EASTGRIP CAMP, GREENLAND - JULY 29: An ice slab (cut from an ice core) cleaned with a microtome knife is ready for the line scanner, which records the visual layers in the core. Even with a naked eye, cloudy bands are visible at EastGRIP camp on July 29, 2022. Glacier ice contains visible layers called cloudy bands. Especially in the relatively dirty glacial ice, the layers correlate to the content of dust and other impurities used for dating purposes. EastGRIP is an international science station on the Greenland ice sheet, the second-largest ice body in the world after the Antarctic ice cap. The team at EastGRIP, led by the University of Copenhagen in coordination with the Danish Centre for Ice and Climate and other partners, aims to drill through 2650 meters of ice dating back 80,000 years, to glean new knowledge of ice-sheet dynamics and how fast-flowing ice streams will contribute to sea-level rise. The resulting ice core will also create a new record of past climatic and atmospheric conditions from the northeastern part of the Greenland Ice Sheet, informing our understanding of how it may respond to a changing climate. This summer marked the first season of fieldwork since 2019, after the Covid-19 pandemic caused the cancellation of the 2020 and 2021 field seasons. After two months of preparation this spring, the drilling operation started on July 7th and ended on August 6th, yielding a new 300 meters of core at a maximum depth of 2418.23 meters. That puts them under 250 meters from their target depth, which the team aims to achieve next year. With this year's fieldwork concluded, the new ice core samples will now be sent foremost to Copenhagen University, but scientists from around the globe can request samples for their analysis and the ice core data is available broadly to the scientific community. New findings will be published later this year.
(Photo by Lukasz Larsson Warzecha/Getty Images)