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Arctic Sea Ice Animation

Surface currents under Arctic sea ice detected from space.

Monitoring the surface circulation of the ice-covered Arctic Ocean is generally limited in space, time or both. We present a new 12-year record of geostrophic currents at monthly resolution in the ice-covered and ice-free Arctic Ocean derived from satellite radar altimetry and characterise their seasonal to decadal variability from 2003 to 2014, a period of rapid environmental change in the Arctic. Geostrophic currents around the Arctic basin increased in the late 2000s, with the largest increases observed in summer. More...

Published: Aug 5, 2017 10:26:00 AM

MSc Students papers

Our MSc Geoscience students publish their research.

Former UCL MSc students David King and Cherry Newsam have published their UCL MSc Geoscience research in a peer-reviewed journal. Both projects focused on the use of microscopic fossils to investigate extinction and palaeoenvironmental change.
More...

Published: Jul 20, 2017 4:26:00 PM

Sumatra - IODP map

Sediments tell a tsunami story.

Plate-boundary fault rupture during the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman subduction earthquake extended closer to the trench than expected, increasing earthquake and tsunami size. International Ocean Discovery Program Expedition 362 sampled incoming sediments offshore northern Sumatra, revealing recent release of fresh water within the deep sediments. Thermal modeling links this freshening to amorphous silica dehydration driven by rapid burial-induced temperature increases in the past 9 million years. Complete dehydration of silicates is expected before plate subduction, contrasting with prevailing models for subduction seismogenesis calling for fluid production during subduction. Shallow slip offshore Sumatra appears driven by diagenetic strengthening of deeply buried fault-forming sediments, contrasting with weakening proposed for the shallow Tohoku-Oki 2011 rupture, but our results are applicable to other thickly sedimented subduction zones including those with limited earthquake records. More...

Published: May 26, 2017 3:00:00 PM

Campi_Flegeri

Campi Flegrei (Italy) volcano eruption possibly closer than thought.

The Campi Flegrei volcano in southern Italy may be closer to an eruption than previously thought according to new research at UCL and the Vesuvius Observatory in Naples. The volcano has been restless for 67 years, with two-year periods of unrest in the 1950s, 1970s and 1980s causing small, local earthquakes and ground uplift. Similar unrest occurred over 500 years ago, when it took a century to build up to an eruption in 1538. More...

Published: May 15, 2017 10:26:00 AM

Campi_Flegeri

Testing low-cost sensors at Campi Flegrei in Italy.

A UCL team of Dr Christopher Kilburn (UCL Earth Sciences), Prof Steve Hailes (UCL Computer Science) and Lara Smale (PhD UCL Earth Sciences), in partnership with the Vesuvius Observatory - National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (INGV), conducted successful tests of prototype, low-cost sensors for monitoring gas emissions at active volcanoes. More...

Published: Apr 12, 2017 10:26:00 AM

Geological Spectroscopy Lab

World’s Oldest Fossils Unearthed.

“Our discovery supports the idea that life emerged from hot, seafloor vents shortly after planet Earth formed. This speedy appearance of life on Earth fits with other evidence of recently discovered 3,700 million year old sedimentary mounds that were shaped by microorganisms. These discoveries demonstrate life developed on Earth at a time when Mars and Earth had liquid water at their surfaces, posing exciting questions for extra-terrestrial life. Therefore, we expect to find evidence for past life on Mars 4,000 million years ago, or if not, Earth may have been a special exception.” explained first author, PhD student Matthew Dodd (UCL Earth Sciences and the London Centre for Nanotechnology).  More...

Published: Mar 1, 2017 7:00:00 PM

Prof Dame Jane Francis Talk

Forests and frost? Antarctica in a 400ppm CO2 world: evidence from the rock record

The MAPS Faculty Colloquium series is proud to present the talk by Prof Dame Jane Francis: More...

Published: Mar 1, 2017 6:00:00 PM

2017-02-Fox

Study of the Glacial Erosion in the Antarctic Peninsula.

The topographic evolution in Antarctica is vital to accurately reconstruct past glaciers, their sensitivity to climate change, and their contribution to sea level. I will be travelling to the Antarctic Peninsula to collect samples that I can use to measure the long-term pattern and physical processes of glacial erosion.
More...

Published: Feb 9, 2017 10:26:00 AM

2017-01-Stroeve-Arctic

The Changing Arctic.

Prof. Julienne Stroeve participated in two international Arctic events during January, ArcticBaseCamp, a side meeting held in Davos, Switzerland during the World Economic Forum (WEF), and the Annual Arctic Frontiers meeting in Tromso, Norway. Both meetings brought together scientists, policy makers and industry to discuss the changing Arctic. At ArcticBaseCamp in Davos, a team of Arctic scientists presented state-of-the-art Arctic research to the world’s most powerful leaders. Prof. Julienne Stroeve from UCL delivered a keynote on the fate of Arctic sea ice. This talk was followed by presentations from former US vice president Al Gore and Christiana Figueres, the former Executive Secretary the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The event was well attended by media and foreign leaders and plans are being made to include the event at next years WEF. More...

Published: Feb 9, 2017 10:26:00 AM

2017-01-Sammonds

Microdynamics of Ice.

Prof Peter Sammonds and Colleagues compiled and edited the theme issue of “Microdynamics of ice” published by the Philosophical transaction of the Royal Society A. This theme issue highlights some of the recent advances in the observations, analyses, theories, modelling and interpretation of ice microstructures and micro-deformation mechanisms. Among the contributors are @ES_UCL past and present researchers: Daniel L. Feltham, Peter M. Grindrod, Daniel C. Hatton, Ben Lishman, Ceri A. Middleton, Alexandra Seymour-Pierce. More...

Published: Jan 12, 2017 10:20:00 AM