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Welcome to the Archive of the LIMA Challenge Webchat
Wednesday, November 19
See more information on LIMA
and
Participating Scientists



Quest_Moderator
Welcome early birds! I will start posting questions as soon as our scientists arrive! Make sure you've posted some of yours to the room (that way you can have a head start!) - Linda

Scearce_MVMS_IA
<Q>Hi Linda- Just checking if this is working on our computers- I may have some students join us after all.
Quest_Moderator
<A>Good to hear! I was delighted to see you on!
.
Good_Shepherd_Day_School_Punta_G
<Q>How do we get access to time-series of Landsat? We don't know how to do it.
Robert_Bindschadler <A>Good question. LIMA is basically a "snapshot"--one point in time. We have one example on the lima.nasa.gov website where we prepared three images. Otherwise, you need to go get other Landsat images yourself. The best place to do this is the EarthExplorer website that the USGS runs. Landsat data are now free. Google on EarthExplorer to find the site.

Eddie_Millinocket
<Q>Have you ever found any preserved mammals?
Tom_Wagner <A>Yes, as fossils on the islands between Antarctica and South America. They're important because they show that Antarctica was the crossroads to the world around a 100 of millions of years ago. In fact, it's speculated that mammals got to Australia from Africa via Antarctica. And some may have even evolved in Antarctica before moving around.

Jared_Millinocket
<Q>If it snows in Anarctica a big portion of the time then why don't glaciers start immediatly after the snow storm ends because the snow would compress and make ice. I know it takes millions of years to make a glacier but wouldn't it start after the latest storm.
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>I suppose technically the glacier does form right away, even though the snow hasn't compressed to ice yet. The snow or ice will start to flow, but very very slowly. As the ice gets thicker, the force of gravity will force the ice to move faster and faster.

Good_Shepherd_Day_School_Punta_G
<Q>For Ted Scambos: Why did you say that this is one of the fastest changing parts of the ocean around Antarctica?
Ted_Scambos
<A>This area of the ocean is seeing a lot less floating ice (sea ice) than it used to, up to 20% less than in the 1980s. And the land area downwind from this area is warming rapidly, that's the Antarctic Peninsula. Glaciers in the Antarctic Peninsula are retreating from the coast, because the water has gotten warmer, and the air is warmer in teh summer, causing more melt. So it would be very interesting to see if Peter I island is also changing.

Sarah_Millinocket
<Q>How can you tell if a mountain is indinted or outdented on the top.
Ginny_Catania
<A>I would look at the shadows in the image. If the mountain-top has a similar shadow to a nearby mountain that you know has a peak, it likely has the same shape.

Leah_Millinocket
<Q>In Mark from Millinocket Middle School's proposal what would some of the effects and problems that would happen if the supposed volcano were to erupt?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Think about how an erupting volcano changes the environment from what was there the day before the eruption. A volcano adds heat and ash. Heat would melt the snow and ice. Ash that lands on the surface would make the surface darker which would absorb more solar radiation, leading to more melting.

Leah_Millinocket
<Q>In Alex from Millinocket Middle School'd proposal what is the real possibilty of finding dinosaur bones and such? Wouldn't the bones have been crushed by the flowing ice already?
Ginny_Catania
<A>It's possible, but most researchers search for fossils on rock. If the dinos were there before the ice was there, there would be no bones in the ice.

Leah_Millinocket
<Q>In Mark from Millinocket Middle School's proposal if a volcanic eruption were to happen what would the effects or the problems that would happen in Antarctica?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Good questions! There are volcanic eruptions nearly every day at Mt Erebus in Antarctica. Check out the MEVO website--you can see the lava lake in the summit explode! The answer to your question is that it depends where the volcano is. Mt Erebus's summit isn't covered with ice, so the eruptions come straight out. But a volcano buried by ice could cause an explosion and make a neat rock call hyaloclastite. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyaloclastite There is also some worry that an eruption could melt some of the overlying ice, make water and lubricate its base, and maybe speed up the flow of the glacier.

Matthew_Millinockey
<Q>about how much land does Antarctica cover
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>You could Google this answer, but I'll give it to you. The areal extent of ANtarctica is roughly 14 million sq. km. Larger than the US.

John_Millinoket_Maine
<Q>What sort of machinary do you use to find out what kind of land there is under the ice?
Ginny_Catania
<A>There are several types of instruments that you can use; ice-penetrating radar is similar to an x-ray of your body. Ice is transparent to radio waves, so they can pass through it easily. But the base of the ice sheet is not as transparent, so the radio waves bounce off of the bed. We tow a radar system by an airplane or overland to image the ice sheet and the base just like you see in cross sections of rock on the side of the highway. Similarly, seismic systems are used to image the base of the ice sheet. These types of systems can see through the mud at the bottom of the ice to see what's underneath that mud. If all of that fails, you can drill to the bottom!

travisa_shenandoah.k12.ia.us
<Q>is this the only place to log in?
Quest_Moderator <A>This is it! Just post your quesitons, and I will forward them to our experts. If you'd like to address it to one or the other in particular, please feel free to do so!

alainamvms_IA
<Q>Does anyone know where Aeolian sand comes from?
Ginny_Catania <A>Aeolian is a Greek word that means 'produced by the wind' so aeolian sand is wind-blown sand.

taylor_millinocket
<Q>Is it possible to have a volcano that is active but will never erupt?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Ask yourself "how did the volcano form"? Through eruption, so I don't think you can have a volcano without eruptions sometime. But volcanos that have already formed can go dormant. I had a vulconologist once tell me that there is no such thing as a permanently dormant volcano. Never say never!

