Antarctica: Catching Snow in the World's Southernmost Desert

Pressure ridges in Antarctica


Feb. 21, 2018

7:00 – 8:30 pm MST


Have you ever been curious what it is like to work in Antarctica where temperatures can drop below minus 50 degrees Fahrenheit and wind speeds can exceed hurricane force? Snow accumulation is the primary precipitation method that sustains the Antarctic ice sheets. Yet, snowfall remains one of the most difficult meteorological variables to accurately measure, especially in windy conditions. A new field program funded by the National Science Foundation is focused on testing recent advances in technology to determine if accurate snowfall measurements are now possible in the Antarctic environment. Join NSF NCAR scientist Scott Landolt as he provides an overview of this field program, the challenges of working in Antarctica, day-to-day life around McMurdo Station, and stunning photography of the Antarctic ice sheets.

Scott Landolt

Research Applications Laboratory (RAL), NSF NCAR

Scott Landolt is an associate scientist at NSF NCAR and has worked in the Research Applications Laboratory for over 20 years. One of his primary research areas focuses on improving snowfall measurements and observations. He was an active participant in the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Solid Precipitation Intercomparison Experiment (SPICE) to establish a world standard for snowfall measurement. More recently, Scott has been actively working with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on developing methods to utilize snowfall measurements with aircraft deicing practices. In addition to his research, Scott oversees the NSF NCAR Pre-College Internship Program (PRECIP) that brings high school students to NSF NCAR for the summer to do research with scientists. Outside of NSF NCAR, Scott is a professor at Metropolitan State University of Denver in the meteorology program.

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Recorded Presentation

The Antarctica Project: Catching Snow

WeatherNation highlights NCAR scientist Scott Landolt and the Antarctica field campaign being conducted by the NCAR Research Applications Laboratory. Find out more by clicking on the "Related Links".