Antarctica Archives - State of the Planet

Short-Term Ocean Temperature Shifts Are Affecting West Antarctic Ice, Says Study

Scientists have known for some time that ice shelves off West Antarctica are melting as deep, warm ocean waters eat at their undersides, but a new study shows that temperatures, and resultant melting, can vary far more than previously thought, within a time scale of a few years.

by |August 13, 2018
traversing the thwaites glacier

U.S., UK Scientists Join to Study Possible Collapse of Massive Antarctic Glacier

An international collaboration will study the wasting of the Thwaites glacier, which already accounts for around 4 percent of current global sea-level rise, and could collapse within decades or centuries.

by |April 30, 2018
Robin Bell

Wonder Woman: Lamont Polar Pioneer Robin Bell

Lamont’s Robin Bell is living proof of the importance of encouraging young women to study STEM disciplines. Her breakthrough research, fueled by passionate intellectual curiosity, has been critical to understanding our planet.

by |March 8, 2018
sunset in antarctica

Reflections from Antarctica: A Landscape in Flux

Working as an Antarctic field scientist, I witnessed the destruction provoked by a rapidly warming planet. But I also found inspiration.

by |January 16, 2018

In Antarctica, Enough is Never Enough

Almost out of nowhere we were given a surprise opportunity to fly one more survey line on our second-to-last day in Antarctica, and we jumped at it!

by |December 16, 2017
antarctic ice shelves

Tiny Losses of Ice at Antarctica’s Fringes May Hasten Declines in Interior

A new study shows that even minor deterioration of ice shelves can instantaneously hasten the decline of ice hundreds of miles landward.

by |December 11, 2017

American Geophysical Union 2017: Key Events From the Earth Institute

A chronological guide to key talks and other events presented by Columbia University’s Earth Institute at the American Geophysical Union 2017 meeting. 

by |December 4, 2017

A Bit of Sun on an Antarctic Thanksgiving

The Rosetta team made two big accomplishments this week: Our lidar returned some beautiful 3D images of the sea ice topography, which can be used to study small details of the ice. And our own Chloe Gustafson won first place in the Antarctic Turkey Trot. She now holds the honor of being the first woman to win the race!

by |November 28, 2017
Snowy day in Antarctica.

Wind, Snow and Ice: Summer in Antarctica

The theme of the past week has been the weather. Weather is of course always happening, but in the lingo of McMurdo Station, ‘weather’ means ‘bad weather.’

by |November 21, 2017

Let’s Talk About Crevasses—Deep Fractures in Antarctica’s Ice

The word “crevasse” sends shivers down the spine of anyone who works on a glacier. Sometimes hundreds of feet deep and hidden beneath a thin layer of snow, these cracks have claimed the lives of many polar explorers and scientists. They also appear quite frequently in our sensors as we fly our survey flights for Rosetta-Ice.

by |November 16, 2017