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Sample records for active west antarctic

  1. Active volcanism beneath the West Antarctic ice sheet and implications for ice-sheet stability

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Blankenship, D.D.; Bell, R.E.; Hodge, S.M.; Brozena, J.M.; Behrendt, John C.; Finn, C.A.

    1993-01-01

    IT is widely understood that the collapse of the West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) would cause a global sea level rise of 6 m, yet there continues to be considerable debate about the detailed response of this ice sheet to climate change1-3. Because its bed is grounded well below sea level, the stability of the WAIS may depend on geologically controlled conditions at the base which are independent of climate. In particular, heat supplied to the base of the ice sheet could increase basal melting and thereby trigger ice streaming, by providing the water for a lubricating basal layer of till on which ice streams are thought to slide4,5. Ice streams act to protect the reservoir of slowly moving inland ice from exposure to oceanic degradation, thus enhancing ice-sheet stability. Here we present aerogeophysical evidence for active volcanism and associated elevated heat flow beneath the WAIS near the critical region where ice streaming begins. If this heat flow is indeed controlling ice-stream formation, then penetration of ocean waters inland of the thin hot crust of the active portion of the West Antarctic rift system could lead to the disappearance of ice streams, and possibly trigger a collapse of the inland ice reservoir.

  2. Evidence for Subglacial Volcanic Activity Beneath the area of the Divide of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Behrendt, J. C.

    2013-12-01

    There is an increasing body of aeromagnetic, radar ice-sounding, heat flow, subglacial volcanic earthquakes, several exposed active and subglacial volcanoes and other lines of evidence for volcanic activity associated with the West Antarctic Rift System (WR) since the origin (~25 Ma) of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS), which flows through it. Exposed late Cenozoic, alkaline volcanic rocks, 34 Ma to present concentrated in Marie Byrd Land (LeMasurier and Thomson, 1990), but also exposed along the rift shoulder on the Transantarctic Mountains flank of the WR, and >1 million cubic kilometers, of mostly subglacially erupted 'volcanic centers' beneath the WAIS inferred from aeromagnetic data, have been interpreted as evidence of a magmatic plume. About 18 high relief, (~600-2000 m) 'volcanic centers' presently beneath the WAIS surface, probably were erupted subaerially when the WAIS was absent, based on the 5-km orthogonally line spaced Central West Antarctica aerogeophysical survey. All would be above sea level after ice removal and isostatic adjustment. Nine of these high relief peaks are in the general area beneath the divide of the WAIS. This high bed relief topography was first interpreted in the 1980s as the volcanic 'Sinuous Ridge ' based on a widely spaced aeromagnetic -radar ice sounding survey (Jankowski et al,. 1983). A 70-km wide, circular ring of interpreted subglacial volcanic rocks was cited as evidence of a volcanic caldera underlying the ice sheet divide based on the CWA survey (Behrendt et al., 1998). A broad magnetic 'low' surrounding the caldera area possibly is evidence of a shallow Curie isotherm. High heat flow reported from temperature logging (Clow et al., 2012) in the WAISCORE and a thick volcanic ash layer in the core (Dunbar et al., 2012) are consistent with this interpretation. A 2 km-high subaerially erupted volcano (subglacial Mt Thiel, ~78.5 degrees S, 111 degrees W) ~ 100 km north from the WAISCORE could be the source of the ash

  3. The ARM West Antarctic Radiation Experiment (AWARE)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lubin, Dan; Bromwich, David; Vogelmann, Andrew; Verlinde, Johannes; Russell, Lynn

    2016-04-01

    West Antarctica is one of the most rapidly warming regions on Earth, and its changing climate in both atmosphere and ocean is linked to loss of Antarctic ice mass and global sea level rise. The specific mechanisms for West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) warming are not fully understood, but are hypothesized to involve linkage between moisture from Southern Ocean storm tracks and the surface energy balance over the WAIS, and related teleconnections with subtropical and tropical meteorology. This present lack of understanding has motivated a climate science and cloud physics campaign jointly supported by the US National Science Foundation (NSF) and Department of Energy (DOE), called the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Program (ARM) West Antarctic Radiation Experiment (AWARE). The DOE's second ARM Mobile Facility (AMF2) was deployed to McMurdo Station on Ross Island in November 2015 and will operate through December 2016. The AMF2 includes (1) cloud research radars, both scanning and zenith, operating in the Ka- and X-bands, (2) high spectral resolution and polarized micropulse lidars, and (3) a suite of shortwave and longwave broadband and spectral radiometers. A second suite of instruments is deployed at the WAIS Divide Ice Camp on the West Antarctic plateau during December 2015 and January 2016. The WAIS instrument suite provides (1) measurement of all surface energy balance components, (2) a polarized micropulse lidar and shortwave spectroradiometer, (3) microwave total water column measurement, and (4) four times daily rawinsonde launches which are the first from West Antarctica since 1967. There is a direct linkage between the WAIS instrument suite and the AMF2 at McMurdo, in that air masses originating in Southern Ocean storm tracks that are driven up over the WAIS often subsequently descend over the Ross Ice Shelf and arrive at Ross Island. Preliminary data are already illustrating the prevalence of mixed-phase clouds and their role in the surface energy balance

  4. Balance of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    For several decades, measurements of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet showed it to be retreating rapidly. But new data derived from satellite-borne radar sensors show the ice sheet to be growing. Changing Antarctic ice sheets remains an area of high scientific interest, particularly in light of recent global warming concerns. These new findings are significant because scientists estimate that sea level would rise 5-6 meters (16-20 feet) if the ice sheet collapsed into the sea. Do these new measurements signal the end of the ice sheet's 10,000-year retreat? Or, are these new satellite data simply much more accurate than the sparse ice core and surface measurements that produced the previous estimates? Another possibility is that the ice accumulation may simply indicate that the ice sheet naturally expands and retreats in regular cycles. Cryologists will grapple with these questions, and many others, as they examine the new data. The image above depicts the region of West Antarctica where scientists measured ice speed. The fast-moving central ice streams are shown in red. Slower tributaries feeding the ice streams are shown in blue. Green areas depict slow-moving, stable areas. Thick black lines depict the areas that collect snowfall to feed their respective ice streams. Reference: Ian Joughin and Slawek Tulaczyk Science Jan 18 2002: 476-480. Image courtesy RADARSAT Antarctic Mapping Project

  5. Marine pelagic ecosystems: the west Antarctic Peninsula.

    PubMed

    Ducklow, Hugh W; Baker, Karen; Martinson, Douglas G; Quetin, Langdon B; Ross, Robin M; Smith, Raymond C; Stammerjohn, Sharon E; Vernet, Maria; Fraser, William

    2007-01-29

    The marine ecosystem of the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) extends from the Bellingshausen Sea to the northern tip of the peninsula and from the mostly glaciated coast across the continental shelf to the shelf break in the west. The glacially sculpted coastline along the peninsula is highly convoluted and characterized by deep embayments that are often interconnected by channels that facilitate transport of heat and nutrients into the shelf domain. The ecosystem is divided into three subregions, the continental slope, shelf and coastal regions, each with unique ocean dynamics, water mass and biological distributions. The WAP shelf lies within the Antarctic Sea Ice Zone (SIZ) and like other SIZs, the WAP system is very productive, supporting large stocks of marine mammals, birds and the Antarctic krill, Euphausia superba. Ecosystem dynamics is dominated by the seasonal and interannual variation in sea ice extent and retreat. The Antarctic Peninsula is one among the most rapidly warming regions on Earth, having experienced a 2 degrees C increase in the annual mean temperature and a 6 degrees C rise in the mean winter temperature since 1950. Delivery of heat from the Antarctic Circumpolar Current has increased significantly in the past decade, sufficient to drive to a 0.6 degrees C warming of the upper 300 m of shelf water. In the past 50 years and continuing in the twenty-first century, the warm, moist maritime climate of the northern WAP has been migrating south, displacing the once dominant cold, dry continental Antarctic climate and causing multi-level responses in the marine ecosystem. Ecosystem responses to the regional warming include increased heat transport, decreased sea ice extent and duration, local declines in icedependent Adélie penguins, increase in ice-tolerant gentoo and chinstrap penguins, alterations in phytoplankton and zooplankton community composition and changes in krill recruitment, abundance and availability to predators. The climate

  6. Marine pelagic ecosystems: the West Antarctic Peninsula

    PubMed Central

    Ducklow, Hugh W; Baker, Karen; Martinson, Douglas G; Quetin, Langdon B; Ross, Robin M; Smith, Raymond C; Stammerjohn, Sharon E; Vernet, Maria; Fraser, William

    2006-01-01

    The marine ecosystem of the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) extends from the Bellingshausen Sea to the northern tip of the peninsula and from the mostly glaciated coast across the continental shelf to the shelf break in the west. The glacially sculpted coastline along the peninsula is highly convoluted and characterized by deep embayments that are often interconnected by channels that facilitate transport of heat and nutrients into the shelf domain. The ecosystem is divided into three subregions, the continental slope, shelf and coastal regions, each with unique ocean dynamics, water mass and biological distributions. The WAP shelf lies within the Antarctic Sea Ice Zone (SIZ) and like other SIZs, the WAP system is very productive, supporting large stocks of marine mammals, birds and the Antarctic krill, Euphausia superba. Ecosystem dynamics is dominated by the seasonal and interannual variation in sea ice extent and retreat. The Antarctic Peninsula is one among the most rapidly warming regions on Earth, having experienced a 2°C increase in the annual mean temperature and a 6°C rise in the mean winter temperature since 1950. Delivery of heat from the Antarctic Circumpolar Current has increased significantly in the past decade, sufficient to drive to a 0.6°C warming of the upper 300 m of shelf water. In the past 50 years and continuing in the twenty-first century, the warm, moist maritime climate of the northern WAP has been migrating south, displacing the once dominant cold, dry continental Antarctic climate and causing multi-level responses in the marine ecosystem. Ecosystem responses to the regional warming include increased heat transport, decreased sea ice extent and duration, local declines in ice-dependent Adélie penguins, increase in ice-tolerant gentoo and chinstrap penguins, alterations in phytoplankton and zooplankton community composition and changes in krill recruitment, abundance and availability to predators. The climate/ecological gradients

  7. Boundary conditions of an active West Antarctic subglacial lake: implications for storage of water beneath the ice sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siegert, M. J.; Ross, N.; Corr, H.; Smith, B.; Jordan, T.; Bingham, R. G.; Ferraccioli, F.; Rippin, D. M.; Le Brocq, A.

    2014-01-01

    Repeat-pass ICESat altimetry has revealed 124 discrete surface height changes across the Antarctic Ice Sheet, interpreted to be caused by subglacial lake discharges (surface lowering) and inputs (surface uplift). Few of these active lakes have been confirmed by radio-echo sounding (RES) despite several attempts (notable exceptions are Lake Whillans and three in the Adventure Subglacial Trench). Here we present targeted RES and radar altimeter data from an "active lake" location within the upstream Institute Ice Stream, into which at least 0.12 km3 of water was previously calculated to have flowed between October 2003 and February 2008. We use a series of transects to establish an accurate depiction of the influences of bed topography and ice surface elevation on water storage potential. The location of surface height change is downstream of a subglacial hill on the flank of a distinct topographic hollow, where RES reveals no obvious evidence for deep (> 10 m) water. The regional hydropotential reveals a sink coincident with the surface change, however. Governed by the location of the hydrological sink, basal water will likely "drape" over topography in a manner dissimilar to subglacial lakes where flat strong specular RES reflections are measured. The inability of RES to detect the active lake means that more of the Antarctic ice sheet bed may contain stored water than is currently appreciated. Variation in ice surface elevation data sets leads to significant alteration in calculations of the local flow of basal water indicating the value of, and need for, high-resolution altimetry data in both space and time to establish and characterise subglacial hydrological processes.

  8. Boundary conditions of an active West Antarctic subglacial lake: implications for storage of water beneath the ice sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siegert, M. J.; Ross, N.; Corr, H.; Smith, B.; Jordan, T.; Bingham, R.; Ferraccioli, F.; Rippin, D.; Le Brocq, A.

    2013-06-01

    Repeat-pass IceSat altimetry has revealed 124 discrete surface height changes across the Antarctic Ice Sheet, interpreted to be caused by subglacial lake discharges (surface lowering) and inputs (surface uplift). Few of these active lakes have been confirmed by radio-echo sounding (RES) despite several attempts (notable exceptions are Lake Whillans and three in the Adventure Subglacial Trench). Here we present targeted RES and radar altimeter data from an "active lake" location within the upstream Institute Ice Stream, into which 0.12 km3 of water is calculated to have flowed between October 2003 and February 2008. We use a series of transects to establish an accurate appreciation of the influences of bed topography and ice-surface elevation on water storage potential. The location of surface height change is over the downslope flank of a distinct topographic hollow, where RES reveals no obvious evidence for deep (> 10 m) water. The regional hydropotential reveals a sink coincident with the surface change, however. Governed by the location of the hydrological sink, basal water will likely "drape" over existing topography in a manner dissimilar to subglacial lakes where flat strong specular RES reflections are measured. The inability of RES to detect the active lake means that more of the Antarctic ice sheet bed may contain stored water than is currently appreciated. Variation in ice surface elevation datasets leads to significant alteration in calculations of the local flow of basal water indicating the value of, and need for, high resolution RES datasets in both space and time to establish and characterise subglacial hydrological processes.

  9. A microbial ecosystem beneath the West Antarctic ice sheet.

    PubMed

    Christner, Brent C; Priscu, John C; Achberger, Amanda M; Barbante, Carlo; Carter, Sasha P; Christianson, Knut; Michaud, Alexander B; Mikucki, Jill A; Mitchell, Andrew C; Skidmore, Mark L; Vick-Majors, Trista J

    2014-08-21

    Liquid water has been known to occur beneath the Antarctic ice sheet for more than 40 years, but only recently have these subglacial aqueous environments been recognized as microbial ecosystems that may influence biogeochemical transformations on a global scale. Here we present the first geomicrobiological description of water and surficial sediments obtained from direct sampling of a subglacial Antarctic lake. Subglacial Lake Whillans (SLW) lies beneath approximately 800 m of ice on the lower portion of the Whillans Ice Stream (WIS) in West Antarctica and is part of an extensive and evolving subglacial drainage network. The water column of SLW contained metabolically active microorganisms and was derived primarily from glacial ice melt with solute sources from lithogenic weathering and a minor seawater component. Heterotrophic and autotrophic production data together with small subunit ribosomal RNA gene sequencing and biogeochemical data indicate that SLW is a chemosynthetically driven ecosystem inhabited by a diverse assemblage of bacteria and archaea. Our results confirm that aquatic environments beneath the Antarctic ice sheet support viable microbial ecosystems, corroborating previous reports suggesting that they contain globally relevant pools of carbon and microbes that can mobilize elements from the lithosphere and influence Southern Ocean geochemical and biological systems. PMID:25143114

  10. West Antarctic Ice Sheet Initiative. Volume 2: Discipline Reviews

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bindschadler, Robert A. (Editor)

    1991-01-01

    Seven discipline review papers are presented on the state of the knowledge of West Antarctica and opinions on how that knowledge must be increased to predict the future behavior of this ice sheet and to assess its potential to collapse, rapidly raising the global sea level. These are the goals of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Initiative (WAIS).

  11. Geophysical studies of the West Antarctic Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Behrendt, J. C.; Lemasurier, W. E.; Cooper, A. K.; Tessensohn, F.; TréHu, A.; Damaske, D.

    1991-12-01

    and the Byrd Subglacial Basin areas). The near absence of earthquakes in the West Antarctic rift system probably results from a combination of primarily sparse seismograph coverage and, secondarily, suppression of earthquakes by the ice sheet (e.g., Johnston, 1987) and very high seismicity shortly after deglaciation in the Ross Embayment followed by abnormally low seismicity at present (e.g., Muir Wood, 1989). The evidence of high temperatures at shallow depth beneath the Ross Sea continental shelf and adjacent Transantarctic Mountains is supportive of thermal uplift of the mountains associated with lateral heat conduction from the rift and can possibly also explain the volcanism, rifting, and high elevation of the entire rift shoulder to the Ellsworth-Horlick-Whitmore Mountains. We infer that the Gondwana breakup and the West Antarctic rift are part of a continuously propagating rift that started in the Jurassic when Africa separated from East Antarctica (including the failed Jurassic Transantarctic rift). Rifting proceeded clockwise around East Antarctica to the separation of New Zealand and the Campbell Plateau about 85-95 Ma and has continued (with a spreading center jump) to its present location in the Ross Embayment and West Antarctica. The Cenozoic activity of the West Antarctic rift system appears to be continuous in time with rifting in the same area that began only in the late Mesozoic. Although the mechanism for rifting is not completely explained, we suggest a combination of the flexural rigidity model (Stem and ten Brink, 1989) proposed for the Ross Embayment and the thermal plume or hot spot concepts. The propagating rift may have been "captured" by the thermal plume.

  12. Cenozoic rifting in the West Antarctic Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Granot, R.; Cande, S. S.; Stock, J. M.; Clayton, R. W.; Davey, F. J.

    2007-12-01

    The West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) experienced two episodes of Cenozoic rifting. Seafloor spreading at the Adare spreading axis, north of the Ross Sea, from Middle Eocene to Late Oligocene time (43 - 26 Ma), was directly linked with motions within the WARS. For this time interval, marine magnetic anomalies within the Adare Basin and structural features within the Ross Sea constrain the motion between East and West Antarctica. During this episode, widespread intrusive activity took place in the continental part of the rift. Subsequent Late Oligocene until present-day (26 - 0 Ma) extension was characterized by a transition to volcanic activity. Yet, the details of extension during this episode have been poorly resolved. We present preliminary results of new seismic reflection and seafloor mapping data acquired on geophysical cruise 07-01 aboard the R/VIB Nathaniel Palmer in the northern part of the rift. Our results suggest that the style of deformation changed from spreading-related faulting into diffuse normal faulting (tilted blocks) that trend NE-SW with little resultant E-W extension. Recent volcanism is distributed throughout but tends to align with the NE-SW trend, into a localized zone. Formation of the Terror Rift, Ross Sea, within the same time frame suggests that the pole of rotation has changed its position, reflecting a change in the relative magnitudes of tensile stresses along the rift. Moreover, this change was accompanied with a sharp decrease of extension rates.

  13. Effect of subglacial volcanism on changes in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Behrendt, John C.

    1993-01-01

    Rapid changes in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) may affect future global sea-level changes. Alley and Whillans note that 'the water responsible for separating the glacier from its bed is produced by frictional dissipation and geothermal heat,' but assume that changes in geothermal flux would ordinarily be expected to have slower effects than glaciological parameters. I suggest that episodic subglacial volcanism and geothermal heating may have significantly greater effects on the WAIS than is generally appreciated. The WAIS flows through the active, largely asiesmic West Antarctic rift system (WS), which defines the sub-sea-level bed of the glacier. Various lines of evidence summarized in Behrendt et al. (1991) indicate high heat flow and shallow asthenosphere beneath the extended, weak lithosphere underlying the WS and the WAIS. Behrendt and Cooper suggest a possible synergistic relation between Cenozoic tectonism, episodic mountain uplift and volcanism in the West Antarctic rift system, and the waxing and waning of the Antarctic ice sheet beginning about earliest Oligocene time. A few active volcanoes and late-Cenozoic volcanic rocks are exposed throughout the WS along both flanks, and geophysical data suggest their presence beneath the WAIS. No part of the rift system can be considered inactive. I propose that subglacial volcanic eruptions and ice flow across areas of locally (episodically?) high heat flow--including volcanically active areas--should be considered possibly to have a forcing effect on the thermal regime resulting in increased melting at the base of the ice streams.

  14. The First Annual West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) Science Workshop

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bindschadler, Robert A. (Editor)

    1993-01-01

    A compilation of abstracts presented at the workshop are presented. The goal was to answer the question, what is the future behavior and potential for rapid collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS)? The workshop was organized into four sessions corresponding to the four objectives identified as necessary to reach the WAIS workshop goal: history, current behavior, internal dynamics, and environmental interactions. Presentations were organized by their relevance to each objective, rather than by discipline.

  15. Modeled Aeromagnetic Anomalies, Controlled By Radar Ice Sounding, As Evidence for Subglacial Volcanic Activity in the West Antarctic Rift System (WR) Beneath the Area of the Divide of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Behrendt, J. C.

    2014-12-01

    The Thwaites and Pine Island ice shelves, buttressing the WAIS, have passed the turning point as they are eaten away by warmer ocean waters (Joghin et al., 2014; Rignot et al., 2014). There is an increasing evidence (aeromagnetic, radar ice-sounding, high heat flow, subglacial volcanic seismicity, and several exposed and subglacial active volcanoes), for volcanic activity in the WR beneath the WAIS, which flows through it. The 5-km, orthogonally line spaced, central West Antarctica (CWA) aerogeophysical survey defined >400 high amplitude volcanic magnetic anomalies correlated with glacial bed topography. Modeled anomalies defined magnetic properties; interpreted volcanic edifices were mostly removed by the moving ice into which they were erupted. Very high apparent susceptibility contrasts (.001->.3 SI) are typical of measured properties from volcanic exposures in the WAIS area. About 90% of the magnetic sources have normal magnetization in the present field direction. Two explanations as to why the anomalies are not approximately 50% negative: (1) Volcanic activity resulting in these anomalies occurred in a predominantly normal field (unlikely). (2) Sources are a combination of induced and remanent magnetization resulting in anomalies of low amplitude (induced cancels remanent) and are not recognized because they are <100 nT (most probable). About 18 high relief, (~600-2000 m) "volcanic centers" beneath the WAIS surface, probably were erupted subaerially when the WAIS was absent; nine of these are in the general area beneath the divide of the WAIS. A 70-km wide, ring of interpreted subglacial volcanic rocks may define a volcanic caldera underlying thedivide (Behrendt et al., 1998). A 2 km-high subaerially erupted volcano (subglacial Mt Thiel, ~78o30'S, 111oW) ~ 100 km north of the WAISCORE, could be the source an ash layer observed in the core. Models by Tulaczyk and Hossainzadeh (2011) indicate >4mm/yr basal melting beneath the WAIS, supportive of high heat flow

  16. Fast Recession of a West Antarctic Glacier

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rignot, E. J.

    1998-01-01

    Satellite radar interferometry observations of Pine Island Glacier, in West Antarctica, reveal that the hinge-line position of this major ice stream retreated 1.2+/-0.2 km per year between 1992 and 1996, which in turn implies ice thinning at 3.5+/-0.6m ice per year.

  17. ARM West Antarctic Radiation Experiment (AWARE) Science Plan

    SciTech Connect

    Lubin, D; Bromwich, DH; Russell, LM; Verlinde, J; Vogelmann, AM

    2015-10-01

    West Antarctica is one of the most rapidly warming regions on Earth, and this warming is closely connected with global sea level rise. The discovery of rapid climate change on the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) has challenged previous explanations of Antarctic climate change that focused on strengthening of circumpolar westerlies in response to the positive polarity trend in the Southern Annular Mode. West Antarctic warming does not yet have a comprehensive explanation: dynamical mechanisms may vary from one season to the next, and these mechanisms very likely involve complex teleconnections with subtropical and tropical latitudes. The prime motivation for this proposal is that there has been no substantial atmospheric science or climatological field work on West Antarctica since the 1957 International Geophysical Year and that research continued for only a few years. Direct meteorological information on the WAIS has been limited to a few automatic weather stations for several decades, yet satellite imagery and meteorological reanalyses indicate that West Antarctica is highly susceptible to advection of warm and moist maritime air with related cloud cover, depending on the location and strength of low pressure cells in the Amundsen, Ross, and Bellingshausen Seas. There is a need to quantify the role of these changing air masses on the surface energy balance, including all surface energy components and cloud-radiative forcing. More generally, global climate model simulations are known to perform poorly over the Antarctic and Southern Oceans, and the marked scarcity of cloud information at southern high latitudes has so far inhibited significant progress. Fortunately, McMurdo Station, where the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Facility’s (ARM’s) most advanced cloud and aerosol instrumentation is situated, has a meteorological relationship with the WAIS via circulation patterns in the Ross and Amundsen Seas. We can therefore gather sophisticated data with cloud

  18. CASERTZ aeromagnetic data reveal late Cenozoic flood basalts (?) in the West Antarctic rift system

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Behrendt, John C.

    1994-01-01

    The late Cenozoic volcanic and tectonic activity of the enigmatic West Antarctic rift system, the least understood of the great active continental rifts, has been suggested to be plume driven. In 1991-1992, as part of the CASERTZ (Corridor Aerogeophysics of the Southeast Ross Transect Zone) program, an ~25 000 km aeromagnetic survey over the ice-covered Byrd subglacial basin shows magnetic "texture' critical to interpretations of the underlying extended volcanic terrane. The aeromagnetic data reveal numerous semicircular anomalies ~100-1100 nT in amplitude, interpreted as having volcanic sources at the base of the ice sheet; they are concentrated along north-trending magnetic lineations interpreted as rift fabric. The CASERTZ aeromagnetic results, combined with >100 000 km of widely spaced aeromagnetic profiles, indicate at least 106 km3 of probable late Cenozoic volcanic rock (flood basalt?) in the West Antarctic rift beneath the ice sheet and Ross Ice Shelf. -from Authors

  19. Irregular oscillations of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Macayeal, Douglas R.

    1993-01-01

    Model simulations of the West Antarctic ice sheet suggest that sporadic, perhaps chaotic, collapse (complete mobilization) of the ice sheet occurred throughout the past one million years. The irregular behavior is due to the slow equilibration time of the distribution of basal till, which lubricates ice-sheet motion. This nonlinear response means that predictions of future collapse of the ice sheet in response to global warming must take into account its past history, and in particular, whether the present basal till distribution predisposes the ice sheet towards rapid change.

  20. Tributaries of West Antarctic Ice Streams Revealed by RADARSAT Interferometry.

    PubMed

    Joughin; Gray; Bindschadler; Price; Morse; Hulbe; Mattar; Werner

    1999-10-01

    Interferometric RADARSAT data are used to map ice motion in the source areas of four West Antarctic ice streams. The data reveal that tributaries, coincident with subglacial valleys, provide a spatially extensive transition between slow inland flow and rapid ice stream flow and that adjacent ice streams draw from shared source regions. Two tributaries flow into the stagnant ice stream C, creating an extensive region that is thickening at an average rate of 0.49 meters per year. This is one of the largest rates of thickening ever reported in Antarctica. PMID:10514370

  1. Obliquity-paced Pliocene West Antarctic ice sheet oscillations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naish, T.; Powell, R.; Levy, R.; Wilson, G.; Scherer, R.; Talarico, F.; Krissek, L.; Niessen, F.; Pompilio, M.; Wilson, T.; Carter, L.; Deconto, R.; Huybers, P.; McKay, R.; Pollard, D.; Ross, J.; Winter, D.; Barrett, P.; Browne, G.; Cody, R.; Cowan, E.; Crampton, J.; Dunbar, G.; Dunbar, N.; Florindo, F.; Gebhardt, C.; Graham, I.; Hannah, M.; Hansaraj, D.; Harwood, D.; Helling, D.; Henrys, S.; Hinnov, L.; Kuhn, G.; Kyle, P.; Läufer, A.; Maffioli, P.; Magens, D.; Mandernack, K.; McIntosh, W.; Millan, C.; Morin, R.; Ohneiser, C.; Paulsen, T.; Persico, D.; Raine, I.; Reed, J.; Riesselman, C.; Sagnotti, L.; Schmitt, D.; Sjunneskog, C.; Strong, P.; Taviani, M.; Vogel, S.; Wilch, T.; Williams, T.

    2009-03-01

    Thirty years after oxygen isotope records from microfossils deposited in ocean sediments confirmed the hypothesis that variations in the Earth's orbital geometry control the ice ages, fundamental questions remain over the response of the Antarctic ice sheets to orbital cycles. Furthermore, an understanding of the behaviour of the marine-based West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) during the `warmer-than-present' early-Pliocene epoch (~5-3Myr ago) is needed to better constrain the possible range of ice-sheet behaviour in the context of future global warming. Here we present a marine glacial record from the upper 600m of the AND-1B sediment core recovered from beneath the northwest part of the Ross ice shelf by the ANDRILL programme and demonstrate well-dated, ~40-kyr cyclic variations in ice-sheet extent linked to cycles in insolation influenced by changes in the Earth's axial tilt (obliquity) during the Pliocene. Our data provide direct evidence for orbitally induced oscillations in the WAIS, which periodically collapsed, resulting in a switch from grounded ice, or ice shelves, to open waters in the Ross embayment when planetary temperatures were up to ~3°C warmer than today and atmospheric CO2 concentration was as high as ~400p.p.m.v. (refs 5, 6). The evidence is consistent with a new ice-sheet/ice-shelf model that simulates fluctuations in Antarctic ice volume of up to +7m in equivalent sea level associated with the loss of the WAIS and up to +3m in equivalent sea level from the East Antarctic ice sheet, in response to ocean-induced melting paced by obliquity. During interglacial times, diatomaceous sediments indicate high surface-water productivity, minimal summer sea ice and air temperatures above freezing, suggesting an additional influence of surface melt under conditions of elevated CO2.

  2. Obliquity-paced Pliocene West Antarctic ice sheet oscillations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Naish, T.; Powell, R.; Levy, R.; Wilson, G.; Scherer, R.; Talarico, F.; Krissek, L.; Niessen, F.; Pompilio, M.; Wilson, T.; Carter, L.; DeConto, R.; Huybers, P.; McKay, R.; Pollard, D.; Ross, J.; Winter, D.; Barrett, P.; Browne, G.; Cody, R.; Cowan, E.; Crampton, J.; Dunbar, G.; Dunbar, N.; Florindo, F.; Gebhardt, C.; Graham, I.; Hannah, M.; Hansaraj, D.; Harwood, D.; Helling, D.; Henrys, S.; Hinnov, L.; Kuhn, G.; Kyle, P.; Laufer, A.; Maffioli, P.; Magens, D.; Mandernack, K.; McIntosh, W.; Millan, C.; Morin, R.; Ohneiser, C.; Paulsen, T.; Persico, D.; Raine, I.; Reed, J.; Riesselman, C.; Sagnotti, L.; Schmitt, D.; Sjunneskog, C.; Strong, P.; Taviani, M.; Vogel, S.; Wilch, T.; Williams, T.

    2009-01-01

    Thirty years after oxygen isotope records from microfossils deposited in ocean sediments confirmed the hypothesis that variations in the Earth's orbital geometry control the ice ages, fundamental questions remain over the response of the Antarctic ice sheets to orbital cycles. Furthermore, an understanding of the behaviour of the marine-based West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) during the 'warmer-than-present' early-Pliocene epoch (???5-3 Myr ago) is needed to better constrain the possible range of ice-sheet behaviour in the context of future global warming. Here we present a marine glacial record from the upper 600 m of the AND-1B sediment core recovered from beneath the northwest part of the Ross ice shelf by the ANDRILL programme and demonstrate well-dated, ???40-kyr cyclic variations in ice-sheet extent linked to cycles in insolation influenced by changes in the Earth's axial tilt (obliquity) during the Pliocene. Our data provide direct evidence for orbitally induced oscillations in the WAIS, which periodically collapsed, resulting in a switch from grounded ice, or ice shelves, to open waters in the Ross embayment when planetary temperatures were up to ???3??C warmer than today and atmospheric CO 2 concentration was as high as ???400 p.p.m.v. (refs 5, 6). The evidence is consistent with a new ice-sheet/ice-shelf model that simulates fluctuations in Antarctic ice volume of up to +7 m in equivalent sea level associated with the loss of the WAIS and up to +3 m in equivalent sea level from the East Antarctic ice sheet, in response to ocean-induced melting paced by obliquity. During interglacial times, diatomaceous sediments indicate high surface-water productivity, minimal summer sea ice and air temperatures above freezing, suggesting an additional influence of surface melt under conditions of elevated CO2. ??2009 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

  3. Obliquity-paced Pliocene West Antarctic ice sheet oscillations.

    PubMed

    Naish, T; Powell, R; Levy, R; Wilson, G; Scherer, R; Talarico, F; Krissek, L; Niessen, F; Pompilio, M; Wilson, T; Carter, L; DeConto, R; Huybers, P; McKay, R; Pollard, D; Ross, J; Winter, D; Barrett, P; Browne, G; Cody, R; Cowan, E; Crampton, J; Dunbar, G; Dunbar, N; Florindo, F; Gebhardt, C; Graham, I; Hannah, M; Hansaraj, D; Harwood, D; Helling, D; Henrys, S; Hinnov, L; Kuhn, G; Kyle, P; Läufer, A; Maffioli, P; Magens, D; Mandernack, K; McIntosh, W; Millan, C; Morin, R; Ohneiser, C; Paulsen, T; Persico, D; Raine, I; Reed, J; Riesselman, C; Sagnotti, L; Schmitt, D; Sjunneskog, C; Strong, P; Taviani, M; Vogel, S; Wilch, T; Williams, T

    2009-03-19

    Thirty years after oxygen isotope records from microfossils deposited in ocean sediments confirmed the hypothesis that variations in the Earth's orbital geometry control the ice ages, fundamental questions remain over the response of the Antarctic ice sheets to orbital cycles. Furthermore, an understanding of the behaviour of the marine-based West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) during the 'warmer-than-present' early-Pliocene epoch ( approximately 5-3 Myr ago) is needed to better constrain the possible range of ice-sheet behaviour in the context of future global warming. Here we present a marine glacial record from the upper 600 m of the AND-1B sediment core recovered from beneath the northwest part of the Ross ice shelf by the ANDRILL programme and demonstrate well-dated, approximately 40-kyr cyclic variations in ice-sheet extent linked to cycles in insolation influenced by changes in the Earth's axial tilt (obliquity) during the Pliocene. Our data provide direct evidence for orbitally induced oscillations in the WAIS, which periodically collapsed, resulting in a switch from grounded ice, or ice shelves, to open waters in the Ross embayment when planetary temperatures were up to approximately 3 degrees C warmer than today and atmospheric CO(2) concentration was as high as approximately 400 p.p.m.v. (refs 5, 6). The evidence is consistent with a new ice-sheet/ice-shelf model that simulates fluctuations in Antarctic ice volume of up to +7 m in equivalent sea level associated with the loss of the WAIS and up to +3 m in equivalent sea level from the East Antarctic ice sheet, in response to ocean-induced melting paced by obliquity. During interglacial times, diatomaceous sediments indicate high surface-water productivity, minimal summer sea ice and air temperatures above freezing, suggesting an additional influence of surface melt under conditions of elevated CO(2). PMID:19295607

  4. Latest Word on Retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bindschadler, R.

    2000-01-01

    The West Antarctic ice sheet during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) is estimated to have been three times its present volume and to have extended close to the edge of the continental shelf Holocene retreat of this ice sheet in the Ross Sea began between 11,000 and 12,000 years ago. This history implies an average contribution of this ice sheet to sea level of 0.9 mm/a. Evidence of dateable past grounding line positions in the Ross sector are broadly consistent with a linear retreat model. However, inferred rates of retreat for some of these grounding line positions are not consistent with a linear retreat model. More rapid retreat approximately 7600 years ago and possible near-stability in the Ross Sea sector at present suggest a slow rate of initial retreat followed by a more rapid-than-average retreat during the late Holocene, returning to a near-zero rate of retreat currently. This model is also consistent with the mid-Holocene high stand observations of eustatic sea level. Recent compilation of Antarctic bed elevations (BEDMAP) illustrates that the LGM and present grounding lines occur in the shallowest waters, further supporting the model of a middle phase of rapid retreat bracketed by an older and a more recent phase of modest retreat. Extension of these hypotheses into the future make subsequent behavior of the West Antarctic ice sheet more difficult to predict but suggest that if it loses its hold on the present shallow bed, the final retreat of the ice sheet could be very rapid.

  5. Where is the West Antarctic Rift System in the Amundsen Sea and Bellingshausen Sea sectors?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gohl, Karsten; Kalberg, Thomas; Eagles, Graeme; Dziadek, Ricarda; Kaul, Norbert; Spiegel, Cornelia; Lindow, Julia

    2015-04-01

    The West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) is one of the largest continental rifts globally, but its lateral extent, distribution of local rifts, timing of rifting phases, and mantle processes are still largely enigmatic. It has been presumed that the rift and its crustal extensional processes have widely controlled the history and development of West Antarctic glaciation with an ice sheet of which most is presently based at sub-marine level and which is, therefore, likely to be highly sensitive to ocean warming. While the western domain of the WARS in the Ross Sea has been studied in some detail, only recently have various geophysical and geochemical/thermochronological analyses revealed indications for its eastern extent in the Amundsen Sea and Bellingshausen Sea sectors of the South Pacific realm. The current model, based on these studies and additional data, suggests that the WARS activity included tectonic translateral, transtensional and extensional processes from the Amundsen Sea Embayment to the Bellingshausen Sea region of the southern Antarctic Peninsula. We present the range of existing hypotheses regarding the extent of the eastern WARS as well as published and yet unpublished data that support a conceptual WARS model for the eastern West Antarctica with implications for glacial onset and developments.

  6. A Maturing Tephra Record in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dunbar, N. W.; Kurbatov, A.; McIntosh, W. C.

    2011-12-01

    Tephra layers found in many Antarctic ice cores range from sub-centimeter thick, visible layers to cryptotephra consisting of sparse, fine-grained (<10 micron) glass particles. Location of tephra particles has improved with advances in methods of detecting cryptotephra in ice cores. Identification of tephra layers traditionally relied on visible detection or association with sulfate aerosols, but is now supplemented by downhole optical logging (Bay et al., 2001). Improved analytical techniques for glass characterization, such as high quality quantitative electron microprobe analysis, and more complete information on source eruptions has facilitated identification of tephra horizons in ice cores. Two deep ice cores drilled in West Antarctica (Siple Dome and WAIS Divide) contain rich tephra records, with the former containing 37 tephra layers and the latter containing several hundred distinct, visible layers, many of which are likely to be tephra. Most of the tephra layers with strong correlations to sources are derived from Antarctic volcanoes, many from two large West Antarctic stratovolcanoes Mt. Berlin and Mt. Takahe, tephra from which have also been recognized in the marine record (Hillenbrand et al., 1988). A well-defined ash layer is found at a depth of between 190.37-190.39 m depth in the WAIS Divide core, containing 20 um ash shards that are chemically correlated to the the Pleaides volcanoes, in northern Victoria Land. This tephra layer correlates to one found in a Siple Dome (B) ice core (97.2 to 97.7 m depth) and in the Taylor Dome ice core (79.2 m depth). Deeper parts of the WAIS Divide ice core correspond to a time interval of abundant regional volcanism, represented by the large number of visible dust bands and cloudy layers in the core (A. Orsi, pers. comm., 2010). A distinct "visible brown layer" at a depth of 1586.363 m. (8.279 Ky BP preliminary age) is very likely to be from a major eruption of the West Antarctic volcano Mt. Takahe (8.2±5

  7. A review of precipitation-related aspects of West Antarctic meteorology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bromwich, David H.; Carleton, Andrew M.; Parish, Thomas R.

    1991-01-01

    An overview is presented of the factors associated with snowfall over the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. The flux of atmospheric moisture across the coast, the synoptic processes over the South Pacific Ocean, the large scale atmospheric controls, and numerical modeling of the West Antarctic environment are all discussed. Suggestions are made for research needed to substantially upgrade the status of knowledge in these closely interrelated topic areas.

  8. Obliquity-paced Pliocene West Antarctic Ice Sheet oscillations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naish, T.; Powell, R.; Levy, R.; Deconto, R.; Pollard, D.; Andrill Mis Science Team

    2009-04-01

    Thirty years after the first deep-sea oxygen isotope records confirmed Milankovitch's orbital hypothesis of the ice ages, fundamental questions remain over the response of Antarctica's ice sheets to cycles in Earth's orbital geometry. Furthermore, an understanding of the behaviour of the marine-based, West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) during "warmer-than-present" Early Pliocene Epoch (~5-3 million years ago) is needed in the context of future global warming. Here we present a marine glacial record from the upper 600m of a sediment core (AND-1B) recovered from beneath the northwest part of the Ross Ice Shelf by the ANDRILL Program . Well-dated, cyclic variations in the core link ice sheet extent to cycles in insolation controlled by the ~40,000 year period of Earth's axial tilt (obliquity) during the Pliocene. Our data provide the first direct evidence for orbitally-induced oscillations in the WAIS, which periodically collapsed resulting in a switch from grounded ice, or ice shelves, to open waters in the Ross Embayment when planetary temperatures were up to ~3°C warmer than today and atmospheric pCO2 as high as ~400 ppm. The evidence is consistent with a new ice sheet-ice shelf model that simulates fluctuations in Antarctic ice volume of up to +8 m equivalent sea level, in response to ocean-induced melting paced by obliquity. During interglacial times, diatomaceous sediments indicate high surface water productivity, minimal summer sea ice and air temperatures above freezing, suggesting an additional influence of surface melt under conditions of elevated CO2.

  9. West Antarctic Surface Melt: Recent Context, Future Directions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reusch, D. B.; Schneider, D. P.; Lampkin, D. J.; Karmosky, C. C.

    2012-12-01

    Surface melting on ice sheets and ice shelves is a physical threshold of much climatic and geophysical significance. Wetting reduces albedo and encourages additional melt, runoff may contribute to ice-sheet mass loss, and penetration of meltwater to the glacier bed can lubricate faster flow and thereby increase mass loss by calving. Meltwater is also a major factor in ice-shelf collapse through wedging open of crevasses. While fringing ice-shelf collapse along the Antarctic Peninsula is probably the best known example of the cryospheric response to a warming atmosphere (and ocean), surface melting is also present in inland portions of West Antarctica. In addition to potentially contributing to ice sheet dynamics, surface melt occurrence is a valuable proxy for changing atmospheric temperature conditions. Combining satellite remote sensing with atmospheric modeling, we diagnose the meteorological conditions associated with the December 1991/January 1992 surface melt event on the Ross Ice Shelf, the most extensive and longest such event in the period 1987-2008. Through this case study, we examine the utility and skill of our meteorological datasets (reanalyses, Polar WRF, selected CMIP5 GCMs) in the development of diagnostic tools for identifying surface melt as observed by satellite and simulated by regional and global models. To assess GCM model skill in the recent, and to better appraise future predictions to come in later work, we compare warm-season climatologies derived from several CMIP5-class model simulations against observations and the ERA-Interim reanalysis. Sub-daily temperatures are compared where both model output and in-situ observations are available. Trends in the surface climate for the historical period are also examined in order to assess which models simulate the most realistic changes. Self-organizing maps develop grids of generalized patterns organized by similarity to represent the continuum of synoptic weather states found in each model

  10. 76 FR 9849 - Comprehensive Environmental Evaluations for Antarctic Activities

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-02-22

    ... Comprehensive Environmental Evaluations for Antarctic Activities SUMMARY: The Department of State gives notice of the availability of two draft Comprehensive Environmental Evaluations (CEEs) for activities... Evaluation: Construction and Operation of Jang Bogo Antarctic Research Station, Terra Nova Bay,...

  11. Deformation-induced melting in the margins of the West Antarctic ice streams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suckale, Jenny; Platt, John D.; Perol, Thibaut; Rice, James R.

    2014-05-01

    Flow of glacial ice in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet localizes in narrow bands of fast-flowing ice streams bordered by ridges of nearly stagnant ice, but our understanding of the physical processes that generate this morphology is incomplete. Here we study the thermal and mechanical properties of ice-stream margins, where flow transitions from rapid to stagnant over a few kilometers. Our goal is to explore under which conditions the intense shear deformation in the margin may lead to deformation-induced melting. We propose a 2-D model that represents a cross section through the ice stream margin perpendicular to the downstream flow direction. We limit temperature to the melting point to estimate melt rates based on latent heat. Using rheology parameters as constrained by laboratory data and observations, we conclude that a zone of temperate ice is likely to form in active shear margins.

  12. Halogenating activities detected in Antarctic macroalgae

    SciTech Connect

    Laturnus, F.; Adams, F.C.; Gomez, I.; Mehrtens, G.

    1997-03-01

    Halogenating activities were determined in samples of 18 cultivated species of brown, red and green macroalgae from the Antarctic. Activities for the halogenating organic compounds with bromide, iodide and chloride were found. Investigated red algae (rhodophytes) showed higher brominating and iodinating activities compared to brown (phaeophytes) and green (chlorophytes) algae. The highest brominating and iodinating activities were measured in the red algae Plocamium cartilagineum (1.11 {+-} 0.01 U g{sup -1} wet algal weight and 0.18 U g{sup -1} wet algal weight, respectively) and Myriogramme mangini (3.62 {+-} 0.17 U g{sup -1} wet algal weight and 4.5 U g{sup -1} wet algal weight, respectively). Chlorinating activities were detected in the red alga Plocamium cartilagineum only (0.086 U g{sup -1} wet algal weight). 30 refs., 2 figs., 1 tab.

  13. Evidence for elevated and spatially variable geothermal flux beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.

    PubMed

    Schroeder, Dustin M; Blankenship, Donald D; Young, Duncan A; Quartini, Enrica

    2014-06-24

    Heterogeneous hydrologic, lithologic, and geologic basal boundary conditions can exert strong control on the evolution, stability, and sea level contribution of marine ice sheets. Geothermal flux is one of the most dynamically critical ice sheet boundary conditions but is extremely difficult to constrain at the scale required to understand and predict the behavior of rapidly changing glaciers. This lack of observational constraint on geothermal flux is particularly problematic for the glacier catchments of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet within the low topography of the West Antarctic Rift System where geothermal fluxes are expected to be high, heterogeneous, and possibly transient. We use airborne radar sounding data with a subglacial water routing model to estimate the distribution of basal melting and geothermal flux beneath Thwaites Glacier, West Antarctica. We show that the Thwaites Glacier catchment has a minimum average geothermal flux of ∼ 114 ± 10 mW/m(2) with areas of high flux exceeding 200 mW/m(2) consistent with hypothesized rift-associated magmatic migration and volcanism. These areas of highest geothermal flux include the westernmost tributary of Thwaites Glacier adjacent to the subaerial Mount Takahe volcano and the upper reaches of the central tributary near the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide ice core drilling site. PMID:24927578

  14. Evidence for elevated and spatially variable geothermal flux beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    PubMed Central

    Schroeder, Dustin M.; Blankenship, Donald D.; Young, Duncan A.; Quartini, Enrica

    2014-01-01

    Heterogeneous hydrologic, lithologic, and geologic basal boundary conditions can exert strong control on the evolution, stability, and sea level contribution of marine ice sheets. Geothermal flux is one of the most dynamically critical ice sheet boundary conditions but is extremely difficult to constrain at the scale required to understand and predict the behavior of rapidly changing glaciers. This lack of observational constraint on geothermal flux is particularly problematic for the glacier catchments of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet within the low topography of the West Antarctic Rift System where geothermal fluxes are expected to be high, heterogeneous, and possibly transient. We use airborne radar sounding data with a subglacial water routing model to estimate the distribution of basal melting and geothermal flux beneath Thwaites Glacier, West Antarctica. We show that the Thwaites Glacier catchment has a minimum average geothermal flux of ∼114 ± 10 mW/m2 with areas of high flux exceeding 200 mW/m2 consistent with hypothesized rift-associated magmatic migration and volcanism. These areas of highest geothermal flux include the westernmost tributary of Thwaites Glacier adjacent to the subaerial Mount Takahe volcano and the upper reaches of the central tributary near the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide ice core drilling site. PMID:24927578

  15. The aeromagnetic method as a tool to identify Cenozoic magmatism in the West Antarctic Rift System beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet: a review; Thiel subglacial volcano as possible source of the ash layer in the WAISCOR

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Behrendt, John C.

    2013-01-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) flows through the volcanically active West Antarctic Rift System (WARS). The aeromagnetic method has been the most useful geophysical tool for identification of subglacial volcanic rocks, since 1959–64 surveys, particularly combined with 1978 radar ice-sounding. The unique 1991–97 Central West Antarctica (CWA) aerogeophysical survey covering 354,000 km2 over the WAIS, (5-km line-spaced, orthogonal lines of aeromagnetic, radar ice-sounding, and aerogravity measurements), still provides invaluable information on subglacial volcanic rocks, particularly combined with the older aeromagnetic profiles. These data indicate numerous 100–>1000 nT, 5–50-km width, shallow-source, magnetic anomalies over an area greater than 1.2 × 106 km2, mostly from subglacial volcanic sources. I interpreted the CWA anomalies as defining about 1000 “volcanic centers” requiring high remanent normal magnetizations in the present field direction. About 400 anomaly sources correlate with bed topography. At least 80% of these sources have less than 200 m relief at the WAIS bed. They appear modified by moving ice, requiring a younger age than the WAIS (about 25 Ma). Exposed volcanoes in the WARS are The present rapid changes resulting from global warming, could be accelerated by subglacial volcanism.

  16. Negative magnetic anomaly over Mt. Resnik, a subaerially erupted volcanic peak beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Behrendt, John C.; Finn, C.; Morse, D.L.; Blankenship, D.D.

    2006-01-01

    negative anomalies indicate volcanic activity during a period of magnetic reversal and therefore must also be at least 780 ka. The spatial extent and volume of volcanism can now be reassessed for the 1.2 ?? 106 km2 region of the WAIS characterized by magnetic anomalies defining interpreted volcanic centers associated with the West Antarctic rift system. The CWA covers an area of 3.54 ?? 105 km2; forty-four percent of that area exhibits short-wavelength, high-amplitude anomalies indicative of volcanic centers and subvolcanic intrusions. This equates to an area of 0.51 ?? 105 km2 and a volume of 106 km3 beneath the ice-covered West Antarctic rift system, of sufficient extent to be classified as a large igneous province interpreted to be of Oligocene to recent age.

  17. The impacts of local human activities on the Antarctic environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tin, T.; Fleming, Z. L.; Hughes, K. A.; Ainley, D. G.; Convey, P.; Moreno, C. A.; Pfeiffer, S.; Scott, J.; Snape, I.

    2009-04-01

    An overview of a recently published review of the scientific literature from the past decade on the impacts of human activities on the Antarctic environment is presented. An assessment of the cumulative effects of scientists and accompanying base construction, tourists and fishery activities in Antarctica is timely given a decade since the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty came into force in 1998 and the increasing attention given to and human presence in Antarctica during this 2007-2009 IPY. A range of impacts has been identified at a variety of spatial and temporal scales. Chemical contamination and sewage disposal on the continent have been found to be long-lived, with contemporary sewage management practices at many coastal stations insufficient to prevent local contamination. Human activities, particularly construction and transport, have affected Antarctic flora and fauna and a small number of non-indigenous plant and animal species has become established on some of the Antarctic Peninsula and sub Antarctic islands. There is little indication of recovery of overexploited fish stocks, and ramifications of fishing activity on bycatch species and the ecosystem could also be far-reaching. The Antarctic Treaty System and its instruments, in particular the Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) and the Environmental Protocol, provide a framework within which management of human activities take place. In order to ensure comprehensive protection of the Antarctic environment, including its intrinsic, wilderness and scientific values in the face of the continuing expansion of human activities in Antarctica, a more effective implementation of a wide range of measures is essential. These include effective environmental impact assessments, long-term monitoring, mitigation measures for non-indigenous species, ecosystem-based management of living resources, and increased regulation of National Antarctic

  18. Ice-dynamical constraints on the existence and impact of subglacial volcanism on West Antarctic ice sheet stability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vogel, Stefan W.; Tulaczyk, Slawek

    2006-12-01

    Subglacial volcanism in West Antarctica may play a crucial role in the dynamics and stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). Evidence supporting the existence of an individual subglacial volcanic center (Mt. Casertz) in the upper catchments of Whillans and Kamb Ice Stream (WIS and KIS), comes from a comparison of ice sheet modeling results with measured ice velocities. Lubrication of an area, which otherwise should be frozen to its bed, is best explained by basal melt water generated in the vicinity of Mt. Casertz. The estimated melt water production of Mt. Casertz corresponds to ~8 % of the total melt water production in the two catchments. This would be sufficient to offset basal freezing in the dormant KIS, relubricating its bed and potentially causing a restart. Near future volcanic activity changes are speculative, but would have far reaching implications on the dynamics and stability of the WAIS requiring further investigation.

  19. The aeromagnetic method as a tool to identify Cenozoic magmatism in the West Antarctic Rift System beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet — A review; Thiel subglacial volcano as possible source of the ash layer in the WAISCORE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Behrendt, John C.

    2013-02-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) flows through the volcanically active West Antarctic Rift System (WARS). The aeromagnetic method has been the most useful geophysical tool for identification of subglacial volcanic rocks, since 1959-64 surveys, particularly combined with 1978 radar ice-sounding. The unique 1991-97 Central West Antarctica (CWA) aerogeophysical survey covering 354,000 km2 over the WAIS, (5-km line-spaced, orthogonal lines of aeromagnetic, radar ice-sounding, and aerogravity measurements), still provides invaluable information on subglacial volcanic rocks, particularly combined with the older aeromagnetic profiles. These data indicate numerous 100->1000 nT, 5-50-km width, shallow-source, magnetic anomalies over an area greater than 1.2 × 106 km2, mostly from subglacial volcanic sources. I interpreted the CWA anomalies as defining about 1000 "volcanic centers" requiring high remanent normal magnetizations in the present field direction. About 400 anomaly sources correlate with bed topography. At least 80% of these sources have less than 200 m relief at the WAIS bed. They appear modified by moving ice, requiring a younger age than the WAIS (about 25 Ma). Exposed volcanoes in the WARS are < 34 Ma, but at least four are active. If a few buried volcanic centers are active, subglacial volcanism may well affect the WAIS regime. Aerogeophysical data (Blankenship et al., 1993, Mt. Casertz; Corr and Vaughan, 2008, near Hudson Mts.) indicated active subglacial volcanism. Magnetic data indicate a caldera and a surrounding "low" in the WAISCORE vicinity possibly the result of a shallow Curie isotherm. High heat flow reported from temperature logging in the WAISCORE (Conway et al., 2011; Clow, personal commun.) and a volcanic ash layer (Dunbar, 2012) are consistent with this interpretation. A subaerially erupted subglacial volcano, (Mt Thiel), about 100 km distant, may be the ash source. The present rapid changes resulting from global warming, could be

  20. Holocene accumulation and ice flow near the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide ice core site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koutnik, Michelle R.; Fudge, T. J.; Conway, Howard; Waddington, Edwin D.; Neumann, Thomas A.; Cuffey, Kurt M.; Buizert, Christo; Taylor, Kendrick C.

    2016-05-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide Core (WDC) provided a high-resolution climate record from near the Ross-Amundsen Divide in Central West Antarctica. In addition, radar-detected internal layers in the vicinity of the WDC site have been dated directly from the ice core to provide spatial variations in the age structure of the region. Using these two data sets together, we first infer a high-resolution Holocene accumulation-rate history from 9.2 kyr of the ice-core timescale and then confirm that this climate history is consistent with internal layers upstream of the core site. Even though the WDC was drilled only 24 km from the modern ice divide, advection of ice from upstream must be taken into account. We evaluate histories of accumulation rate by using a flowband model to generate internal layers that we compare to observed layers. Results show that the centennially averaged accumulation rate was over 20% lower than modern at 9.2 kyr before present (B.P.), increased by 40% from 9.2 to 2.3 kyr B.P., and decreased by at least 10% over the past 2 kyr B.P. to the modern values; these Holocene accumulation-rate changes in Central West Antarctica are larger than changes inferred from East Antarctic ice-core records. Despite significant changes in accumulation rate, throughout the Holocene the regional accumulation pattern has likely remained similar to today, and the ice-divide position has likely remained on average within 5 km of its modern position. Continent-scale ice-sheet models used for reconstructions of West Antarctic ice volume should incorporate this accumulation history.

  1. The diatom record from beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and the global proxy perspective

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scherer, Reed P.

    1993-01-01

    Recent glaciological evaluation and modeling of the marine-based West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) support the possibility that the WAIS disintegrated during one or more Pleistocene interglacial period(s). The magnitude of sea level and oxygen isotope variation during certain late-Pleistocene interglacial periods is also consistent with the possibility of major retreat of the WAIS. Although oxygen isotopes from deep-sea sediments provide the best available proxy record for global ice volume (despite the ambiguities in the record), the source of ice volume changes must be hypothesized. Based on the intensity of interglacial isotopic shifts recorded in Southern Ocean marine sedimentary records, stage 11 (400,000 years ago) is the strongest candidate for WAIS collapse, but the records for stages 9, 7, and 5.5 are all consistent with the possibility of multiple late-Pleistocene collapses. Seismic reflection studies through the WAIS have revealed thick successions of strata with seismic characteristics comparable to upper Tertiary marine sediments. Small samples of glacial diamictons from beneath the ice sheet have been collected via hot-water drilled access holes. These sediments include mixed diatom assemblages of varying ages. Late-Miocene diatoms dominate many samples, probably reflecting marine deposition in West Antarctic basins prior to development of a dominantly glacial phase in West Antarctica. In addition to late-Miocene diatoms, samples from Upstream B (1988/89) contain rare post-Miocene diatoms, many of which imply deposition in the West Antarctic interior during one or more Pleistocene deglaciation periods. Age-diagnostic fossils in glacial sediments beneath ice sheets provide relatively coarse chronostratigraphic control, but they do contain direct evidence of regional deglaciation. Thus, sub-glacial till samples provide the evidence regarding the source of ice sheet variability seen in well-dated proxy records. Combined, these independent data sets can

  2. Radio-echo sounding of 'active' Antarctic subglacial lakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siegert, M. J.; Ross, N.; Blankenship, D. D.; Young, D. A.; Greenbaum, J. S.; Richter, T.; Rippin, D. M.; Le Brocq, A. M.; Wright, A.; Bingham, R.; Corr, H.; Ferraccioli, F.; Jordan, T. A.; Smith, B. E.; Payne, A. J.; Dowdeswell, J. A.; Bamber, J. L.

    2013-12-01

    Repeat-pass satellite altimetry has revealed 124 discrete surface height changes across the Antarctic Ice Sheet, interpreted to be caused by subglacial lake discharges (surface lowering) and inputs (surface uplift). Few of these active lakes have been confirmed by radio-echo sounding (RES) despite several attempts, however. Over the last 5 years, major geophysical campaigns have acquired RES data from several 'active' lake sites, including the US-UK-Australian ICECAP programme in East Antactica and the UK survey of the Institute Ice Stream in West Antarctica. In the latter case, a targeted RES survey of one 'active' lake was undertaken. RES evidence of the subglacial bed beneath 'active' lakes in both East and West Antarctica will be presented, and the evidence for pooled subglacial water from these data will be assessed. Based on this assessment, the nature of 'active' subglacial lakes, and their associated hydrology and relationship with surrounding topography will be discussed, as will the likelihood of further 'active' lakes in Antarctica. Hydraulic potential map of the Byrd Glacier catchment with contours at 5 MPa intervals. Predicted subglacial flowpaths are shown in blue. Subglacial lakes known from previous geophysical surveys are shown as black triangles while the newly discovered 'Three-tier lakes' are shown in dashed black outline. Surface height change features within the Byrd subglacial catchment are shown in outline and are shaded to indicate whether they were rising or falling during the ICESat campaign. Those features are labelled in-line with the numbering system of Smith et al. (J. Glac. 2009).

  3. Geological and Tectonic Evidence for the Formation and Extensional Collapse of the West Antarctic Plateau: Implications for the Formation of the West Antarctic Rift System and the Transantarctic Mountains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fitzgerald, P. G.; Studinger, M.; Bialas, R. W.; Buck, W.

    2007-12-01

    The Transantarctic Mountains (TAM), the world's longest and highest non-contractional intracontinental mountain belt, define the western boundary of the West Antarctic rift system (WARS). The WARS is a broad region of extended continental lithosphere, ca. 750-1000 km wide, lying dominantly below sea-level. A new model (Bialas et al., 2007), proposes that a region of thickened continental crust and high-standing topography, the "West Antarctic Plateau", underwent extensional collapse to leave a remnant edge representing the proto-TAM. Tectonic and paleogeographic reconstructions indicate the plateau formed inboard of a continental arc along the paleo- Pacific margin of Antarctica, active throughout the Paleozoic until the late Mesozoic. This high-standing region was responsible for confining sediments (Beacon Supergroup) to elongate basins along the length of the TAM. Much of the present region of the WARS has been correlated with the Lachlan Fold belt of southeastern Australia. This belt formed from the Ordovician to Carboniferous during back-arc basin formation associated with slab roll- back with short periods of compression. Convergence along the paleo-Pacific margin, perhaps enhanced by subduction of more buoyant oceanic lithosphere as the Phoenix-Pacific ridge was obliquely subducted, resulted in crustal thickening and formation of high-standing terrain (the plateau). Extensional collapse of the plateau most likely began in the Jurassic during initial rifting between East and West Antarctica, but was mainly accomplished during distributed rifting in the Cretaceous (ca. 105-85) following subduction of the Phoenix-Pacific ridge and prior to the separation of New Zealand from Marie Byrd Land. Continued formation of the TAM continued in the Cenozoic concomitant with extension in the WARS that was localized along its western margin adjacent to the TAM. Glacial erosion in the Oligocene and early-Miocene enhanced peak height in the TAM. In this presentation we

  4. Tectonics of the West Antarctic rift system: new light on the history and dynamics of distributed intracontinental extension

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Siddoway, C.S.

    2007-01-01

    The West Antarctic rift system (WARS) is the product of multiple stages of intracontinental deformation from Jurassic to Present. The Cretaceous rifting phase accomplished >100 percent extension across the Ross Sea and central West Antarctica, and is widely perceived as a product of pure shear extension orthogonal to the Transantarctic Mountains that led to breakup and opening of the Southern Ocean between West Antarctica and New Zealand. New structural, petrological, and geochronological data from Marie Byrd Land reveal aspects of the kinematics, thermal history, and chronology of the Cretaceous intracontinental extension phase that cannot be readily explained by a single progressive event. Elevated temperatures in "Lachlan-type" crust caused extensive crustal melting and mid-crustal flow within a dextral transcurrent strain environment, leading to rapid extension and locally to exhumation and rapid cooling of a migmatite dome and detachment footwall structures. Peak metamorphism and onset of crustal flow that brought about WARS extension between 105 Ma and 90 Ma is kinematically, temporally, and spatially linked to the active convergent margin system of East Gondwana. West Antarctica-New Zealand breakup is distinguished as a separate event at 83-70 Ma, from the standpoint of kinematics and thermal evolution

  5. Ocean temperature thresholds for Last Interglacial West Antarctic Ice Sheet collapse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sutter, Johannes; Gierz, Paul; Grosfeld, Klaus; Thoma, Malte; Lohmann, Gerrit

    2016-03-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) is considered the major contributor to global sea level rise in the Last Interglacial (LIG) and potentially in the future. Exposed fossil reef terraces suggest sea levels in excess of 7 m in the last warm era, of which probably not much more than 2 m are considered to originate from melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet. We simulate the evolution of the Antarctic Ice Sheet during the LIG with a 3-D thermomechanical ice sheet model forced by an atmosphere-ocean general circulation model (AOGCM). Our results show that high LIG sea levels cannot be reproduced with the atmosphere-ocean forcing delivered by current AOGCMs. However, when taking reconstructed Southern Ocean temperature anomalies of several degrees, sensitivity studies indicate a Southern Ocean temperature anomaly threshold for total WAIS collapse of 2-3°C, accounting for a sea level rise of 3-4 m during the LIG. Potential future Antarctic Ice Sheet dynamics range from a moderate retreat to a complete collapse, depending on rate and amplitude of warming.

  6. Rifting, Volcanism, and the Geochemical Character of the Mantle Beneath the West Antarctic Rift System (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mukasa, S. B.; Aviado, K. B.; Rilling-Hall, S.; Bryce, J. G.; Cabato, J.

    2013-12-01

    The West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) is one of the largest extensional alkali volcanic provinces on Earth, but the mechanisms responsible for generating the massive amounts of its associated magmatism remain controversial. The failure of both passive and active decompression melting models to adequately explain the observed lava volumes has prompted debate about the relative roles of thermal plume-related melting and ancient subduction-related flux melting. 40Ar/39Ar dating and geochemical analyses of the lavas, as well as volatile and trace-element determinations of olivine-hosted melt inclusions shed light on the relationship between rifting and volcanism, and also improve our understanding of the geochemical character of the mantle beneath the WARS. Results show that the magmatism post-dates the main phase of extension along the Terror Rift within the WARS, which supports a decompression-melting model without the benefit of a significant thermal anomaly. However, the observed large magma volumes seem to require a volatile-fluxed mantle, a notion supported by a long history of subduction (>500 Myr) along the paleo-Pacific margin of Gondwana. In fact, the legacy of that subduction may manifest itself in the high H2O concentrations of olivine-hosted melt inclusions (up to 3 wt% in preliminary results from ion probe measurements). The major oxide compositions of lavas in the WARS are best matched to experimental melts of garnet pyroxenite and carbonated peridotite sources. The Pb and Nd isotopic systems are decoupled from each other, suggesting removal of fluid-mobile elements from the mantle source possibly during the long history of subduction along this Gondwana margin. Extremely unradiogenic 187Os/188Os ranging to as low as 0.1081 × 0.0001 hints at the involvement of lithospheric components in generation of magmas in the WARS.

  7. Nature of the Mantle Sources and Bearing on Tectonic Evolution in the West Antarctic Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mukasa, S. B.; Rilling-Hall, S.; Marcano, M. C.; Wilson, T. J.; Lawver, L. A.; LeMasurier, W. E.

    2012-12-01

    We collected samples from subaerial lava flows and dredged some Neogene basanitic lavas from seven volcanic edifices in the Ross Sea, Antarctica - a part of the West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) and one of the world's largest alkaline magmatic provinces - for a study aimed at two principal objectives: (1) Geochemical interrogation of the most primitive magmatic rocks to try and understand the nature of the seismically abnormal mantle domain recently identified beneath the shoulder of the Transantarctic Mountains (TAM), the Ross Sea Embayment and Marie Byrd Land; and (2) Using 40Ar/39Ar geochronology to establish a temporal link between magmatism and tectonism, particularly in the Terror Rift. We have attempted to answer the questions of whether magmatism is due to a hot mantle or wet mantle, and whether rifting in the area triggered magmatic activity or vice versa. Results show that the area does not have an age-progressive hotspot track, and the magmatism post-dates the main phase of extension along the Terror Rift within the WARS, which supports a decompression-melting model without the benefit of a significant thermal anomaly. In fact, preliminary volatile measurements on olivine-hosted melt inclusions have yielded water concentrations in excess of 2 wt%, indicating that flux melting was an important complementary process to decompression melting. The major oxide compositions of lavas in the WARS are best matched to experimental melts of carbonated peridotite, though garnet pyroxenite can also be a minor source. The Pb and Nd isotopic systems are decoupled from each other, suggesting removal of fluid-mobile elements from the mantle source possibly during the long history of subduction along the Paleo-Pacific margin of Gondwana. Extremely unradiogenic 187Os/188Os ranging to as low as 0.1081 ± 0.0001 hints at the involvement of lithospheric components in generation of magmas in the WARS.

  8. West-Antarctic Ice Streams: Analog to Ice Flow in Channels on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lucchitta, B. K.

    1997-01-01

    Sounding of the sea floor in front of the Ross Ice Shelf in Antarctica recently revealed large persistent patterns of longitudinal megaflutes and drumlinoid forms, which are interpreted to have formed at the base of ice streams during the list glacial advance. The flutes bear remarkable resemblance to longitudinal grooves and highly elongated streamlined islands found on the floors of some large martian channels, called outflow channels. ln addition, other similarities exist between Antarctic ice streams and outflow channels. Ice streams are 30 to 80 km wide and hundreds of kilometers long, as are the martian channels. Ice stream beds are below sea level. Floors of many martian outflow channels lie below martian datum, which may have been close to or below past martian sea levels. The Antarctic ice stream bed gradient is flat and locally may go uphill, and surface slopes are exceptionally low. So are gradients of martian channels. The depth to the bed in ice streams is 1 to 1.5 km. At bankful stage, the depth of the fluid in outflow channels would have been 1 to 2 km. These similarities suggest that the martian outflow channels, whose origin is commonly attributed to gigantic catastrophic floods, were locally filled by ice that left a conspicuous morphologic imprint. Unlike the West-Antarctic-ice streams, which discharge ice from an ice sheet, ice in the martian channels came from water erupting from the ground. In the cold martian environment, this water, if of moderate volume, would eventually freeze. Thus it may have formed icings on springs, ice dams and jams on constrictions in the channel path, or frozen pools. Given sufficient thickness and downhill surface gradient, these ice masses would have moved; and given the right conditions, they could have moved like Antarctic ice streams.

  9. Inability of stratospheric sulfate aerosol injections to preserve the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCusker, K. E.; Battisti, D. S.; Bitz, C. M.

    2015-06-01

    Injection of sulfate aerosols into the stratosphere has the potential to reduce the climate impacts of global warming, including sea level rise (SLR). However, changes in atmospheric and oceanic circulation that can significantly influence the rate of basal melting of Antarctic marine ice shelves and the associated SLR have not previously been considered. Here we use a fully coupled global climate model to investigate whether rapidly increasing stratospheric sulfate aerosol concentrations after a period of global warming could preserve Antarctic ice sheets by cooling subsurface ocean temperatures. We contrast this climate engineering method with an alternative strategy in which all greenhouse gases (GHG) are returned to preindustrial levels. We find that the rapid addition of a stratospheric aerosol layer does not effectively counteract surface and upper level atmospheric circulation changes caused by increasing GHGs, resulting in continued upwelling of warm water in proximity of ice shelves, especially in the vicinity of the already unstable Pine Island Glacier in West Antarctica. By contrast, removal of GHGs restores the circulation, yielding relatively cooler subsurface ocean temperatures to better preserve West Antarctica.

  10. Melt generation in the West Antarctic Rift System: the volatile legacy of Gondwana subduction?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aviado, K.; Rilling-Hall, S.; Mukasa, S. B.; Bryce, J. G.; Cabato, J.

    2013-12-01

    The West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) represents one of the largest extensional alkali volcanic provinces on Earth, yet the mechanisms responsible for driving rift-related magmatism remain controversial. The failure of both passive and active models of decompression melting to explain adequately the observed volume of volcanism has prompted debate about the relative roles of thermal plume-related melting and ancient subduction-related flux melting. The latter is supported by roughly 500 Ma of subduction along the paleo-Pacific margin of Gondwana, although both processes are capable of producing the broad seismic anomaly imaged beneath most of the Southern Ocean. Olivine-hosted melt inclusions from basanitic lavas provide a means to evaluate the volatile budget of the mantle responsible for active rifting beneath the WARS. We present H2O, CO2, F, S and Cl concentrations determined by SIMS and major oxide compositions by EMPA for olivine-hosted melt inclusions from lavas erupted in Northern Victoria Land (NVL) and Marie Byrd Land (MBL). The melt inclusions are largely basanitic in composition (4.05 - 17.09 wt % MgO, 37.86 - 45.89 wt % SiO2, and 1.20 - 5.30 wt % Na2O), and exhibit water contents ranging from 0.5 up to 3 wt % that are positively correlated with Cl and F. Coupling between Cl and H2O indicates metasomatic enrichment by subduction-related fluids produced during dehydration reactions; coupling between H2O and F, which is more highly retained in subducting slabs, may be related to partial melting of slab remnants [1]. Application of source lithology filters [2] to whole rock major oxide data shows that primitive lavas (MgO wt % >7) from the Terror Rift, considered the locus of on-going tectonomagmatic activity, have transitioned from a pyroxenite source to a volatilized peridotite source over the past ~4 Ma. Integrating the volatile data with the modeled characteristics of source lithologies suggests that partial melting of lithosphere modified by

  11. Exploring under the weak underbelly of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet with recent aerogeophysical data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferraccioli, F.; Jordan, T.; Holt, J.; Vaughan, D. G.; Diehl, T.; Blankenship, D.; Corr, H.; James, M.; Fairhead, D.

    2007-12-01

    There are growing concerns over how the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) will respond to global warming and the major societal implications that its potential collapse would have. An area of particular concern is the Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE), where glaciers such as Pine Island Glacier (PIG) and Thwaites Glacier (THW) have been shown to be melting, thinning, accelerating and retreating rapidly. This part of the WAIS has also been referred to as the "weak underbelly of the WAIS" where rapid deglaciation could occur. Previous aerogeophysical surveys flown over the Siple Coast (SC) ice streams have imaged subglacial geology, and have highlighted the importance of considering geology when assessing the dynamics and long-term stability of the WAIS. The SC ice streams overlie broad and narrow sediment-infilled rift basins of the West Antarctic Rift System (WARS). Subglacial sediments and Cenozoic to Recent magmatic features associated with the WARS may represent geological templates for enhanced glacial flow there. However, whether the WARS extended beneath the catchments of the dynamic ASE glaciers remained poorly constrained due to the paucity of geophysical data. Approximately 100,000 line km of new aerogeophysical data were collected over this region as part of a collaborative effort between the University and Texas and the British Antarctic Survey, comprising airborne radar, aeromagnetic and airborne gravity. The new airborne radar datasets yielded an improved picture of the deep narrow subglacial trough beneath the trunk of PIG, and the broader basin where THW flows, as well as the narrow basins where tributary flow occurs. A bedrock high was imaged on the flank of PIG, which would rise above sea-level after isostatic compensation following deglaciation, and could perhaps impede ice-sheet collapse initiated near the grounding line by preventing its progress into the deep Byrd Sublglacial Basin. The new potential field data uncovers the WARS in ASE region

  12. Revised East-West Antarctic plate motions since the Middle Eocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Granot, R.; Cande, S. C.; Stock, J.; Damaske, D.

    2010-12-01

    The middle Cenozoic (43-26 Ma) rifting between East and West Antarctica is defined by an episode of ultraslow seafloor spreading in the Adare Basin, located off northwestern Ross Sea. The absence of fracture zones and the lack of sufficient well-located magnetic anomaly picks have resulted in a poorly constrained kinematic model (Cande et al., 2000). Here we utilize the results from a dense aeromagnetic survey (Damaske et al., 2007) collected as part of GANOVEX IX 2005/06 campaign to re-evaluate the kinematics of the West Antarctic rift system since the Middle Eocene. We identify marine magnetic anomalies (anomalies 12o, 13o, 16y, and 18o) along a total of 25,000 km of the GPS navigated magnetic profiles. The continuation of these anomalies into the Northern Basin has allowed us to use the entire N-S length of this dataset in our calculations. A distinct curvature in the orientation of the spreading axis provides a strong constraint on our calculated kinematic models. The results from two- (East-West Antarctica) and three- (Australia-East Antarctica-West Antarctica) plate solutions agree well and create a cluster of rotation axes located south of the rift system, near the South Pole. These solutions reveal that spreading rate and direction, and therefore motion between East and West Antarctica, were steady between the Middle Eocene and Early Oligocene. Our kinematic solutions confirm the results of Davey and De Santis (2005) that the Victoria Land Basin has accommodated ~95 km of extension since the Middle Eocene. This magnetic pattern also provides valuable constraints on the post-spreading deformation of the Adare Basin (Granot et al., 2010). The Adare Basin has accommodated very little extension since the Late Oligocene (<7 km), but motion has probably increased southward. The details of this younger phase of motion are still crudely constrained.

  13. Collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet after local destabilization of the Amundsen Basin.

    PubMed

    Feldmann, Johannes; Levermann, Anders

    2015-11-17

    The future evolution of the Antarctic Ice Sheet represents the largest uncertainty in sea-level projections of this and upcoming centuries. Recently, satellite observations and high-resolution simulations have suggested the initiation of an ice-sheet instability in the Amundsen Sea sector of West Antarctica, caused by the last decades' enhanced basal ice-shelf melting. Whether this localized destabilization will yield a full discharge of marine ice from West Antarctica, associated with a global sea-level rise of more than 3 m, or whether the ice loss is limited by ice dynamics and topographic features, is unclear. Here we show that in the Parallel Ice Sheet Model, a local destabilization causes a complete disintegration of the marine ice in West Antarctica. In our simulations, at 5-km horizontal resolution, the region disequilibrates after 60 y of currently observed melt rates. Thereafter, the marine ice-sheet instability fully unfolds and is not halted by topographic features. In fact, the ice loss in Amundsen Sea sector shifts the catchment's ice divide toward the Filchner-Ronne and Ross ice shelves, which initiates grounding-line retreat there. Our simulations suggest that if a destabilization of Amundsen Sea sector has indeed been initiated, Antarctica will irrevocably contribute at least 3 m to global sea-level rise during the coming centuries to millennia. PMID:26578762

  14. Collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet after local destabilization of the Amundsen Basin

    PubMed Central

    Feldmann, Johannes; Levermann, Anders

    2015-01-01

    The future evolution of the Antarctic Ice Sheet represents the largest uncertainty in sea-level projections of this and upcoming centuries. Recently, satellite observations and high-resolution simulations have suggested the initiation of an ice-sheet instability in the Amundsen Sea sector of West Antarctica, caused by the last decades’ enhanced basal ice-shelf melting. Whether this localized destabilization will yield a full discharge of marine ice from West Antarctica, associated with a global sea-level rise of more than 3 m, or whether the ice loss is limited by ice dynamics and topographic features, is unclear. Here we show that in the Parallel Ice Sheet Model, a local destabilization causes a complete disintegration of the marine ice in West Antarctica. In our simulations, at 5-km horizontal resolution, the region disequilibrates after 60 y of currently observed melt rates. Thereafter, the marine ice-sheet instability fully unfolds and is not halted by topographic features. In fact, the ice loss in Amundsen Sea sector shifts the catchment's ice divide toward the Filchner–Ronne and Ross ice shelves, which initiates grounding-line retreat there. Our simulations suggest that if a destabilization of Amundsen Sea sector has indeed been initiated, Antarctica will irrevocably contribute at least 3 m to global sea-level rise during the coming centuries to millennia. PMID:26578762

  15. Macrofossil records of West Antarctic Ice Sheet retreat during the Holocene

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berkman, Paul Arthur

    1993-01-01

    Marine macrofossils in emerged beaches around Antarctica represent a geochemical framework for interpreting meltwater signatures associated with variations in the adjacent ice sheet margins during the last 10,000 years. In particular, mollusc species provide ideal experimental templates for assessing hydrochemical variations in Antarctic coastal marine environments because of their excellent preservation, high abundances, circumpolar distributions, and carbonate shells, which incorporate trace elements and stable isotopes. Modern samples of the bivalve Adamussium colbecki, which were collected across a depth gradient in the vicinity of a glacial meltwater stream in West McMurdo Sound, revealed shell trace element concentrations that were significantly higher above 10 meters because of their exposure to meltwater runoff. This meltwater signature also was reflected by the shell oxygen isotopic composition, which was in equilibrium with the ambient seawater, as demonstrated by the overlap between the predicted and actual O-(delta-18)sub w values. These modern samples provide analogs for interpreting the geochemical records in their fossils, which were based solely on molluscan fossils, complement the above geochemical data by suggesting that the rate of beach emergence fluctuated around Antarctica during the mid-Holocene. Paleoenvironmental analysis of macrofossils from emerged beaches represents a new direction in Antarctic research that can be used to assess changes in the margins of the ice sheets since the Last Glacial Maximum. The resolution of these analyses will be enhanced by collaborations that are developing with scientists who are conducting comparable studies in other coastal regions around the continent.

