Close. As part of two new studies into the glacier, teams of US and UK scientists scanned Thwaites from above and below. In 2002, a team of … Warm water from the deep ocean is welling up under the glacier from three different directions and mixing under the ice, the researchers discovered. The city of Boston is planning for more than 3 feet of sea level rise by 2070, and between 2 and 7 feet by 2100. The red dot shows the approximate location of the Nathaniel B. Palmer research vessel each day. If it collapses it could take other parts of the ice shelf with it and lead to the single largest driver of sea-level rise this century, lead researcher Erin Pettit told Nature. Scientists fear an unstoppable flow of ice from the Thwaites Glacier into the sea Credit: SWNS:South West News Service If Thwaites disappears, what happens? Global sea levels could rise as much as 10ft (3 metres) if the Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica collapses. Credit: Courtesy of Rob Larter/ British Antarctic Survey. If the entire floating ice shelf at Thwaites fractures into icebergs, whatâs left at the edge of the glacier is a giant cliff of ice whose shape makes it particularly vulnerable to runaway collapse. Annual ice discharge from this region as a whole has increased 77 percent since 1973. Many low-lying coastal cities, from the US to the Netherlands to Bangladesh, are built on land partially reclaimed from the sea. The question then is what we choose to do about it. Sometimes called the Doomsday Glacier due to the potential impact its collapse could have on sea levels, Thwaites is unusually broad and fast. As part of the wider project a number of robotic vehicles have been sent under the ice to gather data including one called Rán - named after the Norse god of the sea. Tagged: The mid-Atlantic coast is expected to see some of the greatest increases in flood frequency. Bostonâs affluent Back Bay neighborhood was previously a tidal bay in the city until a 19th-century land reclamation project made construction of the neighborhood possible. Already, Thwaites accounts for about four per cent of global sea-level rise as warming waters cause it to melt from the underside. Computer modeling shows Thwaites is unstable, and could start collapsing within decades. Scientists think the glacier could undergo even more dramatic changes in the near future. As Thwaites glacier nears collapse, scientists worry that ramifications like the disappearance of West Antarctic are a mere decade away. Scientists are investigating how to slow or stop the glacier melting, but there's no concrete answer just yet. Produced by Ian Coss, Steven Davy, David Evans, Alex Newman, Anna Pratt and Peter Thomson. How Antarctica ‘Doomsday Glacier’ Thwaites could COLLAPSE and send sea levels soaring. âYou'd expect it might lead to even further acceleration of flow of the glacier,â Larter said of the blowout. Rather than cram in a plethora of new features, Apple's latest update is about boosting stability, with improvements in everything from FaceID and battery life. Scientists recently discovered that warm undercurrents could be eating away its underbelly. Read More. The ultimate goal of the five-year research collaboration is to collect data â on the glacier itself, the bedrock beneath it, and the warm water melting it â that will improve models and fill in some of the unknowns about what the glacierâs collapse might look like. But it wont I bet it doesn't Probably active volcanoes , … As the glacier continues to melt, and its grounding line shifts farther inland, scientists suspect Thwaites will eventually reach a point of no return -- with its collapse inevitable. The Thwaites glacier is the size of Florida and is located in the Amundsen Sea. Instead, much of the ice there is actually what scientists call a âmÃ©lange,â a slushy mix of icebergs and other floating bits of ice formed by fracturing at an ice front. But it is a sign of the glacierâs instability. Melting of Thwaites is cause for global concern as its sheer enormity means that it contains enough ice that, if it was to melt, there would be worldwide implications. A map showing what the land is like underneath the ice on Antarctica created as part of the wider project is helping scientists predict the impact of global warming on the frozen continent - they used data from seismology and air surveys. Sea level rises threaten cities from Shanghai to London, to low-lying swathes of Florida or Bangladesh, and to entire nations such as the Maldives. Like other glaciers, Thwaites has a long, thin tongue of ice that sticks out into seawater. It is up to 4,000 meters thick and is considered a key in making projections of global sea level rise. Thwaites Glacier in Antarctica is 74,000 square miles, the size of Great Britain, and is thought to be particularly susceptible to climate change. This image pair demonstrates the changes that have occurred since the start of this century. 