Experts from the sclerochronology and scleroclimatology group at SOS Bangor and from the Increments group at Mainz will be on hand to help you try out and compare different shell processing techniques. You'll also be able to get expert advice on crossmatching and chronology construction from Bryan Black and on geochemical techniques from Al Wanamaker.
Early Bird Registration and Abstract Submission deadline extended to 2nd April !!
The Earlybird deadline for Registration and Abstract Submission for the 3rd International Sclerochronology Conference (18th - 22nd May 2013) has been extended to 2nd April. Please encourage your colleagues to register and send an abstract. If you're a supervisor, encourage your students. If you're a student or postdoc, encourage your supervisors!
A diver from the British Antarctic Survey is shown here collecting samples of the bivalve Yoldia eightsi at Hangar Cove near the UK research station at Rothera. We are currently using Y. eightsi shells to investigate rapid warming on the West Antarctic Peninsula over the past two hundred years
Photo by Lloyd Peck, British Antarctic Survey
Second Circular for ISC2013
Posted 23 November 2012
Registration and Abstract Submission for the 3rd International Sclerochronology Conference (18th - 22nd May 2013) are now open.
You'll also be able to register for the First Sclerochronology Fieldweek, which will take place here at SOS directly after the conference (23rd - 27th May)
This follows on from press publicity about the recent paper in Nature Communications where the first results from the Iceland chronology were reported (see next item down). Adam Walton talks to Paul and Chris, and there's also an excellent interview with Danny Mccarroll from the dendrochronology group at Swansea who gives the tree-ring context.
You can listen to the program through these links:
New paper from Al Wanamaker and the Bangor sclero group
Posted 27 June 2012
Our work on the radiocarbon reservoir and the strength of the AMOC based on radiocarbon measurements of Arctica shells from the North Icelandic Shelf has now been published in Nature Communications. Read more about it here. If you speak Norwegian, you'll also appreciate some of our worldwide coverage. Thanks in particular to Al Wanamaker, who collected the data when he was working at SOS on the MILLENNIUM project and who saw it through the lengthy process of acceptance and publication.
Posted 27 June 2012
The sclero exhibit had a very enjoyable outing at the Urdd Eisteddfod (that's the youth Eisteddfod) near Caernarvon earlier in June. Some nice images of the event are available here. We estimated that about 14,000 people passed through the pavilion during the week.
ISC2013 - Announcement and First Circular
Posted 2 March 2012
The 3rd International Sclerochronology Conference is to be held in Caernarfon, North Wales, UK between Saturday 18 and Wednesday 22 May 2013.
The meeting venue will be Galeri, a modern conference centre located on the beautiful shores of the Menai Strait in the ancient walled Royal Borough of Caernarfon.
The Conference will be directly followed by the 1st Sclerochronology Fieldweek (Thursday 23 - Monday 27 May), where participants will get practical experience with hands-on sclerochronology projects using facilities at School of Ocean Sciences in Menai Bridge
Best of Scottish Science
Posted 2 March 2012
Our sclero exhibit will be on show at Best of Scottish Science in Edinburgh from 1st April to 4th April, part of the Edinburgh International Science Festival.
Will Brocas starting PhD in Bremen
Posted 29 February 2012
Congratulations to Will Brocas who is starting a PhD in Bremen working with Dr Thomas Felis on Caribbean corals and stalagmites. Will was an undergraduate here for four years before working for several months on trace elements in Glycymeris glycymeris from the Celtic Sea. He's also been writing a paper on G. glycymeris from the Isle of Man waters.
Sitting in the Mollusc Store
Posted 20 January 2012
Dr. Richard Preece takes us behind the scenes in the Mollusc section of Cambridge University Museum of Zoology in this short film from BlueSciFilms. Our Arctica research gets an honourable mention.
Sclerochronology display features at the Palace of Westminster
Posted 12 January 2012
Two weeks before Christmas (December 12-15), as part of an exhibition organized by Anglesey's MP Albert Owen to showcase the research being done in SOS, the Bangor sclero groups's Arctica exhibit was on show at the Palace of Westminster.
