1997. The AIC utilized the unique attributes of the Canadian RADARSAT-1 to acquire the first, high-resolution, synthetic aperture imagery covering the entire Antarctic Continent. Although the primary goal of the mission was the acquisition of image data, the nearly flawless execution of the mission enabled additional collections of exact repeat orbit data. These data, covering an extensive portion of the interior Antarctic, potentially are suitable for interferometric analysis of topography and surface velocity. This document summarizes the Project through completion with delivery of products to the NASA DAACs.

  3. Antarctic crabs: invasion or endurance?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huw J Griffiths

    Full Text Available Recent scientific interest following the "discovery" of lithodid crabs around Antarctica has centred on a hypothesis that these crabs might be poised to invade the Antarctic shelf if the recent warming trend continues, potentially decimating its native fauna. This "invasion hypothesis" suggests that decapod crabs were driven out of Antarctica 40-15 million years ago and are only now returning as "warm" enough habitats become available. The hypothesis is based on a geographically and spatially poor fossil record of a different group of crabs (Brachyura, and examination of relatively few Recent lithodid samples from the Antarctic slope. In this paper, we examine the existing lithodid fossil record and present the distribution and biogeographic patterns derived from over 16,000 records of Recent Southern Hemisphere crabs and lobsters. Globally, the lithodid fossil record consists of only two known specimens, neither of which comes from the Antarctic. Recent records show that 22 species of crabs and lobsters have been reported from the Southern Ocean, with 12 species found south of 60 °S. All are restricted to waters warmer than 0 °C, with their Antarctic distribution limited to the areas of seafloor dominated by Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW. Currently, CDW extends further and shallower onto the West Antarctic shelf than the known distribution ranges of most lithodid species examined. Geological evidence suggests that West Antarctic shelf could have been available for colonisation during the last 9,000 years. Distribution patterns, species richness, and levels of endemism all suggest that, rather than becoming extinct and recently re-invading from outside Antarctica, the lithodid crabs have likely persisted, and even radiated, on or near to Antarctic slope. We conclude there is no evidence for a modern-day "crab invasion". We recommend a repeated targeted lithodid sampling program along the West Antarctic shelf to fully test the validity of the

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

    OpenAIRE

    Grosvenor, D. P.; Choularton, T. W.; Lachlan-Cope, T.; Gallagher, M. W.; Crosier, J.; Bower, K. N.; Ladkin, R. S.; Dorsey, J. R.

    2012-01-01

    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 phas...

  5. Emerging spatial patterns in Antarctic prokaryotes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chun Wie eChong

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Recent advances in knowledge of patterns of biogeography in terrestrial eukaryotic organisms have led to a fundamental paradigm shift in understanding of the controls and history of life on land in Antarctica, and its interactions over the long term with the glaciological and geological processes that have shaped the continent. However, while it has long been recognized that the terrestrial ecosystems of Antarctica are dominated by microbes and their processes, knowledge of microbial diversity and distributions has lagged far behind that of the macroscopic eukaryote organisms. Increasing human contact with and activity in the continent is leading to risks of biological contamination and change in a region whose isolation has protected it for millions of years at least; these risks may be particularly acute for microbial communities which have, as yet, received scant recognition and attention. Even a matter apparently as straightforward as Protected Area designation in Antarctica requires robust biodiversity data which, in most parts of the continent, remain almost completely unavailable. A range of important contributing factors mean that it is now timely to reconsider the state of knowledge of Antarctic terrestrial prokaryotes. Rapid advances in molecular biological approaches are increasingly demonstrating that bacterial diversity in Antarctica may be far greater than previously thought, and that there is overlap in the environmental controls affecting both Antarctic prokaryotic and eukaryotic communities. Bacterial dispersal mechanisms and colonization patterns remain largely unaddressed, although evidence for regional evolutionary differentiation is rapidly accruing and, with this, there is increasing appreciation of patterns in regional bacterial biogeography in this large part of the globe. In this review, we set out to describe the state of knowledge of Antarctic prokaryote diversity patterns, drawing analogy with those of eukaryote

  6. Climate Change Impacts in the sub-Antarctic Islands Technical Report N.2 of ONERC

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2009-01-01

    Difficult to apprehend as a whole, the polar regions constitute the Arctic to the North, an ocean surrounded by emerged lands, and the Antarctic to the South, a continent bordered by the Austral Ocean where a belt of sub Antarctic islands lies. Climate change impacts on sub Antarctic islands are varied, direct and indirect: glacier retreat, more favourable conditions for introduced species, marine biodiversity modification, etc. This report discusses the French, British, Australian, South African and New Zealand sub Antarctic islands, the climatic evolutions and the resulting impacts, focused especially on biodiversity. The Observatoire National sur les Effets du Rechauffement Climatique and the International Polar Foundation have been joined in this endeavour by the French polar institute Paul-Emile Victor, the administration of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands (TAAF in French) and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. (authors)

  7. Biogeographical distribution of the benthic thecate hydroids collected during the Spanish Antartida 8611 expedition and comparison between Antarctic and Magellan benthic hydroid faunas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. L. Peña Cantero

    1999-12-01

    Full Text Available The biogeographical distribution of the benthic hydroid species collected during the Spanish Antarctic expedition Antártida 8611 has been studied. An inventory of the Antarctic and Magellan benthic thecate hydroid faunas, along with a comparison between the two, have been also carried out. 104 and 126 species of thecate hydroids have been considered in the Antarctic and Magellan areas, respectively. 72 species (69% of the Antarctic species and 49 (39% of the Magellan species are endemic. 23 species are present both in the Antarctic Region and in the Magellan area, representing 22% and 18% respectively, and indicating an important relationship between both faunas.

  8. Geostrophic volume transport and eddies in the region of sub-tropical and sub-Antarctic waters south of Madagascar during austral summer (January–February) 2004

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    RameshBabu, V.; Somayajulu, Y.K.; Sudhakar, M.

    at STF pave the way for the occurrence of intense cold and warm eddies to the north and south of STF. For the region south off South Africa, Lutjeharms and Valentine 13 have cate- gorized the eddies into a few distinct classes depending..., pathways and large-scale impact. Deep-Sea Res. II, 2004, 51, 383–400. 13. Lutjeharms, J. R. E. and Valentine, H. R., Eddies at the subtropi- cal convergence south of Africa. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 1988, 18, 761–774. 14. Quartly, G. D., Buck, J. J. H...

  9. Extremophiles in an Antarctic Marine Ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iain Dickinson

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Recent attempts to explore marine microbial diversity and the global marine microbiome have indicated a large proportion of previously unknown diversity. However, sequencing alone does not tell the whole story, as it relies heavily upon information that is already contained within sequence databases. In addition, microorganisms have been shown to present small-to-large scale biogeographical patterns worldwide, potentially making regional combinations of selection pressures unique. Here, we focus on the extremophile community in the boundary region located between the Polar Front and the Southern Antarctic Circumpolar Current in the Southern Ocean, to explore the potential of metagenomic approaches as a tool for bioprospecting in the search for novel functional activity based on targeted sampling efforts. We assessed the microbial composition and diversity from a region north of the current limit for winter sea ice, north of the Southern Antarctic Circumpolar Front (SACCF but south of the Polar Front. Although, most of the more frequently encountered sequences  were derived from common marine microorganisms, within these dominant groups, we found a proportion of genes related to secondary metabolism of potential interest in bioprospecting. Extremophiles were rare by comparison but belonged to a range of genera. Hence, they represented interesting targets from which to identify rare or novel functions. Ultimately, future shifts in environmental conditions favoring more cosmopolitan groups could have an unpredictable effect on microbial diversity and function in the Southern Ocean, perhaps excluding the rarer extremophiles.

  10. Distribution and abundance of Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) along the Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siegel, Volker; Reiss, Christian S.; Dietrich, Kimberly S.; Haraldsson, Matilda; Rohardt, Gerhard

    2013-07-01

    Net-based data on the abundance, distribution, and demographic patterns of Antarctic krill are quantified from a contemporaneous two ship survey of the Antarctic Peninsula during austral summer 2011. Two survey areas were sampled focussed on Marguerite Bay in the south, and the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula in the north. Data from 177 stations showed that the highest concentrations of krill were found in the southern sampling area. Differences between areas were associated with a few large catches of one year old krill found in anomalously warm and productive waters in Marguerite Bay, and small krill catches in the less-productive, offshore waters in the north. Estimated krill density across the survey area was 3.4 krill m-2, and was low compared to the long-term average of 45 krill m-2 for the Elephant Island area. Overall recruitment between the two survey regions was similar, but per capita recruitment was about 60% lower than historical mean recruitment levels measured at Elephant Island since the late 1970s. Demographic patterns showed small krill concentrated near the coast, and large krill concentrated offshore on the shelf and slope all along the survey area. The offshore distribution of adult krill was delineated by the warm (˜1 °C), low salinity (33.8) water at 30 m, suggesting that most krill were present shoreward of the southern boundary of Antarctic Circumpolar Current Front. Distributions of larvae indicated that three hotspot areas were important for the production of krill: slope areas outside Marguerite Bay and north of the South Shetland Islands, and near the coast around Antarctic Sound. Successful spawning, as inferred from larval abundance, was roughly coincident with the shelf break and not with inshore waters. Given the rapid changes in climate along the Antarctic Peninsula and the lower per capita recruitment observed in recent years, studies comparing and contrasting production, growth, and recruitment across the Peninsula will be

  11. Antarctic climate change and the environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-11-01

    This volume provides a comprehensive, up-to-date account of how the physical and biological : environment of the Antarctic continent and Southern Ocean has changed from Deep Time until : the present day. It also considers how the Antarctic environmen...

  12. Regulating Antarctic Tourism and the Precautionary Principle

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bastmeijer, C.J.; Roura, R.

    2004-01-01

    On the basis of an overview of the developments in Antarctic tourism since 1956, this current development note examines the issue of international regulation of Antarctic tourism. After discussing one of the main management issues in respect of Antarctic tourism ¿ the assessment and prevention of

  13. Antarctic Lithosphere Studies: Progress, Problems and Promise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalziel, I. W. D.; Wilson, T. J.

    2017-12-01

    In the sixty years since the International Geophysical Year, studies of the Antarctic lithosphere have progressed from basic geological observations and sparse geophysical measurements to continental-scale datasets of radiometric dates, ice thickness, bedrock topography and characteristics, seismic imaging and potential fields. These have been augmented by data from increasingly dense broadband seismic and geodetic networks. The Antarctic lithosphere is known to have been an integral part, indeed a "keystone" of the Pangea ( 250-185Ma) and Gondwanaland ( 540-180 Ma) supercontinents. It is widely believed to have been part of hypothetical earlier supercontinents Rodinia ( 1.0-0.75 Ga) and Columbia (Nuna) ( 2.0-1.5 Ga). Despite the paucity of exposure in East Antarctica, the new potential field datasets have emboldened workers to extrapolate Precambrian geological provinces and structures from neighboring continents into Antarctica. Hence models of the configuration of Columbia and its evolution into Rodinia and Gondwana have been proposed, and rift-flank uplift superimposed on a Proterozoic orogenic root has been hypothesized to explain the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains. Mesozoic-Cenozoic rifting has imparted a strong imprint on the West Antarctic lithosphere. Seismic tomographic evidence reveals lateral variation in lithospheric thickness, with the thinnest zones within the West Antarctic rift system and underlying the Amundsen Sea Embayment. Upper mantle low velocity zones are extensive, with a deeper mantle velocity anomaly underlying Marie Byrd Land marking a possible mantle plume. Misfits between crustal motions measured by GPS and GIA model predictions can, in part, be linked with the changes in lithosphere thickness and mantle rheology. Unusually high uplift rates measured by GPS in the Amundsen region can be interpreted as the response of regions with thin lithosphere and weak mantle to late Holocene ice mass loss. Horizontal displacements across the TAM

  14. Water masses, ocean fronts, and the structure of Antarctic seabird communities: putting the eastern Bellingshausen Sea in perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribic, Christine A.; Ainley, David G.; Ford, R. Glenn; Fraser, William R.; Tynan, Cynthia T.; Woehler, Eric J.

    2015-01-01

    Waters off the western Antarctic Peninsula (i.e., the eastern Bellingshausen Sea) are unusually complex owing to the convergence of several major fronts. Determining the relative influence of fronts on occurrence patterns of top-trophic species in that area, therefore, has been challenging. In one of the few ocean-wide seabird data syntheses, in this case for the Southern Ocean, we analyzed ample, previously collected cruise data, Antarctic-wide, to determine seabird species assemblages and quantitative relationships to fronts as a way to provide context to the long-term Palmer LTER and the winter Southern Ocean GLOBEC studies in the eastern Bellingshausen Sea. Fronts investigated during both winter (April–September) and summer (October–March) were the southern boundary of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC), which separates the High Antarctic from the Low Antarctic water mass, and within which are embedded the marginal ice zone and Antarctic Shelf Break Front; and the Antarctic Polar Front, which separates the Low Antarctic and the Subantarctic water masses. We used clustering to determine species' groupings with water masses, and generalized additive models to relate species' densities, biomass and diversity to distance to respective fronts. Antarctic-wide, in both periods, highest seabird densities and lowest species diversity were found in the High Antarctic water mass. In the eastern Bellingshausen, seabird density in the High Antarctic water mass was lower (as low as half that of winter) than found in other Antarctic regions. During winter, Antarctic-wide, two significant species groups were evident: one dominated by Adélie penguins (Pygoscelis adeliae) (High Antarctic water mass) and the other by petrels and prions (no differentiation among water masses); in eastern Bellingshausen waters during winter, the one significant species group was composed of species from both Antarctic-wide groups. In summer, Antarctic-wide, a High Antarctic group

  15. Modelling the Antarctic Ice Sheet

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Jens Olaf Pepke; Holm, A.

    2015-01-01

    to sea level high stands during past interglacial periods. A number of AIS models have been developed and applied to try to understand the workings of the AIS and to form a robust basis for future projections of the AIS contribution to sea level change. The recent DCESS (Danish Center for Earth System......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...

  16. Ophiuroidea das regiões antártica e subantártica: 1. sobre três espécies de Gorgonocephalidae e Ophiacanthidae Ophiuroidea from antarctic and subantarctic regions: 1. on three species of Gorgonocephalidae and Ophiacanthidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Maria Gouveia Monteiro

    1983-01-01

    Full Text Available É estudada a distribuição geográfica e a variação de caracteres morfológicos de três espécies de ofiuroides (OpiLacantha antartica, Astrotoma agassizzi e Gorgonecephalus chilensis das regiões Antártica e Subantãrtica. São também apresentadas observações sobre biologia reprodutiva.The geographical distribution and the variation of morphological characters of three (Gorgonecephalus chilensis, Astroma agassizii, Ophiacantha antartica from the Antarctic and Subantarctic regions are studied. Observations on reproductive biology are presented.

  17. The Antarctic - the wild card in the global climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oesterhus, Svein; Gammelsroed, Tor; Foldvik, Arne; Noest, Ole Anders

    1999-01-01

    The overview gives an account of studies of snowfall, ice melting and formation and water flow patterns in the Antarctic during the present global warming period. It also gives a survey of the ice area in the region. The sea water warming is dramatic and a large floating glacier seems to be decomposing which is disrupting the oceanographic and ecological relations in the region and globally and is significantly influencing the global climate

  18. Mass balance of the Antarctic ice sheet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wingham, D J; Shepherd, A; Muir, A; Marshall, G J

    2006-07-15

    The Antarctic contribution to sea-level rise has long been uncertain. While regional variability in ice dynamics has been revealed, a picture of mass changes throughout the continental ice sheet is lacking. Here, we use satellite radar altimetry to measure the elevation change of 72% of the grounded ice sheet during the period 1992-2003. Depending on the density of the snow giving rise to the observed elevation fluctuations, the ice sheet mass trend falls in the range -5-+85Gtyr-1. We find that data from climate model reanalyses are not able to characterise the contemporary snowfall fluctuation with useful accuracy and our best estimate of the overall mass trend-growth of 27+/-29Gtyr-1-is based on an assessment of the expected snowfall variability. Mass gains from accumulating snow, particularly on the Antarctic Peninsula and within East Antarctica, exceed the ice dynamic mass loss from West Antarctica. The result exacerbates the difficulty of explaining twentieth century sea-level rise.

  19. 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.)

  20. Low genetic diversity in Antarctic populations of the lichen-forming ascomycete Cetraria aculeata and its photobiont

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie Domaschke

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Lichens, symbiotic associations of fungi (mycobionts and green algae or cyanobacteria (photobionts, are poikilohydric organisms that are particularly well adapted to withstand adverse environmental conditions. Terrestrial ecosystems of the Antarctic are therefore largely dominated by lichens. The effects of global climate change are especially pronounced in the maritime Antarctic and it may be assumed that the lichen vegetation will profoundly change in the future. The genetic diversity of populations is closely correlated to their ability to adapt to changing environmental conditions and to their future evolutionary potential. In this study, we present evidence for low genetic diversity in Antarctic mycobiont and photobiont populations of the widespread lichen Cetraria aculeata. We compared between 110 and 219 DNA sequences from each of three gene loci for each symbiont. A total of 222 individuals from three Antarctic and nine antiboreal, temperate and Arctic populations were investigated. The mycobiont diversity is highest in Arctic populations, while the photobionts are most diverse in temperate regions. Photobiont diversity decreases significantly towards the Antarctic but less markedly towards the Arctic, indicating that ecological factors play a minor role in determining the diversity of Antarctic photobiont populations. Richness estimators calculated for the four geographical regions suggest that the low genetic diversity of Antarctic populations is not a sampling artefact. Cetraria aculeata appears to have diversified in the Arctic and subsequently expanded its range into the Southern Hemisphere. The reduced genetic diversity in the Antarctic is most likely due to founder effects during long-distance colonization.

  1. Evaluating Potential Tipping Points of Antarctic basins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durand, G.; Sainan, S.; Pattyn, F.; Jourdain, N.

    2017-12-01

    Antarctica is currently loosing mass and its forthcoming contribution to sea-level rise could substantially increase during the coming centuries. This is essentially due to geometrical constraints, i.e., in regions where grounded ice lies on a bedrock below sea-level sloping down towards the interior of the ice sheet (retrograde slope). For such a configuration the ice sheet is considered potentially unstable, as suggested by theory. However, recent observations on accelerated grounding-line retreat and new insights in modeling Pine Island and Thwaites glaciers give evidence that such self-sustained retreat, called marine ice sheet instability (MISI), has already been on its way. Although West Antarctica appears to be the most vulnerable region for MISI occurrence, similar topographic configurations are also observed in East Antarctica, in the Wilkes Basin in particular. Therefore, evaluating the MISI potential at a pan-Antarctic scale is becoming a priority. Here, using the f.ETISh ice sheet model, an ensemble of simulations of the entire contemporary Antarctic ice sheet has been carried out. In particular, we investigate the debuttressing of ice shelves required to initiate MISI for each coastal region around Antarctica by forcing the model with realistic sub-shelf melt pulses of varying duration and amplitude. We further identify the currently grounded areas where the outlet glaciers could hardly stabilize, the Amundsen Sea Sector being the more prone to large self-sustained retreats. On the contrary, the ability of Cook and Ninnis ice shelves to recover after large perturbations and enough buttress upstream outlet glaciers tends to limit self-sustained retreat of the sector. For each basin, rates of contribution to sea-level rise are discussed together with the RCPs and time when tipping points could be reached and MISI triggered.

  2. Absorption of ultraviolet radiation by antarctic phytoplankton

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vernet, M.; Mitchell, B.G. (Univ. of California-San Diego, La Jolla (United States))

    1990-01-09

    Antarctic phytoplankton contain UV-absorbing compounds that may block damaging radiation. Compounds that absorb from 320-340 nm were observed in spectral absorption of both particulates and in methanol extracts of the particulates. The decrease in the total concentration of these UV compounds with respect to chlorophyll a, as measured by the ratio of in vitro absorption at 335 nm to absorption at 665 nm is variable and decreases with depth. We observed up to 5-fold decrease in this ratio for samples within the physically mixes surface layer. The absorption of UV radiation in methanol extracts, which peaks from 320 to 340 nm, may be composed of several compounds. Shifts in peak absorption with depth (for example, from 331 nm at surface to 321 nm at 75 m), may be interpreted as a change in composition. Ratios of protective yellow xanthophylls (diadinoxanthin + diatoxanthin) to photosynthetic fucoxanthin-like pigments have highest values in surface waters. As these pigments also absorb in the near UV, their function might extend to protection as well as utilization of UV radiation for photosynthesis. We document strong absorption in the UV from 320-330 nm for Antarctic marine particulates. Below this region of the solar energy spectrum, absolute energy levels of incident radiation drop off dramatically. Only wavelengths shorter than about 320 nm will be significantly enhanced due to ozone depletion. If the absorption we observed serves a protective role for phytoplankton photosynthesis, it appears the peak band is in the region where solar energy increases rapidly, and not in the region where depletion would cause significant variations in absolute flux.

  3. Peatland Ecosystem Processes in the Maritime Antarctic During Warm Climates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loisel, Julie; Yu, Zicheng; Beilman, David W; Kaiser, Karl; Parnikoza, Ivan

    2017-09-27

    We discovered a 50-cm-thick peat deposit near Cape Rasmussen (65.2°S), in the maritime Antarctic. To our knowledge, while aerobic 'moss banks' have often been examined, waterlogged 'peatlands' have never been described in this region before. The waterlogged system is approximately 100 m 2 , with a shallow water table. Surface vegetation is dominated by Warnstorfia fontinaliopsis, a wet-adapted moss commonly found in the Antarctic Peninsula. Peat inception was dated at 2750 cal. BP and was followed by relatively rapid peat accumulation (~0.1 cm/year) until 2150 cal. BP. Our multi-proxy analysis then shows a 2000-year-long stratigraphic hiatus as well as the recent resurgence of peat accumulation, sometime after 1950 AD. The existence of a thriving peatland at 2700-2150 cal. BP implies regionally warm summer conditions extending beyond the mid-Holocene; this finding is corroborated by many regional records showing moss bank initiation and decreased sea ice extent during this time period. Recent peatland recovery at the study site (maritime Antarctic region may promote a more peatland-rich landscape in the future.

  4. Geochemical signatures of tephras from Quaternary Antarctic Peninsula volcanoes

    OpenAIRE

    Kraus,Stefan; Kurbatov,Andrei; Yates,Martin

    2013-01-01

    In the northern Antarctic Peninsula area, at least 12 Late Plelstocene-Holocene volcanic centers could be potential sources of tephra layers in the region. We present unique geochemical fingerprints for ten of these volcanoes using major, trace, rare earth element, and isotope data from 95 samples of tephra and other eruption products. The volcanoes have predominantly basaltic and basaltic andesitic compositions. The Nb/Y ratio proves useful to distinguish between volcanic centers located on ...

  5. AGU honored for Antarctic book

    Science.gov (United States)

    AGU has won an honorable mention award at the Fifteenth Annual Awards Program for Excellence in Professional and Scholarly Publishing sponsored by the Association of American Publishers for the book Volcanoes of the Antarctic Plate and Southern Oceans. The book is part of AGU's Antarctic Research Series, an outgrowth of research done during the International Geophysical Year that was begun in 1963 with a grant from the National Science Foundation. The award was presented at the AAP Annual Awards Dinner on February 6 at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Washington, D.C. The award consists of a medallion and a plate on which the names of the publisher, title, and authors are engraved.

  6. IPAB Antarctic Drifting Buoy Data, Version 1

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) International Programme for Antarctic Buoys (IPAB), through participating research organizations in various countries,...

  7. 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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brasso, Rebecka L.; Polito, Michael J.; Lynch, Heather J.; Naveen, R.; Emslie, Steven D.

    2012-01-01

    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 (δ 15 N and δ 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 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 δ 15 N or δ 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: ► 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

  9. Primary productivity, phytoplankton standing crop and physico-chemical characteristics of the Antarctic and adjacent central Indian Ocean waters

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    JiyalalRam, M.

    Primary productivity, phytoplankton pigments and physico-chemical properties were studied in Antarctic waters and adjoining Indian Ocean between 11 degrees and 67 degrees E longitudes from polynya region (60 degrees S) to equator during the austral...

  10. Antarctic skuas recognize individual humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Won Young; Han, Yeong-Deok; Lee, Sang-Im; Jablonski, Piotr G; Jung, Jin-Woo; Kim, Jeong-Hoon

    2016-07-01

    Recent findings report that wild animals can recognize individual humans. To explain how the animals distinguish humans, two hypotheses are proposed. The high cognitive abilities hypothesis implies that pre-existing high intelligence enabled animals to acquire such abilities. The pre-exposure to stimuli hypothesis suggests that frequent encounters with humans promote the acquisition of discriminatory abilities in these species. Here, we examine individual human recognition abilities in a wild Antarctic species, the brown skua (Stercorarius antarcticus), which lives away from typical human settlements and was only recently exposed to humans due to activities at Antarctic stations. We found that, as nest visits were repeated, the skua parents responded at further distances and were more likely to attack the nest intruder. Also, we demonstrated that seven out of seven breeding pairs of skuas selectively responded to a human nest intruder with aggression and ignored a neutral human who had not previously approached the nest. The results indicate that Antarctic skuas, a species that typically inhabited in human-free areas, are able to recognize individual humans who disturbed their nests. Our findings generally support the high cognitive abilities hypothesis, but this ability can be acquired during a relatively short period in the life of an individual as a result of interactions between individual birds and humans.

  11. Determination of the Antarctic region active margin basement by using integration of the information coming from the multichannel seismic analysis and the magnetometry; Determinacao do embasamento da margen ativa da regiao Antartica pela integracao de informacoes provenientes da sismica multicanal e da magnetometria

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Torres, Luiz Carlos [Diretoria de Hidrografia e Navegacao, XX (Brazil); Gomes, Benedito Souza [PETROBRAS S.A., Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Gamboa, Luiz Antonio P. [Universidade Federal Fluminense, Niteroi, RJ (Brazil)

    1999-07-01

    Geophysical measurements were carried out in the Western Margin of the Antarctic Peninsula and Bransfield Strait by the Brazilian Antarctic Program during the summers of 1987 and 1988. The present work, using a continued seismic multi channel and magnetometry data profile crossing the area, intends to present a two-dimensional model of the interface sediment/basement and contribute to the understanding of the complex geology verified in the studying area. By this model, the main provinces of the are (Deep Ocean, South Shetland Trench, Accretionary Prism, Volcanic Arc South Shetland Islands and Bransfield Basin) could be determined. The seismic and magnetic measurements information when superposed can attribute more consistencies to the interpreted basement; although each method has its particular resolution. This way, when the seismic interpretation was not possible due to complex structures disposition, magnetic measurements could offer good estimation about basement depth. The fit between both methods (seismic and magnetic measurements) was reasonable both on the oceanic basin and in the region of Bransfield Strait. The magnetometry, as as well seismic, was sensible to the dip of Drake Plate at South Shetland Trench and the Intrusive occurrence at Bransfield Basin axis. (author)

  12. Stable isotopes and Antarctic moss banks: Plants and soil microbes respond to recent warming on the Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Royles, Jessica; Amesbury, Matthew; Ogée, Jérôme; Wingate, Lisa; Convey, Peter; Hodgson, Dominic; Griffiths, Howard; Leng, Melanie; Charman, Dan

    2014-05-01

    The Antarctic Peninsula is one of the most rapidly warming regions on Earth, with air temperature increases of as much as 3°C recorded since the 1950s. However, the longer-term context of this change is limited and existing records, largely relying on ice core data, are not suitably located to be able to trace the spatial signature of change over time. We are working on a project exploiting stable isotope records preserved in moss peat banks spanning 10 degrees of latitude along the Antarctic Peninsula as an archive of late Holocene climate variability. Here we present a unique time series of past moss growth and soil microbial activity that has been produced from a 150 year old moss bank at Lazarev Bay, Alexander Island (69°S), a site at the southern limit of significant plant growth in the Antarctic Peninsula region. These moss banks are ideal archives for palaeoclimate research as they are well-preserved by freezing, generally monospecific, easily dated by radiocarbon techniques, and have sufficiently high accumulation rates to permit decadal resolution. We use accumulation rates, cellulose δ13C and fossil testate amoebae to show that growth rates, assimilation and microbial productivity rose rapidly in the 1960s, consistent with temperature change, although recently may have stalled, concurrent with other evidence. The increase in biological activity is unprecedented in the last 150 years. Along with work completed on Signy Island (60°S), in the South Orkney Islands, in which we used carbon isotope evidence to show recent climate-related enhancement of CO2 assimilation and peat accumulation rates in Antarctica, the observed relationships between moss growth, microbial activity and climate suggests that moss bank records have the potential to test the regional expression of temperature variability shown by instrumental data on the Antarctic Peninsula over centennial to millennial timescales, by providing long-term records of summer growth conditions

  13. Functional ecology of an Antarctic Dry Valley

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Yuki; Van Nostrand, Joy D.; Zhou, Jizhong; Pointing, Stephen B.

    2013-01-01

    The McMurdo Dry Valleys are the largest ice-free region in Antarctica and are critically at risk from climate change. The terrestrial landscape is dominated by oligotrophic mineral soils and extensive exposed rocky surfaces where biota are largely restricted to microbial communities, although their ability to perform the majority of geobiological processes has remained largely uncharacterized. Here, we identified functional traits that drive microbial survival and community assembly, using a metagenomic approach with GeoChip-based functional gene arrays to establish metabolic capabilities in communities inhabiting soil and rock surface niches in McKelvey Valley. Major pathways in primary metabolism were identified, indicating significant plasticity in autotrophic, heterotrophic, and diazotrophic strategies supporting microbial communities. This represents a major advance beyond biodiversity surveys in that we have now identified how putative functional ecology drives microbial community assembly. Significant differences were apparent between open soil, hypolithic, chasmoendolithic, and cryptoendolithic communities. A suite of previously unappreciated Antarctic microbial stress response pathways, thermal, osmotic, and nutrient limitation responses were identified and related to environmental stressors, offering tangible clues to the mechanisms behind the enduring success of microorganisms in this seemingly inhospitable terrain. Rocky substrates exposed to larger fluctuations in environmental stress supported greater functional diversity in stress-response pathways than soils. Soils comprised a unique reservoir of genes involved in transformation of organic hydrocarbons and lignin-like degradative pathways. This has major implications for the evolutionary origin of the organisms, turnover of recalcitrant substrates in Antarctic soils, and predicting future responses to anthropogenic pollution. PMID:23671121

  14. Treatment and prevention of infection following bites of the Antarctic fur seal (Arctocephalus gazella

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kouliev T

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Timur Kouliev,1 Victoria Cui2 1Beijing United Family Hospital, Beijing, People's Republic of China; 2Department of Biological Sciences, Columbia University, New York, NY, USA Abstract: In recent decades, an increasing number of people have traveled to sub-Antarctic and Antarctic regions each year for research, tourism, and resource exploitation. Hunting of Antarctic fur seals (Arctocephalus gazella almost pushed the species to extinction in the early 1900s, but populations have since shown rapid and substantial recovery. The species' range has re-expanded to include several islands south of the Antarctic Convergence, most notably South Georgia, and now overlaps with many popular Antarctic travel destinations. Both male and female fur seals can become extremely aggressive when provoked, and their bites, if not properly treated, pose a significant risk of infection by microorganisms not usually encountered in cases of animal bites. In this report, we present the case of a patient treated for a fur seal bite during an Antarctic expedition cruise, review the literature concerning seal bites, and suggest the use of antibiotic prophylaxis to prevent complications. Keywords: zoonotic, polar tourism, prophylaxis, seal finger, expedition medicine

  15. Are Antarctic ozone variations a manifestation of dynamics or chemistry?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tung, K.-K.; Ko, M. K. W.; Rodriguez, J. M.; Sze, N. D.

    1986-01-01

    The existence of a reverse circulation cell with rising motion in the polar lower stratosphere is suggested as an explanation for the temporal behavior of the ozone column density in the Antarctic region. The upwelling brings ozone-poor air from below 100 mbar to the stratosphere, possibly contributing to the observed ozone decline in early spring. At the same time, the Antarctic stratosphere might contain a very low concentration of NO(x), a condition that could favor a greatly enhanced catalytic removal of O3 by halogen species. It is argued that heterogeneous processes and formation of OClO by the reaction BrO+ClO - OClO+Br before and after the polar night might help to suppress the NO(x) levels during the early spring period.

  16. The delta18O composition of Antarctic coastal current waters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frew, R.; Heywood, K.; Dennis, P.

    1997-01-01

    The varying proportions of 18 O to 16 O in sea water provide an oceanographic trace like salinity, but with an extra degree of freedom: salt is a tracer for the oceanic fluid, whereas the isotopic composition is a tracer specifically for the water component of that fluid. Hydrogen and oxygen isotopes are the variables most intimately related to the water component in the sea, therefore thay furnish a direct link to the water in the atmosphere and on continents and to the precipitation cycle which caused the salinity changes. The ratio of 18 O to 16 O (delta 18 O) ot waters is a powerful tracer in polar regions where sea and glacial ice processes decouple delta 18 O from salinity. Here we present observations from a significant but relatively unexplored component of the Southern Ocean current system, the Antarctic Coastal Current, and its associated Antarctic Slope Front. (author)

  17. Carbon dioxide emissions of Antarctic tourism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Farreny, R.; Oliver-Solà, J.; Lamers, M.A.J.; Amelung, B.; Gabarrell, X.; Rieradevall, J.; Boada, M.; Benayas, J.

    2011-01-01

    The increase of tourism to the Antarctic continent may entail not only local but also global environmental impacts. These latter impacts, which are mainly caused by transport, have been generally ignored. As a result, there is a lack of data on the global impacts of Antarctic tourism in terms of

  18. Pakistan and Antarctic research - an overview

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rizvi, S.H.

    1993-01-01

    The paper describes the significance of Antarctica and the necessity of conducting scientific research for the understanding of the global environment and through various environmental processes operative in Antarctica. The paper presents a review of the Pakistan's activities and research interests in Antarctica focussing on the salient features of the Pakistan's Antarctic Research Programme and objectives. It summarises the significance of Antarctica, Antarctic Research and the interests of the world in Antarctica and international co-operation for Antarctic Research. The paper also highlights the philosophy of Antarctic Science and provides some guidelines for the development of Antarctic Research programmes for Pakistan and for the newcomers in Antarctica particularly for the developing countries. (author)

  19. Air-sea interaction regimes in the sub-Antarctic Southern Ocean and Antarctic marginal ice zone revealed by icebreaker measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Lisan; Jin, Xiangze; Schulz, Eric W.; Josey, Simon A.

    2017-08-01

    Antarctic continents and provide critical support for Australia's Southern Ocean research operation. Automated meteorological measurement systems are deployed onboard the vessel, providing routine observations of wind, air and sea temperature, humidity, pressure, precipitation and long- and short-wave radiation. Two climatically important regimes are sampled as the icebreaker sails across the sub-Antarctic Southern Ocean and traverses the marginal region of the East Antarctic continent. One regime is the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) system where strong westerly winds are featured. The other is the Antarctic seasonal marginal ice zone (MIZ), i.e., the narrow transition zone that connects the ice-free sub-Antarctic with the Antarctic ice-covered regime. Observing the remote Southern Ocean has been historically challenging due to the cost realities and logistical difficulties. The shipboard and near-surface meteorological measurements offer a rare and valuable opportunity for gaining an in situ insight into the air-sea heat and momentum exchange in two poorly sampled yet dynamically important regimes.

  20. 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

  1. On the Atmospheric Correction of Antarctic Airborne Hyperspectral Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Black

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The first airborne hyperspectral campaign in the Antarctic Peninsula region was carried out by the British Antarctic Survey and partners in February 2011. This paper presents an insight into the applicability of currently available radiative transfer modelling and atmospheric correction techniques for processing airborne hyperspectral data in this unique coastal Antarctic environment. Results from the Atmospheric and Topographic Correction version 4 (ATCOR-4 package reveal absolute reflectance values somewhat in line with laboratory measured spectra, with Root Mean Square Error (RMSE values of 5% in the visible near infrared (0.4–1 µm and 8% in the shortwave infrared (1–2.5 µm. Residual noise remains present due to the absorption by atmospheric gases and aerosols, but certain parts of the spectrum match laboratory measured features very well. This study demonstrates that commercially available packages for carrying out atmospheric correction are capable of correcting airborne hyperspectral data in the challenging environment present in Antarctica. However, it is anticipated that future results from atmospheric correction could be improved by measuring in situ atmospheric data to generate atmospheric profiles and aerosol models, or with the use of multiple ground targets for calibration and validation.

  2. Glacial isostatic stress shadowing by the Antarctic ice sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivins, E. R.; James, T. S.; Klemann, V.

    2005-01-01

    Numerous examples of fault slip that offset late Quaternary glacial deposits and bedrock polish support the idea that the glacial loading cycle causes earthquakes in the upper crust. A semianalytical scheme is presented for quantifying glacial and postglacial lithospheric fault reactivation using contemporary rock fracture prediction methods. It extends previous studies by considering differential Mogi-von Mises stresses, in addition to those resulting from a Coulomb analysis. The approach utilizes gravitational viscoelastodynamic theory and explores the relationships between ice mass history and regional seismicity and faulting in a segment of East Antarctica containing the great Antarctic Plate (Balleny Island) earthquake of 25 March 1998 (Mw 8.1). Predictions of the failure stress fields within the seismogenic crust are generated for differing assumptions about background stress orientation, mantle viscosity, lithospheric thickness, and possible late Holocene deglaciation for the D91 Antarctic ice sheet history. Similar stress fracture fields are predicted by Mogi-von Mises and Coulomb theory, thus validating previous rebound Coulomb analysis. A thick lithosphere, of the order of 150-240 km, augments stress shadowing by a late melting (middle-late Holocene) coastal East Antarctic ice complex and could cause present-day earthquakes many hundreds of kilometers seaward of the former Last Glacial Maximum grounding line.

  3. ADMAP-2: The second generation Antarctic crustal magnetic anomaly map.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferraccioli, F.; Golynsky, A.; Golynsky, D.; Young, D. A.; Eagles, G.; Damaske, D.; Finn, C.; Aitken, A.; von Frese, R. R. B.; Ghidella, M. E.; Kim, H. R.; Hong, J.

    2017-12-01

    ADMAP-2 is the second generation crustal magnetic anomaly compilation for the Antarctic region south of 60°S. It was produced from more than 3.5 million line-km of near-surface terrestrial, airborne and marine magnetic observations collected since the International Geophysical Year 1957/58 through 2013. The data were edited, IGRF corrected, profile levelled and gridded at a 1.5-km interval on a polar stereographic projection using the minimum curvature technique. Given the ubiquitous polar cover of snow, ice and sea water, the magnetic anomaly compilation offers important constraints on the global tectonic processes and crustal properties of the Antarctic. It also links widely separated areas of outcrop to help unify disparate geologic studies, and provides insights on the lithospheric transition between Antarctica and adjacent oceans, as well as the geodynamic evolution of the Antarctic lithosphere in the assembly and break-up of the Gondwana, Rodinia, and Columbia supercontinents and key piercing points for reconstructing linkages between the protocontinents. The magnetic data together with ice-probing radar and gravity information greatly facilitate understanding the evolution of fundamental large-scale geological processes such as continental rifting, intraplate mountain building, subduction and terrane accretion processes, and intraplate basin formation.

  4. Miocene Antarctic Terrestrial Realm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashworth, A. C.; Lewis, A.; Marchant, D. R.

    2009-12-01

    The discovery of several locations in the Transantarctic Mountains that contain macrofossils and pollen is transforming our understanding of late Cenozoic Antarctica. The most southerly location is on the Beardmore Glacier (85.1°S) about 500 km from the South Pole. The environment was an active glacial margin in which plants, insects and freshwater mollusks inhabited the sand and gravel bars and small lakes on an outwash plain. In addition to leaves and wood of dwarf Nothofagus (Southern Beech) shrubs, achenes of Ranunculus (Buttercup), in situ cushion growth forms of mosses and a vascular plant, the assemblages contains various exoskeletal parts of carabid and curculionid beetles and a cyclorrhaphan fly, the shells of freshwater bivalve and gastropod species and a fish tooth. Initially the deposits were assigned a Pliocene age (3.5 Ma) but a mid- to early Miocene age is more probable (c. 14 - 25 Ma) based on correlation of fossil pollen from the deposits with 39Ar/40Ar dated pollen assemblages from the McMurdo Dry Valleys locations. The oldest location within the Dry Valleys also involved an active ice margin but was part of a valley system that was completely deglaciated for intervals long enough for thick paleosols to develop. The Friis Hills fossil deposits of the Taylor Valley region (77.8°S) are at least 19.76 Ma based on the 39Ar/40Ar age of a volcanic ash bed. The valley floor during the non-glacial phases had poorly-drained soils and the extensive development of mossy mires. Wood and leaves of Nothofagus are abundant in lacustrine deposits. The silts of shallow fluvial channels contain abundant megaspores and spiky leaves of the aquatic lycopod Isoetes (Quillwort). Fossils of beetles are also present in these deposits. During the glacial phases, proglacial lakes were surrounded by dwarfed, deciduous Nothofagus shrubs. The youngest fossils recovered from the Dry Valleys are from the Olympus Range (77.5°S) with an age of 14.07 Ma. The environment was an

  5. 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...... this zone to be a confined aquifer situated in sediments with a porosity of 23-42%. Discovery of this aquifer suggests that subsurface liquid water may be more pervasive in regions of continuous permafrost than previously thought and may represent an extensive habitat for microbial populations. Key Points...... Geophysical survey finds low resistivities beneath a lake in Antarctic Dry Valleys Liquid brine abundant beneath Antarctic lake Aquifer provides microbial refugium in cold desert environment...

  6. The Signature of Southern Hemisphere Atmospheric Circulation Patterns in Antarctic Precipitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, Gareth J; Thompson, David W J; van den Broeke, Michiel R

    2017-11-28

    We provide the first comprehensive analysis of the relationships between large-scale patterns of Southern Hemisphere climate variability and the detailed structure of Antarctic precipitation. We examine linkages between the high spatial resolution precipitation from a regional atmospheric model and four patterns of large-scale Southern Hemisphere climate variability: the southern baroclinic annular mode, the southern annular mode, and the two Pacific-South American teleconnection patterns. Variations in all four patterns influence the spatial configuration of precipitation over Antarctica, consistent with their signatures in high-latitude meridional moisture fluxes. They impact not only the mean but also the incidence of extreme precipitation events. Current coupled-climate models are able to reproduce all four patterns of atmospheric variability but struggle to correctly replicate their regional impacts on Antarctic climate. Thus, linking these patterns directly to Antarctic precipitation variability may allow a better estimate of future changes in precipitation than using model output alone.

  7. Concentration of trace elements in feathers of three Antarctic penguins: Geographical and interspecific differences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jerez, Silvia [Area de Toxicologia, Facultad de Veterinaria, Universidad de Murcia, Campus de Espinardo, 30100 Murcia (Spain); Motas, Miguel, E-mail: motas@um.es [Area de Toxicologia, Facultad de Veterinaria, Universidad de Murcia, Campus de Espinardo, 30100 Murcia (Spain); Palacios, Maria Jose; Valera, Francisco [Departamento de Ecologia Funcional y Evolutiva, Estacion Experimental de Zonas Aridas, CSIC, Carretera de Sacramento s/n, 04120 La Canada de San Urbano, Almeria (Spain); Cuervo, Jose Javier; Barbosa, Andres [Departamento de Ecologia Funcional y Evolutiva, Estacion Experimental de Zonas Aridas, CSIC, Carretera de Sacramento s/n, 04120 La Canada de San Urbano, Almeria (Spain); Departamento de Ecologia Evolutiva, Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales, CSIC, C/Jose Gutierrez Abascal 2, 28006 Madrid (Spain)

    2011-10-15

    Antarctica is often considered as one of the last pristine regions, but it could be affected by pollution at global and local scale. Concentrations of Al, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Se, Cd and Pb were determinated by ICP-MS in feathers (n = 207 individuals) of gentoo, chinstrap and Adelie penguin collected in 8 locations throughout the Antarctic Peninsula (2006-2007). The highest levels of several elements were found in samples from King George Island (8.08, 20.29 and 1.76 {mu}g g{sup -1} dw for Cr, Cu and Pb, respectively) and Deception Island (203.13, 3.26 and 164.26 {mu}g g{sup -1} dw for Al, Mn and Fe, respectively), where probably human activities and large-scale transport of pollutants contribute to increase metal levels. Concentrations of Cr, Mn, Cu, Se or Pb, which are similar to others found in different regions of the world, show that some areas in Antarctica are not utterly pristine. - Highlights: > We study levels of trace elements in feathers of Antarctic penguins. > Eight different rookeries throughout the Antarctic Peninsula were sampled. > Interspecific (gentoo, chinstrap, Adelie) and geographical differences were tested. > Relatively high metal levels were found in areas with major human presence. > Penguin feather can be useful for metals monitoring in the Antarctic environment. - Trace element levels in feathers of three penguin species from the Antarctic Peninsula indicate the presence of pollution in certain locations.

  8. Concentration of trace elements in feathers of three Antarctic penguins: Geographical and interspecific differences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jerez, Silvia; Motas, Miguel; Palacios, Maria Jose; Valera, Francisco; Cuervo, Jose Javier; Barbosa, Andres

    2011-01-01

    Antarctica is often considered as one of the last pristine regions, but it could be affected by pollution at global and local scale. Concentrations of Al, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Se, Cd and Pb were determinated by ICP-MS in feathers (n = 207 individuals) of gentoo, chinstrap and Adelie penguin collected in 8 locations throughout the Antarctic Peninsula (2006-2007). The highest levels of several elements were found in samples from King George Island (8.08, 20.29 and 1.76 μg g -1 dw for Cr, Cu and Pb, respectively) and Deception Island (203.13, 3.26 and 164.26 μg g -1 dw for Al, Mn and Fe, respectively), where probably human activities and large-scale transport of pollutants contribute to increase metal levels. Concentrations of Cr, Mn, Cu, Se or Pb, which are similar to others found in different regions of the world, show that some areas in Antarctica are not utterly pristine. - Highlights: → We study levels of trace elements in feathers of Antarctic penguins. → Eight different rookeries throughout the Antarctic Peninsula were sampled. → Interspecific (gentoo, chinstrap, Adelie) and geographical differences were tested. → Relatively high metal levels were found in areas with major human presence. → Penguin feather can be useful for metals monitoring in the Antarctic environment. - Trace element levels in feathers of three penguin species from the Antarctic Peninsula indicate the presence of pollution in certain locations.

  9. The changing form of Antarctic biodiversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chown, Steven L; Clarke, Andrew; Fraser, Ceridwen I; Cary, S Craig; Moon, Katherine L; McGeoch, Melodie A

    2015-06-25

    Antarctic biodiversity is much more extensive, ecologically diverse and biogeographically structured than previously thought. Understanding of how this diversity is distributed in marine and terrestrial systems, the mechanisms underlying its spatial variation, and the significance of the microbiota is growing rapidly. Broadly recognizable drivers of diversity variation include energy availability and historical refugia. The impacts of local human activities and global environmental change nonetheless pose challenges to the current and future understanding of Antarctic biodiversity. Life in the Antarctic and the Southern Ocean is surprisingly rich, and as much at risk from environmental change as it is elsewhere.

  10. Historical Arctic and Antarctic Surface Observational Data

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This product consists of meteorological data from 105 Arctic weather stations and 137 Antarctic stations, extracted from the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC)'s...

  11. Ross Ice Shelf, Antarctic Ice and Clouds

    Science.gov (United States)

    1991-01-01

    In this view of Antarctic ice and clouds, (56.5S, 152.0W), the Ross Ice Shelf of Antarctica is almost totally clear, showing stress cracks in the ice surface caused by wind and tidal drift. Clouds on the eastern edge of the picture are associated with an Antarctic cyclone. Winds stirred up these storms have been known to reach hurricane force.

  12. The safety band of Antarctic ice shelves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fürst, Johannes Jakob; Durand, Gaël; Gillet-Chaulet, Fabien; Tavard, Laure; Rankl, Melanie; Braun, Matthias; Gagliardini, Olivier

    2016-05-01

    The floating ice shelves along the seaboard of the Antarctic ice sheet restrain the outflow of upstream grounded ice. Removal of these ice shelves, as shown by past ice-shelf recession and break-up, accelerates the outflow, which adds to sea-level rise. A key question in predicting future outflow is to quantify the extent of calving that might precondition other dynamic consequences and lead to loss of ice-shelf restraint. Here we delineate frontal areas that we label as `passive shelf ice’ and that can be removed without major dynamic implications, with contrasting results across the continent. The ice shelves in the Amundsen and Bellingshausen seas have limited or almost no `passive’ portion, which implies that further retreat of current ice-shelf fronts will yield important dynamic consequences. This region is particularly vulnerable as ice shelves have been thinning at high rates for two decades and as upstream grounded ice rests on a backward sloping bed, a precondition to marine ice-sheet instability. In contrast to these ice shelves, Larsen C Ice Shelf, in the Weddell Sea, exhibits a large `passive’ frontal area, suggesting that the imminent calving of a vast tabular iceberg will be unlikely to instantly produce much dynamic change.

  13. Antarctic Ice Sheet Slope and Aspect Based on Icesat's Repeat Orbit Measurement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, L.; Li, F.; Zhang, S.; Xie, S.; Xiao, F.; Zhu, T.; Zhang, Y.

    2017-09-01

    Accurate information of ice sheet surface slope is essential for estimating elevation change by satellite altimetry measurement. A study is carried out to recover surface slope of Antarctic ice sheet from Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) elevation measurements based on repeat orbits. ICESat provides repeat ground tracks within 200 meters in cross-track direction and 170 meters in along-track direction for most areas of Antarctic ice sheet. Both cross-track and along-track surface slopes could be obtained by adjacent repeat ground tracks. Combining those measurements yields a surface slope model with resolution of approximately 200 meters. An algorithm considering elevation change is developed to estimate the surface slope of Antarctic ice sheet. Three Antarctic Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) were used to calculate surface slopes. The surface slopes from DEMs are compared with estimates by using in situ GPS data in Dome A, the summit of Antarctic ice sheet. Our results reveal an average surface slope difference of 0.02 degree in Dome A. High resolution remote sensing images are also used in comparing the results derived from other DEMs and this paper. The comparison implies that our results have a slightly better coherence with GPS observation than results from DEMs, but our results provide more details and perform higher accuracy in coastal areas because of the higher resolution for ICESat measurements. Ice divides are estimated based on the aspect, and are weakly consistent with ice divides from other method in coastal regions.

  14. Isolation of Campylobacter spp. from Three Species of Antarctic Penguins in Different Geographic Locations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Peña, F J; Llorente, M T; Serrano, T; Ruano, M J; Belliure, J; Benzal, J; Herrera-León, S; Vidal, V; D'Amico, V; Pérez-Boto, D; Barbosa, A

    2017-03-01

    The presence of Campylobacter species was studied in three Antarctic penguin species, Adélie (Pygoscelis adeliae), chinstrap (Pygoscelis antarctica) and gentoo (Pygoscelis papua). A total of 390 penguins were captured in 12 different rookeries along the Antarctic Peninsula with differences in the amount of human visitation: six colonies were highly visited [Stranger Point, King George Island (P. papua and P. adeliae); Hannah Point, Livingston Island (P. papua and P. antarctica); Deception Island (P. antarctica); and Paradise Bay, Antarctic Peninsula (P. papua)], and six colonies were rarely visited [Devil's Point, Byers Peninsula, Livingston Island (P. papua); Cierva Cove, Antarctic Peninsula (P. papua); Rongé Island (P. papua and P. antarctica); Yalour Island (P. adeliae); and Avian Island (P. adeliae)]. A total of 23 strains were isolated from penguins from nine different rookeries. Campylobacter lari subsp. lari was isolated from eight samples (seven from P. papua and one from P. adeliae); C. lari subsp. concheus from 13 (ten from P. adeliae and three from P. antarctica) and C. volucris from two samples (both from P. papua). We did not find any significant differences in the prevalence of Campylobacter spp. between the populations in highly and rarely visited areas. This is the first report of C. lari subsp. concheus and C. volucris isolation from penguins in the Antarctic region.

  15. Impacts of the north and tropical Atlantic Ocean on the Antarctic Peninsula and sea ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xichen; Holland, David M; Gerber, Edwin P; Yoo, Changhyun

    2014-01-23

    In recent decades, Antarctica has experienced pronounced climate changes. The Antarctic Peninsula exhibited the strongest warming of any region on the planet, causing rapid changes in land ice. Additionally, in contrast to the sea-ice decline over the Arctic, Antarctic sea ice has not declined, but has instead undergone a perplexing redistribution. Antarctic climate is influenced by, among other factors, changes in radiative forcing and remote Pacific climate variability, but none explains the observed Antarctic Peninsula warming or the sea-ice redistribution in austral winter. However, in the north and tropical Atlantic Ocean, the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (a leading mode of sea surface temperature variability) has been overlooked in this context. Here we show that sea surface warming related to the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation reduces the surface pressure in the Amundsen Sea and contributes to the observed dipole-like sea-ice redistribution between the Ross and Amundsen-Bellingshausen-Weddell seas and to the Antarctic Peninsula warming. Support for these findings comes from analysis of observational and reanalysis data, and independently from both comprehensive and idealized atmospheric model simulations. We suggest that the north and tropical Atlantic is important for projections of future climate change in Antarctica, and has the potential to affect the global thermohaline circulation and sea-level change.

