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Scientists detect an ancient rock structure hidden beneath Antartica, shifting the ice

Scientists detect an ancient rock structure hidden beneath Antartica, shifting the ice

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Deep below the frozen wastelands of Antarctica, scientists have discovered ancient tectonic plate structures that are having a huge impact on melting patterns around the continent’s largest ice shelf. The hidden rock, in place for hundreds of millions of years, is controlling water flow around the gigantic Ross Ice Shelf. This shelf currently acts as a crucial buffer preventing more of Antarctica’s ice floating out into the wider ocean. Researchers detected said rock thanks to observations carried out by the IcePod, a dedicated scanning system which measures ice shelf height, thickness and internal structure, and the magnetic and gravity signals of the underlying rock. Essentially, the IcePod can peer through hundreds of metres (thousands of feet) of ice to detect underlying rock structures that satellites can’t spot. As researchers report in their newly published study, a geological boundary between East and West Antarctica has created a division underneath the continent, which is…
Source: class=”bbc_link” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>Scientists detect an ancient rock structure hidden beneath Antartica, shifting the ice

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