Leah_Millinocket
<Q>Is there a way to test the ice at the top of the summit to tell if it's actually a volcano?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Sure, you might see things in the ice that show heat is being released. Or you might see gas escaping. Or you might see volcanic ash layers embedded in the ice around the volcano.

kylesciencemilli
<Q>Could ice swell when water is under it?? If so, how much and why???
Tom_Wagner
<A>Yes, it could. And in some cases water has been seen to flow under the ice and cause it to rise and fall.

Mark__Millinocket
<Q>How could I find out if a summit is or used to be a volcano? And how would that be measured?
Tom_Wagner
<A>One way is to look at its shape. Look at pictures of volcanos on the internet and you'll see.

JENNY_MVMS <Q>HI Does some one know how deep Don Juan Pond is?
Tom_Wagner <A>Shallow! You can walk across it and not get your knees wet in most of it.

Alex_Millinocket
<Q>How would you use LIMA to find rocks with fossils in them?
Tom_Wagner
<A>I'd learn about the rocks where the dinosaur bones were found, and then look for similar rocks in other areas of the TransAntarctic Mountains with LIMA.

Tom_Wagner
<Q>I have a question for the students--what intrigued you to learn about LIMA/

Jared_Millinocket
<Q>What percentage of Antarctica has been thoroughly explored?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Great question. Via satellite, we "seen" it all, but seeing it one way doesn't tell us all that we want to know. If anything, it leads to new questions. Field teams can only visit small parts of the surface. That's why data like LIMA are so valuable. It lets scientists see a lot and let them pick the most interesting places to go work. Back to your question--very few areas have been "thoroughly explored", well less than 1%

Joe_CaidenMVMS_Iowa
<Q>Do you know why Onyx River is the only river in Anarctica?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Well, you need two things for the river--water and a place for it to flow. In Antarctica, both of those are rare!

Kristen_Millinocket
<Q>What are some of the most interesting artifacts you have found in Antarctica?
Ted_Scambos
<A>That -I- have found.... hmm. I visited some of the old hut buildings that Scott and Shackleton used in their early visits, but those are like museums, they were re-found a long time ago and are protected as monuments to the early heros. I have found some flags and poles in the middle of the ice sheet that had been left behind ~20 years earlier - it was odd to see a flag on a very short pole flapping in the snow, and to know that the pole was really 8 feet long. The flag was all threads and ragged, and had faded in the sun.

Good_Shepherd_Day_School_Punta_G
<Q>We think there might be pieces of ice breaking off the Tofte Glacier and eventually floating away and melting in warm waters, but we don't know where to look for this information-help!
Ginny_Catania
<A>One way might be to compare the LIMA images of Tofte with other images of that glacier in the past.

g5-redd-texas-garay
<Q>what type of resarch is most done in antarctica? biology, geology,atmosphere or oceanography?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>It depends on how you measure "most". I think the budget for biology is largest, but there is plenty of great research in the other areas that would take place if the research money was there. Each group is addressing important questions.

travisa_shenandaoh.k12.ia.us
<Q>could lava go through ice tunnels and cause ice bergs to calve?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Yes, lava can make ice tunnels. But usually it's just the heat and gas escaping from the magma that percolates up through the ice that makes spectacular ice caves. Calving usually happens far from where there are volcanoes--in the ocean!

travisa_shenandaoh.k12.ia.us
<Q>our teacher has done many NASA projects and this was an oppourtunity to do something new and exciting.
Quest_Moderator <A>We're so glad you could join us!

Lucas_Millinocket
<Q>My question is how can you tell the start of a glacier to the end of a glacier
Ted_Scambos
<A>Well, that's a good one -- but its easy to answer: they flow downhill. But even if somehow you didn' t know the elevation, you could tell: glaciers start off with lots of smooth snow, in an area where lots of snow falls and collects. As they flow away from the 'catchment', they get cracks in them ('crevasses') and they start to expose more ice. At the end, there are rock piled up and lots of sand, which are materials from the underlying bedrock that the glacier has pushed forward.

Joe_CaidenMVMS_Iowa
<Q>Can you put underwater probes in the lakes that are completely frozen?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Yes, we make holes in the ice with "Hotsies" and then we put probes down--even people! Who scuba dive in the lakes.

