An air shot of Ross Ice Shelf in Antarctica. Researchers found that one of the largest ice shelves in the…
An air shot of Ross Ice Shelf in Antarctica. Researchers found that one of the largest ice shelves in the world produces a low hum that is caused by wind currents on the snow surface. The sound is almost continuous and changes the pitch based on the situation on the surface. ( American Geophysical Union (AGU) | YouTube )
Antarctica Singing. Researchers found that one of the world’s largest ice sheets produces an almost continuous series of toner.
The phenomenon was accidentally observed on the Ross Ice Shelf. Researchers who monitored the vibrations on the largest ice shelf on the continent were “stunned” to detect the low hums caused by the wind blowing over their snow nets.
A study that discusses the seismic noise created by Ross Ice Shelf was published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters from the American Geophysical Union.
Unfortunately, the little song on the ice shelf is too low for human ears to hear ̵
1; the sound is recorded at frequencies of> 5 Hz. To “listen” to Rossi’s shelf seismic tones, the researchers buried sensitive sensors under the ice surface. A sped-up recording of lobster was released by the American Geophysical Union on its social media pages (see below).
“It’s like blowing a flute constantly on the ice shelf,” geologist Julien Chaput, leading author of the study, described.
Ross Ice Shelf’s low stomach is produced when the wind blows over the snowy eyes, which causes the surface to vibrate and produces a seismic tone that only sensitive machines can detect. Researchers were in place to study low frequency vibration caused by earthquakes and sea waves. But on closer inspection they discovered that the surface of the ice surface is constantly vibrating.
They also found that the ice on the ice shelves changed in accordance with the weather conditions. When there is a strong storm blowing wind over the ice shelf surface and rearranges the snow layer over it, the ice vibrates at different frequencies. The air temperature also affects how fast the seismic waves travel through the snow on the surface. The researchers compare the process of a musician changing the pitch of a note on a flute by changing the velocity of airflow or picking what hole the air is coming out of.
“You change either the speed of snow by heating or cooling it or changing where you blow the flute by adding or destroying dunes,” explains Chaput. “And it’s essentially the two compelling effects we can observe.”
The researchers hope that the changes in the seismic mood of ice shelves could reveal new details about the ice shelves, especially if they are at risk of breaking apart.
Ross Ice Shelf is the largest ice sheet in Antarctica. It measures about 487,000 square kilometers or approximately the size of Texas and France. It also plays an important role in stabilizing ice on the continent and acts as a “cork” that prevents internal glaciers from melting into the ocean.
Because of global warming, the ice sheet in Antarctica becomes thinner. Some have gone back or even collapsed because of the rising sea and the heating temperature.
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