'We've never seen an ice sheet disintegrate in a warming climate, so we're struggling to project how it could happen,' glaciologist Ted Scambos told Nature. It's a little smaller than Britain, so it's absolutely massive. This winterâs expedition aboard the Palmer marked the first field season of a five-year, international research collaboration to discover just how much, and how fast, Thwaites Glacier might add to rising seas. Scientists recently discovered that warm undercurrents could be eating away its underbelly. Other groups will look at the glacier's flow on land and the ocean circulation - with all of the research feeding into models of the glacier and its future. A 'doomsday' Antarctic glacier that could collapse within decades and cause a 10ft (3 metre) rise in sea levels will be studied by an 'unprecedented' joint US-UK mission. Read More “You have to think in terms of maybe 3 feet, but maybe 10 or 15,” Alley said. As part of the wider project a number of robotic vehicles have been sent under the ice to gather data including one called Rán - named after the Norse god of the sea, The team were able to use data gathered by the robot to create a detailed map of the sea floor underneath the glacier. Mysterious US spy satellite is launched into orbit around the Earth atop a massive Delta IV Heavy rocket... No need to hold back on the cheese and wine this Christmas: Study shows they can REDUCE risk of Alzheimer's... Mass extinctions of land-dwelling animals follow a 27-million-year cycle and could be dictated by our orbit... Do NOT try to make George's Marvellous Medicine in lockdown: Scientists warn bored children stuck at home... Apple's new iPad is blazingly fast, gorgeous to look at, and quite simply the best tablet out there - and for a lot of people, probably the best computer out there. But even the city government isnât sure that level of protection is possible. Peloton's hi-tech bike lets you stream live and on demand rides to your home - and it's one of the best examples of fitness technology out there - at a price. In 2001, a study of Thwaites Glacier using satellite radar interferometry data from the Earth Remote Sensing Satellite 1 and 2 revealed that the grounding line of Thwaites Glacier was retreating at 1 kilometer per year and that the glacier was significantly out of mass balance, hence confirming presumptions of collapse by Terence Hughes, University of Maine, in 1973. Shocking moment a giant iceberg three times the size of... Groundbreaking footage of Antarctica's 'doomsday' Thwaites... Scientists drill into Antarctica's 'doomsday' Thwaites... What lies beneath? Scientists fear the collapse of Thwaites Glacier could one day destabilize surrounding glaciers and eventually trigger up to 11 feet of global sea level rise. This image pair demonstrates the changes that have occurred since the start of this century. DeConto said they are still working to identify the exact tipping point that would trigger this dramatic fracturing of the West Antarctic ice sheet, but work he presented at the American Geophysical Union meeting this past winter suggests itâs somewhere between 2-3 degrees Celsius of warming. âWhen we have better data, better science, then we can make more informed decisions.â. Thwaites Glacier. It could also be on the verge of a rapid collapse. This single glacier is responsible for 4% of global sea level rise. It's eye-wateringly expensive at $2,999, but Naim's Uniti Atom is a revelation, an integrated amplifier than makes it easy to stream music at a quality you've probably never heard before. This means that one chunk of ice crumbling could mean the entire glacier gives way. Thwaites Glacier is in West Antarctica and is sometimes called the Doomsday Glacier due to its potential impact on global sea levels. âIt's another step in the [progressive] retreat,â Larter said. Scientists fear its collapse could one day destabilize surrounding glaciers and eventually trigger up to 11 feet of global sea level rise. The front face of Thwaites glacier rises an estimated 60 to 75 feet above water in the areas where it is most intact. It already drains an area roughly the size of Britain or the US state of Florida, accounting for around four per cent of global sea-level rise —an amount that has doubled since the mid-1990s. The ice shelf is stabilized by contact with the seafloor. Israeli beauty-tech firm Pollogen has launched its Geneo Personal device, which stimulates oxygen from beneath the skin's surface to give you a clearer, fresher face within minutes. Pacific Island nations like Kiribati, the Marshall Islands and the Maldives would be wiped off the map if the West Antarctic ice sheet were to collapse entirely. And how fast it might happen once it starts. An iceberg in the Southern Ocean, is pictured here as the Nathaniel B. Palmer sailed by during its return trip from Antarctica in March 2019. It's just the science right now is so uncertain that it's planning for a variance of 4 feet of sea level rise,â Pegan said. Scientists say Thwaites and the other glaciers are not likely to collapse in the next century; they are simply too big to fail right now. Thwaites’ demise alone could have significant impact globally. The latest findings from a study into the wider ice shelf the glacier sits on come two years into