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Read science articles on the ice age, glaciation and climatology. Discover the connection between ice ages and global warming.
Updated: 1 hour 27 min ago

In hot pursuit of dinosaurs: Tracking extinct species on ancient Earth via biogeography

Fri, 05/31/2019 - 09:05
Identifying the movements of extinct species from millions of years ago can provide insights into ancient migration routes, interaction between species, and the movement of continents.

Mass die-off of puffins recorded in the Bering Sea

Wed, 05/29/2019 - 17:02
A mass die-off of seabirds in the Bering Sea may be partially attributable to climate change, according to a new study.

Early humans used northern migration routes to reach eastern Asia

Wed, 05/29/2019 - 13:50
Northern and Central Asia have been neglected in studies of early human migration, with deserts and mountains being considered uncompromising barriers. However, a new study argues that humans may have moved through these extreme settings in the past under wetter conditions. By analyzing past climate, northern Asia emerges as a potential route of human dispersal, as well as a zone of potential interaction with other hominins such as Neanderthals and Denisovans.

Asia's glaciers provide buffer against drought

Wed, 05/29/2019 - 12:12
A new study assesses the contribution that Asia's high mountain glaciers make to relieving water stress in the region. The study has important economic and social implications for a region that is vulnerable to drought. Climate change is causing most of the region's glaciers to shrink.

A warming Arctic produces weather extremes in our latitudes

Tue, 05/28/2019 - 13:01
Atmospheric researchers at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) have now developed a climate model that can accurately depict the frequently observed winding course of the jet stream, a major air current over the Northern Hemisphere.

Did ancient supernovae prompt human ancestors to walk upright?

Tue, 05/28/2019 - 08:53
Supernovae bombarded Earth with cosmic energy starting as many as 8 million years ago, with a peak some 2.6 million years ago, initiating an avalanche of electrons in the lower atmosphere and setting off a chain of events that feasibly ended with bipedal hominins.

Study uncovers surprising melting patterns beneath Antarctica's Ross Ice Shelf

Mon, 05/27/2019 - 10:17
Scientists have discovered an ancient geologic structure that restricts where ocean water flows, and reveals that local ocean currents may play a critical role in the ice shelf's future retreat.

Climate change affects the genetic diversity of a species

Fri, 05/24/2019 - 09:27
What effects does climate change have on the genetic diversity of living organisms? In a new study, researchers studied the genome of the alpine marmot. Results were unexpected: the species was found to be the least genetically diverse of any wild mammal studied to date. The alpine marmot has lost its genetic diversity during ice-age related climate events and been unable to recover its diversity since.

GRACE data contributes to understanding of climate change

Thu, 05/23/2019 - 12:02
The team that led a twin satellite system launched in 2002 to take detailed measurements of the Earth, called the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE), reports on the contributions that their nearly two decades of data have made to our understanding of global climate patterns.

A family of comets reopens the debate about the origin of Earth's water

Thu, 05/23/2019 - 10:14
Researchers have found that one family of comets, the hyperactive comets, contains water similar to terrestrial water.

Melting small glaciers could add 10 inches to sea levels

Thu, 05/23/2019 - 09:49
A new review of glacier research data paints a picture of a future planet with a lot less ice and a lot more water.

Widespread permafrost degradation seen in high Arctic terrain

Thu, 05/23/2019 - 08:13
Rapid changes in terrain are taking place in Canada's high Arctic polar deserts due to increases in summer air temperatures.

Massive Martian ice discovery opens a window into Red Planet's history

Wed, 05/22/2019 - 13:17
Newly discovered layers of ice buried a mile beneath Mars' north pole are the remnants of ancient polar ice sheets and could be one of the largest water reservoirs on the planet, according to scientists. The layers of ice are a record of past climate on Mars in much the same way tree rings are a record of climate on Earth.

River valleys helped shape current genetic landscape of Han Chinese

Tue, 05/21/2019 - 18:37
New research shows the importance of how the three main river valleys in China contributed to Han genetic diversity.

Better understanding of the effect of melting ice sheets: Experts weigh in

Mon, 05/20/2019 - 14:30
Using a technique called structured expert judgment, researchers asked 22 ice sheet experts to estimate plausible ranges for future sea level rise due to the projected melting of each of the Greenland, West Antarctic and East Antarctic ice sheets under low and high future global temperature rise scenarios.

How Earth's mantle is like a Jackson Pollock painting

Mon, 05/20/2019 - 10:57
New research paints an intricate picture of Earth's mantle as a geochemically diverse mosaic, far different from the relatively uniform lavas that eventually reach the surface.

Nearly a quarter of West Antarctic ice is now unstable

Thu, 05/16/2019 - 10:46
In only 25 years, ocean melting has caused ice thinning to spread across West Antarctica so rapidly that a quarter of its glacier ice is now affected, according to a new study.

Warming climate threatens microbes in alpine streams

Thu, 05/16/2019 - 08:08
Changes to alpine streams fed by glaciers and snowfields due to a warming climate threaten to dramatically alter the types of bacteria and other microbes in those streams, according to new research. But streams that are fed by underground ice insulated by rock -- called 'icy seeps' -- offer some hope that the impact of climate change will be less severe in some areas.

How ocean melts Antarctic Ice Sheet

Wed, 05/15/2019 - 10:03
An innovative use of instruments that measure the ocean near Antarctica has helped scientists to get a clearer picture of how the ocean is melting the Antarctic ice sheet. Until now, most measurements in Antarctica were made during summer, leaving winter conditions, when the sea freezes over with ice, largely unknown.

Ancient DNA suggests that some Northern Europeans got their languages from Siberia

Thu, 05/09/2019 - 13:26
Most Europeans descend from a combination of European hunter-gatherers, Anatolian early farmers, and Steppe herders. But only European speakers of Uralic languages like Estonian and Finnish also have DNA from ancient Siberians. Now, with the help of ancient DNA samples, researchers suggest that these languages may have arrived from Siberia by the beginning of the Iron Age, about 2,500 years ago, rather than evolving in Northern Europe.