  16. Winter and spring controls on the summer food web of the coastal West Antarctic Peninsula.

    PubMed

    Saba, Grace K; Fraser, William R; Saba, Vincent S; Iannuzzi, Richard A; Coleman, Kaycee E; Doney, Scott C; Ducklow, Hugh W; Martinson, Douglas G; Miles, Travis N; Patterson-Fraser, Donna L; Stammerjohn, Sharon E; Steinberg, Deborah K; Schofield, Oscar M

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the mechanisms by which climate variability affects multiple trophic levels in food webs is essential for determining ecosystem responses to climate change. Here we use over two decades of data collected by the Palmer Long Term Ecological Research program (PAL-LTER) to determine how large-scale climate and local physical forcing affect phytoplankton, zooplankton and an apex predator along the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP). We show that positive anomalies in chlorophyll-a (chl-a) at Palmer Station, occurring every 4-6 years, are constrained by physical processes in the preceding winter/spring and a negative phase of the Southern Annular Mode (SAM). Favorable conditions for phytoplankton included increased winter ice extent and duration, reduced spring/summer winds, and increased water column stability via enhanced salinity-driven density gradients. Years of positive chl-a anomalies are associated with the initiation of a robust krill cohort the following summer, which is evident in Adélie penguin diets, thus demonstrating tight trophic coupling. Projected climate change in this region may have a significant, negative impact on phytoplankton biomass, krill recruitment and upper trophic level predators in this coastal Antarctic ecosystem. PMID:25000452

  17. Union Glacier: a new exploration gateway for the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rivera, A.; Zamora, R.; Uribe, J. A.; Jaña, R.; Oberreuter, J.

    2014-02-01

    Union Glacier (79°46' S/83°24' W) in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS), has been used by the private company Antarctic Logistic and Expeditions (ALE) since 2007 for their landing and commercial operations, providing a unique logistic opportunity to perform glaciological research in a vast region, including the Ice divide between Institute and Pine Island glaciers and the Subglacial Lake Ellsworth. Union glacier is flowing into the Ronne Ice Shelf, where future migrations of the grounding line zone (GLZ) in response to continuing climate and oceanographic changes have been modelled. In order to analyse the potential impacts on Union glacier of this scenario, we installed an array of stakes, where ice elevation, mass balance and ice velocities have been measured since 2007, resulting in near equilibrium conditions with horizontal displacements between 10 and 33 m yr-1. GPS receivers and three radar systems have been also used to map the subglacial topography, the internal structure of the ice and the presence of crevasses along surveyed tracks. The resulting radar data showed a subglacial topography with a minimum of 858 m below sea level, much deeper than estimated before. The below sea level subglacial topography confirms the potential instability of the glacier in foreseen scenarios of GLZ upstream migration during the second half of the XXI century.

  18. Activity and bacterial diversity of snow around Russian Antarctic stations.

    PubMed

    Lopatina, Anna; Krylenkov, Vjacheslav; Severinov, Konstantin

    2013-11-01

    The diversity and temporal dynamics of bacterial communities in pristine snow around two Russian Antarctic stations was investigated. Taxonomic analysis of rDNA libraries revealed that snow communities were dominated by bacteria from a small number of operational taxonomic units (OTUs) that underwent dramatic swings in abundance between the 54th (2008-2009) and 55th (2009-2010) Russian Antarctic expeditions. Moreover, analysis of the 55th expedition samples indicated that there was very little, if any, correspondence in abundance of clones belonging to the same OTU present in rDNA and rRNA libraries. The latter result suggests that most rDNA clones originate from bacteria that are not alive and/or active and may have been deposited on the snow surface from the atmosphere. In contrast, clones most abundant in rRNA libraries (mostly belonging to Variovorax, Janthinobacterium, Pseudomonas, and Sphingomonas genera) may be considered as endogenous Antarctic snow inhabitants. PMID:24012540

  19. West Antarctic Ice Sheet Initiative. Volume 1: Science and Implementation Plan

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bindschadler, Robert A. (Editor)

    1990-01-01

    The Science and Implementation Plan of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Initiative (WAIS) is described. The goal of this initiative is the prediction of the future behavior of this ice sheet and an assessment of its potential to collapse, rapidly raising global sea level. The multidisciplinary nature of WAIS reflects the complexity of the polar ice sheet environment. The project builds upon past and current polar studies in many fields and meshes with future programs of both the U.S. and other countries. Important tasks in each discipline are described and a coordinated schedule by which the majority of these tasks can be accomplished in 5 years is presented. The companion report (Volume 2) contains seven discipline review papers on the state of knowledge of Antarctica and opinions on how that knowledge must be increased to attain the WAIS goal.

  20. Aspects of the evolution of the West Antarctic margin of Gondwanaland

    SciTech Connect

    Grunow, A.M.

    1989-01-01

    A combination of paleomagnetism, structural field mapping, microprobe analysis, microfabric analysis and {sup 40}Ar/{sup 39}Ar geochronology was used to elucidate the history of the West Antarctic crustal block and the evolution of subduction complexes along the Scotia Ridge. West Antarctica is composed of four crustal blocks whose relationship to East Antarctica and to each other throughout the Phanerozoic is not well known. These blocks are: the Ellsworth-Whitmore Mountains (EWM); the Antarctic Peninsula (AP); Thurston Island (TI); Marie Byrd Land (MBL). Paleomagnetic sampling and analysis were conducted on rocks from the EWM and TI blocks in the hope of constraining the motion of these blocks and the opening history of the Weddell Sea. The paleomagnetic results suggest that the AP, EWM, and TI blocks have moved relative to East Antarctica prior to the mid-Cretaceous and that the main opening of the Weddell Sea was between the Early and mid-Cretaceous. Detailed field mapping was conducted on the subduction complexes of the Scotia Metamorphic Complex (SMC) on Smith Island and Elephant Island (Antarctica). Polyphase ductile deformation characterizes the Smith Island and Elephant Island tectonites. Microprobe analyses indicate that the blue amphiboles from both areas are primary crossite. Pressure-temperature estimates for Smith Island blueschist metamorphism are {approximately}350 C at 6-7 kbars. The {sup 40}Ar/{sup 39}Ar geochronology indicates a complex thermal evolution for the SMC. The north to south increase in intensity of deformation and metamorphism on Elephant Island corresponds to decrease in {sup 40}Ar/{sup 39}Ar age. Uplift of the Smith Island blueschists occurred since 47 Ma while most of the uplift on Elephant Island occurred since {approximately}102 Ma.

  1. Inland thinning of West Antarctic Ice Sheet steered along subglacial rifts.

    PubMed

    Bingham, Robert G; Ferraccioli, Fausto; King, Edward C; Larter, Robert D; Pritchard, Hamish D; Smith, Andrew M; Vaughan, David G

    2012-07-26

    Current ice loss from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) accounts for about ten per cent of observed global sea-level rise. Losses are dominated by dynamic thinning, in which forcings by oceanic or atmospheric perturbations to the ice margin lead to an accelerated thinning of ice along the coastline. Although central to improving projections of future ice-sheet contributions to global sea-level rise, the incorporation of dynamic thinning into models has been restricted by lack of knowledge of basal topography and subglacial geology so that the rate and ultimate extent of potential WAIS retreat remains difficult to quantify. Here we report the discovery of a subglacial basin under Ferrigno Ice Stream up to 1.5 kilometres deep that connects the ice-sheet interior to the Bellingshausen Sea margin, and whose existence profoundly affects ice loss. We use a suite of ice-penetrating radar, magnetic and gravity measurements to propose a rift origin for the basin in association with the wider development of the West Antarctic rift system. The Ferrigno rift, overdeepened by glacial erosion, is a conduit which fed a major palaeo-ice stream on the adjacent continental shelf during glacial maxima. The palaeo-ice stream, in turn, eroded the 'Belgica' trough, which today routes warm open-ocean water back to the ice front to reinforce dynamic thinning. We show that dynamic thinning from both the Bellingshausen and Amundsen Sea region is being steered back to the ice-sheet interior along rift basins. We conclude that rift basins that cut across the WAIS margin can rapidly transmit coastally perturbed change inland, thereby promoting ice-sheet instability. PMID:22837002

  2. Geodetically-Constrained Glacial Isostatic Adjustment models of Antarctica: Implications for the Mass Balance of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Willis, M. J.; Wilson, T. J.; James, T. S.; Mazzotti, S.; Bevis, M. G.; Kendrick, E. C.; Brown, A. K.

    2010-12-01

    The IJ05 Antarctic ice sheet history is employed to drive a suite of approximately one thousand two-layered, laterally-homogeneous spherical Earth models and generate predictions of Antarctic crustal uplift due to glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA). GPS data collected between 1996 and 2010 on the flanks of the West Antarctic Rift System are used to produce bedrock uplift rates that are compared with the model predictions. The models that display the best fit to the data have softer, weaker upper-mantle viscosities than those published in many previous studies. A low viscosity upper-mantle is in agreement with seismic tomography that indicates that the upper mantle beneath much of West Antarctica has slower than average seismic shear-wave velocities. Best fit models further feature thin elastic lithospheres, a situation that is also corroborated by recent airborne gravity and seismic investigations. The best fit GIA models are used to generate crustal uplift rates and gravity changes that are larger than previously published models used to correct GRACE observations and infer Antarctic ice mass balance.The new models, which are the first GPS-constrained GIA corrections for GRACE in Antarctica, increases the ice-mass loss estimate for West Antarctica.

  3. Modelling West Antarctic ice sheet growth and collapse through the past five million years.

    PubMed

    Pollard, David; DeConto, Robert M

    2009-03-19

    The West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS), with ice volume equivalent to approximately 5 m of sea level, has long been considered capable of past and future catastrophic collapse. Today, the ice sheet is fringed by vulnerable floating ice shelves that buttress the fast flow of inland ice streams. Grounding lines are several hundred metres below sea level and the bed deepens upstream, raising the prospect of runaway retreat. Projections of future WAIS behaviour have been hampered by limited understanding of past variations and their underlying forcing mechanisms. Its variation since the Last Glacial Maximum is best known, with grounding lines advancing to the continental-shelf edges around approximately 15 kyr ago before retreating to near-modern locations by approximately 3 kyr ago. Prior collapses during the warmth of the early Pliocene epoch and some Pleistocene interglacials have been suggested indirectly from records of sea level and deep-sea-core isotopes, and by the discovery of open-ocean diatoms in subglacial sediments. Until now, however, little direct evidence of such behaviour has been available. Here we use a combined ice sheet/ice shelf model capable of high-resolution nesting with a new treatment of grounding-line dynamics and ice-shelf buttressing to simulate Antarctic ice sheet variations over the past five million years. Modelled WAIS variations range from full glacial extents with grounding lines near the continental shelf break, intermediate states similar to modern, and brief but dramatic retreats, leaving only small, isolated ice caps on West Antarctic islands. Transitions between glacial, intermediate and collapsed states are relatively rapid, taking one to several thousand years. Our simulation is in good agreement with a new sediment record (ANDRILL AND-1B) recovered from the western Ross Sea, indicating a long-term trend from more frequently collapsed to more glaciated states, dominant 40-kyr cyclicity in the Pliocene, and major retreats at

  4. Ecological and Pharmacological Activities of Antarctic Marine Natural Products.

    PubMed

    Avila, Conxita

    2016-06-01

    Antarctic benthic communities are regulated by abundant interactions of different types among organisms, such as predation, competition, etc. Predators are usually sea stars, with omnivorous habits, as well as other invertebrates. Against this strong predation pressure, many organisms have developed all sorts of defensive strategies, including chemical defenses. Natural products are thus quite common in Antarctic organisms with an important ecological and pharmacological potential. In this paper, the chemical defenses of the Antarctic organisms studied during the ECOQUIM and ACTIQUIM projects, as well as their pharmacological potential, are reviewed. For the ecological defenses, predation against the sea star Odontaster validus is analyzed and evaluated along depth gradients as well as considering the lifestyle of the organisms. For the pharmacological activity, the anticancer, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial activities tested are evaluated here. Very often, only crude extracts or fractions have been tested so far, and therefore, the natural products responsible for such activities remain yet to be identified. Even if the sampling efforts are not uniform along depth, most ecologically active organisms are found between 200 and 500 m depth. Also, from the samples studied, about four times more sessile organisms possess chemical defenses against the sea star than the vagile ones; these represent 50 % of sessile organisms and 35 % of the vagile ones, out of the total tested, being active. Pharmacological activity has not been tested uniformly in all groups, but the results show that relevant activity is found in different phyla, especially in Porifera, Cnidaria, Bryozoa, and Tunicata, but also in others. No relationship between depth and pharmacological activity can be established with the samples tested so far. More studies are needed in order to better understand the ecological relationships among Antarctic invertebrates mediated by natural products and

  5. Sea level pressure variability in the Amundsen Sea region inferred from a West Antarctic glaciochemical record

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kreutz, K. J.; Mayewski, P. A.; Pittalwala, I. I.; Meeker, L. D.; Twickler, M. S.; Whitlow, S. I.

    2000-02-01

    Using European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) numerical operational analyses, sea ice extent records, and station pressure data, we investigate the influence of sea level pressure variability in the Amundsen Sea region on a West Antarctic (Siple Dome) glaciochemical record. Empirical orthogonal function analysis of the high-resolution Siple Dome multivariate ice core chemical time series record (SDEOF1) documents lower tropospheric transport of sea-salt aerosols to the site. During 1985-1994 the SDEOF1 record of high (low) aerosol transport corresponds to anomalously low (high) sea level pressure (SLP) in the Amundsen Sea region. Spatial correlation patterns between ECMWF monthly SLP fields and the annual SDEOF1 record suggest that a majority of sea-salt aerosol is transported to Siple Dome during spring (September, October, and November). Analysis of zonal and meridional wind fields supports the SLP/SDEOF1 correlation and suggests the SDEOF1 record is sensitive to changes in regional circulation strength. No relationship is found between sea ice extent and the SDEOF1 record for the period 1973-1994. To investigate the SDEOF1 record prior to ECMWF coverage, a spring transpolar index (STPI) is created, using normalized SLP records from the New Zealand and South America/Antarctic Peninsula sectors, and is significantly correlated (at least 95% c.l.) with the SDEOF1 record on an annual (r = 0.32, p < 0.001) and interannual (3 years; r = 0.51, p < 0.001) basis. Dominant periodicities (3.3 and 7.1 years) in the annual SDEOF1 record (1890-1994 A.D.) suggest that a portion of the recorded interannual variability may be related tropical/extratropical ENSO teleconnections. Changes in the periodic structure of the full (850-1994 A.D.) Siple Dome record suggests a shift in SLP forcing during the Little Ice Age (˜1400-1900 A.D.) interval.

  6. A 19-year radar altimeter elevation change time-series of the East and West Antarctic ice sheets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sundal, A. V.; Shepherd, A.; Wingham, D.; Muir, A.; Mcmillan, M.; Galin, N.

    2012-12-01

    We present 19 years of continuous radar altimeter observations of the East and West Antarctic ice sheets acquired by the ERS-1, ERS-2, and ENVISAT satellites between May 1992 and September 2010. Time-series of surface elevation change were developed at 39,375 crossing points of the satellite orbit ground tracks using the method of dual cycle crossovers (Zwally et al., 1989; Wingham et al., 1998). In total, 46.5 million individual measurements were included in the analysis, encompassing 74 and 76 % of the East and West Antarctic ice sheet, respectively. The satellites were cross-calibrated by calculating differences between elevation changes occurring during periods of mission overlap. We use the merged time-series to explore spatial and temporal patterns of elevation change and to characterise and quantify the signals of Antarctic ice sheet imbalance. References: Wingham, D., Ridout, A., Scharroo, R., Arthern, R. & Shum, C.K. (1998): Antarctic elevation change from 1992 to 1996. Science, 282, 456-458. Zwally, H. J., Brenner, A. C., Major, J. A., Bindschadler, R. A. & Marsh, J. G. (1989): Growth of Greenland ice-sheet - measurements. Science, 246, 1587-1589.

  7. Understanding the thermal and tectonic evolution of Marie Byrd Land from a reanalysis of airborne geophysical data in the West Antarctic Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quartini, E.; Powell, E. M.; Richter, T.; Damiani, T.; Burris, S. G.; Young, D. A.; Blankenship, D. D.

    2013-12-01

    The West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) is a region characterized by a significant topographic range, a complex tectonic history, and active subglacial volcanism. Those elements exert a large influence on the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, which flows within the cradle-shaped rift system and is currently grounded well below sea level. This potentially unstable configuration is the motivation for gaining a better understanding of the ice sheet boundary conditions dictated by rift evolution and how they impact the ice flow. In this study we focus on characterizing the distribution of and transition between sedimentary basins and inferred geothermal heat flux from the flanks to the floor of the rift system. We do so through analysis of gravity data both for sources within the deep lithosphere and near surface targets in the crust. A compilation of gravity datasets over West and Central Antarctica and the analysis thereof is presented. In particular we use gravity data collected during several airborne geophysical surveys: CASERTZ (1994-1997), SOAR/WMB (1997-1998), AGASEA (2004-2005), ICEBRIDGE (2008-2011), and GIMBLE (2012-2013). New processing and data reduction methodologies are applied to the older gravity surveys to improve the high frequency signal content and to make these surveys compatible with modern works (i.e. AGASEA, ICEBRIDGE, GIMBLE). The high frequency signal provides better resolution of small-scale features within survey blocks but long-wavelength integrity is retained by registering the airborne free-air disturbance within those blocks to the gravity disturbance derived from the GOCE global satellite gravity field. This allows for consistent long wavelength interpretation across the merged surveys and provides improved gravity analysis of the deep lithosphere while retaining the capacity to study smaller scale features. A crustal model for the area is produced using the Bouguer anomaly and spectral analyses of the Bouguer anomaly and free

  8. Viral distribution and activity in Antarctic waters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guixa-Boixereu, Núria; Vaqué, Dolors; Gasol, Josep M.; Sánchez-Cámara, Jaime; Pedrós-Alió, Carlos

    Variability in abundance of virus-like particles (VLP), VLP decay rates and prokaryotic mortality due to viral infection were determined in three Antarctic areas: Bellingshausen Sea, Bransfield Strait and Gerlache Strait, during December 1995 and February 1996. VLP abundance showed very small spatial variability in the three areas (7×10 6-2×10 7 VLP ml -1). VLP abundance, on the other hand, decreased one order of magnitude from the surface to the bottom, in two stations where deep vertical profiles were sampled. Low seasonal variability in VLP abundance was found when comparing each area separately. Diel VLP variability was also very low. VLP abundance showed the lowest values when solar irradiation was maximal, in two of the three stations where diel cycles were examined. Viral decay rates (VDR) were determined using KCN in two kinds of experiments. Type 1 experiments were performed in 6 stations to determine viral decay. Type 2 experiments were carried out in 2 stations to examine the influence of temperature and organic matter concentration on viral decay. VDR was not influenced by these parameters. Prokaryotic mortality due to viral infection was always higher than that due to bacterivores in the stations where both factors of prokaryotic mortality were measured. Viral infection accounted for all the prokaryotic heterotrophic production in Bellingshausen Sea and Gerlache Strait and for half of the prokaryotic heterotrophic production in Bransfield Strait. These high values of prokaryotic mortality due to viral infection are difficult to reconcile in nature, and more work is necessary to determine the mechanisms involved in the disappearance of viruses.

  9. Aeromagnetic evidence for a volcanic caldera(?) complex beneath the divide of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Behrendt, John C.; Finn, C.A.; Blankenship, D.; Bell, R.E.

    1998-01-01

    A 1995-96 aeromagnetic survey over part of the Sinuous Ridge (SR) beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) divide shows a 70-km diameter circular pattern of 400-1200-nT anomalies suggesting one of the largest volcanic caldera(?) complexes on earth. Radar-ice-sounding (RIS) shows the northern part of this pattern overlies the SR, and extends south over the Bentley Subglacial Trench (BST). Modeled sources of all but one the caldera(?) anomalies are at the base of <1-2-km thick ice and their volcanic edifices have been glacially removed. The exception is a 700-m high, 15-km wide 'volcano' producing an 800-nT anomaly over the BST. 'Intrusion' of this 'volcano' beneath 3 km of ice probably resulted in pillow basalt rather than easily removed hyaloclastite erupted beneath thinner ice. The background area (-300 to -500-nT) surrounding the caldera(?) is possibly caused by a shallow Curie isotherm. We suggest uplift of the SR forced the advance of the WAIS.A 1995-96 aeromagnetic survey over part of the Sinuous Ridge (SR) beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) divide shows a 70-km diameter circular pattern of 400-1200-nT anomalies suggesting one of the largest volcanic caldera(?) complexes on earth. Radar-ice-sounding (RIS) shows the northern part of this pattern overlies the SR, and extends south over the Bentley Subglacial Trench (BST). Modeled sources of all but one the caldera(?) anomalies are at the base of < 1-2-km thick ice and their volcanic edifices have been glacially removed. The exception is a 700-m high, 15-km wide 'volcano' producing an 800-nT anomaly over the BST. 'Intrusion' of this 'volcano' beneath 3 km of ice probably resulted in pillow basalt rather than easily removed hyaloclastite erupted beneath thinner ice. The background area (-300 to -500-nT) surrounding the caldera(?) is possibly caused by a shallow Curie isotherm. We suggest uplift of the SR forced the advance of the WAIS.

  10. Multichannel Seismic Investigations of Sediment Drifts off West Antarctica and the Antarctic Peninsula: Preliminary Results from Research Cruise JR298

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larter, R. D.; Graham, A. G. C.; Hernandez-Molina, J.; Channell, J. E. T.; Hillenbrand, C. D.; Hogan, K. A.; Uenzelmann-Neben, G.; Gohl, K.; Rebesco, M.; Hodell, D. A.

    2015-12-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) and Antarctic Peninsula Ice Sheet (APIS) have exhibited significant changes over recent decades but there is still great uncertainty about how rapidly and how far they will retreat in a warmer climate. For example, it remains unclear whether or not the marine-based WAIS "collapsed" during the last interglacial period, resulting in a global sea-level rise contribution of more than 3 m. Previous studies, including Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Leg 178, have shown that sediment drifts on the continental rise west of the Antarctic Peninsula contain a rich high-resolution archive of Antarctic margin paleoceanography and APIS history that extends back to at least the Late Miocene. The potential of existing ODP cores from the drifts is, however, compromised by the fact that composite sections are incomplete and lack of precise chronological control. A new drilling proposal (732-Full2) has been scientifically approved and is with the JOIDES Resolution Facilities Board of the International Ocean Discovery Program for scheduling. The main aims of the proposal are to obtain continuous, high-resolution records from sites on sediment drifts off both the Antarctic Peninsula and West Antarctica (southern Bellingshausen Sea) and to achieve good chronological control on them using a range of techniques. We present preliminary results from a recent site survey investigation cruise on RRS James Clark Ross (JR298) that obtained high-resolution multichannel seismic reflection data over the proposed sites and adjacent working areas. The new data provide a basis for interpretation of (i) sedimentary processes that operated during the development of the drifts, and (ii) links between depositional systems on the continental rise, paleo-ice-sheet dynamics and paleoceanographic processes. Through further analyses of seismic and other geophysical data, in combination with marine sediment cores retrieved from the proposed sites, we aim to provide insight into

  11. Anomalous South Pacific lithosphere dynamics derived from new total sediment thickness estimates off the West Antarctic margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wobbe, Florian; Lindeque, Ansa; Gohl, Karsten

    2014-12-01

    Paleotopographic models of the West Antarctic margin, which are essential for robust simulations of paleoclimate scenarios, lack information on sediment thickness and geodynamic conditions, resulting in large uncertainties. A new total sediment thickness grid spanning the Ross Sea-Amundsen Sea-Bellingshausen Sea basins is presented and is based on all the available seismic reflection, borehole, and gravity modeling data offshore West Antarctica. This grid was combined with NGDC's global 5 arc minute grid of ocean sediment thickness (Whittaker et al., 2013) and extends the NGDC grid further to the south. Sediment thickness along the West Antarctic margin tends to be 3-4 km larger than previously assumed. The sediment volume in the Bellingshausen, Amundsen, and Ross Sea basins amounts to 3.61, 3.58, and 2.78 million km3, respectively. The residual basement topography of the South Pacific has been revised and the new data show an asymmetric trend over the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge. Values are anomalously high south of the spreading ridge and in the Ross Sea area, where the topography seems to be affected by persistent mantle processes. In contrast, the basement topography offshore Marie Byrd Land cannot be attributed to dynamic topography, but rather to crustal thickening due to intraplate volcanism. Present-day dynamic topography models disagree with the presented revised basement topography of the South Pacific, rendering paleotopographic reconstructions with such a limited dataset still fairly uncertain.

  12. Mid-Holocene pulse of thinning in the Weddell Sea sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hein, Andrew; Marrero, Shasta; Woodward, John; Dunning, Stuart; Winter, Kate; Westoby, Matthew; Freeman, Stewart; Sugden, David

    2016-04-01

    The trajectory of thinning of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet during the Holocene is important for questions concerning ice-sheet (in)stability and changes in global sea level. Here we present detailed geomorphological and cosmogenic nuclide data from the southern Ellsworth Mountains that suggest a mid-Holocene phase of marine instability in this little known sector of Antarctica. The ice sheet, in the heart of the Weddell Sea embayment, was nourished by increased snowfall until the early Holocene and remained near its Last Glacial Maximum thickness from 49-10 ka. A pulse of rapid thinning at 6.5-3.5 ka, triggered by grounding-line retreat, caused the ice elevation to fall by ~400 m at rates of 29 cm per year or higher and may have contributed 1.4-2 m to global sea level. Ice elevation today is the same as at 3.5 ka and the ice has either stabilised or thickened in recent millennia. These results constrain ice-sheet models in the Weddell Sea sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Moreover, they imply that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet contributed little to late-glacial sea-level rise but was involved in mid-Holocene rises.

  13. A large population of king crabs in Palmer Deep on the west Antarctic Peninsula shelf and potential invasive impacts

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Craig R.; Grange, Laura J.; Honig, David L.; Naudts, Lieven; Huber, Bruce; Guidi, Lionel; Domack, Eugene

    2012-01-01

    Lithodid crabs (and other skeleton-crushing predators) may have been excluded from cold Antarctic continental shelf waters for more than 14 Myr. The west Antarctic Peninsula shelf is warming rapidly and has been hypothesized to be soon invaded by lithodids. A remotely operated vehicle survey in Palmer Deep, a basin 120 km onto the Antarctic shelf, revealed a large, reproductive population of lithodids, providing the first evidence that king crabs have crossed the Antarctic shelf. DNA sequencing and morphology indicate the lithodid is Neolithodes yaldwyni Ahyong & Dawson, previously reported only from Ross Sea waters. We estimate a N. yaldwyni population density of 10 600 km−2 and a population size of 1.55 × 106 in Palmer Deep, a density similar to lithodid populations of commercial interest around Alaska and South Georgia. The lithodid occurred at depths of more than 850 m and temperatures of more than 1.4°C in Palmer Deep, and was not found in extensive surveys of the colder shelf at depths of 430–725 m. Where N. yaldwyni occurred, crab traces were abundant, megafaunal diversity reduced and echinoderms absent, suggesting that the crabs have major ecological impacts. Antarctic Peninsula shelf waters are warming at approximately 0.01°C yr−1; if N. yaldwyni is currently limited by cold temperatures, it could spread up onto the shelf (400–600 m depths) within 1–2 decades. The Palmer Deep N. yaldwyni population provides an important model for the potential invasive impacts of crushing predators on vulnerable Antarctic shelf ecosystems. PMID:21900324

  14. Recent Ice Loss from the Fleming and Other Glaciers, Wordie Bay, West Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rignot, E.; Casassa, G.; Gogineni, S.; Kanagaratnam, P.; Krabill, W.; Pritchard, H.; Rivera, A.; Thomas, R.; Turner, J.; Vaughan, D.

    2005-01-01

    Satellite radar interferometry data from 1995 to 2004, and airborne ice thickness data from 2002, reveal that the glaciers flowing into former Wordie Ice Shelf, West Antarctic Peninsula, discharge 6.8 +/- 0.3 km(exp 3)/yr of ice, which is 84 +/- 30 percent larger than a snow accumulation of 3.7 +/- 0.8 km(exp 3)/yr over a 6,300 km(exp 2) drainage basin. Airborne and ICESat laser altimetry elevation data reveal glacier thinning at rates up to 2 m/yr. Fifty km from its ice front, Fleming Glacier flows 50 percent faster than it did in 1974 prior to the main collapse of Wordie Ice Shelf. We conclude that the glaciers accelerated following ice shelf removal, and have been thinning and losing mass to the ocean over the last decade. This and other observations suggest that the mass loss from the northern part of the Peninsula is not negligible at present.

  15. High geothermal heat flux measured below the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.

    PubMed

    Fisher, Andrew T; Mankoff, Kenneth D; Tulaczyk, Slawek M; Tyler, Scott W; Foley, Neil

    2015-07-01

    The geothermal heat flux is a critical thermal boundary condition that influences the melting, flow, and mass balance of ice sheets, but measurements of this parameter are difficult to make in ice-covered regions. We report the first direct measurement of geothermal heat flux into the base of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS), below Subglacial Lake Whillans, determined from the thermal gradient and the thermal conductivity of sediment under the lake. The heat flux at this site is 285 ± 80 mW/m(2), significantly higher than the continental and regional averages estimated for this site using regional geophysical and glaciological models. Independent temperature measurements in the ice indicate an upward heat flux through the WAIS of 105 ± 13 mW/m(2). The difference between these heat flux values could contribute to basal melting and/or be advected from Subglacial Lake Whillans by flowing water. The high geothermal heat flux may help to explain why ice streams and subglacial lakes are so abundant and dynamic in this region. PMID:26601210

  16. Siple Dome Ice Cores: Implications for West Antarctic Climate and ENSO Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, T.; White, J. W.

    2010-12-01

    Ice cores at Siple Dome, West Antarctic receive the majority of their precipitation from Pacific Ocean moisture sources. Pacific climate patterns, particularly the El Niño-Southern Oscillation, affect the local temperature, atmospheric circulation, and snow accumulation at Siple Dome, as well as isotopic signals (∂D and ∂18O). We examined isotopes, accumulation and borehole temperatures from a number of shallow ice cores distributed 60km across the Dome. The data reveal a strong microclimate heavily influenced by South Pacific climate and the location of the Amundsen Sea Low Pressure Area. The Dome Summit and Pacific Flank respond to La Niña conditions by warming, increasing isotope ratios and increased snowfall. The Inland Flank responds to El Niño conditions and cold interior air masses by cooling, decreasing isotope ratios and decreased snowfall. Spectral analysis of the ∂D record shows a distinct shift in ocean-atmosphere climate dynamics in the late 19th century, where scattered bi-decadal to decadal periodicities change to include more intensely grouped and decreasing periodicities as low as two years at the end of the 20th century. Similar changes are seen in South Pacific coral isotope records. Map of Siple Dome including local grid locations for the seven shallow cores B-H. Note the Pacific Ocean and Inland (South Pole) oriented cores. [Modified after Bertler et al., 2006].

  17. Upper ocean variability in west Antarctic Peninsula continental shelf waters as measured using instrumented seals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costa, Daniel P.; Klinck, John M.; Hofmann, Eileen E.; Dinniman, Michael S.; Burns, Jennifer M.

    2008-02-01

    Temperature profile data for the west Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) continental shelf waters, collected from freely ranging instrumented seals (crabeater, Lobodon carcinophagus and leopard, Hydrurga leptonyx), were used to demonstrate that these platforms can be used to supplement traditional oceanographic sampling methods to investigate the physical properties of the upper water column. The seal-derived profiles were combined with temperature profiles obtained from ship-based CTD measurements and from a numerical circulation model developed for the WAP to describe changes in temperature structure, heat content, and heat flux in the upper ocean waters of the WAP continental shelf. The seal-derived data documented the fall-to-winter transition of the surface waters and the shelf-wide presence of modified Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW) below 150-200 m on the WAP continental shelf. The heat content of the upper 200 m calculated from the seal-derived temperature profiles ranged between 1000 and 1500 MJ m -2; similar estimates were obtained from simulated temperature distributions. The seal-derived temperature measurements provided broader space and time resolution than was possible using any other currently available oceanographic sampling method. As such, the seal-derived measurements provided a valuable dataset for evaluation of temperature fields obtained from a numerical circulation model.

  18. High geothermal heat flux measured below the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    PubMed Central

    Fisher, Andrew T.; Mankoff, Kenneth D.; Tulaczyk, Slawek M.; Tyler, Scott W.; Foley, Neil

    2015-01-01

    The geothermal heat flux is a critical thermal boundary condition that influences the melting, flow, and mass balance of ice sheets, but measurements of this parameter are difficult to make in ice-covered regions. We report the first direct measurement of geothermal heat flux into the base of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS), below Subglacial Lake Whillans, determined from the thermal gradient and the thermal conductivity of sediment under the lake. The heat flux at this site is 285 ± 80 mW/m2, significantly higher than the continental and regional averages estimated for this site using regional geophysical and glaciological models. Independent temperature measurements in the ice indicate an upward heat flux through the WAIS of 105 ± 13 mW/m2. The difference between these heat flux values could contribute to basal melting and/or be advected from Subglacial Lake Whillans by flowing water. The high geothermal heat flux may help to explain why ice streams and subglacial lakes are so abundant and dynamic in this region. PMID:26601210

  19. The environment and evolution of the West Antarctic ice sheet: setting the stage.

    PubMed

    Bindschadler, Robert

    2006-07-15

    The West Antarctic ice sheet is the last ice sheet of the type cradled in a warm, marine geologic basin. Its perimeter stretches into the surrounding seas allowing warmer ocean waters to reach the undersides of its floating ice shelves and its relatively low surface elevation permits snow-carrying storms to extend well into its interior. This special environment has given rise to theories of impending collapse and for the past quarter-century has challenged researchers who seek a quantitative prediction of its future behaviour and the corresponding effect on sea level. Observations confirm changes on a variety of time scales from the quaternary to less than a minute. The dynamics of the ice sheet involve the complex interaction of ice that is warm at its base and cold along the margins of ice streams; subglacial till that is composed of a combination of marine sediment and eroded sedimentary rocks; and water that moves primarily between the ice and bed, but whose flow direction can differ from the direction of ice motion. The pressure of the water system is often sufficient to float the ice sheet locally and small changes in the amount of water in the till can cause it to rapidly switch from very weak to very stiff. PMID:16782601

  20. Recent ice dynamic and surface mass balance of Union Glacier in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rivera, A.; Zamora, R.; Uribe, J. A.; Jaña, R.; Oberreuter, J.

    2014-08-01

    Here we present the results of a comprehensive glaciological investigation of Union Glacier (79°46' S/83°24' W) in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS), a major outlet glacier within the Ellsworth Mountains. Union Glacier flows into the Ronne Ice Shelf, where recent models have indicated the potential for significant grounding line zone (GLZ) migrations in response to changing climate and ocean conditions. To elaborate a glaciological base line that can help to evaluate the potential impact of this GLZ change scenario, we installed an array of stakes on Union Glacier in 2007. The stake network has been surveyed repeatedly for elevation, velocity, and net surface mass balance. The region of the stake measurements is in near-equilibrium, and ice speeds are 10 to 33 m a-1. Ground-penetrating radars (GPR) have been used to map the subglacial topography, internal structure, and crevasse frequency and depth along surveyed tracks in the stake site area. The bedrock in this area has a minimum elevation of -858 m a.s.l., significantly deeper than shown by BEDMAP2 data. However, between this deeper area and the local GLZ, there is a threshold where the subglacial topography shows a maximum altitude of 190 m. This subglacial condition implies that an upstream migration of the GLZ will not have strong effects on Union Glacier until it passes beyond this shallow ice pinning point.

  1. Bedform signature of a West Antarctic palaeo-ice stream reveals a multi-temporal record of flow and substrate control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graham, Alastair G. C.; Larter, Robert D.; Gohl, Karsten; Hillenbrand, Claus-Dieter; Smith, James A.; Kuhn, Gerhard

    2009-12-01

    The presence of a complex bedform arrangement on the sea floor of the continental shelf in the western Amundsen Sea Embayment, West Antarctica, indicates a multi-temporal record of flow related to the activity of one or more ice streams in the past. Mapping and division of the bedforms into distinct landform assemblages reveals their time-transgressive history, which implies that bedforms can neither be considered part of a single downflow continuum nor a direct proxy for palaeo-ice velocity, as suggested previously. A main control on the bedform imprint is the geology of the shelf, which is divided broadly between rough bedrock on the inner shelf, and smooth, dipping sedimentary strata on the middle to outer shelf. Inner shelf bedform variability is well preserved, revealing information about local, complex basal ice conditions, meltwater flow, and ice dynamics over time. These details, which are not apparent at the scale of regional morphological studies, indicate that past ice streams flowed across the entire shelf at times, and often had onset zones that lay within the interior of the Antarctic Ice Sheet today. In contrast, highly elongated subglacial bedforms on sedimentary strata of the middle to outer shelf represent a timeslice snapshot of the last activity of ice stream flow, and may be a truer representation of fast palaeo-ice flow in these locations. A revised model for ice streams on the shelf captures complicated multi-temporal bedform patterns associated with an Antarctic palaeo-ice stream for the first time, and confirms a strong substrate control on a major ice stream system that drained the West Antarctic Ice Sheet during the Late Quaternary.

  2. Retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet from the western Amundsen Sea shelf at a pre- or early LGM stage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klages, J. P.; Kuhn, G.; Hillenbrand, C.-D.; Graham, A. G. C.; Smith, J. A.; Larter, R. D.; Gohl, K.; Wacker, L.

    2014-05-01

    Recent palaeoglaciological studies on the West Antarctic shelf have mainly focused on the wide embayments of the Ross and Amundsen seas in order to reconstruct the extent and subsequent retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). However, the narrower shelf sectors between these two major embayments have remained largely unstudied in previous geological investigations despite them covering extensive areas of the West Antarctic shelf. Here, we present the first systematic marine geological and geophysical survey of a shelf sector offshore from the Hobbs Coast. It is dominated by a large grounding zone wedge (GZW), which fills the base of a palaeo-ice stream trough on the inner shelf and marks a phase of stabilization of the grounding line during general WAIS retreat following the last maximum ice-sheet extent in this particular area (referred to as the Local Last Glacial Maximum, ‘LLGM’). Reliable age determination on calcareous microfossils from the infill of a subglacial meltwater channel eroded into the GZW reveals that grounded ice had retreated landward of the GZW before ˜20.88 cal. ka BP, with deglaciation of the innermost shelf occurring prior to ˜12.97 cal. ka BP. Geophysical sub-bottom information from the inner-, mid- and outer shelf indicates grounded ice extended to the shelf edge prior to the formation of the GZW. Assuming the wedge was deposited during deglaciation, we infer the timing of maximum grounded ice extent occurred before ˜20.88 cal. ka BP. This could suggest that the WAIS retreat from the outer shelf was already underway during or even prior to the global LGM (˜23-19 cal. ka BP). Our new findings give insights into the regional deglacial behaviour of this understudied part of the West Antarctic shelf and at the same time support early deglaciation ages recently presented for adjacent drainage sectors of the WAIS. If correct, these findings contrast with the hypothesis that initial deglaciation

  3. Geophysical glimpses into the Ferrigno Rift at the northwestern tip of the West Antarctic Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bingham, Robert; Ferraccioli, Fausto

    2014-05-01

    The West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) forms one of the largest continental rift systems on Earth. The WARS is of major significance as it forms the lithospheric cradle for the marine-based and potentially unstable West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). Seismic refraction, reflection, aeromagnetic, gravity and drilling in the Ross Sea have revealed most of what we know about its structure, tectonic and magmatic patterns and sedimentary basins. Aerogeophysical research and passive seismic networks have considerably extended our knowledge of the WARS and its influence on the overlying WAIS in the Siple Coast and Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) regions. The Bellingshausen Sea Embayment region has however remained largely unexplored, and hence the possible extent of the WARS in this sector has remained poorly constrained. Here we use a combination of reconnaissance ground-based and airborne radar observations, airborne gravity, satellite gravity and aeromagnetic data to investigate the WARS in the Bellingshausen Sea Embayment, in the area of the Ferrigno Ice Stream (Bingham et al., 2012, Nature). This region is of high significance, as it one of the main sectors of the WAIS that is currently exhibiting rapid ice loss, thought to be driven primarily by oceanic warming. Assessing geological controls on subice topography and ice dynamics is therefore of prime importance in this part of the WAIS. Ground-based and airborne radar image a subglacial basin beneath the Ferrigno Ice Stream that is up to 1.5 kilometres deep and that connects the ice-sheet interior to the Bellingshausen Sea margin. We interpret this basin as a narrow, glacially overdeepened rift basin that formed at the northwestern tip of the WARS. Satellite gravity data cannot resolve such a narrow rift basin but indicate that the crust beneath the region is likely thinned, lending support to the hypothesis that this area is indeed part of the WARS. Widely-spaced aeromagnetic data image a linear low along the inferred

  4. The Ellsworth Subglacial Highlands and the inception and retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ross, N.; Siegert, M. J.; Bingham, R. G.; Corr, H. F. J.; Ferraccioli, F.; Jordan, T. A.; Le Brocq, A.; Rippin, D.

    2012-04-01

    Laying on a bed in places >2km below sea level, the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) is thought to be prone to major rapid decay due to melting from the ocean, which induces grounding line retreat. A feedback may occur, in which migration of the grounding line to deeper regions leads to further ice loss. Highland regions of the subglacial bed will act both as seeding centres for ice sheet growth and points of stability ('pinning points') during ice sheet recession. While several highland regions exist beneath the WAIS, none have been confirmed as ice sheet seeding centres/pinning points. Studies of subglacial East Antarctica have demonstrated the utility of radio-echo sounding (RES) in the identification of glacial geomorphology from which past ice sheet conditions can be appreciated. Here, we characterise the detailed glacial morphology of the Ellsworth Subglacial Highlands (ESH), from ground-based and airborne RES surveys. We document well-preserved classic features associated with restricted, dynamic, marine-proximal alpine glaciation, with hanging tributary valleys feeding significant over-deepened troughs cut by valley (tidewater) glaciers. Fjord-mouth threshold bars down-ice of overdeepenings define the termini of palaeo outlet-glaciers. We show how MODIS satellite imagery of the ice surface reflects the gross subglacial morphology. The imagery reveals numerous glaciated valleys cutting through the ESH, terminating at the edge of the deep Bentley Subglacial Trench. The landscape obviously predates the present ice sheet, and is likely to have been formed by a small dynamic ice cap at times when the marine sections of the WAIS were absent. As well as acting as a key WAIS seeding point, the ESH would be critical for 'pinning' the ice sheet during any large-scale retreat event.

  5. Mass Balance of the West Antarctic Ice-Sheet from ICESat Measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zwally, H. Jay; Li, Jun; Robins, John; Saba, Jack L.; Yi, Donghui

    2011-01-01

    Mass balance estimates for 2003-2008 are derived from ICESat laser altimetry and compared with estimates for 1992-2002 derived from ERS radar altimetry. The net mass balance of 3 drainage systems (Pine Island, Thwaites/Smith, and the coast of Marie Bryd) for 2003-2008 is a loss of 100 Gt/yr, which increased from a loss of 70 Gt/yr for the earlier period. The DS including the Bindschadler and MacAyeal ice streams draining into the Ross Ice Shelf has a mass gain of 11 Gt/yr for 2003-2008, compared to an earlier loss of 70 Gt/yr. The DS including the Whillans and Kamb ice streams has a mass gain of 12 Gt/yr, including a significant thickening on the upper part of the Kamb DS, compared to a earlier gain of 6 Gt/yr (includes interpolation for a large portion of the DS). The other two DS discharging into the Ronne Ice Shelf and the northern Ellsworth Coast have a mass gain of 39 Gt/yr, compared to a gain of 4 Gt/yr for the earlier period. Overall, the increased losses of 30 Gt/yr in the Pine Island, Thwaites/Smith, and the coast of Marie Bryd DSs are exceeded by increased gains of 59 Gt/yr in the other 4 DS. Overall, the mass loss from the West Antarctic ice sheet has decreased to 38 Gt/yr from the earlier loss of 67 Gt/yr, reducing the contribution to sea level rise to 0.11 mm/yr from 0.19 mm/yr

  6. Oceanic an climatic consequences of a sudden large-scale West Antarctic Ice Sheet collapse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scarff, Katie; Green, Mattias; Schmittner, Andreas

    2015-04-01

    Atmospheric warming is progressing to the point where the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) will experience an elevated rate of discharge. The current discharge rate of WAIS is around 0.005Sv, but this rate will most likely accelerate over this century. The input of freshwater, in the form of ice, may have a profound effect on oceanic circulation systems, including potentially reducing the formation of deep water in the Southern Ocean and thus triggering or enhancing the bipolar seesaw. Using UVic - an intermediate complexity ocean-climate model - we investigate how various hosing rates from the WAIS will impact of the present and future ocean circulation and climate. These scenarios range from observed hosing rates (~0.005Sv) being applied for 100 years, to a total collapse of the WAIS over the next 100 years (the equivalent to a0.7Sv hosing). We show that even the present day observed rates can have a significant impact on the ocean and atmospheric temperatures, and that the bipolar seesaw may indeed be enhanced by the Southern Ocean hosing. Consequently, there is a speed-up of the Meridional Overturning Circulation (MOC) early on during the hosing, which leads to a warming over the North Atlantic, and a subsequent reduction in the MOC on centennial scales. The larger hosing cases show more dramatic effects with near-complete shutdowns of the MOC during the hosing. Furthermore, global warming scenarios based on the IPCC "business as usual" scenario show that the atmospheric warming will change the response of the ocean to Southern Ocean hosing and that the warming will dominate the perturbation. The potential feedback between changes in the ocean stratification in the scenarios and tidally driven abyssal mixing via tidal conversion is also explored.

  7. Evidence of rapid Cenozoic uplift of the shoulder escarpment of the Cenozoic West Antarctic rift system and a speculation on possible climate forcing

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Behrendt, John C.; Cooper, A.

    1991-01-01

    The Cenozoic West Antarctic rift system, characterized by Cenozoic bimodal alkalic volcanic rocks, extends over a largely ice-covered area, from the Ross Sea nearly to the Bellingshausen Sea. Various lines of evidence lead to the following interpretation: the transantarctic Mountains part of the rift shoulder (and probably the entire shoulder) has been rising since about 60 Ma, at episodic rates of ~1 km/m.y., most recently since mid-Pliocene Time, rather than continuously at the mean rate of 100 m/m.y. Uplift rates vary along the scarp, which is cut by transverse faults. It is speculated that this uplift may have climatically forced the advance of the Antarctic ice sheet since the most recent warm period. A possible synergistic relation is suggested between episodic tectonism, mountain uplift, and volcanism in the Cenozoic West Antarctic rift system and waxing and waning of the Antarctic ice sheet beginning about earliest Oligocene time. -from Authors

  8. Phreatomagmatic eruptions under the West Antarctic Ice Sheet: potential hazard for ice sheet stability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iverson, N. A.; Dunbar, N. W.; Lieb-Lappen, R.; Kim, E. J.; Golden, E. J.; Obbard, R. W.

    2014-12-01

    Volcanic tephra layers have been seen in most ice cores in Antarctica. These tephra layers are deposited almost instantaneously across wide areas of ice sheets, creating horizons that can provide "pinning points" to adjust ice time scales that may otherwise be lacking detailed chronology. A combination of traditional particle morphology characterization by SEM with new non-destructive X-ray micro-computed tomography (Micro-CT) has been used to analyze selected coarse grained tephra in the West Antarctica Ice Sheet (WAIS) Divide WDC06A ice core. Micro-CT has the ability to image particles as small as 50µm in length (15µm resolution), quantifying both particle shape and size. The WDC06A contains hundreds of dusty layers of which 36 have so far been identified as primary tephra layers. Two of these tephra layers have been characterized as phreatomagmatic eruptions based on SEM imagery and are blocky and platy in nature, with rare magmatic particles. These layers are strikingly different in composition from the typical phonolitic and trachytic tephra produced from West Antarctic volcanoes. These two layers are coarser in grain size, with many particles (including feldspar crystals) exceeding 100µm in length. One tephra layer found at 3149.138m deep in the ice core is a coarse ~1mm thick basanitic tephra layer with a WDC06-7 ice core age of 45,381±2000yrs. The second layer is a ~1.3 cm thick zoned trachyandesite to trachydacite tephra found at 2569.205m deep with an ice core age 22,470±835yrs. Micro-CT analysis shows that WDC06A-3149.138 has normal grading with the largest particles at the bottom of the sample (~160μm). WDC06A-2569.205 has a bimodal distribution of particles with large particles at the top and bottom of the layer. These large particles are more spherical in shape at the base and become more irregular and finer grained higher in the layer, likely showing changes in eruption dynamics. The distinct chemistry as well as the blocky and large grain size

  9. Volcanic rocks and subglacial volcanism beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet in the West Antarctic Rift System, (WAIS) from aeromagnetic and radar ice sounding - Thiel Subglacial Volcano as possible source of the ash layer in the WAISCORE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Behrendt, J. C.

    2012-12-01

    Radar ice sounding and aeromagnetic surveys reported over the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) have been interpreted as evidence of subglacial volcanic eruptions over a very extensive area (>500,000 km2 ) of the volcanically active West Antarctic rift system interpreted as caused by subglacial volcanic rocks. Several active volcanoes have shown evidence of eruption through the WAIS and several other active volcanoes are present beneath the WAIS reported from radar and aeromagnetic data. Five-kilometer spaced coincident aeromagnetic and radar ice sounding surveys since 1990 provide three dimensional characterization of the magnetic field and bed topography beneath the ice sheet. These 5-50-km-width, semicircular magnetic anomalies range from 100->1000 nT as observed ~1 km over the 2-3 km thick ice have been interpreted as evidence of subglacial eruptions. Comparison of a carefully selected subset of ~400 of the >1000 high-amplitude anomalies in the CWA survey having topographic expression at the glacier bed, showed >80% had less than 200-m relief. About 18 high-amplitude subglacial magnetic sources also have high topography and bed relief (>600 m) interpreted as subaerially erupted volcanic peaks when the WAIS was absent, whose competent lava flows protected their edifices from erosion. All of these would have high elevation above sea-level, were the ice removed and glacial rebound to have occurred. Nine of these subaerially erupted volcanoes are concentrated in the WAIS divide area. Behrendt et al., 1998 interpreted a circular ring of positive magnetic anomalies overlying the WAIS divide as caused by a volcanic caldera. The area is characterized by high elevation bed topography. The negative regional magnetic anomaly surrounding the caldera anomalies was interpreted as the result of a shallow Curie isotherm. High heat flow inferred from temperature logging in the WAISCORE (G. Clow 2012, personal communication; Conway, 2011) and a prominent volcanic ash layer in the

  10. Oceanographic variability on the West Antarctic Peninsula during the Holocene and the influence of upper circumpolar deep water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peck, Victoria L.; Allen, Claire S.; Kender, Sev; McClymont, Erin L.; Hodgson, Dominic A.

    2015-07-01

    Recent intensification of wind-driven upwelling of warm upper circumpolar deep water (UCDW) has been linked to accelerated melting of West Antarctic ice shelves and glaciers. To better assess the long term relationship between UCDW upwelling and the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, we present a multi-proxy reconstruction of surface and bottom water conditions in Marguerite Bay, West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP), through the Holocene. A combination of sedimentological, diatom and foraminiferal records are, for the first time, presented together to infer a decline in UCDW influence within Marguerite Bay through the early to mid Holocene and the dominance of cyclic forcing in the late Holocene. Extensive glacial melt, limited sea ice and enhanced primary productivity between 9.7 and 7.0 ka BP is considered to be most consistent with persistent incursions of UCDW through Marguerite Trough. From 7.0 ka BP sea ice seasons increased and productivity decreased, suggesting that UCDW influence within Marguerite Bay waned, coincident with the equatorward migration of the Southern Hemisphere Westerly Winds (SWW). UCDW influence continued through the mid Holocene, and by 4.2 ka BP lengthy sea ice seasons persisted within Marguerite Bay. Intermittent melting and reforming of this sea ice within the late Holocene may be indicative of episodic incursions of UCDW into Marguerite Bay during this period. The cyclical changes in the oceanography within Marguerite Bay during the late Holocene is consistent with enhanced sensitively to ENSO forcing as opposed to the SWW-forcing that appears to have dominated the early to mid Holocene. Current measurements of the oceanography of the WAP continental shelf suggest that the system has now returned to the early Holocene-like oceanographic configuration reported here, which in both cases has been associated with rapid deglaciation.

  11. Tectonic activity evolution of the Scotia-Antarctic Plate boundary from mass transport deposit analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pérez, Lara F.; Bohoyo, Fernando; Hernández-Molina, F. Javier; Casas, David; Galindo-Zaldívar, Jesús; Ruano, Patricia; Maldonado, Andrés.

    2016-04-01

    The spatial distribution and temporal occurrence of mass transport deposits (MTDs) in the sedimentary infill of basins and submerged banks near the Scotia-Antarctic plate boundary allowed us to decode the evolution of the tectonic activity of the relevant structures in the region from the Oligocene to present day. The 1020 MTDs identified in the available data set of multichannel seismic reflection profiles in the region are subdivided according to the geographic and chronological distributions of these features. Their spatial distribution reveals a preferential location along the eastern margins of the eastern basins. This reflects local deformation due to the evolution of the Scotia-Antarctic transcurrent plate boundary and the impact of oceanic spreading along the East Scotia Ridge (ESR). The vertical distribution of the MTDs in the sedimentary record evidences intensified regional tectonic deformation from the middle Miocene to Quaternary. Intensified deformation started at about 15 Ma, when the ESR progressively replaces the West Scotia Ridge (WSR) as the main oceanic spreading center in the Scotia Sea. Coevally with the WSR demise at about 6.5 Ma, increased spreading rates of the ESR and numerous MTDs were formed. The high frequency of MTDs during the Pliocene, mainly along the western basins, is also related to greater tectonic activity due to uplift of the Shackleton Fracture Zone by tectonic inversion and extinction of the Antarctic-Phoenix Ridge and involved changes at late Pliocene. The presence of MTDs in the southern Scotia Sea basins is a relevant indicator of the interplay between sedimentary instability and regional tectonics.

  12. Volatiles and subduction-recycled lithologies in the petrogenesis of Cenozoic alkaline magmatism in the West Antarctic Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aviado, K.; Rilling-Hall, S.; Mukasa, S. B.; Bryce, J. G.; Fahnestock, M. F.

    2015-12-01

    In the West Antarctic Rift System (WARS), the failure of both passive and active models of decompression melting to explain unusually voluminous Cenozoic volcanism has prompted debate about the roles of thermal plume-related melting and ancient subduction-related flux melting. The latter is supported by ~500 Ma of subduction along the paleo-Pacific margin of Gondwana[1], a process capable of generating easily fusible, volatile-rich lithologies and producing the broad seismic low-velocity anomaly imaged beneath the Southern Ocean[2]. We present new geochemical information from submarine lavas in the Ross Sea and subaerial lavas from Franklin Island, Beaufort Island, and Mt. Melbourne in Northern Victoria Land (NVL) supportive of an evolving fluxed mantle source. Lavas exhibit ocean island basalt (OIB)-like trace element signatures and isotopic affinities for the C/FOZO mantle endmember consistent with subduction processing of recycled ocean lithosphere. Lava major-oxide compositions suggest multiple recycled source components, including pyroxenite (associated with older lavas), amphibole-rich metasomes, and volatilized peridotite (associated with the youngest lavas). In-situ analyses of olivine-hosted melt inclusions (MIs) from a subset of host lavas confirm high H2O and CO2 ranging up to 2.94 wt % and 4657 ppm, respectively. MIs exhibit OIB-like trace element compositions and Ba/Rb and Rb/Sr consistent with melting in the presence of hydrated, amphibole-bearing lithosphere[3,4]. We interpret these observations as evidence that ongoing tectonomagmatic activity in the WARS is facilitated by melting of subduction-modified mantle generated by 550 - 100 Ma Gondwana subduction. Following radiogenic ingrowth in high-µ (U/Pb) domains, Cenozoic extension triggered decompression melting of easily fusible, hydrated metasomes and volatilized mantle. This multistage magma model attempts to reconcile geochemical observations with increasing geophysical evidence that the seismic

  13. Seasonal dynamics of megafauna on the deep West Antarctic Peninsula shelf in response to variable phytodetrital influx

    PubMed Central

    Sumida, P. Y. G.; Smith, C. R.; Bernardino, A. F.; Polito, P. S.; Vieira, D. R.

    2014-01-01

    The deep West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) shelf is characterized by intense deposition of phytodetritus during spring/summer months, while very little food material reaches the seafloor during winter. The response of the shelf benthic megafauna to this highly variable food supply is still poorly understood. In order to characterize the deposition of phytodetritus and the megabenthic community response, we deployed a seafloor time-lapse camera at approximately 590 m depth on the mid WAP shelf west of Anvers Island for 15 months. Seafloor photographs were taken at intervals of 12 or 24 h nearly continuously from 9 December 1999 (austral winter) to 20 March 2001 (summer) and analysed for phytodetritus deposition and megafaunal dynamics. Seafloor images indicated a marked seasonal arrival of greenish phytodetritus, with large interannual and seasonal variability in the coverage of depositing phytodetrital particles. The surface-deposit-feeding elasipod holothurians Protelpidia murrayi and Peniagone vignoni dominated the epibenthic megafauna throughout the year, frequently constituting more than 80% of the megafaunal abundance, attaining total densities of up to 2.4 individuals m−2. Elasipod abundances were significantly higher in summer than winter. During summer periods of high phytodetrital flux, Pr. murrayi produced faecal casts at higher rates, indicating intensified population-level feeding activity. In March–June 2000, faecal casts lasted longest, suggesting lower horizontal bioturbation activity during autumn–winter. Our data indicate that the Pr. murrayi population increases its feeding rates in response to increasing amounts and/or lability of organic matter on the sediment surface. Assuming that this species feeds on the top millimetre of the sediment, we estimate that, during periods of high phytodetrital flux, the Pr. murrayi population reworks one square metre of sediment surface in approximately 287 days. We suggest that Pr. murrayi is an

  14. Geochronological and geochemical assessment of Cenozoic volcanism from the Terror Rift region of the West Antarctic Rift System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rilling, Sarah E.

    The work presented in this dissertation explains results from three different methods to determine the relation between tectonism and rift-related volcanism in the Terror Rift region of the West Antarctic Rift System (WARS). Alkaline lavas from seven submarine features, Beaufort Island and Franklin Islands, and several locations near Mt Melbourne were dated by 40Ar/39Ar geochronology and analyzed for elemental and isotopic chemical signatures. Each chapter addresses a different aspect of the hypothesis that the presence of volatiles, primarily H2O or CO2, in the magma source has led to anomalously high volumes of magmatism after rift-related decompressional melting rather than requiring an active mantle plume source. Chapter 2 provides the temporal framework, illustrating that the sampled features range in age from 6.7 Ma to 89 ka, post-dating the main Miocene age phase of Terror Rift extension. Chapter 3 illustrates the traditional enriched elemental and isotopic chemical signatures to support the overall homogeneity of these lavas and previously analyzed areas of the WARS. This chapter also provides a new model for the generation of the Pb isotopic signatures consistent with a history of metasomatism in the magma source. Chapter 4 provides an entirely new chemical dataset for the WARS. The first platinum group element (PGE) abundances and extremely unradiogenic Os isotopic signatures of Cenozoic lavas from Antarctica provide the strongest evidence of melting contributions from a lithospheric mantle source. The combined results from these three studies consistently support the original hypothesis of this dissertation. New evidence suggests that WARS related lavas are not related to a mantle plume(s) as previously proposed. Instead, they are generated by passive, decompressional melting of a source, likely a combination of the asthenospheric and lithospheric mantle, which has undergone previous melting events and metasomatism.

  15. Deglacial history of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet in the western Amundsen Sea Embayment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, James A.; Hillenbrand, Claus-Dieter; Kuhn, Gerhard; Larter, Robert D.; Graham, Alastair G. C.; Ehrmann, Werner; Moreton, Steven G.; Forwick, Matthias

    2011-03-01

    The Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) drains approximately 35% of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) and is one of the most rapidly changing parts of the cryosphere. In order to predict future ice sheet behaviour, modellers require long-term records of ice-sheet melting to constrain and build confidence in their simulations. Here, we present detailed marine geological and radiocarbon data along three palaeo-ice stream tributary troughs in the western ASE to establish vital information on the timing of deglaciation of the WAIS since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). We have undertaken multi-proxy analyses of the cores (core description, shear strength, x-radiographs, magnetic susceptibility, wet bulk density, total organic carbon/nitrogen, carbonate content and clay mineral analyses) in order to: (1) characterise the sedimentological facies and depositional environments; and (2) identify the horizon(s) in each core that would yield the most reliable age for deglaciation. In accordance with previous studies we identify three key facies, which offer the most reliable stratigraphies for dating deglaciation by recording the transition from a grounded ice sheet to open marine environments. These facies are: i) subglacial, ii) proximal grounding line, and iii) seasonal open marine. In addition, we incorporate ages from other facies (e.g., glaciomarine diamictons deposited at some distance from the grounding line, such as glaciogenic debris flows and iceberg-rafted diamictons and turbates) into our deglacial model. In total, we have dated 78 samples (mainly the acid insoluble organic (AIO) fraction, but also calcareous foraminifers), which include 63 downcore and 15 surface samples. Through careful sample selection prior to dating, we have established a robust deglacial chronology for this sector of the WAIS. Our data show that deglaciation of the western ASE was probably underway as early as 22,351 calibrated years before present (cal yr BP), reaching the mid-shelf by 13

  16. Developmental History of an Intriguing Peat-Forming Community Along the West Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loisel, J.; Yu, Z.; Beilman, D.; Kaiser, K.

    2014-12-01

    Permafrost peatbanks along the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) have become valuable high-resolution archives for late-Holocene climatic conditions recently. We recently observed and studied a few water-saturated peatlands that had formed in rocky depressions near Vernadsky Station and in mainland Antarctica (~ 65°S, 64°W). Remarkably, we seem to be the very first ones to analyze these systems for environmental reconstructions. The similarity between these peatlands and fens from the lower latitudes is striking, and the rarity of these systems along the WAP is intriguing. We present a high-resolution, multi-proxy record of ecosystem development and paleoenvironmental conditions for Rasmussen peatland. The ecosystem is ~100 m2 in size and is characterized by a shallow water table depth at 7 cm below the surface. Surface vegetation is dominated by Calliergon spp., a wet-adapted moss found along the WAP. The studied moss deposit is 50 cm thick and has a high organic matter content (> 90% dry weight). Plant macrofossil analysis reveals that the peatland was initially a wet Sanionia spp. carpet and that a sharp transition to Calliergon spp. occurred about half way through the deposit. A distinct layer of highly decomposed organic matter was observed from 32 to 40 cm and could indicate a period of slowed peat formation, potentially due to dry conditions (enhanced peat decay) or perennial snow cover (limited plant growth). Biochemical decomposition indicators such as carbohydrate yields, acid:aldehyde ratios of lignin phenols, and hydroxyproline yields are being determined to better understand the extent of peat decay that has occurred at this site throughout its development, particularly to further address the nature of the observed stratigraphic changes. Preliminary results indicate that carbohydrate yields of the bottom half of the core are about 1/3 smaller than those of the top half, indicating substantial carbon loss due to decomposition. Overall, these peatlands

  17. Controls on interior West Antarctic Ice Sheet Elevations: inferences from geologic constraints and ice sheet modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ackert, Robert P.; Putnam, Aaron E.; Mukhopadhyay, Sujoy; Pollard, David; DeConto, Robert M.; Kurz, Mark D.; Borns, Harold W.

    2013-04-01

    Knowledge of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) response to past sea level and climate forcing is necessary to predict its response to warmer temperatures in the future. The timing and extent of past interior WAIS elevation changes provides insight to WAIS behavior and constraints for ice sheet models. Constraints prior to the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) however, are rare. Surface exposure ages of glacial erratics near the WAIS divide at Mt. Waesche in Marie Byrd Land, and at the Ohio Range in the Transantarctic Mountains, range from ∼10 ka to >500 ka without a dependence on elevation. The probability distribution functions (PDF) of the exposure ages at both locations, are remarkably similar. During the last glaciation, maximum interior ice elevations as recorded by moraines and erratics were reached between 10 ka and 12 ka. However, most exposure ages are older than the LGM and cluster around ∼40 ka and ∼80 ka. The peak in the exposure age distributions at ∼40 ka includes ages of alpine moraine boulders at Mercer Ridge in the Ohio Range. Comparison of the PDF of exposures ages from the Ohio Range and Mt. Waesche with the temperature record from the Fuji Dome ice core indicates that the youngest peak in the exposure age distributions corresponds to the abrupt warming during the Last Glacial termination. A prominent peak in the Ohio Range PDF corresponds to the penultimate termination (stage 5e). During the intervening glacial period, there is not a consistent relationship between the peaks in the PDF at each location and temperature. A combined ice sheet/ice shelf model with forcing scaled to marine δ18O predicts that interior WAIS elevations near the ice divide have varied ∼300 m over the Last Glacial cycle. Peaks in the PDF correspond to model highstands over the last 200 ka. In the simulated elevation history, maximum ice elevations at Ohio Range (+100 m) and Mt. Waesche (+60 m) occur at ∼10 ka, in agreement with observations from these sites

  18. Diagnostic modeling of dimethylsulfide production in coastal water west of the Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hermann, Maria; Najjar, Raymond G.; Neeley, Aimee R.; Vila-Costa, Maria; Dacey, John W. H.; DiTullio, Giacomo, R.; Kieber, David J.; Kiene, Ronald P.; Matrai, Patricia A.; Simo, Rafel; Vernet, Maria

    2012-01-01

    The rate of gross biological dimethylsulfide (DMS) production at two coastal sites west of the Antarctic Peninsula, off Anvers Island, near Palmer Station, was estimated using a diagnostic approach that combined field measurements from 1 January 2006 through 1 March 2006 and a one-dimensional physical model of ocean mixing. The average DMS production rate in the upper water column (0-60 m) was estimated to be 3.1 +/- 0.6 nM/d at station B (closer to shore) and 2.7 +/- 0.6 nM/d1 at station E (further from shore). The estimated DMS replacement time was on the order of 1 d at both stations. DMS production was greater in the mixed layer than it was below the mixed layer. The average DMS production normalized to chlorophyll was 0.5 +/- nM/d)/(mg cubic m) at station B and 0.7 +/- 0.2 (nM/d)/(mg/cubic m3) at station E. When the diagnosed production rates were normalized to the observed concentrations of total dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSPt, the biogenic precursor of DMS), we found a remarkable similarity between our estimates at stations B and E (0.06 +/- 0.02 and 0.04 +/- 0.01 (nM DMS / d1)/(nM DMSP), respectively) and the results obtained in a previous study from a contrasting biogeochemical environment in the North Atlantic subtropical gyre (0.047 =/- 0.006 and 0.087 +/- 0.014 (nM DMS d1)/(nM DMSP) in a cyclonic and anticyclonic eddy, respectively).We propose that gross biological DMS production normalized to DMSPt might be relatively independent of the biogeochemical environment, and place our average estimate at 0.06 +/- 0.01 (nM DMS / d)/(nM DMSPt). The significance of this finding is that it can provide a means to use DMSPt measurements to extrapolate gross biological DMS production, which is extremely difficult to measure experimentally under realistic in situ conditions.

  19. Potential of the solid-Earth response for limiting long-term West Antarctic Ice Sheet retreat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konrad, Hannes; Sasgen, Ingo; Pollard, David; Klemann, Volker

    2016-04-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) is assumed to be inherently unstable because it is grounded below sea level in a large part, where the bedrock deepens from today's grounding line towards the interior of the ice sheet. Idealized simulations have shown that bedrock uplift due to isostatic adjustment of the solid Earth and the associated sea-level fall may stop the retreat of such a marine-based ice sheet (Gomez et al., 2012). Here, we employ a coupled model for ice-sheet dynamics and solid-Earth dynamics, including a gravitationally consistent description of sea level, to investigate the influence of the viscoelastic Earth structure on the WAIS' future stability (Konrad et al. 2015). For this, we start from a steady-state condition for the Antarctic Ice Sheet close to present-day observations and apply atmospheric and oceanic forcing of different strength to initiate the retreat of the WAIS and investigate the effect of the viscoelastic deformation on the ice evolution for a range of solid-Earth rheologies. We find that the climate forcing is the primary control on the occurrence of the WAIS collapse. However, for moderate climate forcing and a weak solid-Earth rheology associated with the West Antarctic rift system (asthenosphere viscosities of 3x10^19 Pa s or less), we find that the combined effect of bedrock uplift and gravitational sea-level fall limits the retreat to the Amundsen Sea embayment on millennial time scales. In contrast, a stiffer Earth rheology yields a collapse under these conditions. Under a stronger climate forcing, weak Earth structures do not prevent the WAIS collapse; however, they produce a delay of up to 5000 years in comparison to a stiffer solid-Earth rheology. In an additional experiment, we test the impact of sea-level rise from an assumed fast deglaciation of the Greenland Ice Sheet. In cases when the climatic forcing is too weak to force WAIS collapse by itself, the additional rise in sea-level leads to disintegration of the WAIS

  20. Upper mantle seismic anisotropy beneath the West Antarctic Rift System and surrounding region from shear wave splitting analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Accardo, Natalie J.; Wiens, Douglas A.; Hernandez, Stephen; Aster, Richard C.; Nyblade, Andrew; Huerta, Audrey; Anandakrishnan, Sridhar; Wilson, Terry; Heeszel, David S.; Dalziel, Ian W. D.

    2014-07-01

    We constrain azimuthal anisotropy in the West Antarctic upper mantle using shear wave splitting parameters obtained from teleseismic SKS, SKKS and PKS phases recorded at 37 broad-band seismometres deployed by the POLENET/ANET project. We use an eigenvalue technique to linearize the rotated and shifted shear wave horizontal particle motions and determine the fast direction and delay time for each arrival. High-quality measurements are stacked to determine the best fitting splitting parameters for each station. Overall, fast anisotropic directions are oriented at large angles to the direction of Antarctic absolute plate motion in both hotspot and no-net-rotation frameworks, showing that the anisotropy does not result from shear due to plate motion over the mantle. Further, the West Antarctic directions are substantially different from those of East Antarctica, indicating that anisotropy across the continent reflects multiple mantle regimes. We suggest that the observed anisotropy along the central Transantarctic Mountains (TAM) and adjacent West Antarctic Rift System (WARS), one of the largest zones of extended continental crust on Earth, results from asthenospheric mantle strain associated with the final pulse of western WARS extension in the late Miocene. Strong and consistent anisotropy throughout the WARS indicate fast axes subparallel to the inferred extension direction, a result unlike reports from the East African rift system and rifts within the Basin and Range, which show much greater variation. We contend that ductile shearing rather than magmatic intrusion may have been the controlling mechanism for accumulation and retention of such coherent, widespread anisotropic fabric. Splitting beneath the Marie Byrd Land Dome (MBL) is weaker than that observed elsewhere within the WARS, but shows a consistent fast direction, possibly representative of anisotropy that has been `frozen-in' to remnant thicker lithosphere. Fast directions observed inland from the

  1. Large ensemble modeling of last deglacial retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet: comparison of simple and advanced statistical techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pollard, D.; Chang, W.; Haran, M.; Applegate, P.; DeConto, R.

    2015-11-01

    A 3-D hybrid ice-sheet model is applied to the last deglacial retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet over the last ~ 20 000 years. A large ensemble of 625 model runs is used to calibrate the model to modern and geologic data, including reconstructed grounding lines, relative sea-level records, elevation-age data and uplift rates, with an aggregate score computed for each run that measures overall model-data misfit. Two types of statistical methods are used to analyze the large-ensemble results: simple averaging weighted by the aggregate score, and more advanced Bayesian techniques involving Gaussian process-based emulation and calibration, and Markov chain Monte Carlo. Results for best-fit parameter ranges and envelopes of equivalent sea-level rise with the simple averaging method agree quite well with the more advanced techniques, but only for a large ensemble with full factorial parameter sampling. Best-fit parameter ranges confirm earlier values expected from prior model tuning, including large basal sliding coefficients on modern ocean beds. Each run is extended 5000 years into the "future" with idealized ramped climate warming. In the majority of runs with reasonable scores, this produces grounding-line retreat deep into the West Antarctic interior, and the analysis provides sea-level-rise envelopes with well defined parametric uncertainty bounds.

  2. Regional sea level change in response to ice mass loss in Greenland, the West Antarctic and Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brunnabend, S.-E.; Schröter, J.; Rietbroek, R.; Kusche, J.

    2015-11-01

    Besides the warming of the ocean, sea level is mainly rising due to land ice mass loss of the major ice sheets in Greenland, the West Antarctic, and the Alaskan Glaciers. However, it is not clear yet how these land ice mass losses influence regional sea level. Here, we use the global Finite Element Sea-ice Ocean Model (FESOM) to simulate sea surface height (SSH) changes caused by these ice mass losses and combine it with the passive ocean response to varying surface loading using the sea level equation. We prescribe rates of fresh water inflow, not only around Greenland, but also around the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and the mountain glaciers in Alaska with approximately present-day amplitudes of 200, 100, and 50 Gt/yr, respectively. Perturbations in sea level and in freshwater distribution with respect to a reference simulation are computed for each source separately and in their combination. The ocean mass change shows an almost globally uniform behavior. In the North Atlantic and Arctic Ocean, mass is redistributed toward coastal regions. Steric sea level change varies locally in the order of several centimeters on advective timescales of decades. Steric effects to local sea level differ significantly in different coastal locations, e.g., at North American coastal regions the steric effects may have the same order of magnitude as the mass driven effect, whereas at the European coast, steric effects remain small during the simulation period.

  3. The Role of the Tropics in Last Glacial Abrupt Climate Change from a West Antarctic Ice Core

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, T. R.; White, J. W. C.; Steig, E. J.; Cuffey, K. M.; Vaughn, B. H.; Morris, V. A.; Vasileios, G.; Markle, B. R.; Schoenemann, S. W.

    2014-12-01

    Debate exists as to whether last glacial abrupt climate changes in Greenland, and associated changes in Antarctica, had a high-latitude or tropical trigger. An ultra high-resolution water isotope record from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide (WAIS Divide) Ice Core Project has been developed with three key water isotope parameters that offer insight into this debate: δD, δ18O, and deuterium excess (dxs). δD and δ18O are a proxy for local temperature and regional atmospheric circulation, while dxs is primarily a proxy for sea surface temperature at the ice core's moisture source(s) (relative humidity and wind speed also play a role). We build on past studies that show West Antarctic climate is modulated by El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) teleconnection mechanisms, which originate in the equatorial Pacific Ocean, to infer how past ENSO changes may have influenced abrupt climate change. Using frequency analysis of the water isotope data, we can reconstruct the amplitude of ENSO-scale climate oscillations in the 2-15 year range within temporal windows as low as 100 years. Our analysis uses a back diffusion model that estimates initial amplitudes before decay in the firn column. We combine δD, δ18O, and dxs frequency analysis to evaluate how climate variability at WAIS Divide is influenced by tropical climate forcing. Our results should ultimately offer insight into the role of the tropics in abrupt climate change.

  4. Holocene Southern Ocean surface temperature variability west of the Antarctic Peninsula.

    PubMed

    Shevenell, A E; Ingalls, A E; Domack, E W; Kelly, C

    2011-02-10

    The disintegration of ice shelves, reduced sea-ice and glacier extent, and shifting ecological zones observed around Antarctica highlight the impact of recent atmospheric and oceanic warming on the cryosphere. Observations and models suggest that oceanic and atmospheric temperature variations at Antarctica's margins affect global cryosphere stability, ocean circulation, sea levels and carbon cycling. In particular, recent climate changes on the Antarctic Peninsula have been dramatic, yet the Holocene climate variability of this region is largely unknown, limiting our ability to evaluate ongoing changes within the context of historical variability and underlying forcing mechanisms. Here we show that surface ocean temperatures at the continental margin of the western Antarctic Peninsula cooled by 3-4 °C over the past 12,000 years, tracking the Holocene decline of local (65° S) spring insolation. Our results, based on TEX(86) sea surface temperature (SST) proxy evidence from a marine sediment core, indicate the importance of regional summer duration as a driver of Antarctic seasonal sea-ice fluctuations. On millennial timescales, abrupt SST fluctuations of 2-4 °C coincide with globally recognized climate variability. Similarities between our SSTs, Southern Hemisphere westerly wind reconstructions and El Niño/Southern Oscillation variability indicate that present climate teleconnections between the tropical Pacific Ocean and the western Antarctic Peninsula strengthened late in the Holocene epoch. We conclude that during the Holocene, Southern Ocean temperatures at the western Antarctic Peninsula margin were tied to changes in the position of the westerlies, which have a critical role in global carbon cycling. PMID:21307939

  5. Antarctic Meteorite Location Map Series

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schutt, John (Editor); Fessler, Brian (Editor); Cassidy, William (Editor)

    1989-01-01

    Antarctica has been a prolific source of meteorites since meteorite concentrations were discovered in 1969. The Antarctic Search For Meteorites (ANSMET) project has been active over much of the Trans-Antarctic Mountain Range. The first ANSMET expedition (a joint U.S.-Japanese effort) discovered what turned out to be a significant concentration of meteorites at the Allan Hills in Victoria Land. Later reconnaissance in this region resulted in the discovery of meteorite concentrations on icefields to the west of the Allan Hills, at Reckling Moraine, and Elephant Moraine. Antarctic meteorite location maps (reduced versions) of the Allan Hills main, near western, middle western, and far western icefields and the Elephant Moraine icefield are presented. Other Antarctic meteorite location maps for the specimens found by the ANSMET project are being prepared.