the five year project. A run-away collapse of the glacier would lead to a significant increase in sea levels of around 65cm (25 inches) and scientists want to find out how quickly this could happen. Google is late to the game with its Home Hub, but the low price and AI features make it a great choice for controlling your home, showing pictures and even helping run your life. Naim's incredible Mu-So Qb takes you back to the good old days - where the music captivates and enthralls, rather that simply being something in the background. The two bigger glaciers are shielding ice that, if melted, would contribute to significant sea-level rise around the world. On one hand, the XR lacks the high-resolution screen and dual-lens camera on the XS. The Florida-sized glacier extends deep into the heart of the Antarctica ice sheet. It found tidal flooding will dramatically increase in many East and Gulf Coast locations, based on a conservative estimate of predicted sea level increases based on current data. Scientists race against time to find out. But what Thwaites and the glaciers around it have in store could be much more significant. It would drain a mass of water that is roughly the size of Great Britain or the state of Florida and currently accounts for approximately 4 percent of global sea-level rise. Places such as Annapolis, Maryland and Washington, DC can expect more than 150 tidal floods a year, and several locations in New Jersey could see 80 tidal floods or more. Some communities are going beyond these national and international projections and incorporating potential melting from Antarcticaâs ice sheets into their local sea level rise estimates. Thwaites Glacier doomed? It is up to 4,000 metres (13,100 feet thick) and is considered a key in making projections of global sea level rise. Flight window is open! Antarctica's Thwaites glacier has warm water from three directions well under it threatening to destroy the ice sheet and raise global sea levels by up to two feet. Because its interior connects to the vast portion of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet that lies deeply below sea level, the glacier is considered a gateway to the majority of West Antarctica’s potential sea level contribution. When we think of Antarctic ice, it's tempting to think of huge bergs floating through the sea. Apple's new iPhone XS and XS Max go on sale on Friday - and the biggest handset Apple has ever made is also its best (and possibly unsurprisingly, its most expensive). The rate of Thwaites’s disintegration has alarmed scientists for good reason. A massive one that poses such risk it's been branded the 'Doomsday Glacier". Their 2016 research, which predicts how marine ice cliffs will react to atmospheric warming under a variety of future greenhouse gas scenarios, found that in a future where we quickly and radically cut greenhouse gas emissions, the West Antarctic ice sheet would be relatively stable for centuries. The collapse of the glacier, which could begin with decades, could also submerge major cities such as New York and Sydney. If you were to dive into the water beneath the protruding, … That information was used to add to a detailed map of the sea floor and information on the conditions of the ocean and currents. Parts of New Orleans, Houston and Miami in the south on the US would also be particularly hard hit. Scientists think we could see a total collapse of the glacier within the next century, and are scrambling to better understand how to save it. This submarineâs historic tour under Thwaites Glacier will help scientists predict sea level rise, On a journey to Antarctica, a New Orleans chef awakens to the threat of melting ice, These high-tech seals are charting future sea level rise, These scientists used small explosions to 'see' under Antarctica and measure how fast a key glacier will melt, For this marine tech, Antarcticaâs Thwaites Glacier drives home threat of climate change, more than a quarter of the population would face inundation. Glaciers contribute to sea-level rise when more ice is lost to the ocean that is replaced by snow. Glaciers are huge sheets of ice moving very slowly, and contain vast amounts of water. It might not be a name familiar to the US market, but Naim is a legendary British brand hoping to make a splash with the American launch of its $1499 Mu:So speaker. In âOur challenge is that [sea levels are] going to keep going up,â said Julie Wormser from the Boston-area Mystic River Watershed Association. As the ice shelf thins, it lifts away from the seafloor and loses its ability to act as a brake on the flow of ice from the continent. Environment . Previously unseen parts of Herod's spectacular hilltop palace in Israel where the Judean king was buried in... SpaceX's latest Starship prototype COLLAPSES on the launch pad just days after its predecessor exploded... Smart wearable device that light up, vibrate and make 'annoying ' sounds when people are six feet of each... New solar-powered electric vehicle, Aptera, that 'never needs charging' provides 1,000 miles of range which... Scent of lemons can make you feel thinner and lighter but vanilla makes you feel heavier, study finds. If every country met its Paris Agreement commitments, the world would warm to 2.7 degrees Celsius. Next year the little robot submarine will create a large map of the area all the way to where the main body of the glacier sits on bedrock. Once the ice shelf is gone, ice will flow into the sea unchecked. The Thwaites glacier has experienced significant flow acceleration since the 1970s. Read More. Thwaites Glacier, a sheet of ice about the size of Florida, lies in West Antarctica. Coupled with the thinning of the glacier and its faster flow, âthis [event] is one expression of the fact that Thwaites Glacier is putting more and more ice into the ocean.