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Initiation and long-term instability of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet

Overview of attention for article published in Nature, December 2017
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (99th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (84th percentile)

Mentioned by

24 news outlets
3 blogs
155 tweeters
4 Facebook pages
1 Wikipedia page
1 Google+ user
3 Redditors


36 Dimensions

Readers on

134 Mendeley
Initiation and long-term instability of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet
Published in
Nature, December 2017
DOI 10.1038/nature25026
Pubmed ID

Sean P. S. Gulick, Amelia E. Shevenell, Aleksandr Montelli, Rodrigo Fernandez, Catherine Smith, Sophie Warny, Steven M. Bohaty, Charlotte Sjunneskog, Amy Leventer, Bruce Frederick, Donald D. Blankenship


Antarctica's continental-scale ice sheets have evolved over the past 50 million years. However, the dearth of ice-proximal geological records limits our understanding of past East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) behaviour and thus our ability to evaluate its response to ongoing environmental change. The EAIS is marine-terminating and grounded below sea level within the Aurora subglacial basin, indicating that this catchment, which drains ice to the Sabrina Coast, may be sensitive to climate perturbations. Here we show, using marine geological and geophysical data from the continental shelf seaward of the Aurora subglacial basin, that marine-terminating glaciers existed at the Sabrina Coast by the early to middle Eocene epoch. This finding implies the existence of substantial ice volume in the Aurora subglacial basin before continental-scale ice sheets were established about 34 million years ago. Subsequently, ice advanced across and retreated from the Sabrina Coast continental shelf at least 11 times during the Oligocene and Miocene epochs. Tunnel valleys associated with half of these glaciations indicate that a surface-meltwater-rich sub-polar glacial system existed under climate conditions similar to those anticipated with continued anthropogenic warming. Cooling since the late Miocene resulted in an expanded polar EAIS and a limited glacial response to Pliocene warmth in the Aurora subglacial basin catchment. Geological records from the Sabrina Coast shelf indicate that, in addition to ocean temperature, atmospheric temperature and surface-derived meltwater influenced East Antarctic ice mass balance under warmer-than-present climate conditions. Our results imply a dynamic EAIS response with continued anthropogenic warming and suggest that the EAIS contribution to future global sea-level projections may be under-estimated.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 155 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 134 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 134 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Researcher 31 23%
Student > Ph. D. Student 29 22%
Student > Master 21 16%
Student > Bachelor 7 5%
Professor > Associate Professor 7 5%
Other 18 13%
Unknown 21 16%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Earth and Planetary Sciences 88 66%
Environmental Science 9 7%
Physics and Astronomy 3 2%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 2 1%
Social Sciences 2 1%
Other 6 4%
Unknown 24 18%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 305. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 11 November 2019.
All research outputs
of 15,355,549 outputs
Outputs from Nature
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Outputs of similar age
of 406,907 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Nature
of 858 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 15,355,549 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 99th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 74,450 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 83.6. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 93% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 406,907 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 858 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done well, scoring higher than 84% of its contemporaries.