Frank Nitsche, Author at State of the Planet - Page 2 of 2

I am a marine geologist and geophysicist at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. Large parts of the earth surface are shaped by sedimentary processes. I am fascinated with complex sedimentary features, their morphology, and understanding the mechanisms that built and modified these features. Based on my background in geophysics I am using geophysical techniques to image the morphology, extent, and internal structure of complex sedimentary features to understand their evolution as well as the controlling processes.

Recent Posts

So Much Depends on Sea Ice

Where we work and how we get there depends on the sea ice. The Oden is a powerful icebreaker but it is often faster and more fuel-efficient to go around heavy sea ice then to chop our way through. If the sea ice is several feet thick, we often choose to detour. We actually consult… read more

by |February 15, 2010

Is Ocean Water Helping to Melt Glaciers?

After crossing the Ross Sea, we’ve reached our first study area: the “Little America Trough.” The oceanographers on board want to find out if warmer water from the deep ocean is rising onto the continental shelf and reaching the ice, making it melt faster. They measure temperature and salinity as well as the water currents…. read more

by |February 11, 2010

Ready to Sail

Today we arrived at McMurdo, an American research station that hosts Antarctica’s largest community—about 1,000 people during austral summer. To get here, a US Air Force cargo plane picked us up in Christchurch, New Zealand, and landed us on the ice nearby. Today is a balmy summer day of 30°F, not much colder than the… read more

by |February 6, 2010

Melting Glaciers–Tracking Their Path

I am a geophysicist at Columbia’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, and I study how different processes shape the bottom of oceans and rivers. One focus of my research is the continental shelves off Antarctica, especially in the Bellingshausen and Amundsen Sea, and the role of ice sheets in their formation. I made my first trip to… read more

by |February 4, 2010