â. Livable Planet Maybe 15 feet. Glaciers are huge sheets of ice moving very slowly, and contain vast amounts of water. Thwaitesâ ice shelf stabilizes the whole glacier, acting like a cork in a wine bottle to slow the seaward flow of ice from the continentâs interior. What we do know is that as seas warm and rise, Thwaites will be under increasing threat. Climate. 1 month ago. For some communities, 2 feet of sea level rise, which would come if Thwaites Glacier melts completely, represents an existential threat. The £39million study involving UK and US scientists was launched after concerns the increasingly unstable glacier may have already started to collapse. But the IPCC, too, serves up its estimates with an important caveat, stating that âthe collapse of the marine-based sectors of the Antarctic ice sheet, if initiated, could cause [global mean sea level] to rise substantially above the likely range during the 21st century.â. âThere are a lot of people interested in making sure that we can do this, but I can't say for sure right now.â. Antarctica Thwaites glacier collapse could lead to 2ft sea level riseA team of scientists from Oregon State University made the most of ice free waters in West Antarctica to look under the glacier - which is about the size of Great Britain. Thwaites is like the cork in the wine bottle for the rest of the West Antarctica ice sheet. Days after the Nathaniel B. Palmer became the first ship to sail across the 75-mile face of West Antarcticaâs Thwaites Glacier, a piece of its floating ice shelf bigger than Manhattan crumbled off the glacier into a flotilla of icebergs. The Thwaites glacier covers an area around half the size of the UK Antarctica's ice – what's going on? Scientists fear the collapse of Thwaites Glacier could one day destabilize surrounding glaciers and eventually trigger up to 11 feet of global sea level rise. The glacier is retreating in the face of the warming ocean and is thought to be unstable because its interior lies more than two kilometres (1.2 miles) below sea level while, at the coast, the bottom of the glacier is quite shallow. That's worrying news for coastal cities. Posted by. And it's melting very quickly, which is a huge concern to scientists. They will also use a combination of gliders, drilling and other sensors to gather as much data as they can about the seafloor and ocean currents. In the UK, for instance, a rise of 6.7ft (2 metres) or more may cause areas such as Hull, Peterborough, Portsmouth and parts of east London and the Thames Estuary at risk of becoming submerged. From 1992 to 2011, the centre of the Thwaites grounding line retreated by nearly 14 kilometres (nine miles). Once the glacier has retreated to a certain point, the tall cliffs of ice may crumble under their own weight. âSuddenly, it was making sense with what we were seeing out of the windows.â. Scientists may just have identified Thwaites Glacier's Achilles heel. Teams of scientists are drilling into a huge glacier – described as the “doomsday glacier” – to find out if it’s about to collapse. Glaciers contribute to sea-level rise when more ice is lost to the ocean that is replaced by snow. âYou could get a domino effect of icebergs falling off of the edge of an ice sheet,â said Ali Graham, a marine geophysicist on the ship from the UKâs University of Exeter. Scientists fear the collapse of Thwaites Glacier could one day destabilize surrounding glaciers and eventually trigger up to 11 feet of global sea level rise. Thwaites is already losing twice as much ice a year as it was in the late 1990s. This is the last in a series, Into the Thaw: Decoding Thwaites Glacier. Areas on the south coast like Portsmouth, as well as Cambridge and Peterborough would also be heavily affected. And ice cliff modeling suggests that if that process starts, there might not be anything to stop it. The first image, acquired with the Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) on Landsat 7, shows the glacier’s floating ice tongue on December 2, 2001 shortly before it calved Iceberg B-22. Think of Thwaites a bit like a keystone in an arch, holding everything together. She said by then we should know much more about the risks the ice shelf poses. âWhether it leads directly to further changes or not, we just have to wait and see,â Larter said. The key to West Antarctica’s future is the Thwaites glacier. Boston, of course, is not alone, nor is it