Instrument: Phase-sensitive radar (ApRES)

Filchner Ice Shelf

Position
Lat. 0°0'0"N, Long. 0°0'0"E

Research teams use phase-sensitive radars for determining ice shelf basal melt rates.  Data is used to enhance climate models.

The ApRES instruments yield time series of ice shelf thickness change at precisions of ~1 mm.  Measurements taken over a 10-day period will generate information about derived melt rate of a few cm per annum or better. The is used improve the performance of  ocean models.

ApRES phase-sensitive radar is a low-power, light-weight instrument developed in a collaboration between BAS and University College London. It is a 200-400 MHz FMCW radar, with a 1-second chirp, run by controller: housed within its characteristic yellow box the radar and a 100 AH battery is buried in a shallow hole.  The radar’s transmit aerial and receive aerial are spaced 5 meters each side of the yellow box and are also buried. Each system will record for a nominal 12 months and has the ability to process and send, via satellite link, melt-rate data.

Filchner Ice Shelf System, Antarctica

Understanding the contribution that polar ice sheets make to global sea-level rise is recognised internationally as urgent.  The mission of this five-year project is to capture new observations and data …