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Drilling near the North Pole, Dr. Jan Backman reveals a brief moment in time when the Arctic was subtropical. More about world climate change can be found in our Climate Change featured story .
The National Ice Center’s work is focused on ensuring safe and efficient...
Blog entry MORE STORIES Blog entry MORE AUDIO / VIDEO
At a recent staff meeting a Smithsonian colleague mentioned that one of his...
How will changes in temperature affect glaciers and ice sheets? Dr. Sarah Das...

LATEST CATCH

Standing at twice the height of the Adélie penguins, emperor penguins are the largest of the penguin species and can grow to be 100 pounds. This species breeds directly on the ice: a female lays her one egg and then passes it to...
It’s confirmed: both Antarctica and Greenland are losing ice —around 350...
Looking through this iceberg's reflection in the Antarctic water, you can...

DIVE DEEPER

by Hannah Waters To really see a glacier move, you first have to speed up the passage of time. What appears to be an...
Antarctica is almost entirely covered by ice sheets up to two miles (3 km) thick, which contain roughly 70% of the world’s freshwater. The great ice sheets spill out to sea as floating ice-shelves...
The white body of the snow petrel blends in with the stark Antarctic landscape, accentuating the beautiful black eyes and beak of this seabird. They hunt in the sea ice, feeding on krill and fish...
Hidden beneath Arctic ice is a world few have ever seen. Take the icy plunge with a team of ice-loving scientists.
At a recent staff meeting a Smithsonian colleague mentioned that one of his pastimes this summer has been keeping tabs on the Arctic sea ice. The question that's on many Arctic-watchers' minds is...
For two months, Cassandra Brooks , a marine scientist with Stanford University, travelled on an ice-breaking ship through the Ross Sea in the Antarctica—and she filmed the whole thing. A camera...
Hidden beneath Arctic ice is a world few have ever seen. Take the icy plunge with a team of ice-loving scientists.
On average, Arctic sea ice has decreased by four percent per decade since the late 1970s. But at the same time, Antarctic ice has increased by 1 percent. Scientists are investigating why . More about...
Sea ice is typically viewed as the domain of physical and natural scientists, the oceanographers, marine biologists, climate modelers, and navigators of the world. It is easy to forget another...
The Ross Sea, a 1.9 million square mile (3.6 million square km) stretch of ocean off the coast of Antarctica, has been nicknamed “ The Last Ocean .” And it’s not just a ploy to get your attention. In...
See an animation showing over time, the receding of summer sea ice in the Arctic .
Marine biologist Mette Kaufman measures the temperature of a recently-drilled ice core . Variations in temperature at different points of the ice core provide information about the living conditions...
Every year as the sun disappears for the winter, the surface waters around Antarctica freeze into a slab of ice 10-feet thick, which effectively doubles the size of the continent. In the summer, the...
The National Ice Center’s work is focused on ensuring safe and efficient navigation, but it also supports scientific research and provides crucial information used by scientists to better monitor and...
Looking through this iceberg's reflection in the Antarctic water, you can see the iceberg below the surface—some 90% of its total volume. Icebergs are pieces of freshwater ice broken off of glaciers...
by Hannah Waters To really see a glacier move, you first have to speed up the passage of time. What appears to be an unmoving frozen expanse, as solid as the ground beneath your feet, is in fact a...
Walruses use sea ice as platforms on which to nurse their young and launch their dives for clams and other bottom-dwellers. Each spring, walruses move northward to stay close to these perches as ice...
The threat that climate change poses to polar bears has received a lot of attention, but they are not the only Arctic species at risk. Ice-loving seals, such as harp, hooded and ringed seals, are...
This graph of the Arctic sea ice coverage shows how close the year 2011 is to reaching a record-low . The graph contains data through September 7, 2011. The National Snow and Ice Data Center , which...
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