We know of the mysteries of the Antarctica plates that hide an unseen world below. Behind these massive slabs there are incredible canyons and caves that are continually carving water. Ice cracks and tides flow through all edges, and hot and cold water mixes in this submarine world that exists below as the ice ridge on the seabed.
Seven underwater robots will dive and explore everything as part of new efforts to predict possible sea level rise.
These robots, otherwise made at the Washington University (UW) in Seattle, will spend a year watching the melting process under the Pine Island ice sheet stretching more than 50 square meters to help scientists predict the future of these ice plates more accurately.
Given that the physics of these unique locations is very complex, there is a permanent difficulty in predicting this change correctly. It is important to understand these processes, especially those who live in or near coastal areas, as they will be the first to face the greatest impact of sea level rise.
Knut Christianson, the glacial mission and leader of U.W.'s Future of Ice Initiative, said: "For about 40 years now we know that ice sheets are mostly unstable. But we do not really understand the variability of these systems, let alone how they react to a great external influence such as warming the sea temperature. "
Originally designed to explore in open water, these diving robots will go for a risk investigation: "There is a real danger that some of these instruments will no longer come back," admitted Jason Gobat, an oceanographer at UW's Applied Physics Laboratory to distribute banners from Antarctica
Over the past 40 years, the rate of melting on the Pine Island glaze increased by almost 75%, and if only one plate dissolved – so would each coastal city flood on the planet Earth
Although this mission is dangerous for precious instruments, the only way to accurately measure key temperature, pressure, water chemistry, and turbulence is to put these drones into the water below the board.
In previous missions, robots slammed underneath the ice for much shorter missions through small holes drilled on the Antarctic plate. These efforts, however, were short in limited areas, so the data could not correctly indicate a larger region or melting ice in a more general sense.
This new robotic fleet consists of three Seagliders – self-propelled drones and four floating floats. By "swimming" by adjusting their craftiness, these robots will slide through the water with mechanical wings.
Orbit satellites above Antarctica can additionally send instructions and bots will send data after the mission is completed. Scales are less capable when it comes to movement, moving only up and down by adjusting swing. It makes them so susceptible to sea currents.
The aforementioned robot team will drastically improve the current understanding of sea level rise and enable scientists to predict more precisely all future dissolution. Let's hope the mission with useful data will succeed and the diving drones will "survive" the journey.