2018-2019 USAP Field Season
Stability and instability--records of external drivers and resulting behavior of Thwaites Glacier
Dr. Robert David Larter
Dr. Julia Wellner
Project Web Site:
Supporting Stations: RV/IB Nathaniel B. Palmer
This project will conduct marine and sub-ice shelf research to: (1) establish boundary conditions seaward of the Thwaites Glacier grounding line; (2) obtain records of past external drivers of glacier change; and (3) determine the history of past changes in grounding-line migration and conditions at the glacier base. These objectives will be achieved through high-resolution geophysical surveys of the seafloor and analysis of sediment cores from the inner shelf seaward of the Thwaites Glacier grounding line. The team will use ship-based equipment and a corer deployed through the ice shelf via hot water drill holes. The results will be incorporated into numerical ocean/ice-sheet models and will improve projections of ice loss and sea-level rise originating from the glacier.
Field Season Overview
For this project, researchers will sail on the RV/IB Nathaniel B. Palmer (NBP) from Punta Arenas, Chile to their research area in the Amundsen Sea. They will sail with other Thwaites Glacier research groups (Goehring-Johnson (C-443-N), Pettit/Heywood (C-445-N), and an NSF Artists and Writers (Rush-Mueller, W-481-N) grantee and plan to collect sediment cores using a combination of jumbo-piston, box, multi (mega), and Kasten cores. To help determine the best sites for coring, they will conduct multibeam swath bathymetry and sub-bottom profiling surveys.
Deploying Team Members