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Sample records for island glacier faster

  1. Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    This pair of MISR images of the Pine Island Glacier in western Antarctica was acquired on December 12, 2000 during Terra orbit 5246. At left is a conventional, true-color image from the downward-looking (nadir) camera. The false-color image at right is a composite of red band data taken by the MISR forward 60-degree, nadir, and aftward 60-degree cameras, displayed in red, green, and blue colors, respectively. Color variations in the left (true-color) image highlight spectral differences. In the multi-angle composite, on the other hand, color variations act as a proxy for differences in the angular reflectance properties of the scene. In this representation, clouds show up as light purple. Blue to orange gradations on the surface indicate a transition in ice texture from smooth to rough. For example, the bright orange 'carrot-like' features are rough crevasses on the glacier's tongue. In the conventional nadir view, the blue ice labeled 'rough crevasses' and 'smooth blue ice' exhibit similar coloration, but the multi-angle composite reveals their different textures, with the smoother ice appearing dark purple instead of orange. This could be an indicator of different mechanisms by which this ice is exposed. The multi-angle view also reveals subtle roughness variations on the frozen sea ice between the glacier and the open water in Pine Island Bay.

    To the left of the 'icebergs' label are chunks of floating ice. Additionally, smaller icebergs embedded in the frozen sea ice are visible below and to the right of the label. These small icebergs are associated with dark streaks. Analysis of the illumination geometry suggests that these streaks are surface features, not shadows. Wind-driven motion and thinning of the sea ice in the vicinity of the icebergs is one possible explanation.

    Recently, Robert Bindschadler, a glaciologist at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center discovered in Landsat 7 imagery a newly-formed crack traversing the Pine Island Glacier. This crack

  2. Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2001-10-22

    This ASTER image was acquired on December 12, 2000, and covers an area of 38 x 48 km. Pine Island Glacier has undergone a steady loss of elevation with retreat of the grounding line in recent decades. Now, space imagery has revealed a wide new crack that some scientists think will soon result in a calving event. Glaciologist Robert Bindschadler of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center predicts this crack will result in the calving of a major iceberg, probably in less than 18 months. Discovery of the crack was possible due to multi-year image archives and high resolution imagery. This image is located at 74.1 degrees south latitude and 105.1 degrees west longitude. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA11095

  3. Pine Island Glacier

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2013-04-16

    ... the open water in Pine Island Bay. To the left of the "icebergs" label are chunks of floating ice. Additionally, smaller icebergs embedded in the frozen sea ice are visible below and to the right of ...

  4. NASA Spacecraft Images Massive Crack in Antarctica Pine Island Glacier

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2011-11-15

    This image from NASA Terra spacecraft shows a massive crack across the Pine Island Glacier, a major ice stream that drains the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Eventually, the crack will extend all the way across the glacier.

  5. Ice Island Calves off Petermann Glacier

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    NASA image acquired August 11, 2010. After breaking off the Petermann Glacier on August 5, 2010, a massive ice island floated slowly down the fjord toward the Nares Strait. The Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured this false-color image of the ice island on August 11, 2010. In this image, ice is light blue, water is nearly black, and clouds are nearly white. Although a bank of thin clouds hovers over the fjord, the southernmost margin of the ice island is still visible. Toward the north, the leading edge of the ice island retains the same shape it had days earlier, at the time of the initial calving. NASA Earth Observatory image created by Jesse Allen, using data provided courtesy of NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team. Caption by Michon Scott. Instrument: Terra - ASTER To see more images from of the glacier go to: earthobservatory.nasa.gov/NaturalHazards/event.php?id=45116 NASA Goddard Space Flight Center is home to the nation's largest organization of combined scientists, engineers and technologists that build spacecraft, instruments and new technology to study the Earth, the sun, our solar system, and the universe. Follow us on Twitter Join us on Facebook

  6. Iceberg from Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    The voyage of Iceberg B-31 continued in January, 2014 as the giant iceberg drifted over the frigid waters of Pine Island Bay and widened the gap between the newly-calved iceberg and the “mother” glacier. Between November 9 and 11, 20143 a giant crack in the Pine Island Glacier gave completely away, liberating Iceberg B-31 from the end of the glacial tongue. The new iceberg was estimated to be 35 km by 20 km (21 mi by 12 mi) in size – or roughly the size of Singapore. On January 5, 2014 the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA’s Terra satellite captured this true-color image of B-31 floating in the center of Pine Island Bay on an approach to the Amundsen Sea. Pine Island Glacier can be seen on the upper right coast of the bay, and is marked by parallel lines in the ice. According to measurements reported by the National U.S. Ice Center, on January 10, B-31 was maintaining its size, and was located at 74°24'S and 104°33'W. Credit: NASA/GSFC/Jeff Schmaltz/MODIS Land Rapid Response Team NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  7. Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica, MISR Multi-angle Composite

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2013-11-15

    NASA Terra satellite passed over the Pine Island Glacier in Antarctica around Oct. 27, 2013, just days before iceberg B-31 broke completely free. B-31 is finally moving away from the coast, with open water between the iceberg and the glacier.

  8. External forcing modulates Pine Island Glacier flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christianson, K. A.; Bushuk, M.; Holland, D.; Dutrieux, P.; Joughin, I.; Parizek, B. R.; Alley, R. B.; Anandakrishnan, S.; Heywood, K. J.; Jenkins, A.; Nicholls, K. W.; Webber, B.; Muto, A.; Stanton, T. P.

    2015-12-01

    Nearly 50 years ago, Mercer first suggested the Eemian sea-level high stand was a result of a collapse of the marine portions of the West Antarctic ice sheet. Recently, special attention has been paid to West Antarctica's Amundsen Sea Embayment due to its steeply sloping retrograde beds that are well below sea level, and observations of rapid grounding-line retreat, high ice-shelf basal-melt rates, and basin-wide glacier thinning and acceleration. Despite this focus, accurate assessments of the past and future behavior of this embayment remain elusive due to a lack of understanding of calving processes and ice-ocean interactions. Here we present a continuous two-year (2012-2014) time series of oceanographic, borehole, glaciological, and seismological observations of Pine Island Glacier ice shelf, its sub-ice ocean cavity, and the adjacent Amundsen Sea. With these data, we captured the ice shelf's response to a large fluctuation in the temperature of the water (~1 °C) entering the sub-ice-ocean cavity. Initially, the ice shelf slowed by 5%, but, by the end of 2014, it had nearly recovered its earlier speed. The generally smooth changes in ice flow were punctuated by rapid (2-3 week), high-amplitude (~2.5% of the background speed) speedups and slowdowns. Satellite and seismological observations indicate that rapid speedups are caused by reduction of lateral drag along the ice stream's shear margins as a large iceberg calves and that rapid slowdowns may be due to periodic regrounding on bed highs at low tide. Coupled ice-stream/ice-shelf/ocean-plume flowband modeling informed by these new data indicates that the more-gradual changes in speed are related to ocean temperature, ice-front position, and past ice-flow history. Our observations highlight an ice shelf's rapid response to external forcings and that past ice-flow behavior affects subsequent ice response to external forcing. Thus, long-term, multifaceted investigations are necessary to determine whether a

  9. Pine Island Glacier - local flow mechanisms and basal sliding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilkens, N. M.; Kleiner, T.; Humbert, A.

    2013-12-01

    Pine Island Glacier is a fast moving outlet glacier in the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Several tributaries feeding the central ice stream characterise the flow field structure of this glacier. In the past decades the glacier has shown acceleration, thinning and a significant grounding line retreat. These ongoing processes are coinciding with a concentrated mass loss in the area around Pine Island Glacier, the Amundsen Sea Embayment. The area is of additional interest due to its retrograde bed slope. The postulated instability of the setting turns the glacier into an even more suitable object for modelling studies. One major challenge encountered when modelling the flow field of Pine Island Glacier is to reproduce the locally varying flow pattern, with its many tributaries. Commonly this difficulty is overcome by inversion for parameters controlling basal sliding. Our study is aimed at connecting basal sliding again to physical parameters. To achieve this we conduct experiments of Pine Island Glacier with the diagnostic 3D full-Stokes model COMice. The model is thermo-mechanically coupled and implemented with the commercial finite-element package COMSOL Multiphysics©. We use remotely sensed surface velocity data to validate our results. In a first step, the model is used to identify dominant local mechanisms that drive the flow of the different tributaries. We identify connections between the basal topography, the basal temperature, the driving stress and the basal roughness distribution. The thus gained information is used to confine basal sliding. Areas with similar qualitative characteristics are identified, and constant-sliding assumptions made for those. Additionally, the basal roughness distribution is matched onto a basal sliding parameter. This way the sliding law is again brought closer to its original meaning. Our results are important for prognostic model experiments, as we connect basal sliding to locally varying basal properties, which might lead to

  10. Ice Island calves off Petermann Glacier

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    NASA image acquired August 5, 2010 On August 5, 2010, an enormous chunk of ice, roughly 97 square miles (251 square kilometers) in size, broke off the Petermann Glacier, along the northwestern coast of Greenland. The Canadian Ice Service detected the remote event within hours in near real-time data from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite. The Peterman Glacier lost about one-quarter of its 70-kilometer (40-mile) long floating ice shelf, said researchers who analyzed the satellite data at the University of Delaware. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured these natural-color images of Petermann Glacier 18:05 UTC on August 5, 2010 (top), and 17:15 UTC on July 28, 2010 (bottom). The Terra image of the Petermann Glacier on August 5 was acquired almost 10 hours after the Aqua observation that first recorded the event. By the time Terra took this image, skies were less cloudy than they had been earlier in the day, and the oblong iceberg had broken free of the glacier and moved a short distance down the fjord. Icebergs calving off the Petermann Glacier are not unusual. Petermann Glacier’s floating ice tongue is the Northern Hemisphere’s largest, and it has occasionally calved large icebergs. The recently calved iceberg is the largest to form in the Arctic since 1962, said the University of Delaware. To read more and or to download the high res go here: www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/petermann-calve.html or Click here to see more images from NASA Goddard’s Earth Observatory NASA Earth Observatory image created by Jesse Allen and Robert Simmon, using data obtained from the Goddard Level 1 and Atmospheric Archive and Distribution System (LAADS). Caption by Holli Riebeek and Michon Scott. Instrument: Terra - MODIS NASA Goddard Space Flight Center is home to the nation's largest organization of combined scientists, engineers and technologists that build spacecraft

  11. Rapid thinning of Pine Island Glacier in the early Holocene.

    PubMed

    Johnson, J S; Bentley, M J; Smith, J A; Finkel, R C; Rood, D H; Gohl, K; Balco, G; Larter, R D; Schaefer, J M

    2014-02-28

    Pine Island Glacier, a major outlet of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, has been undergoing rapid thinning and retreat for the past two decades. We demonstrate, using glacial-geological and geochronological data, that Pine Island Glacier (PIG) also experienced rapid thinning during the early Holocene, around 8000 years ago. Cosmogenic (10)Be concentrations in glacially transported rocks show that this thinning was sustained for decades to centuries at an average rate of more than 100 centimeters per year, which is comparable with contemporary thinning rates. The most likely mechanism was a reduction in ice shelf buttressing. Our findings reveal that PIG has experienced rapid thinning at least once in the past and that, once set in motion, rapid ice sheet changes in this region can persist for centuries.

  12. Revisited Inventory of Glaciers on Axel Heiberg Island, Nunavut

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomson, L.; Osinski, G.

    2009-05-01

    As documented in the IPCC's Climate Change 2007 report, the high latitude regions of the Northern Hemisphere are experiencing the highest rates of warming. Given that 35% of the global glacial ice exists within the Arctic Archipelago, this region provides an excellent laboratory for monitoring the anticipated degree of glacial recession [1]. Evidence of arctic warming through negative mass balance trends has been detected in several studies already [e.g., 2]. Here, we show the importance and value of historical records in the task of monitoring glacial retreat. A highly detailed inventory developed by S. Ommanney in 1969 [3], has been revisited and transformed into digital format for the purposes of integration with modern inventories. The Ommanney inventory covers the entirety of Axel Heiberg Island , NU, and includes details often lacking in present day inventories, including orientations (accumulation and ablation zones), elevations (highest, lowest, elevation of the snowline, and the mean elevations of both the accumulation and ablation areas), length (of the ablation area, exposed ice, and of the total glacier including debris cover), area (of the ablation area, exposed ice, and of the total glacier), accumulation area ratio (AAR), depth, volume, and a six digit code which gives qualitative details on glacier attributes. This report is one of the most thorough and comprehensive glacier inventory report ever published in Canada. More recent inventories used for comparison include the glacier extents created by the National Topographic System based on photography from 1980-1987, as well as extents developed by Dr. Luke Copland for the Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) database using 1999-2000 satellite imagery. Our preliminary results show that approximately 90% of ice bodies under 0.2km on Axel Heiberg Island have disappeared entirely in the 40 year period of interest. The issue of glacier definition will be discussed as a possible cause of these

  13. Sensitivity of Pine Island Glacier to observed ocean forcing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christianson, Knut; Bushuk, Mitchell; Dutrieux, Pierre; Parizek, Byron R.; Joughin, Ian R.; Alley, Richard B.; Shean, David E.; Abrahamsen, E. Povl; Anandakrishnan, Sridhar; Heywood, Karen J.; Kim, Tae-Wan; Lee, Sang Hoon; Nicholls, Keith; Stanton, Tim; Truffer, Martin; Webber, Benjamin G. M.; Jenkins, Adrian; Jacobs, Stan; Bindschadler, Robert; Holland, David M.

    2016-10-01

    We present subannual observations (2009-2014) of a major West Antarctic glacier (Pine Island Glacier) and the neighboring ocean. Ongoing glacier retreat and accelerated ice flow were likely triggered a few decades ago by increased ocean-induced thinning, which may have initiated marine ice sheet instability. Following a subsequent 60% drop in ocean heat content from early 2012 to late 2013, ice flow slowed, but by < 4%, with flow recovering as the ocean warmed to prior temperatures. During this cold-ocean period, the evolving glacier-bed/ice shelf system was also in a geometry favorable to stabilization. However, despite a minor, temporary decrease in ice discharge, the basin-wide thinning signal did not change. Thus, as predicted by theory, once marine ice sheet instability is underway, a single transient high-amplitude ocean cooling has only a relatively minor effect on ice flow. The long-term effects of ocean temperature variability on ice flow, however, are not yet known.

  14. Timing of recent accelerations of Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Joughin, I.; Rignot, E.; Rosanova, C.E.; Lucchitta, B.K.; Bohlander, J.

    2003-01-01

    We have used Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) data and sequential Landsat imagery to identify and temporally constrain two acceleration events on Pine Island Glacier (PIG). These two events are separated by a period of at least seven years (1987 - 1994). The change in discharge between two flux gates indicates that the majority of the increase in discharge associated with the second acceleration originates well inland (>80 km) from the grounding line. An analysis indicates that changes in driving stress consistent with observed thinning rates are sufficient in magnitude to explain much of the acceleration.

  15. Ocean mixing beneath Pine Island Glacier Ice Shelf

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimura, Satoshi; Dutrieux, Pierre; Jenkins, Adrian; Forryan, Alexander; Naveira Garabato, Alberto; Firing, Yvonne

    2016-04-01

    Ice shelves around Antarctica are vulnerable to increase in ocean-driven melting, with the melt rate depending on ocean temperature and strength of sub-ice-shelf-cavity circulations. We present repeated measurements of velocity, temperature, salinity, turbulent kinetic energy dissipation rate and thermal variance dissipation rate beneath Pine Island Glacier Ice Shelf, collected by CTD, ADCP and turbulence sensors mounted on an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV). The turbulence quantities measured by the AUV outside the ice shelf are in good agreement with ship-based measurements. The highest rate of turbulent kinetic energy dissipation is found near the grounding line, while its temporal fluctuation over seabed ridge within the cavity corresponds to the tidal fluctuation predicted in the Pine Island Bay to the west. The highest thermal variance dissipation rate is found when the AUV was 0.5 m away from the ice, and the thermal variance dissipation generally increases with decreasing distance between the AUV and ice.

  16. Glacier-derived permafrost ground ice, Bylot Island, Nunavut

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coulombe, S.; Fortier, D.; Lacelle, D.; Godin, E.; Veillette, A.

    2014-12-01

    Massive icy bodies are important components of permafrost geosystems. In situ freezing of water in the ground by ice-segregation processes forms most of these icy bodies. Other hypotheses for the origin of massive ice include the burial of ice (e.g. glacier, snow, lake, river, sea). The analysis of ground-ice characteristics can give numerous clues about the geomorphologic processes and the thermal conditions at the time when permafrost developed. Massive underground ice therefore shows a great potential as a natural archive of the earth's past climate. Identifying the origin of massive ice is a challenge for permafrost science since the different types of massive ice remain difficult to distinguish on the sole basis of field observations. There is actually no clear method to accurately assess the origin of massive ice and identification criteria need to be defined. The present study uses physico-chemical techniques to characterize buried glacier ice observed on Bylot Island, Nunavut. Combined to the analysis of cryostratigraphy, massive-ice cores crystallography and high-resolution imagery of the internal structure of the ice cores were obtained using micro-computed tomography techniques. These techniques are well suited for detailed descriptions (shape, size, orientation) of crystals, gas inclusions and sediment inclusions. Oxygen and hydrogen isotopes ratios of massive-ice cores were also obtained using common equilibrium technique. Preliminary results suggest the occurrence of two types of buried massive-ice of glacial origin similar to those found on contemporary glaciers: 1) Englacial ice: clear to whitish ice, with large crystals (cm) and abundant gas bubbles at crystal intersections; 2) Basal glacier ice: ice-rich, banded, micro-suspended to suspended cryostructures and ice-rich lenticular to layered cryostructures, with small ice crystals (mm) and a few disseminated gas bubbles. Glacier-derived permafrost contains antegenetic ice, which is ice that

  17. Earth system consequences of a Pine Island Glacier collapse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Green, Mattias; Schmittner, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    An intermediate complexity climate model is used to simulate the impact of an accelerated Pine Island Glacier mass loss on the large-scale ocean circulation and climate. Simulations are performed for pre-industrial conditions using hosing levels consistent with present day observation of 3,000 m3 s-1, at an accelerated rate of 6,000 m3 s-1, and at a total collapse rate of 100,000 m3 s-1, and in all experiments the hosing lasted 100 years. It is shown that even a modest input of meltwater from the glacier can introduce an initial cooling over the upper part of the Southern Ocean due to increased stratification and ice cover leading to a reduced upward heat flux from Circumpolar Deep Water. This causes global ocean heat content to increase and global surface air temperatures to decrease. The Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) increases, presumably due to changes in the density difference between Antarctic Intermediate Water and North Atlantic Deep Water. Simulations with a simultaneous hosing and increases of atmospheric CO2 concentrations show smaller effects of the hosing on global surface air temperature and ocean heat content, which we attribute to the melting of Southern Ocean sea ice. The sensitivity of the AMOC to the hosing is also reduced as the warming by the atmosphere completely dominates the perturbations. Further consequences for oceanic biogeochemical cycles in realistic future warming scenarios are discussed.

  18. Operation IceBridge: Fly Through of Pine Island Glacier Crack

    NASA Image and Video Library

    This animation provides a fly through of the major rift in the Pine Island Glacier in western Antarctica. This crack, which extends at least 18 miles and is 50 meters deep, could produce an iceberg...

  19. Newly Found Crack Across the Pine Island Glacier

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    A close-up image of the crack spreading across the ice shelf of Pine Island Glacier shows the details of the boulder-like blocks of ice that fell into the rift when it split. For most of the 18-mile stretch of the crack that NASA’s DC-8 flew over on Oct. 26, 2011, it stretched about 240 feet wide, as roughly seen here. The deepest points ranged from about 165 to 190 feet, roughly equal to the top of the ice shelf down to sea level. Scientists expect the crack to propagate and the ice shelf to calve an iceberg of more than 300 square miles in the coming months. This image was captured by the Digital Mapping System (DMS) aboard the DC-8. Credit: NASA/DMS NASA's Operation IceBridge returns to a base camp of Punta Arenas, Chile for the third year of flights over Antarctica's changing sea ice, glaciers and ice sheets. NASA's DC-8, outfitted with seven remote-sensing instruments, and a Gulfstream 5 operated by the National Science Foundation and National Center for Atmospheric Research and outfitted with a high-altitude laser-ranging mapper, will fly from Chile over Antarctica in October and November. The mission is designed to record changes to Antarctica's ice sheets and give scientists insight into what is driving those changes. Follow the progress of the mission: Campaign News site: www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/icebridge/index.html IceBridge blog: blogs.nasa.gov/cm/newui/blog/viewpostlist.jsp?blogname=ic... Twitter: @nasa_ice NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  20. Ocean mixing beneath Pine Island Glacier ice shelf, West Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimura, Satoshi; Jenkins, Adrian; Dutrieux, Pierre; Forryan, Alexander; Naveira Garabato, Alberto C.; Firing, Yvonne

    2016-12-01

    Ice shelves around Antarctica are vulnerable to an increase in ocean-driven melting, with the melt rate depending on ocean temperature and the strength of flow inside the ice-shelf cavities. We present measurements of velocity, temperature, salinity, turbulent kinetic energy dissipation rate, and thermal variance dissipation rate beneath Pine Island Glacier ice shelf, West Antarctica. These measurements were obtained by CTD, ADCP, and turbulence sensors mounted on an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV). The highest turbulent kinetic energy dissipation rate is found near the grounding line. The thermal variance dissipation rate increases closer to the ice-shelf base, with a maximum value found ˜0.5 m away from the ice. The measurements of turbulent kinetic energy dissipation rate near the ice are used to estimate basal melting of the ice shelf. The dissipation-rate-based melt rate estimates is sensitive to the stability correction parameter in the linear approximation of universal function of the Monin-Obukhov similarity theory for stratified boundary layers. We argue that our estimates of basal melting from dissipation rates are within a range of previous estimates of basal melting.

