Dr Stephen Cornford
Lecturer
Geography
Telephone: (01792) 513298
Room: Academic Office - 236
Second Floor
Wallace Building
Singleton Campus

Areas of Expertise

  • Ice Flow Modelling
  • Antarctica
  • Data Assimilation
  • Adaptive mesh methods
  • High performance computing

Publications

  1. & Composite matrix construction for structured grid adaptive mesh refinement. Computer Physics Communications
  2. & Buoyant forces promote tidewater glacier iceberg calving through large basal stress concentrations. The Cryosphere 13(7), 1877-1887.
  3. et. al. initMIP-Antarctica: an ice sheet model initialization experiment of ISMIP6. The Cryosphere 13(5), 1441-1471.
  4. & Millennial-scale Vulnerability of the Antarctic Ice Sheet to Regional Ice Shelf Collapse. Geophysical Research Letters
  5. & New Mass-Conserving Bedrock Topography for Pine Island Glacier Impacts Simulated Decadal Rates of Mass Loss. Geophysical Research Letters 45(7), 3173-3181.

See more...

Teaching

  • GEG111 Geographical Writing Skills and Personal Development Planning

    This module introduces students to key skills in scientific writing and career development. The module is taught through a tutorial programme throughout the year.

  • GEG132 Dynamic Earth Systems

    This module introduces the four main Earth systems: the atmosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere and biosphere and provides a sound understanding of the processes within each system, and of the interactions between them. This module forms the essential foundation for any more advanced study of physical geography. The atmosphere section deals with flows of energy and moisture and their role in controlling climate over both space and time. The geosphere section deals with the origin of Earth, describes the distribution of different rock types and introduces the concept of plate tectonics. The hydrosphere section focuses on the concepts of the hydrological cycle and main processes associated with the water fluxes. The biosphere section deals mainly with flows of energy and nutrients between Earth systems.

  • GEG133 Dangerous Earth: Understanding and Living with Natural Hazards

    This module investigates hazardous aspects of Earth¿s natural environment and how society relates to them. Introductory principles include the definition of natural hazard, disaster, risk and loss, and approaches to reducing risk and managing disasters. Major types of natural hazard are studied in order to understand how they operate, where, and how frequently they are likely to occur. Hazardous consequences are explored, as well as how society can respond to hazardous events. Key aspects include discussion of primary and secondary hazards, prediction, forecasting and monitoring of hazards, and understanding how their harmful effects can be minimised. Natural hazards considered during this module include volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, tsunamis, wildfires, landslides, extreme weather events, flooding, avalanches and Mega Hazards. Lectures consider general principles as well as case studies. Practical classes reinforce concepts learned in lectures. The practical aspect of the work will culminate in a disaster management simulation day.

  • GEG264B Environmental Research Methods B

    The module builds upon student knowledge covers research project design, data collection and data analysis. Students are introduced to a range of laboratory and field techniques in physical geography along with statistical analyses and presentation skills. They gain experience in describing and interpreting results derived from laboratory techniques concerned with reconstructing the depositional history of sediments, chemical analysis of sediments from a variety of sources and the simulation of geomorphological processes. Students are also introduced to dissertation research. The module culminates in a poster presentation (including short oral introduction to poster) on one of the projects they have undertaken.

  • GEG333 Geographical Research Frontiers

    This module provides students with the opportunity to demonstrate their competence as a Geographer by undertaking a critical analysis of a wide variety of literature-based sources in order to develop a cogent, substantial, and persuasive argument. While the Dissertation in Geography normally focuses on the design and execution of an evidenced-based research project that assesses the capacity of students to undertake effective data analysis and interpretation, the purpose of this module is to assess the extent to which students are capable of engaging with the academic literature at the frontier of a particular part of Geography. Students select from a wide range of research frontiers in Human and Physical Geography that have been identified by the academic staff within the Department. Given that this module emphasizes student-centred learning, none of the frontiers will have been covered in other modules, although in many cases modules will have taken students up to some of these frontiers. However, to orientate students and provide them with suitable points of departure and way-stations, there will be a brief introduction to each frontier and a short list of pivotal references disseminated via Blackboard. (Note: The topic selected by you must not overlap with the subject of your Dissertation. If there is any doubt about potential overlap, this must be discussed with your Dissertation Support Group supervisor and agreed in writing.)

  • GEG344 Glaciology

    This module will provide you with the scientific basis to understand the physical behaviour of glacier ice at spatial scales ranging from individual ice crystals to continental-scale glaciation. The module core topics will include glacier mass balance, transformation of snow to ice, glacier hydrology, dynamics, ice crystal structure and deformation, glacier sliding, deformation of glacial sediments, glacier flow instabilities and glacier surging. We will then introduce example topics of current research interest. You will have the opportunity to work in a small group on a guided research project. The module is assessed through an individual paper critique and ¿take-home¿ examination, as well as group presentation of your research project results at a poster-based mini-conference, and as a report. The research project work will normally be assigned a group mark, however, individual student¿s marks may be moderated based on self and peer assessment.

  • GEG347 Meteorology and Atmospheric Science

    This module provides a comprehensive introduction to meteorology, weather, and atmospheric science. The course covers both applied meteorology and the underlying physical concepts. An excellent mathematical qualification (GCSE level) and physical background is a pre-requisite for a student attending this module. The module focuses on short timescales ranging from daily to seasonal. Meteorology is introduced as the study of weather and related phenomena. Methods of measuring the atmosphere and the interpretation of these measurements are fundamental to the subject, as are classifications and qualitative descriptions of atmospheric phenomena. The fundamental physics of the atmosphere (motion, moisture and radiation) are discussed. The central part of the module focuses on weather systems, both in the tropics and the mid-latitudes. Finally, the module covers small-scale phenomena (e.g. tornadoes), and boundary-layer processes. Weather forecasting is a theme which runs through the module, as much of the research in meteorology has been motivated by the desire to predict the weather. The relationship between measurements, models and forecasts is explored.

Supervision

  • Untitled (current)

    Student name:
    MSc
    Other supervisor: Prof Adrian Luckman
  • Stability of Antarctic Ice Shelves: Implications in terms of sea level rise (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Adrian Luckman
  • Drumlin and MSGL form and evolution beneath Rutford Ice Stream, West Antarctica using ice-penetrating radar (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Tavi Murray