Recently in the Antarctica Category


West Antarctic Melt Rate Has Tripled

A comprehensive, 21-year analysis of the fastest-melting region of Antarctica has found that the melt rate of glaciers there has tripled during the last decade.

NASA is carrying out its sixth consecutive year of Operation IceBridge research flights over Antarctica to study changes in the continent's ice sheet, glaciers and sea ice.

NASA Antarctic Ice News

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory held a press conference to discuss the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and its potential contribution to future sea level rise. The new study by researchers at NASA and the University of California, Irvine, finds a rapidly melting section of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet appears to be in an irreversible state of decline, with nothing to stop the glaciers in this area from melting into the sea.

A new study led by NASA researchers shows that half-a-dozen key glaciers in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet are in irreversible decline. The melting of these sprawling icy giants will affect global sea levels in the centuries ahead.

First Radar Vision for Copernicus

Launched on 3 April, ESA's Sentinel-1A satellite has already delivered its first radar images of Earth. They offer a tantalising glimpse of the kind of operational imagery that this new mission will provide for Europe's ambitious Copernicus environmental monitoring programme.

NASA hosted a Google+ Hangout news conference on Tuesday, Oct. 29 to share information about Operation IceBridge's upcoming airborne field campaign in Antarctica.

The ozone hole that forms each year in the stratosphere over Antarctica was slightly smaller in 2013 than average in recent decades, according to NASA satellite data.

ESA is accepting proposals for scientific research using two of its human spaceflight 'analogue' platforms: bedrest studies and the Concordia station in Antarctica. Such experiments increase our knowledge of human risks in spaceflight today, and especially help to prepare for future long-duration exploration missions.

For five years, a scientific expedition tried reaching Pine Island Glacier ice shelf in a remote, wind-ridden corner of Antarctica. The obstacles to get to the ice shelf were extreme, but the science goal was simple: to measure how fast the sea was melting the 37-mile long ice tongue from underneath by drilling through the ice shelf.

For more than a century scientists have known that Earth's ice ages are caused by the wobbling of the planet's orbit, which changes its orientation to the sun and affects the amount of sunlight reaching higher latitudes, particularly the polar regions.

New Ice Island in Antarctica

The Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) instrument--built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry for NASA's Terra satellite--acquired this image of two widening cracks along an edge of the Pine Island Glacier in Antarctica.

Ocean waters melting the undersides of Antarctic ice shelves are responsible for most of the continent's ice shelf mass loss, a new study by NASA and university researchers has found.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has released a master plan for updating its largest Antarctic research station, McMurdo, on Ross Island, that will, among other goals, increase energy efficiency, along with logistical and resource efficiency.

Antartica The Bedrock Beneath

Our understanding of what lies beneath the world's biggest ice sheet has taken another leap forward. In this video we strip away Antarctic ice to reveal a new, and much more detailed map of the bedrock below.

South Georgia Island As Seen From Space

This photograph from the International Space Station (ISS) shows the eastern half of South Georgia Island. At 54 degrees South latitude, snow and ice are permanent everywhere on the island except at altitudes near sea level, where temperatures are higher.

Reliable information on the depth and floor structure of the Southern Ocean has so far been available for only few coastal regions of the Antarctic. An international team of scientists under the leadership of the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, has for the first time succeeded in creating a digital map of the entire Antarctic seafloor.

Scientists at the British Antarctic Survey have been working with a host of international collaborators to present the most detailed map yet of Antarctica's landmass. Bedmap2 reveals a landscape of mountain ranges and plains cut by gorges and valleys much deeper than previously seen. In addition, the map allows scientists to analyse, in much greater detail, the bed below the Antarctic ice sheet.

The Director of Science and Robotic Exploration intends to define, in the course of 2013, the science themes and questions that will be addressed by the next two Large (L-class) missions in the Cosmic Vision 2015-2025 plan, "L2" and "L3", currently planned for a launch in 2028 and 2034, respectively.

Flying high over Antarctica, a NASA long duration balloon has broken the record for longest flight by a balloon of its size. The record-breaking balloon, carrying the Super Trans-Iron Galactic Element Recorder (Super-TIGER) experiment, has been afloat for 46 days and is on its third orbit around the South Pole.

Changes to Antarctic Sea Ice Drift

View of Sheldon Glacier with Mount Barre in the background, seen from Ryder Bay near Rothera Research Station, Adelaide Island, Antarctica. A new NASA/British Antarctic Survey study examines why Antarctic sea ice cover has increased under the effects of climate change over the past two decades.

Opening the curtains at Concordia

Set against a star-studded backdrop and a splash of the Milky Way, the green glow of an auroral curtain pervades the permanently dark winter skies of the South Pole.

I recently had a chance to ask Dr. Alexander Kumar a few questions about his experiences in Antarctica - and elsewhere - as they related to space exploration - and exploration in general.

In October 2011, researchers flying in NASA's Operation IceBridge campaign made the first-ever detailed, airborne measurements of a major iceberg calving event while it was in progress. Four months later, the IceBridge team has mapped the crack in Antarctica's Pine Island Glacier in a way that allows glaciologists and the rest of us to fly through the icy canyon.

Three and a half billion years ago our planet was quite different and Earth's earliest biosphere was dominated by microbial communities - complex multicellular organisms were not to evolve for quite some time, only arriving on the scene about 600 million years ago.

Peter Rejcek, Antarctic Sun Editor: Al Fastier vividly recalls sloshing through nearly a foot of water as the first tourist of the season to enter what's become known as the Cape Evans Hut, a century-old wooden building that sits on a sloping black volcanic beach on Ross Island.

The 12 scientists and support staff made a slow crawl across a vast, blank stretch of East Antarctica this past austral summer for three months to study how regional climate variability relates to global climate change expected to encounter brutally cold storms and other challenges on the high polar plateau.