University of Southampton scientist have been using innovative technology to keep track of glaciers in real life. These scientists started this project to understand more of the linkage between global warming, the retreat of glaciers, and rising sea levels.
The Southampton researchers have invented advanced technology called sensor probes that measure temperature, pressure, stress, weather and subglacial movement. These unique sensor probes have been placed on top and underneath glaciers to track their activity in real time. Information acquired by these probes helps the team understand a glacier’s dynamics and climate change.
In Skálafellsjökull, Iceland, the team found that increasing volumes of glacier melt water is expanding the rate in which glaciers in the area are minimizing. Additionally, the study published by Nature Communications discusses how a unique stick-slip motion is caused by meltwater from glaciers. According to Jane Hart, Professor in Geography at the University of Southampton these findings demonstrate how these minimal changes in melting have a powerful effect of the behavior of glaciers.
Hart, who is also the lead on this project stated, "As part of this latest study we hope to determine what is controlling their velocity, the rate of lake growth and how this growth is affecting ice retreat as we continue to contribute fundamental research in glaciology and wireless sensor networks."
Reporter: Jeraldy Gomez