Dear Travellers,

I am looking forward to our trip to Antarctica next winter – the land excursions, the long dinners with interesting people, the happy hours, and hot tubs as we are surrounded by tabular icebergs!

This trip will also take us along the Antarctic Peninsula where some of the largest loss-events of the Antarctic ice shelf are observed. In this expedition, we will again have a scientific component, beginning with a review of Global Climate Change. We will discuss how El Niño dynamics can release ocean heat stored during La Niña dominated-time periods back to the atmosphere - causing these record high temperatures. We will then zoom in on the southern hemisphere and discuss climate change of the Southern Ocean and the Antarctic continent. In particular, we will look at the apparently counter-intuitive increase in maximum sea ice extent, the early disintegration of the winter pack-ice in 2016, and the acceleration of ice streams from the land feeding the ice shelves all around Antarctica.

Finally, we will discuss the birth of ice sheets, that presently cover Antarctica, 30 million years ago, and those covering Greenland (born more recently), as the global climate slowly transitioned from a "hot house" during the Cretaceous to an "ice house", punctuated by the opening of the Drake Passage, the closing of the Isthmus of Panama, and the gradual closing of the Indonesian throughflow – all having an impact on the global ocean circulation and the present-day land ice configuration.

– Bruno Tremblay

Dr. Bruno Tremblay is Professor in McGill’s Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences. Dr. Tremblay’s research focuses on high latitude climate change, with special emphasis on the future of the sea ice cover in a warming world. Bruno will be on board with us on our Expedition Cruise to the Antarctic Circle.
His work focuses on modeling, analysis of global climate models and satellite data, and field work. Dr. Tremblay is involved in the Canadian ArcticNet mooring deployment program and the Canadian Arctic Buoy Program. His research is funded by the Office of Naval Research, the National Science Foundation, the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada and ArcticNet, among others. His recent collaborations on Rapid Decline in Summer Arctic Sea Ice and The Last Ice Area, garnered national and international media coverage from CBC News, Radio-Canada, The New York Times, Le Monde, and National Geographic, to name just a few. He has received several scientific awards and honours including the Stroke Doherty Lectureship from Columbia University, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Postdoctoral Fellowship in Climate and Global Change and the Landolt Chair "Innovations for a Sustainable Future". Tremblay was an editor at the Journal of Geophysical Research – Oceans.

Seminar Topics while on our Antarctic voyage include:

1. Antarctic Ice Sheet History: Transition from Greenhouse (pre 30 million years ago) to Ice House (post 30 million years), history of the ice sheet (expansion and retreat) until present day - associated with the 20,000, 40,000 and 100,000 year cycle in ice mass on earth in the last 10 million years), proxi data we use to reconstruct past ice sheet geometry (e.g. ocean core), Distant past large discharge of ice from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet and associated sea level rise, the ice sheet mass balance (why does it grow and shrink, role of calving and melt and precipitation) etc.

2. Antarctic Ice Sheet recent history and trend with global warming. Where does the melt occur? How much melt? What are the forecast of ice sheet geometry and associated sea level rise?

3. Antarctic sea ice trends. Why do they differ from those in the Arctic? What sets the northward ice edge in the Southern Ocean since there are no land mass around it as in the Arctic? 

Don't miss this Expedition to the Antarctic Circle. Contact us today! Email or call 1-800-387-1483.