  1. Bed conditions of Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brisbourne, A. M.; Smith, A. M.; Vaughan, D. G.; King, E. C.; Davies, D.; Bingham, R. G.; Smith, E. C.; Nias, I. J.; Rosier, S. H. R.

    2017-01-01

    Although 90% of Antarctica's discharge occurs via its fast-flowing ice streams, our ability to project future ice sheet response has been limited by poor observational constraints on the ice-bed conditions used in numerical models to determine basal slip. We have helped address this observational deficit by acquiring and analyzing a series of seismic reflection profiles to determine basal conditions beneath the main trunk and tributaries of Pine Island Glacier (PIG), West Antarctica. Seismic profiles indicate large-scale sedimentary deposits. Combined with seismic reflection images, measured acoustic impedance values indicate relatively uniform bed conditions directly beneath the main trunk and tributaries, comprising a widespread reworked sediment layer with a dilated sediment lid of minimum thickness 1.5 ± 0.4 m. Beneath a slow-moving intertributary region, a discrete low-porosity sediment layer of 7 ± 3 m thickness is imaged. Despite considerable basal topography, seismic observations indicate that a till layer at the ice base is ubiquitous beneath PIG, which requires a highly mobile sediment body to maintain an abundant supply. These results are compatible with existing ice sheet models used to invert for basal shear stress: existing basal conditions upstream will not inhibit further rapid retreat of PIG if the high-friction region currently restraining flow, directly upstream of the grounding line, is breached. However, small changes in the pressure regime at the bed, as a result of stress reorganization following retreat, may result in a less-readily deformable bed and conditions which are less likely to maintain high ice-flow rates.

  2. Velocities of Pine Island and Thwaites glaciers, West Antarctica, from ERS-1 SAR images

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lucchita, Baerbel K.; Rosanova, Christine E.

    1997-01-01

    Average velocities of Pine Island and Thwaites glaciers (West Antarctica) were measured for the time periods between 1992 and 1994 by tracking ice-surface patterns. Velocities of the central flow of the Pine Island glacier range from 1.5 km/yr above the grounding line (separating the grounded from the floating parts of a glacier) to 2.8 km/yr near the terminus; velocities of the central Thwaites glacier range from 2.2 km/yr above the grounding line to 3.4 km/yr at the limit of measurements on the tongue. Both glaciers show an increase in velocity of about 1 km/yr where they cross their grounding lines. The velocities derived from ERS-1 images are higher than those previously derived from Landsat images, perhaps reflecting acceleration of the glaciers. Both glaciers are exceptionally fast. The high velocities may be due to high precipitation rates over West Antarctica and the lack of a major buttressing ice shelf.

  3. Velocities of Pine Island and Thwaites Glaciers, West Antarctica, from ERS-1 SAR images

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lucchitta, B.K.; Rosanova, C.E.

    1997-01-01

    Average velocities of Pine Island and Thwaites Glaciers were measured for the time periods between 1992 and 1994 by tracking ice-surface patterns. Velocities of the central flow of the Pine Island Glacier range from 1.5 km/yr above the grounding line (separating the grounded from the floating parts of a glacier) to 2.8 km/yr near the terminus; velocities of the central Thwaites Glacier range from 2.2 km/yr above the grounding line to 3.4 km/yr at the limit of measurements on the tongue. Both glaciers show an increase in velocity of about 1 km/yr where they cross their grounding lines. The velocities derived from ERS-1 images are higher than those previously derived from Landsat images, perhaps reflecting acceleration of the glaciers. Both glaciers are exceptionally fast. The high velocities may be due to high precipitation rates over West Antarctica and the lack of a major buttressing ice shelf.

  4. Trend of melt under Pine Island Glacier ice shelf modulated by high variability in ocean temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dutrieux, Pierre; De Rydt, Jan; Jenkins, Adrian; Holland, Paul R.; Ha, Ho Kyung; Lee, Sang Hoon; Povl Abrahamsen, E.; Jacobs, Stanley S.

    2013-04-01

    Pine Island Glacier and neighbouring outlet glaciers of West Antarctica have thinned and accelerated over the last 2 decades, significantly contributing to global sea level rise. Increased ocean heat transport beneath Pine Island Glacier ice shelf and unpinning from a seabed ridge are thought to be the primary drivers of such changes. However, the acceleration of the glacier paused since 2009, renewing questions about the main processes presently affecting the ice/ocean system, the future behaviour of the glacier and the associated impacts. Here, we present ocean observations taken in austral Spring 2012 to show a 200 m lowering of the thermocline at the glacier calving front and a 50% decrease of meltwater production from 2009. High-resolution simulations of the ocean circulation in the cavity beneath the floating tongue of the glacier demonstrate that for the present ice geometry, the seabed ridge blocks the warmest deep waters from reaching the ice and strongly ties meltwater production to thermocline depth above the ridge, hereby making it susceptible to relatively high variability in time, from intraseasonal to interannual. These results highlight the role of climatic variability in glacial ice loss and the fundamental importance of local ice shelf and seabed geometry for determining ice-ocean dynamics.

  5. Mass loss and imbalance of glaciers along the Andes Cordillera to the sub-Antarctic islands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mernild, Sebastian H.; Beckerman, Andrew P.; Yde, Jacob C.; Hanna, Edward; Malmros, Jeppe K.; Wilson, Ryan; Zemp, Micheal

    2015-10-01

    Here, we examine available glacier mass-balance records between 1993 and 2012 for Andes Cordillera, South America (6.5°N-45.8°S), and the sub-Antarctic islands around the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula (62.7°S-63.8°S) to determine their recent mass loss and imbalance with the present climate. The mean annual observed mass-balance Ba changed from - 620 ± 390 (1993-2002) to - 740 ± 240 kg m- 2 yr- 1 (2003-2012) and for this past decade showed a decrease in Ba from south to north. These glaciers had a mean accumulation area ratio of 0.42, which is below the AAR value for glaciers in equilibrium, reflecting mean area and volume imbalances of 23% and 27%, respectively. Glaciers in the northern part of Andes Cordillera are most out of balance with the present climate (33%), while glaciers on the sub-Antarctic islands are only slightly out of balance (4%). We identified a spatiotemporal cycle of Ba that distinguishes glaciers on the sub-Antarctic islands from glaciers in the Andes using an Empirical Orthogonal Function analysis. This analysis also revealed that South America should be divided into three individual glacier regions, and not two regions as earlier stated. Overall, the spatiotemporal cycles identified correlate to the multivariate El Niño Southern Oscillation Index instantaneously (zero-year lag-time) and to the Pacific Decadal Oscillation with an approximately eight-year lag-time.

  6. Basal debris entrainment and transport in glaciers of southwestern Bylot Island, Canadian Arctic

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zdanowicz, C.M.; Michel, F.A.; Shilts, W.W.

    1996-01-01

    Glaciers on southwestern Bylot Island in the Canadian Arctic flow from an alpine setting in high-grade crystalline Archean terrane, on to coastal lowlands underlain by clastic sedimentary strata of Cretaceous to Tertiary age. We have used the contrasting mineralogy of the substrate as a tool to study subglacial entrainment and transport of debris in two large piedmont glaciers on Bylot Island. High chlorite/ and mica-illite/smectite ratios indicate that most basal debris is derived from crystalline rocks underlying the upper reaches of the glaciers. The subglacial accretion of Cretaceous-Tertiary sediments appears restricted to the lowermost part of the basal zone and is most noticeable near the glaciers' termini. Ice associated with discrete silty-sandy debris layers is characterized by an isotopic signature indicative of refreezing of meltwater at the glacier sole. The compositional, textural and isotopic characteristics of basal sediment and ice lead us to conclude that subglacial entrainment through basal ice accretion occurs in both the upper and marginal parts of the glaciers.

  7. Holocene glacier activity on Kerguelen Island: preliminary results from a novel proglacial lake sediment record

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Støren, Eivind; Bakke, Jostein; Arnaud, Fabien; Poulenard, Jérôme; Fanget, Bernard; Malet, Emmanuel; Sabatier, Pierre

    2016-04-01

    The Polar-regions are changing rapidly as greenhouse warming is continuing with huge impact on e.g. sea ice extent and snow cover. This change triggers teleconnections to low latitude areas challenging societies and human activity. We have, however, very little quantitative information of past climate in the Polar-regions that can be used to evaluate the potential responses and the response patterns to forcing changes and changes in boundary conditions. Whatever anthropogenic changes may occur in the future, they will be superimposed on, and interact with, natural climate variations due to all the forcing we are aware of. This means we need to better document past climate/environmental variability of the Polar-regions. Especially in the Southern Ocean there are few time series recording past climate due to few suitable land areas and the few Sub-Antarctic Islands is remote and has cumbersome logistics. Continuous terrestrial records from this region are therefore urgently needed for constraining future scenarios from earth system models. Glaciers and ice caps are still ubiquitous in the Polar-regions, although they are rapidly shrinking due to the on-going warming. The continuous sedimentary records produced by glaciers, which are stored in downstream lakes, represent supreme archives of past variability wherefrom quantitative information of key climate system components can be extracted. Kerguelen Island is located within the Antarctic Circumpolar Current and the Southern Westerly wind belt and contains several glaciers and smaller ice caps. Terrestrial archives recording past history of the glaciers at Kerguelen thus have a unique potential to record past changes in oceanic and atmospheric circulation patterns from southern mid-latitudes. Here we present preliminary results from the first distal glacier-fed lake that is sampled from Kerguelen Island. A 2.8 m long sediment core was obtained from Lac Guynemer (121masl.) located at the Peninsule Loranchet at the

  8. Glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hambrey, Michael; Alean, Jürg

    2004-12-01

    Glaciers are among the most beautiful natural wonders on Earth, as well as the least known and understood, for most of us. Michael Hambrey describes how glaciers grow and decay, move and influence human civilization. Currently covering a tenth of the Earth's surface, glacier ice has shaped the landscape over millions of years by scouring away rocks and transporting and depositing debris far from its source. Glacier meltwater drives turbines and irrigates deserts, and yields mineral-rich soils as well as a wealth of valuable sand and gravel. However, glaciers also threaten human property and life. Our future is indirectly connected with the fate of glaciers and their influence on global climate and sea level. Including over 200 stunning photographs, the book takes the reader from the High-Arctic through North America, Europe, Asia, Africa, New Zealand and South America to the Antarctic. Michael Hambrey is Director of the Centre for Glaciology at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. A past recipient of the Polar Medal, he was also given the Earth Science Editors' Outstanding Publication Award for the first edition of Glaciers (Cambridge, 1995). Hambrey is also the author of Glacial Environments (British Columbia, 1994). JÜrg Alean is Professor of Geography at the Kantonsschule ZÜrcher Unterland in BÜlach, Switzerland.

  9. Channelized ice melting in the ocean boundary layer beneath Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica.

    PubMed

    Stanton, T P; Shaw, W J; Truffer, M; Corr, H F J; Peters, L E; Riverman, K L; Bindschadler, R; Holland, D M; Anandakrishnan, S

    2013-09-13

    Ice shelves play a key role in the mass balance of the Antarctic ice sheets by buttressing their seaward-flowing outlet glaciers; however, they are exposed to the underlying ocean and may weaken if ocean thermal forcing increases. An expedition to the ice shelf of the remote Pine Island Glacier, a major outlet of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet that has rapidly thinned and accelerated in recent decades, has been completed. Observations from geophysical surveys and long-term oceanographic instruments deployed down bore holes into the ocean cavity reveal a buoyancy-driven boundary layer within a basal channel that melts the channel apex by 0.06 meter per day, with near-zero melt rates along the flanks of the channel. A complex pattern of such channels is visible throughout the Pine Island Glacier shelf.

  10. Glacier velocities and dynamic ice discharge from the Queen Elizabeth Islands, Nunavut, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Wychen, Wesley; Burgess, David O.; Gray, Laurence; Copland, Luke; Sharp, Martin; Dowdeswell, Julian A.; Benham, Toby J.

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies indicate an increase in glacier mass loss from the Canadian Arctic Archipelago as a result of warmer summer air temperatures. However, no complete assessment of dynamic ice discharge from this region exists. We present the first complete surface velocity mapping of all ice masses in the Queen Elizabeth Islands and show that these ice masses discharged ~2.6 ± 0.8 Gt a-1 of ice to the oceans in winter 2012. Approximately 50% of the dynamic discharge was channeled through non surge-type Trinity and Wykeham Glaciers alone. Dynamic discharge of the surge-type Mittie Glacier varied from 0.90 ± 0.09 Gt a-1 during its 2003 surge to 0.02 ± 0.02 Gt a-1 during quiescence in 2012, highlighting the importance of surge-type glaciers for interannual variability in regional mass loss. Queen Elizabeth Islands glaciers currently account for ~7.5% of reported dynamic discharge from Arctic ice masses outside Greenland.

  11. Mechanisms driving variability in the ocean forcing of Pine Island Glacier.

    PubMed

    Webber, Benjamin G M; Heywood, Karen J; Stevens, David P; Dutrieux, Pierre; Abrahamsen, E Povl; Jenkins, Adrian; Jacobs, Stanley S; Ha, Ho Kyung; Lee, Sang Hoon; Kim, Tae Wan

    2017-02-17

    Pine Island Glacier (PIG) terminates in a rapidly melting ice shelf, and ocean circulation and temperature are implicated in the retreat and growing contribution to sea level rise of PIG and nearby glaciers. However, the variability of the ocean forcing of PIG has been poorly constrained due to a lack of multi-year observations. Here we show, using a unique record close to the Pine Island Ice Shelf (PIIS), that there is considerable oceanic variability at seasonal and interannual timescales, including a pronounced cold period from October 2011 to May 2013. This variability can be largely explained by two processes: cumulative ocean surface heat fluxes and sea ice formation close to PIIS; and interannual reversals in ocean currents and associated heat transport within Pine Island Bay, driven by a combination of local and remote forcing. Local atmospheric forcing therefore plays an important role in driving oceanic variability close to PIIS.

  12. Mechanisms driving variability in the ocean forcing of Pine Island Glacier

    PubMed Central

    Webber, Benjamin G. M.; Heywood, Karen J.; Stevens, David P.; Dutrieux, Pierre; Abrahamsen, E. Povl; Jenkins, Adrian; Jacobs, Stanley S.; Ha, Ho Kyung; Lee, Sang Hoon; Kim, Tae Wan

    2017-01-01

    Pine Island Glacier (PIG) terminates in a rapidly melting ice shelf, and ocean circulation and temperature are implicated in the retreat and growing contribution to sea level rise of PIG and nearby glaciers. However, the variability of the ocean forcing of PIG has been poorly constrained due to a lack of multi-year observations. Here we show, using a unique record close to the Pine Island Ice Shelf (PIIS), that there is considerable oceanic variability at seasonal and interannual timescales, including a pronounced cold period from October 2011 to May 2013. This variability can be largely explained by two processes: cumulative ocean surface heat fluxes and sea ice formation close to PIIS; and interannual reversals in ocean currents and associated heat transport within Pine Island Bay, driven by a combination of local and remote forcing. Local atmospheric forcing therefore plays an important role in driving oceanic variability close to PIIS. PMID:28211473

  13. Mechanisms driving variability in the ocean forcing of Pine Island Glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Webber, Benjamin G. M.; Heywood, Karen J.; Stevens, David P.; Dutrieux, Pierre; Abrahamsen, E. Povl; Jenkins, Adrian; Jacobs, Stanley S.; Ha, Ho Kyung; Lee, Sang Hoon; Kim, Tae Wan

    2017-02-01

    Pine Island Glacier (PIG) terminates in a rapidly melting ice shelf, and ocean circulation and temperature are implicated in the retreat and growing contribution to sea level rise of PIG and nearby glaciers. However, the variability of the ocean forcing of PIG has been poorly constrained due to a lack of multi-year observations. Here we show, using a unique record close to the Pine Island Ice Shelf (PIIS), that there is considerable oceanic variability at seasonal and interannual timescales, including a pronounced cold period from October 2011 to May 2013. This variability can be largely explained by two processes: cumulative ocean surface heat fluxes and sea ice formation close to PIIS; and interannual reversals in ocean currents and associated heat transport within Pine Island Bay, driven by a combination of local and remote forcing. Local atmospheric forcing therefore plays an important role in driving oceanic variability close to PIIS.

  14. Monitoring of land-based glaciers on James Ross Island, Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laska, Kamil; Nyvlt, Daniel; Engel, Zbynek; Stachon, Zdenek

    2015-04-01

    Antarctic Peninsula has been considered one of the most rapidly warming parts of our planet during the second half of the 20th century. Therefore, James Ross Island located near the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, represents a unique place to study the sensitivity of glacier systems to regional atmospheric warming. Since 2006, an integrated multidisciplinary study of glaciers and terrestrial ecosystems has been carried out in the northern part of Ulu Peninsula, James Ross Island. In this contribution, glacier monitoring network consisting of four dominant land-based glaciers at the Ulu Peninsula is presented. Davies Dome (DD) is an ice dome, which originates on the surface of a flat volcanic mesa at >400 m a.s.l. and terminates as a single 700 m wide outlet in Whisky Bay. In 2006, Davies Dome had an area of 6.5 km2 and lay in the altitude range 0-514 m a.s.l. Whisky Glacier (WG) is a cold-based land-terminating valley glacier, which is surrounded by an extensive area of debris-covered ice. WG covered an area of 2.4 km2 and ranged from 215 to 520 m a.s.l. Triangular Glacier (TG) is a southwest-facing land-terminating glacier with an area of 0.6 km2 ranging from 302 to 107 m a.s.l. with well-developed ice-cored terminal moraine. San Jose Glacier (SJG) is a south-facing land-terminating piedmont glacier rejuvenated from the above lying Lachman Crags Dome (~640 m a.s.l.). SJG covers an area of 0.6 km2 and extends between 138 and 310 m a.s.l. Moreover, monitoring network consists of five automatic weather stations (AWS) placed in the central and marginal parts of the selected glaciers. Each AWS was equipped with the EMS33 air temperature and humidity probes placed inside the radiation shields. Apart from that, additional instruments, e.g. albedometer, propeller anemometer, snow depth sensors were installed on the central part of DD and WG. Since 2009, annual mass balance measurements have been realized on the DD, WG and TG glaciers. In 2010, ice thickness and

  15. Local surface winds modulate the ocean forcing of Pine Island Glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dutrieux, P.; Webber, B.; Heywood, K. J.; Stevens, D. P.; Jacobs, S.; Abrahamsen, E. P.; Jenkins, A.; Ha, H. K.; Lee, S. H.; Kim, T. W.

    2015-12-01

    Pine Island Glacier terminates in a rapidly melting ice shelf, where ocean forcing of the melt rate has been implicated in the acceleration and retreat of the glacier. A set of mooring records close to the Pine Island ice shelf were recovered in 2014, two of which are combined to provide an unprecedented five-year time series of temperature, salinity and current velocity. These data reveal considerable seasonal and interannual variability in intermediate to deep ocean temperatures, of sufficient magnitude to make a substantial impact on the melt rate of Pine Island ice shelf. The seasonal cycle in ocean temperature is correlated with surface wind speed over the continental shelf, suggesting a role for local surface heat fluxes and convection in influencing the observed temperatures down to 600 m depth. The period August 2011 to August 2013 was anomalously cold; comparison with ship-based summertime observations suggest the heat content at the glacier front in December 2012 was the coldest in the observational record. Similar cold anomalies are observed concurrently at other moorings within Pine Island Bay. This cold spell coincided with a reduction in the concentration of melt water observed, consistent with reduced melting implied by lower temperatures at the mooring locations near the ice shelf. Current observations suggest this was accompanied by a reversal in the circulation pattern around the bay, and the concurrent increase in salinity implies increased sea ice formation. Mooring records in one of the two continental shelf-edge depressions leading to PIG do not indicate a change in temperature during this cold period.

  16. Buried glacier ice in permafrost, a window to the past: examples from Bylot Island, Canadian Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fortier, D.; Coulombe, S.; Kanevskiy, M. Z.; Paquette, M.; Shur, Y.; Stephani, E.

