Please select your home edition
Edition
Naiad/Oracle Supplier

British Antarctic Survey support field expedition to James Ross Island

by British Antarctic Survey on 14 Jan 2011
RRS Ernest Shackleton British Antarctic Survey © http://www.antarctica.ac.uk
British Antarctic Survey (BAS) will support a team of scientists from the Universities of Leeds and Aberystwyth as they embark on an ambitious three-month Antarctic expedition. Their fieldwork aims to uncover information about how the glaciers and ice sheets of the north-eastern Antarctic Peninsula behaved in past climates, and what we can expect in the future.

Alan Hill, an experienced BAS field assistant, will accompany three British scientists as they set sail for James Ross Island aboard the Royal Research Ship Ernest Shackleton, which lies just off the Antarctic Peninsula. In a quest to learn more about the climate history of the region the team is heading to part of the coldest, windiest, highest and driest continent on Earth where they will live and work together in an isolated and challenging environment. They will be heavily laden with equipment including four quad bikes, two trailers, scientific equipment, tents and enough food and fuel to last three months.

The Antarctic Peninsula has experienced above average warming over the past half-century, with around a 2.5°C temperature increase since 1950. This warming is causing glaciers and ice shelves to melt, releasing large volumes of fresh water into the oceans which not only raises sea level, but also influences deep sea circulation and regional climate.

However, scientists do not fully understand the relationship between air and sea temperature, and the melting of ice. Therefore it is difficult for them to assess whether the melting being observed at the moment is unprecedented in the context of geological time.

To address these outstanding questions, the team will collect samples of rock to date their exposure to cosmic radiation and thus to analyse how the glaciers and ice have retreated since the last ice age, around 20,000 years ago.

Lead researcher Professor Neil Glasser, from the University of Aberystwyth said, 'The collapse of Antarctic ice shelves is largely thought to be caused by warming of the atmosphere, but it appears that changes in sea temperature and ice-shelf structure are also important. With the climate expected to warm in the future, it is important for us to understand how Antarctic glaciers and ice shelves behaved in the past so we can predict how they will react in years to come if temperatures continue to rise.'

Dr Jonathan Carrivick from the University of Leeds said, 'We're expecting the expedition to be very exciting and challenging due to a quite different style of operations. Normally when researchers work in Antarctica they operate from a research ship or at an established station, whereas we will be dropped off with all our kit and left for two months with just radio contact to the rest of the world.'

The team will spend two months collecting around 100 boxes of rock samples, which they will bring back to Britain to study in a laboratory. They will analyse the rock mineralogy, geochemistry and isotopic character to determine when they were first exposed to cosmic rays; to calculate when ice cover disappeared from that particular site. They are also planning to map a 600km2 ice-free area of the island to allow them to generate a 3D terrain model.

BAS Website
Wildwind 2016 660x82Barz Optics - FloatersNewport Boat Show 2016 660x82

Related Articles

Free $US3,000 Carbon Vang with SouthernFurl boom orders in July
Southern Spars is giving a free carbon vang - valued at US$3,000 - with SouthernFurl in-boom furlers ordered in July Southern Spars is giving away a free carbon vang - valued at US$3,000 - with all of their SouthernFurl in-boom furlers ordered in July. Carbon gas vangs make a great addition to the furling boom package, though if you’d prefer to keep your existing one, Southern Spars will offer you a 5% discount on the price of your boom instead.
Posted on 29 Jun
Newport Bermuda Race - High Noon takes honours
As the Newport Bermuda Race fleet rushed to the finish line on Monday in the wake of the first-to-finish boat, As the Newport Bermuda Race fleet rushed to the finish line on Monday in the wake of the first-to-finish boat, the powerful 100-foot grand prix Comanche, to the surprise of many they were led by an unusual boat and crew. High Noon, at 41 feet, is fully 59 feet shorter than Comanche and tens of feet shorter than many other entries.
Posted on 22 Jun
Platino recovery - Family confirms that tug has made rendezvous
Reports in social media say a salvage tug has made a rendezvous with the Platino earlier than expected. Reports in social media by family and friends of Nick Saull, the crew member killed during a catastrophic incident abroad the 66ft yacht Platino say the salvage tug which left on Tuesday night has made the rendezvous earlier than expected. The Facebook report says the tug, Sea Pelican, arrived on Friday morning, the weather in the area has eased and with a more favorable outlook.
Posted on 16 Jun
Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron to ban bottled water
Approval has been given to create a ban on bottled water that comes in plastic containers. The RQYS Management Committee has confirmed that approval has been given to create a ban on bottled water that comes in plastic containers. This will place the club as a leader in environmental impact management in Australia and around the world. The Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club earlier this year did likewise. Who’s next?
Posted on 16 Jun
SouthernFurl In-Boom furling systems withstand Sydney Hobart test
Southern Spars design team have developed the SouthernFurl Boom smaller budgets and yachts from 35-70 feet. Have you ever scared your family when you got stuck with too much sail up when you should be reefed? Southern Spars’ range of SouthernFurl booms are the answer – letting you reduce sail quickly and easily without leaving the safety of the cockpit.
Posted on 23 May
2016 Garda Trentino Olympic Week - Day 4
Garda Trentino Olympic Week 2016 draws near to the conclusion: the weather once again proves difficult. Garda Trentino Olympic Week 2016 draws near to the conclusion: the weather once again proves difficult. Tomorrow the medal race is scheduled for the Lasers and another two races for the three paralympic classes.
Posted on 13 May
CCA presents RCC Award to Scott and Mary Flanders
CCA has announced that Scott and Mary Flanders are the recipients of the organization’s 2015 Royal Cruising Club Trophy. The Cruising Club of America (CCA) has announced that Scott and Mary Flanders are the recipients of the organization’s 2015 Royal Cruising Club Trophy.
Posted on 22 Apr
Cyclone Winston Relief Fund – Help the people of Fiji
Sea Mercy is sending volunteer fleet of small and large vessels, loaded with shelter, food and medical supplies to Fiji. Sea Mercy is once again sending our volunteer fleet of small and large vessels, loaded with shelter, food, water and medical supplies and teams to Fiji.
Posted on 27 Feb
Golden Globe Race - 30 sailors from 12 countries named for challenge
Sailors from America, Britain and France head the preliminary entry list for the 2018 Golden Globe solo round the world Sailors from America, Britain and France head the preliminary entry list for the 2018 Golden Globe solo round the world race. The 29 men and one woman – have each paid an initial A$3,000 entry fee. Other entrants hail from Austria, Australia, Brazil, Estonia, India, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, Norway, Palestine, Russia and Switzerland.
Posted on 18 Feb
Passage making and the responsibility to others—World Cruising news
Editorial Editorial
Posted on 29 Jan