Breaking the Ice

This event has now finished. Please see our events website for details of upcoming events at Brookes.

Breaking the Ice

Who this event is for

  • Everyone


Willow Lecture Theatre, Willow Building, Headington Campus, Headington Hill site


You’re 16,000 miles from home; it’s -45°C with a wind speed of 55mph; you haven’t seen a sunset in 6 weeks and it’ll be another 16 weeks before you get to go home. So why do some scientists choose to become polar explorers and what are they learning about our planet from research in some of the most extreme environments on Earth?

What challenges face those conducting research in these inhospitable regions? Is climate change going to make access to these unique parts of the world more difficult? How is the UK investing in polar exploration and why?

Join our panel of ‘cool’ experts to learn more about life on the edge of existence.

Professor Martin Siegertis Co-Director of the Grantham Institute for Climate Change. He leads the Lake Ellsworth Consortium – a Natural Environment Research Council – funded programme that aims to explore the large sub-glacial lake beneath the ice of West Antarctica. Martin has undertaken three Antarctic field seasons, using geophysics to measure the sub glacial landscape and to understand what it tells us about past changes in Antarctica and elsewhere.

Hugh Broughton took on the challenge of designing a hospitable research station in the Antarctic. Halley VI is the latest attempt by experts to build a research station that can withstand the extreme environment that the other five Halley designs failed to overcome.

Dr. Melody Clark is a Project Leader at the British Antarctic Survey in Cambridge for the Adaptations and Physiology Group. Melody joined the British Antarctic Survey in August 2003 to develop their genomics expertise, as at the time very little was known about the DNA of Antarctic organisms.

Facilitating the discussion is science journalist and broadcaster Quentin Cooper who has explored the Arctic Circle and witnessed at first-hand the effects of climate change.

Tickets £8 with £5 concessions (OAPs, under 18s and students)