The Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets are both losing mass to the ocean...
...largely driven by changes around their margins where warmer ocean waters are coming into contact with the underside of the glaciers and ice shelves. The circulation of the adjacent oceans are strongly coupled through physical processes occurring at the ice-ocean interfaces at the fronts and bases of ice shelves and glacier tongues, and the termini of tidewater glaciers.
Improved understanding of these processes is essential to realistically represent the evolution of ice sheets and glaciers in a changing climate and to improve predictions of global ocean circulation and sea level change. Scripps Polar Center researchers study the processes responsible for driving these changes through a combination of observation, by satellite and in the field, and modelling. The goals of this research theme are to: (1) improve our observations of ice-ocean interactions; and (2) facilitate the incorporation of this information into models of ice sheet evolution.
Isabela Le Bras