Volume of ice in Antarctica measured

By Expeditions / 01 May 2014

Volume of ice in Antarctica measured

A detailed analysis of data compiled during 50 years of exploration shows the White Continent to contain about 26-and-a-half-million cubic km.

If this ice was all converted to liquid water, it would be sufficient to raise the height of the world's oceans by 58m. These numbers come out of an international project known as Bedmap2, a large cooperative effort involving 60 scientists from 35 institutions based in 14 countries.

Bedmap2's new figure for the volume of ice is 4.5% more than previously thought. Interestingly, the sea-level-rise equivalent is not that different to past estimates. This is because the extra ice is shown to lie mostly below the current water line and so if it melted it would not add significantly to the volume already displaced. The thickest point is in a place called Astrolabe Subglacial Basin. There, the column of ice is 4,776m thick.

Read the full story at BBC Science and Environment...


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