    2011-12-01

    Bylot Island is located north of Baffin Island (73°N, 80°W) and is extensively covered by an ice cap and its outlet glaciers flowing towards the arctic lowland of the Lancaster formation. During summers of 2009 and 2011 several active-layer detachment slides exposed large massive ice bodies and other types of debris-rich ice that were interpreted as buried glacier ice. The upper part of the massive ice and debris-rich ice were usually in contact with various types of ice-contact or glacio-fluvial sediments and in some cases they were covered by mass wasting/colluvial deposits. This suggests that their preservation was likely related to burial of the ice and refreezing of the overlying sediments following permafrost aggradation. A preliminary analysis of the ice facies and ice crystals revealed the presence of four distinct types of ice: 1) clear-ice bodies with very few sediment and no organic inclusions. The ice crystals were large (cm), randomly oriented and air bubbles were observed at the junction of crystals. These characteristics could potentially indicate an englacial (snow-neve metamorphism) origin for these clear ice bodies; 2) large, meter thick, clear ice layers with no sediment, nor organics. The ice crystals were large (cm), several cm long, oriented in the same direction, and vertically aligned. These characteristics could potentially point to water that refroze in a tunnel incised in englacial ice; 3) Successive, mm to cm thick, ice layers, separated by undulating sand and gravel bands also containing cobles to boulder size rock fragments. These characteristics could potentially represent regelation ice formed at the base of glaciers and incorporated to the glacier sole; 4) mm to cm suspended aggregate of fine-grained sediments in clear ice. These micro-suspended and suspended cryostructures were sometimes deformed and aligned in the form of thin (mm) undulating layers. These micro-structures were very similar to basal ice facies, presumably

  17. Sub-ice-shelf sediments record history of twentieth-century retreat of Pine Island Glacier.

    PubMed

    Smith, J A; Andersen, T J; Shortt, M; Gaffney, A M; Truffer, M; Stanton, T P; Bindschadler, R; Dutrieux, P; Jenkins, A; Hillenbrand, C-D; Ehrmann, W; Corr, H F J; Farley, N; Crowhurst, S; Vaughan, D G

    2017-01-05

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet is one of the largest potential sources of rising sea levels. Over the past 40 years, glaciers flowing into the Amundsen Sea sector of the ice sheet have thinned at an accelerating rate, and several numerical models suggest that unstable and irreversible retreat of the grounding line-which marks the boundary between grounded ice and floating ice shelf-is underway. Understanding this recent retreat requires a detailed knowledge of grounding-line history, but the locations of the grounding line before the advent of satellite monitoring in the 1990s are poorly dated. In particular, a history of grounding-line retreat is required to understand the relative roles of contemporaneous ocean-forced change and of ongoing glacier response to an earlier perturbation in driving ice-sheet loss. Here we show that the present thinning and retreat of Pine Island Glacier in West Antarctica is part of a climatically forced trend that was triggered in the 1940s. Our conclusions arise from analysis of sediment cores recovered beneath the floating Pine Island Glacier ice shelf, and constrain the date at which the grounding line retreated from a prominent seafloor ridge. We find that incursion of marine water beyond the crest of this ridge, forming an ocean cavity beneath the ice shelf, occurred in 1945 (±12 years); final ungrounding of the ice shelf from the ridge occurred in 1970 (±4 years). The initial opening of this ocean cavity followed a period of strong warming of West Antarctica, associated with El Niño activity. Thus our results suggest that, even when climate forcing weakened, ice-sheet retreat continued.

  18. Sub-ice-shelf sediments record history of twentieth-century retreat of Pine Island Glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, J. A.; Andersen, T. J.; Shortt, M.; Gaffney, A. M.; Truffer, M.; Stanton, T. P.; Bindschadler, R.; Dutrieux, P.; Jenkins, A.; Hillenbrand, C.-D.; Ehrmann, W.; Corr, H. F. J.; Farley, N.; Crowhurst, S.; Vaughan, D. G.

    2016-11-01

    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet is one of the largest potential sources of rising sea levels. Over the past 40 years, glaciers flowing into the Amundsen Sea sector of the ice sheet have thinned at an accelerating rate, and several numerical models suggest that unstable and irreversible retreat of the grounding line—which marks the boundary between grounded ice and floating ice shelf—is underway. Understanding this recent retreat requires a detailed knowledge of grounding-line history, but the locations of the grounding line before the advent of satellite monitoring in the 1990s are poorly dated. In particular, a history of grounding-line retreat is required to understand the relative roles of contemporaneous ocean-forced change and of ongoing glacier response to an earlier perturbation in driving ice-sheet loss. Here we show that the present thinning and retreat of Pine Island Glacier in West Antarctica is part of a climatically forced trend that was triggered in the 1940s. Our conclusions arise from analysis of sediment cores recovered beneath the floating Pine Island Glacier ice shelf, and constrain the date at which the grounding line retreated from a prominent seafloor ridge. We find that incursion of marine water beyond the crest of this ridge, forming an ocean cavity beneath the ice shelf, occurred in 1945 (±12 years); final ungrounding of the ice shelf from the ridge occurred in 1970 (±4 years). The initial opening of this ocean cavity followed a period of strong warming of West Antarctica, associated with El Niño activity. Thus our results suggest that, even when climate forcing weakened, ice-sheet retreat continued.

  19. Comparison of contemporary subglacial bedforms beneath Rutford Ice Stream and Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, Edward; Pritchard, Hamish; Brisbourne, Alex; Smith, Andrew; Lewington, Emma; Clark, Chris

    2017-04-01

    Detailed subglacial topography derived from radio-echo sounding surveys is available for patches of two active West Antarctic ice streams: Rutford Ice Stream and Pine Island Glacier. Here we compare the type, size, and distribution of bedforms in the two locations. We will also discuss the regional factors that may have a bearing on the sediment type and grain-size distribution to be expected in the topographic troughs that the ice streams flow within. The Rutford Ice Stream survey covers a 40 x 18 km portion of the bed near the grounding line, where the ice flows at about 350 m/year. Rutford Ice Stream flows in a graben with a high mountain range immediately adjacent on the right flank which is a likely proximal source of mixed grain-sized sediment. The Pine Island Glacier survey covers 25 x 18 km of the bed at 160 km upstream from the grounding line where the flow speed is about 1000 m/year. Pine Island Glacier has more subdued topographic control and is distal from any potential terrestrial sediment sources so basal sediments are more likely to be fine-grained marine sediments deposited during interglacials. The subglacial bedform assemblages in both locations are dominated by mega-scale glacial lineations (MSGL) and drumlinoids. The Rutford drumlinoids have amplitudes considerably higher than the norm for deglaciated terrains whereas the Pine Island set are relatively subdued. The Rutford drumlinoids are more scattered across the survey area compared to the Pine Island examples which are grouped closely together. In both locations the MSGL align with flow vectors within the ice column and reflect divergence around a basal hill in the Rutford case and convergence between tributary and main trunk flow in the Pine Island case. Repeated seismic reflection surveys in one location on Rutford Ice Stream showed rates of erosion and deposition at the bed of 5 to 6 m over a six year period. Parts of the Rutford Ice Stream radio-echo sounding survey will be re

  20. Deception island, Antarctica: a terrestrial analogue for the study and understanding of the martian permafrost and subsurface glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernandez de Pablo, M. A.; Ramos, M.; Vieira, G.; Gilichinsky, D.; Gómez, F.; Molina, A.; Segovia, R.

    2009-04-01

    The existence of permafrost on Mars was widely studied since Viking era and its presence is fundamental in the understanding of the water-cycle, the geological history of Mars, and the evolution of the martian hydrosphere. Viking, MOC, THEMIS, HRSC and HiRISE images allowed increase our knowledge about the role of ice on the martian landscapes. Polygonal terrains, glacial-like features, "basketball terrain" or pingos are some of the landforms that reveal the existence of frozen ice near the surface and in the ground forming the martian permafrost on present, recent or ancient times. The field observations and analyses done by Phoenix mission seem to confirm the existence of the martian permafrost hypothesized by the analyses of the images acquired by the previous missions to Mars. Moreover, the recent interpretations of the (RADAR) sensor on board of MRO mission also revealed that the surface of Mars seems to cover an important volume of ice forming glaciers covered by different materials. Here we propose the study of the glaciers and permafrost of Deception Island (Antarctica) such as a terrestrial analogue of the glaciers and permafrost of Mars. This active volcanic island is an exceptional site to study the permafrost since the climatic conditions maintain the surface covered by the ice and snow during the main part of the year. This characteristic allows the existence of an important permafrost layer also during the summer, and permanent glaciers in the higher part of the island. In addition, Deception Island is an active volcano. Some of the glaciers are covered by the ash and tephra what made difficult to distinguish between the covered glacier and the permafrost. The eruptive volcanic materials could have similar characteristics than some martian regolith by lithology, granulometry and texture. In this way, the study of the permafrost and glaciers in Deception Island could help to understand the martian permafrost and glaciers at present. On the other hand

  1. Thermal structure and basal sliding parametrisation at Pine Island Glacier - a 3-D full-Stokes model study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilkens, N.; Behrens, J.; Kleiner, T.; Rippin, D.; Rückamp, M.; Humbert, A.

    2015-04-01

    Pine Island Glacier is one of the fastest changing glaciers of the Antarctic Ice Sheet and therefore of scientific interest. The glacier holds enough ice to raise the global sea level significantly (~ 0.5 m) when fully melted. The question addressed by numerous modelling studies of the glacier focuses on whether the observed changes are a start of an uncontrolled and accelerating retreat. The movement of the glacier is, in the fast-flowing areas, dominated by basal motion. In modelling studies the parametrisation of the basal motion is therefore crucial. Inversion methods are commonly applied to reproduce the complex surface flow structure of Pine Island Glacier by using information of the observed surface velocity field to constrain, among other things, basal sliding. We introduce two different approaches of combining a physical parameter, the basal roughness, with basal sliding parametrisations. This way basal sliding is again connected closer to its original formulation. We show that the basal roughness is an important and helpful parameter to consider and that many features of the flow structure can be reproduced with these approaches.

  2. Accelerated ice shelf rifting and retreat at Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jeong, Seongsu; Howat, Ian M.; Bassis, Jeremy N.

    2016-11-01

    Pine Island Glacier has undergone several major iceberg calving events over the past decades. These typically occurred when a rift at the heavily fractured shear margin propagated across the width of the ice shelf. This type of calving is common on polar ice shelves, with no clear connection to ocean-ice dynamic forcing. In contrast, we report on the recent development of multiple rifts initiating from basal crevasses in the center of the ice shelf, resulted in calving further upglacier than previously observed. Coincident with rift formation was the sudden disintegration of the ice mélange that filled the northern shear margin, resulting in ice sheet detachment from this margin. Examination of ice velocity suggests that this internal rifting resulted from the combination of a change in ice shelf stress regime caused by disintegration of the mélange and intensified melting within basal crevasses, both of which may be linked to ocean forcing.

  3. Populations and productivity of seabirds at South Marble Island, Glacier Bay, Alaska, during May-July, 1999

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zador, Stephani G.; Piatt, John F.

    1999-01-01

    In the course of directed research on glaucous-winged gulls, we investigated the numbers and activities of all breeding and non-breeding seabirds associated with South Marble Island in Glacier Bay, Alaska, during mid-May to late July, 1999. Most observations were made from the island; additional observations were made during transportation to and from the island. Data were collected on the presence and numbers of all seabirds observed. Detailed information on breeding chronology and productivity were also collected for glaucous-winged gulls (Larus glaucescens), pigeon guillemots (Cepphus columba), black-legged kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla), and black oystercatchers (Haemantopus bachmani).

  4. Modeling the response of Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica, to external forcings for the next 50 years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seroussi, H. L.; Morlighem, M.; Larour, E. Y.; Rignot, E. J.; Mouginot, J.; Khazendar, A.

    2012-12-01

    Pine Island Glacier experienced spectacular changes over the past decades. This glacier has been thinning and accelerating since the 1970's at least and its grounding line has been retreating inland at a rate of about 1 km/yr. Initiation of these changes is usually attributed to warmer ocean waters in the Amundsen Sea affecting the floating part of Pine Island. By buttressing grounded ice flow and controlling the discharge of inland ice to the ocean, the ice shelf of Pine Island plays a major role in the stability of the glacier. Interactions between the ice shelf and ice stream remain poorly understood, which limits the ability to predict the future evolution of major outlet glaciers and ice streams and their contribution to sea level rise. We use the Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM) and a three-dimensional higher-order model to simulate the evolution of the glacier for the next fifty years and assess the effect of changes in several climate forcings and model parameters, namely basal melting under the floating part, ice front position, atmospheric conditions and grounding line retreat. Simulation results show the dominant effect of basal melting and of grounding line retreat. Results also show that changes are not limited to the ice shelf and the grounding line area but propagate far inland, almost to the ice divide. We find that enhanced basal melting or grounding line retreat are each associated with a distinct pattern of ice thinning and acceleration. We compare the simulation results with remote sensing observations of velocity changes and grounding line evolution to elucidate which forcing is more likely to have caused the recent acceleration of Pine Island Glacier. In general, our simulations indicate that Pine Island Glacier has much potential to continue changing over the coming years. This work was performed at the University of California Irvine and the California Institute of Technology's Jet Propulsion Laboratory under a contract with the National

  5. Glacier extent during the Younger Dryas and 8.2-ka event on Baffin Island, Arctic Canada.

    PubMed

    Young, Nicolás E; Briner, Jason P; Rood, Dylan H; Finkel, Robert C

    2012-09-14

    Greenland ice cores reveal that mean annual temperatures during the Younger Dryas (YD) cold interval--about 12.9 to 11.7 thousand years ago (ka)--and the ~150-year-long cold reversal that occurred 8.2 thousand years ago were ~15° and 3° to 4°C colder than today, respectively. Reconstructing ice-sheet response to these climate perturbations can help evaluate ice-sheet sensitivity to climate change. Here, we report the widespread advance of Laurentide Ice Sheet outlet glaciers and independent mountain glaciers on Baffin Island, Arctic Canada, in response to the 8.2-ka event and show that mountain glaciers during the 8.2-ka event were larger than their YD predecessors. In contrast to the wintertime bias of YD cooling, we suggest that cooling during the 8.2-ka event was more evenly distributed across the seasons.

  6. Hydrology, microbiology and carbon cycling at a high Arctic polythermal glacier, (John Evans Glacier, Ellesmere Island, Canada)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skidmore, Mark Leslie

    Analysis of the hydrology, hydrochemistry and microbiology at polythermal John Evans Glacier and geochemical and isotopic data from Haut Glacier d'Arolla demonstrates that certain subglacial chemical weathering processes are microbially mediated. Subglacial drainage is likely an annual occurrence beneath John Evans Glacier and solute rich subglacial waters indicate over winter storage at the glacier bed. Subglacial microbial populations are also present, and are viable under simulated near in situ conditions at 0.3°C. This suggests that temperate subglacial environments at a polythermal glacier, which are isolated by cold ice above and around them, provide a viable habitat for life where basal water and organic carbon are present throughout the year. Thus, a subglacial microbial ecosystem based upon legacy carbon, (from old soils or surface inputs) rather than primary production may exist, where redox processes are a key component, and seasonal anoxia may occur. The existence of anoxic environments is supported by the presence of strictly anaerobic bacteria (sulphate reducing bacteria and methanogens) in the basal sediments---which are viable in culture at 4°C---and also argues that these bacteria are not washed in with oxygenated surface meltwaters, but are present in the subglacial environment. During the summer meltseason there is a large input of surficial waters to the subglacial system and water residence times are drastically reduced. Hence, kinetic weathering processes dominate, resulting in light delta 13C-DIC (dissolved inorganic carbon) in glacial runoff, as verified by experimental work on CaCO3 and John Evans Glacier sediments. The experiments demonstrate kinetic bedrock fractionation (KBF) during carbonate hydrolysis and that kinetic fractionation of CO2 (KFC) is proportional to the rate of CO2 draw down during the carbonation of carbonates. This results in significantly depleted delta13C-DIC values (≤-16 ‰) relative to the bedrock carbonate

  7. The influence of air temperature inversions on snowmelt and glacier mass-balance simulations, Ammassalik island, SE Greenland

    SciTech Connect

    Mernild, Sebastian Haugard; Liston, Glen

    2009-01-01

    In many applications, a realistic description of air temperature inversions is essential for accurate snow and glacier ice melt, and glacier mass-balance simulations. A physically based snow-evolution modeling system (SnowModel) was used to simulate eight years (1998/99 to 2005/06) of snow accumulation and snow and glacier ice ablation from numerous small coastal marginal glaciers on the SW-part of Ammassalik Island in SE Greenland. These glaciers are regularly influenced by inversions and sea breezes associated with the adjacent relatively low temperature and frequently ice-choked fjords and ocean. To account for the influence of these inversions on the spatiotemporal variation of air temperature and snow and glacier melt rates, temperature inversion routines were added to MircoMet, the meteorological distribution sub-model used in SnowModel. The inversions were observed and modeled to occur during 84% of the simulation period. Modeled inversions were defined not to occur during days with strong winds and high precipitation rates due to the potential of inversion break-up. Field observations showed inversions to extend from sea level to approximately 300 m a.s.l., and this inversion level was prescribed in the model simulations. Simulations with and without the inversion routines were compared. The inversion model produced air temperature distributions with warmer lower elevation areas and cooler higher elevation areas than without inversion routines due to the use of cold sea-breeze base temperature data from underneath the inversion. This yielded an up to 2 weeks earlier snowmelt in the lower areas and up to 1 to 3 weeks later snowmelt in the higher elevation areas of the simulation domain. Averaged mean annual modeled surface mass-balance for all glaciers (mainly located above the inversion layer) was -720 {+-} 620 mm w.eq. y{sup -1} for inversion simulations, and -880 {+-} 620 mm w.eq. y{sup -1} without the inversion routines, a difference of 160 mm w.eq. y

  8. Mounting evidence for intense ocean interaction with the Pine Island Glacier Ice Shelf

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bindschadler, R.; Holland, D.; Vaughan, D.; Vornberger, P.

    2008-12-01

    The spatial signature of thinning and acceleration of the Pine Island Glacier has led to the inference that these changes originate at the seaward end of the glacier, possibly within or under the ice shelf (Payne et al., 2004; Shepherd et al., 2004). We present new analyses resulting from both new and archived satellite imagery of the ice shelf that supports this inference and provides new insights into strong seasonal and intra- annual characters of ocean-ice shelf interaction. Strong longitudinal variations in both thickness and surface elevation measured by British Antarctic Survey airborne radars (Vaughan et al., 2006) have wavelengths that correspond roughly to the annual motion of the ice shelf. These could be caused by seasonal variations in flow speed, but such variations of flow speed have never been reported and are not seen in the most recent continuous GPS observations of the ice shelf. We suggest that these strong variations in ice thickness, as large as 200 meters in an average thickness of 600 meters, are caused by seasonal variations in the properties of the water circulating underneath the ice shelf. One likely explanation is that the dominant water mass reaching the deepest parts of the ice shelf alternates between cold High Salinity Shelf Water in the winter and warm Circumpolar Deep Water in the summer. Evidence for recent strengthening of the sub- shelf circulation is the sudden occurrence of three persistent polynyas immediately adjacent to the ice front. These are located in precisely the locations expected from modeled sub-shelf circulation (Payne et al., 2007). This mode was never observed in any satellite imagery prior to the 1999-2000 austral summer (data of 7 summers since 1973 were available), but has occurred in 7 of the 9 summers since and persists throughout the summer. Payne, A.J., A. Vieli, A.P. Shepherd, D.J. Wingham and E. Rignot, 2004. Recent dramatic thinning of largest West Antarctic ice stream triggered by oceans, Geophysical

  9. Variability of Basal Melt Beneath the Pine Island Glacier Ice Shelf, West Antarctica

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bindschadler, Robert; Vaughan, David G.; Vornberger, Patricia

    2011-01-01

    Observations from satellite and airborne platforms are combined with model calculations to infer the nature and efficiency of basal melting of the Pine Island Glacier ice shelf, West Antarctica, by ocean waters. Satellite imagery shows surface features that suggest ice-shelf-wide changes to the ocean s influence on the ice shelf as the grounding line retreated. Longitudinal profiles of ice surface and bottom elevations are analyzed to reveal a spatially dependent pattern of basal melt with an annual melt flux of 40.5 Gt/a. One profile captures a persistent set of surface waves that correlates with quasi-annual variations of atmospheric forcing of Amundsen Sea circulation patterns, establishing a direct connection between atmospheric variability and sub-ice-shelf melting. Ice surface troughs are hydrostatically compensated by ice-bottom voids up to 150m deep. Voids form dynamically at the grounding line, triggered by enhanced melting when warmer-than-average water arrives. Subsequent enlargement of the voids is thermally inefficient (4% or less) compared with an overall melting efficiency beneath the ice shelf of 22%. Residual warm water is believed to cause three persistent polynyas at the ice-shelf front seen in Landsat imagery. Landsat thermal imagery confirms the occurrence of warm water at the same locations.

  10. Impact of local winter cooling on the melt of Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    St-Laurent, P.; Klinck, J. M.; Dinniman, M. S.

    2015-10-01

    The rapid thinning of the ice shelves in the Amundsen Sea is generally attributed to basal melt driven by warm water originating from the continental slope. We examine the hypothesis that processes taking place on the continental shelf contribute significantly to the interannual variability of the ocean heat content and ice shelf melt rates. A numerical model is used to simulate the circulation of ocean heat and the melt of the ice shelves over the period 2006-2013. The fine model grid (grid spacing 1.5 km) explicitly resolves the coastal polynyas and mesoscale processes. The ocean heat content of the eastern continental shelf exhibits recurrent decreases around September with a magnitude that varies from year to year. The heat loss is primarily caused by surface heat fluxes along the eastern shore in areas of low ice concentration (polynyas). The cold winter water intrudes underneath the ice shelves and reduces the basal melt rates. Ocean temperatures upstream (i.e., at the shelf break) are largely constant over the year and cannot account for the cold events. The cooling is particularly marked in 2012 and its effect on the ocean heat content remains visible over the following years. The study suggests that ocean-atmosphere interactions in coastal polynyas contribute to the interannual variability of the melt of Pine Island Glacier.

