Maxine King
(Photo provided by Maxine King)

I graduated from Bangor University in 2016 with an integrated Master’s in Oceanography, specialising in Geological Oceanography. It was during my master’s year that I developed a particular interest in palaeoclimate and Antarctic geosciences. After graduation, I was lucky enough to do some voluntary work at the British Antarctic Survey using radar data to study eddy activity under the Ronne-Filchner Ice Shelf, and also attended a research cruise as part of the Welsh marine renewable energy initiative, SEACAMS 2.

I am in my second year of a PhD programme at Plymouth University. My current research is investigating sedimentary processes on the Ross Sea continental slope, and how they relate to past glaciations. This is using a sediment core (U1525A) taken on the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Expedition 374 (Ross Sea West Antarctic Ice Sheet History). The West Antarctic Ice Sheet is currently very vulnerable to melting, so this project is part of a growing body of very important evidence to help us understand how it will behave in the future.

My work involves analysing the grain size distribution of samples from U1525A, along with measurements of its physical properties. These data will allow me to reconstruct the depositional environment at the core site, and therefore piece together how ice has advanced/retreated over the Ross Sea continental shelf over approximately the last 2.6 million years. I am very lucky to be studying such an interesting topic, which also means I am part of an international community of Antarctic geoscientists studying this important subject. Being involved with IODP is a wonderful opportunity to meet and work with talented scientists from all over the world.

If you would like to get in touch or learn more about me and my Antarctic work: maxine.king@plymouth.ac.uk

Twitter: @maxine_king25

UKPN: https://polarnetwork.org/ukpn-committee/maxine-king-2/