Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 25 Issue 03

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Volume 25, No. 3
Pages 104 - 105

SIDEBAR • Listening to Glaciers: Passive Hydroacoustics Near Marine-Terminating Glaciers

Erin C. Pettit Jeffrey A. Nystuen Shad O’Neel
First Paragraph

The catastrophic breakup of the Larsen B Ice Shelf in the Weddell Sea in 2002 paints a vivid portrait of the effects of glacier-climate interactions. This event, along with other unexpected episodes of rapid mass loss from marine-terminating glaciers (i.e., tidewater glaciers, outlet glaciers, ice streams, ice shelves) sparked intensified study of the boundaries where marine-terminating glaciers interact with the ocean. These dynamic and dangerous boundaries require creative methods of observation and measurement. Toward this effort, we take advantage of the exceptional sound-propagating properties of seawater to record and interpret sounds generated at these glacial ice-ocean boundaries from distances safe for instrument deployment and operation.


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