  6. Influence of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and its collapse on the wind and precipitation regimes of the Ross Embayment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seles, D.; Kowalewski, D. E.

    2015-12-01

    Marine Isotope Stage 31 (MIS 31) is a key analogue for current warming trends yet the extent of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) and the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) during this interglacial remains unresolved. Inconsistencies persist between offshore records (suggesting the instability of WAIS) and McMurdo Dry Valley (MDV) terrestrial datasets (indicating long-term ice sheet stability). Here we use a high-resolution regional scale climate model (RegCM3_Polar) to reconstruct paleoclimate during MIS 31 (warm orbit, 400 ppm CO2) and assess changes in precipitation and winds (including katabatic) with WAIS present versus WAIS absent. The MIS 31 scenario with WAIS present resulted in minimal changes in wind magnitude compared with current climate conditions. With WAIS absent, the model predicts a decrease in coastal and highland monthly mean average wind velocities. The greatest rates of snowfall remain along the coast but shift towards higher latitudes with the interior continent remaining dry when WAIS is removed. Focusing on the Ross Embayment, this decreased monthly mean wind velocity and shift of winds to the east indicate a greater influence of offshore winds from the Ross Sea, enabling the increase of precipitation southward along the Transantarctic Mountains (TAM) (i.e. MDV). The apparent decrease of katabatic winds with no WAIS implies that offshore winds may be responsible for bringing the warmer, wetter air into the TAM. The change in wind and precipitation in the Ross Embayment and specifically the MDV highlights the impact of WAIS on Antarctic climate and its subsequent influence on the mass balance of peripheral EAIS domes (i.e. Taylor Dome). Modeling suggests that if WAIS was absent during MIS 31, we would expect (1) greater accumulation at such domes and (2) MDV terrestrial records that reflect a wetter climate, and (3) weaker winds suggesting possibly lower ablation/erosion rates compared to if WAIS was present.

  7. Feedbacks between ice and ocean dynamics at the West Antarctic Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf in future global warming scenarios

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goeller, Sebastian; Timmermann, Ralph

    2016-04-01

    The ice flow at the margins of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet is moderated by large ice shelves. Their buttressing effect substantially controls the mass balance of the WAIS and thus its contribution to sea level rise. The stability of these ice shelves results from the balance of mass gain by accumulation and ice flow from the adjacent ice sheet and mass loss by calving and basal melting due to the ocean heat flux. Recent results of ocean circulation models indicate that warm circumpolar water of the Southern Ocean may override the submarine slope front of the Antarctic Continent and boost basal ice shelf melting. In particular, ocean simulations for several of the IPCC's future climate scenarios demonstrate the redirection of a warm coastal current into the Filchner Trough and underneath the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf within the next decades. In this study, we couple the finite elements ocean circulation model FESOM and the three-dimensional thermomechanical ice flow model RIMBAY to investigate the complex interactions between ocean and ice dynamics at the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf. We focus on the impact of a changing ice shelf cavity on ocean dynamics as well as the feedback of the resulting sub-shelf melting rates on the ice shelf geometry and implications for the dynamics of the adjacent marine-based Westantarctic Ice Sheet. Our simulations reveal the high sensitivity of grounding line migration to ice-ocean interactions within the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf and emphasize the importance of coupled model studies for realistic assessments of the Antarctic mass balance in future global warming scenarios.

  8. Megafaunal communities in rapidly warming fjords along the West Antarctic Peninsula: hotspots of abundance and beta diversity.

    PubMed

    Grange, Laura J; Smith, Craig R

    2013-01-01

    Glacio-marine fjords occur widely at high latitudes and have been extensively studied in the Arctic, where heavy meltwater inputs and sedimentation yield low benthic faunal abundance and biodiversity in inner-middle fjords. Fjord benthic ecosystems remain poorly studied in the subpolar Antarctic, including those in extensive fjords along the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP). Here we test ecosystem predictions from Arctic fjords on three subpolar, glacio-marine fjords along the WAP. With seafloor photographic surveys we evaluate benthic megafaunal abundance, community structure, and species diversity, as well as the abundance of demersal nekton and macroalgal detritus, in soft-sediment basins of Andvord, Flandres and Barilari Bays at depths of 436-725 m. We then contrast these fjord sites with three open shelf stations of similar depths. Contrary to Arctic predictions, WAP fjord basins exhibited 3 to 38-fold greater benthic megafaunal abundance than the open shelf, and local species diversity and trophic complexity remained high from outer to inner fjord basins. Furthermore, WAP fjords contained distinct species composition, substantially contributing to beta and gamma diversity at 400-700 m depths along the WAP. The abundance of demersal nekton and macroalgal detritus was also substantially higher in WAP fjords compared to the open shelf. We conclude that WAP fjords are important hotspots of benthic abundance and biodiversity as a consequence of weak meltwater influences, low sedimentation disturbance, and high, varied food inputs. We postulate that WAP fjords differ markedly from their Arctic counterparts because they are in earlier stages of climate warming, and that rapid warming along the WAP will increase meltwater and sediment inputs, deleteriously impacting these biodiversity hotspots. Because WAP fjords also provide important habitat and foraging areas for Antarctic krill and baleen whales, there is an urgent need to develop better understanding of the

  9. Megafaunal Communities in Rapidly Warming Fjords along the West Antarctic Peninsula: Hotspots of Abundance and Beta Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Grange, Laura J.; Smith, Craig R.

    2013-01-01

    Glacio-marine fjords occur widely at high latitudes and have been extensively studied in the Arctic, where heavy meltwater inputs and sedimentation yield low benthic faunal abundance and biodiversity in inner-middle fjords. Fjord benthic ecosystems remain poorly studied in the subpolar Antarctic, including those in extensive fjords along the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP). Here we test ecosystem predictions from Arctic fjords on three subpolar, glacio-marine fjords along the WAP. With seafloor photographic surveys we evaluate benthic megafaunal abundance, community structure, and species diversity, as well as the abundance of demersal nekton and macroalgal detritus, in soft-sediment basins of Andvord, Flandres and Barilari Bays at depths of 436–725 m. We then contrast these fjord sites with three open shelf stations of similar depths. Contrary to Arctic predictions, WAP fjord basins exhibited 3 to 38-fold greater benthic megafaunal abundance than the open shelf, and local species diversity and trophic complexity remained high from outer to inner fjord basins. Furthermore, WAP fjords contained distinct species composition, substantially contributing to beta and gamma diversity at 400–700 m depths along the WAP. The abundance of demersal nekton and macroalgal detritus was also substantially higher in WAP fjords compared to the open shelf. We conclude that WAP fjords are important hotspots of benthic abundance and biodiversity as a consequence of weak meltwater influences, low sedimentation disturbance, and high, varied food inputs. We postulate that WAP fjords differ markedly from their Arctic counterparts because they are in earlier stages of climate warming, and that rapid warming along the WAP will increase meltwater and sediment inputs, deleteriously impacting these biodiversity hotspots. Because WAP fjords also provide important habitat and foraging areas for Antarctic krill and baleen whales, there is an urgent need to develop better understanding of the

  10. Comparison of glacial isostasy contribution to the sea level changes during the Holocene in West and East Antarctic regions.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poleshchuk, Ksenia; Verkulich, Sergey; Pushina, Zina

    2016-04-01

    Antarctica as geographically completed and tectonically compound continent is an interesting object for study of glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) and sea level changes in the Holocene. The analysis of relative sea level curves is one of the most indicative approaches for glacio-isostasy estimation. The present study focuses on two different regions of Antarctic margin which sea-level changes are well researched. We compare our relative sea-level curves for Bunger Oasis (East Antarctica) and King George Island (West Antarctica) that were obtained from new geomorphological, paleogeographical and micropaleontological data. The results showed notable difference: the maximum relative water altitude had occurred between 8 000 - 6 000 yr BP and had reached 12 m a. s. l. in the Bunger Oasis and 18-20 m a. s. l. in King George Island. Furthermore, the research of other Antarctic regions revealed significant differences in sea-level altitudes. Following analysis of constructed curves and computative GIA models allow us to estimate the possible extent of glacial isostatic adjustment. Besides, this observation has indicated the importance of deglaciation rates and local tectonic features. The reported study was funded by RFBR according to the research project No. 16-35-00346 mol_a.

  11. Evidence for the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet divide for 1.4 million years

    PubMed Central

    Hein, Andrew S.; Woodward, John; Marrero, Shasta M.; Dunning, Stuart A.; Steig, Eric J.; Freeman, Stewart P. H. T.; Stuart, Finlay M.; Winter, Kate; Westoby, Matthew J.; Sugden, David E.

    2016-01-01

    Past fluctuations of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) are of fundamental interest because of the possibility of WAIS collapse in the future and a consequent rise in global sea level. However, the configuration and stability of the ice sheet during past interglacial periods remains uncertain. Here we present geomorphological evidence and multiple cosmogenic nuclide data from the southern Ellsworth Mountains to suggest that the divide of the WAIS has fluctuated only modestly in location and thickness for at least the last 1.4 million years. Fluctuations during glacial–interglacial cycles appear superimposed on a long-term trajectory of ice-surface lowering relative to the mountains. This implies that as a minimum, a regional ice sheet centred on the Ellsworth-Whitmore uplands may have survived Pleistocene warm periods. If so, it constrains the WAIS contribution to global sea level rise during interglacials to about 3.3 m above present. PMID:26838462

  12. Evidence for the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet divide for 1.4 million years.

    PubMed

    Hein, Andrew S; Woodward, John; Marrero, Shasta M; Dunning, Stuart A; Steig, Eric J; Freeman, Stewart P H T; Stuart, Finlay M; Winter, Kate; Westoby, Matthew J; Sugden, David E

    2016-01-01

    Past fluctuations of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) are of fundamental interest because of the possibility of WAIS collapse in the future and a consequent rise in global sea level. However, the configuration and stability of the ice sheet during past interglacial periods remains uncertain. Here we present geomorphological evidence and multiple cosmogenic nuclide data from the southern Ellsworth Mountains to suggest that the divide of the WAIS has fluctuated only modestly in location and thickness for at least the last 1.4 million years. Fluctuations during glacial-interglacial cycles appear superimposed on a long-term trajectory of ice-surface lowering relative to the mountains. This implies that as a minimum, a regional ice sheet centred on the Ellsworth-Whitmore uplands may have survived Pleistocene warm periods. If so, it constrains the WAIS contribution to global sea level rise during interglacials to about 3.3 m above present. PMID:26838462

  13. Evidence for the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet divide for 1.4 million years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hein, Andrew S.; Woodward, John; Marrero, Shasta M.; Dunning, Stuart A.; Steig, Eric J.; Freeman, Stewart P. H. T.; Stuart, Finlay M.; Winter, Kate; Westoby, Matthew J.; Sugden, David E.

    2016-02-01

    Past fluctuations of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) are of fundamental interest because of the possibility of WAIS collapse in the future and a consequent rise in global sea level. However, the configuration and stability of the ice sheet during past interglacial periods remains uncertain. Here we present geomorphological evidence and multiple cosmogenic nuclide data from the southern Ellsworth Mountains to suggest that the divide of the WAIS has fluctuated only modestly in location and thickness for at least the last 1.4 million years. Fluctuations during glacial-interglacial cycles appear superimposed on a long-term trajectory of ice-surface lowering relative to the mountains. This implies that as a minimum, a regional ice sheet centred on the Ellsworth-Whitmore uplands may have survived Pleistocene warm periods. If so, it constrains the WAIS contribution to global sea level rise during interglacials to about 3.3 m above present.

  14. Multiple 'Stable' States of Antarctic Intermediate Water: A Study from the Subantarctic South-West Atlantic.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roberts, J.; Hodell, D. A.; Peck, V. L.; Kender, S.

    2014-12-01

    Modelling studies suggest that density changes in Antarctic Intermediate Water (AAIW) played a significant role in the reorganisation of Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation over the last glacial period. From its principal site of formation in the SE Pacific, a significant proportion of AAIW is entrained in the Antarctic circumpolar current and enters the Atlantic through Drake Passage. Air-sea interaction within the subAntarctic SW Atlantic modifies this AAIW further, producing a cooler and fresher Atlantic end member of AAIW. Our core site is located where this branch of AAIW subducts and travels northwards along the western margin of the Atlantic basin. We present the first high-resolution, multi-proxy study of AAIW in the sub-Antarctic SW Atlantic over the last 140 kyrs. Here, we focus on the temperature and salinity records over the last two glacial terminations and at the onset of the last glaciation. We use a combination of benthic stable isotopes and elemental ratios (Mg/Ca) on the shallow infaunal species Uvigerina peregrina to reconstruct AAIW temperature and salinity. Our records suggest that AAIW temperature both increased and decreased in a step-wise manner over the last 120 kyrs hinting at 3 'stable' states for AAIW through the last glacial cycle (see shaded areas within figure). Another common feature is a transient interval of apparently warm, saline AAIW observed at the onset of both glacial terminations - could this be evidence of the 'deep, salty blob' or of increased outflow of Pacific surface waters? We identify some fundamental differences between termination I and termination II; AAIW appears to have been markedly warmer during MIS6 than at the LGM. Furthermore, the glacial-interglacial potential density difference is much greater over termination I than termination II.

  15. First geomorphological record and glacial history of an inter-ice stream ridge on the West Antarctic continental shelf

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klages, J. P.; Kuhn, G.; Hillenbrand, C.-D.; Graham, A. G. C.; Smith, J. A.; Larter, R. D.; Gohl, K.

    2013-02-01

    Inter-ice stream areas cover significant portions of Antarctica's formerly glaciated shelves, but have been largely neglected in past geological studies because of overprinting by iceberg scours. Here, we present results of the first detailed survey of an inter-ice stream ridge from the West Antarctic continental shelf. Well-preserved sub- and proglacial bedforms on the seafloor of the ridge in the eastern Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) provide new insights into the flow dynamics of this sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) during the Last Glacial cycle. Multibeam swath bathymetry and PARASOUND acoustic sub-bottom profiler data acquired across a mid-shelf bank, between the troughs of the Pine Island-Thwaites (PITPIS) and Cosgrove palaeo-ice streams (COPIS), reveal large-scale ribbed moraines, hill-hole pairs, terminal moraines, and crevasse-squeeze ridges. Together, these features form an assemblage of landforms that is entirely different from that in the adjacent ice-stream troughs, and appears to be unique in the context of previous studies of Antarctic seafloor geomorphology. From this assemblage, the history of ice flow and retreat from the inter-ice stream ridge is reconstructed. The bedforms indicate that ice flow was significantly slower on the inter-ice stream ridge than in the neighbouring troughs. While terminal moraines record at least two re-advances or stillstands of the ice sheet during deglaciation, an extensive field of crevasse-squeeze ridges indicates ice stagnation subsequent to re-advancing ice, which deposited the field of terminal moraines in the NE. The presented data suggest that the ice flow behaviour on the inter-ice stream ridge was substantially different from that in the adjacent troughs. However, newly obtained radiocarbon ages on two sediment cores recovered from the inter-ice stream ridge suggest a similar timing in the deglaciation of both areas. This information closes an important gap in the understanding of past WAIS

  16. Antimycobacterial activity in vitro of pigments isolated from Antarctic bacteria.

    PubMed

    Mojib, Nazia; Philpott, Rachel; Huang, Jonathan P; Niederweis, Michael; Bej, Asim K

    2010-11-01

    In this study, we describe the antimycobacterial activity of two pigments, violacein, a purple violet pigment from Janthinobacterium sp. Ant5-2 (J-PVP), and flexirubin, a yellow-orange pigment from Flavobacterium sp. Ant342 (F-YOP). These pigments were isolated from bacterial strains found in the land-locked freshwater lakes of Schirmacher Oasis, East Antarctica. The minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) of these pigments for avirulent and virulent mycobacteria were determined by the microplate Alamar Blue Assay (MABA) and Nitrate Reductase Assay (NRA). Results indicated that the MICs of J-PVP and F-YOP were 8.6 and 3.6 μg/ml for avirulent Mycobacterium smegmatis mc²155; 5 and 2.6 μg/ml for avirulent Mycobacterium tuberculosis mc²6230; and 34.4 and 10.8 μg/ml for virulent M. tuberculosis H₃₇Rv, respectively. J-PVP exhibited a ~15 times lower MIC for Mycobacterium sp. than previously reported for violacein pigment from Chromobacterium violaceum, while the antimycobacterial effect of F-YOP remains undocumented. Our results indicate these pigments isolated from Antarctic bacteria might be valuable lead compounds for new antimycobacterial drugs used for chemotherapy of tuberculosis. PMID:20556653

  17. ANDRILL Targets Coulman High, Ross Sea, Antarctica, to Recover Early History of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levy, Richard; Luyendyk, Bruce; Rack, Frank; Wilson, Doug; Sorlien, Chris; Fischbein, Steve; Harwood, David; Pyne, Alex; Falconer, Tamsin; Science Committee, Andrill

    2010-05-01

    The international Antarctic Geological Drilling (ANDRILL) Program recently recovered long (> 1000 m) rock and sediment cores from two sites in McMurdo Sound, and now aims to recover new stratigraphic sections from sites beneath the Ross Ice Shelf east of Ross Island on the structural Coulman High. ANDRILL will utilize new drilling capabilities to operate from a fast moving ice shelf platform (~700 m/year northward) and complete two deep holes. The drilling target for the Coulman High Project is a Cretaceous (?) to lower Miocene section. Recovery of these strata will allow our team to investigate: (1) the behaviour of ice sheets in West Antarctica during periods of moderate to high greenhouse gas levels; (2) the Antarctic environment in warm greenhouse periods; and (3) tectonic processes within the West Antarctic Rift System. In 2003 and 2004 a marine multichannel seismic grid was completed across Coulman High as close as 500 m from the front of the Ross Ice Shelf. The ice shelf has advanced 4 km north and now sits over several seismic lines providing a platform from which to drill into sites located on those lines. Selected drill sites target ~600 m of laterally continuous sediments underlain by a major regional unconformity and 350 - 850 m of faulted sediments and basement beneath it. Seismic correlation from Deep Sea Drilling Project Sites 272 and 273 to the Coulman High sites implies that the section proposed to be drilled predates 19 Ma. Several new operational challenges exist at the Coulman High sites and work is underway to modify existing technology and develop new approaches to address them. Access to the sea-floor requires melting through 250 meters of ice shelf using the ANDRILL hot water drill, which has previously be used to maintain an open hole through 80 meters of ice. The amount of lateral deflection that ANDRILL's sea-riser can accommodate is limited by water column thickness (630 m) and amount of ice shelf movement of ~2 m/day. These parameters

  18. Using blue-ice moraines to constrain elevation changes of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet in the southern Ellsworth Mountains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugden, David; Woodward, John; Dunning, Stuart; Hein, Andy; Marrero, Shasta; Le-Brocq, Anne

    2014-05-01

    Observations in the Weddell Sea sector of the Antarctic Ice Sheet have not yet allowed the dating of elevated glacier trimlines and associated deposits in the Ellsworth Mountains. This uncertainty limits the value of models of changing ice-sheet configuration, volume and, by extension, sea level during glacial cycles and earlier. Here we present the emerging results of a study into the origin and evolution of blue-ice moraines in the Heritage Range, southern Ellsworth Mountains, and begin to unravel the long record of ice-sheet history they hold. Our findings so far are: (a) Ground Penetrating Radar shows that the blue-ice moraines are equilibrium forms bringing basal debris to the ice surface; the compressive ice flow is caused by enhanced ablation at the mountain foot. (b) Moraines are concentrated in embayments that focus katabatic winds and their location is largely controlled by topography. (c) The elevated blue-ice moraines in the southern Ellsworth Mountains hold a continuous record of West Antarctic Ice Sheet history going back 600,000 years; so far we have not found evidence of de-glacial intervals. (d) Thinning since the LGM (~40 ka?) is < 450 m and agrees with views of modest changes in the Weddell Sea sector during glacial cycles; most thinning occurred in the Holocene (6-3 ka). (e) Downslope flow of debris-covered ice in embayments follows ice surface lowering; it transports old clasts downslope and exposes fresh clasts, thus complicating the interpretation of exposure ages. We hope that a second field season in 2014 to re-measure 90 stakes for horizontal movement and ablation will help quantify the rate of blue-ice moraine formation.

  19. Potential of the solid-Earth response for limiting long-term West Antarctic Ice Sheet retreat in a warming climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konrad, Hannes; Sasgen, Ingo; Pollard, David; Klemann, Volker

    2015-12-01

    We employ a coupled model for ice-sheet dynamics and Maxwell viscoelastic solid-Earth dynamics, including a gravitationally consistent description of sea level. With this model, we study the influence of the solid Earth on the future evolution of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). Starting from steady-state conditions close to the present-day configuration of the Antarctic Ice Sheet, we apply different atmospheric and oceanic forcings and solid-Earth rheologies in order to analyse the retreat of the WAIS. Climate forcing is the primary control on the occurrence of WAIS collapse. For moderate climate forcing and weak solid-Earth rheologies, however, we find that the relative sea level (RSL) fall associated with the viscoelastic solid-Earth response due to unloading by WAIS retreat limits the retreat to the Amundsen Sea embayment on time scales of several millennia, whereas stiffer Earth structures yield a collapse under these conditions. Under stronger climate forcing, weak Earth structures associated with the West Antarctic rift system produce a delay of up to 5000 years in comparison to stiffer, Antarctic-average solid-Earth rheologies. Furthermore, we find that sea-level rise from an assumed fast deglaciation of the Greenland Ice Sheet induces WAIS collapse in the presence of higher asthenosphere viscosities in cases when the climatic forcing is too weak to force WAIS collapse alone.

  20. Submarine and subaerial lavas in the West Antarctic Rift System: Temporal record of shifting magma source components from the lithosphere and asthenosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aviado, Kimberly B.; Rilling-Hall, Sarah; Bryce, Julia G.; Mukasa, Samuel B.

    2015-12-01

    The petrogenesis of Cenozoic alkaline magmas in the West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) remains controversial, with competing models highlighting the roles of decompression melting due to passive rifting, active plume upwelling in the asthenosphere, and flux melting of a lithospheric mantle metasomatized by subduction. In this study, seamounts sampled in the Terror Rift region of the Ross Sea provide the first geochemical information from submarine lavas in the Ross Embayment in order to evaluate melting models. Together with subaerial samples from Franklin Island, Beaufort Island, and Mt. Melbourne in Northern Victoria Land (NVL), these Ross Sea lavas exhibit ocean island basalt (OIB)-like trace element signatures and isotopic affinities for the C or FOZO mantle endmember. Major-oxide compositions are consistent with the presence of multiple recycled lithologies in the mantle source region(s), including pyroxenite and volatile-rich lithologies such as amphibole-bearing, metasomatized peridotite. We interpret these observations as evidence that ongoing tectonomagmatic activity in the WARS is facilitated by melting of subduction-modified mantle generated during 550-100 Ma subduction along the paleo-Pacific margin of Gondwana. Following ingrowth of radiogenic daughter isotopes in high-µ (U/Pb) domains, Cenozoic extension triggered decompression melting of easily fusible, hydrated metasomes. This multistage magma generation model attempts to reconcile geochemical observations with increasing geophysical evidence that the broad seismic low-velocity anomaly imaged beneath West Antarctica and most of the Southern Ocean may be in part a compositional structure inherited from previous active margin tectonics.

  1. Mid-Holocene pulse of thinning in the Weddell Sea sector of the West Antarctic ice sheet

    PubMed Central

    Hein, Andrew S.; Marrero, Shasta M.; Woodward, John; Dunning, Stuart A.; Winter, Kate; Westoby, Matthew J.; Freeman, Stewart P. H. T.; Shanks, Richard P.; Sugden, David E.

    2016-01-01

    Establishing the trajectory of thinning of the West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) since the last glacial maximum (LGM) is important for addressing questions concerning ice sheet (in)stability and changes in global sea level. Here we present detailed geomorphological and cosmogenic nuclide data from the southern Ellsworth Mountains in the heart of the Weddell Sea embayment that suggest the ice sheet, nourished by increased snowfall until the early Holocene, was close to its LGM thickness at 10 ka. A pulse of rapid thinning caused the ice elevation to fall ∼400 m to the present level at 6.5–3.5 ka, and could have contributed 1.4–2 m to global sea-level rise. These results imply that the Weddell Sea sector of the WAIS contributed little to late-glacial pulses in sea-level rise but was involved in mid-Holocene rises. The stepped decline is argued to reflect marine downdraw triggered by grounding line retreat into Hercules Inlet. PMID:27545202

  2. Mid-Holocene pulse of thinning in the Weddell Sea sector of the West Antarctic ice sheet.

    PubMed

    Hein, Andrew S; Marrero, Shasta M; Woodward, John; Dunning, Stuart A; Winter, Kate; Westoby, Matthew J; Freeman, Stewart P H T; Shanks, Richard P; Sugden, David E

    2016-01-01

    Establishing the trajectory of thinning of the West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) since the last glacial maximum (LGM) is important for addressing questions concerning ice sheet (in)stability and changes in global sea level. Here we present detailed geomorphological and cosmogenic nuclide data from the southern Ellsworth Mountains in the heart of the Weddell Sea embayment that suggest the ice sheet, nourished by increased snowfall until the early Holocene, was close to its LGM thickness at 10 ka. A pulse of rapid thinning caused the ice elevation to fall ∼400 m to the present level at 6.5-3.5 ka, and could have contributed 1.4-2 m to global sea-level rise. These results imply that the Weddell Sea sector of the WAIS contributed little to late-glacial pulses in sea-level rise but was involved in mid-Holocene rises. The stepped decline is argued to reflect marine downdraw triggered by grounding line retreat into Hercules Inlet. PMID:27545202

  3. Evidence for a substantial West Antarctic ice sheet contribution to meltwater pulses and abrupt global sea level rise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fogwill, C. J.; Turney, C. S.; Golledge, N. R.; Etheridge, D. M.; Rubino, M.; Thornton, D.; Woodward, J.; Winter, K.; van Ommen, T. D.; Moy, A. D.; Curran, M. A.; Rootes, C.; Rivera, A.; Millman, H.

    2015-12-01

    During the last deglaciation (21,000 to 7,000years ago) global sea level rise was punctuated by several abrupt meltwater spikes triggered by the retreat of ice sheets and glaciers world-wide. However, the debate regarding the relative timing, geographical source and the physical mechanisms driving these rapid increases in sea level has catalyzed debate critical to predicting future sea level rise and climate. Here we present a unique record of West Antarctic Ice Sheet elevation change derived from the Patriot Hills blue ice area, located close to the modern day grounding line of the Institute Ice Stream in the Weddell Sea Embayment. Combined isotopic signatures and gas volume analysis from the ice allows us to develop a record of local ice sheet palaeo-altitude that is assessed against independent regional high-resolution ice sheet modeling studies, allowing us to demonstrate that past ice sheet elevations across this sector of the WSE were considerably higher than those suggested by current terrestrial reconstructions. We argue that ice in the WSE had a significant influence on both pre and post LGM sea level rise including MWP-1A (~14.6 ka) and during MWP-1B (11.7-11.6 ka), reconciling past sea level rise and demonstrating for the first time that this sector of the WAIS made a significant and direct contribution to post LGM sea level rise.

  4. Century-scale simulations of the response of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet to a warming climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cornford, S. L.; Martin, D. F.; Payne, A. J.; Ng, E. G.; Le Brocq, A. M.; Gladstone, R. M.; Edwards, T. L.; Shannon, S. R.; Agosta, C.; van den Broeke, M. R.; Hellmer, H. H.; Krinner, G.; Ligtenberg, S. R. M.; Timmermann, R.; Vaughan, D. G.

    2015-08-01

    We use the BISICLES adaptive mesh ice sheet model to carry out one, two, and three century simulations of the fast-flowing ice streams of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, deploying sub-kilometer resolution around the grounding line since coarser resolution results in substantial underestimation of the response. Each of the simulations begins with a geometry and velocity close to present-day observations, and evolves according to variation in meteoric ice accumulation rates and oceanic ice shelf melt rates. Future changes in accumulation and melt rates range from no change, through anomalies computed by atmosphere and ocean models driven by the E1 and A1B emissions scenarios, to spatially uniform melt rate anomalies that remove most of the ice shelves over a few centuries. We find that variation in the resulting ice dynamics is dominated by the choice of initial conditions and ice shelf melt rate and mesh resolution, although ice accumulation affects the net change in volume above flotation to a similar degree. Given sufficient melt rates, we compute grounding line retreat over hundreds of kilometers in every major ice stream, but the ocean models do not predict such melt rates outside of the Amundsen Sea Embayment until after 2100. Within the Amundsen Sea Embayment the largest single source of variability is the onset of sustained retreat in Thwaites Glacier, which can triple the rate of eustatic sea level rise.

  5. Anomalously high arsenic concentration in a West Antarctic ice core and its relationship to copper mining in Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwanck, Franciele; Simões, Jefferson C.; Handley, Michael; Mayewski, Paul A.; Bernardo, Ronaldo T.; Aquino, Francisco E.

    2016-01-01

    Arsenic variability records are preserved in snow and ice cores and can be utilized to reconstruct air pollution history. The Mount Johns ice core (79°55‧S; 94°23‧W and 91.2 m depth) was collected from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet in the 2008/09 austral summer. Here, we report the As concentration variability as determined by 2137 samples from the upper 45 m of this core using ICP-SFMS (CCI, University of Maine, USA). The record covers approximately 125 years (1883-2008) showing a mean concentration of 4.32 pg g-1. The arsenic concentration in the core follows global copper mining evolution, particularly in Chile (the largest producer of Cu). From 1940 to 1990, copper-mining production increased along with arsenic concentrations in the MJ core, from 1.92 pg g-1 (before 1900) to 7.94 pg g-1 (1950). In the last two decades, environmental regulations for As emissions have been implemented, forcing smelters to treat their gases to conform to national and international environmental standards. In Chile, decontamination plants required by the government started operating from 1993 to 2000. Thereafter, Chilean copper production more than doubled while As emission levels declined, and the same reduction was observed in the Mount Johns ice core. After 1999, arsenic concentrations in our samples decreased to levels comparable to the period before 1900.

  6. Life form and water source interact to determine active time and environment in cryptogams: an example from the maritime Antarctic.

    PubMed

    Schlensog, Mark; Green, T G Allan; Schroeter, Burkhard

    2013-09-01

    Antarctica, with its almost pristine conditions and relatively simple vegetation, offers excellent opportunities to investigate the influence of environmental factors on species performance, such information being crucial if the effects of possible climate change are to be understood. Antarctic vegetation is mainly cryptogamic. Cryptogams are poikilohydric and are only metabolically and photosynthetically active when hydrated. Activity patterns of the main life forms present, bryophytes (10 species, ecto- and endohydric), lichens (5 species) and phanerogams (2 species), were monitored for 21 days using chlorophyll a fluorescence as an indicator of metabolic activity and, therefore, of water regime at a mesic (hydration by meltwater) and a xeric (hydration by precipitation) site on Léonie Island/West Antarctic Peninsula (67°36'S). Length of activity depended mainly on site and form of hydration. Plants at the mesic site that were hydrated by meltwater were active for long periods, up to 100 % of the measurement period, whilst activity was much shorter at the xeric site where hydration was entirely by precipitation. There were also differences due to life form, with phanerogams and mesic bryophytes being most active and lichens generally much less so. The length of the active period for lichens was longer than in continental Antarctica but shorter than in the more northern Antarctic Peninsula. Light intensity when hydrated was positively related to the length of the active period. High activity species were strongly coupled to the incident light whilst low activity species were active under lower light levels and essentially uncoupled from incident light. Temperatures were little different between sites and also almost identical to temperatures, when active, for lichens in continental and peninsular Antarctica. Gradients in vegetation cover and growth rates across Antarctica are, therefore, not likely to be due to differences in temperature but more likely to

  7. Seasonal climate information preserved within West Antarctic ice cores and its relation to large-scale atmospheric circulation and regional sea ice variations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Küttel, M.; Steig, E. J.; Ding, Q.; Battisti, D. S.

    2010-12-01

    Recent evidence suggests that West Antarctica has been warming since at least the 1950s. With the instrumental record being limited to the mid-20th century, indirect information from stable isotopes (δ18O and δD, hereafter collectively δ) preserved within ice cores have commonly been used to place this warming into a long term context. Here, using a large number of δ records obtained during the International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition (ITASE), past variations in West Antarctic δ are not only investigated over time but also in space. This study therefore provides an important complement to longer records from single locations as e.g. the currently being processed West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) Divide ice core. Although snow accumulation rates at the ITASE sites in West Antarctica are variable, they are generally high enough to allow studies on sub-annual scale over the last 50-100 years. Here, we show that variations in δ in this region are strongly related to the state of the large-scale atmospheric circulation as well as sea ice variations in the adjacent Southern Ocean, with important seasonal changes. While a strong relationship to sea ice changes in the Ross and Amundsen Sea as well as to the atmospheric circulation offshore is found during austral fall (MAM) and winter (JJA), only modest correlations are found during spring (SON) and summer (DJF). Interestingly, the correlations with the atmospheric circulation in the latter two seasons have the strongest signal over the Antarctic continent, but not offshore - an important difference to MAM and JJA. These seasonal changes are in good agreement with the seasonally varying predominant circulation: meridional with more frequent storms in the Amundsen Sea during MAM and JJA and more zonal and stable during SON and DJF. The relationship to regional temperature is similarly seasonally variable with highest correlations found during MAM and JJA. Notably, the circulation pattern found to be strongest

  8. Two decades of inorganic carbon dynamics along the West Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hauri, C.; Doney, S. C.; Takahashi, T.; Erickson, M.; Jiang, G.; Ducklow, H. W.

    2015-11-01

    We present 20 years of seawater inorganic carbon measurements collected along the western shelf and slope of the Antarctic Peninsula. Water column observations from summertime cruises and seasonal surface underway pCO2 measurements provide unique insights into the spatial, seasonal, and interannual variability in this dynamic system. Discrete measurements from depths > 2000 m align well with World Ocean Circulation Experiment observations across the time series and underline the consistency of the data set. Surface total alkalinity and dissolved inorganic carbon data showed large spatial gradients, with a concomitant wide range of Ωarag (< 1 up to 3.9). This spatial variability was mainly driven by increasing influence of biological productivity towards the southern end of the sampling grid and meltwater input along the coast towards the northern end. Large inorganic carbon drawdown through biological production in summer caused high near-shore Ωarag despite glacial and sea-ice meltwater input. In support of previous studies, we observed Redfield behavior of regional C / N nutrient utilization, while the C / P (80.5 ± 2.5) and N / P (11.7 ± 0.3) molar ratios were significantly lower than the Redfield elemental stoichiometric values. Seasonal salinity-based predictions of Ωarag suggest that surface waters remained mostly supersaturated with regard to aragonite throughout the study. However, more than 20 % of the predictions for winters and springs between 1999 and 2013 resulted in Ωarag < 1.2. Such low levels of Ωarag may have implications for important organisms such as pteropods. Even though we did not detect any statistically significant long-term trends, the combination of on-going ocean acidification and freshwater input may soon induce more unfavorable conditions than the ecosystem experiences today.

  9. Comparing ice discharge through West Antarctic Gateways: Weddell vs. Amundsen Sea warming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, M. A.; Levermann, A.; Winkelmann, R.

    2015-03-01

    Future changes in Antarctic ice discharge will be largely controlled by the fate of the floating ice shelves, which exert a back-stress onto Antarctica's marine outlet glaciers. Ice loss in response to warming of the Amundsen Sea has been observed and investigated as a potential trigger for the marine ice-sheet instability. Recent observations and simulations suggest that the Amundsen Sea Sector might already be unstable which would have strong implications for global sea-level rise. At the same time, regional ocean projections show much stronger warm-water intrusion into ice-shelf cavities in the Weddell Sea compared to the observed Amundsen warming. Here we present results of numerical ice sheet modelling with the Parallel Ice Sheet Model (PISM) which show that idealized, step-function type ocean warming in the Weddell Sea leads to more immediate ice discharge with a higher sensitivity to small warming levels than the same warming in the Amundsen Sea. This is consistent with the specific combination of bedrock and ice topography in the Weddell Sea Sector which results in an ice sheet close to floatation. In response to even slight ocean warming, ice loss increases rapidly, peaks and declines within one century. While the cumulative ice loss in the Amundsen Sea Sector is of similar magnitude after five centuries of continued warming, ice loss increases at a slower pace and only for significantly higher warming levels. Although there is more marine ice stored above sea level in close vicinity of the grounding line compared to the Weddell Sea Sector, the ice sheet is farther from floatation and the grounding line initially retreats more slowly.

  10. The response of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet to ocean warming beneath the Filchner Ronne Ice Shelf

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goeller, Sebastian; Timmermann, Ralph; Thoma, Malte

    2015-04-01

    The ice flow at the margins of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) is moderated by large ice shelves. Their buttressing effect substantially controls the mass balance of the WAIS and thus its contribution to sea level rise. The stability of these ice shelves results from the balance of mass gain by accumulation and ice flow from the adjacent ice sheet and mass loss by calving and basal melting due to the ocean heat flux. Recent results of ocean circulation models indicate that warm circumpolar water of the Southern Ocean may override the submarine slope front of the Antarctic Continent and boost basal ice shelf melting. In particular, ocean simulations for several of the IPCC's future climate scenarios demonstrate the redirection of a warm coastal current into the Filchner Trough and underneath the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf (FRIS) within the next decades. In this study, we couple the finite elements ocean circulation model FESOM and the three-dimensional thermomechanical ice flow model RIMBAY to investigate the sensitivity of the ice dynamics within the entire FRIS catchment to simulated future basal shelf melt rates. Our simulations indicate a high sensitivity of the ice dynamics for the Möller and the Institute Ice Stream but only very little response of other ice streams like Rutford, Foundation and Recovery Ice Stream to enhanced basal shelf melting. The grounding line between the Möller and Institute Ice Streams is located on a submarine ridge in front of a deep trough further inland. In this area, basal shelf melting causes a local thinning of the FRIS. The consequent initial retreat of the grounding line continues once it reaches the adjacent reverse-sloped bedrock. We state, that a possible 'point of no return' for a vast grounding line retreat along this steep reverse bedrock slope might have been crossed already even for simulated present-day melt rates, indicating that the WAIS is currently not in equlibrium. Furthermore, our simulations show an

  11. Large-Ensemble Modeling of Past Variations in West Antarctic Embayments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pollard, D.; Deconto, R. M.

    2014-12-01

    Recent observations of thinning and retreat of the Pine Island and Thwaites Glaciers identify this sector of West Antarctica as particularly vulnerable to future climate change. To date, most future modeling of these glaciers has beenvalidated using recent and modern observations. As an alternate approach,we apply a hybrid 3-D ice sheet-shelf model to the last deglacial retreat in this sector, making use of geologic data of ice extents from ~20,000 years BP to present, both for the Amundsen Sea sector and also for the Ross and Weddellembayments.Following recent ice-sheet studies, we use Large-Ensemble statistical techniques, performing sets of ~500 to 1000 runs with varying model parameters. The model is run for the last 20 kyrs on 5 to 20-km grids spanning West Antarctica, with lateral boundary conditions from a prior continental-scale simulation. An objective score for each run is calculated using reconstructed past grounding lines, shelf extents, relative sea levels, and modern conditions. Runs are extended into the future (few millennia) with simple atmospheric and oceanic forcing. The goal is to produce calibrated probabilistic envelopes of model parameter ranges and simulated ice retreat.Preliminary results are presented for Large Ensembles with (i) Latin HyperCube sampling in high-dimensional parameter space, and (ii) dense sampling with a lower number of parameters. We focus on optimal parameter differencesbetween the 3 embayments, validation with other paleo data, contribution to meltwater pulses ~14 to 12 ka, and future projections. Most reasonable parameter combinations produce drastic future retreat into the interior Pine Island and Thwaites basins within ~2000 years, adding ~2 m to global sea-level rise.

  12. Research activities on Antarctic middle atmosphere by JARE 25th team

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hirasawa, T.; Eiwasaka, Y. AFTANAKA, M. agfujii, r.0 typ; Eiwasaka, Y. AFTANAKA, M. agfujii, r.0 typ

    1985-01-01

    The Antarctic Middle Atmosphere (AMA)-Japan research project was set about by the JARE (Japan Antarctic Research Expedition) 23rd team in 1982, and since then the JARE-24th and JARE-25th teams have been continuing reseach on the Antarctic Middle Atmosphere. Results gained by JARE-25th team members who are now working at Syowa Station (69.99 deg S, 39.35 deg E), Antarctica are presented. In their activities satellite measurements (Exos-C) and rocket soundings are used. Three rockets of the S310 type were launched at Syowa Station (Geomagnetic Latitude = 69.9 deg S) for the purpose of directly observing the electron density, ionospheric temperature, auroral patterns and luminosity in situ. Vertical profiles of electron density and auroral emission 4278A measured by three rockets are compared.

  13. An Artificial Neural Network Approach to Surface Melt Magnitude Retrieval over West Antarctic Ice Shelves Using Coupled MODIS Optical and Thermal Satellite Measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karmosky, C. C.; Lampkin, D. J.

    2009-12-01

    Ice shelf stability is of crucial importance in the Antarctic because shelves serve as buttresses to glacial ice advancing from the Antarctic Ice Sheet. Surface melt has been increasing over recent years, especially over the Antarctic Peninsula, contributing to disintegration of shelves such as Larsen. Satellite based assessments of melt from passive microwave systems are limited in that they only provide an indication of melt occurrence and have coarse resolution. Though this is useful in tracking the duration of melt, melt amount of magnitude is still unknown. Coupled optical/thermal surface measurements from MODIS were calibrated by estimates of liquid water fraction (LWF) in the upper 1cm of the firn derived from a one-dimensional thermal snowmelt model (SNTHERM). SNTHERM was forced by hourly meteorological data from automatic weather station data at seven reference sites spanning a range of melt conditions across several West Antarctic ice shelves. A calibration “curve” was developed using an artificial neural network platform to derive LWF for satellite composite periods covering the Antarctic summer months at a 4km resolution over the Larsen Ice Shelf, Ronne-Filchner Ice Shelf and the Ross Ice Shelf, ranging from near 0% LWF to upwards of 5% LWF on the Larsen Ice Shelf during the time of peak surface melt. Spatial and temporal variations in the amount of surface melt are seen to be related to both katabatic wind strength and wind shifts due to the progression of cyclones along the circumpolar vortex. Sea ice concentration along the ice shelf front, specifically the formation of polynyas, are also thought to be driving factors for surface melt as latent and sensible heat fluxes increase by one to three orders of magnitude as polynyas form.

  14. Evidence of rapid Cenozoic uplift of the shoulder escarpment of the Cenozoic West Antarctic rift system and a speculation on possible climate forcing

    SciTech Connect

    Behrendt, J.C. ); Cooper, A. )

    1991-04-01

    The Cenzoic West Antarctic rift system, characterized by Cenozoic bimodal alkalic volcanic rocks, extends over a largely ice-covered area, from the Ross Sea nearly to the Bellingshausen Sea. It is bounded on one side by a spectacular 4-to 5-km-high rift-shoulder scarp (maximum bedrock relief 5 to 7 km) from northern Victoria Land-Queen Maud Mountains to the Ellsworth-Whitmore-Horlick Mountains. Jurassic tholeiites crop out with the late Cenozoic volcanic rocks along the section of the Transantarctic Mountains from northern Victoria Land to the Horlick Mountains. The Cenozoic rift shoulder diverges here from the Jurassic tholeiite trend, and the tholeiites are exposed discontinuously along the lower elevation (1-2 km) section of the Transantarctic Mountains to the Weddell Sea. Various lines of evidence, no one of which is independently conclusive, lead the authors (as others have also suggested) to interpret the following. The Transantarctic Mountains part of the rift shoulder (and probably the entire shoulder) has been rising since about 60 Ma, at episodic rates of {approximately}1 km/m.y., most recently since mid-Pliocene time, rather than continuously at the mean rate of 100m/m.y. Uplift rates vary along the scarp, which is cut by transverse faults. The authors speculate that this uplift may have climatically forced the advance of the Antarctic ice sheet since the most recent warm period. They suggest a possible synergistic relation between episodic tectonism, mountain uplift, and volcanism in the Cenozoic West Antarctic rift system and waxing and waning of the Antarctic ice sheet beginning about earliest Oligocene time.

  15. Shield volcanoes of Marie Byrd Land, West Antarctic rift: oceanic island similarities, continental signature, and tectonic controls

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    LeMasurier, Wesley

    2013-06-01

    The Marie Byrd Land volcanic province is largely defined by 18 large (up to ~1,800 km3) alkaline shield volcanoes, each surmounted by a summit section of varied felsic rocks dominated by trachytic flows. They are distributed over a 500 × 800-km block-faulted dome within the West Antarctic rift. The basement contact of volcanic sections is ~500 masl at one site and 3,000 mbsl at another, 70 km away, which illustrates the scale of block faulting but complicates an understanding of volcanic structure. Furthermore, the continental ice sheet buries 16 volcanoes to progressively greater heights inland. However, five are sufficiently exposed to allow meaningful comparisons with alkaline oceanic island volcanoes; these comparisons are used as a guide to estimate the structure of Marie Byrd Land volcanoes. The type example for this study is Mt. Murphy, the most completely exposed volcano. It consists of a 1,400-m section of alkaline basalt overlain by trachyte and benmoreite flows that make up ~7-13 % of the volcano volume. In gross structure and composition, Mt. Murphy is similar to Gran Canaria volcano, Canary Islands, but the percent of felsic rock may be three times that of Gran Canaria, if the estimate is approximately correct. Departures from the oceanic island example are believed to represent the imprint of the Marie Byrd Land lithosphere and tectonic environment on volcano evolution. These include a lack of order in the sequence of felsic rock types, lack of progression toward more silica undersaturated compositions with time, absence of a highly undersaturated mafic resurgent stage, and perhaps, a relatively large volume of felsic rock.

  16. Subglacial hydrology indicates a major shift in dynamics of the West Antarctic Ross Ice Streams within the next two centuries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goeller, S.; Helm, V.; Thoma, M.; Grosfeld, K.

    2015-07-01

    The mass export of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) is dominated by fast flowing ice streams. Understanding their dynamics is a key to estimate the future integrity of the WAIS and its contributions to global sea level rise. This study focuses on the Ross Ice Streams (RIS) at the Siple Coast. In this sector, observations reveal a high variability of ice stream pathways and velocities which is assumed to be driven by subglacial hydrology. We compute subglacial water pathways for the present-day ice sheet and verify this assumption by finding high correlations between areas of enhanced basal water flow and the locations of the RIS. Moreover, we reveal that the ice flow velocities of the individual ice streams are correlated with the sizes of the water catchment areas draining underneath. The future development of the subglacial hydraulic environment is estimated by applying ice surface elevation change rates observed by ICESat and CryoSat-2 to the present-day ice sheet geometry and thus assessing prognostic basal pressure conditions. Our simulations consistently indicate that a major hydraulic tributary of the Kamb and Whillans Ice Stream (KIS and WIS) will be redirected underneath the Bindschadler Ice Stream (BIS) within the next two centuries. The water catchment area feeding underneath the BIS is estimated to grow by about 50 % while the lower part of the stagnated KIS becomes increasingly separated from its upper hydraulic tributaries. We conclude, that this might be a continuation of the subglacial hydraulic processes which caused the past stagnation of the KIS. The simulated hydraulic rerouting is also capable to explain the observed deceleration of the WIS and indicates a possible future acceleration of the BIS accompanied by an increased ice drainage of the corresponding ice sheet interior.

  17. Linear sea-level response to abrupt ocean warming of major West Antarctic ice basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mengel, M.; Feldmann, J.; Levermann, A.

    2016-01-01

    Antarctica's contribution to global sea-level rise has recently been increasing. Whether its ice discharge will become unstable and decouple from anthropogenic forcing or increase linearly with the warming of the surrounding ocean is of fundamental importance. Under unabated greenhouse-gas emissions, ocean models indicate an abrupt intrusion of warm circumpolar deep water into the cavity below West Antarctica's Filchner-Ronne ice shelf within the next two centuries. The ice basin's retrograde bed slope would allow for an unstable ice-sheet retreat, but the buttressing of the large ice shelf and the narrow glacier troughs tend to inhibit such instability. It is unclear whether future ice loss will be dominated by ice instability or anthropogenic forcing. Here we show in regional and continental-scale ice-sheet simulations, which are capable of resolving unstable grounding-line retreat, that the sea-level response of the Filchner-Ronne ice basin is not dominated by ice instability and follows the strength of the forcing quasi-linearly. We find that the ice loss reduces after each pulse of projected warm water intrusion. The long-term sea-level contribution is approximately proportional to the total shelf-ice melt. Although the local instabilities might dominate the ice loss for weak oceanic warming, we find that the upper limit of ice discharge from the region is determined by the forcing and not by the marine ice-sheet instability.

  18. Neogene-Quaternary Volcanic Alignments in the Transantarctic Mountains and West Antarctic Rift System of Southern Victoria Land, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paulsen, T. S.; Wilson, T. J.

    2004-12-01

    Neogene-Quaternary volcanism in southern Victoria Land, Antarctica, produced the Erebus Volcanic Province, a suite of alkaline volcanic rocks that extend from the Transantarctic Mountains rift-flank uplift to offshore localities within the West Antarctic rift system. We are mapping volcanic vent patterns in the province to detect alignments indicative of stress/strain patterns during rift evolution. In the southern sector of the Erebus Volcanic Province in the Royal Society Range Block of the Transantarctic Mountains, mapping shows that elliptical scoria cones, fissures, dikes, and linear vent arrays define volcanic alignments that have a dominant NNE trend, with subsidiary WNW trends. Age data for the alignments suggest that this pattern persisted from 14.6 to 0.25 Ma. We are currently completing mapping along an east-west transect crossing the rift margin, and results obtained so far within the rift region indicate a similar pattern of alignments. On the northern flank of Mount Morning, a large volcano just to the east of the Royal Society Range, elliptical scoria cones and linear vent arrays define volcanic alignments that have a dominant NE trend, with a subsidiary NNW trend. Available age data suggest that many of these cone alignments may be of Quaternary age. At Brown Peninsula, further east from the rift flank, cone alignments trend NNE and available ages range from 2 to 3 Ma. To the east of Brown Peninsula, cone alignments trend NW at Black Island, but are of uncertain age; age data on Black Island range from 11 to 3.4 Ma. At White Island, the farthest east into the rift, cone alignments trend NNE and available age data suggest volcanism as young as 0.2 Ma. Although some differences in cone alignment trends are apparent between the rift flank and the rift system across our transect, both regions appear to be dominated by NE trending alignments, which implies a WNW to NW minimum horizontal stress (Shmin) direction. This is oblique to the ENE Shmin Cape

  19. Channelised Subglacial Hydrology Modulates West Antarctic Ice Stream Basal Conditions and Flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siegert, M. J.; Ross, N.; Schroeder, D. M.

    2014-12-01

    Ice-sheet models show a coincidence between ice flux and basal water-flow maxima, as water at the bed of an ice sheets acts generally to lubricate the basal interface. Hydrological flow paths support this view with ice and basal-water drainage basins being well-aligned. At the scale of an individual ice stream, however, we reveal a significant offset of this alignment. Airborne geophysical data across the trunk of the Institute Ice Stream reveal how subglacial hydrology acts to subdue ice flow in two ways: first, by removing basal sediment, which decreases opportunity for the deformation of basal material and increases basal roughness; and, second, by reducing basal water pressures. The macro flow of basal water beneath the ice stream is known well from high-resolution bed elevation data and satellite imagery, which reveal well-organised water flow along the Robin Subglacial Basin, terminating at the grounding line as a channel carving upwards into the adjacent ice shelf. The highest ice flow is offset from this channelized zone, however. Maximum velocities are located where the bed is very smooth and radio-echo returns are strong; consistent with a dilated weak sedimentary material at the ice stream bed. The geophysical evidence is consistent with the removal of basal sediment from the deepest regions of the Robin Subglacial Basin by the action of water and illustrates how accumulation of sedimentary material from ice streams is not necessary a precise locator for maximum ice-flow velocities at the scale of individual ice streams. The figure shows a radar section across the Institute Ice Stream, West Antarctica, revealing two modes of basal environment. One is flat and smooth, indicative of a soft wet bed. The other is rougher, as a consequence of the removal of basal material and water channelisation. This latter region is located in the deepest regions of the Robin Subglacial Basin. The former region is located beneath the highest ice flow speeds.

  20. Observations of Turbulent Mixing in an Active Antarctic Coastal Polynya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muench, R. D.; Padman, L.; Jacobs, S. S.

    2006-12-01

    Wintertime polynyas, or semipermanent open water areas, occur adjacent to the Antarctic coast in response to strong, offshore katabatic winds and are sites for rapid surface ice formation, brine rejection, and formation of High Salinity Shelf Water (HSSW) that contributes to Antarctic deep and bottom waters. We report on a time series of CTD and microstructure profiles obtained from the Mertz Glacier Polynya, Antarctica over a 5- hour period during October (late austral winter) 2004. Winds were offshore at ~5 ms-1 during the observations, and air temperatures were <-10° C. These conditions directly followed cessation of much stronger 20-25 ms-1 winds at the same low temperatures. The upper layer was initially vertically homogeneous to ~140 m depth. During the next 4 h it deepened to ~250 m before beginning to shoal. During this time multiple salinity-stratified layers developed through which temperature remained effectively at the freezing point. Salinity increase in this layer was consistent with ~4 cm new ice formation over the 5-hour duration of the observations; however, we ascribe much of the upper layer evolution to lateral advective processes. Vertical eddy diffusivity Kz, computed from shear microstructure, exhibited pronounced maxima above and below the interface underlying the upper layer, and also in association with the evolving upper layer salinity structures. Values of Kz within these maxima often exceeded 5x10-3 m2s-1. We will address the relative contributions of current shear, convective turbulence and advection to upper-ocean evolution in the polynya and discuss the relevance of these results to regionally significant processes such as formation of HSSW.

  1. A history of leisure activities at SANAE, an Antarctic research base (1970-93).

    PubMed

    van der Merwe, F J

    1998-04-01

    Leisure activities of the crew at the South African National Antarctic Expedition (SANAE) are reported for the period from 1970-1993. Favorite pastimes at the underground base were card games, pool, darts, movies and videos, music, reading, and mind-games. Cliques and hierarchies developed among the men. Outdoor activities were limited to the summer. The significance of physical activities in social isolation is explored. PMID:11541838

  2. Unique Aeromagnetic-radar Ice-sounding Survey over the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Allows Three Dimensional Definition of Sources of Magnetic Anomalies Caused by Subglacial Volcanic Sources at the Bed of the Ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Behrendt, J. C.; Casertz; Soar Teams

    2011-12-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) flows through the volcanically active West Antarctic Rift System (WARS). The aeromagnetic method has proven the most useful geophysical tool for studying subglacial volcanic rocks beneath the WAIS since early surveys in the 1950s. The Central West Antarctica (CWA) aerogeophysical survey covering ~354,000 km2 (about the area of Nevada and California combined) over the WAIS, consisting of a 5-km line-spaced, orthogonal set of aeromagnetic, radar ice-sounding and aerogravity measurements, is a unique Antarctic data set. This 1990-97 survey (CASERTZ and SOAR), still provides invaluable information on subglacial volcanic rocks, particularly when combined with widely spaced older aeromagnetic flight lines over a much greater area. These combined survey data indicate numerous high-amplitude (100->1000 nT), 5-50 km width, shallow-source, magnetic anomalies over a very extensive area (>1.2 x 106 km2) mostly resulting from subglacial volcanic eruptions. I interpreted the anomalies sampled in the CWA survey as defining ~1000 "volcanic centers" requiring high remanent normal magnetizations in the present field direction. About 400 of these anomaly sources (conservatively selected) are correlated with bed topography. The tops of >80% of these anomaly sources have <200 m relief at the bed of the WAIS. They appear modified by moving ice, requiring a younger age than the WAIS (~25 Ma). The 5 km by 5 km orthogonal flight line survey obviated aliasing of the magnetic and radar ice sounding data, because it is approximately equivalent to the flight elevation above the ice (1 km) surface plus the ice thickness (2-3 km); it reveals the magnetic anomalies and the tops of volcanic sources at its bed in three dimensions. Models (2 1/2 D) fit to a number of the magnetic anomalies, whose sources are at the bed of the ice sheet are constrained by topography measured by the radar ice sounding. Volcanoes in the WARS are <34 Ma, but at least four are active

  3. Micromorphological features of the fine earth and skeletal fractions of soils of West Antarctica in the areas of Russian Antarctic stations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abakumov, E. V.; Gagarina, E. I.; Sapega, V. F.; Vlasov, D. Yu.

    2013-12-01

    Micromorphological features of the fine earth and skeletal fractions of soils of West Antarctica forming under different conditions of pedogenesis have been studied in the areas of Russian Antarctic stations. The processes of mineral weathering and alteration of rock fragments are more pronounced in the Subantarctic soils with better developed humification and immobilization of iron compounds under conditions of surface overmoistening. The biogenic accumulative processes in the soils of King George Island result in the appearance of initial forms of humic plasma that have not been detected in the Antarctic soils in the areas of the Russkaya and Leningradskaya stations. Humus films on mineral grains are present in the soils of King George Island, and organic plasmic material is present in the ornithogenic soils under penguin guano on Lindsey Island. High-latitude Antarctic soils may contain surface concentrations of organic matter; rock fragments are covered by iron oxides and soluble salts. The formation of amorphous organic plasma takes place in the ornithogenic soils of Lindsey Island. The microprobe analysis indicates the presence of local concentrations of organic matter and pedogenic compounds not only on the surface of rock fragments but also in the fissures inside them. This analysis has also proved the translocation of guano-derived organic substances inside rock fragments through a system of fissures in the soils of Lindsey Island and the development of a network of pores inside rock fragments in the soils of King George Island.

  4. Antimicrobial activity of Antarctic bryozoans: an ecological perspective with potential for clinical applications.

    PubMed

    Figuerola, Blanca; Sala-Comorera, Laura; Angulo-Preckler, Carlos; Vázquez, Jennifer; Jesús Montes, M; García-Aljaro, Cristina; Mercadé, Elena; Blanch, Anicet R; Avila, Conxita

    2014-10-01

    The antimicrobial activity of Antarctic bryozoans and the ecological functions of the chemical compounds involved remain largely unknown. To determine the significant ecological and applied antimicrobial effects, 16 ether and 16 butanol extracts obtained from 13 different bryozoan species were tested against six Antarctic (including Psychrobacter luti, Shewanella livingstonensis and 4 new isolated strains) and two bacterial strains from culture collections (Escherichia coli and Bacillus cereus). Results from the bioassays reveal that all ether extracts exhibited antimicrobial activity against some bacteria. Only one butanol extract produced inhibition, indicating that antimicrobial compounds are mainly lipophilic. Ether extracts of the genus Camptoplites inhibited the majority of bacterial strains, thus indicating a broad-spectrum of antimicrobial activity. Moreover, most ether extracts presented activities against bacterial strains from culture collections, suggesting the potential use of these extracts as antimicrobial drugs against pathogenic bacteria. PMID:25232675

  5. Rayleigh-wave group velocity distribution in the Antarctic region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kobayashi, Reiji; Zhao, Dapeng

    2004-03-01

    We determined 2D group velocity distribution of Rayleigh waves at periods of 20-150 s in the Antarctic region using a tomographic inversion technique. The data are recorded by both permanent networks and temporary arrays. In East Antarctica the velocities are high at periods of 90-150 s, suggesting that the root of East Antarctica is very deep. The velocities in West Antarctica are low at all periods, which may be related to the volcanic activity and the West Antarctic Rift System. Low velocity anomalies appear at periods of 40-140 s along the Southeastern Indian Ridge and the western part of the Pacific Antarctic Ridge. The velocities are only slightly low around the Atlantic Indian Ridge, Southwestern Indian Ridge, and the eastern part of the Pacific Antarctic Ridge, where the spreading rates are small. Around two hotspots, the Mount Erebus and Balleny Islands, the velocity is low at periods of 50-150 s.

  6. Changes in the west antarctic ice sheet since 1963 from declassified satellite photography

    PubMed

    Bindschadler; Vornberger

    1998-01-30

    Comparison of declassified satellite photography taken in 1963 with more recent satellite imagery reveals that large changes have occurred in the region where an active ice stream enters the Ross Ice Shelf. Ice stream B has widened by 4 kilometers, at a rate much faster than suggested by models, and has decreased in speed by 50 percent. The ice ridge between ice streams B and C has eroded 14 kilometers. These changes, along with changes in the crevassing around Crary Ice Rise, imply that this region's velocity field shifted during this century. PMID:9445471

  7. Revealing potential past collapses of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet - Upcoming drilling in the Amundsen Sea Embayment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuhn, Gerhard; Gohl, Karsten; Uenzelmann-Neben, Gabriele; Bickert, Torsten; Schulz, Michael; Larter, Robert D.; Hillenbrand, Claus-Dieter

    2014-05-01

    The West Antarctic Ice-Sheet (WAIS) is likely to have been subject to very dynamic changes during its history as most of its base is grounded below modern sea-level, making it particularly sensitive to climate changes. Its collapse would result in global sea-level rise of 3-5 m. The reconstruction and quantification of possible partial or full collapses of the WAIS in the past can provide important constraints for ice-sheet models, used for projecting its future behaviour and resulting sea-level rise. Large uncertainties exist regarding the chronology, extent, rates as well as spatial and temporal variability of past advances and retreats of the WAIS across the continental shelves. By using the seafloor drilling device MeBo during an RV Polarstern cruise scheduled for early 2015, a series of sediment cores will be drilled on the Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) shelf, where seismic data show glacially-derived sequences covered by only a thin veneer of postglacial deposits in some areas. From analyses of seismic data, we infer that interglacial sediments can be sampled which may have been deposited under seasonally open water conditions and thus contain datable microfossil-bearing material. A shallow basin near the Pine Island Glacier front will be one of the prime targets for the drilling. The near-horizontal seismic reflection horizons may represent a sequence of continuously deposited, mainly terrigenous material, including ice-rafted debris, meltwater deposits and hemipelagic sediments deposited rapidly during the Holocene or a series of unconformities caused by erosion resulting from grounding line oscillations through many glacial cycles. Subglacial bedforms imaged in multibeam bathymetric data indicate fast glacial flow over some shelf areas of the ASE, where seismic profiles show acoustic basement near the seafloor. It is unknown, whether fast ice-flow in these areas was facilitated by water-lubricated sliding over bedrock or presence of a thin layer of

  8. Constraints on the last deglaciation of the Ross Sea Sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) from 10Be dating

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bill, N. S.; Clark, P. U.; Kurz, M. D.; Marcott, S. A.; Caffee, M. W.

    2014-12-01

    We present new 10Be surface exposure ages from glacial erratic boulders from several locations in McMurdo Sound in order to constrain the deglacial history of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Previous model and field data indicate that the present day Ross Ice Shelf was a grounded ice sheet, with the grounding line extending to near the continental shelf edge during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). However, the timing and rate of the last deglaciation of the Ross Sea Sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet remain uncertain. We sampled granitic and basaltic erratic boulders for dating with the cosmogenic nuclides 10Be and 3He; in situ 14C dating will be used to assess complex burial histories. The 10Be ages on erratics near or at the upper limit of Ross Sea Drift that do not appear to have inheritance range from 17 to 26 ka. 10Be ages from erratics below the limit of the (LGM) Ross Sea Drift suggest final deglaciation by ~11 ka. New 10Be ages from more highly weathered glacial deposits above the Ross Sea drift near Blue Glacier suggest an age range of 141 to 171 ka.

  9. Cosmogenic 10Be Depth Profile in top 560 m of West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide Ice Core

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Welten, K. C.; Woodruff, T. E.; Caffee, M. W.; Edwards, R.; McConnell, J. R.; Bisiaux, M. M.; Nishiizumi, K.

    2009-12-01

    Concentrations of cosmogenic 10Be in polar ice samples are a function of variations in solar activity, geomagnetic field strength, atmospheric mixing and annual snow accumulation rates. The 10Be depth profile in ice cores also provides independent chronological markers to tie Antarctic to Greenland ice cores and to tie Holocene ice cores to the 14C dendrochronology record. We measured 10Be concentrations in 187 samples from depths of 0-560 m of the main WAIS Divide core, WDC06A. The ice samples are typically 1-2 kg and represent 2-4 m of ice, equivalent to an average temporal resolution of ~12 years, based on the preliminary age-depth scale proposed for the WDC core, (McConnell et al., in prep). Be, Al and Cl were separated using ion exchange chromatography techniques and the 10Be concentrations were measured by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) at PRIME lab. The 10Be concentrations range from 8.1 to 19.1 x 10^3 at/g, yielding an average of (13.1±2.1) x 10^3 at/g. Adopting an average snow accumulation rate of 20.9 cm weq/yr, as derived from the age-depth scale, this value corresponds to an average 10Be flux of (2.7±0.5) x 10^5 atoms/yr/cm2. This flux is similar to that of the Holocene part of the Siple Dome (Nishiizumi and Finkel, 2007) and Dome Fuji (Horiuchi et al. 2008) ice cores, but ~30% lower than the value of 4.0 x 10^5 atoms/yr/cm2 for GISP2 (Finkel and Nishiizumi, 1997). The periods of low solar activity, known as Oort, Wolf, Spörer, Maunder and Dalton minima, show ~20% higher 10Be concentrations/fluxes than the periods of average solar activity in the last millennium. The maximum 10Be fluxes during some of these periods of low solar activity are up to ~50% higher than average 10Be fluxes, as seen in other polar ice cores, which makes these peaks suitable as chronologic markers. We will compare the 10Be record in the WAIS Divide ice core with that in other Antarctic as well as Greenland ice cores and with the 14C treering record. Acknowledgment. This

  10. Coring to the West Antarctic ice sheet bed with a new Deep Ice Sheet Coring (DISC) drill

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bentley, C. R.; Taylor, K. C.; Shturmakov, A. J.; Mason, W. P.; Emmel, G. R.; Lebar, D. A.

    2005-05-01

    As a contribution to IPY 2007-2008, the U.S. ice core research community, supported by the National Science Foundation, plans to core through the West Antarctic ice sheet (WAIS) at the ice-flow divide between the Ross Sea and Amundsen Sea drainage systems. The aim is to develop a unique series of interrelated climatic, ice-dynamic, and biologic records focused on understanding interactions among global earth systems. There will be approximately 15 separate but synergistic projects to analyze the ice and interpret the records. The most significant expected outcome of the WAIS Divide program will be climate records for the last ~40,000 years with an annually resolved chronology (through layer counting), comparable to the records from central Greenland. The data will also extend, at lower temporal resolution, to approximately 100,000 BP. These records will permit comparison of environmental conditions between the northern and southern hemispheres, and study of greenhouse gas concentrations in the paleoatmosphere, with unprecedented detail. To accomplish the coring, an innovative new Deep Ice Sheet Coring (DISC) drill is being built at the University of Wisconsin. The modular design of the bore-hole assembly (sonde) provides high flexibility for producing a 122 mm diameter ice core to depths of 4,000 m with maximum core lengths of 4 m. The DISC drill has a rotating outer barrel that can be used with or without an inner barrel designed to improve core recovery in brittle ice. Separate and independent motors for the drill and pump allow cutter speeds from 0 to 150 rpm and pump rates from 0 to 140 gpm. The high pumping rate should alleviate problems drilling in warm ice near the bed; it also helps make tripping speeds several times faster than with the old US drill. Other innovations include vibration and acoustic sensors for monitoring the drilling process, a segmented core barrel to avoid the formerly persistent problem of bent core barrels, and a high-speed data

  11. Geophysical evidence of a Large Igneous Province (LIP) in the West Antarctic Rift System (WARS), and its potential influence on the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Behrendt, J. C.

    2010-12-01

    The WAIS flows through the volcanically active WARS. The inland rift shoulder ranges from 4-5 km elevation, (5-7 km relief, the greatest in the world); it is coincident with the Transantarctic Mountains from northern Victoria land bordering the Ross Sea, south along the west and south side of the Ross Ice Shelf to the Horlick Mountains. It forms the boundary between East and West Antarctica in this area, but diverges to the Ellsworth Mountains and forms the inland boundary of the WAIS and WARS there. Throughout the WARS shoulder to the Horlick Mountains, exposures of mostly late Cenozoic alkaline volcanic rocks are reported, as is the case in the coastal Marie Byrd Land area on the Southern Ocean aide of the WARS. The Transantarctic Mountains, continue at a much lower elevation (2000-750 m) to form the boundary between East and West Antarctica in the Filchner Ice Shelf area. Aeromagnetic and radar ice-sounding surveys over the WAIS indicated numerous high-amplitude (100->1000 nT),5-50-km width, shallow-source, magnetic anomalies over a very extensive area (>500,000 km2 ) that has been interpreted as evidence of mostly subglacial volcanic eruptions (“volcanic centers”). Behrendt et al, (2005, 2008) interpreted these anomalies as >1000 "volcanic centers" requiring high remanent normal (and at least 10% reversed) magnetizations in the present field direction. These data were interpreted to show that >80% of the anomaly sources at the bed of the WAIS, were modified by the moving ice, requiring a younger age than the WAIS (~25 Ma). Several active volcanoes have shown evidence of eruption through the WAIS and several other active volcanoes are present beneath the WAIS. Although exposed volcanoes surrounding the WAIS extend in age to ~34 Ma., Mt Erebus (<1 Ma), Mt. Melbourne (<0.26 Ma), and Mt. Takahe (<0.1 Ma) are examples of active volcanoes in the WAIS area. However, most "volcanic centers" are buried beneath the WAIS. If only a very small percentage of these >1000

  12. Photoprotective and toxicological activities of extracts from the Antarctic moss Sanionia uncinata

    PubMed Central

    Fernandes, Andréia da Silva; Alencar, Alexandre Santos; Evangelista, Heitor; Mazzei, José Luiz; Felzenszwalb, Israel

    2015-01-01

    Background: The Antarctic moss Sanionia uncinata (Hedw.) Loeske has shown high ultraviolet (UV)-absorbers content after exposition to high levels of UV-B radiation and can be an important source of antioxidants. Objective: The aim was to investigate photoprotection and mutagenicity by the aqueous extract (AE) and hydroethanolic extract (HE) from the Antarctic moss S. uncinata. Materials and Methods: Photoprotective activities were determined through survival curves of Escherichia coli strains, after UV irradiation in an aqueous solution of thymine and in vitro sun protection factor (SPF). The Salmonella/microsome assays were applied to assess the mutagenicity. Results: Both extracts induced photoprotection against UV-C radiation. The AE showed a higher protection than the hydroethanolic one against UV-induced thymine dimerization. The SPFs were low in both extracts. In association to benzophenone-3 a significant increase in the SPF was detected for the AE, and a significant decrease was induced by the HE. No mutagenicity was found in the both extracts. Furthermore, it was observed absence of cytotoxicity. Conclusion: Water-extractable compounds seem to contribute on photoprotection of this Antarctic moss. PMID:25709208

  13. Semi-empirical models for chlorine activation and ozone depletion in the Antarctic stratosphere: proof of concept

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huck, P. E.; Bodeker, G. E.; Kremser, S.; McDonald, A. J.; Rex, M.; Struthers, H.

    2013-03-01

    Two semi-empirical models were developed for the Antarctic stratosphere to relate the shift of species within total chlorine (Cly = HCl + ClONO2 + HOCl + 2 × Cl2 + 2×Cl2O2 + ClO + Cl) into the active forms (here: ClOx = 2×Cl2O2 + ClO), and to relate the rate of ozone destruction to ClOx. These two models provide a fast and computationally inexpensive way to describe the inter- and intra-annual evolution of ClOx and ozone mass deficit (OMD) in the Antarctic spring. The models are based on the underlying physics/chemistry of the system and capture the key chemical and physical processes in the Antarctic stratosphere that determine the interaction between climate change and Antarctic ozone depletion. They were developed considering bulk effects of chemical mechanisms for the duration of the Antarctic vortex period and quantities averaged over the vortex area. The model equations were regressed against observations of daytime ClO and OMD providing a set of empirical fit coefficients. Both semi-empirical models are able to explain much of the intra- and inter-annual variability observed in daily ClOx and OMD time series. This proof-of-concept paper outlines the semi-empirical approach to describing the evolution of Antarctic chlorine activation and ozone depletion.

  14. Semi-empirical models for chlorine activation and ozone depletion in the Antarctic stratosphere: proof of concept

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huck, P. E.; Bodeker, G. E.; Kremser, S.; McDonald, A. J.; Rex, M.; Struthers, H.

    2012-10-01

    Two semi-empirical models were developed for the Antarctic stratosphere to relate the shift of species within total chlorine (Cly = HCl + ClONO2 + HOCl + 2 × Cl2 + 2 × Cl2O2 + ClO + Cl) into the active forms (here: ClOx = 2 × Cl2O2 + ClO), and to relate the rate of ozone destruction to ClOx. These two models provide a fast and computationally inexpensive way to describe the inter- and intra-annual evolution of ClOx and ozone mass deficit (OMD) in the Antarctic spring. The models are based on the underlying physics/chemistry of the system and capture the key chemical and physical processes in the Antarctic stratosphere that determine the interaction between climate change and Antarctic ozone depletion. They were developed considering bulk effects of chemical mechanisms for the duration of the Antarctic vortex period and quantities averaged over the vortex area. The model equations were regressed against observations of daytime ClO and OMD providing a set of empirical fit coefficients. Both semi-empirical models are able to explain much of the intra- and inter-annual variability observed in daily ClOx and OMD time series. This proof-of-concept paper outlines the semi-empirical approach to describing the evolution of Antarctic chlorine activation and ozone depletion.

  15. Activation of macrophages by an exopolysaccharide isolated from Antarctic Psychrobacter sp. B-3

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Leiye; Sun, Guojie; Wei, Jingfang; Wang, Yingze; Du, Chao; Li, Jiang

    2016-09-01

    An exopolysaccharide (EPS) was isolated and purified from an Antarctic psychrophilic bacterium B-3, identified as Psychrobacter sp., and the activation of RAW264.7 cells by B-3 EPS was investigated. The results show that B-3 EPS, over a certain concentration range, promoted cell viability, nitric oxide production, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)α secretion, and phagocytic ability. Furthermore, TAK-242, an inhibitor of the toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) significantly reduced nitric oxide production by these cells after stimulation with B-3 EPS. Moreover, B-3 EPS induced p65 phosphorylation and IκBα degradation in these cells. In conclusion, B-3 EPS might have activated RAW264.7 cells by combining with TLR4 on cell surface and triggering activation of NF-κB signaling pathways, implying that this EPS could activate macrophages and regulate initial immune response.

  16. Activation of macrophages by an exopolysaccharide isolated from Antarctic Psychrobacter sp. B-3

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Leiye; Sun, Guojie; Wei, Jingfang; Wang, Yingze; Du, Chao; Li, Jiang

    2016-01-01

    An exopolysaccharide (EPS) was isolated and purified from an Antarctic psychrophilic bacterium B-3, identified as Psychrobacter sp., and the activation of RAW264.7 cells by B-3 EPS was investigated. The results show that B-3 EPS, over a certain concentration range, promoted cell viability, nitric oxide production, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)α secretion, and phagocytic ability. Furthermore, TAK-242, an inhibitor of the toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) significantly reduced nitric oxide production by these cells after stimulation with B-3 EPS. Moreover, B-3 EPS induced p65 phosphorylation and IκBα degradation in these cells. In conclusion, B-3 EPS might have activated RAW264.7 cells by combining with TLR4 on cell surface and triggering activation of NF-κB signaling pathways, implying that this EPS could activate macrophages and regulate initial immune response.

  17. Relative roles of different types of PSC to Antarctic ozone depletion in polar spring caused by chlorine activation and denitrification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirner, Ole; Müller, Rolf; Khosrawi, Farah; Ruhnke, Roland

    2015-04-01

    It is well known that heterogeneous reactions on the surfaces of PSC particles and denitrification of the stratosphere are the cause for Antarctic ozone depletion in polar spring, but the relative roles of different types of PSCs is an open question. We use multi-year simulations from 2005 to 2014 of the chemistry-climate model ECHAM5/MESSy Atmospheric chemistry (EMAC) to investigate the impact that various types of PSCs have on Antarctic ozone loss. One standard and three sensitivity EMAC simulations (nudged with ERA-Interim) have been performed to evaluate the contribution of liquid, NAT and ice particles to ozone depletion in Antarctic winter and spring due to chlorine activation by heterogeneous chemistry on their surfaces. In the three sensitivity simulations, we changed the heterogeneous chemistry on PSC particles by switching on and off the chemistry on liquid, NAT and ice particles. Further sensitivity simulations are performed to evaluate the contribution of NAT to Antarctic ozone depletion through denitrification of the stratosphere. With the help of these different EMAC simulations we will show the significance of liquid, NAT and ice particles to Antarctic ozone depletion caused by chlorine activation and denitrification.

  18. An unusual early Holocene diatom event north of the Getz Ice Shelf (Amundsen Sea): Implications for West Antarctic Ice Sheet development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Esper, O.; Gersonde, R.; Hillenbrand, C.; Kuhn, G.; Smith, J.

    2011-12-01

    Modern global change affects not only the polar north but also, and to increasing extent, the southern high latitudes, especially the Antarctic regions covered by the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). Consequently, knowledge of the mechanisms controlling past WAIS dynamics and WAIS behaviour at the last deglaciation is critical to predict its development in a future warming world. Geological and palaeobiological information from major drainage areas of the WAIS, like the Amundsen Sea Embayment, shed light on the history of the WAIS glaciers. Sediment records obtained from a deep inner shelf basin north of Getz Ice Shelf document a deglacial warming in three phases. Above a glacial diamicton and a sediment package barren of microfossils that document sediment deposition by grounded ice and below an ice shelf or perennial sea ice cover (possibly fast ice), respectively, a sediment section with diatom assemblages dominated by sea ice taxa indicates ice shelf retreat and seasonal ice-free conditions. This conclusion is supported by diatom-based summer temperature reconstructions. The early retreat was followed by a phase, when exceptional diatom ooze was deposited around 12,500 cal. years B.P. [1]. Microscopical inspection of this ooze revealed excellent preservation of diatom frustules of the species Corethron pennatum together with vegetative Chaetoceros, thus an assemblage usually not preserved in the sedimentary record. Sediments succeeding this section contain diatom assemblages indicating rather constant Holocene cold water conditions with seasonal sea ice. The deposition of the diatom ooze can be related to changes in hydrographic conditions including strong advection of nutrients. However, sediment focussing in the partly steep inner shelf basins cannot be excluded as a factor enhancing the thickness of the ooze deposits. It is not only the presence of the diatom ooze but also the exceptional preservation and the species composition of the diatom assemblage

  19. LGM-extent of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet offshore from the Hobbs Coast, based on paleo-ice stream bed observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klages, J.; Kuhn, G.; Hillenbrand, C.; Graham, A. G.; Smith, J.; Larter, R. D.; Gohl, K.