Joe_CaidenMVMS_Iowa
<Q>We thought that it could be very interesting to work on LIMA.
Quest_Moderator
<A>I noticed that you were one of the fortunate proposers to get 3 responses from the scientists. Do you have any specific questions that will help you do your final proposal?

travisa_shenandaoh.k12.ia.us
<Q>Mr. Bindschadler, how can you tell how well B-15A ice berg is attached to the ice tongue?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>I'd want to know two things: how thick the ice is and how cold is that ice. Thickness we can estimate by measuring the length of the shadow the iceberg casts on the water. Knowing the elevation of the sun, one can figure how much ice sticks out of the water. Then knowing the densities of ice and water, one gets the density. These can be figured out from LIMA imagery. The other thing that affects the strength of the connection is the ice temperature. Colder ice is stiffer and stronger. This is hard to measure from space, but you can estimate it by knowing the air temperature and the water temperature.

mvms_IA
<Q>does any one know how deep lake hoare is?
Ginny_Catania
<A>I'm not sure, but I would guess a few meters. You might be able to find this out using the web. There is a lot of info. on this lake because of the McMurdo LTER site that is nearby.

travisa_shenandaoh.k12.ia.us
<Q>what causes ice burgs to attatch again once they have broken off?
Tom_Wagner
<A>They get frozen in sea ice, which is when the surface of the ocean freezes. Icebergs come from glaciers from the land that flow into the ocean.

pgardner
<Q>Connally Elementary: Our Answer to Tom Wagner: We are concerned about Antarctica's effect on the global climate and how it might directly affect us in Texas.
Tom_Wagner
<A>Thanks!

Joe_CaidenMVMS_Iowa
<Q>Do you know the origin of Lake Vida?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>I'm not an expert on surface lakes in Antarctica, so I'll take the simple approach and suggest that Lake Vida is there because enough water melted from the ice to collect and it found a local depression. Voila, Lake Vida! Maybe you have better ideas.

travisa_shenandaoh.k12.ia.us
<Q>what causes crevices in ice bergs, and do the ice bergs crack on crevaces?
Ted_Scambos
<A>This is a really good question, I was just working on this. Most of the cracks on icebergs are 'leftovers' from when the iceberg was a part of the ice sheet - but icebergs can get their own cracks, too, from being bent by ocean tides or banging into islands or other icebergs. But the interesting crevasses I was working on form at the edges of the icebergs, from the forces that are placed on the iceberg just by it floating in water. The water 'squeezes' the iceberg - or a ship, or a log, or any other floating object -- but ice is flexible, and so it bends a bit; sometimes it can crack at the edge, and a long, skinny piece of the edge of the iceberg will float away. They look like McDonald's french fries in the water -- but the size of aircraft carriers.

rehanna_mvms_iowa
<Q>How do lichen and fungui stay alive during the harsh winter?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Good question--WE DON'T KNOW! But there also fish and insects that survive in conditions below their freezing point.

Emily_Millinocket
<Q>Is it possible for a volcano to erupt in Antarctica? Also how do you know if a volcano is active or dormant with the ice and snow covering it?
Tom_Wagner
<A>yes! Check out the MEVO website. Volcanoes have their own heat, so they erupt just fine in the cold regions. But strange things happen when magma and ice meet, including explosions!

JENNY_MVMS
<Q>Hi Do you know how many ponds are in Antarctica that are not frozen over like Don Juan Pond?
Ted_Scambos
<A>Hi, no, but I would guess it is about 10 or 20 or so. Don Juan Pond is the most famous, I think it has just the right combination of these very unusual salts (calcium chloride, potassium chloride, calcium sulphate) to stay unfrozen even at -40 C. Like a lot of things in the Dry Valleys, people wonder if the same kinds of unfrozen ponds could exist on Mars.

JENNY_MVMS
<Q>Where is the best place to see penguins in Anarctica? I think they are very important in the world. When they die down we now tyhe world has gone to far into global warming.
Tom_Wagner
<A>Depends on what kind of penguin! But there are penguins all around Antarctica, and even some in South America, Africa, and New Zealand.

Katherine_From_Millinocket
<Q>What makes blue ice blue?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>That etherial blue color is a combination of light being absorbed and not scattered. Red light gets absorbed by ice more than blue. If there aren't very many bubbles in the ice, the light doesn't scatter (which makes the ice appear white) much and the longer the distance the light travels without scattering, the more blue it appears

Brandon_Millinocket_Maine
<Q>How do you know that there is fricton under the ice if it is frozen?
Ginny_Catania
<A>There is friction at the base of the ice sheet because the material underneath is rough. If the ice is frozen to the bed, it will not experience this bed roughness, but the ice will deform (and thus flow) under its own weight. If the ice is not frozen to its bed and there is water at the base of the ice sheet, this reduces the friction from the bed and the ice can flow faster (by sliding).

