CORDIS
EU research results

CORDIS

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Essential field and laboratory measurements of critical physical and microbial processes which darken the Greenland Ice Sheet and accelerate sea level rise

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 856416

Status

Ongoing project

  • Start date

    1 January 2020

  • End date

    31 December 2025

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.1.

  • Overall budget:

    € 11 007 344

  • EU contribution

    € 11 007 344

Hosted by:

UNIVERSITY OF BRISTOL

United Kingdom

Objective

The stability of the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) is a threat to coastal communities worldwide. The PIs have changed our understanding of why it darkens during the melt season, becoming increasingly deep purple due to pigmented ice algal blooms in the ice surface, producing more melt and accelerating the GrIS towards its tipping point, and increasing sea level. The next step jump in our understanding of biological darkening will be provided by DEEP PURPLE, which will establish the factors that control ice algal blooms. These factors are essential for modelling of future melting, which require a process-based understanding of blooming. DEEP PURPLE will quantify the synergies between the biology, chemistry and physics of ice algae micro-niches in rotting, melting ice, and examine the combination of factors which stabilise them. State-of-the-science analytical and observational methods will be employed to characterise the complex mosaic of wet ice habitats, dependent on factors such as the hydrology, nutrient status, particulate content and light fields within these continually evolving ice-water-particulate-microbe systems. We will quantitatively assess why and how the fine light mineral dust particulates contained within the melting ice amplify the growth of ice algae. The particulate content and composition of different layers in the GrIS is dependent on age, and so the algae that the melting ice can support may fundamentally change over time. We look back to understand if the ice biome has changed through the Anthropocene via analyse of fjord sediments. The first draft genome of ice algae will show their key adaptations to glacier surface habitats. DEEP PURPLE looks forward by providing the critical field data sets and conceptual models of ice algal growth that will facilitate the next generation of predictive models of sea level rise due to biologically enhanced melting of the GrIS.
Leaflet | Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors, Credit: EC-GISCO, © EuroGeographics for the administrative boundaries

Host institution

UNIVERSITY OF BRISTOL

Address

Beacon House Queens Road
Bs8 1qu Bristol

United Kingdom

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 4 422 781

Beneficiaries (3)

UNIVERSITY OF BRISTOL

United Kingdom

EU Contribution

€ 4 422 781

AARHUS UNIVERSITET

Denmark

EU Contribution

€ 3 288 763

HELMHOLTZ ZENTRUM POTSDAM DEUTSCHESGEOFORSCHUNGSZENTRUM GFZ

Germany

EU Contribution

€ 3 295 800

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 856416

Status

Ongoing project

  • Start date

    1 January 2020

  • End date

    31 December 2025

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.1.

  • Overall budget:

    € 11 007 344

  • EU contribution

    € 11 007 344

Hosted by:

UNIVERSITY OF BRISTOL

United Kingdom