Ice-ocean interaction: effects of climate change on Antarctic ice-shelf dynamics
Bangor University, School of Ocean Sciences,
For my undergraduate degree I studied Mathematics at the University of Leeds. I quickly became interested in the applied processes and fluid dynamics in particular. In 2013 I graduated with a First-class Honours and spent the next three years working as a marine geophysicist. Towards the end of 2016 I wanted to further my studies and decided to undertake the MSc in Physical Oceanography at Bangor University. After starting this degree I was awarded with the Nautilus Scholarship and this helped fund the course and progress onto a PhD. During the Master’s degree I started to focus my studies on the polar regions. My Master’s project examined the role of tidal mixing on the east Greenland continental shelf. This was done using a time series of microstructure shear measurements together with hydrographic data and tidal velocities.
My PhD project will use a coupled ice-ocean model to understand how future climate change in the Southern Ocean will affect the floating and grounded ice of Antarctica. The aim is to identify oceanic tipping points in the cavity beneath Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf that may cause irreversible changes in ocean-induced melt. I will establish a control simulation of present day ocean conditions and compare this to the response for RCP8.5 conditions. By using these results I can study the feedback processes between ocean and ice, and determine when oceanic conditions alone can induce an ice shelf collapse through enhanced basal melting. The results from this project will provide an insight into the century-scale response of the ice sheet and its contribution to future global sea level.