Joe_CaidenMVMS_Iowa
<Q>Mr. Wagner, could Joe's ice feature, the triangular feature, be a rock avalanche?
Tom_Wagner
<A>That's a great idea, but I'm not sure and it's difficult to to tell from that image. I would pull back and look at the surrounding area.

Amanda_Millinocket
<Q>When you guys are doing your reserches with NASA do you ever have a difficult time trying to figure out different things that you are doing and also do you do alot of reserch with Nasa?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Good scientists never have a problem coming up with questions that need answers. The trick is to ask "good" qustions. A good question is one that can be answered. Then with lots of good questions, you have to decide which one to start with!

Joe_CaidenMVMS_Iowa
<Q>are there any ice features that have completely melted away?
Ted_Scambos
<A>Oh yeah, especially in the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. There are large regions that were once covered by glaciers, or large areas of the ocean that used to be covered by thick plates of ice (~700 feet thick, 20 miles across, 30 miles long) that are gone. But the key was that it didn't take melting all the way to nothing -- what we learned was that a little water on a glacier or an iceberg or ice shelf can have a big effect, by making it flow faster (glaciers) or break easier (ice shelves).
.
Kristen_Millinocket
<Q>Why would some places be better for finding fossils than others?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Well, fossils are mostly found in sedimentary rocks--that is rocks that were originally dirt. So, if you want fossils, you don't go looking at igneous rocks like basalt and granite and there is quite a bit of that in Antarctica.

Joe_CaidenMVMS_Iowa
<Q>are there any ice features that have completely melted away?
Ted_Scambos
<A>Also in Alaska, there are some very large glaciers that have shrunk away to almost nothing

Amanda_Millinocket
<Q>Is there life in Antartica?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Well, there are people! And there are bacteria. And nematodes. And penguins. And fish. And algae. And fungi. And even an insect. But it's a good question, because life there is very simple, so we study it to see how life might have started.

rehanna_mvms_iowa
<Q>how do you think artemis ridge was created?
Ted_Scambos
<A>I don't have the picture in front of me, so you tell me which of these ideas is the most plausible, given how it looks and how the systems of the earth work:

Good_Shepherd_Day_School_Punta_G
<Q>We were intrigued because we want to help scientists find good and interesting places to study if global warming is affecting Anrtarctica.

Stephanie__Millinocket
<Q>What would cause global warming in Antarctica, even though Antarctica is very cold?
Ginny_Catania
<A>Antarctica can be affected by global warming just like any other place on the planet. The oceans will warm more quickly than the ice and where oceans touch the ice, the warm ocean can melt the ice. This may be why many of the ice shelves in the Peninsula have broken off. Also, if the atmosphere in Antarctica starts to warm, it may snow more (warmer temperatures promote precipitation) and the ice sheet may grow slightly.

Katherine_From_Millinocket
<Q>Were the volcanos in Antarctica ever active?
Tom_Wagner
<A>yes, and they still are! Check out the MEVO web page.

Cameron_Millinocket
<Q>What types of fish live in Antarctica? If there are, ten how could they survive?
Robert_Bindschadler <A>If I were a comedian, I'd answer COLD fish swim in Antarctica. Serious scientists have been studying characteristics of Antarctic cod (one type of fish) for many years. Their blood contains antifreeze! How cool is that!

JENNY_MVMS
<Q>We have heard of fish with antifreeze have you ever seen them? Do they look like other fish?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Antarctic fish look very much like fish elsewhere. The differences that let them swim in water colder than 0 degrees is all internal.

emma_mvms_IA
<Q>Is lake hoare salt water or fresh water?
Ginny_Catania
<A>You can probably find this answer online also. Lake Hoare is a well-studied lake that is part of the McMurdo Long-term-ecological-research program (LTER). I think Lake Hoare gets its water from a nearby glacier though...so what do you think? Will it be fresher or saltier if it gets water from a glacier?

JENNY_MVMS
<Q>Does some of the salt in Don Juan Pond come from the rocks in it?
Tom_Wagner
<A>I wish I knew the answer to this question. It's such a strange salt, we don't really know where it comes from or why this pond is so different from the other ponds around it. Maybe you can study it one day!

rehanna_mvms_iowa
<Q>how do you think artemis ridge was created?
Ted_Scambos
<A>Water erosion from a huge flash flood from under the ice (this apparently has happened on Mars before); Ice erosion of layers of bedrock from a time when the ice sheet spread over the area; and now the ice is smaller, so we can see it; or was it billions of years of wind erosion carving out valleys in the rock?; or normal water erosion, over thousands of years, just like the process that forms the canyons and mesas in the Southwest, like the Grand Canyon.

