Rocks and Rain Fix Nitrogen in Post-Glacial Sites

19 April 2016, by

A new study in Plant and Soil found that the input of nitrogen from the atmosphere, via a process of rain funneling through rocks, created levels of nitrogen that are adequate to support plant growth in post-glacial alpine soil, challenging the common view that the element is the primary limiting factor in deglaciated areas. In […]

New Study Warns: Rapid Sea Level Rise, Superstorms Likely

14 April 2016, by

Existing climate change assessments could be underestimating the amount of future sea level rise, as well as the likelihood of other phenomenons like increased superstorms and glacier loss, warns a new high-profile paper in Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics. The study, by longtime climate scientist James Hansen and 18 co-authors, has gained attention recently for its […]

Photo Friday: Send Us Your Glacier Selfies

1 April 2016, by

At GlacierHub, we don’t just love science— we’re passionate about art and photography, too. We’ve featured work by Zaria Forman and Diane Burko, and each Friday we share photographs of glaciers and other mountain scenes. Now we’re excited to try something new: We’d like to invite our readers to share photographs that you’ve taken of […]

Building a Database of Dramatic Glacial Floods

29 March 2016, by

Glacial lake outburst floods are a type of deluge that occurs when a moraine–a natural dam, made of rock, sediment and ice–breaks, releasing the glacier-fed lake behind it. As a consequence, some scientists have said that it is necessary to build a database of past glacial lake outburst floods to manage and monitor the threat of future ones. […]

Could Glaciology Use a Dose of Feminism?

22 March 2016, by

A new study in Progress in Human Geography argues that the viewpoints of women and indigenous people are not being represented in glaciology and that a feminist perspective is needed to counterbalance this deficit. The authors—Mark Carey, M Jackson, Alessandro Antonello, and Jaclyn Rushing of the University of Oregon—are calling for a reimagining of what […]

How Melting Glaciers Can Change Regional Climate

9 March 2016, by

Fresh water melting from glaciers in the Southern Hemisphere could make contributions to climate change, according to the recent study, “Glacial lake drainage in Patagonia (13-8 kyr) and response of the adjacent Pacific Ocean,” by Neil F. Glasser and others in the journal Nature Scientific Reports. These findings are consistent with previous studies in North America […]

Bacteria From the Sahara Desert Found on Swiss Glaciers

24 February 2016, by

Bacteria living among dust particles from the Sahara have been found trapped in ice and snow on the Swiss Alps at an altitude of over 11,000 feet, according to a December article in Frontiers in Microbiology. The samplings collected from the Jungfraujoch region of Switzerland contained bacteria originally from northwest Africa, meaning these bacteria survived […]

Crevasses Offer Clues About Glacial Dynamics

23 February 2016, by

A recent article accepted in the Reviews of Geophysics summarizes research on how crevasses form and affect glaciers. Crevasses are fractures in the glacier surface that are renowned for their danger but also have been a research focus for glaciologists and other physical scientists for the past several decades, a subject which William Colgan of York University […]

Helicopters: The Eye-in-the-Sky for Glacier Research

10 February 2016, by

With global warming, glaciers are melting, and mountain ranges in the mid-latitudes such as the Swiss Alps are showing significant glacier retreat. For decades researchers have measured the length and area of glaciers to see if they are shrinking or not— a key symptom of disequilibrium— which can be done using photographs and satellites. But a key […]

Have Ice Ages Gone Extinct?

9 February 2016, by

A new study in Nature says the Earth, previously headed for an Ice Age before the Industrial Revolution, is likely to maintain its current warm phase in the glacial cycle for an unprecedented amount of time. The researchers―Andrey Ganopolski, Ricarda Winkelmann, and Hans Joachim Schellnhuber of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research―first examined the effect […]

Glacier Retreat Ushers in Arachnids

3 February 2016, by

Harvestmen— a spider-like arachnid— are among the first creatures to inhabit land in the wake of glacier retreat, according to a recent study by Sigmund Hågvar and Daniel Flø in the Norwegian Journal of Entomology. The land where glaciers have recently melted is an ideal habitat for creepy-crawlies including spiders, beetles, and other invertebrates. Perhaps […]

A Glacier-covered Volcano in Chile: Will It Erupt Soon?

2 February 2016, by

Several recent events suggest that a set of glacier-covered volcanoes in the southern Chilean region of Bío-Bío, which have been showing increasing activity since December, may be likely to erupt.  The three mountains, known as the Nevados de Chillán, reach over 3200 meters in elevation, and have a set of glaciers totaling over 2 square kilometers in […]