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Lambert Glacier Glides Along
The largest glacier in the world, Antarctica’s Lambert Glacier, is one of the world’s fastest-moving ice streams.
(Ice streams are parts of an ice sheet that move faster than the sheet as a whole.).
Glaciers, like Lambert Glacier and other ice streams, are sometimes nicknamed “rivers of ice,” because—just like rivers.
—they flow from places of high elevation to low elevation.
Lambert Glacier flows from the Antarctic ice sheet (on the interior of the continent) to the Amery ice shelf, a narrow inlet in East Antarctica.
used in this map of Lambert Glacier
Information used in this map of Lambert Glacier was gathered with remote sensing technology.
Remote sensing technology collects data about an object without making physical contact with it.
To study Lambert Glacier.
researchers relied on data collected using instruments on the Radarsat-1satellite. The glacier is simply too isolated to conduct extensive in-person surveys.
This map tracks the movement, or flow, of Lambert Glacier.
Yellow represents areas of the Antarctic ice sheet with no real movement, including areas of exposed ground with no ice cover at all.
Green areas move 100-300 meters (330-980 feet) per year.
Most of the Lambert Glacier moves between 400-800 meters .
(1,310-2,620 feet) per year. As the glacier extends across Amery ice shelf, velocities increase to 1000-1200 meters (3,280-3,937 feet) per year.
(For older students) Consult National Geography Standard 1.2 (8th grade): How to use maps and other geographic representations, geospatial technologies, and spatial thinking to understand and communicate information. The acquisition and organization of geospatial data to construct geographic representations.
Discuss geospatial technologies and geographic representations.
Geospatial technologies might include:
– A glacier can range in length from the equivalent of a football field to more than 100 miles.
They are formed by snowflakes over long periods of time.
New layers of snow arrive each winter, making the glacier bigger and denser.
– The largest glacier on earth is Antarctica’s Lambert glacier.
– Glaciers contain an estimated 69 per cent of the world’s freshwater supply.
In comparison lakes, rivers, swamps, and similar bodies can only claim a combined 0.3 per cent.
– If every glacier and ice sheet on Earth suddenly melted, global sea levels would rise by over 260 feet.
Many glaciers in Alaska and other parts of the US have shrunk dramatically.
– Himalayan glaciers have been retreating rapidly since 2000 due to an average 1 degree Celsius temperature rise in the region.
Icefall on the Lambert Glacier
The Lambert Glacier in Antarctica is the world’s largest glacier.
The focal point of this image is an icefall that feeds into the Lambert glacier from the vast ice sheet covering the polar plateau.