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Read science articles on the ice age, glaciation and climatology. Discover the connection between ice ages and global warming.
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Genome sequence of polar alga explains evolutionary adaptation to extreme variable climate

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 11:18
An international team of researchers has identified the genetic mutations which allowed microalgae (phytoplankton) from the Southern Ocean to adapt to extreme and highly variable climates -- a step towards understanding how polar organisms are impacted by climate change.

Tracking Antarctic adaptations in diatoms

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 11:18
In the Antarctic Ocean, large populations of the diatom Fragillariopsis cylindrus dominate the phytoplankton communities. To learn more about how F. cylindrus adapted to its extremely cold environment, a team of researchers conducted a comparative genomic analysis involving three diatoms. The results provided insights into the genome structure and evolution of F. cylindrus, as well as this diatom's role in the Southern Ocean.

Changing atmospheric conditions may contribute to stronger ocean waves in Antarctica

Fri, 01/13/2017 - 14:56
A new study provides important details on the extent of sea ice, which can protect ice shelves from the impacts of ocean storms, in the Antarctic Peninsula.

How the darkness and the cold killed the dinosaurs

Fri, 01/13/2017 - 12:30
Climate scientists now reconstructed how tiny droplets of sulfuric acid formed high up in the air after the well-known impact of a large asteroid and blocking the sunlight for several years, had a profound influence on life on Earth.

Pretty in pink: Some algae like it cold

Tue, 01/10/2017 - 14:13
Scientific efforts are aimed at learning more about the effects of pink snow algae on glaciers and snowfields covering Pacific Northwest stratovolcanoes.

Rapid Arctic warming has in the past shifted Southern Ocean winds

Tue, 01/10/2017 - 09:16
Ice core records from the two poles show that during the last ice age, sharp spikes in Arctic temperatures shifted the position of winds around Antarctica.

Giant iceberg, 5,000 square kilometers, set to calve from Larsen C Ice Shelf, Antarctica

Fri, 01/06/2017 - 12:19
A huge iceberg looks set to break away from the Larsen C ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula. Satellite observations from December 2016 show a growing crack in the ice shelf which suggests that an iceberg with an area of up to 5,000 square kilometers is likely to calve soon.

Great Barrier Reef almost drowned; climate implications

Fri, 01/06/2017 - 08:29
The first comprehensive analysis of the Great Barrier Reef at a time of rapid sea-level rise during the beginning of the Last Interglacial found it almost died. The research shows the reef can be resilient but questions remain about cumulative impacts. The research also provides an accurate identification of the age of the fossil reef that grew before the modern Great Barrier Reef, some 129,000-121,000 years ago.

Radar reveals meltwater's year-round life under Greenland ice

Thu, 01/05/2017 - 11:32
When summer temperatures rise in Greenland and the melt season begins, water pools on the surface, and sometimes disappears down holes in the ice. That water may eventually reach bedrock, creating a slipperier, faster slide for glaciers. But where does it go once it gets there, and what happens to it in the winter? A new study helps answer these questions.

Ocean Acidification: High-tech mooring will measure beneath Antarctic ice

Thu, 01/05/2017 - 11:32
Scientists have deployed a high-tech mooring beneath the seasonally ice-covered waters around Antarctica to better understand ocean acidification in polar regions.

Climate change could trigger strong sea level rise

Thu, 01/05/2017 - 11:31
About 15,000 years ago, the ocean around Antarctica has seen an abrupt sea level rise of several meters. It could happen again.

Potential instability in Atlantic Ocean water circulation system

Wed, 01/04/2017 - 14:43
One of the world's largest ocean circulation systems may not be as stable as today's weather models predict, according to a new study. In fact, changes in the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation -- the same deep-water ocean current featured in the movie 'The Day After Tomorrow' -- could occur quite abruptly, in geologic terms, the study says.

The fire through the smoke: Working for transparency in climate projections

Wed, 01/04/2017 - 10:43
To help policymakers more confidently prepare for the effects of climate change, a group of preeminent climate scientists evaluated the scientific work and expert judgments behind the most recent projections from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change regarding the potential ecological, social, economic and meteorological repercussions of climate change.

Researchers explore link between tropical glaciers, water supply

Wed, 01/04/2017 - 09:36
Researchers are closer to understanding how the loss of glaciers in the Cordillera Blanca of Peru is affecting water resources in a region responding to global climate change.

When the Arctic coast retreats, life in the shallow water areas drastically changes

Wed, 01/04/2017 - 09:35
The thawing and erosion of Arctic permafrost coasts has dramatically increased in the past years and the sea is now consuming more than 20 meters of land per year at some locations.

Closely related yet so different

Thu, 12/22/2016 - 08:48
Southeast Asia is home to numerous felids, including the Asian golden cat and the bay cat. The two cat species are closely related sister species which split from each other 3.16 million years ago. Yet, their more recent history was quite different. Scientists could now show that, after a massive volcanic eruption about 73,000 years ago, the Asian golden cat survived only in Indochina, from where it expanded its range in dramatic fashion during the peak of the last Ice Age. The cooler and drier climates at the time pushed its sister species, the bay cat, however, into rainforest refuges on Borneo.

Leaky plumbing impedes greenland ice sheet flow

Tue, 12/20/2016 - 16:51
Surface meltwater that drains to the bed of the Greenland Ice Sheet each summer causes changes in ice flow that cannot be fully explained by prevailing theories.

Scientists bear witness to birth of an ice cloud

Tue, 12/20/2016 - 08:46
Scientists have witnessed the birth of atmospheric ice clouds, creating ice cloud crystals in the laboratory and then taking images of the process through a microscope, essentially documenting the very first steps of cloud formation.

Warmer climate threatening to northern birds

Tue, 12/20/2016 - 08:39
Will northern birds such as the Siberian jay and the red-flanked bluetail be gone in 50 years? There is a huge risk since a deteriorating climate for breeding is imminent. Another six species are also under threat and will require particular conservation actions in order to survive, according to a researcher who has developed a species analysis method.

Satellites observe 'traffic jams' in Antarctic Ice Stream caused by tides

Mon, 12/19/2016 - 12:44
Nine months of continual radar observation reveals the complex changing patterns of ice stream movement in three dimensions that can inform predictions for the speed at which the ice caps will respond to a warming climate.

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