This opportunity has been a major outcome of the exhibit's first outing at the Royal Society's Summer Exhibition in 2010; Albert saw our stand there, was impressed, and on that basis decided that SOS was the aspect of Anglesey that he wanted to present to his fellow MPs. Here's what he has said about it:
"Meeting the challenge of major energy and environmental issues requires collaboration between government, industry, and the research base. The Isle of Anglesey has established its Energy island vision which is to create a world-renowned centre of excellence for the production, demonstration and servicing of low carbon energy. The School of Ocean Sciences is playing a key role in this via its SEACAMS project, working with businesses and government to increase economic activity in the marine sector."
As well as the sclerochronology display, research will also be featured into Sustainable Marine Resources, Marine Renewable Energy and the SEACAMS initiative.
Dates announced for 3rd International Sclerochronology Conference Bangor-Caernarfon
Posted 13 June 2011
The dates have just been announced for the 3rd International Sclerochronology Conference in 2013. The conference will be May 18-22, and the sclero fieldweek will follow May 23-27. The event will be hosted by School of Ocean Sciences sclero group at Galeri, Caernarfon. Watch this space for more news ...
Publicity for our ageing research on the BBC's website
Posted 7 June 2011
Our research into ageing processes using Arctica islandica has been featured on the BBC's Nature web page. Nature's guide to immortality covers the strategies adopted by different species to extend their lifetimes and includes quotes by Iain Ridgway.
Paul Butler wins the Lewis Penny medal
Posted 18 Jan 2011
Dr Paul Butler has been awarded the prestigious Lewis Penny medal by the Quaternary Research Association for his work building long Arctica islandica chronologies for the Irish Sea and the North Icelandic Shelf. The medal is awarded to an early career researcher who has contributed significantly to the Quaternary stratigraphy of the British Isles and its maritime environment.
New research funding has been awarded by NERC (ULTRA; PI Professor Chris Richardson) to carry out stable oxygen and carbon isotope analyses on Arctica islandica shells from the North Icelandic shelf. We hope to produce very high resolution (annual and sub-annual) proxy data for the marine environment in a climatically sensitive region where the Polar Front divides cold Arctic waters from relatively warm Atlantic waters. Work has already started on ULTRA, with Paul Butler identifying shells for sampling by crossmatching selected sub-fossil shells into the existing chronology.
David Reynolds, who is currently completing his doctorate, has now been appointed to this project to mill out the samples and send them for analysis.
Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition 2010
Last June and July, the Bangor Sclerochronology and Scleroclimatology group were showcasing our research at London's Southbank Centre as part of the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition 2010. Our exhibit stressed the 'wow' factor in our work, with a banner 'Arctica islandica, the longest-lived animal on Earth' featuring the record breaking specimen of Arctica from Iceland popularly known as 'Ming' and an historic section of giant Sequoia tree (the specimen actually used to calibrate the radiocarbon timescale) which we borrowed from Cambridge. The exhibition this year coincided with the 350th anniversary of the Royal Society and was moved from its usual site in the RS to the Southbank Centre to maximize awareness among the general public. We estimated that we must have met and talked to some 2,500 people during the 9 days of the main event. Click here for pictures and a video from the exhibition.
We got excellent media coverage, including a feature on BBC Radio 4's The Material World, a news report in The Times and an item on BBC Wales about our collaboration with local firm Griffilms who developed interactive games for us.
One aspect that was especially pleasing was that so many of our colleagues and collaborators came over to help out, including Al Wanamaker (Iowa and ex-SOS), Bill Austin and Keziah Stott (St Andrews), Bernd Schöne (Mainz), Rob Witbaard (NIOZ), Charlotte Bryant (NERC Radiocarbon unit), Martin Sayer (NERC Diving unit) and Simon Chenery (BGS). The SOS contingent were Iain Ridgway, Iris Verhagen, Holly Pelling, Holly Whiteley, Nick Jones, Chris Richardson, Dave Reynolds and Paul Butler (not all of them are actually in the sclero group, but everybody picked up the spiel pretty quickly and were soon chatting away as if they'd been counting rings all their lives). The technical support came from Ian Nicholls, David Roberts and Brian Long. Given the planning and practical work involved in construction, setting up and breakdown, their role was crucial to our success. The final but most important credit goes to James Scourse, who was the main driving force behind our participation, who raised £25k of funding and without whom it just wouldn't have happened.