The South Pole Ice Core (SPICE) project aims to retrieve an ice core 1,500 meters long beginning in the 2014-15 austral summer field season. College of the Environment’s faculty member Eric Steig is co-leading the project. Read more about this project and their goals in the Antarctic Sun.
Would-be Arctic explorers of all ages can stoke their imaginations – and meet their real-life counterparts – tomorrow through Sunday (Feb. 28-March 3) at the 8th annual Polar Science Weekend organized jointly by the UW Applied Physics Laboratory and Pacific Science Center. In addition to the Applied Physics Laboratory, other UW units including oceanography, atmospheric sciences, Earth and space sciences and biology all will be represented, as will agencies such as the U.S. Coast Guard and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Read about it here!
This mosaic of images taken by NASA’s Aqua satellite shows an unusually strong storm over the Arctic Ocean on Aug. 6, 2012. Image Source: NASA / Goddard / MODIS Rapid Response Team
Last summer the Arctic sea ice melted to a record low. At the same time, a freak cyclone over the Arctic hung out for a record 13 days in August. Was the cyclone the key driver of the record ice melt? Researchers from UW’s Polar Science Center say that no. Read more here!
It came out of Siberia, swirling winds over an area that covered almost the entire Arctic basin in the normally calm late summer. It came to be known as “The Great Arctic Cyclone of August 2012,” and for some observers it suggested that the historic sea ice minimum may have been caused by a freak summer storm, rather than warming temperatures. But new results from the University of Washington show that the August cyclone was not responsible for last year’s record low for Arctic sea ice. The study was published online this week in Geophysical Research Letters. Read more about this.
New research suggests that a key part of Antarctica is warming up fast; the finding could help change the outlook for sea level rise this century. ESS‘ Eric Steig is included in this interview; check out the audio, video, and transcript here!
A new study by an international team of over 130 scientists has shed light on the climate, and ice, of the prehistoric past. Utilizing new techniques for ice dating, the team–including ESS‘ Edwin Waddington and Michelle Koutnik–found that temperatures during the peak interglacial period about 125,000 years ago were quite warm, yet the Greenland ice sheet melted less than previously thought. Read the UW story, and/or the Nature story. Also check out ESS’ Eric Steig‘s blog post about this topic!