Quantifying ice sheet response to variations in initial Bedrock topography (IceBed)
The majority of the world's population lives along the coastline. In the present-day world of melting ice sheets and consequent global sea level rise, ice sheet research is therefore extremely relevant. The effect of the bedrock topography on which the ice sheets grow on the resulting ice volume and stability is still largely unknown. IceBed aims at quantifying this effect under various climate conditions. As a start the climate during a previous warm period is simulated and discussed in an article published in the open access journal Climate of the Past (Langebroek and Nisancioglu, 2014). These simulated warm climates provide scenarios for testing the climate module that forces the ice sheet model (under development). A special focus of IceBed is on the much-debated early onset of Northern Hemisphere glaciation under high CO2 levels of the Eocene/Oligocene, approximately 34 million years ago. During a three-months research stay a solid collaboration with ice sheet and climate scientists at the University of Bristol (United Kingdom) is established. Through this collaboration bedrock topography maps and simulated climate conditions for the Eocene/Oligocene were acquired providing an exciting baseline to assess the possibility of early Northern Hemisphere glaciations. Related to this work a publication reviewing the evolution of the Greenland ice sheet during the Cenozoic was published in Earth Science Reviews (Vasskog et al., 2015). Public outreach for IceBed comprises of two popular science articles in printed and online versions (one in the Norwegian climate magazine '2grader' and one in Bergens Tidende) and information on our contribution to the Norwegian Science Days on several websites.