James: Doing Science

Today I went out on the supraglacial lakes with Sarah, one of the glaciologists. The purpose of today’s work was to measure the depth of the lake at various points. The method for doing this is pretty simple: we would pick a point, wet the ice with a bit of water, and then use a commercial fish finder to measure the depth of the lake bed.

We put water on the ice so the device can get a clear reading, otherwise the fishfinder will only measure the thickness of the ice. I think in total we measured about 100 to 150 spots. It was really cool to see the differences in depth – for instance, some places were a half-meter and others only a few paces a way were 16 meters! With all of this raw data, Sarah will be able to map out the depth of the lake and also be able to show the change in the depth over time.

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