  16. Monitoring trace elements in Antarctic penguin chicks from South Shetland Islands, Antarctica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jerez, Silvia; Motas, Miguel; Benzal, Jesús; Diaz, Julia; Barbosa, Andrés

    2013-04-15

    The concentration of human activities in the near-shore ecosystems from the northern Antarctic Peninsula area can cause an increasing bioavailability of pollutants for the vulnerable Antarctic biota. Penguin chicks can reflect this potential impact in the rookeries during the breeding season. They also can reflect biomagnification phenomena since they are on the top of the Antarctic food chain. The concentrations of Al, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Se, Cd and Pb were measured by ICP-MS in samples of liver, kidney, muscle, bone, feather and stomach content of gentoo, chinstrap and Adélie penguin chicks (n=15 individuals) collected opportunistically in the Islands of King George and Deception (South Shetland Islands, Antarctica). The detected levels of some trace elements were not as low as it could be expected in the isolated Antarctic region. Penguin chicks can be useful indicators of trace elements abundance in the study areas. Carcasses of Antarctic penguin chicks were used to evaluate the bioavailability of trace elements in the Islands of King George and Deception. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. A robust bioassay to assess the toxicity of metals to the Antarctic marine microalga Phaeocystis antarctica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gissi, Francesca; Adams, Merrin S; King, Catherine K; Jolley, Dianne F

    2015-07-01

    Despite evidence of contamination in Antarctic coastal marine environments, no water-quality guidelines have been established for the region because of a paucity of biological effects data for local Antarctic species. Currently, there is limited information on the sensitivity of Antarctic microalgae to metal contamination, which is exacerbated by the lack of standard toxicity testing protocols for local marine species. In the present study, a routine and robust toxicity test protocol was developed using the Antarctic marine microalga Phaeocystis antarctica, and its sensitivity was investigated following 10-d exposures to dissolved copper, cadmium, lead, zinc, and nickel. In comparisons of 10% inhibition of population growth rate (IC10) values, P. antarctica was most sensitive to copper (3.3 μg/L), followed by cadmium (135 μg/L), lead (260 μg/L), and zinc (450 μg/L). Although an IC10 value for nickel could not be accurately estimated, the no-observed-effect concentration value for nickel was 1070 μg/L. Exposure to copper and cadmium caused changes in internal cell granularity and increased chlorophyll a fluorescence. Lead, zinc, and nickel had no effect on any of the cellular parameters measured. The present study provides valuable metal-ecotoxicity data for an Antarctic marine microalga, with P. antarctica representing one of the most sensitive microalgal species to dissolved copper ever reported when compared with temperate and tropical species. © 2015 SETAC.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Calle, Paola; Alvarado, Omar; Monserrate, Lorena; Cevallos, Juan Manuel; Calle, Nastenka; Alava, Juan José

    2015-01-01

    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. Spreading of Antarctic Bottom Water in the Atlantic Ocean

    OpenAIRE

    Morozov, E.; Tarakanov, R. Y.; Zenk, Walter

    2012-01-01

    This paper describes the transport of bottom water from its source region in the Weddell Sea through the abyssal channels of the Atlantic Ocean. The research brings together the recent observations and historical data. A strong flow of Antarctic Bottom Water through the Vema Channel is analyzed. The mean speed of the flow is 30 cm/s. A temperature increase was found in the deep Vema Channel, which has been observed for 30 years already. The flow of bottom water in the northern part of the Bra...

  20. Development of a new generation gravity map of Antarctica: ADGRAV Antarctic Digital Gravity Synthesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. A. Arko

    1999-06-01

    Full Text Available The U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF has agreed to support the development of a new generation gravity map of Antarctica (ADGRAV - Antarctic Digital Gravity Synthesis, funding the development of a web based access tool. The goal of this project is the creation of an on-line Antarctic gravity database which will facilitate access to improved high resolution satellite gravity models, in conjunction with shipboard, airborne, and land based gravity measurements for the continental regions. This database will complement parallel projects underway to develop new continental bedrock (BEDMAP and magnetic (ADMAP maps of Antarctica.

  1. Spatial and temporal variability across life's hierarchies in the terrestrial Antarctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chown, Steven L; Convey, Peter

    2007-12-29

    Antarctica and its surrounding islands lie at one extreme of global variation in diversity. Typically, these regions are characterized as being species poor and having simple food webs. Here, we show that terrestrial systems in the region are nonetheless characterized by substantial spatial and temporal variations at virtually all of the levels of the genealogical and ecological hierarchies which have been thoroughly investigated. Spatial variation at the individual and population levels has been documented in a variety of genetic studies, and in mosses it appears that UV-B radiation might be responsible for within-clump mutagenesis. At the species level, modern molecular methods have revealed considerable endemism of the Antarctic biota, questioning ideas that small organisms are likely to be ubiquitous and the taxa to which they belong species poor. At the biogeographic level, much of the relatively small ice-free area of Antarctica remains unsurveyed making analyses difficult. Nonetheless, it is clear that a major biogeographic discontinuity separates the Antarctic Peninsula and continental Antarctica, here named the 'Gressitt Line'. Across the Southern Ocean islands, patterns are clearer, and energy availability is an important correlate of indigenous and exotic species richness, while human visitor numbers explain much of the variation in the latter too. Temporal variation at the individual level has much to do with phenotypic plasticity, and considerable life-history and physiological plasticity seems to be a characteristic of Antarctic terrestrial species. Environmental unpredictability is an important driver of this trait and has significantly influenced life histories across the region and probably throughout much of the temperate Southern Hemisphere. Rapid climate change-related alterations in the range and abundance of several Antarctic and sub-Antarctic populations have taken place over the past several decades. In many sub-Antarctic locations, these

  2. High-resolution climate modelling of Antarctica and the Antarctic Peninsula

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Wessem, J.M.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/413533085

    2016-01-01

    In this thesis we have used a high-resolution regional atmospheric climate model (RACMO2.3) to simulate the present-day climate (1979-2014) of Antarctica and the Antarctic Peninsula. We have evaluated the model results with several observations, such as in situ surface energy balance (SEB)

  3. Carbon dynamics modelization and biological community sensitivity to temperature in an oligotrophic freshwater Antarctic lake

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Antonio Villaescusa, Juan; Jorgensen, Sven Erik; Rochera, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    food web. This preliminary model aims to describe part of the carbon dynamics, especially for bacterioplankton and associated factors, in this maritime Antarctic lake highly affected by temperature increase linked to regional warming. To describe the system, the effects of the variation of different...

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2014-01-01

    The northern Antarctic Peninsula (nAP, < 66° S) is one of the most rapidly changing glaciated regions on earth, yet the spatial patterns of its ice mass loss at the glacier basin scale have to date been poorly documented. We use satellite laser altimetry and satellite stereo-image topography

  5. A new albedo parameterization for use in climate models over the Antarctic ice sheet

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kuipers Munneke, P.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/304831891; van den Broeke, M.R.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/073765643; Lenaerts, J.T.M.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/314850163; Flanner, M.G.; Gardner, A.S.; van de Berg, W.J.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/304831611

    2011-01-01

    A parameterization for broadband snow surface albedo, based on snow grain size evolution, cloud optical thickness, and solar zenith angle, is implemented into a regional climate model for Antarctica and validated against field observations of albedo for the period 1995–2004. Over the Antarctic

  6. Spatially Extensive Standardized Surveys Reveal Widespread, Multi-Decadal Increase in East Antarctic Adélie Penguin Populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Southwell, Colin; Emmerson, Louise; McKinlay, John; Newbery, Kym; Takahashi, Akinori; Kato, Akiko; Barbraud, Christophe; DeLord, Karine; Weimerskirch, Henri

    2015-01-01

    Seabirds are considered to be useful and practical indicators of the state of marine ecosystems because they integrate across changes in the lower trophic levels and the physical environment. Signals from this key group of species can indicate broad scale impacts or response to environmental change. Recent studies of penguin populations, the most commonly abundant Antarctic seabirds in the west Antarctic Peninsula and western Ross Sea, have demonstrated that physical changes in Antarctic marine environments have profound effects on biota at high trophic levels. Large populations of the circumpolar-breeding Adélie penguin occur in East Antarctica, but direct, standardized population data across much of this vast coastline have been more limited than in other Antarctic regions. We combine extensive new population survey data, new population estimation methods, and re-interpreted historical survey data to assess decadal-scale change in East Antarctic Adélie penguin breeding populations. We show that, in contrast to the west Antarctic Peninsula and western Ross Sea where breeding populations have decreased or shown variable trends over the last 30 years, East Antarctic regional populations have almost doubled in abundance since the 1980's and have been increasing since the earliest counts in the 1960's. The population changes are associated with five-year lagged changes in the physical environment, suggesting that the changing environment impacts primarily on the pre-breeding age classes. East Antarctic marine ecosystems have been subject to a number of changes over the last 50 years which may have influenced Adélie penguin population growth, including decadal-scale climate variation, an inferred mid-20th century sea-ice contraction, and early-to-mid 20th century exploitation of fish and whale populations.

  7. Spatially Extensive Standardized Surveys Reveal Widespread, Multi-Decadal Increase in East Antarctic Adélie Penguin Populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Colin Southwell

    Full Text Available Seabirds are considered to be useful and practical indicators of the state of marine ecosystems because they integrate across changes in the lower trophic levels and the physical environment. Signals from this key group of species can indicate broad scale impacts or response to environmental change. Recent studies of penguin populations, the most commonly abundant Antarctic seabirds in the west Antarctic Peninsula and western Ross Sea, have demonstrated that physical changes in Antarctic marine environments have profound effects on biota at high trophic levels. Large populations of the circumpolar-breeding Adélie penguin occur in East Antarctica, but direct, standardized population data across much of this vast coastline have been more limited than in other Antarctic regions. We combine extensive new population survey data, new population estimation methods, and re-interpreted historical survey data to assess decadal-scale change in East Antarctic Adélie penguin breeding populations. We show that, in contrast to the west Antarctic Peninsula and western Ross Sea where breeding populations have decreased or shown variable trends over the last 30 years, East Antarctic regional populations have almost doubled in abundance since the 1980's and have been increasing since the earliest counts in the 1960's. The population changes are associated with five-year lagged changes in the physical environment, suggesting that the changing environment impacts primarily on the pre-breeding age classes. East Antarctic marine ecosystems have been subject to a number of changes over the last 50 years which may have influenced Adélie penguin population growth, including decadal-scale climate variation, an inferred mid-20th century sea-ice contraction, and early-to-mid 20th century exploitation of fish and whale populations.

  8. 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

  9. The United States Antarctic Program Data Center (USAP-DC): Recent Developments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nitsche, F. O.; Bauer, R.; Arko, R. A.; Shane, N.; Carbotte, S. M.; Scambos, T.

    2017-12-01

    Antarctic earth and environmental science data are highly valuable, often unique research assets. They are acquired with substantial and expensive logistical effort, frequently in areas that will not be re-visited for many years. The data acquired in support of Antarctic research span a wide range of disciplines. Historically, data management for the US Antarctic Program (USAP) has made use of existing disciplinary data centers, and the international Antarctic Master Directory (AMD) has served as a central metadata catalog linking to data files hosted in these external repositories. However, disciplinary repositories do not exist for all USAP-generated data types and often it is unclear what repositories are appropriate, leading to many datasets being served locally from scientist's websites or not available at all. The USAP Data Center (USAP-DC; www.usap-dc.org), operated as part of the Interdisciplinary Earth Data Alliance (IEDA), contributes to the broader preservation of research data acquired with funding from NSF's Office of Polar Programs by providing a repository for diverse data from the Antarctic region. USAP-DC hosts data that spans the range of Antarctic research from snow radar to volcano observatory imagery to penguin counts to meteorological model outputs. Data services include data documentation, long-term preservation, and web publication, as well as scientist support for registration of data descriptions into the AMD in fulfillment of US obligations under the International Antarctic Treaty. In Spring 2016, USAP-DC and the NSIDC began a new collaboration to consolidate data services for Antarctic investigators and to integrate the NSF-funded glaciology collection at NSIDC with the collection hosted by USAP-DC. Investigator submissions for NSF's Glaciology program now make use of USAP-DC's web submission tools, providing a uniform interface for Antarctic investigators. The tools have been redesigned to collect a broader range of metadata. Each data

  10. Satellite gravity gradient views help reveal the Antarctic lithosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferraccioli, F.; Ebbing, J.; Pappa, F.; Kern, M.; Forsberg, R.

    2017-12-01

    Here we present and analyse satellite gravity gradient signatures derived from GOCE and superimpose these on tectonic and bedrock topography elements, as well as seismically-derived estimates of crustal thickness for the Antarctic continent. The GIU satellite gravity component images the contrast between the thinner crust and lithosphere underlying the West Antarctic Rift System and the Weddell Sea Rift System and the thicker lithosphere of East Antarctica. The new images also suggest that more distributed wide-mode lithospheric and crustal extension affects both the Ross Sea Embayment and the less well known Ross Ice Shelf segment of the rift system. However, this pattern is less clear towards the Bellingshousen Embayment, indicating that the rift system narrows towards the southern edge of the Antarctic Peninsula. In East Antarctica, the satellite gravity data provides new views into the Archean to Mesoproterozoic Terre Adelie Craton, and clearly shows the contrast wrt to the crust and lithosphere underlying both the Wilkes Subglacial Basin to the east and the Sabrina Subglacial Basin to the west. This finding augments recent interpretations of aeromagnetic and airborne gravity data over the region, suggesting that the Mawson Continent is a composite lithospheric-scale entity, which was affected by several Paleoproterozoic and Mesoproterozoic orogenic events. Thick crust is imaged beneath the Transantarctic Mountains, the Terre Adelie Craton, the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains and also Eastern Dronning Maud Land, in particular beneath the recently proposed region of the Tonian Oceanic Arc Superterrane. The GIA and GIU components help delineate the edges of several of these lithospheric provinces. One of the most prominent lithospheric-scale features discovered in East Antarctica from satellite gravity gradient imaging is the Trans East Antarctic Shear Zone that separates the Gamburtsev Province from the Eastern Dronning Maud Land Province and appears to form the

  11. 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

  12. ADMAP-2: The next-generation Antarctic magnetic anomaly map

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golynsky, Alexander; Golynsky, Dmitry; Ferraccioli, Fausto; Jordan, Tom; Damaske, Detlef; Blankenship, Don; Holt, Jack; Young, Duncan; Ivanov, Sergey; Kiselev, Alexander; Jokat, Wilfried; Gohl, Karsten; Eagles, Graeme; Bell, Robin; Armadillo, Egidio; Bozzo, Emanuelle; Caneva, Giorgio; Finn, Carol; Forsberg, Rene; Aitken, Alan

    2017-04-01

    The Antarctic Digital Magnetic Anomaly Project compiled the first international magnetic anomaly map of the Antarctic region south of 60°S (ADMAP-1) some six years after its 1995 launch (Golynsky et al., 2001; Golynsky et al., 2007; von Frese et al., 2007). This magnetic anomaly compilation provided new insights into the structure and evolution of Antarctica, including its Proterozoic-Archaean cratons, Proterozoic-Palaeozoic orogens, Palaeozoic-Cenozoic magmatic arc systems, continental rift systems and rifted margins, large igneous provinces and the surrounding oceanic gateways. The international working group produced the ADMAP-1 database from more than 1.5 million line-kilometres of terrestrial, airborne, marine and satellite magnetic observations collected during the IGY 1957-58 through 1999. Since the publication of the first magnetic anomaly map, the international geomagnetic community has acquired more than 1.9 million line-km of new airborne and marine data. This implies that the amount of magnetic anomaly data over the Antarctic continent has more than doubled. These new data provide important constraints on the geology of the enigmatic Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains and Prince Charles Mountains, Wilkes Land, Dronning Maud Land, and other largely unexplored Antarctic areas (Ferraccioli et al., 2011, Aitken et al., 2014¸ Mieth & Jokat, 2014, Golynsky et al., 2013). The processing of the recently acquired data involved quality assessments by careful statistical analysis of the crossover errors. All magnetic data used in the ADMAP-2 compilation were delivered as profiles, although several of them were in raw form. Some datasets were decimated or upward continued to altitudes of 4 km or higher with the higher frequency geological signals smoothed out. The line data used for the ADMAP-1 compilation were reprocessed for obvious errors and residual corrugations. The new near-surface magnetic data were corrected for the international geomagnetic reference field

  13. A comparison of the present and last interglacial periods in six Antarctic ice cores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Masson-Delmotte

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available We compare the present and last interglacial periods as recorded in Antarctic water stable isotope records now available at various temporal resolutions from six East Antarctic ice cores: Vostok, Taylor Dome, EPICA Dome C (EDC, EPICA Dronning Maud Land (EDML, Dome Fuji and the recent TALDICE ice core from Talos Dome. We first review the different modern site characteristics in terms of ice flow, meteorological conditions, precipitation intermittency and moisture origin, as depicted by meteorological data, atmospheric reanalyses and Lagrangian moisture source diagnostics. These different factors can indeed alter the relationships between temperature and water stable isotopes. Using five records with sufficient resolution on the EDC3 age scale, common features are quantified through principal component analyses. Consistent with instrumental records and atmospheric model results, the ice core data depict rather coherent and homogenous patterns in East Antarctica during the last two interglacials. Across the East Antarctic plateau, regional differences, with respect to the common East Antarctic signal, appear to have similar patterns during the current and last interglacials. We identify two abrupt shifts in isotopic records during the glacial inception at TALDICE and EDML, likely caused by regional sea ice expansion. These regional differences are discussed in terms of moisture origin and in terms of past changes in local elevation histories, which are compared to ice sheet model results. Our results suggest that elevation changes may contribute significantly to inter-site differences. These elevation changes may be underestimated by current ice sheet models.

  14. Exploring the effect of East Antarctic ice mass loss on GIA-induced horizontal bedrock motions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konfal, S. A.; Whitehouse, P. L.; Hermans, T.; van der Wal, W.; Wilson, T. J.; Bevis, M. G.; Kendrick, E. C.; Dalziel, I.; Smalley, R., Jr.

    2017-12-01

    Ice history inputs used in Antarctic models of GIA include major centers of ice mass loss in West Antarctica. In the Transantarctic Mountains (TAM) region spanning the boundary between East and West Antarctica, horizontal crustal motions derived from GPS observations from the Antarctic Network (ANET) component of the Polar Earth Observing Network (POLENET) are towards these West Antarctic ice mass centers, opposite to the pattern of radial crustal motion expected in an unloading scenario. We investigate alternative ice history and earth structure inputs to GIA models in an attempt to reproduce observed crustal motions in the region. The W12 ice history model is altered to create scenarios including ice unloading in the Wilkes Subglacial Basin based on available glaciological records. These altered ice history models, along with the unmodified W12 ice history model, are coupled with 60 radially varying (1D) earth model combinations, including approximations of optimal earth profiles identified in published GIA models. The resulting model-predicted motions utilizing both the modified and unmodified ice history models fit ANET GPS-derived crustal motions in the northern TAM region for a suite of earth model combinations. Further south, where the influence of simulated Wilkes unloading is weakest and West Antarctic unloading is strongest, observed and predicted motions do not agree. The influence of simulated Wilkes ice unloading coupled with laterally heterogeneous earth models is also investigated. The resulting model-predicted motions do not differ significantly between the original W12 and W12 with simulated Wilkes unloading ice histories.

  15. ARM West Antarctic Radiation Experiment (AWARE) Science Plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lubin, D [National Science Foundation; Bromwich, DH [Ohio State University; Russell, LM [Scripps Institution of Oceanography; Verlinde, J [The Pennsylvania State University; Vogelmann, AM [Brookhaven National Laboratory

    2015-10-01

    West Antarctica is one of the most rapidly warming regions on Earth, and this warming is closely connected with global sea level rise. The discovery of rapid climate change on the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) has challenged previous explanations of Antarctic climate change that focused on strengthening of circumpolar westerlies in response to the positive polarity trend in the Southern Annular Mode. West Antarctic warming does not yet have a comprehensive explanation: dynamical mechanisms may vary from one season to the next, and these mechanisms very likely involve complex teleconnections with subtropical and tropical latitudes. The prime motivation for this proposal is that there has been no substantial atmospheric science or climatological field work on West Antarctica since the 1957 International Geophysical Year and that research continued for only a few years. Direct meteorological information on the WAIS has been limited to a few automatic weather stations for several decades, yet satellite imagery and meteorological reanalyses indicate that West Antarctica is highly susceptible to advection of warm and moist maritime air with related cloud cover, depending on the location and strength of low pressure cells in the Amundsen, Ross, and Bellingshausen Seas. There is a need to quantify the role of these changing air masses on the surface energy balance, including all surface energy components and cloud-radiative forcing. More generally, global climate model simulations are known to perform poorly over the Antarctic and Southern Oceans, and the marked scarcity of cloud information at southern high latitudes has so far inhibited significant progress. Fortunately, McMurdo Station, where the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Facility’s (ARM’s) most advanced cloud and aerosol instrumentation is situated, has a meteorological relationship with the WAIS via circulation patterns in the Ross and Amundsen Seas. We can therefore gather sophisticated data with cloud

  16. Full Waveform Adjoint Seismic Tomography of the Antarctic Plate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lloyd, A. J.; Wiens, D.; Zhu, H.; Tromp, J.; Nyblade, A.; Anandakrishnan, S.; Aster, R. C.; Huerta, A. D.; Winberry, J. P.; Wilson, T. J.; Dalziel, I. W. D.; Hansen, S. E.; Shore, P.

    2017-12-01

    Recent studies investigating the response and influence of the solid Earth on the evolution of the cryosphere demonstrate the need to account for 3D rheological structure to better predict ice sheet dynamics, stability, and future sea level impact, as well as to improve glacial isostatic adjustment models and more accurately measure ice mass loss. Critical rheological properties like mantle viscosity and lithospheric thickness may be estimated from shear wave velocity models that, for Antarctica, would ideally possess regional-scale resolution extending down to at least the base of the transition zone (i.e. 670 km depth). However, current global- and continental-scale seismic velocity models are unable to obtain both the resolution and spatial coverage necessary, do not take advantage of the full set of available Antarctic data, and, in most instance, employ traditional seismic imaging techniques that utilize limited seismogram information. We utilize 3-component earthquake waveforms from almost 300 Antarctic broadband seismic stations and 26 southern mid-latitude stations from 270 earthquakes (5.5 ≤ Mw ≤ 7.0) between 2001-2003 and 2007-2016 to conduct a full-waveform adjoint inversion for Antarctica and surrounding regions of the Antarctic plate. Necessary forward and adjoint wavefield simulations are performed utilizing SPECFEM3D_GLOBE with the aid of the Texas Advanced Computing Center. We utilize phase observations from seismogram segments containing P, S, Rayleigh, and Love waves, including reflections and overtones, which are autonomously identified using FLEXWIN. The FLEXWIN analysis is carried out over a short (15-50 s) and long (initially 50-150 s) period band that target body waves, or body and surface waves, respectively. As our model is iteratively refined, the short-period corner of the long period band is gradually reduced to 25 s as the model converges over 20 linearized inversion iterations. We will briefly present this new high

  17. Antarctic station life: The first 15 years of mixed expeditions to the Antarctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarris, Aspa

    2017-02-01

    This study examined the experiences of women who lived and worked on remote and isolated Antarctic stations for up to 15 months at a time. The study employed purposeful sampling and a longitudinal - processual approach to study women's experiences over the first 15 years of mixed gender Antarctic expeditions. The retrospective analysis was based on a semi-structured interview administered to 14 women upon their return to Australia. The results showed that women referred to the natural physical Antarctic environment as one of the best aspects of their experience and the reason they would recommend the Antarctic to their friends as a good place to work. In describing the worst aspect of their experience, women referred to aspects of Antarctic station life, including: (i) the male dominated nature of station culture; (ii) the impact of interpersonal conflict, including gender based conflict and friction between scientists and trades workers; and (iii) the lack of anonymity associated with living and working with the same group of individuals, mainly men, for up to 12 months or more. The results are discussed within the context of the evolution of Antarctic station culture and recommendations are made in terms of the demography of expeditions, expeditioner selection and recruitment and the ongoing monitoring of Antarctic station culture. The study presents a framework that can be applied to groups and teams living and working in analogous isolated, confined and extreme work environments, including outer space missions.

  18. Observation Impact over the Antarctic During the Concordiasi Field Campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boullot, Nathalie; Rabier, Florence; Langland, Rolf; Gelaro, Ron; Cardinali, Carla; Guidard, Vincent; Bauer, Peter; Doerenbecher, Alexis

    2014-01-01

    The impact of observations on analysis uncertainty and forecast performance was investigated for Austral Spring 2010 over the Southern polar area for four different systems (NRL, GMAO, ECMWF and Meteo-France), at the time of the Concordiasi field experiment. The largest multi model variance in 500 hPa height analyses is found in the southern sub-Antarctic oceanic region, where there are strong atmospheric dynamics, rapid forecast error growth, and fewer upper air wind observation data to constrain the analyses. In terms of data impact the most important observation components are shown to be AMSU, IASI, AIRS, GPS-RO, radiosonde, surface and atmospheric motion vector observations. For sounding data, radiosondes and dropsondes, one can note a large impact of temperature at low levels and a large impact of wind at high levels. Observing system experiments using the Concordiasi dropsondes show a large impact of the observations over the Antarctic plateau extending to lower latitudes with the forecast range, with a large impact around 50 to 70deg South. These experiments indicate there is a potential benefit of better using radiance data over land and sea-ice and innovative atmospheric motion vectors obtained from a combination of various satellites to fill the current data gaps and improve NWP in this region.

  19. What Controls the Size of the Antarctic Ozone Hole?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhartia, P. K. (Technical Monitor); Newman, Paul A.; Kawa, S. Randolph; Nash, Eric R.

    2002-01-01

    The Antarctic ozone hole is a region of extremely large ozone depletion that is roughly centered over the South Pole. Since 1979, the area coverage of the ozone hole has grown from near zero size to over 24 Million square kilometers. In the 8-year period from 1981 to 1989, the area expanded by 18 Million square kilometers. During the last 5 years, the hole has been observed to exceed 25 Million square kilometers over brief periods. We will review these size observations, the size trends, and the interannual variability of the size. The area is derived from the area enclosed by the 220 DU total ozone contour. We will discuss the rationale for the choice of 220 DU: 1) it is located near the steep gradient between southern mid-latitudes and the polar region, and 2) 220 DU is a value that is lower than the pre- 1979 ozone observations over Antarctica during the spring period. The phenomenal growth of the ozone hole was directly caused by the increases of chlorine and bromine compounds in the stratosphere. In this talk, we will show the relationship of the ozone hole's size to the interannual variability of Antarctic spring temperatures. In addition, we will show the relationship of these same temperatures to planetary-scale wave forcings.

  20. On the Size of the Antarctic Ozone Hole

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, Paul A.; Nash, Eric R.; Kawa, S. Randolph

    2002-01-01

    The Antarctic ozone hole is a region of extremely large ozone depletion that is roughly centered over the South Pole. Since 1979, the area coverage of the ozone hole has grown from near zero size to over 24 Million sq km. In the 8-year period from 1981 to 1989, the area expanded by 18 Million sq km. During the last 5 years, the hole has been observed to exceed 25 Million sq km over brief periods. In the spring of 2002, the size of the ozone hole barely reached 20 Million sq km for only a couple of days. We will review these size observations, the size trends, and the interannual variability of the size. The area is derived from the area enclosed by the 220 DU total ozone contour. We will discuss the rationale for the choice of 220 DU: 1) it is located near the steep gradient between southern mid-latitudes and the polar region, and 2) 220 DU is a value that is lower than the pre-1979 ozone observations over Antarctica during the spring period. The phenomenal growth of the ozone hole was directly caused by the increases of chlorine and bromine compounds in the stratosphere. In this talk, we will show the relationship of the ozone hole's size to the interannual variability of Antarctic spring temperatures. In addition, we will show the relationship of these same temperatures to planetary-scale wave forcings.

  1. Antarctic volcanoes: A remote but significant hazard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geyer, Adelina; Martí, Alex; Folch, Arnau; Giralt, Santiago

    2017-04-01

    Ash emitted during explosive volcanic eruptions can be dispersed over massive areas of the globe, posing a threat to both human health and infrastructures, such as the air traffic. Some of the last eruptions occurred during this decade (e.g. 14/04/2010 - Eyjafjallajökull, Iceland; 24/05/2011-Grímsvötn, Iceland; 05/06/2011-Puyehue-Cordón Caulle, Chile) have strongly affected the air traffic in different areas of the world, leading to economic losses of billions of euros. From the tens of volcanoes located in Antarctica, at least nine are known to be active and five of them have reported volcanic activity in historical times. However, until now, no attention has been paid to the possible social, economical and environmental consequences of an eruption that would occur on high southern latitudes, perhaps because it is considered that its impacts would be minor or local, and mainly restricted to the practically inhabited Antarctic continent. We show here, as a case study and using climate models, how volcanic ash emitted during a regular eruption of one of the most active volcanoes in Antarctica, Deception Island (South Shetland Islands), could reach the African continent as well as Australia and South America. The volcanic cloud could strongly affect the air traffic not only in the region and at high southern latitudes, but also the flights connecting Africa, South America and Oceania. Results obtained are crucial to understand the patterns of volcanic ash distribution at high southern latitudes with obvious implications for tephrostratigraphical and chronological studies that provide valuable isochrones with which to synchronize palaeoclimate records. This research was partially funded by the MINECO grants VOLCLIMA (CGL2015-72629-EXP)and POSVOLDEC(CTM2016-79617-P)(AEI/FEDER, UE), the Ramón y Cajal research program (RYC-2012-11024) and the NEMOH European project (REA grant 34 agreement n° 289976).

  2. Mysterious iodine-overabundance in Antarctic meteorites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dreibus, G.; Waenke, H.; Schultz, L.

    1986-01-01

    Halogen as well as other trace element concentrations in meteorite finds can be influenced by alteration processes on the Earth's surface. The discovery of Antarctic meteorites offered the opportunity to study meteorites which were kept in one of the most sterile environment of the Earth. Halogen determination in Antartic meteorites was compared with non-Antarctic meteorites. No correlation was found between iodine concentration and the weathering index, or terrestrial age. The halogen measurements indicate a contaminating phase rich in iodine and also containing chlorine. Possible sources for this contamination are discussed.

  3. Mysterious iodine-overabundance in Antarctic meteorites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dreibus, G.; Waenke, H.; Schultz, L.

    1986-01-01

    Halogen as well as other trace element concentrations in meteorite finds can be influenced by alteration processes on the Earth's surface. The discovery of Antarctic meteorites offered the opportunity to study meteorites which were kept in one of the most sterile environment of the Earth. Halogen determination in Antartic meteorites was compared with non-Antarctic meteorites. No correlation was found between iodine concentration and the weathering index, or terrestrial age. The halogen measurements indicate a contaminating phase rich in iodine and also containing chlorine. Possible sources for this contamination are discussed

  4. Plants and soil microbes respond to recent warming on the Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amesbury, M. J.; Royles, J.; Hodgson, D.; Convey, P.; Griffiths, H.; Charman, D.

    2013-12-01

    The Antarctic Peninsula is one of the most rapidly warming regions on Earth, with temperature increases of as much as 3°C recorded since the 1950s. However, the longer-term context of this change is limited and existing records are not suitably located to be able to trace the spatial signature of change over time. This paper will present the first published results from a wider project exploiting peat moss banks spanning 10 degrees of latitude along the Antarctic Peninsula as an archive of late Holocene climate variability. These moss banks are ideal archives for palaeoclimate research as they are well-preserved by freezing, generally monospecific, easily dated by radiocarbon techniques and have sufficiently high accumulation rates to permit decadal resolution. A unique time series of past moss growth and soil microbial activity has been produced from a 150 year old moss bank at Lazarev Bay, Alexander Island, a site at the southern limit of significant plant growth in the Antarctic Peninsula region. We use accumulation rates, cellulose δ13C and fossil testate amoebae to provide an indication of ecosystem productivity. We show that both moss and microbial population growth rates rose rapidly in the 1960s, consistent with temperature change, although recently may have stalled, concurrent with other evidence. The increase in terrestrial plant growth rates and soil microbial activity is unprecedented in the last 150 years. The observed relationship between moss growth, microbial activity and climate at Lazarev Bay suggests that moss bank records have the potential to test the regional expression of temperature variability shown by instrumental data on the Antarctic Peninsula over centennial to millennial timescales, by providing long-term records of summer growth conditions, complementing the more distant and widely dispersed ice core records. As a result, we will conclude by placing the Lazarev Bay record into the wider context of the latest progress of analysis of

  5. Using Gravity Inversion to Estimate Antarctic Geothermal Heat Flux

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughan, Alan P. M.; Kusznir, Nick J.; Ferraccioli, Fausto; Leat, Phil T.; Jordan, Tom A. R. M.; Purucker, Michael E.; (Sasha) Golynsky, A. V.; Rogozhina, Irina

    2014-05-01

    New modelling studies for Greenland have recently underlined the importance of GHF for long-term ice sheet behaviour (Petrunin et al. 2013). Revised determinations of top basement heat-flow for Antarctica and adjacent rifted continental margins using gravity inversion mapping of crustal thickness and continental lithosphere thinning (Chappell & Kusznir 2008), using BedMap2 data have provided improved estimates of geothermal heat flux (GHF) in Antarctica where it is very poorly known. Continental lithosphere thinning and post-breakup residual thicknesses of continental crust determined from gravity inversion have been used to predict the preservation of continental crustal radiogenic heat productivity and the transient lithosphere heat-flow contribution within thermally equilibrating rifted continental and oceanic lithosphere. The sensitivity of present-day Antarctic top basement heat-flow to initial continental radiogenic heat productivity, continental rift and margin breakup age has been examined. Recognition of the East Antarctic Rift System (EARS), a major Permian to Cretaceous age rift system that appears to extend from the continental margin at the Lambert Rift to the South Pole region, a distance of 2500 km (Ferraccioli et al. 2011) and is comparable in scale to the well-studied East African rift system, highlights that crustal variability in interior Antarctica is much greater than previously assumed. GHF is also important to understand proposed ice accretion at the base of the EAIS in the GSM and its links to sub-ice hydrology (Bell et al. 2011). References Bell, R.E., Ferraccioli, F., Creyts, T.T., Braaten, D., Corr, H., Das, I., Damaske, D., Frearson, N., Jordan, T., Rose, K., Studinger, M. & Wolovick, M. 2011. Widespread persistent thickening of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet by freezing from the base. Science, 331 (6024), 1592-1595. Chappell, A.R. & Kusznir, N.J. 2008. Three-dimensional gravity inversion for Moho depth at rifted continental margins

  6. Lichen flora around the Korean Antarctic Scientific Station, King George Island, Antarctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ji Hee; Ahn, In-Young; Hong, Soon Gyu; Andreev, Mikhail; Lim, Kwang-Mi; Oh, Mi Jin; Koh, Young Jin; Hur, Jae-Seoun

    2006-10-01

    As part of the long-term monitoring projects on Antarctic terrestrial vegetation in relation to global climate change, a lichen floristical survey was conducted around the Korean Antarctic Station (King Sejong Station), which is located on Barton Peninsula, King George Island, in January and February of 2006. Two hundred and twenty-five lichen specimens were collected and sixty-two lichen species in 38 genera were identified by morphological characteristics, chemical constituents, TLC analysis and ITS nucleotide sequence analysis.

  7. Climate change drives expansion of Antarctic ice-free habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jasmine R.; Raymond, Ben; Bracegirdle, Thomas J.; Chadès, Iadine; Fuller, Richard A.; Shaw, Justine D.; Terauds, Aleks

    2017-07-01

    Antarctic terrestrial biodiversity occurs almost exclusively in ice-free areas that cover less than 1% of the continent. Climate change will alter the extent and configuration of ice-free areas, yet the distribution and severity of these effects remain unclear. Here we quantify the impact of twenty-first century climate change on ice-free areas under two Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) climate forcing scenarios using temperature-index melt modelling. Under the strongest forcing scenario, ice-free areas could expand by over 17,000 km2 by the end of the century, close to a 25% increase. Most of this expansion will occur in the Antarctic Peninsula, where a threefold increase in ice-free area could drastically change the availability and connectivity of biodiversity habitat. Isolated ice-free areas will coalesce, and while the effects on biodiversity are uncertain, we hypothesize that they could eventually lead to increasing regional-scale biotic homogenization, the extinction of less-competitive species and the spread of invasive species.

  8. Antarctic marine sediments as fingerprints of pollution migration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Waheed, S.; Ahmad, S.; Rahman, A.; Qureshi, I.H.

    2001-01-01

    Forty elements in 21 coastal marine sediment samples collected during the second Antarctic scientific expedition from 18 different sites of Brekilen area located at the coast of Antarctica were analysed by instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) to detect eventual pollution. Radio-assay schemes for three sets of elements after neutron irradiation and cooling were evolved to avoid matrix effects. Data have been compared with those for sediments of various stations at Antarctica and two other regions in different continents. Lower concentration of certain elements in the Antarctic sediments reflects less environmental exposition. Enrichment factors (EF) were calculated for all the elements using the earth crust as reference matrix, based on elemental values by MASON, TAYLOR and WEDEPOHL which show a normal pattern near to unity expect for Ag and Br. The data obtained could also serve as a reference point from which changes in the global environment can be studied. The quality assurance of data was performed using standard reference materials (SRMs) of a similar matrix (IAEA Marine Sediment SD-M/TM and Chinese Marine Sediment GBW 07313). (author)

  9. Impact of Antarctic mixed-phase clouds on climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawson, R Paul; Gettelman, Andrew

    2014-12-23

    Precious little is known about the composition of low-level clouds over the Antarctic Plateau and their effect on climate. In situ measurements at the South Pole using a unique tethered balloon system and ground-based lidar reveal a much higher than anticipated incidence of low-level, mixed-phase clouds (i.e., consisting of supercooled liquid water drops and ice crystals). The high incidence of mixed-phase clouds is currently poorly represented in global climate models (GCMs). As a result, the effects that mixed-phase clouds have on climate predictions are highly uncertain. We modify the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Earth System Model (CESM) GCM to align with the new observations and evaluate the radiative effects on a continental scale. The net cloud radiative effects (CREs) over Antarctica are increased by +7.4 Wm(-2), and although this is a significant change, a much larger effect occurs when the modified model physics are extended beyond the Antarctic continent. The simulations show significant net CRE over the Southern Ocean storm tracks, where recent measurements also indicate substantial regions of supercooled liquid. These sensitivity tests confirm that Southern Ocean CREs are strongly sensitive to mixed-phase clouds colder than -20 °C.

  10. Tolerance of Antarctic soil fungi to hydrocarbons

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hughes, Kevin A.; Bridge, Paul; Clark, Melody S. [British Antarctic Survey, Natural Environment Research Council, High Cross, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 0ET (United Kingdom)

    2007-01-01

    Little is known about the effects of hydrocarbons and fuel oil on Antarctic filamentous fungi in the terrestrial Antarctic environment. Growth of fungi and bacteria from soils around Rothera Research Station (Adelaide Island, Antarctic Peninsula) was assessed in the presence of ten separate aromatic and aliphatic hydrocarbons [marine gas oil (MGO), dodecane, hexadecane, benzoic acid, p-hydroxybenzoic acid, toluene, phenol, biphenyl, naphthalene and m- and p-xylenes with ethylbenzene]. Aromatic hydrocarbons inhibited soil microbial growth more than aliphatic hydrocarbons. Soil microorganisms from a moss patch, where little previous impact or hydrocarbon contamination had occurred, were less tolerant of hydrocarbons than those from high impact sites. Fungal growth rates of Mollisia sp., Penicillium commune, Mortierella sp., Trichoderma koningii, Trichoderma sp. and Phoma herbarum were assessed in the presence of hydrocarbons. Generally, aromatic hydrocarbons inhibited or stopped hyphal extension, though growth rates increased with some aliphatic hydrocarbons. Hyphal dry weight measurements suggested that Mortierella sp. may be able to use dodecane as sole carbon and energy source. Hydrocarbon-degrading Antarctic fungi may have use in future hydrocarbon spill bioremediation. (author)

  11. The changing form of Antarctic biodiversity

    OpenAIRE

    Chown, Steven L.; Clarke, Andrew; Fraser, Ceridwen I.; Cary, S. Craig; Moon, Katherine L.; McGeoch, Melodie A.

    2015-01-01

    Antarctic biodiversity is much more extensive, ecologically diverse and biogeographically structured than previously thought. Understanding of how this diversity is distributed in marine and terrestrial systems, the mechanisms underlying its spatial variation, and the significance of the microbiota is growing rapidly. Broadly recognizable drivers of diversity variation include energy availability and historical refugia. The impacts of local human activities and global environmental change non...

  12. Tightened constraints on the time-lag between Antarctic temperature and CO2 during the last deglaciation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. D. van Ommen

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Antarctic ice cores provide clear evidence of a close coupling between variations in Antarctic temperature and the atmospheric concentration of CO2 during the glacial/interglacial cycles of at least the past 800-thousand years. Precise information on the relative timing of the temperature and CO2 changes can assist in refining our understanding of the physical processes involved in this coupling. Here, we focus on the last deglaciation, 19 000 to 11 000 yr before present, during which CO2 concentrations increased by ~80 parts per million by volume and Antarctic temperature increased by ~10 °C. Utilising a recently developed proxy for regional Antarctic temperature, derived from five near-coastal ice cores and two ice core CO2 records with high dating precision, we show that the increase in CO2 likely lagged the increase in regional Antarctic temperature by less than 400 yr and that even a short lead of CO2 over temperature cannot be excluded. This result, consistent for both CO2 records, implies a faster coupling between temperature and CO2 than previous estimates, which had permitted up to millennial-scale lags.

  13. The Antarctic-Magellan connection: macrobenthos ecology on the shelf and upper slope, a progress report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolf E. Arntz

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Ecological work carried out on the Antarctic and Magellan shelves since the first IBMANT conference held at the UMAG, Punta Arenas in 1997 is summarized to identify areas where progress has been made and others, where important gaps have remained in understanding past and present interaction between the Antarctic and the southern tip of South America. This information is complementary to a review on shallow-water work along the Scotia Arc (Barnes, 2005 and recent work done in the deep sea (Brandt and Hilbig, 2004. While principally referring to shipboard work in deeper water, above all during the recent international EASIZ and LAMPOS campaigns, relevant work from shore stations is also included. Six years after the first IBMANT symposium, significant progress has been made along the latitudinal gradient from the Magellan region to the high Antarctic in the fields of biodiversity, biogeography and community structure, life strategies and adaptations, the role of disturbance and its significance for biodiversity, and trophic coupling of the benthic realm with the water column and sea ice. A better understanding has developed of the role of evolutionary and ecological factors in shaping past and present-day environmental conditions, species composition and distribution, and ecosystem functioning. Furthermore, the science community engaged in unravelling Antarctic-Magellan interactions has advanced in methodological aspects such as new analytical approaches for comparing biodiversity derived from visual methods, growth and age determination, trophic modelling using stable isotope ratios, and molecular approaches for taxonomic and phylogenetic purposes. At the same time, much effort has been invested to complement the species inventory of the two adjacent regions. However, much work remains to be done to fill the numerous gaps. Some perspectives are outlined in this review, and suggestions are made where particular emphasis should be placed in future

  14. A recent case of Antarctic bioprospecting from Japan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akiho Shibata

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Antarctic bioprospecting, namely the search for valuable genetic or chemical compounds in Antarctic nature, has been the subject of intense discussion within Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meetings. In this discussion, based on the so-called "end-users view point," utilizing the patent database to see how much Antarctic biological material has been used in patents, Antarctic bioprospecting has been depicted as a lucrative commercial activity operated by big multinational companies. This paper, instead, proposes an "access view point" for Antarctic bioprospecting, by examining a recent Japanese case in which scientists participating in the Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition in 2007 collected some sediment from Antarctic lakes near Syowa Station, isolated and cultured a particular fungus, and found the first evidence of the presence of antifreezing activity in oomycetes. In 2009, the scientists' affiliate institutions, including the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, applied for a patent on Antarctomyces psychrotrophicus Syw-1 and the antifreeze protein obtained from it. A detailed examination of this case demonstrates that the dichotomy of Antarctic bioprospecting into "commercial" and "scientific" does not reflect the reality of bioprospecting activities and, therefore, does not provide an appropriate ground for legal and policy discussion on Antarctic bioprospecting.

  15. The Antarctic Master Directory -- the Electronic Card Catalog of Antarctic Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scharfen, G.; Bauer, R.

    2003-12-01

    The Antarctic Master Directory (AMD) is a Web-based, searchable record of thousands of Antarctic data descriptions. These data descriptions contain information about what data were collected, where they were collected, when they were collected, who the scientists are, who the point of contact is, how to get the data, and information about the format of the data and what documentation and bibliographic information exists. With this basic descriptive information about content and access for thousands of Antarctic scientific data sets, the AMD is a resource for scientists to advertise the data they have collected and to search for data they need. The AMD has been created by more than twenty nations which conduct research in the Antarctic under the auspices of the Antarctic Treaty. It is a part of the International Directory Network/Global Change Master Directory (IDN/GCMD). Using the AMD is easy. Users can search on subject matter key words, data types, geographic place-names, temporal or spatial ranges, or conduct free-text searches. To search the AMD go to: http://gcmd.nasa.gov/Data/portals/amd/. Contributing your own data descriptions for Antarctic data that you have collected is also easy. Scientists can start by submitting a short data description first (as a placeholder in the AMD, and to satisfy National Science Foundation (NSF) reporting requirements), and then add to, modify or update their record whenever it is appropriate. An easy to use on-line tool and a simple tutorial are available at: http://nsidc.org/usadcc. With NSF Office of Polar Programs (OPP) funding, the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) operates the U.S. Antarctic Data Coordination Center (USADCC), partly to assist scientists in using and contributing to the AMD. The USADCC website is at http://nsidc.org/usadcc.

  16. Psychrotrophic metal tolerant bacteria for mobilisation of metals in Antarctic waters

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Gonsalves, M.J.B.D.

    Cold tolerant psychrotrophic bacteria abound in the Antarctic waters. While Antarctic krills are known to concentrate heavy metals at ppm levels, psychrotrophic bacteria from Antarctic fresh and marine waters have been reported to tolerate them...

  17. Recent Aeromagnetic Anomaly views of the Antarctic continent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferraccioli, F.

    2012-04-01

    Antarctica is a keystone within the Gondwana and Rodinia supercontinents. However, despite intense geological research along the coastal fringes of Antarctica, the interior of the continent remains one of the most poorly understood regions on Earth. Aeromagnetic investigations are a useful tool to help disclose the structure and the evolution of continents from the Precambrian to the Cenozoic and Antarctica is no exception. Here I review a variety of aeromagnetic studies in East and West Antarctica performed since the completion of the first generation ADMAP -Antarctic Digital Magnetic Anomaly Project- in 2001. In western Dronning Maud, in East Antarctica, aeromagnetic data help delineate the extent of the Jurassic Jutulstraumen subglacial rift that is flanked by remnants of a Grenvillian-age (ca 1.1. Ga) igneous province and magmatic arc. Different magnetic signatures appear to characterize the Coats Land block but reconnaissance surveys are insufficient to fully delineate the extent and significance of the Coats Land block, a possible tectonic tracer of Laurentia within Rodinia (Loewy et al., 2011). Further in the interior of East Antarctica, a mosaic of distinct and hitherto largely unknown Precambrian provinces has recently been revealed by combining aeromagnetic and satellite magnetic data with models of crustal thickness constrained by gravity modeling and seismology (Ferraccioli et al., 2011, Nature). A major collisional suture may lie between the Archean Ruker Province and an inferred Proterozoic Gamburtsev Province but the age of final assembly of central East Antarctica remains uncertain and controversial. I favour a Grenville-age collisional event (linked to Rodinia assembly) or possibly older Paleoproteroic collision, followed by intraplate reactivation, as opposed to Neoproterozoic or Early Cambrian collision linked to East-West Gondwana assembly (Boger, 2011). New aerogeophysical surveys over Prince Elizabeth and Queen Mary Land could test this

  18. Deep UV Native Fluorescence Imaging of Antarctic Cryptoendolithic Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Storrie-Lombardi, M. C.; Douglas, S.; Sun, H.; McDonald, G. D.; Bhartia, R.; Nealson, K. H.; Hug, W. F.

    2001-01-01

    An interdisciplinary team at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory Center for Life Detection has embarked on a project to provide in situ chemical and morphological characterization of Antarctic cryptoendolithic microbial communities. We present here in situ deep ultraviolet (UV) native fluorescence and environmental scanning electron microscopy images transiting 8.5 mm into a sandstone sample from the Antarctic Dry Valleys. The deep ultraviolet imaging system employs 224.3, 248.6, and 325 nm lasers to elicit differential fluorescence and resonance Raman responses from biomolecules and minerals. The 224.3 and 248.6 nm lasers elicit a fluorescence response from the aromatic amino and nucleic acids. Excitation at 325 nm may elicit activity from a variety of biomolecules, but is more likely to elicit mineral fluorescence. The resultant fluorescence images provide in situ chemical and morphological maps of microorganisms and the associated organic matrix. Visible broadband reflectance images provide orientation against the mineral background. Environmental scanning electron micrographs provided detailed morphological information. The technique has made possible the construction of detailed fluorescent maps extending from the surface of an Antarctic sandstone sample to a depth of 8.5 mm. The images detect no evidence of microbial life in the superficial 0.2 mm crustal layer. The black lichen component between 0.3 and 0.5 mm deep absorbs all wavelengths of both laser and broadband illumination. Filamentous deep ultraviolet native fluorescent activity dominates in the white layer between 0.6 mm and 5.0 mm from the surface. These filamentous forms are fungi that continue into the red (iron-rich) region of the sample extending from 5.0 to 8.5 mm. Using differential image subtraction techniques it is possible to identify fungal nuclei. The ultraviolet response is markedly attenuated in this region, apparently from the absorption of ultraviolet light by iron-rich particles coating

  19. Description of Pseudingolfiella possessionis n. sp. (Crustacea, Amphipoda) from sub-Antarctic Île de La Possession, Crozet archipelago: the second freshwater amphipod known from the Antarctic biome, a human introduction of Gondwanan ancestry?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smet, Willem H De

    2015-03-31

    A new species of freshwater amphipod, Pseudingolfiella possessionis n. sp. (Senticaudata, Pseudingolfiellidae), is described from the submerged moss vegetation of small brooklets at sub-Antarctic Île de La Possession, Crozet archipelago. It constitutes the second freshwater amphipod species known for the sub-Antarctic and Antarctic region, and the fourth member of the genus. The main characters distinguishing it from all congeners are: the spine on the posterior margin of the dactylus, incisor and lamina mobilis of mandible each with 5 teeth, the setation of the maxilliped, the vestigial second article of pleopod 3 in the female, the undulate and laterally notched posterolateral margin of the external ramus of uropods 1 and 2 in the male, the spinulate dorsomedian projection of the telson.

  20. On the Antarctic Slope Front and Current crossing of the South Scotia Ridge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orsi, A. H.; Palmer, M.; Gomis, D.; Flexas, M. M.; Kim, Y.-S.; Jordà, G.; Wiederwohl, C.; Álvarez, M.

    2012-04-01

    To unveil the contorted path followed by the Antarctic Slope Current connecting the Weddell and Scotia Seas, hydrographic stations with unprecedented spatial resolution were occupied on a series of sections across the slope and multiple channels in the double-pronged western portion of the South Scotia Ridge. Fieldwork consisted of two cruises from the ESASSI (January 2008) and ACROSS (February 2009) programs, the Spanish and USA/Argentina components of the International Polar Year core project SASSI (Synoptic Antarctic Shelf-Slope Interaction study). In this region the Antarctic Slope Current can be located by the pronounced in-shore deepening of isopycnals over the continental slope, rendering the strong subsurface temperature and salinity gradients characteristic of the Antarctic Slope Front. Before reaching the gaps in the southern Ridge near 51°W and 50°W, the ASC carries about 3 Sv of upper layer waters, but it splits into shallow and deep branches upon turning north through these two gaps. The shallower branch enters the Hesperides Trough at 51°W, then shows a tight cyclonic loop back to that longitude roughly following the slope's 700-m isobath, and turns again westward through a similar gap in the northern Ridge. In the Scotia Sea the westward-flowing Antarctic Slope Current is found as far west as the Elephant Island along slightly deeper levels of slope (1100 m) before it is blocked by the Antarctic Circumpolar Current south of the Shackleton Fracture Zone (56°W). The deeper branch of the ASC in the Powell Basin crosses the southern Ridge near 50°W and roughly follows the 1600-m isobath before entering the Scotia Sea through the Hesperides Gap farther to the east (49°W). Thereafter the deeper waters carried westward by this branch become undistinguishable from those circulating farther offshore. Repeat cross-slope sections at both southern and northern flanks of the South Scotia Ridge showed significant temporal variability in the characteristics

  1. Changes in glacier dynamics in the northern Antarctic Peninsula since 1985

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seehaus, Thorsten; Cook, Alison J.; Silva, Aline B.; Braun, Matthias

    2018-02-01

    The climatic conditions along the northern Antarctic Peninsula have shown significant changes within the last 50 years. Here we present a comprehensive analysis of temporally and spatially detailed observations of the changes in ice dynamics along both the east and west coastlines of the northern Antarctic Peninsula. Temporal evolutions of glacier area (1985-2015) and ice surface velocity (1992-2014) are derived from a broad multi-mission remote sensing database for 74 glacier basins on the northern Antarctic Peninsula ( disintegration showed the largest retreat by 208.59 km2. Glaciers on the east coast north of the former Prince Gustav Ice Shelf extent in 1986 receded by only 21.07 km2 (1985-2015) and decelerated by about 58 % on average (1992-2014). A dramatic acceleration after ice shelf disintegration with a subsequent deceleration is observed at most former ice shelf tributaries on the east coast, combined with a significant frontal retreat. In 2014, the flow speed of the former ice shelf tributaries was 26 % higher than before 1996. Along the west coast the average flow speeds of the glaciers increased by 41 %. However, the glaciers on the western Antarctic Peninsula revealed a strong spatial variability of the changes in ice dynamics. By applying a hierarchical cluster analysis, we show that this is associated with the geometric parameters of the individual glacier basins (hypsometric indexes, maximum surface elevation of the basin, flux gate to catchment size ratio). The heterogeneous spatial pattern of ice dynamic evolutions at the northern Antarctic Peninsula shows that temporally and spatially detailed observations as well as further monitoring are necessary to fully understand glacier change in regions with such strong topographic and climatic variances.

  2. Persistent organochlorines in high-Antarctic fish; Persistente chlororganische Verbindungen in hochantarktischen Fischen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zimmermann, S.