    2012-12-01

    Paleo-ice stream beds that are exposed today on the West Antarctic continental shelf provide unique archives of conditions at the base of the past ice sheet, that are difficult to assess beneath its modern, extant counterpart. During the last decade, several of these paleo-ice stream beds have been studied in detail to reconstruct the extent of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) at the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), the patterns of ice drainage, and the timing of grounding-line retreat during the last deglaciation. However, despite significant advances, such information still remains poorly constrained in numerous drainage sectors of the WAIS. In particular, the maximum extent of ice at the LGM remains ambiguous for key drainage basins of the ice sheet. Whether the WAIS extended to the shelf break around the continent, or advanced only partially across its sea bed, is a crucial piece of information required for reconstructing and modeling patterns of ice-sheet change from past to present. Here we present marine geological and geophysical data that we collected on R/V "Polarstern" expedition ANT-XXVI/3 in early 2010 to investigate the extent, flow, and retreat of the WAIS, from an especially poorly studied part of the West Antarctic shelf, offshore from the Hobbs Coast in the western Amundsen Sea. Here, a landward deepening paleo-ice stream trough is incised into the shelf. The seafloor within the western-central part of the trough is characterized by a large trough-wide grounding zone wedge, ~70 m thick and ~17 km long, which overlies a high of seaward dipping sedimentary strata. The back-slope of the GZW is characterized by highly elongate streamlined bedforms suggesting fast paleo-ice flow towards NW. The crest of the wedge has been cross-cutted by iceberg keels. In contrast, the outer shelf seafloor offshore the GZW is predominantly smooth and featureless, although there is some evidence locally for iceberg scouring. A radiocarbon age from calcareous microfossils

  20. Regional seismic stratigraphic correlations of the Ross Sea: Implications for the tectonic history of the West Antarctic Rift System

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Decesari, Robert C.; Sorlien, Christopher C.; Luyendyk, Bruce P.; Wilson, Douglas S.; Bartek, Louis; Diebold, John; Hopkins, Sarah E.

    2007-01-01

    Using existing and new seismic reflection data, new and updated correlations of late Oligocene-early Miocene RSS-2 strata were made between the southern parts of Ross Sea basins. Previous studies documented Cretaceous extension across much of Ross Sea. We interpret that Cenozoic extension also occurred across Ross Sea. Subsidence during and following this extension deepened existing basins and may have initiated basins in the west, subsiding ridges between basins below sea level during the late Oligocene. Pre-Oligocene strata record cessation of L. Cretaceous extension in easternmost Ross Sea. Successively younger Cenozoic extension occurred from east to west across the rest of Ross Sea.

  1. Antarctic Polar Descent and Planetary Wave Activity Observed in ISAMS CO from April to July 1992

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allen, D. R.; Stanford, J. L.; Nakamura, N.; Lopez-Valverde, M. A.; Lopez-Puertas, M.; Taylor, F. W.; Remedios, J. J.

    2000-01-01

    Antarctic polar descent and planetary wave activity in the upper stratosphere and lower mesosphere are observed in ISAMS CO data from April to July 1992. CO-derived mean April-to-May upper stratosphere descent rates of 15 K/day (0.25 km/day) at 60 S and 20 K/day (0.33 km/day) at 80 S are compared with descent rates from diabatic trajectory analyses. At 60 S there is excellent agreement, while at 80 S the trajectory-derived descent is significantly larger in early April. Zonal wavenumber 1 enhancement of CO is observed on 9 and 28 May, coincident with enhanced wave 1 in UKMO geopotential height. The 9 May event extends from 40 to 70 km and shows westward phase tilt with height, while the 28 May event extends from 40 to 50 km and shows virtually no phase tilt with height.

  2. Large ensemble modeling of the last deglacial retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet: comparison of simple and advanced statistical techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pollard, David; Chang, Won; Haran, Murali; Applegate, Patrick; DeConto, Robert

    2016-05-01

    A 3-D hybrid ice-sheet model is applied to the last deglacial retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet over the last ˜ 20 000 yr. A large ensemble of 625 model runs is used to calibrate the model to modern and geologic data, including reconstructed grounding lines, relative sea-level records, elevation-age data and uplift rates, with an aggregate score computed for each run that measures overall model-data misfit. Two types of statistical methods are used to analyze the large-ensemble results: simple averaging weighted by the aggregate score, and more advanced Bayesian techniques involving Gaussian process-based emulation and calibration, and Markov chain Monte Carlo. The analyses provide sea-level-rise envelopes with well-defined parametric uncertainty bounds, but the simple averaging method only provides robust results with full-factorial parameter sampling in the large ensemble. Results for best-fit parameter ranges and envelopes of equivalent sea-level rise with the simple averaging method agree well with the more advanced techniques. Best-fit parameter ranges confirm earlier values expected from prior model tuning, including large basal sliding coefficients on modern ocean beds.

  3. Yeasts from sub-Antarctic region: biodiversity, enzymatic activities and their potential as oleaginous microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Martinez, A; Cavello, I; Garmendia, G; Rufo, C; Cavalitto, S; Vero, S

    2016-09-01

    Various microbial groups are well known to produce a range of extracellular enzymes and other secondary metabolites. However, the occurrence and importance of investment in such activities have received relatively limited attention in studies of Antarctic soil microbiota. Sixty-one yeasts strains were isolated from King George Island, Antarctica which were characterized physiologically and identified at the molecular level using the D1/D2 region of rDNA. Fifty-eight yeasts (belonging to the genera Cryptococcus, Leucosporidiella, Rhodotorula, Guehomyces, Candida, Metschnikowia and Debaryomyces) were screened for extracellular amylolytic, proteolytic, esterasic, pectinolytic, inulolytic xylanolytic and cellulolytic activities at low and moderate temperatures. Esterase activity was the most common enzymatic activity expressed by the yeast isolates regardless the assay temperature and inulinase was the second most common enzymatic activity. No cellulolytic activity was detected. One yeast identified as Guehomyces pullulans (8E) showed significant activity across six of seven enzymes types tested. Twenty-eight yeast isolates were classified as oleaginous, being the isolate 8E the strain that accumulated the highest levels of saponifiable lipids (42 %). PMID:27469174

  4. Response of marine sedimentation to upper Holocene climate variability in Maxwell Bay, King George Island, West Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wittenberg, Nina; Hass, Christian; Kuhn, Gerhard

    2013-04-01

    The Western Antarctic Peninsula experiences a temperature increase that is higher than in other parts of Antarctica. Within the last 50 years the tidewater glaciers in the tributary fjords of Maxwell Bay (King George Island) have retreated landwards with increasing speed. Meltwaters mobilize fine-grained sediments and transport those in plumes out of the coves into Maxwell Bay. Our hypothesis is that meltwater sediments characterize warmer climate periods of the Holocene. Marine sediment cores recovered along a profile of the eastern slope of Maxwell Bay were studied. The cores were taken in high-accumulation areas at the entrances of Collins Harbor, Marian and Potter coves. We measured the grain-size distribution in 1-cm steps in each core with a Laser diffraction particle analyzer (range 0.04-2500 µm) in order to resolve shifts in grain size compositions in very high resolution. We undertook different approaches for reliable age determination of the sediments. Since marine biogenic carbonate suitable for radiocarbon age determination is sparse, radiocarbon dating of the extracted humic acid fraction of the bulk sediment was included. Unfortunately, these age determinations turned out to be not reliable, likely because they are overprinted by an unknown older radiocarbon source. Preliminary results suggest that the cores cover approximately the last 2000 years. The magnetic susceptibility (MS) parameter fluctuates throughout the cores. It is negatively correlated to the amount of total organic carbon (TOC) and biogenic opal, suggesting dilution of the MS signal through higher input of organic material. Together with the bathymetry data, sub-bottom profiles reveal information on the interior of the topography and the geometry of the deposited sediments. The profiles obtained in Potter Cove show almost no sediment penetration suggesting either a very thin sediment cover and/or highly reworked unsorted sediments. The sub-bottom profiles from Maxwell Bay penetrate

  5. A gene encoding a new cold-active lipase from an Antarctic isolate of Penicillium expansum.

    PubMed

    Mohammed, Suja; Te'o, Junior; Nevalainen, Helena

    2013-08-01

    Cold-active lipases are of significant interest as biocatalysts in industrial processes. We have identified a lipase that displayed activity towards long carbon-chain-p-nitrophenyl substrates (C12-C18) at 25 °C from the culture supernatant of an Antarctic Penicillium expansum strain assigned P. expansum SM3. Zymography revealed a protein band of around 30 kDa with activity towards olive oil. DNA fragments of a lipase gene designated as lipPE were isolated from the genomic DNA of P. expansum SM3 by genomic walking PCR. Subsequently, the complete genomic lipPE gene was amplified using gene-specific primers designed from the 5'- and 3'-regions. Reverse transcription PCR was used to amplify the lipPE cDNA. The deduced amino acid sequence consisted of 285 residues that included a predicted signal peptide. Three peptides identified by LC/MS/MS analysis of the proteins in the culture supernatant of P. expansum were also present in the deduced amino acid sequence of the lipPE gene suggesting that this gene encoded the lipase identified by initial zymogram activity analysis. Full analysis of the nucleotide and the deduced amino acid sequences indicated that the lipPE gene encodes a novel P. expansum lipase. The lipPE gene was expressed in E. coli for further characterization of the enzyme with a view of assessing its suitability for industrial applications. PMID:23779196

  6. Benzo(a)pyrene Metabolism and EROD and GST Biotransformation Activity in the Liver of Red- and White-Blooded Antarctic Fish.

    PubMed

    Strobel, Anneli; Burkhardt-Holm, Patricia; Schmid, Peter; Segner, Helmut

    2015-07-01

    Climate change and anthropogenic pollution are of increasing concern in remote areas such as Antarctica. The evolutionary adaptation of Antarctic notothenioid fish to the cold and stable Southern Ocean led to a low plasticity of their physiological functions, what may limit their capacity to deal with altered temperature regimes and pollution in the Antarctic environment. Using a biochemical approach, we aimed to assess the hepatic biotransformation capacities of Antarctic fish species by determining (i) the activities of ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD) and glutathione-S-transferase (GST), and (ii) the metabolic clearance of benzo(a)pyrene by hepatic S9 supernatants. In addition, we determined the thermal sensitivity of the xenobiotic biotransformation enzymes. We investigated the xenobiotic metabolism of the red-blooded Gobionotothen gibberifrons and Notothenia rossii, the hemoglobin-less Chaenocephalus aceratus and Champsocephalus gunnari, and the rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss as a reference. Our results revealed similar metabolic enzyme activities and metabolic clearance rates between red- and white-blooded Antarctic fish, but significantly lower rates in comparison to rainbow trout. Therefore, bioaccumulation factors for metabolizable lipophilic contaminants may be higher in Antarctic than in temperate fish. Likewise, the thermal adaptive capacities and flexibilities of the EROD and GST activities in Antarctic fish were significantly lower than in rainbow trout. As a consequence, increasing water temperatures in the Southern Ocean will additionally compromise the already low detoxification capacities of Antarctic fish. PMID:25965896

  7. Contribution of liquid, NAT and ice particles to chlorine activation and ozone depletion in Antarctic winter and spring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirner, O.; Müller, R.; Ruhnke, R.; Fischer, H.

    2015-02-01

    Heterogeneous reactions in the Antarctic stratosphere are the cause of chlorine activation and ozone depletion, but the relative roles of different types of polar stratospheric clouds (PSCs) in chlorine activation is an open question. We use multi-year simulations of the chemistry-climate model ECHAM5/MESSy for Atmospheric Chemistry (EMAC) to investigate the impact that the various types of PSCs have on Antarctic chlorine activation and ozone loss. One standard and three sensitivity EMAC simulations have been performed. In all simulations a Newtonian relaxation technique using the ERA-Interim reanalysis was applied to simulate realistic synoptic conditions. In the three sensitivity simulations, we only changed the heterogeneous chemistry on PSC particles by switching the chemistry on liquid, nitric acid trihydrate (NAT) and ice particles on and off. The results of these simulations show that the significance of heterogeneous reactions on NAT and ice particles for chlorine activation and ozone depletion in Antarctic winter and spring is small in comparison to the significance of heterogeneous reactions on liquid particles. Liquid particles alone are sufficient to activate almost all of the available chlorine, with the exception of the upper PSC regions between 10 and 30 hPa, where temporarily ice particles show a relevant contribution. Shortly after the first PSC occurrence, NAT particles contribute a small fraction to chlorine activation. Heterogeneous chemistry on liquid particles is responsible for more than 90% of the ozone depletion in Antarctic spring in the model simulations. In high southern latitudes, heterogeneous chemistry on ice particles causes only up to 5 DU of additional ozone depletion in the column and heterogeneous chemistry on NAT particles less than 0.5 DU. The simulated HNO3, ClO and O3 results agree closely with observations from the Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) onboard NASA's Aura satellite.

  8. Cenozoic motion between East and West Antarctica

    PubMed

    Cande; Stock; Muller; Ishihara

    2000-03-01

    The West Antarctic rift system is the result of late Mesozoic and Cenozoic extension between East and West Antarctica, and represents one of the largest active continental rift systems on Earth. But the timing and magnitude of the plate motions leading to the development of this rift system remain poorly known, because of a lack of magnetic anomaly and fracture zone constraints on seafloor spreading. Here we report on magnetic data, gravity data and swath bathymetry collected in several areas of the south Tasman Sea and northern Ross Sea. These results enable us to calculate mid-Cenozoic rotation parameters for East and West Antarctica. These rotations show that there was roughly 180 km of separation in the western Ross Sea embayment in Eocene and Oligocene time. This episode of extension provides a tectonic setting for several significant Cenozoic tectonic events in the Ross Sea embayment including the uplift of the Transantarctic Mountains and the deposition of large thicknesses of Oligocene sediments. Inclusion of this East-West Antarctic motion in the plate circuit linking the Australia, Antarctic and Pacific plates removes a puzzling gap between the Lord Howe rise and Campbell plateau found in previous early Tertiary reconstructions of the New Zealand region. Determination of this East-West Antarctic motion also resolves a long standing controversy regarding the contribution of deformation in this region to the global plate circuit linking the Pacific to the rest of the world. PMID:10724159

  9. Microbial Communities Can Be Described by Metabolic Structure: A General Framework and Application to a Seasonally Variable, Depth-Stratified Microbial Community from the Coastal West Antarctic Peninsula

    PubMed Central

    Bowman, Jeff S.; Ducklow, Hugh W.

    2015-01-01

    Taxonomic marker gene studies, such as the 16S rRNA gene, have been used to successfully explore microbial diversity in a variety of marine, terrestrial, and host environments. For some of these environments long term sampling programs are beginning to build a historical record of microbial community structure. Although these 16S rRNA gene datasets do not intrinsically provide information on microbial metabolism or ecosystem function, this information can be developed by identifying metabolisms associated with related, phenotyped strains. Here we introduce the concept of metabolic inference; the systematic prediction of metabolism from phylogeny, and describe a complete pipeline for predicting the metabolic pathways likely to be found in a collection of 16S rRNA gene phylotypes. This framework includes a mechanism for assigning confidence to each metabolic inference that is based on a novel method for evaluating genomic plasticity. We applied this framework to 16S rRNA gene libraries from the West Antarctic Peninsula marine environment, including surface and deep summer samples and surface winter samples. Using statistical methods commonly applied to community ecology data we found that metabolic structure differed between summer surface and winter and deep samples, comparable to an analysis of community structure by 16S rRNA gene phylotypes. While taxonomic variance between samples was primarily driven by low abundance taxa, metabolic variance was attributable to both high and low abundance pathways. This suggests that clades with a high degree of functional redundancy can occupy distinct adjacent niches. Overall our findings demonstrate that inferred metabolism can be used in place of taxonomy to describe the structure of microbial communities. Coupling metabolic inference with targeted metagenomics and an improved collection of completed genomes could be a powerful way to analyze microbial communities in a high-throughput manner that provides direct access to

  10. Microbial Communities Can Be Described by Metabolic Structure: A General Framework and Application to a Seasonally Variable, Depth-Stratified Microbial Community from the Coastal West Antarctic Peninsula.

    PubMed

    Bowman, Jeff S; Ducklow, Hugh W

    2015-01-01

    Taxonomic marker gene studies, such as the 16S rRNA gene, have been used to successfully explore microbial diversity in a variety of marine, terrestrial, and host environments. For some of these environments long term sampling programs are beginning to build a historical record of microbial community structure. Although these 16S rRNA gene datasets do not intrinsically provide information on microbial metabolism or ecosystem function, this information can be developed by identifying metabolisms associated with related, phenotyped strains. Here we introduce the concept of metabolic inference; the systematic prediction of metabolism from phylogeny, and describe a complete pipeline for predicting the metabolic pathways likely to be found in a collection of 16S rRNA gene phylotypes. This framework includes a mechanism for assigning confidence to each metabolic inference that is based on a novel method for evaluating genomic plasticity. We applied this framework to 16S rRNA gene libraries from the West Antarctic Peninsula marine environment, including surface and deep summer samples and surface winter samples. Using statistical methods commonly applied to community ecology data we found that metabolic structure differed between summer surface and winter and deep samples, comparable to an analysis of community structure by 16S rRNA gene phylotypes. While taxonomic variance between samples was primarily driven by low abundance taxa, metabolic variance was attributable to both high and low abundance pathways. This suggests that clades with a high degree of functional redundancy can occupy distinct adjacent niches. Overall our findings demonstrate that inferred metabolism can be used in place of taxonomy to describe the structure of microbial communities. Coupling metabolic inference with targeted metagenomics and an improved collection of completed genomes could be a powerful way to analyze microbial communities in a high-throughput manner that provides direct access to

  11. Neogene deformation in the West Antarctic Rift in the McMurdo Sound region from studies of the ANDRILL and Cape Roberts drill cores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paulsen, T. S.; Wilson, T. J.; Jarrard, R. D.; Millan, C.; Saddler, D.; Läufer, A.; Pierdominici, S.

    2010-12-01

    Seismic studies indicate that the West Antarctic rift system records at least two distinct periods of Cenozoic rifting (Paleogene and Neogene) within the western Ross Sea. Natural fracture data from ANDRILL and Cape Roberts drill cores are revealing a picture of the geodynamic patterns associated with these rifting episodes. Kinematic indicators along faults recovered in drill cores document dominant normal faulting, although reverse and strike-slip faults are also present. Ongoing studies of mechanically twinned calcite in veins recovered in the drill cores yield predominantly vertical shortening strains with horizontal extension, consistent with a normal fault regime. In the Cape Roberts Project drill core, faults of inferred Oligocene age document a dominant NNE maximum horizontal stress associated with Paleogene rifting within the Victoria Land Basin. The NNE maximum horizontal stress at Cape Roberts is at an oblique angle to Transantarctic Mountain front, and consistent with previous interpretations invoking Cenozoic dextral transtensional shear along the boundary. In the ANDRILL SMS (AND-2A) drill core, faults and veins presumably associated with Neogene rifting document a dominant NNW to NE faulting of an expanded Lower Miocene section, although subsidiary WNW faulting is also present within the upper sections of oriented core. In the ANDRILL MIS (AND-1B) drill core, natural fractures are consistently present through the core below c. 450 mbsf, the estimated depth of the ‘B-clino’ seismic reflector. This is consistent with the presence of seismically-detectable faults below this horizon, which record the major faulting episode associated with Neogene rifting in the Terror Rift. Sedimentary intrusions and steep veins folded by compaction indicate that deformation occurred prior to complete lithification of the strata, suggesting that deformation was at least in part coeval with deposition. Faults and associated veins intersected in the AND-1B drill core

  12. Reconstruction of changes in the Amundsen Sea and Bellingshausen Sea sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet since the Last Glacial Maximum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larter, Robert D.; Anderson, John B.; Graham, Alastair G. C.; Gohl, Karsten; Hillenbrand, Claus-Dieter; Jakobsson, Martin; Johnson, Joanne S.; Kuhn, Gerhard; Nitsche, Frank O.; Smith, James A.; Witus, Alexandra E.; Bentley, Michael J.; Dowdeswell, Julian A.; Ehrmann, Werner; Klages, Johann P.; Lindow, Julia; Cofaigh, Colm Ó.; Spiegel, Cornelia

    2014-09-01

    Marine and terrestrial geological and marine geophysical data that constrain deglaciation since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) of the sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) draining into the Amundsen Sea and Bellingshausen Sea have been collated and used as the basis for a set of time-slice reconstructions. The drainage basins in these sectors constitute a little more than one-quarter of the area of the WAIS, but account for about one-third of its surface accumulation. Their mass balance is becoming increasingly negative, and therefore they account for an even larger fraction of current WAIS discharge. If all of the ice in these sectors of the WAIS were discharged to the ocean, global sea level would rise by ca 2 m. There is compelling evidence that grounding lines of palaeo-ice streams were at, or close to, the continental shelf edge along the Amundsen Sea and Bellingshausen Sea margins during the last glacial period. However, the few cosmogenic surface exposure ages and ice core data available from the interior of West Antarctica indicate that ice surface elevations there have changed little since the LGM. In the few areas from which cosmogenic surface exposure ages have been determined near the margin of the ice sheet, they generally suggest that there has been a gradual decrease in ice surface elevation since pre-Holocene times. Radiocarbon dates from glacimarine and the earliest seasonally open marine sediments in continental shelf cores that have been interpreted as providing approximate ages for post-LGM grounding-line retreat indicate different trajectories of palaeo-ice stream recession in the Amundsen Sea and Bellingshausen Sea embayments. The areas were probably subject to similar oceanic, atmospheric and eustatic forcing, in which case the differences are probably largely a consequence of how topographic and geological factors have affected ice flow, and of topographic influences on snow accumulation and warm water inflow across the continental

  13. Antarctic Crabs: Invasion or Endurance?

    PubMed Central

    Griffiths, Huw J.; Whittle, Rowan J.; Roberts, Stephen J.; Belchier, Mark; Linse, Katrin

    2013-01-01

    Recent scientific interest following the “discovery” of lithodid crabs around Antarctica has centred on a hypothesis that these crabs might be poised to invade the Antarctic shelf if the recent warming trend continues, potentially decimating its native fauna. This “invasion hypothesis” suggests that decapod crabs were driven out of Antarctica 40–15 million years ago and are only now returning as “warm” enough habitats become available. The hypothesis is based on a geographically and spatially poor fossil record of a different group of crabs (Brachyura), and examination of relatively few Recent lithodid samples from the Antarctic slope. In this paper, we examine the existing lithodid fossil record and present the distribution and biogeographic patterns derived from over 16,000 records of Recent Southern Hemisphere crabs and lobsters. Globally, the lithodid fossil record consists of only two known specimens, neither of which comes from the Antarctic. Recent records show that 22 species of crabs and lobsters have been reported from the Southern Ocean, with 12 species found south of 60°S. All are restricted to waters warmer than 0°C, with their Antarctic distribution limited to the areas of seafloor dominated by Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW). Currently, CDW extends further and shallower onto the West Antarctic shelf than the known distribution ranges of most lithodid species examined. Geological evidence suggests that West Antarctic shelf could have been available for colonisation during the last 9,000 years. Distribution patterns, species richness, and levels of endemism all suggest that, rather than becoming extinct and recently re-invading from outside Antarctica, the lithodid crabs have likely persisted, and even radiated, on or near to Antarctic slope. We conclude there is no evidence for a modern-day “crab invasion”. We recommend a repeated targeted lithodid sampling program along the West Antarctic shelf to fully test the validity of the

  14. Effects of initial active chlorine concentrations on the Antarctic ozone spring depletion

    SciTech Connect

    Henderson, G.S.; Evans, W.F.J. ); McConnell, J.C. )

    1990-02-20

    Several one-dimensional model experiments have been conducted in order to simulate the observed downward trend of total ozone and the shape of ozone profiles in the Antarctic during the austral spring. The results underline the fact that the O{sub 3} depletion is quadratically sensitive to the amount of active chlorine, which the authors have expressed as the fraction (F) of CL{sub x} that is in active form by polar sunrise. For F = 1, this result is largely independent of the occurrence of heterogeneous chemistry after polar sunrise since all of the processing has already occurred. The main O{sub 3} loss is due to formation and photolysis of Cl{sub 2}O{sub 2}. By comparison, using Br{sub x} levels similar to currently measured values, it was found that the BrO + ClO reaction plays a less important role in O{sub 3} depletion. The depth of the O{sub 3} minimum in spring appears to be related to the vertical extent of the region chemically processed by polar stratospheric clouds as well as the absolute levels of active Cl{sub 2}; more extensive vertical regions result in larger bite outs of the O{sub 3} profile. This may account for the difference in O{sub 3} minimum between 1986 and 1987. Simulations involving downward vertical transports are unable to reproduce observed decreases in total O{sub 3}. The authors speculate that low trace gas mixing ratios of species such as N{sub 2}O may be remnants of the previous summer and fall conditions, rather than signatures of downward transport during the springtime ozone depletion.

  15. Thermal regime of active layer at two lithologically contrasting sites on James Ross Island, Antarctic Peninsula.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hrbáček, Filip; Nývlt, Daniel; Láska, Kamil

    2016-04-01

    Antarctic Peninsula region (AP) represents one of the most rapidly warming parts of our planet in the last 50 years. Despite increasing research activities along both western and eastern sides of AP in last decades, there is still a lot of gaps in our knowledge relating to permafrost, active layer and its thermal and physical properties. This study brings new results of active layer monitoring on James Ross Island, which is the largest island in northern AP. Its northern part, Ulu Peninsula, is the largest ice-free area (more than 200 km2) in the region. Due its large area, we focused this study on sites located in different lithologies, which would affect local thermal regime of active layer. Study site (1) at Abernethy Flats area (41 m a.s.l.) lies ~7 km from northern coast. Lithologically is formed by disintegrated Cretaceous calcareous sandstones and siltstones of the Santa Marta Formation. Study site (2) is located at the northern slopes of Berry Hill (56 m a.s.l.), about 0.4 km from northern coastline. Lithology is composed of muddy to intermediate diamictites, tuffaceous siltstones to fine grained sandstones of the Mendel Formation. Data of air temperature at 2 meters above ground and the active layer temperatures at 75 cm deep profiles were obtained from both sites in period 1 January 2012 to 31 December 2014. Small differences were found when comparing mean air temperatures and active temperatures at 5 and 75 cm depth in the period 2012-2014. While the mean air temperatures varied between -7.7 °C and -7.0 °C, the mean ground temperatures fluctuated between -6.6 °C and -6.1 °C at 5 cm and -6.9 °C and -6.0 °C at 75 cm at Abernethy Flats and Berry Hill slopes respectively. Even though ground temperature differences along the profiles weren't pronounced during thawing seasons, the maximum active layer thickness was significantly larger at Berry Hill slopes (80 to 82 cm) than at Abernethy Flats (52 to 64 cm). We assume this differences are affected by

  16. Measurements of Active Chlorine in the Antarctic Ozone Hole: 1986 to 2005

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Solomon, P.; Barrett, J.; Connor, B.; Mooney, T.; Parrish, A.

    2005-12-01

    We will present and compare ground-based microwave measurements of stratospheric chlorine monoxide, ClO, from 1986, 1987 and 1996 through 2005 obtained from McMurdo and Scott Base, Antarctica (78° S). These measurements demonstrate the evolution of the ClO altitude profile (from 15 to 40 km) as the ozone hole progresses from the onset of sunlight in early August until the beginning of the breakup of the vortex in early October. The measurements from 1986 and 1987 were part of the National Ozone Expedition and the 1996 to 2005 measurements are carried out as part of the Network for the Detection of Stratospheric Change, NDSC. The 1986 measurements were the first detection of a huge excess of chlorine monoxide during the Antarctic ozone hole period and the 1987 measurements produced the first full altitude profile of ClO over Antarctica. The last 10 years of measurements were carried out with an instrument very similar to the one used in the 1980's, but automated for continuous operation. The ClO altitude profile from the older measurements will be compared to the more recent measurements and variations in the time sequence of active chlorine from year to year will be discussed. We will also report on changes and/or trends in the peak mixing ratios from year to year both within the 10 year sequence (1996 to 2005) and between the recent measurements and the data from the 1980's. The measurements will also be compared to models to test the current understanding of chlorine chemistry.

  17. Antarctic Entomology.

    PubMed

    Chown, Steven L; Convey, Peter

    2016-03-11

    The Antarctic region comprises the continent, the Maritime Antarctic, the sub-Antarctic islands, and the southern cold temperate islands. Continental Antarctica is devoid of insects, but elsewhere diversity varies from 2 to more than 200 species, of which flies and beetles constitute the majority. Much is known about the drivers of this diversity at local and regional scales; current climate and glacial history play important roles. Investigations of responses to low temperatures, dry conditions, and varying salinity have spanned the ecological to the genomic, revealing new insights into how insects respond to stressful conditions. Biological invasions are common across much of the region and are expected to increase as climates become warmer. The drivers of invasion are reasonably well understood, although less is known about the impacts of invasion. Antarctic entomology has advanced considerably over the past 50 years, but key areas, such as interspecific interactions, remain underexplored. PMID:26982437

  18. Antarctic meteorites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cassidy, W. A.; Rancitelli, L. A.

    1982-04-01

    An abundance of meteorites has been discovered on two sites in the Antarctic which may assist in the study of the origins of meteorites and the history of the solar system. Characteristics particular to those meteorites discovered in this region are explained. These specimens, being well preserved due to the climate, have implications in the study of the cosmic ray flux through time, the meteoroid complex in space, and cosmic ray exposure ages. Implications for the study of the Antarctic, particularly the ice flow, are also discussed. Further discoveries of meteorites in this region are anticipated.

  19. Analyses of 24 Unmelted Antarctic Meteorites by Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindstrom, D. J.; Klock, W.

    1992-07-01

    Ultra-high sensitivity instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis (INAA) techniques developed for the analysis of individual stratospheric dust particles (Lindstrom, 1990) have been applied to 24 "unmelted" Antarctic micrometeorites (AMM) in the size range 50-100 micrometers. These weigh about 0.05-1.7 micrograms, or about 10-100x more than the Interplanetary Dust Particles (IDPs) previously analyzed. Samples were collected at Cap Prudhomme (Maurette et al., 1991). Four of the samples broke during handling and were analyzed separately. In all cases, the splits were very similar in composition, showing that sampling is not a serious problem. Two samples (B-5-24 and 91-19-11) had clearly terrestrial signatures, including low Ir contents (<0.07 and <0.014 ppm, respectively). One sample (B3-3-31) had the unmistakable compositional characteristics of a CAI: high CaO, REE, Hf, Th, and Sc, and low Fe, Cr, Co, and Ni. This is a fine-grained particle with a very flat (Group I) REE pattern at about 23x chondrites. A two sigma upper limit for Eu corresponds to 20x CI, so there is no positive Eu anomaly, suggesting that it is a Type B inclusion (e.g., Grossman, 1980). The remainder of the samples have approximately chondritic compositions, but with occasional outliers and some systematic differences that may provide valuable information on the processes that these particles have undergone, including atmospheric entry heating and weathering in the Antarctic ice. For example, seven of the 22 micrometeorite particles contain apparent U abundances of more than one ppm (>100 x CI). These seven include smaller particles and three of the four (porous?) particles that broke during handling, suggesting that the U contents are surface correlated. Most likely these small amounts of U (about 10^9 atoms) are leached from small amounts of terrestrial volcanic ash in the melted ice (in the relatively stable form of uranyl ion, UO(sub)2^2+) and adsorbed on the surfaces of the particles. These U

  20. Carbon dioxide effects research and assessment program. Environmental and societal consequences of a possible CO/sub 2/-induced climate change: volume II, part I. Response of the West Antarctic ice sheet to CO/sub 2/-induced climatic warming

    SciTech Connect

    Bentley, C.

    1982-04-01

    The paper proposes a research plan to deal with the question of what the response of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet would be to a rise in global temperatures caused by an anthropogenic CO/sub 2/ buildup in the atmosphere. The plan is designed to answer the following questions: (1) how fast is the ice mass changing now, and why; (2) how will the boundary conditions that affect the ice sheet respond to an atmospheric temperature change and how are those boundary conditions changing now; (3) what will be the response of the ice sheet to changes in boundary conditions; and (4) what can be learned by analogy with what has happened in the past. (ACR)

  1. Seabird assemblages observed during the BROKE-West survey of the Antarctic coastline (30°E-80°E), January - March 2006

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woehler, Eric J.; Raymond, Ben; Boyle, Adrian; Stafford, Andrew

    2010-05-01

    Seabird surveys in January - March 2006 of a poorly known area of the Southern Ocean adjacent to the East Antarctic coast identified six seabird communities, several of which were comparable to seabird communities identified both in adjacent sectors of the Antarctic, and elsewhere in the Southern Ocean. These results support previous proposals that the Southern Ocean seabird community is characterised by an ice-associated assemblage and an open-water assemblage, with the species composition of the assemblages reflecting local (Antarctic-resident) breeding species, and the migratory routes and feeding areas of distant-breeding taxa, respectively. Physical environmental covariates such as sea-ice cover, distance to continental shelf and time of year influenced the distribution and abundance of seabirds observed, but the roles of these factors in the observed spatial and temporal patterns in seabird assemblages was confounded by the duration of the survey. Occurrence of a number of seabird taxa exhibited significant correlations with krill densities at one or two spatial scales, but only three taxa (Arctic tern, snow petrel and dark shearwaters, i.e. sooty and short-tailed shearwaters) showed significant correlations at a range of spatial scales. Dark shearwater abundances showed correlations with krill densities across the range of spatial scales examined.

  2. Antarctic Peninsula and Weddell Sea

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Numerous icebergs are breaking out of the sea ice in the Southern Ocean surrounding the Antarctic Peninsula. This true-color MODIS image from November 13, 2001, shows several icebergs drifting out of the Weddell Sea. The Antarctic Peninsula (left) reaches out into the Drake Passage, which separates the southern tip of South America from Antarctica. Warmer temperatures have cleared a tiny patch of bare ground at the Peninsula's tip. The predominant ocean current in the area is the Antarctic Circumpolar Current ('circum' meaning 'around'), which is also the 'West Wind Drift.' The current is the largest permanent current in the world, and water is moved eastward by westerly winds. Icebergs leaving the Weddell Sea are likely to be moved north and east by the current. Credit: Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC

  3. 77 FR 7610 - Notice of permit applications received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-02-13

    ... Notice of permit applications received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 AGENCY: National Science Foundation. ACTION: Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of... of permit applications received to conduct activities regulated under the Antarctic Conservation...

  4. Psychological factors in the antarctic.

    PubMed

    Rothblum, E D

    1990-05-01

    For the people who live and work in the Antarctic, isolation and extreme physical conditions cause considerable stress. This article reviews psychological research on Antarctic residents, focusing on factors related to the isolation (effective personnel selection, positive adjustment, conflict, and reintegration into the home environment) and factors related to the physical environment (the extreme cold, high altitude, increased radiation, sensory deprivation, and seasonal changes in activity level). Finally, Antarctic research has been applied to the study of future space travel and space station habitation. PMID:2189993

  5. A Benthic Invertebrate Survey of Jun Jaegyu Volcano: An active undersea volcano in Antarctic Sound, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quinones, G.; Brachfeld, S.; Gorring, M.; Prezant, R. S.; Domack, E.

    2005-12-01

    Jun Jaegyu volcano, an Antarctic submarine volcano, was dredged in May 2004 during cruise 04-04 of the RV Laurence M. Gould to determine rock, sediment composition and marine macroinvertebrate diversity. The objectives of this study are to examine the benthic assemblages and biodiversity present on a young volcano. The volcano is located on the continental shelf of the northeastern Antarctic Peninsula, where recent changes in surface temperature and ice shelf stability have been observed. This volcano was originally swath-mapped during cruise 01-07 of the Research Vessel-Ice Breaker Nathaniel B. Palmer. During LMG04-04 we also studied the volcano using a SCUD video camera, and performed temperature surveys along the flanks and crest. Both the video and the dredge indicate a seafloor surface heavily colonized by benthic organisms. Indications of fairly recent lava flows are given by the absence of marine life on regions of the volcano. The recovered dredge material was sieved, and a total of thirty-three invertebrates were extracted. The compilation of invertebrate community data can subsequently be compared to other benthic invertebrate studies conducted along the peninsula, which can determine the regional similarity of communities over time, their relationship to environmental change and health, if any, and their relationship to geologic processes in Antarctic Sound. Twenty-two rock samples, all slightly weathered and half bearing encrusted organisms, were also analyzed using inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES). Except for one conglomerate sample, all are alkali basalts and share similar elemental compositions with fresh, unweathered samples from the volcano. Two of the encrusted basalt samples have significantly different compositions than the rest. We speculate this difference could be due to water loss during sample preparation, loss of organic carbon trapped within the vesicles of the samples and/or elemental uptake by the

  6. Highly Variable Holocene Antarctic Climate: A High-Resolution Marine Geochemical Record of Surface and Export Production, Terrigenous Provenance, and Terrigenous Accumulation from the Palmer Deep, West Antarctic Peninsula.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kryc, K. A.; Murray, R. W.; Dunbar, R. B.

    2001-12-01

    The Antarctic Peninsula is an ideal region to investigate climate change at decadal to millennial timescales due to its location in one of the earth's most dynamic climate systems. We have targeted the geochemical sedimentary record of ODP Site 1098 in the Palmer Deep to investigate changes in Holocene glacial evolution and oscillations in the Circumpolar Deep Water as traced by terrigenous provenance, terrigenous accumulation, nutrient utilization, and surface and export production. More than 50 meters of laminated diatomaceous muds, oozes, and muddy diamictons were recovered from the Palmer Deep, comprising the first, high-resolution, continuous Holocene sediment record from the Antarctic continental margin. We report on a synthesis of trace and major element, stable isotope, and C/N geochemistry on samples collected at a temporal resolution ranging from ~8 to ~50 years. We analyzed Si, Al, Ti, P, Ba, biogenic opal, organic C and N, and organic 13C/12C and 15N/14N isotopic ratios every 2.5 to 10 cm downcore. A series of sequential extractions were completed on a subset of samples to better constrain the elemental distribution within the different components of the sediment. Our chronology is based on 36 AMS radiocarbon dates. Biogenic opal, Corg, and P accumulation rates all increase ~2,000 years B.P., reaching a maximum ~5,500 to 7,000 years B.P. Opal concentrations are less variable, yet indicate that biosiliceous production increased during the mid-Holocene. 13C/12C in bulk organic matter are high (with values similar to ice-edge bloom products) ~4500 to 7000 years B.P., signifying stronger diatom bloom events during the mid-Holocene. Prior to ~3000 years B.P., delta15N was lower for ~2,000 years, resulting from less complete utilization of photic zone nitrate. The Al/Ti ratio indicates a change in terrigenous composition ~3500 years B.P. indicating a change in source, weathering style, and/or intensity. All tracers of productivity and terrigenous provenance

  7. Field Training Activities for Hydrologic Science in West Java, Indonesia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agustina, C.; Fajri, P. N.; Fathoni, F.; Gusti, T. P.; Harifa, A. C.; Hendra, Y.; Hertanti, D. R.; Lusiana, N.; Rohmat, F. I.; Agouridis, C.; Fryar, A. E.; Milewski, A.; Pandjaitan, N.; Santoso, R.; Suharyanto, A.

    2013-12-01

    In hydrologic science and engineering, one challenge is establishing a common framework for discussion among workers from different disciplines. As part of the 'Building Opportunity Out of Science and Technology: Helping Hydrologic Outreach (BOOST H2O)' project, which is supported by the U.S. Department of State, nine current or recent graduate students from four Indonesian universities participated in a week of training activities during June 2013. Students had backgrounds in agricultural engineering, civil and environmental engineering, water resources engineering, natural resources management, and soil science. Professors leading the training, which was based at Bogor Agricultural University (IPB) in west Java, included an agricultural engineer, civil engineers, and geologists. Activities in surface-water hydrology included geomorphic assessment of streams (measuring slope, cross-section, and bed-clast size) and gauging stream flow (wading with top-setting rods and a current meter for a large stream, and using a bucket and stopwatch for a small stream). Groundwater-hydrology activities included measuring depth to water in wells, conducting a pumping test with an observation well, and performing vertical electrical soundings to infer hydrostratigraphy. Students also performed relatively simple water-quality measurements (temperature, electrical conductivity, pH, and alkalinity) in streams, wells, and springs. The group analyzed data with commercially-available software such as AQTESOLV for well hydraulics, freeware such as the U.S. Geological Survey alkalinity calculator, and Excel spreadsheets. Results were discussed in the context of landscape position, lithology, and land use.

  8. Quality assessment and antiplasmodial activity of West African Cochlospermum species.

    PubMed

    Lamien-Meda, Aline; Kiendrebeogo, Martin; Compaoré, Moussa; Meda, Roland N T; Bacher, Markus; Koenig, Karin; Pacher, Thomas; Fuehrer, Hans-Peter; Noedl, Harald; Willcox, Merlin; Novak, Johannes

    2015-11-01

    The present study focuses on development of phytochemical methods for quality assessment of two West-African Cochlospermum species (Cochlospermum planchonii and Cochlospermum tinctorium) traditionally used for malaria treatment in Burkina Faso. Antimalarial activity of preparations from dried rhizomes (decoction) was tested against the chloroquine-sensitive Plasmodium strain 3D7 using the histidine-rich protein II (HRP2) drug susceptibility assay and compared with extract preparations using organic solvents of different polarity. Two main apocarotenoids were isolated from rhizomes of C. planchonii and unambiguously identified as dihydrocochloxanthine and cochloxanthine by spectroscopic methods. Comparative HPLC analyses of thirty-nine (39) samples from markets and from collections in natural habitats of both species showed a high variability in the accumulation of cochloxanthines and related carotenoids which were proven to be characteristic for rhizomes of both species and generally absent in leaves. Furthermore, content of total phenolics and antioxidant activities (DPPH and FRAP) as well as haemolytic activity of various extracts was tested. The HPLC method presented here was validated and provides a good separation of both compounds including 10 minor carotenoids. Extracts from both species and pure cochloxanthine offered pronounced antioxidant activities and weak haemolytic activity while, in contrast, dihydrocochloxanthine had a strong haemolytic effect at the highest concentration analysed. However, cochloxanthine as well as dihydrocochloxanthine showed erythroprotective effects against the haemolytic activity of the reference saponin. Moderate antiplasmodial activity between 16 and 63 μg/ml were observed with all tested extracts, and lower IC50 values were obtained with pure dihydrocochloxanthine (IC50=6.9 μg/ml), cochloxanthine (IC50=6.8 μg/ml), the DCM fraction (IC50=2.4 μg/ml) and the ethyl acetate fraction (IC50=11.5μg/ml) derived from a methanolic

  9. Antarctic science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Summerhayes, Colin

    Once upon a time, dinosaurs roamed Antarctica and swam in its seas. Since then, life evolved as the climate cooled into the ice ages. Life will no doubt continue to evolve there as the globe now warms. But nowadays, humans are having a profound and direct effect on life in Antarctica, the sub-Antarctic islands, and the surrounding Southern Ocean, which are being invaded by a wide range of alien species including microbes, algae, fungi, bryophytes, land plants, invertebrates, fish, birds, and mammals.

  10. Antarctic Genomics

    PubMed Central

    Clarke, Andrew; Cockell, Charles S.; Convey, Peter; Detrich III, H. William; Fraser, Keiron P. P.; Johnston, Ian A.; Methe, Barbara A.; Murray, Alison E.; Peck, Lloyd S.; Römisch, Karin; Rogers, Alex D.

    2004-01-01

    With the development of genomic science and its battery of technologies, polar biology stands on the threshold of a revolution, one that will enable the investigation of important questions of unprecedented scope and with extraordinary depth and precision. The exotic organisms of polar ecosystems are ideal candidates for genomic analysis. Through such analyses, it will be possible to learn not only the novel features that enable polar organisms to survive, and indeed thrive, in their extreme environments, but also fundamental biological principles that are common to most, if not all, organisms. This article aims to review recent developments in Antarctic genomics and to demonstrate the global context of such studies. PMID:18629155

  11. Solution structures, dynamics, and ice growth inhibitory activity of peptide fragments derived from an antarctic yeast protein.

    PubMed

    Shah, Syed Hussinien H; Kar, Rajiv K; Asmawi, Azren A; Rahman, Mohd Basyaruddin A; Murad, Abdul Munir A; Mahadi, Nor M; Basri, Mahiran; Rahman, Raja Noor Zaliha A; Salleh, Abu B; Chatterjee, Subhrangsu; Tejo, Bimo A; Bhunia, Anirban

    2012-01-01

    Exotic functions of antifreeze proteins (AFP) and antifreeze glycopeptides (AFGP) have recently been attracted with much interest to develop them as commercial products. AFPs and AFGPs inhibit ice crystal growth by lowering the water freezing point without changing the water melting point. Our group isolated the Antarctic yeast Glaciozyma antarctica that expresses antifreeze protein to assist it in its survival mechanism at sub-zero temperatures. The protein is unique and novel, indicated by its low sequence homology compared to those of other AFPs. We explore the structure-function relationship of G. antarctica AFP using various approaches ranging from protein structure prediction, peptide design and antifreeze activity assays, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) studies and molecular dynamics simulation. The predicted secondary structure of G. antarctica AFP shows several α-helices, assumed to be responsible for its antifreeze activity. We designed several peptide fragments derived from the amino acid sequences of α-helical regions of the parent AFP and they also showed substantial antifreeze activities, below that of the original AFP. The relationship between peptide structure and activity was explored by NMR spectroscopy and molecular dynamics simulation. NMR results show that the antifreeze activity of the peptides correlates with their helicity and geometrical straightforwardness. Furthermore, molecular dynamics simulation also suggests that the activity of the designed peptides can be explained in terms of the structural rigidity/flexibility, i.e., the most active peptide demonstrates higher structural stability, lower flexibility than that of the other peptides with lower activities, and of lower rigidity. This report represents the first detailed report of downsizing a yeast AFP into its peptide fragments with measurable antifreeze activities. PMID:23209600

  12. Numerical model of circumpolar Antarctic ice shelves

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, R.C.

    1985-01-01

    Extensive floating ice shelves in the Antarctic have been proposed to explain the discrepancies between Pleistocene high sea levels shown by dated coral reefs and coeval low sea levels inferred from glacial ice volumes calculated from oxygen isotope ratios in deep sea cores. A numerical model using the floating shelf creep analysis of Weertman (1957) has provided a plausible basis for the acceptance of such shelves. Shelf outer limits were set at 55/sup 0/S in East Antarctica and 58/sup 0/S in West Antarctica, based in part on diatom-deficient deep sea sediments deposited prior to the Holocene. Precipitation varied from 10 gm cm/sup -2/yr/sup -1/ at 75/sup 0/S to 80 gm cm/sup -2/yr/sup -1/ at 55/sup 0/S. Mean air temperatures varied from -35/sup 0/C at the 75/sup 0/S coast to -17/sup 0/C at the outer limits. Isotope ratios were those of present Antarctic precipitation at corresponding model shelf temperatures. In the calculation, a steady state is assumed. Integration begins at the coast with summation over successive years as creep and continental ice discharge move the integration element to the outer limits. The oceanic oxygen isotope ratio change required by the discrepancies in the record is 0.40 to 0.50 ppmil. Using the flow law constant of 4.2 and a creep activation energy of 134 kjoules mol/sup -1/, the resulting change is 0.44 ppmil. Difference results reflect the uncertainties associated with the critical creep constants used in the modeling. Nevertheless, the results suggest that a quantity of Antarctic shelf ice comparable to ice volumes in major Northern glacial areas existed at times during the Pleistocene.

  13. Metabolism of Antarctic micronektonic crustacea across a summer ice-edge bloom: respiration, composition, and enzymatic activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donnelly, Joseph; Kawall, Helena; Geiger, Stephen P.; Torres, Joseph J.

    2004-08-01

    The Antarctic marginal ice zone is an important oceanic front separating the pack-ice and open-water environments. During summer, the retreating pack ice creates a meltwater lens in the euphotic zone, allowing primary producers and microheterotrophs to flourish in a discrete bloom just seaward of the retreating ice edge that lasts about 60 days. The purpose of the present study was to see if the ice-edge bloom had a discernible effect on the metabolism and physiological condition of Antarctic micronekton similar to that observed in zooplankton species. We also wished to assess the importance of the summer season to species' life cycles. Two major data sets were collected on 25 species in the following taxonomic groups: amphipods, cephalopods, decapods, euphausiids, isopods, mysids, ostracods, and polychaetes. The first data set described the metabolic rates of individuals in areas of the marginal ice zone with widely different levels of chlorophyll biomass to investigate the effect of the ice-edge bloom on metabolism. Additionally, summer metabolic rates were compared with data from other seasons. The second data set detailed the levels of protein, water, ash, RNA and DNA, and the activities of metabolic enzymes (citrate synthase and malate dehydrogenase) to examine the efficacy of biochemical indices as predictive tools for metabolism. Results suggested that the mobility of the micronektonic species eliminated most direct effects of the bloom on metabolism. Individuals captured in very different productivity regimes showed few significant differences in the metabolic indicators listed above. Isolated cases of changes in body composition and enzyme activity, however, implied that longer-term effects of the bloom may be exhibited. Seasonal increases in metabolism from winter to summer were observed in the euphausiids Euphausia superba, E. triacantha, and Thysanoessa macrura and the amphipod Vibilia stebbingi. It was concluded that the seasonal shifts were indicative

  14. Antarctic micrometeorites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kurat, G.; Koeberl, C.; Presper, T.; Brandstaetter, F.; Maurette, Michel

    1994-01-01

    Micrometeoroids in the size range 50-500 micron dominate the flux onto the Earth. Contrary to theoretical predictions, many of them survive atmospheric entry almost unchanged. Such micrometeorites can be collected from the Antarctic ice sheet where they account for a surprisingly large proportion of the total dust content of the ice. Early studies of this important class of extraterrestrial material have revealed that some Antarctic micrometeorites are similar to CM chondrites in chemical bulk composition and mineral composition, and a few seem to resemble CI chondrites. However, none of the micrometeorites investigated so far match CM or CI chondrites exactly, nor is there a match between average bulk micrometeorite composition and that of any other chondrite class. Also, the micrometeorite mineral chemistry is different from that of carbonaceous chondrites. Several elements are depleted in micrometeorites as compared to carbonaceous chondrites and some are enriched. The question arises whether these differences are pristine or if some of them are of secondary origin. On the basis of our data we will attempt to answer these questions, some of which have been addressed by us before.

  15. Is there a linkage between the tropical cyclone activity in the southern Indian Ocean and the Antarctic Oscillation?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mao, Rui; Gong, Dao-Yi; Yang, Jing; Zhang, Zi-Yin; Kim, Seong-Joong; He, Hao-Zhe

    2013-08-01

    this article, the relationship between the Antarctic Oscillation (AAO) and the tropical cyclone (TC) activity in the southern Indian Ocean (SIO) was examined. It was found that on the interannual time scale, the AAO is well linked with the TC activity in the SIO during TC season (December-March). The rank correlation coefficient between the AAO index and the TC frequency (TCF) in the SIO is 0.37, which is significant at the 95% confidence level. When the AAO is in a positive phase, TC passage in the northwestern coast of Australia (100E°-120°E and 10°S-30°S) increases by approximately 50%-100% from the climatology. The increase in the TC passage is primarily the result of more frequent TCs originating in this region due to enhanced water vapor convergence and ascending motions, which are caused by a cyclonic height anomaly over the western coast of Australia associated with the positive AAO phases. In addition, the AAO-height covariations, which are essential to the formation of the AAO-TC links in the SIO, were investigated through a historical climate simulation using the Community Climate System Model 4 from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5. The AAO-height links were well reproduced in the simulation. The similarity in the AAO-height links between the observation and the simulation supports the physical robustness of the AAO-TC links in the SIO.

  16. Multiple meteoroid impacts in Antarctica at 481,000ky: a possible cause for the mid-Brunhes Event/MIS 11 Stage via the disruption of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rice, A. R.; Weihaupt, J. G.; van der Hoeven, F.

    2010-12-01

    An early (1960s) gravity traverse over Wilkes Land in Antarctica yielded an unusual gravity profile: free air anomaly to -158mgal, steep negative free air gravity anomaly gradients (to 4.71 mgal/km), etc. The profile was not characteristic of those related to mantle or geologic crustal variations. Further, the lack of isostatic compensation, known rebound rates and locally crevassed ice lent to the suggestion the profile represented some recent process. The profile gave indication of apparent rim structures with an interior peak beneath the ice. The only interpretation at the time that appeared to reconcile the incongruities was the suggestion the profile represented a recent major bolide impact. Later radio-sounding work yielding craterform features that strengthened the hypothesis. More recent geophysical surveys, however, show a dominant cluster of negative free air gravity anomalies throughout Antarctica, spread across the East and West Antarctic structural boundary, i.e., the Transantarctic Mountains, the Ross Embayment and crossing into the continental-oceanic boundary. The geographic spread of these anomalies lies athwart contrasting geological provinces, making it difficult to assign the cause of these anomalies to any processes that might attend one geological regime. In addition, these anomalies lie within what might be postulated to be a bolide scatter ellipse. These gravity anomalies as well as aeromagnetic anomalies do not depart significantly from those of known impact sites (deviations are attributable to glacial scour). We therefore modified the earlier suggestion of one impact to that of multiple impacts. Three independent groups recently report that a major meteoritic event did occur in Antarctica at 481kyr. These reports arose from studies of 2 deep ice cores, Core Fuji and Dome C Core, and from the discovery of significant ablation debris in the Transantarctic Mountains indistinguishable from the anomalous extraterrestrial particles found in the

  17. Diversity and extracellular enzymatic activities of yeasts isolated from King George Island, the sub-Antarctic region

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Antarctica has been successfully colonized by microorganisms despite presenting adverse conditions for life such as low temperatures, high solar radiation, low nutrient availability and dryness. Although these “cold-loving” microorganisms are recognized as primarily responsible for nutrient and organic matter recycling/mineralization, the yeasts, in particular, remain poorly characterized and understood. The aim of this work was to study the yeast microbiota in soil and water samples collected on King George Island. Results A high number of yeast isolates was obtained from 34 soil and 14 water samples. Molecular analyses based on rDNA sequences revealed 22 yeast species belonging to 12 genera, with Mrakia and Cryptococcus genera containing the highest species diversity. The species Sporidiobolus salmonicolor was by far the most ubiquitous, being identified in 24 isolates from 13 different samples. Most of the yeasts were psychrotolerant and ranged widely in their ability to assimilate carbon sources (consuming from 1 to 27 of the 29 carbon sources tested). All species displayed at least 1 of the 8 extracellular enzyme activities tested. Lipase, amylase and esterase activity dominated, while chitinase and xylanase were less common. Two yeasts identified as Leuconeurospora sp. and Dioszegia fristingensis displayed 6 enzyme activities. Conclusions A high diversity of yeasts was isolated in this work including undescribed species and species not previously isolated from the Antarctic region, including Wickerhamomyces anomalus, which has not been isolated from cold regions in general. The diversity of extracellular enzyme activities, and hence the variety of compounds that the yeasts may degrade or transform, suggests an important nutrient recycling role of microorganisms in this region. These yeasts are of potential use in industrial applications requiring high enzyme activities at low temperatures. PMID:23131126

  18. Antarctic role in multi-centennial climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bakker, Pepijn; Clark, Peter U.; Golledge, Nicolas R.; Schmittner, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    Proxy-based reconstructions have revealed an important lack of multi-centennial climate variability in global climate models. Here we use a high-resolution ice-sheet model in combination with global climate simulations to show that internal variability in discharge of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet is a potentially important driver of multi-centennial climate variability. Variations in discharge impact the formation of Antarctic Bottom Water, that in turn impacts the climate at the earth's surface and in the deep ocean, in both near-field and far-field regions, through variations in the strength of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation. If indeed interactions between the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and the climate on multi-centennial timescales are important, studying them in high resolution climate records has good potential to provide constraints on the dynamics of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and its contribution to future sea-level rise.

  19. Environmental contamination in Antarctic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Bargagli, R

    2008-08-01

    Although the remote continent of Antarctica is perceived as the symbol of the last great wilderness, the human presence in the Southern Ocean and the continent began in the early 1900s for hunting, fishing and exploration, and many invasive plant and animal species have been deliberately introduced in several sub-Antarctic islands. Over the last 50 years, the development of research and tourism have locally affected terrestrial and marine coastal ecosystems through fuel combustion (for transportation and energy production), accidental oil spills, waste incineration and sewage. Although natural "barriers" such as oceanic and atmospheric circulation protect Antarctica from lower latitude water and air masses, available data on concentrations of metals, pesticides and other persistent pollutants in air, snow, mosses, lichens and marine organisms show that most persistent contaminants in the Antarctic environment are transported from other continents in the Southern Hemisphere. At present, levels of most contaminants in Antarctic organisms are lower than those in related species from other remote regions, except for the natural accumulation of Cd and Hg in several marine organisms and especially in albatrosses and petrels. The concentrations of organic pollutants in the eggs of an opportunistic top predator such as the south polar skua are close to those that may cause adverse health effects. Population growth and industrial development in several countries of the Southern Hemisphere are changing the global pattern of persistent anthropogenic contaminants and new classes of chemicals have already been detected in the Antarctic environment. Although the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty provides strict guidelines for the protection of the Antarctic environment and establishes obligations for all human activity in the continent and the Southern Ocean, global warming, population growth and industrial development in countries of the Southern

  20. Production, purification, and characterization of a novel cold-active superoxide dismutase from the Antarctic strain Aspergillus glaucus 363.

    PubMed

    Abrashev, Radoslav; Feller, Georges; Kostadinova, Nedelina; Krumova, Ekaterina; Alexieva, Zlatka; Gerginova, Maria; Spasova, Boryana; Miteva-Staleva, Jeni; Vassilev, Spassen; Angelova, Maria

    2016-05-01

    The Antarctic fungal strain Aspergillus glaucus 363 produces cold-active (CA) Cu/Zn-superoxide dismutase (SOD). The strain contains at least one gene encoding Cu/Zn-SOD that exhibited high homology with the corresponding gene of other Aspergillus species. To our knowledge, this is the first nucleotide sequence of a CA Cu/Zn-SOD gene in fungi. An effective laboratory technology for A. glaucus SOD production in 3 L bioreactors was developed on the basis of transient cold-shock treatment. The temperature downshift to 10 °C caused 1.4-fold increase of specific SOD activity compared to unstressed culture. Maximum enzyme productivity was 64 × 10(3) U kg(-1) h(-1). Two SOD isoenzymes (Cu/Zn-SODI and Cu/Zn-SODII) were purified to electrophoretic homogeneity. The specific activity of the major isoenzyme, Cu/Zn-SODII, after Q-Sepharose chromatography was 4000 U mg(-1). The molecular mass of SODI (38 159 Da) and of SODII (15 835 Da) was determined by electrospray quadropole time-of-flight (ESI-Q-TOF) mass spectrometry and dynamic light scattering (DLS). The presence of Cu and Zn were confirmed by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). The N-terminal amino acid sequence of Cu/Zn-SODII revealed a high degree of structural homology with Cu/Zn-SOD from other fungi, including Aspergillus species. PMID:27109365

  1. Identification of lipase encoding genes from Antarctic seawater bacteria using degenerate primers: expression of a cold-active lipase with high specific activity.

    PubMed

    Parra, Loreto P; Espina, Giannina; Devia, Javier; Salazar, Oriana; Andrews, Barbara; Asenjo, Juan A

    2015-01-01

    Cold-active enzymes are valuable catalysts showing high activity at low and moderate temperatures and low thermostability. Among cold-active enzymes, lipases offer a great potential in detergent, cosmetic, biofuel and food or feed industries. In this paper we describe the identification of novel lipase coding genes and the expression of a lipase with high activity at low temperatures. The genomic DNA from Antarctic seawater bacteria showing lipolytic activity at 4°C was used to amplify five DNA fragments that partially encode novel lipases using specifically designed COnsensus-DEgenerate Hybrid Oligonucleotide Primers (CODEHOP). All the fragments were found to have a high identity with an α/β-hydrolase domain-containing protein identified by the sequencing of the complete genome of Shewanella frigidimarina NCIMB 400. The complete sequence of one of the lipase-coding gene fragments, lipE13, was obtained by genome walking. Considering that the other fragments had a high identity to the putative lipase from S. frigidimarina NCIMB 400, the complete lipase genes were amplified using oligonucleotide primers designed based on the 5' and 3' regions of the coding sequence of the related protein. This strategy allowed the amplification of 3 lipase-encoding genes of which one was expressed in the periplasm using the Escherichia coli BL21(DE3)/pET-22b(+) expression system. The recombinant protein was obtained with activity toward p-nitrophenyl caproate showing a high specific activity between 15 and 25°C. PMID:25435506

  2. Revisiting Antarctic Ozone Depletion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grooß, Jens-Uwe; Tritscher, Ines; Müller, Rolf

    2015-04-01

    Antarctic ozone depletion is known for almost three decades and it has been well settled that it is caused by chlorine catalysed ozone depletion inside the polar vortex. However, there are still some details, which need to be clarified. In particular, there is a current debate on the relative importance of liquid aerosol and crystalline NAT and ice particles for chlorine activation. Particles have a threefold impact on polar chlorine chemistry, temporary removal of HNO3 from the gas-phase (uptake), permanent removal of HNO3 from the atmosphere (denitrification), and chlorine activation through heterogeneous reactions. We have performed simulations with the Chemical Lagrangian Model of the Stratosphere (CLaMS) employing a recently developed algorithm for saturation-dependent NAT nucleation for the Antarctic winters 2011 and 2012. The simulation results are compared with different satellite observations. With the help of these simulations, we investigate the role of the different processes responsible for chlorine activation and ozone depletion. Especially the sensitivity with respect to the particle type has been investigated. If temperatures are artificially forced to only allow cold binary liquid aerosol, the simulation still shows significant chlorine activation and ozone depletion. The results of the 3-D Chemical Transport Model CLaMS simulations differ from purely Lagrangian longtime trajectory box model simulations which indicates the importance of mixing processes.

  3. Onset of deglacial warming in West Antarctica driven by local orbital forcing

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    WAIS Divide Project Members; Steig, Eric J.; Markle, Bradley R.; Schoenemann, Spruce W.; Ding, Qinghua; Taylor, Kendrick C.; McConnell, Joseph R.; Brook, Edward J.; Sowers, Todd; White, James W. C.; Alley, Richard B.; Chen, Hai; Clow, Gary D.; Cole-Dai, Jihong; Conway, Howard; Fitzpatrick, Joan J.; Hargreaves, Geoffrey; and others

    2013-01-01

    The cause of warming in the Southern Hemisphere during the most recent deglaciation remains a matter of debate. Hypotheses for a Northern Hemisphere trigger, through oceanic redistributions of heat, are based in part on the abrupt onset of warming seen in East Antarctic ice cores and dated to 18,000 years ago, which is several thousand years after high-latitude Northern Hemisphere summer insolation intensity began increasing from its minimum, approximately 24,000 years ago. An alternative explanation is that local solar insolation changes cause the Southern Hemisphere to warm independently. Here we present results from a new, annually resolved ice-core record from West Antarctica that reconciles these two views. The records show that 18,000 years ago snow accumulation in West Antarctica began increasing, coincident with increasing carbon dioxide concentrations, warming in East Antarctica and cooling in the Northern Hemisphere associated with an abrupt decrease in Atlantic meridional overturning circulation. However, significant warming in West Antarctica began at least 2,000 years earlier. Circum-Antarctic sea-ice decline, driven by increasing local insolation, is the likely cause of this warming. The marine-influenced West Antarctic records suggest a more active role for the Southern Ocean in the onset of deglaciation than is inferred from ice cores in the East Antarctic interior, which are largely isolated from sea-ice changes.

  4. Onset of deglacial warming in West Antarctica driven by local orbital forcing.

    PubMed

    2013-08-22

    The cause of warming in the Southern Hemisphere during the most recent deglaciation remains a matter of debate. Hypotheses for a Northern Hemisphere trigger, through oceanic redistributions of heat, are based in part on the abrupt onset of warming seen in East Antarctic ice cores and dated to 18,000 years ago, which is several thousand years after high-latitude Northern Hemisphere summer insolation intensity began increasing from its minimum, approximately 24,000 years ago. An alternative explanation is that local solar insolation changes cause the Southern Hemisphere to warm independently. Here we present results from a new, annually resolved ice-core record from West Antarctica that reconciles these two views. The records show that 18,000 years ago snow accumulation in West Antarctica began increasing, coincident with increasing carbon dioxide concentrations, warming in East Antarctica and cooling in the Northern Hemisphere associated with an abrupt decrease in Atlantic meridional overturning circulation. However, significant warming in West Antarctica began at least 2,000 years earlier. Circum-Antarctic sea-ice decline, driven by increasing local insolation, is the likely cause of this warming. The marine-influenced West Antarctic records suggest a more active role for the Southern Ocean in the onset of deglaciation than is inferred from ice cores in the East Antarctic interior, which are largely isolated from sea-ice changes. PMID:23945585

  5. Bacterial diversity is strongly associated with historical penguin activity in an Antarctic lake sediment profile.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Renbin; Shi, Yu; Ma, Dawei; Wang, Can; Xu, Hua; Chu, Haiyan

    2015-01-01

    Current penguin activity in Antarctica affects the geochemistry of sediments and their microbial communities; the effects of historical penguin activity are less well understood. Here, bacterial diversity in ornithogenic sediment was investigated using high-throughput pyrosequencing. The relative abundances of dominant phyla were controlled by the amount of historical penguin guano deposition. Significant positive correlations were found between both the bacterial richness and diversity, and the relative penguin number (p < 0.01); this indicated that historical penguin activity drove the vertical distribution of the bacterial communities. The lowest relative abundances of individual phyla corresponded to lowest number of penguin population at 1,800-2,300 yr BP during a drier and colder period; the opposite was observed during a moister and warmer climate (1,400-1,800 yr BP). This study shows that changes in the climate over millennia affected penguin populations and the outcomes of these changes affect the sediment bacterial community today. PMID:26601753

  6. Phosphatase Activities of Endolithic Communities in Rocks of the Antarctic Dry Valleys.

    PubMed

    Banerjee; Whitton; Wynn-Williams

    2000-01-01

    Phosphorus is scarce in Beacon Sandstone of the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica, and any input from precipitation is minimal. In endolithic microbial communities recycling of P by the action of phosphatases may therefore be important. The phosphatase activities of three different types of endolithic communities in the McMurdo Dry Valley, Antarctica, were studied in the laboratory. The dominant phototrophs were Chroococcidiopsis, mixed Gloeocapsa and Trebouxia, and Trebouxia. Bacteria were also visually conspicuous in the latter two communities, and the Trebouxia in both cases formed a lichenized association with fungal hyphae. In each case marked phosphomonoesterase (PMEase) activity was found in assays with 4-methylumbelliferyl phosphate (MUP) or p-nitrophenyl phosphate as substrate, and phosphodiesterase activity with bis-p-nitrophenyl phosphate as substrate. The pH optimum of PMEase (assayed at 0.5 pH intervals) of the Chroococcidiopsis, Gloeocapsa-Trebouxia, and Trebouxia communities was 9.5, 5.5, and 8.0, respectively. These values are similar for aqueous extracts of the respective rocks (pH 9.2, 6.2, 7.5). All three communities showed significantly higher PMEase activity at 5 degrees than 1 degrees C, and the first two also showed much higher activity at 5 degrees than 10 degrees C. All three communities also showed slightly lower activity in the light (7 µmol photon m(-2) s(-1)) than the dark; this was found with all substrates and substrate concentrations. Prior exposure of a moistened sample to light for 2 h led to a reduction in activity even when the subsequent assay was done in the dark. The rate of PMEase activity (using 100 µM MUP) in the Gloeocapsa-Trebouxia and Trebouxia communities was approximately linear with time up to 24 h, whereas the Chroococcidiopsis community showed a marked decrease after 6 h. At least part of this was due to retention of the 4-methylumbelliferone (MU) hydrolysis product. In spite of the assays being conducted on a whole

  7. Higher Temperature and Hydrogen Availability Stimulated the Methanogenic Activity in East Antarctic Subglacial Sediment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, H.

    2014-12-01

    Subglacial ecosystem has been recognized as an environment with considerable methanogenic activity, and therefore is of significant impact on global methane budget and climate change. Although the methanogens have been discovered at a few subglacial environments, the methanogenic activity there is yet insufficiently studied, especially on the effects of environmental parameters, due to technical difficulties on sampling and cultivation. Here, in this study, we attempt to access the methanogenic activity and community structure in response to temperature and substrate availability. An integrated approach including in vitro cultivation and molecular techniques were employed. A subglacial sediment from Larsemann Hills, East Antarctica was incubated at different temperatures (1, 4, 12 oC) supplied with H2+CO2 or sodium acetate to estimate the methanogenic activity. The McrA gene which is a specific marker for methanogens was amplified with primer ME and ML to construct phylogenetic trees. This functional gene was also quantified by Q-PCR before and after the incubation to estimate the increase of methanogens. After 8 months a highest methanogenesis rate of 226 pmol/ day/ gram sediment was observed at 12 oC with H2 supplying, which was 2 times higher than that with acetate supplying, clearly suggesting that H2 is a preferable substrate than acetate. The methanogenesis rate without supplying extra substrate showed positive temperature dependence with rate of 23.3, 24.8, 131 pmol/day/gram sediment at 1 oC, 4 oC, and 12 oC, respectively. The McrA copy number was increased more than 300 times and 50 times with H2 and acetate supplying respectively after the incubation. 94% and 67% of the mcrA gene sequences were classed into methanomicrobiales which were hydrogen-trophic methanogens in the two clone libraries with primer ML and ME respectively. This finding suggests the potential effect of methanogenesis under glacier on the climate change.

  8. Bacterial diversity is strongly associated with historical penguin activity in an Antarctic lake sediment profile

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Renbin; Shi, Yu; Ma, Dawei; Wang, Can; Xu, Hua; Chu, Haiyan

    2015-01-01

    Current penguin activity in Antarctica affects the geochemistry of sediments and their microbial communities; the effects of historical penguin activity are less well understood. Here, bacterial diversity in ornithogenic sediment was investigated using high-throughput pyrosequencing. The relative abundances of dominant phyla were controlled by the amount of historical penguin guano deposition. Significant positive correlations were found between both the bacterial richness and diversity, and the relative penguin number (p < 0.01); this indicated that historical penguin activity drove the vertical distribution of the bacterial communities. The lowest relative abundances of individual phyla corresponded to lowest number of penguin population at 1,800–2,300 yr BP during a drier and colder period; the opposite was observed during a moister and warmer climate (1,400–1,800 yr BP). This study shows that changes in the climate over millennia affected penguin populations and the outcomes of these changes affect the sediment bacterial community today. PMID:26601753

  9. Variation in blood serum antifreeze activity of Antarctic Trematomus fishes across habitat temperature and depth.

    PubMed

    Fields, Lauren G; DeVries, Arthur L

    2015-07-01

    High latitude waters in the Southern Ocean can be near their freezing point and remain ice-covered throughout the year whereas lower latitude Southern Ocean waters have seasonal ice coverage and comparatively large (6 °C) annual temperature changes. The genus Trematomus (suborder Notothenioidei) is regarded primarily as a high latitude group because of its abundance there, they also inhabit the warmer regions in smaller numbers. Freeze avoidance in the notothenioids is linked to the presence of two antifreeze proteins (AFPs); the antifreeze glycoproteins (AFGPs) and antifreeze potentiating protein (AFPP), both of which adsorb to internal ice crystals inhibiting growth. Both high and low latitude trematomids possess sufficient AFP to lower their blood freezing point below that of seawater (-1.9 °C). We investigated the contributions of AFGPs and AFPP to the blood freezing point depression to determine how they varied with depth, water temperature, and the presence of ice. High latitude trematomids had lower blood freezing points than those inhabiting lower latitude waters indicating differences in their freeze avoidance capacities. Lower freezing points were associated with higher levels of antifreeze activity due to higher levels of both AFGP and AFPP. Populations of Trematomus hansoni and Trematomus bernacchii from shallow depths appear more freeze avoidant than populations inhabiting deep, ice-free water based on their lower freezing points and higher antifreeze activities. Gel electrophoresis of the trichloroacetic acid-soluble AFGPs indicates that only high molecular weight isoforms, which contribute more to AFGP activity, vary across species as well as between individuals of a species. PMID:25770668

  10. Cosmogenic records in Antarctic meteorites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goswami, J. N.; Nishiizumi, K.

    1983-01-01

    Aliquot samples of 29 Antarctic L and H chondrites are analyzed for their nuclear track records and Mn-53 activities. The track density in the analyzed samples ranges from 10 to the 4th to approximately 6 x 10 to the 6th per sq cm. A significant finding is the observation of track-rich grains in a set of four L3 chondrites (ALHA 77215, 77216, 77217, and 77252), suspected of belonging to the same fall based on petrographic observations. An additional sample, ALHA 78105, an L6 chondrite, also has track-rich grains. Mn-53 activity is at near saturation level in approximately 65 percent of the analyzed samples, suggesting exposure ages of greater than 10 m.y. in these cases. Very few H chondrites from the 7-m.y. exposure age peak are apparently sampled among the ones investigated in this study. Approximately 6 percent and 4 percent, respectively, of the Antarctic H and L chondrites analyzed thus far for their cosmogenic records have precompaction irradiation features. A combined analysis of Mn-53 and nuclear track data makes it possible to confirm or rule out the proposed pairing of several sets of Antarctic meteorites and to estimate the preatmospheric sizes of some of these meteorites. The results suggest that most of the small Antarctic meteorites (less than 1 kg) have suffered high (greater than 95 percent) ablation mass-loss.

  11. Antarctic stratospheric chemistry of chlorine nitrate, hydrogen chloride, and ice - Release of active chlorine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Molina, Mario J.; Tso, Tai-Ly; Molina, Luisa T.; Wang, Frank C.-Y.

    1987-01-01

    The reaction rate between atmospheric hydrogen chloride (HCl) and chlorine nitrate (ClONO2) is greatly enhanced in the presence of ice particles; HCl dissolves readily into ice, and the collisional reaction probability for ClONO2 on the surface of ice with HCl in the mole fraction range from about 0.003 to 0.010 is in the range from about 0.05 to 0.1 for temperatures near 200 K. Chlorine is released into the gas phase on a time scale of at most a few milliseconds, whereas nitric acid (HNO3), the other product, remains in the condensed phase. This reaction could play an important role in explaining the observed depletion of ozone over Antarctica; it releases photolytically active chlorine from its most abundant reservoir species, and it promotes the formation of HNO3 and thus removes nitrogen dioxide from the gas phase. Hence it establishes the necessary conditions for the efficient catalytic destruction of ozone by halogenated free radicals.

  12. Antarctic Stratospheric Chemistry of Chlorine Nitrate, Hydrogen Chloride, and Ice: Release of Active Chlorine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molina, Mario J.; Tso, Tai-Ly; Molina, Luisa T.; Wang, Frank C.-Y.

    1987-11-01

    The reaction rate between atmospheric hydrogen chloride (HCl) and chlorine nitrate (ClONO2) is greatly enhanced in the presence of ice particles; HCl dissolves readily into ice, and the collisional reaction probability for ClONO2 on the surface of ice with HCl in the mole fraction range from ~ 0.003 to 0.010 is in the range from ~ 0.05 to 0.1 for temperatures near 200 K. Chlorine (Cl2) is released into the gas phase on a time scale of at most a few milliseconds, whereas nitric acid (HNO3), the other product, remains in the condensed phase. This reaction could play an important role in explaining the observed depletion of ozone over Antarctica; it releases photolytically active chlorine from its most abundant reservoir species, and it promotes the formation of HNO3 and thus removes nitrogen dioxide (NO2) from the gas phase. Hence it establishes the necessary conditions for the efficient catalytic destruction of ozone by halogenated free radicals. In the absence of HCl, ClONO2 also reacts irreversibly with ice with a collision efficiency of ~ 0.02 at 200 K; the product hypochlorous acid (HOCl) is released to the gas phase on a time scale of minutes.

  13. A message to the antarctic community

    SciTech Connect

    Wilkness, P.E.

    1992-12-01

    Peter E. Wilkness, Division Director of the NSF Division of Polar Programs, summarizes the advances and changes in support of the US Antarctic Program over the last decade. Antarctic research has emerged as a vital component of global environmental concerns. Unique opportunities for astronomers and astrophysicists are found in the Antarctic. Logistic support and operational capabilities have been enhanced and the US stations have been renovated or replaced. Improved environmental management, both in terms of clean-up and current activities, is well under way. The challenge lies in managing and using these new tools in response to the public expectation of public benefit.

