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UW Researchers Lead Team Discovering Ice Is Sliding Toward Edges off Greenland Ice Sheet

Ice on the Greenland Ice Sheet doesn’t just melt. The ice actually slides rapidly across its bed toward the ice sheet’s edges. As a result, because ice motion is from sliding as opposed to ice deformation, ice is being moved to the high-melt marginal zones more rapidly than previously thought.  Neil Humphrey, a University of Wyoming professor of geology and geophysics, and Nathan Maier, a UW geology Ph.D. student from Morristown, N.J., headed a recent research group that discovered that you do not need beds with till or mud, which acts as a lubricant, to have high rates of sliding. Rather, they discovered that it is over hard bedrock where ice slides more rapidly. Additionally, the ice slides over the bedrock much more than previous theories predicted of how ice on the Greenland Ice Sheet moves.  Read more....

 

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