    1997-11-01

    24 chlorinated hydrocarbons from different classes (PCB, HCH, DDT, Chlordane, Hexachlorobenzene and Octachlorostyrene) were analyzed in four species of high-Antarctic fish (Aethotaxis mitopteryx, Pleuragramma antarcticum, Trematomus lepidorhinus, and Chinodraco myersi). The concentrations were in the order of 1 {mu}g/kg wet weight or 10 {mu}g/kg lipid weight, respectively. Highest concentrations were measured for HCB in all species. The species showed different distribution patterns for the organochlorines studied. Compared with concentrations in fish from other regions the organochlorine levels measured in Antarctic fish are rather low. It is unlikely that the burden of organochlorines will cause any toxic effects in high-Antarctic fish yet. Nevertheless, with regard to the sensitive Antarctic ecosystem, even small concentrations carry a high risk of harm for Antarctic life. Environmental pollution in Antarctica should be observed with a monitoring program using standardized methods. For this purpose, the fish species studied are very useful as bioindicators for organochlorine contamination. (orig.) [Deutsch] 24 persistente Chlorkohlenwasserstoffe verschiedener Schadstoffgruppen (PCB, HCH, DDT, Chlordan, Hexachlorbenzol und Octachlorstyrol) wurden in vier hochantarktischen Fischarten (Aethotaxis mitopteryx, Pleuragramma antarcticum, Trematomus lepidorhinus und Chionodraco myersi). Die Konzentrationen der nachgewiesenen Schadstoffe im Ganzfisch liegen jeweils in der Groessenordnung von 1 {mu}g/kg Feuchtgewicht bzw. 10 {mu}g/kg Lipidgewicht mit erheblichen Schwankungen je nach Schadstoff und Art. Die Spezies zeigen artspezifische Schadstoffverteilungsmuster. Die Konzentrationen sind gegenueber denen in Fischen aus Gebieten mit staerkerem zivilisatorischem Einfluss eher niedrig. Die Fremstoffbelastungen der hochantarktischen Fische fuehren wahrscheinlich noch nicht zu messbaren toxischen Effekten bei den Fischen. Dennoch geht von den Schadstoffen in Hinblick auf das

  3. Estimating Antarctic Geothermal Heat Flux using Gravity Inversion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughan, Alan P. M.; Kusznir, Nick J.; Ferraccioli, Fausto; Leat, Phil T.; Jordan, Tom A. R. M.; Purucker, Michael E.; Golynsky, A. V.; Sasha Rogozhina, Irina

    2013-04-01

    Geothermal heat flux (GHF) in Antarctica is very poorly known. We have determined (Vaughan et al. 2012) top basement heat-flow for Antarctica and adjacent rifted continental margins using gravity inversion mapping of crustal thickness and continental lithosphere thinning (Chappell & Kusznir 2008). Continental lithosphere thinning and post-breakup residual thicknesses of continental crust determined from gravity inversion have been used to predict the preservation of continental crustal radiogenic heat productivity and the transient lithosphere heat-flow contribution within thermally equilibrating rifted continental and oceanic lithosphere. The sensitivity of present-day Antarctic top basement heat-flow to initial continental radiogenic heat productivity, continental rift and margin breakup age has been examined. Knowing GHF distribution for East Antarctica and the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains (GSM) region in particular is critical because: 1) The GSM likely acted as key nucleation point for the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS); 2) the region may contain the oldest ice of the EAIS - a prime target for future ice core drilling; 3) GHF is important to understand proposed ice accretion at the base of the EAIS in the GSM and its links to sub-ice hydrology (Bell et al. 2011). An integrated multi-dataset-based GHF model for East Antarctica is planned that will resolve the wide range of estimates previously published using single datasets. The new map and existing GHF distribution estimates available for Antarctica will be evaluated using direct ice temperature measurements obtained from deep ice cores, estimates of GHF derived from subglacial lakes, and a thermodynamic ice-sheet model of the Antarctic Ice Sheet driven by past climate reconstructions and each of analysed heat flow maps, as has recently been done for the Greenland region (Rogozhina et al. 2012). References Bell, R.E., Ferraccioli, F., Creyts, T.T., Braaten, D., Corr, H., Das, I., Damaske, D., Frearson, N

  4. Tailoring Peptidomimetics Antifreeze Protein from Exotic Antarctic Marine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mohd Basyaruddin Abdul Rahman; Azren Aida Asmawi; Emilia Abdulmalek

    2016-01-01

    Antifreeze proteins (AFPs) are synthesized by various cold-adapted organisms to enable them to survive in subzero environment. The unique role of AFPs recently attracted enormous interest to develop them as commercial products. In this work, we have studied the antifreeze activity of short helical protein fragments (peptides) instead of the entire antifreeze protein of Antarctic yeast Glaciozyma antarctica. Several short peptide segments were designed according to amino acid sequence of helical region of AFP-1 G.antarctica, which are assumed to be involved in its antifreeze activity. We have demonstrated that short peptide segments derived from yeast AFP possess antifreeze activity and result in modification of the ice crystals growth rates and habits. This strategy has enabled the preparation of short AFP with high antifreeze activity in large amount of quantities at a low cost further opens the chance of developing the commercial potentials of AFPs.(author)

  5. Laboratory study of nitrate photolysis in Antarctic snow

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berhanu, Tesfaye A.; Meusinger, Carl; Erbland, Joseph

    2014-01-01

    in Antarctic snow. I. Observed quantum yield, domain of photolysis, and secondary chemistry," J. Chem. Phys. 140, 244305 (2014)]) is to characterize nitrate photochemistry and improve the interpretation of the nitrate ice core record. Naturally occurring stable isotopes in nitrate (15N, 17O, and 18O) provide...... additional information concerning post-depositional processes. Here, we present results from studies of the wavelength-dependent isotope effects from photolysis of nitrate in a matrix of natural snow. Snow from Dome C, Antarctica was irradiated in selected wavelength regions using a Xe UV lamp and filters....... The irradiated snow was sampled and analyzed for nitrate concentration and isotopic composition (δ 15N, δ 18O, and Δ 17O). From these measurements an average photolytic isotopic fractionation of 15ε = (- 15 ± 1.2)‰ was found for broadband Xe lamp photolysis. These results are due in part to excitation...

  6. SPREADING OF ANTARCTIC BOTTOM WATER IN THE ATLANTIC OCEAN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eugene Morozov

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the transport of bottom water from its source region in the Weddell Sea through the abyssal channels of the Atlantic Ocean. The research brings together the recent observations and historical data. A strong flow of Antarctic Bottom Water through the Vema Channel is analyzed. The mean speed of the flow is 30 cm/s. A temperature increase was found in the deep Vema Channel, which has been observed for 30 years already. The flow of bottom water in the northern part of the Brazil Basin splits. Part of the water flows through the Romanche and Chain fracture zones. The other part flows to the North American Basin. Part of the latter flow propagates through the Vema Fracture Zone into the Northeast Atlantic. The properties of bottom water in the Kane Gap and Discovery Gap are also analyzed.

  7. Understanding and protecting the world's biodiversity: the role and legacy of the SCAR programme "Evolution and Biodiversity in the Antarctic".

    Science.gov (United States)

    di Prisco, Guido; Convey, Peter; Gutt, Julian; Cowan, Don; Conlan, Kathleen; Verde, Cinzia

    2012-12-01

    Current global changes are prompting scientists and governments to consider the risk of extinction of species inhabiting environments influenced by ice. Concerted, multidisciplinary, international programmes aimed at understanding life processes, evolution and adaptations in the Polar Regions will help to counteract such an event by protecting polar life and ecosystems. There is a long tradition of international scientific cooperation in Antarctica that provides a strong foundation for such approaches. While basic understanding is emerging, we still largely lack predictive biological models, and need to achieve further integration amongst biological and non-biological disciplines. The ongoing SCAR Science Research Programme, "Evolution and Biodiversity in the Antarctic (EBA)" has successfully carried out its crucial role of providing an overarching umbrella for SCAR research in Life Sciences. Now is the time for aiming to progress beyond this important role, and the Antarctic biology community is proposing two programmes, focussed on distinct but complementary aspects of polar biology and working across marine, freshwater and terrestrial environments: "State of the Antarctic Ecosystem (AntEco)", and "Antarctic Thresholds--Ecosystem Resilience and Adaptation (AnT-ERA)". These programmes are the legacy of EBA, and they are key to understanding and protect Antarctic biodiversity. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Glacier extent in sub-Antarctic Kerguelen archipelago from MIS 3 period: Evidence from 36Cl dating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jomelli, Vincent; Schimmelpfennig, Irene; Favier, Vincent; Mokadem, Fatima; Landais, Amaelle; Rinterknecht, Vincent; Brunstein, Daniel; Verfaillie, Deborah; Legentil, Claude; Aumaitre, Georges; Bourlès, Didier L.; Keddadouche, Karim

    2018-03-01

    Documenting sub-Antarctic glacier variations during the local last glacial maximum is of major interest to better understand their sensitivity to atmospheric and oceanic temperature changes in conjunction with Antarctic ice sheet changes. However, data are sparse because evidence of earlier glacier extents is for most sub-Antarctic islands located offshore making their observation complex. Here, we present 22 cosmogenic 36Cl surface exposure ages obtained from five sites at Kerguelen to document the glacial history. The 36Cl ages from roche moutonnee surfaces, erratics and boulders collected on moraines span from 41.9 ± 4.4 ka to 14.3 ± 1.1 ka. Ice began to retreat on the eastern part of the main island before 41.4 ± 4.4 ka. Slow deglaciation occurred from ∼41 to ∼29 ka. There is no evidence of advances between 29 ka and the Antarctic Cold Reversal (ACR) period (∼14.5-12.9 ka) period. During the ACR, however, the Bontemps and possibly Belvedere moraines were formed by the advance of a Cook Ice Cap outlet glacier and a local glacier on the Presque Ile Jeanne d'Arc, respectively. This glacier evolution differs partly from that of glaciers in New Zealand and in Patagonia. These asynchronous glacier changes in the sub-Antarctic region are however in agreement with sea surface temperature changes recorded around Antarctica, which suggest differences in the climate evolution of the Indo-Pacific and Atlantic sectors of Antarctica.

  9. MECHANISMS FOR THE SEASONAL CYCLE IN THE ANTARCTIC COASTAL OCEANS

    OpenAIRE

    オオシマ; Kay I., OHSHIMA

    1996-01-01

    Seasonal variations of the Antarctic coastal oceans has not been well understood owing to logistical difficulties in observations, especially during the ice-covered season. Recently, 'Weddell Gyre Study' and 'Japanese Antarctic Climate Research program' have revealed the following seasonal variations in the Antarctic coastal ocean. First, the thickness of the Winter Water (WW) layer, characterized by cold, fresh, oxygen-rich water, exhibits its maximum in the austral fall and its minimum in t...

  10. When shape matters: strategies of different Antarctic ascidians morphotypes to deal with sedimentation

    OpenAIRE

    Torre, Luciana; Abele, Doris; Lagger, Cristian; Momo, Fernando; Sahade, Ricardo

    2014-01-01

    Climate change leads to increased melting of tidewater glaciers in theWestern Antarctic Peninsula region and sediment bearing glacial melt waters negatively affects filter feeding species as solitary ascidians. In previous work the erect-forms Molgula pedunculata and Cnemidocarpa verrucosa (Order Stolidobranchiata) appeared more sensitive than the flat form Ascidia challengeri (Order Phlebobranchiata). Sedimentation exposure is expected to induce up-regulation of anaerobic metabol...

  11. Dome C UltraCarbonaceous Antarctic MicroMeteorites Infrared and Raman fingerprints

    OpenAIRE

    Dartois, E.; Engrand, C.; Duprat, J.; Godard, M.; Charon, E.; Delauche, L.; Sandt, C.; Borondics, F.

    2017-01-01

    UltraCarbonaceous Antarctic MicroMeteorites (UCAMMs) represent a small fraction of interplanetary dust particles reaching the Earth's surface and contain large amounts of an organic component not found elsewhere. They are most probably sampling a contribution from the outer regions of the solar system to the local interplanetary dust particle flux. We characterize UCAMMs composition focusing on the organic matter, and compare the results to the insoluble organic matter (IOM) from primitive me...

  12. Processes influencing differences in Arctic and Antarctic Trough Mouth Fan sedimentology

    OpenAIRE

    Gales, J; Hillenbrand, C-D; Larter, R; Laberg, J-S; Melles, M; Benetti, S; Passchier, S

    2018-01-01

    Trough Mouth Fans (TMFs) are sediment depocentres that form along high-latitude continental margins at the mouths of some cross-shelf troughs. They reflect the dynamics of past ice sheets over multiple glacial cycles and processes operating on (formerly) glaciated continental shelves and slopes, such as erosion, reworking, transport and deposition. The similarities and differences in TMF morphology and formation processes of the Arctic and Antarctic regions remain poorly constrained. Here, we...

  13. Controls on turbulent mixing on the West Antarctic Peninsula shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brearley, J. Alexander; Meredith, Michael P.; Naveira Garabato, Alberto C.; Venables, Hugh J.; Inall, Mark E.

    2017-05-01

    The ocean-to-atmosphere heat budget of the West Antarctic Peninsula is controlled in part by the upward flux of heat from the warm Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW) layer that resides below 200 m to the Antarctic Surface Water (AASW), a water mass which varies strongly on a seasonal basis. Upwelling and mixing of CDW influence the formation of sea ice in the region and affect biological productivity and functioning of the ecosystem through their delivery of nutrients. In this study, 2.5-year time series of both Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (ADCP) and conductivity-temperature-depth (CTD) data are used to quantify both the diapycnal diffusivity κ and the vertical heat flux Q at the interface between CDW and AASW. Over the period of the study, a mean upward heat flux of 1 W m-2 is estimated, with the largest heat fluxes occurring shortly after the loss of winter fast ice when the water column is first exposed to wind stress without being strongly stratified by salinity. Differences in mixing mechanisms between winter and summer seasons are investigated. Whilst tidally-driven mixing at the study site occurs year-round, but is likely to be relatively weak, a strong increase in counterclockwise-polarized near-inertial energy (and shear) is observed during the fast-ice-free season, suggesting that the direct impact of storms on the ocean surface is responsible for much of the observed mixing at the site. Given the rapid reduction in sea-ice duration in this region in the last 30 years, a shift towards an increasingly wind-dominated mixing regime may be taking place.

  14. Antarctic Meteorite Classification and Petrographic Database

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd, Nancy S.; Satterwhite, C. E.; Righter, Kevin

    2011-01-01

    The Antarctic Meteorite collection, which is comprised of over 18,700 meteorites, is one of the largest collections of meteorites in the world. These meteorites have been collected since the late 1970's as part of a three-agency agreement between NASA, the National Science Foundation, and the Smithsonian Institution [1]. Samples collected each season are analyzed at NASA s Meteorite Lab and the Smithsonian Institution and results are published twice a year in the Antarctic Meteorite Newsletter, which has been in publication since 1978. Each newsletter lists the samples collected and processed and provides more in-depth details on selected samples of importance to the scientific community. Data about these meteorites is also published on the NASA Curation website [2] and made available through the Meteorite Classification Database allowing scientists to search by a variety of parameters

  15. Meteorological observatory for Antarctic data collection; L`Osservatorio per l`acquisizione dei dati meteorologici in Antartide

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grigioni, P.; De silvestri, L. [ENEA, Centro Ricerche Casaccia, Rome (Italy). Dip. Ambiente; Della Vedova, A.M. [Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica, P.N.R.A., Rome (Italy)

    1996-12-31

    In the last years, a great number of automatic weather stations was installed in Antarctica, with the aim to examine closely the weather and climate of this region and to improve the coverage of measuring points on the Antarctic surface. In 1987 the Italian Antarctic Project started to set up a meteorological network, in an area not completely covered by other countries. Some of the activities performed by the meteorological observatory, concerning technical functions such as maintenance of the AWS`s and the execution of radio soundings, or relating to scientific purposes such as validation and elaboration of collected data, are exposed. Finally, some climatological considerations on the thermal behaviour of the Antarctic troposphere such as `coreless winter`, and on the wind field, including katabatic flows in North Victoria Land are described.

  16. Spatial Patterns of Variability in Antarctic Surface Temperature: Connections to the Southern Hemisphere Annular Mode and the Southern Oscillation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwok, Ron; Comiso, Josefino C.; Koblinsky, Chester J. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The 17-year (1982-1998) trend in surface temperature shows a general cooling over the Antarctic continent, warming of the sea ice zone, with moderate changes over the oceans. Warming of the peripheral seas is associated with negative trends in the regional sea ice extent. Effects of the Southern Hemisphere Annular Mode (SAM) and the extrapolar Southern Oscillation (SO) on surface temperature are quantified through regression analysis. Positive polarities of the SAM are associated with cold anomalies over most of Antarctica, with the most notable exception of the Antarctic Peninsula. Positive temperature anomalies and ice edge retreat in the Pacific sector are associated with El Nino episodes. Over the past two decades, the drift towards high polarity in the SAM and negative polarity in the SO indices couple to produce a spatial pattern with warmer temperatures in the Antarctic Peninsula and peripheral seas, and cooler temperatures over much of East Antarctica.

  17. Antarctic carbonaceous chondrites - New opportunities for research

    Science.gov (United States)

    McSween, Harry Y., Jr.

    An account is given of the types of carbonaceous meteorites available in the Antarctic collections of the U.S. and Japan. In the case of the collection for Victoria Land and Queen Maud Land, all known classes for meteorites except C1 are present; available pairing data, though limited, are indicative of the presence of many different falls. Thus far, attention has been focused on the largest meteorites. Most samples, however, are small.

  18. Structural Uncertainty in Antarctic sea ice simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, D. P.

    2016-12-01

    The inability of the vast majority of historical climate model simulations to reproduce the observed increase in Antarctic sea ice has motivated many studies about the quality of the observational record, the role of natural variability versus forced changes, and the possibility of missing or inadequate forcings in the models (such as freshwater discharge from thinning ice shelves or an inadequate magnitude of stratospheric ozone depletion). In this presentation I will highlight another source of uncertainty that has received comparatively little attention: Structural uncertainty, that is, the systematic uncertainty in simulated sea ice trends that arises from model physics and mean-state biases. Using two large ensembles of experiments from the Community Earth System Model (CESM), I will show that the model is predisposed towards producing negative Antarctic sea ice trends during 1979-present, and that this outcome is not simply because the model's decadal variability is out-of-synch with that in nature. In the "Tropical Pacific Pacemaker" ensemble, in which observed tropical Pacific SST anomalies are prescribed, the model produces very realistic atmospheric circulation trends over the Southern Ocean, yet the sea ice trend is negative in every ensemble member. However, if the ensemble-mean trend (commonly interpreted as the forced response) is removed, some ensemble members show a sea ice increase that is very similar to the observed. While this results does confirm the important role of natural variability, it also suggests a strong bias in the forced response. I will discuss the reasons for this systematic bias and explore possible remedies. This an important problem to solve because projections of 21st -Century changes in the Antarctic climate system (including ice sheet surface mass balance changes and related changes in the sea level budget) have a strong dependence on the mean state of and changes in the Antarctic sea ice cover. This problem is not unique to

  19. America on the Ice. Antarctic Policy Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-01-01

    Malay- sian Prime Minister- Mahatir Mohamad-fired the open- ing volleys during a UN General Assembly speech in September of that year. He noted...define the problem of unin- habited lands." According to Mahatir , the Antarctic conti- nent clearly qualified for such consideration and, not... Mahatir , 109 Molodezhnaya station, 124 Moon Treaty (1979), 108 Mount Erebus, 134 Myhre, Jeffrey, 59 NASA. See National Aeronautics and Space

  20. Antarctic isolation: immune and viral studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tingate, T. R.; Lugg, D. J.; Muller, H. K.; Stowe, R. P.; Pierson, D. L.

    1997-01-01

    Stressful environmental conditions are a major determinant of immune reactivity. This effect is pronounced in Australian National Antarctic Research Expedition populations exposed to prolonged periods of isolation in the Antarctic. Alterations of T cell function, including depression of cutaneous delayed-type hypersensitivity responses and a peak 48.9% reduction of T cell proliferation to the mitogen phytohaemagglutinin, were documented during a 9-month period of isolation. T cell dysfunction was mediated by changes within the peripheral blood mononuclear cell compartment, including a paradoxical atypical monocytosis associated with altered production of inflammatory cytokines. There was a striking reduction in the production by peripheral blood mononuclear cells of the predominant pro-inflammatory monokine TNF-alpha and changes were also detected in the production of IL-1, IL-2, IL-6, IL-1ra and IL-10. Prolonged Antarctic isolation is also associated with altered latent herpesvirus homeostasis, including increased herpesvirus shedding and expansion of the polyclonal latent Epstein-Barr virus-infected B cell population. These findings have important long-term health implications.

  1. EVA: Evryscopes for the Arctic and Antarctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richichi, A.; Law, N.; Tasuya, O.; Fors, O.; Dennihy, E.; Carlberg, R.; Tuthill, P.; Ashley, M.; Soonthornthum, B.

    2017-06-01

    We are planning to build Evryscopes for the Arctic and Antarctic (EVA), which will enable the first ultra-wide-field, high-cadence sky survey to be conducted from both Poles. The system is based on the successful Evryscope concept, already installed and operating since 2015 at Cerro Tololo in Chile with the following characteristics: robotic operation, 8,000 square degrees simultaneous sky coverage, 2-minute cadence, milli-mag level photometric accuracy, pipelined data processing for real-time analysis and full data storage for off-line analysis. The initial location proposed for EVA is the PEARL station on Ellesmere island; later also an antarctic location shall be selected. The science goals enabled by this unique combination of almost full-sky coverage and high temporal cadence are numerous, and include among others ground-breaking forays in the fields of exoplanets, stellar variability, asteroseismology, supernovae and other transient events. The EVA polar locations will enable uninterrupted observations lasting in principle over weeks and months. EVA will be fully robotic. We discuss the EVA science drivers and expected results, and present the logistics and the outline of the project which is expected to have first light in the winter of 2018. The cost envelope can be kept very competitive thanks to R&D already employed for the CTIO Evryscope, to our experience with both Arctic and Antarctic locations, and to the use of off-the-shelf components.

  2. Intraplate Earthquakes and Deformation within the East Antarctic Craton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lough, A. C.; Wiens, D.; Nyblade, A.

    2017-12-01

    The apparent lack of tectonic seismicity within Antarctica has long been discussed. Explanations have ranged from a lack of intraplate stress due to the surrounding spreading ridges and low absolute plate velocity (Sykes, 1978), to the weight of ice sheets increasing the vertical normal stress (Johnston, 1987). The 26 station GAMSEIS/AGAP array deployed in East Antarctica from late 2008 to early 2010 provides the first opportunity to study the intraplate seismicity of the Antarctic interior using regional data. Here we report 27 intraplate tectonic earthquakes that occurred during 2009. Depth determination together with their corresponding uncertainty estimates, show that most events originate in the shallow to middle crust, indicating a tectonic and not a cryoseismic origin. The earthquakes are primarily located beneath linear alignments of basins adjacent to the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains (GSM) that have been denoted as the East Antarctic rift system (Ferraccioli et al, 2011). The geophysical properties of the `rift' system contrast sharply with those of the GSM and Vostok Subglacial Highlands on either side. Crustal thickness, seismic velocity, and gravity anomalies all indicate large lateral variation in lithospheric properties. We propose the events outline an ancient continental rift, a terrain boundary feature, or a combination of the two where rifting exploited pre-existing weakness. It is natural to draw parallels between East Antarctica and the St. Lawrence depression where rifting and a collisional suture focus intraplate earthquakes within a craton (Schulte and Mooney, 2005). We quantify the East Antarctic seismicity by developing a frequency-magnitude relation, constraining the lower magnitudes with the 2009 results and the larger magnitudes with 1982-2012 teleseismic seismicity. East Antarctica and the Canadian Shield show statistically indistinguishable b-values (near 1) and seismicity rates as expressed as the number of events with mb > 4 per

  3. Draft genome of the Antarctic dragonfish, Parachaenichthys charcoti.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahn, Do-Hwan; Shin, Seung Chul; Kim, Bo-Mi; Kang, Seunghyun; Kim, Jin-Hyoung; Ahn, Inhye; Park, Joonho; Park, Hyun

    2017-08-01

    The Antarctic bathydraconid dragonfish, Parachaenichthys charcoti, is an Antarctic notothenioid teleost endemic to the Southern Ocean. The Southern Ocean has cooled to -1.8ºC over the past 30 million years, and the seawater had retained this cold temperature and isolated oceanic environment because of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current. Notothenioids dominate Antarctic fish, making up 90% of the biomass, and all notothenioids have undergone molecular and ecological diversification to survive in this cold environment. Therefore, they are considered an attractive Antarctic fish model for evolutionary and ancestral genomic studies. Bathydraconidae is a speciose family of the Notothenioidei, the dominant taxonomic component of Antarctic teleosts. To understand the process of evolution of Antarctic fish, we select a typical Antarctic bathydraconid dragonfish, P. charcoti. Here, we have sequenced, de novo assembled, and annotated a comprehensive genome from P. charcoti. The draft genome of P. charcoti is 709 Mb in size. The N50 contig length is 6145 bp, and its N50 scaffold length 178 362 kb. The genome of P. charcoti is predicted to contain 32 712 genes, 18 455 of which have been assigned preliminary functions. A total of 8951 orthologous groups common to 7 species of fish were identified, while 333 genes were identified in P. charcoti only; 2519 orthologous groups were also identified in both P. charcoti and N. coriiceps, another Antarctic fish. Four gene ontology terms were statistically overrepresented among the 333 genes unique to P. charcoti, according to gene ontology enrichment analysis. The draft P. charcoti genome will broaden our understanding of the evolution of Antarctic fish in their extreme environment. It will provide a basis for further investigating the unusual characteristics of Antarctic fishes. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  4. The transition from diffuse to focused extension: Modeled evolution of the West Antarctic Rift system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huerta, Audrey D.; Harry, Dennis L.

    2007-03-01

    Two distinct stages of extension are recognized in the West Antarctic Rift system (WARS). During the first stage, beginning in the Late Cretaceous, extension was broadly distributed throughout much of West Antarctica. A second stage of extension in the late Paleogene was focused primarily in the Victoria Land Basin, near the boundary with the East Antarctic craton. The transition to focused extension was roughly coeval with volcanic activity and strike-slip faulting in the adjacent Transantarctic Mountains. This spatial and temporal correspondence suggests that the transition in extensional style could be the result of a change in plate motions or impingement of a plume. Here we use finite element models to study the processes and conditions responsible for the two-stage evolution of rifting in the WARS. Model results indicate that the transition from a prolonged period of broadly distributed extension to a later period of focused rifting did not require a change in the regional stress regime (changes in plate motion), or deep mantle thermal state (impingement of a plume). Instead, we attribute the transition from diffuse to focused extension to an early stage dominated by the initially weak accreted lithosphere of West Antarctica, and a later stage that concentrated around a secondary weakness located at the boundary between the juvenile West Antarctica lithosphere and Precambrian East Antarctic craton. The modeled transition in extension from the initially weak West Antarctica region to the secondary weakness at the West Antarctic-East Antarctic boundary is precipitated by strengthening of the West Antarctica lithosphere during syn-extensional thinning and cooling. The modeled syn-extensional strengthening of the WARS lithosphere promotes a wide-rift mode of extension between 105 and ˜ 65 Ma. By ˜ 65 Ma most of the extending WARS region becomes stronger than the area immediately adjacent to the East Antarctic craton and extension becomes concentrated near the

  5. Can gravity waves significantly impact PSC occurrence in the Antarctic?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. M. Woollands

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available A combination of POAM III aerosol extinction and CHAMP RO temperature measurements are used to examine the role of atmospheric gravity waves in the formation of Antarctic Polar Stratospheric Clouds (PSCs. POAM III aerosol extinction observations and quality flag information are used to identify Polar Stratospheric Clouds using an unsupervised clustering algorithm.

    A PSC proxy, derived by thresholding Met Office temperature analyses with the PSC Type Ia formation temperature (TNAT, shows general agreement with the results of the POAM III analysis. However, in June the POAM III observations of PSC are more abundant than expected from temperature threshold crossings in five out of the eight years examined. In addition, September and October PSC identified using temperature thresholding is often significantly higher than that derived from POAM III; this observation probably being due to dehydration and denitrification. Comparison of the Met Office temperature analyses with corresponding CHAMP observations also suggests a small warm bias in the Met Office data in June. However, this bias cannot fully explain the differences observed.

    Analysis of CHAMP data indicates that temperature perturbations associated with gravity waves may partially explain the enhanced PSC incidence observed in June (relative to the Met Office analyses. For this month, approximately 40% of the temperature threshold crossings observed using CHAMP RO data are associated with small-scale perturbations. Examination of the distribution of temperatures relative to TNAT shows a large proportion of June data to be close to this threshold, potentially enhancing the importance of gravity wave induced temperature perturbations. Inspection of the longitudinal structure of PSC occurrence in June 2005 also shows that regions of enhancement are geographically associated with the Antarctic Peninsula; a known mountain wave "hotspot". The

  6. East Antarctic rifting triggers uplift of the Gamburtsev Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferraccioli, F.; Finn, Carol A.; Jordan, Tom A.; Bell, Robin E.; Anderson, Lester M.; Damaske, Detlef

    2011-01-01

    The Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains are the least understood tectonic feature on Earth, because they are completely hidden beneath the East Antarctic Ice Sheet. Their high elevation and youthful Alpine topography, combined with their location on the East Antarctic craton, creates a paradox that has puzzled researchers since the mountains were discovered in 1958. The preservation of Alpine topography in the Gamburtsevs may reflect extremely low long-term erosion rates beneath the ice sheet, but the mountains’ origin remains problematic. Here we present the first comprehensive view of the crustal architecture and uplift mechanisms for the Gamburtsevs, derived from radar, gravity and magnetic data. The geophysical data define a 2,500-km-long rift system in East Antarctica surrounding the Gamburtsevs, and a thick crustal root beneath the range. We propose that the root formed during the Proterozoic assembly of interior East Antarctica (possibly about 1 Gyr ago), was preserved as in some old orogens and was rejuvenated during much later Permian (roughly 250 Myr ago) and Cretaceous (roughly 100 Myr ago) rifting. Much like East Africa, the interior of East Antarctica is a mosaic of Precambrian provinces affected by rifting processes. Our models show that the combination of rift-flank uplift, root buoyancy and the isostatic response to fluvial and glacial erosion explains the high elevation and relief of the Gamburtsevs. The evolution of the Gamburtsevs demonstrates that rifting and preserved orogenic roots can produce broad regions of high topography in continental interiors without significantly modifying the underlying Precambrian lithosphere.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shao, Zhu-De; Ke, Chang-Qing

    2015-01-01

    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

  8. Reflectance of Antarctic surfaces from multispectral radiometers: The correction of atmospheric effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zibordi, G.; Maracci, G.

    1993-01-01

    Monitoring reflectance of polar icecaps has relevance in climate studies. In fact, climate changes produce variations in the morphology of ice and snow covers, which are detectable as surface reflectance change. Surface reflectance can be retrieved from remotely sensed data. However, absolute values independent of atmospheric turbidity and surface altitude can only be obtained after removing masking effects of the atmosphere. An atmospheric correction model, accounting for surface and sensor altitudes above sea level, is described and validated through data detected over Antarctic surfaces with a Barnes Modular Multispectral Radiometer having bands overlapping those of the Landsat Thematic Mapper. The model is also applied in a sensitivity analysis to investigate error induced in reflectance obtained from satellite data by indeterminacy in optical parameters of atmospheric constituents. Results show that indeterminacy in the atmospheric water vapor optical thickness is the main source of nonaccuracy in the retrieval of surface reflectance from data remotely sensed over Antarctic regions

  9. Results of SPM sun photometer measurements at Mirny Antarctic station (58-60th RAE)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kabanov, Dmitry M.; Prakhov, Aleksander N.; Radionov, Vladimir F.; Sakerin, Sergey M.

    2015-11-01

    The SPM portable sun photometer observations in the wavelength range of 0.34-2.14 μm are performed at Mirny Antarctic station since fall 2013. The data obtained are used to calculate the aerosol optical depth (AOD) and water vapor content of the atmosphere. The sun photometer intercalibration results and statistical characteristics of interdiurnal and seasonal variations in spectral AOD of the atmosphere are discussed. Estimates of interannual variations in the atmospheric AOD in the region of Mirny station and in the coastal zone of Antarctica are presented. The global background level of AOD of the Antarctic atmosphere is noted to be still about 0.02 at the wavelength of 0.5 μm.

  10. An ikaite record of late Holocene climate at the Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Zunli; Rickaby, Rosalind E. M.; Kennedy, Hilary; Kennedy, Paul; Pancost, Richard D.; Shaw, Samuel; Lennie, Alistair; Wellner, Julia; Anderson, John B.

    2012-04-01

    Calcium carbonate can crystallize in a hydrated form as ikaite at low temperatures. The hydration water in ikaite grown in laboratory experiments records the δ18O of ambient water, a feature potentially useful for reconstructing δ18O of local seawater. We report the first downcore δ18O record of natural ikaite hydration waters and crystals collected from the Antarctic Peninsula (AP), a region sensitive to climate fluctuations. We are able to establish the zone of ikaite formation within shallow sediments, based on porewater chemical and isotopic data. Having constrained the depth of ikaite formation and δ18O of ikaite crystals and hydration waters, we are able to infer local changes in fjord δ18O versus time during the late Holocene. This ikaite record qualitatively supports that both the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age extended to the Antarctic Peninsula.

  11. 77 FR 5403 - Conservation of Antarctic Animals and Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-02-03

    ... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION 45 CFR Part 670 Conservation of Antarctic Animals and Plants AGENCY: National Science Foundation. ACTION: Final rule. SUMMARY: Pursuant to the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, The National Science Foundation (NSF) is amending its regulations to reflect newly designated...

  12. Transcriptome of the Antarctic brooding gastropod mollusc Margarella antarctica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Melody S; Thorne, Michael A S

    2015-12-01

    454 RNA-Seq transcriptome data were generated from foot tissue of the Antarctic brooding gastropod mollusc Margarella antarctica. A total of 6195 contigs were assembled de novo, providing a useful resource for researchers with an interest in Antarctic marine species, phylogenetics and mollusc biology, especially shell production. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Reaching for the Horizon: Enabling 21st Century Antarctic Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogan-Finnemore, M.; Kennicutt, M. C., II; Kim, Y.

    2015-12-01

    The Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programs' (COMNAP) Antarctic Roadmap Challenges(ARC) project translated the 80 highest priority Antarctic and Southern Ocean scientific questionsidentified by the community via the SCAR Antarctic Science Horizon Scan into the highest prioritytechnological, access, infrastructure and logistics needs to enable the necessary research to answer thequestions. A workshop assembled expert and experienced Antarctic scientists and National AntarcticProgram operators from around the globe to discern the highest priority technological needs includingthe current status of development and availability, where the technologies will be utilized in the Antarctic area, at what temporal scales and frequencies the technologies will be employed,and how broadly applicable the technologies are for answering the highest priority scientific questions.Secondly the logistics, access, and infrastructure requirements were defined that are necessary todeliver the science in terms of feasibility including cost and benefit as determined by expected scientific return on investment. Finally, based on consideration of the science objectives and the mix oftechnologies implications for configuring National Antarctic Program logistics capabilities andinfrastructure architecture over the next 20 years were determined. In particular those elements thatwere either of a complexity, requiring long term investments to achieve and/or having an associated cost that realistically can only (or best) be achieved by international coordination, planning and partnerships were identified. Major trends (changes) in logistics, access, and infrastructure requirements were identified that allow for long-term strategic alignment of international capabilities, resources and capacity. The outcomes of this project will be reported.

  14. Biological studies in the Antarctic waters: A review

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Dhargalkar, V.K.

    stream_size 12 stream_content_type text/plain stream_name Proc_Workshop_Antarct_Stud_1990_407.pdf.txt stream_source_info Proc_Workshop_Antarct_Stud_1990_407.pdf.txt Content-Encoding ISO-8859-1 Content-Type text/plain; charset...

  15. Increased West Antarctic and unchanged East Antarctic ice discharge over the last 7 years

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gardner, Alex S.; Moholdt, Geir; Scambos, Ted; Fahnstock, Mark; Ligtenberg, Stefan; van den Broeke, Michiel; Nilsson, Johan

    2018-01-01

    Ice discharge from large ice sheets plays a direct role in determining rates of sea-level rise. We map present-day Antarctic-wide surface velocities using Landsat 7 and 8 imagery spanning 2013–2015 and compare to earlier estimates derived from synthetic aperture radar, revealing heterogeneous

  16. Revision of Eocene Antarctic carpet sharks (Elasmobranchii, Orectolobiformes) from Seymour Island, Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engelbrecht, Andrea; Mörs, Thomas; Reguero, Marcelo A; Kriwet, Jürgen

    2017-01-01

    Seymour Island, Antarctic Peninsula, was once called the 'Rosetta Stone' of Southern Hemisphere palaeobiology, because this small island provides the most complete and richly fossiliferous Palaeogene sequence in Antarctica. Among fossil marine vertebrate remains, chondrichthyans seemingly were dominant elements in the Eocene Antarctic fish fauna. The fossiliferous sediments on Seymour Island are from the La Meseta Formation, which was originally divided into seven stratigraphical levels, TELMs 1-7 (acronym for Tertiary Eocene La Meseta) ranging from the upper Ypresian (early Eocene) to the late Priabonian (late Eocene). Bulk sampling of unconsolidated sediments from TELMs 5 and 6, which are Ypresian (early Eocene) and Lutetian (middle Eocene) in age, respectively, yielded very rich and diverse chondrichthyan assemblages including over 40 teeth of carpet sharks representing two new taxa, Notoramphoscyllium woodwardi gen. et sp. nov. and Ceolometlaouia pannucae gen. et sp. nov. Two additional teeth from TELM 5 represent two different taxa that cannot be assigned to any specific taxon and thus are left in open nomenclature. The new material not only increases the diversity of Eocene Antarctic selachian faunas but also allows two previous orectolobiform records to be re-evaluated. Accordingly, Stegostoma cf. faciatum is synonymized with Notoramphoscyllium woodwardi gen. et sp. nov., whereas Pseudoginglymostoma cf. brevicaudatum represents a nomen dubium . The two new taxa, and probably the additional two unidentified taxa, are interpreted as permanent residents, which most likely were endemic to Antarctic waters during the Eocene and adapted to shallow and estuarine environments.

  17. Past Penguin Colony Linkages to Climate Change and Catastrophic Volcanism on the Northern Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, S. J.; Monien, P.; Foster, L. C.; Loftfield, J.; Schnetger, B.; Pearson, E. J.; Hocking, E. P.; Fretwell, P.; Ireland, L.; Ochyra, R.; Haworth, A.; Allen, C. S.; Brumsack, H. J.; Bentley, M.; Hodgson, D.

    2016-12-01

    Recent warming and reductions in sea-ice in some parts of Antarctica are thought to be having a negative impact on populations of `ice-dependent' penguin species (e.g., Emperor, Adélie) that feed at the sea-ice edge because populations of `ice-avoiding'/more `adaptable' species (e.g., Gentoo, Chinstrap) have remained stable or increased, and some Adélie colonies located in areas of sea-ice expansion have increased. This hypothesis is based on short observational records and limited subfossil evidence, but has not been tested over longer, mid-late Holocene, timescales on the Antarctic Peninsula. Between 1950-1997, the northern Antarctic Peninsula was one of the most rapidly warming regions in the Southern Hemisphere and, over the last 30 years, the largest breeding population of Gentoo penguins in Antarctica on Ardley Island, north-western Antarctic Peninsula, has increased. We tracked past changes in the Ardley Island penguin colony size by comparing detailed biogeochemical analysis of an 8,500-year Ardley Lake sediment profile with past records of penguin presence, climate and sea-ice extent across the Antarctic Peninsula and found that the colony also responded positively during some local-regionally warmer parts of the late Holocene. However, at least three large volcanic eruptions from nearby Deception Island had a devastating impact on the colony between 7000-2000 years ago, with colony recovery taking up to 800 years following the most disruptive period of volcanic activity c. 5500-5000 years ago.

  18. Black carbon at a coastal Antarctic station (Syowa Station: seasonal variation and transport processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keiichiro Hara

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Measurement of atmospheric black carbon (BC was carried out at Syowa Station Antarctica (69゜00′S, 39゜35′E from February 2004 until January 2007. The BC concentration at Syowa Station ranged from below detection to 176 ng m^. Higher BC concentrations were observed frequently from April until October. Increase of BC concentration may be associated with poleward flow due to the approach of a cyclone and or blocking event during winter-spring. The BC-rich air masses traveled through the lower troposphere from the Atlantic and Indian Oceans to Syowa (Antarctic coast. During the summer (November-February, the BC concentration showed a diurnal variation together with surface wind speed and increased in the presence of katabatic wind from the Antarctic continent. Considering the low BC source strength over the Antarctic continent, the higher BC concentration in the continental air (katabatic wind might be caused by long range transport of BC via the free troposphere from mid- and low- latitudes. The seasonal variation of BC at Syowa Station had a maximum in July-September, while at the other coastal stations (Halley, Neumayer, and Ferraz and a continental station (Amundsen-Scott, the maximum occurred in October. This difference may result from different transport pathways, significant contribution of source regions and scavenging of BC by precipitation during the transport from the source regions. During the austral summer, long-range transport of BC via the free troposphere is likely to make an important contribution to the ambient BC concentration along the Antarctic coasts.

  19. Antarctic Glaciological Data at NSIDC: field data, temperature, and ice velocity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, R.; Bohlander, J.; Scambos, T.; Berthier, E.; Raup, B.; Scharfen, G.

    2003-12-01

    velocity provides an upper limit for change in velocity for this glacier over the past decade. Two pairs of Landsat images were used to compare velocities from 2000-2001 to 1989-2000. No significant change in velocity is observed. A new ice discharge flux of 17.8 km3a-1 was determined, and basal melting at the grounding line was re-calculated at 11 m per year (Berthier et al., 2003, in press). Velocity data for the Institute Ice Stream was compiled at NSIDC using a Landsat images from 1986, 1989, and 1997. The data were recently used in a study outlining the velocity, mass balance, and morphology of the Institute ice stream and nearby Ronne ice shelf area. (Scambos et al., 2003, in review). The study indicates the Institute has regions with flow and morphology characteristics similar to the Ross Embayment ice streams. Ice velocity research contributes to understanding the mass balance and overall stability of the Antarctic Ice Sheet. The archiving of velocity data has proven to be a useful tool to the Antarctic science community, and VELMAP continues to grow as a valuable resource through PI contributions. If you have velocity data that you would like to contribute to the VELMAP archive please contact agdc@nsidc.org. The velocity data used in the two studies presented here can be accessed on the VELMAP web site at http://nsidc.org/data/velmap.

  20. Increased West Antarctic and unchanged East Antarctic ice discharge over the last 7 years

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardner, Alex S.; Moholdt, Geir; Scambos, Ted; Fahnstock, Mark; Ligtenberg, Stefan; van den Broeke, Michiel; Nilsson, Johan

    2018-02-01

    Ice discharge from large ice sheets plays a direct role in determining rates of sea-level rise. We map present-day Antarctic-wide surface velocities using Landsat 7 and 8 imagery spanning 2013-2015 and compare to earlier estimates derived from synthetic aperture radar, revealing heterogeneous changes in ice flow since ˜ 2008. The new mapping provides complete coastal and inland coverage of ice velocity north of 82.4° S with a mean error of image pairs acquired during the daylight period. Using an optimized flux gate, ice discharge from Antarctica is 1929 ± 40 Gigatons per year (Gt yr-1) in 2015, an increase of 36 ± 15 Gt yr-1 from the time of the radar mapping. Flow accelerations across the grounding lines of West Antarctica's Amundsen Sea Embayment, Getz Ice Shelf and Marguerite Bay on the western Antarctic Peninsula, account for 88 % of this increase. In contrast, glaciers draining the East Antarctic Ice Sheet have been remarkably constant over the period of observation. Including modeled rates of snow accumulation and basal melt, the Antarctic ice sheet lost ice at an average rate of 183 ± 94 Gt yr-1 between 2008 and 2015. The modest increase in ice discharge over the past 7 years is contrasted by high rates of ice sheet mass loss and distinct spatial patters of elevation lowering. The West Antarctic Ice Sheet is experiencing high rates of mass loss and displays distinct patterns of elevation lowering that point to a dynamic imbalance. We find modest increase in ice discharge over the past 7 years, which suggests that the recent pattern of mass loss in Antarctica is part of a longer-term phase of enhanced glacier flow initiated in the decades leading up to the first continent-wide radar mapping of ice flow.

  1. Time Matters: Increasing the Efficiency of Antarctic Marine Geology and Paleoceanography Expeditions by Providing Improved Sediment Chronology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenheim, B. E.; Domack, E. W.; Shevenell, A.; Subt, C.

    2015-12-01

    To maximize the areal extent of Antarctic sedimentary records of past deglaciation, it is necessary to ensure more sediment cores can be adequately dated. Antarctic margin sediment is challenging to date due to the lack of preserved calcium carbonate, but the records contained in these sediments readily recount the history of deglaciation. Recent and continued development of new chronological methods for Antarctic margin sediments have allowed better use of the efforts of marine geological coring expeditions to the region. The development of Ramped PyrOx radiocarbon dating has allowed us to 1. improve dates in deglacial sediments where no carbonate is preserved, 2. date glacial sediments lying below the tills marking the last glaciation, and 3. compile core chronologies into a regional framework of ice shelf collapse that has eluded many marine geology campaigns over the last few decades. These advances in a fundamental aspect of geological sciences will put the U.S. and international community on a better foothold to interpret the past as it relates to our warming future. We will present these advances in chronology as well as the science that is enabled by them, while arguing that the future of Antarctic marine science also depends on investments in shore-based technologies that come at a relatively low cost.

  2. Salmonella infections in Antarctic fauna and island populations of wildlife exposed to human activities in coastal areas of Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iveson, J B; Shellam, G R; Bradshaw, S D; Smith, D W; Mackenzie, J S; Mofflin, R G

    2009-06-01

    Salmonella infections in Antarctic wildlife were first reported in 1970 and in a search for evidence linking isolations with exposure to human activities, a comparison was made of serovars reported from marine fauna in the Antarctic region from 1982-2004 with those from marine mammals in the Northern hemisphere. This revealed that 10 (83%) Salmonella enterica serovars isolated from Antarctic penguins and seals were classifiable in high-frequency (HF) quotients for serovars prevalent in humans and domesticated animals. In Australia, 16 (90%) HF serovars were isolated from marine birds and mammals compared with 12 (86%) HF serovars reported from marine mammals in the Northern hemisphere. In Western Australia, HF serovars from marine species were also recorded in humans, livestock, mussels, effluents and island populations of wildlife in urban coastal areas. Low-frequency S. enterica serovars were rarely detected in humans and not detected in seagulls or marine species. The isolation of S. Enteritidis phage type 4 (PT4), PT8 and PT23 strains from Adélie penguins and a diversity of HF serovars reported from marine fauna in the Antarctic region and coastal areas of Australia, signal the possibility of transient serovars and endemic Salmonella strains recycling back to humans from southern latitudes in marine foodstuffs and feed ingredients.

  3. Automatic focusing system of BSST in Antarctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Peng-Yi; Liu, Jia-Jing; Zhang, Guang-yu; Wang, Jian

    2015-10-01

    Automatic focusing (AF) technology plays an important role in modern astronomical telescopes. Based on the focusing requirement of BSST (Bright Star Survey Telescope) in Antarctic, an AF system is set up. In this design, functions in OpenCV is used to find stars, the algorithm of area, HFD or FWHM are used to degree the focus metric by choosing. Curve fitting method is used to find focus position as the method of camera moving. All these design are suitable for unattended small telescope.

  4. The late Cainozoic East Antarctic ice sheet

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Colhoun, E.A.

    1999-01-01

    A review, mainly of East Antarctic late Cainozoic (post 40 Ma) geological and geomorphological evidence, supports the hypothesis of the continuous presence of an ice sheet, of about the present size, since the late Miocene. Evidence is presented and the view advanced that, during the late Wisconsin maximum of isotope stage 2, ice was not nearly as thick or extensive over the continental shelf as required by the model of 'maximum' Antarctic glaciation. Some of the factors influencing the contribution of Antarctica to post-glacial sea-level rise are discussed. It is considered that Antarctica's contribution was probably considerably less than previously estimated. The dating of marine and freshwater sequences in the Vestfold and Bunger Hills is consistent with deglaciation around the Pleistocene Holocene boundary, after the Late Wisconsin maximum. A date of ∼25 ka BP from permafrost in the Larsemann Hills means that either the Larsemann Hills were not glaciated during the Late Wisconsin or the ice failed to erode much of the permafrost surface. The degree of weathering of rock and glacial drifts in the Vestfold, Larsemann and Bunger Hills suggests a long time for formation, perhaps considerably longer than indicated by the dated marine and freshwater sediment sequences. Cosmogenic isotope dating in the Vestfold Hills has provided equivocal ages for deglaciation. While the results could indicate deglaciation before 80 ka BP, they do not confirm such early deglaciation. If the ice cover was thin and failed to remove the previous rock exposure profile, then the assays could predate the last ice advance. Weathered iron crust fragments in the till suggest little erosion. The raised beaches of the oases are Holocene. Assuming they have been produced by post Late Wisconsin isostatic uplift and by the Holocene transgression, calculations show that the Antarctic continental ice sheet could not have been more than ∼500 m thicker in the inner shelf-coastal zone. The

  5. Terrestrial and exposure histories of Antarctic meteorites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nishiizumi, K.

    1986-01-01

    Records of cosmogenic effects were studied in a large suite of Antarctic meteorites. The cosmogenic nuclide measurements together with cosmic ray track measurements on Antartic meteorites provide information such as exposure age, terrestrial age, size and depth in meteoroid or parent body, influx rate in the past, and pairing. The terrestrail age is the time period between the fall of the meteorite on the Earth and the present. To define terrestrial age, two or more nuclides with different half-lives and possibly noble gases are required. The cosmogenic radionuclides used are C-14, Kr-81, Cl-36, Al-26, Be-10, Mn-53, and K-40

  6. Terrestrial and exposure histories of Antarctic meteorites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishiizumi, K.

    1986-01-01

    Records of cosmogenic effects were studied in a large suite of Antarctic meteorites. The cosmogenic nuclide measurements together with cosmic ray track measurements on Antartic meteorites provide information such as exposure age, terrestrial age, size and depth in meteoroid or parent body, influx rate in the past, and pairing. The terrestrail age is the time period between the fall of the meteorite on the Earth and the present. To define terrestrial age, two or more nuclides with different half-lives and possibly noble gases are required. The cosmogenic radionuclides used are C-14, Kr-81, Cl-36, Al-26, Be-10, Mn-53, and K-40.

  7. Stress fields in the Antarctic plate inferred from focal mechanisms of intraplate earthquakes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsuki Kubo

    1999-03-01

    Full Text Available Typical directional features of intraplate stresses are extracted from focal mechanism solutions of earthquakes in the Antarctic plate. Typical directions of stresses are obtained in the following regions, 1 Bellingshausen Sea, 2 south of Juan-Fernandez microplate, 3 Balleny Island region and 4 Kerguelen region. P axes in regions 1 and 2 have been interpreted by ridge push force. However these interpretations are based on one focal mechanism for each event and on crude physical concept of ridge push. It is difficult to explain intraplate stress fields in these regions only by the local ridge push force. The stress direction in region 3 can be interpreted by both deformation near triple junction and deformation due to deglaciation. Earthquakes near region 4 appear to be normal fault event. Because normal fault events appear only in the younger ocean floor, the stress field may be affected by thermal features such as hot spots Quantitative modeling and superposition of various stress factors are required to discriminate among stress origins. It is difficult to discuss stress directions in and around Antarctic continent, because number of the earthquakes is not enough.

  8. Spectral curves of surface reflectance in some Antarctic regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lupi, A.; Tomasi, C.; Orsini, A.; Cacciari, A.; Vitale, V.; Georgiadis, T.; Casacchia, R.; Salvatori, R.; Salvi, S.

    2001-01-01

    Four surface reflectance models of solar radiation were determined by examining several sets of field measurements taken for clear-sky conditions at various sites in Antarctica. Each model consists of the mean spectral curve of surface reflectance in the 0.25-2.7 μm wavelength range and of the dependence curve of total abedo on the solar elevation angle h, within the range from 5 0 to 55 0 . The TNB (Terra Nova Bay) model refers to a rocky terrain where granites are predominant; the NIS (Nansen Ice Sheet) model to a glacier surface made uneven by sastrugi and streaked by irregular fractures; the HAP (High Altitude Plateau) model to a flat ice surface covered by fresh snow and scored by light sastrugi; and the RIS (Ross Ice Shelf) model to an area covered by the sea ice pack presenting many discontinuities in the reflectance features, due to melt water lakes, puddles, refrozen ice and snow pots. The reflectance curve obtained for the TNB model presents gradually increasing values as wavelength increases through the visible spectral range and almost constant values at infrared wavelengths, giving a total albedo value equal to 0.264 at = 30 0 , which increases by about 80% through the lower range of h and decreases by 12% through the upper range. The reflectance curves of the NIS, HAP and RIS models are all peaked at visible wavelengths and exhibit decreasing values throughout the infrared spectral range, giving values of total albedo equal to 0.464, 0.738 and 0.426 at h 30 0 , respectively. These values were estimated to increase by 8-14% as h decreases from 30 0 to 5 0 and to decrease by 2-4% only as h increases from 30 0 to 55 0

  9. An evaluation of selected Neidium species from the Antarctic Region

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hamilton, P. B.; De Haan, M.; Kopalová, Kateřina; Zidarova, R.; Van de Vijver, B.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 29, č. 1 (2014), s. 27-40 ISSN 0269-249X R&D Projects: GA MŠk ME 934; GA MŠk ME 945 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : Bacillariophyta * biogeography * Neidium Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.746, year: 2014

  10. Geomagnetic storms in the Antarctic F-region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wrenn, G.L.; Rodger, A.S.; Rishbeth, H.

    1987-01-01

    New analysis procedures are used to show that the main phase mid-latitude storm effects conform to consistent patterns in local time when suitable selection rules are applied, with averaging over several years. Changes in the maximum plasma frequency, foF2, with respect to estimated quiet-time values, are analysed in terms of asub(p)(t), a new geomagnetic index derived to take account of integrated disturbance. Reduction of foF2 is greatest during the early morning hours, in summer, at higher geomagnetic latitudes, near solar minimum and through the more active periods. The various dependencies are quantitatively determined for the first time by creating an average 'steady state' disturbance, rather than following specific storm events. This approach permits tests of competing theories using available modelling programs. (author)

  11. The 2002 Antarctic Ozone Hole

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, P. A.; Nash, E. R.; Douglass, A. R.; Kawa, S. R.

