Questions tagged [glaciology]

The [glaciology] tag concerns all forms of snow and ice on Earth and in space. And the marks left by ancient glaciers.

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How would an icicle "grow" upwards?

The other day a friend of my dad's showed him a picture of an icicle that appeared to be "growing" upwards out of a crack in a sidewalk. There were no roofs, overhangs or vehicles parked near by... It ...
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Why does glacier ice look blue?

The color of the ice observed in glaciers, icebergs and crevasses is often blue. However, ice cubes and industrial ice blocks are perfectly transparent or white if not. So. Why does glacier ice look ...
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During the "Ice Ages" or "Snowball Earth" times, where was all the energy?

We often seem to accept the idea that there were periods of time in which the entire surface of Earth was frozen, for the most part. This implies that there were periods of time in which the entire ...
personjerry's user avatar
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How does global-warming-triggered ice melting cause global sea levels to rise?

Apologies for asking a silly question like this. But I want to offer some points which I could not counter, as follows: Ice is less dense than water, that is why it floats. For the same unit mass, if ...
lousycoder's user avatar
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How do we know that we are NOT in an "Ice Age?"

Historically, the earth has had five "Ice Ages" Each of them lasted millions, tens of millions, or hundreds of millions of years. The last ice age reportedly ended perhaps 10,000 years ago. That ...
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What percent of volcanoes are glaciated?

I have not been able to find an estimate of how many known volcanoes host perennial ice masses, and it would be very useful to me. Does anyone know of any attempts to do this?
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Is this 70km crack in an ice shelf of Antarctica remarkable, or a regular occurrence?

I've just seen the LiveScience article 70-Mile-Long Crack Opens Up in Anatarctica. I'm not sure if the title is a bit sensational or not, the crack is in an ice shelf, not the continent of Antarctica. ...
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Can glaciers be less than 30m thick?

The wikipedia page on Ice-sheet dynamics claims that: Ice will not flow until it has reached a thickness of 30 meters (98 ft) And this geography website claims that To be called a glacier, a ...
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Can earthquakes contribute to Antarctic ice loss?

I read about the earthquake that took place in Japan in 2011, led to some small calving events in Antarctica (link). So, it makes me think if there is a big earthquake near or in Antarctica, can it ...
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How strong can a glacial icequake get?

While researching Antarctic geology, I came across the term 'icequake' in the abstract to the article Seismicity within a propagating ice shelf rift: The relationship between icequake locations and ...
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Why doesn't sea level show seasonality?

North-hemisphere ice-shelf melts on summer and grows on winter. I would expect appreciable changes on sea-level between seasons, but sea-level looks equal on winter than on summer. Why doesn't sea ...
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How will sea level rise be distributed across the globe?

Sea level rise from melting glaciers will not be uniformly distributed across the globe. However, it isn't clear to me what places will have the most and least extreme changes in sea level rise. I ...
f.thorpe's user avatar
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Where does the biggest land-based ice cap reside?

I'm thinking biggest in volume, regarding which area of the planet will contribute more to a raising in sea level - were the ice in those regions to melt. I can basically think of two candidates, ...
harogaston's user avatar
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Glaciology: odd pattern of smooth and ribbed chunks of ice in Antartica

At -69.184611, -68.124276 (just east of the Bugge Islands) there is a triangular ice shelf. On satellite images (as seen on Google/Bing maps) you can see it is riddled with --for lack of a clearer ...
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Why do those glaciers form on the lee side of the mountains?

In the Scandinavian mountains, there is a strong effect of orographic precipitation. The west receives far more precipitation than the east. This difference can be a factor 5 or more in some places. ...
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Is Antarctic sea ice at record levels?

Every time I read a news article about Antarctic ice extent, I don't seem to have a clear answer as to what the deal is. If I look at the February sea ice extent from the National Snow and Ice Data ...
arkaia's user avatar
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Converting glacier volume to mass: what ice density to use?

The density of ice is 0.9167 g/cm3 at 0 °C (under atmospheric pressure). I know of two factors that may influence this (are there more?) Pressure The glaciology faq (Common Questions and Myths ...
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When will glaciation resume? Has global warming delayed return to global cooling?

As far as I understand, we are currently living in the Holocene, an interglacial period of the Quaternary glaciation, i.e. the current ice age that has so far lasted 2.6 million years. The Holocene ...
Halfdan Faber's user avatar
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What are the non-anthropogenic causes of The Netherlands' low elevation?

A large area of The Netherlands is below sea level. There are two non-anthropogenic reasons that I can think of: Compaction of delta sediments that lie below the country, A side effect of the ...
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When will the Final Ice Age happen?

As the Sun's luminosity slowly rises, the Earth's surface temperature will climb. Will Earth ever be too warm to have any more glacial periods? If so, when will that be? Edit: The existing answer ...
Kaia Leahy's user avatar
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Is there a name for this type of ice crystal?

Recently, I took the following picture: I have read about this phenomenon and I think it is caused by water vapour that is pressed out of the ground and then freezes due to low temperature. However, ...
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What geophysical knowledge have we learned by the construction of IceCube?

The IceCube is a particle detector at the South Pole that records neutrino interactions. It has lead to many fascinating new discoveries in the field of astrophysics (e.g., 1, 2) and it was awarded "...
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For what percentage of the earth's history has there been permanent ice?

Wikipedia comments here that "Permanent ice is actually a rare phenomenon in the history of the Earth, occurring only during the 20% of the time that the planet is under an icehouse effect." A "...
user1205901 - Слава Україні's user avatar
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How could this pyramidal Mountain have been formed?

