Karen Heywood is a professor in the School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia. As an observational oceanographer, she relies on multiple methods to understand Earth's oceans, including ocean-ice interaction in the Antarctic. Her observational tools include research cruises, numerical models, satellite data, among others. She is also enthused by new opportunities offered by ocean gliders and autonomous robots that can take measurements in places that are otherwise too difficult.

Heywood is a lead Principal Investigator on the TARSAN project. She and her team will measure ocean circulation and thinning beneath the Thwaites Glacier. The team will employ automated underwater vehicles and automated land-ice stations.