The original BEDMAP project, completed in 2000, brought together a strong international consortium of Antarctic scientists who pooled data from several decades of polar expeditions. It produced the first comprehensive maps of the Antarctic landscape that lay hidden under the ice sheets for hundreds of thousands of years. From these, the volume of Antarctic ice was revealed and, since then, many other research projects have used the maps to model ice sheet flow and for studies of geology, tectonics, crustal seismics, magnetics and ice core interpretation.
The BEDMAP2 project, part of the International Polar Year (IPY), aims to assemble all new data on ice thickness and bed topography for Antarctica. The aim is to provide new ice surface and bed elevation maps for the continent and surrounding seas.
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