How could this pyramidal peak have been formed in Antarctica? Little is known about it as far as I know but what is known is that its miles away from any existing plate boundary and its shape is also ...
Charlie's user avatar
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How long to melt all the polar ice?

The answers to this question say that the sea level will rise 66m if all the polar ice, etc, melts. How long will this take? Transporting incredible amounts of heat energy to the poles and injecting ...
ravenspoint's user avatar
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Will increased precipitation in Antarctica prevent sea level rise?

It has been suggested that global warming will lead to increased precipitation in parts of Antarctica. This would sequester water in the ice sheet, preventing sea level rise. However, the slope (and ...
Keith McClary's user avatar
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Considering how old the Antarctic ice cover is, why isn't it much thicker?

The Wikipedia article on the subject of the "Antarctic ice sheet" says that: The icing of Antarctica began in the middle Eocene about 45.5 million years ago and escalated during the Eocene–...
neo's user avatar
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Esker vs. Kame vs. Drumlin - what's the difference?

In researching glacial features, I came across the terms esker, drumlin, and kame. I know that they are all depositional features that are shaped like a mound. My impression is that an esker is longer ...
Cyclopropane's user avatar
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How was the Marinoan Glaciation triggered?

The Marinoan Glaciation (a.k.a. Elatina Glaciation) was a glaciation that is thought to have occurred towards the end of the aptly-named Cryogenian period at ca. 650Ma. It is particularly known as one ...
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What does "glacier collapse" mean?

CNN's Mont Blanc glacier could collapse at any moment, Italy warns says: A staggering 250,000 cubic meters (8.8 million cubic feet) of ice could break away from the Planpincieux glacier on the ...
uhoh's user avatar
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Siberia (Beringia) during last glacier period

Today, Northern Russia is considered quite cold. It is not populated because it has low biological productivity: low light and cold. It can be below -50 at winter and 10 C at summer peak. It is low ...
Recognize Evil as Waste's user avatar
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Any other fumarolic ice caves in the literature? [closed]

I study the fumarolic ice caves of Erebus Volcano, and am looking for published research on similar sorts of caves. My criteria for a "fumarolic ice cave" are that it must be: A gas-filled void space ...
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9 votes
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How are the thickness of ice sheets from previous glaciation periods determined?

How is the thickness/depth of ice sheets from previous glaciation periods determined? I've for instance often seen statements that the ice sheet over Scandinavia at the last glacial period maximum (i....
fileunderwater's user avatar
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1 answer
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Why are some theories as to the cause of glacation less popular among the scientific community?

There are a few theories as to the causes of glaciation. There's the Milankovitch Theory, which says that there are cyclical changes in Earth's orbit and in the tilt of Earth's axis that occur over ...
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9 votes
1 answer
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How do we use oxygen isotopes as temperature proxy?

As far as I know scientists use oxygen isotope 16 to 18 ratio in air trapped in glaciers (or in old foraminiftera shells) as proxy for temperature in the past. I know that $\ce{^18O}$ is heavier, and ...
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Traits of invaded ecosystems? Are my compost worms a threat to New York?

I was shocked to learn that there were few native worms in the glaciated portion of North America. I use worms indoors to compost paper and kitchen scraps. I don't think there is much chance of ...
futurebird's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
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Is PhD the only way to study glaciers?

I am wondering if there are alternative ways to study glaciers apart from obtaining a PhD. I would be glad to build a career around glaciology, however, with the issues in regards to my PhD, a new Ph....
kc_nul's user avatar
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1 answer
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What would it be like to live in an ice age?

If you were born in the most recent ice age, how different would your life be compared to how you live it today? Furthermore, if humans currently lived in an ice age, how would it affect life today?
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Why do fjords have sills?

I have read about some of the geologic processes that are related to the formation of fjords. Is the presence of sills in fjords related to the deposition of glacial moraine?
chiaka's user avatar
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The giant 6,000 km$^2$ iceberg A-68; will ground-truth telemetry supplement satellite tracking data?

update 2: FIRST images of A-68 iceberg not taken from a satellite in space but from the air are out. On this NASA Earth Observatory web page are areal images from NASA's Operation IceBridge taken from ...
uhoh's user avatar
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8 votes
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What is more important in Antarctica calving or basal melting of the ice shelves?

Ice shelves are present along 75% of Antarctica coast and cover over 1.5 million km2. The two main processes causing mass loss of the ice shelf are basal melting and calving. Which of the two ...
arkaia's user avatar
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What evidence is there linking melting ice caps and changes in tectonic movement?

Reading one of my other questions, How much would the Greenland landmass isostatic rebound contribute to long term climate change?, a subsequent question is what, if any, effect the isostatic rebound ...
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7 votes
3 answers
914 views

Oxygen isotope ratio and Glaciers

The question is basically: During the Cretaceous there were no continental ice sheets. The ratio of O-18/O-16 in sea water was: a) Higher than today b) Lower than today The answer ...
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What is the name of this landform?

These are from the movie Insomnia. Also available in this video from 4 seconds to 8 seconds. What is the name of this landform? Are these just snow on Lapies? or These are some form of glaciated ...
Arun S R's user avatar
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How does ice-penetrating radar "see" through kilometers of ice without being absorbed?

The BBC News article Isolated lakes found beneath Canadian ice sheet links to the open access Science Advances article Discovery of a hypersaline subglacial lake complex beneath Devon Ice Cap, ...
uhoh's user avatar
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