the most vulnerable. By 2030, more than half of the 52 communities studied are projected to experience, on average, at least 24 tidal floods per year in exposed areas, assuming moderate sea level rise projections. Teams of scientists are drilling into a huge glacier – described as the “doomsday glacier” – to find out if it’s about to collapse. WORLD EXCLUSIVE - Prince Andrew's sex slave alibi falls apart: Explosive dossier blows a hole in 'Pizza Express' excuse, and shows he had a manicure booked on day Virginia Roberts claims she slept with him... but investigation questions her story too, Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday & Metro Media Group, Discover deals on home essentials and electricals, Apply AO.com voucher codes to save on home appliances, Check out the latest B&Q clearance for great offers, Keep yourselves entertained with these electrical offers, Check out the latest Wayfair sale to save on furniture. Thwaites Glacier in Antarctica is 74,000 square miles, the size of Great Britain, and is thought to be particularly susceptible to climate change. Thwaites, about the size of Florida, is currently responsible for about 4 percent of global sea level rise, making it one of the most dangerous glaciers in the world, according to scientists. In a major new collaboration, the UK Natural Environment Research Council and the U.S. National Science Foundation plan to deploy more than 100 scientists from dozens of institutions to study the possibility that West Antarctica’s huge Thwaites Glacier could collapse within decades or centuries. If Thwaites were to collapse, it could lead to an increase in sea levels of around 25 inches (64 centimeters) -- and the researchers are trying to find out how soon this is likely to happen. u/nrtlbwlitw. The Thwaites Glacier part of the West Antarctica Ice Sheet is undergoing accelerated melt along with a number of other glaciers that could see sea levels rise by between 10 and 13 feet. The Thwaites Glacier is one of the most dangerous glaciers in the world, and scientists are eager to travel to Antarctica to study it. They are studying the wider shelf, which extends across more than 65miles of open ocean and acts as a cork holding back ice on land, Pettit said. Scientists fear the collapse of both Thwaites Glacier and Pine Island Glacier, two of the biggest and fastest retreating in Antarctica, could cause sea levels to rise by over a metre. The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline. The seafloor underneath the glacier slopes downward as it goes inland in what scientists call a âretrograde slope,â and the ice sitting on top of it gets thicker and thicker. And that's a concern.â. The Thwaites glacier is slightly smaller than the total size of the UK, approximately the same size as the state of Washington, and is located in the Amundsen Sea. Scientists think the glacier could undergo even more dramatic changes in the near future. but it is $250 cheaper and still get most of the other cutting-edge features found on the more expensive model. At 11 feet, much of the city would be underwater without massive, new infrastructure projects to protect it. The first image, acquired with the Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) on Landsat 7, shows the glacier’s floating ice tongue on December 2, 2001 shortly before it calved Iceberg B-22. This means that cities and countries using IPCC data to build their own localized sea level rise projections are likewise only planning for a small amount of loss from West Antarctica, which might prove to be an underestimation. Thwaites Glacier is melting fast, and scientists fear its collapse could one day destabilize surrounding glaciers and eventually trigger up to 11 feet of global sea level rise. Scientists fear the collapse of Thwaites Glacier could one day destabilize surrounding glaciers and eventually trigger up to 11 feet of global sea level rise. As the glacier continues to melt, and its grounding line shifts farther inland, scientists suspect Thwaites will eventually reach a point of no return -- with its collapse inevitable. In some places Thwaites Glacier has been losing tens of feet, or several meters, of elevation per year. An earlier robotic submarine was able to confirm the presence of warm water under the ice, which Pettit and her team expanded on to find there were three sources of the warm water all 'attacking' the glacier from different sides. 'It's not just a flat sheet of ice that is melting uniformly. u/nrtlbwlitw. Mazur/ University of Gothenburg ) when do scientists think the thwaites glacier could collapse? the Thwaites grounding line retreated by nearly 14 kilometres ( nine miles ) eating! Of Florida, lies in West Antarctica could significantly affect global sea levels soaring of... Be on the conditions of the windows.â it into the glacier US the. Size of the Nathaniel B. Palmer, chartered by the US would be. Away its underbelly of those it is up to 11 feet, or can do. Amounts of water expensive model identified Thwaites glacier is responsible for 4 % of global sea,... 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