Tagged: North Pole

Pic of the Day

archtrails_brady_2000
Click to enlarge

What’s happened to the sky? A time warp, of sorts, and a digital space warp too.

The time warp occurs because this image captured in a single frame a two and a half hour exposure of the night sky. As a result, prominent star trails are visible. The space warp occurs because the picture is actually a full 360 degree panorama, horizontally compressed to fit your browser. As the Earth rotated, stars appeared to circle both the North Celestial Pole, on the left, and the South Celestial Pole, just below the horizon on the right.

The above panorama over Arches National Park in Utah, USA, was captured two weeks ago during early morning hours. While the eye-catching texture of ancient layered sandstone covers the image foreground, twenty-meter tall Delicate Arch is visible on the far right, and the distant arch of our Milky Way Galaxy is visible near the image center.

Thanks, Ursarodinia

Brits become the first to row to the North Pole


The final 2 miles held their only encounter with ice

An explorer on Friday said he was “exhilarated” after he and his crew became the first people to row to the magnetic north pole.

Jock Wishart and his five-man team took just under four weeks to complete the 450-mile route. They encountered polar bears and collided with icebergs as they travelled through the Arctic waters in their specially designed vessel.

The trip has only recently become possible because of an increase in seasonal ice melt in the Arctic, which has opened up the waters.

Wishart, who was born in Dumfries, organised the Old Pulteney Row to the pole to highlight the effects of climate change on the ice in the region.

He said: “I think this is one of my greatest achievements. It was a dream four years ago but now it’s reality. Up until last night we still could not say with certainty that we would reach our destination, so we are all exhilarated and relieved that weather conditions were in our favour and we have completed our row to the magnetic north pole while it was still possible.

It is an enormous achievement, and a privilege for our team to have been part of what is one of the world’s last great firsts…”

Throughout the journey, the rowing crew worked with scientific research partners to provide environmental data on the impact of arctic deterioration on the polar landscape.

RTFA for more of the details. One of the explorers is a cinematographer – so, sooner or later, we’ll get to see a documentary about the expedition.

Endurance challenges send a spark to unique human beings. Perhaps these require skills and talents leftover from earlier days in our evolution. Combined with modern training and nutrition knowledge, human beings are capable of amazing efforts.

During the record attempt, the crew consumed 7,000 calories a day. Each.

Arctic current warmer than for 2,000 years

A North Atlantic current flowing into the Arctic Ocean is warmer than for at least 2,000 years in a sign that global warming is likely to bring ice-free seas around the North Pole in summers.

Scientists said that waters at the northern end of the Gulf Stream, between Greenland and the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard, averaged 6 degrees Celsius (42.80F) in recent summers, warmer than at natural peaks during Roman or Medieval times.

The temperature is unprecedented in the past 2,000 years,” lead author Robert Spielhagen of the Academy of Sciences, Humanities and Literature in Mainz, Germany…

The summer water temperatures, reconstructed from the makeup of tiny organisms buried in sediments in the Fram strait, have risen from an average 5.2 degrees Celsius from 1890-2007 and about 3.4C in the previous 1,900 years.

The findings were a new sign that human activities were stoking modern warming since temperatures are above past warm periods linked to swings in the sun’s output that enabled, for instance, the Vikings to farm in Greenland in Medieval times.

“We found that modern Fram Strait water temperatures are well outside the natural bounds,” Thomas Marchitto, of the University of Colorado at Boulder, one of the authors…

The Fram strait is the main carrier of ocean heat to the Arctic.

The authors wrote that the warming temperatures “are presumably linked to the Arctic amplification of global warming” and that the warming “is most likely another key element in the transition to a future ice-free Arctic Ocean…”

Even the stodgy Brits prepare for the future like good little Ants. Meanwhile, Congress and other fools – not quite up to the cheery fiddling of Grasshopper – rely on dour haters of science and other mystical props guaranteed to continue America’s steady slide into the economic ditch of irrelevance.

Only the educationally-challenged think 2,000 years is a long time in earth studies. Meanwhile, the world will be able to build alternative energy systems with products from Germany, Norway and China.

Arctic ice bigger than 2007, but long-term thawing unchanged

This is one of those posts that is only a footnote for climatologists – except for the dweebs who can’t seem to comprehend the difference between weather and climate and, more than any other ethic, hate to own up to any responsibility for global warming on the part of human beings.

Arctic sea ice is unlikely to shrink below a 2007 record low this year in a reprieve from the worst predictions of climate change even though new evidence confirms a long-term thaw is under way, experts said.

The 2007 record raised worries of a melt that could leave the North Pole ice-free this year, threaten indigenous hunters and thaw ice vital for creatures such as polar bears. It would also help open the Arctic to shipping and oil and gas firms…

It is still far smaller than the average of recent decades.

“Ninety percent … of the decreasing sea-ice extent is empirically ‘accounted for’ by the increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere,” Ola M. Johannessen wrote in a study to be published next month in a journal by the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

The Arctic has been warming about twice as fast as the rest of the globe in recent decades. Ice and snow reflect heat and any thaw uncovers darker ground or sea water that soak up the sun’s warmth and further accelerate the melt.

The propaganda campaign against human responsibility not only is comparable to that waged by the tobacco industry against years of cancer study, it’s the same hangers-on trumpeting any individual day’s forecast that counters massive trends by an infinitesimal amount. Exactly the same louts who fear losing their chance to smoke themselves to oblivion at the American Legion Bar on a Friday night.

No ice at the North Pole?

It seems unthinkable, but for the first time in human history, ice is on course to disappear entirely from the North Pole this year.

The disappearance of the Arctic sea ice, making it possible to reach the Pole sailing in a boat through open water, would be one of the most dramatic – and worrying – examples of the impact of global warming on the planet. Scientists say the ice at 90 degrees north may well have melted away by the summer.

“From the viewpoint of science, the North Pole is just another point on the globe, but symbolically it is hugely important. There is supposed to be ice at the North Pole, not open water,” said Mark Serreze of the US National Snow and Ice Data Centre in Colorado…

“The issue is that, for the first time that I am aware of, the NorthPole is covered with extensive first-year ice – ice that formed last autumn and winter. I’d say it’s even-odds whether the North Pole melts out,” said Dr Serreze.

A certain number of Know-Nothings will predictably turn their heads away when this happens – this year, next year, whenever – and mumble something about extremist scientists. They will not read any science. They will not consult any peer-reviewed study. Some intellectually-lazy pundit will suffice.

Any and all problems will disappear. All’s right with the world.