Joe_CaidenMVMS_Iowa
<Q>Do you know how many people visit Lake Vida each year?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Gosh, I'm stumped. I expect there are years that no one visits Lake Vida. That's another reason LIMA imagery and other satellite data are so valuable. They are our "eyes' when we can't be there. I'll forward this message to Tom, who may know the direct answer.

austin__millinocket
<Q>what is an ice chimmny?
Ginny_Catania
<A>I think an ice chimney occurs where you have warm gases escaping from a volcanic environment, but that volcano is overlain with ice. As the gases escape they melt a pipe (or chimney) into the overlying ice. You can google 'ice chimney Erebus' to see images of these from Mt. Erebus in Antarctica.

Joe_CaidenMVMS_Iowa
<Q>Do you know how many people visit Lake Vida each year?
Tom_Wagner <A>Not so many--maybe just a few or none depending on the year.

Amanda_Millinocket
<Q>In Antarctica does a lot of ice melt in a week or even a day?
Ginny_Catania
<A>This is difficult to answer because we don't have data that can give us daily or weekly measurements. But our overall trends show that some regions of Antarctica are showing significant melt over several years to decades.

Lucas_Millinocket
<Q>Is there a certain amount of glacier moutain or volcano's in Antartica.
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Well, there is a certain amount, but I don't know how much. I don't beleive anyone does. Most of the mountains/volcanoes are buried beneath the ice. More are being discovered and LIMA imagery is one way of seeing clues to lead us to buried mysteries.

rehanna_mvms_iowa <Q>Got to go- Thanks

emma_mvms_IA <Q>Time for us to go- thanks
Quest_Moderator <A>Thanks for joining us today!

JENNY_MVMS <Q>time to go- thanks

alainamvms_IA <Q>have to go- thank you very much

austin_millinocket
<Q>what area would be good to find fossils in antarctica?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Mt Kirkpatrick is where the older dinosaurs were found (Cryolophosaurus), and the islands off the peninsula opposite south america are where many more recent fossils were found, especially from the KP extinction that wiped out the dinosaurs. There are birds, plesiosaurs and other things there.}

Quest_Moderator We're running out of questions. Do you have more? ESPECIALLY having to do with your proposals! This is your chance to fine tune!

Amanda_Millinocket
<Q>Is working with nasa hard. I mean, is working with Antarctica hard?
Tom_Wagner
<A>It can be hard, but it's fun! If it was easy, it'd be boring. How long does anyone play an easy video game?

tyler_millinocket
<Q>Does melting water act as a lubricant for the glacier or slow it down.
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>A wonderful question aimed at ice flow, which is key in how ice sheets will change sea level as the world warms. Water is a lubricant, so on the face of it, water that gets between the ice and rock will allow the ice to move faster. However, just to show that many things can cut both ways, if the water flowing beneath the ice starts to form a network of channels, those channels can start to suck more wter to them actually drying out most of the bed and the glacier slows down!

travisa_shenandaoh.k12.ia.us
<Q>why are the ice caps melting in the Arctic but water is freezing in the Antarctic? is this a form uniformitarianism or is global warming causing something new or accelerating it?
Ted_Scambos
<A>Tough question, but lets untangle it a bit. Because the seasons are opposite for the opposite poles (summer in the north is winter in the south) you get freezing in Antarctica every August, just when the Arctic is shrinking fast. But I think you mean longer-term -- and I think you are also talking about sea ice, the thin ice floating on the ocean. The Arctic is warming fast, and with that little bit of warming, especially in summer, the Arctic is going from just a little below freezing to just a little above freezing -- and that has this big effect, of burning off all the ice and creating a lot of follow-on changes as the ocean gets darker (no ice cover) and the air warms up. In Antarctica, things are not yet warming as much -- and the temperature is WAY below freezing over much of the sea ice, so a little bit of warming does not push the ice into the melting state.

Millinocket2013
<Q>does Lima do more than just science things? or does it do more?
Robert_Bindschadler <A>My favorite question so far!! One of the best things LIMA does is show everybody what Antarctica truely looks like. This is natural color and we never had a high-definition view of the continent to share with most of the people in the world. Most people will NEVER have the opportunity to go to ANtarctica, so LIMA brings Antarctica to THEM--right to their desktop!

travisa_shenandaoh.k12.ia.us
<Q>what type of insect lives in Antarctica?
Ted_Scambos
<A>In the very warmest parts of Antarctica, in summer, there are two kinds of bugs that I know about that form little clouds over melt ponds: they are called 'midges' and 'springtails' I think. But I'm an ice guy, I don''t know if there are any biologists in on this chat. You can look up 'Antarctica's largest land animal' on the web, and I think it will say 'midges', this tiny insect.

travisa_shenandaoh.k12.ia.us <Q>thank you for your time, school's out. we appreciate the answers you gave us, the TAG team from Shenandoah IA.
Quest_Moderator <A>We're so glad you could join us live!!

erycah_taylor_academy_ca
<Q>Have you been able to find any life forms in the ice caves or crevasses of Antarctica?
Tom_Wagner
<A>yes, there are bacteria just about everywhere. It's gets blown in.