  11. Coupled ice shelf-ocean modeling and complex grounding line retreat for Pine Island Glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Rydt, Jan; Gudmundsson, Hilmar

    2016-04-01

    Recent observations and modeling work have shown a complex mechanical coupling between Antarctica's floating ice shelves and the adjacent grounded ice sheet. A prime example is Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica, which has a strong negative mass balance caused by a recent increase in ocean-induced melting of its ice shelf. The mass loss coincides with the retreat of the grounding line from a seabed ridge, on which it was at least partly grounded until the 1970s. At present, it is unclear what has caused the onset of this retreat, and how feedback mechanisms between the ocean and iceshelf geometry have influenced the ice dynamics. To address these questions, we present results from an offline coupling between a state-of-the-art shallow-ice flow model with grounding line resolving capabilities, and a three-dimensional ocean general circulation model with a static implementation of the ice shelf. A series of idealized experiments simulate the retreat from a seabed ridge in response to changes in the ocean forcing, and we show that the retreat becomes irreversible after 20 years of warm ocean conditions. A comparison to experiments with a simple depth-dependent meltrate parameterisation demonstrates that such parameterizations are unable to capture the details of the retreat process, and they overestimate mass loss by more than 40% over a 50-year timescale.

  12. Dropping aircraft-deployable GPS stations on Scar Inlet and Pine Island Glacier.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hilmar Gudmundsson, G.; Jones, David

    2013-04-01

    There remains areas of scientific interest that heavy crevassing makes difficult or impossible to reach by ground via overland treks or an aircraft landing. We have developed an alternative strategy for instrumenting these regions: a sensor probe that can be dropped from an aircraft, partially bury itself in the snow whilst keeping its antennas protruding high above the surface to ensure a long operating life. Our probe has a 2.5m, 10kg missile-shaped design and can be deployed through a standard sonar-buoy launch tube. In order to achieve a consistent impact depth in different snow densities the case is fitted with fold-out fins one metre from the nose cone. This ensures a large step-change in impact surface area when the device is embedded to the correct depth. A small disk-gap-band parachute improves the angle of impact while damping any probe oscillations. We are now able to achieve near-vertical impact angles and a consistent snow penetration depth of one metre. The sensor is cheap to make (approximately £1000) and has a minimal environmental impact. This year we have used a large network of these sensors to instrument previously inaccessible parts of Scar Inlet and Pine Island Glacier.

  13. Analysis and Model Comparison of Internal Layers in Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica from Radio Echo Sounding Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karlsson, Nanna B.; Rippin, David M.; Bingham, Robert G.; Hindmarsh, Richard C. A.

    2010-05-01

    In the southern summer 2004/2005 the British Antarctic Survey and the University of Texas carried out a radio echo sounding survey of the Pine Island Glacier (PIG) in West Antarctica retrieving bed topography as well as layers of high reflectivity in the interior of the glacier. In this study we present the results from an extensive analysis of the internal layering as well as a comparison between the observed internal layers and layers generated with a 3D ice flow model (Hindmarsh et al. 2009). The Pine Island glacier is one of the largest glaciers in West Antarctica and drains approximately 175,000 km2 of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (Vaughan et al. 2006). During the last 35 years the glacier has experienced well-documented changes in flux and ice thickness (Rignot 2006), but it is unknown whether the changes are caused by deglaciation as a response to climate change or simply natural fluctuations (Vaughan et al. 2006). Studies of other glaciers (e.g. Siegert et al. 2005 and Rippin et al. 2006) have found a correlation between the degree of disruption of the internal layering and the changes in ice flow velocity of the glacier. To a large extent this correlation also holds true for the layering in PIG in agreement with the fact that the glacier is topographically constrained and therefore unlikely to have undergone significant changes in flow pattern. In order to investigate in more detail the changes PIG has undergone in the past, the internal layering is compared to that generated from a 3D flow model assuming steady state conditions. We find that the goodness of the fit varies not only with different surface velocity but also with the direction of the flightline compared to the ice flow. Hindmarsh et al. 2009; R. C. A. Hindmarsh, G. J.-M.C. Leysinger Vieli and F. Parrenin, A large-scale numerical model for computing isochrone geometry, Annals of Glaciology, 50 (51) Rignot 2006; E. Rignot, Changes in ice dynamics and mass balance of the Antarctic ice sheet

  14. Age and significance of former low-altitude corrie glaciers on Hoy, Orkney Islands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ballantyne, C.K.; Hall, A.M.; Phillips, W.; Binnie, S.; Kubik, P.W.

    2007-01-01

    Geomorphological mapping provides evidence for two former low-level corrie glaciers on Hoy, both defined by end moraines. Five 10Be exposure ages obtained from sandstone boulders on moraine crests fall within the range 12.4??1.5 ka to 10.4??1.7 ka (weighted mean 11.7??0.6 ka), confirming that these glaciers developed during the Loch Lomond (Younger Dryas) Stade (LLS) of 12.9-11.5 cal. ka BP, and demonstrate the feasibility of using this approach to establish the age of LLS glacier limits. The equilibrium line altitude (ELA) of one of the glaciers (99 m) is the lowest recorded for any LLS glacier, and the area-weighted mean ELA for both (141 m) is consistent with a general northward ELA decrease along the west coast of Britain. The size of moraines fronting these small (???0.75 km2) glaciers implies that glacier termini remained at or close to their limits for a prolonged period. The apparent restriction of LLS glaciers to only two sites on Hoy probably reflects topographic favourability, and particularly the extent of snow-contributing areas.

  15. Sensitivity of glacier mass balance and equilibrium line altitude to climatic change on King George Island, Antarctic Peninsula.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Falk, Ulrike; Lopez, Damian; Silva-Busso, Adrian

    2017-04-01

    The South Shetland Islands are located at the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula which is among the fastest warming regions on Earth. Surface air temperature increases (ca. 3 K in 50 years) are concurrent with retreating glacier fronts, an increase in melt areas, ice surface lowering and rapid break-up and disintegration of ice shelves. Observed surface air temperature lapse rates show a high variability during winter months (standard deviations up to ±1.0 K/100 m), and a distinct spatial heterogeneity reflecting the impact of synoptic weather patterns especially during winter glacial mass accumulation periods. The increased mesocyclonic activity during the winter time in the study area results in intensified advection of warm, moist air with high temperatures and rain, and leads to melt conditions on the ice cap, fixating surface air temperatures to the melting point. The impact on winter accumulation results in even more negative mass balance estimates. Six years of glaciological measurements on mass balance stake transects are used with a glacier melt model to assess changes in melt water input to the coastal waters, glacier surface mass balance and the equilibrium line altitude. The average equilibrium line altitude (ELA) calculated from own glaciological observations for KGI over the time period 2010 - 2015 amounts to ELA=330±100 m. Published studies suggest rather stable condition slightly negative glacier mass balance until the mid 80's with an ELA of approx. 150 m. The calculated accumulation area ratio suggests rather dramatic changes in extension of the inland ice cap for the South Shetland Islands until an equilibrium with concurrent climate conditions is reached.

  16. Autonomous ocean observations beneath Pine Island Glacier Ice Shelf, West Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dutrieux, P.; Jenkins, A.; Jacobs, S.; Heywood, K. J.

    2015-12-01

    Warm circumpolar deep water reaching 3.5ºC above the in situ freezing point pervasively fills a network of glacially carved troughs in the Amundsen sea, West Antarctica, and melts and thins neighbouring ice shelves, including Pine Island glacier Ice Shelf (PIIS). Hydrographic, current, and microstructure observations obtained in austral summer 2009 and 2014 by an autonomous underwater vehicle beneath the PIIS are used here to detail the complex ice-ocean interaction and resulting ocean circulation. The theoretical schematic of deeply incoming warm and saline water melting the grounding line and generating a buoyant plume upwelling along the ice draft is generally consistent with observations. The cavity beneath PIIS is clearly divided in two by a seabed ridge, constraining the oceanic circulation and water masses distribution. On the seaward side of the ridge, a thick warm deep water layer circulates cyclonically and is overlaid by a thin meltwater layer. Only intermediate depth waters are allowed to overflow from the ridge top into the inner cavity, where a much thinner warm water layer is now overlaid by a thicker meltwater layer. At the ice/ocean interface, melt induced freshening is forcing an upwelling which in turn injects cyclonic vorticity and participates in creating a vigorous cyclonic recirculation in the inner cavity. The top of the ridge, where warm waters overflow in the inner cavity, is a dynamical boundary characterized by northward along-ridge currents up to 0.2 m/s and enhanced shear, thermal gradient, and mixing. Observations at two points at the ice interface indicate that the ocean remains stratified within 2 meters of the ice.

  17. New surface-based observations of the environment beneath Pine Island Glacier ice shelf

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bindschadler, Robert; Truffer, Martin; Stanton, Tim; Peters, Leo; Shortt, Mike; Pomraning, Dale; Stockel, Jim; Shaw, Bill; Steinarson, Einar; Anandakrishnan, Sridhar; Wilson, Kiya; Holland, David; Bushuk, Mitch; Behar, Alberto; Cocaud, Cedric; Stam, Christina

    2013-04-01

    Extensive surface, sub-shelf cavity and seabed observations of the Pine Island Glacier (PIG) ice shelf environment were collected by a surface field team during the 2012-13 austral summer. Three sites aligned along a central, flow-aligned surface valley were occupied for about one week each during which two hot-water holes were drilled at each site. In one hole, a mast-mounted set of oceanographic sensors recorded water temperature, current and salinity in the few meters immediately below the ice-shelf bottom. In the other hole, a similarly instrumented profiler was deployed to make quasi-daily vertical transects of the sub-shelf cavity by rising and sinking along a cable suspended in the cavity. These instruments are already returning data that provide direct rates of heat and momentum transfer in the boundary layer, basal melt rates and the temporal variation of water movements on daily and longer time scales. Shallow cores of the sea bed and a photographic record of the drill holes, ocean cavity and sea bed were also collected at two of the drill sites. The geophysics program was spatially much broader and consisted of phase-sensitive radars to measure basal melt rates and active seismic instrumentation to explore the character of the sea bed. Continuous profiling between the drill sites established the previously discovered ("Autosub") sea bed ridge is asymmetric with a steeper downstream face. Spot measurements upstream of the drill sites were reached by helicopter and refined the shape of the ocean cavity where extensive melt rates were measured. The field work is concluding as this abstract is being submitted, so most results are not yet available, but will be included in the presentation as first results emerge.

  18. A cosmogenic 3He chronology of late Quaternary glacier fluctuations in North Island, New Zealand (39°S)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eaves, Shaun R.; N. Mackintosh, Andrew; Winckler, Gisela; Schaefer, Joerg M.; Alloway, Brent V.; Townsend, Dougal B.

    2016-01-01

    Mountain glaciers advance and retreat primarily in response to changes in climate. Establishing the timing and magnitude of mountain glacier fluctuations from geological records can thus help to identify the drivers and mechanisms of past climate change. In this study, we use cosmogenic 3He surface exposure dating and tephrochronology to constrain the timing of past glaciation on Tongariro massif in central North Island, New Zealand (39°S). Exposure ages from moraine boulders show that valley glaciation persisted between c. 30-18 ka, which coincides with the global Last Glacial Maximum. Reinterpretation of moraine tephrostratigraphy, using major element geochemistry analysis, shows that ice retreat and climatic amelioration at the last glacial termination was well underway prior to 14 ka. The equilibrium line altitude in central North Island, during the Last Glacial Maximum, was c. 1400-1550 m above sea level, which is c. 930-1080 m lower than present. Considering the uncertainties in the glacial reconstruction and temperature lapse rates, we estimate that this equilibrium line altitude lowering equates to a temperature depression of 5.6 ± 1.1 °C, relative to present. Our mapping and surface exposure dating also show evidence for an earlier period of glaciation, of similar magnitude to the Last Glacial Maximum, which culminated prior to 57 ka, probably during Marine Isotope Stage 4. Good agreement between the timing and magnitude of glacier fluctuations in central North Island and the Southern Alps indicate a response to a common climatic forcing during the last glacial cycle.

  19. Glacier fluctuations during the last 400 years at Mount San Lorenzo and Santa Ines Island, southern Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aravena, J.; Luckman, B. H.

    2007-12-01

    We examine the local glacier fluctuations for the last 400 years in two mountain areas of the western coast of southernmost South America, Mount San Lorenzo and Santa Ines Island, using dendroglaciologic, geomorphologic and historical evidence. Mount San Lorenzo moraines span between 1636 and 1927 with periods of more frequent occurrence of glacial advances for the years 1670, 1770, 1870 and 1910. Santa Ines glacial advances are less numerous than in Mount San Lorenzo with well defined, clearly separated frontal moraines. The moraines were colonized by Nothofagus betuloides and Nothofagus antarctica two species with clear and well-preserved tree rings and the total age of the sampled trees was more precisely estimated. Dated moraines cover the last 300 years with evidence for advances during late 1600s, around 1800, 1860, 1910, 1930 and 1960. Further work is needed in dendroglaciological dating, geomorphologic surveying, and better understanding of local glacial dynamics for several glaciers to obtain a regional history of the glacier fluctuations of the southern Andes.

  20. Glaciers of North America - Glaciers of Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Molnia, Bruce F.

    2008-01-01

    Glaciers cover about 75,000 km2 of Alaska, about 5 percent of the State. The glaciers are situated on 11 mountain ranges, 1 large island, an island chain, and 1 archipelago and range in elevation from more than 6,000 m to below sea level. Alaska's glaciers extend geographically from the far southeast at lat 55 deg 19'N., long 130 deg 05'W., about 100 kilometers east of Ketchikan, to the far southwest at Kiska Island at lat 52 deg 05'N., long 177 deg 35'E., in the Aleutian Islands, and as far north as lat 69 deg 20'N., long 143 deg 45'W., in the Brooks Range. During the 'Little Ice Age', Alaska's glaciers expanded significantly. The total area and volume of glaciers in Alaska continue to decrease, as they have been doing since the 18th century. Of the 153 1:250,000-scale topographic maps that cover the State of Alaska, 63 sheets show glaciers. Although the number of extant glaciers has never been systematically counted and is thus unknown, the total probably is greater than 100,000. Only about 600 glaciers (about 1 percent) have been officially named by the U.S. Board on Geographic Names (BGN). There are about 60 active and former tidewater glaciers in Alaska. Within the glacierized mountain ranges of southeastern Alaska and western Canada, 205 glaciers (75 percent in Alaska) have a history of surging. In the same region, at least 53 present and 7 former large ice-dammed lakes have produced jokulhlaups (glacier-outburst floods). Ice-capped volcanoes on mainland Alaska and in the Aleutian Islands have a potential for jokulhlaups caused by subglacier volcanic and geothermal activity. Because of the size of the area covered by glaciers and the lack of large-scale maps of the glacierized areas, satellite imagery and other satellite remote-sensing data are the only practical means of monitoring regional changes in the area and volume of Alaska's glaciers in response to short- and long-term changes in the maritime and continental climates of the State. A review of the

  1. Pine Island Glacier melt rates, grounding zone evolution, and dynamic response from 2008-2015

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shean, D. E.; Joughin, I.; Smith, B.; Berthier, E.

    2015-12-01

    Significant grounding line retreat, acceleration, and thinning have occurred along the Amundsen Sea sector of West Antarctica in recent decades. These changes are directly linked to ice-ocean interaction beneath ice shelves, but existing observations of the spatial distribution, timing, and magnitude of ice shelf basal melt are very limited. We generated ~2 m/px DEMs for all available 2010-2015 high-resolution stereo satellite imagery (WorldView-1/2/3 and GeoEye-1) of the West Antarctic coast (excluding the Ross and Ronne-Filchner ice shelves). Annual and sub-annual DEM mosaics were produced for the Amundsen Sea sector, with focus on the Pine Island Glacier (PIG). We integrated SPIRIT ~40 m/px DEMs to extend the PIG time series to 2007/2008, and incorporated surface velocity maps from TerraSAR-X/TanDEM-X from 2009-2015. We use these products to compute ice thickness, Eulerian dH/dt, and Lagrangian DH/Dt, which capture evolving grounding line position, shelf thickening/thinning, and upstream ice dynamics. Ice shelf basal melt rate estimates are derived from both lagrangian DH/Dt and dense flux gate mass budget analysis. We document the spatial and temporal evolution of melt rates for the 2008-2015 period, and compare with existing ICESat (2003-2008) melt estimates and oceanographic observations. Finally, we compare observed melt vs. depth relationships with existing ice flow model parameterizations. Estimated basal melt rates are >100-150 m/yr within the PIG inner cavity, with significantly lower rates of <50 m/yr beneath the outer shelf. Eulerian dh/dt observations show significant thinning (>5-10 m/yr) upstream of the PIG grounding line following the ~2008-2009 ungrounding of the PIG "ice plain," with additional thinning along lateral margins in subsequent years. A combination of reduced melt rates and increased flux resulted in ice shelf regrounding on a large transverse seabed ridge and significant ice shelf thickening. These new data provide critical

  2. The influence of shear bands on the grounding line retreat in Pine Island Glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Favier, Lionel; Durand, Gaël; Cornford, Stephen; Gagliardini, Olivier; Zwinger, Thomas

    2013-04-01

    Pine Island Glacier (PIG), West Antarctica, is known as the weak underbelly of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. During the last 30 years, it has undergone a dramatic acceleration along with a retreat of its grounding line. The main ice stream draining PIG is laterally bounded by two thin bands of damaged ice. These shear bands may play a key role in the dynamics of the grounding line since they likely decrease the ice-shelf buttressing. The traditional approach is generally to infer the viscosity from surface velocity using data assimilation methods. However, in that case the inverse problem is under-constrained when it is coupled to the inversion of basal drag: different set of basal drag and viscosity pattern solution can lead to a good match between modelled and observed surface velocities, but would lead to different prognostic solutions associated to different grounding line migrations. Here, we follow a simpler approach and perform a sensitivity study on the shear bands effective viscosity, and its consequences for the ice dynamics. The areas of fractured ice at PIG are located using a recent SPOT satellite image. The non-fractured ice viscosity depends on ice temperatures while the fractured ice viscosity is decreased through a sensitivity study to reproduce the damaged ice of the shear bands. Using two different higher-order models (Elmer/Ice and BISICLES), we investigate the influence of the shear bands' damage on the grounding line dynamics. Each experiment in the sensitivity study gathers successively (i) the determination of basal drag through assimilation methods, (ii) a geometry relaxation over 15 years and (iii) transient perturbation experiments driven by different calving sizes. The initial geometry of the ice sheet arises from the ALBMAP data set on a 1 km grid resolution, velocities were acquired during the last International polar Year, and non-fractured ice viscosities are deduced from prescribed temperatures computed with a higher order model. We

  3. Creating a new ice sheet geometry of Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica, for use in high resolution ice flow modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nias, Isabel; Cornford, Stephen; Payne, Antony

    2017-04-01

    Previous high resolution ice flow modelling studies have shown that interpolation-based products for ice thickness (e.g. Bedmap2) can be inconsistent with the conservation of mass, given observations of velocity, surface mass balance and surface elevation change (Morlighem et al., 2011). For Pine Island Glacier, there is a thickening tendency of order 100 m/yr in the region of the grounding line, which is not observed in the pattern of elevation change. Poor geometric representation has implications for ice sheet stability, when modelling grounding line dynamics. Here we introduce an implicit algorithm to solve an advection-diffusion problem and use it to find an ice thickness field covering the Pine Island Glacier catchment, given observations of velocity and point data of ice thickness obtained from airborne radar surveys. Radar data points falling within the fast flowing region of the grounding line were removed, because basal crevassing in this region has likely resulted in an underestimation of ice thickness here. Our method performs well in fast flowing regions, but is less effective in slow flowing regions, where the algorithm relies on the diffusive term, rather than advection of thickness information downstream. Using the BISICLES ice flow model, we employ the newly created thickness field in an inverse problem to find fields for the basal traction coefficient and viscosity stiffening factor. We then use these fields to run the model forward, and compare the results to simulations using other geometries (Bedmap2 and a relaxed modification).

  4. Mass budget of Queen Elizabeth Islands glaciers and ice caps, Canada, from 1992 to present

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Millan, R.; Rignot, E. J.; Mouginot, J.

    2015-12-01

    Recent studies indicate to say that the Canadian Artic Archipelago's mass loss has increased in recent years. However the role of ice dynamics changes in this area is not well known. In this study, we present a comprehensive velocity mapping of the CAA using ALOS/PALSAR, RADARSAT-1, ERS1 and Landsat data between 1992 and 2015. Glaciers speed are calculated using a speckle and feature tracking algorithm.The results reveals that three large marine-terminating glaciers have accelerated significantly after 2010, while most others have slowed down or retreated to a sill to become similar to land-terminating glaciers. By combining the velocities of these glaciers with ice thickness measurements from NASA's Operation IceBridge, we calculate their ice discharge. The fluxes of these glaciers increased significantly since 2000 with a marked increase after 2011. The comparison of ice discharge with the surface mass balance from RACMO-2, shows that these glaciers came out of balance after 2011, which is also a time period where their discharge almost doubled. The analysis of RACMO-2 reveals an increase in runoff between 1970's and today and a precipitation with no significant trend. We digitalize the calving front positions of the glaciers and show an increasing rate retreat since 1976. We conclude that global pattern of velocity changes shows that the mass losses due to surface mass balance will likely going to raise in the coming years and that ice discharge will have a smaller part in the contribution of the CAA to sea level rise.

