NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
West Antarctic Ice Sheet melting. Image showing the terrain below the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, where the glaciers are flowing into the Amundsen Sea - from a project aiming to determine the fate of the receding ice sheet. Three factors affect how quickly a glacier melts: the change in its flow speed, how much of it floats on seawater and the slope and depth (topography) of the terrain it is flowing over. Here, regions of bedrock below sea level are shown in shades of brown where darker brown indicates deeper valleys. The areas above sea level are shown in shades of green and sea level is shown in yellow. Note the large subglacial valleys feeding the glaciers flowing into the Amundsen Sea.
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