    2003-01-01

    Since 1979, the ozone hole has grown from near zero size to over 24 Million km2. This area is most strongly controlled by levels of inorganic chlorine and bromine oncentrations. In addition, dynamical variations modulate the size of the ozone hole by either cooling or warming the polar vortex collar region. We will review the size observations, the size trends, and the interannual variability of the size. Using a simple trajectory model, we will demonstrate the sensitivity of the ozone hole to dynamical forcing, and we will use these observations to discuss the size of the ozone hole during the 2002 Austral spring. We will further show how the Cly decreases in the stratosphere will cause the ozone hole to decrease by 1-1.5% per year. We will also show results from a 3-D chemical transport model (CTM) that has been continuously run since 1999. These CTM results directly show how strong dynamics acts to reduce the size of the ozone hole.

  12. When will the Antarctic Ozone Hole Recover?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, Paul A.; Nash, Eric R.; Kawa, S. Randolph; Montzka, Steve

    2006-01-01

    The Antarctic ozone hole develops each year and culminates by early Spring. Antarctic ozone values have been monitored since 1979 using satellite observations from the .TOMS instrument. The severity of the hole has been assessed from TOMS using the minimum total ozone value from the October monthly mean (depth of the hole) and by calculating the average size during the September-October period. Ozone is mainly destroyed by halogen catalytic cycles, and these losses are modulated by temperature variations in the collar of the polar lower stratospheric vortex. In this presentation, we show the relationships of halogens and temperature to, both the size and depth of the hole. Because atmospheric halogen levels are responding to international agreements that limit or phase out production, the amount of halogens in the stratosphere should decrease over the next few decades. Using projections of halogen levels combined with age-of-air estimates, we find that the ozone hole is recovering at an extremely slow rate and that large ozone holes will regularly recur over the next 2 decades. The ozone hole will begin to show first signs of recovery in about 2023, and the hole will fully recover to pre-1980 levels in approximately 2070. This 2070 recovery is 20 years later than recent projections.

  13. Metal complexation capacity of Antarctic lacustrine sediments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alberti, Giancarla; Mussi, Matteo; Quattrini, Federico; Pesavento, Maria; Biesuz, Raffaela

    2018-04-01

    The purpose of this study is to implement a work that is a part of a project funded by the Italian National Antarctic Research Program (PNRA, Piano Nazionale di Ricerche in Antartide) within the main thematic focus "Chemical Contamination-Global Change". This research was devoted to detect and characterize micro and nano components with strong complexing capability towards metal ions at trace level in sea water, lakes and lacustrine sediments, sampled during the XXII expedition of PNRA. In particular, in the present work, the sorption complexation capacity of an Antarctic lacustrine sediments toward Cu(II) and Pb(II) is described. The characterization of the sorption was undertaken, studying kinetics and isotherm profiles. The lake here considered is Tarn Flat in the area of Terra Nova Bay. The sorption equilibria of Cu(II) and Pb(II) on the lacustrine sediments were reached in about 10 h, and they were best modelled by the Langmuir equation. Preliminary, to establish if the data here obtained were consistent with those reported for the same area in other expeditions, a common multivariate techniques, namely the principal component analysis (PCA), was applied and finally the consistency of the data has been confirmed. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Direct observations of the Antarctic Slope Current transport at 113°E

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peña-Molino, B.; McCartney, M. S.; Rintoul, S. R.

    2016-10-01

    The Antarctic Slope Current (ASC), defined here as the region of westward flow along the continental slope off Antarctica, forms the southern limb of the subpolar gyres. It regulates the exchange of water across the shelf break and provides a path for interbasin westward transport. Despite its significance, the ASC remains largely unobserved around most of the Antarctic continent. Here we present direct velocity observations from a 17 month current meter moored array deployed across the continental slope between the 1000 and the 4200 m isobaths, in the southeastern Indian Ocean near 113°E. The observed time-mean flow consists of a surface-intensified jet associated with the Antarctic Slope Front (ASF) and a broader bottom-intensified westward flow that extends out to approximately the 4000 m isobath and is strongest along the upper slope. The time-mean transport of the ASC is -29.2 Sv. Fluctuations in the transport are large, typically exceeding the mean by a factor of 2. They are mainly due to changes in the northward extent of the current over the lower slope. However, seasonal changes in the wind also drive variations in the transport of the ASF and the flow in the upper slope. Both mean and variability are largely barotropic, thus invisible to traditional geostrophic methods.

  15. Seasonal variations and vertical features of aerosol particles in the Antarctic troposphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keiichiro Hara

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Tethered balloon-borne aerosol measurements were carried out at Syowa Station, Antarctica during the 46th Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition. CN concentration had a maximum in the summer, whereas the number concentrations of fine particles (D_p>0.3 μm and coarse particles (D_p>2.0 μm increased during the winter-spring. The range of CN concentration was 30-2200 cm^ near the surface (surface-500 m and 7-7250 cm^ in the lower free troposphere (>1500 m. During the austral summer, higher CN concentration was often observed in the lower free troposphere. Frequent appearance of higher CN concentration in the free troposphere relative to the surface measurements strongly suggests that new particle formation in the Antarctic regions occurs in the lower free troposphere. Single particle analysis indicated that most of the aerosol particles during the winter were composed of Mg-enriched sea-salt particles originated from sea-salt fractionation on the sea-ice and their modified particles by NO_3^ and SO_4^. This suggests that sea-salt fractionation on sea-ice and modification of sea-salt particles were affected greatly by aerosol hygroscopicity during the winter. Antarctic haze layer was observed not only in the boundary layer but also in the lower free troposphere.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calle, Paola; Alvarado, Omar; Monserrate, Lorena; Cevallos, Juan Manuel; Calle, Nastenka; Alava, Juan José

    2015-02-28

    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. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Site-Specific Variability in the Chemical Diversity of the Antarctic Red Alga Plocamium cartilagineum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan M. Young

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Plocamium cartilagineum is a common red alga on the benthos of Antarctica and can be a dominant understory species along the western Antarctic Peninsula. Algae from this region have been studied chemically, and like “P. cartilagineum” from other worldwide locations where it is common, it is rich in halogenated monoterpenes, some of which have been implicated as feeding deterrents toward sympatric algal predators. Secondary metabolites are highly variable in this alga, both qualitatively and quantitatively, leading us to probe individual plants to track the possible link of variability to genetic or other factors. Using cox1 and rbcL gene sequencing, we find that the Antarctic alga divides into two closely related phylogroups, but not species, each of which is further divided into one of five chemogroups. The chemogroups themselves, defined on the basis of Bray-Curtis similarity profiling of GC/QqQ chromatographic analyses, are largely site specific within a 10 km2 area. Thus, on the limited geographical range of this analysis, P. cartilagineum displays only modest genetic radiation, but its secondary metabolome was found to have experienced more extensive radiation. Such metabogenomic divergence demonstrated on the larger geographical scale of the Antarctic Peninsula, or perhaps even continent-wide, may contribute to the discovery of cryptic speciation.

  18. 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.

  19. Precipitation regime influence on oxygen triple-isotope distributions in Antarctic precipitation and ice cores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Martin F.

    2018-01-01

    The relative abundance of 17O in meteoric precipitation is usually reported in terms of the 17O-excess parameter. Variations of 17O-excess in Antarctic precipitation and ice cores have hitherto been attributed to normalised relative humidity changes at the moisture source region, or to the influence of a temperature-dependent supersaturation-controlled kinetic isotope effect during in-cloud ice formation below -20 °C. Neither mechanism, however, satisfactorily explains the large range of 17O-excess values reported from measurements. A different approach, based on the regression characteristics of 103 ln (1 +δ17 O) versus 103 ln (1 +δ18 O), is applied here to previously published isotopic data sets. The analysis indicates that clear-sky precipitation ('diamond dust'), which occurs widely in inland Antarctica, is characterised by an unusual relative abundance of 17O, distinct from that associated with cloud-derived, synoptic snowfall. Furthermore, this distinction appears to be largely preserved in the ice core record. The respective mass contributions to snowfall accumulation - on both temporal and spatial scales - provides the basis of a simple, first-order explanation for the observed oxygen triple-isotope ratio variations in Antarctic precipitation, surface snow and ice cores. Using this approach, it is shown that precipitation during the last major deglaciation, both in western Antarctica at the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) Divide and at Vostok on the eastern Antarctic plateau, consisted essentially of diamond dust only, despite a large temperature differential (and thus different water vapour supersaturation conditions) at the two locations. In contrast, synoptic snowfall events dominate the accumulation record throughout the Holocene at both sites.

  20. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adhikari, S.; Ivins, E. R.; Larour, E.; Seroussi, H.; Morlighem, M.; Nowicki, S.

    2014-06-01

    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 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 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.

  2. The Australasian Antarctic Expedition 2013-2014: Practicing 'Citizen-Science' in a Changing World

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fogwill, C. J.; Turney, C. S.

    2014-12-01

    Government funding is the cornerstone of modern science. But with declining investment in science across most of the Western World, a major challenge for society is where best to place what little resource we have. Which research questions should have the greatest priority? Nowhere are these issues more pressing than in the Antarctic, where bases have and continue to play host to 'big-science', multi-year programmes of research, locking up logistical support and costs. But in a warming world, the areas with the greatest effects of climate change aren't always near government research stations. With this in mind, in 2012 a plan was formed to visit Commonwealth Bay, a remote area off the East Antarctic Ice Sheet, where in 2010, an iceberg the size of Rhode Island, known as B09B, dramatically knocked a 60-mile long tongue of ice off the Mertz Glacier into the Southern Ocean, setting off a cascade of change. Inspired by the expeditions of the past, we advertised berths for sale to take citizen scientists south with us, harnessing their interest, experience and investment. People responded far and wide. We were oversubscribed, and the Australasian Antarctic Expedition 2013-2014 was born. With the Russian-owned MV Akademik Shokalskiy as the expedition vessel, we set out south from the New Zealand port of Bluff in late November 2013. During our journey south and on the ice we undertook a number of scientific firsts for the region actively engaging the volunteer scientists on board in projects ranging from oceanography, biology, ecology, geology and glaciaology. The expedition demostrated how private funding could support targeted programmes of research and communicate it to the wider world. Small-science research can capture the public's imagination and also reap real scientific outputs. Although it is a funding model developed in the Antarctic a hundred years ago, the beauty is it can applied anywhere in the world.

  3. Formation of Antarctic Intermediate Water during the Plio-Pleistocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karas, C.; Goldstein, S. L.; deMenocal, P. B.

    2017-12-01

    Antarctic Intermediate Water (AAIW) plays a fundamental role in modern climate change. It is an important sink for anthropogenic CO2, it represents an important source water in several (sub)tropical upwelling regions and it is the coldwater route from the Southern Hemisphere to the North Atlantic Ocean replacing North Atlantic Deep Water (NADW). During the last 4 million years, which marks the transition from the warm Pliocene climate towards icehouse conditions, the formation of this watermass is still largely unknown. We here present a multi-proxy approach using neodymium isotopes (ɛNd) on Fe-Mn encrusted foraminifera and coupled benthic Mg/Ca and stable isotopes from South Atlantic Site 516, within AAIW, to reconstruct its variability. Our data show that the modern formation of AAIW started about 3 million years ago, indicated by a distinct drop of ɛNd by 1.5, a cooling and freshening of benthic TMg/Ca by 8°C and a drop in benthic d13C values towards modern times. We interpret these changes as a reduced inflow of Pacific waters into the South Atlantic and the onset of modern deep vertical mixing at the source regions of AAIW near the polar front. These processes had significant effects on the CO2 storage of the ocean that supported global cooling and the intensification of the Northern Hemisphere Glaciation.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  5. Combined ice core and climate-model evidence for the collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet during Marine Isotope Stage 5e.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steig, Eric J.; Huybers, Kathleen; Singh, Hansi A.; Steiger, Nathan J.; Frierson, Dargan M. W.; Popp, Trevor; White, James W. C.

    2015-04-01

    It has been speculated that collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet explains the very high eustatic sea level rise during the last interglacial period, marine isotope stage (MIS) 5e, but the evidence remains equivocal. Changes in atmospheric circulation resulting from a collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) would have significant regional impacts that should be detectable in ice core records. We conducted simulations using general circulation models (GCMs) at varying levels of complexity: a gray-radiation aquaplanet moist GCM (GRaM), the slab ocean version of GFDL-AM2 (also as an aquaplanet), and the fully-coupled version of NCAR's CESM with realistic topography. In all the experiments, decreased elevation from the removal of the WAIS leads to greater cyclonic circulation over the West Antarctic region. This creates increased advection of relatively warm marine air from the Amundsen-Bellingshausen Seas towards the South Pole, and increased cold-air advection from the East Antarctic plateau towards the Ross Sea and coastal Marie Byrd Land. The result is anomalous warming in some areas of the East Antarctic interior, and significant cooling in Marie Byrd Land. Comparison of ice core records shows good agreement with the model predictions. In particular, isotope-paleotemperature records from ice cores in East Antarctica warmed more between the previous glacial period (MIS 6) and MIS 5e than coastal Marie Byrd Land. These results add substantial support to other evidence for WAIS collapse during the last interglacial period.

  6. Anthropogenic Radionuglides in Marine Polar Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holm, Elis

    The polar regions are important for the understanding of long range water and atmospheric transport of anthropogenic substances. Investigations show that atmospheric transport of anthropogenic radionuclides is the most important route of transport to the Antarctic while water transport plays a greater role for the Arctic. Fallout from nuclear detonation tests is the major source in the Antarctic while in the Arctic other sources, especially European reprocessing facilities, dominate for conservatively behaving rdionuclides such as 137Cs . The flux of 137Cs and 239+240Pu in the Antarctic is about 1/10 of that for the Arctic and the resulting concentrations in surface sea-water show the same ratio for the two areas. In the Antarctic concentration factors for 137Cs are higher than in the Arctic for similar species

  7. Gravity Maps of Antarctic Lithospheric Structure from Remote-Sensing and Seismic Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tenzer, Robert; Chen, Wenjin; Baranov, Alexey; Bagherbandi, Mohammad

    2018-02-01

    Remote-sensing data from altimetry and gravity satellite missions combined with seismic information have been used to investigate the Earth's interior, particularly focusing on the lithospheric structure. In this study, we use the subglacial bedrock relief BEDMAP2, the global gravitational model GOCO05S, and the ETOPO1 topographic/bathymetric data, together with a newly developed (continental-scale) seismic crustal model for Antarctica to compile the free-air, Bouguer, and mantle gravity maps over this continent and surrounding oceanic areas. We then use these gravity maps to interpret the Antarctic crustal and uppermost mantle structure. We demonstrate that most of the gravity features seen in gravity maps could be explained by known lithospheric structures. The Bouguer gravity map reveals a contrast between the oceanic and continental crust which marks the extension of the Antarctic continental margins. The isostatic signature in this gravity map confirms deep and compact orogenic roots under the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains and more complex orogenic structures under Dronning Maud Land in East Antarctica. Whereas the Bouguer gravity map exhibits features which are closely spatially correlated with the crustal thickness, the mantle gravity map reveals mainly the gravitational signature of the uppermost mantle, which is superposed over a weaker (long-wavelength) signature of density heterogeneities distributed deeper in the mantle. In contrast to a relatively complex and segmented uppermost mantle structure of West Antarctica, the mantle gravity map confirmed a more uniform structure of the East Antarctic Craton. The most pronounced features in this gravity map are divergent tectonic margins along mid-oceanic ridges and continental rifts. Gravity lows at these locations indicate that a broad region of the West Antarctic Rift System continuously extends between the Atlantic-Indian and Pacific-Antarctic mid-oceanic ridges and it is possibly formed by two major

  8. [Near infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS): a novel approach to reconstructing historical changes of primary productivity in Antarctic lake].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Qian-Qian; Liu, Xiao-Dong; Liu, Wen-Qi; Jiang, Shan

    2011-10-01

    Compared with traditional chemical analysis methods, reflectance spectroscopy has the advantages of speed, minimal or no sample preparation, non-destruction, and low cost. In order to explore the potential application of spectroscopy technology in the paleolimnological study on Antarctic lakes, we took a lake sediment core in Mochou Lake at Zhongshan Station of Antarctic, and analyzed the near infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS) data in the sedimentary samples. The results showed that the factor loadings of principal component analysis (PCA) displayed very similar depth-profile change pattern with the S2 index, a reliable proxy for the change in historical lake primary productivity. The correlation analysis showed that the values of PCA factor loading and S2 were correlated significantly, suggesting that it is feasible to infer paleoproductivity changes recorded in Antarctic lakes using NIRS technology. Compared to the traditional method of the trough area between 650 and 700 nm, the authors found that the PCA statistical approach was more accurate for reconstructing the change in historical lake primary productivity. The results reported here demonstrate that reflectance spectroscopy can provide a rapid method for the reconstruction of lake palaeoenviro nmental change in the remote Antarctic regions.

  9. Links between Patagonian Ice Sheet fluctuations and Antarctic dust variability during the last glacial period (MIS 4-2)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaiser, Jérôme; Lamy, Frank

    2010-06-01

    Antarctic and Greenland ice-core records reveal large fluctuations of dust input on both orbital and millennial time-scales with potential global climate implications. At least during glacial periods, the Antarctic dust fluctuations appear to be largely controlled by environmental changes in southern South America. We compare dust flux records from two Antarctic ice-cores to variations in the composition of the terrigenous supply at ODP Site 1233 located off southern Chile and known to record fluctuations in the extent of the northern part of the Patagonian ice-sheet (NPIS) during the last glacial period (Marine Isotope Stage, MIS, 4 to 2). Within age uncertainties, millennial-scale glacial advances (retreats) of the NPIS correlate to Antarctic dust maxima (minima). In turn, NPIS fluctuations were closely related to offshore sea surface temperature (SST) changes. This pattern suggests a causal link involving changes in temperature, in rock flour availability, in latitudinal extensions of the westerly winds and in foehn winds in the southern Pampas and Patagonia. We further suggest that the long-term trend of dust accumulation is partly linked to the sea-level related changes in the size if the Patagonian source area due to the particular morphology of the Argentine shelf. We suggest that sea-level drops at the beginning of MIS 4 and MIS 2 were important for long-term dust increases, while changes in the Patagonian dust source regions primarily control the early dust decrease during the MIS 4/3 transition and Termination 1.

  10. Geodetic antenna calibration test in the Antarctic environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grejner-Brzezinska, A.; Vazquez, E.; Hothem, L.

    2006-01-01

    TransAntarctic Mountain DEFormation (TAMDEF) Monitoring Network is the NSF-sponsored OSU and USGS project, aimed at measuring crustal motion in the Transantarctic Mountains of Victoria Land using GPS carrier phase measurements. Station monumentation, antenna mounts, antenna types, and data processing strategies were optimized to achieve mm-level estimates for the rates of motion. These data contributes also to regional Antarctic frame definition. Significant amount of data collected over several years allow the investigation of unique aspects of GPS geodesy in Antarctica, to determine how the error spectrum compares to the mid-latitude regions, and to identify the optimum measurement and data processing schemes for Antarctic conditions, in order to test the predicted rates of motion (mm-level w.r.t. time). The data collection for the TAMDEF project was initiated in 1996. The primary antenna used has been the Ashtech L1/L2 Dorne Margolin (D/M) choke ring. A few occupations involved the use of a Trimble D/M choke ring. The data were processed using the antenna calibration data available from the National Geodetic Survey (NGS). The recent developments in new antenna designs that are lighter in weight and lower in cost are being considered as a possible alternative to the bulkier and more expensive D/M choke ring design. In November 2003, in situ testing of three alternative models of L1/L2 antennas was conducted at a site located in the vicinity of McMurdo Station, Antarctica (S77.87, E166.56). The antenna models used in this test were: Ashtech D/M choke ring, Trimble D/M choke ring, Trimble Zephyr, and the NovAtel GPS-702. Two stations, spaced within 30 meters, were used in the test. Both had the characteristics similar to the stations of the TAMDEF network, i.e., the UNAVCO fixed-height, force-centered level mounts with a constant antenna offset were used, ensuring extreme stability of the antenna/ mount/pin set up. During each of the four 3-day test data collection

  11. Icebergs, sea ice, blue carbon and Antarctic climate feedbacks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, David K A; Fleming, Andrew; Sands, Chester J; Quartino, Maria Liliana; Deregibus, Dolores

    2018-06-28

    Sea ice, including icebergs, has a complex relationship with the carbon held within animals (blue carbon) in the polar regions. Sea-ice losses around West Antarctica's continental shelf generate longer phytoplankton blooms but also make it a hotspot for coastal iceberg disturbance. This matters because in polar regions ice scour limits blue carbon storage ecosystem services, which work as a powerful negative feedback on climate change (less sea ice increases phytoplankton blooms, benthic growth, seabed carbon and sequestration). This resets benthic biota succession (maintaining regional biodiversity) and also fertilizes the ocean with nutrients, generating phytoplankton blooms, which cascade carbon capture into seabed storage and burial by benthos. Small icebergs scour coastal shallows, whereas giant icebergs ground deeper, offshore. Significant benthic communities establish where ice shelves have disintegrated (giant icebergs calving), and rapidly grow to accumulate blue carbon storage. When 5000 km 2 giant icebergs calve, we estimate that they generate approximately 10 6 tonnes of immobilized zoobenthic carbon per year (t C yr -1 ). However, their collisions with the seabed crush and recycle vast benthic communities, costing an estimated 4 × 10 4  t C yr -1 We calculate that giant iceberg formation (ice shelf disintegration) has a net potential of approximately 10 6  t C yr -1 sequestration benefits as well as more widely known negative impacts.This article is part of the theme issue 'The marine system of the West Antarctic Peninsula: status and strategy for progress in a region of rapid change'. © 2018 The Authors.

  12. Radarsat Antarctic Mapping Project Digital Elevation Model, Version 2

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The high-resolution Radarsat Antarctic Mapping Project (RAMP) Digital Elevation Model (DEM) combines topographic data from a variety of sources to provide consistent...

  13. Searching for eukaryotic life preserved in Antarctic permafrost

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zucconi, L.; Selbmann, L.; Buzzini, P.

    2012-01-01

    Fungi and yeasts isolated in pure culture from Antarctic permafrost collected at different depths in the McMurdo Dry Valleys were identified with cultural, physiological and molecular methods. Fungi belonged to the genera Penicillium, Eurotium, Cladosporium, Alternaria, Engyodonthium, Aureobasidium...

  14. STRATEGIES AND KINETICS OF PHOTOACCLIMATION IN 3 ANTARCTIC NANOPHYTOFLAGELLATES

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    BUMA, AGJ; NOORDELOOS, AAM; LARSEN, J

    Three Antarctic nanophytoflagellates (two cryptophyte species and a Pyramimonas sp.) were compared for their capacity to photoacclimate and for their kinetic responses in changing photic environments. Division rate, cell size, cellular fluorescence, and chlorophyll a content were measured during

  15. Climate Prediction Center (CPC) Daily Antarctic Oscillation Index

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Antarctic Oscillation (AAO) is a leading teleconnection pattern in the Southern Hemisphere circulation. It is calculated as the first Empirical Orthogonal...

  16. Climate Prediction Center(CPC)Monthly Antarctic Oscillation Index

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Antarctic Oscillation (AAO) is a leading teleconnection pattern in the Southern Hemisphere circulation. It is calculated as the first Empirical Orthogonal...

  17. Antarctic Active Subglacial Lake Inventory from ICESat Altimetry, Version 1

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains lake boundaries, volume changes, and gridded elevations for 124 active subglacial lakes beneath the Antarctic ice sheet. Lakes were identified...

  18. Photosynthesis in a sub-Antarctic shore-zone lichen

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smith, V.; Gremmen, N.J.M.

    2001-01-01

    Photosynthetic responses to moisture, light, temperature, salinity and inorganic nitrogen fertilization are reported for a shore-zone lichen Turgidiusculum complicatulum (formerly Mastodia tesselata), a possible recent introduction to sub-Antarctic Marion Island. Optimum moisture contents for net

  19. German Antarctic Receiving Station (GARS) O'Higgins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neidhardt, Alexander; Ploetz, Christian; Kluegel, Thomas

    2013-01-01

    In 2012, the German Antarctic Receiving Station (GARS) O'Higgins contributed to the IVS observing program with four observation sessions. Maintenance and upgrades were made, and a new replacement dewar is under construction in the observatory at Yebes, Spain.

  20. Increased West Antarctic and unchanged East Antarctic ice discharge over the last 7 years

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. S. Gardner

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Ice discharge from large ice sheets plays a direct role in determining rates of sea-level rise. We map present-day Antarctic-wide surface velocities using Landsat 7 and 8 imagery spanning 2013–2015 and compare to earlier estimates derived from synthetic aperture radar, revealing heterogeneous changes in ice flow since ∼ 2008. The new mapping provides complete coastal and inland coverage of ice velocity north of 82.4° S with a mean error of < 10 m yr−1, resulting from multiple overlapping image pairs acquired during the daylight period. Using an optimized flux gate, ice discharge from Antarctica is 1929 ± 40 Gigatons per year (Gt yr−1 in 2015, an increase of 36 ± 15 Gt yr−1 from the time of the radar mapping. Flow accelerations across the grounding lines of West Antarctica's Amundsen Sea Embayment, Getz Ice Shelf and Marguerite Bay on the western Antarctic Peninsula, account for 88 % of this increase. In contrast, glaciers draining the East Antarctic Ice Sheet have been remarkably constant over the period of observation. Including modeled rates of snow accumulation and basal melt, the Antarctic ice sheet lost ice at an average rate of 183 ± 94 Gt yr−1 between 2008 and 2015. The modest increase in ice discharge over the past 7 years is contrasted by high rates of ice sheet mass loss and distinct spatial patters of elevation lowering. The West Antarctic Ice Sheet is experiencing high rates of mass loss and displays distinct patterns of elevation lowering that point to a dynamic imbalance. We find modest increase in ice discharge over the past 7 years, which suggests that the recent pattern of mass loss in Antarctica is part of a longer-term phase of enhanced glacier flow initiated in the decades leading up to the first continent-wide radar mapping of ice flow.

  1. Morphogenesis of Antarctic Paleosols: Martian Analogue

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahaney, W. C.; Dohm, J. M.; Baker, V. R.; Newsom, Horton E.; Malloch, D.; Hancock, R. G. V.; Campbell, Iain; Sheppard, D.; Milner, M. W.

    2001-11-01

    Samples of horizons in paleosols from the Quartermain Mountains of the Antarctic Dry Valleys (Aztec and New Mountain areas) were analyzed for their physical characteristics, mineralogy, chemical composition, and microbiology to determine the accumulation and movement of salts and other soluble constituents and the presence/absence of microbial populations. Salt concentrations are of special interest because they are considered to be a function of age, derived over time, in part from nearby oceanic and high-altitude atmospheric sources. The chemical composition of ancient Miocene-age paleosols in these areas is the direct result of the deposition and weathering of airborne-influxed salts and other materials, as well as the weathering of till derived principally from local dolerite and sandstone outcrops. Paleosols nearer the coast have greater contents of Cl, whereas near the inland ice sheet, nitrogen tends to increase on a relative basis. The accumulation and vertical distribution of salts and other soluble chemical elements indicate relative amounts of movement in the profile over long periods of time, in the order of several million years. Four of the six selected subsamples from paleosol horizons in two ancient soil profiles contained nil concentrations of bacteria and fungi. However, two horizons at depths of between 3 and 8 cm, in two profiles, yielded several colonies of the fungi Beauveria bassiana and Penicillium brevicompactum, indicating very minor input of organic carbon. Beauveria bassiana is often reported in association with insects and is used commercially for the biological control of some insect pests. Penicillium species are commonly isolated from Arctic, temperate, and tropical soils and are known to utilize a wide variety of organic carbon and nitrogen compounds. The cold, dry soils of the Antarctic bear a close resemblance to various present and past martian environments where similar weathering could occur and possible microbial populations

  2. Antarctic Martian Meteorites at Johnson Space Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funk, R. C.; Satterwhite, C. E.; Righter, K.; Harrington, R.

    2018-01-01

    This past year marked the 40th anniversary of the first Martian meteorite found in Antarctica by the ANSMET Antarctic Search for Meteorites) program, ALH 77005. Since then, an additional 14 Martian meteorites have been found by the ANSMET program making for a total of 15 Martian meteorites in the U. S. Antarctic meteorite collection at Johnson Space Center (JSC). Of the 15 meteorites, some have been paired so the 15 meteorites actually represent a total of approximately 9 separate samples. The first Martian meteorite found by ANSMET was ALH 77005 (482.500 g), a lherzolitic shergottite. When collected, this meteorite was split as a part of the joint expedition with the National Institute of Polar Research (NIPR) Japan. Originally classified as an "achondrite-unique", it was re-classified as a Martian lherzolitic shergottite in 1982. This meteorite has been allocated to 137 scientists for research and there are 180.934 g remaining at JSC. Two years later, one of the most significant Martian meteorites of the collection at JSC was found at Elephant Moraine, EET 79001 (7942.000 g), a shergottite. This meteorite is the largest in the Martian collection at JSC and was the largest stony meteorite sample collected during the 1979 season. In addition to its size, this meteorite is of particular interest because it contains a linear contact separating two different igneous lithologies, basaltic and olivine-phyric. EET 79001 has glass inclusions that contain noble gas and nitrogen compositions that are proportionally identical to the Martian atmosphere, as measured by the Viking spacecraft. This discovery helped scientists to identify where the "SNC" meteorite suite had originated, and that we actually possessed Martian samples. This meteorite has been allocated to 205 scientists for research and 5,298.435 g of sample is available.

  3. Leadership in politics and science within the Antarctic Treaty

    OpenAIRE

    John R. Dudeney; David W.H. Walton

    2012-01-01

    For over 50 years the Antarctic has been governed through the Antarctic Treaty, an international agreement now between 49 nations of whom 28 Consultative Parties (CPs) undertake the management role. Ostensibly, these Parties have qualified for their position on scientific grounds, though diplomacy also plays a major role. This paper uses counts of policy papers and science publications to assess the political and scientific outputs of all CPs over the last 18 years. We show that a subset of t...

  4. Wind profile radar for study of Antarctic air circulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ragaini, E.; Sarango, M.F.; Vasquez, E.H.

    1992-01-01

    After a brief discussion of meteorological methods used in the Antarctic, the paper gives an outline of a coordinated international research project whose objective is to set up a wind profiler radar station that would give meteorologists information regarding Antarctic atmospheric dynamics useful in their investigation of the causes and effects of the hole in the ozone layer. The radar instrumentation is to provide continuous readings of wind velocity at varying altitudes above the polar continent

  5. Transcriptomics and comparative analysis of three antarctic notothenioid fishes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seung Chul Shin

    Full Text Available For the past 10 to 13 million years, Antarctic notothenioid fish have undergone extraordinary periods of evolution and have adapted to a cold and highly oxygenated Antarctic marine environment. While these species are considered an attractive model with which to study physiology and evolutionary adaptation, they are poorly characterized at the molecular level, and sequence information is lacking. The transcriptomes of the Antarctic fishes Notothenia coriiceps, Chaenocephalus aceratus, and Pleuragramma antarcticum were obtained by 454 FLX Titanium sequencing of a normalized cDNA library. More than 1,900,000 reads were assembled in a total of 71,539 contigs. Overall, 40% of the contigs were annotated based on similarity to known protein or nucleotide sequences, and more than 50% of the predicted transcripts were validated as full-length or putative full-length cDNAs. These three Antarctic fishes shared 663 genes expressed in the brain and 1,557 genes expressed in the liver. In addition, these cold-adapted fish expressed more Ub-conjugated proteins compared to temperate fish; Ub-conjugated proteins are involved in maintaining proteins in their native state in the cold and thermally stable Antarctic environments. Our transcriptome analysis of Antarctic notothenioid fish provides an archive for future studies in molecular mechanisms of fundamental genetic questions, and can be used in evolution studies comparing other fish.

  6. Parasites of the Antarctic toothfish (Dissostichus mawsoni Norman, 1937 (Perciformes, Nototheniidae in the Pacific sector of the Antarctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilya I. Gordeev

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The Antarctic toothfish (Dissostichus mawsoni Norman, 1937 is one of the main target species of commercial fisheries in the Antarctic. It is an endemic and is found along the shelf of Antarctica, as well as on the slopes of seamounts, underwater elevations and islands in the sub-Antarctic. It feeds on a variety of fish and cephalopods and can be an intermediate/paratenic host of some helminthes, whose final hosts are whales, seals, large rays and sharks. This article presents new data on toothfish infection in the Pacific sector of the Antarctic. Specimens were examined during commercial longline fishing in the Ross Sea and the Amundsen Sea in January–February 2013. Fourteen species of parasites were found using standard parasitological methods and genetic analysis.

  7. A long term strategy for Antarctic tourism : The key to decision making within the Antarctic Treaty System?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bastmeijer, C.J.; Maher, P.; Stewart, E.; Lück, M.

    2011-01-01

    The fast increase of Antarctic tourism raises various management questions. Questions relating to the safety of tourists, questions regarding the interaction between science and tourism and questions relating to direct, indirect or cumulative affects on Antarctica's environment and wilderness

  8. Antarctic air over New Zealand following vortex breakdown in 1998

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Ajtic

    2003-11-01

    Full Text Available An ozonesonde profile over the Network for Detection of Stratospheric Change (NDSC site at Lauder (45.0° S, 169.7° E, New Zealand, for 24 December 1998 showed atypically low ozone centered around 24 km altitude (600 K potential temperature. The origin of the anomaly is explained using reverse domain filling (RDF calculations combined with a PV/O3 fitting technique applied to ozone measurements from the Polar Ozone and Aerosol Measurement (POAM III instrument. The RDF calculations for two isentropic surfaces, 550 and 600 K, show that ozone-poor air from the Antarctic polar vortex reached New Zealand on 24–26 December 1998. The vortex air on the 550 K isentrope originated in the ozone hole region, unlike the air on 600 K where low ozone values were caused by dynamical effects. High-resolution ozone maps were generated, and their examination shows that a vortex remnant situated above New Zealand was the cause of the altered ozone profile on 24 December. The maps also illustrate mixing of the vortex filaments into southern midlatitudes, whereby the overall mid-latitude ozone levels were decreased.Key words. Atmospheric composition and structure (middle atmosphere composition and chemistry – Meteorology and atmospheric dynamics (middle atmosphere dynamics

  9. Antarctic air over New Zealand following vortex breakdown in 1998

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Ajtic

    Full Text Available An ozonesonde profile over the Network for Detection of Stratospheric Change (NDSC site at Lauder (45.0° S, 169.7° E, New Zealand, for 24 December 1998 showed atypically low ozone centered around 24 km altitude (600 K potential temperature. The origin of the anomaly is explained using reverse domain filling (RDF calculations combined with a PV/O3 fitting technique applied to ozone measurements from the Polar Ozone and Aerosol Measurement (POAM III instrument. The RDF calculations for two isentropic surfaces, 550 and 600 K, show that ozone-poor air from the Antarctic polar vortex reached New Zealand on 24–26 December 1998. The vortex air on the 550 K isentrope originated in the ozone hole region, unlike the air on 600 K where low ozone values were caused by dynamical effects. High-resolution ozone maps were generated, and their examination shows that a vortex remnant situated above New Zealand was the cause of the altered ozone profile on 24 December. The maps also illustrate mixing of the vortex filaments into southern midlatitudes, whereby the overall mid-latitude ozone levels were decreased.

    Key words. Atmospheric composition and structure (middle atmosphere composition and chemistry – Meteorology and atmospheric dynamics (middle atmosphere dynamics

  10. The role of feedbacks in Antarctic sea ice change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feltham, D. L.; Frew, R. C.; Holland, P.

    2017-12-01

    The changes in Antarctic sea ice over the last thirty years have a strong seasonal dependence, and the way these changes grow in spring and decay in autumn suggests that feedbacks are strongly involved. The changes may ultimately be caused by atmospheric warming, the winds, snowfall changes, etc., but we cannot understand these forcings without first untangling the feedbacks. A highly simplified coupled sea ice -mixed layer model has been developed to investigate the importance of feedbacks on the evolution of sea ice in two contrasting regions in the Southern Ocean; the Amundsen Sea where sea ice extent has been decreasing, and the Weddell Sea where it has been expanding. The change in mixed layer depth in response to changes in the atmosphere to ocean energy flux is implicit in a strong negative feedback on ice cover changes in the Amundsen Sea, with atmospheric cooling leading to a deeper mixed layer resulting in greater entrainment of warm Circumpolar Deep Water, causing increased basal melting of sea ice. This strong negative feedback produces counter intuitive responses to changes in forcings in the Amundsen Sea. This feedback is absent in the Weddell due to the complete destratification and strong water column cooling that occurs each winter in simulations. The impact of other feedbacks, including the albedo feedback, changes in insulation due to ice thickness and changes in the freezing temperature of the mixed layer, were found to be of secondary importance compared to changes in the mixed layer depth.

  11. Modeling Antarctic Subglacial Lake Filling and Drainage Cycles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dow, Christine F.; Werder, Mauro A.; Nowicki, Sophie; Walker, Ryan T.

    2016-01-01

    The growth and drainage of active subglacial lakes in Antarctica has previously been inferred from analysis of ice surface altimetry data. We use a subglacial hydrology model applied to a synthetic Antarctic ice stream to examine internal controls on the filling and drainage of subglacial lakes. Our model outputs suggest that the highly constricted subglacial environment of our idealized ice stream, combined with relatively high rates of water flow funneled from a large catchment, can combine to create a system exhibiting slow-moving pressure waves. Over a period of years, the accumulation of water in the ice stream onset region results in a buildup of pressure creating temporary channels, which then evacuate the excess water. This increased flux of water beneath the ice stream drives lake growth. As the water body builds up, it steepens the hydraulic gradient out of the overdeepened lake basin and allows greater flux. Eventually this flux is large enough to melt channels that cause the lake to drain. Lake drainage also depends on the internal hydrological development in the wider system and therefore does not directly correspond to a particular water volume or depth. This creates a highly temporally and spatially variable system, which is of interest for assessing the importance of subglacial lakes in ice stream hydrology and dynamics.

  12. Increased Ice-age Influence of Antarctic Intermediate Water.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muratli, J.; McManus, J.; Mix, A.; Chase, Z.

    2008-12-01

    A depth transect of three ODP sites collected along the central Chile Margin constrain Antarctic Intermediate Water (AAIW) distributions and regional export production over the last 30 ka. Reduced Re and Cd, and increased Mn are proxies for higher bottom water oxygenation; 230Th-normalized burial of opal is a proxy for productivity. Mn/Al is high during the glacial interval at all three sites, suggesting high oxygenation and the retreat of the oxygen minimum zone during this period. At Site 1233, within the core of modern AAIW, Re and Cd are unchanged from detrital values throughout the last 30 ky, implying continuously oxic conditions. In contrast, at the northern sites 1234 and 1235, which reside below and above AAIW respectively, Re and Cd rise rapidly from low glacial values at ~15ka, signifying lower oxygen concentrations at the sea floor during Holocene time relative to ice-age conditions. Local productivity, recorded in Th-normalized opal burial, is highest during the glacial interval at both sites 1233 and 1234, and varies independently from the redox proxies. We conclude that local productivity does not drive bottom water oxygenation here, and that ventilation of the shallow subsurface southeast Pacific increased during the last ice age, with an expanded depth range of AAIW relative to the present.

  13. A meta-analysis of human disturbance impacts on Antarctic wildlife.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coetzee, Bernard W T; Chown, Steven L

    2016-08-01

    Evidence-based assessments are increasingly recognized as the best-practice approach to determine appropriate conservation interventions, but such assessments of the impact of human disturbance on wildlife are rare. Human disturbance comprises anthropogenic activities that are typically non-lethal, but may cause short- and/or longer-term stress and fitness responses in wildlife. Expanding human activity in the Antarctic region is of particular concern because it increases the scope and potential for increased human disturbance to wildlife in a region that is often thought of as relatively untouched by anthropogenic influences. Here, we use a meta-analytical approach to synthesise research on human disturbance to wildlife over the last three decades in the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic region. We combine data from 62 studies across 21 species on the behavioural, physiological and population responses of wildlife to pedestrian, vehicle and research disturbances. The overall effect size indicated a small, albeit statistically significant negative effect of disturbance (-0.39; 95% CI: -0.60 to -0.18). Negative effects were found for both physiological and population responses, but no evidence was found for a significant impact on wildlife behavioural responses. Negative effects were found across pedestrian, vehicle and research disturbances. Significant and high among-study heterogeneity was found in both disturbance and response sub-groups. Among species, it remains unclear to what extent different forms of disturbance translate into negative population responses. Most current guidelines to limit wildlife disturbance impacts in Antarctica recommend that approaches be tailored to animal behavioural cues, but our work demonstrates that behavioural changes do not necessarily reflect more cryptic, and more deleterious impacts, such as changes in physiology. In consequence, we recommend that pedestrian approach guidelines in the Antarctic region be revisited. Due to the high

  14. Assessing fuel spill risks in polar waters: Temporal dynamics and behaviour of hydrocarbons from Antarctic diesel, marine gas oil and residual fuel oil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Kathryn E; King, Catherine K; Kotzakoulakis, Konstantinos; George, Simon C; Harrison, Peter L

    2016-09-15

    As part of risk assessment of fuel oil spills in Antarctic and subantarctic waters, this study describes partitioning of hydrocarbons from three fuels (Special Antarctic Blend diesel, SAB; marine gas oil, MGO; and intermediate grade fuel oil, IFO 180) into seawater at 0 and 5°C and subsequent depletion over 7days. Initial total hydrocarbon content (THC) of water accommodated fraction (WAF) in seawater was highest for SAB. Rates of THC loss and proportions in equivalent carbon number fractions differed between fuels and over time. THC was most persistent in IFO 180 WAFs and most rapidly depleted in MGO WAF, with depletion for SAB WAF strongly affected by temperature. Concentration and composition remained proportionate in dilution series over time. This study significantly enhances our understanding of fuel behaviour in Antarctic and subantarctic waters, enabling improved predictions for estimates of sensitivities of marine organisms to toxic contaminants from fuels in the region. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Spatial structures in the heat budget of the Antarctic atmospheric boundary layer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. J. van de Berg

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Output from the regional climate model RACMO2/ANT is used to calculate the heat budget of the Antarctic atmospheric boundary layer (ABL. The main feature of the wintertime Antarctic ABL is a persistent temperature deficit compared to the free atmosphere. The magnitude of this deficit is controlled by the heat budget. During winter, transport of heat towards the surface by turbulence and net longwave emission are the primary ABL cooling terms. These processes show horizontal spatial variability only on continental scales. Vertical and horizontal, i.e. along-slope, advection of heat are the main warming terms. Over regions with convex ice sheet topography, i.e. domes and ridges, warming by downward vertical advection is enhanced due to divergence of the ABL wind field. Horizontal advection balances excess warming caused by vertical advection, hence the temperature deficit in the ABL weakens over domes and ridges along the prevailing katabatic wind. Conversely, vertical advection is reduced in regions with concave topography, i.e. valleys, where the ABL temperature deficit enlarges along the katabatic wind. Along the coast, horizontal and vertical advection is governed by the inability of the large-scale circulation to adapt to small scale topographic features. Meso-scale topographic structures have thus a strong impact on the ABL winter temperature, besides latitude and surface elevation. During summer, this mechanism is much weaker, and the horizontal variability of ABL temperatures is smaller.

  16. Possible connections of the opposite trends in Arctic and Antarctic sea-ice cover.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Lejiang; Zhong, Shiyuan; Winkler, Julie A; Zhou, Mingyu; Lenschow, Donald H; Li, Bingrui; Wang, Xianqiao; Yang, Qinghua

    2017-04-05

    Sea ice is an important component of the global climate system and a key indicator of climate change. A decreasing trend in Arctic sea-ice concentration is evident in recent years, whereas Antarctic sea-ice concentration exhibits a generally increasing trend. Various studies have investigated the underlying causes of the observed trends for each region, but possible linkages between the regional trends have not been studied. Here, we hypothesize that the opposite trends in Arctic and Antarctic sea-ice concentration may be linked, at least partially, through interdecadal variability of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) and the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO). Although evaluation of this hypothesis is constrained by the limitations of the sea-ice cover record, preliminary statistical analyses of one short-term and two long-term time series of observed and reanalysis sea-ice concentrations data suggest the possibility of the hypothesized linkages. For all three data sets, the leading mode of variability of global sea-ice concentration is positively correlated with the AMO and negatively correlated with the PDO. Two wave trains related to the PDO and the AMO appear to produce anomalous surface-air temperature and low-level wind fields in the two polar regions that contribute to the opposite changes in sea-ice concentration.

  17. Macronutrient and carbon supply, uptake and cycling across the Antarctic Peninsula shelf during summer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henley, Sian F; Jones, Elizabeth M; Venables, Hugh J; Meredith, Michael P; Firing, Yvonne L; Dittrich, Ribanna; Heiser, Sabrina; Stefels, Jacqueline; Dougans, Julie

    2018-06-28

    The West Antarctic Peninsula shelf is a region of high seasonal primary production which supports a large and productive food web, where macronutrients and inorganic carbon are sourced primarily from intrusions of warm saline Circumpolar Deep Water. We examined the cross-shelf modification of this water mass during mid-summer 2015 to understand the supply of nutrients and carbon to the productive surface ocean, and their subsequent uptake and cycling. We show that nitrate, phosphate, silicic acid and inorganic carbon are progressively enriched in subsurface waters across the shelf, contrary to cross-shelf reductions in heat, salinity and density. We use nutrient stoichiometric and isotopic approaches to invoke remineralization of organic matter, including nitrification below the euphotic surface layer, and dissolution of biogenic silica in deeper waters and potentially shelf sediment porewaters, as the primary drivers of cross-shelf enrichments. Regenerated nitrate and phosphate account for a significant proportion of the total pools of these nutrients in the upper ocean, with implications for the seasonal carbon sink. Understanding nutrient and carbon dynamics in this region now will inform predictions of future biogeochemical changes in the context of substantial variability and ongoing changes in the physical environment.This article is part of the theme issue 'The marine system of the West Antarctic Peninsula: status and strategy for progress in a region of rapid change'. © 2018 The Authors.

  18. Climate change and the marine ecosystem of the western Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Andrew; Murphy, Eugene J; Meredith, Michael P; King, John C; Peck, Lloyd S; Barnes, David K.A; Smith, Raymond C

    2006-01-01

    The Antarctic Peninsula is experiencing one of the fastest rates of regional climate change on Earth, resulting in the collapse of ice shelves, the retreat of glaciers and the exposure of new terrestrial habitat. In the nearby oceanic system, winter sea ice in the Bellingshausen and Amundsen seas has decreased in extent by 10% per decade, and shortened in seasonal duration. Surface waters have warmed by more than 1 K since the 1950s, and the Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW) of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current has also warmed. Of the changes observed in the marine ecosystem of the western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) region to date, alterations in winter sea ice dynamics are the most likely to have had a direct impact on the marine fauna, principally through shifts in the extent and timing of habitat for ice-associated biota. Warming of seawater at depths below ca 100 m has yet to reach the levels that are biologically significant. Continued warming, or a change in the frequency of the flooding of CDW onto the WAP continental shelf may, however, induce sublethal effects that influence ecological interactions and hence food-web operation. The best evidence for recent changes in the ecosystem may come from organisms which record aspects of their population dynamics in their skeleton (such as molluscs or brachiopods) or where ecological interactions are preserved (such as in encrusting biota of hard substrata). In addition, a southwards shift of marine isotherms may induce a parallel migration of some taxa similar to that observed on land. The complexity of the Southern Ocean food web and the nonlinear nature of many interactions mean that predictions based on short-term studies of a small number of species are likely to be misleading. PMID:17405211

  19. What's Cooler Than Being Cool? Icefin: Robotic Exploration Beneath Antarctic Ice Shelves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, J.; Schmidt, B. E.; Meister, M. R.; Glass, J. B.; Bowman, J. S.; Stockton, A. M.; Dichek, D.; Hurwitz, B.; Ramey, C.; Spears, A.; Walker, C. C.

    2017-12-01

    The 2017-18 Antarctic field season marks the first of three under the RISEUP project (Ross Ice Shelf & Europa Underwater Probe, NASA PSTAR program grant NNX16AL07G, PI B. E. Schmidt). RISEUP expands our efforts to understand the physical processes governing ice-ocean interactions from beneath the McMurdo Ice Shelf (MIS) to the Ross Ice Shelf (RIS), utilizing the modular autonomous or remotely operable submersible vehicle (AUV/ROV) Icefin. The remote, aphotic regions below Antarctic shelves present a unique opportunity- they are both poorly understood terrestrial environments and analogs for similar systems hypothesized to be present on other bodies in our solar system, such as Europa and Enceladus. By developing new robotic technologies to access and explore ice shelf cavities we are advancing our understanding of how temperature, pressure, and salinity influence the ice-ocean interface, the limits of habitable environments on Earth, and what biological processes and adaptations enable the life discovered by the RISP and WISSARD programs during initial exploration beneath the RIS. These investigations further our understanding of ocean world habitability and support planned and proposed planetary missions (e.g. Europa Clipper, Europa Lander) via improved constraint of marine ice accretion processes, organic entrainment, and interface habitability. Custom built at Georgia Tech and first deployed during the 2014/15 Antarctic season, Icefin is 3.5 m, 125 kg modular vehicle that now carries a full suite of oceanographic sensors (including conductivity, temperature, depth, dissolved O2, dissolved organic matter, turbidity, pH, eH, and sonar) that can be deployed through boreholes as small as 25 cm in diameter. Here we present continued analysis of basal ice and oceanographic observations in the McMurdo Sound region from 2012-2015 with, pending anticipated field work, comparisons to preliminary data from the 2017/18 field season beneath both the McMurdo and Ross Ice

  20. Climate change and the marine ecosystem of the western Antarctic Peninsula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Andrew; Murphy, Eugene J; Meredith, Michael P; King, John C; Peck, Lloyd S; Barnes, David K A; Smith, Raymond C

    2007-01-29

    The Antarctic Peninsula is experiencing one of the fastest rates of regional climate change on Earth, resulting in the collapse of ice shelves, the retreat of glaciers and the exposure of new terrestrial habitat. In the nearby oceanic system, winter sea ice in the Bellingshausen and Amundsen seas has decreased in extent by 10% per decade, and shortened in seasonal duration. Surface waters have warmed by more than 1 K since the 1950s, and the Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW) of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current has also warmed. Of the changes observed in the marine ecosystem of the western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) region to date, alterations in winter sea ice dynamics are the most likely to have had a direct impact on the marine fauna, principally through shifts in the extent and timing of habitat for ice-associated biota. Warming of seawater at depths below ca 100 m has yet to reach the levels that are biologically significant. Continued warming, or a change in the frequency of the flooding of CDW onto the WAP continental shelf may, however, induce sublethal effects that influence ecological interactions and hence food-web operation. The best evidence for recent changes in the ecosystem may come from organisms which record aspects of their population dynamics in their skeleton (such as molluscs or brachiopods) or where ecological interactions are preserved (such as in encrusting biota of hard substrata). In addition, a southwards shift of marine isotherms may induce a parallel migration of some taxa similar to that observed on land. The complexity of the Southern Ocean food web and the nonlinear nature of many interactions mean that predictions based on short-term studies of a small number of species are likely to be misleading.

  1. 78 FR 54686 - Notice of Permit Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-05

    ... the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism... of the ongoing effort to monitor the spatial scale of human impacts in Antarctica. Samples taken near...

  2. Metal and antibiotic-resistance in psychrotrophic bacteria from Antarctic marine waters

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    De; Nair, S.; LokaBharathi, P.A.; Chandramohan, D.

    In the wake of the findings that Antarctic krills concentrate heavy metals at ppm level, (Yamamoto et al., 1987), the Antarctic waters from the Indian side were examined for the incidence of metal and antibiotic-resistant bacteria during...

  3. 77 FR 50720 - Notice of Permit Modification Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-08-22

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and..., bill and flipper dimensions taken, 3-5 feathers removed to confirm gender of the penguin, and have GPS...

  4. 78 FR 56743 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-13

    ... by the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science... measure ablation and GPS units to monitor the motion of the glacier. The GPR system will be moved...

  5. 77 FR 67407 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-11-09

    ... designation of certain animals and certain geographic areas a requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas. The applications received... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic...

  6. 78 FR 56744 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-13

    ... requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 AGENCY: National Science Foundation. ACTION: Notice of Permit Applications Received...

  7. 77 FR 38834 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-06-29

    ... requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 AGENCY: National Science Foundation. ACTION: Notice of permit applications received...

  8. 78 FR 59728 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-27

    ... requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Foundation (NSF) is required to publish a notice of permit applications received to conduct activities...

  9. Total ozone changes in the 1987 Antarctic ozone hole

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krueger, Arlin J.; Schoeberl, Mark R.; Doiron, Scott D.; Sechrist, Frank; Galimore, Reginald

    1988-01-01

    The development of the Antarctic ozone minimum was observed in 1987 with the Nimbus 7 Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (TOMS) instrument. In the first half of August the near-polar (60 and 70 deg S) ozone levels were similar to those of recent years. By September, however, the ozone at 70 and 80 deg S was clearly lower than any previous year including 1985, the prior record low year. The levels continued to decrease throughout September until October 5 when a new record low of 109 DU was established at a point near the South Pole. This value is 29 DU less than the lowest observed in 1985 and 48 DU less than the 1986 low. The zonal mean total ozone at 60 deg S remained constant throughout the time of ozone hole formation. The ozone decline was punctuated by local minima formed away from the polar night boundary at about 75 deg S. The first of these, on August 15 to 17, formed just east of the Palmer Peninsula and appears to be a mountain wave. The second major minimum formed on September 5 to 7 again downwind of the Palmer Peninsula. This event was larger in scale than the August minimum and initiated the decline of ozone across the polar region. The 1987 ozone hole was nearly circular and pole centered for its entire life. In previous years the hole was perturbed by intrusions of the circumpolar maximum into the polar regions, thus causing the hole to be elliptical. The 1987 hole also remained in place until the end of November, a few days longer than in 1985, and this persistence resulted in the latest time for recovery to normal values yet observed.

