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LTMS Research Programme

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Long Term Monitoring and Survey

Contact: Antarctic Environmental Data Centre

The Challenge

LTMS will build on and extend BAS’s past collection of long-term time-series of key environmental variables.

Examples include the ongoing collection of the temperature record which shows that the Antarctic Peninsula is experiencing an exceptionally rapid rate of warming, and the ozone record which resulted in the discovery, by BAS scientists, of the ozone hole – a result that led to major changes in environmental legislation and industrial practice worldwide.

Automatic Weather Station at Atoll Nunataks

It will also include survey work, such as using the swath bathymetry system of the RRS James Clark Ross, to map unexplored regions of the sea bed, and the recently-commissioned polarimetric airborne radar to map the internal structure and bedrock of the Antarctic ice sheet.


Relevance to Global Science

To measure change and variability in the Earth system we need quality-controlled, uninterrupted, long-term data records.The models used to simulate and predict the behaviour of this system also need such data to allow us to check and improve their reliability. In Antarctica, we face a further challenge – to survey the unknown so that accurate mapping of the land and the ocean can guide fieldwork, be included in models, and open up new frontiers.

Delivering the Results

We collect data from our Antarctic research stations, from autonomous instrument platforms deployed on and from our research ships, from our aircraft and from field parties.We will also use remote-controlled or autonomous vehicles in the air, in the sea and in remote land areas.We will coordinate field activities with national and international partners to maximise the scientific return. LTMS contributes to all aspects of the GSAC programme.

Progress Report

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