  14. Feeding repellence in Antarctic bryozoans.

    PubMed

    Figuerola, Blanca; Núñez-Pons, Laura; Moles, Juan; Avila, Conxita

    2013-11-01

    The Antarctic sea star Odontaster validus and the amphipod Cheirimedon femoratus are important predators in benthic communities. Some bryozoans are part of the diet of the asteroid and represent both potential host biosubstrata and prey for this omnivorous lysianassid amphipod. In response to such ecological pressure, bryozoans are expected to develop strategies to deter potential predators, ranging from physical to chemical mechanisms. However, the chemical ecology of Antarctic bryozoans has been scarcely studied. In this study we evaluated the presence of defenses against predation in selected species of Antarctic bryozoans. The sympatric omnivorous consumers O. validus and C. femoratus were selected to perform feeding assays with 16 ether extracts (EE) and 16 butanol extracts (BE) obtained from 16 samples that belonged to 13 different bryozoan species. Most species (9) were active (12 EE and 1 BE) in sea star bioassays. Only 1 BE displayed repellence, indicating that repellents against the sea star are mainly lipophilic. Repellence toward C. femoratus was found in all species in different extracts (10 EE and 12 BE), suggesting that defenses against the amphipod might be both lipophilic and hydrophilic. Interspecific and intraspecific variability of bioactivity was occasionally detected, suggesting possible environmental inductive responses, symbiotic associations, and/or genetic variability. Multivariate analysis revealed similarities among species in relation to bioactivities of EE and/or BE. These findings support the hypothesis that, while in some cases alternative chemical or physical mechanisms may also provide protection, repellent compounds play an important role in Antarctic bryozoans as defenses against predators. PMID:24221581

  15. In-situ measurements of chlorine activation, nitric acid redistribution and ozone depletion in the Antarctic lower vortex aboard the German research aircraft HALO during TACTS/ESMVal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jurkat, Tina; Voigt, Christiane; Kaufmann, Stefan; Schlage, Romy; Gottschaldt, Klaus-Dirk; Ziereis, Helmut; Hoor, Peter; Bozem, Heiko; Müller, Stefan; Zahn, Andreas; Schlager, Hans; Oelhaf, Hermann; Sinnhuber, Björn-Martin; Dörnbrack, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    In-situ measurements of stratospheric chlorine compounds are rare and exhibit the potential to gain insight into small scale mixing processes where stratospheric air masses of different origin and history interact. In addition, the relationship with chemically stable trace gases helps to identify regions that have been modified by chemical processing on polar stratospheric clouds. To this end, in-situ measurements of ClONO2, HCl, HNO3, NOy, N2O and O3 have been performed in the Antarctic Polar Vortex in September 2012 aboard the German research aircraft HALO (High Altitude and Long Rang research aircraft) during the TACTS/ESMVal (Transport and Composition in the UTLS/Earth System Model Validation) mission. With take-off and landing in Capetown, HALO sampled vortex air with latitudes down to 65°S, at altitudes between 8 and 14.3 km and potential temperatures between 340 and 390 K. Before intering the vortex at 350 K potential temperature, HALO additionally sampled mid-latitude stratospheric air. The trace gas distributions at the edge of the Antarctic polar vortex show distinct signatures of processed upper stratospheric vortex air and chemically different lower stratospheric / upper tropospheric air. Diabatic descend of the vortex transports processed air into the lower stratosphere. Here small scale filaments of only a few kilometers extension form at the lower vortex boundary due to shear stress, ultimately leading to transport and irreversible mixing. Comparison of trace gas relationships with those at the beginning of the polar winter reveals substantial chlorine activation, ozone depletion de- and renitrification with high resolution. Furthermore, the measurements are compared to the chemistry climate models EMAC and supported by ECMWF analysis. Finally, we compare the Antarctic measurements with new measurements of ClONO2, HCl and HNO3 aboard HALO obtained during the Arctic mission POLSTRACC (POLar STratosphere in a Changing Climate) based in Kiruna (Sveden

  16. Recent Aeromagnetic Anomaly views of the Antarctic continent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferraccioli, F.

    2012-04-01

    hypothesis further and contribute towards understanding the role that the inherited Precambrian architecture exerted on the location and development of the East Antarctic Rift System, which was active both before and during Gondwana break-up. Over Wilkes Land, aeromagnetic data offer tantalizing new glimpses into the extent of Precambrian basement provinces that have been extensively studied in formerly adjacent Australia. An over 1,900 km long magnetic low is traced from a new magnetic anomaly compilation along the margin of the Archean-Proterozoic Mawson continent, and is interpreted as delineating part of a Neoproterozoic rift system that heralded Rodinia break-up. Aeromagnetic data are also helping in deciphering Phanerozoic crustal growth along the paleo-Pacific active margin of Gondwana. In northern Victoria Land aeromagnetic anomaly interpretation, coupled with geochemical and structural observations is clarifying the architecture and evolution of Cambro-Ordovician terranes that were affected by the Ross Orogen. In the Antarctic Peninsula aeromagnetic and aerogravity data suggest the existence of several distinct arc provinces that may have docked against the Gondwana margin during the Cretaceous age Palmer Land event. Aeromagnetic interpretation over the West Antarctic ice sheet provides new insights into the extent of Cenozoic magmatism and rift basins within the West Antarctic Rift System and into the inland extent of the Jurassic Weddell Sea Rift

  17. Determinants of active pulmonary tuberculosis in Ambo Hospital, West Ethiopia

    PubMed Central

    Mengiste, Bezatu; Mesfin, Frehiwot; Godana, Wanzahun

    2015-01-01

    Objectives The aim of this study was to determine factors associated with active pulmonary tuberculosis seen in cases in Ambo Hospital, Ethiopia. Design A facility-based prospective case-control study. Setting Patients attending Ambo Hospital from 01 December 2011 to 29 March 2012. Participants The sample included 312 adult patients attending Ambo Hospital. The main outcome measure was presence of active pulmonary tuberculosis (TB). Explanatory measures Age, gender, occupation, educational status, marital status, place of residence, patient history of TB, family history of TB, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, smoking, alcohol intake, khat chewing, body mass index (BMI), employment, diabetes, history of asthma, previous history of worm infestation, history of hospitalisation, number of adults living in the household (HH), person per room, housing condition. Results A total of 312 study participants, including 104 active pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB) cases (cases) and 208 non-active PTB cases (controls), were recruited for the present study. Having one or more family member with a history of TB (OR = 4.4; 95% CI: 1.50–12.90), marital status (OR = 7.6; 95% CI: 2.2–12.6), male gender (OR = 3.2; 95% CI: 1.4–7), rural residence (OR = 3.3; P = 0.012), being a current or past smoker (OR = 2.8; 95% CI: 1.1–7.2), BMI < 18.5 (OR = 2.1; 95% CI: 1.03–4.2), HIV infection (OR = 8.8; 95% CI: 2.4–23.8) and a history of worm infestation (OR = 6.4; 95% CI: 2.6–15.4) remained significant independent host-related factors for active PTB. Conclusion Patients who came from a compound with more than two HHs were more likely to develop active PTB than those who came from a compound with only one HH. Those who lived in houses with no windows were more likely to develop active PTB than those who lived in houses with one or more windows, had a family history of TB, lived in rural areas. Sex of the patient was a predicting factor. Not being the owner of the house was

  18. Tephrochronology of the Siple Dome ice core, West Antarctica: correlations and sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dunbar, Nelia W.; Kurbatov, Andrei V.

    2011-06-01

    A total of 24 tephra-bearing volcanic layers have been recognized between 550 and 987 m depth in the Siple Dome A (SDM-A) ice core, in addition to a number already recognized tephra in the upper 550 m ( Dunbar et al., 2003; Kurbatov et al., 2006). The uniform composition and distinctive morphological of the particles composing these tephra layers suggest deposition as a result of explosive volcanic eruptions and that the layers therefore represent time-stratigraphic markers in the ice core. Despite the very fine grain size of these tephra (mostly less than 20 microns), robust geochemical compositions were determined by electron microprobe analysis. The source volcanoes for these tephra layers are largely found within the Antarctic plate. Statistical geochemical correlations tie nine of the tephra layers to known eruptions from Mt. Berlin, a West Antarctic volcano that has been very active for the past 100,000 years. Previous correlations were made to an eruption of Mt. Takahe, another West Antarctic volcano, and one to Mt. Hudson, located in South America ( Kurbatov et al., 2006). The lowest tephra layer in the ice core, located at 986.21 m depth, is correlated to a source eruption with an age of 118.1 ± 1.3 ka, suggesting a chronological pinning point for the lower ice. An episode of anomalously high volcanic activity in the ice in the SDM-A core between 18 and 35 ka ( Gow and Meese, 2007) appears to be related to eruptive activity of Mt. Berlin volcano. At least some of the tephra layers found in the SDM-A core appear to be the result of very explosive eruptions that spread ash across large parts of West Antarctica, off the West Antarctic coast, as well as also being recognized in East Antarctica ( Basile et al., 2001; Narcisi et al., 2005, 2006). Some of these layers would be expected to should be found in other deep Antarctic ice cores, particularly ones drilled in West Antarctica, providing correlative markers between different cores. The analysis of the

  19. Population dynamics of Salpa thompsoni near the Antarctic Peninsula: Growth rates and interannual variations in reproductive activity (1993-2009)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loeb, V. J.; Santora, J. A.

    2012-04-01

    The salp Salpa thompsoni has exhibited increased abundance in high latitude portions of the Southern Ocean in recent decades and is now frequently the numerically dominant zooplankton taxon in the Antarctic Peninsula region. The abundance increase of this species in high latitude waters is believed related to ocean warming. Due to its continuous filter feeding and production of dense rapidly sinking fecal pellets S. thompsoni is considered to be an important link in the export of particulate carbon from the surface waters. Hence basic information on the life history of this component of the Antarctic marine ecosystem is essential for assessing its impact given continued climate warming. Here we cover various aspects of the life history of S. thompsoni collected in the north Antarctic Peninsula during annual austral summer surveys of the US Antarctic Marine Living Resources (AMLR) Program between 1993 and 2009. We focus on seasonal and interannual variations in the size composition and abundance of the aggregate (sexual) and solitary (asexual) stages. This information is valuable for refining components of Southern Ocean food web models that explicitly deal with size-structured and life history information on zooplankton. Intraseasonal changes in length-frequency distribution of both stages are used to estimate their growth rates. These average 0.40 mm day-1 for aggregates and 0.23 mm day-1 for solitaries; together these represent ∼7 week and ∼7.5 month generation times, respectively, and a 9 month life cycle (i.e., onset of aggregate production year 1 to aggregate production year 2). Based on the maximum lengths typically found during January-March, the life spans of the aggregate and solitary stages can reach at least ∼5 and ∼15 months, respectively. Length-frequency distributions each year reflect interannual differences in timing of the initiation and peak reproductive output. Interannual differences in the abundance of total salps and proportions of the

  20. 33 CFR 334.762 - Naval Support Activity Panama City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas. 334.762 Section 334.762 Navigation and Navigable Waters... REGULATIONS § 334.762 Naval Support Activity Panama City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas. (a) The..., Naval Support Activity, Panama City Florida, and such agencies as he/she may designate....

  1. 33 CFR 334.762 - Naval Support Activity Panama City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas. 334.762 Section 334.762 Navigation and Navigable Waters... REGULATIONS § 334.762 Naval Support Activity Panama City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas. (a) The..., Naval Support Activity, Panama City Florida, and such agencies as he/she may designate....

  2. 33 CFR 334.762 - Naval Support Activity Panama City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas. 334.762 Section 334.762 Navigation and Navigable Waters... REGULATIONS § 334.762 Naval Support Activity Panama City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas. (a) The..., Naval Support Activity, Panama City Florida, and such agencies as he/she may designate....

  3. 33 CFR 334.762 - Naval Support Activity Panama City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas. 334.762 Section 334.762 Navigation and Navigable Waters... REGULATIONS § 334.762 Naval Support Activity Panama City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas. (a) The..., Naval Support Activity, Panama City Florida, and such agencies as he/she may designate....

  4. The Mountain West and the World: International Connections and Alternative Futures. A Handbook of 15 Activities for Secondary Classrooms.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Gary R.; Bienstock, Eric M.

    Activities to supplement secondary school global or future studies courses in the 10 state Mountain West region are presented in this teacher handbook. Material is divided into 3 sections. Section 1, an introduction to international connectedness, contains 7 activities focusing on the Mountain West's interdependence with the rest of the world. A…

  5. 33 CFR 334.762 - Naval Support Activity Panama City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas. 334.762 Section 334.762 Navigation and Navigable Waters... REGULATIONS § 334.762 Naval Support Activity Panama City; North Bay and West Bay; restricted areas. (a) The..., Naval Support Activity, Panama City Florida, and such agencies as he/she may designate....

  6. The Antarctic Ice.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Radok, Uwe

    1985-01-01

    The International Antarctic Glaciological Project has collected information on the East Antarctic ice sheet since 1969. Analysis of ice cores revealed climatic history, and radar soundings helped map bedrock of the continent. Computer models of the ice sheet and its changes over time will aid in predicting the future. (DH)

  7. The Antarctic Ozone Hole.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stolarski, Richard S.

    1988-01-01

    Discusses the Airborne Antarctic Ozone Experiment (1987) and the findings of the British Antarctic Survey (1985). Proposes two theories for the appearance of the hole in the ozone layer over Antarctica which appears each spring; air pollution and natural atmospheric shifts. Illustrates the mechanics of both. Supports worldwide chlorofluorocarbon…

  8. Upper mantle structure of central and West Antarctica from array analysis of Rayleigh wave phase velocities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heeszel, David S.; Wiens, Douglas A.; Anandakrishnan, Sridhar; Aster, Richard C.; Dalziel, Ian W. D.; Huerta, Audrey D.; Nyblade, Andrew A.; Wilson, Terry J.; Winberry, J. Paul

    2016-03-01

    The seismic velocity structure of Antarctica is important, both as a constraint on the tectonic history of the continent and for understanding solid Earth interactions with the ice sheet. We use Rayleigh wave array analysis methods applied to teleseismic data from recent temporary broadband seismograph deployments to image the upper mantle structure of central and West Antarctica. Phase velocity maps are determined using a two-plane wave tomography method and are inverted for shear velocity using a Monte Carlo approach to estimate three-dimensional velocity structure. Results illuminate the structural dichotomy between the East Antarctic Craton and West Antarctica, with West Antarctica showing thinner crust and slower upper mantle velocity. West Antarctica is characterized by a 70-100 km thick lithosphere, underlain by a low-velocity zone to depths of at least 200 km. The slowest anomalies are beneath Ross Island and the Marie Byrd Land dome and are interpreted as upper mantle thermal anomalies possibly due to mantle plumes. The central Transantarctic Mountains are marked by an uppermost mantle slow-velocity anomaly, suggesting that the topography is thermally supported. The presence of thin, higher-velocity lithosphere to depths of about 70 km beneath the West Antarctic Rift System limits estimates of the regionally averaged heat flow to less than 90 mW/m2. The Ellsworth-Whitmore block is underlain by mantle with velocities that are intermediate between those of the West Antarctic Rift System and the East Antarctic Craton. We interpret this province as Precambrian continental lithosphere that has been altered by Phanerozoic tectonic and magmatic activity.

  9. Antarctic Meteorology and Climatology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, J. C.; Turner, J.

    1997-07-01

    This book is a comprehensive survey of the climatology and meteorology of Antarctica. The first section of the book reviews the methods by which we can observe the Antarctic atmosphere and presents a synthesis of climatological measurements. In the second section, the authors consider the processes that maintain the observed climate, from large-scale atmospheric circulation to small-scale processes. The final section reviews our current knowledge of the variability of Antarctic climate and the possible effects of "greenhouse" warming. The authors stress links among the Antarctic atmosphere, other elements of the Antarctic climate system (oceans, sea ice and ice sheets), and the global climate system. This volume will be of greatest interest to meteorologists and climatologists with a specialized interest in Antarctica, but it will also appeal to researchers in Antarctic glaciology, oceanography and biology. Graduates and undergraduates studying physical geography, and the earth, atmospheric and environmental sciences will find much useful background material in the book.

  10. Characterisation of the Nematode Community of a Low-Activity Cold Seep in the Recently Ice-Shelf Free Larsen B Area, Eastern Antarctic Peninsula

    PubMed Central

    Hauquier, Freija; Ingels, Jeroen; Gutt, Julian; Raes, Maarten; Vanreusel, Ann

    2011-01-01

    Background Recent climate-induced ice-shelf disintegration in the Larsen A (1995) and B (2002) areas along the Eastern Antarctic Peninsula formed a unique opportunity to assess sub-ice-shelf benthic community structure and led to the discovery of unexplored habitats, including a low-activity methane seep beneath the former Larsen B ice shelf. Since both limited particle sedimentation under previously permanent ice coverage and reduced cold-seep activity are likely to influence benthic meiofauna communities, we characterised the nematode assemblage of this low-activity cold seep and compared it with other, now seasonally ice-free, Larsen A and B stations and other Antarctic shelf areas (Weddell Sea and Drake Passage), as well as cold-seep ecosystems world-wide. Principal Findings The nematode community at the Larsen B seep site differed significantly from other Antarctic sites in terms of dominant genera, diversity and abundance. Densities in the seep samples were high (>2000 individuals per 10 cm2) and showed below-surface maxima at a sediment depth of 2–3 cm in three out of four replicates. All samples were dominated by one species of the family Monhysteridae, which was identified as a Halomonhystera species that comprised between 80 and 86% of the total community. The combination of high densities, deeper density maxima and dominance of one species is shared by many cold-seep ecosystems world-wide and suggested a possible dependence upon a chemosynthetic food source. Yet stable 13C isotopic signals (ranging between −21.97±0.86‰ and −24.85±1.89‰) were indicative of a phytoplankton-derived food source. Conclusion The recent ice-shelf collapse and enhanced food input from surface phytoplankton blooms were responsible for the shift from oligotrophic pre-collapse conditions to a phytodetritus-based community with high densities and low diversity. The parthenogenetic reproduction of the highly dominant Halomonhystera species is rather unusual for marine

  11. Air and shipborne magnetic surveys of the Antarctic into the 21st century

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Golynsky, A.; Bell, R.; Blankenship, D.; Damaske, D.; Ferraccioli, F.; Finn, C.; Golynsky, D.; Ivanov, S.; Jokat, W.; Masolov, V.; Riedel, S.; von Frese, R.; Young, D.

    2013-02-01

    The Antarctic geomagnetics' community remains very active in crustal anomaly mapping. More than 1.5 million line-km of new air- and shipborne data have been acquired over the past decade by the international community in Antarctica. These new data together with surveys that previously were not in the public domain significantly upgrade the ADMAP compilation. Aeromagnetic flights over East Antarctica have been concentrated in the Transantarctic Mountains, the Prince Charles Mountains - Lambert Glacier area, and western Dronning Maud Land (DML) — Coats Land. Additionally, surveys were conducted over Lake Vostok and the western part of Marie Byrd Land by the US Support Office for Aerogeophysical Research projects and over the Amundsen Sea Embayment during the austral summer of 2004/2005 by a collaborative US/UK aerogeophysical campaign. New aeromagnetic data over the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains (120,000 line-km), acquired within the IPY Antarctica's Gamburtsev Province project reveal fundamental geologic features beneath the East Antarctic Ice sheet critical to understanding Precambrian continental growth processes. Roughly 100,000 line-km of magnetic data obtained within the International Collaboration for Exploration of the Cryosphere through Aerogeophysical Profiling promises to shed light on subglacial lithology and identify crustal boundaries for the central Antarctic Plate. Since the 1996/97 season, the Alfred Wegener Institute has collected 90,000 km of aeromagnetic data along a 1200 km long segment of the East Antarctic coast over western DML. Recent cruises by Australian, German, Japanese, Russian, British, and American researchers have contributed to long-standing studies of the Antarctic continental margin. Along the continental margin of East Antarctica west of Maud Rise to the George V Coast of Victoria Land, the Russian Polar Marine Geological Research Expedition and Geoscience Australia obtained 80,000 and 20,000 line-km, respectively, of

  12. A 16,000-yr tephra framework for the Antarctic ice sheet: a contribution from the new Talos Dome core

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Narcisi, Biancamaria; Petit, Jean Robert; Delmonte, Barbara; Scarchilli, Claudio; Stenni, Barbara

    2012-08-01

    A detailed tephra record for the last 16,000 years of the TALDICE ice core drilled at Talos Dome (East Antarctica, Pacific/Ross Sea sector) is documented. Traces of 26 different explosive volcanic eruptions, dated by ice core chronology and framed within the climate (δ18O) record for the core, have been identified. Glass major element composition and grain size data indicate that all prominent tephra layers derive from Antarctic volcanic activity and likely originated in proximal volcanoes of the Melbourne Volcanic Province (Northern Victoria Land). Two other Antarctic horizons may have originated from the more distant volcanoes of Mount Berlin (Marie Byrd Land, West Antarctica) and Mount Erebus (Ross Island, Southern Victoria Land). Moreover, based on glass-shard geochemistry and a 20-year analysis of atmospheric back trajectories suggesting ash transport from South America to the drilling site by the circumpolar westerly circulation, a few faint microtephra horizons are attributed to Andean volcanic activity. Two of these tephras are interpreted to be related to known Holocene explosive eruptions from the volcanoes of Mount Hudson and Mount Burney. Finally, by comparing compositional features in conjunction with age data, three TALDICE tephras have been successfully correlated with volcanic layers in other ice records of the Antarctic ice sheet. Altogether, our results expand the Antarctic tephrostratigraphic framework and add value to the prospects for continental-scale correlations between ice cores and Southern Hemisphere sediment archives.

  13. Controls and variability of solute and sedimentary fluxes in Antarctic and sub-Antarctic Environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zwolinski, Zbigniew

    2015-04-01

    The currently prepared SEDIBUD Book on "Source-to-Sink Fluxes in Undisturbed Cold Environments" (edited by Achim A. Beylich, John C. Dixon and Zbigniew Zwolinski and published by Cambridge University Press) is summarizing and synthesizing the achievements of the International Association of Geomorphologists` (I.A.G./A.I.G.) Working Group SEDIBUD (Sediment Budgets in Cold Environments), which has been active since 2005 (http://www.geomorph.org/wg/wgsb.html). The book comprises five parts. One of them is part about sub-Antarctic and Antarctic Environments. This part "Sub-Antarctic and Antarctic Environments" describes two different environments, namely oceanic and continental ones. Each part contains results of research on environmental drivers and rates of contemporary solute and sedimentary fluxes in selected sites. Apart from describing the environmental conditions of the whole continent of Antarctica and sub-Antarctic islands (Zb.Zwolinski, M.Kejna, A.N.Lastochkin, A.Zhirov, S.Boltramovich) this part of the book characterizes terrestrial polar oases free from multi-year ice and snow covers (Zb.Zwolinski). The detailed results of geoecological and sedimentological research come from different parts of Antarctica. Antarctic continental shelf (E.Isla) is an example of sub-Antarctic oceanic environment. South Shetlands, especially King George Island (Zb.Zwolinski, M.Kejna, G.Rachlewicz, I.Sobota, J.Szpikowski), is an example of sub-Antarctic terrestrial environment. Antarctic Peninsula (G.Vieira, M.Francelino, J.C.Fernandes) and surroundings of McMurdo Dry Valleys (W.B.Lyons, K.A.Welch, J.Levy, A.Fountain, D.McKnight) are examples of Antarctic continental environments. The key goals of the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic book chapters are following: (i) identify the main environmental drivers and rates of contemporary solute and sedimentary fluxes, and (ii) model possible effects of projected climate change on solute and sedimentary fluxes in cold climate environments

  14. Ice sheets. Volume loss from Antarctic ice shelves is accelerating.

    PubMed

    Paolo, Fernando S; Fricker, Helen A; Padman, Laurie

    2015-04-17

    The floating ice shelves surrounding the Antarctic Ice Sheet restrain the grounded ice-sheet flow. Thinning of an ice shelf reduces this effect, leading to an increase in ice discharge to the ocean. Using 18 years of continuous satellite radar altimeter observations, we have computed decadal-scale changes in ice-shelf thickness around the Antarctic continent. Overall, average ice-shelf volume change accelerated from negligible loss at 25 ± 64 cubic kilometers per year for 1994-2003 to rapid loss of 310 ± 74 cubic kilometers per year for 2003-2012. West Antarctic losses increased by ~70% in the past decade, and earlier volume gain by East Antarctic ice shelves ceased. In the Amundsen and Bellingshausen regions, some ice shelves have lost up to 18% of their thickness in less than two decades. PMID:25814064

  15. 77 FR 16566 - Notice of Permit Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-03-21

    ... Notice of Permit Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 AGENCY: National Science Foundation. ACTION: Notice of Permit Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of... applications received to conduct activities regulated under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public...

  16. 78 FR 41959 - Notice of Permit Modification Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-07-12

    ... activities occurring in Antarctic Specially Protected Areas (ASPA) or involving Antarctic Flora and Fauna. Starting in 2013, all new permits issued for ASPA entry or involving Antarctic Flora and Flora require the... Flora and Fauna issued prior to 2013 that require the permittee to submit an annual report to...

  17. EMAP - WEST COMMUNICATIONS, SURVEY DESIGNS FOR SAMPLING SURFACE WATER CONDITION IN THE WEST (ONE-PAGE BRIEFING PAPER ON EMAP-WEST ACTIVITIES)

    EPA Science Inventory

    To meet the requirements of the Clean Water Act, States and Tribes must provide a statement of condition of their surface water resources. The design used in EMAP-West will allow these
    requirements to be met in an efficient as well as scientifically defensible manner. The desi...

  18. Antarctic skuas recognize individual humans.

    PubMed

    Lee, Won Young; Han, Yeong-Deok; Lee, Sang-Im; Jablonski, Piotr G; Jung, Jin-Woo; Kim, Jeong-Hoon

    2016-07-01

    Recent findings report that wild animals can recognize individual humans. To explain how the animals distinguish humans, two hypotheses are proposed. The high cognitive abilities hypothesis implies that pre-existing high intelligence enabled animals to acquire such abilities. The pre-exposure to stimuli hypothesis suggests that frequent encounters with humans promote the acquisition of discriminatory abilities in these species. Here, we examine individual human recognition abilities in a wild Antarctic species, the brown skua (Stercorarius antarcticus), which lives away from typical human settlements and was only recently exposed to humans due to activities at Antarctic stations. We found that, as nest visits were repeated, the skua parents responded at further distances and were more likely to attack the nest intruder. Also, we demonstrated that seven out of seven breeding pairs of skuas selectively responded to a human nest intruder with aggression and ignored a neutral human who had not previously approached the nest. The results indicate that Antarctic skuas, a species that typically inhabited in human-free areas, are able to recognize individual humans who disturbed their nests. Our findings generally support the high cognitive abilities hypothesis, but this ability can be acquired during a relatively short period in the life of an individual as a result of interactions between individual birds and humans. PMID:26939544

  19. The Antarctic Submillimetre Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Minier, V.; Olmi, L.; Durand, G.; Daddi, E.; Israel, F.; Kramer, C.; Lagage, P.-O.; de Petris, M.; Sabbatini, L.; Spinoglio, L.; Schneider, N.; Tothill, N.; Tremblin, P.; Valenziano, L.; Veyssière, C.

    This report aims to provide a summary of the status of our Antarctic Submillimetre Telescope (AST) project up to date. It is a very new project for Antarctic astronomy. Necessary prerequisites for a future deployment of a large size telescope infrastructure have been tested in years 2007 and 2008. The knowledge of the transmission, frost formation and temperature gradient were fundamental parameters before starting a feasibility study. The telescope specifications and requirements are currently discussed with the industrial partnership.

  20. A barrier to Antarctic circumpolar flow until the mid-Miocene?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalziel, I. W.; Lawver, L. A.; Pearce, J. A.; Barker, P. F.; Hastie, A. R.; Barfod, D.; Schenke, H.; Davis, M. B.

    2012-12-01

    The Central Scotia Sea (CSS) is a region approximately the size of France situated in the Southern Ocean between the active South Sandwich arc-East Scotia Sea back-arc basin system and the extinct West Scotia Sea spreading system. Presently the CSS is an integral part of the Drake Passage deep ocean gateway permitting eastward flow from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean as part of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC). The geological history of the CSS is therefore critical for a full understanding of the initiation and subsequent evolution of the ACC, widely believed to have been a key factor in the history of Antarctic glaciation. Despite its importance, however, the isolation and iceberg-infested setting of the CSS has meant that, until now, no in situ samples had been recovered to constrain its geology. Here, we present new evidence on the nature and age of its floor. Multibeam surveys and petrologic and geochemical study of the first dredged samples indicate that a now submerged remnant volcanic arc, split by the ESS basin behind the South Sandwich arc, may have formed a barrier to deep eastward oceanic circulation through the Drake Passage gateway, possibly until after the mid-Miocene climatic optimum. Inception and development of a full ACC may therefore have been important, not in the initial drop in global temperatures at the Eocene-Oligocene boundary as long surmised, but rather in the subsequent late Miocene global cooling and intensification of Antarctic glaciation.

  1. Characterization of serum phospholipase a(2) activity in three diverse species of west african crocodiles.

    PubMed

    Merchant, Mark; Juneau, Kate; Gemillion, Jared; Falconi, Rodolfo; Doucet, Aaron; Shirley, Matthew H

    2011-01-01

    Secretory phospholipase A(2), an enzyme that exhibits substantial immunological activity, was measured in the serum of three species of diverse West African crocodiles. Incubation of different volumes of crocodile serum with bacteria labeled with a fluorescent fatty acid in the sn-2 position of membrane lipids resulted in a volume-dependent liberation of fluorescent probe. Serum from the Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) exhibited slightly higher activity than that of the slender-snouted crocodile (Mecistops cataphractus) and the African dwarf crocodile (Osteolaemus tetraspis). Product formation was inhibited by BPB, a specific PLA(2) inhibitor, confirming that the activity was a direct result of the presence of serum PLA(2). Kinetic analysis showed that C. niloticus serum produced product more rapidly than M. cataphractus or O. tetraspis. Serum from all three species exhibited temperature-dependent PLA(2) activities but with slightly different thermal profiles. All three crocodilian species showed high levels of activity against eight different species of bacteria. PMID:22110960

  2. Antarctic Tectonics: Constraints From an ERS-1 Satellite Marine Gravity Field

    PubMed

    McAdoo; Laxon

    1997-04-25

    A high-resolution gravity field of poorly charted and ice-covered ocean near West Antarctica, from the Ross Sea east to the Weddell Sea, has been derived with the use of satellite altimetry, including ERS-1 geodetic phase, wave-form data. This gravity field reveals regional tectonic fabric, such as gravity lineations, which are the expression of fracture zones left by early (65 to 83 million years ago) Pacific-Antarctic sea-floor spreading that separated the Campbell Plateau and New Zealand continent from West Antarctica. These lineations constrain plate motion history and confirm the hypothesis that Antarctica behaved as two distinct plates, separated from each other by an extensional Bellingshausen plate boundary active in the Amundsen Sea before about 61 million years ago. PMID:9110969

  3. Non-extensivity and complexity in the earthquake activity at the West Corinth rift (Greece)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michas, Georgios; Vallianatos, Filippos; Sammonds, Peter

    2013-04-01

    Earthquakes exhibit complex phenomenology that is revealed from the fractal structure in space, time and magnitude. For that reason other tools rather than the simple Poissonian statistics seem more appropriate to describe the statistical properties of the phenomenon. Here we use Non-Extensive Statistical Physics [NESP] to investigate the inter-event time distribution of the earthquake activity at the west Corinth rift (central Greece). This area is one of the most seismotectonically active areas in Europe, with an important continental N-S extension and high seismicity rates. NESP concept refers to the non-additive Tsallis entropy Sq that includes Boltzmann-Gibbs entropy as a particular case. This concept has been successfully used for the analysis of a variety of complex dynamic systems including earthquakes, where fractality and long-range interactions are important. The analysis indicates that the cumulative inter-event time distribution can be successfully described with NESP, implying the complexity that characterizes the temporal occurrences of earthquakes. Further on, we use the Tsallis entropy (Sq) and the Fischer Information Measure (FIM) to investigate the complexity that characterizes the inter-event time distribution through different time windows along the evolution of the seismic activity at the West Corinth rift. The results of this analysis reveal a different level of organization and clusterization of the seismic activity in time. Acknowledgments. GM wish to acknowledge the partial support of the Greek State Scholarships Foundation (IKY).

  4. Sugars in Antarctic aerosol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barbaro, Elena; Kirchgeorg, Torben; Zangrando, Roberta; Vecchiato, Marco; Piazza, Rossano; Barbante, Carlo; Gambaro, Andrea

    2015-10-01

    The processes and transformations occurring in the Antarctic aerosol during atmospheric transport were described using selected sugars as source tracers. Monosaccharides (arabinose, fructose, galactose, glucose, mannose, ribose, xylose), disaccharides (sucrose, lactose, maltose, lactulose), alcohol-sugars (erythritol, mannitol, ribitol, sorbitol, xylitol, maltitol, galactitol) and anhydrosugars (levoglucosan, mannosan and galactosan) were measured in the Antarctic aerosol collected during four different sampling campaigns. For quantification, a sensitive high-pressure anion exchange chromatography was coupled with a single quadrupole mass spectrometer. The method was validated, showing good accuracy and low method quantification limits. This study describes the first determination of sugars in the Antarctic aerosol. The total mean concentration of sugars in the aerosol collected at the "Mario Zucchelli" coastal station was 140 pg m-3; as for the aerosol collected over the Antarctic plateau during two consecutive sampling campaigns, the concentration amounted to 440 and 438 pg m-3. The study of particle-size distribution allowed us to identify the natural emission from spores or from sea-spray as the main sources of sugars in the coastal area. The enrichment of sugars in the fine fraction of the aerosol collected on the Antarctic plateau is due to the degradation of particles during long-range atmospheric transport. The composition of sugars in the coarse fraction was also investigated in the aerosol collected during the oceanographic cruise.

  5. Solutions to problems of weathering in Antarctic eucrites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strait, Melissa M.

    1990-01-01

    Neutron activation analysis was performed for major and trace elements on a suite of eucrites from both Antarctic and non-Antarctic sources. The chemistry was examined to see if there was an easy way to distinguish Antarctic eucrites that had been disturbed in their trace elements systematics from those that had normal abundances relative to non-Antarctic eucrites. There was no simple correlation found, and identifying the disturbed meteorites still remains a problem. In addition, a set of mineral separates from an eucrite were analyzed. The results showed no abnormalities in the chemistry and provides a possible way to use Antarctic eucrites that were disturbed in modelling of the eucrite parent body.

  6. Characterization of a salt-activated protease with temperature-dependent secretion in Stenotrophomonas maltophilia FF11 isolated from frozen Antarctic krill.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qingling; Ji, Fangling; Wang, Jingyun; Jiang, Bo; Li, Lu; An, Lijia; Li, Yachen; Bao, Yongming

    2016-06-01

    Seafood is sometimes wasted due to the growth of psychrotolerant microbes which secrete proteases and break down proteins. Stenotrophomonas maltophilia FF11, isolated from frozen Antarctic krill, grows at a wide range of temperatures and secretes more proteases at low temperatures. According to zymogram analysis, two kinds of proteases were produced from this strain. A major protease was produced largely at 15 °C, but not at 37 °C. The temperature-dependent secreted protease was purified to homogeneity. Its molecular mass was determined at 37.4 kDa and its amino acid sequence was also obtained. This protease is a member of the subtilase group according to the NCBI blast analysis. The enzyme was highly stable at high salt concentration (4 M). Interestingly, its activity increased about 1.6-fold under high salt condition. The enzyme remains active and stable in different organic solvents (50 %, v/v) such as dimethylsulfoxide, dimethyl formamide, dioxane and acetone. These properties may provide potential applications in quality control for sea foods, in protein degradation at high salt concentration, in biocatalysis and biotransformation within non-aqueous media, such as detergent and transesterification. PMID:27001262

  7. A decade of aerogeophysical exploration helps unveil the architecture and evolution of the Antarctic continent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferraccioli, F.

    2012-12-01

    -up (Ferraccioli et al., 2012, Nature submitted). Interpretation of residual gravity images suggests that the rifted margin was imposed upon a major transcontinental suture zone of Paleoproterozoic age. Aeromagnetic data are also deciphering Phanerozoic crustal growth processes along the paleo-Pacific active margin of Gondwana. In northern Victoria Land aeromagnetic anomaly imaging is helping unravel the architecture of Cambro-Ordovician terranes that were affected by the Ross Orogen. In the Antarctic Peninsula several distinct magmatic arc provinces are interpreted as having docked against the rifted Gondwana margin in the mid Cretaceous. Aeromagnetic and gravity imaging over the West Antarctic ice sheet is also unveiling the extent of the Cretaceous-Cenozoic West Antarctic Rift System (e.g. Bingham et al., 2012 Nature) and the Jurassic age Weddell Sea Rift system (Jordan et al., 2012 b, Tectonophysics).

  8. Rebound of Antarctic ozone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salby, Murry; Titova, Evgenia; Deschamps, Lilia

    2011-05-01

    Restrictions on CFCs have led to a gradual decline of Equivalent Effective Stratospheric Chlorine (EESC). A rebound of Antarctic ozone, however, has remained elusive, masked by large interannual changes that dominate its current evolution. A positive response of ozone is not expected to emerge for at least 1-2 decades, possibly not for half a century. We show that interannual changes of the Antarctic ozone hole are accounted for almost perfectly by changes in dynamical forcing of the stratosphere. The close relationship enables dynamically-induced changes of ozone to be removed, unmasking the climate signal associated with CFCs. The component independent of dynamically-induced changes exhibits a clear upward trend over the last decade - the first signature of a rebound in Antarctic ozone. It enables ozone to be tracked relative to CFCs and other changes of climate.

  9. The use of early summer mosquito surveillance to predict late summer West Nile virus activity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ginsberg, Howard S.; Rochlin, Ilia; Campbell, Scott R.

    2010-01-01

    Utility of early-season mosquito surveillance to predict West Nile virus activity in late summer was assessed in Suffolk County, NY. Dry ice-baited CDC miniature light traps paired with gravid traps were set weekly. Maximum-likelihood estimates of WNV positivity, minimum infection rates, and % positive pools were generally well correlated. However, positivity in gravid traps was not correlated with positivity in CDC light traps. The best early-season predictors of WNV activity in late summer (estimated using maximum-likelihood estimates of Culex positivity in August and September) were early date of first positive pool, low numbers of mosquitoes in July, and low numbers of mosquito species in July. These results suggest that early-season entomological samples can be used to predict WNV activity later in the summer, when most human cases are acquired. Additional research is needed to establish which surveillance variables are most predictive and to characterize the reliability of the predictions.

  10. Antarctic Peninsula Tidewater Glacier Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pettit, E. C.; Scambos, T. A.; Haran, T. M.; Wellner, J. S.; Domack, E. W.; Vernet, M.

    2015-12-01

    The northern Antarctic Peninsula (nAP, north of 66°S) is a north-south trending mountain range extending transverse across the prevailing westerly winds of the Southern Ocean resulting in an extreme west-to-east precipitation gradient. Snowfall on the west side of the AP is one to two orders of magnitude higher than the east side. This gradient drives short, steep, fast-flowing glaciers into narrow fjords on the west side, while longer lower-sloping glaciers flow down the east side into broader fjord valleys. This pattern in ice dynamics affects ice-ocean interaction on timescales of decades to centuries, and shapes the subglacial topography and submarine bathymetry on timescales of glacial cycles. In our study, we calculate ice flux for the western and eastern nAP using a drainage model that incorporates the modern ice surface topography, the RACMO-2 precipitation estimate, and recent estimates of ice thinning. Our results, coupled with observed rates of ice velocity from InSAR (I. Joughin, personal communication) and Landsat 8 -derived flow rates (this study), provide an estimate of ice thickness and fjord depth in grounded-ice areas for the largest outlet glaciers. East-side glaciers either still terminate in or have recently terminated in ice shelves. Sedimentary evidence from the inner fjords of the western glaciers indicates they had ice shelves during LIA time, and may still have transient floating ice tongues (tabular berg calvings are observed). Although direct oceanographic evidence is limited, the high accumulation rate and rapid ice flux implies cold basal ice for the western nAP glaciers and therefore weak subglacial discharge relative to eastern nAP glaciers and or other tidewater fjord systems such as in Alaska. Finally, despite lower accumulation rates on the east side, the large elongate drainage basins result in a greater ice flux funneled through fewer deeper glaciers. Due to the relation between ice flux and erosion, these east-side glaciers

  11. Antarctic terrestrial ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Walton, D.W.H.

    1987-01-01

    The Maritime and Continental Antarctic terrestrial ecosystems are considered in the context of environmental impacts - habitat destruction, alien introductions, and pollution. Four types of pollution are considered: nutrients, radionuclides, inert materials, and noxious chemicals. Their ability to recover from perturbation is discussed in the light of present scientific knowledge, and the methods used to control impacts are reviewed. It is concluded that techniques of waste disposal are still inadequate, adequate training in environmental and conservation principles for Antarctic personnel in many countries is lacking, and scientific investigations may be a much more serious threat than tourism to the integrity of these ecosystems. Some priorities crucial to future management are suggested.

  12. Antarctic analogs for Enceladus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murray, A. E.; Andersen, D. T.; McKay, C. P.

    2014-12-01

    Enceladus is a new world for Astrobiology. The Cassini discovery of the icy plume emanating from the South Polar region indicates an active world, where detection of water, organics, sodium, and nano-particle silica in the plume strongly suggests that the source is a subsurface salty ocean reservoir. Recent gravity data from Cassini confirms the presence of a regional sea extending north to 50°S. An ocean habitat under a thick ice cover is perhaps a recurring theme in the Outer Solar System, but what makes Enceladus unique is that the plume jetting out into space is carrying samples of this ocean. Therefore, through the study of Enceladus' plumes we can gain new insights not only of a possible habitable world in the Solar Systems, but also about the formation and evolution of other icy-satellites. Cassini has been able to fly through this plume - effectively sampling the ocean. It is time to plan for future missions that do more detailed analyses, possibly return samples back to Earth and search for evidence of life. To help prepare for such missions, the need for earth-based analog environments is essential for logistical, methodological (life detection) and theoretical development. We have undertaken studies of two terrestrial environments that are close analogs to Enceladus' ocean: Lake Vida and Lake Untersee - two ice-sealed Antarctic lakes that represent physical, chemical and possibly biological analogs for Enceladus. By studying the diverse biology and physical and chemical constraints to life in these two unique lakes we will begin to understand the potential habitability of Enceladus and other icy moons, including possible sources of nutrients and energy, which together with liquid water are the key ingredients for life. Analog research such as this will also enable us to develop and test new strategies to search for evidence of life on Enceladus.

  13. Antarctic subglacial lake exploration: first results and future plans.

    PubMed

    Siegert, Martin J; Priscu, John C; Alekhina, Irina A; Wadham, Jemma L; Lyons, W Berry

    2016-01-28

    After more than a decade of planning, three attempts were made in 2012-2013 to access, measure in situ properties and directly sample subglacial Antarctic lake environments. First, Russian scientists drilled into the top of Lake Vostok, allowing lake water to infiltrate, and freeze within, the lower part of the ice-core borehole, from which further coring would recover a frozen sample of surface lake water. Second, UK engineers tried unsuccessfully to deploy a clean-access hot-water drill, to sample the water column and sediments of subglacial Lake Ellsworth. Third, a US mission successfully drilled cleanly into subglacial Lake Whillans, a shallow hydraulically active lake at the coastal margin of West Antarctica, obtaining samples that would later be used to prove the existence of microbial life and active biogeochemical cycling beneath the ice sheet. This article summarizes the results of these programmes in terms of the scientific results obtained, the operational knowledge gained and the engineering challenges revealed, to collate what is known about Antarctic subglacial environments and how to explore them in future. While results from Lake Whillans testify to subglacial lakes as being viable biological habitats, the engineering challenges to explore deeper more isolated lakes where unique microorganisms and climate records may be found, as exemplified in the Lake Ellsworth and Vostok missions, are considerable. Through international cooperation, and by using equipment and knowledge of the existing subglacial lake exploration programmes, it is possible that such environments could be explored thoroughly, and at numerous sites, in the near future. PMID:26667917

  14. Antarctic subglacial lake exploration: first results and future plans

    PubMed Central

    Siegert, Martin J.; Priscu, John C.; Wadham, Jemma L.; Lyons, W. Berry

    2016-01-01

    After more than a decade of planning, three attempts were made in 2012–2013 to access, measure in situ properties and directly sample subglacial Antarctic lake environments. First, Russian scientists drilled into the top of Lake Vostok, allowing lake water to infiltrate, and freeze within, the lower part of the ice-core borehole, from which further coring would recover a frozen sample of surface lake water. Second, UK engineers tried unsuccessfully to deploy a clean-access hot-water drill, to sample the water column and sediments of subglacial Lake Ellsworth. Third, a US mission successfully drilled cleanly into subglacial Lake Whillans, a shallow hydraulically active lake at the coastal margin of West Antarctica, obtaining samples that would later be used to prove the existence of microbial life and active biogeochemical cycling beneath the ice sheet. This article summarizes the results of these programmes in terms of the scientific results obtained, the operational knowledge gained and the engineering challenges revealed, to collate what is known about Antarctic subglacial environments and how to explore them in future. While results from Lake Whillans testify to subglacial lakes as being viable biological habitats, the engineering challenges to explore deeper more isolated lakes where unique microorganisms and climate records may be found, as exemplified in the Lake Ellsworth and Vostok missions, are considerable. Through international cooperation, and by using equipment and knowledge of the existing subglacial lake exploration programmes, it is possible that such environments could be explored thoroughly, and at numerous sites, in the near future. PMID:26667917

  15. Retrospective space-time analysis methods to support West Nile virus surveillance activities.

    PubMed

    Mulatti, P; Mazzucato, M; Montarsi, F; Ciocchetta, S; Capelli, G; Bonfanti, L; Marangon, S

    2015-01-01

    The steep increase in human West Nile virus (WNV) infections in 2011-2012 in north-eastern Italy prompted a refinement of the surveillance plan. Data from the 2010-2012 surveillance activities on mosquitoes, equines, and humans were analysed through Bernoulli space-time scan statistics, to detect the presence of recurrent WNV infection hotspots. Linear models were fit to detect the possible relationships between WNV occurrence in humans and its activity in mosquitoes. Clusters were detected for all of the hosts, defining a limited area on which to focus surveillance and promptly identify WNV reactivation. Positive relationships were identified between WNV in humans and in mosquitoes; although it was not possible to define precise spatial and temporal scales at which entomological surveillance could predict the increasing risk of human infections. This stresses the necessity to improve entomological surveillance by increasing both the density of trapping sites and the frequency of captures. PMID:24641869

  16. Long-term explosive degassing and debris flow activity at West Mata submarine volcano

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dziak, R. P.; Bohnenstiehl, D. R.; Baker, E. T.; Matsumoto, H.; Caplan-Auerbach, J.; Embley, R. W.; Merle, S. G.; Walker, S. L.; Lau, T.-K.; Chadwick, W. W.

    2015-03-01

    West Mata is a 1200 m deep submarine volcano where explosive boninite eruptions were observed in 2009. The acoustic signatures from the volcano's summit eruptive vents Hades and Prometheus were recorded with an in situ (~25 m range) hydrophone during ROV dives in May 2009 and with local (~5 km range) moored hydrophones between December 2009 and August 2011. The sensors recorded low frequency (1-40 Hz), short duration explosions consistent with magma bubble bursts from Hades, and broadband, 1-5 min duration signals associated with episodes of fragmentation degassing from Prometheus. Long-term eruptive degassing signals, recorded through May 2010, preceded a several month period of declining activity. Degassing episodes were not recorded acoustically after early 2011, although quieter effusive eruption activity may have continued. Synchronous optical measurements of turbidity made between December 2009 and April 2010 indicate that turbidity maxima resulted from occasional south flank slope failures triggered by the collapse of accumulated debris during eruption intervals.

  17. Diagnosing Antarctic Fog

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lazzara, M. A.

    2010-07-01

    Fog affects aviation and other logistical operations in the Antarctic; nevertheless limited studies have been conducted to understand fog behavior in this part of the world. A study has been conducted in the Ross Island region of Antarctica, the location of McMurdo Station and Scott Base - the main stations of the United States and New Zealand Antarctic programs, respectively. Using tools such as multi-channel satellites observations and supported by in situ radiosonde and ground-based automatic weather station observations, combined with back trajectory and mesoscale numerical models, discover that austral summer fog events are "advective" in temperament. The diagnosis finds a primary source region from the southeast over the Ross Ice Shelf (over 72% of the cases studied) while a minority of cases point toward a secondary fog source region to the north along the Scott Coast of the Ross Sea with influences from the East Antarctic Plateau. Part of this examination confirms existing anecdotes from forecasters and weather observers, while refuting others about fog and its behavior in this environment. This effort marks the beginning of our understanding of Antarctic fog behavior.

  18. Synchronicity between ice retreat and phytoplankton bloom in circum-Antarctic polynyas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yun; Ji, Rubao; Jenouvrier, Stephanie; Jin, Meibing; Stroeve, Julienne

    2016-03-01

    Phytoplankton in Antarctic coastal polynyas has a temporally short yet spatially variant growth window constrained by ice cover and day length. Using 18-year satellite measurements (1997-2015) of sea ice and chlorophyll concentrations, we assessed the synchronicity between the spring phytoplankton bloom and light availability, taking into account the ice cover and the incident solar irradiance, for 50 circum-Antarctic coastal polynyas. The synchronicity was strong (i.e., earlier ice-adjusted light onset leads to earlier bloom and vice versa) in most of the western Antarctic polynyas but weak in a majority of the eastern Antarctic polynyas. The west-east asymmetry is related to sea ice production rate: the formation of many eastern Antarctic polynyas is associated with strong katabatic wind and high sea ice production rate, leading to stronger water column mixing that could damp phytoplankton blooms and weaken the synchronicity.

  19. Evidence for an extensive Antarctic Ice Sheet by 37 Ma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carter, Andrew; Riley, Teal; Hillenbrand, Claus-Dieter; Rittner, Martin

    2016-04-01

    We present observational evidence that both the East and West Antarctic ice sheets had expanded to the coast by 37 Ma, predating, by at least 3 Myr, a major drop in atmospheric CO2 at the Eocene-Oligocene boundary widely considered responsible for Antarctic Ice Sheet expansion. Our evidence comes from the provenance (geochronology, thermochronometry, mineralogy) of iceberg-rafted debris identified in Late Eocene marine sediments from (ODP) Leg 113 Site 696 in the NW Weddell Sea. The existence of an significant Antarctic Ice Sheet in a Late Eocene high pCO2 world calls into question the role of atmospheric CO2 concentrations as the dominant mechanism for ice sheet expansion and whether topography and ocean circulation only play a secondary role.

  20. Unveiling the Antarctic subglacial landscape.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Warner, Roland; Roberts, Jason

    2010-05-01

    revealed by this approach, and we advocate its consideration in future ice thickness data syntheses. REFERENCES Budd, W.F., and R.C. Warner, 1996. A computer scheme for rapid calculations of balance-flux distributions. Annals of Glaciology 23, 21-27. Bamber, J.L., J.L. Gomez Dans and J.A. Griggs, 2009. A new 1 km digital elevation model of the Antarctic derived from combined satellite radar and laser data. Part I: Data and methods. The Cryosphere 3 (2), 101-111. Griggs, J.A., and J.L. Bamber, 2009. A new digital elevation model of Antarctica derived from combined radar and laser altimetry data. Part II: Validation and error estimates, The Cryosphere, 3(2), 113-123. Le Brocq, A.M., A.J. Payne and M.J. Siegert, 2006. West Antarctic balance calculations: Impact of flux-routing algorithm, smoothing algorithm and topography. Computers and Geosciences 23(10): 1780-1795. Lythe, M. B., D.G. Vaughan, and the BEDMAP Consortium 2001, BEDMAP: A new ice thickness and subglacial topographic model of Antarctica, J. of Geophys. Res., 106(B6),11,335-11,351. van de Berg, W.J., M.R. van den Broeke, C.H. Reijmer, and E. van Meijgaard, 2006. Reassessment of the Antarctic surface mass balance using calibrated output of a regional atmospheric climate model, J. Geophys. Res., 111, D11104,doi:10.1029/2005JD006495. Warner, R.C., and W.F. Budd, 2000. Derivation of ice thickness and bedrock topography in data-gap regions over Antarctica, Annals of Glaciology, 31, 191-197. Wright, A.P., M.J. Siegert, A.M. Le Brocq, and D.B. Gore, 2008. High sensitivity of subglacial hydrological pathways in Antarctica to small ice-sheet changes, Geophys. Res. Lett., 35, L17504, doi:10.1029/2008GL034937.

  1. 76 FR 52354 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-08-22

    ... such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas. The applications received are as..., Seattle, WA 98105-7940. Activity for Which Permit Is Requested Enter an Antarctic Specially Protected Area. The applicant plans to enter the Antarctic Specially Protect Area at Cape Royds, Ross Island (ASPA...

  2. Microbial biomass and basal respiration in Sub-Antarctic and Antarctic soils in the areas of some Russian polar stations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abakumov, E.; Mukhametova, N.

    2014-03-01

    Antarctica is the unique place for pedological investigations. Soils of Antarctica have been studied intensively during the last century. Antarctic logistic provides the possibility to scientists access the terrestrial landscapes mainly in the places of polar stations. That is why the main and most detailed pedological investigations were conducted in Mc Murdo Valleys, Transantarctic Mountains, South Shetland Islands, Larsemann hills and Schirmacher Oasis. Investigations were conducted during the 53rd and 55th Russian Antarctic expeditions on the base of soil pits and samples collected in Sub-Antarctic and Antarctic regions. Soils of diverse Antarctic landscapes were studied with aim to assess the microbial biomass level, basal respiration rates and metabolic activity of microbial communities. The investigation conducted shows that soils of Antarctic are quite different in profile organization and carbon content. In general, Sub-Antarctic soils are characterized by more developed humus (sod) organo-mineral horizons as well as the upper organic layer. The most developed organic layers were revealed in peat soils of King-George Island, where its thickness reach even 80 cm. These soils as well as soils under guano are characterized by the highest amount of total organic carbon (TOC) 7.22-33.70%. Coastal and continental soils of Antarctic are presented by less developed Leptosols, Gleysols, Regolith and rare Ornhitosol with TOC levels about 0.37-4.67%. The metabolic ratios and basal respiration were higher in Sub-Antarctic soils than in Antarctic ones which can be interpreted as result of higher amounts of fresh organic remnants in organic and organo-mineral horizons. Also the soils of King-George island have higher portion of microbial biomass (max 1.54 mg g-1) than coastal (max 0.26 mg g-1) and continental (max 0.22 mg g-1) Antarctic soils. Sub-Antarctic soils mainly differ from Antarctic ones in increased organic layers thickness and total organic carbon content

  3. Chemical studies of H chondrites. 6: Antarctic/non-Antarctic compositional differences revisited

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolf, Stephen F.; Lipschutz, Michael E.

    1995-01-01

    We report data for the trace elements Au, Co, Sb, Ga, Rb, Ag, Se, Cs, Te, Zn, Cd, Bi, T1, and In (ordered by putative volatility during nebular condensation and accretion) determined by radiochemical neutron activation analysis of 14 additional H5 and H6 chondrite falls. Data for the 10 most volatile elements (Rb to In) treated by the multivariate techniques of linear discriminant analysis and logistic regression in these and 44 other falls are compared with those of 59 H4-6 chondrites from Antarctica. Various populations are tested by the multivariate techniques, using the previously developed method of randomization-simulation to assess significance levels. An earlier conclusion, based on fewer examples, that H4-6 chondrite falls are compositionally distinguishable from the Antarctic suite is verified by the additional data. This distinctiveness is highly significant because of the presence of samples from Victoria Land in the Antarctic population, which differ compositionally from falls beyond any reasonable doubt. However, it cannot be proven unequivocally that falls and Antarctic samples from Queen Maud Land are compositionally distinguishable. Trivial causes (e.g., analyst bias, weathering) cannot explain the Victoria Land (Antarctic)/non-Antarctic compositional difference for paradigmatic H4-6 chondrites. This seems to reflect a time-dependent variation of near-Earth meteoroid source regions differing in average thermal history.

  4. Differences between Antarctic and non-Antarctic meteorites: An assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Koeberl, C. ); Cassidy, W.A. )

    1991-01-01

    The discovery of a statistically significant number of meteorites in Antarctica over the past 20 years has posed many questions. One of the most intriguing suggestions that came up during the study of the Antarctic samples was that there might be a difference between the parent populations of Antarctic and non-Antarctic samples was that there might be a difference between the parent populations of Antarctic and non-Antarctic meteorites. This interpretation was put forward after the detection of a significant difference in the abundances of volatile and mobile trace elements in H, L, and C chondrites and achondrites. Other major differences include the occurrence of previously rare or unknown meteorites, different meteorite-type frequencies, petrographic characteristics, oxygen isotopic compositions, and smaller average masses. Not all differences between the Antarctic and non-Antarctic meteorite populations can be explained by weathering, pairing, or different collection procedures. Variable trace element abundances and distinct differences in the thermal history and thermoluminescence characteristics have to be interpreted as being pre-terrestrial in origin. Such differences imply the existence of meteoroid streams, whose existence poses problems in the framework of our current knowledge of celestial mechanics. In this paper we summarize the contributions in this series and provide a review of the current state of the question for the reality and cause of differences between Antarctic and non-Antarctic meteorites.

  5. Dynamic Antarctic ice-sheet response to deglacial meltwater pulses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weber, Michael; Clark, Peter U.; Timmermann, Axel; Lohmann, Gerrit; Kuhn, Gerhard; Sprenk, Daniela; Gladstone, Rupert

    2013-04-01

    Reconstruction of the last global sea level rise faces uncertainties because only a few robust data evidences are available for Antarctic ice sheets. Deglacial dynamics have mostly been inferred from shallow-water cores on the shelf, where decisive changes are either erased by grounding ice or occur in condensed, lithologically complex successions with partially reversed and generally unreliable 14C ages. Previous modeling studies reconstruct a late ice-sheet retreat starting around 12 ka BP and ending around 7 ka BP with a large impact of an unstable West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) and a small impact of a stable East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS). However, new findings from two deepwater cores from the Scotia Sea challenge these reconstructions and call for a principal revision of the Antarctic deglacial history. The well-dated sites (Weber et al., 2012, Quaternary Science Reviews) provide the first integrative and representative record of Antarctic Ice Sheet instability. They are located in the central transport route of virtually all Antarctic icebergs, the so-called Iceberg Alley, and demonstrate a highly dynamic Antarctic Ice Sheet during the last deglaciation with eight distinct phases of enhanced iceberg routing, dubbed Antarctic Ice Sheet Events (AIE), in contrast to existing models of a late and monotonous ice-sheet retreat which implied only little contribution to the last, natural, sea-level rise 19,000 to 9,000 years ago. We found the first direct evidence for an Antarctic contribution to Meltwater Pulse 1A in the flux rates of ice-rafted debris. Using an ensemble of transient deglacial model simulations we could show that increased export of warmer Circumpolar Deep Water towards Antarctica contributed to Antarctic Ice Sheet melt by ocean thermal forcing (Weber et al., Science, in review). These new findings hold the potential to substantially revise and improve our understanding of the transient response of the ice sheet to external and internal forcings

  6. Virucidal activity and chemical composition of essential oils from aromatic plants of central west Argentina.

    PubMed

    García, Cybele C; Acosta, Eliana G; Carro, Ana C; Fernández Belmonte, María C; Bomben, Renata; Duschatzky, Claudia B; Perotti, Marina; Schuff, Carola; Damonte, Elsa B

    2010-08-01

    The essential oils of seven aromatic plants from central west Argentina were isolated by steam distillation and analyzed by a gas chromatography/mass spectrometry technique. The oils were screened for cytotoxicity and in vitro inhibitory activity against herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), dengue virus type 2 (DENV-2) and Junin virus (JUNV). The oils showed a variable virucidal action according to the virus. JUNV was the least susceptible virus in comparison with HSV-1 and DENV-2. The better relationship between cytotoxicity and inhibitory activity was observed for the essential oil of Lantana grisebachiii (Seckt.) var. grisebachii against DENV-2 and HSV-1 with IC50 (inhibitory concentration 50%) values of 21.1 and 26.1 ppm, respectively. This effect was specific since the selectivity indices (ratio cytotoxicity/virucidal activity) were > 23.7 and > 19.1 for DENV-2 and HSV-1, respectively. Furthermore, the oil from L. grisebachii was also an effective inhibitor of HSV-2 and acyclovir resistant variants of herpes virus. This study demonstrates the effective and selective inhibitory activity of the essential oil from Lantana grisebachii against HSV and DENV by direct virus inactivation. PMID:20839642

  7. In Vitro Activity of Selected West African Medicinal Plants against Mycobacterium ulcerans Disease.

    PubMed

    Tsouh Fokou, Patrick Valere; Kissi-Twum, Abena Adomah; Yeboah-Manu, Dorothy; Appiah-Opong, Regina; Addo, Phyllis; Tchokouaha Yamthe, Lauve Rachel; Ngoutane Mfopa, Alvine; Fekam Boyom, Fabrice; Nyarko, Alexander Kwadwo

    2016-01-01

    Buruli ulcer (BU) is the third most prevalent mycobacteriosis, after tuberculosis and leprosy. The currently recommended combination of rifampicin-streptomycin suffers from side effects and poor compliance, which leads to reliance on local herbal remedies. The objective of this study was to investigate the antimycobacterial properties and toxicity of selected medicinal plants. Sixty-five extracts from 27 plant species were screened against Mycobacterium ulcerans and Mycobacterium smegmatis, using the Resazurin Microtiter Assay (REMA). The cytotoxicity of promising extracts was assayed on normal Chang liver cells by an MTT assay. Twenty five extracts showed activity with minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) values ranging from 16 µg/mL to 250 µg/mL against M. smegmatis, while 17 showed activity against M. ulcerans with MIC values ranging from 125 µg/mL to 250 µg/mL. In most of the cases, plant extracts with antimycobacterial activity showed no cytotoxicity on normal human liver cells. Exception were Carica papaya, Cleistopholis patens, and Polyalthia suaveolens with 50% cell cytotoxic concentrations (CC50) ranging from 3.8 to 223 µg/mL. These preliminary results support the use of some West African plants in the treatment of Buruli ulcer. Meanwhile, further studies are required to isolate and characterize the active ingredients in the extracts. PMID:27089314

  8. Ebola active monitoring system for travelers returning from West Africa—Georgia, 2014-2015.

    PubMed

    Parham, Mary; Edison, Laura; Soetebier, Karl; Feldpausch, Amanda; Kunkes, Audrey; Smith, Wendy; Guffey, Taylor; Fetherolf, Romana; Sanlis, Kathryn; Gabel, Julie; Cowell, Alex; Drenzek, Cherie

    2015-04-10

    The Ebola virus disease (Ebola) epidemic in West Africa has so far produced approximately 25,000 cases, more than 40 times the number in any previously documented Ebola outbreak. Because of the risk for imported disease from infected travelers, in October 2014 CDC recommended that all travelers to the United States from Ebola-affected countries receive enhanced entry screening and postarrival active monitoring for Ebola signs or symptoms until 21 days after their departure from an Ebola-affected country. The state of Georgia began its active monitoring program on October 25, 2014. The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) modified its existing, web-based electronic notifiable disease reporting system to create an Ebola Active Monitoring System (EAMS). DPH staff members developed EAMS from conceptualization to implementation in 6 days. In accordance with CDC recommendations, "low (but not zero) risk" travelers are required to report their daily health status to DPH, and the EAMS dashboard enables DPH epidemiologists to track symptoms and compliance with active monitoring. Through March 31, 2015, DPH monitored 1,070 travelers, and 699 (65%) used their EAMS traveler login instead of telephone or e-mail to report their health status. Medical evaluations were performed on 30 travelers, of whom three were tested for Ebola. EAMS has enabled two epidemiologists to monitor approximately 100 travelers daily, and to rapidly respond to travelers reporting signs and symptoms of potential Ebola virus infection. Similar electronic tracking systems might be useful for other jurisdictions. PMID:25856255

  9. New magnetic anomaly map of the East Antarctic continental margin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Golynsky, Alexander; Ivanov, Sergey; Kazankov, Andrey

    2010-05-01

    (Powell et al. 1988). The history of the early spreading is complicated further by the likelihood of one or several ridge jumps in which most early seafloor crust was transferred to the Antarctic plate and the Elan Bank micro-continent was isolated from the Indian continent (Muller et al. 2001). Additionally, a large amount of the seafloor crust is now probably overprinted by igneous activity associated with the Kerguelen Plume, which began forming the Kerguelen LIP from about 120-110 Ma. However all available results of interpretations do not match to the magnetic anomaly pattern which can be distinguished by the newly compiled map. Our observations suggest that this is especially correct to the Enderby Basin and to lesser degree for the region that was conjugate to Australia. The prominent magnetic anomaly boundary signal and sharp basement step correlated with the MacRobertson Coast Anomaly or the Enderby Basin Anomaly (Golynsky et al., 2007) is not observed elsewhere in the Enderby Basin, Princess Elizabeth Trough or Davis Sea. In the central Enderby Basin there some evidences for an abandoned ‘fossil' spreading centre that might continue to the west of the Kerguelen Plateau, east of Gunnerus Ridge. The estimated timing of its extinction corresponding to the early surface expression of the Kerguelen Plume at the Southern Kerguelen Plateau around 120 Ma and the subsequent formation of the Elan Bank microcontinent. Alternatively, the ridge jump occurred only in the central Enderby basin, due to the proximity of the Kerguelen plateau, whereas seafloor spreading continued in the western Enderby basin and conjugate south of Sri Lanka basin.

  10. Permafrost and active layer monitoring in the maritime Antarctic: Preliminary results from CALM sites on Livingston and Deception Islands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ramos, M.; Vieira, G.; Blanco, J.J.; Hauck, C.; Hidalgo, M.A.; Tome, D.; Nevers, M.; Trindade, A.

    2007-01-01

    This paper describes results obtained from scientific work and experiments performed on Livingston and Deception Islands. Located in the South Shetland Archipelago, these islands have been some of the most sensitive regions over the last 50 years with respect to climate change with a Mean Annual Air Temperature (MAAT) close to -2 ºC. Three Circumpolar Active Layer Monitoring (CALM) sites were installed to record the thermal regime and the behaviour of the active layer in different places with similar climate, but with different soil composition, porosity, and water content. The study’s ultimate aim is to document the influence of climate change on permafrost degradation. Preliminary results, obtained in 2006, on maximum active-layer thickness (around 40 cm in the CALM of Deception Island), active layer temperature evolution, snow thickness, and air temperatures permit early characterization of energy exchange mechanisms between the ground and the atmosphere in the CALM-S sites.

  11. Modelling the Isotopic Response to Antarctic Ice Sheet Change During the Last Interglacial

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holloway, Max; Sime, Louise; Singarayer, Joy; Tindall, Julia; Valdes, Paul

    2015-04-01

    Ice sheet changes can exert major control over spatial water isotope variations in Antarctic surface snow. Consequently a significant mass loss or gain of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) would be expected to cause changes in the water isotope record across Antarctic ice core sites. Analysis of sea level indicators for the last interglacial (LIG), around 125 to 128 ka, suggest a global sea level peak 6 to 9 m higher than present. Recent NEEM Greenland ice core results imply that Greenland likely provided a modest ~2m contribution towards this global sea level rise. This implies that a WAIS contribution is necessary to explain the LIG sea level maxima. In addition, Antarctic ice core records suggest that Antarctic air temperatures during the LIG were up to 6°C warmer than present. Climate models have been unable to recreate such warmth when only orbital and greenhouse gas forcing are considered. Thus changes to the Antarctic ice sheet and ocean circulation may be required to reconcile model simulations with ice core data. Here we model the isotopic response to differing WAIS deglaciation scenarios, freshwater hosing, and sea ice configurations using a fully coupled General Circulation Model (GCM) to help interpret Antarctic ice core records over the LIG. This approach can help isolate the contribution of individual processes and feedbacks to final isotopic signals recorded in Antarctic ice cores.

  12. Viruses in Antarctic lakes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kepner, R. L. Jr; Wharton, R. A. Jr; Suttle, C. A.; Wharton RA, J. r. (Principal Investigator)

    1998-01-01

    Water samples collected from four perennially ice-covered Antarctic lakes during the austral summer of 1996-1997 contained high densities of extracellular viruses. Many of these viruses were found to be morphologically similar to double-stranded DNA viruses that are known to infect algae and protozoa. These constitute the first observations of viruses in perennially ice-covered polar lakes. The abundance of planktonic viruses and data suggesting substantial production potential (relative to bacteria] secondary and photosynthetic primary production) indicate that viral lysis may be a major factor in the regulation of microbial populations in these extreme environments. Furthermore, we suggest that Antarctic lakes may be a reservoir of previously undescribed viruses that possess novel biological and biochemical characteristics.

  13. Gully Surface and Shallow Subsurface Structure in the South Fork of Wright Valley, Antarctic Dry Valleys: Implications for Gully Activity on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levy, J. S.; Head, J. W.; Marchant, D. R.; Morgan, G. A.; Dickson, J. L.

    2007-03-01

    Gully analogs (Antarctic Dry Valleys) show that top-down melting of trapped windblown snow is a major water source; meltwater soaks into the hyporheic zone and travels along the top of the ice table, providing insight into the origin of Mars gullies.

  14. Antarctic Meteorite Newsletter

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindstrom, Marilyn

    2000-01-01

    This newsletter contains something for everyone! It lists classifications of about 440 meteorites mostly from the 1997 and 1998 ANSMET (Antarctic Search for Meteorites) seasons. It also gives descriptions of about 45 meteorites of special petrologic type. These include 1 iron, 17 chondrites (7 CC, 1 EC, 9 OC) and 27 achondrites (25 HED, UR). Most notable are an acapoloite (GRA98028) and an olivine diogenite (GRA98108).

  15. Antarctic Photochemistry: Uncertainty Analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stewart, Richard W.; McConnell, Joseph R.

    1999-01-01

    Understanding the photochemistry of the Antarctic region is important for several reasons. Analysis of ice cores provides historical information on several species such as hydrogen peroxide and sulfur-bearing compounds. The former can potentially provide information on the history of oxidants in the troposphere and the latter may shed light on DMS-climate relationships. Extracting such information requires that we be able to model the photochemistry of the Antarctic troposphere and relate atmospheric concentrations to deposition rates and sequestration in the polar ice. This paper deals with one aspect of the uncertainty inherent in photochemical models of the high latitude troposphere: that arising from imprecision in the kinetic data used in the calculations. Such uncertainties in Antarctic models tend to be larger than those in models of mid to low latitude clean air. One reason is the lower temperatures which result in increased imprecision in kinetic data, assumed to be best characterized at 298K. Another is the inclusion of a DMS oxidation scheme in the present model. Many of the rates in this scheme are less precisely known than are rates in the standard chemistry used in many stratospheric and tropospheric models.

  16. Thermoluminescence and Antarctic meteorites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sears, D. W. G.; Hasan, F. A.

    1986-01-01

    The level of natural thermoluminescence (TL) in meteorites is the result of competition between build-up, due to exposure to cosmic radiation, and thermal decay. Antarctic meteorites tend to have lower natural TL than non-Antarctic meteorites because of their generally larger terrestrial ages. However, since a few observed falls have low TL due to a recent heating event, such as passage within approximately 0.7 astronomical units of the Sun, this could also be the case for some Antarctic meteorites. Dose rate variations due to shielding, heating during atmospheric passage, and anomalous fading also cause natural TL variations, but the effects are either relatively small, occur infrequently, or can be experimentally circumvented. The TL sensitivity of meteorites reflects the abundance and nature of the feldspar. Thus intense shock, which destroys feldspar, causes the TL sensitivity to decrease by 1 to 2 orders of magnitude, while metamorphism, which generates feldspar through the devitrification of glass, causes TL sensitivity to increase by a factor of approximately 10000. The TL-metamorphism relationship is particularly strong for the lowest levels of metamorphism. The order-disorder transformation in feldspar also affect the TL emission characteristics and thus TL provides a means of paleothermometry.

  17. Cenozoic uplift on the West Greenland margin: active sedimentary basins in quiet Archean terranes.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jess, Scott; Stephenson, Randell; Brown, Roderick

    2016-04-01

    The North Atlantic is believed by some authors to have experienced tectonically induced uplift within the Cenozoic. Examination of evidence, onshore and offshore, has been interpreted to imply the presence of kilometre scale uplift across the margins of the Barents Sea, North Sea, Baffin Bay and Greenland Sea. Development of topography on the West Greenland margin (Baffin Bay), in particular, has been subject to much discussion and dispute. A series of low temperature thermochronological (AFT and AHe) studies onshore and interpretation of seismic architecture offshore have suggested uplift of the entire margin totalling ~3km. However, challenges to this work and recent analysis on the opposing margin (Baffin Island) have raised questions about the validity of this interpretation. The present work reviews and remodels the thermochronological data from onshore West Greenland with the aim of re-evaluating our understanding of the margin's history. New concepts within the discipline, such as effect of radiation damage on Helium diffusivity, contemporary modelling approaches and denudational mapping are all utilised to investigate alternative interpretations to this margins complex post rift evolution. In contrast to earlier studies our new approach indicates slow protracted cooling across much of the region; however, reworked sedimentary samples taken from the Cretaceous Nuussuaq Basin display periods of rapid reheating and cooling. These new models suggest the Nuussuaq Basin experienced a tectonically active Cenozoic, while the surrounding Archean basement remained quiet. Faults located within the basin appear to have been reactivated during the Palaeocene and Eocene, a period of well-documented inversion events throughout the North Atlantic, and may have resulted in subaerial kilometre scale uplift. This interpretation of the margin's evolution has wider implications for the treatment of low temperature thermochronological data and the geological history of the North

  18. Addendum to the performance assessment analysis for low-level waste disposal in the 200 west area active burial grounds

    SciTech Connect

    Wood, M.I., Westinghouse Hanford

    1996-12-20

    An addendum was completed to the performance assessment (PA) analysis for the active 200 West Area low-level solid waste burial grounds. The addendum includes supplemental information developed during the review of the PA analysis, an ALARA analysis, a comparison of PA results with the Hanford Groundwater Protection Strategy, and a justification for the assumption of 500 year deterrence to the inadvertent intruder.

  19. The role of blowing snow in the activation of bromine over first-year Antarctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lieb-Lappen, R. M.; Obbard, R. W.

    2015-07-01

    It is well known that during polar springtime halide sea salt ions, in particular Br-, are photochemically activated into reactive halogen species (e.g., Br and BrO), where they break down tropospheric ozone. This research investigated the role of blowing snow in transporting salts from the sea ice/snow surface into reactive bromine species in the air. At two different locations over first-year ice in the Ross Sea, Antarctica, collection baskets captured blowing snow at different heights. In addition, sea ice cores and surface snow samples were collected throughout the month-long campaign. Over this time, sea ice and surface snow Br- / Cl- mass ratios remained constant and equivalent to seawater, and only in lofted snow did bromide become depleted relative to chloride. This suggests that replenishment of bromide in the snowpack occurs faster than bromine activation in mid-strength wind conditions (approximately 10 m s-1) or that blowing snow represents only a small portion of the surface snowpack. Additionally, lofted snow was found to be depleted in sulfate and enriched in nitrate relative to surface snow.

  20. The role of blowing snow in the activation of bromine over first-year Antarctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lieb-Lappen, R. M.; Obbard, R. W.

    2015-04-01

    It is well known that during polar springtime halide sea salt ions, in particular Br-, are photochemically activated into reactive halogen species (e.g. Br and BrO), where they break down tropospheric ozone. This research investigated the role of blowing snow in transporting salts from the sea ice/snow surface into reactive bromine species in the air. At two different locations over first-year ice in the Ross Sea, Antarctica, collection baskets captured blowing snow at different heights. In addition, sea ice cores and surface snow samples were collected throughout the month-long campaign. Over this time, sea ice and surface snow Cl-/Br- mass ratios remained constant and equivalent to seawater, and only in lofted snow did bromide become depleted relative to chloride. This suggests that replenishment of bromide in the snowpack occurs faster than bromine activation in mid-strength wind conditions (approximately 10 m s-1). Additionally, lofted snow was found to be depleted in sulfate and enriched in nitrate relative to surface snow.

  1. A new 10Be record recovered from an Antarctic ice core: validity and limitations to record the solar activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baroni, Mélanie; Bard, Edouard; Aster Team

    2015-04-01

    Cosmogenic nuclides provide the only possibility to document solar activity over millennia. Carbon-14 (14C) and beryllium-10 (10Be) records are retrieved from tree rings and ice cores, respectively. Recently, 14C records have also proven to be reliable to detect two large Solar Proton Events (SPE) (Miyake et al., Nature, 2012, Miyake et al., Nat. Commun., 2013) that occurred in 774-775 A.D. and in 993-994 A.D.. The origin of these events is still under debate but it opens new perspectives for the interpretation of 10Be ice core records. We present a new 10Be record from an ice core from Dome C (Antarctica) covering the last millennium. The chronology of this new ice core has been established by matching volcanic events on the WAIS Divide ice core (WDC06A) that is the best dated record in Antarctica over the Holocene (Sigl et al., JGR, 2013, Sigl et al., Nat. Clim. Change, 2014). The five minima of solar activity (Oort, Wolf, Spörer, Maunder and Dalton) are detected and characterized by a 10Be concentration increase of ca. 20% above average in agreement with previous studies of ice cores drilled at South Pole and Dome Fuji in Antarctica (Bard et al., EPSL, 1997; Horiuchi et al., Quat. Geochrono., 2008) and at NGRIP and Dye3 in Greenland (Berggren et al., GRL, 2009). The high resolution, on the order of a year, allows the detection of the 11-year solar cycle. Sulfate concentration, a proxy for volcanic eruptions, has also been measured in the very same samples, allowing a precise comparison of both 10Be and sulfate profiles. We confirm the systematic relationship between stratospheric eruptions and 10Be concentration increases, first evidenced by observations of the stratospheric volcanic eruptions of Agung in 1963 and Pinatubo in 1991 (Baroni et al., GCA, 2011). This relationship is due to an increase in 10Be deposition linked to the role played by the sedimentation of volcanic aerosols. In the light of these new elements, we will discuss the limitations and

  2. Marapi an active West-Central Sumatra Volcano: a geological and petrological study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Del Marmol, M.; Budianto, A.; Fournelle, J.; Jacobs, P.; Elburg, M. A.

    2010-12-01

    Marapi volcano (West - Central Sumatra), Sumatra’s most active volcano (not to be confused with Merapi on Java), located in a densely populated area and where more than 50 explosive eruptions have been recorded in the last 200 years has been studied in detail in the field to gain fundamental understanding of the volcano's activity in terms of its basic geology, petrology and geochemistry. Marapi is one of a few active volcanoes among many dormant volcanoes of this island. Large deposits of the nearby Maninjau caldera, dated 50 ka (n=3), associated with very silica-rich volcanic products is another reason for concern, since caldera formation is linked with severe explosive activity. Those deposits are found at the base of the volcano and largely in the deeply incised valley which follows the Sumatra fault extending parallel to the Sumatra volcanic front. A possible landslide parallel to the Sumatra fault is recognized on the LANDSAT image. Landslides on the external old external side have allowed the collection of the oldest part of the volcano as most of it is covered with a thick primary forest. These landslides occurring on old volcanic terrain are a threat to the surrounding population living nearby the rivers especially during the heavy rainy seasons. A 20 m high stratigraphic column has been studied, with the volcano’s explosive nature seen in the collected samples (i.e. bombs and pumices). A new sketch map of the area of the craters (6 over 2km) replaces the one made in 1921 at the Dutch colonial time. A geological and hazard map have been created showing the extension of the various deposits.

