Seafloor Mapping at the Top and Bottom of the World: What This Tells Us About the Great Ice Sheets

Kelly Hogan, Ph.D.
Marine Geophysicist

British Antarctic Survey

Friday, Feb. 26, 2016, 3:00pm
Chase 130

Seafloor surveying at high latitudes is often hampered by unpredictable sea-ice conditions and poor weather. Nevertheless, the seafloor around places like Antarctica and Greenland holds a unique and pristine archive of the behaviour of past ice masses when they expanded on to continental shelves during sea level lowstands. Investigating subglacial environments beneath today’s glaciers and ice sheets - by drilling through the ice or seismic campaigns - is logistically difficult and expensive. Therefore, seafloor records from glaciated continental margins are extremely valuable for understanding how ice sheets behaved as they expanded and retreated in response to climatic forcing. These results serve as an analogue for the behaviour of modern ice masses in our warming planet. This seminar will show examples of seafloor data from both Polar Regions and will explore how we can address glaciological problems from seafloor datasets.


Kelly Hogan is a Marine Geophysicist at the British Antarctic Survey based in Cambridge in the UK. She has participated in 10 research cruises to both northern and southern high-latitudes, most recently to Petermann Glacier, NW Greenland and the Amundsen and Bellingshausen Seas offshore Western Antarctica. She helps plan scientific surveys and acquire marine geophysical (multibeam bathymetry, sub-bottom profiles, seismic reflection profiles) and sediment core datasets. In Cambridge, she processes and analyses geophysical datasets, interpreting the seafloor landscape in terms of the past activity of glaciers and ice sheets. Dr. Hogan has a B.A. in Geology from the University of Oxford, an M.Sc. in Oceanography from the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton in the UK, and a Ph.D. in Polar Studies from the University of Cambridge. She has also been a Guest Lecturer at the University Centre on Svalbard (UNIS) since 2011.