How We Measure Glaciers (Byte-Sized Science)


My name is Mark Ednie. I work at Natural Resources
Canada, and I study glaciers. It’s important to study glaciers because they play a significant
role in the timing and magnitude of stream flow, which is important for communities with
their drinking water, as well as other related industries such as power generation and agriculture.
We travel up to the glacier. We drill deep stakes into the ice. And from these stakes,
we measure from the glacier ice surface to the top of the stake. We measure the amount
of mass that’s gained through the winter and compare it to the amount of ice that’s lost
in the summer. We drive up to Nahanni National Park, which
is in Northwest Territories, from Calgary, which is a three-day drive. But once we got
onto the glacier, we set up our camp. We checked our weather station, which gives us air temperature,
incoming and outgoing solar radiation, wind speed and direction. Throughout the next week,
we travelled around the glacier, visiting stakes that we had already drilled into the
ice. These stakes provide us information on how much the glacier is gaining or losing
mass throughout the year. My favourite part about the job is being able to explore these very remote regions, being able to see places that very few people get to see. And to be
able to explore the knowledge that’s gained and understand how glaciers are changing in
Canada and its effect on people. If you liked this video, let us know with
a thumbs-up. Click on the logo below to subscribe to the Simply Science channel, and click the
bell icon to be notified when we upload new videos.

Leave a Reply