Thwaites Offshore Research (THOR)

Thwaites Offshore Research (THOR) is a ship-based and ice-based project that will examine the sedimentary records both offshore from the glacier and beneath the ice shelf, together with glacial landforms on the sea bed, to reconstruct past changes in ocean conditions and the glaciers response to these changes. 

Principal Investigators

Team Members

Blog Posts

THOR research onboard the N.B. Palmer icebreaker through March 2020

The Thwaites Glacier Offshore Research (THOR) team set sail from Punta Arenas, Chile, on January 26, 2020 and is conducting research in the Amundsen Sea off the coast of Thwaites Glacier. During their 60-day cruise on the US icebreaker Nathaniel B.

US PolarTREC teacher blogs about upcoming research cruise with THOR project, January 2020

Join teacher Sarah Slack as she writes about her experience as an NSF PolarTREC teacher on board the Nathaniel B. Palmer research vessel. The Palmer departs Punta Arenas, Chile, on January 26, 2020, bound for the Amundsen Sea waters off the coast of the Thwaites Glacier.

THOR blog - Cruise offshore of Thwaites Glacier

Seven researchers from the Thwaites Offshore Research team embark on a 53-day cruise in the Amundsen Sea to study the ocean off of the Thwaites Glacier.

Read about THOR's Cruise News.

Related News

New high resolution images of the seafloor in West Antarctica show past retreat of Thwaites Glacier.

On the 100th anniversary of the polar explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton’s death, a research mission using a fleet of underwater robots to determine the impact of Thwaites Glacier on global sea-level rise, departs from Punta Arenas, Chile (6 January 2021). A team of 32 international scientists will set sail on the U.S. National Science Foundation icebreaker Nathaniel B. Palmer bound for the remote glacier in West Antarctica.
For the first time, researchers have collected data from underneath the remote Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica using an underwater robot. Findings reveal that the supply of warm water to the glacier is larger than previously thought, triggering concerns of faster melting and accelerating ice flow. The findings are published this week (10 April 2021) in the journal Science Advances.
The sheer scale of the glacier captivated Ted Scambos as he looked on from his plane window, thousands of feet above the ice. The widest glacier in the world, the frozen white Antarctic landscape of Thwaites seemed to stretch on forever—an area as large as Florida, and a mile or more thick.