JP_CheektowagaCentralMS_NY
<Q>Question from the whole group, we read that there has been a meteor impact site found, is there a group or a person to contact that we could ask question about what to look for at our chosen site?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Neat, huh! My understnding is that the meteor struck 250 million years ago--long before the ice sheet was there. Roughly the area it landed is in "Wilkes Land" which is a big part of East ANtarctica. Dr. Ralph von Frese made the discovery by looking at the gravity field from space. Meteors are heavy and the leftover heavy rocks were detected. I don't think there is any visual signature of the crater left to be seen.

Dylan_millinocket
<Q>How many airports are built in Antarctica?
Ted_Scambos
<A>Well it depends on what you mean by airport (is Millinocket getting a big airport upgrade?). In terms of 'landing sites' I suppose there are about 75 of those every year, maybe more -- but the planes that most people use in Antarctica only need a few hundred yards of smooth snow to do a landing. If you mean a runway that a wheeled aircraft can roll to a stop, or take-off from, lets see... McMurdo, Patriot Hills, Dumont Durville, Rothera, Novolazarevskya, Troll, SANAE, .... ok maybe a dozen. The aircraft that go most often are: Twin Otter, C-130 Herculese, Ilushyin 76, Dornier, a modified DC-3 called a 'Bassler'...and a huge military cargo plane called a C-17 -- that's what I think I'll be on tomorrow when we go to McMurdo

Leah_Millinocket
<Q>Will the ice eventually flow away from Antarctica and the world will basically flood? ::smile
Ted_Scambos
<A>Will people all over the world start to manage the Earth, take care of it, and make sure that this will never happen? -- I think so. Smile.

John and Caiden/MVMS/
<Q> You talked to us about Lake Vanda but we were looking at Lake Vida so is there a river flowing into Lake Vida?
Ginny_Catania
<A>I am an ice person so I don't know much about the lakes in the Dry Valleys. I would have a look around the web. There are lots of biologists and hydrologists that study these lakes and they may have lots of info. about Lake Vida posted online. However, you may be able to see if there is a river flowing into it using LIMA or other imagery.

Joe/MVMS
<Q>Could my triangular object be the remnant of an avalanche triggered by an earthquake? When was the last known earthquake in Antarctica?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Wow, that's a good question. Antarctica has small earthquakes all of the time. But it doesn't have the large earthquakes that might trigger a rock slide.

shyla_millinocket
<Q>Why do glacier only form by the ocean?
Ted_Scambos
<A>Oh, they form all over the place - in the mountains especially; like the Rockies, or the Alps, or the Himalayas... far from the ocean. But in the polar regions it's cold enough that they can flow all the way down to the sea -- and if the water is very cold (almost never above freezing) they can even flow out over the ocean and form large floating plates that last for centuries.

Scearce_MVMS_IA
<Q>Brandt/MVMS/ Is there a website or a way I can look at satellite imagery that would show below the surface of the ice? John and Caiden/MVMS/ You talked to us about Lake Vanda but we were looking at Lake Vida so is there a river flowing into Lake Vida? Also, what part of the year is the kite stream frozen and when is it not? Would that show up on the LIMA or would we need to do a field study? Joe/MVMS Could my triangular object be the remnant of an avalanche triggered by an earthquake? When was the last known earthquake in Antarctica? Rehanna and Nicole/MVMS For Ted-You talk of a crust of lichen and fungi that lives on the soil surface by Artemis ridge- do you happen to know the scientific name of the lichen and fungi? Jenny and Delaney/MVMS For Bob- Is it possible that the ocean used to cover the land around DJP (similar to the Great Salt Lake) and the concentration of salt is from having evaporated over millions of years? Or could the salt be coming from the rocks or bacteria in the are
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Wow, lots of questions! I'll try to pick out mine. For a website to show subsurface data of Antarctica, try BEDMAP (google on this). It is a collection of data of ice thickness and bed elevation beneath the ice. You'll see that lots of the ice sheet sits on a bed BELOW sea level!
<A>Next Q for me: DId the ocean drown DJP--gosh, I don't know, but it's a great idea. If so, it would have been millions of years ago, so that water would have enough time to evaporate. But I'm no expert on that and I encourage you to pursue this hypothesis a bit farther! If I've missed other questions to me, please resubmit them.

Joe/MVMS
<Q>Could my triangular object be the remnant of an avalanche triggered by an earthquake? When was the last known earthquake in Antarctica?
Tom_Wagner
<A>You might be interested to read about "rock glaciers" in the McMurdo Dry Valleys.

Cameron_Millinocket
<Q>Can there be any animal life on Antarctica?
Tom_Wagner
<A>There is! People! And one tiny insect. And there are penguins and seals on the coast. But nothing besides bacteria in the interior.

Quest_Moderator So! Does this mean we're all ready for posting our final designs! I still see lots of folks in the chat room. Do you have any more questions? Last chance!