  3. International Workshop on Antarctic Meteorites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Annexstad, J. O.; Schultz, L.; Waenke, H.

    1986-01-01

    Topics addressed include: meteorite concentration mechanisms; meteorites and the Antarctic ice sheet; iron meteorites; iodine overabundance in meteorites; entrainment, transport, and concentration of meteorites in polar ice sheets; weathering of stony meteorites; cosmic ray records; radiocarbon dating; element distribution and noble gas isotopic abundances in lunar meteorites; thermoanalytical characterization; trace elements; thermoluminescence; parent sources; and meteorite ablation and fusion spherules in Antarctic ice.

  4. First evidence of widespread active methane seepage in the Southern Ocean, off the sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Römer, M.; Torres, M.; Kasten, S.; Kuhn, G.; Graham, A. G. C.; Mau, S.; Little, C. T. S.; Linse, K.; Pape, T.; Geprägs, P.; Fischer, D.; Wintersteller, P.; Marcon, Y.; Rethemeyer, J.; Bohrmann, G.

    2014-10-01

    An extensive submarine cold-seep area was discovered on the northern shelf of South Georgia during R/V Polarstern cruise ANT-XXIX/4 in spring 2013. Hydroacoustic surveys documented the presence of 133 gas bubble emissions, which were restricted to glacially-formed fjords and troughs. Video-based sea floor observations confirmed the sea floor origin of the gas emissions and spatially related microbial mats. Effective methane transport from these emissions into the hydrosphere was proven by relative enrichments of dissolved methane in near-bottom waters. Stable carbon isotopic signatures pointed to a predominant microbial methane formation, presumably based on high organic matter sedimentation in this region. Although known from many continental margins in the world's oceans, this is the first report of an active area of methane seepage in the Southern Ocean. Our finding of substantial methane emission related to a trough and fjord system, a topographical setting that exists commonly in glacially-affected areas, opens up the possibility that methane seepage is a more widespread phenomenon in polar and sub-polar regions than previously thought.

  5. Antarctic Crustal Thickness from Gravity Inversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vaughan, A. P.; Kusznir, N. J.; Ferraccioli, F.; Jordan, T. A.

    2013-12-01

    Using gravity anomaly inversion, we have produced the first comprehensive regional maps of crustal thickness and oceanic lithosphere distribution for Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. We determine Moho depth, crustal basement thickness, continental lithosphere thinning (1-1/β) and ocean-continent transition location using a 3D spectral domain gravity inversion method, which incorporates a lithosphere thermal gravity anomaly correction. The continental lithosphere thinning distribution, used to define the initial thermal model temperature perturbation is derived from the gravity inversion and uses no a priori isochron information; as a consequence the gravity inversion method provides a prediction of ocean-continent transition location, which is independent of ocean isochron information. The gravity anomaly contribution from ice thickness is included in the gravity inversion, as is the contribution from sediments which assumes a compaction controlled sediment density increase with depth. Data used in the gravity inversion are elevation and bathymetry, free-air gravity anomaly, the most recent Bedmap2 ice thickness and bedrock topography compilation south of 60 degrees south (Fretwell et al., 2013) and relatively sparse constraints on sediment thickness. Our gravity inversion study predicts thick crust (> 45 km) under interior East Antarctica penetrated by narrow continental rifts that feature relatively thinner crust. The East Antarctic Rift System (EARS) is a major Permian to Cretaceous age rift system that appears to extend from the continental margin at the Lambert Rift to the South Pole region, a distance of 2500 km. This is comparable in scale to the well-studied East African rift system. Intermediate crustal thickness with an inferred linear rift fabric is predicted under Coates Land. An extensive region of either thick oceanic crust or highly thinned continental crust is predicted offshore Oates Land and north Victoria Land, and also off West Antarctica

  6. Anti-inflammatory activity of intravenous immunoglobulins protects against West Nile virus encephalitis

    PubMed Central

    Srivastava, Ruchi; Ramakrishna, Chandran

    2015-01-01

    West Nile virus (WNV), an important global human pathogen, targets neurons to cause lethal encephalitis, primarily in elderly and immunocompromised patients. Currently, there are no approved therapeutic agents or vaccines to treat WNV encephalitis. Recent studies have suggested that inflammation is a major contributor to WNV encephalitis morbidity. In this study we evaluated the use of IVIG (intravenous immunoglobulins – a clinical product comprising pooled human IgG) as an anti-inflammatory treatment in a model of lethal WNV infection. We report here that IVIG and pooled human WNV convalescent sera (WNV-IVIG) inhibited development of lethal WNV encephalitis by suppressing central nervous system (CNS) infiltration by CD45high leukocytes. Pathogenic Ly6Chigh CD11b+ monocytes were the major infiltrating subset in the CNS of infected control mice, whereas IVIG profoundly reduced infiltration of these pathogenic Ly6Chigh monocytes into the CNS of infected mice. Interestingly, WNV-IVIG was more efficacious than IVIG in controlling CNS inflammation when mice were challenged with a high-dose inoculum (105 versus 104 p.f.u.) of WNV. Importantly, adsorption of WNV E-glycoprotein neutralizing antibodies did not abrogate IVIG protection, consistent with virus neutralization not being essential for IVIG protection. These findings confirmed the potent immunomodulatory activity of generic IVIG, and emphasized its potential as an effective immunotherapeutic drug for encephalitis and other virus induced inflammatory diseases. PMID:25667322

  7. Analysis of Culex and Aedes mosquitoes in southwestern Nigeria revealed no West Nile virus activity

    PubMed Central

    Sule, Waidi Folorunso; Oluwayelu, Daniel Oladimeji

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Amplification and transmission of West Nile virus (WNV) by mosquitoes are driven by presence and number of viraemic/susceptible avian hosts. Methods In order to predict risk of WNV infection to humans, we collected mosquitoes from horse stables in Lagos and Ibadan, southwestern Nigeria. The mosquitoes were sorted and tested in pools with real-time RT-PCR to detect WNV (or flavivirus) RNA using WNV-specific primers and probes, as well as, pan-flavivirus-specific primers in two-step real-time RT-PCR. Minimum infection rate (MIR) was used to estimate mosquito infection rate. Results Only two genera of mosquitoes were caught (Culex, 98.9% and Aedes, 1.0%) totalling 4,112 females. None of the 424 mosquito pools tested was positive for WNV RNA; consequently the MIR was zero. Sequencing and BLAST analysis of amplicons detected in pan-flavivirus primer-mediated RT-PCR gave a consensus sequence of 28S rRNA of Culex quinquefasciatus suggesting integration of flaviviral RNA into mosquito genome. Conclusion While the latter finding requires further investigation, we conclude there was little or no risk of human infection with WNV in the study areas during sampling. There was predominance of Culex mosquito, a competent WNV vector, around horse stables in the study areas. However, mosquito surveillance needs to continue for prompt detection of WNV activity in mosquitoes. PMID:27279943

  8. Larvicidal Activity of Nerium oleander against Larvae West Nile Vector Mosquito Culex pipiens (Diptera: Culicidae).

    PubMed

    El-Akhal, Fouad; Guemmouh, Raja; Ez Zoubi, Yassine; El Ouali Lalami, Abdelhakim

    2015-01-01

    Background. Outbreaks of the West Nile virus infection were reported in Morocco in 1996, 2003, and 2010. Culex pipiens was strongly suspected as the vector responsible for transmission. In the North center of Morocco, this species has developed resistance to synthetic insecticides. There is an urgent need to find alternatives to the insecticides as natural biocides. Objective. In this work, the insecticidal activity of the extract of the local plant Nerium oleander, which has never been tested before in the North center of Morocco, was studied on larval stages 3 and 4 of Culex pipiens. Methods. Biological tests were realized according to a methodology inspired from standard World Health Organization protocol. The mortality values were determined after 24 h of exposure and LC50 and LC90 values were calculated. Results. The extract had toxic effects on the larvae of culicid mosquitoes. The ethanolic extract of Nerium oleander applied against the larvae of Culex pipiens has given the lethal concentrations LC50 and LC90 in the order of 57.57 mg/mL and 166.35 mg/mL, respectively. Conclusion. This investigation indicates that N. oleander could serve as a potential larvicidal, effective natural biocide against mosquito larvae, particularly Culex pipiens. PMID:26640701

  9. Cardiac vagal activation by adrenocorticotropic hormone treatment in infants with West syndrome.

    PubMed

    Hattori, Ayako; Hayano, Junichiro; Fujimoto, Shinji; Ando, Naoki; Mizuno, Kumiko; Kamei, Michi; Kobayashi, Satoru; Ishikawa, Tatsuya; Togari, Hajime

    2007-02-01

    West syndrome (WS) is a generalized epileptic syndrome of infancy and early childhood with various etiologies, and consists of a triad of infantile spasm, arrest or regress of psychomotor development and specific electroencephalogram (EEG) pattern of hypsarrhythmia. WS had been believed to be refractory, but recent evidence supports effectiveness of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) treatment. The ACTH treatment, however, has a problem that it is often accompanied by adverse autonomic symptoms. We therefore examined heart rate variability (HRV) for assessing cardiac autonomic functions in WS and prospectively observed the changes during ACTH treatment. We studied 15 patients with WS and 9 age-matched controls during sleep (EEG stage 2). Compared with controls, the patients with WS were greater in the low-frequency component (LF) of HRV, an index reflecting sympatho-vagal interaction (p = 0.02), but were comparable for high-frequency component (HF) and LF-to-HF ratio (LF/HF), indices reflecting cardiac vagal activity and sympathetic predominance, respectively. During ACTH treatment, heart rate decreased (p < 0.01), LF and HF increased (p < 0.01), and LF/HF did not differ significantly. These results indicate that WS might be accompanied by autonomic changes and that ACTH treatment enhances parasympathetic function and causes bradycardia. PMID:17287597

  10. Larvicidal Activity of Nerium oleander against Larvae West Nile Vector Mosquito Culex pipiens (Diptera: Culicidae)

    PubMed Central

    El-Akhal, Fouad; Guemmouh, Raja; Ez Zoubi, Yassine; El Ouali Lalami, Abdelhakim

    2015-01-01

    Background. Outbreaks of the West Nile virus infection were reported in Morocco in 1996, 2003, and 2010. Culex pipiens was strongly suspected as the vector responsible for transmission. In the North center of Morocco, this species has developed resistance to synthetic insecticides. There is an urgent need to find alternatives to the insecticides as natural biocides. Objective. In this work, the insecticidal activity of the extract of the local plant Nerium oleander, which has never been tested before in the North center of Morocco, was studied on larval stages 3 and 4 of Culex pipiens. Methods. Biological tests were realized according to a methodology inspired from standard World Health Organization protocol. The mortality values were determined after 24 h of exposure and LC50 and LC90 values were calculated. Results. The extract had toxic effects on the larvae of culicid mosquitoes. The ethanolic extract of Nerium oleander applied against the larvae of Culex pipiens has given the lethal concentrations LC50 and LC90 in the order of 57.57 mg/mL and 166.35 mg/mL, respectively. Conclusion. This investigation indicates that N. oleander could serve as a potential larvicidal, effective natural biocide against mosquito larvae, particularly Culex pipiens. PMID:26640701

  11. Biodiversity and biogeography of Antarctic and sub-Antarctic mollusca

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Linse, Katrin; Griffiths, Huw J.; Barnes, David K. A.; Clarke, Andrew

    2006-04-01

    For many decades molluscan data have been critical to the establishment of the concept of a global-scale increase in species richness from the poles to the equator. Low polar diversity is key to this latitudinal cline in diversity. Here we investigate richness patterns in the two largest classes of molluscs at both local and regional scales throughout the Southern Ocean. We show that biodiversity is very patchy in the Southern Ocean (at the 1000-km scale) and test the validity of historical biogeographic sub-regions and provinces. We used multivariate analysis of biodiversity patterns at species, genus and family levels to define richness hotspots within the Southern Ocean and transition areas. This process identified the following distinct sub-regions in the Southern Ocean: Antarctic Peninsula, Weddell Sea, East Antarctic—Dronning Maud Land, East Antarctic—Enderby Land, East Antarctic—Wilkes Land, Ross Sea, and the independent Scotia arc and sub Antarctic islands. Patterns of endemism were very different between the bivalves and gastropods. On the basis of distributional ranges and radiation centres of evolutionarily successful families and genera we define three biogeographic provinces in the Southern Ocean: (1) the continental high Antarctic province excluding the Antarctic Peninsula, (2) the Scotia Sea province including the Antarctic Peninsula, and (3) the sub Antarctic province comprising the islands in the vicinity of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current.

  12. Exposure age and ice-sheet model constraints on Pliocene East Antarctic ice sheet dynamics.

    PubMed

    Yamane, Masako; Yokoyama, Yusuke; Abe-Ouchi, Ayako; Obrochta, Stephen; Saito, Fuyuki; Moriwaki, Kiichi; Matsuzaki, Hiroyuki

    2015-01-01

    The Late Pliocene epoch is a potential analogue for future climate in a warming world. Here we reconstruct Plio-Pleistocene East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) variability using cosmogenic nuclide exposure ages and model simulations to better understand ice sheet behaviour under such warm conditions. New and previously published exposure ages indicate interior-thickening during the Pliocene. An ice sheet model with mid-Pliocene boundary conditions also results in interior thickening and suggests that both the Wilkes Subglacial and Aurora Basins largely melted, offsetting increased ice volume. Considering contributions from West Antarctica and Greenland, this is consistent with the most recent IPCC AR5 estimate, which indicates that the Pliocene sea level likely did not exceed +20 m on Milankovitch timescales. The inception of colder climate since ∼3 Myr has increased the sea ice cover and inhibited active moisture transport to Antarctica, resulting in reduced ice sheet thickness, at least in coastal areas. PMID:25908601

  13. Exposure age and ice-sheet model constraints on Pliocene East Antarctic ice sheet dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Yamane, Masako; Yokoyama, Yusuke; Abe-Ouchi, Ayako; Obrochta, Stephen; Saito, Fuyuki; Moriwaki, Kiichi; Matsuzaki, Hiroyuki

    2015-01-01

    The Late Pliocene epoch is a potential analogue for future climate in a warming world. Here we reconstruct Plio-Pleistocene East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) variability using cosmogenic nuclide exposure ages and model simulations to better understand ice sheet behaviour under such warm conditions. New and previously published exposure ages indicate interior-thickening during the Pliocene. An ice sheet model with mid-Pliocene boundary conditions also results in interior thickening and suggests that both the Wilkes Subglacial and Aurora Basins largely melted, offsetting increased ice volume. Considering contributions from West Antarctica and Greenland, this is consistent with the most recent IPCC AR5 estimate, which indicates that the Pliocene sea level likely did not exceed +20 m on Milankovitch timescales. The inception of colder climate since ∼3 Myr has increased the sea ice cover and inhibited active moisture transport to Antarctica, resulting in reduced ice sheet thickness, at least in coastal areas. PMID:25908601

  14. Exposure age and ice-sheet model constraints on Pliocene East Antarctic ice sheet dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamane, Masako; Yokoyama, Yusuke; Abe-Ouchi, Ayako; Obrochta, Stephen; Saito, Fuyuki; Moriwaki, Kiichi; Matsuzaki, Hiroyuki

    2015-04-01

    The Late Pliocene epoch is a potential analogue for future climate in a warming world. Here we reconstruct Plio-Pleistocene East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) variability using cosmogenic nuclide exposure ages and model simulations to better understand ice sheet behaviour under such warm conditions. New and previously published exposure ages indicate interior-thickening during the Pliocene. An ice sheet model with mid-Pliocene boundary conditions also results in interior thickening and suggests that both the Wilkes Subglacial and Aurora Basins largely melted, offsetting increased ice volume. Considering contributions from West Antarctica and Greenland, this is consistent with the most recent IPCC AR5 estimate, which indicates that the Pliocene sea level likely did not exceed +20 m on Milankovitch timescales. The inception of colder climate since ~3 Myr has increased the sea ice cover and inhibited active moisture transport to Antarctica, resulting in reduced ice sheet thickness, at least in coastal areas.

  15. The tidal spectrum underneath Antarctic Ice Shelves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pedley, M.; Paren, J. G.; Potter, J. R.

    1986-11-01

    A year-long tidal record has been obtained from beneath the George VI Ice Shelf, Antarctica. An unusual feature of the record is a significant response in tidal species 3 to 7. These harmonics are practically absent from records further north on the west coast of the Antarctic Peninsula but are present in all tidal height records from George VI Sound. A strong ter-diurnal signal also exists in the tidal currents under the ice shelf. Nonlinearity also occurs in the tidal motion of the Ronne and Ekström ice shelves but has not been reported from the Ross Ice Shelf. The tidal dynamics of several Antarctic ice shelves have therefore been modified by a region of strong nonlinear response to tidal forcing. If nonlinear tides in the semidiurnal band are present on the Ross Ice Shelf, they could account for difficulties in modeling the area's weak semidiurnal tides. An anelastic component in the deformation of the ice at the grounding line is tentatively proposed as the mechanism responsible. The positioning of recording pressure sensors in pairs on the seafloor and at the ice shelf base will allow this hypothesis to be tested and also provide a value for the power dissipated by tidally induced flexure at the grounding line.

  16. Mass balance of the Antarctic ice sheet.

    PubMed

    Wingham, D J; Shepherd, A; Muir, A; Marshall, G J

    2006-07-15

    The Antarctic contribution to sea-level rise has long been uncertain. While regional variability in ice dynamics has been revealed, a picture of mass changes throughout the continental ice sheet is lacking. Here, we use satellite radar altimetry to measure the elevation change of 72% of the grounded ice sheet during the period 1992-2003. Depending on the density of the snow giving rise to the observed elevation fluctuations, the ice sheet mass trend falls in the range -5-+85Gtyr-1. We find that data from climate model reanalyses are not able to characterise the contemporary snowfall fluctuation with useful accuracy and our best estimate of the overall mass trend-growth of 27+/-29Gtyr-1-is based on an assessment of the expected snowfall variability. Mass gains from accumulating snow, particularly on the Antarctic Peninsula and within East Antarctica, exceed the ice dynamic mass loss from West Antarctica. The result exacerbates the difficulty of explaining twentieth century sea-level rise. PMID:16782603

  17. Microbial biomass and basal respiration of selected Sub-Antarctic and Antarctic soils in the areas of some Russian polar stations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abakumov, E.; Mukhametova, N.

    2014-07-01

    Antarctica is a unique place for soil, biological, and ecological investigations. Soils of Antarctica have been studied intensively during the last century, when different national Antarctic expeditions visited the sixth continent with the aim of investigating nature and the environment. Antarctic investigations are comprised of field surveys mainly in the terrestrial landscapes, where the polar stations of different countries are situated. That is why the main and most detailed soil surveys were conducted in the McMurdo Valleys, Transantarctic Mountains, South Shetland Islands, Larsemann Hills and the Schirmacher Oasis. Our investigations were conducted during the 53rd and 55th Russian Antarctic expeditions in the base of soil pits, and samples were collected in Sub-Antarctic and Antarctic regions. Sub-Antarctic or maritime landscapes are considered to be very different from Antarctic landscapes due to differing climatic and geogenic conditions. Soils of diverse zonal landscapes were studied with the aim of assessing the microbial biomass level, basal respiration rates and metabolic activity of microbial communities. This investigation shows that Antarctic soils are quite diverse in profile organization and carbon content. In general, Sub-Antarctic soils are characterized by more developed humus (sod) organo-mineral horizons as well as by an upper organic layer. The most developed organic layers were revealed in peat soils of King George Island, where its thickness reach, in some cases, was 80 cm. These soils as well as soils formed under guano are characterized by the highest amount of total organic carbon (TOC), between 7.22 and 33.70%. Coastal and continental Antarctic soils exhibit less developed Leptosols, Gleysols, Regolith and rare Ornhitosol, with TOC levels between 0.37 and 4.67%. The metabolic ratios and basal respiration were higher in Sub-Antarctic soils than in Antarctic ones, which can be interpreted as a result of higher amounts of fresh organic

  18. Recent uplift and hydrothermal activity at Tangkuban Parahu volcano, west Java, Indonesia

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dvorak, J.; Matahelumual, J.; Okamura, A.T.; Said, H.; Casadevall, T.J.; Mulyadi, D.

    1990-01-01

    Tangkuban Parahu is an active stratovolcano located 17 km north of the city of Bandung in the province west Java, Indonesia. All historical eruptive activity at this volcano has been confined to a complex of explosive summit craters. About a dozen eruptions-mostly phreatic events- and 15 other periods of unrest, indicated by earthquakes or increased thermal activity, have been noted since 1829. The last magmatic eruption occurred in 1910. In late 1983, several small phreatic explosions originated from one of the summit craters. More recently, increased hydrothermal and earthquake activity occurred from late 1985 through 1986. Tilt measurements, using a spirit-level technique, have been made every few months since February 1981 in the summit region and along the south and east flanks of the volcano. Measurements made in the summit region indicated uplift since the start of these measurements through at least 1986. From 1981 to 1983, the average tilt rate at the edges of the summit craters was 40-50 microradians per year. After the 1983 phreatic activity, the tilt rate decreased by about a factor of five. Trilateration surveys across the summit craters and on the east flank of the volcano were conducted in 1983 and 1986. Most line length changes measured during this three-year period did not exceed the expected uncertainty of the technique (4 ppm). The lack of measurable horizontal strain across the summit craters seems to contradict the several years of tilt measurements. Using a point source of dilation in an elastic half-space to model tilt measurements, the pressure center at Tangkuban Parahu is located about 1.5 km beneath the southern part of the summit craters. This is beneath the epicentral area of an earthquake swarm that occurred in late 1983. The average rate in the volume of uplift from 1981 to 1983 was 3 million m3 per year; from 1983 to 1986 it averaged about 0.4 million m3 per year. Possible causes for this uplift are increased pressure within a very

  19. Warming of the Antarctic ice-sheet surface since the 1957 International Geophysical Year.

    PubMed

    Steig, Eric J; Schneider, David P; Rutherford, Scott D; Mann, Michael E; Comiso, Josefino C; Shindell, Drew T

    2009-01-22

    Assessments of Antarctic temperature change have emphasized the contrast between strong warming of the Antarctic Peninsula and slight cooling of the Antarctic continental interior in recent decades. This pattern of temperature change has been attributed to the increased strength of the circumpolar westerlies, largely in response to changes in stratospheric ozone. This picture, however, is substantially incomplete owing to the sparseness and short duration of the observations. Here we show that significant warming extends well beyond the Antarctic Peninsula to cover most of West Antarctica, an area of warming much larger than previously reported. West Antarctic warming exceeds 0.1 degrees C per decade over the past 50 years, and is strongest in winter and spring. Although this is partly offset by autumn cooling in East Antarctica, the continent-wide average near-surface temperature trend is positive. Simulations using a general circulation model reproduce the essential features of the spatial pattern and the long-term trend, and we suggest that neither can be attributed directly to increases in the strength of the westerlies. Instead, regional changes in atmospheric circulation and associated changes in sea surface temperature and sea ice are required to explain the enhanced warming in West Antarctica. PMID:19158794

  20. Are Antarctic Subglacial Lakes Markers of Geologic Boundaries?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, A. E.; Bell, R.; Studinger, M.

    2005-12-01

    Airborne geophysics has revealed the locations of more than 150 subglacial lakes in the Antarctic interior. The spatial distribution of lakes beneath an ice sheet depends on geothermal flux at the ice-bed interface, ice thickness and flow, surface temperature and accumulation rate, as well as the occurrence of basins in the bed topography. The dynamics of the lake environment, as well as the diversity of controls acting on it, account for the difficulty in reproducing or predicting the distribution of known and probable lakes from models. To date, most efforts to predict the distribution of subglacial lakes have focused on the glaciological facets of the problem. Here we examine the role tectonics may play in the distribution of subglacial lakes. Lake Vostok lies along a tectonic boundary between two distinct geologic provinces-relatively flat-lying continental margin sediments to the west of the lake and folded and compressed crust material to the east. This suture is possibly the result of Precambrian tectonic activity which produced the Vostok basin and thus is the fundamental tectonic control on the location of Lake Vostok. This work examines the relative contribution of glaciological and tectonic controls to determine if other subglacial lakes may also reside on geologic or tectonic boundaries.

  1. Gazetteer of the Antarctic

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    U.S. Board on Geographic Names; Defense Mapping Agency; U.S. Geological Survey; National Science Foundation

    1989-01-01

    This gazetteer lists antarctic names approved by the United States Board on Geographic Names and by the Secretary of the Interior. The Board is the interagency body created by law to standardize and promulgate geographic names for official purposes. As the official standard for names in Antarctica, the gazetteer assures accuracy and uniformity for the specialist and the general user alike. Unlike the last (1981) edition, now out of print, the book contains neither historical notes nor textual descriptions of features. The gazetteer contains names of features in Antarctica and the area extending northward to the Antarctic Convergence that have been approved by the Board as recently as mid-1989. It supersedes previous Board gazetteers for the area. For each geographic feature, the book contains the name, cross references if any, and latitude and longitude. Coverage corresponds to that of maps at the scale of 1:250,000 or larger for islands, coastal Antarctica, and mountains and ranges of the continent. Much of the interior of Antarctica, an ice plateau, has been mapped at a smaller scale and is nearly devoid of features and toponyms. All of the names are for natural features; scientific stations are not listed. For the names of submarine features, reference should be made to the Gazetteer of Undersea Features, U.S. Board on Geographic Names (1981).

  2. AVHRR imagery reveals Antarctic ice dynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Bindschadler, R.A.; Vornberger, P.L. STX Corp., Lanham, MD )

    1990-06-01

    A portion of AVHRR data taken on December 5, 1987 at 06:15 GMT over a part of Antarctica is used here to show that many of the most significant dynamic features of ice sheets can be identified by a careful examination of AVHRR imagery. The relatively low resolution of this instrument makes it ideal for obtaining a broad view of the ice sheets, while its wide swath allows coverage of areas beyond the reach of high-resolution imagers either currently in orbit or planned. An interpretation is given of the present data, which cover the area of ice streams that drain the interior of the West Antarctic ice sheet into the Ross Ice Shelf. 21 refs.

  3. Emerging spatial patterns in Antarctic prokaryotes.

    PubMed

    Chong, Chun-Wie; Pearce, David A; Convey, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in knowledge of patterns of biogeography in terrestrial eukaryotic organisms have led to a fundamental paradigm shift in understanding of the controls and history of life on land in Antarctica, and its interactions over the long term with the glaciological and geological processes that have shaped the continent. However, while it has long been recognized that the terrestrial ecosystems of Antarctica are dominated by microbes and their processes, knowledge of microbial diversity and distributions has lagged far behind that of the macroscopic eukaryote organisms. Increasing human contact with and activity in the continent is leading to risks of biological contamination and change in a region whose isolation has protected it for millions of years at least; these risks may be particularly acute for microbial communities which have, as yet, received scant recognition and attention. Even a matter apparently as straightforward as Protected Area designation in Antarctica requires robust biodiversity data which, in most parts of the continent, remain almost completely unavailable. A range of important contributing factors mean that it is now timely to reconsider the state of knowledge of Antarctic terrestrial prokaryotes. Rapid advances in molecular biological approaches are increasingly demonstrating that bacterial diversity in Antarctica may be far greater than previously thought, and that there is overlap in the environmental controls affecting both Antarctic prokaryotic and eukaryotic communities. Bacterial dispersal mechanisms and colonization patterns remain largely unaddressed, although evidence for regional evolutionary differentiation is rapidly accruing and, with this, there is increasing appreciation of patterns in regional bacterial biogeography in this large part of the globe. In this review, we set out to describe the state of knowledge of Antarctic prokaryote diversity patterns, drawing analogy with those of eukaryote groups where appropriate

  4. Emerging spatial patterns in Antarctic prokaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Chong, Chun-Wie; Pearce, David A.; Convey, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in knowledge of patterns of biogeography in terrestrial eukaryotic organisms have led to a fundamental paradigm shift in understanding of the controls and history of life on land in Antarctica, and its interactions over the long term with the glaciological and geological processes that have shaped the continent. However, while it has long been recognized that the terrestrial ecosystems of Antarctica are dominated by microbes and their processes, knowledge of microbial diversity and distributions has lagged far behind that of the macroscopic eukaryote organisms. Increasing human contact with and activity in the continent is leading to risks of biological contamination and change in a region whose isolation has protected it for millions of years at least; these risks may be particularly acute for microbial communities which have, as yet, received scant recognition and attention. Even a matter apparently as straightforward as Protected Area designation in Antarctica requires robust biodiversity data which, in most parts of the continent, remain almost completely unavailable. A range of important contributing factors mean that it is now timely to reconsider the state of knowledge of Antarctic terrestrial prokaryotes. Rapid advances in molecular biological approaches are increasingly demonstrating that bacterial diversity in Antarctica may be far greater than previously thought, and that there is overlap in the environmental controls affecting both Antarctic prokaryotic and eukaryotic communities. Bacterial dispersal mechanisms and colonization patterns remain largely unaddressed, although evidence for regional evolutionary differentiation is rapidly accruing and, with this, there is increasing appreciation of patterns in regional bacterial biogeography in this large part of the globe. In this review, we set out to describe the state of knowledge of Antarctic prokaryote diversity patterns, drawing analogy with those of eukaryote groups where appropriate

  5. Sudden sea-level change from melting Antarctic ice: How likely?

    SciTech Connect

    Bentley, C.R.

    1995-12-31

    There has been concern that the West Antarctic marine ice sheet could collapse catastrophically, leading to a 5-meter rise in sea level in a single century. However, that idea was based on a modeled instability at the grounding line that reflected a discontinuity between the mathematical models used for the grounded and floating parts of the ice sheet, respectively. Improved knowledge about ice streams, the active portions of the marine ice sheet, reveals that in the Ross Sea sector, at least, there is in reality a broad, gradual transition zone, rather than a discontinuity, between the inland ice and the ice shelf. Consequently, there probably is no instability; total disappearance of the ice sheet would take a millenium or more. The resulting average contribution to sea-level rise thus would be only a few millimeters per year, comparable to the present rate of rise (from all sources). Furthermore, dynamic response to present-day climate change would not even begin in less than a century. It is still uncertain whether the Antarctic ice sheet is making a positive or negative contribution to sea-level rise now. Whichever the case, however, during the next century or two the effect of climatic warming almost surely will be to increase the mass input to the ice sheet, thus yielding a negative contribution to sea-level rise of the order of a millimeter per year.

  6. Advances in modelling subglacial lakes and their interaction with the Antarctic ice sheet.

    PubMed

    Pattyn, Frank; Carter, Sasha P; Thoma, Malte

    2016-01-28

    Subglacial lakes have long been considered hydraulically isolated water bodies underneath ice sheets. This view changed radically with the advent of repeat-pass satellite altimetry and the discovery of multiple lake discharges and water infill, associated with water transfer over distances of more than 200 km. The presence of subglacial lakes also influences ice dynamics, leading to glacier acceleration. Furthermore, subglacial melting under the Antarctic ice sheet is more widespread than previously thought, and subglacial melt rates may explain the availability for water storage in subglacial lakes and water transport. Modelling of subglacial water discharge in subglacial lakes essentially follows hydraulics of subglacial channels on a hard bed, where ice sheet surface slope is a major control on triggering subglacial lake discharge. Recent evidence also points to the development of channels in deformable sediment in West Antarctica, with significant water exchanges between till and ice. Most active lakes drain over short time scales and respond rapidly to upstream variations. Several Antarctic subglacial lakes exhibit complex interactions with the ice sheet due to water circulation. Subglacial lakes can therefore-from a modelling point of view-be seen as confined small oceans underneath an imbedded ice shelf. PMID:26667909

  7. Mass Gains of the Antarctic Ice Sheet Exceed Losses

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zwally, H. Jay; Li, Jun; Robbins, John; Saba, Jack L.; Yi, Donghui; Brenner, Anita; Bromwich, David

    2012-01-01

    During 2003 to 2008, the mass gain of the Antarctic ice sheet from snow accumulation exceeded the mass loss from ice discharge by 49 Gt/yr (2.5% of input), as derived from ICESat laser measurements of elevation change. The net gain (86 Gt/yr) over the West Antarctic (WA) and East Antarctic ice sheets (WA and EA) is essentially unchanged from revised results for 1992 to 2001 from ERS radar altimetry. Imbalances in individual drainage systems (DS) are large (-68% to +103% of input), as are temporal changes (-39% to +44%). The recent 90 Gt/yr loss from three DS (Pine Island, Thwaites-Smith, and Marie-Bryd Coast) of WA exceeds the earlier 61 Gt/yr loss, consistent with reports of accelerating ice flow and dynamic thinning. Similarly, the recent 24 Gt/yr loss from three DS in the Antarctic Peninsula (AP) is consistent with glacier accelerations following breakup of the Larsen B and other ice shelves. In contrast, net increases in the five other DS of WA and AP and three of the 16 DS in East Antarctica (EA) exceed the increased losses. Alternate interpretations of the mass changes driven by accumulation variations are given using results from atmospheric-model re-analysis and a parameterization based on 5% change in accumulation per degree of observed surface temperature change. A slow increase in snowfall with climate waRMing, consistent with model predictions, may be offsetting increased dynamic losses.

  8. Recent Rapid Regional Climate Warming on the Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vaughan, D. G.; Marshall, G. J.; Connolley, W. M.; Parkinson, C.; Mulvaney, R.; Hodgson, D. A.; King, J. C.; Pudsey, C. J.; Turner, J.

    2002-12-01

    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) confirmed that global warming was 0.6 ñ 0.2 degrees C during the 20th Century and cited increases in greenhouse gases as a likely contributor. But this average conceals the complexity of observed climate change, which is seasonally biased, decadally variable and geographically patchy. In particular, over the last 50 years three high-latitude areas have undergone recent rapid regional (RRR) warming ? substantially more rapid than the global mean. We discuss the spatial and temporal significance of RRR warming in one area, the Antarctic Peninsula. New analyses of station records show no ubiquitous polar amplification of global warming but significant RRR warming on the Antarctic Peninsula. We investigate the likelihood that this could be amplification of a global warming, and use climate-proxy data to indicate that this RRR warming on the Antarctic Peninsula is unprecedented over the last two millennia and unlikely to be a natural mode of variability. We can show a strong connection between RRR warming and reduced sea-ice duration in an area on the west of the Antarctic Peninsula, but here we cannot yet distinguish cause and effect. Thus for the present we cannot determine which process causes the RRR warming, and until the mechanism initiating and sustaining it is understood, and is convincingly reproduced in climate models, we lack a sound basis for predicting climate change in this region over the coming century.

  9. Plate tectonic evolution of circum-Antarctic passive margins

    SciTech Connect

    Scotese, C.R.; Lawver, L.A.; Sclater, J.G.; Mayes, C.L.; Norton, I.; Royer, J.

    1987-05-01

    Passive margins that formed during the Late Jurassic and Cretaceous account for approximately 80% of the 15,000-km circumference of Antarctica. There are no passive margins younger than Late Cretaceous. Approximately 28% of these margins are Late Jurassic in age, 24% are Early Cretaceous in age, and the remaining 48% formed during the Late Cretaceous. The tectonic style of the rifting events that formed these margins varies considerably along the perimeter of Antarctica. In several areas the initiation of sea-floor spreading was preceded by a long period of extension and predrift stretching (Wilkes Land). Along other portions of the margin, rifting proceeded rapidly with little evidence for a lengthy phase of pre-drift extension (Queen Maud Land). Though extension is the dominant tectonic style, there is evidence for large-scale strike-slip movement associated with the early phases of continental breakup along the coasts of Crown Princess Martha Land and Victoria Land. Except for a short segment of the margin between the West Antarctic peninsula and Marie Byrdland, the Antarctic passive margins have not been affected by subsequent subduction-related compressive deformation. This presentation will review the plate tectonic evolution of the Circum-Antarctic passive margins during five time intervals: Early Jurassic, Late Jurassic, Early Cretaceous, mid-Cretaceous, and latest Cretaceous. A map illustrating the relative amounts of extension along the margin of Antarctica will be presented, and a computer animation illustrating the breakup of Gondwana from an Antarctic perspective will be shown.

  10. Antarctic sea ice change and variability - Physical and ecological implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Massom, Robert A.; Stammerjohn, Sharon E.

    2010-08-01

    Although Antarctic sea ice is undergoing a slight increase in overall extent, major regional changes are occurring in its spatio-temporal characteristics (most notably in sea ice seasonality). Biologically significant aspects of Antarctic sea ice are evaluated, emphasising the importance of scale and thermodynamics versus dynamics. Changing sea ice coverage is having major direct and indirect though regionally-dependent effects on ecosystem structure and function, with the most dramatic known effects to date occurring in the West Antarctic Peninsula region. There is mounting evidence that loss of sea ice has affected multiple levels of the marine food web in a complex fashion and has triggered cascading effects. Impacts on primary production, Antarctic krill, fish, marine mammals and birds are assessed, and are both negative and positive. The review includes recent analysis of change/variability in polynyas and fast ice, and also highlights the significance of extreme events (which have paradoxical impacts). Possible future scenarios are investigated in the light of the predicted decline in sea ice by 2100 e.g. increased storminess/waviness, numbers of icebergs and snowfall. Our current lack of knowledge on many aspects of sea ice-related change and biological response is emphasised.

  11. Thermochronologic constraints on the tectonic evolution of the western Antarctic Peninsula in late Mesozoic and Cenozoic times

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brix, M.R.; Faundez, V.; Hervé, F.; Solari, M.; Fernandez, J.; Carter, A.; Stöckhert, B.

    2007-01-01

    West of the Antarctic Peninsula, oceanic lithosphere of the Phoenix plate has been subducted below the Antarctic plate. Subduction has ceased successively from south to north over the last 65 Myr. An influence of this evolution on the segmentation of the crust in the Antarctic plate is disputed. Opposing scenarios consider effects of ridge crest – trench interactions with the subduction zone or differences in slip along a basal detachment in the overriding plate. Fission track (FT) analyses on apatites and zircons may detect thermochronologic patterns to test these hypotheses. While existing data concentrate on accretionary processes in Palmer Land, new data extend information to the northern part of the Antarctic Peninsula. Zircons from different geological units over wide areas of the Antarctic Peninsula yield fission track ages between 90 and 80 Ma, indicating a uniform regional cooling episode. Apatite FT ages obtained so far show considerable regional variability

  12. Antarctic Tephrochronology: A Maturing Record of Visible Layers and Cryptotephra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dunbar, N. W.; Kurbatov, A.; McIntosh, W. C.

    2012-12-01

    Visible tephra layers, which represent important time-stratigraphic markers in ice-bound climate records, have been found in majority of the deep Antarctic ice cores. Ice core tephra layers range from sub-centimeter thick, visible layers to cryptotephra consisting of sparse, fine-grained (<10 micron) glass particles. Identification of tephra layers traditionally relied on visual identification or acidity spikes association with sulfate aerosols, but is now also aided by fluorescence and downhole optical logging techniques. Improved analytical techniques for glass characterization, and more complete information on source eruptions has allowed development of a regional record of Antarctic volcanic eruptions. Two deep West Antarctic ice cores (Siple Dome SDMA and West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide core WDC06A) contain rich tephra records, with the former containing 37 tephra layers and the latter containing several hundred distinct, visible "dusty" layers, many of which are likely to be tephra. Based on analyses of all identified tephra layers in the Siple Dome A and B ice cores and of a subset of those in WDC06A, most layers appear to be derived from two large West Antarctic stratovolcanoes Mt. Berlin and Mt. Takahe, tephra from which have also been recognized in the marine record (Hillenbrand et al., 1988). However, a well-defined ash layer recognized at a depth of between 190.37-190.39 m depth in the WDC06A core and several other ice cores, which contains 20 μm ash shards, was chemically characterized as being derived from the East Antarctic Pleiades volcanic center. Several tephra layers, including one that correlates between the SDMA and WDC06A cores, are thought to be related to South American volcanism. In terms of the West Antarctic regional tephra framework, a very distinct "visible brown layer", with glass shards up to 20 μm in diameter, found at a depth of 1586.363 m in WDC06A (8.279 ka B.P. preliminary age), chemically correlates to a major 40Ar/39Ar

  13. RADARSAT: The Antarctic Mapping Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jezek, Kenneth C.; Lindstrom, E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The first Antarctic Imaging Campaign (AIC) occurred during the period September 9, 1997 through October 20, 1997. The AIC utilized the unique attributes of the Canadian RADARSAT-1 to acquire the first, high-resolution, synthetic aperture imagery covering the entire Antarctic Continent. Although the primary goal of the mission was the acquisition of image data, the nearly flawless execution of the mission enabled additional collections of exact repeat orbit data. These data, covering an extensive portion of the interior Antarctic, potentially are suitable for interferometric analysis of topography and surface velocity. This document summarizes the Project through completion with delivery of products to the NASA DAACs.

  14. Measurements of ethane in Antarctic ice cores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verhulst, K. R.; Fosse, E. K.; Aydin, K. M.; Saltzman, E. S.

    2011-12-01

    Ethane is one of the most abundant hydrocarbons in the atmosphere. The major ethane sources are fossil fuel production and use, biofuel combustion, and biomass-burning emissions and the primary loss pathway is via reaction with OH. A paleoatmospheric ethane record would be useful as a tracer of biomass-burning emissions, providing a constraint on past changes in atmospheric methane and methane isotopes. An independent biomass-burning tracer would improve our understanding of the relationship between biomass burning and climate. The mean annual atmospheric ethane level at high southern latitudes is about 230 parts per trillion (ppt), and Antarctic firn air measurements suggest that atmospheric ethane levels in the early 20th century were considerably lower (Aydin et al., 2011). In this study, we present preliminary measurements of ethane (C2H6) in Antarctic ice core samples with gas ages ranging from 0-1900 C.E. Samples were obtained from dry-drilled ice cores from South Pole and Vostok in East Antarctica, and from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide (WAIS-D). Gases were extracted from the ice by melting under vacuum in a glass vessel sealed by indium wire and were analyzed using high resolution GC/MS with isotope dilution. Ethane levels measured in ice core samples were in the range 100-220 ppt, with a mean of 157 ± 45 ppt (n=12). System blanks contribute roughly half the amount of ethane extracted from a 300 g ice core sample. These preliminary data exhibit a temporal trend, with higher ethane levels from 0-900 C.E., followed by a decline, reaching a minimum between 1600-1700 C.E. These trends are consistent with variations in ice core methane isotopes and carbon monoxide isotopes (Ferretti et al., 2005, Wang et al., 2010), which indicate changes in biomass burning emissions over this time period. These preliminary data suggest that Antarctic ice core bubbles contain paleoatmospheric ethane levels. With further improvement of laboratory techniques it appears

  15. Combustion of available fossil fuel resources sufficient to eliminate the Antarctic Ice Sheet.

    PubMed

    Winkelmann, Ricarda; Levermann, Anders; Ridgwell, Andy; Caldeira, Ken

    2015-09-01

    The Antarctic Ice Sheet stores water equivalent to 58 m in global sea-level rise. We show in simulations using the Parallel Ice Sheet Model that burning the currently attainable fossil fuel resources is sufficient to eliminate the ice sheet. With cumulative fossil fuel emissions of 10,000 gigatonnes of carbon (GtC), Antarctica is projected to become almost ice-free with an average contribution to sea-level rise exceeding 3 m per century during the first millennium. Consistent with recent observations and simulations, the West Antarctic Ice Sheet becomes unstable with 600 to 800 GtC of additional carbon emissions. Beyond this additional carbon release, the destabilization of ice basins in both West and East Antarctica results in a threshold increase in global sea level. Unabated carbon emissions thus threaten the Antarctic Ice Sheet in its entirety with associated sea-level rise that far exceeds that of all other possible sources. PMID:26601273

  16. Combustion of available fossil-fuel resources sufficient to eliminate the Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winkelmann, R.; Levermann, A.; Ridgwell, A.; Caldeira, K.

    2015-12-01

    The Antarctic Ice Sheet stores water equivalent to 58 meters in global sea-level rise. Here we show in simulations with the Parallel Ice Sheet Model that burning the currently attainable fossil-fuel resources is sufficient to eliminate the ice sheet. With cumulative fossil-fuel emissions of 10 000 GtC, Antarctica is projected to become almost ice-free with an average contribution to sea-level rise exceeding 3 meters per century during the first millennium. Consistent with recent observations and simulations, the West Antarctic Ice Sheet becomes unstable with 600 to 800 GtC of additional carbon emissions. Beyond this additional carbon release, the destabilization of ice basins in both West- and East Antarctica results in a threshold-increase in global sea level. Unabated carbon emissions thus threaten the Antarctic Ice Sheet in its entirety with associated sea-level rise that far exceeds that of all other possible sources.

  17. Combustion of available fossil fuel resources sufficient to eliminate the Antarctic Ice Sheet

    PubMed Central

    Winkelmann, Ricarda; Levermann, Anders; Ridgwell, Andy; Caldeira, Ken

    2015-01-01

    The Antarctic Ice Sheet stores water equivalent to 58 m in global sea-level rise. We show in simulations using the Parallel Ice Sheet Model that burning the currently attainable fossil fuel resources is sufficient to eliminate the ice sheet. With cumulative fossil fuel emissions of 10,000 gigatonnes of carbon (GtC), Antarctica is projected to become almost ice-free with an average contribution to sea-level rise exceeding 3 m per century during the first millennium. Consistent with recent observations and simulations, the West Antarctic Ice Sheet becomes unstable with 600 to 800 GtC of additional carbon emissions. Beyond this additional carbon release, the destabilization of ice basins in both West and East Antarctica results in a threshold increase in global sea level. Unabated carbon emissions thus threaten the Antarctic Ice Sheet in its entirety with associated sea-level rise that far exceeds that of all other possible sources. PMID:26601273

  18. Carbon-dioxide flow measurement in geodynamically active area of West Bohemia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vlcek, Josef; Fischer, Tomas; Heinicke, Jens

    2016-04-01

    Geodynamically active area of West Bohemia is interesting not only due to its earthquake swarms occurrence but also due to degassing flux of magmatic origin occurring in natural moffettes and mineral springs. While monitoring of earthquakes is done by a standard local seismic network, monitoring of amount of CO2 is at its initial stage. Despite lack of data, the 2014 earthquake swarm showed also very interesting increase in CO2 flow. This correlation with seismicity motivated us to develop robust and reliable methods of CO2 flow measurement, which would be sufficient to create denser monitoring network. Standard usage of gas-flowmeter for the purpose of gas flow measurement is dependent on the weather and device conditions, which makes the measurement instable in time and unreliable. Although gas-flowmeter is also accompanied with measurement of the gas pressure in the well to check flow rate value, reliability of this method is still low. This problematic behavior of the flow measurement was the reason to test new methods to measure CO2 amount - the first is based on measuring the density water with bubbles in the well by differential pressure gauge. The second one utilizes electric conductivity measurement to determine the density of bubbles in the water-gas mixture. Advantage of these methods is that their probes are directly in the well or moffette, where the concentration is measured. This approach is free of the influence of moving parts and assures the independence of measurements of environmental conditions. In this paper we show examples of obtained data series from selected sites and compare the trend of the curves, the mutual relations of the measured quantities and the influence of environmental conditions.

  19. Geological and geomorphological insights into Antarctic ice sheet evolution.

    PubMed

    Sugden, David E; Bentley, Michael J; O Cofaigh, Colm

    2006-07-15

    Technical advances in the study of ice-free parts of Antarctica can provide quantitative records that are useful for constraining and refining models of ice sheet evolution and behaviour. Such records improve our understanding of system trajectory, influence the questions we ask about system stability and help to define the ice-sheet processes that are relevant on different time-scales. Here, we illustrate the contribution of cosmogenic isotope analysis of exposed bedrock surfaces and marine geophysical surveying to the understanding of Antarctic ice sheet evolution on a range of time-scales. In the Dry Valleys of East Antarctica, 3He dating of subglacial flood deposits that are now exposed on mountain summits provide evidence of an expanded and thicker Mid-Miocene ice sheet. The survival of surface boulders for approximately 14Myr, the oldest yet measured, demonstrates exceptionally low rates of subsequent erosion and points to the persistence and stability of the dry polar desert climate since that time. Increasingly, there are constraints on West Antarctic ice sheet fluctuations during Quaternary glacial cycles. In the Sarnoff Mountains of Marie Byrd Land in West Antarctica, 10Be and 26Al cosmogenic isotope analysis of glacial erratics and bedrock reveal steady thinning of the ice sheet from 10400 years ago to the present, probably as a result of grounding line retreat. In the Antarctic Peninsula, offshore analysis reveals an extensive ice sheet at the last glacial maximum. Based on radiocarbon dating, deglaciation began by 17000cal yr BP and was complete by 9500cal yr BP. Deglaciation of the west and east sides of the Antarctic Peninsula ice sheet occurred at different times and rates, but was largely complete by the Early Holocene. At that time ice shelves were less extensive on the west side of the Antarctic Peninsula than they are today. The message from the past is that individual glacier drainage basins in Antarctica respond in different and distinctive

  20. Improvements in the chronology, geochemistry and correlation techniques of tephra in Antarctic ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iverson, N. A.; Dunbar, N. W.; McIntosh, W. C.; Pearce, N. J.; Kyle, P. R.

    2013-12-01

    Visible and crypto tephra layers found in West Antarctic ice provide an excellent record of Antarctic volcanism over the past 100ka. Tephra layers are deposited almost instantaneously across wide areas creating horizons that, if found in several locations, provide 'pinning points' to adjust ice time scales that may otherwise be lacking detailed chronology. Individual tephra layers can have distinct chemical fingerprints allowing them to correlate over great distances. Advances in sample preparation, geochemical analyses (major and trace elements) of fine grained tephra and higher precision 40Ar/39Ar dating of young (<100ka) proximal volcanic deposits are improving an already established tephra record in West Antarctica. Forty three of the potential hundreds of silicate layers found in a recently drilled deep West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide core (WDC06A) have been analyzed for major elements and a subset for trace elements. Of these layers, at least 16 are homogenous tephra that could be correlated to other ice cores (e.g. Siple Dome, SDMA) and/or to source volcanoes found throughout Antarctica and even extra-continental eruptions (e.g. Sub-Antarctic islands and South America). Combining ice core tephra with those exposed in blue ice areas provide more locations to correlate widespread eruptions. For example, a period of heightened eruptive activity at Mt. Berlin, West Antarctica between 24 and 28ka produced a set of tephra layers that are found in WDC06A and SDMA ice cores, as well as at a nearby blue ice area at Mt. Moulton (BIT-151 and BIT-152). Possible correlative tephra layers are found at ice ages of 26.4, 26.9 and 28.8ka in WDC06A and 26.5, 27.0, and 28.7ka in SDMA cores. The geochemical similarities of major elements in these layers mean that ongoing trace element analyses will be vital to decipher the sequence of events during this phase of activity at Mt. Berlin. Sample WDC06A-2767.117 (ice age of 28.6×1.0ka) appears to correlate to blue ice tephra BIT

  1. Starfish saponins. 55. Isolation, structure elucidation, and biological activity of the steroid oligoglycosides from an Antarctic starfish of the family Asteriidae.

    PubMed

    De Marino, S; Iorizzi, M; Palagiano, E; Zollo, F; Roussakis, C

    1998-11-01

    This paper reports an analysis of the chemical constituents from an Antarctic starfish of the family Asteriidae. Different steroid glycoside types are represented among its constituents, including the five hexaglycoside steroidal sulfates ("asterosaponins") asteriidosides A-E (1-5), differing in their oligosaccharide chain, and the two nonsulfated diglycosides asteriidoside F (6) and G (7), in which 6 is the 26-methyl analogue of 7. Also present are the two sulfated diglycosides asteriidoside H (8) and I (9) and one sulfated monoglycoside asteriidoside L (10). Eight of the compounds were tested against human nonsmall-cell lung carcinoma cells (NSCLC-L16) and found to be moderately cytotoxic. PMID:9834144

  2. Antarctic stratospheric ice crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Goodman, J. ); Toon, O.B.; Pueschel, R.F.; Snetsinger, K.G. ) Verma, S. )

    1989-11-30

    Ice crystals were replicated over the Palmer Peninsula at approximately 72{degree}S on six occasions during the 1987 Airborne Antarctic Ozone Experiment. The sampling altitude was between 12.5 and 18.5 km (45-65 thousand ft pressure altitude) with the temperature between 190 and 201 K. The atmosphere was subsaturated with respect to ice in all cases. The collected crystals were predominantly solid and hollow columns. The largest crystals were sampled at lower altitudes where the potential temperature was below 400 K. While the crystals were larger than anticipated, their low concentration results in a total surface area that is less than one tenth of the total aerosol surface area. The large ice crystals may play an important role in the observed stratospheric dehydration processes through sedimentation. Evidence of scavenging of submicron particles further suggests that the ice crystals may be effective in the removal of stratospheric chemicals.

  3. 77 FR 44289 - Notice of Permit Application Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-07-27

    ...Notice is hereby given that the National Science Foundation (NSF) has received a waste management permit application for operation of a 54-foot steel-hulled ketch, Northanger, sailing and making landings along the west coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, operated by the Explorer's Corner LLC, a company within the United States. The application is submitted to NSF pursuant to regulations issued......

  4. 75 FR 53351 - Notice of Permit Application Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-08-31

    ... Operators. The camp can accommodate up to 100 people and is adjacent to a 100m x 2000m blue-ice runway. The blue-ice runway is a natural feature that requires limited amount of preparation and ] upkeep for..., Environmental Manager, Antarctic Logistics & Expeditions, LLC, 79 West 450 South, Suite 2, Salt Lake City,...

  5. A source-to-sink, multi-proxy provenance study of CRP-1 and AND-2/2A core records: implications for sediment dispersal and ice dynamics models in the West Antarctic Rift System of South Victoria Land in Early Miocene time

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strada, Eleonora; Florindo, Fabio; Sandroni, Sonia; Talarico, Franco Maria

    2014-05-01

    The study of the lithosphere-cryosphere system interactions in response to climate and tectonic forcings during the Cenozoic long-term cooling and the reconstruction of the past glacial volumes and regimes (ice mountains caps vs ice sheets, warm-based vs polar/cold-based) represents a priority area for recent and current geosciences and climate science research. A unique case-history to investigate these issues is represented by the South Victoria Land sector of the West Antarctic Rift System, where several high-quality sediment drill-cores provide a benchmark for integrating paleoenvironmental information stored in a cumulative ca. 4.8 km-long stratigraphic record of late Eocene to Pleistocene age, with the erosion and exhumation histories recorded in several mountain blocks in the adjacent Transantarctic Mountains (TAM). Previous provenance studies on Victoria Land Basin cores highlight the high value of different provenance tools in the reconstruction of paleoenvironmental variability during the Cenozoic glacial and paleoclimatic evolution in the Ross Embayment in a number of time windows. However, integration of different datasets has been so far very limited, particularly for what concerns correlations of key Cenozoic tectonic and paleoclimatic events across the entire length of the TAM in Victoria Land. The Cape Roberts Project CRP-1 and the ANDRILL SMS AND2-2A cores, with their correlative core sections, provide the opportunity to reconstruct ice dynamic and paleoenvironmental scenarios at a regional scale, comprising a wide area of the western Ross Sea and the adjacent segment of the TAM in Early Miocene time. Our study includes a tighter data integration of all available provenance/compositional datasets in each core, and new mineralogical data (on both silicate and opaque mineralogy and in different sedimentary grain fractions). The overall new and existing datasets consistently highlight the presence of significant differences in provenance, suggesting

  6. West Nile Virus Activity--United States, October 13-19, 2004.

    PubMed

    2004-10-22

    During October 13-19, a total of 200 cases of human West Nile virus (WNV) illness were reported from 20 states (Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Wisconsin, and Wyoming). PMID:15499683

  7. Intermountain West Military Training Lands Planting Guide: Selecting Seed Mixtures for Actively Used Military Lands

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This guide provides recommendations on plant materials for Department of Defense (DoD) training land restoration at military facilities in the Intermountain West of the United States. These guidelines fill a gap in knowledge in the science of military land management; there are no other guides for ...

  8. The Antarctic ozone depletion caused by Erebus volcano gas emissions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zuev, V. V.; Zueva, N. E.; Savelieva, E. S.; Gerasimov, V. V.

    2015-12-01

    Heterogeneous chemical reactions releasing photochemically active molecular chlorine play a key role in Antarctic stratospheric ozone destruction, resulting in the Antarctic ozone hole. Hydrogen chloride (HCl) is one of the principal components in these reactions on the surfaces of polar stratospheric clouds (PSCs). PSCs form during polar nights at extremely low temperatures (lower than -78 °C) mainly on sulfuric acid (H2SO4) aerosols, acting as condensation nuclei and formed from sulfur dioxide (SO2). However, the cause of HCl and H2SO4 high concentrations in the Antarctic stratosphere, leading to considerable springtime ozone depletion, is still not clear. Based on the NCEP/NCAR reanalysis data over the last 35 years and by using the NOAA HYSPLIT trajectory model, we show that Erebus volcano gas emissions (including HCl and SO2) can reach the Antarctic stratosphere via high-latitude cyclones with the annual average probability Pbarann. of at least ∼0.235 (23.5%). Depending on Erebus activity, this corresponds to additional annual stratospheric HCl mass of 1.0-14.3 kilotons (kt) and SO2 mass of 1.4-19.7 kt. Thus, Erebus volcano is the natural and powerful source of additional stratospheric HCl and SO2, and hence, the cause of the Antarctic ozone depletion, together with man-made chlorofluorocarbons.

  9. The Antarctic Master Directory -- a resource for Antarctic Scientists

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scharfen, G.; Bauer, R.

    2002-12-01

    Under the auspices of the Antarctic Treaty, a group of nations conducting Antarctic scientific research have created the Antarctic Master Directory (AMD), a resource for Antarctic scientists. The AMD is a Web-based, searchable directory containing data descriptions (metadata in the form of DIF entries) of Antarctic scientific data, and is a node of the International Directory Network/Global Change Master Directory (IDN/GCMD). The data descriptions in the AMD, essentially a data catalog of Antarctic scientific data, include information about what data were collected, where they were collected, when they were collected, who the scientists are, who the point of contact is, and information about the format of the data and what documentation and bibliographic information exists. As part of the AMD effort, the National Science Foundation Office of Polar Programs (OPP) funds the National Snow and Ice Data Center to operate the U.S. Antarctic Data Coordination Center (USADCC), the US focal point for the AMD. The USADCC assists PIs as they meet the requirements of the OPP "Guidelines and Award Conditions for Scientific Data", which identify the conditions for awards and responsibilities of PIs regarding the archival of data, and submission of metadata, resulting from their NSF OPP grants. The USADCC offers access to free, easy-to-use online tools that PIs can use to create the data descriptions that the NSF policy data requires. We provide advice to PIs on how to meet the data policy requirements, and can answer specific questions on related issues. Scientists can access data set descriptions submitted to the AMD, by thousands of scientists around the world, from the USADCC web pages.

  10. Antarctic sea ice losses drive gains in benthic carbon drawdown.

    PubMed

    Barnes, D K A

    2015-09-21

    Climate forcing of sea-ice losses from the Arctic and West Antarctic are blueing the poles. These losses are accelerating, reducing Earth's albedo and increasing heat absorption. Subarctic forest (area expansion and increased growth) and ice-shelf losses (resulting in new phytoplankton blooms which are eaten by benthos) are the only significant described negative feedbacks acting to counteract the effects of increasing CO2 on a warming planet, together accounting for uptake of ∼10(7) tonnes of carbon per year. Most sea-ice loss to date has occurred over polar continental shelves, which are richly, but patchily, colonised by benthic animals. Most polar benthos feeds on microscopic algae (phytoplankton), which has shown increased blooms coincident with sea-ice losses. Here, growth responses of Antarctic shelf benthos to sea-ice losses and phytoplankton increases were investigated. Analysis of two decades of benthic collections showed strong increases in annual production of shelf seabed carbon in West Antarctic bryozoans. These were calculated to have nearly doubled to >2x10(5) tonnes of carbon per year since the 1980s. Annual production of bryozoans is median within wider Antarctic benthos, so upscaling to include other benthos (combined study species typically constitute ∼3% benthic biomass) suggests an increased drawdown of ∼2.9x10(6) tonnes of carbon per year. This drawdown could become sequestration because polar continental shelves are typically deeper than most modern iceberg scouring, bacterial breakdown rates are slow, and benthos is easily buried. To date, most sea-ice losses have been Arctic, so, if hyperboreal benthos shows a similar increase in drawdown, polar continental shelves would represent Earth's largest negative feedback to climate change. PMID:26394097

  11. GeoBioScience: Red Wood Ants as Bioindicators for Active Tectonic Fault Systems in the West Eifel (Germany)

    PubMed Central

    Berberich, Gabriele; Schreiber, Ulrich

    2013-01-01

    Simple Summary In a 1.140 km² study area of the volcanic West Eifel, approx. 3,000 Red Wood Ant (RWA; Formica rufa-group) mounds had been identified and correlated with tectonically active gas-permeable faults, mostly strike-slip faults. Linear alignment of RWA mounds and soil gas anomalies distinctly indicate the course of these faults, while clusters of mounds indicate crosscut zones of fault systems, which can be correlated with voids caused by crustal block rotation. This demonstrates that RWA are bioindicators for identifying active fault systems and useful where information on the active regime is incomplete or the resolution by technical means is insufficient. Abstract In a 1.140 km² study area of the volcanic West Eifel, a comprehensive investigation established the correlation between red wood ant mound (RWA; Formica rufa-group) sites and active tectonic faults. The current stress field with a NW-SE-trending main stress direction opens pathways for geogenic gases and potential magmas following the same orientation. At the same time, Variscan and Mesozoic fault zones are reactivated. The results showed linear alignments and clusters of approx. 3,000 RWA mounds. While linear mound distribution correlate with strike-slip fault systems documented by quartz and ore veins and fault planes with slickensides, the clusters represent crosscut zones of dominant fault systems. Latter can be correlated with voids caused by crustal block rotation. Gas analyses from soil air, mineral springs and mofettes (CO2, Helium, Radon and H2S) reveal limiting concentrations for the spatial distribution of mounds and colonization. Striking is further the almost complete absence of RWA mounds in the core area of the Quaternary volcanic field. A possible cause can be found in occasionally occurring H2S in the fault systems, which is toxic at miniscule concentrations to the ants. Viewed overall, there is a strong relationship between RWA mounds and active tectonics in the West Eifel

  12. Health aspects of Antarctic tourism.

    PubMed

    Prociv, P

    1998-12-01

    Increasing numbers of seaborne tourists are visiting Antarctica, with most coming from the United States (3503 in 1996-97), Germany (777), and Australia (680; cf. 356 in 1994-95 and 410 in 1995-96). The impression among travel medicine clinicians is that, each year, more prospective travelers seek advice about the health demands of this type of adventure, mostly relating to fitness for travel, exposure to extreme cold, hazards in ice and snow, and other potential health risks. This is a recent phenomenon. While a regular shipping service had been established between the Falklands and the subantarctic islands of South Georgia and the South Shetlands by 1924, the first documented tourists accompanied an Argentine expedition to the South Orkneys in 1933.1 Commercial airline flights over these islands and the Antarctic Peninsula began in 1956, from Chile, and recreational cruises to the Peninsula began in 1958. Tourist numbers subsequently grew slowly, for what was clearly an exclusive and very expensive undertaking, with few ships available for these hazardous voyages. From 1957 to 1993, 37,000 tourists visited by sea, most seeing only the Peninsula.2 The dramatic recent growth in numbers is a consequence of the collapse of the Soviet Union. The small fleet of ice-strengthened research vessels and working icebreakers, which was made redundant by withdrawal of central government support from isolated communities and military activities along the northern coast of Siberia (and from Antarctic research bases), now accounts for the bulk of charter-cruise tourism to Antarctica, at competitive prices. According to the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators,3 7322 people traveled to Antarctica on commercially organized voyages in the 1996-97 season, and a record 10,000 shipborne visitors were expected for the 1997-98 season (November-March), traveling mainly from South America to the Peninsula on 15 ice-reinforced vessels, each carrying between 36 and 180

  13. [Effects of simulated nitrogen deposition on soil enzyme activities in a Betula luminifera plantation in Rainy Area of West China].

    PubMed

    Tu, Li-Hua; Hu, Hong-Ling; Hu, Ting-Xing; Zhang, Jian; Xiao, Yin-Long; Luo, Shou-Hua; Li, Ren-Hong; Dai, Hong-Zhong

    2012-08-01

    From January 2008 to January 2009, a field experiment was conducted to investigate the effects of simulated nitrogen (N) deposition (0, 5, 15, and 30 g N x m(-2) x a(-1)) on the soil enzyme activities in a Betula luminifera plantation in Rainy Area of West China. As compared with the control (0 g N x m(-2) x a(-1)), simulated N deposition stimulated the activities of soil hydrolases (beta-fructofuranosidase, cellulase, acid phosphatase, and urease) significantly, but depressed the activities of soil oxidases (polyphenol oxidase and peroxidase). These results suggested that the increased exogenous inorganic N could stimulate soil microbial activity and increase the demands of both B. luminifera and soil microbes for C and P, whereas the depress of soil polyphenol oxidase and peroxidase activities under N addition could inhibit the degradation of litter and promote its accumulation in soil, leading to the increase of soil C storage in the B. luminifera plantation ecosystem. PMID:23189689

  14. Antarctic Miocene Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ashworth, A. C.; Lewis, A. R.

    2013-12-01

    Fossils from Antarctic Miocene terrestrial deposits, coupled with stratigraphic, geochemical and paleontological data from marine boreholes, provide new insights into the climatic history of the continent. During the Miocene, ice caps coalesced to form ice sheets and vegetated surfaces gave way to barren expanses. The cryospheric changes especially have global climatic implications. The fossil data consists of diatoms, pollen and spores, and macroscopic remains of plants, ostracods, insects, molluscs and a fish. Plant fossils include wood and leaves of Nothofagus (southern beech), seeds of several vascular plants, including Ranunculus (buttercup), Hippuris (mare's-tail) and Myriophyllum (watermilfoil), megaspores of Isoetes (quillwort), and moss species. The insect chitin consists of larval head capsules of Chironomidae (midges) and exoskeletal parts of Coleoptera (beetles). The molluscs include freshwater gastropods and bivalves. The majority of these taxa are likely descendants of taxa that had survived on the continent from the Paleogene or earlier. Even though early Miocene glaciations may have been large, the climate was never cold enough to cause the extinction of the biota, which probably survived in coastal refugia. Early Miocene (c. 20 Ma) macrofossils from the McMurdo Dry Valleys (77°S) support palynological interpretations from the Cape Roberts and ANDRILL marine records that the upland vegetation was a shrub tundra. Mean summer temperature (MST) in the uplands was c. 6°C and possibly higher at the coast. The climate was wet, supporting mires and lakes. By the mid-Miocene, even though the climate continued to be wet. MST was c. 4°C which was too cold to support Nothofagus and most vascular plant species. Stratigraphic evidence indicates that the time between the Early and Mid-Miocene was a time of repeated ice advances and retreats of small glaciers originating from ice caps. At c. 14 Ma there appears to have been a modal shift in climate to

  15. Prospects for surviving climate change in Antarctic aquatic species

    PubMed Central

    Peck, Lloyd S

    2005-01-01

    Maritime Antarctic freshwater habitats are amongst the fastest changing environments on Earth. Temperatures have risen around 1°C and ice cover has dramatically decreased in 15 years. Few animal species inhabit these sites, but the fairy shrimp Branchinecta gaini typifies those that do. This species survives up to 25°C daily temperature fluctuations in summer and passes winter as eggs at temperatures down to -25°C. Its annual temperature envelope is, therefore around 50°C. This is typical of Antarctic terrestrial species, which exhibit great physiological flexibility in coping with temperature fluctuations. The rapidly changing conditions in the Maritime Antarctic are enhancing fitness in these species by increasing the time available for feeding, growth and reproduction, as well as increasing productivity in lakes. The future problem these animals face is via displacement by alien species from lower latitudes. Such invasions are now well documented from sub-Antarctic sites. In contrast the marine Antarctic environment has very stable temperatures. However, seasonality is intense with very short summers and long winter periods of low to no algal productivity. Marine animals grow slowly, have long generation times, low metabolic rates and low levels of activity. They also die at temperatures between +5°C and +10°C. Failure of oxygen supply mechanisms and loss of aerobic scope defines upper temperature limits. As temperature rises, their ability to perform work declines rapidly before lethal limits are reached, such that 50% of populations of clams and limpets cannot perform essential activities at 2–3°C, and all scallops are incapable of swimming at 2°C. Currently there is little evidence of temperature change in Antarctic marine sites. Models predict average global sea temperatures will rise by around 2°C by 2100. Such a rise would take many Antarctic marine animals beyond their survival limits. Animals have 3 mechanisms for coping with change: they can

  16. Cardiovascular control in Antarctic fish

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Egginton, Stuart; Campbell, Hamish; Davison, William

    2006-04-01

    The capacity for synthesis and plasma levels of stress hormones in species with a range of activity patterns suggest that depressed catecholamine synthesis is typical of notothenioid fishes regardless of life style, although they are able to release extensive stores under conditions of extreme trauma. Cortisol does not appear to be an important primary stress hormone in these species. In general, vascular reactivity shows a modest α and β adrenergic tonus, but with greater potency for cholinergic and serotonergic vasoconstrictor agonists, although a dominance of vasodilatation over vasoconstriction is observed in one species. Vasomotor control mechanisms appear to be primarily a consequence of evolutionary lineage rather than low environmental temperature, but the pattern may be modified according to functional demand. These and other data confirm the cardiovascular system is dominated by cholinergic control: the heart apparently lacks adrenergic innervation, but receives inhibitory parasympathetic input that regulates heart rate (HR) by setting a resting vagal tonus. Oxygen consumption (MO 2) determined at rest and varied via specific dynamic action, in intact fish and fish that had undergone bilateral sectioning of the vagus nerve, show that HR is a good predictor of MO 2, and that the major influence on HR is the degree of vagal tone—these fish work by removing the brake rather than applying the accelerator. However, whether these traits actually represent adaptation to the Antarctic environment or merely represent ancestral characteristics and their relative phylogenetic position is at present unclear.

  17. Rapid Thinning of an East Antarctic Outlet Glacier During Stable Holocene Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, R. S.; Mackintosh, A. N.; Norton, K. P.; Golledge, N. R.; Fogwill, C. J.; Kubik, P.

    2014-12-01

    Ice-sheets that are grounded on overdeepened beds below sea-level are potentially vulnerable to collapse. Many outlets of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet that occupy reverse bed slopes are currently in negative mass balance. New ice-penetrating radar data reveal that large overdeepened basins and reverse bed slopes exist under parts of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet, raising concern for its future behaviour. Retreat of the Antarctic ice sheet from the Last Glacial Maximum to its present configuration provides an opportunity to assess ice-sheet response to climate forcing and ice-dynamic feedbacks. Here we report 44 new surface-exposure ages from an East Antarctic outlet glacier that thinned dramatically during the early/mid-Holocene at a rate comparable to modern rates of thinning at Pine Island Glacier. Rapid thinning was coeval with retreat of the grounding-line through an overdeepening on the inner continental-shelf, and the disintegration of a buttressing ice-shelf. We demonstrate that a similar magnitude and timing of ice-dynamic thinning also occurred on the West Antarctic and Peninsula ice-sheets, at a time of relative climatic and oceanic stability after grounding-lines had retreated to the inner continental-shelf. These results imply that significant ice-sheet thinning in the early/mid Holocene arose from topographic feedbacks rather than from significant environmental forcing.

  18. Revealing archaeal diversity patterns and methane fluxes in Admiralty Bay, King George Island, and their association to Brazilian Antarctic Station activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakayama, C. R.; Kuhn, E.; Araújo, A. C. V.; Alvalá, P. C.; Ferreira, W. J.; Vazoller, R. F.; Pellizari, V. H.

    2011-03-01

    The study of Antarctic archaeal communities adds information on the biogeography of this group and helps understanding the dynamics of biogenic methane production in such extreme habitats. Molecular methods were combined to methane flux determinations in Martel Inlet, Admiralty Bay, to assess archaeal diversity, to obtain information about contribution of the area to atmospheric methane budget and to detect possible interferences of the Antarctic Brazilian Station Comandante Ferraz (EACF) wastewater discharge on local archaeal communities and methane emissions. Methane fluxes in Martel Inlet ranged from 3.2 to 117.9 μmol CH 4 m -2 d -1, with an average of 51.3±8.5 μmol CH 4 m -2 d -1 and a median of 57.6 μmol CH 4 m -2d -1. However, three negative fluxes averaging -11.3 μmol CH 4 m -2 d -1 were detected in MacKellar Inlet, indicating that Admiralty Bay can be either a source or sink of atmospheric methane. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) showed that archaeal communities at EACF varied with depth and formed a group separated from the reference sites. Granulometric analysis indicated that differences observed may be mostly related to sediment type. However, an influence of wastewater input could not be discarded, since higher methane fluxes were found at CF site, suggesting stimulation of local methanogenesis. DGGE profile of the wastewater sample grouped separated from all other samples, suggesting that methanogenesis stimulation may be due to changes in environmental conditions rather than to the input of allochtonous species from the wastewater. 16S ribosomal DNA clone libraries analysis showed that all wastewater sequences were related to known methanogenic groups belonging to the hydrogenotrophic genera Methanobacterium and Methanobrevibacter and the aceticlastic genus Methanosaeta. EACF and Botany Point sediment clone libraries retrieved only groups of uncultivated Archaea, with predominance of Crenarchaeota representatives (MCG, MG1, MBG

  19. Antarctic Meteorite Classification and Petrographic Database Enhancements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Todd, N. S.; Satterwhite, C. E.; Righter, K.

    2012-03-01

    Describes the Antarctic Meteorite Classification Database and the latest enhancements made to the data acquisition process used to provide updated meteorite data concurrent with the publication of the Antarctic Meteorite Newsletter twice a year.

  20. Non-extensivity and long-range correlations in the earthquake activity at the West Corinth rift (Greece)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michas, G.; Vallianatos, F.; Sammonds, P.

    2013-09-01

    In the present work the statistical properties of the earthquake activity in a highly seismic region, the West Corinth rift (Central Greece), are being studied by means of generalized statistical physics. By using a dataset that covers the period 2001-2008, we investigate the earthquake energy distribution and the distribution of the time intervals (interevent times) between the successive events. As has been reported previously, these distributions exhibit complex statistical properties and fractality. By using detrended fluctuation analysis (DFA), a well-established method for detection of long-range correlations in non-stationary signals, it is shown that long-range correlations are also present in the earthquake activity. The existence of these properties motivates us to use non-extensive statistical physics (NESP) to investigate the statistical properties of the frequency-magnitude and the interevent time distributions, along with other well-known relations in seismology, such as the gamma distribution for interevent times. The results of the analysis indicate that the statistical properties of the earthquake activity can be successfully reproduced by means of NESP and that the earthquake activity at the West Corinth rift is correlated at all-time scales.

  1. Cloud properties during active and break spells of the West African summer monsoon from CloudSat-CALIPSO measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Efon, E.; Lenouo, A.; Monkam, D.; Manatsa, D.

    2016-07-01

    High resolution of daily rainfall dataset from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) was used to identify active and break cloud formation periods. The clouds were characterized based on CloudSat-CALIPSO satellite images over West Africa during the summer monsoon during the period 2006-2010. The active and break periods are defined as the periods during the peak monsoon months of June to August when the normalized anomaly of rainfall over the monsoon core zone is greater than 0.9 or less than -0.9 respectively, provided the criteria is satisfied for at least three consecutive days. It is found that about 90% of the break period and 66.7% of the active spells lasted 3-4 days. Active spells lasting duration of about a week were observed while no break spell had such a long span. Cloud macrophysical (cloud base height (CBH), cloud top height (CTH) and cloud geometric depth (∆H), microphysical (cloud liquid water content, (LWC), liquid number concentration (LNC), liquid effective radius, ice water content (IWC), ice number concentration (INC) and ice effective radius) and radiative (heating rate properties) over South Central West Africa (5-15°N; 15°W-10°E) during the active and break spells were also analyzed. High-level clouds are more predominant during the break periods compared to the active periods. Active spells have lower INC compared to the break spells. Liquid water clouds are observed to have more radiative forcing during the active than break periods while ice phase clouds bring more cooling effect during the break spells compared to the active spells.

  2. Reproductive biology of two species of holothurian from the deep-sea order Elasipoda, on the Antarctic continental shelf

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galley, E. A.; Tyler, P. A.; Smith, C. R.; Clarke, A.