  10. Biogeographical note on Antarctic microflorae: Endemism and cosmopolitanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Waqar Azeem Jadoon

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available This study deals with the biogeography of Antarctic microflora (Antarctica acts as best model to study microbial biogeography such as cyanobacteria and selected halophiles with special emphasis on Halomonas variabilis and Bacillus licheniformis. Halophiles are known to be resistant not only to salt stress, but also to extreme temperature, pressure, and aridity and they are capable of surviving in harsh environments such as polar regions, deep-sea habitats, and deserts. Many microbes are known to be resistant to hostile environmental conditions, and are capable of surviving in harsh environments. Our group has isolated 444 strains belonging to 28 genera of halophiles from various environments around the world. The 16S rRNA gene sequences revealed that many of the isolated strains from geographically distant habitats having different environmental conditions, were closely related to each other, with some strains possessing 100% identical sequences. Organisms possessing survival mechanism such as spore formation are usually ubiquitous. The genus Halomonas is represented by potentially endemic strains and the ubiquitous H. variabilis, while spore-forming B. licheniformis showed cosmopolitan distribution. One potentially endemic (moderate endemicity that is regional and/or continental distribution strain was reported from Syowa station, East Antarctica, and Mario Zucchelli station, West Antarctica, which are geographically separated by 3000 km. Moreover, 15 strains having 100% similarity with B. licheniformis were considered cosmopolitans. The results of this work provide support for the middle-ground model that some microbes have moderate endemicity and others have cosmopolitan distribution. These results will contribute to a greater understanding of microbial biogeography with special emphasis on Antarctica.

  11. Environmental Variation and Cohort Effects in an Antarctic Predator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrott, Robert A.; Rotella, Jay J.; Siniff, Donald B.; Parkinson, Claire L.; Stauffer, Glenn E.

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the potential influence of environmental variation experienced by animals during early stages of development on their subsequent demographic performance can contribute to our understanding of population processes and aid in predicting impacts of global climate change on ecosystem functioning. Using data from 4,178 tagged female Weddell seal pups born into 20 different cohorts, and 30 years of observations of the tagged seals, we evaluated the hypothesis that environmental conditions experienced by young seals, either indirectly through maternal effects and/or directly during the initial period of juvenile nutritional independence, have long-term effects on individual demographic performance. We documented an approximately 3-fold difference in the proportion of each cohort that returned to the pupping colonies and produced a pup within the first 10 years after birth. We found only weak evidence for a correlation between annual environmental conditions during the juvenile-independence period and cohort recruitment probability. Instead, the data strongly supported an association between cohort recruitment probability and the regional extent of sea ice experienced by the mother during the winter the pup was in utero. We suggest that inter-annual variation in winter sea-ice extent influences the foraging success of pregnant seals by moderating the regional abundance of competing predators that cannot occupy areas of consolidated sea ice, and by directly influencing the abundance of mid-trophic prey species that are sea-ice obligates. We hypothesize that this environmentally-induced variation in maternal nutrition dictates the extent of maternal energetic investment in offspring, resulting in cohort variation in mean size of pups at weaning which, in turn, contributes to an individual?s phenotype and its ultimate fitness. These linkages between sea ice and trophic dynamics, combined with demonstrated and predicted changes in the duration and extent of sea

  12. Persistence of Antarctic polar stratospheric clouds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mccormick, M. Patrick; Trepte, C. R.

    1988-01-01

    The persistence of Polar Stratospheric Clouds (PSCs) observed by the Stratospheric Aerosol Measurement (SAM) 2 satellite sensor over a 9-year period is compared and contrasted. Histograms of the SAM 2 1.0 micron extinction ratio data (aerosol extinction normalized by the molecular extinction) at an altitude of 18 km in the Antarctic have been generated for three 10-day periods in the month of September. Statistics for eight different years (1979 to 1982 and 1984 to 1987) are shown in separate panels for each figure. Since the SAM 2 system is a solar occultation experiment, observations are limited to the edge of the polar night and no measurements are made deep within the vortex where temperatures could be colder. For this reason, use is made of the NMC global gridded fields and the known temperature-extinction relationship to infer additional information on the occurrence and areal coverage of PSCs. Calculations of the daily areal coverage of the 195 K isotherm will be presented for this same period of data. This contour level lies in the range of the predicted temperature for onset of the Type 1 particle enhancement mode at 50 mb (Poole and McCormick, 1988b) and should indicate approximately when formation of the binary HNO3-H2O particles begins.

  13. Peripheral cold acclimatization in Antarctic scuba divers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bridgman, S A

    1991-08-01

    Peripheral acclimatization to cold in scuba divers stationed at the British Antarctic Survey's Signy Station was investigated during a year in Antarctica. Five divers and five non-diver controls underwent monthly laboratory tests of index finger immersion in cold water for 30 min. Index finger pulp temperature and time of onset of cold-induced vasodilatation (CIVD) were measured. Pain was recorded with verbal and numerical psychophysical subjective pain ratings. Average finger temperatures and median finger pain from 6-30 min of immersion, maximum finger temperatures during the first CIVD cycle, and finger temperatures at the onset of CIVD were calculated. Comparison of the variables recorded from divers and non-divers were performed with analysis of variance. No significant differences were found among the variables recorded from divers and non-divers. From a review of the literature, divers have responses typical of non-cold-adapted Caucasians. There is, therefore, no evidence that Signy divers peripherally acclimatized to cold. We suggest that these findings occur because either the whole body cooling which divers undergo inhibits peripheral acclimatization or because of insufficiently frequent or severe cold exposure while diving. Further basic studies on the duration, frequency and severity of cold exposure necessary to induce peripheral cold acclimatization are required before this question can be satisfactorily answered.

  14. Antarctic icebergs distributions 1992-2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tournadre, J.; Bouhier, N.; Girard-Ardhuin, F.; Rémy, F.

    2016-01-01

    Basal melting of floating ice shelves and iceberg calving constitute the two almost equal paths of freshwater flux between the Antarctic ice cap and the Southern Ocean. The largest icebergs (>100 km2) transport most of the ice volume but their basal melting is small compared to their breaking into smaller icebergs that constitute thus the major vector of freshwater. The archives of nine altimeters have been processed to create a database of small icebergs (law of slope -1.52 ± 0.32 close to the -3/2 laws observed and modeled for brittle fragmentation. The global volume of ice and its distribution between the ocean basins present a very strong interannual variability only partially explained by the number of large icebergs. Indeed, vast zones of the Southern Ocean free of large icebergs are largely populated by small iceberg drifting over thousands of kilometers. The correlation between the global small and large icebergs volumes shows that small icebergs are mainly generated by large ones breaking. Drifting and trapping by sea ice can transport small icebergs for long period and distances. Small icebergs act as an ice diffuse process along large icebergs trajectories while sea ice trapping acts as a buffer delaying melting.

  15. Protecting polar wilderness : Just a western philosophical idea or a useful concept for regulating human activities in the polar regions?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bastmeijer, Kees; Leary, D.; Koivurova, T.; Alfredsson, G.

    2009-01-01

    Governments involved in Arctic and Antarctic governance have been well aware of the increasing human pressure on the Polar Regions and particularly the last two decades many initiatives have been taken to protect the Arctic and Antarctic environment. But what values are to be protected? This paper

  16. Summer diet of the Salvin's prion at sub-Antarctic Marion Island

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    1988-02-14

    Feb 14, 1988 ... Thirty-nine food samples were collected from Salvin's prions Pachyptila salvini at sub-Antarctic Marion Island,. Prince Edward Islands. ..... guide to foraging methods used by marine birds in. Antarctic and sub-Antarctic seas. BIOMASS Handbook. 24: 1-22. GRINDLEY, J.R. & LANE, S.B. 1979. Zooplankton.

  17. 78 FR 41959 - Notice of Permit Modification Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-12

    ... Areas (ASPA) or involving Antarctic Flora and Fauna. Starting in 2013, all new permits issued for ASPA entry or involving Antarctic Flora and Flora require the permittee to submit an annual report to the... Specially Protected Areas (ASPA) or involving Antarctic Flora and Fauna issued prior to 2013 that require...

  18. 77 FR 41809 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-07-16

    ..., Lockheed Martin IS&GS, Antarctic Support Contract, 7400 S. Tucson Way, Centennial, CO 80112-3938. Activity..., Antarctic Support Contract, 7400 S. Tucson Way, Centennial, CO 80112-3938. Activity for Which Permit Is.... Applicant: Celia Lang, Lockheed Martin IS&GS, Antarctic Support Contract, 7400 S. Tucson Way, Centennial, CO...

  19. Feasibility of Using Alternate Fuels in the U.S. Antarctic Program: Initial Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-09-01

    Polar Programs. Morris, A. 2015a. Email communication. 21 April. Centennial , CO: Antarctic Support Contractor. ———. 2015b. Personal...communication. 19 May. Centennial , CO: Antarctic Support Contractor. ———. 2014. Email communication. 24 November. Centennial , CO: Antarctic Support

  20. Advective pathways near the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula: Trends, variability and ecosystem implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renner, Angelika H. H.; Thorpe, Sally E.; Heywood, Karen J.; Murphy, Eugene J.; Watkins, Jon L.; Meredith, Michael P.

    2012-05-01

    Pathways and rates of ocean flow near the Antarctic Peninsula are strongly affected by frontal features, forcings from the atmosphere and the cryosphere. In the surface mixed layer, the currents advect material from the northwestern Weddell Sea on the eastern side of the Peninsula around the tip of the Peninsula to its western side and into the Scotia Sea, connecting populations of Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) and supporting the ecosystem of the region. Modelling of subsurface drifters using a particle tracking algorithm forced by the velocity fields of a coupled sea ice-ocean model (ORCA025-LIM2) allows analysis of the seasonal and interannual variability of drifter pathways over 43 years. The results show robust and persistent connections from the Weddell Sea both to the west into the Bellingshausen Sea and across the Scotia Sea towards South Georgia, reproducing well the observations. The fate of the drifters is sensitive to their deployment location, in addition to other factors. From the shelf of the eastern Antarctic Peninsula, the majority enter the Bransfield Strait and subsequently the Bellingshausen Sea. When originating further offshore over the deeper Weddell Sea, drifters are more likely to cross the South Scotia Ridge and reach South Georgia. However, the wind field east and southeast of Elephant Island, close to the tip of the Peninsula, is crucial for the drifter trajectories and is highly influenced by the Southern Annular Mode (SAM). Increased advection and short travel times to South Georgia, and reduced advection to the western Antarctic Peninsula can be linked to strong westerlies, a signature of the positive phase of the SAM. The converse is true for the negative phase. Strong westerlies and shifts of ocean fronts near the tip of the Peninsula that are potentially associated with both the SAM and the El Niño-Southern Oscillation restrict the connection from the Weddell Sea to the west, and drifters then predominantly follow the open

  1. A Synoptic View of the Ventilation and Circulation of Antarctic Bottom Water from Chlorofluorocarbons and Natural Tracers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purkey, Sarah G.; Smethie, William M.; Gebbie, Geoffrey; Gordon, Arnold L.; Sonnerup, Rolf E.; Warner, Mark J.; Bullister, John L.

    2018-01-01

    Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW) is the coldest, densest, most prolific water mass in the global ocean. AABW forms at several distinct regions along the Antarctic coast and feeds into the bottom limb of the meridional overturning circulation, filling most of the global deep ocean. AABW has warmed, freshened, and declined in volume around the globe in recent decades, which has implications for the global heat and sea level rise budgets. Over the past three decades, the use of tracers, especially time-varying tracers such as chlorofluorocarbons, has been essential to our understanding of the formation, circulation, and variability of AABW. Here, we review three decades of temperature, salinity, and tracer data and analysis that have led to our current knowledge of AABW and how the southern component of deep-ocean ventilation is changing with time.

  2. Ground based observations of Pc3-Pc5 geomagnetic pulsation power at Antarctic McMurdo station

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. G. Maclennan

    1998-06-01

    Full Text Available The two horizontal geomagnetic components and, measured by a fluxgate magnetometer at Antarctic McMurdo station (corrected geomagnetic coordinates 80.0° S, 327.5° E, are analyzed for the period May-June 1994; the spectral powers are calculated and integrated over three frequency intervals corresponding to the nominal ranges. The time dependence of those integrated powers and their correlations with northern auroral indices and solar wind speed are considered. The observations are compared with previous results reported from Terra Nova Bay station (located near McMurdo at the same corrected geomagnetic latitude during Antarctic summer intervals. The differences found between the two stations are discussed in terms of the seasonal dependence of geomagnetic field line configurations in the near cusp region.

  3. Genetic diversity among populations of Antarctic springtails (Collembola) within the Mackay Glacier ecotone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beet, Clare R; Hogg, Ian D; Collins, Gemma E; Cowan, Don A; Wall, Diana H; Adams, Byron J

    2016-09-01

    Climate changes are likely to have major influences on the distribution and abundance of Antarctic terrestrial biota. To assess arthropod distribution and diversity within the Ross Sea region, we examined mitochondrial DNA (COI) sequences for three currently recognized species of springtail (Collembola) collected from sites in the vicinity, and to the north of, the Mackay Glacier (77°S). This area acts as a transition between two biogeographic regions (northern and southern Victoria Land). We found populations of highly divergent individuals (5%-11.3% intraspecific sequence divergence) for each of the three putative springtail species, suggesting the possibility of cryptic diversity. Based on molecular clock estimates, these divergent lineages are likely to have been isolated for 3-5 million years. It was during this time that the Western Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) was likely to have completely collapsed, potentially facilitating springtail dispersal via rafting on running waters and open seaways. The reformation of the WAIS would have isolated newly established populations, with subsequent dispersal restricted by glaciers and ice-covered areas. Given the currently limited distributions for these genetically divergent populations, any future changes in species' distributions can be easily tracked through the DNA barcoding of springtails from within the Mackay Glacier ecotone.

  4. Past penguin colony responses to explosive volcanism on the Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Stephen J.; Monien, Patrick; Foster, Louise C.; Loftfield, Julia; Hocking, Emma P.; Schnetger, Bernhard; Pearson, Emma J.; Juggins, Steve; Fretwell, Peter; Ireland, Louise; Ochyra, Ryszard; Haworth, Anna R.; Allen, Claire S.; Moreton, Steven G.; Davies, Sarah J.; Brumsack, Hans-Jürgen; Bentley, Michael J.; Hodgson, Dominic A.

    2017-04-01

    Changes in penguin populations on the Antarctic Peninsula have been linked to several environmental factors, but the potentially devastating impact of volcanic activity has not been considered. Here we use detailed biogeochemical analyses to track past penguin colony change over the last 8,500 years on Ardley Island, home to one of the Antarctic Peninsula's largest breeding populations of gentoo penguins. The first sustained penguin colony was established on Ardley Island c. 6,700 years ago, pre-dating sub-fossil evidence of Peninsula-wide occupation by c. 1,000 years. The colony experienced five population maxima during the Holocene. Overall, we find no consistent relationships with local-regional atmospheric and ocean temperatures or sea-ice conditions, although the colony population maximum, c. 4,000-3,000 years ago, corresponds with regionally elevated temperatures. Instead, at least three of the five phases of penguin colony expansion were abruptly ended by large eruptions from the Deception Island volcano, resulting in near-complete local extinction of the colony, with, on average, 400-800 years required for sustainable recovery.

  5. Effects of sea-ice extent and krill or salp dominance on the Antarctic food web

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loeb, V.; Siegel, V.; Holm-Hansen, O.; Hewitt, R.; Fraser, W.; Trivelpiece, W.; Trivelpiece, S.

    1997-06-01

    Krill (Euphausia superba) provide a direct link between primary producers and higher trophic levels in the Antarctic marine food web. The pelagic tunicate Salpa thompsoni can also be important during spring and summer through the formation of extensive and dense blooms. Although salps are not a major dietary item for Antarctic vertebrate predators,, their blooms can affect adult krill reproduction and survival of krill larvae. Here we provide data from 1995 and 1996 that support hypothesized relationships between krill, salps and region-wide sea-ice conditions,. We have assessed salp consumption as a proportion of net primary production, and found correlations between herbivore densities and integrated chlorophyll-a that indicate that there is a degree of competition between krill and salps. Our analysis of the relationship between annual sea-ice cover and a longer time series of air temperature measurements, indicates a decreased frequency of winters with extensive sea-ice development over the last five decades. Our data suggest that decreased krill availability may affect the levels of their vertebrate predators. Regional warming and reduced krill abundance therefore affect the marine food web and krill resource management.

  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. Tropically driven and externally forced patterns of Antarctic sea ice change: reconciling observed and modeled trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, David P.; Deser, Clara

    2017-09-01

    Recent work suggests that natural variability has played a significant role in the increase of Antarctic sea ice extent during 1979-2013. The ice extent has responded strongly to atmospheric circulation changes, including a deepened Amundsen Sea Low (ASL), which in part has been driven by tropical variability. Nonetheless, this increase has occurred in the context of externally forced climate change, and it has been difficult to reconcile observed and modeled Antarctic sea ice trends. To understand observed-model disparities, this work defines the internally driven and radiatively forced patterns of Antarctic sea ice change and exposes potential model biases using results from two sets of historical experiments of a coupled climate model compared with observations. One ensemble is constrained only by external factors such as greenhouse gases and stratospheric ozone, while the other explicitly accounts for the influence of tropical variability by specifying observed SST anomalies in the eastern tropical Pacific. The latter experiment reproduces the deepening of the ASL, which drives an increase in regional ice extent due to enhanced ice motion and sea surface cooling. However, the overall sea ice trend in every ensemble member of both experiments is characterized by ice loss and is dominated by the forced pattern, as given by the ensemble-mean of the first experiment. This pervasive ice loss is associated with a strong warming of the ocean mixed layer, suggesting that the ocean model does not locally store or export anomalous heat efficiently enough to maintain a surface environment conducive to sea ice expansion. The pervasive upper-ocean warming, not seen in observations, likely reflects ocean mean-state biases.

  8. Tropically driven and externally forced patterns of Antarctic sea ice change: reconciling observed and modeled trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, David P.; Deser, Clara

    2018-06-01

    Recent work suggests that natural variability has played a significant role in the increase of Antarctic sea ice extent during 1979-2013. The ice extent has responded strongly to atmospheric circulation changes, including a deepened Amundsen Sea Low (ASL), which in part has been driven by tropical variability. Nonetheless, this increase has occurred in the context of externally forced climate change, and it has been difficult to reconcile observed and modeled Antarctic sea ice trends. To understand observed-model disparities, this work defines the internally driven and radiatively forced patterns of Antarctic sea ice change and exposes potential model biases using results from two sets of historical experiments of a coupled climate model compared with observations. One ensemble is constrained only by external factors such as greenhouse gases and stratospheric ozone, while the other explicitly accounts for the influence of tropical variability by specifying observed SST anomalies in the eastern tropical Pacific. The latter experiment reproduces the deepening of the ASL, which drives an increase in regional ice extent due to enhanced ice motion and sea surface cooling. However, the overall sea ice trend in every ensemble member of both experiments is characterized by ice loss and is dominated by the forced pattern, as given by the ensemble-mean of the first experiment. This pervasive ice loss is associated with a strong warming of the ocean mixed layer, suggesting that the ocean model does not locally store or export anomalous heat efficiently enough to maintain a surface environment conducive to sea ice expansion. The pervasive upper-ocean warming, not seen in observations, likely reflects ocean mean-state biases.

  9. Accelerated freshening of Antarctic Bottom Water over the last decade in the Southern Indian Ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menezes, Viviane V; Macdonald, Alison M; Schatzman, Courtney

    2017-01-01

    Southern Ocean abyssal waters, in contact with the atmosphere at their formation sites around Antarctica, not only bring signals of a changing climate with them as they move around the globe but also contribute to that change through heat uptake and sea level rise. A repeat hydrographic line in the Indian sector of the Southern Ocean, occupied three times in the last two decades (1994, 2007, and, most recently, 2016), reveals that Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW) continues to become fresher (0.004 ± 0.001 kg/g decade -1 ), warmer (0.06° ± 0.01°C decade -1 ), and less dense (0.011 ± 0.002 kg/m 3 decade -1 ). The most recent observations in the Australian-Antarctic Basin show a particularly striking acceleration in AABW freshening between 2007 and 2016 (0.008 ± 0.001 kg/g decade -1 ) compared to the 0.002 ± 0.001 kg/g decade -1 seen between 1994 and 2007. Freshening is, in part, responsible for an overall shift of the mean temperature-salinity curve toward lower densities. The marked freshening may be linked to an abrupt iceberg-glacier collision and calving event that occurred in 2010 on the George V/Adélie Land Coast, the main source region of bottom waters for the Australian-Antarctic Basin. Because AABW is a key component of the global overturning circulation, the persistent decrease in bottom water density and the associated increase in steric height that result from continued warming and freshening have important consequences beyond the Southern Indian Ocean.

  10. Water masses transform at mid-depths over the Antarctic Continental Slope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mead Silvester, Jess; Lenn, Yueng-Djern; Polton, Jeffrey; Phillips, Helen E.; Morales Maqueda, Miguel

    2017-04-01

    The Meridional Overturning Circulation (MOC) controls the oceans' latitudinal heat distribution, helping to regulate the Earth's climate. The Southern Ocean is the primary place where cool, deep waters return to the surface to complete this global circulation. While water mass transformations intrinsic to this process predominantly take place at the surface following upwelling, recent studies implicate vertical mixing in allowing transformation at mid-depths over the Antarctic continental slope. We deployed an EM-Apex float near Elephant Island, north of the Antarctic Peninsula's tip, to profile along the slope and use potential vorticity to diagnose observed instabilities. The float captures direct heat exchange between a lens of Upper Circumpolar Deep Water (UCDW) and surrounding Lower Circumpolar Deep Waters (LCDW) at mid-depths and over the course of several days. Heat fluxes peak across the top and bottom boundaries of the UCDW lens and peak diffusivities across the bottom boundary are associated with shear instability. Estimates of diffusivity from shear-strain finestructure parameterisation and heat fluxes are found to be in reasonable agreement. The two-dimensional Ertel potential vorticity is elevated both inside the UCDW lens and along its bottom boundary, with a strong contribution from the shear term in these regions and instabilities are associated with gravitational and symmetric forcing. Thus, shear instabilities are driving turbulent mixing across the lower boundary between these two water masses, leading to the observed heat exchange and transformation at mid-depths over the Antarctic continental slope. This has implications for our understanding of the rates of upwelling and ocean-atmosphere exchanges of heat and carbon at this critical location.

  11. Seasonal variation and sources of atmospheric gravity waves in the Antarctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaoru Sato

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available In the last recent ten years, our knowledge of gravity waves in the Antarctic has been significantly improved through numerous studies using balloon and satellite observations and high-resolution model simulations. In this report, we introduce results from two studies which were performed as a part of the NIPR project "Integrated analysis of the material circulation in the Antarctic atmosphere-cryosphere-ocean" (2004-2009, i.e., Yoshiki et al. (2004 and Sato and Yoshiki (2008. These two studies focused on the seasonal variation and sources of the gravity waves in the Antarctic, because horizontal wavelengths and phase velocities depend largely on the wave sources. The former study used original high-resolution data from operational radiosonde observations at Syowa Station. In the lowermost stratosphere, gravity waves do not exhibit characteristic seasonal variation; instead, the wave energy is intensified when lower latitude air intrudes into the area near Syowa Station in the upper troposphere. This intrusion is associated with blocking events or developed synoptic-scale waves. In the lower and middle stratosphere, the gravity wave energy is maximized in spring and particularly intensified when the axis of the polar night jet approaches Syowa Station. The latter study is based on intensive radiosonde observation campaigns that were performed in 2002 at Syowa Station as an activity of JARE-43. Gravity wave propagation was statistically examined using two dimensional (i.e., vertical wavenumber versus frequency spectra in each season. It was shown that the gravity waves are radiated upward and downward from an unbalanced region of the polar night jet. This feature is consistent with the gravity-wave resolving GCM simulation.

  12. Seasonal variations and vertical features of aerosol particles in the Antarctic troposphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Hara

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Tethered balloon-borne aerosol measurements were conducted at Syowa Station, Antarctica during the 46th Japanese Antarctic expedition (2005–2006. The CN concentration reached a maximum in the summer, although the number concentrations of fine particles (Dp>0.3 μm and coarse particles (Dp>2.0 μm increased during the winter–spring. The CN concentration was 30–2200 cm−3 near the surface (surface – 500 m and 7–7250 cm−3 in the lower free troposphere (>1500 m. During the austral summer, higher CN concentration was often observed in the lower free troposphere, where the number concentrations in fine and coarse modes were remarkably lower. The frequent appearance of higher CN concentrations in the free troposphere relative to continuous aerosol measurements at the ground strongly suggests that new particle formation is more likely to occur in the lower free troposphere in Antarctic regions. Seasonal variations of size distribution of fine-coarse particles show that the contribution of the coarse mode was greater in the winter–spring than in summer because of the dominance of sea-salt particles in the winter–spring. The number concentrations of fine and coarse particles were high in air masses from the ocean and mid-latitudes. Particularly, aerosol enhancement was observed not only in the boundary layer, but also in the lower free troposphere during and immediately after Antarctic haze events occurring in May, July and September.

  13. Penguin Proxies: Deciphering Millennial-Scale Antarctic Ecosystem Change using Amino Acid Stable Isotope Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michelson, C.; McMahon, K.; Emslie, S. D.; Patterson, W. P.; McCarthy, M. D.; Polito, M. J.

    2017-12-01

    The Southern Ocean ecosystem is undergoing rapid environmental change due to ongoing and historic anthropogenic impacts such as climate change and marine mammal harvesting. These disturbances may have cascading effects through the Antarctic food webs, resulting in profound shifts in the sources and cycling of organic matter supporting higher-trophic organisms, such as penguins. For example, bulk stable isotope analyses of modern and ancient preserved penguin tissues suggest variations in penguin feeding ecology throughout the Holocene with dramatic isotopic shifts in the last 200 years. However, it is not clear whether these isotopic shifts resulted from changes at the base of the food web, dietary shifts in penguins, or some combination of both factors. Newly developed compound-specific stable nitrogen isotope analysis of individual amino acids (CSIA-AA) may provide a powerful new tool to tease apart these confounding variables. Stable nitrogen isotope values of trophic amino acids (e.g., glutamic acid) increase substantially with each trophic transfer in the food web, while source amino acid (e.g., phenylalanine) stable nitrogen isotope values remain relatively unchanged and reflect ecosystem baselines. As such, we can use this CSIA-AA approach to decipher between baseline and dietary shifts in penguins over time from modern and ancient eggshells of Pygoscelis penguins in the Antarctic Peninsula and the Ross Sea regions of Antarctica. In order to accurately apply this CSIA-AA approach, we first characterized the trophic fractionation factors of individual amino acids between diet and penguin consumers in a long-term controlled penguin feeding experiment. We then applied these values to modern and ancient eggshells from the Antarctic Peninsula and Ross Sea to evaluate shifts in penguin trophic dynamics as a function of climate and anthropogenic interaction throughout much of the Holocene. This work develops a cutting edge new molecular geochemistry approach

  14. Biodiversity of Antarctic echinoids: a comprehensive and interactive database

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno David

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Eighty-one echinoid species are present south of the Antarctic Convergence, and they represent an important component of the benthic fauna. “Antarctic echinoids” is an interactive database synthesising the results of more than 100 years of Antarctic expeditions, and comprising information about all echinoid species. It includes illustrated keys for determination of the species, and information about their morphology and ecology (text, illustrations and glossary and their distribution (maps and histograms of bathymetrical distribution; the sources of the information (bibliography, collections and expeditions are also provided. All these data (taxonomic, morphologic, geographic, bathymetric… can be interactively queried in two main ways: (1 display of listings that can be browsed, sorted according to various criteria, or printed; and (2 interactive requests crossing the different kinds of data. Many other possibilities are offered, and an on-line help file is also available.

  15. In vitro immunobiological activity of an Antarctic streptomyces polysaccharide

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Toshkova, R.; Yossifova, L.; Gardeva, E.; Zvetkova, E.; Ivanova, V.

    2010-01-01

    Antarctic Streptomyces sp. 1010, were obtained from sea water samples (Livingston Island, Antarctica), during the Third Bulgarian Antarctic Scientific Expedition (1994-1995). The ecophysiological methods for isolation and characterization of these active, cold-adapted, Gram-positive microorganisms (psychrophiles) in morphological, phenotypic, genetic and taxonomic aspects, have been earlier reported. In this study, a new extracellular polysaccharide (heteropolysaccharide) has been isolated and purified from cultured broth of the Antarctic Streptomyces sp. 1010. The monosaccharide content of the Antarctic streptomyces heteropolysaccharide has been examined by TLC and GC/MS. The mitogenic and immuno potential properties of the purified Antarctic Streptomyces polysaccharide (ASMP) have been studied in vitro - in the short-term cultures of human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (hPBMCs - lymphocytes and monocytes) and mouse spleen lymphocytes (mouse splenocytes - mSps). The results obtained show that ASMP has a double lectin-like effect on the proliferative activity of hPBMCs: similar to this of Con A on the lymphoid cells (preliminary T-lymphocytes) and to the effect of LPS on the mononuclear from monocyte-macrophage lineage. Expressed as proliferative index (PI), the mitogenic response of mSps to the in vitro influence of ASMP was also higher than PI in the negative, as well as in the positive controls (mSps, cultured in the presence of PHA, Con A and LPS). The new Antarctic Streptomyces' heteropolysaccharide examined could be useful in the future as an immunomodulative biologically active substance and its extracellular production may contribute to the development of thermobiochemistry, immunomodulative drug therapy and immunopharmaceutical industry. (authors)

  16. Early Spring Phytoplankton Dynamics in the Western Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arrigo, Kevin R.; van Dijken, Gert L.; Alderkamp, Anne-Carlijn; Erickson, Zachary K.; Lewis, Kate M.; Lowry, Kate E.; Joy-Warren, Hannah L.; Middag, Rob; Nash-Arrigo, Janice E.; Selz, Virginia; van de Poll, Willem

    2017-12-01

    The Palmer Long-Term Ecological Research program has sampled waters of the western Antarctic Peninsula (wAP) annually each summer since 1990. However, information about the wAP prior to the peak of the phytoplankton bloom in January is sparse. Here we present results from a spring process cruise that sampled the wAP in the early stages of phytoplankton bloom development in 2014. Sea ice concentrations were high on the shelf relative to nonshelf waters, especially toward the south. Macronutrients were high and nonlimiting to phytoplankton growth in both shelf and nonshelf waters, while dissolved iron concentrations were high only on the shelf. Phytoplankton were in good physiological condition throughout the wAP, although biomass on the shelf was uniformly low, presumably because of heavy sea ice cover. In contrast, an early stage phytoplankton bloom was observed beneath variable sea ice cover just seaward of the shelf break. Chlorophyll a concentrations in the bloom reached 2 mg m-3 within a 100-150 km band between the SBACC and SACCF. The location of the bloom appeared to be controlled by a balance between enhanced vertical mixing at the position of the two fronts and increased stratification due to melting sea ice between them. Unlike summer, when diatoms overwhelmingly dominate the phytoplankton population of the wAP, the haptophyte Phaeocystis antarctica dominated in spring, although diatoms were common. These results suggest that factors controlling phytoplankton abundance and composition change seasonally and may differentially affect phytoplankton populations as environmental conditions within the wAP region continue to change.

  17. 222Rn in the Antarctic Peninsula during 1986

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pereira, E.B.; Setzer, A.W.; Cavalcanti, I.F.A.

    1988-01-01

    222 Rn was continuously measured at the Brazilian Antarctic Station (62 0 S, 58 0 W) during the year of 1986. Baseline radon concentration averaged 0.02 Bq.m -3 with surges peaking 0.4 Bq.m -3 . The data exhibited a characteristic periodicity of about 25 days and a strong positive association with short term fluctuations of atmospheric temperature. No seasonal variations of radon were observed. Interpretation of the radon surges with reference to synoptic charts and weather satellite pictures showed that the continental influence of radon at the Antarctic Peninsula is very small and comes only from the tip of the South American cone. (author)

  18. Microbiology and Geochemistry of Antarctic Paleosols

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahaney, W. C.; Malloch, D.; Hancock, R. G. V.; Campbell, I. B.; Sheppard, D.

    2000-08-01

    Samples of ancient soils from horizons in paleosols from the Quartermain Mountains (Aztec and New Mountain areas of the Antarctic Dry Valleys) were analyzed for their chemical composition and microbiology to determine the accumulation and movement of salts and other soluble constituents. The salt concentrations are of special interest because they are considered to be a function of age, derived in part from nearby oceanic and high altitude atmospheric sources. The geochemistry of ancient Miocene-age paleosols in these areas is the direct result of the deposition and weathering of till, derived principally from dolerite and sandstone source rock, in association with airborne-influxed salts. Paleosols nearer the coast have greater contents of chlorine, and farther inland near the Inland Ice Sheet, nitrogen tends to increase on a relative basis. The accumulation and vertical distribution of salts and other soluble chemical elements indicate relative amounts of movement in the profile over long periods of time, to the order of several million years. Iron, both in total concentration and in the form of various extracts, indicates it can be used as a geochronometer to assess the buildup of goethite plus hematite over time in the paleosols. Trends for ferrihydrite, a partially soluble Fe-hydroxide, shows limited profile translocation that might be related to the movement of salt. Six of the eight selected subsamples from paleosol horizons in three soil profiles contained nil concentrations of bacteria and fungi. However, two horizons at depths of between three to eight centimeters yielded several colonies of the fungi Beauveria bassiana and Penicillium spp., indicating some input of organic carbon. Beauveria bassiana is often reported in association with insects and is used commercially for the biological control of some insect pests. Penicillium species are commonly isolated from Arctic, temperate and tropical soils and are known to utilize a wide variety of organic

  19. Laboratory study of nitrate photolysis in Antarctic snow. II. Isotopic effects and wavelength dependence

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berhanu, Tesfaye A.; Erbland, Joseph; Savarino, Joël [Laboratoire de Glaciologie et Géophysique de l’Environnement, CNRS, F-38041 Grenoble (France); Univ. Grenoble Alpes, LGGE, F-38041 Grenoble (France); Meusinger, Carl; Johnson, Matthew S. [Copenhagen Center for Atmospheric Research (CCAR), Department of Chemistry, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Jost, Rémy [Laboratoire de Interdisciplinaire de Physique (LIPHY) Univ. de Grenoble, Grenoble (France); Bhattacharya, S. K. [Research Center for Environmental Changes, Academia Sinica, Nangang, Taipei 115, Taiwan (China)

    2014-06-28

    Atmospheric nitrate is preserved in Antarctic snow firn and ice. However, at low snow accumulation sites, post-depositional processes induced by sunlight obscure its interpretation. The goal of these studies (see also Paper I by Meusinger et al. [“Laboratory study of nitrate photolysis in Antarctic snow. I. Observed quantum yield, domain of photolysis, and secondary chemistry,” J. Chem. Phys. 140, 244305 (2014)]) is to characterize nitrate photochemistry and improve the interpretation of the nitrate ice core record. Naturally occurring stable isotopes in nitrate ({sup 15}N, {sup 17}O, and {sup 18}O) provide additional information concerning post-depositional processes. Here, we present results from studies of the wavelength-dependent isotope effects from photolysis of nitrate in a matrix of natural snow. Snow from Dome C, Antarctica was irradiated in selected wavelength regions using a Xe UV lamp and filters. The irradiated snow was sampled and analyzed for nitrate concentration and isotopic composition (δ{sup 15}N, δ{sup 18}O, and Δ{sup 17}O). From these measurements an average photolytic isotopic fractionation of {sup 15}ε = (−15 ± 1.2)‰ was found for broadband Xe lamp photolysis. These results are due in part to excitation of the intense absorption band of nitrate around 200 nm in addition to the weaker band centered at 305 nm followed by photodissociation. An experiment with a filter blocking wavelengths shorter than 320 nm, approximating the actinic flux spectrum at Dome C, yielded a photolytic isotopic fractionation of {sup 15}ε = (−47.9 ± 6.8)‰, in good agreement with fractionations determined by previous studies for the East Antarctic Plateau which range from −40 to −74.3‰. We describe a new semi-empirical zero point energy shift model used to derive the absorption cross sections of {sup 14}NO{sub 3}{sup −} and {sup 15}NO{sub 3}{sup −} in snow at a chosen temperature. The nitrogen isotopic fractionations obtained by applying

  20. Some observations on the role of planetary waves in determining the spring time ozone distribution in the Antarctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandra, S.; Mcpeters, R. D.

    1986-01-01

    Ozone measurements from 1970 to 1984 from the Nimbus 4 backscattered ultraviolet and the Nimbus 7 solar backscattered ultraviolet spectrometers show significant decrease in total ozone only after 1979. The downward trend is most apparent in October south of 70 deg S in the longitude zone 0 to 30 deg W where planetary wave activity is weak. Outside this longitude region, the trend in total ozone is much smaller due to strong interannual variability of wave activity. This paper gives a phenomenological description of ozone depletion in the Antarctic region based on vertical advection and transient planetary waves.

  1. Persistent organohalogen contaminant burdens in Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) from the eastern Antarctic sector: A baseline study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bengtson Nash, S.M.; Poulsen, A.H.; Kawaguchi, S.; Vetter, W.; Schlabach, M.

    2008-01-01

    A baseline for persistent organohalogen compound (POC) accumulation in the Antarctic keystone species, Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) has been established for a 50 deg. longitudinal range of the eastern Antarctic sector. Samples of adult krill, caught from 12 sites distributed between 30 deg. and 80 deg. E (60-70 deg. S), were analysed for > 100 organohalogen compounds including chlorinated pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polybrominated organic compounds and polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins/furans (PCDD/Fs). Organochlorine pesticides dominated measured krill contaminant burdens with hexachlorobenzene (HCB) as the single most abundant compound quantified. Krill HCB concentrations were comparable to those detected at this trophic level in both the Arctic and temperate northwest Atlantic, lending support for the hypothesis that HCB will approach global equilibrium at a faster rate than other POCs. Para, para'-dichlorodiphenylethene (p,p'-DDE) was detected at notable concentrations. Measurements of DDT and its degradation products provide an important baseline for monitoring the temporal and geographical influence of renewed, DDT usage for malaria-control in affected southern hemisphere countries. In contrast to the Arctic, PCBs did not feature prominently in contaminant burdens of Antarctic krill. The major commercial polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) congeners -99 and -47 were quantified at low background levels with clear concentration spikes observed at around 70 deg. E , in the vicinity of modern, active research stations. The likelihood that local anthropogenic activities are supplementing low PBDE levels, delivered otherwise primarily via long range environmental transport, is discussed. The suspected naturally occurring brominated organic compound, 2,4,6-tribromoanisole (TBA), was a ubiquitous contaminant in all samples whereas the only PCDD/Fs quantifiable were trace levels of octachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (OCDD) and 1,2,3

  2. Antarctic Starfish (Echinodermata, Asteroidea) from the ANDEEP3 expedition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danis, Bruno; Jangoux, Michel; Wilmes, Jennifer

    2012-01-01

    This dataset includes information on sea stars collected during the ANDEEP3 expedition, which took place in 2005. The expedition focused on deep-sea stations in the Powell Basin and Weddell Sea.Sea stars were collected using an Agassiz trawl (3m, mesh-size 500µm), deployed in 16 stations during the ANTXXII/3 (ANDEEP3, PS72) expedition of the RV Polarstern. Sampling depth ranged from 1047 to 4931m. Trawling distance ranged from 731 to 3841m. The sampling area ranges from -41°S to -71°S (latitude) and from 0 to -65°W (longitude). A complete list of stations is available from the PANGAEA data system (http://www.pangaea.de/PHP/CruiseReports.php?b=Polarstern), including a cruise report (http://epic-reports.awi.de/3694/1/PE_72.pdf).The dataset includes 50 records, with individual counts ranging from 1-10, reaching a total of 132 specimens.The andeep3-Asteroidea is a unique dataset as it covers an under-explored region of the Southern Ocean, and that very little information was available regarding Antarctic deep-sea starfish. Before this study, most of the information available focused on starfish from shallower depths than 1000m. This dataset allowed to make unique observations, such as the fact that some species were only present at very high depths (Hymenaster crucifer, Hymenaster pellucidus, Hymenaster praecoquis, Psilaster charcoti, Freyella attenuata, Freyastera tuberculata, Styrachaster chuni and Vemaster sudatlanticus were all found below -3770m), while others displayed remarkable eurybathy, with very high depths amplitudes (Bathybiaster loripes (4842m), Lysasterias adeliae (4832m), Lophaster stellans (4752m), Cheiraster planeta (4708m), Eremicaster crassus (4626m), Lophaster gaini (4560m) and Ctenodiscus australis (4489m)).Even if the number of records is relatively small, the data bring many new insights on the taxonomic, bathymetric and geographic distributions of Southern starfish, covering a very large sampling zone. The dataset also brings to light six

  3. Expression and enzymatic characterization of a cold-adapted β-agarase from Antarctic bacterium Pseudoalteromonas sp. NJ21

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jiang; Sha, Yujie

    2015-03-01

    An agar-degrading bacterium, designated as Pseudoalteromonas sp. NJ21, was isolated from an Antarctic sediment sample. The agarase gene aga1161 from Pseudoalteromonas sp. NJ21 consisting of a 2 382-bp coding region was cloned. The gene encodes a 793-amino acids protein and was found to possess characteristic features of the Glyco_hydro_42 family. The recombinant agarase (rAga1161) was overexpressed in Escherichia coli and purified as a fusion protein. Enzyme activity analysis revealed that the optimum temperature and pH for the purified recombinant agarase were 30-40°C and 8.0, respectively. rAga1161 was found to maintain as much as 80% of its maximum activity at 10°C, which is typical of a coldadapted enzyme. The pattern of agar hydrolysis demonstrated that the enzyme is an β-agarase, producing neoagarobiose (NA2) as the final main product. Furthermore, this work is the first proof of an agarolytic activity in Antarctic bacteria and these results indicate the potential for the Antarctic agarase as a catalyst in medicine, food and cosmetic industries.

  4. A pivotal role for ocean eddies in the distribution of microbial communities across the Antarctic Circumpolar Current.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siddarthan Venkatachalam

    Full Text Available Mesoscale variability and associated eddy fluxes play crucial roles in ocean circulation dynamics and the ecology of the upper ocean. In doing so, these features are biologically important, providing a mechanism for the mixing and exchange of nutrients and biota within the ocean. Transient mesoscale eddies in the Southern Ocean are known to relocate zooplankton communities across the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC and are important foraging grounds for marine top predators. In this study we investigated the role of cyclonic and anti-cyclonic eddies formed at the South-West Indian Ridge on the spatial variability and diversity of microbial communities. We focused on two contrasting adjacent eddies within the Antarctic Polar Frontal Zone to determine how these features may influence the microbial communities within this region. The water masses and microbiota of the two eddies, representative of a cyclonic cold core from the Antarctic zone and an anti-cyclonic warm-core from the Subantarctic zone, were compared. The data reveal that the two eddies entrain distinct microbial communities from their points of origin that are maintained for up to ten months. Our findings highlight the ecological impact that changes, brought by the translocation of eddies across the ACC, have on microbial diversity.

  5. Satellite Remote Sensing of Snow Depth on Antarctic Sea Ice: An Inter-Comparison of Two Empirical Approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan Kern

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Snow on Antarctic sea ice plays a key role for sea ice physical processes and complicates retrieval of sea ice thickness using altimetry. Current methods of snow depth retrieval are based on satellite microwave radiometry, which perform best for dry, homogeneous snow packs on level sea ice. We introduce an alternative approach based on in-situ measurements of total (sea ice plus snow freeboard and snow depth, which we use to compute snow depth on sea ice from Ice, Cloud, and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat total freeboard observations. We compare ICESat snow depth for early winter and spring of the years 2004 through 2006 with the Advanced Scanning Microwave Radiometer aboard EOS (AMSR-E snow depth product. We find ICESat snow depths agree more closely with ship-based visual and air-borne snow radar observations than AMSR-E snow depths. We obtain average modal and mean ICESat snow depths, which exceed AMSR-E snow depths by 5–10 cm in winter and 10–15 cm in spring. We observe an increase in ICESat snow depth from winter to spring for most Antarctic regions in accordance with ground-based observations, in contrast to AMSR-E snow depths, which we find to stay constant or to decrease. We suggest satellite laser altimetry as an alternative method to derive snow depth on Antarctic sea ice, which is independent of snow physical properties.

  6. Links between CO2, glaciation and water flow: reconciling the Cenozoic history of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ladant, J.B.; Donnadieu, Y.; Dumas, C.

    2014-01-01

    The timing of the onset of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) is a crucial event of the Cenozoic because of its cooling and isolating effect over Antarctica. It is intimately related to the glaciations occurring throughout the Cenozoic from the Eocene - Oligocene (EO) transition (∼ 34 Ma) to the middle Miocene glaciations (∼ 13.9 Ma). However, the exact timing of the onset remains debated, with evidence for a late Eocene setup contradicting other data pointing to an occurrence closer to the Oligocene - Miocene (OM) boundary. In this study, we show the potential impact of the Antarctic ice sheet on the initiation of a strong proto- ACC at the EO boundary. Our results reveal that the regional cooling effect of the ice sheet increases sea ice formation, which disrupts the meridional density gradient in the Southern Ocean and leads to the onset of a circumpolar current and its progressive strengthening. We also suggest that subsequent variations in atmospheric CO 2 , ice sheet volumes and tectonic reorganizations may have affected the ACC intensity after the Eocene - Oligocene transition. This allows us to build a hypothesis for the Cenozoic evolution of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current that may provide an explanation for the second initiation of the ACC at the Oligocene - Miocene boundary while reconciling evidence supporting both early Oligocene and early Miocene onset of the ACC. (authors)

  7. Measuring Zonal Transport Variability of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current Using GRACE Ocean Bottom Pressure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makowski, J.; Chambers, D. P.; Bonin, J. A.

    2012-12-01

    Previous studies have suggested that ocean bottom pressure (OBP) can be used to measure the transport variability of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC). Using OBP data from the JPL ECCO model and the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE), we examine the zonal transport variability of the ACC integrated between the major fronts between 2003-2010. The JPL ECCO data are used to determine average front positions for the time period studies, as well as where transport is mainly zonal. Statistical analysis will be conducted to determine the uncertainty of the GRACE observations using a simulated data set. We will also begin looking at low frequency changes and how coherent transport variability is from region to region of the ACC. Correlations with bottom pressure south of the ACC and the average basin transports will also be calculated to determine the probability of using bottom pressure south of the ACC as a means for describing the ACC dynamics and transport.

  8. Dating Antarctic soils using atmosphere-derived 10Be and nitrate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Graham, I.J.; Ditchburn, R.G.; Claridge, G.G.C.; Whitehead, N.E.; Zondervan, A.; Sheppard, D.S.

    2002-01-01

    Because they are slow forming, Antarctic soils have the potential to yield considerable climatic information from the past c.20 m.y. However, these soils have proved difficult to date absolutely by conventional means. Here we present a novel approach to the problem, based on atmosphere-derived 10 Be and nitrate contents. In situations where medium to long term deposition rates can be reasonably estimated from ice core data, the total nitrate inventory in an Antarctic soil can place constraints on its formation age. 10 Be radioactive decay may then be used, assuming steady state equilibrium, to further refine the age profile. We have applied such models to a complex soil from the Taylor Valley region in South Victoria Land, deriving an overall nitrate inventory age of c. 18 Ma, and 10 Be decay ages for the upper and middle layers of c.15 and c.17 Ma, respectively. These results are consistent with the >10 Ma age of the soil deduced from stratigraphic and geomorphological information. (author). 28 refs., 4 figs., 2 tabs

  9. Changes in ice dynamics and mass balance of the Antarctic ice sheet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rignot, Eric

    2006-07-15

    The concept that the Antarctic ice sheet changes with eternal slowness has been challenged by recent observations from satellites. Pronounced regional warming in the Antarctic Peninsula triggered ice shelf collapse, which led to a 10-fold increase in glacier flow and rapid ice sheet retreat. This chain of events illustrated the vulnerability of ice shelves to climate warming and their buffering role on the mass balance of Antarctica. In West Antarctica, the Pine Island Bay sector is draining far more ice into the ocean than is stored upstream from snow accumulation. This sector could raise sea level by 1m and trigger widespread retreat of ice in West Antarctica. Pine Island Glacier accelerated 38% since 1975, and most of the speed up took place over the last decade. Its neighbour Thwaites Glacier is widening up and may double its width when its weakened eastern ice shelf breaks up. Widespread acceleration in this sector may be caused by glacier ungrounding from ice shelf melting by an ocean that has recently warmed by 0.3 degrees C. In contrast, glaciers buffered from oceanic change by large ice shelves have only small contributions to sea level. In East Antarctica, many glaciers are close to a state of mass balance, but sectors grounded well below sea level, such as Cook Ice Shelf, Ninnis/Mertz, Frost and Totten glaciers, are thinning and losing mass. Hence, East Antarctica is not immune to changes.

  10. MASS BALANCE CHANGES AND ICE DYNAMICS OF GREENLAND AND ANTARCTIC ICE SHEETS FROM LASER ALTIMETRY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. S. Babonis

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  11. Validation of a limited area model over Dome C, Antarctic Plateau, during winter

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gallee, Hubert; Gorodetskaya, Irina V. [Laboratoire de Glaciologie et de Geophysique de l' Environnement, CNRS, 54, rue Moliere, BP. 96, St Martin d' Heres Cedex (France)

    2010-01-15

    The limited area model MAR (Modele Atmospherique Regional) is validated over the Antarctic Plateau for the period 2004-2006, focussing on Dome C during the cold season. MAR simulations are made by initializing the model once and by forcing it through its lateral and top boundaries by the ECMWF operational analyses. Model outputs compare favourably with observations from automatic weather station (AWS), radiometers and atmospheric soundings. MAR is able to simulate the succession of cold and warm events which occur at Dome C during winter. Larger longwave downwelling fluxes (LWD) are responsible for higher surface air temperatures and weaker surface inversions during winter. Warm events are better simulated when the small Antarctic precipitating snow particles are taken into account in radiative transfer computations. MAR stratosphere cools during the cold season, with the coldest temperatures occurring in conjunction with warm events at the surface. The decrease of saturation specific humidity associated with these coldest temperatures is responsible for the formation of polar stratospheric clouds (PSCs) especially in August-September. PSCs then contribute to the surface warming by increasing the surface downwelling longwave flux. (orig.)

  12. Radiocarbon as a Novel Tracer of Extra-Antarctic Feeding in Southern Hemisphere Humpback Whales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisenmann, Pascale; Fry, Brian; Mazumder, Debashish; Jacobsen, Geraldine; Holyoake, Carlysle Sian; Coughran, Douglas; Bengtson Nash, Susan

    2017-06-29

    Bulk stable isotope analysis provides information regarding food web interactions, and has been applied to several cetacean species for the study of migration ecology. One limitation in bulk stable isotope analysis arises when a species, such as Southern hemisphere humpback whales, utilises geographically distinct food webs with differing isotopic baselines. Migrations to areas with different baselines can result in isotopic changes that mimic changes in feeding relations, leading to ambiguous food web interpretations. Here, we demonstrate the novel application of radiocarbon measurement for the resolution of such ambiguities. Radiocarbon was measured in baleen plates from humpback whales stranded in Australia between 2007 and 2013, and in skin samples collected in Australia and Antarctica from stranded and free-ranging animals. Radiocarbon measurements showed lower values for Southern Ocean feeding than for extra-Antarctic feeding in Australian waters. While the whales mostly relied on Antarctic-derived energy stores during their annual migration, there was some evidence of feeding within temperate zone waters in some individuals. This work, to our knowledge, provides the first definitive biochemical evidence for supplementary feeding by southern hemisphere humpback whales within temperate waters during migration. Further, the work contributes a powerful new tool (radiocarbon) for tracing source regions and geographical feeding.

  13. Recruitment, growth and mortality of an Antarctic hexactinellid sponge, Anoxycalyx joubini.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul K Dayton

    Full Text Available Polar ecosystems are sensitive to climate forcing, and we often lack baselines to evaluate changes. Here we report a nearly 50-year study in which a sudden shift in the population dynamics of an ecologically important, structure-forming hexactinellid sponge, Anoxycalyx joubini was observed. This is the largest Antarctic sponge, with individuals growing over two meters tall. In order to investigate life history characteristics of Antarctic marine invertebrates, artificial substrata were deployed at a number of sites in the southern portion of the Ross Sea between 1967 and 1975. Over a 22-year period, no growth or settlement was recorded for A. joubini on these substrata; however, in 2004 and 2010, A. joubini was observed to have settled and grown to large sizes on some but not all artificial substrata. This single settlement and growth event correlates with a region-wide shift in phytoplankton productivity driven by the calving of a massive iceberg. We also report almost complete mortality of large sponges followed over 40 years. Given our warming global climate, similar system-wide changes are expected in the future.

  14. Annually resolved southern hemisphere volcanic history from two Antarctic ice cores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cole-Dai, Jihong; Mosley-Thompson, Ellen; Thompson, Lonnie G.

    1997-07-01

    The continuous sulfate analysis of two Antarctic ice cores, one from the Antarctic Peninsula region and one from West Antarctica, provides an annually resolved proxy history of southern semisphere volcanism since early in the 15th century. The dating is accurate within ±3 years due to the high rate of snow accumulation at both core sites and the small sample sizes used for analysis. The two sulfate records are consistent with each other. A systematic and objective method of separating outstanding sulfate events from the background sulfate flux is proposed and used to identify all volcanic signals. The resulting volcanic chronology covering 1417-1989 A.D. resolves temporal ambiguities about several recently discovered events. A number of previously unknown, moderate eruptions during late 1600s are uncovered in this chronology. The eruption of Tambora (1815) and the recently discovered eruption of Kuwae (1453) in the tropical South Pacific injected the greatest amount of sulfur dioxide into the southern hemisphere stratosphere during the last half millennium. A technique for comparing the magnitude of volcanic events preserved within different ice cores is developed using normalized sulfate flux. For the same eruptions the variability of the volcanic sulfate flux between the cores is within ±20% of the sulfate flux from the Tambora eruption.

