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glaciology

The deepest hole in Antarctica

Glaciers are one of nature’s most powerful agents of erosion, and no better place is this evident than beneath the outlet glaciers of our current ice sheets. During a short project at the University of Sheffield examining glacial overdeepenings (essentially very deep holes in the ground), I was able to create automated scripts that could map […]

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Empirical-modelling perspectives on ice-retreat dynamics

Out today is a new publication in Earth Surface Dynamics written by myself and some colleagues that uses a fairly unique approach in the interpretation of palaeo ice-sheet dynamics. The setting for the research is Tremadog Bay in the Irish Sea Basin, a location close to the the confluence zone of the Irish Sea Ice […]

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New start in Sheffield

Since submitting my PhD last September I have been unemployed, although still managing to keep very busy! After some travelling, a PhD defence, and time utilising a grant to study Welsh/British ice sheet dynamics, I recently applied for a research post at Sheffield University exploring glacial ‘overdeepenings’ underneath Antarctica and Greenland. I was fortunate enough […]

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Drawing ice-sheet flowlines

When I wanted to draw flowlines for a modelled ice-sheet DEM I was surprised to find limited options in my usual GIS program ArcGIS 9.2. There is a tool in the 3D Analyst toolbar which gives a ‘steepest path’ on a raster, but it can’t be batch processed from multiple points for example. After hours […]

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The Welsh Ice Cap Interaction

The following Google Earth animation is an ‘optimal’ numerical reconstruction of the Late Devensian Welsh Ice Cap, derived in the publication ‘The last Welsh Ice Cap: Part 1’. Timeslices of the ice-surface velocity begin at 27.8 ka BP and refresh every 200 years. To view properly: Make sure the time slider is zoomed out to […]

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Lake Vostok Reached

Reports are circulating that the Russian team drilling into Lake Vostok have finally reached their target, just in time before the onset of the Antarctic winter. The total depth drilled through the ice sheet stands at 3,768 metres, though this information is still yet to be confirmed. Lake Vostok has remained sealed off from the […]

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Next Ice Age on hold

A study recently published in Nature Geoscience has suggested that due to current atmospheric concentrations of CO2, the next ice age will fail to materialise on time. The authors used past interglacials as analogies to the present, and by assuming that ice growth mainly responds to insolation and CO2 forcing predicted our current warm period would end […]

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The Greenland Ice Sheet

Off the back of the BBC’s Frozen Planet, Alun Hubbard asked me to create a website detailing the research him and his team are carrying out on the Greenland Ice Sheet. The site is now up on the university webpages at www.aber.ac.uk/greenland and encourage everyone to have a look. As well as presenting the various scientific projects, […]

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Glacial karst: Descent into the Gornergletscher

The Gornergletscher is the second largest glacier system in the Alps, found on the western side of the Monte Rosa Massif flowing down towards the town of Zermatt. The glacier was the centre of interest for the Italian La Venta team during the 80’s and 90’s, during which time they found, explored and described a […]

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A new Arctic sea ice record?

Measurements taken from NASA’s Aqua satellite have shown that the area covered be sea ice in the Arctic Ocean this year came narrowly close to the record low set in 2007, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC). The animation below shows how sea ice cover has changed since early March until […]

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