Dramatic Changes in Polar Ice: Are We Waking Sleeping Giants

Presented by Waleed Abdalati, Director, Earth Science & Observation Center, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO

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Uploaded by Essinova on September 4, 2009

From disappearing Arctic sea ice to the rapid acceleration of Greenland and Antarcticas outlet glaciers, the Earths ice cover is changing in remarkable ways. Because ice plays a critical role in shaping our planets environment, understanding changes like these is crucial. Scientists ability to investigate the dramatic behavior of the Earths vast and remote frozen regions has been greatly enhanced in recent years by the development of sophisticated satellite observation capabilities. The space-based view provides both perspective and context that enable new insights into how and why ice is changing and what these changes may mean for life on Earth.

Dr. Abdalati is Director of the Earth Science and Observation Center and Associate Professor of Geography at the University of Colorado. His research focuses on the development and application of remote sensing techniques to understand changes in high-latitude glaciers and ice sheets. From 1996 to 2008 he held various positions at NASA in which he conducted and oversaw NASA-funded research efforts and on glaciers, ice sheets, sea ice, and polar climate.. He has also been heavily involved in the scientific development of NASAs Ice Cloud and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) and its planned successor, ICESat-2, which have as their primary objective understanding changes in the Earths polar ice cover. Dr. Abdalati received his Masters and Ph.D. from the University of Colorado in 1991 and 1996 respectively, and from 1986 to 1990 he worked as a mechanical engineer in the aerospace industry. He has received various honors and awards for his research and service to NASA including the NASA Exceptional Service Medal and the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers from the White House.

(Added on YouTube: August 10, 2009)

Tags: Earth, NASA, Waleed Abdalati, Arctic, ice, climate change

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