  5. Three-dimensional modelling of calving processes on Johnsons Glacier, Livingston Island, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Otero, Jaime; Navarro, Francisco J.; Martín, Carlos; Cuadrado, M. Luisa; Corcuera, M. Isabel

    2010-05-01

    Iceberg calving is an important mass loss mechanism from ice shelves and tidewater glaciers for many mid- and high-latitude glaciers and ice caps, yet the process is not well represented in prognostic models of ice dynamics. Benn and others (2007) proposed a calving criterion appropriate for both grounded and floating glacier tongues or ice shelves. This criterion assumes that the calving is triggered by the downward propagation of transverse surface crevasses, near the calving front, as a result of the extensional stress regime. The crevasse depth is calculated following Nye (1957), assuming that the base of a field of closely spaced crevasses lies at a depth where the longitudinal tensile strain rate tending to open the crevasse equals the creep closure resulting from the ice overburden pressure. Crevasses partially or totally filled with water will penetrate deeper, because of the contribution of water pressure to the opening of the crevasse. This criterion is readily incorporated into glacier and ice sheet models, but has not been fully validated with observations. We apply a three-dimensional extension of Benn and others' (2007) criterion, incorporated into a full-Stokes model of glacier dynamics, to estimate the current position of the calving front of Johnsons Glacier, Antarctica. We develop four experiments: (i) an straightforward three-dimensional extension of Benn and other's (2007) model; (2) an improvement to the latter that computes the tensile deviatoric stress opening the crevasse using the full-stress solution; (iii) a further improvement based on finding the depth at which the model-computed tensile deviatoric stress, considered as a function of depth, equals the ice overburden closure pressure; (iv) an experiment that adds, to the above, the effect of a threshold strain rate required for crevasses initiation. We found that the improvements considered in experiments (ii) and (iii) were necessary to reproduce accurately the observed calving front

  6. Mass budget of the glaciers and ice caps of the Queen Elizabeth Islands, Canada, from 1991 to 2015

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Millan, Romain; Mouginot, Jeremie; Rignot, Eric

    2017-02-01

    Recent studies indicate that the glaciers and ice caps in Queen Elizabeth Islands (QEI), Canada have experienced an increase in ice mass loss during the last two decades, but the contribution of ice dynamics to this loss is not well known. We present a comprehensive mapping of ice velocity using a suite of satellite data from year 1991 to 2015, combined with ice thickness data from NASA Operation IceBridge, to calculate ice discharge. We find that ice discharge increased significantly after 2011 in Prince of Wales Icefield, maintained or decreased in other sectors, whereas glacier surges have little impact on long-term trends in ice discharge. During 1991–2005, the QEI mass loss averaged 6.3 ± 1.1 Gt yr‑1, 52% from ice discharge and the rest from surface mass balance (SMB). During 2005–2014, the mass loss from ice discharge averaged 3.5 ± 0.2 Gt yr‑1 (10%) versus 29.6 ± 3.0 Gt yr‑1 (90%) from SMB. SMB processes therefore dominate the QEI mass balance, with ice dynamics playing a significant role only in a few basins.

  7. Rifting and Calving Event in 2015 at Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica, Associated with Frontal and Basal processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jeong, S.; Howat, I. M.; Bassis, J. N.

    2015-12-01

    Calving is a process that glacier loses its mass by full-thickness penetration of crevasses (i.e. rifting), followed by separation of iceberg from the terminus. Pine Island Glacier (PIG) in West Antarctica has undergone several major calving events including those in 2001, 2007 and 2013. All of them have started from rifting at its shear margin, growing toward the center of the ice shelf, and finally reaching the margin at the other end. However, recent observation of PIG from remote sensing data affirms unprecedented pattern of rifting, that the rifts start to grow at the center of the ice shelf and expanding to the each ends of the shear margin. Moreover, this evolution was accompanied with incessant disintegration of ice melange (mixture of small icebergs and sea ice) filling the shear margin around the terminus. We found from Landsat 8 images that those rifts start from the troughs transverse to the ice shelf, which are surface features of basal crevasses (i.e. cracks at the bottom of ice shelf). We also analyzed velocity fields of PIG's flow and confirmed that its change is consistent with the rifting and melange loss. We postulate this rifting event attributes to the associated effects of reduced resistant force by melange disintegration, and expedited erosion of basal crevasses that causes the tensile stress to concentrate. As both of them are closely related to ocean forcing, we also hypothesize that warmer ocean current under the ice shelf has triggered this new mode of rifting and calving event.

  8. Microbial Experiments on Basal Ice from John Evans Glacier, Eastern Ellesmere Island, Northwest Territories, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skidmore, M.; Foght, J.; Sharp. M.

    1998-01-01

    Recent research on permanent-ice associated microorganisms has focused on surficial ice environments. We present evidence that, to the authors' knowledge, is the first example that aerobic and anaerobic bacteria can be cultured at 4C from sediment-rich basal ice from a large polythermal Arctic glacier (John Evans Glacier). This builds on previous work in which we demonstrated that both aerobic and anaerobic microbes exist in viable populations in subglacial meltwaters at the same glacier, and that the populations increase with sediment concentration. This high Arctic glacier (at 80N) may be a reasonable terrestrial analog for martian polar environments, and hence the findings of this study may be important in assisting sampling program development for microbiology in the martian polar regions. Sterile samples of both debris-rich basal ice and debris-poor (clean) glacier ice were taken aseptically from the glacier margin in the spring of 1997 prior to the onset of the melt season to examine whether any observed microbial activity was linked to sediment concentration. The samples were melted slowly in a sterile environment and then incubated at 4C under nutrient-amended and nutrient-unamended conditions for three months. Parallel sterile and poisoned controls were included to account for abiotic processes. In all cases microbiological activity was recorded in the sediment-rich samples amended with growth medium. This indicates that viable anaerobic and aerobic bacteria were present in the debris-rich basal ice. The dissolved organic C (DOC) concentrations and sigma-13-C DOC of unamended ice samples were also analyzed. DOC concentrations in the basal ice were 4x higher than in the clean ice. Furthermore, the sigma-13-C values of the DOC suggested different sources for the DOC in the two types of ice. The higher DOC values in the unamended basal ice samples suggest that there is in situ microbial activity in the subglacial sediments. This is supported by the presence

  9. Calibrated prediction of Pine Island Glacier retreat during the 21st and 22nd centuries with a coupled flowline model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gladstone, Rupert M.; Lee, Victoria; Rougier, Jonathan; Payne, Antony J.; Hellmer, Hartmut; Le Brocq, Anne; Shepherd, Andrew; Edwards, Tamsin L.; Gregory, Jonathan; Cornford, Stephen L.

    2012-06-01

    A flowline ice sheet model is coupled to a box model for cavity circulation and configured for the Pine Island Glacier. An ensemble of 5000 simulations are carried out from 1900 to 2200 with varying inputs and parameters, forced by ocean temperatures predicted by a regional ocean model under the A1B ‘business as usual’ emissions scenario. Comparison is made against recent observations to provide a calibrated prediction in the form of a 95% confidence set. Predictions are for monotonic (apart from some small scale fluctuations in a minority of cases) retreat of the grounding line over the next 200 yr with huge uncertainty in the rate of retreat. Full collapse of the main trunk of the PIG during the 22nd century remains a possibility.

  10. Spatial patterns of basal drag inferred using control methods from a full-Stokes and simpler models for Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morlighem, M.; Rignot, E.; Seroussi, H.; Larour, E.; Ben Dhia, H.; Aubry, D.

    2010-07-01

    Basal drag is a fundamental control on ice stream dynamics that remains poorly understood or constrained by observations. Here, we apply control methods on ice surface velocities of Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica to infer the spatial pattern of basal drag using a full-Stokes (FS) model of ice flow and compare the results obtained with two commonly-used simplified solutions: the MacAyeal shelfy stream model and the Blatter-Pattyn model. Over most of the model domain, the three models yield similar patterns of basal drag, yet near the glacier grounding-line, the simplified models yield high basal drag while FS yields almost no basal drag. The simplified models overestimate basal drag because they neglect bridging effects in an ice stream region of rapidly varying ice thickness. This result reinforces theoretical studies that a FS treatment of ice flow is essential near glacier grounding lines.

  11. Glacial evolution in King George and Livingston Islands (Antarctica) since the Last Glacial Maximum based on cosmogenic nuclide dating and glacier surface reconstruction - CRONOANTAR project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruiz Fernández, Jesús; Oliva, Marc; Fernández Menéndez, Susana del Carmen; García Hernández, Cristina; Menéndez Duarte, Rosa Ana; Pellitero Ondicol, Ramón; Pérez Alberti, Augusto; Schimmelpfennig, Irene

    2017-04-01

    CRONOANTAR brings together researchers from Spain, Portugal, France and United Kingdom with the objective of spatially and temporally reconstruct the deglaciation process at the two largest islands in the South Shetlands Archipelago (Maritime Antarctica), since the Global Last Glacial Maximum. Glacier retreat in polar areas has major implications at a local, regional and even planetary scale. Global average sea level rise is the most obvious and socio-economically relevant, but there are others such as the arrival of new fauna to deglaciated areas, plant colonisation or permafrost formation and degradation. This project will study the ice-free areas in Byers and Hurd peninsulas (Livingston Island) and Fildes and Potter peninsulas (King George Island). Ice-cap glacier retreat chronology will be revealed by the use of cosmogenic isotopes (mainly 36Cl) on glacially originated sedimentary and erosive records. Cosmogenic dating will be complemented by other dating methods (C14 and OSL), which will permit the validation of these methods in regions with cold-based glaciers. Given the geomorphological evidences and the obtained ages, a deglaciation calendar will be proposed and we will use a GIS methodology to reconstruct the glacier extent and the ice thickness. The results emerging from this project will allow to assess whether the high glacier retreat rates observed during the last decades were registered in the past, or if they are conversely the consequence (and evidence) of the Global Change in Antarctica. Acknowledgements This work has been funded by the Spanish Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness (Reference: CTM2016-77878-P).

  12. Seasonal variation of meteorological variables and recent surface ablation / accumulation rates on Davies Dome and Whisky Glacier, James Ross Island, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Láska, K.; Nývlt, D.; Engel, Z.; Budík, L.

    2012-04-01

    In this study, surface mass balance data of two glaciers on James Ross Island, Antarctica, and its spatial and temporal variations are evaluated using snow ablation stakes, ground-penetrating radar, and dGPS measurements. The investigated glaciers are located on the Ulu Peninsula, northern part of James Ross Island. Davies Dome is an ice dome, which originates on the surface of a flat volcanic mesa at elevations >400 m a.s.l. and terminates with a single 700 m wide outlet in the Whisky Bay. Davies Dome has an area of ~6.5 km2 and lies in the altitude range of 0-514 m a.s.l. Whisky Glacier is a cold-based land-terminating valley glacier surrounded by an extensive moraine ridges made of debris-covered ice. The glacier has an area of ~2.4 km2 and lies in the altitude range of 215-520 m a.s.l. Within several summer austral summers, extensive field programme were carried out on both glaciers including the operation of two automatic weather stations, field mapping and mass balance measurements. Each station was equipped with albedometer CM7B (Kipp-Zonen, Netherlands), air temperature and humidity sensor EMS33 (EMS, Czech Republic), propeller anemometer 05103 (Young, USA), and snow depth sensors (Judd, USA). In the period 2009-2011, high seasonal and interdiurnal variability of incoming solar radiation and near-surface air temperature was found as a result of changes in the circulation patterns and synoptic-scale weather systems moving in the Circumpolar Trough. High ablation and accumulation rates were recorded mainly in the spring and summer seasons (October-February), while negligible changes were found in winter (May-September). The effects of positive degree-day temperatures on the surface ablation rates were examined using a linear regression model. In this approach, near-surface air temperature maps on the glacier surfaces were derived from digital elevation model according to actual temperature lapse rates. Mass balance investigations started in 2006 on Davies

  13. Constraining the recent mass balance of Pine Island and Thwaites glaciers, West Antarctica with airborne observations of snow accumulation (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Medley, B.; Joughin, I. R.; Smith, B. E.; Das, S. B.; Steig, E. J.; Conway, H.; Gogineni, P. S.; Criscitiello, A. S.; McConnell, J. R.; van den Broeke, M. R.; Lenaerts, J.; Bromwich, D. H.; Nicolas, J. P.

    2013-12-01

    an ice core depth-age scale. From these measurements we investigate both the spatial and temporal variability in accumulation in this sector of West Antarctica as well as evaluate global and regional atmospheric model accumulation rate equivalents (i.e., precipitation minus sublimation, P-S; surface mass balance, SMB). First, we generate a spatially complete map of the 1985-2009 average annual accumulation over both Pine Island and Thwaites glaciers, which is used to precisely determine their recent mass balance. Next, we investigate the temporal variability and trend in annual accumulation rate, which is limited to Thwaites glacier. Finally, we assess the ability of three global reanalysis P-S products and a regional climate model (RACMO2) SMB product to reproduce the spatiotemporal accumulation variability over these glaciers. Accumulation rate measurements derived from airborne radar systems not only reduce the uncertainty in mass balance measurements but also provide the means with which to evaluate the skill of and discriminate between atmospheric models. New measurements from both Greenland and Antarctica as part of NASA's Operation IceBridge will further reduce our overall uncertainty in the glacial contribution to sea-level rise.

  14. A 125-year record of climate and chemistry variability at the Pine Island Glacier ice divide, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwanck, Franciele; Simões, Jefferson C.; Handley, Michael; Mayewski, Paul A.; Auger, Jeffrey D.; Bernardo, Ronaldo T.; Aquino, Francisco E.

    2017-07-01

    The Mount Johns (MJ) ice core (79°55' S; 94°23' W) was drilled near the Pine Island Glacier ice divide on the West Antarctic Ice Sheet during the 2008-2009 austral summer, to a depth of 92.26 m. The upper 45 m of the record covers approximately 125 years (1883-2008), showing marked seasonal variability. Trace element concentrations in 2137 samples were determined using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. In this study, we reconstruct mineral dust and sea salt aerosol transport and investigate the influence of climate variables on the elemental concentrations at the MJ site. The ice core record reflects changes in emissions as well as atmospheric circulation and transport processes. Our trajectory analysis shows distinct seasonality, with strong westerly transport in the winter months and secondary northeasterly transport in the summer. During summer months, the trajectories present slow-moving (short) transport and are more locally influenced than in other seasons. Finally, our reanalysis correlations with trace element suggest that marine-derived trace element concentrations are strongly influenced by sea ice concentration and sea surface temperature anomalies. The results show that seasonal elemental concentration maxima in sea salt elements correlate well with the sea ice concentration winter maxima in the west Amundsen and Ross seas. Lastly, we observed an increased concentration of marine aerosols when sea surface temperature decreased.

  15. Glacier albedo change and its relationship to surface temperature change from MODIS data: Queen Elizabeth Islands, Arctic Canada, 2001-2015

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mortimer, C.; Sharp, M. J.

    2016-12-01

    Glacier and ice cap surface albedo change over the Canadian High Arctic is assessed using measurements from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensors for the period 2001-2015. Mean summer black-sky broadband surface albedo (MCD43A3 v05) over all glaciated surfaces in the Queen Elizabeth Islands south of 80°N decreased at a rate of 0.0038 ± 0.0037 yr-1 over that period. The bulk of this albedo decrease occurred from 2008 to 2012 when mean summer albedo was anomalously low. Albedo declines were greatest in the west of the QEI and at lower elevations on the ice caps. The period 2005-2012 included some of the warmest summers in the region since at least the 1950s. Between 2001 and 2015, mean summer glacier surface temperatures for the QEI (south of 80°N), derived from MODIS data (MOD11A2 v05), increased at a rate of 0.034 ± 0.037 °C yr-1. Net shortwave energy is modulated by changes in the surface albedo and is the largest source of summer melt energy in the QEI. During 2001-2015, the summer albedo record was negatively correlated with the mean summer glacier surface temperature record across 91% of the region; clusters of positive correlations between surface temperature and albedo were observed at high elevations in eastern Ellesmere Island.

  16. Grounding line variability and subglacial lake drainage on Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joughin, Ian; Shean, David E.; Smith, Ben E.; Dutrieux, P.

    2016-09-01

    We produced a 6 year time series of differential tidal displacement for Pine Island Ice Shelf, Antarctica, using speckle-tracking methods applied to fine-resolution TerraSAR-X data. These results reveal that the main grounding line has maintained a relatively steady position over the last 6 years, following the speedup that terminated in ~2009. In the middle of the shelf, there are grounded spots that migrate downstream over the 6 year record. Examination of high-resolution digital elevation models reveals that these grounded spots form where deep keels (thickness anomalies) advect over an approximately flow-parallel bathymetric high, maintaining intermittent contact with the bed. These data sets also reveal several subsidence and uplift events associated with subglacial lake drainages in the fast-flowing region above the grounding line. Although these drainages approximately double the rate of subglacial water flow over periods of a few weeks, they have no discernible effect on horizontal flow speed.

  17. New Zealand Glaciers

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-03-09

    New Zealand contains over 3,000 glaciers, most of which are in the Southern Alps on the South Island. Since 1890, the glaciers have been retreating, with short periods of small advances, as shown in this image from NASA Terra spacecraft. The image cover an area of 39 by 46 km, and are located at 43.7 degrees south, 170 degrees east. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA21509

  18. The Friction Law Stress Exponent under Pine Island Glacier from 15 Years of Surface Elevation and Velocity Measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gillet-chaulet, F.; Durand, G.; Gagliardini, O.; Mosbeux, C.; Mouginot, J.; Remy, F.; Ritz, C.

    2015-12-01

    Polar the ice-sheets mass balance largely depends on the flow of ice-streams. Rapid basal motion generally accounts for most of the velocities. In flow models, the conditions at the base of the ice in contact with the bedrock are generally parameterised using a friction law that relates the sliding velocity to the basal shear stress. The most common law has two poorly constrained parameters, the basal slipperiness c and the stress exponent m. The basal slipperiness is expected to depend on local unobservable quantities and is routinely tuned from observed surface velocities using inverse methods. Different values for m are expected depending on the processes, from hard-bed sliding to soft bed deformation, and no consensus has emerged so far for its value that range from 1 to infinity. However, several studies have shown that the transient response of the ice-sheet models to external forcing is highly sensitive to m. Therefore, the uncertainty attached to the friction law is an important limit to our ability to evaluate future dynamical evolution of coastal regions. Calibrating m can be done only if either basal stresses and/or velocities have changed significantly while c can be assumed constant in time. Here, we use Elmer/Ice to model the flow of Pine Island Glacier (PIG), Antarctica, sufficiently far upstream of the grounding line so that we can assume no change in c. Observations show an increase of surface velocities by up to 50% between 1996 and 2010, associated with an important dynamical thinning. Using a control inverse method and different values of m, we tune a spatially varying basal slipperiness field that best fit, in the same time, observed surface velocities for years 1996, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010. These years correspond to the MeaSUREs project velocity datasets that have the best spatial coverage for our model domain. Surface elevations for the corresponding years are constructed using ERS and Envisat radar altimetry data. We show that the

  19. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-28

    This ice cave in Belcher Glacier (Devon Island, Canada) was formed by melt water flowing within the glacier ice. To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: Angus Duncan, University of Saskatchewan NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  20. Assimilation of surface velocities acquired between 1996 and 2010 to constrain the form of the basal friction law under Pine Island Glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gillet-Chaulet, F.; Durand, G.; Gagliardini, O.; Mosbeux, C.; Mouginot, J.; Rémy, F.; Ritz, C.

    2016-10-01

    In ice-sheet models, slip conditions at the base between the ice and the bed are parameterized by a friction law. The most common relation has two poorly constrained parameters, C and m. The basal slipperiness coefficient, C, depends on local unobserved quantities and is routinely inferred using inverse methods. While model results have shown that transient responses to external forcing are highly sensitive to the stress exponent m, no consensus value has emerged, with values commonly used ranging from 1 to ∞ depending on the slip processes. By assimilation of Pine Island Glacier surface velocities from 1996 to 2010, we show that observed accelerations are best reproduced with m≥5. We conclude that basal motion, in much of the fast flowing region, is governed by plastic deformation of the underlying sediments. This implies that the glacier bed in this area cannot deliver resistive stresses higher than today, making the drainage basin potentially more sensitive to dynamical perturbations than predicted with models using standard values m = 1 or 3.

