The permafrost in the mires of subarctic Sweden is undergoing dramatic changes. The part of the soils that thaws in the summer, the so-called active layer, has become deeper since 1970 and the permafrost has disappeared altogether in some locations. This has lead to significant changes in the vegetation composition and subsequent increase in emissions of the powerful greenhouse gas methane. Methane is 25 times more potent compared to carbon dioxide as greenhouse gas.
Behind these new findings is an international research team lead from the GeoBiosphere Science Centre at Lund University, Sweden. The results have just been published in the prestigious American scientific journal Geophysical Research Letters. The results are unique as there are very few places in the circumpolar North where a multi-decadal comparison of observations is possible. The Abisko region in subarctic Sweden is unique in the circumpolar North with respect to long-term records of climate, permafrost and other environmental variables. There are likewise many historical investigations that recent observations may be compared with. The Abisko area is recognised as part of the international network of Man and the Biosphere Reserves (under the auspices of UNESCO).
In the present study airborne infrared images are used to compare the vegetation distribution in 1970 with that of 2000. Dramatic changes are observed and these are related to the climate warming and decreasing permafrost extent that has been observed over the same period. Also the land-atmosphere exchanges of carbon dioxide and methane has been studied for a long time in Abisko. The exchange of carbon dioxide with ecosystems can either be an atmospheric source or sink while in the case of methane it is predominantly a source. Methane is released from the breakdown of plant material under wet soil conditions.
Göran Frankel | alfa
Predicting unpredictability: Information theory offers new way to read ice cores
07.12.2016 | Santa Fe Institute
Sea ice hit record lows in November
07.12.2016 | University of Colorado at Boulder
Physicists of the University of Würzburg have made an astonishing discovery in a specific type of topological insulators. The effect is due to the structure of the materials used. The researchers have now published their work in the journal Science.
Topological insulators are currently the hot topic in physics according to the newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung. Only a few weeks ago, their importance was...
In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.
Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
09.12.2016 | Life Sciences
09.12.2016 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation
09.12.2016 | Health and Medicine