Jared_Millinocket
<Q>What would be the weight of all the ice on Antarctica if you could weigh it?
Ginny_Catania
<A>That's a great question! It sure would be hard to actually do this. I think you could probably work out the answer on your own. The things you need to know are: 1. how much ice is in Antarctica: 25x10^6 cubic kilometers and 2. the density of ice is 910 kg/m^3.

Rehanna and Nicole/MVMS<Q> For Ted-You talk of a crust of lichen and fungi that lives on the soil surface by Artemis ridge- do you happen to know the scientific name of the lichen and fungi?
Ted_Scambos <A>(Help, Tom!) -- I should have searched for this term myself, I knew it a while back. Try searching the web with the terms 'Canada Glacier', 'lichen', 'fungi', 'protected area', 'Dry Valleys', and 'soil'.

JP_CheektowagaCentralMS_NY
<Q>When we write our final proposal, how much detail do you want? Do you want things like field trips, proposed activities and labs activities we can create based on our proposal? Is there a final outline format?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>No format. What I've found missing is some description of what would be measured. I like the questions that were suggested, but only a few proposals mentioned specific measurements and how those measurements would help answer the questions. Don't just say that your data would answer the Q, say how. (Some of my colleagues STILL don't do this--sshhh, don't tell them!)

John and Caiden/MVMS/<Q>Also, what part of the year is the kite stream frozen and when is it not? Would that show up on the LIMA or would we need to do a field study?
Tom_Wagner <A>It might--it depends on when the image you were looking at were taken. But more importantly, can you see the feeder streams? Can you trace them back to their source? Even when they don't have water, you can still see their shape.

pgardner
<Q>If Mt. Takahe is still active would the lava be any colder than any other volcano's lava?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Depends on the volcano--it might be warmer in places, just like Kilauea in Hawaii is cold is some spots and too hot to touch in others.

Cameron_Millinocket
<Q>Could the world flood if Antarctica melted?
Ginny_Catania
<A>Another good question that you can probably answer yourself! If you look at how much ice is in Antarctica (25x10^6 cubic kilometers) and if you were to melt it and spread it out over the ocean-covered parts of the globe, how high would oceans rise? I'll give you a hint: Not exactly Waterworld!
Quest_Moderator

Jenny and Delaney/MVMS
<Q>For Bob- Is it possible that the ocean used to cover the land around DJP (similar to the Great Salt Lake) and the concentration of salt is from having evaporated over millions of years? Or could the salt be coming from the rocks or bacteria in the are
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>I already answered this, but I've got more to suggest. FIgure out how much salt would be left if the lake had filled with sea water. If the lake then refilled with fresh water, wouldn't the salinity go back to that of seawater? We know DJP is very, very salty. So how many times would you have to fill it with sea water and then evaporate off the water, to get as much salt as is in the lake now? That would be a neat calculation.

Jared_Millinocket
<Q>I've heard that the Earth isn't perfectly round, and that is from the weight on Antarctica, is that true?
Ted_Scambos <A>No, well, not quite like that, this is jumbling a couple of different things together. The weight of the ice does push the continents out of shape, shoving them down in the middle and up at the edges (like a, um, butt sitting on a couch pillow). But the main reason the Earth is not perfectly round is because it is spinning, and so the Equator bulges out a bit from centrifugal forces due to the spinning. That deviation is about ...I think about 20-30 miles (30-45 km) or so. That's much bigger than the 'couch pillow' effect, which is about 500 meters, 1km that range.

Brandt/MVMS/
<Q>Is there a website or a way I can look at satellite imagery that would show below the surface of the ice?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Try BEDMAP. It shows the bed elevation beneath Antarctica. http://www.antarctica.ac.uk//bas_research/data/access/bedmap

erycah_taylor_academy_ca
<Q>When did Mt. Erebus last erupt?
Tom_Wagner
<A>Check this out: http://erebus.nmt.edu/blog/

Good_Shepherd_Day_School_Punta_G
<Q>The swirling patterns that we talked about in our proposal are they on our off land because we can`t tell if it`s ice land or water. We think it`s a mixture of ice and water.
Ted_Scambos
<A>This is the project about Peter I island, right? yes the swilrling pattern are offshore, in the ocean near the coast, and are forme by tidal currents or swirling winds caused by flowing around the cliffs and underwater shoals of the island. Yes, its small pieces of ice swirling very slowly on the ocean surface.

rehanna_mvms_iowa
<Q>have many people traveled to artemis ridge?
Ted_Scambos
<A>I don't know -- maybe 20? maybe 40? It has been mapped by geologist more than once over the years. Who named it? they probably were the first visitors.

rehanna_mvms_iowa
<Q>have many people traveled to artemis ridge?
Ted_Scambos
<A>I should say, the Dry Valleys in general have been mapped and visited many times - I don't know about Artemis Ridge specifically.