  1. Mass-balance characteristics of arctic glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Braithwaite, Roger J.

    A survey of available mass-balance data shows that glaciers on arctic islands, i.e. mountain glaciers and ice caps in northern Canada, Greenland, Svalbard and the Eurasian islands, share mass-balance characteristics of low annual amplitude and small interannual variability. By contrast, glaciers around the Arctic (e.g. in Alaska, Iceland, mainland Scandinavia and northern Eurasia) can have exceptionally large annual amplitude and interannual variability but otherwise share characteristics with glaciers in lower latitudes. The arctic island glaciers occur in areas with low annual precipitation and high annual temperature variability, i.e. in dry-cold or continental regions. Most glaciers surrounding the Arctic (Alaska, Iceland and Scandinavia) occur in areas with high annual precipitation and low annual temperature variability, i.e. in wet-warm or maritime regions. Earlier mass-balance modelling showed that arctic island glaciers have low sensitivity to temperature changes consistent with their low mass-balance amplitude. However, very large changes in mass balance could occur on arctic island glaciers if the sea ice surrounding the arctic islands were reduced so that the climate of the arctic islands becomes more maritime.

  2. Glaciers of Greenland

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williams, Richard S.; Ferrigno, Jane G.

    1995-01-01

    Landsat imagery, combined with aerial photography, sketch maps, and diagrams, is used as the basis for a description of the geography, climatology, and glaciology, including mass balance, variation, and hazards, of the Greenland ice sheet and local ice caps and glaciers. The Greenland ice sheet, with an estimated area of 1,736,095+/-100 km2 and volume of 2,600,000 km3, is the second largest glacier on the planet and the largest relict of the Ice Age in the Northern Hemisphere. Greenland also has 48,599+/-100 km2 of local ice caps and other types of glaciers in coastal areas and islands beyond the margin of the ice sheet.

  3. Columbia Glacier in 1984: disintegration underway

    SciTech Connect

    Meier, M.F.; Rasmussen, L.A.; Miller, D.S.

    1985-01-01

    Columbia Glacier is a large, iceberg-calving glacier near Valdez, Alaska. The terminus of this glacier was relatively stable from the time of the first scientific studies in 1899 until 1978. During this period the glacier terminated partly on Heather Island and partly on a submerged moraine shoal. In December, 1978, the glacier terminus retreated from Heather Island, and retreat has accelerated each year since then, except during a period of anomalously low calving in 1980. Although the glacier has not terminated on Heather Island since 1978, a portion of the terminus remained on the crest of the moraine shoal until the fall of 1983. By December 8, 1983, that feature had receded more than 300 m from the crest of the shoal, and by December 14, 1984, had disappeared completely, leaving most of the terminus more than 2000 meters behind the crest of the shoal. Recession of the glacier from the shoal has placed the terminus in deeper water, although the glacier does not float. The active calving face of the glacier now terminates in seawater that is about 300 meters deep at the glacier centerline. Rapid calving appears to be associated with buoyancy effects due to deep water at the terminus and subglacial runoff. 12 refs., 10 figs.

  4. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2007-05-17

    Small valley glacier exiting the Devon Island Ice Cap in Canada. To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: Alex Gardner, Clark University NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  5. A novel multispectral glacier mapping method and its performance in Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Citterio, M.; Fausto, R. S.; Ahlstrom, A. P.; Andersen, S. B.

    2014-12-01

    Multispectral land surface classification methods are widely used for mapping glacier outlines. Significant post-classification manual editing is typically required, and mapping glacier outlines over larger regions remains a rather labour intensive task. In this contribution we introduce a novel method for mapping glacier outlines from multispectral satellite imagery, requiring only minor manual editing.Over the last decade GLIMS (Global Land Ice Measurements from Space) improved the availability of glacier outlines, and in 2012 the Randolph Glacier Inventory (RGI) attained global coverage by compiling existing and new data sources in the wake of the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC AR5). With the launch of Landsat 8 in 2013 and the upcoming ESA (European Space Agency) Sentinel 2 missions, the availability of multispectral imagery may grow faster than our ability to process it into timely and reliable glacier outline products. Improved automatic classification methods would enable a full exploitation of these new data sources.We outline the theoretical basis of the proposed classification algorithm, provide a step by step walk-through from raw imagery to finished ice cover grids and vector glacier outlines, and evaluate the performance of the new method in mapping the outlines of glaciers, ice caps and the Greenland Ice Sheet from Landsat 8 OLI imagery. The classification output is compared against manually digitized ice margin positions, the RGI vectors, and the PROMICE (Programme for Monitoring of the Greenland Ice Sheet) aerophotogrammetric map of Greenland ice masses over a sector of the Disko Island surge cluster in West Greenland, the Qassimiut ice sheet lobe in South Greenland, and the A.P. Olsen ice cap in NE Greenland.

  6. Tropical Glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fountain, Andrew

    The term "tropical glacier" calls to mind balmy nights and palm trees on one hand and cold, blue ice on the other. Certainly author Gabriel Garcia Marqez exploited this contrast in One Hundred Years of Solitude. We know that tropical fish live in warm, Sun-kissed waters and tropical plants provide lush, dense foliage populated by colorful tropical birds. So how do tropical glaciers fit into this scene? Like glaciers everywhere, tropical glaciers form where mass accumulation—usually winter snow—exceeds mass loss, which is generally summer melt. Thus, tropical glaciers exist at high elevations where precipitation can occur as snowfall exceeds melt and sublimation losses, such as the Rwenzori Mountains in east Africa and the Maoke Range of Irian Jaya.

  7. Characterizing interannual variability of glacier dynamics and dynamic discharge (1999-2015) for the ice masses of Ellesmere and Axel Heiberg Islands, Nunavut, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Wychen, Wesley; Davis, Jamie; Burgess, David O.; Copland, Luke; Gray, Laurence; Sharp, Martin; Mortimer, Colleen

    2016-01-01

    Landsat 7 and RADARSAT-1/RADARSAT-2 satellite images are used to produce the most comprehensive record of glacier motion in the Canadian High Arctic to date and to characterize spatial and temporal variability in ice flow over the past ~15 years. This allows us to assess whether dynamically driven glacier change can be attributed to "surging" or "pulsing," or whether other mechanisms are involved. RADAR velocity mapping allows annual regional dynamic discharge (iceberg calving) to be calculated for 2000 and the period 2011-2015 (yielding a mean regional discharge of 2.21 ± 0.68 Gt a-1), and velocities derived from feature tracking of optical imagery allow for annual dynamic discharge to be calculated for select glaciers from 1999 to 2010. Since ~2011, several of the major tidewater-terminating glaciers within the region have decelerated and their dynamic discharge has decreased. Trinity and Wykeham Glaciers (Prince of Wales Icefield) represent a notable departure from this pattern as they have generally accelerated over the study period. The resulting increase in dynamic discharge from these glaciers entirely compensates (within error limits) for the decrease in discharge from the other tidewater glaciers across the study region. These two glaciers accounted for ~62% of total regional dynamic discharge in winter 2015 (compared to ~22% in 2000), demonstrating that total ice discharge from the Canadian High Arctic can be sensitive to variations in flow of just a few tidewater glaciers.

  8. Pine Island Bay

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2013-04-16

    article title:  Birth of a Large Iceberg in Pine Island Bay, Antarctica     ... View an animated gif (371 kb) A large tabular iceberg (42 kilometers x 17 kilometers) broke off Pine Island Glacier, West ...

  9. Geomorphologic mapping in the Ny Ålesund area (Svalbard Island, Norway) for the analysis of geomorphologic effects on rock slopes induced by glacier retreat in climate sensitive High Arctic regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miccadei, Enrico; Piacentini, Tommaso; Casacchia, Ruggero; Sparapani, Roberto

    2014-05-01

    The geomorphological effects of glacial retreat, rapidly changing Arctic environments and consequent local temporary permafrost melting are several types of glacial and periglacial landforms (pingos, solifluction, drumlins, etc.) but also debris and rock falls, alluvial fan and glacial outwash development and scarp/slopes retreat and evolution. In this work we have realized a geomorphologic map of rockfalls, landslides, alluvial fans and the slopes and scarps of steep mountainsides in the Ny Ålesund area (Svalbard Island, Norway) focused on the analysis of rock falls as geomorphological effects of glacier retreat, permafrost degradation and higher temperatures on slope processes. The investigation is based on geological and geomorphological field survey, and remote sensing and aerial photo interpretation, The Ny Ålesund area landscape is characterized by rugged non-vegetated mountains only partially covered by glaciers, with steep flanks and rock scarps; the scarps are formed by different types of rocks (intrusive and effusive igneous rocks, marine sedimentary rocks); this landscape is highly affected by debris and rock falls (from scarps and slopes) forming wide talus slopes and by alluvial fan and fluvial outwash (from glaciers), which make the surface sedimentary cover of the island together with rock glaciers and moraine deposits and locally fluvial deposits. The work is focused on the comprehension of the role of different factors in inducing rock falls, alluvial fans, slope/scarps evolution in high geomorphological sensitivity environments (i.e. glacial, periglacial or mountain) including: orography, lithology, rock fracturation, morphostructural setting, meteorological context. The conclusions focus on the possible geomorphological hazards affecting the Ny Ålesund area.

  10. Geomatic methods applied to the study of the front position changes of Johnsons and Hurd Glaciers, Livingston Island, Antarctica, between 1957 and 2013

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rodríguez Cielos, Ricardo; Aguirre de Mata, Julián; Díez Galilea, Andrés; Álvarez Alonso, Marina; Rodríguez Cielos, Pedro; Navarro Valero, Francisco

    2016-08-01

    Various geomatic measurement techniques can be efficiently combined for surveying glacier fronts. Aerial photographs and satellite images can be used to determine the position of the glacier terminus. If the glacier front is easily accessible, the classic surveys using theodolite or total station, GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) techniques, laser-scanner or close-range photogrammetry are possible. When the accessibility to the glacier front is difficult or impossible, close-range photogrammetry proves to be useful, inexpensive and fast. In this paper, a methodology combining photogrammetric methods and other techniques is applied to determine the calving front position of Johnsons Glacier. Images taken in 2013 with an inexpensive nonmetric digital camera are georeferenced to a global coordinate system by measuring, using GNSS techniques, support points in accessible areas close to the glacier front, from which control points in inaccessible points on the glacier surface near its calving front are determined with theodolite using the direct intersection method. The front position changes of Johnsons Glacier during the period 1957-2013, as well as those of the land-terminating fronts of Argentina, Las Palmas and Sally Rocks lobes of Hurd glacier, are determined from different geomatic techniques such as surface-based GNSS measurements, aerial photogrammetry and satellite optical imagery. This provides a set of frontal positions useful, e.g., for glacier dynamics modeling and mass balance studies.Link to the data repository: https://doi.pangaea.de/10.1594/PANGAEA.845379.

  11. Prognostic simulations of Pine Island Glacier using a 3D full-Stokes model and an inverse method to infer basal drag

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Favier, L.; Zwinger, T.; Gillet-Chaulet, F.; Durand, G.; Gagliardini, O.

    2012-04-01

    Ice discharge and grounding line retreat in West Antarctica have been accelerated during the last decades. One of the most striking example is Pine Island Glacier (PIG) which accelerated dramatically over the last 30 years. Such rapid changes in this part of Antarctica are due to large modifications of ice dynamics which are nevertheless poorly understood, and badly represented in numerical models, as pointed out by the IPCC fourth assessment report. Here, a 3D full-Stokes model of a marine ice sheet is used to carry out prognostic simulations of PIG over the next two centuries. The flow problem is coupled with the evolution of the upper and lower free surfaces, and the position of the grounding line is determined by solving the contact problem between the ice-shelf/ice-sheet lower surface and the bedrock. The upper and lower surfaces, and the bathymetry provided on a 1 km grid (courtesy of A. Le Brocq) are used to produce the initial geometry of the entire PIG basin. The mesh refinement is a function of the surface velocities (also provided on a 1 km grid by A. Le Brocq) Hessian matrix and the distance to the grounding line. Surface velocities are also used to infer the basal drag through the resolution of an inverse Robin problem. The initial surface is first relaxed and the results are compared to the observed current surface elevation, surface velocity and change in surface elevation. A perturbation experiment is then performed for which the whole ice-shelf is instantaneously removed. This test can be seen as a worst case scenario as all the buttressing induced by the ice shelf is lost instantaneously. The effect of the ice-shelf disintegration for the following two centuries is discussed in terms of grounding line retreat and increase in sea level.

  12. Subglacial bathymetry and sediment distribution beneath Pine Island Glacier ice shelf modeled using aerogravity and in situ geophysical data: New results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muto, Atsuhiro; Peters, Leo E.; Gohl, Karsten; Sasgen, Ingo; Alley, Richard B.; Anandakrishnan, Sridhar; Riverman, Kiya L.

    2016-01-01

    Pine Island Glacier (PIG) in the Amundsen Sea sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) is losing mass and contributing to global sea-level rise at an accelerating rate. Although recent observations and modeling have identified the incursion of relatively warm Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW) beneath the PIG ice shelf (PIGIS) as the main driver of this ice-mass loss, the lack of precise bathymetry limits furthering our understanding of the ice-ocean interactions and improving the accuracy of modeling. Here we present updated bathymetry and sediment distribution beneath the PIGIS, modeled by the inversion of aerogravity data with constraints from active-source seismic data, observations from an autonomous underwater vehicle, and the regional gravity-anomaly field derived from satellite gravity observations. Modeled bathymetry shows a submarine ridge beneath the middle of PIGIS that rises ∼350 to 400 m above the surrounding sea floor, with a minimum water-column thickness of ∼200 m above it. This submarine ridge continues across the whole width of the 45-km wide ice shelf, with no deep troughs crossing it, confirming the general features of the previously predicted sub-ice-shelf ocean circulation. However, the relatively low resolution of the aerogravity data and limitations in our inversion method leave a possibility that there is an undetected, few-kilometers-wide or narrower trough that may alter the predicted sub-ice-shelf ocean circulation. Modeled sediment distribution indicates a sedimentary basin of up to ∼800 m thick near the current grounding zone of the main PIG trunk and extending farther inland, and a region seaward of the submarine ridge where sediments are thin or absent with exposed crystalline basement that extends seaward into Pine Island Bay. Therefore, the submarine ridge marks the transition from a thick sedimentary basin providing a smooth interface over which ice could flow easily by sliding or sediment deformation, to a region with no to

  13. Glacier Swap

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2014-05-16

    ISS040-E-000298 (16 May 2014) --- NASA astronaut Steve Swanson, Expedition 40 commander, works with the General Laboratory Active Cryogenic ISS Experiment Refrigerator (GLACIER) in the Destiny laboratory of the International Space Station.

  14. Glacier Swap

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2014-05-16

    ISS040-E-000297 (16 May 2014) --- NASA astronaut Steve Swanson, Expedition 40 commander, works with the General Laboratory Active Cryogenic ISS Experiment Refrigerator (GLACIER) in the Destiny laboratory of the International Space Station.

  15. Glacier Swap

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2014-05-16

    ISS040-E-000296 (16 May 2014) --- NASA astronaut Steve Swanson, Expedition 40 commander, works with the General Laboratory Active Cryogenic ISS Experiment Refrigerator (GLACIER) in the Destiny laboratory of the International Space Station.

  16. Malaspina Glacier, Alaska

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2003-05-01

    Malaspina Glacier in southeastern Alaska is considered the classic example of a piedmont glacier. Piedmont glaciers occur where valley glaciers exit a mountain range onto broad lowlands, are no longer laterally confined, and spread to become wide lobes.

  17. Gyldenlove Glacier

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    On April 11, 2011, IceBridge finally got the clear weather necessary to fly over glaciers in southeast Greenland. But with clear skies came winds of up to 70 knots, which made for a bumpy ride over the calving front of glaciers like Gyldenlove. Operation IceBridge, now in its third year, makes annual campaigns in the Arctic and Antarctic where science flights monitor glaciers, ice sheets and sea ice. Credit: NASA/GSFC/Michael Studinger To learn more about Ice Bridge go to: www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/icebridge/news/spr11/index.html NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Join us on Facebook

  18. In-situ GPS records of surface mass balance, firn compaction rates, and ice-shelf basal melt rates for Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shean, D. E.; Christianson, K.; Larson, K. M.; Ligtenberg, S.; Joughin, I. R.; Smith, B.; Stevens, C.

    2016-12-01

    In recent decades, Pine Island Glacier (PIG) has experienced marked retreat, speedup and thinning due to ice-shelf basal melt, internal ice-stream instability and feedbacks between these processes. In an effort to constrain recent ice-stream dynamics and evaluate potential causes of retreat, we analyzed 2008-2010 and 2012-2014 GPS records for PIG. We computed time series of horizontal velocity, strain rate, multipath-based antenna height, surface elevation, and Lagrangian elevation change (Dh/Dt). These data provide validation for complementary high-resolution WorldView stereo digital elevation model (DEM) records, with sampled DEM vertical error of 0.7 m. The GPS antenna height time series document a relative surface elevation increase of 0.7-1.0 m/yr, which is consistent with estimated surface mass balance (SMB) of 0.7-0.9 m.w.e./yr from RACMO2.3 and firn compaction rates from the IMAU-FDM dynamic firn model. An abrupt 0.2-0.3 m surface elevation decrease due to surface melt and/or greater near-surface firn compaction is observed during a period of warm atmospheric temperatures from December 2012 to January 2013. Observed surface Dh/Dt for all PIG shelf sites is highly linear with trends of -1 to -4 m/yr and <0.4 m residuals. Similar Dh/Dt estimates with reduced variability are obtained after removing expected downward GPS pole base velocity from observed GPS antenna Dh/Dt. Estimated Dh/Dt basal melt rates are 10 to 40 m/yr for the outer PIG shelf and 4 m/yr for the South shelf. These melt rates are similar to those derived from ice-bottom acoustic ranging, phase-sensitive ice-penetrating radar, and high-resolution stereo DEM records. The GPS/DEM records document higher melt rates within and near transverse surface depressions and rifts associated with longitudinal extension. Basal melt rates for the 2012-2014 period show limited temporal variability, despite significant change in ocean heat content. This suggests that sub-shelf melt rates are less sensitive to

  19. Malaspina Glacier

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    NASA image captured August 31, 2000 The tongue of the Malaspina Glacier, the largest glacier in Alaska, fills most of this image. The Malaspina lies west of Yakutat Bay and covers 1,500 sq. MI (3,880 sq. km). Credit: NASA/Landsat NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Join us on Facebook

  20. Glorious Glacier

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2016-07-15

    This image has low-sun lighting that accentuates the many transverse ridges on this slope, extending from Euripus Mons (mountains). These flow-like structures were previously called "lobate debris aprons," but the Shallow Radar (SHARAD) instrument on MRO has shown that they are actually debris-covered flows of ice, or glaciers. There is no evidence for present-day flow of these glaciers, so they appear to be remnants of past climates. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA20745

  1. Matusevich Glacier

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    NASA image acquired September 6, 2010 The Matusevich Glacier flows toward the coast of East Antarctica, pushing through a channel between the Lazarev Mountains and the northwestern tip of the Wilson Hills. Constrained by surrounding rocks, the river of ice holds together. But stresses resulting from the glacier’s movement make deep crevasses, or cracks, in the ice. After passing through the channel, the glacier has room to spread out as it floats on the ocean. The expanded area and the jostling of ocean waves prompts the ice to break apart, which it often does along existing crevasses. On September 6, 2010, the Advanced Land Imager (ALI) on NASA’s Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) satellite captured this natural-color image of the margin of Matusevich Glacier. Shown here just past the rock-lined channel, the glacier is calving large icebergs. Low-angled sunlight illuminates north-facing surfaces and casts long shadows to the south. Fast ice anchored to the shore surrounds both the glacier tongue and the icebergs it has calved. Compared to the glacier and icebergs, the fast ice is thinner with a smoother surface. Out to sea (image left), the sea ice is even thinner and moves with winds and currents. Matusevich Glacier does not drain a significant amount of ice off of the Antarctic continent, so the glacier’s advances and retreats lack global significance. Like other Antarctic glaciers, however, Matusevich helps glaciologists form a larger picture of Antarctica’s glacial health and ice sheet volume. NASA Earth Observatory image created by Jesse Allen and Robert Simmon, using EO-1 ALI data provided courtesy of the NASA EO-1 team. Caption by Michon Scott based on image interpretation by Robert Bindschadler, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, and Walt Meier, National Snow and Ice Data Center. Instrument: EO-1 - ALI Credit: NASA Earth Observatory NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar

  2. Glacier microseismicity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    West, Michael E.; Larsen, Christopher F.; Truffer, Martin; O'Neel, Shad; LeBlanc, Laura

    2010-01-01

    We present a framework for interpreting small glacier seismic events based on data collected near the center of Bering Glacier, Alaska, in spring 2007. We find extremely high microseismicity rates (as many as tens of events per minute) occurring largely within a few kilometers of the receivers. A high-frequency class of seismicity is distinguished by dominant frequencies of 20–35 Hz and impulsive arrivals. A low-frequency class has dominant frequencies of 6–15 Hz, emergent onsets, and longer, more monotonic codas. A bimodal distribution of 160,000 seismic events over two months demonstrates that the classes represent two distinct populations. This is further supported by the presence of hybrid waveforms that contain elements of both event types. The high-low-hybrid paradigm is well established in volcano seismology and is demonstrated by a comparison to earthquakes from Augustine Volcano. We build on these parallels to suggest that fluid-induced resonance is likely responsible for the low-frequency glacier events and that the hybrid glacier events may be caused by the rush of water into newly opening pathways.

  3. Jakobshavn Glacier

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2013-04-17

    article title:  Greenland's Coast in Holiday Colors     ... blues adorn this view of the area surrounding the Jakobshavn Glacier on the western coast of Greenland. The image is a false-color (near-infrared, green, blue) view ...

