School of GeoSciences Research

About us

Our group investigates glaciers, ice sheets and snow cover across the world.

We actively explore across both polar regions, with particular activity in West Antarctica’s Amundsen Sea Embayment and southwest Greenland.  Our polar research extends from monitoring and modelling terrestrial ice losses to thinning ice shelves, diminishing sea ice and the impacts of these processes on marine biogeochemistry and physical oceanography.  We use Earth observation systems to monitor what is happening to mountain glaciers to help inform projections of future glacially-fed water and power resources relevant to millions of people. 

Experts apply geomorphology and geochronology to constrain how rapidly past ice caps, such as those in Patagonia and Scotland, retreated to understand better how rapidly the Earth’s remaining ice masses will respond to future climate warming. Research on seasonal snow cover combines field studies at Arctic and Alpine sites, remote sensing and modelling.  We work on scales from landscapes (where snow influences the activities of people, animals and plants living in cold regions), to mountain ranges (where snow stores and releases essential water resources), to continents (where snow-atmosphere interactions shape the climate). 

In delivering this work, we benefit from funding from:

  • Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)
  • European Space Agency (ESA)
  • UK Met Office

We coordinate our work through collaborative agencies such as:

  • International Arctic Science Council (IASC)
  • Scientific Committee for Antarctic Research (SCAR)
  • International Association of Cryospheric Sciences (IACS)
  • Scottish Alliance for Geoscience, Society and the Environment (SAGES)