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Dr Jeff Ridley

Jeff works on ice sheets and glaciers

Jeff is a climate scientist working on the understanding and modelling of ice sheets and mountain glaciers, and their likely contribution to future global sea-level rise.

Current activities

Jeff's work on ice sheets involves embedding 3D models of ice sheets in the climate version of the Unified Model. Model simulations are used to evaluate the response of ice sheets to long-term climate change. This work is in collaboration with glaciologists at Bristol University.

The next generation of ice sheet models includes a representation of the interaction of oceans with ice streams and ice shelves. The development and assessment of these model components is being undertaken as part of a European Programme, Ice2sea. These studies will lead to an improved understanding of the likely contribution to global sea-level rise from Greenland and Antarctica.

Mountain glaciers are maintained by a balance of snowfall at high elevation; downhill motion of the ice, and melting at low elevation. A new understanding of the role of glaciers in the climate system, the contribution of their melt to river flow and ultimately to sea-level rise, is provided by a unique component of the Unified Model. Rather than simulating 100,000 individual glaciers, a novel approach has been developed which simultaneously represents all glaciers in a single grid cell of the climate model. This methodology provides dynamic glaciers which can form and melt as their local climate changes.

Career background

Jeff joined the Met Office Hadley Centre in 2001 and has been involved in climate model development, and analysis of the cryosphere, since he joined. Before that he spent four years in the Satellite Applications group.

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