2022-2023 USAP Field Season
Constraining West Antarctic Ice Sheet elevation during the last interglacial
Dr. Jerry X Mitrovica
Supporting Stations: McMurdo Station
REMOVE FROM 2023-24 This project aims to place constraints on West Antarctic Ice Sheet elevations at Mt. Waesche, a young volcano in Marie Byrd Land, near the dome of the ice sheet during the last interglacial period. The project team will use cosmogenic nuclide inventories and 40Ar/39Ar dating of lava flows near and below the present ice level, and subglacial bedrock morphology, to identify and date lower than present ice levels. This season, the project also incorporates Seth Campbell's EAGER award, NSF/OPP Award 2210092, Collaborative Research: EAGER: Dating glacier retreat and readvance near Mt. Waesche, West Antarctica.
Field Season Overview
A team of seven participants will focus on drilling two transects of four bedrock cores in the vicinity of Mt. Waesche, drilling through up to 120 m of ice and firn to reach bedrock. They will also re-measure stakes set from the previous season to determine ice ablation and movement over the past four years, and will conduct additional mapping of exposed lava flows and glacial moraines. In addition to bedrock cores, they will collect ice samples using the Eclipse drill and a horizontal trencher, with the goal of dating unconformities in the ice that indicate lower ice levels. Ice samples will be melted and bottled for transport out of the field. All activities will take place within five miles of the camp site.
Deploying Team Members