Navigation Links
Has the mystery of the Antarctic ice sheet been solved?
Date:2/27/2008

A team of scientists from Cardiff Universitys School of Earth and Ocean Sciences and Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales travelled to Africa to find new evidence of climate change which helps explain some of the mystery surrounding the appearance of the Antarctic ice sheet.

Ice sheet formation in the Antarctic is one of the most important climatic shifts in Earths history. However, previous temperature records show no evidence of the oceans cooling at this time, but instead suggest they actually warmed, presenting a confusing picture of the climate system which has long been a mystery in palaeoclimatology.

Now Dr Carrie Lear, Lecturer in Palaeoceanography, and her team at Cardiff have presented new temperature records using ancient sea floor mud recovered from Tanzania, East Africa. The shell chemistry of pin-head sized animals called foraminifera (forams) reveal that ocean temperatures did in fact cool by about 2.50C.

Dr Lear said: Forams are great tools for studying climates of the past, which helps us learn about the uncertainties of our future greenhouse climate. These new records help resolve a long-standing puzzle regarding the extent of ice-sheet growth versus global cooling, and bring climate proxy records into line with climate model simulations.

We have been able to use the chemistry of the Tanzanian microfossils to construct records of temperature and ice volume over the interval of the big climate switch. These new records show that the worlds oceans did cool during the growth of an ice sheet, and that the volume of ice would have fitted onto Antarctica; so now the computer models of climate and the past climate data match up.

The team at Cardiff Universitys School of Earth, Ocean and Planetary Sciences will now look for evidence of the ultimate cause of the global cooling using the forams. They believe the prime suspect is a gradual reduction of CO2 in the atmosphere, combined with a trigger time when Earths orbit around the sun made Antarctic summers cold enough for ice to remain frozen all year round.


'/>"/>

Contact: Dr. Carrie Lear
carrie@earth.cf.ac.uk
029-208-79004
Cardiff University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. UCLA researchers solve decade-old mystery
2. Ancient mystery solved
3. ASU professor helps solve mystery of glassy water
4. 480-million-year-old fossil sheds light on 150-year-old paleontological mystery
5. Time-sharing tropical birds key to evolutionary mystery
6. Cassini on the trail of a runaway mystery
7. Magnetic snakes control fluids, gravity-defying droplets, and solving a dragonfly mystery
8. Men shed light on the mystery of human longevity, study finds
9. Folate mystery finally solved
10. Scientists tackle mystery mountain illness
11. Krill discovered living in the Antarctic abyss
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/28/2016)... BANGALORE, India , April 28, 2016 ... subsidiary of Infosys (NYSE: INFY ), and Samsung ... global partnership that will provide end customers with a ... and payment services.      (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130122/589162 ... for financial services, but it also plays a fundamental part ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... First quarter 2016:   , Revenues amounted ... quarter of 2015 The gross margin was 49% (27) ... the operating margin was 40% (-13) Earnings per share ... operations was SEK 249.9 M (21.2) , Outlook   ... M. The operating margin for 2016 is estimated to ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... and LONDON , ... Finacle, part of EdgeVerve Systems, a product subsidiary ... Onegini today announced a partnership to integrate the ...      (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20151104/283829LOGO ) ... provide their customers enhanced security to access and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/28/2016)... 28, 2016 Q BioMed ... Company,s CEO  was featured in an article he ... VCs Fear To Tread: http://www.lifescienceleader.com/doc/accelerators-enter-when-vcs-fear-to-tread-0001 ... is an essential business journal for life ... biotechs to Big Pharmas. Their content is designed ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... ... April 28, 2016 , ... Morris ... open house for regional manufacturers at its Maple Grove, Minnesota technical center, May ... Group, Chiron and Trumpf. Almost 20 leading suppliers of tooling, accessories, software ...
(Date:4/27/2016)... ... April 27, 2016 , ... ... mobile devices with fingerprint recognition for secure access, voice recognition for hands-free communication, ... ways consumers are interacting with biometrics technology today. But if they asked ...
(Date:4/27/2016)... ... April 27, 2016 , ... NDA ... joined the company as an Expert Consultant. Mr. Clark was formerly a ... managing the development of small molecule monographs based on analytical methods. NDA ...
Breaking Biology Technology: