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This section contains 11 annual layers with summer layers (arrowed) sandwiched between darker winter layers. From the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Wikimedia Commons. 420,000 years of ice core data from Vostok, Antarctica research station. From bottom to top: * Solar variation at 65°N due to en: Milankovitch cycles (connected to 18O). They spent two nights at each site, first collecting radar data and secondly collecting a 15 m shallow ice core. This schematic cross section of an ice sheet shows an ideal drilling site at the centre of the polar plateau near the ice divide, with ice flowing away from the ice divide in all direction. The large Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have huge, high plateaux where snow accumulates in an ordered fashion. The team were travelling across the West Antarctic Ice Sheet to study snow accumulation. Stable isotopes of oxygen (Oxygen [The figure above shows changes in ice temperature during the last several glacial-interglacial cycles and comparison to changes in global ice volume.
Snow falls over Antarctica and is slowly converted to ice. Through analysis of ice cores, scientists learn about glacial-interglacial cycles, changing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, and climate stability over the last 10,000 years. This picture shows a traversing field camp from December 2010. From top to bottom: * Levels of carbon dioxide (CO2). High rates of snow accumulation provide excellent time resolution, and bubbles in the ice core preserve actual samples of the world’s ancient atmosphere. This can be related directly to concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gasses preserved in the ice. Snow precipitation over Antarctica is made mostly of HO is related to surface temperature at middle and high latitudes.