The ferocious noise made by popping or cracking ice maybe a worrying sound to the lay ear — particularly if you are standing on top of it at the time. However to researchers working in the field of climate science the groaning of the polar landscapes is music to their ears.
Scientists have started to record the sound that the ice makes as it recedes, using hydrophones to measure the amount of glacial melting. Mapping the sea floor using sonar is not a new phenomenon but in this new application instead of sending pulses of sound to the sea floor and timing their return, glaciologists just simply listen. Looking at the interface between ice, ocean and bedrock it may be possible to use acoustics to measure the glacial melt.
You can almost hear the glaciers heave a sigh of relief.
Photo from shareski via flickr
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