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This week from AGU: Icequakes, the Arctic, origins of life, ocean drilling, & 3 new papers

December 16, 2015

GeoSpace

One Million Icequakes

Nestled in the Arctic is a glacier like no other. This glacier quakes once a minute creating seismic events that rattle the earth--more frequently than scientists have ever seen. Understanding why these icequakes are so common may help researchers predict future ice flow, a process that propels climate-driven sea level rise.

Restoring white Arctic will fall to future generations who never knew it

Scientists and policymakers have discussed for decades how to slow the rate of global warming and melting Arctic ice--most recently at the Paris talks--but few have discussed how to restore the ice after it is lost. That task will likely fall to future generations who not only grew up without a white Arctic but may have conflicting interests in keeping it blue, according to an analysis presented on Monday by scientists at the 2015 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting.

Cold reaction has hot implications for evolution of life

When carbon dioxide and hydrogen gas mingle deep underground, they transform into methane and water--the building blocks of life. Scientists once thought the reaction, called Sabatier synthesis, could only proceed above 150 degrees Celsius. Life, they thought, was conceived deep in the scalding vents of an ancient ocean. But the Sabatier process also runs cooler, finds a new study presented at the 2015 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting.

Eos.org

Scientific ocean drilling charts a new course

The International Ocean Discovery Program plans drilling expeditions for 2016 and 2017 while increasing efficiencies in ship scheduling and operations.

New research papers

High-resolution Probing of Inner Core Structure with Seismic Interferometry, Geophysical Research Letters

Air moisture control on ocean surface temperature, hidden key to the warm bias enigma, Geophysical Research Letters

Intra-annual variability of biogeochemical processes in the continental shelf waters of southeastern Arabian Sea, Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences
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East Antarctica's Denman Glacier has retreated 5 kilometers, nearly 3 miles, in the past 22 years, and researchers at the University of California, Irvine and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory are concerned that the shape of the ground surface beneath the ice sheet could make it even more susceptible to climate-driven collapse.
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