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Last Updated: Thursday, 28 December 2006, 13:06 GMT
Polar Medal for glacier professor
Tavi Murray (Photo by Alex Taylor)
Professor Murray regularly visits the Arctic and Antarctic
A Swansea University professor is to receive a prestigious award from the Queen for her research on glaciers.

Tavi Murray joins a list of recipients of the Polar Medal that includes such renowned explorers as Captain Robert Scott and Sir Ernest Shackleton.

A graduate of Aberystwyth University, she is part of a team studying changes in sea levels caused by the melting of the polar ice caps.

The 42-year-old from Mumbles said she was "humbled" to learn of the award.

Prof Murray is currently working on three research projects which regularly take her on field work to the Arctic, Antarctic and the European Alps.

She said: "It is the same medal awarded to Scott and Shackleton, which is humbling company.

"We do face some of the same challenges, though - like hungry polar bears, yawning crevasses and raging storms.

"However, I regard myself as incredibly lucky to be able to work in the beautiful mountains and wind-swept ice of the polar regions."

Her research concentrates on fast-flowing glaciers and glacier instabilities. She said many were rapidly thinning.

One of the key issues Prof Murray and her research group at Swansea are trying to address is measuring the past and future rise in sea levels caused by the melting ice.

The Polar Medal was first established in 1857 as the Arctic Medal to reward early explorers.

Prof Murray will collect the award at a ceremony at Buckingham Palace early in 2007.


SEE ALSO
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05 Feb 06 |  South West Wales

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