The US space institute NASA will be measuring the movements of Iceland’s glaciers, starting this week.
RÚV reports that NASA will begin sending planes over the glaciers of Langjökull and Hofsjökull this week, using equipment that was designed with the help of Icelandic scientists, to study both the size and movement of the glaciers.
Mark Simons, a professor in geophysics who is taking part in the project, told reporters that the measurements are not necessarily related to climate change, “although its effects certainly have a part to play.”
Simons adds that Iceland is unique when it comes to the study of glaciers. “It’s amazing to do this in Iceland because in other places, such as Greenland or the Antarctic, access to many glaciers is a lot more difficult.” He says as well that Iceland’s glaciers are not uniform when it comes to their speed, and can move “up to 50 centimetres per day” in some places.
The project is being conducted in a partnership between Caltech University and the University of Iceland.