The CNRS publishes an article “The whisper of the glacier” in its Journal. This article relates the experience of Philippe Roux, a researcher at the Grenoble Institute of Earth Sciences, in the framework of the RESOLVE project.
RESOLVE consisted in equipping the Argentière glacier with more than 100 measuring instruments of various types: seismic sensors (65 of these sensors belong to Résif’s Sismob mobile instrument park), but also electromagnetic radar, surface GPS sensors and depth pressure sensors.
All of these instruments remained in place for a month to measure the movement of the glacier, the vibrations passing through it, and the variations in water pressure and flow at its base.
This experiment, conducted from April to June 2018 with engineers, seismologists and glaciologists, aims to advance scientific knowledge on the slow dynamics of glaciers, which are reasonably believed to be endangered by global warming.
The CNRS had followed the experiment and produced a video available online entitled “A Listening Glacier”.
Transport of bags containing seismometers on the Argentière glacier, in the Mont-Blanc massif, during the installation of a network of one hundred seismometers on the surface of the glacier, by scientists of the RESOLVE project, complementing those installed in the rock of its underground galleries. They have to be positioned according to a determined grid, with an inter-sensor distance of fifty meters, according to precise GPS positions, and are then calibrated. Each node of the network is composed of a “wireless” geophone (or seismometer), i.e. equipped with an integrated digitizer and a battery, allowing continuous measurement of the three components of the seismic waves for one month. The entire network of geophones was installed in one day on the glacier. The goal of this major project is to reveal the internal mechanisms of glaciers. © Nicolas Baker / ISTerre / CNRS Photo Library