Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan

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Professor Aciego: Glacier Chaser

Posted: July 9, 2013

Professor Aciego: Glacier Chaser

By: Madeline Strong Diehl

Sarah Aciego doesn't anticipate that her upcoming trip to Greenland will be as dangerous as her fieldwork in Antarctica, where finding shelter within seconds during a sudden storm meant the difference between life or death. But the AOSS assistant professor does know this trip could be just as important as her Antarctic fieldwork—if not more. Her new method of studying glacial meltwater will yield data that hasn't been accessible to scientists before, and will help paint a more detailed picture of climate change.

Glacial melting occurs where an ice sheet is in contact with the earth. As the pace of global warming accelerates, scientists like Aciego are trying to learn more about this process. “We can’t climb under the glacier to see what's happening under there,” explains Aciego, “so we'll be collecting meltwater samples very close to the outlet, where it enters the sea.”

Aciego is a member of a faculty cluster focused on the cryosphere, which includes AOSS professors Brian Arbic, Jeremy Bassis and Mark Flanner.  All are appointed in both the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences and the Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences.

To read the full story on Aciego, please click here.

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