Helen Amanda Fricker

Professor, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California San Diego

Helen Amanda Fricker is a Professor of Geophysics in the Cecil H. and Ida M. Green Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego. Her research focuses on ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland and their role in the climate system. She uses a combination of satellite radar and laser altimetry and other remote-sensing data to understand ice sheet processes. Some specific processes Dr. Fricker investigates include subglacial hydrology by monitoring the activity of subglacial lakes under the ice streams, ice flexure from tidal activity in the grounding zone, basal melting and freezing under the ice shelves, and the propagation and evolution of active ice shelf rifts, which eventually lead to iceberg calving. Dr. Fricker received her Ph.D. in Glaciology from the University of Tasmania. She joined the Scripps Institution of Oceanography as a postgraduate researcher. Dr. Fricker recently won the prestigious "Martha Muse" Prize for promising young researchers, from the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research. She is a member of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) and was chair of AGU's Cryospheric Sciences Focus Group. She received a NASA Group Achievement Award for her role in the Ice, Cloud, and Land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) Mission Development Team, was a member of the ICESat Science Team, and is currently on both the ICESat-2 Science Definition Team and the NASA Sea Level Change Team.


  • –present
    Professor, Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics , University of California, San Diego


Tinker-Muse Prize for Science and Policy in Antarctica; AGU Fellow