BERLIN, Aug. 16 (UPI) -- A German scientist has installed a windscreen on the Rhone glacier in Switzerland to try to stop it from melting.
Geographer Hans-Joachim Fuchs of Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany, said Alpine glaciers have shrunk by 50 percent since 1850. He is hoping a 50 foot windscreen will keep cold air on top of the glacier and keep it from melting, Der Spiegel reported Friday.
The windscreen was installed with the help of students.
"We hope our installations will bring about a net cooling of the area," Fuchs said in a statement. "And if the melt is not stopped, that it is at least slowed."
Glacial experts said his plan won't work.
"Something like that would certainly not be very effective," Swiss glaciologist Martin Funk told the newspaper. "Covers are much more effective."
Massive, light colored covers have been used successfully to maintain ice in ski areas, the newspaper said.