The Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets, headquartered at the University of Kansas, will play a significant role in the International Polar Year that began March 1. The center will conduct two major field experiments — one in Greenland and another in Antarctica during the IPY. The center also is currently playing host to a seminar series that highlights issues related to climate change.
The seminar series features several internationally regarded speakers who have and will cover a variety of topics related to polar ice, global climate change and society. Anyone is welcome to attend these free presentations, which include:
· "Tropical Ice Cores" by Lonnie Thompson, distinguished professor at the Ohio State University and world-renowned researcher at OSU's Byrd Polar Research Center; 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Feb. 7, Spahr Engineering Classroom, 2 Eaton Hall.
· "The Human Dimensions of Climate Change Science" by James Rodger Fleming, Professor of Science, Technology and Society at Colby College, Maine; 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m., March 8, the Hall Center for the Humanities Conference Hall
· "Peak Oil" by Seppo A. Korpela, Professor of Mechanical Engineering at The Ohio State University; 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m., March 21, Spahr Engineering Classroom, Eaton Hall
· "Ice Sheets on the Edge: A Golden Age for Glaciology" by Robert Bindschadler, Senior Fellow at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center; 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m., April 11, Spahr Engineering Classroom, Eaton Hall
· "Winds of Change" by author and journalist Eugene Linden; 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m., April 25, location to be determined
· "Feeling the Heat" by Don Worster, KU Distinguished Professor of History; 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m., May 9, Spahr Engineering Classroom, Eaton Hall.
The International Polar Year is a global research effort to better understand the polar regions and their climatic effect on the Earth. The year runs from March 1, 2007, to March 1, 2009. The IPY "year" allows researchers two summer cycles to conduct and mark research in both polar regions that have six-month long winters shrouded in darkness and inhospitable cold. IPY involves more than 60 countries.
Students, staff and faculty affiliated with the multi-institutional National Science Foundation funded center are developing technologies and techniques to characterize the regions' ongoing, rapid changes in polar ice sheets and develop models that explain and predict ice sheet interactions with climate. The center will also train next-generation scientists and engineers, work with industry, share scientific knowledge, and educate policymakers and the public about climate change and its impacts.
CReSIS staff members are working on additional activities during the IPY to share the polar experience with the KU campus as well as the general public.