Just over 100 years ago, on 14 December 1911, Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen won the race to plant a flag at the South Pole. Since then, Antarctica has lured explorers and scientists to comb its icy flanks and plumb its surrounding ocean depths. This week, we’ll chat with two researchers familiar with this remote landscape. Scott Borg, the National Science Foundation’s director of Antarctic Sciences, and Gretchen Hofmann, a marine ecophysiologist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, will talk about the challenges and rewards of working in such an extreme environment. What are some of the next big topics for exploration? And what questions can be answered only in places like Antarctica?
Join us for a live chat at 3 p.m. EST on Thursday, 19 January, on this page. You can leave your questions in the comment box below before the chat starts.
Dr. Gretchen Hofmann, an eco-physiologist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, focuses on the effects of climate and climate change on the performance of marine species in Antarctica. Her recent investigations focus on the impact of rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations, via global warming and ocean acidification, on marine organisms.
Scott Borg is Director of the Division of Antarctic Sciences at the National Science Foundation, responsible for a wide ranging grants program covering disciplines from biology and the geosciences to astrophysics. He's a geologist by training, and his research background is in isotope geochemistry and the origin of granites - mainly working in Antarctica.