  4. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2008-08-25

    Aerial view of the Sverdrup Glacier, a river of ice that flows from the interior of the Devon Island Ice Cap (Canada) into the ocean. To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: Alex Gardner, Clark University NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  5. Alpine Glaciers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Released 27 August 2003

    This image shows part of the western flank of Arsia Mons, the southernmost of the three great Tharsis Montes. The surface shows parallel ridges more reminiscent of a Zen garden than any typical geological feature. These ridges are not typical of lava flow fronts, so a different explanation has been proposed by Mars scientists. These ridges may instead be ancient signs of previously existing glaciers that formed high on the volcano's flank. As glaciers retreat with the seasons and shifting climate, they leave behind a mound of debris along their receding edge. Successive retreats can produce a series of parallel ridges similar to those seen here.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude -6.9, Longitude 230.5 East (129.5 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

  6. Alpine Glaciers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Released 27 August 2003

    This image shows part of the western flank of Arsia Mons, the southernmost of the three great Tharsis Montes. The surface shows parallel ridges more reminiscent of a Zen garden than any typical geological feature. These ridges are not typical of lava flow fronts, so a different explanation has been proposed by Mars scientists. These ridges may instead be ancient signs of previously existing glaciers that formed high on the volcano's flank. As glaciers retreat with the seasons and shifting climate, they leave behind a mound of debris along their receding edge. Successive retreats can produce a series of parallel ridges similar to those seen here.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude -6.9, Longitude 230.5 East (129.5 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

  7. GLACIER SLIDING,

    DTIC Science & Technology

    The theory of the sliding of glaciers presented in earlier papers has been generalized (1) by taking into account the resistance to sliding offered...bed at the downstream side of an obstacle. The sliding velocities and controlling obstacle sizes which are found from the generalized theory are...magnitude smaller in thickness than the height of the controlling obstacles can cause an appreciable increase in the sliding velocity. The generalized

  8. Ecology of Great Salt Pond, Block Island

    EPA Science Inventory

    Great Salt Pond is an island of estuarine water on Block Island, which sits in the middle of the Northwest Atlantic Continental Shelf. When the last continental glaciers retreated, they left a high spot on a terminal moraine. The rising sea from melting glaciers formed two island...

  9. Ecology of Great Salt Pond, Block Island

    EPA Science Inventory

    Great Salt Pond is an island of estuarine water on Block Island, which sits in the middle of the Northwest Atlantic Continental Shelf. When the last continental glaciers retreated, they left a high spot on a terminal moraine. The rising sea from melting glaciers formed two island...

  10. Faster simulation plots

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fowell, Richard A.

    1989-01-01

    Most simulation plots are heavily oversampled. Ignoring unnecessary data points dramatically reduces plot time with imperceptible effect on quality. The technique is suited to most plot devices. The departments laser printer's speed was tripled for large simulation plots by data thinning. This reduced printer delays without the expense of a faster laser printer. Surpisingly, it saved computer time as well. All plot data are now thinned, including PostScript and terminal plots. The problem, solution, and conclusions are described. The thinning algorithm is described and performance studies are presented. To obtain FORTRAN 77 or C source listings, mail a SASE to the author.

  11. Development of Adygine glacier complex (glacier and proglacial lakes) and its link to outburst hazard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Falatkova, Kristyna; Schöner, Wolfgang; Häusler, Hermann; Reisenhofer, Stefan; Neureiter, Anton; Sobr, Miroslav; Jansky, Bohumir

    2017-04-01

    Mountain glacier retreat has a well-known impact on life of local population - besides anxiety over water supply for agriculture, industry, or households, it has proved to have a direct influence on glacier hazard occurrence. The paper focuses on lake outburst hazard specifically, and aims to describe the previous and future development of Adygine glacier complex and identify its relationship to the hazard. The observed glacier is situated in the Northern Tien Shan, with an area of 4 km2 in northern exposition at an elevation range of 3,500-4,200 m a.s.l. The study glacier ranks in the group of small-sized glaciers, therefore we expect it to respond faster to changes of the climate compared to larger ones. Below the glacier there is a three-level cascade of proglacial lakes at different stages of development. The site has been observed sporadically since 1960s, however, closer study has been carried out since 2007. Past development of the glacier-lake complex is analyzed by combination of satellite imagery interpretations and on-site measurements (geodetic and bathymetric survey). A glacier mass balance model is used to simulate future development of the glacier resulting from climate scenarios. We used the simulated future glacier extent and the glacier base topography provided by GPR survey to assess potential for future lake formation. This enables us to assess the outburst hazard for the three selected lakes with an outlook for possible/probable hazard changes linked to further complex succession/progression (originating from climate change scenarios). Considering the proximity of the capital Bishkek, spreading settlements, and increased demand for tourism-related infrastructure within the main valley, it is of high importance to identify the present and possible future hazards that have a potential to affect this region.

  12. A Faster Triphosphorylation Ribozyme

    PubMed Central

    Dolan, Gregory F.; Akoopie, Arvin; Müller, Ulrich F.

    2015-01-01

    In support of the RNA world hypothesis, previous studies identified trimetaphosphate (Tmp) as a plausible energy source for RNA world organisms. In one of these studies, catalytic RNAs (ribozymes) that catalyze the triphosphorylation of RNA 5'-hydroxyl groups using Tmp were obtained by in vitro selection. One ribozyme (TPR1) was analyzed in more detail. TPR1 catalyzes the triphosphorylation reaction to a rate of 0.013 min-1 under selection conditions (50 mM Tmp, 100 mM MgCl2, 22°C). To identify a triphosphorylation ribozyme that catalyzes faster triphosphorylation, and possibly learn about its secondary structure TPR1 was subjected to a doped selection. The resulting ribozyme, TPR1e, contains seven mutations relative to TPR1, displays a previously unidentified duplex that constrains the ribozyme's structure, and reacts at a 24-fold faster rate than the parent ribozyme. Under optimal conditions (150 mM Tmp, 650 mM MgCl2, 40°C), the triphosphorylation rate of TRP1e reaches 6.8 min-1. PMID:26545116

  13. Glaciers of Antarctica

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williams, Richard S.; Ferrigno, Jane G.

    1988-01-01

    have been included. Again, these represent only a small fraction of the large number of aerial photographs now available in various national collections. The chapter is divided into five geographic sections. The first is the Transantarctic Mountains in the Ross Sea area. Some very large outlet glaciers flow from the East Antarctic ice sheet through the Transantarctic Mountains to the Ross Ice Shelf. Byrd Glacier, one of the largest in the world, drains an area of more than 1,000,000 km2. Next, images from the Indian Ocean sector are discussed. These include the Lambert Glacier- Amery Ice Shelf system, so large that about 25 images must be mosaicked to cover its complex system of tributary glaciers. Shirase Glacier, a tidal outlet glacier in the sector, flows at a speed of 2.5 km a-l. About 200 km inland and 200 km west of Shirase Glacier lie the Queen Fabiola (?Yamato?) Mountains, whose extensive exposures of `blue ice? lay claim to being the world?s most important meteorite-collecting locality, with more than 4,700 meteorite fragments discovered since 1969. The Atlantic Ocean sector is fringed by ice shelves into which flow large ice streams like Jutulstraumen, Stancomb-Wills, Slessor, and Recovery Glaciers. Filchner and Ronne Ice Shelves together cover an area two-thirds the size of Texas. From the western margin of the Ronne Ice Shelf, the north-trending arc of the Antarctic Peninsula, with its fjord and alpine landscape and fringing ice shelves, stretches towards South America. The Pacific Ocean sector begins with the Ellsworth Mountains, which include the highest peaks (Vinson Massif at 4,897 m) in Antarctica. The area between the Ellsworth Mountains and the eastern margin of the Ross Ice Shelf is fringed with small ice shelves and some major outlet glaciers. One of these, Pine Island Glacier, was found from comparing 1973 and 1975 images to have an average ice-front velocity of 2.4 km a-l. This part of Antarctica

  14. Principles of Glacier Mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Waddington, Edwin D.

    Glaciers are awesome in size and move at a majestic pace, and they frequently occupy spectacular mountainous terrain. Naturally, many Earth scientists are attracted to glaciers. Some of us are even fortunate enough to make a career of studying glacier flow. Many others work on the large, flat polar ice sheets where there is no scenery. As a leader of one of the foremost research projects now studying the flow of mountain glaciers (Storglaciaren, Norway), Roger Hooke is well qualified to describe the principles of glacier mechanics. Principles of Glacier Mechanics is written for upper-level undergraduate students and graduate students with an interest in glaciers and the landforms that glaciers produce. While most of the examples in the text are drawn from valley glacier studies, much of the material is also relevant to “glacier flatland” on the polar ice sheets.

  15. Beardmore Glacier proposals wanted

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Proposals for research projects to be conducted in the upper Beardmore Glacier area of Antarctica during the 1985-1986 field season are being accepted by t h e National Science Foundation (NSF) through August 15. Later proposal submissions should be discussed with the appropriate program managers (see below).A temporary camp with helicopter support will be established in the region. Occupation by scientific parties will likely be between mid-November 1985 and mid-January 1986. Transportation in the field will be by UH1-N twin-engine Huey helicopters (with a range of approximately 185 km) and by motor toboggans. Satellite tent camps will be established within the range of the helicopters. The exact position of the main camp will be determined in November. Likely candidates, however, are Buckley Island Quadrangle, in the area of the Walcott Névé or the Bowden Névé, near Coalsack Bluff or Mount Sirius.

  16. South Cascade Glacier bibliography

    SciTech Connect

    Fountain, A.G.; Fulk, M.A.

    1984-01-01

    South Cascade Glacier, in Washington State, resides in a well-defined basin with mainly unglacierized divides making it ideal for most glaciological and hydrological studies. This bibliography is divided into three cateogories: (1) studies done about South Cascade Glacier specifically; (2) studies that use data from South Cascade Glacier but do not focus on or give insight to the glacier itself; and (3) instrumentation studies and non-glacier projects including snow studies done in the basin. (ACR)

  17. Glaciers of South America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williams, Richard S.; Ferrigno, Jane G.

    1998-01-01

    Landsat images, together with maps and aerial photographs, have been used to produce glacier inventories, define glacier locations, and study glacier dynamics in the countries of South America, along with the Andes Mountains. In Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, and Bolivia, the small glaciers have been undergoing extensive glacier recession since the late 1800's. Glacier-related hazards (outburst floods, mud flows, and debris avalanches) occur in Colombia, in Ecuador, and associated with the more extensive (2,600 km2) glaciers of Peru. The largest area of glacier ice is found in Argentina and Chile, including the northern Patagonian ice field (about 4,200 km2) and the southern Patagonian ice field (about 13,000 km2), the largest glacier in the Southern Hemisphere outside Antarctica.

  18. Glacier monitoring and glacier-climate interactions in the tropical Andes: A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Veettil, Bijeesh Kozhikkodan; Wang, Shanshan; Florêncio de Souza, Sergio; Bremer, Ulisses Franz; Simões, Jefferson Cardia

    2017-08-01

    the occurrence of cold phases of El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) together. Mountain glaciers in Ecuador show less retreat in response to the warming trend, probably due to high altitudes (above 5750 m), in comparison to glaciers in Colombia and Venezuela. However, elevation-dependent warming (EDW) is a major concern in the tropical Andes. In a nutshell, smaller glaciers at lower altitudes in the inner tropics and the southern wet outer tropics near the Amazon Basin are disappearing faster than other glaciers in the tropical Andes.

  19. Glaciers of Europe

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williams, Richard S.; Ferrigno, Jane G.

    1993-01-01

    ALPS: AUSTRIAN: An overview is provided on the occurrence of the glaciers in the Eastern Alps of Austria and on the climatic conditions in this area, Historical documents on the glaciers have been available since the Middle Ages. Special glaciological observations and topographic surveys of individual glaciers were initiated as early as 1846. Recent data in an inventory based on aerial photographs taken in 1969 show 925 glaciers in the Austrian Alps with a total area of 542 square kilometers. Present research topics include studies of mass and energy balance, relations of glaciers and climate, physical glaciology, a complete inventory of the glaciers, and testing of remote sensing methods. The location of the glacier areas is shown on Landsat multispectral scanner images; the improved capabilities of the Landsat thematic mapper are illustrated with an example from the Oztaler Alpen group. ALPS: SWISS: According to a glacier inventory published in 1976, which is based on aerial photography of 1973, there are 1,828 glacier units in the Swiss Alps that cover a total area of 1fl42 square kilometers. The Rhonegletscher, currently the ninth largest in the country, was one of the first to be studied in detail. Its surface has been surveyed repeatedly; velocity profiles were measured, and the fluctuations of its terminus were mapped and recorded from 1874 to 1914. Recent research on the glacier has included climatological, hydrological, and massbalance studies. Glaciological research has been conducted on various other glaciers in Switzerland concerning glacier hydrology, glacier hazards, fluctuations of glacier termini, ice mechanics, ice cores, and mass balance. Good maps are available showing the extent of glaciers from the latter decades of the 19th century. More recently, the entire country has been mapped at scales of 1:25,000, 1:50,000, 1:100,000, 1:200,000, and 1:500,000. The 1:25,000-scale series very accurately represents the glaciers as well as locates

  20. A new glacier inventory for 2009 reveals spatial and temporal variability in glacier response to atmospheric warming in the Northern Antarctic Peninsula, 1988-2009

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davies, B. J.; Carrivick, J. L.; Glasser, N. F.; Hambrey, M. J.; Smellie, J. L.

    2011-12-01

    The Northern Antarctic Peninsula has recently exhibited ice-shelf disintegration, glacier recession and acceleration. However, the dynamic response of land-terminating, ice-shelf tributary and tidewater glaciers has not yet been quantified or assessed for variability, and there are sparse published data for glacier classification, morphology, area, length or altitude. This paper firstly uses ASTER images from 2009 and a SPIRIT DEM from 2006 to classify the area, length, altitude, slope, aspect, geomorphology, type and hypsometry of 194 glaciers on Trinity Peninsula, Vega Island and James Ross Island. Secondly, this paper uses LANDSAT-4 and ASTER images from 1988 and 2001 and data from the Antarctic Digital Database (ADD) from 1997 to document glacier change 1988-2009. From 1988-2001, 90 % of glaciers receded, and from 2001-2009, 79 % receded. Glaciers on the western side of Trinity Peninsula retreated relatively little. On the eastern side of Trinity Peninsula, the rate of recession of ice-shelf tributary glaciers has slowed from 12.9 km2 a-1 (1988-2001) to 2.4 km2 a-1 (2001-2009). Tidewater glaciers on the drier, cooler Eastern Trinity Peninsula experienced fastest recession from 1988-2001, with limited frontal retreat after 2001. Land-terminating glaciers on James Ross Island also retreated fastest in the period 1988-2001. Large tidewater glaciers on James Ross Island are now declining in areal extent at rates of up to 0.04 km2 a-1. This east-west difference is largely a result of orographic temperature and precipitation gradients across the Antarctic Peninsula. Strong variability in tidewater glacier recession rates may result from the influence of glacier length, altitude, slope and hypsometry on glacier mass balance. High snowfall means that the glaciers on the Western Peninsula are not currently rapidly receding. Recession rates on the eastern side of Trinity Peninsula are slowing as the floating ice tongues retreat into the fjords and the glaciers reach a

  1. In-situ glacier monitoring in Zackenberg (NE Greenland): Freya Glacier and A.P. Olsen Ice Cap

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hynek, Bernhard; Hillerup Larsen, Signe; Binder, Daniel; Weyss, Gernot; Citterio, Michele; Schöner, Wolfgang; Ahlstrøm, Andreas Peter

    2015-04-01

    Due to the scarceness of glacier mass balance measurements from glaciers and local ice caps in East Greenland and the strong impact that local glaciers and ice caps outside the Ice Sheet are expected to exert on sea level rise in the present century, in 2007 and 2008 two glaciological monitoring programmes of peripheral Greenlandic glaciers started to operate near the Zackenberg Research Station in NE Greenland (74° N, 21° W). Freya (Fröya) Glacier is a 6 km long valley glacier situated on Clavering Island 10 km southeast of the Zackenberg research station with a surface area of 5.3 km2 (2013), reaching from 1305 m to 273 m a.s.l. The glacier is mainly oriented to NW and surrounded by high mountain ridges on both sides. A.P. Olsen Ice Cap is a 295 km2 peripheral ice cap located 35 km northeast of Zackenberg. The mass balance monitoring network is situated on the SE outlet glacier reaching from 1425 m to 525 m which drains into the hydrological basin of Zackenberg. This outlet glacier dams a lake which caused several glacial outburst floods within the period of investigation. The two studied glaciers are very close to each other (35 km), but they are complementary in many ways. Apart from the difference in size, which requires different monitoring strategies, Freya Glacier is nearer to the coast and therefore exposed to a more maritime climate with higher winter accumulation. The different area-altitude distribution of both glaciers is one of the main reason for the significantly more positive mean specific mass balance of A.P. Olsen Ice Cap compared to Freya Glacier. In this talk we present the glaciological monitoring on both glaciers and the main results of the first seven years of data.

  2. Glacier discharge and climate variations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dominguez, M. Carmen; Rodriguez-Puebla, Concepcion; Encinas, Ascension H.; Visus, Isabel; Eraso, Adolfo

    2010-05-01

    Different studies account for the warming in the polar regions that consequently would affect Glacier Discharge (GD). Since changes in GD may cause large changes in sensible and latent heat fluxes, we ask about the relationships between GD and climate anomalies, which have not been quantified yet. In this study we apply different statistical methods such as correlation, Singular Spectral Analysis and Wavelet to compare the behaviour of GD data in two Experimental Pilot Catchments (CPE), one (CPE-KG-62°S) in the Antarctica and the other (CPE-KVIA-64°N) in the Arctic regions. Both CPE's are measuring sub- and endo-glacier drainage for recording of glacier melt water run-off. The CPE-KG-62°S is providing hourly GD time series since January 2002 in Collins glacier of the Maxwell Bay in King George Island (62°S, 58°W). The second one, CPE-KVIA-64°N, is providing hourly GD time series since September 2003 in the Kviarjökull glacier of the Vatnajökull ice cap in Iceland (64°N, 16°W). The soundings for these measurements are pressure sensors installed in the river of the selected catchments for the ice cap (CPE-KG-62°S) and in the river of the glacier for (CPE-KVIA-64°N). In each CPE, the calibration function between level and discharge has been adjusted, getting a very high correlation coefficient (0.99 for the first one and 0.95 for the second one), which let us devise a precise discharge law for the glacier. We obtained relationships between GD with atmospheric variables such as radiation, temperature, relative humidity, atmospheric pressure and precipitation. We also found a negative response of GD to El Niño teleconnection index. The results are of great interest due to the GD impact on the climate system and in particular for sea level rise.

  3. Susitna Glacier, Alaska

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2010-09-13

    Folds in the lower reaches of valley glaciers can be caused by powerful surges of tributary ice streams. This phenomenon is spectacularly displayed by the Sustina Glacier in the Alaska Range as seen by NASA Terra spacecraft.

  4. Multi-decadal frontal change rates of tidewater glaciers in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cook, Alison; Copland, Luke; Stokes, Chris; Bentley, Mike

    2017-04-01

    Recent studies of post-2000 observational data have shown variability in the dynamic ice discharge of tidewater glaciers throughout the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA). Expanding this to all tidewater glaciers in the region on a decadal time scale using earlier records can help identify when glacier retreat began, and determine longer-term temporal trends in mass balance. Our study shows that over 94% of 300 tidewater glaciers in the CAA (from southern Baffin Island to Ellesmere Island, excluding those on the northern coast) have retreated since the earliest observational records (aerial photographs acquired in 1958-1960). Mean overall length change rate of the 211 glaciers in the Queen Elizabeth Islands (QEI) is -9.3 ma-1 (± 1.38 SE), and of the 89 glaciers on Baffin and Bylot Islands (BBI) is -7.1 ma-1 (± 0.72 SE). Mean frontal widths of tidewater glaciers in the QEI are greater than those on islands to the south, resulting in greater mean area loss from this region. Each glacier has 6 frontal positions digitised from a range of image sources at approximately decadal intervals. Length change rates have been calculated across each time interval for each glacier, based on area changes divided by glacier frontal width. Results indicate a similar temporal pattern throughout the region, whereby glaciers show minimal change in early years with retreat rates slowly increasing, followed by acceleration in retreat rates since the late 1990s. Mean change rates in the QEI and BBI in the 1960s were -6.92 ma-1 and -0.51 ma-1 respectively, increasing to -28.96 ma-1 and -24.84 ma-1 since 2010. The same trend (at differing magnitudes) has been observed within each latitudinal degree band, and for glaciers of differing frontal widths. Further observations of glacier changes and links to climate change are revealed on the poster.

  5. Glacier Ecosystems of Himalaya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohshima, S.; Yoshimura, Y.; Takeuchi, N.; Segawa, T.; Uetake, J.

