Dr Andrew Moy - ice core research scientist

Dr Andrew Moy
Dr Andrew Moy (Photo: Wendy Pyper)

Dr Andrew Moy: BSc (Hons), PhD

Research interests

I completed a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Earth Sciences at La Trobe University in 1993 and spent the next five years as a mine geologist in northern Queensland. In 2000 I enrolled in a PhD at the University of Tasmania and the Institute of Antarctic and Southern Ocean studies (IASOS), after a chance meeting with Dr Will Howard at the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre. Under Dr Howard’s supervision I used marine sediment records from the South Tasman Rise to reconstruct past deep water circulation and carbonate chemistry in the Southern Ocean. My subsequent post-doc looked at the effect of ocean acidification (caused by increasing amounts of carbon dioxide dissolving in the ocean) on calcareous shelled organisms in the Southern Ocean. By comparing modern-day calcareous shells collected from sediment traps, to shells from the pre-industrial era, we detected a decrease in shell weight over time. This study provided the first field observation of the negative effect of ocean acidification on calcareous organisms and fitted well with carbonate chemistry work by others.

In 2007 I took up a position as an ice core research scientist at the Australian Antarctic Division. Ice cores are like marine sediments in that you can measure various chemical and physical properties to detect changes over time. I’m currently using water isotopes of oxygen and hydrogen (deuterium) in ice cores from Law Dome and Mill Island, to look at changes in snowfall, temperature, atmospheric composition and atmospheric circulation. These records will help us to understand, quantify and determine the natural variability of climate processes, and changes caused by human activities.

I have also been involved in the North Greenland Eemian Ice Drilling (NEEM) international ice core research project, using ice coring equipment developed by our Danish collaborators to retrieve a 411 m ice core record spanning the past 2000 years. I used the knowledge gained from this project to help drill a 2000 year ice core record – with near-annual resolution – at Aurora Basin North in in 2013-14. This project is a stepping stone towards drilling the oldest ice core record (1+ million years) in East Antarctica in the future. These cores will fill a large gap in the array of Antarctic climate records and will improve our capacity to reconstruct past climate and model future climate.

Current projects

International collaborations

Key outcome areas

  • Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)

Related links

Selected publications

Burn-Nunes L.J., Vallelonga P., Loss R. D., Burton G. R., Moy A., Curran M., Hong S., Smith A. M., Edwards R., Morgan V. I., & Rosman K. J. R., 2011. Seasonal variability in the input of lead, barium and indium to Law Dome, Antarctica. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 75(1): 1-20.

Howard W. R., Roberts D., Moy A. D., Lindsay M. C. M., Hopcroft R. R., Trull T. W., & Bray S. G., 2011. Distribution, abundance and seasonal flux of pteropods in the Sub-Antarctic Zone. Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography, 58(21-22): 2293-2300.

Moy A. D., Howard W. R., Bray S. G., & Trull T. W., 2009. Reduced calcification in modern Southern Ocean planktonic foraminifera. Nature Geoscience, 2: 276-280.

Moy A. D., Howard W. R., Bray S. G., & Trull T. W., 2009. Sounding sediments. Nature Geoscience, 2: 308.

Moy A. D., Howard W. R., & Gagan M. K., 2006. Late Quaternary palaeoceanography of the Circumpolar Deep Water from the South Tasman Rise. J. Quat. Sci., 21(7): 763-777.

Pedro J. B., van Ommen T. D., Rasmussen S. O., Morgan V. I., Chappellaz J., Moy A. D., Masson-Delmotte V., & Delmotte M., 2011b. The last deglaciation: timing the bipolar seesaw. Clim. Past, 7(2): 671-683.

Roberts D., Howard W. R., Moy A. D., Roberts J. L., Trull T. W., Bray S. G., & Hopcroft R. R., 2008. Interannual variability of pteropod shell weights in the High-CO2 Southern Ocean. Biogeosciences Discussions, 5: 1-28.

Roberts D., Howard W., Moy A., Roberts J., Trull T., Bray S., & Hopcroft R., 2011. Interannual pteropod variability in sediment traps deployed above and below the aragonite saturation horizon in the Sub-Antarctic Southern Ocean. Polar Biology: 1-12.