News and Events

First Science on the Shore Event February 23: Monitoring Ice at the Poles--Why We Should Care
02.08.2010
 
The public is invited to explore the Earth’s changing polar regions during the first Science on Shore program at 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, February 23, at the NASA Wallops Flight Facility’s Visitor Center.

With the Earth’s changing climate, the polar regions of the planet are undergoing dramatic changes. These changes are impacting sea level, which have and will continue to have an impact on the Eastern Shore.

Since 1992, researchers from Wallops, led by scientist Bill Krabill, have closely monitored the ice sheets and glaciers of Greenland using instruments on aircraft. The group is now part of a larger six-year NASA mission called Operation Ice Bridge to gather valuable information on the ice at the Earth’s polar regions.

During this presentation, Krabill will discuss the groundbreaking research conducted by his Wallops team that has shown the Greenland glaciers and ice sheets to be shrinking. Comparing the health of Greenland’s ice to “a canary in the mine,” he will look at why monitoring Greenland and the polar ice regions is important to everyone, especially those who live near the ocean coast.

Prior to and following Krabill’s presentation, visitors are invited to view the film “Frozen” on the Visitor Center’s Science on a Sphere. “Frozen is a 12-minute movie about Earth’s changing ice and snow cover as captured by NASA spacecraft.

Ice covers about 20 percent of the Earth’s surface and plays a major role in the world’s climate. NASA operates a fleet of spacecraft that make global measurements of ice and snow in remote locations not easily accessible to scientists on the ground. Data from these NASA satellites play a critical role in climate change research.

The Science on the Shore series is a collaborative effort of NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility, the Marine Science Consortium, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, the Nature Conservancy and the Eastern Shore Community College.

This educational and fun program provides the Eastern Shore community with an understanding of how local science based research and conservation techniques are used to solve challenges that impact the nation. Each organization will sponsor research and science activities, providing opportunities for hands-on participation as well as chances to attend unique speaker series.

For more information on Science on the Shore, visit the Internet at: http://msconsortium.org/#/science-on-the-shore/4537206296

For more information on NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility, visit the Internet at: http://www.nasa.gov/wallops