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Friday, 16 February 2007

The Antarctic Ice Sheet - Page 3

Written by Isaiah Norton
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The continent of Antarctica is covered by a thick sheet of ice, averaging over 2 kilometers deep. This frozen mass holds some ninety percent of the fresh water in the world, although much of the continent is paradoxically very dry. Precipitation levels measured at single-digit centimeters per year are common, making the icy expanse in fact one of the "driest" places on Earth.


The purpose of the voyage was to investigate the remaining shelf, and the surrounding sea floor on which the Larsen B used to rest. We took samples of sediment to be used for dating its history as described above. In addition, the ship's sonar systems created a detailed map of the topography of basins formerly covered by ice, useful for understanding the flow patterns. This data may provide clues as to the reason for the immense collapse,  yet to be determined.

I have included a few pictures to give an inPerson taste of the area.

ice shelf

View along a section of the remaining shelf











An iceberg. The brown patch in the middle, center-left of the picture is
probably sediment carried out to sea.









All pictures and text ©Isaiah Norton

(Page 3 of 3)
Last modified on Sunday, 16 December 2012

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