  15. Diatom and silicoflagellate biostratigraphy for the late Eocene: ODP 1090 (sub-Antarctic Atlantic)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barron, John A.; Bukry, David B.; Gersonde, Rainer

    2014-01-01

    Abundant and well-preserved diatoms and silicofl agellate assemblages are documented through a complete late Eocene sequence, ODP Hole 1090B, recovered from the southern Agulhas Ridge in the sub-Antarctic South Atlantic. A sequence of Cestodiscus (diatom) species occurrence events involving C. pulchellus var. novazealandica, C. fennerae, C. antarcticus, C. convexus, C. trochus, and C. robustus is tied with paleomagnetic stratigraphy and provides the basis of proposing a new diatom zonation for the latest middle Eocene to early Oligocene (~37.6–33.4 Ma) of the sub-Antarctic South Atlantic. Comparison with previously published diatom occurrence charts suggested this zonation should be applicable throughout the low latitude regions of the world’s oceans. Silicofl agellates belong to the Dictyocha hexacantha and the overlying Corbisema apiculata Zones. The late Eocene succession of silicofl agellate species is dominated by Naviculopsis (20–60%). Naviculopsis constricta and N. foliacea dominate the D. hexacantha Zone, followed by the N. constricta, then N. biapiculata in the C. apiculata Zone. Cold-water Distephanus is most abundant in the latest Eocene along with N. biapiculata. The tops of zonal guide fossils Dictyocha hexacantha and Hannaites quadria (both 36.6 Ma) and Dictyocha spinosa (37.1 Ma) are tied with paleomagnetic stratigraphy.

  16. Structure and dynamics of Antarctic fish neuroglobin assessed by computer simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boron, Ignacio; Russo, Roberta; Boechi, Leonardo; Cheng, C-H Christina; di Prisco, Guido; Estrin, Darío A; Verde, Cinzia; Nadra, Alejandro D

    2011-03-01

    Neuroglobin (Ngb) is a heme protein, highly conserved along evolution, predominantly found in the nervous system. It is upregulated by hypoxia and ischemia and may have a neuroprotective role under hypoxic stress. Although many other roles have been proposed, the physiological function is still unclear. Antarctic icefishes lack hemoglobin and some species also lack myoglobin, but all have Ngb and thus may help the elucidation of Ngb function. We present the first theoretically derived structure of fish Ngb and describe its behavior using molecular dynamics simulations. Specifically, we sequenced and analyzed Ngbs from a colorless-blooded Antarctic icefish species Chaenocephalus aceratus and a related red-blooded species (Dissostichus mawsoni). Both fish Ngbs are 6-coordinated but have some peculiarities that differentiate them from mammalian counterparts: they have extensions in the N and C termini that can interact with the EF loop, and a gap in the alignment that changes the CD-region structure/dynamics that has been found to play a key role in human neuroglobin. Our results suggest that a single mutation between both fish Ngbs is responsible for significant difference in the behavior of the proteins. The functional role of these characteristics is discussed. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. Circumpolar diversity and geographic differentiation of mtDNA in the critically endangered Antarctic blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus intermedia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angela L Sremba

    Full Text Available The Antarctic blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus intermedia was hunted to near extinction between 1904 and 1972, declining from an estimated initial abundance of more than 250,000 to fewer than 400. Here, we describe mtDNA control region diversity and geographic differentiation in the surviving population of the Antarctic blue whale, using 218 biopsy samples collected under the auspices of the International Whaling Commission (IWC during research cruises from 1990-2009. Microsatellite genotypes and mtDNA sequences identified 166 individuals among the 218 samples and documented movement of a small number of individuals, including a female that traveled at least 6,650 km or 131° longitude over four years. mtDNA sequences from the 166 individuals were aligned with published sequences from 17 additional individuals, resolving 52 unique haplotypes from a consensus length of 410 bp. From this minimum census, a rarefaction analysis predicted that only 72 haplotypes (95% CL, 64, 86 have survived in the contemporary population of Antarctic blue whales. However, haplotype diversity was relatively high (0.968±0.004, perhaps as a result of the longevity of blue whales and the relatively recent timing of the bottleneck. Despite the potential for circumpolar dispersal, we found significant differentiation in mtDNA diversity (F(ST = 0.032, p<0.005 and microsatellite alleles (F(ST = 0.005, p<0.05 among the six Antarctic Areas historically used by the IWC for management of blue whales.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rugenstein, Maria; Stocchi, Paolo; von der Heydt, Anna; Dijkstra, Hendrik; Brinkhuis, Henk

    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 dynamic

  19. Dating Antarctic ice sheet collapse: Proposing a molecular genetic approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strugnell, Jan M.; Pedro, Joel B.; Wilson, Nerida G.

    2018-01-01

    Sea levels at the end of this century are projected to be 0.26-0.98 m higher than today. The upper end of this range, and even higher estimates, cannot be ruled out because of major uncertainties in the dynamic response of polar ice sheets to a warming climate. Here, we propose an ecological genetics approach that can provide insight into the past stability and configuration of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). We propose independent testing of the hypothesis that a trans-Antarctic seaway occurred at the last interglacial. Examination of the genomic signatures of bottom-dwelling marine species using the latest methods can provide an independent window into the integrity of the WAIS more than 100,000 years ago. Periods of connectivity facilitated by trans-Antarctic seaways could be revealed by dating coalescent events recorded in DNA. These methods allow alternative scenarios to be tested against a fit to genomic data. Ideal candidate taxa for this work would need to possess a circumpolar distribution, a benthic habitat, and some level of genetic structure indicated by phylogeographical investigation. The purpose of this perspective piece is to set out an ecological genetics method to help resolve when the West Antarctic Ice Shelf last collapsed.

  20. Antarctic and Southern Ocean influences on Late Pliocene global cooling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    McKay, R.; Naish, T.; Carter, L.; Riesselman, C.; Dunbar, R.; Sjunneskog, C.; Winter, D.; Sangiorgi, F.; Warren, C.; Pagani, M.; Schouten, S.; Willmott, V.; Levy, R.; DeConto , R.M.; Powell, R.D.

    2012-01-01

    The influence of Antarctica and the Southern Ocean on Late Pliocene global climate reconstructions has remained ambiguous due to a lack of well-dated Antarctic-proximal, paleoenvironmental records. Here we present ice sheet, sea-surface temperature, and sea ice reconstructions from the ANDRILL

  1. Microbial ecology and biogeochemistry of continental Antarctic soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Don A Cowan

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The Antarctica Dry Valleys are regarded as the coldest hyperarid desert system on Earth. While a wide variety of environmental stressors including very low minimum temperatures, frequent freeze-thaw cycles and low water availability impose severe limitations to life, suitable niches for abundant microbial colonization exist. Antarctic desert soils contain much higher levels of microbial diversity than previously thought. Edaphic niches, including cryptic and refuge habitats, microbial mats and permafrost soils all harbour microbial communities which drive key biogeochemical cycling processes. For example, lithobionts (hypoliths and endoliths possess a genetic capacity for nitrogen and carbon cycling, polymer degradation and other system processes. Nitrogen fixation rates of hypoliths, as assessed through acetylene reduction assays, suggest that these communities are a significant input source for nitrogen into these oligotrophic soils. Here we review aspects of microbial diversity in Antarctic soils with an emphasis on functionality and capacity. We assess current knowledge regarding adaptations to Antarctic soil environments and highlight the current threats to Antarctic desert soil communities.

  2. South African Antarctic research programme 1978-1982

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    SASCAR

    1978-12-01

    Full Text Available This document provides a comprehensive review of the planned South African scientific activities in Antarctica and on the sub-Antarctic islands in the five year period starting in 1978. The scientific programmes are classified under five headings...

  3. 76 FR 60933 - Antarctic Conservation Act Permit Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-30

    ... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Antarctic Conservation Act Permit Applications AGENCY: National... Conservation Act of 1978. DATES: Interested parties are invited to submit written data, comments, or views with... Regulation for conduct of a flight from South America, over the South Pole, landing at Teniente Marsh Base...

  4. Microbial ecology and biogeochemistry of continental Antarctic soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cowan, Don A; Makhalanyane, Thulani P; Dennis, Paul G; Hopkins, David W

    2014-01-01

    The Antarctica Dry Valleys are regarded as the coldest hyperarid desert system on Earth. While a wide variety of environmental stressors including very low minimum temperatures, frequent freeze-thaw cycles and low water availability impose severe limitations to life, suitable niches for abundant microbial colonization exist. Antarctic desert soils contain much higher levels of microbial diversity than previously thought. Edaphic niches, including cryptic and refuge habitats, microbial mats and permafrost soils all harbor microbial communities which drive key biogeochemical cycling processes. For example, lithobionts (hypoliths and endoliths) possess a genetic capacity for nitrogen and carbon cycling, polymer degradation, and other system processes. Nitrogen fixation rates of hypoliths, as assessed through acetylene reduction assays, suggest that these communities are a significant input source for nitrogen into these oligotrophic soils. Here we review aspects of microbial diversity in Antarctic soils with an emphasis on functionality and capacity. We assess current knowledge regarding adaptations to Antarctic soil environments and highlight the current threats to Antarctic desert soil communities.

  5. Estimates of numbers of kelp gulls and Kerguelen and Antarctic ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Four species are regular breeders at the islands: Subantarctic skua Catharacta antarctica, kelp gull Larus dominicanus, Antarctic tern Sterna vittata and Kerguelen tern S. virgata. The latter three species currently each have populations of below 150 breeding pairs at the islands. Kelp gull numbers appear to be relatively ...

  6. Petrology of Antarctic Eucrites PCA 91078 and PCA 91245

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, L. M.; Domanik, K. J.; Drake, M. J.; Mittlefehldt, D. W.

    2002-01-01

    Antarctic eucrites PCA 91078 and PCA 91245, are petrographically characterized and found to be unpaired, type 6, basaltic eucrites. Observed textures that provide insight into the petrogenesis of these meteorites are also discussed. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  7. Evaluating Wind Power Potential in the Spanish Antarctic Base (BAE)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arribas, L.M.; Garcia Barquero, C; Navarro, J.; Cuerva, A.; Cruz, I.; Roque, V.; Marti, I.

    2000-01-01

    The objective of the work is to model wind field in the surroundings of the Spanish Antarctic Base (BAE in the following). The need of such a work comes from the necessity of an energy source able to supply the energy demand in the BAE during the Antarctic winter. When the BAE is in operation (in the Antarctic summer) the energy supply comes from a diesel engine. In the Antarctic winter the base is closed, but the demand of energy supply is growing up every year because of the increase in the number of technical and scientific machines that remain in the BAE taking different measurements. For this purpose the top of a closed hill called Pico Radio, not perturbed by close obstacles, has been chosen as the better site for the measurements. The measurement station is made up with a sonic anemometer and a small wind generator to supply the energy needed by the sensors head heating of the anemometer. This way, it will be also used as a proof for the suitability of a wind generator in the new chosen site, under those special climatic conditions.(Author) 3 refs

  8. Freshwater invertebrates of sub-Antarctic Marion Island | Dartnall ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The aquatic species include five platyhelminthes, a gastrotrich, three tardigrades, 28 rotifers, six nematodes, two annelids and 11 arthropods. Most are familiar species that have been recorded on other sub-Antarctic islands. The invertebrate faunas of the various freshwater habitats were basically similar in species ...

  9. 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

  10. Insignificant change in Antarctic snowmelt volume since 1979

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kuipers Munneke, P.; Picard, G.; van den Broeke, M.R.; Lenaerts, J.T.M.; van Meijgaard, E.

    2012-01-01

    Surface snowmelt is widespread in coastal Antarctica. Satellite-based microwave sensors have been observing melt area and duration for over three decades. However, these observations do not reveal the total volume of meltwater produced on the ice sheet. Here we present an Antarctic melt volume

  11. Calving fluxes and basal melt rates of Antarctic ice shelves

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Depoorter, M.A.; Bamber, J.L.; Griggs, J.A.; Lenaerts, J.T.M.; Ligtenberg, S.R.M.; van den Broeke, M.R.; Moholdt, G.

    2013-01-01

    Iceberg calving has been assumed to be the dominant cause of mass loss for the Antarctic ice sheet, with previous estimates of the calving flux exceeding 2,000 gigatonnes per year1, 2. More recently, the importance of melting by the ocean has been demonstrated close to the grounding line and near

  12. Dynamic thinning of glaciers on the Southern Antarctic Peninsula

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wouters, B.; Martin-Espanol, A.; Helm, V.; Flament, T.; van Wessem, J. M.; Ligtenberg, S. R. M.; van den Broeke, M. R.; Bamber, J. L.

    2015-01-01

    Growing evidence has demonstrated the importance of ice shelf buttressing on the inland grounded ice, especially if it is resting on bedrock below sea level. Much of the Southern Antarctic Peninsula satisfies this condition and also possesses a bed slope that deepens inland. Such ice sheet geometry

  13. Mucilaginibacter terrae sp nov., isolated from Antarctic soil

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Sedláček, I.; Pantůček, R.; Králová, S.; Mašlaňová, I.; Holochová, P.; Staňková, E.; Sobotka, Roman; Barták, M.; Busse, H.-J.; Švec, P.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 67, č. 10 (2017), s. 4002-4007 ISSN 1466-5026 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1416 Institutional support: RVO:61388971 Keywords : Mucilaginibacter terrae sp nov. * James ross island * Antarctic Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology, Virology OBOR OECD: Microbiology Impact factor: 2.134, year: 2016

  14. Modeling the Thermal Interactions of Meteorites Below the Antarctic Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oldroyd, William Jared; Radebaugh, Jani; Stephens, Denise C.; Lorenz, Ralph; Harvey, Ralph; Karner, James

    2017-10-01

    Meteorites with high specific gravities, such as irons, appear to be underrepresented in Antarctic collections over the last 40 years. This underrepresentation is in comparison with observed meteorite falls, which are believed to represent the actual population of meteorites striking Earth. Meteorites on the Antarctic ice sheet absorb solar flux, possibly leading to downward tunneling into the ice, though observations of this in action are very limited. This descent is counteracted by ice sheet flow supporting the meteorites coupled with ablation near mountain margins, which helps to force meteorites towards the surface. Meteorites that both absorb adequate thermal energy and are sufficiently dense may instead reach a shallow equilibrium depth as downward melting overcomes upward forces during the Antarctic summer. Using a pyronometer, we have measured the incoming solar flux at multiple depths in two deep field sites in Antarctica, the Miller Range and Elephant Moraine. We compare these data with laboratory analogues and model the thermal and physical interactions between a variety of meteorites and their surroundings. Our Matlab code model will account for a wide range of parameters used to characterize meteorites in an Antarctic environment. We will present the results of our model along with depth estimates for several types of meteorites. The recovery of an additional population of heavy meteorites would increase our knowledge of the formation and composition of the solar system.

  15. EBSD in Antarctic and Greenland Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weikusat, Ilka; Kuiper, Ernst-Jan; Pennock, Gill; Sepp, Kipfstuhl; Drury, Martyn

    2017-04-01

    boundaries. However, an almost equal number of tilt subgrain boundaries were measured, involving dislocations gliding on non-basal planes (prism or prism slip). A few subgrain boundaries involving prism edge dislocation glide, as well as boundaries involving basal twist dislocation slip, were also identified. The finding that subgrain boundaries built up by dislocations gliding on non-basal planes are as frequent as those originating from basal plane slip is surprising and has impact on the discussion on rate-controlling processes for the ice flow descriptions of large ice masses with respect to sea-level evolution. Weikusat, I.; Miyamoto, A.; Faria, S. H.; Kipfstuhl, S.; Azuma, N. & Hondoh, T.: Subgrain boundaries in Antarctic ice quantified by X-ray Laue diffraction J. Glaciol., 2011, 57, 85-94

  16. On the origin and evolution of Antarctic Peracarida (Crustacea, Malacostraca

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    Angelika Brandt

    1999-12-01

    Full Text Available The early separation of Gondwana and the subsequent isolation of Antarctica caused a long evolutionary history of its fauna. Both, long environmental stability over millions of years and habitat heterogeneity, due to an abundance of sessile suspension feeders on the continental shelf, favoured evolutionary processes of preadapted taxa, like for example the Peracarida. This taxon performs brood protection and this might be one of the most important reasons why it is very successful (i.e. abundant and diverse in most terrestrial and aquatic environments, with some species even occupying deserts. The extinction of many decapod crustaceans in the Cenozoic might have allowed the Peracarida to find and use free ecological niches. Therefore the palaeogeographic, palaeoclimatologic, and palaeo-hydrographic changes since the Palaeocene (at least since about 60 Ma ago and the evolutionary success of some peracarid taxa (e.g. Amphipoda, Isopoda led to the evolution of many endemic species in the Antarctic. Based on a phylogenetic analysis of the Antarctic Tanaidacea, Sieg (1988 demonstrated that the tanaid fauna of the Antarctic is mainly represented by phylogenetically younger taxa, and data from other crustacean taxa led Sieg (1988 to conclude that the recent Antarctic crustacean fauna must be comparatively young. His arguments are scrutinized on the basis of more recent data on the phylogeny and biodiversity of crustacean taxa, namely the Ostracoda, Decapoda, Mysidacea, Cumacea, Amphipoda, and Isopoda. This analysis demonstrates that the origin of the Antarctic fauna probably has different roots: an adaptive radiation of descendants from old Gondwanian ancestors was hypothesized for the isopod families Serolidae and Arcturidae, an evolution and radiation of phylogenetically old taxa in Antarctica could also be shown for the Ostracoda and the amphipod family Iphimediidae. A recolonization via the Scotia Arc appears possible for some species, though it is

  17. Is there a distinct continental slope fauna in the Antarctic?

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    Kaiser, Stefanie; Griffiths, Huw J.; Barnes, David K. A.; Brandão, Simone N.; Brandt, Angelika; O'Brien, Philip E.

    2011-02-01

    The Antarctic continental slope spans the depths from the shelf break (usually between 500 and 1000 m) to ˜3000 m, is very steep, overlain by 'warm' (2-2.5 °C) Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW), and life there is poorly studied. This study investigates whether life on Antarctica's continental slope is essentially an extension of the shelf or the abyssal fauna, a transition zone between these or clearly distinct in its own right. Using data from several cruises to the Weddell Sea and Scotia Sea, including the ANDEEP (ANtarctic benthic DEEP-sea biodiversity, colonisation history and recent community patterns) I-III, BIOPEARL (BIOdiversity, Phylogeny, Evolution and Adaptive Radiation of Life in Antarctica) 1 and EASIZ (Ecology of the Antarctic Sea Ice Zone) II cruises as well as current databases (SOMBASE, SCAR-MarBIN), four different taxa were selected (i.e. cheilostome bryozoans, isopod and ostracod crustaceans and echinoid echinoderms) and two areas, the Weddell Sea and the Scotia Sea, to examine faunal composition, richness and affinities. The answer has important ramifications to the link between physical oceanography and ecology, and the potential of the slope to act as a refuge and resupply zone to the shelf during glaciations. Benthic samples were collected using Agassiz trawl, epibenthic sledge and Rauschert sled. By bathymetric definition, these data suggest that despite eurybathy in some of the groups examined and apparent similarity of physical conditions in the Antarctic, the shelf, slope and abyssal faunas were clearly separated in the Weddell Sea. However, no such separation of faunas was apparent in the Scotia Sea (except in echinoids). Using a geomorphological definition of the slope, shelf-slope-abyss similarity only changed significantly in the bryozoans. Our results did not support the presence of a homogenous and unique Antarctic slope fauna despite a high number of species being restricted to the slope. However, it remains the case that there may be

  18. Thermohaline structure and water masses in the north of Antarctic Peninsula from data collected in situ by southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina

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    Ilana E. K. C. Wainer

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The Western Antarctic Peninsula is rapidly warming and exhibits high indices of biodiversity concentrated mostly along its continental shelf. This region has great importance due to the the mixing caused by the interaction of waters from Weddell Sea (MW, Bransfield Strait (EB and the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (CCA transmits thermohaline characteristics and nutrients of different sites and finally connects with all the world’s oceans. However, studies focusing on the temporal variability of the region’s oceanographic conditions that finally determine the water mass formation are sparse due to the logistical difficulties of conducting oceanographic surveys and traditional monitoring during the winter. For this study, variations of the thermohaline structure and water masses in the vicinity and below the sea ice in the North of the Antarctic Peninsula (AP and Scotia Sea (SS were recorded between February and November 2008 by two female southern elephant seals (SES, Mirounga leonina tagged with Conductivity–Temperature–Depth/Satellite-Relay Data Logger (CTD–SRDL. One thousand three hundred and thirty vertical profiles of temperature and salinity were collected by seals which were tagged by the MEOP-BR Project team at the Elephant Island, South Shetlands. These profiles, together with spread state diagrams allowed the identification of water masses and their variances in the ocean’s vertical structure. Among the set of identified water masses we cite: Antarctic Surface Water (AASW, Winter Water (WW, Warm Deep Water (WDW, Modified Warm Deep Water (MWDW, Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW, Upper Circumpolar Deep Water (UCDW, Lower Circumpolar Deep Water (LCDW and Ice Shelf Water (ISW. Our results show that the oceanic vertical structure undergoes changes that cannot be traditionally monitored, particularly during the Austral winter and that SES are important and modern oceanographic data collection platforms allowing for the improvement of our

  19. The impact of dynamic topography change on Antarctic Ice Sheet stability during the Mid-Pliocene Warm Period

    Science.gov (United States)

    Austermann, J.; Pollard, D.; Mitrovica, J. X.; Moucha, R.; Forte, A. M.; Deconto, R. M.; Rowley, D. B.; Raymo, M. E.

    2015-12-01

    The mid-Pliocene warm period (MPWP; ~ 3Ma), characterized by globally elevated temperatures (2-3º C) and carbon dioxide levels of ~400ppm, is commonly used as a testing ground for investigating ice sheet stability in a slightly warmer world. The central, unanswered question in this regard is the extent of East Antarctic melting during the MPWP. Here we assess the potential role of dynamic topography on this issue. Model reconstructions of the evolution of the Antarctic ice sheet during the ice age require an estimate of bedrock elevation through time. Ice sheet models account for changes in bedrock elevation due to glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA), often using simplified models of the GIA process, but they generally do not consider other processes that may perturb subglacial topography. One such notable process is dynamic topography, i.e. the deflection of the solid surface of the Earth due to convective flow and buoyancy variations within the mantle and lithosphere. Paleo-shorelines of Pliocene age reflect the influence of dynamic topography, but the impact of these bedrock elevation changes on ice sheet stability in the Antarctic region is unknown. In this study we use viscous flow simulations of mantle dynamics to predict changes in dynamic topography and reconstruct bedrock elevations below the Antarctic Ice Sheet since the MPWP. We furthermore couple this reconstruction to a three-dimensional ice sheet model in order to explore the impact of dynamic topography on the extent of the Antarctic Ice Sheet during the Pliocene. Our modeling indicates that uplift occurred in the area of the Transantarctic Mountains and the adjacent Wilkes Basin. This predicted uplift, which is consistent with geological inferences of uplift in the Transantarctic Mountains, implies a significantly (~100-200 m) lower elevation of the Wilkes Basin in the Pliocene. This lower elevation leads to ~400 km of additional retreat of the grounding line in this region relative to simulations

  20. Trace-element analysis of Antarctic H chondrites: Chemical weathering and comparisons with their non-Antarctic counterparts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kwok, J.E.

    1986-01-01

    Large numbers of meteorites have been discovered in Antarctica over the last decade (7000 fragments probably representing over 1200 separate events). They are important for their numbers and for their complement of unique or rare specimens; they also have long terrestrial ages (up to 1,000,000 years) compared to non-Antarctic falls (usually < 200 years). We report compositional data for mobile/volatile trace elements Ag, Au, Bi, Cd, Co, Cs, In, Rb, Sb, Se, Te, Ti, U, and Zn in a suite of Antarctic H chondrites. Our data show that heavily oxidized H chondrites are leached of a portion of their trace elements and, therefore, have been chemically compromised by their stay in Antarctica. The less oxidized specimens seem to have retained their chemical integrity. We suggest possibilities for using chemical data to measure the degree of a chondrite's chemical weathering. We compare our data to that obtained previously for non-Antarctic H chondrites (Linger et al., 1986), by petrologic type (H4, H5, H6, H4-6) and shock-loading (moderately shocked facies a-c, heavily shocked facies d-f). Many statistically significant differences are found between non-Antarctic and Victoria Land, Antarctica H chondrites of each petrologic type and of shock facies d-f

  1. Geophysical Investigation of Upper Mantle Anomalies of the Australian-Antarctic Ridge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, S. H.; Choi, H.; Kim, S. S.; Lin, J.

    2017-12-01

    Australian-Antarctic Ridge (AAR) is situated between the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge (PAR) and Southeast Indian Ridge (SEIR), extending eastward from the Australian-Antarctic Discordance (AAD). Much of the AAR has been remained uncharted until 2011 because of its remoteness and harsh weather conditions. Since 2011, four multidisciplinary expeditions initiated by the Korea Polar Research Institute (KOPRI) have surveyed the little-explored eastern ends of the AAR and investigated the tectonics, geochemistry, and hydrothermal activity of this intermediate spreading system. Recent isotope studies using the new basalt samples from the AAR have led to the new hypothesis of the Southern Ocean mantle domain (SOM), which may have originated from the super-plume activity associated with the Gondwana break-up. In this study, we characterize the geophysics of the Southern Ocean mantle using the newly acquired shipboard bathymetry and available geophysical datasets. First, we computed residual mantle Bouguer gravity anomalies (RMBA), gravity-derived crustal thickness, and residual topography along the AAR in order to obtain a geological proxy for regional variations in magma supply. The results of these analyses revealed that the southern flank of the AAR is associated with shallower seafloor, more negative RMBA, thicker crust, and/or less dense mantle in comparison to the conjugate northern flank. Furthermore, this north-south asymmetry becomes more prominent toward the central ridge segments of the AAR. Interestingly, the along-axis depths of the entire AAR are significantly shallower than the neighboring ridge systems and the global ridges of intermediate spreading rates. Such shallow depths are also correlated with regional negative geoid anomalies. Furthermore, recent mantle tomography models consistently showed that the upper mantle (< 250 km) below the AAR has low S-wave velocities, suggesting that it may be hotter than the nearby ridges. Such regional-scale anomalies of the

  2. Influence of Ross Sea Bottom Water changes on the warming and freshening of the Antarctic Bottom Water in the Australian-Antarctic Basin

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    K. Shimada

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Changes to the properties of Antarctic Bottom Water in the Australian-Antarctic Basin (AA-AABW between the 1990s and 2000s are documented using data from the WOCE Hydrographic Program (WHP and repeated hydrographic surveys. Strong cooling and freshening are observed on isopycnal layers denser than γn = 28.30 kg m−3. Changes in the average salinity and potential temperature below this isopycnal correspond to a basin-wide warming of 1300 ± 200 GW and freshening of 24 ± 3 Gt year−1. Recent changes to dense shelf water in the source regions in the Ross Sea and George V Land can explain the freshening of AA-AABW but not its extensive warming. An alternative mechanism for this warming is a decrease in the supply of AABW from the Ross Sea (RSBW. Hydrographic profiles between the western Ross Sea and George V Land (171–158° E were analyzed with a simple advective-diffusive model to assess the causes of the observed changes. The model suggests that the warming of RSBW observed between the 1970s and 2000s can be explained by a 21 ± 23% reduction in RSBW transport and the enhancement of the vertical diffusion of heat resulting from a 30 ± 7% weakening of the abyssal stratification. The documented freshening of Ross Sea dense shelf water leads to a reduction in both salinity and density stratification. Therefore the direct freshening of RSBW at its source also produces an indirect warming of the RSBW. A simple box model suggests that the changes in RSBW properties and volume transport (a decrease of 6.7% is assumed between the year 1995 and 2005 can explain 51 ± 6% of the warming and 84 ± 10% of the freshening observed in AA-AABW.

  3. Antarctic fellfield response to climate change: a tripartite synthesis of experimental data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kennedy, Andrew D

    1996-07-01

    This paper explores the biological consequences of climate change by integrating the results of a tripartite investigation involving fumarole, field manipulation and laboratory incubation experiments. The geographical region for this research is the maritime Antarctic. Under contemporary climate conditions, the lithosols in this region support only a sparse cryptogamic flora of limited taxonomic diversity and low structural complexity. However, the existence in geothermal areas of temperate species (e.g. Campylopus introflexus, Marchantia polymorpha, Philonotis acicularis) growing outside their normal biogeographical range suggests that elevated temperature and humidity may alter the trajectory of community development towards Magellanic or Patagonian composition. Productivity is also likely to increase, as indicated by significantly greater vegetative biomass recorded beneath climate-ameliorating soil covers than in controls. Barren fellfield soil samples transplanted to the laboratory and incubated at temperatures of 2-25°C show rapid development of moss, algae and lichen propagules in the range 15-25°C. A variety of species develop that have not been recorded in the field. The presence of exotic taxa indicates the existence of a dormant propagule bank in maritime Antarctic soils and suggests that no significant delay is likely to occur between the onset of climate warming and community development: instead, rapid establishment of those species favoured by the new climate conditions will yield a distinct founder effect, with increasing above- and below-ground biomass stimulating biogeochemical cycling. It is argued that the combined results of this synthesis identify generic responses to climate change arising from the importance at high latitudes of low temperature and water availability as limiting factors: subject to other growth resources being non-limiting, a more consistent stimulatory response to climate change may be expected than in temperate or

  4. A new bed elevation model for the Weddell Sea sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeofry, Hafeez; Ross, Neil; Corr, Hugh F. J.; Li, Jilu; Morlighem, Mathieu; Gogineni, Prasad; Siegert, Martin J.

    2018-04-01

    We present a new digital elevation model (DEM) of the bed, with a 1 km gridding, of the Weddell Sea (WS) sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). The DEM has a total area of ˜ 125 000 km2 covering the Institute, Möller and Foundation ice streams, as well as the Bungenstock ice rise. In comparison with the Bedmap2 product, our DEM includes new aerogeophysical datasets acquired by the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets (CReSIS) through the NASA Operation IceBridge (OIB) program in 2012, 2014 and 2016. We also improve bed elevation information from the single largest existing dataset in the region, collected by the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) Polarimetric radar Airborne Science Instrument (PASIN) in 2010-2011, from the relatively crude measurements determined in the field for quality control purposes used in Bedmap2. While the gross form of the new DEM is similar to Bedmap2, there are some notable differences. For example, the position and size of a deep subglacial trough (˜ 2 km below sea level) between the ice-sheet interior and the grounding line of the Foundation Ice Stream have been redefined. From the revised DEM, we are able to better derive the expected routing of basal water and, by comparison with that calculated using Bedmap2, we are able to assess regions where hydraulic flow is sensitive to change. Given the potential vulnerability of this sector to ocean-induced melting at the grounding line, especially in light of the improved definition of the Foundation Ice Stream trough, our revised DEM will be of value to ice-sheet modelling in efforts to quantify future glaciological changes in the region and, from this, the potential impact on global sea level. The new 1 km bed elevation product of the WS sector can be found at https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1035488" target="_blank">https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1035488.

  5. Molecular ecophysiology of Antarctic notothenioid fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, C-H Christina; Detrich, H William

    2007-12-29

    The notothenioid fishes of the Southern Ocean surrounding Antarctica are remarkable examples of organismal adaptation to extreme cold. Their evolution since the mid-Miocene in geographical isolation and a chronically cold marine environment has resulted in extreme stenothermality of the extant species. Given the unique thermal history of the notothenioids, one may ask what traits have been gained, and conversely, what characters have been lost through change in the information content of their genomes. Two dramatic changes that epitomize such evolutionary transformations are the gain of novel antifreeze proteins, which are obligatory for survival in icy seawater, by most notothenioids and the paradoxical loss of respiratory haemoproteins and red blood cells, normally deemed indispensable for vertebrate life, by the species of a highly derived notothenioid family, the icefishes. Here, we review recent advances in our understanding of these traits and their evolution and suggest future avenues of investigation. The formerly coherent paradigm of notothenioid freeze avoidance, developed from three decades of study of antifreeze glycoprotein (AFGP) based cold adaptation, now faces challenges stemming from the recent discovery of antifreeze-deficient, yet freeze-resistant, early notothenioid life stages and from definitive evidence that the liver is not the physiological source of AFGPs in notothenioid blood. The resolution of these intriguing observations is likely to reveal new physiological traits that are unique to the notothenioids. Similarly, the model of AFGP gene evolution from a notothenioid pancreatic trypsinogen-like gene precursor is being expanded and refined based on genome-level analyses of the linked AFGP loci and their ancestral precursors. Finally, the application of comparative genomics to study evolutionary change in the AFGP genotypes of cool-temperate notothenioids from sub-Antarctic habitats, where these genes are not necessary, will contribute to

  6. 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

  7. Dome C ultracarbonaceous Antarctic micrometeorites. Infrared and Raman fingerprints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dartois, E.; Engrand, C.; Duprat, J.; Godard, M.; Charon, E.; Delauche, L.; Sandt, C.; Borondics, F.

    2018-01-01

    Context. UltraCarbonaceous Antarctic MicroMeteorites (UCAMMs) represent a small fraction of interplanetary dust particles reaching the Earth's surface and contain large amounts of an organic component not found elsewhere. They are most probably sampling a contribution from the outer regions of the solar system to the local interplanetary dust particle (IDP) flux. Aims: We characterize UCAMMs composition focusing on the organic matter, and compare the results to the insoluble organic matter (IOM) from primitive meteorites, IDPs, and the Earth. Methods: We acquired synchrotron infrared microspectroscopy (μFTIR) and μRaman spectra of eight UCAMMs from the Concordia/CSNSM collection, as well as N/C atomic ratios determined with an electron microprobe. Results: The spectra are dominated by an organic component with a low aliphatic CH versus aromatic C=C ratio, and a higher nitrogen fraction and lower oxygen fraction compared to carbonaceous chondrites and IDPs. The UCAMMs carbonyl absorption band is in agreement with a ketone or aldehyde functional group. Some of the IR and Raman spectra show a C≡N band corresponding to a nitrile. The absorption band profile from 1400 to 1100 cm-1 is compatible with the presence of C-N bondings in the carbonaceous network, and is spectrally different from that reported in meteorite IOM. We confirm that the silicate-to-carbon content in UCAMMs is well below that reported in IDPs and meteorites. Together with the high nitrogen abundance relative to carbon building the organic matter matrix, the most likely scenario for the formation of UCAMMs occurs via physicochemical mechanisms taking place in a cold nitrogen rich environment, like the surface of icy parent bodies in the outer solar system. The composition of UCAMMs provides an additional hint of the presence of a heliocentric positive gradient in the C/Si and N/C abundance ratios in the solar system protoplanetary disc evolution. Part of the equipment used in this work has been

  8. Comparative abundance and distribution of major filter-feeders in the Antarctic pelagic zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voronina, N. M.

    1998-11-01

    The filter-feeding plankton, herbivorous copepods, salps and euphausiids, form the basic level of metazoans in the Antarctic pelagic trophic web. This paper sets out to determine the comparative share of these taxonomic groups in the total biomass and annual production. Their most abundant representatives, four copepod species ( Calanus propinquus, Calanoides acutus, Rhincalanus gigas and Metridia gerlachei), all salps and krill Euphausia superba were studied. For the first two groups net samples from six Russian expeditions in different sectors of the Antarctic were used. In total 752 samples from 118 stations were considered. The mean fresh biomass of filter-feeding copepods in the 0-1500 m layer was 18.0 g m -2 and in the entire Antarctic 576 10 6 t. The biomass of salps in comparatively restricted rich regions exceeded 500 g m -2 and in the remaining area was 1.2±0.8 g m -2, giving a total quantity of 882 10 6 t. The krill abundance estimation was based on published data, using a map of its quantitative distribution compiled from commercial trawling made by Soviet fishing and scientific ships during 17 seasons [Parfenovich, S.S., 1980. O zakonomernostyakh razmeshcheniya i regionalnoi differentsiatsii mestoskoplenii krilya v Yuzhnom Okeane. VNIRO, Moskva, in Russian.]. Three main zones based on commercial characteristics were determined by this author: (1) zone of regular occurrence of dense concentrations; (2) zone of rare occurrence of concentrations; (3) zone of low-abundance dispersed krill. All available data on E. superba biomass in the Antarctic were grouped together according to these zones and their means were calculated. The biomass of krill was found to be 60.1±11.2, 3.3±1.3 and 0.8±0.4 g m -2 fresh mass in zones 1, 2 and 3, respectively, with a total of 272 10 6 t. All estimates are compared with the literature data and their validity is discussed. For the annual production determinations the obtained biomass characteristics were multiplied by

  9. Interpretation of ground and aeromagnetic surveys of Palmer Land, Antarctic Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. N. Masolov

    2000-06-01

    Full Text Available Aeromagnetic data for Palmer Land provide new information on crustal structures of the Antarctic Peninsula. Features shown on the compilation of the Lassiter Coast and Orville Coast are characterized by systems of subparallel regional anomaly zones and lineaments. The magnetic data reveal the widespread presence of an orthogonal pattern of crosscutting linear discontinuities that can be interpreted as a Late Cretaceous/Early Tertiary fracture pattern. The main displacements in the anomaly pattern between the two units are recognized in Wetmore-Irvine glaciers area where the structure of the Antarctic Peninsula changes orientation from SW-NE to S-N. The NW-SE trending transitional zone is probably a transfer zone associated with north-westerly movement of the Lassiter Coast crustal segment relative to the Orville Coast segment. Within the Lassiter Coast a fragment of Pacific Margin Anomaly (PMA, Central Plateau Magnetic Anomaly and East Coast Magnetic Anomaly (ECMA are mapped. Two-dimensional modelling suggests that PMA is caused by a limited depth body (8 km consisting of numerous plutons, probably, of different ages, composition and magnetization. The Central Plateau Magnetic Anomaly and the Merrick-Sweeney-Latady zone of the Orville Coast are represented by strong positive anomaly bands that are associated with gabbro-diorite rocks and accompanying plutons intruded near by the border of Mount Poster Formation and Latady Formation. The ECMA are alignments of high-amplitude magnetic anomalies caused by gabbro-diorite bodies, which are located within the framework of the Cretaceous granite-granodiorite plutons. Granite-granodiorite plutons of Lassiter Coast Intrusive Suite are mostly reflected by positive anomalies (100-500 nT. Modelling studies and the character of distribution of the magnetic anomalies suggest that the plutons of Lassiter Coast Intrusive Suite are prominently reflected in magnetic anomalies of regional extent. The plutonic

  10. Secondary organic aerosols over oceans via oxidation of isoprene and monoterpenes from Arctic to Antarctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Qi-Hou; Xie, Zhou-Qing; Wang, Xin-Ming; Kang, Hui; He, Quan-Fu; Zhang, Pengfei

    2013-01-01

    Isoprene and monoterpenes are important precursors of secondary organic aerosols (SOA) in continents. However, their contributions to aerosols over oceans are still inconclusive. Here we analyzed SOA tracers from isoprene and monoterpenes in aerosol samples collected over oceans during the Chinese Arctic and Antarctic Research Expeditions. Combined with literature reports elsewhere, we found that the dominant tracers are the oxidation products of isoprene. The concentrations of tracers varied considerably. The mean average values were approximately one order of magnitude higher in the Northern Hemisphere than in the Southern Hemisphere. High values were generally observed in coastal regions. This phenomenon was ascribed to the outflow influence from continental sources. High levels of isoprene could emit from oceans and consequently have a significant impact on marine SOA as inferred from isoprene SOA during phytoplankton blooms, which may abruptly increase up to 95 ng/m³ in the boundary layer over remote oceans.

  11. Levoglucosan indicates high levels of biomass burning aerosols over oceans from the Arctic to Antarctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Qi-Hou; Xie, Zhou-Qing; Wang, Xin-Ming; Kang, Hui; Zhang, Pengfei

    2013-11-01

    Biomass burning is known to affect air quality, global carbon cycle, and climate. However, the extent to which biomass burning gases/aerosols are present on a global scale, especially in the marine atmosphere, is poorly understood. Here we report the molecular tracer levoglucosan concentrations in marine air from the Arctic Ocean through the North and South Pacific Ocean to Antarctica during burning season. Levoglucosan was found to be present in all regions at ng/m(3) levels with the highest atmospheric loadings present in the mid-latitudes (30°-60° N and S), intermediate loadings in the Arctic, and lowest loadings in the Antarctic and equatorial latitudes. As a whole, levoglucosan concentrations in the Southern Hemisphere were comparable to those in the Northern Hemisphere. Biomass burning has a significant impact on atmospheric Hg and water-soluble organic carbon (WSOC) from pole-to-pole, with more contribution to WSOC in the Northern Hemisphere than in the Southern Hemisphere.

  12. Rhodotorula portillonensis sp. nov., a basidiomycetous yeast isolated from Antarctic shallow-water marine sediment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laich, Federico; Vaca, Inmaculada; Chávez, Renato

    2013-10-01

    During the characterization of the mycobiota associated with shallow-water marine environments from Antarctic sea, a novel pink yeast species was isolated. Sequence analysis of the D1/D2 domain of the LSU rDNA gene and 5.8S-ITS regions revealed that the isolated yeast was closely related to Rhodotorula pallida CBS 320(T) and Rhodotorula benthica CBS 9124(T). On the basis of morphological, biochemical and physiological characterization and phylogenetic analyses, a novel basidiomycetous yeast species, Rhodotorula portillonensis sp. nov., is proposed. The type strain is Pi2(T) ( = CBS 12733(T)  = CECT 13081(T)) which was isolated from shallow-water marine sediment in Fildes Bay, King George Island, Antarctica.

  13. Coordinating Chemical and Mineralogical Analyses of Antarctic Dry Valley Sediments as Potential Analogs for Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patel, S. N.; Bishop, J. L.; Englert, P.; Gibson, E. K.

    2015-01-01

    The Antarctic Dry Valleys (ADV) provide a unique terrestrial analog for Martian surface processes as they are extremely cold and dry sedimentary environments. The surface geology and the chemical composition of the Dry Valleys that are similar to Mars suggest the possible presence of these soil-formation processes on Mars. The soils and sediments from Wright Valley, Antarctica were investigated in this study to examine mineralogical and chemical changes along the surface layer in this region and as a function of depth. Surface samples collected near Prospect Mesa and Don Juan Pond of the ADV were analyzed using visible/near-infrared (VNIR) and mid-IR reflectance spectroscopy and major and trace element abundances.

  14. STS-48 ESC Earth observation of ice pack, Antarctic Ice Shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    1991-01-01

    STS-48 Earth observation taken aboard Discovery, Orbiter Vehicle (OV) 103, is of the breakup of pack ice along the periphery of the Antarctic Ice Shelf. Strong offshore winds, probably associated with katabatic downdrafts from the interior of the continent, are seen peeling off the edges of the ice shelf into long filaments of sea ice, icebergs, bergy bits, and growlers to flow northward into the South Atlantic Ocean. These photos are used to study ocean wind, tide and current patterns. Similar views photographed during previous missions, when analyzed with these recent views may yield information about regional ice drift and breakup of ice packs. The image was captured using an electronic still camera (ESC), was stored on a removable hard disk or small optical disk, and was converted to a format suitable for downlink transmission. The ESC documentation was part of Development Test Objective (DTO) 648, Electronic Still Photography.

  15. Influence of internal tides on Antarctic Bottom Water propagation through abyssal channels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morozov, Eugene

    2010-05-01

    Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW) propagates in the Atlantic Ocean from the Weddell Sea to the north through narrow passages in submarine ridges. Submarine ridges are regions of strong internal tide generation in the ocean that causes mixing and eventually AABW loses its distinguishing properties such as low temperature and salinity. The Vema Fracture Zone (11 N) and Romanche Fracture Zone (equator) in the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR) are pathways for AABW to the Northeast Atlantic. The deep basin of the Northeast Atlantic (Canary Basin and Gambia Abyssal Plain) are filled with the bottom water propagating through the Vema FZ rather than through the equatorial fracture zones because strong internal tides and mixing over the slopes of the MAR near the equator cause warming of AABW and decrease of its density. Further propagation of AABW through the Kane Gap is low. Recent field measurements in the fracture zones confirm this concept based on modeling results. Results of recent cruises are presented.

  16. A roadmap for Antarctic and Southern Ocean science for the next two decades and beyond

    OpenAIRE

    Kennicutt, M.C.; Chown, S.L.; Cassano, J.J.; Liggett, D.; Peck, L.S.; Massom, R.; Rintoul, S.R.; Storey, J.; Vaughan, D.G.; Wilson, T.J.; Allison, I.; Ayton, J.; Badhe, R.; Baeseman, J.; Barrett, P.J.

    2015-01-01

    Antarctic and Southern Ocean science is vital to understanding natural variability, the processes that govern global change and the role of humans in the Earth and climate system. The potential for new knowledge to be gained from future Antarctic science is substantial. Therefore, the international Antarctic community came together to ‘scan the horizon’ to identify the highest priority scientific questions that researchers should aspire to answer in the next two decades and beyond. Wide consu...

  17. El Niño and the Antarctic During Recent Climatic Events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kidwell, A. N.; Jo, Y. H.; Yan, X. H.

    2014-12-01

    The difference between eastern Pacific (EP) and central Pacific (CP) type El Niños has been noted in the tropical Pacific Ocean. During recent global warming hiatus, the Pacific Decadal Oscillations (PDO) switches to the negative phase while the CP El Niños occur more often than EP El Niños. The changes of El Niño type in conjunction with westward drift and increasing warm pool size shows an interesting multidecadal change in the warm pool (Kidwell et al, 2014). However, the effect of these variations in other regions is not fully explored. A comprehensive study of the El Niño /La Niña (EN/LN) events and their Antarctic teleconnections was conducted using multiple remote sensing and composite data sets. During the time period from April 2002-April 2011, the sea ice coverage, remotely sensed sea surface temperature (SST), outgoing longwave radiation (OLR) and continental water mass variations data were all collected and analyzed. The results show the different ways in which the variations in tropical SST and OLR associated with CP and EP El Niños cause regional changes in sea ice coverage around the continent of Antarctica as well as changes in continental water mass during six distinct El Niño events and three distinct La Niña events. The El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) diversity and the Southern Ocean deep warming around the Antarctic during recent "Hiatus" will also be discussed.

  18. Environmental drivers of viral community composition in Antarctic soils identified by viromics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adriaenssens, Evelien M; Kramer, Rolf; Van Goethem, Marc W; Makhalanyane, Thulani P; Hogg, Ian; Cowan, Don A

    2017-07-19

    The Antarctic continent is considered the coldest and driest place on earth with simple ecosystems, devoid of higher plants. Soils in the ice-free regions of Antarctica are known to harbor a wide range of microorganisms from primary producers to grazers, yet their ecology and particularly the role of viruses is poorly understood. In this study, we examined the virus community structures of 14 soil samples from the Mackay Glacier region. Viral communities were extracted from soil and the dsDNA was extracted, amplified using single-primer amplification, and sequenced using the Ion Torrent Proton platform. Metadata on soil physico-chemistry was collected from all sites. Both read and contig datasets were analyzed with reference-independent and reference-dependent methods to assess viral community structures and the influence of environmental parameters on their distribution. We observed a high heterogeneity in virus signatures, independent of geographical proximity. Tailed bacteriophages were dominant in all samples, but the incidences of the affiliated families Siphoviridae and Myoviridae were inversely correlated, suggesting direct competition for hosts. Viruses of the families Phycodnaviridae and Mimiviridae were present at significant levels in high-diversity soil samples and were found to co-occur, implying little competition between them. Combinations of soil factors, including pH, calcium content, and site altitude, were found to be the main drivers of viral community structure. The pattern of viral community structure with higher levels of diversity at lower altitude and pH, and co-occurring viral families, suggests that these cold desert soil viruses interact with each other, the host, and the environment in an intricate manner, playing a potentially crucial role in maintaining host diversity and functioning of the microbial ecosystem in the extreme environments of Antarctic soil.

  19. An Ensemble Analysis of Antarctic Glacial Isostatic Adjustment and Sea Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lecavalier, B.; Tarasov, L.

    2016-12-01

    Inferences of past ice sheet evolution that lack any uncertainty assessment (implicit or explicit), have little value. A developing technique for explicit uncertainty quantification of glacial systems is Bayesian calibration of models against large observational data-sets (Tarasov et al., 2012). The foundation for a Bayesian calibration of a 3D glacial systems model (GSM) for Antarctica has recently been completed (Briggs et al., 2013; 2014; Briggs and Tarasov, 2013). Bayesian calibration thoroughly samples model uncertainties against fits to observational data to generate a probability distribution for the Antarctic Ice Sheet deglaciation with explicit and well-defined confidence intervals. To have validity as a complete inference of past ice sheet evolution, Bayesian calibration requires a model that "brackets reality".Past work has shown the GSM to have likely inadequate range of grounding line migration in certain sectors as well as persistent ice thickness biases in topographically complex regions (Briggs et al., 2014). To advance towards full calibration, these deficiencies are being addressed through a number of model developments. The grounding line scheme has been revised (Pollard and DeConto, 2012), the horizontal resolution is increased to 20 km, and boundary conditions are updated. The basal drag representation now includes the sub-grid treatment of the thermo-mechanical impacts of high basal roughness. Parametric uncertainties in basal drag for regions that are presently marine have been re-evaluated. The impact of past changes in ocean temperature on sub ice shelf melt is explicitly incorporated in the current ocean forcing parametric scheme. Uncertainties in earth rheology are also probed to robustly quantify uncertainties affiliated with glacial isostatic adjustment. The ensemble analysis of the Antarctic glacial system provides dynamical bounds on past and present Antarctica glacial isostatic adjustment and sea level contributions. This research

  20. Trace elements in primitive meteorites—VII Antarctic unequilibrated ordinary chondrites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Ming-Sheng; Lipschutz, Michael E.

    2007-02-01

    We report RNAA results for Co, Au, Sb, Ga, Rb, Cs, Se, Ag, Te, Zn, In, Bi, Tl and Cd (in increasing order of metamorphic mobility) in 22 Antarctic unequilibrated ordinary chondrites (UOC). This brings to 38 the number of UOC for which data for highly volatile elements are known. For elements of lesser mobility (Co to Se, omitting Cs) overall variability in UOC are low, relative standard deviations (one sigma) being no more than a factor of two. For Ag, Te and Zn, relative standard deviations are 2-4×, while for Cs and the four most volatile elements, the variabilities are 8-110×. Elemental abundances do not vary with chemical type (H, L and LL) nor with UOC subtype (3.0-3.9). Contents of all elements reach levels up to, even exceeding, cosmic and all but Cd and the two alkalis, seem unaffected by post-accretionary processes. Contents of highly volatile elements are consistent with the idea that source regions producing contemporary falls and older Antarctic UOC differed in thermal histories. The presence or absence of carbide magnetite assemblages (CMA) generally accords with high or low Cd contents, respectively. This relationship accords with the prior suggestion that CMA formed by alteration of Fe-Ni metal by C-O-H-containing fluids at temperatures indicate that they were subsequently destroyed as metamorphic intensity increased. The high, often supercosmic, Rb and Cs levels in UOC may result from their high solubility in liquid water signalling their redistribution by C-O-H-containing fluid while in the liquid water field. Because of its uniquely high mobility, Cd could have been enriched by the C-O-H fluids and should have been lost from parent regions during later, higher temperature anhydrous metamorphism at temperatures in the 500-600 °C range.

  1. Modification of deep waters in Marguerite Bay, western Antarctic Peninsula, caused by topographic overflows

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venables, Hugh J.; Meredith, Michael P.; Brearley, J. Alexander

    2017-05-01

    Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW) intrudes from the mid-layers of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current onto the shelf of the western Antarctic Peninsula, providing a source of heat and nutrients to the regional ocean. It is well known that CDW is modified as it flows across the shelf, but the mechanisms responsible for this are not fully known. Here, data from underwater gliders with high spatial resolution are used to demonstrate the importance of detailed bathymetry in inducing multiple local mixing events. Clear evidence for overflows is observed in the glider data as water flows along a deep channel with multiple transverse ridges. The ridges block the densest waters, with overflowing water descending several hundred metres to fill subsequent basins. This vertical flow leads to entrainment of overlying colder and fresher water in localised mixing events. Initially this process leads to an increase in bottom temperatures due to the temperature maximum waters descending to greater depths. After several ridges, however, the mixing is sufficient to remove the temperature maximum completely and the entrainment of colder thermocline waters to depth reduces the bottom temperature, to approximately the same as in the source region of Marguerite Trough. Similarly, it is shown that deep waters of Palmer Deep are warmer than at the same depth at the shelf break. The exact details of the transformations observed are heavily dependent on the local bathymetry and water column structure, but glacially-carved troughs and shallow sills are a common feature of the bathymetry of polar shelves, and these types of processes may be a factor in determining the hydrographic conditions close to the coast across a wider area.

  2. Turning microplastics into nanoplastics through digestive fragmentation by Antarctic krill.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawson, Amanda L; Kawaguchi, So; King, Catherine K; Townsend, Kathy A; King, Robert; Huston, Wilhelmina M; Bengtson Nash, Susan M

    2018-03-08

    Microplastics (plastics microplastics through ingestion. Here, by exposing Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) to microplastics under acute static renewal conditions, we present evidence of physical size alteration of microplastics ingested by a planktonic crustacean. Ingested microplastics (31.5 µm) are fragmented into pieces less than 1 µm in diameter. Previous feeding studies have shown spherical microplastics either; pass unaffected through an organism and are excreted, or are sufficiently small for translocation to occur. We identify a new pathway; microplastics are fragmented into sizes small enough to cross physical barriers, or are egested as a mixture of triturated particles. These findings suggest that current laboratory-based feeding studies may be oversimplifying interactions between zooplankton and microplastics but also introduces a new role of Antarctic krill, and potentially other species, in the biogeochemical cycling and fate of plastic.

  3. Natural and anthropogenic hydrocarbons in the Antarctic pack ice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nemirovskaya, I.A.; Novigatsky, A.N.

    2004-01-01

    A field experiment was conducted near the Russian Antarctic stations in May, 2001 in the Pridz Bay and coastal part of the Davies Sea to examine the content of dissolved and suspended forms of aliphatic hydrocarbons in melted snow samples, pack ice and ice cores. The site included clean control areas and polluted test areas. A spill was performed by covering the bare ice surface with marine diesel fuel. The different physical characteristics of clean and polluted ice were measured. This included radiation balance, reflected solar radiation, integral albedo radiation, surface temperature, seawater temperature, salinity at depth, and ice salinity. The study showed that accumulation of natural and anthropogenic hydrocarbon took place in the ice-water barrier zone, mostly in suspended form. It was concluded that for oil spills in pack Antarctic ice, the mechanism of filtration due to convection-diffusion plays an important role in the transformation of diesel fuel. 14 refs., 2 tabs., 2 figs

  4. Development of the interface software for the Antarctic penetrator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kazuo Shibuya

    2005-11-01

    Full Text Available We have developed PC-based interface software which controls ground system segments (GSSs of the Antarctic penetrator through an automatic data collection system onboard a helicopter. A pen-touch panel was developed for easy operation. There are six basic functions in the interface software; GSS time synchronization", make schedule file", send schedule file", GSS time calibration", data read-out", and sleep". The sleep command enables us to cut off the radio transmitter/receiver to save power during a pre-determined period. After execution of each command, log files are saved automatically. In order to monitor processing by eye, a bar graph appears during execution of time synchronization" and data read-out". As for malfunctioning encountered during the 43rd Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition, the related software bugs were identified and the codes were rewritten.

