How to Collect Data from 14,500km Away (WEEK 1)

One of the first steps to this research project is collecting data. Given the need to collect visual data from Antarctica, which is approximately 9,000 miles (or 14,5000 kilometers) away from Virginia, the best solution would be to go to Antarctica itself. However, because that is not feasible time- or money-wise, I am instead investigating the Amery Ice Shelf through satellite imagery: data that is remotely sensed by satellites circulating in high altitudes, then posted online as pixelated images.

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Tears in Antarctic Ice (ABSTRACT)

 

Recently, due heavily to global climate change, there has been a net loss of ice on and around Antarctica. While part of the ice loss is driven by basal melting, most of it – about 75% — is driven by iceberg calving (Bassis, 2008). Iceberg calving is a process whereby large chunks of ice break off ice shelves and float away, eventually melting into the ocean. The process of iceberg calving begins with rift propagation. Rifts are tears in ice shelves that penetrate vertically through the entire ice shelf, and they start from one horizontal end of the ice shelf and lengthen towards another end.

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