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The University of Southampton
Geography and Environmental Science

An investigation of subglacial process using as wireless subglacial probe

Published: 1 March 2011

Fully funded NERC studentship

Supervisor: Prof. Jane K. Hart

This project uses the most recent innovations in wireless communications to study glacier stick-slip movement to understand the relationship between glaciers and climate change. This will provide a student with training in the development of environmental sensor networks as part of the internationally acclaimed GLACSWEB team. This is a multidisciplinary team based in Geography and ECS. This project has been very successful in the development of Environmental Sensor Networks, both in field implementation (Martinez et al., 2004) and theoretical aspects (Hart and Martinez, 2006, Hart et al., 2009). They have developed the first successful working environmental sensor network in a glacial environment, the Glacsweb project, and installed a similar system to monitor debris flows in Tijuana, Mexico (funded by Royal Society, DTi and EPSRC, NOAA, Leverhulme).

It has been recently shown that glacier movement may be episodic and it has been proposed that this reflects stick-slip motion similar to movement associated with earthquakes. This project will use new Glacsweb probes (to measure the “stick” phase”), along with surface dGPS and accelerometers (to measure the “slip” phase) to track the propagation of the glacier earthquakes through the ice and the till, and record associated environmental changes.

The research student will join Southampton's Earth Surface Dynamics group. The school maintains high quality Glaciology Field Equipment for research on glacial processes. This includes a TOPCON differential GPS, Kärcher HDS1000DE hot water drill, borehole camera, borehole sediment sampler and ice auger. The petrographic microscope for till thin section analysis is housed in the Palaeoenvironments Laboratory. Full training in all necessary techniques will be given.
The closing date for applications is 1 April 2011.

Eligibility for this studentship is governed by the NERC – please see their website to check your eligibility BEFORE making an application:

For information on how to apply, follow these links  or contact Julie Drewitt, Graduate School Administrator on if you have any further queries.

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