What Does Antarctica Look Like Beneath The Ice? (VIDEO)

Nasa and the British Antarctic Survey have produced an amazing new view of what Antarctica looks like under the ice.

Unlike the North Pole, which in winter is a frozen sea surrounded by land, the southern pole is a continent-shaped lump of rock, covered in (currently) permanent ice up to 2km thick.

But that hasn't always been the case, and with rising global temperatures the ice there is slowly starting to disappear. Before it does, scientists want to understand what lies beneath the ice sheet in more detail, so they can model how it might react to warmer weather.

Using a new datasate called Bedmap2, incorporating Nasa's Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) and ice thickness data gathered by Operation IceBridge, the British Antarctic Survey have produced a vastly improved picture of the continental bedrock.

Universe Today recently featured the work after it appeared in the Cyrosphere journal.

Peter Fretwell, from the British Antarctic Survey, said:

"The new Bedmap shows, with unprecedented detail, the bedrock beneath the ice sheets of Antarctica. Before we had a regional overview of the topography, but this new map, with its much higher resolution, shows the landscape itself; a complex landscape of mountains, hills and rolling plains, dissected by valleys troughs and deep gorges."

Take a look at the team's work, above.

Above: Antarctica without the ice

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