  5. Eddy dynamics in the Southern Ocean: How does the interaction of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current with sea-bed topography influence the surface mixed layer and hence the carbon-climate feedback processes?

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Kobo, N

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available The Southern Ocean is an important sink for heat and CO2 and is one of the world’s most productive regions. The unique absence of blocking continents allows the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) to connect all ocean basins (Atlantic, Pacific...

  6. Molluscan systematics and biostratigraphy: lower tertiary, La Meseta formation, Seymour Island, Antarctic Peninsula

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Stilwell, Jeffrey D; Zinsmeister, William J

    1992-01-01

    Contents: The Antarctic research series: statement of objectives - Acknowledgements - Abstract - Introduction - Previous investigations - Stratigraphy - Age of the La Meseta Formation - Biostratigraphy - Depositional environments...

  7. Introduction. Antarctic ecology: from genes to ecosystems. Part 2. Evolution, diversity and functional ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogers, Alex D; Murphy, Eugene J; Johnston, Nadine M; Clarke, Andrew

    2007-12-29

    The Antarctic biota has evolved over the last 100 million years in increasingly isolated and cold conditions. As a result, Antarctic species, from micro-organisms to vertebrates, have adapted to life at extremely low temperatures, including changes in the genome, physiology and ecological traits such as life history. Coupled with cycles of glaciation that have promoted speciation in the Antarctic, this has led to a unique biota in terms of biogeography, patterns of species distribution and endemism. Specialization in the Antarctic biota has led to trade-offs in many ecologically important functions and Antarctic species may have a limited capacity to adapt to present climate change. These include the direct effects of changes in environmental parameters and indirect effects of increased competition and predation resulting from altered life histories of Antarctic species and the impacts of invasive species. Ultimately, climate change may alter the responses of Antarctic ecosystems to harvesting from humans. The unique adaptations of Antarctic species mean that they provide unique models of molecular evolution in natural populations. The simplicity of Antarctic communities, especially from terrestrial systems, makes them ideal to investigate the ecological implications of climate change, which are difficult to identify in more complex systems.

  8. Measurement of the electrostatic field in aurora by antarctic rocket

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Takeya, Yoshio; Minami, Shigeyuki

    1974-01-01

    The direct measurement of the electrostatic field produced by the flow of charged particles and geomagnetic field in aurora has been carried out by means of rockets or satellites. The construction of an electric field meter and its characteristics are described, which measures the vectors of electric field with antarctic rockets. New scheme is presented: three components of an electric field are directly obtained through the probes set in three directions. (Mori, K.)

  9. Ultraviolet radiation response of two heterotropy Antarctic marine bacterial

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hernandez, Edgardo A.; Ferreyra, Gustavo A.; Mac Cormack, Walter P.

    2004-01-01

    Two Antarctic marine bacterial strains, were exposed to different irradiance of ultraviolet (UV) solar radiation using several experimental protocols and interferential filters. Results showed that both, UV-A and UV-B radiation produce deleterious effects on two tested bacterial strains. The mortality values under UVB treatments were higher than those observed under UVA treatments. UVvi strain proved to be more resistant to UV radiation than the UVps strain. (author) [es

  10. Atmospheric Influences on the Anomalous 2016 Antarctic Sea Ice Decay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raphael, M. N.; Schlosser, E.; Haumann, A.

    2017-12-01

    Over the past three decades, a small but significant increase in sea ice extent (SIE) has been observed in the Antarctic. However, in 2016 there was a surprisingly early onset of the melt season. The maximum Antarctic SIE was reached in August rather than end of September, and was followed by a rapid decrease. The decline of the sea ice area (SIA) started even earlier, in July. The retreat of the ice was particularly large in November where Antarctic SIE exhibited a negative anomaly (compared to the 1981-2010 average) of almost 2 Mio. km2, which, combined with reduced Arctic SIE, led to a distinct minimum in global SIE. And, satellite observations show that from November 2016 to February 2017, the daily Antarctic SIE has been at record low levels. We use sea level pressure and geopotential height data from the ECMWF- Interim reanalysis, in conjunction with sea ice data obtained from the National Snow and Ice Data Centre (NSIDC), to investigate possible atmospheric influences on the observed phenomena. Indications are that both the onset of the melt in July and the rapid decrease in SIA and SIE in November were triggered by atmospheric flow patterns related to a positive Zonal Wave 3 index, i.e. synoptic situations leading to strong meridional flow. Additionally the Southern Annular Mode (SAM) index reached its second lowest November value since the beginning of the satellite observations. It is likely that the SIE decrease was preconditioned by SIA decrease. Positive feedback effects led to accelerated melt and consequently to the extraordinary low November SIE.

  11. Antarctic sea ice losses drive gains in benthic carbon drawdown.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, D K A

    2015-09-21

    Climate forcing of sea-ice losses from the Arctic and West Antarctic are blueing the poles. These losses are accelerating, reducing Earth's albedo and increasing heat absorption. Subarctic forest (area expansion and increased growth) and ice-shelf losses (resulting in new phytoplankton blooms which are eaten by benthos) are the only significant described negative feedbacks acting to counteract the effects of increasing CO2 on a warming planet, together accounting for uptake of ∼10(7) tonnes of carbon per year. Most sea-ice loss to date has occurred over polar continental shelves, which are richly, but patchily, colonised by benthic animals. Most polar benthos feeds on microscopic algae (phytoplankton), which has shown increased blooms coincident with sea-ice losses. Here, growth responses of Antarctic shelf benthos to sea-ice losses and phytoplankton increases were investigated. Analysis of two decades of benthic collections showed strong increases in annual production of shelf seabed carbon in West Antarctic bryozoans. These were calculated to have nearly doubled to >2x10(5) tonnes of carbon per year since the 1980s. Annual production of bryozoans is median within wider Antarctic benthos, so upscaling to include other benthos (combined study species typically constitute ∼3% benthic biomass) suggests an increased drawdown of ∼2.9x10(6) tonnes of carbon per year. This drawdown could become sequestration because polar continental shelves are typically deeper than most modern iceberg scouring, bacterial breakdown rates are slow, and benthos is easily buried. To date, most sea-ice losses have been Arctic, so, if hyperboreal benthos shows a similar increase in drawdown, polar continental shelves would represent Earth's largest negative feedback to climate change. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Antarctic krill 454 pyrosequencing reveals chaperone and stress transcriptome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melody S Clark

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The Antarctic krill Euphausia superba is a keystone species in the Antarctic food chain. Not only is it a significant grazer of phytoplankton, but it is also a major food item for charismatic megafauna such as whales and seals and an important Southern Ocean fisheries crop. Ecological data suggest that this species is being affected by climate change and this will have considerable consequences for the balance of the Southern Ocean ecosystem. Hence, understanding how this organism functions is a priority area and will provide fundamental data for life history studies, energy budget calculations and food web models. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The assembly of the 454 transcriptome of E. superba resulted in 22,177 contigs with an average size of 492bp (ranging between 137 and 8515bp. In depth analysis of the data revealed an extensive catalogue of the cellular chaperone systems and the major antioxidant proteins. Full length sequences were characterised for the chaperones HSP70, HSP90 and the super-oxide dismutase antioxidants, with the discovery of potentially novel duplications of these genes. The sequence data contained 41,470 microsatellites and 17,776 Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs/INDELS, providing a resource for population and also gene function studies. CONCLUSIONS: This paper details the first 454 generated data for a pelagic Antarctic species or any pelagic crustacean globally. The classical "stress proteins", such as HSP70, HSP90, ferritin and GST were all highly expressed. These genes were shown to be over expressed in the transcriptomes of Antarctic notothenioid fish and hypothesized as adaptations to living in the cold, with the associated problems of decreased protein folding efficiency and increased vulnerability to damage by reactive oxygen species. Hence, these data will provide a major resource for future physiological work on krill, but in particular a suite of "stress" genes for studies understanding

  13. Observation of very low frequency emissions at Indian Antarctic ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Recently, we have succeeded in recording VLF emissions at the Indian Antarctic station, Maitri (geom. lat. 62° S, geom. long. 57.23°E, =4.5) using a T-type antenna, pre/main amplifiers and digital audio tape recorder. VLF hiss in the frequency ranges 11–13 kHz and 13–14.5 kHz and some riser-type emissions in the ...

  14. Tracking the El Nino events from Antarctic ice core records

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Keskin, S.S.; Oelmez, I.

    2004-01-01

    Sodium and chlorine measurements were made by instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) on stratigraphically dated ice core samples from Byrd Station, Antarctica, for the last three centuries. The time period between 1969 and 1989 showed an enhanced impact on the Antarctic ice sheets from oceans in the form of marine aerosols. A disturbed ocean-atmosphere interface due to El Ni Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events seems to be a candidate for this observation in Antarctica. (author)

  15. Can Antarctic lichens acclimatize to changes in temperature?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colesie, Claudia; Büdel, Burkhard; Hurry, Vaughan; Green, Thomas George Allan

    2018-03-01

    The Antarctic Peninsula, a tundra biome dominated by lichens and bryophytes, is an ecozone undergoing rapid temperature shifts. Such changes may demand a high physiological plasticity of the local lichen species to maintain their role as key drivers in this pristine habitat. This study examines the response of net photosynthesis and respiration to increasing temperatures for three Antarctic lichen species with different ecological response amplitudes. We hypothesize that negative effects caused by increased temperatures can be mitigated by thermal acclimation of respiration and/or photosynthesis. The fully controlled growth chamber experiment simulated intermediate and extreme temperature increases over the time course of 6 weeks. Results showed that, in contrast to our hypothesis, none of the species was able to down-regulate temperature-driven respiratory losses through thermal acclimation of respiration. Instead, severe effects on photobiont vitality demonstrated that temperatures around 15°C mark the upper limit for the two species restricted to the Antarctic, and when mycobiont demands exceeded the photobiont capacity they could not survive within the lichen thallus. In contrast, the widespread lichen species was able to recover its homoeostasis by rapidly increasing net photosynthesis. We conclude that to understand the complete lichen response, acclimation processes of both symbionts, the photo- and the mycobiont, have to be evaluated separately. As a result, we postulate that any acclimation processes in lichen are species-specific. This, together with the high degree of response variability and sensitivity to temperature in different species that co-occur spatially close, complicates any predictions regarding future community composition in the Antarctic. Nevertheless, our results suggest that species with a broad ecological amplitude may be favoured with on-going changes in temperature. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Temperature effects on hemocyanin oxygen binding in an antarctic cephalopod.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zielinski, S; Sartoris, F J; Pörtner, H O

    2001-02-01

    The functional relevance of oxygen transport by hemocyanin of the Antarctic octopod Megaleledone senoi and of the eurythermal cuttlefish Sepia officinalis was analyzed by continuous and simultaneous recordings of changes in pH and hemocyanin oxygen saturation in whole blood at various temperatures. These data were compared to literature data on other temperate and cold-water cephalopods (octopods and giant squid). In S. officinalis, the oxygen affinity of hemocyanin changed at deltaP50/degrees C = 0.12 kPa (pH 7.4) with increasing temperatures; this is similar to observations in temperate octopods. In M. senoi, thermal sensitivity was much smaller (delta log P50/delta pH) increased with increasing temperature in both the cuttlefish and the Antarctic octopod. At low PO2 (1.0 kPa) and pH (7.2), the presence of a large venous oxygen reserve (43% saturation) insensitive to pH reflects reduced pH sensitivity and high oxygen affinity in M. senoi hemocyanin at 0 degrees C. In S. officinalis, this reserve was 19% at pH 7.4, 20 degrees C, and 1.7 kPa O2, a level still higher than in squid. These findings suggest that the lower metabolic rate of octopods and cuttlefish compared to squid is reflected in less pH-dependent oxygen transport. Results of the hemocyanin analysis for the Antarctic octopod were similar to those reported for Vampyroteuthis--an extremely high oxygen affinity supporting a very low metabolic rate. In contrast to findings in cold-adapted giant squid, the minimized thermal sensitivity of oxygen transport in Antarctic octopods will reduce metabolic scope and thereby contribute to their stenothermality.

  17. First record of Babesia sp. in Antarctic penguins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montero, Estrella; González, Luis Miguel; Chaparro, Alberto; Benzal, Jesús; Bertellotti, Marcelo; Masero, José A; Colominas-Ciuró, Roger; Vidal, Virginia; Barbosa, Andrés

    2016-04-01

    This is the first reported case of Babesia sp. in Antarctic penguins, specifically a population of Chinstrap penguins (Pygoscelis antarctica) in the Vapour Col penguin rookery in Deception Island, South Shetlands, Antarctica. We collected peripheral blood from 50 adult and 30 chick Chinstrap penguins. Examination of the samples by microscopy showed intraerythrocytic forms morphologically similar to other avian Babesia species in 12 Chinstrap penguin adults and seven chicks. The estimated parasitaemias ranged from 0.25×10(-2)% to 0.75×10(-2)%. Despite the low number of parasites found in blood smears, semi-nested PCR assays yielded a 274 bp fragment in 12 of the 19 positive blood samples found by microscopy. Sequencing revealed that the fragment was 97% similar to Babesia sp. 18S rRNA from Australian Little Penguins (Eudyptula minor) confirming presence of the parasite. Parasite prevalence estimated by microscopy in adults and chicks was higher (24% vs. 23.3%, respectively) than found by semi-nested PCR (16% vs. 13.3% respectively). Although sampled penguins were apparently healthy, the effect of Babesia infection in these penguins is unknown. The identification of Babesia sp. in Antarctic penguins is an important finding. Ixodes uriae, as the only tick species present in the Antarctic Peninsula, is the key to understanding the natural history of this parasite. Future work should address the transmission dynamics and pathogenicity of Babesia sp. in Chinstrap penguin as well as in other penguin species, such as Gentoo penguin (Pygoscelis papua) and Adélie penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae), present within the tick distribution range in the Antarctic Peninsula. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  18. Human impacts on Antarctic ecosystems: do not forget the microorganisms!

    OpenAIRE

    Hughes, Kevin; Verleyen, Elie; Vyverman, Wim; Obbels, Dagmar; Willems, Anne; Stelmach Pessi, Igor; Laughinghouse IV, Haywood; Wilmotte, Annick

    2013-01-01

    The tiny and microscopic creatures that are the permanent inhabitants of the Antarctic continent are often overlooked in environmental impact assessments and when new management and protection strategies are designed. This lack of consideration is probably due to their small size and the need of sophisticated molecular methods to study their diversity, evolution and geographic distribution. However, considerable progress has been made in the field of molecular diversity in the last two dec...

  19. Task-dependent cold stress during expeditions in Antarctic environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Drew M; Pilcher, June J; Powell, Robert B

    2017-01-01

    This study seeks to understand the degree of body cooling, cold perception and physical discomfort during Antarctic tour excursions. Eight experienced expedition leaders across three Antarctic cruise voyages were monitored during occupational tasks: kayaking, snorkelling and zodiac outings. Subjective cold perception and discomfort were recorded using a thermal comfort assessment and skin temperature was recorded using a portable data logger. Indoor cabin temperature and outdoor temperature with wind velocity were used as measures of environmental stress. Physical activity level and clothing insulation were estimated using previous literature. Tour leaders experienced a 6°C (2°C wind chill) environment for an average of 6 hours each day. Leaders involved in kayaking reported feeling colder and more uncomfortable than other leaders, but zodiac leaders showed greater skin temperature cooling. Occupational experience did not predict body cooling or cold stress perception. These findings indicate that occupational cold stress varies by activity and measurement methodology. The current study effectively used objective and subjective measures of cold-stress to identify factors which can contribute to risk in the Antarctic tourism industry. Results suggest that the type of activity may moderate risk of hypothermia, but not discomfort, potentially putting individuals at risk for cognitive related mistakes and cold injuries.

  20. Velocities of antarctic outlet glaciers determined from sequential Landsat images

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacDonald, Thomas R.; Ferrigno, Jane G.; Williams, Richard S.; Lucchitta, Baerbel K.

    1989-01-01

    Approximately 91.0 percent of the volume of present-day glacier ice on Earth is in Antarctica; Greenland contains about another 8.3 percent of the volume. Thus, together, these two great ice sheets account for an estimated 99.3 percent of the total. Long-term changes in the volume of glacier ice on our planet are the result of global climate change. Because of the relationship of global ice volume to sea level (± 330 cubic kilometers of glacier ice equals ± 1 millimeter sea level), changes in the mass balance of the antarctic ice sheet are of particular importance.Whether the mass balance of the east and west antarctic ice sheets is positive or negative is not known. Estimates of mass input by total annual precipitation for the continent have been made from scattered meteorological observations (Swithinbank 1985). The magnitude of annual ablation of the ice sheet from calving of outlet glaciers and ice shelves is also not well known. Although the velocities of outlet glaciers can be determined from field measurements during the austral summer,the technique is costly, does not cover a complete annual cycle,and has been applied to just a few glaciers. To increase the number of outlet glaciers in Antarctica for which velocities have been determined and to provide additional data for under-standing the dynamics of the antarctic ice sheets and their response to global climate change, sequential Landsat image of several outlet glaciers were measured.

  1. Expanding Antarctic Sea Ice: Anthropogenic or Natural Variability?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bitz, C. M.

    2016-12-01

    Antarctic sea ice extent has increased over the last 36 years according to the satellite record. Concurrent with Antarctic sea-ice expansion has been broad cooling of the Southern Ocean sea-surface temperature. Not only are Southern Ocean sea ice and SST trends at odds with expectations from greenhouse gas-induced warming, the trend patterns are not reproduced in historical simulations with comprehensive global climate models. While a variety of different factors may have contributed to the observed trends in recent decades, we propose that it is atmospheric circulation changes - and the changes in ocean circulation they induce - that have emerged as the most likely cause of the observed Southern Ocean sea ice and SST trends. I will discuss deficiencies in models that could explain their incorrect response. In addition, I will present results from a series of experiments where the Antarctic sea ice and ocean are forced by atmospheric perturbations imposed within a coupled climate model. Figure caption: Linear trends of annual-mean SST (left) and annual-mean sea-ice concentration (right) over 1980-2014. SST is from NOAA's Optimum Interpolation SST dataset (version 2; Reynolds et al. 2002). Sea-ice concentration is from passive microwave observations using the NASA Team algorithm. Only the annual means are shown here for brevity and because the signal to noise is greater than in the seasonal means. Figure from Armour and Bitz (2015).

  2. The effect of environmental change on vascular plant and cryptogam communities from the Falkland Islands and the Maritime Antarctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Convey Peter

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Antarctic terrestrial vegetation is subject to one of the most extreme climates on Earth. Currently, parts of Antarctica are one of the fastest warming regions on the planet. During 3 growing seasons, we investigated the effect of experimental warming on the diversity and abundance of coastal plant communities in the Maritime Antarctic region (cryptogams only and the Falkland Islands (vascular plants only. We compared communities from the Falkland Islands (51°S, mean annual temperature 7.9°C, with those of Signy Island (60°S, -2.1°C and Anchorage Island (67°S, -2.6°C, and experimental temperature manipulations at each of the three islands using Open Top Chambers (OTCs. Results Despite the strong difference in plant growth form dominance between the Falkland Islands and the Maritime Antarctic, communities across the gradient did not differ in total diversity and species number. During the summer months, the experimental temperature increase at 5 cm height in the vegetation was similar between the locations (0.7°C across the study. In general, the response to this experimental warming was low. Total lichen cover showed a non-significant decreasing trend at Signy Island (p Conclusion These results suggest that small temperature increases may rapidly lead to decreased soil moisture, resulting in more stressful conditions for plants. The more open plant communities (grass and lichen appeared more negatively affected by such changes than dense communities (dwarf shrub and moss.

  3. Asynchronous behavior of the Antarctic Ice Sheet and local glaciers during and since Termination 1, Salmon Valley, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Margaret S.; Hall, Brenda L.; Denton, George H.

    2018-01-01

    The stability of the Antarctic Ice Sheet under future warming remains an open question with broad implications for sea-level prediction and adaptation. In particular, knowledge of whether the ice sheet has the capacity for rapid drawdown or collapse, or whether it can remain stable during periods of warming, is essential for predicting its future behavior. Here we use 55 radiocarbon dates, coupled with geomorphologic mapping, to reconstruct the timing of changes in ice extent and elevation during the last ice-age termination in Salmon Valley, adjacent to McMurdo Sound in the western Ross Sea Embayment. Results indicate that a grounded ice sheet in the Ross Sea Embayment achieved its maximum elevation and extent along the headlands of Salmon Valley at ∼18,000 yr BP, during a period of increasing temperatures and accumulation over the Antarctic continent. This ice remained at or near its maximum on the headlands near the valley mouth until after ∼14,000 yr BP. Removal of grounded Ross Sea ice from Salmon Valley was complete shortly after ∼7900 yr BP, indicating that the grounding line had retreated through southern McMurdo Sound by that time. We suggest the primary driver of Ross Sea ice removal from McMurdo Sound was marine-based, either through basal melting or calving due to sea-level rise. When combined with regional data, the Salmon Valley record suggests that this sector of the Antarctic Ice Sheet did not contribute in a significant way to deglacial meltwater pulses, such as meltwater pulse 1a. In contrast to the Ross Sea ice, our work also shows that local, independent alpine glaciers in Salmon Valley have advanced through the Holocene. Land-terminating glaciers such as these elsewhere in the region show a similar pattern, and may reflect the continued influence of increased accumulation following the termination of the last ice age.

  4. Reconciling projections of the Antarctic contribution to sea level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Tamsin; Holden, Philip; Edwards, Neil; Wernecke, Andreas

    2017-04-01

    Two recent studies of the Antarctic contribution to sea level rise this century had best estimates that differed by an order of magnitude (around 10 cm and 1 m by 2100). The first, Ritz et al. (2015), used a model calibrated with satellite data, giving a 5% probability of exceeding 30cm by 2100 for sea level rise due to Antarctic instability. The second, DeConto and Pollard (2016), used a model evaluated with reconstructions of palaeo-sea level. They did not estimate probabilities, but using a simple assumption here about the distribution shape gives up to a 5% chance of Antarctic contribution exceeding 2.3 m this century with total sea level rise approaching 3 m. If robust, this would have very substantial implications for global adaptation to climate change. How are we to make sense of this apparent inconsistency? How much is down to the data - does the past tell us we will face widespread and rapid Antarctic ice losses in the future? How much is due to the mechanism of rapid ice loss ('cliff failure') proposed in the latter paper, or other parameterisation choices in these low resolution models (GRISLI and PISM, respectively)? How much is due to choices made in the ensemble design and calibration? How do these projections compare with high resolution, grounding line resolving models such as BISICLES? Could we reduce the huge uncertainties in the palaeo-study? Emulation provides a powerful tool for understanding these questions and reconciling the projections. By describing the three numerical ice sheet models with statistical models, we can re-analyse the ensembles and re-do the calibrations under a common statistical framework. This reduces uncertainty in the PISM study because it allows massive sampling of the parameter space, which reduces the sensitivity to reconstructed palaeo-sea level values and also narrows the probability intervals because the simple assumption about distribution shape above is no longer needed. We present reconciled probabilistic

  5. 75 FR 42462 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-21

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and... Promontory to collect ground control point with highly precise GPS equipment. Activity would include hiking...

  6. 75 FR 53723 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-01

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and...-depth sensing equipment is available, however positioning such devices near seabird and pinniped...

  7. 78 FR 76862 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-19

    ... the Antarctic Science, Tourism and Conservation Act of 1996, has developed regulations for the... in Antarctic waters. Likewise, the sex of individual whales can be determined from genetic markers...

  8. 75 FR 57299 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-20

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and... spatial scales of various types of disturbances in and around McMurdo Station, Antarctica. The sampling...

  9. 76 FR 61117 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-10-03

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and... and spatial scales of various types of disturbances in and around McMurdo Station. The sampling...

  10. 76 FR 20721 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-04-13

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and... imaging (MRI) scans. The study, to be conducted in collaboration with the University of California San...

  11. 75 FR 68830 - Notice of permit applications received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-09

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and... impacts initial CO\\2\\ sequestration and how it impacts the composition of the phytoplankton community...

  12. 77 FR 22004 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-04-12

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and... educational purposes. Location Palmer Station area, Marguerite Bay including ASPA 107-Dion Islands, ASPA 113...

  13. 77 FR 71842 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-12-04

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and..., as well as 500 grams of Artemia salina cysts as food for krill. They plan to measure how fast DNA is...

  14. 78 FR 33115 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-06-03

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and... pregnancy and future parturition rates; and (3) To what extent might changes in food availability during the...

  15. 77 FR 32701 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-06-01

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and... overriding incentives is to know how best to conserve this great natural resource of the bird, the food...

  16. 78 FR 58568 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-24

    ... certain animals and certain geographic areas a requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas. Application Details 1. Applicant... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic...

  17. 78 FR 53789 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-08-30

    ... certain animals and certain geographic areas a requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas. Application Details 1. Applicant... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic...

  18. 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.

  19. 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

    2015-01-01

    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/m2, 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/m2. 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. PMID:26601210

  20. Can we observe the fronts of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current using GRACE OBP?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makowski, J.; Chambers, D. P.; Bonin, J. A.

    2014-12-01

    The Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) and the Southern Ocean remains one of the most undersampled regions of the world's oceans. The ACC is comprised of four major fronts: the Sub-Tropical Front (STF), the Polar Front (PF), the Sub-Antarctic Front (SAF), and the Southern ACC Front (SACCF). These were initially observed individually from repeat hydrographic sections and their approximate locations globally have been quantified using all available temperature data from the World Ocean and Climate Experiment (WOCE). More recent studies based on satellite altimetry have found that the front positions are more dynamic and have shifted south by up to 1° on average since 1993. Using ocean bottom pressure (OBP) data from the current Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) we have measured integrated transport variability of the ACC south of Australia. However, differentiation of variability of specific fronts has been impossible due to the necessary smoothing required to reduce noise and correlated errors in the measurements. The future GRACE Follow-on (GFO) mission and the post 2020 GRACE-II mission are expected to produce higher resolution gravity fields with a monthly temporal resolution. Here, we study the resolution and error characteristics of GRACE gravity data that would be required to resolve variations in the front locations and transport. To do this, we utilize output from a high-resolution model of the Southern Ocean, hydrology models, and ice sheet surface mass balance models; add various amounts of random and correlated errors that may be expected from GFO and GRACE-II; and quantify requirements needed for future satellite gravity missions to resolve variations along the ACC fronts.

  1. 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.

  2. When shape matters: strategies of different Antarctic ascidians morphotypes to deal with sedimentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torre, Luciana; Abele, Doris; Lagger, Cristian; Momo, Fernando; Sahade, Ricardo

    2014-08-01

    Climate change leads to increased melting of tidewater glaciers in the Western Antarctic Peninsula region and sediment bearing glacial melt waters negatively affects filter feeding species as solitary ascidians. In previous work the erect-forms Molgula pedunculata and Cnemidocarpa verrucosa (Order Stolidobranchiata) appeared more sensitive than the flat form Ascidia challengeri (Order Phlebobranchiata). Sedimentation exposure is expected to induce up-regulation of anaerobic metabolism by obstructing the organs of gas exchange (environmental hypoxia) or causes enhanced squirting activity (functional hypoxia). In this study we evaluated the possible relationship between ascidian morphotype and their physiological response to sedimentation. Together with some behavioural observations, we analysed the response of anaerobic metabolic parameters (lactate formation and glycogen consumption) in different tissues of three Antarctic ascidians, exposed to high sediment concentrations (200 mgL(-1)). The results were compared to experimental hypoxia (10% pO2) and exercise (induced muscular contraction) effects, in order to discriminate the effect of sediment on each species and morpho-type (erect vs. flat forms). Our results suggest that the styled (erect) C. verrucosa increases muscular squirting activity in order to expulse excessive material, while the flat-form A. challengeri reacts more passively by down-regulating its aerobic metabolism under sediment exposure. Contrary, the erect ascidian M. pedunculata did not show any measurable response to the treatments, indicating that filtration and ingestion activities were not reduced or altered even under high sedimentation (low energetic material) which could be disadvantageous on the long-term and could explain why M. pedunculata densities decline in the study area. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. 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 (the mid to high latitudes on the surface of Mars which may be caused by eruptions of subsurface fluids [4, 5]. We have identified massive but highly localized Na-sulfate deposits (mirabilite mounds, Na2SO4 .10H2O) that may be derived from subsurface fluids and may provide insight into the processes associated with subsurface fluids on Mars. The mounds are found on the end moraine of the Lewis Cliffs Ice 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.

  4. On the cryogenic removal of NOy from the Antarctic polar stratosphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Smyshlyaev

    2003-06-01

    Full Text Available We review current knowledge about the annual cycle of transport of nitrogen oxides to, and removal from, the polar stratosphere, with particular attention to Antarctica where the annual winter denitrifi cation process is both regular in occurrence and severe in effect. Evidence for a large downward fl ux of NOy from the mesosphere to the stratosphere, fi rst seen briefl y in the Limb Infrared Monitor of the Stratosphere (LIMS data from the Arctic winter of 1978-1979, has been found during the 1990s in both satellite and ground-based observations, though this still seems to be omitted from many atmospheric models. When incorporated in the Stony Brook- St. Petersburg two dimensional (2D transport and chemistry model, more realistic treatment of the NOy fl ux, along with sulfate transport from the mesosphere, sulfate aerosol formation where temperature is favorable, and the inclusion of a simple ion-cluster reaction, leads to good agreement with observed HNO3 formation in the mid-winter middle to upper stratosphere. To further emphasize the importance of large fl uxes of thermospheric and mesospheric NOy into the polar stratosphere, we have used observations, supplemented with model calculations, to defi ne new altitude dependent correlation curves between N2O and NOy. These are more suitable than those previously used in the literature to represent conditions within the Antarctic vortex region prior to and during denitrifi cation by Polar Stratospheric Cloud (PSC particles. Our NOy -N2O curves lead to a 40% increase in the average amount of NOy removed during the Antarctic winter with respect to estimates calculated using NOy-N2O curves from the Atmospheric Trace Molecule Spectroscopy (ATMOS/ATLAS-3 data set.

  5. Empirical estimation of present-day Antarctic glacial isostatic adjustment and ice mass change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunter, B. C.; Didova, O.; Riva, R. E. M.; Ligtenberg, S. R. M.; Lenaerts, J. T. M.; King, M. A.; van den Broeke, M. R.; Urban, T.

    2014-04-01

    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 a firn densification model to account for firn compaction and surface processes as well as reprocessed data sets over a slightly longer period of time. A range of different Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) gravity models were evaluated and a new Ice, Cloud, and Land Elevation Satellite (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 recent conventional GIA models. The new empirically derived GIA rates suggest the presence of strong uplift in the Amundsen Sea sector in West Antarctica (WA) and the Philippi/Denman sectors, as well as subsidence in large parts of East Antarctica (EA). The total GIA-related mass change estimates for the entire Antarctic ice sheet ranged from 53 to 103 Gt yr-1, depending on the GRACE solution used, 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 regional mass loss mostly concentrated in WA. 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. Combined analysis of the chloroplast genome and transcriptome of the Antarctic vascular plant Deschampsia antarctica Desv.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jungeun; Kang, Yoonjee; Shin, Seung Chul; Park, Hyun; Lee, Hyoungseok

    2014-01-01

    Antarctic hairgrass (Deschampsia antarctica Desv.) is the only natural grass species in the maritime Antarctic. It has been researched as an important ecological marker and as an extremophile plant for studies on stress tolerance. Despite its importance, little genomic information is available for D. antarctica. Here, we report the complete chloroplast genome, transcriptome profiles of the coding/noncoding genes, and the posttranscriptional processing by RNA editing in the chloroplast system. The complete chloroplast genome of D. antarctica is 135,362 bp in length with a typical quadripartite structure, including the large (LSC: 79,881 bp) and small (SSC: 12,519 bp) single-copy regions, separated by a pair of identical inverted repeats (IR: 21,481 bp). It contains 114 unique genes, including 81 unique protein-coding genes, 29 tRNA genes, and 4 rRNA genes. Sequence divergence analysis with other plastomes from the BEP clade of the grass family suggests a sister relationship between D. antarctica, Festuca arundinacea and Lolium perenne of the Poeae tribe, based on the whole plastome. In addition, we conducted high-resolution mapping of the chloroplast-derived transcripts. Thus, we created an expression profile for 81 protein-coding genes and identified ndhC, psbJ, rps19, psaJ, and psbA as the most highly expressed chloroplast genes. Small RNA-seq analysis identified 27 small noncoding RNAs of chloroplast origin that were preferentially located near the 5'- or 3'-ends of genes. We also found >30 RNA-editing sites in the D. antarctica chloroplast genome, with a dominance of C-to-U conversions. We assembled and characterized the complete chloroplast genome sequence of D. antarctica and investigated the features of the plastid transcriptome. These data may contribute to a better understanding of the evolution of D. antarctica within the Poaceae family for use in molecular phylogenetic studies and may also help researchers understand the characteristics of the chloroplast

  7. 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.

  8. Emperors in hiding: when ice-breakers and satellites complement each other in Antarctic exploration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ancel, André; Cristofari, Robin; Fretwell, Peter T; Trathan, Phil N; Wienecke, Barbara; Boureau, Matthieu; Morinay, Jennifer; Blanc, Stéphane; Le Maho, Yvon; Le Bohec, Céline

    2014-01-01

    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.

  9. Mixotrophic Activity and Diversity of Antarctic Marine Protists in Austral Summer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca J. Gast

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Identifying putative mixotrophic protist species in the environment is important for understanding their behavior, with the recovery of these species in culture essential for determining the triggers of feeding, grazing rates, and overall impact on bacterial standing stocks. In this project, mixotroph abundances determined using tracer ingestion in water and sea ice samples collected in the Ross Sea, Antarctica during the summer of 2011 were compared with data from the spring (Ross Sea and fall (Arctic to examine the impacts of bacterivory/mixotrophy. Mixotrophic nanoplankton (MNAN were usually less abundant than heterotrophs, but consumed more of the bacterial standing stock per day due to relatively higher ingestion rates (1–7 bacteria mixotroph−1 h−1 vs. 0.1–4 bacteria heterotroph−1 h−1. Yet, even with these high rates observed in the Antarctic summer, mixotrophs appeared to have a smaller contribution to bacterivory than in the Antarctic spring. Additionally, putative mixotroph taxa were identified through incubation experiments accomplished with bromodeoxyuridine-labeled bacteria as food, immunoprecipitation (IP of labeled DNA, and amplification and high throughput sequencing of the eukaryotic ribosomal V9 region. Putative mixotroph OTUs were identified in the IP samples by taxonomic similarity to known phototroph taxa. OTUs that had increased abundance in IP samples compared to the non-IP samples from both surface and chlorophyll maximum (CM depths were considered to represent active mixotrophy and include ones taxonomically similar to Dictyocha, Gymnodinium, Pentapharsodinium, and Symbiodinium. These OTUs represent target taxa for isolation and laboratory experiments on triggers for mixotrophy, to be combined with qPCR to estimate their abundance, seasonal distribution and potential impact.

  10. Genome-based comparative analyses of Antarctic and temperate species of Paenibacillus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa Dsouza

    Full Text Available Antarctic soils represent a unique environment characterised by extremes of temperature, salinity, elevated UV radiation, low nutrient and low water content. Despite the harshness of this environment, members of 15 bacterial phyla have been identified in soils of the Ross Sea Region (RSR. However, the survival mechanisms and ecological roles of these phyla are largely unknown. The aim of this study was to investigate whether strains of Paenibacillus darwinianus owe their resilience to substantial genomic changes. For this, genome-based comparative analyses were performed on three P. darwinianus strains, isolated from gamma-irradiated RSR soils, together with nine temperate, soil-dwelling Paenibacillus spp. The genome of each strain was sequenced to over 1,000-fold coverage, then assembled into contigs totalling approximately 3 Mbp per genome. Based on the occurrence of essential, single-copy genes, genome completeness was estimated at approximately 88%. Genome analysis revealed between 3,043-3,091 protein-coding sequences (CDSs, primarily associated with two-component systems, sigma factors, transporters, sporulation and genes induced by cold-shock, oxidative and osmotic stresses. These comparative analyses provide an insight into the metabolic potential of P. darwinianus, revealing potential adaptive mechanisms for survival in Antarctic soils. However, a large proportion of these mechanisms were also identified in temperate Paenibacillus spp., suggesting that these mechanisms are beneficial for growth and survival in a range of soil environments. These analyses have also revealed that the P. darwinianus genomes contain significantly fewer CDSs and have a lower paralogous content. Notwithstanding the incompleteness of the assemblies, the large differences in genome sizes, determined by the number of genes in paralogous clusters and the CDS content, are indicative of genome content scaling. Finally, these sequences are a resource for further

  11. Antarctic Bottom Water temperature changes in the western South Atlantic from 1989 to 2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Gregory C.; McTaggart, Kristene E.; Wanninkhof, Rik

    2014-12-01

    Warming of abyssal waters in recent decades contributes to global heat uptake and sea level rise. Repeat oceanographic section data in the western South Atlantic taken mostly in 1989 (1995 across the Scotia Sea), 2005, and 2014 are used to quantify warming in abyssal waters that spread northward through the region from their Antarctic origins in the Weddell Sea. While much of the Scotia Sea warmed between 1995 and 2005, only the southernmost portion, on the north side of the Weddell Gyre, continued to warm between 2005 and 2014. The abyssal Argentine Basin also warmed between 1989 and 2005, but again only the southernmost portion continued to warm between 2005 and 2014, suggesting a slowdown in the inflow of the coldest, densest Antarctic Bottom Waters into the western South Atlantic between 1989 and 2014. In contrast, the abyssal waters of the Brazil Basin warmed both between 1989 and 2005 and between 2005 and 2014, at a rate of about 2 m°C yr-1. This warming is also assessed in terms of the rates of change of heights above the bottom for deep isotherms in each deep basin studied. These results, together with findings from previous studies, suggest the deep warming signal observed in the Weddell Sea after the mid-1970s Weddell Polynya was followed by abyssal warming in the Argentine Basin from the late 1970s through about 2005, then warming in the deep Vema Channel from about 1992 through at least 2010, and warming in the Brazil Basin from 1989 to 2014.

  12. 76 FR 39905 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-07

    ... Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and... ASPA 134--Cierva Point and Offshore islands, Danco Coast, Antarctica, to install boreholes and a soil... occurrence and properties, and soil properties along a latitudinal gradient on the western Antarctic...

  13. 75 FR 62891 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-13

    ... requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  14. 76 FR 52354 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-08-22

    ... requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  15. 77 FR 56237 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-09-12

    ... protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  16. 75 FR 61520 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-05

    ... protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  17. 75 FR 60830 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  18. 76 FR 58049 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-19

    ... protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  19. 75 FR 75501 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-12-03

    ... requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... applications received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  20. 75 FR 25300 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-07

    ... protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  1. 77 FR 31044 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-05-24

    ... protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  2. 75 FR 6222 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-02-08

    ... protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  3. 76 FR 58843 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-22

    ... requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic... NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic... Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95-541. SUMMARY: The National...

  4. 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 (Submarine glacial landforms and interactions with volcanism around Sub-Antarctic Heard and McDonald Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Picard, K.; Watson, S. J.; Fox, J. M.; Post, A.; Whittaker, J. M.; Lucieer, V.; Carey, R.; Coffin, M. F.; Hodgson, D.; Hogan, K.; Graham, A. G. C.

    2017-12-01

    Unravelling the glacial history of Sub-Antarctic islands can provide clues to past climate and Antarctic ice sheet stability. The glacial history of many sub-Antarctic islands is poorly understood, including the Heard and McDonald Islands (HIMI) located on the Kerguelen Plateau in the southern Indian Ocean. The geomorphologic development of HIMI has involved a combination of construction via hotspot volcanism and mechanical erosion caused by waves, weather, and glaciers. Today, the 2.5 km2 McDonald Islands are not glacierised; in contrast, the 368 km2 Heard Island has 12 major glaciers, some extending from the summit of 2813 m to sea level. Historical accounts from Heard Island suggest that the glaciers were more extensive in the 1850s to 1870s, and have retreated at least 12% (33.89 km2) since 1997. However, surrounding bathymetry suggests a much more extensive previous glaciation of the HIMI region that encompassed 9,585 km2, likely dating back at least to the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) ca. 26.5 -19 ka. We present analyses of multibeam bathymetry and backscatter data, acquired aboard RV Investigator in early 2016, that support the previous existence of an extensive icecap. These data reveal widespread ice-marginal and subglacial features including moraines, over-deepened troughs, drumlins and crag-and-tails. Glacial landforms suggest paleo-ice flow directions and a glacial extent that are consistent with previously documented broad scale morphological features. We identify >660 iceberg keel scours in water depths ranging from 150 - 530 m. The orientations of the iceberg keel scours reflect the predominantly east-flowing Antarctic Circumpolar Current and westerly winds in the region. 40Ar/39Ar dating of volcanic rocks from submarine volcanoes around McDonald Islands suggests that volcanism and glaciation coincided. The flat-topped morphology of these volcanoes may result from lava-ice interaction or erosion by glaciers post eruption during a time of extensive ice

  5. Contrasting Arctic and Antarctic atmospheric responses to future sea-ice loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    England, M.; Polvani, L. M.; Sun, L.

    2017-12-01

    By the end of this century, the annual mean Antarctic sea ice area is projected to decline by over a third, an amount similar to that in the Arctic, but the effect of Antarctic sea ice loss on the atmosphere remains largely unexplored. Using the Community Earth Systems Model (CESM) Whole Atmosphere Coupled Climate Model (WACCM), we investigate the effect of future Antarctic sea ice loss, and contrast it with its Arctic counterpart. This is accomplished by analyzing integrations of the model with historic and future sea ice levels, using the RCP8.5 scenario. This allows us to disentangle the effect of future sea ice loss on the atmosphere from other aspects of the coupled system. We find that both Antarctic and Arctic sea ice loss act to shift the tropospheric jet equatorwards, counteracting the poleward shift due to increases in greenhouse gases. Although the total forcing to the atmosphere is similar in both hemispheres, the response to Arctic sea ice loss is larger in amplitude and but more seasonally varying, while the response in the Antarctic persists throughout the year but with a smaller amplitude. Furthermore, the atmospheric temperature response over the Antarctic is trapped closer to the surface than in the Arctic, and perhaps surprisingly, we find that the surface temperature response to Antarctic sea ice loss is unable to penetrate the Antarctic continent.

  6. Depth distributions of DNA damage in Antarctic marine phyto- and bacterioplankton exposed to summertime UV radiation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buma, A.G.J.; de Boer, M.K.; Boelen, P.

    During a survey from January to March 1998, the occurrence of W-B radiation (UVBR)-induced DNA damage in Antarctic marine phytoplankton and bacterioplankton was investigated, Sampling was done in Ryder Bay, off the British base Rothera Station, 67 degreesS, 68 degreesW (British Antarctic Survey).

  7. Meltwater produced by wind–albedo interaction stored in an East Antarctic ice shelf

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lenaerts, JTM; Lhermitte, S.L.M.; Drews, R.; Ligtenberg, SRM; Berger, S.; Helm, V.; Smeets, C.J.P.P.; van den Broeke, MR; van de Berg, W.J.; van Meijgaard, E; Eijkelboom, M.; Eisen, O.; Pattyn, F.

    2017-01-01

    Surface melt and subsequent firn air depletion can ultimately lead to disintegration of Antarctic ice shelves1, 2 causing grounded glaciers to accelerate3 and sea level to rise. In the Antarctic Peninsula, foehn winds enhance melting near the grounding line4, which in the recent past has led to the

  8. Effect of different temperature regimes on the chlorophyll a concentration in four species of Antarctic macroalgae

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Dhargalkar, V.K.

    th Symp. on Polar Biology, Nat. Inst. Pf Polar Research. Tokyo. Mem. natn. lnst. polar Res. Tokyo(Spec.Issue).32: l12-116. Papenfuss, G. F. 1964. Catalogue and bibliography of Antarctic and sub- antarctic benthic marine algae. Am. Geophys. Union...

  9. Standing crop and growth rates of net phytoplankton and nanoplankton in Antarctic waters

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Goes, J.I.; Fondekar, S.P.; Parulekar, A.H.

    stream_size 16 stream_content_type text/plain stream_name Proc_Workshop_Antarct_Stud_1990_419.pdf.txt stream_source_info Proc_Workshop_Antarct_Stud_1990_419.pdf.txt Content-Encoding ISO-8859-1 Content-Type text/plain; charset...

  10. Law 16.518 Antarctic Treaty: approve the protocols about Environment protection and annex s

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1994-01-01

    The treaty Antarctic in their appendix C in its articles is about the elimination of residuals by means of its removal of the area of having Treated Antarctic among them radioactive materials, planning of the wastes, communication treatment and exam of the plans of treatment of wastes, treatment proceeding prevention of sea contamination ,discharge of hydrocarbons petroliferous, discharge of liquid noxious substances [es

  11. Food choice of Antarctic soil arthropods clarified by stable isotope signatures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bokhorst, S.F.; Ronfort, C.; Huiskes, A.H.L.; Convey, P.; Aerts, R.A.M.

    2007-01-01

    Antarctic soil ecosystems are amongst the most simplified on Earth and include only few soil arthropod species, generally believed to be opportunistic omnivorous feeders. Using stable isotopic analyses, we investigated the food choice of two common and widely distributed Antarctic soil arthropod

  12. Living resources of Antarctic India's contribution to exploration and future plans for exploration

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Parulekar, A.H.

    stream_size 7 stream_content_type text/plain stream_name Proc_Workshop_Antarct_Stud_1990_459.pdf.txt stream_source_info Proc_Workshop_Antarct_Stud_1990_459.pdf.txt Content-Encoding ISO-8859-1 Content-Type text/plain; charset...

  13. Mapping of Polar Areas Based on High-Resolution Satellite Images: The Example of the Henryk Arctowski Polish Antarctic Station

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurczyński, Zdzisław; Różycki, Sebastian; Bylina, Paweł

    2017-12-01

    To produce orthophotomaps or digital elevation models, the most commonly used method is photogrammetric measurement. However, the use of aerial images is not easy in polar regions for logistical reasons. In these areas, remote sensing data acquired from satellite systems is much more useful. This paper presents the basic technical requirements of different products which can be obtain (in particular orthoimages and digital elevation model (DEM)) using Very-High-Resolution Satellite (VHRS) images. The study area was situated in the vicinity of the Henryk Arctowski Polish Antarctic Station on the Western Shore of Admiralty Bay, King George Island, Western Antarctic. Image processing was applied on two triplets of images acquired by the Pléiades 1A and 1B in March 2013. The results of the generation of orthoimages from the Pléiades systems without control points showed that the proposed method can achieve Root Mean Squared Error (RMSE) of 3-9 m. The presented Pléiades images are useful for thematic remote sensing analysis and processing of measurements. Using satellite images to produce remote sensing products for polar regions is highly beneficial and reliable and compares well with more expensive airborne photographs or field surveys.

  14. Antarctic palynology and palaeoclimate - a review

    OpenAIRE

    Bowman, Vanessa

    2015-01-01

    The first exciting clues that Antarctica had not always been ice-covered were the leaf fossils of Glossopteris plants that Scott’s party brought back from the Beardmore Glacier region in 1912. Since dated at ~ 250 million years old, it has become evident that Antarctica has been vegetated longer than it has been ice-covered. These first plant fossils from the Beardmore have led to over 100 years of scientific investigation of the rich macro- (e.g. leaves and fossil wo...

  15. Zooplankton biomass data collected from net tows from the Eltanin in the Antarctic in support of the US Antarctic Research Program (USARP) from 1963 - 1967 (NODC Accession 0068171)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Zooplankton biomass data (displacement volume, settled volume) sampled aboard the R/V ELTANIN during the U.S. Antarctic Research Program (USARP) from Apr 5 1963 to...

  16. Antarctic climate and ice-sheet configuration during the early Pliocene interglacial at 4.23 Ma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. R. Golledge

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The geometry of Antarctic ice sheets during warm periods of the geological past is difficult to determine from geological evidence, but is important to know because such reconstructions enable a more complete understanding of how the ice-sheet system responds to changes in climate. Here we investigate how Antarctica evolved under orbital and greenhouse gas conditions representative of an interglacial in the early Pliocene at 4.23 Ma, when Southern Hemisphere insolation reached a maximum. Using offline-coupled climate and ice-sheet models, together with a new synthesis of high-latitude palaeoenvironmental proxy data to define a likely climate envelope, we simulate a range of ice-sheet geometries and calculate their likely contribution to sea level. In addition, we use these simulations to investigate the processes by which the West and East Antarctic ice sheets respond to environmental forcings and the timescales over which these behaviours manifest. We conclude that the Antarctic ice sheet contributed 8.6 ± 2.8 m to global sea level at this time, under an atmospheric CO2 concentration identical to present (400 ppm. Warmer-than-present ocean temperatures led to the collapse of West Antarctica over centuries, whereas higher air temperatures initiated surface melting in parts of East Antarctica that over one to two millennia led to lowering of the ice-sheet surface, flotation of grounded margins in some areas, and retreat of the ice sheet into the Wilkes Subglacial Basin. The results show that regional variations in climate, ice-sheet geometry, and topography produce long-term sea-level contributions that are non-linear with respect to the applied forcings, and which under certain conditions exhibit threshold behaviour associated with behavioural tipping points.

  17. Antarctic climate and ice-sheet configuration during the early Pliocene interglacial at 4.23 Ma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golledge, Nicholas R.; Thomas, Zoë A.; Levy, Richard H.; Gasson, Edward G. W.; Naish, Timothy R.; McKay, Robert M.; Kowalewski, Douglas E.; Fogwill, Christopher J.

    2017-07-01

    The geometry of Antarctic ice sheets during warm periods of the geological past is difficult to determine from geological evidence, but is important to know because such reconstructions enable a more complete understanding of how the ice-sheet system responds to changes in climate. Here we investigate how Antarctica evolved under orbital and greenhouse gas conditions representative of an interglacial in the early Pliocene at 4.23 Ma, when Southern Hemisphere insolation reached a maximum. Using offline-coupled climate and ice-sheet models, together with a new synthesis of high-latitude palaeoenvironmental proxy data to define a likely climate envelope, we simulate a range of ice-sheet geometries and calculate their likely contribution to sea level. In addition, we use these simulations to investigate the processes by which the West and East Antarctic ice sheets respond to environmental forcings and the timescales over which these behaviours manifest. We conclude that the Antarctic ice sheet contributed 8.6 ± 2.8 m to global sea level at this time, under an atmospheric CO2 concentration identical to present (400 ppm). Warmer-than-present ocean temperatures led to the collapse of West Antarctica over centuries, whereas higher air temperatures initiated surface melting in parts of East Antarctica that over one to two millennia led to lowering of the ice-sheet surface, flotation of grounded margins in some areas, and retreat of the ice sheet into the Wilkes Subglacial Basin. The results show that regional variations in climate, ice-sheet geometry, and topography produce long-term sea-level contributions that are non-linear with respect to the applied forcings, and which under certain conditions exhibit threshold behaviour associated with behavioural tipping points.

  18. Climate-dependent evolution of Antarctic ectotherms: An integrative analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pörtner, Hans O.

    2006-04-01

    The paper explores the climate-dependent evolution of marine Antarctic fauna and tries to identify key mechanisms involved as well as the driving forces that have caused the physiological and life history characteristics observed today. In an integrative approach it uses the recent concept of oxygen and capacity limited thermal tolerance to identify potential links between molecular, cellular, whole-organism, and ecological characteristics of marine animal life in the Antarctic. As a generalized pattern, minimization of baseline energy costs, for the sake of maximized growth in the cold, appears as one over-arching principle shaping the evolution and functioning of Antarctic marine ectotherms. This conclusion is supported by recent comparisons with (sub-) Arctic ectotherms, where elevated levels of energy turnover result at unstable, including cold temperatures, and are related to wide windows of thermal tolerance and associated metabolic features. At biochemical levels, metabolic regulation at low temperatures in general, is supported by the cold compensation of enzyme kinetic parameters like substrate affinities and turnover numbers, through minute structural modifications of the enzyme molecule. These involve a shift in protein folding, sometimes supported by the replacement of individual amino acids. The hypothesis is developed that efficient metabolic regulation at low rates in Antarctic marine stenotherms occurs through high mitochondrial densities at low capacities and possibly enhanced levels of Arrhenius activation energies or activation enthalpies. This contrasts the more costly patterns of metabolic regulation at elevated rates in cold-adapted eurytherms. Energy savings in Antarctic ectotherms, largely exemplified in fish, typically involve low-cost, diffusive oxygen distribution due to high density of lipid membranes, loss of haemoglobin, myoglobin and the heat shock response, reduced anaerobic capacity, large myocytes with low ion exchange activities

  19. Constraining East Antarctic mass trends using a Bayesian inference approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin-Español, Alba; Bamber, Jonathan L.

    2016-04-01

    East Antarctica is an order of magnitude larger than its western neighbour and the Greenland ice sheet. It has the greatest potential to contribute to sea level rise of any source, including non-glacial contributors. It is, however, the most challenging ice mass to constrain because of a range of factors including the relative paucity of in-situ observations and the poor signal to noise ratio of Earth Observation data such as satellite altimetry and gravimetry. A recent study using satellite radar and laser altimetry (Zwally et al. 2015) concluded that the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) had been accumulating mass at a rate of 136±28 Gt/yr for the period 2003-08. Here, we use a Bayesian hierarchical model, which has been tested on, and applied to, the whole of Antarctica, to investigate the impact of different assumptions regarding the origin of elevation changes of the EAIS. We combined GRACE, satellite laser and radar altimeter data and GPS measurements to solve simultaneously for surface processes (primarily surface mass balance, SMB), ice dynamics and glacio-isostatic adjustment over the period 2003-13. The hierarchical model partitions mass trends between SMB and ice dynamics based on physical principles and measures of statistical likelihood. Without imposing the division between these processes, the model apportions about a third of the mass trend to ice dynamics, +18 Gt/yr, and two thirds, +39 Gt/yr, to SMB. The total mass trend for that period for the EAIS was 57±20 Gt/yr. Over the period 2003-08, we obtain an ice dynamic trend of 12 Gt/yr and a SMB trend of 15 Gt/yr, with a total mass trend of 27 Gt/yr. We then imposed the condition that the surface mass balance is tightly constrained by the regional climate model RACMO2.3 and allowed height changes due to ice dynamics to occur in areas of low surface velocities (solution that satisfies all the input data, given these constraints. By imposing these conditions, over the period 2003-13 we obtained a mass

  1. The Future of the United States Antarctic Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thom, J. E.; Weidner, G. A.; Lazzara, M. A.; Knuth, S. L.; Cassano, J. J.

