Researchers have discovered strange sounds that come from an Antarctic iceberg. The noise is produced when winds blow over snowy…
Researchers have discovered strange sounds that come from an Antarctic iceberg. The noise is produced when winds blow over snowy eyes and make ice to vibrate. Researchers believe that this scary sound can be used to track changes in the ice shelves.
Ross ishylla is the largest ice shelf in Antarctica, which is about the same as Texas. The ishyllan is several hundred meters thick and most of the ice is underwater. It plays an important role in stabilizing the Arctic arch in Antarctica, which acts as a butt to keep the ice on the Antarctic continent and resist ice-flow from land to sea.
Antarctica is among the fastest-heated places on the planet. Its melting ice sheet can affect the environment and contribute to sea level. Because global warming reduces snow dams, many floating ice shelves in the Antarctic can collapse and disappear completely.
In order to better understand changes in these critical features, researchers installed 34 extremely sensitive seismic sensors under the Rossyx snow area. The sensors enabled researchers to study the structure and movements of the iceberg for more than two years, from the end of 201
4 to the beginning of 2017. When researchers began to analyze seismic data on the Ross Ice Shelf, they observed a constant vibration from its surface. They found that this vibration is caused by snowdrifts. Antarctica ice shelf wings like winds whip over the massive snowy eyes, like a pulsed piston drum.
The sound also changed when weather conditions changed the surface of snow. Researchers noticed differences in frequencies when strong storms changed the shape of snowy or when the air’s temperatures on the surface went up or down. Studying an ice shelf vibration can indicate how Antarctica responds to changing climate.
“It’s like blowing a flute constantly on the iceberg,” said lead author Julien Chaput, a geophysicist and mathematician at Colorado State University in Fort Collins. “You either change the speed of snow by heating or cooling it or changing where you blow the flute by adding or destroying dunes. And that’s essentially the two compelling effects we can observe.”