    2008-11-01

    Antarctic shallow-water and deep-sea echinoderms are known to have seasonal gametogenic cycles linked to seasonal pulses of phytodetritus produced in surface waters. We suggest that phytodetritus reaching the Antarctic continental shelf may persist for longer timescales than in shallow or deep waters as a result of the low temperatures, low flow velocities, and the relatively short descent. If this food source remains available for extended periods throughout the year, Antarctic continental shelf megabenthos may not entrain seasonal gametogenic periodicity. To explore the reproductive response of the elpidiid holothurians, Protelpidia murrayi and Peniagone vignoni, a seasonal series of samples were taken on the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) at depths of 550-600 m between November 1999 and March 2001. Gonad indices were measured, and gonad tissues were analysed using histological and image analysis techniques. Oocyte size-frequency distributions were constructed from measurements of oocyte diameter, and analysed to describe reproductive patterns. Histological analyses of gonads tissue from P. murrayi suggest that gametogenesis is synchronised and seasonal, with spawning occurring between March and June. The onset of vitellogenesis appears to be initiated and synchronised by the arrival of the phytodetritus pulse. While, oocyte size-frequency distributions of P. vignoni suggest that oogenesis is synchronous between individuals, and infer a seasonal variation in gametogenic intensity, with an increase in production of vitellogenic oocytes that may be associated with an increase in food supply. The seasonal series of oocyte size-frequency distributions suggests that spawning commenced during October and November. We propose that both P. murrayi and P. vignoni have opportunistic reproductive patterns. In P. murrayi, the distinct gametogenic response to the summer Antarctic-shelf food pulse may be well adapted to any trophic regime with a pulsed food supply. In contrast

  3. Geoethical Approach to Antarctic Subglacial Lakes Exploration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Talalay, Pavel; Markov, Alexey; Sysoev, Mikhail

    2014-05-01

    Antarctic subglacial aquatic environment have become of great interest to the science community because they may provide unique information about microbial evolution, the past climate of the Earth, and the formation of the Antarctic ice sheet. Nowadays it is generally recognized that a vast network of lakes, rivers, and streams exists thousands of meters beneath Antarctic Ice Sheets. Up to date only four boreholes accessed subglacial aquatic system but three of them were filled with high-toxic drilling fluid, and the subglacial water was contaminated. Two recent exploration programs proposed by UK and USA science communities anticipated direct access down to the lakes Ellsworth and Whillans, respectively, in the 2012/2013 Antarctic season. A team of British scientists and engineers engaged in the first attempt to drill into Lake Ellsworth but failed. US research team has successfully drilled through 800 m of Antarctic ice to reach a subglacial lake Whillans and retrieve water and sediment samples. Both activities used hot-water drilling technology to access lakes. Hot water is considered by the world science community as the most clean drilling fluid medium from the present point of view but it cannot solve environmental problems in total because hot-water even when heated to 90 °C, filtered to 0.2 μm, and UV treated at the surface could pick up microorganisms from near-surface snow and circulate them in great volume through the borehole. Another negative impact of hot-water circulation medium is thermal pollution of subglacial water. The new approach to Antarctic subglacial lakes exploration is presented by sampling technology with recoverable autonomous sonde which is equipped by two hot-points with heating elements located on the bottom and top sides of the sonde. All down-hole sonde components will be sterilized by combination of chemical wash, HPV and UV sterilization prior using. At the beginning of the summer season sonde is installed on the surface of the

  4. The role of glacial and tectonic genesis in forming of the Antarctic Peninsula's shelf topography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greku, Rudolf; Greku, Tatyana

    2015-04-01

    The influence of endogenous and exogenous factors on the topography of the West Antarctic shelf is shown. 1. The gravity tomography models [Atlas…] show that the non-geotectonic depressions about 300 m of depth extends to the south from the Bransfield Rift along the western and eastern shelves of the Antarctic Peninsula (AP) up to 69 °S. This is due to the glacial tectonic, which was caused by lithostatic pressure of ice mass and the corresponding deviatoric stress (as а horizontal stretching) in a period of an intense glaciation. Ice mass increases towards the south, therefore the deviatoric stretch and the width of the shelves increases also. 2. Besides such external factors, deep tomography data were taken into account. Results of tomographic modelling show the structure of the AP along its crest and along several cross sections. The AP body, as a single structure, is submerged into the lithospheres of the Pacific Ocean and the Weddell Sea to the depth of 150 km. Some layers of its deepened part are displaced concerning the AP's crest axis. The largest of these shifts are observed up to 50 km from the axis to the east at the latitude of 63°S at the depths of 6-7 km, then a shift up to 100 km to the west at 66°S at the depth of 9 km and at 67°S to the east up to 150 km at the depth of 13 km. 3. After breakup of the ice shelf to the west of the AP, the outflow of ice weight from the main ice board on the Peninsula increased. The consumption of the ice is evaluated now by the discharge of glaciers. Informative data for that are the satellite radar altimetry and interferometry. Several pairs of the ERS1/2 images of 1995-2008 were processed for the area of the Vernadsky Ukrainian Antarctic Station. These 100km x 100km images show 4 glaciers (Deloncle, Girard, Waddington and Collins) along transverse faults. The Collins glacier is the most active one. It starts at the crest of the Bruce Plateau АР at the height of 1450 m. Three smaller glaciers provide an

  5. Crustal motion in the Antarctic interior from a decade of Global Positioning System measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Willis, Michael J.

    A decade of Global Positioning System (GPS) data have been collected at bedrock sites in southern Victoria Land, Antarctica. Measured motions of the crust have been examined to determine if ongoing tectonic deformation occurs within the study area, across the structural boundary between East and West Antarctica. Crustal motions are used to test for activity over the offshore Terror Rift, where young faulting is documented, and to assess locally whether the active Erebus volcano deforms the crust. Bedrock motions caused by large scale ice-mass changes that have occurred in the area since the Last Glacial Maximum are also a major focus of the study. The horizontal GPS motions record Antarctic plate motion of ˜15 mm/yr to the southeast. No deformation is observed over the Transantarctic Mountains Front Zone. Very small amounts of deformation are observed along the Terror Rift, however the recorded direction of motions may be the result of Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA), rather than active tectonics. Recorded motions observed to the south of Ross Island suggest that the Terror Rift continues beneath the Ross Ice Shelf. No volcanic loading signal is observed. Vertical crustal motions exhibit a down-to-the-east tilt over the study area. A suite of earth models, including more than three hundred different mantle viscosity profiles, three different lithospheric thicknesses and three different ice histories, were used to model uplift due to Glacial Isostatic Adjustment driven by ice mass change. None replicate the observed tilt. Two Relative Sea Level curves for the region also could not be replicated by GIA models examined. Comparison of GPS vertical velocities and our GIA models produce well-constrained earth models for the study area, but suggest that current ice history models for the region must be revised to replicate measured crustal motions. We compare the output of our GPS-constrained models with published crustal uplift rates used in modern ice mass balance

  6. Antarctic DNA moving forward: genomic plasticity and biotechnological potential.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Rosales, Cecilia; Fullana, Natalia; Musto, Héctor; Castro-Sowinski, Susana

    2012-06-01

    Antarctica is the coldest, driest, and windiest continent, where only cold-adapted organisms survive. It has been frequently cited as a pristine place, but it has a highly diverse microbial community that is continually seeded by nonindigenous microorganisms. In addition to the intromission of 'alien' microorganisms, global warming strongly affects microbial Antarctic communities, changing the genes (qualitatively and quantitatively) potentially available for horizontal gene transfer. Several mobile genetic elements have been described in Antarctic bacteria (including plasmids, transposons, integrons, and genomic islands), and the data support that they are actively involved in bacterial evolution in the Antarctic environment. In addition, this environment is a genomic source for the identification of novel molecules, and many investigators have used culture-dependent and culture-independent approaches to identify cold-adapted proteins. Some of them are described in this review. We also describe studies for the design of new recombinant technologies for the production of 'difficult' proteins. PMID:22360528

  7. (Environmental impact statement on the US Antarctic program)

    SciTech Connect

    Reed, R.M.; Railsback, S.F.; McLean, R.B.

    1989-12-22

    Three staff members from Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) participated in a site visit to US Antarctic Program (USAP) facilities at McMurdo Station, Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station, and remote field and support sites. Interviews were conducted with National Science Foundation, Navy, and ITT/Antarctic Services staff responsible for environmental management functions. The ORNL team visited all facilities at McMurdo Station, three remote field camps, a Navy refueling facility, South Pole Station, and Scott Base (a New Zealand installation). In general, the team found that environmental impacts of the USAP are minor for the Antarctic continent as a whole. Improvements for the handling and disposal of solid wastes and the discharge of wastewaters that have been initiated should help minimize environmental impacts of USAP activities. The information collected during the site visit will be used in a draft supplemental environmental impact statement on the USAP to be published for public review in June 1990.

  8. Recent Antarctic Peninsula warming relative to Holocene climate and ice-shelf history.

    PubMed

    Mulvaney, Robert; Abram, Nerilie J; Hindmarsh, Richard C A; Arrowsmith, Carol; Fleet, Louise; Triest, Jack; Sime, Louise C; Alemany, Olivier; Foord, Susan

    2012-09-01

    Rapid warming over the past 50 years on the Antarctic Peninsula is associated with the collapse of a number of ice shelves and accelerating glacier mass loss. In contrast, warming has been comparatively modest over West Antarctica and significant changes have not been observed over most of East Antarctica, suggesting that the ice-core palaeoclimate records available from these areas may not be representative of the climate history of the Antarctic Peninsula. Here we show that the Antarctic Peninsula experienced an early-Holocene warm period followed by stable temperatures, from about 9,200 to 2,500 years ago, that were similar to modern-day levels. Our temperature estimates are based on an ice-core record of deuterium variations from James Ross Island, off the northeastern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. We find that the late-Holocene development of ice shelves near James Ross Island was coincident with pronounced cooling from 2,500 to 600 years ago. This cooling was part of a millennial-scale climate excursion with opposing anomalies on the eastern and western sides of the Antarctic Peninsula. Although warming of the northeastern Antarctic Peninsula began around 600 years ago, the high rate of warming over the past century is unusual (but not unprecedented) in the context of natural climate variability over the past two millennia. The connection shown here between past temperature and ice-shelf stability suggests that warming for several centuries rendered ice shelves on the northeastern Antarctic Peninsula vulnerable to collapse. Continued warming to temperatures that now exceed the stable conditions of most of the Holocene epoch is likely to cause ice-shelf instability to encroach farther southward along the Antarctic Peninsula. PMID:22914090

  9. Multidecadal warming of Antarctic waters.

    PubMed

    Schmidtko, Sunke; Heywood, Karen J; Thompson, Andrew F; Aoki, Shigeru

    2014-12-01

    Decadal trends in the properties of seawater adjacent to Antarctica are poorly known, and the mechanisms responsible for such changes are uncertain. Antarctic ice sheet mass loss is largely driven by ice shelf basal melt, which is influenced by ocean-ice interactions and has been correlated with Antarctic Continental Shelf Bottom Water (ASBW) temperature. We document the spatial distribution of long-term large-scale trends in temperature, salinity, and core depth over the Antarctic continental shelf and slope. Warming at the seabed in the Bellingshausen and Amundsen seas is linked to increased heat content and to a shoaling of the mid-depth temperature maximum over the continental slope, allowing warmer, saltier water greater access to the shelf in recent years. Regions of ASBW warming are those exhibiting increased ice shelf melt. PMID:25477461

  10. Antarctic Ozone Hole, 2000

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Each spring the ozone layer over Antarctica nearly disappears, forming a 'hole' over the entire continent. The hole is created by the interaction of some man-made chemicals-freon, for example-with Antarctica's unique weather patterns and extremely cold temperatures. Ozone in the stratosphere absorbs ultraviolet radiation from the sun, thereby protecting living things. Since the ozone hole was discovered many of the chemicals that destroy ozone have been banned, but they will remain in the atmosphere for decades. In 2000, the ozone hole grew quicker than usual and exceptionally large. By the first week in September the hole was the largest ever-11.4 million square miles. The top image shows the average total column ozone values over Antarctica for September 2000. (Total column ozone is the amount of ozone from the ground to the top of the atmosphere. A relatively typical measurement of 300 Dobson Units is equivalent to a layer of ozone 0.12 inches thick on the Earth's surface. Levels below 220 Dobson Units are considered to be significant ozone depletion.) The record-breaking hole is likely the result of lower than average ozone levels during the Antarctic fall and winter, and exceptionally cold temperatures. In October, however (bottom image), the hole shrank dramatically, much more quickly than usual. By the end of October, the hole was only one-third of it's previous size. In a typical year, the ozone hole does not collapse until the end of November. NASA scientists were surprised by this early shrinking and speculate it is related to the region's weather. Global ozone levels are measured by the Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (TOMS). For more information about ozone, read the Earth Observatory's ozone fact sheet, view global ozone data and see these ozone images. Images by Greg Shirah, NASA GSFC Scientific Visualization Studio.

  11. Occurrence of a taurine derivative in an antarctic glass sponge.

    PubMed

    Carbone, Marianna; Núñez-Pons, Laura; Ciavatta, M Letizia; Castelluccio, Francesco; Avila, Conxita; Gavagnin, Margherita

    2014-04-01

    The n-butanol extract of an Antarctic hexactinellid sponge, Anoxycalyx (Scolymastra) joubini, was found to contain a taurine-conjugated anthranilic acid, never reported so far either as a natural product or by synthesis. The compound was inactive against human cancer cells in an in vitro growth inhibitory test, and also showed no antibacterial activity. PMID:24868857

  12. [Soil enzyme activities in a Pleioblastus amurus plantation in Rainy Area of West China under simulated nitrogen deposition].

    PubMed

    Tu, Li-hua; Hu, Ting-xing; Zhang, Jian; Li, Ren-hong; Dai, Hong-zhong; Luo, Shou-hua; Xiang, Yuan-bin; Huang, Li-hua

    2009-12-01

    From November 2007 to May 2009, a simulation test was conducted in a Pleioblastus amarus plantation in Rainy Area of West China to study the effects of nitrogen deposition on the activities of soil enzymes. Four treatments were installed, i.e., control (0 g N x m(-2) x a(-1)), low nitrogen (5 g N x m(-2) x a(-1)), medium nitrogen (15 g N x m(-2) x a(-1)), and high nitrogen (30 g N x m(-2) x a(-1)). Half year after N deposition, 0-20 cm soil samples were collected monthly, and the activities of peroxidase, polyphenol oxidase, cellulase, sucrase, urease, and acid phosphatase were determined. All test enzyme activities had apparent, seasonal variation, with the peak of cellulase, suerase, and acid phosphatase activities in spring, of urease activity in autumn, and of peroxidase and polyphenol oxidase activities in winter. Nitrogen deposition stimulated the activities of polyphenol oxidase, sucrase, urease, and acid phosphatase, inhibited cellulase activity, but had no significant effects on peroxidase activity. The test P. amurus plantation ecosystem was N-limited, and nitrogen deposition stimulated the decomposition of soil organic matter by microbe-enzyme system. PMID:20353060

  13. GeoBioScience: Red Wood Ants as Bioindicators for Active Tectonic Fault Systems in the West Eifel (Germany).

    PubMed

    Berberich, Gabriele; Schreiber, Ulrich

    2013-01-01

    In a 1.140 km² study area of the volcanic West Eifel, a comprehensive investigation established the correlation between red wood ant mound (RWA; Formica rufa-group) sites and active tectonic faults. The current stress field with a NW-SE-trending main stress direction opens pathways for geogenic gases and potential magmas following the same orientation. At the same time, Variscan and Mesozoic fault zones are reactivated. The results showed linear alignments and clusters of approx. 3,000 RWA mounds. While linear mound distribution correlate with strike-slip fault systems documented by quartz and ore veins and fault planes with slickensides, the clusters represent crosscut zones of dominant fault systems. Latter can be correlated with voids caused by crustal block rotation. Gas analyses from soil air, mineral springs and mofettes (CO₂, Helium, Radon and H₂S) reveal limiting concentrations for the spatial distribution of mounds and colonization. Striking is further the almost complete absence of RWA mounds in the core area of the Quaternary volcanic field. A possible cause can be found in occasionally occurring H₂S in the fault systems, which is toxic at miniscule concentrations to the ants. Viewed overall, there is a strong relationship between RWA mounds and active tectonics in the West Eifel. PMID:26487413

  14. Spectral Correlation of Antarctic Satellite Magnetic and Gravity Anomalies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wells, S. B.; von Frese, R. R.; Kim, H.; Potts, L.; Kim, J.; Gaya-Pique, L. R.

    2005-05-01

    Large areas of the Antarctic continent lack terrestrial or airborne magnetic and gravity survey coverage due to the harsh climate and extended distances involved. Satellite missions therefore play an important role, often being the only source of information for the study of remote regions. NASA's GRACE satellite mission provides global-scale gravity measurements with a much higher spatial resolution than previous missions. The free-air gravity anomalies in Antarctica from GRACE offer new insights on the poorly understood Antarctic crust. New interpretations and candidates for further investigation are presented from spectral correlation analysis between the new GRACE free-air gravity anomalies and magnetic anomalies measured by the CHAMP and Ørsted satellites. We quantify the anomaly correlations using correlation filters based on Poisson's relation. Favorability indices are derived that highlight the positive and negative correlations between the satellite observed geopotential anomalies. Several positively and negatively correlated regional anomalies yield new insights on the enigmatic crustal tectonics of Queen Maud Land, Enderby Land and other regions of East Antarctica, and the West Antarctic Peninsula.

  15. Present-day Antarctic Ice Mass Changes and Crustal Motion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    James, Thomas S.; Ivins, Erik R.

    1995-01-01

    The peak vertical velocities predicted by three realistic, but contrasting, present-day scenarios of Antarctic ice sheet mass balance are found to be of the order of several mm/a. One scenario predicts local uplift rates in excess of 5 mm/a. These rates are small compared to the peak Antarctic vertical velocities of the ICE-3G glacial rebound model, which are in excess of 20 mm/a. If the Holocene Antarctic deglaciation history portrayed in ICE-3G is realistic, and if regional upper mantle viscosity is not an order of magnitude below 10(exp 21) pa s, then a vast geographical region in West Antarctica is uplifting at a rate that could be detected by a future Global Positioning System (GPS) campaign. While present-day scenarios predict small vertical crustal velocities, their overall continent-ocean mass exchange is large enough to account for a substantial portion of the observed secular polar motion ((Omega)m(bar)) and time-varying zonal gravity field J(sub 1).

  16. Present-day Antarctic ice mass changes and crustal motion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    James, Thomas S.; Ivins, Erik R.

    1995-01-01

    The peak vertical velocities predicted by three realistic, but contrasting, present-day scenarios of Antarctic ice sheet mass balance are found to be of the order of several mm/a. One scenario predicts local uplift rates in excess of 5 mm/a. These rates are small compared to the peak Antarctic vertical velocities of the ICE-3G glacial rebound model, which are in excess of 20 mm/a. If the Holocene Antarctic deglaciation history protrayed in ICE-3G is realistic, and if regional upper mantle viscosity is not an order of magnitude below 10(exp 21) Pa(dot)s, then a vast geographical region in West Antarctica is uplifting at a rate that could be detected by a future Global Positioning System (GPS) campaign. While present-day scenarios predict small vertical crustal velocities, their overall continent-ocean mass exchange is large enough to account for a substantial portion of the observed secular polar motion (omega m(arrow dot)) and time-varying zonal gravity field.

  17. Environmental microarray analyses of Antarctic soil microbial communities.

    PubMed

    Yergeau, Etienne; Schoondermark-Stolk, Sung A; Brodie, Eoin L; Déjean, Sébastien; DeSantis, Todd Z; Gonçalves, Olivier; Piceno, Yvette M; Andersen, Gary L; Kowalchuk, George A

    2009-03-01

    Antarctic ecosystems are fascinating in their limited trophic complexity, with decomposition and nutrient cycling functions being dominated by microbial activities. Not only are Antarctic habitats exposed to extreme environmental conditions, the Antarctic Peninsula is also experiencing unequalled effects of global warming. Owing to their uniqueness and the potential impact of global warming on these pristine systems, there is considerable interest in determining the structure and function of microbial communities in the Antarctic. We therefore utilized a recently designed 16S rRNA gene microarray, the PhyloChip, which targets 8741 bacterial and archaeal taxa, to interrogate microbial communities inhabiting densely vegetated and bare fell-field soils along a latitudinal gradient ranging from 51 degrees S (Falkland Islands) to 72 degrees S (Coal Nunatak). Results indicated a clear decrease in diversity with increasing latitude, with the two southernmost sites harboring the most distinct Bacterial and Archaeal communities. The microarray approach proved more sensitive in detecting the breadth of microbial diversity than polymerase chain reaction-based bacterial 16S rRNA gene libraries of modest size ( approximately 190 clones per library). Furthermore, the relative signal intensities summed for phyla and families on the PhyloChip were significantly correlated with the relative occurrence of these taxa in clone libraries. PhyloChip data were also compared with functional gene microarray data obtained earlier, highlighting numerous significant relationships and providing evidence for a strong link between community composition and functional gene distribution in Antarctic soils. Integration of these PhyloChip data with other complementary methods provides an unprecedented understanding of the microbial diversity and community structure of terrestrial Antarctic habitats. PMID:19020556

  18. Antarctic Data at the National Snow and Ice Data Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leitzell, K.; Bohlander, J. A.; Bauer, R. J.; Scambos, T. A.

    2010-12-01

    The National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) archives and distributes data related to the Earth’s cryosphere. The center has a unique and extensive archive of data related to Antarctica, supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) Office of Polar Programs, and various NASA projects. This poster will highlight some of our newest and most significant data holdings for Antarctic ice and climate research. Antarctic data at NSIDC include: -New P.I.-contributed data sets from the Antarctic Glaciological Data Center (AGDC), an NSF-funded data archive facility at NSIDC. AGDC has been active for 12 years, and houses data sets from over 150 researchers, spanning all types of research in the Antarctic. -MODIS Mosaic of Antarctica (MOA) 2009 was released in fall of 2010. This is a 125 meter, resolution-enhanced seamless mosaic of Antarctica, compiled from over 250 MODIS images acquired between 20 November 2008 and 01 March 2009. It provides a uniquely clear and detailed view of the continent's subtle ice flow and surface features. The new version offers the opportunity for change detection (ice flow, iceberg calving events, changes in ice flow and wind features) in the five years between early 2009 and an identically processed mosaic assembled in 2004. -NASA’s “Making Earth Science Data Records for Use in Research Environments” (MEaSUREs) provides ice velocity data for all of Antarctica, derived from Interferometric Synthetic Aperture radar (InSAR) analysis. We will show the access and browse software to be used for MEaSURES/Antarctic Ice Velocity, called the Antarctic Cryosphere Access Portal (A-CAP).

  19. Cenozoic evolution of the Antarctic Peninsula continental margin

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, J.B. )

    1990-05-01

    Cenozoic evolution of the Antarctic Peninsula continental margin has involved a series of ridge (Aluk Ridge)-trench collisions between the Pacific and Antarctic plates. Subduction occurred episodically between segments of the Pacific plate that are bounded by major fracture zones. The age of ridge-trench collisions decreases from south to north along the margin. The very northern part of the margin, between the Hero and Shackleton fracture zones, has the last surviving Aluk-Antarctic spreading ridge segments and the only remaining trench topography. The sedimentary cover on the northern margin is relatively thin generally less than 1.5 km, thus providing a unique setting in which to examine margin evolution using high resolution seismic methods. Over 5,000 km of high resolution (water gun) seismic profiles were acquired from the Antarctic Peninsula margin during four cruises to the region. The margin is divided into discrete fracture-zone-bounded segments; each segment displays different styles of development. Highly tectonized active margin sequences have been buried beneath a seaward-thickening sediment wedge that represents the passive stage of margin development Ice caps, which have existed in the Antarctic Peninsula region since at least the late Oligocene, have advanced onto the continental shelf on numerous occasions, eroding hundreds of meters into the shelf and depositing a thick sequence of deposits characterized by till tongues and glacial troughs. Glacial erosion has been the main factor responsible for overdeepening of the shelf; isostasy is of secondary importance. As the shelf was lowered by glacial erosion, it was able to accommodate thicker and more unstable marine ice sheets. The shelf also became a vast reservoir for cold, saline shelf water, one of the key ingredients of Antarctic bottom water.

  20. Particle-size distribution in soils of West Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abakumov, E. V.

    2010-03-01

    The particle-size distribution in soils sampled near Russian polar stations in West Antarctica has been studied. It is shown that the soils of the Subantarctic zone (the Bellingshausen Station on King George Island) are characterized by a higher content of silt and clay in the fine earth fraction and by a higher content of the fine earth fraction in comparison with the soils of the proper Antarctic tundra barrens near the Lenin-gradskaya Station and the Antarctic cold desert near the Russkaya Station. In the latter soils, the content of rock fragments is higher than that in the soils of the Antarctic tundra barrens. In the soils of the tundra barrens, a considerable accumulation of fine earth may take place in large cavities (hollows) on the stony bedrock surface. Desert pavements are formed in both types of Antarctic landscapes.

  1. Increased Feeding and Nutrient Excretion of Adult Antarctic Krill, Euphausia superba, Exposed to Enhanced Carbon Dioxide (CO2)

    PubMed Central

    Saba, Grace K.; Schofield, Oscar; Torres, Joseph J.; Ombres, Erica H.; Steinberg, Deborah K.

    2012-01-01

    Ocean acidification has a wide-ranging potential for impacting the physiology and metabolism of zooplankton. Sufficiently elevated CO2 concentrations can alter internal acid-base balance, compromising homeostatic regulation and disrupting internal systems ranging from oxygen transport to ion balance. We assessed feeding and nutrient excretion rates in natural populations of the keystone species Euphausia superba (Antarctic krill) by conducting a CO2 perturbation experiment at ambient and elevated atmospheric CO2 levels in January 2011 along the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP). Under elevated CO2 conditions (∼672 ppm), ingestion rates of krill averaged 78 µg C individual−1 d−1 and were 3.5 times higher than krill ingestion rates at ambient, present day CO2 concentrations. Additionally, rates of ammonium, phosphate, and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) excretion by krill were 1.5, 1.5, and 3.0 times higher, respectively, in the high CO2 treatment than at ambient CO2 concentrations. Excretion of urea, however, was ∼17% lower in the high CO2 treatment, suggesting differences in catabolic processes of krill between treatments. Activities of key metabolic enzymes, malate dehydrogenase (MDH) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), were consistently higher in the high CO2 treatment. The observed shifts in metabolism are consistent with increased physiological costs associated with regulating internal acid-base equilibria. This represents an additional stress that may hamper growth and reproduction, which would negatively impact an already declining krill population along the WAP. PMID:23300621

  2. Mechanisms of Antarctic net precipitation climate change signals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grieger, Jens; Leckebusch, Gregor C.; Ulbrich, Uwe

    2015-04-01

    This study investigates mechanisms leading to climate change signals of Antarctic net precipitation (E-P) simulated by three members of one CMIP3 coupled atmosphere-ocean general circulation model (AOGCM). Net precipitation is calculated with the divergence of the vertically integrated moisture flux. Generally, moisture flux changes are dominated by increased humidity in the atmosphere due to temperature increase in the future climate projections. This contribution presents an approach to distinguish between thermodynamical and dynamical influences on moisture flux. A physical interpretation of the changing flux signal due to dynamics is given by decomposing atmospheric waves into different length scales and temporal variations. Climate change of moisture transport is compared with fluctuations of geopotential height fields as well as climate signals of extra-tropical cyclones. Synoptic length scale moisture flux variability with temporal variations between 2.5 and 8 days can be assigned to the SH stormtrack, which shows a distinctive poleward shift in the future projection. This signal can also be found for extra-tropical cyclones, whereas changing wave activity can be better understood if strong cyclones separately are taken into account, which intensify especially on the Eastern Hemisphere. Changing moisture transport towards Antarctica leads to climate change signals of net precipitation inside a spherical cap around the continent. Generally, an increasing signal of net precipitation can be found whereas the dynamical part decreases. This is due to the low variability component of synoptic scale waves, which show a decreasing climate change signal, especially off-coast of West Antarctica. This is discussed to be connected to changing variability of the Amundsen-Bellingshausen Sea Low.

  3. An active subglacial water system in West Antarctica mapped from space.

    PubMed

    Fricker, Helen Amanda; Scambos, Ted; Bindschadler, Robert; Padman, Laurie

    2007-03-16

    Satellite laser altimeter elevation profiles from 2003 to 2006 collected over the lower parts of Whillans and Mercer ice streams, West Antarctica, reveal 14 regions of temporally varying elevation, which we interpret as the surface expression of subglacial water movement. Vertical motion and spatial extent of two of the largest regions are confirmed by satellite image differencing. A major, previously unknown subglacial lake near the grounding line of Whillans Ice Stream is observed to drain 2.0 cubic kilometers of water into the ocean over approximately 3 years, while elsewhere a similar volume of water is being stored subglacially. These observations reveal a wide spread, dynamic subglacial water system that may exert an important control on ice flow and mass balance. PMID:17303716

  4. The suppression of Antarctic bottom water formation by melting ice shelves in Prydz Bay

    PubMed Central

    Williams, G. D.; Herraiz-Borreguero, L.; Roquet, F.; Tamura, T.; Ohshima, K. I.; Fukamachi, Y.; Fraser, A. D.; Gao, L.; Chen, H.; McMahon, C. R.; Harcourt, R.; Hindell, M.

    2016-01-01

    A fourth production region for the globally important Antarctic bottom water has been attributed to dense shelf water formation in the Cape Darnley Polynya, adjoining Prydz Bay in East Antarctica. Here we show new observations from CTD-instrumented elephant seals in 2011–2013 that provide the first complete assessment of dense shelf water formation in Prydz Bay. After a complex evolution involving opposing contributions from three polynyas (positive) and two ice shelves (negative), dense shelf water (salinity 34.65–34.7) is exported through Prydz Channel. This provides a distinct, relatively fresh contribution to Cape Darnley bottom water. Elsewhere, dense water formation is hindered by the freshwater input from the Amery and West Ice Shelves into the Prydz Bay Gyre. This study highlights the susceptibility of Antarctic bottom water to increased freshwater input from the enhanced melting of ice shelves, and ultimately the potential collapse of Antarctic bottom water formation in a warming climate. PMID:27552365

  5. Antarctic last interglacial isotope peak in response to sea ice retreat not ice-sheet collapse.

    PubMed

    Holloway, Max D; Sime, Louise C; Singarayer, Joy S; Tindall, Julia C; Bunch, Pete; Valdes, Paul J

    2016-01-01

    Several studies have suggested that sea-level rise during the last interglacial implies retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). The prevalent hypothesis is that the retreat coincided with the peak Antarctic temperature and stable water isotope values from 128,000 years ago (128 ka); very early in the last interglacial. Here, by analysing climate model simulations of last interglacial WAIS loss featuring water isotopes, we show instead that the isotopic response to WAIS loss is in opposition to the isotopic evidence at 128 ka. Instead, a reduction in winter sea ice area of 65±7% fully explains the 128 ka ice core evidence. Our finding of a marked retreat of the sea ice at 128 ka demonstrates the sensitivity of Antarctic sea ice extent to climate warming. PMID:27526639

  6. The suppression of Antarctic bottom water formation by melting ice shelves in Prydz Bay.

    PubMed

    Williams, G D; Herraiz-Borreguero, L; Roquet, F; Tamura, T; Ohshima, K I; Fukamachi, Y; Fraser, A D; Gao, L; Chen, H; McMahon, C R; Harcourt, R; Hindell, M

    2016-01-01

    A fourth production region for the globally important Antarctic bottom water has been attributed to dense shelf water formation in the Cape Darnley Polynya, adjoining Prydz Bay in East Antarctica. Here we show new observations from CTD-instrumented elephant seals in 2011-2013 that provide the first complete assessment of dense shelf water formation in Prydz Bay. After a complex evolution involving opposing contributions from three polynyas (positive) and two ice shelves (negative), dense shelf water (salinity 34.65-34.7) is exported through Prydz Channel. This provides a distinct, relatively fresh contribution to Cape Darnley bottom water. Elsewhere, dense water formation is hindered by the freshwater input from the Amery and West Ice Shelves into the Prydz Bay Gyre. This study highlights the susceptibility of Antarctic bottom water to increased freshwater input from the enhanced melting of ice shelves, and ultimately the potential collapse of Antarctic bottom water formation in a warming climate. PMID:27552365

  7. Antarctic last interglacial isotope peak in response to sea ice retreat not ice-sheet collapse

    PubMed Central

    Holloway, Max D.; Sime, Louise C.; Singarayer, Joy S.; Tindall, Julia C.; Bunch, Pete; Valdes, Paul J.

    2016-01-01

    Several studies have suggested that sea-level rise during the last interglacial implies retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). The prevalent hypothesis is that the retreat coincided with the peak Antarctic temperature and stable water isotope values from 128,000 years ago (128 ka); very early in the last interglacial. Here, by analysing climate model simulations of last interglacial WAIS loss featuring water isotopes, we show instead that the isotopic response to WAIS loss is in opposition to the isotopic evidence at 128 ka. Instead, a reduction in winter sea ice area of 65±7% fully explains the 128 ka ice core evidence. Our finding of a marked retreat of the sea ice at 128 ka demonstrates the sensitivity of Antarctic sea ice extent to climate warming. PMID:27526639

  8. Antarctic Sea Ice Patterns and Its Relationship with Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barreira, S.

    2015-12-01

    Antarctic sea ice concentration fields show a strong seasonal and interannual variation closely tied to changes in climate patterns. The Ross, Amundsen, Bellingshausen, and Weddell Seas during Summer-Autumn and the Southern Ocean regions north of these areas during Winter-Spring have the greatest sea ice variability. Principal components analysis in T- mode, Varimax-rotated applied on Antarctic monthly sea ice concentration anomaly (SICA) fields for 1979-2015 (NASA Team algorithm data sets available at nsidc.org) revealed the main spatial characteristics of Antarctic sea ice patterns and their relationship with atmospheric circulation. This analysis yielded five patterns of sea ice for winter-spring and three patterns for summer-autumn, each of which has a positive and negative phase. To understand the links between the SICA patterns and climate, we extracted the mean pressure and temperature fields for the months with high loadings (positive or negative) of the sea ice patterns. The first pattern of winter-spring sea ice concentration is a dipole structure between the Drake Passage and northern regions of the Bellingshausen and Weddell Seas and, the South Atlantic Ocean. The negative phase shows a strong negative SICA over the Atlantic basin. This pattern can be associated with to the atmospheric structures related to a positive SAM index and a wave-3 arrangement around the continent. That is, a strong negative pressure anomaly centered over the Bellingshausen Sea accompanied by three positive pressure anomalies in middle-latitudes. For summer-autumn, the first pattern shows two strong positive SICA areas, in the eastern Weddell Sea and the northwestern Ross Sea. A negative SICA covers the Amundsen-Bellingshausen Seas and northwest of the Antarctic Peninsula. This pattern, frequently seen in summers since 2008, is associated with cool conditions over the Weddell Sea but warmer temperatures and high surface air pressure west, north and northwest of the Peninsula.

  9. Spatially Extensive Standardized Surveys Reveal Widespread, Multi-Decadal Increase in East Antarctic Adélie Penguin Populations

    PubMed Central

    Southwell, Colin; Emmerson, Louise; McKinlay, John; Newbery, Kym; Takahashi, Akinori; Kato, Akiko; Barbraud, Christophe; DeLord, Karine; Weimerskirch, Henri

    2015-01-01

    Seabirds are considered to be useful and practical indicators of the state of marine ecosystems because they integrate across changes in the lower trophic levels and the physical environment. Signals from this key group of species can indicate broad scale impacts or response to environmental change. Recent studies of penguin populations, the most commonly abundant Antarctic seabirds in the west Antarctic Peninsula and western Ross Sea, have demonstrated that physical changes in Antarctic marine environments have profound effects on biota at high trophic levels. Large populations of the circumpolar-breeding Adélie penguin occur in East Antarctica, but direct, standardized population data across much of this vast coastline have been more limited than in other Antarctic regions. We combine extensive new population survey data, new population estimation methods, and re-interpreted historical survey data to assess decadal-scale change in East Antarctic Adélie penguin breeding populations. We show that, in contrast to the west Antarctic Peninsula and western Ross Sea where breeding populations have decreased or shown variable trends over the last 30 years, East Antarctic regional populations have almost doubled in abundance since the 1980’s and have been increasing since the earliest counts in the 1960’s. The population changes are associated with five-year lagged changes in the physical environment, suggesting that the changing environment impacts primarily on the pre-breeding age classes. East Antarctic marine ecosystems have been subject to a number of changes over the last 50 years which may have influenced Adélie penguin population growth, including decadal-scale climate variation, an inferred mid-20th century sea-ice contraction, and early-to-mid 20th century exploitation of fish and whale populations. PMID:26488299

  10. Spatially Extensive Standardized Surveys Reveal Widespread, Multi-Decadal Increase in East Antarctic Adélie Penguin Populations.

    PubMed

    Southwell, Colin; Emmerson, Louise; McKinlay, John; Newbery, Kym; Takahashi, Akinori; Kato, Akiko; Barbraud, Christophe; DeLord, Karine; Weimerskirch, Henri

    2015-01-01

    Seabirds are considered to be useful and practical indicators of the state of marine ecosystems because they integrate across changes in the lower trophic levels and the physical environment. Signals from this key group of species can indicate broad scale impacts or response to environmental change. Recent studies of penguin populations, the most commonly abundant Antarctic seabirds in the west Antarctic Peninsula and western Ross Sea, have demonstrated that physical changes in Antarctic marine environments have profound effects on biota at high trophic levels. Large populations of the circumpolar-breeding Adélie penguin occur in East Antarctica, but direct, standardized population data across much of this vast coastline have been more limited than in other Antarctic regions. We combine extensive new population survey data, new population estimation methods, and re-interpreted historical survey data to assess decadal-scale change in East Antarctic Adélie penguin breeding populations. We show that, in contrast to the west Antarctic Peninsula and western Ross Sea where breeding populations have decreased or shown variable trends over the last 30 years, East Antarctic regional populations have almost doubled in abundance since the 1980's and have been increasing since the earliest counts in the 1960's. The population changes are associated with five-year lagged changes in the physical environment, suggesting that the changing environment impacts primarily on the pre-breeding age classes. East Antarctic marine ecosystems have been subject to a number of changes over the last 50 years which may have influenced Adélie penguin population growth, including decadal-scale climate variation, an inferred mid-20th century sea-ice contraction, and early-to-mid 20th century exploitation of fish and whale populations. PMID:26488299

  11. Paleoclimate perspectives on Antarctic ice sheet sensitivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naish, Timothy

    2015-04-01

    Near- and long-term future projections of global mean sea level rise (SLR) are hampered by a lack of understanding of the potential dynamic contribution of the polar ice sheets, and in particular the Antarctic ice sheets. With the completion of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's Assessment Report a major challenge continues to be placing an upper bound in sea-level projections for 2100 and beyond. The so-called "deterministic" approach which sums observed- and model-projected trends in the known contributions (e.g. ice sheet and glacier surface mass balance, ocean thermal expansion and ground water storage changes) implies a "likely" upper bound of +100cm by 2080-2100. The "semi-empirical" approach which scales past observed sea-level change to mean surface temperature, and uses this relationship to scale future temperature scenarios, predicts a significantly higher upper bound of up to ~2m by 2100. The discrepancy between the two approaches may in part reflect the poorly understood contribution of ice dynamics - that is the rate of flow of ice sheets into the ocean. An ensemble of Antarctic ice sheet models produces highly divergent results for future sea-level projections, primarily because of uncertainties around the mass changes in the East Antarctic Ice Sheet with some models showing increased precipitation driving a positive mass balance overall, even with loss of the marine-based West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). Current best estimates suggest a 10-20cm dynamic ice sheet contribution by 2100 to global SLR. Of concern is that marine based ice sheets are highly sensitive to increases in ocean temperature at their margins and rapid disintegration may ensue if the ice sheets grounding lines retreat into deep sub-glacial basins. Recent studies show the highest rates of ice sheet thinning and retreat are occurring at locations around the WAIS where the surface ocean has warmed, and that some WAIS loss may now be irreversible. Geological records allow

  12. Late Pleistocene evolution of Scott Glacier, southern Transantarctic Mountains: implications for the Antarctic contribution to deglacial sea level

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bromley, Gordon R. M.; Hall, Brenda L.; Stone, John O.; Conway, Howard

    2012-09-01

    Glacial deposits preserved adjacent to Scott Glacier, southern Transantarctic Mountains, provide a record of past fluctuations in the thickness of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Geologic mapping of these deposits, in conjunction with emerging 10Be surface-exposure data, indicate that the most recent expansion of Scott Glacier occurred during the last glacial maximum in response to grounding of ice in the Ross Sea Embayment. At that time, the ice surface at the confluence of Scott Glacier and the West Antarctic Ice Sheet lay at ˜1100 m elevation. While this ice-surface reconstruction is in accord with other geologic estimates from throughout the Ross Sea Embayment, it contrasts with most computer-based simulations, which tend to overestimate former ice thickness in the southern Ross Sea. Together with recently modelled estimates of Antarctica's contribution to sea level, this finding calls into question an Antarctic source for meltwater pulse 1A.

  13. Frontal structure and Antarctic Bottom Water flow through the Princess Elizabeth Trough, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heywood, Karen J.; Sparrow, Michael D.; Brown, Juan; Dickson, Robert R.

    1999-07-01

    Hydrographic, current meter and ADCP data collected during two recent cruises in the South Indian Ocean ( RRS Discovery cruise 200 in February 1993 and RRS Discovery cruise 207 in February 1994) are used to investigate the current structure within the Princess Elizabeth Trough (PET), near the Antarctic continent at 85°E, 63-66°S. This gap in topography between the Kerguelen Plateau and the Antarctic continent, with sill depth 3750 m, provides a route for the exchange of Antarctic Bottom Water between the Australian-Antarctic Basin and the Weddell-Enderby Basin. Shears derived from ADCP and hydrographic data are used to deduce the barotropic component of the velocity field, and thus the volume transports of the water masses. Both the Southern Antarctic Circumpolar Current Front (SACCF) and the Southern Boundary of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (SB) pass through the northern PET (latitudes 63 to 64.5°S) associated with eastward transports. These are deep-reaching fronts with associated bottom velocities of several cm s -1. Antarctic Bottom water (AABW) from the Weddell-Enderby Basin is transported eastwards in the jets associated with these fronts. The transport of water with potential temperatures less than 0°C is 3 (±1) Sv. The SB is shown to meander in the PET, caused by the cyclonic gyre immediately west of the PET in Prydz Bay. The AABW therefore also meanders before continuing eastwards. In the southern PET (latitudes 64.5 to 66°S) a bottom intensified flow of AABW is observed flowing west. This AABW has most likely formed not far from the PET, along the Antarctic continental shelf and slope to the east. Current meters show that speeds in this flow have an annual scalar mean of 10 cm s -1. The transport of water with potential temperatures less than 0°C is 20 (±3) Sv. The southern PET features westward flow throughout the water column, since the shallower depths are dominated by the flow associated with the Antarctic Slope Front. Including the

  14. 75 FR 68830 - Notice of permit applications received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-11-09

    ...The National Science Foundation (NSF) is required to publish notice of permit applications received to conduct activities regulated under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978. NSF has published regulations under the Antarctic Conservation Act at Title 45 Part 670 of the Code of Federal Regulations. This is the required notice of permit applications...

  15. 78 FR 48201 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-08-07

    ...The National Science Foundation (NSF) is required to publish a notice of permit applications received to conduct activities regulated under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978. NSF has published regulations under the Antarctic Conservation Act at Title 45 Part 670 of the Code of Federal Regulations. This is the required notice of permit applications...

  16. 75 FR 75501 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-12-03

    ...The National Science Foundation (NSF) is required to publish notice of permit applications received to conduct activities regulated under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978. NSF has published regulations under the Antarctic Conservation Act at title 45 part 670 of the Code of Federal Regulations. This is the required notice of permit applications...

  17. 78 FR 33115 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-06-03

    ...The National Science Foundation (NSF) is required to publish a notice of permit applications received to conduct activities regulated under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978. NSF has published regulations under the Antarctic Conservation Act at Title 45 Part 670 of the Code of Federal Regulations. This is the required notice of permit applications...

  18. 75 FR 65035 - Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-10-21

    ...The National Science Foundation (NSF) is required to publish notice of permit applications received to conduct activities regulated under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978. NSF has published regulations under the Antarctic Conservation Act at Title 45 Part 670 of the Code of Federal Regulations. This is the required notice of permit applications...

  19. 78 FR 73893 - Notice of Permit Modification Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95-541)

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-12-09

    ...The National Science Foundation (NSF) is required to publish a notice of requests to modify permits issued to conduct activities regulated under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978. NSF has published regulations under the Antarctic Conservation Act at Title 45 Part 670 of the Code of Federal Regulations. This is the required notice of a requested permit...

  20. Warm ocean is eroding West Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shepherd, Andrew; Wingham, Duncan; Rignot, Eric

    2004-12-01

    Satellite radar measurements show that ice shelves in Pine Island Bay have thinned by up to 5.5 m yr-1 over the past decade. The pattern of shelf thinning mirrors that of their grounded tributaries - the Pine Island, Thwaites and Smith glaciers - and ocean currents on average 0.5°C warmer than freezing appear to be the source. The synchronised imbalance of the inland glaciers is the result of reduced lateral and basal tractions at their termini, and the drawdown of grounded ice shows that Antarctica is more sensitive to changing climates than was previously considered.

  1. West Antarctic Ice Sheet formed earlier than thought

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balcerak, Ernie

    2013-10-01

    About 34 million years ago, Earth transitioned from a warm "greenhouse" climate to a cold "icehouse" climate, marking the transition between the Eocene and Oligocene epochs. This transition has been associated with the formation of a large ice sheet on Antarctica.

  2. Endocrine disrupting activities of surface water associated with a West Virginia oil and gas industry wastewater disposal site

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kassotis, Christopher D.; Iwanowicz, Luke; Akob, Denise M.; Cozzarelli, Isabelle M.; Mumford, Adam; Orem, William H.; Nagel, Susan C.

    2016-01-01

    Currently, >95% of end disposal of hydraulic fracturing wastewater from unconventional oil and gas operations in the US occurs via injection wells. Key data gaps exist in understanding the potential impact of underground injection on surface water quality and environmental health. The goal of this study was to assess endocrine disrupting activity in surface water at a West Virginia injection well disposal site. Water samples were collected from a background site in the area and upstream, on, and downstream of the disposal facility. Samples were solid-phase extracted, and extracts assessed for agonist and antagonist hormonal activities for five hormone receptors in mammalian and yeast reporter gene assays. Compared to reference water extracts upstream and distal to the disposal well, samples collected adjacent and downstream exhibited considerably higher antagonist activity for the estrogen, androgen, progesterone, glucocorticoid and thyroid hormone receptors. In contrast, low levels of agonist activity were measured in upstream/distal sites, and were inhibited or absent at downstream sites with significant antagonism. Concurrent analyses by partner laboratories (published separately) describe the analytical and geochemical profiling of the water; elevated conductivity as well as high sodium, chloride, strontium, and barium concentrations indicate impacts due to handling of unconventional oil and gas wastewater. Notably, antagonist activities in downstream samples were at equivalent authentic standard concentrations known to disrupt reproduction and/or development in aquatic animals. Given the widespread use of injection wells for end-disposal of hydraulic fracturing wastewater, these data raise concerns for human and animal health nearby.

  3. Endocrine disrupting activities of surface water associated with a West Virginia oil and gas industry wastewater disposal site.

    PubMed

    Kassotis, Christopher D; Iwanowicz, Luke R; Akob, Denise M; Cozzarelli, Isabelle M; Mumford, Adam C; Orem, William H; Nagel, Susan C

    2016-07-01

    Currently, >95% of end disposal of hydraulic fracturing wastewater from unconventional oil and gas operations in the US occurs via injection wells. Key data gaps exist in understanding the potential impact of underground injection on surface water quality and environmental health. The goal of this study was to assess endocrine disrupting activity in surface water at a West Virginia injection well disposal site. Water samples were collected from a background site in the area and upstream, on, and downstream of the disposal facility. Samples were solid-phase extracted, and extracts assessed for agonist and antagonist hormonal activities for five hormone receptors in mammalian and yeast reporter gene assays. Compared to reference water extracts upstream and distal to the disposal well, samples collected adjacent and downstream exhibited considerably higher antagonist activity for the estrogen, androgen, progesterone, glucocorticoid and thyroid hormone receptors. In contrast, low levels of agonist activity were measured in upstream/distal sites, and were inhibited or absent at downstream sites with significant antagonism. Concurrent analyses by partner laboratories (published separately) describe the analytical and geochemical profiling of the water; elevated conductivity as well as high sodium, chloride, strontium, and barium concentrations indicate impacts due to handling of unconventional oil and gas wastewater. Notably, antagonist activities in downstream samples were at equivalent authentic standard concentrations known to disrupt reproduction and/or development in aquatic animals. Given the widespread use of injection wells for end-disposal of hydraulic fracturing wastewater, these data raise concerns for human and animal health nearby. PMID:27073166

  4. Sei whale sounds recorded in the Antarctic.

    PubMed

    McDonald, Mark A; Hildebrand, John A; Wiggins, Sean M; Thiele, Deborah; Glasgow, Deb; Moore, Sue E

    2005-12-01

    Sei whales are the least well known acoustically of all the rorquals, with only two brief descriptions of their calls previously reported. Recordings of low-frequency tonal and frequency swept calls were made near a group of four or five sei whales in waters west of the Antarctic Peninsula on 19 February 2003. These whales also produced broadband sounds which can be described as growls or whooshes. Many of the tonal and frequency swept calls (30 out of 68) consist of multiple parts with a frequency step between the two parts, this being the most unique characteristic of the calls, allowing them to be distinguished from the calls of other whale species. The average duration of the tonal calls is 0.45 +/- 0.3 s and the average frequency is 433 +/- 192 Hz. Using a calibrated seafloor recorder to determine the absolute calibration of a sonobuoy system, the maximum source level of the tonal calls was 156 +/- 3.6 dB re 1 microPa at 1 m. Each call had different character and there was no temporal pattern in the calling. PMID:16419837

  5. Sei whale sounds recorded in the Antarctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McDonald, Mark A.; Hildebrand, John A.; Wiggins, Sean M.; Thiele, Deborah; Glasgow, Deb; Moore, Sue E.

    2005-12-01

    Sei whales are the least well known acoustically of all the rorquals, with only two brief descriptions of their calls previously reported. Recordings of low-frequency tonal and frequency swept calls were made near a group of four or five sei whales in waters west of the Antarctic Peninsula on 19 February 2003. These whales also produced broadband sounds which can be described as growls or whooshes. Many of the tonal and frequency swept calls (30 out of 68) consist of multiple parts with a frequency step between the two parts, this being the most unique characteristic of the calls, allowing them to be distinguished from the calls of other whale species. The average duration of the tonal calls is 0.45+/-0.3 s and the average frequency is 433+/-192 Hz. Using a calibrated seafloor recorder to determine the absolute calibration of a sonobuoy system, the maximum source level of the tonal calls was 156+/-3.6 dB re 1 μPa at 1 m. Each call had different character and there was no temporal pattern in the calling.

  6. Complement Activation Is Required for Induction of a Protective Antibody Response against West Nile Virus Infection

    PubMed Central

    Mehlhop, Erin; Whitby, Kevin; Oliphant, Theodore; Marri, Anantha; Engle, Michael; Diamond, Michael S.

    2005-01-01

    Infection with West Nile virus (WNV) causes a severe infection of the central nervous system (CNS) with higher levels of morbidity and mortality in the elderly and the immunocompromised. Experiments with mice have begun to define how the innate and adaptive immune responses function to limit infection. Here, we demonstrate that the complement system, a major component of innate immunity, controls WNV infection in vitro primarily in an antibody-dependent manner by neutralizing virus particles in solution and lysing WNV-infected cells. More decisively, mice that genetically lack the third component of complement or complement receptor 1 (CR1) and CR2 developed increased CNS virus burdens and were vulnerable to lethal infection at a low dose of WNV. Both C3-deficient and CR1- and CR2-deficient mice also had significant deficits in their humoral responses after infection with markedly reduced levels of specific anti-WNV immunoglobulin M (IgM) and IgG. Overall, these results suggest that complement controls WNV infection, in part through its ability to induce a protective antibody response. PMID:15919902

  7. Geophysical Investigation of Australian-Antarctic Ridge Using High-Resolution Gravity and Bathymetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, S. S.; Lin, J.; Park, S. H.; Choi, H.

    2015-12-01

    Much of the Australian-Antarctic Ridge (AAR) has been remained uncharted until 2011 because of its remoteness and harsh weather conditions. From 2011, the multidisciplinary ridge program initiated by the Korea Polar Research Institute (KOPRI) surveyed the little-explored eastern ends of the AAR to characterize the tectonics, geochemistry, and hydrothermal activity of this intermediate spreading system. In this study, we present a detailed analysis of a 300-km-long supersegment of the AAR to quantify the spatial variations in ridge morphology and axial and off-axis volcanisms as constrained by high-resolution shipboard bathymetry and gravity. The ridge axis morphology alternates between rift valleys and axial highs within relatively short ridge segments. To obtain a geological proxy for regional variations in magma supply, we calculated residual mantle Bouguer gravity anomalies (RMBA), gravity-derived crustal thickness, and residual topography for neighboring seven sub-segments. The results of the analyses revealed that the southern flank of the AAR is associated with shallower seafloor, more negative RMBA, thicker crust, and/or less dense mantle in comparison to the conjugate northern flank. Furthermore, this north-south asymmetry becomes more prominent toward the KR1 supersegment of the AAR. The axial topography of the KR1 supersegment exhibits a sharp transition from axial highs at the western end to rift valleys at the eastern end, with regions of axial highs being associated with more robust magma supply as indicated by more negative RMBA. We also compare and contrast the characteristics of the AAR supersegment with that of other ridges of intermediate spreading rates, including the Juan de Fuca Ridge, Galápagos Spreading Center, and Southeast Indian Ridge west of the Australian-Antarctic Discordance, to investigate the influence of ridge-hotspot interaction on ridge magma supply and tectonics.

  8. Interaction between the North-West Sahara Aquifer and the seismically active intraplate Hun Graben Fault system, Libya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamling, I. J.; Aoudia, A.

    2011-12-01

    The North-West Sahara Aquifer System (NWSAS) covers an area of ~1 million km2 spanning the countries of Algeria, Tunisia and Libya. The system is composed of two main aquifers, the Complexe Terminal (CT) and the deeper Continental Intercalaire (CI). Over the last ~40 years these aquifers have been increasingly exploited in order to provide water to these countries. There are estimated to be ~7000 drill sites across the aquifer, 4000 in Algeria, 2000 in Tunisia and a further ~1000 in Libya. Land subsidence, caused by anthropogenic activities such as groundwater pumping, is a global problem and has been observed in a number of places around the world. Here we investigate fault controlled subsidence related to the extraction of water in North Western Libya. Located ~600 km south east of Tripoli, the Hun Graben separates the Sirte Basin to the east from the Hamada al Hamra Platform to the west and lies on the eastern boundary of the North-West Sahara Aquifer System (NWSAS). The graben is composed of two border faults extending for ~130 km from the town of Hun to the north west. These faults, bounding the eastern and western margins of the graben, are known to be seismically active and were responsible for the magnitude 7.1 earthquake in 1935. Due to the lack of ground based instrumentation, there are currently no estimates of slip along these structures. Here we use ERS and Envisat SAR images acquired over the last 20 years and form a number of interferograms to study interseismic strain accumulation along these structures. Satellite Radar Interferometry (InSAR) is a widely used technique for monitoring deformation of the Earth's surface. By differencing the phase from two radar images acquired at different times, maps of range change between the radar and ground can be obtained with millimetre precision. Our analysis over the graben suggests that neither of the two border faults are actively deforming and therefore the causes of intraplate large earthquakes such as

  9. Occupational and Environmental Health Risks Associated with Informal Sector Activities-Selected Case Studies from West Africa.

    PubMed

    Basu, Niladri; Ayelo, Paul Ahoumènou; Djogbénou, Luc S; Kedoté, Marius; Lawin, Herve; Tohon, Honesty; Oloruntoba, Elizabeth O; Adebisi, Nurudeen A; Cazabon, Danielle; Fobil, Julius; Robins, Thomas; Fayomi, Benjamin

    2016-08-01

    Most in the Economic Community of West African States region are employed in the informal sector. While the informal sector plays a significant role in the region's economy, policymakers and the scientific community have long neglected it. To better understand informal-sector work conditions, the goal here is to bring together researchers to exchange findings and catalyze dialogue. The article showcases research studies on several economic systems, namely agriculture, resource extraction, transportation, and trade/commerce. Site-specific cases are provided concerning occupational health risks within artisanal and small-scale gold mining, aggregate mining, gasoline trade, farming and pesticide applications, and electronic waste recycling. These cases emphasize the vastness of the informal sector and that the majority of work activities across the region remain poorly documented, and thus no data or knowledge is available to help improve conditions and formulate policies and programs to promote and ensure decent work conditions. PMID:27231011

  10. Cloning of a prothrombin activator-like metalloproteinase from the West African saw-scaled viper, Echis ocellatus.

    PubMed

    Hasson, S S; Theakston, R D G; Harrison, R A

    2003-11-01

    Systemic envenoming by the saw-scaled viper, Echis ocellatus, is responsible for more deaths than any other snake in West Africa. Despite its medical importance, there have been few investigations into the toxin composition of the venom of this viper. Here we describe the isolation of E. ocellatus venom gland cDNAs encoding a protein of 514 amino acids that showed 91% sequence similarity to Ecarin, a prothrombin-activating metalloproteinase from the venom of the East African viper, E. pyramidum leakeyi, that induces severe consumption coagulopathy. Structural similarities between the E. ocellatus metalloproteinase and analogues in venoms of related vipers suggest that antibodies raised to phylogenetically conserved E. ocellatus metalloproteinase domains may have potential for cross-specific and cross-generic neutralisation of analogous venom toxins. PMID:14602118

  11. Radarsat Antarctic Mapping Project: Antarctic Imaging Campaign 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    The Radarsat Antarctic Mapping Project is a collaboration between NASA and the Canadian Space Agency to map Antarctica using synthetic aperture radar (SAR). The first Antarctic Mapping Mission (AMM-1) was successfully completed in October 1997. Data from the acquisition phase of the 1997 campaign have been used to achieve the primary goal of producing the first, high-resolution SAR image map of Antarctica. The limited amount of data suitable for interferometric analysis have also been used to produce remarkably detailed maps of surface velocity for a few selected regions. Most importantly, the results from AMM-1 are now available to the general science community in the form of various resolution, radiometrically calibrated and geometrically accurate image mosaics. The second Antarctic imaging campaign occurred during the fall of 2000. Modified from AMM-1, the satellite remained in north looking mode during AMM-2 restricting coverage to regions north of about -80 degrees latitude. But AMM-2 utilized for the first time RADARSAT-1 fine beams providing an unprecedented opportunity to image many of Antarctica's fast glaciers whose extent was revealed through AMM-1 data. AMM-2 also captured extensive data suitable for interferometric analysis of the surface velocity field. This report summarizes the science goals, mission objectives, and project status through the acquisition phase and the start of the processing phase. The reports describes the efforts of team members including Alaska SAR Facility, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Vexcel Corporation, Goddard Space Flight Center, Wallops Flight Facility, Ohio State University, Environmental Research Institute of Michigan, White Sands Facility, Canadian Space Agency Mission Planning and Operations Groups, and the Antarctic Mapping Planning Group.

  12. Is the Wilkins Ice Shelf a Firn Aquifer? Spaceborne Observation of Subsurface Winter Season Liquid Meltwater Storage on the Antarctic Peninsula using Multi-Frequency Active and Passive Microwave Remote Sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, J.; Scambos, T.; Forster, R. R.; Long, D. G.; Ligtenberg, S.; van den Broeke, M.; Vaughan, D. G.

    2015-12-01

    Near-surface liquid meltwater on ice shelves has been inferred to influence ice shelf stability if it induces hydrofracture and is linked to disintegration events on the Larsen B and the Wilkins ice shelves on the Antarctic Peninsula during the summer months. While the initial Wilkins disintegration event occurred in March of 2009, two smaller disintegration events followed in May and in July of that year. It has long been assumed meltwater refreezes soon after surface melt processes cease. Given this assumption, an earlier hypothesis for the two winter season disintegration events was hydrofracture via a brine infiltration layer. Two lines of evidence supported this hypothesis 1) early airborne radar surveys did not record a reflection from the bottom of the ice shelf, and 2) a shallow core drilled in 1972 on the Wilkins encountered liquid water at a depth of ~7 m. The salinity of the water and the temperature at the base of the core, however, were not described. The recent discovery of winter season liquid meltwater storage on the Greenland ice sheet has changed perceptions on meltwater longevity at depth in firn. Evidence of Greenland's firn aquifer includes liquid meltwater encountered in shallow firn cores at 5 m depth and a lack of reflections from the base of the ice sheet in airborne surveys. Thus, previous lines of evidence suggesting brine infiltration may alternatively suggest the presence of a perennial firn aquifer. We recently demonstrated the capability for observation of Greenland's firn aquifer from space using multi-frequency active and passive microwave remote sensing. This research exploits the retrieval technique developed for Greenland to provide the first spaceborne mappings of winter season liquid meltwater storage on the Wilkins. We combine L-band brightness temperature and backscatter data from the MIRAS instrument (1.4 GHz) aboard ESA's Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity mission and the radar (1.3 GHZ) and radiometer(1.4 GHz) aboard NASA

  13. Chemical studies of differentiated meteorites. I - Labile trace elements in Antarctic and non-Antarctic eucrites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Paul, Rick L.; Lipschutz, Michael E.

    1990-01-01

    Element contents of Ag, Au, Bi, Cd, Co, Cs, Ga, In, Rb, Sb, Se, Te, Tl, U, and Zn were analyzed, using RNAA, in 25 Antarctic and nine non-Antarctic eucrites to determine whether these two populations differ significantly in thermal history and derive from the same or different eucrite parent body. Data for these 15 elements indicate that basaltic Antarctic and non-Antarctic eucrite populations reflect the same genetic processes and, hence, come from the same parent asteroid.

  14. Satellite imagery of the onset of streaming flow of ice streams C and D, West Antarctica

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hodge, S.M.; Doppelhammer, S.K.

    1996-01-01

    Five overlapping Landsat multispectral scanner satellite images of the interior of the West Antarctic ice sheet were enhanced with principal component analysis, high-pass filtering, and linear contrast stretching and merged into a mosaic by aligning surface features in the overlap areas. The mosaic was registered to geodetic coordinates, to an accuracy of about 1 km, using the five scene centers as control points. The onset of streaming flow of two tributaries of ice stream C and one tributary of ice stream D is visible in the mosaic. The onset appears to occur within a relatively short distance, less than the width of the ice stream, typically at a subglacial topographic feature such as a step or ridge. The ice streams extend farther up into the interior than previously mapped. Ice stream D starts about 150 km from the ice divide, at an altitude of about 1500 m, approximately halfway up the convex-upward dome shape of the interior ice sheet. Ice stream D is relatively much longer than ice stream C, possibly because ice stream D is currently active whereas ice stream C is currently inactive. The grounded portion of the West Antarctic ice sheet is perhaps best conceptualized as an ice sheet in which ice streams are embedded over most of its area, with slow moving ice converging into fast moving ice streams in a widely distributed pattern, much like that of streams and rivers in a hydrologic basin. A relic margin appears to parallel most of the south margin of the tributary of ice stream D, separated from the active shear margin by about 10 km or less for a distance of over 200 km. This means there is now evidence for recent changes having occurred in three of the five major ice streams which drain most of West Antarctica (B, C, and D), two of which (B and D) are currently active.

  15. Heavy metals in Antarctic organisms

    SciTech Connect

    Moreno, J.E.A. de; Moreno, V.J.; Gerpe, M.S.; Vodopivez, C.

    1997-02-01

    To evaluate levels of essential (zinc and copper) and non-essential (mercury and cadmium) heavy metals, 34 species of organisms from different areas close to the Antarctic Peninsula were analysed. These included algae, filter-feeders, omnivorous invertebrates and vertebrates. Mercury was not detected, while cadmium was found in the majority of organisms analysed (detection limit was 0.05 ppm for both metals). The highest cadmium concentration was observed in the starfish Odontaster validus. Anthozoans, sipunculids and nudibranchs showed maximum levels of zinc, while the highest copper level was found in the gastropod Trophon brevispira. Mercury and cadmium levels in fishes were below the detection limit. Concentrations of essential and non-essential metals in birds were highest in liver followed by muscle and eggs. Cadmium and mercury levels in muscle of southern elephant seals were above the detection limit, whereas in Antarctic fur seals they were below it. The objective of the study was to gather baseline information for metals in Antarctic Ocean biota that may be needed to detect, measure and monitor future environmental changes. 46 refs., 7 figs., 8 tabs.

  16. Geographic names of the Antarctic

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    U.S. Board on Geographic Names; U.S. Geological Survey; Defense Mapping Agency; National Science Foundation

    1995-01-01

    This gazetteer contains 12,710 names approved by the United States Board on Geographic Names and the Secretary of the Interior for features in Antarctica and the area extending northward to the Antarctic Convergence. Included in this geographic area, the Antarctic region, are the off-lying South Shetland Islands, the South Orkney Islands, the South Sandwich Islands, South Georgia, Bouvetøya, Heard Island, and the Balleny Islands. These names have been approved for use by U.S. Government agencies. Their use by the Antarctic specialist and the public is highly recommended for the sake of accuracy and uniformity. This publication, which supersedes previous Board gazetteers or lists for the area, contains names approved as recently as December 1994. The basic name coverage of this gazetteer corresponds to that of maps at the scale of 1:250,000 or larger for coastal Antarctica, the off-lying islands, and isolated mountains and ranges of the continent. Much of the interior of Antarctica is a featureless ice plateau. That area has been mapped at a smaller scale and is nearly devoid of toponyms. All of the names are for natural features, such as mountains, glaciers, peninsulas, capes, bays, islands, and subglacial entities. The names of scientific stations have not been listed alphabetically, but they may appear in the texts of some decisions. For the names of submarine features, reference should be made to the Gazetteer of Undersea Features, 4th edition, U.S. Board on Geographic Names, 1990.

  17. Middle proterozoic tectonic activity in west Texas and eastern New Mexico and analysis of gravity and magnetic anomalies

    SciTech Connect

    Adams, D.C.; Keller, G.R. )

    1994-03-01

    The Precambrian history of west Texas and eastern New Mexico is complex, consisting of four events: Early Proterozoic orogenic activity (16309-1800 Ma), formation of the western granite-rhyolite province (WGRP) (1340-1410 Ma), Grenville age tectonics (1116-1232 Ma), and middle Proterozoic extension possibly related to mid-continent rifting (1086-1109 Ma). Pre-Grenville tectonics, Grenville tectonics, and mid-continent rifting are represented in this area by the Abilene gravity minimum (AGM) and bimodal igneous rocks, which are probably younger. We have used gravity modeling and the comparison of gravity and magnetic anomalies with rock types reported from wells penetrating Precambrian basement to study the AGM and middle Proterozoic extension in this area. The AGM is an east-northeast-trending, 600 km long, gravity low, which extends from the Texas-Oklahoma border through the central basin platform (CBP) to the Delaware basin. This feature appears to predate formation of the mafic body in the CBP (1163 Ma) and is most likely related to Pre-Grenville tectonics, possibly representing a continental margin arc batholith. Evidence of middle Proterozoic extension is found in the form of igneous bodies in the CBP, the Van Horn uplift, the Franklin Mountains, and the Sacramento Mountains. Analysis of gravity and magnetic anomalies shows that paired gravity and magnetic highs are related to mafic intrusions in the upper crust. Mapping of middle Proterozoic igneous rocks and the paired anomalies outlines a 530 km diameter area of distributed east-west-oriented extension. The Debaca-Swisher terrain of shallow marine and clastic sedimentary rocks is age correlative with middle Proterozoic extension. These rocks may represent the lithology of possible Proterozoic exploration targets. Proterozoic structures were reactivated during the Paleozoic, affecting both the structure and deposition in the Permian basin.

  18. A spatial framework for assessing current conditions and monitoring future change in the chemistry of the Antarctic atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dixon, D. A.; Mayewski, P. A.; Korotkikh, E.; Sneed, S. B.; Handley, M. J.; Introne, D. S.; Scambos, T. A.

    2011-03-01

    East and West Antarctica and for a significant fraction of the Cd in East Antarctica. Nonetheless, global volcanic outgassing cannot account for the enriched values of Pb or As. Local volcanic outgassing from Mount Erebus may account for a significant fraction of the As and Cd in West Antarctica and for a significant fraction in East Antarctic glaze/dune areas. However, despite potential contributions from local and global volcanic sources, significant concentrations of Pb, Cd, and As remain across much of Antarctica. Most importantly, this study provides a baseline from which changes in the chemistry of the atmosphere over Antarctica can be monitored under expected warming scenarios and continued intensification of industrial activities in the Southern Hemisphere.

  19. Climate Change and Trophic Response of the Antarctic Bottom Fauna

    PubMed Central

    Aronson, Richard B.; Moody, Ryan M.; Ivany, Linda C.; Blake, Daniel B.; Werner, John E.; Glass, Alexander

    2009-01-01

    Background As Earth warms, temperate and subpolar marine species will increasingly shift their geographic ranges poleward. The endemic shelf fauna of Antarctica is especially vulnerable to climate-mediated biological invasions because cold temperatures currently exclude the durophagous (shell-breaking) predators that structure shallow-benthic communities elsewhere. Methodology/Principal Findings We used the Eocene fossil record from Seymour Island, Antarctic Peninsula, to project specifically how global warming will reorganize the nearshore benthos of Antarctica. A long-term cooling trend, which began with a sharp temperature drop ∼41 Ma (million years ago), eliminated durophagous predators—teleosts (modern bony fish), decapod crustaceans (crabs and lobsters) and almost all neoselachian elasmobranchs (modern sharks and rays)—from Antarctic nearshore waters after the Eocene. Even prior to those extinctions, durophagous predators became less active as coastal sea temperatures declined from 41 Ma to the end of the Eocene, ∼33.5 Ma. In response, dense populations of suspension-feeding ophiuroids and crinoids abruptly appeared. Dense aggregations of brachiopods transcended the cooling event with no apparent change in predation pressure, nor were there changes in the frequency of shell-drilling predation on venerid bivalves. Conclusions/Significance Rapid warming in the Southern Ocean is now removing the physiological barriers to shell-breaking predators, and crabs are returning to the Antarctic Peninsula. Over the coming decades to centuries, we predict a rapid reversal of the Eocene trends. Increasing predation will reduce or eliminate extant dense populations of suspension-feeding echinoderms from nearshore habitats along the Peninsula while brachiopods will continue to form large populations, and the intensity of shell-drilling predation on infaunal bivalves will not change appreciably. In time the ecological effects of global warming could spread to other

  20. Isotopic evidence for nitrification in the Antarctic winter mixed layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smart, Sandi M.; Fawcett, Sarah E.; Thomalla, Sandy J.; Weigand, Mira A.; Reason, Chris J. C.; Sigman, Daniel M.

    2015-04-01

    We report wintertime nitrogen and oxygen isotope ratios (δ15N and δ18O) of seawater nitrate in the Southern Ocean south of Africa. Depth profile and underway surface samples collected in July 2012 extend from the subtropics to just beyond the Antarctic winter sea ice edge. We focus here on the Antarctic region (south of 50.3°S), where application of the Rayleigh model to depth profile δ15N data yields estimates for the isotope effect (the degree of isotope discrimination) of nitrate assimilation (1.6-3.3‰) that are significantly lower than commonly observed in the summertime Antarctic (5-8‰). The δ18O data from the same depth profiles and lateral δ15N variations within the mixed layer, however, imply O and N isotope effects that are more similar to those suggested by summertime data. These findings point to active nitrification (i.e., regeneration of organic matter to nitrate) within the Antarctic winter mixed layer. Nitrite removal from samples reveals a low δ15N for nitrite in the winter mixed layer (-40‰ to -20‰), consistent with nitrification, but does not remove the observation of an anomalously low δ15N for nitrate. The winter data, and the nitrification they reveal, explain the previous observation of an anomalously low δ15N for nitrate in the temperature minimum layer (remnant winter mixed layer) of summertime depth profiles. At the same time, the wintertime data require a low δ15N for the combined organic N and ammonium in the autumn mixed layer that is available for wintertime nitrification, pointing to intense N recycling as a pervasive condition of the Antarctic in late summer.

  1. Evidence for widespread endemism among Antarctic micro-organisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vyverman, Wim; Verleyen, Elie; Wilmotte, Annick; Hodgson, Dominic A.; Willems, Anne; Peeters, Karolien; Van de Vijver, Bart; De Wever, Aaike; Leliaert, Frederik; Sabbe, Koen

    2010-08-01

    Understanding the enormous diversity of microbes, their multiple roles in the functioning of ecosystems, and their response to large-scale environmental and climatic changes, are at the forefront of the international research agenda. In Antarctica, where terrestrial and lacustrine environments are predominantly microbial realms, an active and growing community of microbial ecologists is probing this diversity and its role in ecosystem processes. In a broader context, this work has the potential to make a significant contribution to the long-standing debate as to whether microbes are fundamentally different from macroorganisms in their biogeography. According to the ubiquity hypothesis, microbial community composition is not constrained by dispersal limitation and is solely the result of species sorting along environmental gradients. However, recent work on several groups of microalgae is challenging this view. Global analyses using morphology-based diatom inventories have demonstrated that, in addition to environmental harshness, geographical isolation underlies the strong latitudinal gradients in local and regional diversity in the Southern hemisphere. Increasing evidence points to a strong regionalization of diatom floras in the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic regions, mirroring the biogeographical regions that have been recognized for macroorganisms. Likewise, the application of molecular-phylogenetic techniques to cultured and uncultured diversity revealed a high number of Antarctic endemics among cyanobacteria and green algae. Calibration of these phylogenies suggests that several clades have an ancient evolutionary history within the Antarctic continent, possibly dating back to 330 Ma. These findings are in line with the current view on the origin of Antarctic terrestrial metazoa, including springtails, chironomids and mites, with most evidence suggesting a long history of geographic isolation on a multi-million year, even pre-Gondwana break-up timescale.

  2. Observations and theories related to Antarctic ozone changes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hartmann, D.; Watson, R. T.; Cox, Richard A.; Kolb, C.; Mahlman, J.; Mcelroy, M.; Plumb, A.; Ramanathan, V.; Schoeberl, M.; Solomon, S.

    1989-01-01

    In 1985, there was a report of a large, sudden, and unanticipated decrease in the abundance of springtime Antarctic ozone over the last decade. By 1987, ozone decreases of more than 50 percent in the total column, and 95 percent locally between 15 and 20 km, had been observed. The scientific community quickly rose to the challenge of explaining this remarkable discovery; theoreticians soon developed a series of chemical and dynamical hypotheses to explain the ozone loss. Three basic theories were proposed to explain the springtime ozone hole. (1) The ozone hole is caused by the increasing atmospheric loadings of manmade chemicals containing chlorine (chlorofluorocarbons (CFC's) and bromine (halons)). These chemicals efficiently destroy ozone in the lower stratosphere in the Antarctic because of the special geophysical conditions, of an isolated air mass (polar vortex) with very cold temperatures, that exist there. (2) The circulation of the atmosphere in spring has changed from being predominantly downward over Antarctica to upward. This would mean that ozone poor air from the troposphere, instead of ozone rich air from the upper stratosphere, would be transported into the lower Antarctic stratosphere. (3) The abundance of the oxides of nitrogen in the lower Antarctic stratosphere is periodically enhanced by solar activity. Nitrogen oxides are produced in the upper mesosphere and thermosphere and then transported downward into the lower stratosphere in Antarctica, resulting in the chemical destruction of ozone. The climatology and trends of ozone, temperature, and polar stratospheric clouds are discussed. Also, the transport and chemical theories for the Antarctic ozone hole are presented.

  3. Biomarkers and Microbial Fossils In Antarctic Rocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wierzchos, J.; Ascaso, C.

    Lithobiontic microbial communities living within Antarctic rocks are an example of survival in an extremely cold and dry environment. Any unfavourable change in ex- ternal conditions can result in the death and disappearance of microscopic organisms, and this may be followed by the appearance of trace biomarkers and microbial fossils. The extinction of these microorganisms in some zones of the Ross Desert, probably provoked by the hostile environment, might be considered a good terrestrial analogue of the first stage of the disappearance of possible life on early Mars. Granite samples from maritime Antarctica (Granite Harbour) and sandstone rocks from the continental Ross Desert were collected with the aim of searching for biomarkers and microbial fossils at the microscopic level of observation. To this end, a novel in situ applica- tion of scanning electron microscopy with backscattered electron imaging was com- bined with the simultaneous use of X-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy techniques. Our findings confirm the existence of inorganic biomarkers in the form of physico- chemically bioweathered minerals within the granitic rocks. The presence of Fe-rich diagenetic minerals, such as iron hydroxide nanocrystals and biogenic clays around chasmoendolithic hyphae and bacterial cells was also observed. Others biomarkers, including inorganic deposits such as calcium oxalates and silica accumulations, are clear signs of endolithic microorganism activity. The interior of the sandstone rocks (Ross Desert, Mt. Fleming) reveal the presence of microbial fossils of algae and other endolithic microorganisms. These microbial fossils, detected for the first time within Antarctic rocks, contain well preserved and morphologically distinguishable relics of ultrastructural cytoplasm elements, such as cell walls, chloroplast membranes, and oc- casionally, pyrenoids and traces of organic matter. These structures are similar to those observed in live cells also found in Antarctic

  4. Learning from the past: Antarctic Eemian ice sheet dynamics as an analogy for future warming.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sutter, Johannes; Thoma, Malte; Grosfeld, Klaus; Gierz, Paul; Lohmann, Gerrit

    2015-04-01

    Facing considerable warming during this century the stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet is under increasing scrutiny. Recent observations suggest that the marine ice sheet instability of the WAIS has already started . We investigate the dynamic evolution of the Antarctic Ice Sheet during the last interglacial, forcing a state of the art 3D ice sheet model with Eemian boundary conditions. We elucidate the role of ocean warming and surface mass balance on the coupled ice sheet/shelf and grounding line dynamics. Special focus lies on an ice sheet modeling assessment of Antarctica's potential contribution to global sea level rise during the Eemian. The transient model runs are forced by time slice experiments of a fully coupled atmosphere-ocean global circulation model, as well as different sets of sea level and bedrock reconstructions. The model result show strong evidences for a severe ice-sheet retreat in West Antartica, leading to substantical contribution to global sea level from the Southern Hemisphere. Additionally we compare future warming scenarios of West Antarctic Ice Sheet dynamics to our paleo ice sheet modeling studies.

  5. Community dynamics of nematodes after Larsen ice-shelf collapse in the eastern Antarctic Peninsula.

    PubMed

    Hauquier, Freija; Ballesteros-Redondo, Laura; Gutt, Julian; Vanreusel, Ann

    2016-01-01

    Free-living marine nematode communities of the Larsen B embayment at the eastern Antarctic Peninsula were investigated to provide insights on their response and colonization rate after large-scale ice-shelf collapse. This study compares published data on the post-collapse situation from 2007 with new material from 2011, focusing on two locations in the embayment that showed highly divergent communities in 2007 and that are characterized by a difference in timing of ice-shelf breakup. Data from 2007 exposed a more diverse community at outer station B.South, dominated by the genus Microlaimus. On the contrary, station B.West in the inner part of Larsen B was poor in both numbers of individuals and genera, with dominance of a single Halomonhystera species. Re-assessment of the situation in 2011 showed that communities at both stations diverged even more, due to a drastic increase in Halomonhystera at B.West compared to relatively little change at B.South. On a broader geographical scale, it seems that B.South gradually starts resembling other Antarctic shelf communities, although the absence of the genus Sabatieria and the high abundance of Microlaimus still set it apart nine years after the main Larsen B collapse. In contrast, thriving of Halomonhystera at B.West further separates its community from other Antarctic shelf areas. PMID:26811794

  6. Unreviewed safety question evaluation of 100K East and 100K West in-basin fuel characterization program activities

    SciTech Connect

    Alwardt, L.D.