JP_CheektowagaCentralMS_NY
<Q>OK, we were thinking that there are meteor impact sites that are hidden in the mountains. It is hard to get the students to realize just how thick the ice is!
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>There were big meteor impacts millions of years ago. They are buried by the ice sheet that formed later, but the heavy rocks alter the gravity field and this is how the old impact are detected. Smaller meteorites fall on the ice more recently and are carried by the ice to places where they are revealed as the ice slowly evaporates. It can be tough to get people to realize how thick the ice is (have them walk 4 kilometers!) but I also find it tough to get people to realize how BIG Antarctica is. Larger than the US (including Alaska). Calculate how many kids would have to stand on top of each other to cover 4 km.

Quest_Moderator I know for many the bell has rung and you've gone on to other classes. When the scientists have finished answering the questions they've received, we'll wrap up the chat.

Quest_Moderator The whole chat will be archived at this same place. Thank your for joining us!

erycah_taylor_academy_ca
<Q>Thank you very much. This chat was very informative, and taught me a lot about Antarctica.
Quest_Moderator
<A>Thanks for joining us. Looking forward to your final proposal!

pgardner
<Q>If Mt. Takahe erupts what percentage of Western Antarctica would be affected by melting?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>It depends on how extensive the eruption. For an "average" eruption, most of the ice sheet would not be affected, but the local ice would be severly affected. I'll use Mt. St. Helens as an example. The blast zone was just a few miles wide, with the ash cloud extending a hundred miles. West Antarctica is more than 1000 miles across.

Amanda_Millinocket
<Q>is there stores and stuff in antartica?
Ted_Scambos
<A>Well, no, if you want shopping malls, don't come to Antarctica! but there are a few souvenier shops at some of the larger bases. No WalMarts yet.I'm going to breakfast now (its 8am in Christchurch New Zealand) - so goodbye, it was a lot of fun.

Quest_Moderator
Thanks for joining us Ted, and thanks for your inciteful answers despite jet lag!!

JP_CheektowagaCentralMS_NY
<Q>Is the Ohio Range part of two different plates that have combined? If so are there volcanoes along the trans antarctic range?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Oooo, some budding geologists here! No volcanoes along the Transantarctic Mtns. Go to West Antarctica for volcanoes! I'm not sure of the origin of the Ohio Range, but they look to be an extension of the Transantarctic Mtns. I'll forward this to Tom--he's the geologist.
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Oops, Tom is gone. Sorry.

alainamvms_IA
<Q>How much water drips off the glacier into Maria Creek in an average day?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Great question. Great because I don't know the answer. A centimeter of melt is a pretty warm day near Maria Creek.

Ginny_Catania <Q>Bye everyone! Good chatting with all of you!

Scearce_MVMS_IA
<Q>Thanks so much for the webchat- I know that my students really enjoyed being able to ask real Antarctic scientists questions and were thrilled that you responded. The answers will help us make improvements on our proposals. Thanks!

thunderbolt47
<Q>How big was the Swift Glacier?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Was? is it gone? If it were me, I'd use Google Earth, find the glacier (using LIMA as a guide so I knew I was looking at the right spot) and then use the Google tools to draw a polygon around the glacier and see what the area is.

Good_Shepherd_Day_School_Punta_G
<Q>How do scientists find out if the water around Antarctica is warming and where can we get this data?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>There is a data set of "sea surface" temperature" that shows the surface waters are getting sightly warmer. i'm not sure of the specfic source, but I saw somw science paper a while ago. If it were me, I'd use Google Scholar to search the literature.

Good_Shepherd_Day_School_Punta_G
<Q>How do we find out if there are any subglacial lakes under the glacier we're studying?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>Very few lakes hae been found under glaciers. Not to say they aren't there, but it's still hard to detect them. Two ways these lakes are found is to measure a change in the ice surface elevation if water moves either into or out of the lakes, or to use an ice penetrating radar to look for a strong radar reflection that indicates water under the ice. You don't have an ice penetrating radar, do you?

travisa_shenandaoh.k12.ia.us
<Q>shenandoah middle school: if lava from a volcano touches snow could it cause a steam explosion possibly causing an ice berg to calve?
Robert_Bindschadler
<A>A nice connection of ideas! I've heard that lava hitting water can cause an explosion. In snow, it might be similar, but it seems like it would be hard to keep the snow next to the lava. it probably would melt a very deep channel, very very quickly. As for the calving, such a rapidly cutting lava stream could cut an iceberg off from the ic esheet.

Amanda__Millinocket <Q>I wanted to work with Nasa and Antarctica is is hard to learn about it and is it hard to do?
Robert_Bindschadler <A>Learn your science and math. NASA has a bright future, exploration is fun, both on theis planet and beyond. And, of course, Antarctica is great fun. No, it's not hard to learn, just enjoy learning.

Quest_Moderator
Great question to end with. Thanks for joining us and we look forward to your Final Proposals. They will be posted online as quickly as we can after receiving them! Bye for now!

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NASA Official: Liza Coe
Last Updated: May 2005
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