    2009-04-01

    The last three decades have seen Antarctic surface meteorological observations augmented by an increasing number of automated weather stations (AWS). Since 1980, the University of Wisconsin-Madison has managed an expanding array of AWS in Antarctica that are funded through the United States' National Science Foundation. The AWS network began with six stations and has grown to approximately 60 stations. The majority of the AWS use a custom electronics package designed in the 1970s and modified over approximately 20 years. However, dramatic changes in the electronics industry have led the UW-Madison to transition its AWS to commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) components capable of integrating on-station storage, varied sensors, multiple data telemetry options, and a flexible operating system. Among the important technical issues arising from adopting a COTS-based AWS system are limited temperature certification for Antarctic conditions; non-standard integration of the varied telecommunications equipment; potentially inflexible data acquisition schemes; and frequent product upgrades, changes, and obsolescence. The UW-Madison presents the current status of its AWS system; its recent experience with new data loggers, sensors, and communication options; and its attempts to obtain a standardized AWS. The intent is to encourage the development of a forum where groups can document their experiences with varied AWS systems in the extreme polar climate. Recent events have added another challenge within the United States Antarctic Program, as it has become clear that budgetary and logistic limitations will drastically impact the AWS program. With logistical costs playing a bigger factor in funding AWS operations, international coordination and cooperation will be important in deploying and maintaining the AWS networks (such as GCOS) that are critical to monitoring the world's climate.

  2. Activity of Antarctic fungi extracts against phytopathogenic bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purić, J; Vieira, G; Cavalca, L B; Sette, L D; Ferreira, H; Vieira, M L C; Sass, D C

    2018-06-01

    This study aims to obtain secondary metabolites extracts from filamentous fungi isolated from soil and marine sediments from Antarctic ecosystems and to assess its potential antibacterial activity on Xanthomonas euvesicatoria and Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. passiflorae (phytopathogenic bacteria causing diseases in pepper and tomato and passionfruit, respectively). Among the 66 crude intracellular and extracellular extracts obtained from fungi recovered from soil and 79 obtained from marine sediment samples, 25 showed the ability to prevent the growth of X. euvesicatoria in vitro and 28 showed the ability to prevent the growth of X. axonopodis pv. passiflorae in vitro. Intracellular and extracellular extracts from soil fungi inhibited around 97% of X. euvesicatoria and 98% of X. axonopodis pv. passiflorae at 2·1 mg ml -1 . The average inhibition rates against X. euvesicatoria and X. axonopodis pv. passiflorae for intracellular and extracellular extracts from marine sediments fungi were around 96 and 97%, respectively, at 3·0 mg ml -1 . Extracts containing secondary metabolites with antimicrobial activity against X. euvesicatoria and X. axonopodis pv. passiflorae were obtained, containing possible substitutes for the products currently used to control these phytopathogens. Micro-organisms from extreme ecosystems, such as the Antarctic ecosystem, need to survive in harsh conditions with low temperatures, low nutrients and high UV radiation. Micro-organisms adapt to these conditions evolving diverse biochemical and physiological adaptations essential for survival. All this makes these micro-organisms a rich source of novel natural products based on unique chemical scaffolds. Discovering novel bioactive compounds is essential because of the rise in antibiotic-resistant micro-organisms and the emergence of new infections. Fungi from Antarctic environments have been proven to produce bioactive secondary metabolites against various micro-organisms, but few studies

  3. Application of ASTER SWIR bands in mapping anomaly pixels for Antarctic geological mapping

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beiranvand Pour, Amin; Hashim, Mazlan; Park, Yongcheol

    2017-01-01

    Independent component analysis (ICA) was applied to shortwave infrared (SWIR) bands of ASTER satellite data for detailed mapping of alteration mineral zones in the context of polar environments, where little prior information is available. The Oscar II coast area north-eastern Graham Land, Antarctic Peninsula (AP) was selected to conduct a remote sensing satellite-based mapping approach to detect alteration mineral assemblages. Anomaly pixels in the ICA image maps related to spectral features of Al-O-H, Fe, Mg-O-H and CO3 groups were detected using SWIR datasets of ASTER. ICA method provided image maps of alteration mineral assemblages and discriminate lithological units with little available geological data for poorly mapped regions and/or without prior geological information for unmapped regions in northern and southern sectors of Oscar II coast area, Graham Land. The results of this investigation demonstrated the applicability of ASTER spectral data for lithological and alteration mineral mapping in poorly exposed lithologies and inaccessible regions, particularly using the image processing algorithm that are capable to detect anomaly pixels targets in the remotely sensed images, where no prior information is available. (paper)

  4. Nitrous oxide as a dynamical tracer in the 1987 Airborne Antarctic Ozone Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loewenstein, M.; Podolske, J. R.; Chan, K. R.; Strahan, S. E.

    1989-01-01

    In situ N2O measurements were made using an airborne tunable laser absorption spectrometer (ATLAS) on 12 flights into the Antarctic vortex, as well as on five transit flights outside the vortex region in August and September 1987, as part of the Airborne Antartic Ozone Experiment. Vertical profiles of N2O were obtained within the vortex on most of these flights and were obtained outside the vortex on several occasions. Flights into the vortex region show N2O decreasing southward between 53 and 72 S latitude on constant potential temperature surfaces in the lower stratosphere. The data lead to two important conclusions about the vortex region: (1) the lower stratosphere in August/September 1987 was occupied by 'old' air, which had subsided several kilometers during polar winter; (2) the N2O profile in the vortex was in an approximately steady state in August/September 1987, which indicates that the spring upwelling, suggested by several theories, did not occur.

  5. Parameter Estimations of Dynamic Energy Budget (DEB Model over the Life History of a Key Antarctic Species: The Antarctic Sea Star Odontaster validus Koehler, 1906.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Agüera

    Full Text Available Marine organisms in Antarctica are adapted to an extreme ecosystem including extremely stable temperatures and strong seasonality due to changes in day length. It is now largely accepted that Southern Ocean organisms are particularly vulnerable to global warming with some regions already being challenged by a rapid increase of temperature. Climate change affects both the physical and biotic components of marine ecosystems and will have an impact on the distribution and population dynamics of Antarctic marine organisms. To predict and assess the effect of climate change on marine ecosystems a more comprehensive knowledge of the life history and physiology of key species is urgently needed. In this study we estimate the Dynamic Energy Budget (DEB model parameters for key benthic Antarctic species the sea star Odontaster validus using available information from literature and experiments. The DEB theory is unique in capturing the metabolic processes of an organism through its entire life cycle as a function of temperature and food availability. The DEB model allows for the inclusion of the different life history stages, and thus, becomes a tool that can be used to model lifetime feeding, growth, reproduction, and their responses to changes in biotic and abiotic conditions. The DEB model presented here includes the estimation of reproduction handling rules for the development of simultaneous oocyte cohorts within the gonad. Additionally it links the DEB model reserves to the pyloric caeca an organ whose function has long been ascribed to energy storage. Model parameters described a slowed down metabolism of long living animals that mature slowly. O. validus has a large reserve that-matching low maintenance costs- allow withstanding long periods of starvation. Gonad development is continuous and individual cohorts developed within the gonads grow in biomass following a power function of the age of the cohort. The DEB model developed here for O

  6. Satellite gravimetry observation of Antarctic snow accumulation related to ENSO

    OpenAIRE

    Ingo Sasgen; Henryk Dobslaw; Z. Martinec; Maik Thomas

    2010-01-01

    Interannual ice-mass variations along the Antarctic Peninsula (AP) and in the Amundsen Sea Sector (AS) are obtained for the years 2002 until 2009 using satellite data of the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment, that correlate well (r ≈ 0.7) with accumulation variations based on the net precipitation from the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts. Moreover, mass signals for AP and AS are anti-correlated in time (r ≈ − 0.4) and contain El Niño Southern Oscillation signatures re...

  7. Constraining the Antarctic contribution to interglacial sea-level rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naish, T.; Mckay, R. M.; Barrett, P. J.; Levy, R. H.; Golledge, N. R.; Deconto, R. M.; Horgan, H. J.; Dunbar, G. B.

    2015-12-01

    Observations, models and paleoclimate reconstructions suggest that Antarctica's marine-based ice sheets behave in an unstable manner with episodes of rapid retreat in response to warming climate. Understanding the processes involved in this "marine ice sheet instability" is key for improving estimates of Antarctic ice sheet contribution to future sea-level rise. Another motivating factor is that far-field sea-level reconstructions and ice sheet models imply global mean sea level (GMSL) was up to 20m and 10m higher, respectively, compared with present day, during the interglacials of the warm Pliocene (~4-3Ma) and Late Pleistocene (at ~400ka and 125ka). This was when atmospheric CO2 was between 280 and 400ppm and global average surface temperatures were 1- 3°C warmer, suggesting polar ice sheets are highly sensitive to relatively modest increases in climate forcing. Such magnitudes of GMSL rise not only require near complete melt of the Greenland Ice Sheet and the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, but a substantial retreat of marine-based sectors of East Antarctic Ice Sheet. Recent geological drilling initiatives on the continental margin of Antarctica from both ship- (e.g. IODP; International Ocean Discovery Program) and ice-based (e.g. ANDRILL/Antarctic Geological Drilling) platforms have provided evidence supporting retreat of marine-based ice. However, without direct access through the ice sheet to archives preserved within sub-glacial sedimentary basins, the volume and extent of ice sheet retreat during past interglacials cannot be directly constrained. Sediment cores have been successfully recovered from beneath ice shelves by the ANDRILL Program and ice streams by the WISSARD (Whillans Ice Stream Sub-glacial Access Research Drilling) Project. Together with the potential of the new RAID (Rapid Access Ice Drill) initiative, these demonstrate the technological feasibility of accessing the subglacial bed and deeper sedimentary archives. In this talk I will outline the

  8. The use of Antarctic analogs for the Space Exploration Initiative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Barney; Lynch, John T.

    1991-01-01

    Potential approaches to the use of the Antarctic as an analog to the lunar and Mars planetary surface segments of the SEI are reviewed. It is concluded that a well-planned and sustained program of ground-based research and testing in environments analogous to the moon and Mars is a rational method for reducing the risks associated with human space missions. Antarctica may provide an ideal setting for testing critical technologies (habitat design, life support, and advanced scientific instrumentation), studying human factors and physiology, and conducting basic scientific research similar to and directly relevant to that planned for the SEI.

  9. Environmental impact on the polar regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jaffe, D.A.; Leighton, E.; Tumeo, M.A.

    1994-01-01

    The remote and frigid polar regions are no longer isolated from the activities, pollutants, and controversies that bedevil their more temperate neighbors, say three researchers at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks. For example, Daniel A. Jaffe, Elizabeth Leighton, and Mark A. Tumeo point to traces of DDT, PCBs, and heavy metals that routinely turn up in arctic marine mammals and to the ozone hole over the Antarctic. While similar in environmental makeup, the arctic and Antarctic are poles apart in their political structure and, thus, in their environmental exposure, the researchers note. The Antarctic is managed under a long-standing international treaty, while the arctic is sovereign territory to eight separate nations. The international treaty sets aside the Antarctic for peaceful scientific research within strict environmental boundaries. It bans both military activity and minerals extraction-the two activities that have caused the most damage in the arctic. The main threats to Antarctica's environment come from the intrusion of major scientific research operations and the growing tourism industry. On the other hand, the arctic suffered from the massive Cold War military buildup by both the United States and the former Soviet Union. The environmental residue from that buildup is only now being revealed, the authors say. Major oil and gas drilling and coal and metal-ore mining also have taken a huge environmental toll, they add

  10. Mobilization of retrotransposons as a cause of chromosomal diversification and rapid speciation: the case for the Antarctic teleost genus Trematomus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Auvinet, J; Graça, P; Belkadi, L; Petit, L; Bonnivard, E; Dettaï, A; Detrich, W H; Ozouf-Costaz, C; Higuet, D

    2018-05-09

    The importance of transposable elements (TEs) in the genomic remodeling and chromosomal rearrangements that accompany lineage diversification in vertebrates remains the subject of debate. The major impediment to understanding the roles of TEs in genome evolution is the lack of comparative and integrative analyses on complete taxonomic groups. To help overcome this problem, we have focused on the Antarctic teleost genus Trematomus (Notothenioidei: Nototheniidae), as they experienced rapid speciation accompanied by dramatic chromosomal diversity. Here we apply a multi-strategy approach to determine the role of large-scale TE mobilization in chromosomal diversification within Trematomus species. Despite the extensive chromosomal rearrangements observed in Trematomus species, our measurements revealed strong interspecific genome size conservation. After identifying the DIRS1, Gypsy and Copia retrotransposon superfamilies in genomes of 13 nototheniid species, we evaluated their diversity, abundance (copy numbers) and chromosomal distribution. Four families of DIRS1, nine of Gypsy, and two of Copia were highly conserved in these genomes; DIRS1 being the most represented within Trematomus genomes. Fluorescence in situ hybridization mapping showed preferential accumulation of DIRS1 in centromeric and pericentromeric regions, both in Trematomus and other nototheniid species, but not in outgroups: species of the Sub-Antarctic notothenioid families Bovichtidae and Eleginopsidae, and the non-notothenioid family Percidae. In contrast to the outgroups, High-Antarctic notothenioid species, including the genus Trematomus, were subjected to strong environmental stresses involving repeated bouts of warming above the freezing point of seawater and cooling to sub-zero temperatures on the Antarctic continental shelf during the past 40 millions of years (My). As a consequence of these repetitive environmental changes, including thermal shocks; a breakdown of epigenetic regulation that

  11. Coccolithophore populations and their contribution to carbonate export during an annual cycle in the Australian sector of the Antarctic zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rigual Hernández, Andrés S.; Flores, José A.; Sierro, Francisco J.; Fuertes, Miguel A.; Cros, Lluïsa; Trull, Thomas W.

    2018-03-01

    ) coccoliths captured by the traps experienced weight and length reduction during summer (December-February); (3) the estimated annual coccolith weight of E. huxleyi at both sediment traps (2.11 ± 0.96 and 2.13 ± 0.91 pg at 2000 and 3700 m) was consistent with previous studies for morphotype B/C in other Southern Ocean settings (Scotia Sea and Patagonian shelf); and (4) coccolithophores accounted for approximately 2-5 % of the annual deep-ocean CaCO3 flux. Our results are the first annual record of coccolithophore abundance, composition and degree of calcification in the Antarctic zone. They provide a baseline against which to monitor coccolithophore responses to changes in the environmental conditions expected for this region in coming decades.

  12. Population dynamics of Salpa thompsoni near the Antarctic Peninsula: Growth rates and interannual variations in reproductive activity (1993-2009)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loeb, V. J.; Santora, J. A.

    2012-04-01

    The salp Salpa thompsoni has exhibited increased abundance in high latitude portions of the Southern Ocean in recent decades and is now frequently the numerically dominant zooplankton taxon in the Antarctic Peninsula region. The abundance increase of this species in high latitude waters is believed related to ocean warming. Due to its continuous filter feeding and production of dense rapidly sinking fecal pellets S. thompsoni is considered to be an important link in the export of particulate carbon from the surface waters. Hence basic information on the life history of this component of the Antarctic marine ecosystem is essential for assessing its impact given continued climate warming. Here we cover various aspects of the life history of S. thompsoni collected in the north Antarctic Peninsula during annual austral summer surveys of the US Antarctic Marine Living Resources (AMLR) Program between 1993 and 2009. We focus on seasonal and interannual variations in the size composition and abundance of the aggregate (sexual) and solitary (asexual) stages. This information is valuable for refining components of Southern Ocean food web models that explicitly deal with size-structured and life history information on zooplankton. Intraseasonal changes in length-frequency distribution of both stages are used to estimate their growth rates. These average 0.40 mm day-1 for aggregates and 0.23 mm day-1 for solitaries; together these represent ∼7 week and ∼7.5 month generation times, respectively, and a 9 month life cycle (i.e., onset of aggregate production year 1 to aggregate production year 2). Based on the maximum lengths typically found during January-March, the life spans of the aggregate and solitary stages can reach at least ∼5 and ∼15 months, respectively. Length-frequency distributions each year reflect interannual differences in timing of the initiation and peak reproductive output. Interannual differences in the abundance of total salps and proportions of the

  13. Extensive lake sediment coring survey on Sub-Antarctic Indian Ocean Kerguelen Archipelago (French Austral and Antarctic Lands)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnaud, Fabien; Fanget, Bernard; Malet, Emmanuel; Poulenard, Jérôme; Støren, Eivind; Leloup, Anouk; Bakke, Jostein; Sabatier, Pierre

    2016-04-01

    Recent paleo-studies revealed climatic southern high latitude climate evolution patterns that are crucial to understand the global climate evolution(1,2). Among others the strength and north-south shifts of westerlies wind appeared to be a key parameter(3). However, virtually no lands are located south of the 45th South parallel between Southern Georgia (60°W) and New Zealand (170°E) precluding the establishment of paleoclimate records of past westerlies dynamics. Located around 50°S and 70°E, lost in the middle of the sub-Antarctic Indian Ocean, Kerguelen archipelago is a major, geomorphologically complex, land-mass that is covered by hundreds lakes of various sizes. It hence offers a unique opportunity to reconstruct past climate and environment dynamics in a region where virtually nothing is known about it, except the remarkable recent reconstructions based on a Lateglacial peatbog sequence(4). During the 2014-2015 austral summer, a French-Norwegian team led the very first extensive lake sediment coring survey on Kerguelen Archipelago under the umbrella of the PALAS program supported by the French Polar Institute (IPEV). Two main areas were investigated: i) the southwest of the mainland, so-called Golfe du Morbihan, where glaciers are currently absent and ii) the northernmost Kerguelen mainland peninsula so-called Loranchet, where cirque glaciers are still present. This double-target strategy aims at reconstructing various independent indirect records of precipitation (glacier advance, flood dynamics) and wind speed (marine spray chemical species, wind-borne terrigenous input) to tackle the Holocene climate variability. Despite particularly harsh climate conditions and difficult logistics matters, we were able to core 6 lake sediment sites: 5 in Golfe du Morbihan and one in Loranchet peninsula. Among them two sequences taken in the 4km-long Lake Armor using a UWITEC re-entry piston coring system by 20 and 100m water-depth (6 and 7m-long, respectively). One

  14. A new bed elevation model for the Weddell Sea sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Jeofry

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available We present a new digital elevation model (DEM of the bed, with a 1 km gridding, of the Weddell Sea (WS sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS. The DEM has a total area of ∼ 125 000 km2 covering the Institute, Möller and Foundation ice streams, as well as the Bungenstock ice rise. In comparison with the Bedmap2 product, our DEM includes new aerogeophysical datasets acquired by the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets (CReSIS through the NASA Operation IceBridge (OIB program in 2012, 2014 and 2016. We also improve bed elevation information from the single largest existing dataset in the region, collected by the British Antarctic Survey (BAS Polarimetric radar Airborne Science Instrument (PASIN in 2010–2011, from the relatively crude measurements determined in the field for quality control purposes used in Bedmap2. While the gross form of the new DEM is similar to Bedmap2, there are some notable differences. For example, the position and size of a deep subglacial trough (∼ 2 km below sea level between the ice-sheet interior and the grounding line of the Foundation Ice Stream have been redefined. From the revised DEM, we are able to better derive the expected routing of basal water and, by comparison with that calculated using Bedmap2, we are able to assess regions where hydraulic flow is sensitive to change. Given the potential vulnerability of this sector to ocean-induced melting at the grounding line, especially in light of the improved definition of the Foundation Ice Stream trough, our revised DEM will be of value to ice-sheet modelling in efforts to quantify future glaciological changes in the region and, from this, the potential impact on global sea level. The new 1 km bed elevation product of the WS sector can be found at https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1035488.

  15. Evidence of microbial rhodopsins in Antarctic Dry Valley edaphic systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerrero, Leandro D; Vikram, Surendra; Makhalanyane, Thulani P; Cowan, Don A

    2017-09-01

    Microorganisms able to synthesize rhodopsins have the capacity to translocate ions through their membranes, using solar energy to generate a proton motive force. Rhodopsins are the most abundant phototrophic proteins in oceanic surface waters and are key constituents in marine bacterial ecology. However, it remains unclear how rhodopsins are used in most microorganisms. Despite their abundance in marine and fresh-water systems, the presence of functional rhodopsin systems in edaphic habitats has never been reported. Here, we show the presence of several new putative H + , Na + and Cl + pumping rhodopsins identified by metagenomic analysis of Antarctic desert hypolithic communities. Reconstruction of two Proteobacteria genomes harboring xanthorhodopsin-like proteins and one Bacteroidetes genome with a Na-pumping-like rhodopsin indicated that these bacteria were aerobic heterotrophs possessing the apparent capacity for the functional expression of rhodopsins. The existence of these protein systems in hypolithic bacteria expands the known role of rhodopsins to include terrestrial environments and suggests a possible predominant function as heterotrophic energy supply proteins, a feasible microbial adaptation to the harsh conditions prevalent in Antarctic edaphic systems. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Anti-inflammatory activity in selected Antarctic benthic organisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan eMoles

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Antarctic benthos was prospected in search for anti-inflammatory activity in polar benthic invertebrates, in two different geographical areas: deep-bottoms of the Eastern Weddell Sea and shallow-waters of the South Shetland Islands. A total of 36 benthic algae and invertebrate species were selected to perform solubility tests in order to test them for anti-inflammatory activity. From these, ethanol extracts of ten species from five different phyla resulted suitable to be studied in cell macrophage cultures (RAW 264.7. Cytotoxicity (MTT method and production of inflammatory mediators (prostaglandin E2, leukotriene B4, interleukin-1 were determined at three extract concentrations (50, 125, 250 g/mL. Bioassays resulted in four different species showing anti-inflammatory activity corresponding to three sponges: Mycale (Oxymycale acerata, Isodictya erinacea, and I. toxophila; and one hemichordate: Cephalodiscus sp. These results show that Antarctic sessile invertebrates may have great value as a source of lead compounds with potential pharmaceutical applications.

  17. Leadership in politics and science within the Antarctic Treaty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John R. Dudeney

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available For over 50 years the Antarctic has been governed through the Antarctic Treaty, an international agreement now between 49 nations of whom 28 Consultative Parties (CPs undertake the management role. Ostensibly, these Parties have qualified for their position on scientific grounds, though diplomacy also plays a major role. This paper uses counts of policy papers and science publications to assess the political and scientific outputs of all CPs over the last 18 years. We show that a subset of the original 12 Treaty signatories, consisting of the seven claimant nations, the USA and Russia, not only set the political agenda for the continent but also provide most of the science, with those CPs producing the most science generally having the greatest political influence. None of the later signatories to the Treaty appear to play a major role in managing Antarctica compared with this group, with half of all CPs collectively producing only 7% of the policy papers. Although acceptance as a CP requires demonstration of a substantial scientific programme, the Treaty has no formal mechanism to review whether a CP continues to meet this criterion. As a first step to addressing this deficiency, we encourage the CPs collectively to resolve to hold regular international peer reviews of their individual science programmes and to make the results available to the other CPs.

  18. ARM West Antarctic Radiation Experiment (AWARE) Field Campaign Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lubin, Daniel [Univ. of California, San Diego, CA (United States). Scripps Inst. of Oceanography; Bromwich, David H [Ohio State University; Vogelmann, Andrew M [Brookhaven National Lab. (BNL), Upton, NY (United States); Verlinde, Johannes [Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park, PA (United States); Russell, Lynn M [Univ. of California, San Diego, CA (United States). Scripps Inst. of Oceanography

    2017-09-15

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) West Antarctic Radiation Experiment (AWARE) is the most technologically advanced atmospheric and climate science campaign yet fielded in Antarctica. AWARE was motivated be recent concern about the impact of cryospheric mass loss on global sea level rise. Specifically, the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) is now the second largest contributor to rising sea level, after the Greenland Ice Sheet. As steadily warming ocean water erodes the grounding lines of WAIS components where they meet the Amundsen and Bellingshausen Seas, the retreating grounding lines moving inland and downslope on the underlying terrain imply mechanical instability of the entire WAIS. There is evidence that this point of instability may have already been reached, perhaps signifying more rapid loss of WAIS ice mass. At the same time, the mechanical support provided by adjacent ice shelves, and also the fundamental stability of exposed ice cliffs at the ice sheet grounding lines, will be adversely impacted by a warming atmosphere that causes more frequent episodes of surface melting. The surface meltwater damages the ice shelves and ice cliffs through hydrofracturing. With the increasing concern regarding these rapid cryospheric changes, AWARE was motivated by the need to (a) diagnose the surface energy balance in West Antarctica as related to both summer season climatology and potential surface melting, and (b) improve global climate model (GCM) performance over Antarctica, such that future cryospheric projections can be more reliable.

  19. Antarctic environmental specimen bank. A tool for chemical monitoring

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Soggia, F.; Dalla Riva, S.; Abelmoschi, M.L.; Frache, R. [Genoa Univ., Genoa (Italy). Dipt. di Chimica e Chimica Industriale

    2000-02-01

    The work illustrates the project on Antarctic Environmental Specimen Bank (BCAA), which is an integral part of the Italian project on the micropollutants chemistry (sector on chemical contamination of the Italian Antarctic Research program, PNRA), begun in 1994 when the BCAA was installed in the department of chemistry and industrial chemistry (Genoa University, Italy). Its objective underlines an emphasis on environmental chemistry and the establishment of baselines similar to the approaches followed by the other environmental specimen banks, begun at the end of Sixties with the aim of long-term storage of representative environmental specimens in order to study the presence and the evolution of dangerous substances, but focus on the chemical characterization of samples. [Italian] Il lavoro illustra le finalita' del Progetto su una Banca Campioni Ambientali Antartici (BCAA), che e' parte integrante del progetto Chmica dei microinquinannti del Settore Contaminazione chimica del Programma Nazionale di ricerche in Antartide (ONRA), nata nel 1994 presso il dipartimento di chimicia e chimica industriale dell'universita' di Genova. A differenza di altri progetti internazionali che enfatizzano gli aspetti biologici, ecologici e medici, il progetto BCAA enfatizza la chimica ambientale.

  20. Snow surface microbiome on the High Antarctic Plateau (DOME C).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaud, Luigi; Lo Giudice, Angelina; Mysara, Mohamed; Monsieurs, Pieter; Raffa, Carmela; Leys, Natalie; Amalfitano, Stefano; Van Houdt, Rob

    2014-01-01

    The cryosphere is an integral part of the global climate system and one of the major habitable ecosystems of Earth's biosphere. These permanently frozen environments harbor diverse, viable and metabolically active microbial populations that represent almost all the major phylogenetic groups. In this study, we investigated the microbial diversity in the surface snow surrounding the Concordia Research Station on the High Antarctic Plateau through a polyphasic approach, including direct prokaryotic quantification by flow cytometry and catalyzed reporter deposition fluorescence in situ hybridization (CARD-FISH), and phylogenetic identification by 16S RNA gene clone library sequencing and 454 16S amplicon pyrosequencing. Although the microbial abundance was low (<10(3) cells/ml of snowmelt), concordant results were obtained with the different techniques. The microbial community was mainly composed of members of the Alpha-proteobacteria class (e.g. Kiloniellaceae and Rhodobacteraceae), which is one of the most well-represented bacterial groups in marine habitats, Bacteroidetes (e.g. Cryomorphaceae and Flavobacteriaceae) and Cyanobacteria. Based on our results, polar microorganisms could not only be considered as deposited airborne particles, but as an active component of the snowpack ecology of the High Antarctic Plateau.

  1. Snow surface microbiome on the High Antarctic Plateau (DOME C.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luigi Michaud

    Full Text Available The cryosphere is an integral part of the global climate system and one of the major habitable ecosystems of Earth's biosphere. These permanently frozen environments harbor diverse, viable and metabolically active microbial populations that represent almost all the major phylogenetic groups. In this study, we investigated the microbial diversity in the surface snow surrounding the Concordia Research Station on the High Antarctic Plateau through a polyphasic approach, including direct prokaryotic quantification by flow cytometry and catalyzed reporter deposition fluorescence in situ hybridization (CARD-FISH, and phylogenetic identification by 16S RNA gene clone library sequencing and 454 16S amplicon pyrosequencing. Although the microbial abundance was low (<10(3 cells/ml of snowmelt, concordant results were obtained with the different techniques. The microbial community was mainly composed of members of the Alpha-proteobacteria class (e.g. Kiloniellaceae and Rhodobacteraceae, which is one of the most well-represented bacterial groups in marine habitats, Bacteroidetes (e.g. Cryomorphaceae and Flavobacteriaceae and Cyanobacteria. Based on our results, polar microorganisms could not only be considered as deposited airborne particles, but as an active component of the snowpack ecology of the High Antarctic Plateau.

  2. Detecting the Recovery of the Antarctic Ozone Hole

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, Paul A.; Nash, Eric R.; Kawa, S. Randolph; Montzka, Steve

    2004-01-01

    The Antarctic ozone hole develops each year and culminates by early Spring. Antarctic ozone values have been monitored since 1979 using satellite observations from the TOMS instrument. The severity of the hole has been assessed from TOMS using the minimum total ozone value from the October monthly mean (depth of the hole) and by calculating the average size during the September-October period. Ozone is mainly destroyed by halogen catalytic cycles, and these losses are modulated by temperature variations in the collar of the polar lower stratospheric vortex. In this presentation, we show the relationships of halogens and temperature to both the size and depth of the hole. Because atmospheric halogen levels are responding to international agreements that limit or phase out production, the amount of halogens in the stratosphere should decrease over the next few decades. Using projections of halogen levels combined with age-of-air estimates, we find that the ozone hole is recovering at an extremely slow rate and that large ozone holes will regularly recur over the next 2 decades. We will show estimates of both when the ozone hole will begin to show first signs of recovery, and when the hole will fully recover to pre-1980 levels.

  3. Use of antarctic analogs to support the space exploration initiative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wharton, Robert; Roberts, Barney; Chiang, Erick; Lynch, John; Roberts, Carol; Buoni, Corinne; Andersen, Dale

    1990-01-01

    This report has discussed the Space Exploration Initiative (SEI) and the U.S. Antarctic Program (USAP) in the context of assessing the potential rationale and strategy for conducting a cooperative NASA/NSF (National Science Foundation) effort. Specifically, such an effort would address shared research and data on living and conducting scientific research in isolated, confined, hostile, and remote environments. A review of the respective goals and requirements of NASA and the NSF indicates that numerous opportunities exist to mutually benefit from sharing relevant technologies, data, and systems. Two major conclusions can be drawn: (1) The technologies, experience, and capabilities existing and developing in the aerospace community would enhance scientific research capabilities and the efficiency and effectiveness of operations in Antarctica. The transfer and application of critical technologies (e.g., power, waste management, life support) and collaboration on crew research needs (e.g., human behavior and medical support needs) would streamline the USAP operations and provide the scientific community with advancements in facilities and tools for Antarctic research. (2) Antarctica is the most appropriate earth analog for the environments of the the Moon and Mars. Using Antarctica in this way would contribute substantially to near- and long-term needs and plans for the SEI. Antarctica is one of the few ground-based analogs that would permit comprehensive and integrated studies of three areas deemed critical to productive and safe operations on the Moon and Mars: human health and productivity; innovative scientific research techniques; and reliable, efficient technologies and facilities.

  4. Testing a Mars science outpost in the Antarctic dry valleys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, D. T.; Mckay, C. P.; Wharton, R. A.; Rummel, J. D.

    1992-01-01

    Field research conducted in the Antarctic has been providing insights about the nature of Mars in the science disciplines of exobiology and geology. Located in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of southern Victoria Land (160 deg and 164 deg E longitude and 76 deg 30 min and 78 deg 30 min S latitude), research outposts are inhabited by teams of 4-6 scientists. It is proposed that the design of these outposts be expanded to enable meaningful tests of many of the systems that will be needed for the successful conduct of exploration activities on Mars. Although there are some important differences between the environment in the Antarctic dry valleys and on Mars, the many similarities and particularly the field science activities, make the dry valleys a useful terrestrial analog to conditions on Mars. Three areas have been identified for testing at a small science outpost in the dry valleys: (1) studying human factors and physiology in an isolated environment; (2) testing emerging technologies (e.g. innovative power management systems, advanced life support facilities including partial bioregenerative life support systems for water recycling and food growth, telerobotics, etc.); and (3) conducting basic scientific research that will enhance understanding of Mars while contributing to the planning for human exploration. It is suggested that an important early result of a Mars habitat program will be the experience gained by interfacing humans and their supporting technology in a remote and stressful environment.

  5. Depletion of stratospheric ozone over the Antarctic and Arctic: Responses of plants of polar terrestrial ecosystems to enhanced UV-B, an overview

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rozema, Jelte; Boelen, Peter; Blokker, Peter

    2005-01-01

    Depletion of stratospheric ozone over the Antarctic has been re-occurring yearly since 1974, leading to enhanced UV-B radiation. Arctic ozone depletion has been observed since 1990. Ozone recovery has been predicted by 2050, but no signs of recovery occur. Here we review responses of polar plants to experimentally varied UV-B through supplementation or exclusion. In supplementation studies comparing ambient and above ambient UV-B, no effect on growth occurred. UV-B-induced DNA damage, as measured in polar bryophytes, is repaired overnight by photoreactivation. With UV exclusion, growth at near ambient may be less than at below ambient UV-B levels, which relates to the UV response curve of polar plants. UV-B screening foils also alter PAR, humidity, and temperature and interactions of UV with environmental factors may occur. Plant phenolics induced by solar UV-B, as in pollen, spores and lignin, may serve as a climate proxy for past UV. Since the Antarctic and Arctic terrestrial ecosystems differ essentially (e.g. higher species diversity and more trophic interactions in the Arctic), generalization of polar plant responses to UV-B needs caution. - Polar plant responses to UV-B may be different in the Arctic than Antarctic regions

  6. Are Antarctic minke whales unusually abundant because of 20th century whaling?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruegg, Kristen C; Anderson, Eric C; Scott Baker, C; Vant, Murdoch; Jackson, Jennifer A; Palumbi, Stephen R

    2010-01-01

    Severe declines in megafauna worldwide illuminate the role of top predators in ecosystem structure. In the Antarctic, the Krill Surplus Hypothesis posits that the killing of more than 2 million large whales led to competitive release for smaller krill-eating species like the Antarctic minke whale. If true, the current size of the Antarctic minke whale population may be unusually high as an indirect result of whaling. Here, we estimate the long-term population size of the Antarctic minke whale prior to whaling by sequencing 11 nuclear genetic markers from 52 modern samples purchased in Japanese meat markets. We use coalescent simulations to explore the potential influence of population substructure and find that even though our samples are drawn from a limited geographic area, our estimate reflects ocean-wide genetic diversity. Using Bayesian estimates of the mutation rate and coalescent-based analyses of genetic diversity across loci, we calculate the long-term population size of the Antarctic minke whale to be 670,000 individuals (95% confidence interval: 374,000-1,150,000). Our estimate of long-term abundance is similar to, or greater than, contemporary abundance estimates, suggesting that managing Antarctic ecosystems under the assumption that Antarctic minke whales are unusually abundant is not warranted.

  7. Antarctic glaciation caused ocean circulation changes at the Eocene-Oligocene transition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldner, A; Herold, N; Huber, M

    2014-07-31

    Two main hypotheses compete to explain global cooling and the abrupt growth of the Antarctic ice sheet across the Eocene-Oligocene transition about 34 million years ago: thermal isolation of Antarctica due to southern ocean gateway opening, and declining atmospheric CO2 (refs 5, 6). Increases in ocean thermal stratification and circulation in proxies across the Eocene-Oligocene transition have been interpreted as a unique signature of gateway opening, but at present both mechanisms remain possible. Here, using a coupled ocean-atmosphere model, we show that the rise of Antarctic glaciation, rather than altered palaeogeography, is best able to explain the observed oceanographic changes. We find that growth of the Antarctic ice sheet caused enhanced northward transport of Antarctic intermediate water and invigorated the formation of Antarctic bottom water, fundamentally reorganizing ocean circulation. Conversely, gateway openings had much less impact on ocean thermal stratification and circulation. Our results support available evidence that CO2 drawdown--not gateway opening--caused Antarctic ice sheet growth, and further show that these feedbacks in turn altered ocean circulation. The precise timing and rate of glaciation, and thus its impacts on ocean circulation, reflect the balance between potentially positive feedbacks (increases in sea ice extent and enhanced primary productivity) and negative feedbacks (stronger southward heat transport and localized high-latitude warming). The Antarctic ice sheet had a complex, dynamic role in ocean circulation and heat fluxes during its initiation, and these processes are likely to operate in the future.

  8. Equatorial heat accumulation as a long-term trigger of permanent Antarctic ice sheets during the Cenozoic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tremblin, Maxime; Hermoso, Michaël; Minoletti, Fabrice

    2016-10-18

    Growth of the first permanent Antarctic ice sheets at the Eocene-Oligocene Transition (EOT), ∼33.7 million years ago, indicates a major climate shift within long-term Cenozoic cooling. The driving mechanisms that set the stage for this glaciation event are not well constrained, however, owing to large uncertainties in temperature reconstructions during the Eocene, especially at lower latitudes. To address this deficiency, we used recent developments in coccolith biogeochemistry to reconstruct equatorial Atlantic sea surface temperature (SST) and atmospheric pCO 2 values from pelagic sequences preceding and spanning the EOT. We found significantly more variability in equatorial SSTs than previously reported, with pronounced cooling from the Early to Middle Eocene and subsequent warming during the Late Eocene. Thus, we show that the Antarctic glaciation at the Eocene-Oligocene boundary was preceded by a period of heat accumulation in the low latitudes, likely focused in a progressively contracting South Atlantic gyre, which contributed to cooling high-latitude austral regions. This prominent redistribution of heat corresponds to the emplacement of a strong meridional temperature gradient that typifies icehouse climate conditions. Our equatorial coccolith-derived geochemical record thus highlights an important period of global climatic and oceanic upheaval, which began 4 million years before the EOT and, superimposed on a long-term pCO 2 decline, drove the Earth system toward a glacial tipping point in the Cenozoic.

  9. Changes in bird communities of Admiralty Bay, King George Island (West Antarctic: insights from monitoring data (1977–1996

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sierakowski Kazimierz

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The paper summarizes results of twenty years of seabird observations carried out between 1977 and 1996 on the western shore of Admiralty Bay (King George Island, South Shetlands, Antarctic. Changes in population size, distribution and phenology of the breeding species as well as the appearance of non-breeding species are reported. A total of 34 species of birds were observed, including 13 breeding species. Among the non-breeding species, four were observed to visit the site regularly, six rarely, and the remaining 11 were observed only occasionally. Among breeding populations, three Pygoscelis penguin species, the main krill consumers, were most numerous. The Adélie Penguin (P. adeliae dominated among the penguins nesting in the investigated areas, reaching 23,661 breeding pairs in 1978. Two other penguin species were less abundant with population sizes of approximately 7,200 breeding pairs for the Chinstrap Penguin (P. antarcticus and 3,100 breeding pairs for the Gentoo Penguin (P. papua in the same year. During the following two decades, breeding populations of pygoscelid species experienced a declining trend and their numbers were reduced by 68.0% for Chinstrap, 67.1% for Gentoo, and 33.9% for Adélie Penguins. The data reported here represent a unique reference basis and provide valuable information about indicator species, suitable for comparison with contemporary observations of bird populations in the Antarctic Peninsula region, a place of rapidly occurring climate changes and intensive harvesting of marine living resources.

  10. Natural products mediating ecological interactions in Antarctic benthic communities: a mini-review of the known molecules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Núñez-Pons, L; Avila, C

    2015-07-01

    Out of the many bioactive compounds described from the oceans, only a small fraction have been studied for their ecological significance. Similarly, most chemically mediated interactions are not well understood, because the molecules involved remain unrevealed. In Antarctica, this gap in knowledge is even more acute in comparison to tropical or temperate regions, even though polar organisms are also prolific producers of chemical defenses, and pharmacologically relevant products are being reported from the Southern Ocean. The extreme and unique marine environments surrounding Antarctica along with the numerous unusual interactions taking place in benthic communities are expected to select for novel functional secondary metabolites. There is an urgent need to comprehend the evolutionary role of marine derived substances in general, and particularly at the Poles, since molecules of keystone significance are vital in species survival, and therefore, in structuring the communities. Here we provide a mini-review on the identified marine natural products proven to have an ecological function in Antarctic ecosystems. This report recapitulates some of the bibliography from original Antarctic reviews, and updates the new literature in the field from 2009 to the present.

  11. Morphology of gill rakers and their ecological function in feeding of the Antarctic fish Notothenia neglecta Nybelin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavia Sant'Anna Rios

    1998-07-01

    Full Text Available Notothenia neglecta, endemic to the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic regions, is basically carnivorous with a wide dietary spectrum. In order to evaluate the gill rakers' morphology and histological features of gill structures in relation to their feeding habits, specimens were obtained at Admiralty Bay (King George Island, South Shetlands. Their stomach content was identified and measured and the pharyngobranchial apparatus was studied macro and microscopically. The morphology of the gill rakers and the sizes of prey that are present in the stomach of N. neglecta characterize this species as piscivorous but also able to capture other small prey. Gill rakers provided with sharp villiform denticles improve the retention of fish. At the anterior row, gill rakers are flexible and without denticles, allowing continuous breathing during slow ingestion of large prey. Food is selected by size. The distance between gill rakers allows the retention of amphipods, bivalves and gastropods if bigger than 0.17% of the predator standard length. Food is also selected chemically by taste buds and isolated chemical-sensorial cells. Goblet cells produce mucus that covers the preys with a smooth layer, avoiding scratching of the mucosa during ingestion of food and promoting aggregation of smaller food items. N. neglecta is an active feeder that uses different detection and selection mechanisms to survive in an environment where the food composition varies during the year.

  12. Ultrastructure of photo-sensory cells and pigment epithelium in the retina of the Antarctic fish Notothenia neglecta Nybelin (Nototheniidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucelia Donatti

    2002-03-01

    Full Text Available The Antarctic nototheniid Notothenia neglecta is the dominant fish in its habitat in Admiralty Bay, King George Island. They are predators, often ambush feeders, with accurate visual behaviour. For that reason, the ultrastructure of retinal photoreceptive cells and the pigment epithelium was analysed through electron microscopy. Their retina has a pigment epithelium, five different photoreceptors : rods, short single, long single, double, and triple cones, and neurones and support cells. The pigment epithelium is characterised by infoldings of the basal membrane, basal mitochondria, smooth reticule, large amount of microtubules, melanin granules, phagosomes and detached membranes of photoreceptors. Cones show bimembranous discs in the outer segment, an accessory outer segment, a connecting cilium, calycal processes, microtubules in the inferior ellipsoid and myoid, centrioles in the ellipsoid, interdigitating myoid fins and apical microvilli of Muller cells in the myoid and elliposid region. All these features allow all sorts of adaptations to the environmental photic variations, and situate N. neglecta among fish with a complex retina, with cells that are arranged in ten layers, allowing horizontal and vertical integration among them. This allows optimal visual behaviour and perception of food and environment in every Antarctic season.

  13. Study of the active layer at the Spanish Antarctic station “Gabriel de Castilla”, Deception Island, Antarctica

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pablo, M.A. de; Molina, A.; Recio, C.; Ramos, M.; Goyanes, G.; Ropero, M.A.

    2017-01-01

    The degradation of permanent frozen ground (permafrost) and the increase in the thickness of the active layer may be caused both by natural processes (such as global climate change) and by anthropic activity, which changes the natural environmental conditions that allow its existence, as has been widely reported to occur in the northern polar and subpolar regions. In the case of Antarctica, some scientific research stations are located in areas with permafrost, such as the Spanish Antarctic station “Gabriel de Castilla” on Deception Island. In the place where the station is located, an important increase in erosion has been observed in recent years, including the excavation of new gullies and the erosion of the coastal cliffs. In order to develop an initial analysis of the possible effects of the station on the permafrost degradation, ground temperature has been monitored since 2012 and the thickness and of the active layer and the temperature, both inside and beneath the station, have also been sporadically measured. Here we show the results and discuss how the station reduces the freezing of the ground during the winter when the station is closed and facilitates the warming of the ground during the living periods of the station in the Antarctic summer. Those initial results and conclusions make necessary to continue the study of the permafrost and the active layer in the station site by systematic monitoring of the ground temperature and the thickness of the active layer. [es

  14. Characterising terrestrial influences on Antarctic air masses using Radon-222 measurements at King George Island

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambers, S. D.; Hong, S.-B.; Williams, A. G.; Crawford, J.; Griffiths, A. D.; Park, S.-J.

    2014-09-01

    We report on one year of high-precision direct hourly radon observations at King Sejong Station (King George Island) beginning in February 2013. Findings are compared with historic and ongoing radon measurements from other Antarctic sites. Monthly median concentrations reduced from 72 mBq m-3 in late-summer to 44 mBq m-3 in late winter and early spring. Monthly 10th percentiles, ranging from 29 to 49 mBq m-3, were typical of oceanic baseline values. Diurnal cycles were rarely evident and local influences were minor, consistent with regional radon flux estimates one tenth of the global average for ice-free land. The predominant fetch region for terrestrially influenced air masses was South America (47-53° S), with minor influences also attributed to aged Australian air masses and local sources. Plume dilution factors of 2.8-4.0 were estimated for the most terrestrially influenced (South American) air masses, and a seasonal cycle in terrestrial influence on tropospheric air descending at the pole was identified and characterised.

  15. Temporal variability of the Antarctic Ice sheet observed from space-based geodesy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Memin, A.; King, M. A.; Boy, J. P.; Remy, F.

    2017-12-01

    Quantifying the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) mass balance still remains challenging as several processes compete to differing degrees at the basin scale with regional variations, leading to multiple mass redistribution patterns. For instance, analysis of linear trends in surface-height variations from 1992-2003 and 2002-2006 shows that the AIS is subject to decimetric scale variability over periods of a few years. Every year, snowfalls in Antarctica represent the equivalent of 6 mm of the mean sea level. Therefore, any fluctuation in precipitation can lead to changes in sea level. Besides, over the last decade, several major glaciers have been thinning at an accelerating rate. Understanding the processes that interact on the ice sheet is therefore important to precisely determine the response of the ice sheet to a rapid changing climate and estimate its contribution to sea level changes. We estimate seasonal and interannual changes of the AIS between January 2003 and October 2010 and to the end of 2016 from a combined analysis of surface-elevation and surface-mass changes derived from Envisat data and GRACE solutions, and from GRACE solutions only, respectively. While we obtain a good correlation for the interannual signal between the two techniques, important differences (in amplitude, phase, and spatial pattern) are obtained for the seasonal signal. We investigate these discrepancies by comparing the crustal motion observed by GPS and those predicted using monthly surface mass balance derived from the regional atmospheric climate model RACMO.

  16. Antarctic Super Heroes: Using a Graphic Novel to Teach Students About Polar Science. (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lougheed, V.; Palsole, S.; Rojas, C.; Tweedie, C. E.

    2009-12-01

    The University of Texas at El Paso received an IPY grant from the US National Science Foundation to take undergraduate and graduate students, as well as teachers, to Antarctica over winter break 2007. The program, called IPY-ROAM (International Polar Year - Research and Educational Experiences in Antarctica for Minorities) aimed to increase the number of underrepresented minorities in the sciences, and increase public awareness about the polar regions. Education and outreach activities have been designed to teach people of all ages about polar science. For example, an interactive museum exhibit was designed to describe how the polar regions are being affected by climate change, and how individuals can make a difference. Our latest outreach strategy involves taking the large amount of educational materials collected for the museum display and making it available to a broader audience. We have created a graphic novel where the story of the ROAM Antarctic trip and existing educational materials are communicated using a combination of comic strips, fact sheets, and classroom activities. Photographic images from the ROAM trip were digitized and converted to a comic strip format. These images were combined with text from film footage collected by a documentary film, as well as personal anecdotes, to convey the successes of the program and the primary messages participants wanted to share with the public. The graphic novel will be made available to local school groups and online, at our website: www.ipyroam.org.

  17. Microplastics in the Antarctic marine system: An emerging area of research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waller, Catherine L; Griffiths, Huw J; Waluda, Claire M; Thorpe, Sally E; Loaiza, Iván; Moreno, Bernabé; Pacherres, Cesar O; Hughes, Kevin A

    2017-11-15

    It was thought that the Southern Ocean was relatively free of microplastic contamination; however, recent studies and citizen science projects in the Southern Ocean have reported microplastics in deep-sea sediments and surface waters. Here we reviewed available information on microplastics (including macroplastics as a source of microplastics) in the Southern Ocean. We estimated primary microplastic concentrations from personal care products and laundry, and identified potential sources and routes of transmission into the region. Estimates showed the levels of microplastic pollution released into the region from ships and scientific research stations were likely to be negligible at the scale of the Southern Ocean, but may be significant on a local scale. This was demonstrated by the detection of the first microplastics in shallow benthic sediments close to a number of research stations on King George Island. Furthermore, our predictions of primary microplastic concentrations from local sources were five orders of magnitude lower than levels reported in published sampling surveys (assuming an even dispersal at the ocean surface). Sea surface transfer from lower latitudes may contribute, at an as yet unknown level, to Southern Ocean plastic concentrations. Acknowledging the lack of data describing microplastic origins, concentrations, distribution and impacts in the Southern Ocean, we highlight the urgent need for research, and call for routine, standardised monitoring in the Antarctic marine system. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Long-Term Patterns in Production and Export of Fecal Pellets by Krill and Salps along the Western Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinberg, D. K.; Ruck, K. E.; Cope, J. S.

    2016-02-01

    The Western Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) is one of the most rapidly warming regions on Earth, and where climate-induced changes in zooplankton abundance and species composition could dramatically affect the pelagic food web and biogeochemical cycling. We examined long-term (1993 to the present) and spatial trends in summer abundance of, and fecal pellet production (FPP) by, Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) and gelatinous salps (Salpa thompsoni) and their relationship with physical and other environmental parameters. Zooplankton were collected as part of the Palmer, Antarctica Long-Term Ecological Research Program (PAL LTER) from the epipelagic zone in a region divided into latitudinal (North, South, and Far South) and cross-shelf (coastal, shelf, slope) sub-regions. Beginning in 2009, FPP and sinking rate experiments were conducted at representative stations along these gradients. FPP peaks occurred every 4-6 years in both species in the north and south, but alternated such that some years were characterized by high krill-mediated export, and others by high salp-mediated export. In the far south (where perennial sea ice still persists), and in both coastal and shelf sub-regions, krill FFP exceeded that of salps. Conversely, off the slope, salp FPP exceeded that of krill. Variability in krill FPP was strongly and positively influenced by primary production 2-years prior, and negatively correlated with sea surface temperature (no lag). Salp FPP was most significantly correlated with sea ice parameters, with highest FPP in years of lowest sea-ice extent, duration, and area. Warmer water and ice-free conditions favored salps over krill, which also increased overall potential export of fecal pellet carbon to depth. We discuss the implications of this potential increase in biological pump efficiency as the climate warms.

  19. The Southern Ocean and South Pacific Region

    OpenAIRE

    Kelleher, K.; Warnau, Michel; Failler, Pierre; Pecl, Gretta; Turley, Carol; Boeuf, Gilles; Laffoley, Dan; Parker, Laura; Gurney, Leigh

    2012-01-01

    The Region comprises three sub-regions (FAO Statistical Areas) with very different characteristics. The South Pacific includes the vast and virtually unpopulated Southern Ocean surrounding the Antarctic. It has the world’s largest fisheries off Peru and Chile and some of the world’s best managed fisheries in Australia and New Zealand. The Region has over 27% of the world’s ocean area and over 98% of the Region’s total area of 91 million km2 is ‘open ocean’. The Region contains less than 5% of...

  20. Two Antarctic penguin genomes reveal insights into their evolutionary history and molecular changes related to the Antarctic environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Cai; Zhang, Yong; Li, Jianwen; Kong, Lesheng; Hu, Haofu; Pan, Hailin; Xu, Luohao; Deng, Yuan; Li, Qiye; Jin, Lijun; Yu, Hao; Chen, Yan; Liu, Binghang; Yang, Linfeng; Liu, Shiping; Zhang, Yan; Lang, Yongshan; Xia, Jinquan; He, Weiming; Shi, Qiong; Subramanian, Sankar; Millar, Craig D; Meader, Stephen; Rands, Chris M; Fujita, Matthew K; Greenwold, Matthew J; Castoe, Todd A; Pollock, David D; Gu, Wanjun; Nam, Kiwoong; Ellegren, Hans; Ho, Simon Yw; Burt, David W; Ponting, Chris P; Jarvis, Erich D; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Yang, Huanming; Wang, Jian; Lambert, David M; Wang, Jun; Zhang, Guojie

    2014-01-01

    Penguins are flightless aquatic birds widely distributed in the Southern Hemisphere. The distinctive morphological and physiological features of penguins allow them to live an aquatic life, and some of them have successfully adapted to the hostile environments in Antarctica. To study the phylogenetic and population history of penguins and the molecular basis of their adaptations to Antarctica, we sequenced the genomes of the two Antarctic dwelling penguin species, the Adélie penguin [Pygoscelis adeliae] and emperor penguin [Aptenodytes forsteri]. Phylogenetic dating suggests that early penguins arose ~60 million years ago, coinciding with a period of global warming. Analysis of effective population sizes reveals that the two penguin species experienced population expansions from ~1 million years ago to ~100 thousand years ago, but responded differently to the climatic cooling of the last glacial period. Comparative genomic analyses with other available avian genomes identified molecular changes in genes related to epidermal structure, phototransduction, lipid metabolism, and forelimb morphology. Our sequencing and initial analyses of the first two penguin genomes provide insights into the timing of penguin origin, fluctuations in effective population sizes of the two penguin species over the past 10 million years, and the potential associations between these biological patterns and global climate change. The molecular changes compared with other avian genomes reflect both shared and diverse adaptations of the two penguin species to the Antarctic environment.