    1995-01-12

    The purpose of this report is to provide the basis for answers to an Unreviewed Safety Question (USQ) safety evaluation of the 105K East (KE) and 105K West (KW) in-basin activities associated with the fuel characterization program as described in the characterization shipping plan. The significant activities that are common to both 105 KE and 105 KW basins are the movement of canisters from their main basin storage locations (or potentially from the 105 KE Tech View Pit if a dump table is available) to the south loadout pit transfer channel, hydrogen generation testing in the single element fuel container, loading the single element fuel container into the shipping cask, loading of the shipping cask onto a flat-bed trailer, return of the test fuel elements or element pieces from the 327 facility, placement of the fuel elements back into Mark 2 canisters, and placement of the canisters in the main storage basin. Decapping of canisters in the south loadout pit transfer channel and re-encapsulation of canisters are activities specific to the 105 KW basin. The scope of this safety evaluation includes only those characterization fuel shipment activities performed in the 105 KE and 105 KW fuel storage basin structures up to installation of the overpack. The packaging safety evaluation report governs the shipment of the fuel elements. The K Basins Plant Review Committee has determined that the in-basin activities associated with the fuel characterization program fuel shipments are bounded by the current safety envelop and do not constitute an unreviewed safety question. This determination is documented on Attachment 1.

  7. Enzymatic activities and prokaryotic abundance in relation to organic matter along a West-East Mediterranean transect (TRANSMED cruise).

    PubMed

    Zaccone, R; Boldrin, A; Caruso, G; La Ferla, R; Maimone, G; Santinelli, C; Turchetto, M

    2012-07-01

    The distribution of extracellular enzymatic activities (EEA) [leucine aminopeptidase (LAP), ß-glucosidase (GLU), alkaline phosphatase (AP)], as well as that of prokaryotic abundance (PA) and biomass (PB), dissolved organic carbon (DOC), particulate organic carbon and particulate total nitrogen (POC, PTN), was determined in the epi-, meso-, and bathypelagic waters of the Mediterranean Sea along a West-East transect and at one Atlantic station located outside the Strait of Gibraltar. This study represents a synoptical evaluation of the microbial metabolism during early summer. Decreasing trends with depth were observed for most of the parameters (PA, PB, AP, DOC, POC, PTN). Significant differences between the western and eastern basins of the Mediterranean Sea were found, displaying higher rates of LAP and GLU and lower C/N ratios more in the eastern than in the western areas. Conversely, in the epipelagic layer, PA and PB were found to be higher in the western than in the eastern basins. PB was significantly related to DOC concentration (all data, n = 145, r = 0.53, P < 0.01), while significant correlations of EEA with POC and PTN were found in the epipelagic layer, indicating an active response of microbial metabolism to organic substrates. Specific enzyme activities normalized to cell abundance pointed out high values of LAP and GLU in the bathypelagic layer, especially in the eastern basin, while cell-specific AP was high in the epi- and bathypelagic zone of the eastern basin indicating a rapid regeneration of inorganic P for both prokaryotes and phytoplankton needs. Low activity and abundance characterized the Atlantic station, while opposite trends of these parameters were observed along the Mediterranean transect, showing the uncoupling between abundance and activity data. In the east Mediterranean Sea, decomposition processes increased probably in response to mesoscale structures which lead to organic matter downwelling. PMID:22349935

  8. Bromoalkane production by Antarctic ice algae

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sturges, W. T.; Sullivan, C. W.; Schnell, R. C.; Heidt, L. E.; Pollock, W. H.

    1993-01-01

    Ice microalgae, collected from the underside of annual sea ice in McMurdo Sound, Antarctica, were found to contain and release to seawater a number of brominated hydrocarbons. These included bromoform, dibromomethane, mixed bromochloromethanes, and methyl bromide. Atmospheric measurements in the McMurdo Sound vicinity revealed the presence of bromoform and methyl bromide in the lower atmosphere, with lowest concentrations inland, further indicating that biogenic activity in the Sound is a source of organic bromine gases to the Antarctic atmosphere. This may have important implications for boundary layer chemistry in Antarctica. In the Arctic, the presence of bromoform has been linked to loss of surface ozone in the spring. We report here preliminary evidence for similar surface ozone loss at McMurdo Station.

  9. Antibacterial activity and chemical constitutions of essential oils of Thymus persicus and Thymus eriocalyx from west of Iran.

    PubMed

    Talei, Gholam Reza; Meshkatalsadat, Mohammad Hadi

    2007-11-01

    The essential oils of Thymus persicus and Thymus eriocalyx were collected in Lorestan province, west of Iran and were examined by GC/MS and bacteriological tests. Twenty seven compounds representing 92.095% of T. persicus and 99.77% of Thymus eriocalyx essential oils were identified. The major constituents of T. persicus were thymol (10.71%), carvacrol (25.71%), gamma-terpinene (5.63%), alpha-pinene (1.14%), beta-pinene (1.02%), limonene (11.65%) trans-sabinene hydrate (7.78%) and 1-borneol (4.07%) and the major compounds of T. eriocalyx. were 1, 8-cinole (3.07%), L-linalool (1.01%), thymol (66.34%), caryophyllene oxide (2.96%) and carvacrol (7.5%). The oils also were examined for antibacterial activities against 6 standard bacteria by the broth microdilution and disc diffusion methods. They exhibited significant antibacterial activities against Staphylococcus aureus (MIC =1 : 235, MBC =1:20), Escherichia coli (MIC = 1:320, MBC =1:80) and Pseudomonas aeroginosa (MIC = MBC = 1:1280). The results were compared with control antibiotics. PMID:19090255

  10. The 1988 Antarctic ozone depletion - Comparison with previous year depletions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schoeberl, Mark R.; Stolarski, Richard S.; Krueger, Arlin J.

    1989-01-01

    The 1988 spring Antarctic ozone depletion was observed by TOMS to be substantially smaller than in recent years. The minimum polar total ozone values declined only 15 percent during September 1988, compared to nearly 50 percent during September 1987. At southern midlatitudes, exceptionally high total ozone values were recorded beginning in July 1988. The total integrated southern hemispheric ozone increased rapidly during the Austral spring, approaching 1980 levels during October. The high midlatitude total ozone values were associated with a substantial increase in eddy activity as indicated by the standard deviation in total ozone in the zonal band 30-60 deg S. Mechanisms through which the increased midlatitude eddy activity could disrupt the formation of the Antarctic ozone hole are briefly discussed.

  11. The 1988 Antarctic ozone depletion: Comparison with previous year depletions

    SciTech Connect

    Schoeberl, M.R.; Stolarski, R.S.; Krueger, A.J. )

    1989-05-01

    The 1988 spring Antarctic ozone depletion was observed by TOMS to be substantially smaller than in recent years. The minimum polar total ozone values declined only 15% during September 1988 compared to nearly 50% during September 1987. At southern midlatitudes, exceptionally high total ozone values were recorded beginning in July 1988. The total integrated southern hemispheric ozone increased rapidly during the Austral spring, approaching 1980 levels during October. The high midlatitude total ozone values were associated with a substantial increase in eddy activity as indicated by the standard deviation in total ozone in the zonal band 30{degree}-60{degree}S. The standard deviation also correlates with the QBO cycling of the tropical winds. Mechanisms through which the increased midlatitude eddy activity could disrupt the formation of the Antarctic ozone hole are briefly discussed.

  12. Heat Flow on the South West Indian Ridge at 14°E and the Consequences for Microbiological Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaul, N. E.; Molari, M.; Boetius, A.

    2014-12-01

    During RV POLARSTERN cruise PS81 to the South West Indian Ridge (SWIR) at 52°S, 14°E an integrated study was carried out in more than 4000 m water depth employing seismology, geology, microbiology, deep-sea ecology, heat flow and others. Heat flow is supposed to be an indicator for the varying depth of the magma chamber beneath the ridge axis. Bottom observations from previous work on the SWIR are scarce and visual information about geostructures, habitat landscapes, benthic faunal communities and their distribution in this area have so far been missing. Vigorous fluid flow in the form of black smokers or shimmering water could not be detected but enhanced heat flow due to upward pore water migration occurred. This leads to values of very high heat flow (up to 850 mW/m2) and advection rates up to 25 cm/a Darcy velocity. Enhanced biomass and a greater variation of megafauna along those sites of high heat flow could be inferred from reconnaissance observations with a camera sledge. A closer investigation of microbial activity in the material of gravity corers revealed favorable living conditions for microorganisms. We find the inorganic carbon fixation rates, here applied like a proxy of microbial metabolic activity, were significantly higher (up to 7 times higher) in surficial sediments in proximity of the station PS 81/640 compared to other stations along the ridge. Conversely the extracellular enzymatic activities did not show any significant difference in the potential organic matter degradation between the stations investigated. These results suggest an increase of chemosynthetic activities at St PS 81/649, possibly related to increase of availability of reduced compounds (i.e. sulphide, reduced metals) in presence of pore water flow.

  13. Viable Bacteria in Antarctic Soils and - Two Models for Extraterrestrial Search of Life

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soina, Vera; Vorobyova, Elena; Lysak, Ludmila; Mergelov, Nikita

    Antarctic soils and permafrost are the most convenient models for search life preservation in extraterrestrial cryogenic environment. Study of life activity and preservation of prokaryotes in such extreme environment allow assuming, that those habitats must be viewed as two models for astrobiology extrapolations. Antarctic permafrost due to long term freezing can be regarded as the most stable environment for life preservation and expanding of potential physiological cell activity due to stabilization of cell structures and biomolecules. Antarctic soils seem to be not less attractive as a model for study of life on the surface of Antarctic rocks, but in contrast to permafrost are characterized by less stable external factors. Presumably, it is due to changing cycles of freezing and thawing and high doses of UV radiation, that make such biotopes more extreme for microbial survival. A combination of culture- depended and - independent techniques, including SEM and TEM methods were used to characterize bacteria community in earlier not investigated Antarctic soils in the oases of Larsemann Hills (East Antarctic Coast). Several important characteristics of Antarctic soil and permafrost bacteria as models for possible signs of life in extraterrestrial habitats are discussed (cytomorphological and physiological characteristics of bacteria both in situ, and cells isolated from permafrost and exposed to various external stress factors). Our data indicate that significant discrepancy between indexes of total and viable number of cells and irregularity of such indexes in horizons of developing soils and permafrost sediments can be explained by specification of physical and chemical processes in those habitats. Also, in Antarctic and extraterrestrial investigations is important to take into account the leading role of microbial biofilms, where microorganisms are intimately associated with each other and mineral particles through binding and inclusion within exopolymer matrix

  14. Antarctic Meteorite Newsletter, Volume 28, Number 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Righter, Kevin (Editor); Satterwhite, Cecilia (Editor)

    2005-01-01

    This newsletter contains classifications for 274 new meteorites from the 2003 and 2004 ANtarctic Search for METeorites (ANSMET) collections. They include samples from the Cumulus Hills, Larkman Nunatak, LaPaz Ice Field, MacAlpine Hills, Dominion Range, Miller Range, Roberts Massif, and Sandford Cliffs. Tables are provided of the newly classified Antarctic meteorites, meteorites classified by type, and tentative pairings petrographic descriptions.

  15. Habitat Selection and Foraging Behavior of Southern Elephant Seals in the Western Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huckstadt, L.; Costa, D. P.; McDonald, B. I.; Tremblay, Y.; Crocker, D. E.; Goebel, M. E.; Fedak, M. E.

    2006-12-01

    We examined the foraging behavior of 18 southern elephant seals foraging over two seasons in the Western Antarctic Peninsula. The foraging behavior and habitat utilization of 7 females in 2005 and 12 in 2006 were followed using satellite linked Satellite Relay Data Loggers that measured diving behavior as well collected salinity and temperature profiles as the animals dove. Animals were tagged after the annual molt during February at Cape Shirreff Livngston Island, South Shetland Islands. There was significant interannual variation in the regions of the Southern Ocean used by seals from Livingston Island. In 2005 of the 7 animals tagged one foraged 4700 km due west of the Antarctic Peninsula going as far as 150 W. The remaining females headed south along the Western Antarctic Peninsula bypassing Marguerite Bay moving south along Alexander Island. Three of these animals continued to forage in the pack ice as it developed. On their return trip all females swam past Livingston Island, continuing on to South Georgia Island where they apparently bred in the austral spring. One animal returned to Cape Shirreff to molt and her tag was recovered. During 2006 animals initially followed a similar migratory pattern going south along the Antarctic Peninsula, but unlike 2005 where the majority of the animals remained in the immediate vicinity of the Western Antarctic Peninsula, most of the animals in 2006 moved well to the west foraging as far as the Amundsen Sea. We compared the area restricted search (focal foraging areas) areas of these animals using a newly developed fractal landscape technique that identifies and quantifies areas of intensive search. The fractal analysis of area restricted search shows that the area, distance and coverage (Fractal D) searched were not different between years, while the time spent in the search areas was higher in 2005. Further analysis will examine how the physical properties of the water column as determined from the CTD data derived from

  16. Antarctic Ice-Sheet Mass Balance from Satellite Altimetry 1992 to 2001

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zwally, H. Jay; Brenner, Anita C.; Cornejo, Helen; Giovinetto, Mario; Saba, Jack L.; Yi, Donghui

    2003-01-01

    A major uncertainty in understanding the causes of the current rate of sea level rise is the potential contributions from mass imbalances of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. Estimates of the current mass balance of the Antarctic ice sheet are derived from surface- elevation changes obtained from 9 years of ERS - 1 & 2 radar altimeter data. Elevation time-series are created from altimeter crossovers among 90-day data periods on a 50 km grid to 81.5 S. The time series are fit with a multivariate linear/sinusoidal function to give the average rate of elevation change (dH/dt). On the major Rome-Filchner, Ross, and Amery ice shelves, the W d t are small or near zero. In contrast, the ice shelves of the Antarctic Peninsula and along the West Antarctic coast appear to be thinning significantly, with a 23 +/- 3 cm per year surface elevation decrease on the Larsen ice shelf and a 65 +/- 4 cm per year decrease on the Dotson ice shelf. On the grounded ice, significant elevation decreases are obtained over most of the drainage basins of the Pine Island and Thwaites glaciers in West Antarctica and inland of Law Dome in East Antarctica. Significant elevation increases are observed within about 200 km of the coast around much of the rest of the ice sheet. Farther inland, the changes are a mixed pattern of increases and decreases with increases of a few centimeters per year at the highest elevations of the East Antarctic plateau. The derived elevation changes are combined with estimates of the bedrock uplift from several models to provide maps of ice thickness change. The ice thickness changes enable estimates of the ice mass balances for the major drainage basins, the overall mass balance, and the current contribution of the ice sheet to global sea level change.

  17. Extreme late chronotypes and social jetlag challenged by Antarctic conditions in a population of university students from Uruguay

    PubMed Central

    Tassino, Bettina; Horta, Stefany; Santana, Noelia; Levandovski, Rosa; Silva, Ana

    2016-01-01

    In humans, a person’s chronotype depends on environmental cues and on individual characteristics, with late chronotypes prevailing in youth. Social jetlag (SJL), the misalignment between an individual׳s biological clock and social time, is higher in late chronotypes. Strong SJL is expected in Uruguayan university students with morning class schedules and very late entertainment activities. Sleep disorders have been reported in Antarctic inhabitants, that might be a response to the extreme environment or to the strictness of Antarctic life. We evaluated, for the first time in Uruguay, the chronotypes and SJL of 17 undergraduate students of the First Uruguayan Summer School on Antarctic Research, using Munich Chronotype Questionnaire (MCTQ) and sleep logs (SL) recorded during 3 phases: pre-Antarctic, Antarctic, and post-Antarctic. The midsleep point of free days corrected for sleep debt on work days (MSFsc,) was used as proxy of individuals’ chronotype, whose values (around 6 a.m.) are the latest ever reported. We found a SJL of around 2 h in average, which correlated positively with MSFsc, confirming that late chronotypes generate a higher sleep debt during weekdays. Midsleep point and sleep duration significantly decreased between pre-Antarctic and Antarctic phases, and sleep duration rebounded to significant higher values in the post-Antarctic phase. Waking time, but not sleep onset time, significantly varied among phases. This evidence suggests that sleep schedules more likely depended on the social agenda than on the environmental light–dark shifts. High motivation of students towards Antarctic activities likely induced a subjective perception of welfare non-dependent on sleep duration. PMID:27226819

  18. Extreme late chronotypes and social jetlag challenged by Antarctic conditions in a population of university students from Uruguay.

    PubMed

    Tassino, Bettina; Horta, Stefany; Santana, Noelia; Levandovski, Rosa; Silva, Ana

    2016-01-01

    In humans, a person's chronotype depends on environmental cues and on individual characteristics, with late chronotypes prevailing in youth. Social jetlag (SJL), the misalignment between an individual׳s biological clock and social time, is higher in late chronotypes. Strong SJL is expected in Uruguayan university students with morning class schedules and very late entertainment activities. Sleep disorders have been reported in Antarctic inhabitants, that might be a response to the extreme environment or to the strictness of Antarctic life. We evaluated, for the first time in Uruguay, the chronotypes and SJL of 17 undergraduate students of the First Uruguayan Summer School on Antarctic Research, using Munich Chronotype Questionnaire (MCTQ) and sleep logs (SL) recorded during 3 phases: pre-Antarctic, Antarctic, and post-Antarctic. The midsleep point of free days corrected for sleep debt on work days (MSFsc,) was used as proxy of individuals' chronotype, whose values (around 6 a.m.) are the latest ever reported. We found a SJL of around 2 h in average, which correlated positively with MSFsc, confirming that late chronotypes generate a higher sleep debt during weekdays. Midsleep point and sleep duration significantly decreased between pre-Antarctic and Antarctic phases, and sleep duration rebounded to significant higher values in the post-Antarctic phase. Waking time, but not sleep onset time, significantly varied among phases. This evidence suggests that sleep schedules more likely depended on the social agenda than on the environmental light-dark shifts. High motivation of students towards Antarctic activities likely induced a subjective perception of welfare non-dependent on sleep duration. PMID:27226819

  19. Reagan: Maintain Antarctic program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richman, Barbara T.

    President Ronald Reagan has decided that the United States should maintain an ‘active and influential presence’ in Antarctica to support the nation's interests. Following a review of a study by the Antarctica Policy Group, Reagan issued a memorandum, dated February 5, to the heads of 14 government agencies, including the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Office of Science and Technology Policy, and the Office of Management and Budget.The U.S. presence in Antarctica ‘shall include the conduct of scientific activities in major disciplines; year-round occupation of the South Pole and two coastal stations; and availability of related necessary logistics support,’ wrote the President. In addition, NSF should continue to budget for the entire U.S. program in Antarctica. Short-term programs by other agencies require the recommendation of the Antarctica Policy Group and should be coordinated within the framework of NSF logistics support.

  20. Models for the volume of earliest Oligocene Antarctic ice on reconstructed Antarctic topography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, D. S.; Pollard, D.; DeConto, R.; Jamieson, S.; Luyendyk, B. P.

    2011-12-01

    The Eocene-Oligocene (E-O) climate transition is widely recognized as including both growth of a substantial Antarctic ice sheet and cooling of the deep ocean, recorded most quantitatively by a sharp increase in benthic marine oxygen isotopes. As the oceanographic record of oxygen isotopes depends on both ice volume and temperature, substantial recent effort has been directed to interpreting proxy records of temperature and sea level in order to determine the changes in ice volume and temperature. The general consensus is that the ice-volume increase at E-O is comparable to or most plausibly larger than the volume of present Antarctic ice (25.4 M km3, BEDMAP). Early models of E-O ice growth have not produced this volume. One of the factors limiting the value of the early ice-growth models is the use of present Antarctic bedrock topography as a boundary condition. The use of present topography ignores the potentially significant long-term processes of landscape evolution including glacial erosion, thermal subsidence and tectonics which are likely to have changed the relationship between topography and ice dynamics in Antarctica. We present models contrasting the ice volume supported by the present topography (BEDMAP, restored for removing the load of modern ice) with the ice volume supported by minimum and maximum estimates of reconstructed E-O topography [Wilson, D.S., et al., Antarctic topography at the Eocene-Oligocene boundary, Palaeogeogr. Palaeoclimatol. Palaeoecol., 2011, in press, doi:10.1016/j.palaeo.2011.05.028], which restore substantial areas of West Antarctica above sea level. These models are based on running a 3-D ice-sheet model to equilibrium, in a climate obtained from a look-up matrix of GENESIS GCM snapshots with atmospheric CO2 set to 2x preindustrial level, and an average Earth orbit. Using a uniformly high-friction basal boundary condition for ice sliding, our preliminary predictions for total ice volume are 23.6 Mkm3 for BEDMAP, 35.6 Mkm3 for

  1. Nauclea latifolia: biological activity and alkaloid phytochemistry of a West African tree.

    PubMed

    Boucherle, Benjamin; Haudecoeur, Romain; Queiroz, Emerson Ferreira; De Waard, Michel; Wolfender, Jean-Luc; Robins, Richard J; Boumendjel, Ahcène

    2016-09-25

    Covering up to 2016Nauclea latifolia (syn. Sarcocephalus latifolius, Rubiaceae), commonly called the African pincushion tree, is a plant widely used in folk medicine in different regions of Africa for treating a variety of illnesses, including malaria, epilepsy and pain. N. latifolia has not only drawn the interest of traditional healers but also of phytochemists, who have identified a range of bioactive indole alkaloids in its tissue. More recently, following up on the traditional use of extracts in pain management, a bio-guided purification from the roots of the tree led to the identification of the active ingredient as tramadol, available as a synthetic analgesic since the 1970s. The discovery of this compound as a natural phytochemical was highlighted worldwide. This review focuses on the correlation between extracted compounds and pharmacological activities, paying special attention to infectious diseases and neurologically-related disorders. A critical analysis of the data reported so far on the natural origin of tramadol and its proposed biosynthesis is also presented. PMID:27346294

  2. Stable isotopes and Antarctic moss banks: Plants and soil microbes respond to recent warming on the Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Royles, Jessica; Amesbury, Matthew; Ogée, Jérôme; Wingate, Lisa; Convey, Peter; Hodgson, Dominic; Griffiths, Howard; Leng, Melanie; Charman, Dan

    2014-05-01

    The Antarctic Peninsula is one of the most rapidly warming regions on Earth, with air temperature increases of as much as 3°C recorded since the 1950s. However, the longer-term context of this change is limited and existing records, largely relying on ice core data, are not suitably located to be able to trace the spatial signature of change over time. We are working on a project exploiting stable isotope records preserved in moss peat banks spanning 10 degrees of latitude along the Antarctic Peninsula as an archive of late Holocene climate variability. Here we present a unique time series of past moss growth and soil microbial activity that has been produced from a 150 year old moss bank at Lazarev Bay, Alexander Island (69°S), a site at the southern limit of significant plant growth in the Antarctic Peninsula region. These moss banks are ideal archives for palaeoclimate research as they are well-preserved by freezing, generally monospecific, easily dated by radiocarbon techniques, and have sufficiently high accumulation rates to permit decadal resolution. We use accumulation rates, cellulose δ13C and fossil testate amoebae to show that growth rates, assimilation and microbial productivity rose rapidly in the 1960s, consistent with temperature change, although recently may have stalled, concurrent with other evidence. The increase in biological activity is unprecedented in the last 150 years. Along with work completed on Signy Island (60°S), in the South Orkney Islands, in which we used carbon isotope evidence to show recent climate-related enhancement of CO2 assimilation and peat accumulation rates in Antarctica, the observed relationships between moss growth, microbial activity and climate suggests that moss bank records have the potential to test the regional expression of temperature variability shown by instrumental data on the Antarctic Peninsula over centennial to millennial timescales, by providing long-term records of summer growth conditions

  3. Oxygen Isotope Mass-Balance Constraints on Pliocene Sea Level and East Antarctic Ice Sheet Stability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winnick, M. J.; Caves, J. K.

    2015-12-01

    The mid-Pliocene Warm Period (MPWP, 3.3-2.9 Ma), with reconstructed atmospheric pCO2 of 350-450 ppm, represents a potential analogue for climate change in the near future. Current highly cited estimates place MPWP maximum global mean sea level (GMSL) at 21 ± 10 m above modern, requiring total loss of the Greenland (GIS) and marine West Antarctic Ice Sheets (WAIS) and a substantial loss of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS), with only a concurrent 2-3 ºC rise in global temperature. Many estimates of Pliocene GMSL are based on the partitioning of oxygen isotope records from benthic foraminifera (δ18Ob) into changes in deep-sea temperatures and terrestrial ice sheets. These isotopic budgets are underpinned by the assumption that the δ18O of Antarctic ice (δ18Oi) was the same in the Pliocene as it is today, and while the sensitivity of δ18Ob to changing meltwater δ18O has been previously considered, these analyses neglect conservation of 18O/16O in the ocean-ice system. Using well-calibrated δ18O-temperature relationships for Antarctic precipitation along with estimates of Pliocene Antarctic surface temperatures, we argue that the δ18Oi of the Pliocene Antarctic ice sheet was at minimum 1‰-4‰ higher than present. Assuming conservation of 18O/16O in the ocean-ice system, this requires lower Pliocene seawater δ18O (δ18Osw) without a corresponding change in ice sheet mass. This effect alone accounts for 5%-20% of the δ18Ob difference between the MPWP interglacials and the modern. With this amended isotope budget, we suggest that Pliocene GMSL was likely 9-13.5 m and very likely 5-17 m above modern, which suggests the EAIS is less sensitive to radiative forcing than previously inferred from the geologic record.

  4. Bacterial production, glucosidase activity and particle-associated carbohydrates in Dona Paula bay, west coast of India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhaskar, P. V.; Bhosle, N. B.

    2008-11-01

    Size-fractionated bacterial production, abundance and α- and β- glucosidase enzyme activities were studied with respect to changes in hydrography, total suspended matter (TSM), chlorophyll a, particulate organic carbon and nitrogen ratio (POC:PON), 1.5 M NaCl-soluble and 10 mM EDTA-soluble carbohydrates (Sal-PCHO and CPCHO) and transparent exopolymeric particles (TEP) in the surface waters from July 1999-2000 at a shallow coastal station in Dona Paula Bay, west coast of India. The bulk of the total bacterial production and glucosidase activity were associated with particles (75% and >80%, respectively). Total bacterial production was linearly correlated to chlorophyll a ( r = 0.513; p < 0.05) whereas enzyme activity was significantly correlated to TSM (α-glucosidase: r = 0.721 ( p < 0.001); β-glucosidase: r = 0.596 ( p < 0.01)). Both α-glucosidase ( r = 0.514; p < 0.05) and β-glucosidase enzymes ( r = 0.598; p < 0.01) appeared to be involved in the degradation of CPCHO and Sal-PCHO, respectively. Changes in α-glucosidase/β-glucosidase ratios highlighted the varying composition of particulate organic matter. The bacterial uptake of 14C-labeled bacterial extracellular carbohydrate measured over 11 days showed a strong linear correlation between 14C-uptake and bacterial production using tritiated thymidine. The turnover rate of 14C-labeled carbohydrate-C was 0.52 d -1, higher than the estimated annual mean potential carbohydrate carbon turnover rate of 0.33 ± 0.2 d -1. Our study suggests that carbohydrates derived from sediments may serve as an important alternative carbon source sustaining the bacterial carbon demand in the surface waters of Dona Paula Bay.

  5. WEST Physics Basis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bourdelle, C.; Artaud, J. F.; Basiuk, V.; Bécoulet, M.; Brémond, S.; Bucalossi, J.; Bufferand, H.; Ciraolo, G.; Colas, L.; Corre, Y.; Courtois, X.; Decker, J.; Delpech, L.; Devynck, P.; Dif-Pradalier, G.; Doerner, R. P.; Douai, D.; Dumont, R.; Ekedahl, A.; Fedorczak, N.; Fenzi, C.; Firdaouss, M.; Garcia, J.; Ghendrih, P.; Gil, C.; Giruzzi, G.; Goniche, M.; Grisolia, C.; Grosman, A.; Guilhem, D.; Guirlet, R.; Gunn, J.; Hennequin, P.; Hillairet, J.; Hoang, T.; Imbeaux, F.; Ivanova-Stanik, I.; Joffrin, E.; Kallenbach, A.; Linke, J.; Loarer, T.; Lotte, P.; Maget, P.; Marandet, Y.; Mayoral, M. L.; Meyer, O.; Missirlian, M.; Mollard, P.; Monier-Garbet, P.; Moreau, P.; Nardon, E.; Pégourié, B.; Peysson, Y.; Sabot, R.; Saint-Laurent, F.; Schneider, M.; Travère, J. M.; Tsitrone, E.; Vartanian, S.; Vermare, L.; Yoshida, M.; Zagorski, R.; Contributors, JET

    2015-06-01

    With WEST (Tungsten Environment in Steady State Tokamak) (Bucalossi et al 2014 Fusion Eng. Des. 89 907-12), the Tore Supra facility and team expertise (Dumont et al 2014 Plasma Phys. Control. Fusion 56 075020) is used to pave the way towards ITER divertor procurement and operation. It consists in implementing a divertor configuration and installing ITER-like actively cooled tungsten monoblocks in the Tore Supra tokamak, taking full benefit of its unique long-pulse capability. WEST is a user facility platform, open to all ITER partners. This paper describes the physics basis of WEST: the estimated heat flux on the divertor target, the planned heating schemes, the expected behaviour of the L-H threshold and of the pedestal and the potential W sources. A series of operating scenarios has been modelled, showing that ITER-relevant heat fluxes on the divertor can be achieved in WEST long pulse H-mode plasmas.

  6. Chemistry of the Antarctic stratosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcelroy, Michael B.; Salawitch, Ross J.; Wofsy, Steven C.

    1988-01-01

    Interferometric measurements of HCl, ClNO3, HNO3, NO2, and NO obtained over the Antarctic in 1986 are used to model the chemistry of the atmosphere in the region of the Ozone Hole. The low abundance noted in stratospheric HCl is attributed to incorporation of HCl in polar stratospheric clouds and subsequent reaction of HCl with ClNO3. The results point to a net loss of HNO3 from the stratosphere and to the suppression of the abundance of odd nitrogen at high altitudes in the vortex. O3 loss is suggested to be due to the catalytic influence of halogen radicals.

  7. Cellulolytic Activity of Thermophilic Bacilli Isolated from Tattapani Hot Spring Sediment in North West Himalayas.

    PubMed

    Priya, Indu; Dhar, M K; Bajaj, B K; Koul, Sanjana; Vakhlu, Jyoti

    2016-06-01

    Eight thermophilic bacterial strains were isolated from Tattapani Hot spring and screened for various hydrolytic enzymes including cellulases. The isolated bacterial strains were identified as Geobacillus thermodenitrificans IP_WH1(KP842609), Bacillus licheniformis IP_WH2(KP842610), B. aerius IP_WH3(KP842611), B. licheniformis IP_WH4(KP842612), B. licheniformis IP_60Y(KP842613), G. thermodenitrificans IP_60A1(KP842614), Geobacillus sp. IP_60A2(KP842615) and Geobacillus sp. IP_80TP(KP842616) after 16S ribotying. Out of the eight isolates Geobacillus sp. IP_80TP grew best at 80 °C whereas rest of the isolates showed optimal growth at 60 °C. G. thermodenitrificans IP_WH1 produced a thermotolerant cellulase with maximum activity at 60 °C. PMID:27570317

  8. Active submarine volcanism on the Society hotspot swell (west Pacific): A geochemical study

    SciTech Connect

    Devey, C.W.; Albarede, F.; Michard, A. ); Cheminee, J.L. ); Muehe, R.; Stoffers, P. )

    1990-04-10

    The present work deals with the petrography and geochemistry of lavas dredged from five active submarine volcanoes (named Mehetia, Moua Pihaa, Rocard, Teahitia, and Cyana) from the southeast end of the Society Islands hotspot trace. Most samples are basic and alkaline. Fractionation modelling based on major and minor compatible element variations suggests that olivine and minor clinopyroxene were the major fractionating phases. Rocard and Cyana have yielded more evolved, trachy-phonolitic, glassy samples. Both basaltic and phonolitic samples are incompatible-element enriched. The trachy-phonolite patterns show middle (REE) depletion and negative Eu anomalies. The Moua Pihaa basalts have flatter patterns than the other basalts. All smaples, with the exception of a sample from Moua Pihaa which has elevated {sup 206}Pb/{sup 204}Pb, fall on linear Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic arrays, suggesting two end-member mixing. The Sr isotopic variations in the samples excluding Moua Pihaa correlate positively with Rb/Nb, Pb/Ce, and SiO{sub 2} variations, idicating a component of mantle enriched by injection of material from a subducted oceanic slab. Correlation of {sup 207}Pb/{sup 204}Pb with {sup 87}Sr/{sup 86}Sr suggests that the subducted material is geochemically old. The absence of a MORB component in the Society magmatism, the small volumes of the Polynesian hotspot volcanoes, and the lack of more intense volcanic activity near the center of the Pacific Superswell, all lead to the conclusion that the latter is unlikely to be caused by a large convective plume.

  9. Changes in nearshore waves during the active sea/land breeze period off Vengurla, central west coast of India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amrutha, M. M.; Sanil Kumar, V.; Singh, J.

    2016-02-01

    A unique feature observed in the tropical and subtropical coastal area is the diurnal sea-breeze/land-breeze cycle. We examined the nearshore waves at 5 and 15 m water depth during the active sea/land breeze period (January-April) in the year 2015 based on the data measured using the waverider buoys moored in the eastern Arabian sea off Vengurla, central west coast of India. Temporal variability of diurnal wave response is examined. Numerical model Delft3D is used to study the nearshore wave transformation. The wave height increased due to the sea breeze and reached its peak at ˜ 13:00 UTC at 15 m water depth, whereas the peak significant wave height is at 12:00 UTC at 5 m water depth. Due to the influence of the land/sea breeze system, the range of the peak wave period in 1 day varied up to 8 s. Reduction in the wave height of wind-sea is around 20 % and that of the swell is around 10 % from 15 to 5 m water depth.

  10. IHY activities in West Asia: Research and Education in Astronomy and Space Sciences for Arab Countries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Al-Naimiy, H. M. K.

    2006-11-01

    alnaimiy2@yahoo.com Astronomy and Space Sciences (ASS) are important fields of research, study, knowledge and culture. They have been the cradle of both eastern and western sciences. We all know, from education and psychology, about the effective teaching and learning of ASS. Unfortunately, a small percentage of this knowledge is actually used in teaching at schools, universities level and any other academic institutions in the Arab countries. The challenge is to provide effective professional development for ASS educators and researchers at all levels, from elementary school to university. ASS is the most appealing subject to young students and very important tool to convey scientific knowledge? Once students have understood the importance of science, they might be more easily pursued to continue their education in science and technology. The aim of this paper is to show the importance of the formal and informal ASS research, and education, giving an example of a possible curriculum, projects, and comments on the activities that have been carried out in a few Arab countries. We feel the need for a new communication channel among the Arab people based on our common scientific ground. ASS is, in this respect, the best possible choice in the vast cultural heritage of the Arab basin. The final purpose is scientific and economical. Building modern and good observatories, planetariums and research centers in the region jointly by Arab astronomers and space scientists is essential and will be an excellent step toward developing astronomy and astrophysics (for research, education and knowledge).

  11. Mercury speciation and dispersion from an active gold mine at the West Wits area, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Lusilao-Makiese, J G; Tessier, E; Amouroux, D; Tutu, H; Chimuka, L; Weiersbye, I; Cukrowska, E M

    2016-01-01

    Total mercury (HgTOT), inorganic mercury (IHg), and methylmercury (MHg) were determined in dry season waters, sediments, and tailings from an active mine which has long history of gold exploitation. Although HgTOT in waters was generally low (0.03 to 19.60 ng L(-1)), the majority of the samples had proportions of MHg of at least 90 % of HgTOT which denotes a substantial methylation potential of the mine watersheds. Mercury was relatively high in tailing materials (up to 867 μg kg(-1)) and also in the mine sediments (up to 837 μg kg(-1)) especially in samples collected near tailing storage facilities and within a receiving water dam. Sediment profiles revealed mercury enrichment and enhanced methylation rate at deeper layers. The presence of IHg and decaying plants (organic matter) in the watersheds as well as the anoxic conditions of bulk sediments are believed to be some of the key factors favoring the mercury methylation at the site. PMID:26687090

  12. The Southern Hemisphere quasi-stationary eddies and their relationship with Antarctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hobbs, William Richard

    The west Antarctic region shows one of the strongest warming trends globally over the late 20th century, whilst much of the Antarctic continent shows little trend or even cooling. Additionally, sea ice reductions in the Antarctic Peninsula region have been balanced by sea ice increases in the Ross Sea region. Despite this heterogeneity, much recent research in the Southern Hemisphere has focused on the approximately zonally-symmetric Southern Annular Mode. In this research, reanalysis and satellite data are analyzed to show that at monthly and annual timescales the zonally asymmetric circulation over the Southern Ocean is dominated by two quasi-stationary anticyclones; a stable western anticyclone approximately located south of New Zealand, and a more variable eastern anticyclone located over the Drake Passage region. Time series describing each anticyclone's strength and longitude, and these time series are used to investigate the physical nature and influence of the anticyclones. The anticyclones are found to have some covariance, and in particular they tend to shift in phase, but their strengths are negatively correlated. Quasi-geostrophic diagnosis indicates that the west anticyclone is maintained by meridional vorticity advection by poleward airflow south of Australia, whereas the east anticyclone is forced by zonal convergence over the Pacific Ocean. The differences in variability and dynamic nature between the anticyclones bring into question the utility of the zonal wave decomposition, which is commonly used in analysis of the Southern Hemisphere zonally asymmetric circulation. It is shown that the quasi-stationary anticyclones influence west Antarctic sea ice in a pattern that resembles the 1st and 3rd principal components of ice variability. The anticyclones have some effect on wind-driven sea ice motion, but the primary mechanism explaining their link to sea ice appears to be meridional thermal advection.

  13. Spatial and temporal variability of Antarctic precipitation from atmospheric methods

    SciTech Connect

    Cullather, R.L.; Bromwich, D.H.; Van Woert, M.L.

    1998-03-01

    The spatial and temporal variability of net precipitation (precipitation minus evaporation/sublimation) for Antarctica derived from the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts operational analyses via the atmospheric moisture budget is assessed in comparison to a variety of glaciological and meteorological observations and datasets. For the 11-yr period 1985-95, the average continental value is 151 mm yr{sup {minus}1} water equivalent. Large regional differences with other datasets are identified, and the sources of error are considered. Interannual variability in the Southern Ocean storm tracks is found to be an important mechanism for enhanced precipitation minus evaporation (P-E) in both east and west Antarctica. In relation to the present findings, an evaluation of the rawinsonde method for estimating net precipitation in east Antarctica is conducted. Estimates of P-E using synthetic rawinsondes derived from the analyses are found to compare favorably to glaciological estimates. A significant upward trend of 2.4 mm yr{sup {minus}1} is found for the Antarctic continent that is consistent with findings from the National Centers for Environmental Prediction, formerly the National Meteorological Center, and the National Center for Atmospheric Research Reanalysis precipitation dataset. Despite large regional discrepancies, the general agreement on the main features of Antarctic precipitation between studies suggests that a threshold has been reached, where the assessment of the smaller terms including evaporation/sublimation and drift snow loss is required to explain the differences. 76 refs., 24 figs., 1 tab.

  14. Variability of total electron content over an equatorial West African station during low solar activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bolaji, O. S.; Adeniyi, J. O.; Radicella, S. M.; Doherty, P. H.

    2012-01-01

    Slant total electron content (STEC) data measured by the Global Positioning System receiver at Ilorin, Nigeria, with geographical coordinates 8.47°N, 4.68°E for the year 2009 (a low-activity year) was used to study the diurnal, monthly standard deviation and monthly median value of total electron content (TEC). The vertical total electron content (VTEC) values are estimated from the STEC data. The thin shell approximation with an ionospheric shell height of 350 km was used for the analysis. The diurnal variation of VTEC (DTEC) and its corresponding monthly median variation (MTEC) shows a minimum at presunrise between the hours of 05:00 and 06:00 LT. The DTEC values show a maximum variation range from ˜24 to ˜34 total electron content unit (TECU). The daytime maximum TEC values observed in all the months were broad with a slight daytime depression in May, June, July, and November. The maximum variation of MTEC after slight daytime depression is greater than its variation before the slight daytime depression in the months affected with the month of July as exception. The slight daytime depression was lowest in the month of May and has a value of 0.99 TECU. A postsunset decrease at 20:00 LT with corresponding enhancement 2 h later was observed in the month of March. This post sunset decrease and enhancement in the month of March could be a strong indicator of the abrupt onset of scintillations, plasma bubbles, and spread F phenomenon. The monthly standard deviation depicts summary behavior of all the diurnal variations in each month. Annual and seasonal variations were also investigated.

  15. Neotectonic activity in and around the southwestern Rhenish shield (West Germany): indications of a levelling comparison

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demoulin, A.; Pissart, A.; Zippelt, K.

    1995-09-01

    Precise levelling data are re-examined in the southwestern Rhenish shield and its foreland by comparing them analytically along levelling profiles. Instead of generalizing regional vertical movement trends, this method emphasizes the activity of individual structural elements, which can be located with a high accuracy. It is shown that present-day vertical motions concentrate on fractures which cut the massif into a number of tectonic blocks. These undergo more or less independent movements. Significant measured displacements range from 1 to 3.5 cm over an average 20-year period and correspond mostly to aseismic slip. High displacements are found near pre-existing faults, sometimes also zones of joint concentration which are favourably oriented with respect to the current regional stress field. In the Mosel area, SW-NE-trending faults are predominantly reactivated as reverse faults. The motion inferred for the Hunsrück border fault is also consistent with the compressive regime presently observed in that area, with σ1 oriented to the northwest. The direction of vertical motions along the western border fault of the upper Rhine graben changes from south to north in relation to the different azimuths of the central and northern segments of the graben, inducing a S-N-oriented transition from compressional to extensional shear. Within the graben itself, some N160°E-trending normal faults are identified, one of them having probably ruptured in a swarm of microearthquaks not long before the second survey was performed. The western Saar-Nahe trough is characterized by N-S-oriented fractures which cannot be related to mapped faults but show a close connection with photolineaments.

  16. Chemical composition and antibacterial activity of Pinus halepensis Miller growing in West Northern of Algeria

    PubMed Central

    Fekih, Nadia; Allali, Hocine; Merghache, Salima; Chaïb, Faïza; Merghache, Djamila; El Amine, Mohamed; Djabou, Nassim; Muselli, Alain; Tabti, Boufeldja; Costa, Jean

    2014-01-01

    Objective To find new bioactive natural products, the chemical composition and to sudy the antibacterial activity of essential oil components extracted from the aerial parts of the Algerian aromatic plant Pinus halepensis Miller (P. halepensis) (needles, twigs and buds). Methods The essential oil used in this study was isolated by hydrodistillation using a Clevenger-type apparatus according to the European Pharmacopoeia. The chemical composition was investigated using GC-retention indices (RI) and GC-MS. Results Forty-nine compounds, representing 97.9% of the total collective oil, were identified. Essential oil was dominated by hydrocarbon compounds (80.6%) especially monoterpenes (65.5%). The major compounds from ten oils stations were: myrcene (15.2%-32.0%), α-pinene (12.2%-24.5%), E-β-caryophyllene (7.0%-17.1%), terpinolene (1.8%-13.3%), 2-phenyl ethyl isovalerate (4.8%-10.9%), terpinene-4-ol (1.0%-8.2 %) and sabinene (1.5%-6.3%). The intra-species variations of the chemical compositions of P. halepensis aerial parts essential oils from ten Algerian sample locations were investigated using statistical analysis. Essential oil samples were clustered in 2 groups by hierarchical cluster analysis, according to their chemical composition. The essential oil revealed an interesting antimicrobial effect against Lysteria monocytogenes, Enterococcus faecalis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Acinetobacter baumanii, Citrobacter freundii and Klebsiella pneumoniae. Conclusions These results suggest that the essential oil from P. halepensis may be a new potential source as natural antimicrobial applied in pharmaceutical and food industries.

  17. Challenges to antarctic science in a changing social order

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-03-01

    The November, 1992 report of the Commission on the Future of the NSF recommends that NSF should be guided by two goals: supporting first rate research, on the frontier of knowledge, which has been identified and defined by the best scientists; balancing resources among fields and research activities in response to expanding opportunities for science to contribute to national goals. The US Antarctic Program (USAP) has improved the ability to provide state of the art support to researchers and worked to ensure that the results of antarctic research are of the highest quality. Science highlights from 1992 are summarized in this editorial; they include the following: discovery of a fossilized deciduous forest, of global climate change interest; balloon-borne and lidar probes to examine ozone related chemistry of the stratosphere; work in the Weddell Sea changing understandings of ocean circulation and global climatic change;studies of El Nino; and unique educational opportunities for students from several discipines.

  18. The effect of low temperature on Antarctic endolithic green algae

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meyer, M. A.; Morris, G. J.; Friedmann, E. I.

    1988-01-01

    Laboratory experiments show that undercooling to about -5 degrees C occurs in colonized Beacon sandstones of the Ross Desert, Antarctica. High-frequency temperature oscillations between 5 degrees C and -5 degrees C or -10 degrees C (which occur in nature on the rock surface) did not damage Hemichloris antarctica. In a cryomicroscope, H. antarctica appeared to be undamaged after slow or rapid cooling to -50 degrees C. 14CO2 incorporation after freezing to -20 degrees C was unaffected in H. antarctica or in Trebouxia sp. but slightly depressed in Stichococcus sp. (isolated from a less extreme Antarctic habitat). These results suggest that the freezing regime in the Antarctic desert is not injurious to endolithic algae. It is likely that the freezing-point depression inside the rock makes available liquid water for metabolic activity at subzero temperatures. Freezing may occur more frequently on the rock surface and contribute to the abiotic nature of the surface.

  19. West African monsoon intraseasonal activity and its daily precipitation indices in regional climate models: diagnostics and challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poan, E. D.; Gachon, P.; Dueymes, G.; Diaconescu, E.; Laprise, R.; Seidou Sanda, I.

    2016-02-01

    The West African monsoon intraseasonal variability has huge socio-economic impacts on local populations but understanding and predicting it still remains a challenge for the weather prediction and climate scientific community. This paper analyses an ensemble of simulations from six regional climate models (RCMs) taking part in the coordinated regional downscaling experiment, the ECMWF ERA-Interim reanalysis (ERAI) and three satellite-based and observationally-constrained daily precipitation datasets, to assess the performance of the RCMs with regard to the intraseasonal variability. A joint analysis of seasonal-mean precipitation and the total column water vapor (also called precipitable water—PW) suggests the existence of important links at different timescales between these two variables over the Sahel and highlights the relevance of using PW to follow the monsoon seasonal cycle. RCMs that fail to represent the seasonal-mean position and amplitude of the meridional gradient of PW show the largest discrepancies with respect to seasonal-mean observed precipitation. For both ERAI and RCMs, spectral decompositions of daily PW as well as rainfall show an overestimation of low-frequency activity (at timescales longer than 10 days) at the expense of the synoptic (timescales shorter than 10 days) activity. Consequently, the effects of the African Easterly Waves and the associated mesoscale convective systems are substantially underestimated, especially over continental regions. Finally, the study investigates the skill of the models with respect to hydro-climatic indices related to the occurrence, intensity and frequency of precipitation events at the intraseasonal scale. Although most of these indices are generally better reproduced with RCMs than reanalysis products, this study indicates that RCMs still need to be improved (especially with respect to their subgrid-scale parameterization schemes) to be able to reproduce the intraseasonal variance spectrum adequately.

  20. Larvicidal activity of selected plant hydrodistillate extracts against the house mosquito, Culex pipiens, a West Nile virus vector.

    PubMed

    Cetin, Huseyin; Yanikoglu, Atila; Cilek, James E

    2011-04-01

    The larvicidal activity of hydrodistillate extracts from Chrysanthemum coronarium L., Hypericum scabrum L., Pistacia terebinthus L. subsp. palaestina (Boiss.) Engler, and Vitex agnus castus L. was investigated against the West Nile vector, Culex pipiens L. (Diptera: Culicidae). Yield and identification of the major essential oils from each distillation was determined by GC-MS analyses. The major essential oil component for each plant species was as follows: α-pinene for P. terebinthus palaestina, and H. scabrum (45.3% and 42.3%, respectively), trans-β-caryophyllene for V. agnus castus (22.1%), and borneol for C. coronarium (20.9%). A series of distillate concentrations from these plants (that ranged from 1 ppm to 500 ppm, depending on plant species) were assessed against late third to early fourth C. pipiens larvae at 1, 6, and 24 h posttreatment. In general, larval mortality to water treated with a distillate increased as concentration and exposure time increased. H. scabrum and P. terebinthus palaestina were most effective against the mosquito larvae and both produced 100% mortality at 250 ppm at 24-h continuous exposure compared with the other plant species. Larval toxicity of the distillates at 24 h (LC(50) from most toxic to less toxic) was as follows: P. terebinthus palaestina (59.2 ppm) > H. scabrum (82.2 ppm) > V. agnus castus (83.3 ppm) > C. coronarium (311.2 ppm). But when LC(90) values were compared, relative toxicity ranking changed as follows: H. scabrum (185.9 ppm) > V. agnus castus (220.7 ppm) > P. terebinthus palaestina (260.7 ppm) > C. coronarium (496.3 ppm). Extracts of native Turkish plants continue to provide a wealth of potential sources for biologically active agents that may be applied against arthropod pests of man and animals. PMID:21053014

  1. Gills of antarctic fish.

    PubMed

    Rankin, J C; Tuurala, H

    1998-01-01

    We review the literature on the way the structure of icefish gills relates the physiology of these haemoglobin-less fishes. Vascular casting confirmed earlier reports that the only special feature of the gills is the large size of the blood vessels, especially the prominent and continuous marginal channels Isolated perfused gill arches were used to study the effects of changes in afferent and efferent pressure on gill resistance and tritiated water influx in Chionobathyscus dewitti. Increasing perfusion rate did not change gill resistance, but there were moderate proportional increases in water influx. Reducing efferent pressure increased gill resistance but did not affect water influx. In both C. dewitti and Cryodraco antarcticus gills perfused at constant flow rate, noradrenaline produced concentration-dependent decreases in gill resistance and, with high concentrations, increases in water influx. Fixation while perfusion continued was used to compare blood space dimensions in control, noradrenaline-treated and unperfused gills. Noradrenaline caused large increases in the thickness of the lamellar blood space and increased lamellar height, despite a greatly reduced afferent pressure. This suggests that modulation of pillar cell active tension might be involved in control of lamellar perfusion. The possible relationship between gill water fluxes and lamellar recruitment is discussed. PMID:11253779

  2. Jang Bogo Antarctic Ionosonde

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bullett, Terry; Jee, Geonhwa; Livingston, Robert; Kim, Jeong-Han; Zabotin, Nikolay; Lee, Chang-Sup; Grubb, Richard; Mabie, Justin; Kwon, Hyuck-Jin

    2016-04-01

    The Korean Polar Research Institute has established the Jang Bogo research station in Antarctica on Terra Nova Bay (74.62°S, 164.23°E). One of the space environment sensors installed in 2014 is a world class research ionosonde facility consisting of a Vertical Incidence Pulsed Ionospheric Radar (VIPIR) with Dynasonde signal processing. The VIPIR is an MF/HF radar oeprating from 0.5 to 25 MHz. The transmit antenna is a 36x75x75m dual vertical incidence log periodic design and the receive antenna is a 70x70m array of 8 orthogonal 4m active dipoles attached to 8 coherent digital receivers. Full resolution In-Phase and Quadrature data are recorded for post analysis. The low atmospheric noise and low interference combine with the high system performance to produce ionogram data of very high quality and allow measurements with high time resolution. The 2015 data were taken using the first generation VIPIR electronics on loan from Boulder. Antenna repairs and the installation of the second generation VIPIR electronics were completed at the end of 2015. Phase based Dynasonde analysis techniques are applied to the VIPIR data to perform echo detection and to derive electron density profiles and velocity vectors.

  3. Unmanned aerial optical systems for spatial monitoring of Antarctic mosses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lucieer, Arko; Turner, Darren; Veness, Tony; Malenovsky, Zbynek; Harwin, Stephen; Wallace, Luke; Kelcey, Josh; Robinson, Sharon

    2013-04-01

    The Antarctic continent has experienced major changes in temperature, wind speed and stratospheric ozone levels during the last 50 years. In a manner similar to tree rings, old growth shoots of Antarctic mosses, the only plants on the continent, also preserve a climate record of their surrounding environment. This makes them an ideal bio-indicator of the Antarctic climate change. Spatially extensive ground sampling of mosses is laborious and time limited due to the short Antarctic growing season. Obviously, there is a need for an efficient method to monitor spatially climate change induced stress of the Antarctic moss flora. Cloudy weather and high spatial fragmentation of the moss turfs makes satellite imagery unsuitable for this task. Unmanned aerial systems (UAS), flying at low altitudes and collecting image data even under a full overcast, can, however, overcome the insufficiency of satellite remote sensing. We, therefore, developed scientific UAS, consisting of a remote-controlled micro-copter carrying on-board different remote sensing optical sensors, tailored to perform fast and cost-effective mapping of Antarctic flora at ultra-high spatial resolution (1-10 cm depending on flight altitude). A single lens reflex (SLR) camera carried by UAS acquires multi-view aerial photography, which processed by the Structure from Motion computer vision algorithm provides an accurate three-dimensional digital surface model (DSM) at ultra-high spatial resolution. DSM is the key input parameter for modelling a local seasonal snowmelt run-off, which provides mosses with the vital water supply. A lightweight multispectral camera on-board of UVS is collecting images of six selected spectral wavebands with the full-width-half-maximum (FWHM) of 10 nm. The spectral bands can be used to compute various vegetation optical indices, e.g. Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) or Photochemical Reflectance Index (PRI), assessing the actual physiological state of polar vegetation. Recently

  4. Miocene Antarctic Terrestrial Realm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ashworth, A. C.; Lewis, A.; Marchant, D. R.

    2009-12-01

    The discovery of several locations in the Transantarctic Mountains that contain macrofossils and pollen is transforming our understanding of late Cenozoic Antarctica. The most southerly location is on the Beardmore Glacier (85.1°S) about 500 km from the South Pole. The environment was an active glacial margin in which plants, insects and freshwater mollusks inhabited the sand and gravel bars and small lakes on an outwash plain. In addition to leaves and wood of dwarf Nothofagus (Southern Beech) shrubs, achenes of Ranunculus (Buttercup), in situ cushion growth forms of mosses and a vascular plant, the assemblages contains various exoskeletal parts of carabid and curculionid beetles and a cyclorrhaphan fly, the shells of freshwater bivalve and gastropod species and a fish tooth. Initially the deposits were assigned a Pliocene age (3.5 Ma) but a mid- to early Miocene age is more probable (c. 14 - 25 Ma) based on correlation of fossil pollen from the deposits with 39Ar/40Ar dated pollen assemblages from the McMurdo Dry Valleys locations. The oldest location within the Dry Valleys also involved an active ice margin but was part of a valley system that was completely deglaciated for intervals long enough for thick paleosols to develop. The Friis Hills fossil deposits of the Taylor Valley region (77.8°S) are at least 19.76 Ma based on the 39Ar/40Ar age of a volcanic ash bed. The valley floor during the non-glacial phases had poorly-drained soils and the extensive development of mossy mires. Wood and leaves of Nothofagus are abundant in lacustrine deposits. The silts of shallow fluvial channels contain abundant megaspores and spiky leaves of the aquatic lycopod Isoetes (Quillwort). Fossils of beetles are also present in these deposits. During the glacial phases, proglacial lakes were surrounded by dwarfed, deciduous Nothofagus shrubs. The youngest fossils recovered from the Dry Valleys are from the Olympus Range (77.5°S) with an age of 14.07 Ma. The environment was an

  5. AUF1 p45 Promotes West Nile Virus Replication by an RNA Chaperone Activity That Supports Cyclization of the Viral Genome

    PubMed Central

    Friedrich, Susann; Schmidt, Tobias; Geissler, René; Lilie, Hauke; Chabierski, Stefan; Ulbert, Sebastian; Liebert, Uwe G.; Golbik, Ralph P.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT A central aspect of current virology is to define the function of cellular proteins (host factors) that support the viral multiplication process. This study aimed at characterizing cellular proteins that assist the RNA replication process of the prevalent human pathogen West Nile virus (WNV). Using in vitro and cell-based approaches, we defined the p45 isoform of AU-rich element RNA-binding protein 1 (AUF1) as a host factor that enables efficient WNV replication. It was demonstrated that AUF1 p45 has an RNA chaperone activity, which aids the structural rearrangement and cyclization of the WNV RNA that is required by the viral replicase to initiate RNA replication. The obtained data suggest the RNA chaperone activity of AUF1 p45 is an important determinant of the WNV life cycle. IMPORTANCE In this study, we identified a cellular protein, AUF1 (also known as heterogeneous ribonucleoprotein D [hnRNPD]), acting as a helper (host factor) of the multiplication process of the important human pathogen West Nile virus. Several different variants of AUF1 exist in the cell, and one variant, AUF1 p45, was shown to support viral replication most significantly. Interestingly, we obtained a set of experimental data indicating that a main function of AUF1 p45 is to modify and thus prepare the West Nile virus genome in such a way that the viral enzyme that generates progeny genomes is empowered to do this considerably more efficiently than in the absence of the host factor. The capability of AUF1 p45 to rearrange the West Nile virus genome was thus identified to be an important aspect of a West Nile virus infection. PMID:25078689

  6. Underwater Optics in Sub-Antarctic and Antarctic Coastal Ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Huovinen, Pirjo; Ramírez, Jaime; Gómez, Iván

    2016-01-01

    Understanding underwater optics in natural waters is essential in evaluating aquatic primary production and risk of UV exposure in aquatic habitats. Changing environmental conditions related with global climate change, which imply potential contrasting changes in underwater light climate further emphasize the need to gain insights into patterns related with underwater optics for more accurate future predictions. The present study evaluated penetration of solar radiation in six sub-Antarctic estuaries and fjords in Chilean North Patagonian region (39–44°S) and in an Antarctic bay (62°S). Based on vertical diffuse attenuation coefficients (Kd), derived from measurements with a submersible multichannel radiometer, average summer UV penetration depth (z1%) in these water bodies ranged 2–11 m for UV-B (313 nm), 4–27 m for UV-A (395 nm), and 7–30 m for PAR (euphotic zone). UV attenuation was strongest in the shallow Quempillén estuary, while Fildes Bay (Antarctica) exhibited the highest transparency. Optically non-homogeneous water layers and seasonal variation in transparency (lower in winter) characterized Comau Fjord and Puyuhuapi Channel. In general, multivariate analysis based on Kd values of UV and PAR wavelengths discriminated strongly Quempillén estuary and Puyuhuapi Channel from other study sites. Spatial (horizontal) variation within the estuary of Valdivia river reflected stronger attenuation in zones receiving river impact, while within Fildes Bay a lower spatial variation in water transparency could in general be related to closeness of glaciers, likely due to increased turbidity through ice-driven processes. Higher transparency and deeper UV-B penetration in proportion to UV-A/visible wavelengths observed in Fildes Bay suggests a higher risk for Antarctic ecosystems reflected by e.g. altered UV-B damage vs. photorepair under UV-A/PAR. Considering that damage repair processes often slow down under cool temperatures, adverse UV impact could be

  7. Underwater Optics in Sub-Antarctic and Antarctic Coastal Ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Huovinen, Pirjo; Ramírez, Jaime; Gómez, Iván

    2016-01-01

    Understanding underwater optics in natural waters is essential in evaluating aquatic primary production and risk of UV exposure in aquatic habitats. Changing environmental conditions related with global climate change, which imply potential contrasting changes in underwater light climate further emphasize the need to gain insights into patterns related with underwater optics for more accurate future predictions. The present study evaluated penetration of solar radiation in six sub-Antarctic estuaries and fjords in Chilean North Patagonian region (39-44°S) and in an Antarctic bay (62°S). Based on vertical diffuse attenuation coefficients (Kd), derived from measurements with a submersible multichannel radiometer, average summer UV penetration depth (z1%) in these water bodies ranged 2-11 m for UV-B (313 nm), 4-27 m for UV-A (395 nm), and 7-30 m for PAR (euphotic zone). UV attenuation was strongest in the shallow Quempillén estuary, while Fildes Bay (Antarctica) exhibited the highest transparency. Optically non-homogeneous water layers and seasonal variation in transparency (lower in winter) characterized Comau Fjord and Puyuhuapi Channel. In general, multivariate analysis based on Kd values of UV and PAR wavelengths discriminated strongly Quempillén estuary and Puyuhuapi Channel from other study sites. Spatial (horizontal) variation within the estuary of Valdivia river reflected stronger attenuation in zones receiving river impact, while within Fildes Bay a lower spatial variation in water transparency could in general be related to closeness of glaciers, likely due to increased turbidity through ice-driven processes. Higher transparency and deeper UV-B penetration in proportion to UV-A/visible wavelengths observed in Fildes Bay suggests a higher risk for Antarctic ecosystems reflected by e.g. altered UV-B damage vs. photorepair under UV-A/PAR. Considering that damage repair processes often slow down under cool temperatures, adverse UV impact could be further

  8. Active tectonics west of New Zealand's Alpine Fault: South Westland Fault Zone activity shows Australian Plate instability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Pascale, Gregory P.; Chandler-Yates, Nicholas; Dela Pena, Federico; Wilson, Pam; May, Elijah; Twiss, Amber; Cheng, Che

    2016-04-01

    The 300 km long South Westland Fault Zone (SWFZ) is within the footwall of the Central Alpine Fault (<20 km away) and has 3500 m of dip-slip displacement, but it has been unknown if the fault is active. Here the first evidence for SWFZ thrust faulting in the "stable" Australian Plate is shown with cumulative dip-slip displacements up to 5.9 m (with 3 m throw) on Pleistocene and Holocene sediments and gentle hanging wall anticlinal folding. Cone penetration test (CPT) stratigraphy shows repeated sequences within the fault scarp (consistent with thrusting). Optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating constrains the most recent rupture post-12.1 ± 1.7 ka with evidence for three to four events during earthquakes of at least Mw 6.8. This study shows significant deformation is accommodated on poorly characterized Australian Plate structures northwest of the Alpine Fault and demonstrates that major active and seismogenic structures remain uncharacterized in densely forested regions on Earth.

  9. New Insights into Antarctic Ice-Sheet Retreat During the Last Sea-Level Rise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weber, M. E.; Kuhn, G.; Clark, P. U.; Sprenk, D.

    2010-12-01

    Reconstruction of the last global sea level rise faces uncertainties because only a few robust results are available for Antarctic ice sheets. Modeling studies reconstruct a late ice-sheet retreat starting around 12 ka BP and ending around 7 ka BP with a large impact of an unstable West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) and a small impact of a stable East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS). However, two regions in the Atlantic sector of the Southern Ocean provide evidence that Antarctica responded much earlier and possibly provided a significant contribution to the last sea-level rise. On the continental slope of the southeastern Weddell Sea, seven Polarstern cores preserved varved sediment during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), indicative for intense, seasonally variable bottom-water production, presumably caused by brine injection in polynias and shelf-ice plowing in front of the ice shelf, which had advanced toward the shelf edge. The following postglacial bioturbated mud favors at least partially open surface water and occasionally intensified iceberg calving. The termination of varvation marked the retreat of the EAIS from the shelf edge around 19 ka BP. The timing coincides with Meltwater Pulse 19 ka from the Northern Hemisphere (NH) and with the initiation of the temperature increase over East Antarctica. After a short ice re-advance, a second retreat occurred around 16 ka - also a time of enhanced global sea-level rise and a period when glaciers rapidly retreated in Patagonia. Sediments from the central Scotia Sea are located in the prolongation of the “iceberg alley”, where icebergs exit the Weddell Sea to the north. Accordingly, this is an excellent location to trace ice-sheet dynamics. Sites MD07-3134 and MD07-3133 document four phases of enhanced iceberg activity as indicated by the amount of small ice-rafted debris (IRD) at 19.5, 16.5,14.5, and 12 ka. The first two are most likely related to the two ice-sheet retreat signals documented by the Weddell Sea sites

  10. Green house emissions, inventories and evaluation of marine environment visa vis offshore oil field development activities Bombay high (west coast) upstream petroleum sector, India

    SciTech Connect

    Sharma, J.S.; Ahmed, S.; Negi, C.V.S.; Nainwal, D.R.

    1996-12-31

    Wide use of petroleum products contributes significant amount of emission to the global environment and hence maintaining emission inventories are of great importance while assessing the global green house emissions. The present paper describes a brief account of green house emission and inventories for CO{sub 2}, CO, NO{sub x}, HC particulate and SO{sub 2} emissions generated due to upstream petroleum sector activities viz. discharges of gaseous emission, combustion of Natural Gas anti HSD from production and drilling facilities of Bombay offshore area located in Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) west coast of India. Besides, authors have also given an account on west coast marine base line status including impact of oil field activities on marine ecosystem.

  11. Microbial ecology of Antarctic aquatic systems.

    PubMed

    Cavicchioli, Ricardo

    2015-11-01

    The Earth's biosphere is dominated by cold environments, and the cold biosphere is dominated by microorganisms. Microorganisms in cold Southern Ocean waters are recognized for having crucial roles in global biogeochemical cycles, including carbon sequestration, whereas microorganisms in other Antarctic aquatic biomes are not as well understood. In this Review, I consider what has been learned about Antarctic aquatic microbial ecology from 'omic' studies. I assess the factors that shape the biogeography of Antarctic microorganisms, reflect on some of the unusual biogeochemical cycles that they are associated with and discuss the important roles that viruses have in controlling ecosystem function. PMID:26456925

  12. Serum chemistry and antibodies against pathogens in antarctic fur seals, Weddell seals, crabeater seals, and Ross seals.

    PubMed

    Tryland, Morten; Nymo, Ingebjørg H; Nielsen, Ole; Nordøy, Erling S; Kovacs, Kit M; Krafft, Bjørn A; Thoresen, Stein I; Åsbakk, Kjetil; Osterrieder, Klaus; Roth, Swaantje J; Lydersen, Christian; Godfroid, Jacques; Blix, Arnoldus S

    2012-07-01

    Information on health parameters, such as antibody prevalences and serum chemistry that can reveal exposure to pathogens, disease, and abnormal physiologic conditions, is scarce for Antarctic seal species. Serum samples from Antarctic fur seals (Arctocephalus gazella, n=88) from Bouvetøya (2000-2001 and 2001-2002), and from Weddell seals (Leptonychotes weddellii, n=20), Ross seals (Ommatophoca rossii, n=20), and crabeater seals (Lobodon carcinophagus, n=9) from the pack-ice off Queen Maud Land, Antarctica (2001) were analyzed for enzyme activity, and concentrations of protein, metabolites, minerals, and cortisol. Adult Antarctic fur seal males had elevated levels of total protein (range 64-99 g/l) compared to adult females and pups (range 52-79 g/l). Antarctic fur seals had higher enzyme activities of creatine kinase, lactate dehydrogenase, and amylase, compared to Weddell, Ross, and crabeater seals. Antibodies against Brucella spp. were detected in Weddell seals (37%), Ross seals (5%), and crabeater seals (11%), but not in Antarctic fur seals. Antibodies against phocine herpesvirus 1 were detected in all species examined (Antarctic fur seals, 58%; Weddell seals, 100%; Ross seals, 15%; and crabeater seals, 44%). No antibodies against Trichinella spp., Toxoplasma, or phocine distemper virus (PDV) were detected (Antarctic fur seals were not tested for PDV antibodies). Antarctic seals are challenged by reduced sea ice and increasing temperatures due to climate change, and increased anthropogenic activity can introduce new pathogens to these vulnerable ecosystems and represent a threat for these animals. Our data provide a baseline for future monitoring of health parameters of these Antarctic seal species, for tracking the impact of environmental, climatic, and anthropogenic changes in Antarctica over time. PMID:22740529

  13. Spatial patterns of Antarctic surface temperature trends in the context of natural variability: Lessons from the CMIP5 Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, K. L.; Polvani, L. M.

    2015-12-01

    The recent annually averaged warming of the Antarctic Peninsula, and of West Antarctica, stands in stark contrast to very small and weakly negative trends over East Antarctica. This asymmetry arises primarily from a highly significant warming of West Antarctica in austral spring and a strong cooling of East Antarctic in austral autumn. Here we examine whether this East-West asymmetry is a response to anthropogenic climate forcings or a manifestation of natural climate variability. We compare the observed Antarctic surface air temperature (SAT) trends from five temperature reconstructions over two distinct time periods (1979-2005 and 1960-2005), and with those simulated by 40 coupled models participating in Phase 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project. We find that the observed East-West asymmetry differs substantially over the two time periods and, furthermore, is completely absent from the CMIP5 multi-model mean (from which all natural variability is eliminated by the averaging). We compare the CMIP5 SAT trends to those of 29 historical atmosphere-only simulations with prescribed sea surface temperatures (SSTs) and sea ice and find that these simulations are in better agreement with the observations. This suggests that natural multi-decadal variability associated with SSTs and sea ice and not external forcings is the primary driver of Antarctic SAT trends. We confirm this by showing that the observed trends lie within the distribution of multi-decadal trends from the CMIP5 pre-industrial integrations. These results, therefore, offer new evidence which points to natural climate variability as the more likely cause of the recent warming of West Antarctica and of the Peninsula.

  14. Recent Climate and Ice-Sheet Changes in West Antarctica Compared with the Past 2,000 Years

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Steig, Eric J.; Ding, Qinghua; White, James W.; Kuttel, Marcel; Rupper, Summer B.; Neumann, Thomas Allen; Neff, Peter D.; Gallant, Ailie J. E.; Mayewski, Paul A.; Taylor, Kendrick C.; Hoffmann, Georg; Dixon, Daniel A.; Schoenemann, Spruce W.; Markle, Bradley R.; Fudge, Tyler J.; Schneider, David P.; Schauer, Andrew J.; Teel, Rebecca P.; Vaughn, Bruce H.; Burgener, Landon; Williams, Jessica; Korotkikh, Elena

    2013-01-01

    Changes in atmospheric circulation over the past five decades have enhanced the wind-driven inflow of warm ocean water onto the Antarctic continental shelf, where it melts ice shelves from below1-3. Atmospheric circulation changes have also caused rapid warming4 over the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, and contributed to declining sea-ice cover in the adjacent Amundsen-Bellingshausen seas5. It is unknown whether these changes are part of a longer-term trend. Here, we use waterisotope (Delta O-18) data from an array of ice-core records to place recent West Antarctic climate changes in the context of the past two millennia. We find that the d18O of West Antarctic precipitation has increased significantly in the past 50 years, in parallel with the trend in temperature, and was probably more elevated during the 1990s than at any other time during the past 200 years. However, Delta O-18 anomalies comparable to those of recent decades occur about 1% of the time over the past 2,000 years. General circulation model simulations suggest that recent trends in Delta O-18 and climate in West Antarctica cannot be distinguished from decadal variability that originates in the tropics. We conclude that the uncertain trajectory of tropical climate variability represents a significant source of uncertainty in projections of West Antarctic climate and ice-sheet change.

  15. 3D Geometry of Active Shortening, Uplift and Subsidence West of the Alpine Fault (South Island, New Zealand)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghisetti, F.; Sibson, R. H.; Hamling, I. J.

    2014-12-01

    The Alpine Fault is the principal component of the transform boundary between the Australian and Pacific plates across the South Island of New Zealand, linking the opposite dipping Hikurangi and Puysegur subduction zones. In the northern South Island, the transition from the subducted W-dipping Pacific slab of the Hikurangi margin to the intra-continental transform margin is defined by earthquake foci from 350 to 100 km deep. West of the Alpine Fault the Australian crust above the slab has been incorporated into the collisional plate boundary and uplifted in a compressional belt up to 100 km wide. Retro-deformation and back-stripping of 10 regional transects utilising surface geology, seismic reflection lines and exploration wells define the progressive deformation of the Australian crust since 35 Ma along the collisional margin. The reconstructed geometry of faulted basement blocks is tied to localisation and evolution of overlying sedimentary basins, coeval with displacement on the Alpine Fault. Amounts of shortening, uplift and subsidence and fault activity are heterogeneous in space and time across the margin, and are controlled by compressional reactivation of inherited high-angle, N-S Paleogene normal faults oblique to the margin. However, significant differences also occur along the strike of the collisional margin, with major contrasts in uplift and subsidence north and south of lat. 41°.7, i.e. the region overlying the southern termination of the Hikurangi slab. These differences are highlighted by present day hydrographic anomalies in the Buller region, and by the pattern of filtered topography at > 75 km wavelength. Our data show that the 3D geometry of the Australian plate cannot be entirely attributed to inherited crustal heterogeneity of a flexured "retro-foreland" domain in the footwall of the Alpine Fault, and suggest the need of deeper dynamic interaction between the Pacific and Australian lithosphere along the subduction-collision margin.

  16. Temperature, lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary, and heat flux beneath the Antarctic Plate inferred from seismic velocities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    An, Meijian; Wiens, Douglas A.; Zhao, Yue; Feng, Mei; Nyblade, Andrew; Kanao, Masaki; Li, Yuansheng; Maggi, Alessia; Lévêque, Jean-Jacques

    2015-12-01

    We estimate the upper mantle temperature of the Antarctic Plate based on the thermoelastic properties of mantle minerals and S velocities using a new 3-D shear velocity model, AN1-S. Crustal temperatures and surface heat fluxes are then calculated from the upper mantle temperature assuming steady state thermal conduction. The temperature at the top of the asthenosphere beneath the oceanic region and West Antarctica is higher than the dry mantle solidus, indicating the presence of melt. From the temperature values, we generate depth maps of the lithosphere-asthenosphere boundary and the Curie temperature isotherm. The maps show that East Antarctica has a thick lithosphere similar to that of other stable cratons, with the thickest lithosphere (~250 km) between Domes A and C. The thin crust and lithosphere beneath West Antarctica are similar to those of modern subduction-related rift systems in East Asia. A cold region beneath the Antarctic Peninsula is similar in spatial extent to that of a flat-subducted slab beneath the southern Andes, indicating a possible remnant of the Phoenix Plate, which was subducted prior to 10 Ma. The oceanic lithosphere generally thickens with increasing age, and the age-thickness correlation depends on the spreading rate of the ridge that formed the lithosphere. Significant flattening of the age-thickness curves is not observed for the mature oceanic lithosphere of the Antarctic Plate.

  17. Antarctic Ozone: Theory and Observation.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salawitch, Ross Jay

    The amount of ozone observed in October over Antarctica has fallen steadily and precipitously in the last decade. Observational data describing the phenomenology of the Antarctic ozone reduction are reviewed, followed by the presentation of theories that seek to account for the observed ozone reductions while satisfying other available constraints. We begin with a discussion of the thermodynamic properties of solid phases containing HCl and HNO_3. The presence of clouds in the Antarctic stratosphere, caused be extremely low temperatures during spring, leads to condensation and precipitation of HNO_3, and condensation and reaction of HCl. Both processes lead to the conversion of unreactive forms of chlorine to chlorine oxides, which participate in a sequence of chemical reactions that consume ozone. A chemical model that incorporates the influence of cloud catalyzed heterogeneous reactions is compared in detail to the interferometric measurements of HCl, ClNO_3, HNO_3 , NO_2, and NO obtained over Antarctica during the spring of 1986 (Farmer et al., 1987). Model results are consistent with observed temporal trends of these species and with trends for total column ozone reported by Stolarski et al. (1986). Loss of ozone is attributed to the catalytic influence of chlorine and bromine radicals, in cycles suggested by McElroy et al. (1986b) and Molina and Molina (1987). Constraints are then placed on the abundance of stratospheric bromine by analysis of observations of OClO over Antarctica during the spring of 1986 (Solomon et al., 1987a). The diurnal variation of OClO is consistent with 16 +/- 4 ppt of stratospheric bromine if a fraction of the overall ClO + BrO reaction proceeds through a channel resulting in the production of BrCl. Bromine levels in this range would contribute approximately 20% of the total ozone loss. Finally, it is shown that the production of reactive chlorine oxides by heterogeneous processes depends on the initial concentration of HCl relative

  18. Carbonate Deposition on Antarctic Shelves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frank, T. D.; James, N. P.; Malcolm, I.

    2011-12-01

    Limestones associated with glaciomarine deposits occur throughout the geologic record but remain poorly understood. The best-described examples formed during major ice ages of the Neoproterozoic and Late Paleozoic. Quaternary analogs on Antarctic shelves have received comparatively little study. Here, we report on the composition, spatial distribution, and stratigraphic context of carbonate sediments contained in piston cores from the Ross Sea. The goals of this work are to (1) document the nature and distribution of carbonate sediments on the Ross Sea continental shelf and (2) examine temporal relationships to Quaternary glaciation. Results will be used to develop criteria that will improve understanding of analogous deposits in the ancient record. All carbonate-rich intervals in piston cores from the Ross Rea, now housed at the Antarctic Marine Geology Research Facility at Florida State University, were examined and described in detail. Sediment samples were disaggregated and sieved into size fractions before description with paleontological analysis carried out on the coarsest size fraction (>250 microns). Carbonate-rich sediments are concentrated in the northwestern Ross Sea, along the distal margins of Mawson and Pennell Banks. Calcareous facies include a spectrum of lithologies that range from fossiliferous mud, sand, and gravel to skeletal floatstone-rudstone and bafflestone. Floatstone-rudstone and bafflestone is most abundant along western-facing slopes in areas protected from the Antarctic Coastal Current. Sand-prone facies dominate the tops of banks and mud-prone, often spicultic, facies occur in deeper areas. The carbonate factory is characterized by a low-diversity, heterozoan assemblage that is dominated by stylasterine hydrocorals, barnacles, and bryozoans. Molluscs and echinoids are present but not abundant. Planktic and benthic foraminifera are ubiquitous components of the sediment matrix, which is locally very rich in sponge spicules. Biota rarely

  19. The Last Interglacial History of the An