Browse Archive

  • disintegration of Larsen B ice shelf

    Glacier Loss Detailed After Ice Shelves Collapse

    07.25.11 - An international group of scientists has detailed glacier ice loss following the collapse of the Larsen A and B ice shelves in 1995 and 2002.

  • Various species of microscopic organisms called phytoplankton reflect light that when imaged from space show up as colorful blue and green swirls.

    NASA Sets Sail on Mission's Final Arctic Voyage

    06.21.11 - Scientists embark this week on the second and final leg of a NASA oceanographic field campaign to study how changing conditions in the Arctic affect the ocean's chemistry and ecosystems.

  • NASA's B200 aircraft

    NASA's Arctic Ice Campaign Adds Second Aircraft

    04.21.11 - NASA scientists conducting an airborne Arctic campaign to monitor changes in sea ice and ice sheet thickness have a new tool -- a second aircraft.

  • Store Glacier, West Greenland.

    NASA Finds Polar Ice Adding More To Rising Seas

    03.08.11 - The Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets are losing mass at an accelerating pace, according to a new NASA-funded satellite study.

  • The left image shows how much energy the Northern Hemisphere’s snow and ice, called the cryosphere, reflected on average between 1979 and 2008. The right image shows how the energy being reflected from the cryosphere has changed between 1979 and 2008.

    Melting Snow and Ice Warm Northern Hemisphere  →

    02.24.11 - Mark Flanner at the University of Michigan and his collaborators used satellite data to measure how much changes in snow and ice in the Northern Hemisphere have contributed to rising temperatures in the last 30 years.

  • This image shows the average Arctic sea ice concentration for January 2011, based on observations from the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for EOS (AMSR-E) aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite. Blue indicates open water; white indicates high sea ice concentrations; and turquoise indicates loosely packed sea ice. The yellow line shows the average sea ice extent for January from 1979 through 2000.

    Record Low Arctic Sea Ice Extent for January  →

    02.09.10 - The U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) has reported that Arctic sea ice was at its lowest extent ever recorded for January (since satellite records began).

  • The bathymetry—the height and depth of the seafloor—beneath Pine Island Glacier. The deepest regions (navy blue) descend about 1,200 meters (3,900 feet) below sea level, while elevated seamounts and shoals (pale blue to white) are mostly 200 meters (650 feet) below sea level.

    Channel Beneath Pine Island Glacier  →

    01.20.10 - Beneath the Pine Island Glacier in Antarctica, scientists have found a deepwater channel -- a likely pathway for warm water to reach the glacier’s underbelly and melt it from below.

  • West Antarctica is seeing dramatic ice loss particularly the Antarctic Peninsula and Pine Island regions. Ice loss culprits include the loss off buttressing ice shelves, wind, and a sub-shelf channel that allows warm water to intrude below the ice.

    Unstable Antarctica: What's Driving Ice Loss?

    12.15.10 - New studies reveal mechanisms driving ice loss in West Antarctica, with implications for improving predictions of sea level rise.

  • Maps of multiyear sea ice coverage of Arctic Ocean on April 30, 2008 (left) and again on Nov. 30, 2008 (right) show a large area of fragmented multiyear ice in the Beaufort Sea disappears after ice pack reached its annual summer minimum extent.

    The Role of Melt in Loss of Old Arctic Sea Ice

    11.09.10 - A NASA analysis of satellite data challenges previously held beliefs about how the Arctic loses its older and thicker 'multiyear' sea ice.

  • Screen capture from video of sea ice minimum for 2010.

    Arctic Sea Ice Reaches 2010 Minimum Extent

    10.06.10 - Sea ice has reached its minimum extent for 2010, measuring in at the third-lowest extent since satellite measurements began.

  • image of polar sea ice cover created using satellite data gathered 3 Sept 2010

    A Sea Ice Snapshot

    09.13.10 - While the 2010 minimum extent of arctic sea ice remains to be seen, NASA's Aqua satellite captured this snapshot on Sept. 3.

  • Petermann Glacier in Greenland

    NASA Releases New Image of Massive Greenland Iceberg

    08.12.10 - A new NASA satellite image shows the continued movement of a massive iceberg that broke off Greenland's Petermann Glacier on Aug. 5.

  • Greenland's Petermann Glacier

    Ice Island Calves off Petermann Glacier

    08.09.10 - A chunk of ice some 97 square miles in size broke off Greenland's Petermann Glacier on August 5. The resulting iceberg is the Arctic's largest since 1962.

  • Map Overlayed on the Boat

    Cutting Into Arctic Sea Ice

    07.23.10 - "Over by the fish, below the soccer field," said ice scientist Bonnie Light, pointing at the Arctic sea ice from the bridge of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy earlier this month during NASA's ICESCAPE oceanographic mission.

  • detail of new, more accurate grounding lines

    Antarctica Traced from Space

    07.22.10 - The point where ice separates from land is called the "grounding line." For scientists, an accurate map of the grounding line is a first step toward a complete calculation of how much ice the continent is losing.

  • Sensor

    Arctic Voyage Illuminating Ocean Optics

    07.21.10 - During the ICESCAPE voyage to the Arctic, scientists have been looking at the phytoplankton in the Arctic's Chukchi Sea -- how many, how big and at what depths they are found.

  • Jakobsahvn glacier before and after losing 1 square mile of ice

    Mile-long Chunk of Ice Calves off Greenland Glacier

    07.09.10 - Jakobshavn Glacier shed 2.7 square miles of ice overnight as researchers watched the ice sheet rift and then retreat.

  • A large phytoplankton specimen photographed by the Imaging Flow Cytobot instrument.

    ICESCAPE Tracking Arctic Plankton

    07.07.10 - ICESCAPE has brought together a team of ice and ocean experts in the fields of biology, chemistry and physics to collect data across the sea in an effort to piece together the plankton picture.

  • Coast Guard Ship in Dutch Harbour

    To Sea! NASA's Arctic Research Voyage Begins

    06.15.10 - The expedition got underway this morning as the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker Healy steamed out of this island fishing port in the North Pacific.

  • Healy Coast Guard Ship

    NASA Begins Arctic Voyage to Probe Ocean Changes

    06.09.10 - NASA goes to sea to take an up-close look at how changing conditions in the Arctic are affecting the ocean’s chemistry and ecosystems.