    2012-12-01

    Biological activity on glaciers has been believed to be extremely limited. However, we found various biotic communities specialized to the glacier environment in various part of the world, such as Himalaya, Patagonia and Alaska. Some of these glacier hosted biotic communities including various cold-tolerant insects, annelids and copepods that were living in the glacier by feeding on algae and bacteria growing in the snow and ice. Thus, the glaciers are simple and relatively closed ecosystems sustained by the primary production in the snow and ice. In this presentation, we will briefly introduce glacier ecosystems in Himalaya; ecology and behavior of glacier animals, altitudinal zonation of snow algal communities, and the structure of their habitats in the glacier. Since the microorganisms growing on the glacier surface are stored in the glacial strata every year, ice-core samples contain many layers with these microorganisms. We showed that the snow algae in the ice-core are useful for ice core dating and could be new environmental signals for the studies on past environment using ice cores. These microorganisms in the ice core will be important especially in the studies of ice core from the glaciers of warmer regions, in which chemical and isotopic contents are often heavily disturbed by melt water percolation. Blooms of algae and bacteria on the glacier can reduce the surface albedo and significantly affect the glacier melting. For example, the surface albedo of some Himalayan glaciers was significantly reduced by a large amount of dark-colored biogenic material (cryoconite) derived from snow algae and bacteria. It increased the melting rates of the surfaces by as much as three-fold. Thus, it was suggested that the microbial activity on the glacier could affect the mass balance and fluctuation of the glaciers.

  6. Fast-flowing outlet glaciers on Svalbard ice caps

    SciTech Connect

    Dowdeswell, J.A. ); Collin, R.L. )

    1990-08-01

    Four well-defined outlet glaciers are present on the 2510 km{sup 2} cap of Vestfonna in Nordaustlandet, Svalbard. Airborne radio echo sounding and aerial-photograph and satellite-image analysis methods are used to analyze the morphology and dynamics of the ice cap and its component outlet glaciers. The heavily crevassed outlets form linear depressions in the ice-cap surface and flow an order of magnitude faster than the ridges of uncrevassed ice between them. Ice flow on the ridges is accounted for by internal deformation alone, whereas rates of outlet glacier flow require basal motion. One outlet has recently switched into and out of a faster mode of flow. Rapid terminal advance, a change from longitudinal compression to tension, and thinning in the upper basin indicate surge behavior. Observed outlet glacier discharge is significantly greater than current inputs of mass of the ice cap, indicating that present rates of flow cannot be sustained under the contemporary climate.

  7. Malaspina Glacier, Alaska, Perspective with Landsat Overlay

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    Malaspina Glacier in southeastern Alaska is considered the classic example of a piedmont glacier. Piedmont glaciers occur where valley glaciers exit a mountain range onto broad lowlands, are no longer laterally confined, and spread to become wide lobes. Malaspina Glacier is actually a compound glacier, formed by the merger of several valley glaciers, the most prominent of which seen here are Agassiz Glacier (left) and Seward Glacier (right). In total, Malaspina Glacier is up to 65 kilometers (40 miles) wide and extends up to 45 kilometers (28 miles) from the mountain front nearly to the sea.

    This perspective view was created from a Landsat satellite image and an elevation model generated by the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM). Landsat views both visible and infrared light, which have been combined here into a color composite that generally shows glacial ice in light blue, snow in white, vegetation in green, bare rock in grays and tans, and the ocean (foreground) in dark blue. The back (northern) edge of the data set forms a false horizon that meets a false sky.

    Glaciers erode rocks, carry them down slope, and deposit them at the edge of the melting ice, typically in elongated piles called moraines. The moraine patterns at Malaspina Glacier are quite spectacular in that they have huge contortions that result from the glacier crinkling as it gets pushed from behind by the faster-moving valley glaciers.

    Glaciers are sensitive indicators of climatic change. They can grow and thicken with increasing snowfall and/or decreased melting. Conversely, they can retreat and thin if snowfall decreases and/or atmospheric temperatures rise and cause increased melting. Landsat imaging has been an excellent tool for mapping the changing geographic extent of glaciers since 1972. The elevation measurements taken by SRTM in February 2000 now provide a near-global baseline against which future non-polar region glacial thinning or thickening can be assessed.

  8. Glaciers of Asia

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williams, Richard S., Jr.; Ferrigno, Jane G.

    2010-01-01

    This chapter is the ninth to be released in U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1386, Satellite Image Atlas of Glaciers of the World, a series of 11 chapters. In each of the geographic area chapters, remotely sensed images, primarily from the Landsat 1, 2, and 3 series of spacecraft, are used to analyze the specific glacierized region of our planet under consideration and to monitor glacier changes. Landsat images, acquired primarily during the middle to late 1970s and early 1980s, were used by an international team of glaciologists and other scientists to study various geographic regions and (or) to discuss related glaciological topics. In each glacierized geographic region, the present areal distribution of glaciers is compared, wherever possible, with historical information about their past extent. The atlas provides an accurate regional inventory of the areal extent of glacier ice on our planet during the 1970s as part of a growing international scientific effort to measure global environmental change on the Earth?s surface. The chapter is divided into seven geographic parts and one topical part: Glaciers of the Former Soviet Union (F-1), Glaciers of China (F-2), Glaciers of Afghanistan (F?3), Glaciers of Pakistan (F-4), Glaciers of India (F-5), Glaciers of Nepal (F?6), Glaciers of Bhutan (F-7), and the Paleoenvironmental Record Preserved in Middle-Latitude, High-Mountain Glaciers (F-8). Each geographic section describes the glacier extent during the 1970s and 1980s, the benchmark time period (1972-1981) of this volume, but has been updated to include more recent information. Glaciers of the Former Soviet Union are located in the Russian Arctic and various mountain ranges of Russia and the Republics of Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Kazakstun. The Glacier Inventory of the USSR and the World Atlas of Ice and Snow Resources recorded a total of 28,881 glaciers covering an area of 78,938 square kilometers (km2). China includes many of the mountain-glacier

  9. Afghanistan Glacier Diminution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shroder, J. F.; Bishop, M.; Haritashya, U.; Olsenholler, J.

    2008-12-01

    Glaciers in Afghanistan represent a late summer - early fall source of melt water for late season crop irrigation in a chronically drought-torn region. Precise river discharge figures associated with glacierized drainage basins are generally unavailable because of the destruction of hydrological gauging stations built in pre-war times although historic discharge data and prior (1960s) mapped glacier regions offer some analytical possibilities. The best satellite data sets for glacier-change detection are declassified Cornona and Keyhole satellite data sets, standard Landsat sources, and new ASTER images assessed in our GLIMS (Global Land Ice Measurements from Space) Regional Center for Southwest Asia (Afghanistan and Pakistan). The new hyperspectral remote sensing survey of Afghanistan completed by the US Geological Survey and the Afghanistan Ministry of Mines offers potential for future detailed assessments. Long-term climate change in southwest Asia has decreased precipitation for millennia so that glaciers, rivers and lakes have all declined from prehistoric and historic highs. As many glaciers declined in ice volume, they increased in debris cover until they were entirely debris-covered or became rock glaciers, and the ice was protected thereby from direct solar radiation, to presumably reduce ablation rates. We have made a preliminary assessment of glacier location and extent for the country, with selected, more-detailed, higher-resolution studies underway. In the Great Pamir of the Wakhan Corridor where the largest glaciers occur, we assessed fluctuations of a randomly selected 30 glaciers from 1976 to 2003. Results indicate that 28 glacier-terminus positions have retreated, and the largest average retreat rate was 36 m/yr. High albedo, non-vegetated glacier forefields formed prior to 1976, and geomorphological evidence shows apparent glacier-surface downwasting after 1976. Climatic conditions and glacier retreat have resulted in disconnection of tributary

  10. In Brief: Melting glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Showstack, Randy; Tretkoff, Ernie

    2010-12-01

    Glaciers in Patagonia and Alaska have been losing their mass, and for longer than glaciers elsewhere in the world, according to a 7 December report compiled by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). “Climate change is causing significant mass loss of glaciers in high mountains worldwide,” notes the report, which calls for accelerated research, monitoring, and modeling of glaciers and snow and their role in water supplies. The report “also highlights the vulnerability and exposure of people dependent upon [glacier-fed] rivers to floods, droughts and eventually shortages as a result of changes in the melting and freezing cycles linked with climate change and other pollution impacts,” according to UNEP executive director Achim Steiner. For more information, visit http://www.grida.no/publications/high­mountain-glaciers/.

  11. The thermophysics of glaciers

    SciTech Connect

    Zotikov, I.A.

    1986-01-01

    This volume presents the results of experimental and theoretical work on the thermodynamics of ice sheets and glaciers. The author has carried out extensive field work in both the Soviet Union and Antarctica over the last 25 years and has contributed to the understanding of the thermophysics of glaciers. The topics covered in this volume embrace heat flow measurement and temperature distributions in glaciers, the thermal drilling of glaciers, the melting and freezing of ice sheets, and other thermophysical problems. Also included are topics of relevance to glacial engineering.

  12. Icefall, Lambert Glacier, Antarctica

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    Image taken 12/2/2000: The Lambert Glacier in Antarctica, is the world's largest glacier. The focal point of this image is an icefall that feeds into the Lambert glacier from the vast ice sheet covering the polar plateau. Ice flows like water, albeit much more slowly. Cracks can be seen in this icefall as it bends and twists on its slow-motion descent 1300 feet (400 meters) to the glacier below. This Icefall can be found on Landsat 7 WRS Path 42 Row 133/134/135, center: -70.92, 69.15. To learn more about the Landsat satellite go to: landsat.gsfc.nasa.gov/

  13. Greenland outlet glacier dynamics from Extreme Ice Survey (EIS) photogrammetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hawbecker, P.; Box, J. E.; Balog, J. D.; Ahn, Y.; Benson, R. J.

    2010-12-01

    Time Lapse cameras fill gaps in our observational capabilities: 1. By providing much higher temporal resolution than offered by conventional airborne or satellite remote sensing. 2. While GPS or auto-theodolite observations can provide higher time resolution data than from photogrammetry, survival of these instruments on the hazardous glacier surface is limited, plus, the maintenance of such systems can be more expensive than the maintenance of a terrestrial photogrammetry installation. 3. Imagery provide a high spatial density of observations across the glacier surface, higher than is realistically available from GPS or other in-situ observations. 4. time lapse cameras provide observational capabilities in Eulerian and Lagrangian frames while GPS or theodolite targets, going along for a ride on the glacier, provide only Lagrangian data. Photogrammetry techniques are applied to a year-plus of images from multiple west Greenland glaciers to determine the glacier front horizontal velocity variations at hourly to seasonal time scales. The presentation includes comparisons between glacier front velocities and: 1. surface melt rates inferred from surface air temperature and solar radiation observations; 2. major calving events identified from camera images; 3. surface and near-surface ocean temperature; 4. land-fast sea ice breakup; 5. tidal variations; 6. supra-glacial melt lake drainage events observed in daily optical satellite imagery; and 7.) GPS data. Extreme Ice Survey (EIS) time lapse camera overlooking the Petermann glacier, installed to image glacier dynamics and to capture the predicted ice "island" detachment.

  14. Malaspina Glacier: a modern analog to the Laurentide Glacier in New England

    SciTech Connect

    Gustavson, T.C.; Boothroyd, J.C.

    1985-01-01

    The land-based temperate Malaspina Glacier is a partial analog to the late Wisconsinan Laurentide Ice Sheet that occupied New England and adjacent areas. The Malaspina occupies a bedrock basin similar to basins occupied by the margin of the Laurentide Ice Sheet. Ice lobes of the Malaspina are similar in size to end moraine lobes in southern New England and Long Island,New York. Estimated ice temperature, ablation rates, surface slopes and meltwater discharge per unit of surface area for the Laurentide Ice Sheet are similar to those for the Malaspina Glacier. In a simple hydrologic-fluvial model for the Malaspina Glacier meltwater moves towards the glacier bed and down-glacier along intercrystalline pathways, crevasses and moulins, and a series of tunnels. Regolith and bedrock at the glacier floor, which are eroded and transported by subglacial and englacial streams, are the sources of essentially all fluvio-lacustrine sediment on the Malaspina Foreland. Supraglacial eskers containing coarse gravels occur as much as 100 m above the glacier bed and are evidence that bedload can be lifted hydraulically. Subordinant amounts of sediment are contributed to outwash by small surface streams draining the ice margin. By analogy a similar hydrologic-fluvial system existed along the southeastern margin of the Laurentide Ice Sheet. Subglacial regolith and bedrock eroded from beneath the Laurentide Ice Sheet by meltwater was also the source of most glaciofluvial and glaciolacustrine deposits in southern New England, not sediment carried to the surface of the ice sheet along shear planes and washed off the glacier by meltwater.

  15. Islands uncovered by melting polar ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, Mohi

    Thawing glaciers north of Norway's Svalbard archipelago have revealed at least two unmapped and unclaimed islands, one roughly the size of a basketball court, according to a 20 August Reuters report. In addition, information released in August by the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center indicated that with one month left in the melting season, Arctic sea ice is already below the record minimum. "Reductions of snow and ice are happening at an alarming rate," said Norwegian Environment Minister Helen Bjoernoy. She suggested that these observations may indicate that the loss of sea ice is perhaps accelerating faster than predicted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which warned in February that summer sea ice could almost vanish by the end of this century.

  16. Byrd Glacier, Antarctica

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2008-11-17

    Byrd Glacier is a major glacier in Antarctica; it drains an extensive area of the polar plateau and flows eastward between the Britannia Range and the Churchill Mountains to discharge into the Ross Ice Shelf. This image is from NASA Terra satellite.

  17. HORSESHOE CURVE IN GLACIER POINT ROAD NEAR GLACIER POINT. HALF ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    HORSESHOE CURVE IN GLACIER POINT ROAD NEAR GLACIER POINT. HALF DOME AT CENTER REAR. SAME VIEW AT CA-157-2. LOOKING NNE. GIS: N-37' 43 44.3 / W-119 34 14.1 - Glacier Point Road, Between Chinquapin Flat & Glacier Point, Yosemite Village, Mariposa County, CA

  18. 2. HORSESHOE CURVE IN GLACIER POINT ROAD NEAR GLACIER POINT. ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    2. HORSESHOE CURVE IN GLACIER POINT ROAD NEAR GLACIER POINT. HALF DOME AT CENTER REAR. LOOKING NNE. GIS N-37 43 44.3 / W-119 34 14.1 - Glacier Point Road, Between Chinquapin Flat & Glacier Point, Yosemite Village, Mariposa County, CA

  19. Dynamic interactions between glacier and glacial lake in the Bhutan Himalaya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsutaki, S.; Fujita, K.; Yamaguchi, S.; Sakai, A.; Nuimura, T.; Komori, J.; Takenaka, S.; Tshering, P.

    2012-04-01

    A number of supraglacial lakes formed on the termini of debris-covered glaciers in the Bhutan Himalaya as a result of glacier retreat due to climate change. The terminal part of the lake-terminating glaciers flow faster than that of the land-terminating glaciers because the basal ice motion is enhanced by high subglacial water pressure generated by lake water. Increased ice flux caused by the accelerated glacier flow could be dissipated through the calving process which reduced the glacier thickness. It is important to understand the interaction between lake formation and glacier dynamics. Although glacier flow velocity has been measured by remote-sensing analysis in several regions of the Himalayas, glacier thinning rates have not been observed by neither in-situ nor remote-sensing approaches. The lack of field data raises limitation to interpretations for glacier dynamics. We investigate the influence of the presence/absence of glacial lakes on glacier dynamics and changes in surface elevation. We study two debris-covered glaciers in the Lunana region, the Bhutan Himalaya. Thorthormi Glacier is a land-terminating glacier with some supraglacial lakes while Lugge Glacier is a lake-terminating glaciers. We surveyed the surface elevation of debris-covered areas of the two glaciers in 2004 and 2011 by a differential GPS. Change in surface elevation of the lake-terminating Lugge Glacier (-5.4--2.4 m yr-1) was much more negative than that of the land-terminating Thorthormi Glacier (-3.3-0.6 m yr-1). Surface flow speed of the Thorthormi Glacier measured during 2002-2004 was faster in the upper reaches (~90 m yr-1) and reduced toward the downstream (40 m yr-1). In contrast, the surface flow speed at the Lugge Glacier measured in the same periods was 40-55 m yr-1 and the greatest at the lower most part. Observed spatial distribution of surface flow velocity at both glaciers were evaluated by a two-dimensional numerical flow model. Calculated emergence velocities are 1

  20. ISD--Faster, Better, Easier.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sink, Darryl L.

    2002-01-01

    Considers the practice of Instructional Systems Design (ISD) as it exists in the real world and how it is being modified and used to produce training solutions that are faster, better, and easier. Focuses on Web-based training and discusses needs assessment, content analysis, design strategies, revision strategies, and project management.…

  1. Quantifying Glacier Runoff Contribution to Nooksack River, WA in 2013-15

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pelto, M. S.

    2015-12-01

    The 2015 hydrologic year has been posited in terms of temperature as an analog for the future for the Pacific Northwest (PNW), with record warm air temperatures, warm stream temperatures and low summer streamflow. The high stream temperatures and low flows are both threats to salmon in the watershed and are offset in part by glacier runoff. Freezing levels were the highest relative to the median in the key winter months of January through May, 2015. The snowline on glaciers across the region in early July is typically at levels observed 1-2 months later in the melt season. This increases ablation since glacier ice melts faster than glacier snowcover. Very high 2015 ablation rates are occurring because glacier runoff in the PNW is primarily controlled by ablation season temperatures. In July, 2015 streamflow in the North Fork Nooksack River has been at a record low for the 77 years of record, which would increase the role of glacier runoff in stream discharge. We have measured both glacier runoff and ablation on glaciers in the North Fork Nooksack River basin during the summers of 2013-15 that allows determination of the percent of total stream discharge contributed by glaciers. In 2014 the glacier contribution exceeded 40% of total streamflow on 21 days all occurring in Aug. and Sept. Here we will present the results of 2013-2015 glacier runoff observations and the 1984-2015 mass balance observations to put in context 2015 results from our ongoing field work this summer.

  2. Glacier Area Change: a Global Compilation of Published Rates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cogley, J. G.

    2016-12-01

    Publications reporting measurements of glacier shrinkage (reduction of area) now number nearly 500, yet these measurements are not accessible in any centralized archive. I have compiled all available measured rates of shrinkage, and here I explore their combined potential for yielding insights into change in the terrestrial cryosphere as a whole. Previous work has shown that the problem of survey dates that differ from study to study can be solved with quantifiable uncertainty by interpolating measured areas to fixed dates at pentadal intervals. Interpolation to fill gaps in spatial coverage has been shown to be unprofitable, but for this difficulty a promising remedy is to exploit the widely-observed tendency for smaller glaciers to shrink at faster percentage rates. Thus when results from overlapping study regions are averaged within the cells of the 0.5° geographical grid of the Randolph Glacier Inventory, which is also a source for glacier size distributions, clear patterns of spatially variable rates of shrinkage emerge in many glacierized regions. Regional- and larger-scale changes of shrinkage rate with time are harder to identify with confidence. This can be attributed to large uncertainties in the area measurements themselves and in the dependence of shrinkage rates on initial size. Nevertheless, systematic analysis of glacier area change holds great promise as a complement to systematic analysis of glacier mass change.

  3. Glacier changes on South Georgia since the late-19th century documented in historical photographs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordon, John; Haynes, Valerie

    2014-05-01

    South Georgia is one of the few landmasses in the Southern Ocean. It provides a crucial geographical datapoint for glacier responses to climate change over different timescales. As part of an ongoing glacier inventory of the island, we are compiling a database of historical glacier photographs. Since the late 19th century, the island has been visited by numerous scientific and survey expeditions, as well as being the land-base for a major whaling industry. Historical photographs of the island are available from the late-19th century, beginning with the 1882-83 German International Polar Year Expedition. Many more exist from the 20th century, notably from the South Georgia Surveys in the 1950s. An assessment of the value of the photographs indicates that spatial coverage is variable, many lack reference features to pinpoint glacier positions and, in the case of smaller glaciers, the presence of snowcover makes it difficult to define the ice edge. Nevertheless, the photographs provide useful corroboration of more advanced glacier positions during the late-19th century and recession of smaller mountain and valley glaciers during the mid-20th century, while larger tidewater and sea-calving glaciers generally remained in relatively advanced positions until the 1980s. Since then, nearly all the glaciers have retreated; some of these retreats have been dramatic and a number of small mountain glaciers have fragmented or disappeared. The response of the glaciers can be related to synoptic-scale warming, particularly since the 1950s, moderated by individual glacier geometry and topography.

  4. Malaspina Glacier, Alaska

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-28

    The ice of a piedmont glacier spills from a steep valley onto a relatively flat plain, where it spreads out unconstrained like pancake batter. Elephant Foot Glacier in northeastern Greenland is an excellent example; it is particularly noted for its symmetry. But the largest piedmont glacier in North America (and possibly the world) is Malaspina in southeastern Alaska. On September 24, 2014, the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8 acquired this image of Malaspina Glacier. The main source of ice comes from Seward Glacier, located at the top-center of this image. The Agassiz and Libbey glaciers are visible on the left side, and the Hayden and Marvine glaciers are on the right. The brown lines on the ice are moraines—areas where soil, rock, and other debris have been scraped up by the glacier and deposited at its sides. Where two glaciers flow together, the moraines merge to form a medial moraine. Glaciers that flow at a steady speed tend to have moraines that are relatively straight. But what causes the dizzying pattern of curves, zigzags, and loops of Malaspina’s moraines? Glaciers in this area of Alaska periodically “surge,”meaning they lurch forward quickly for one to several years. As a result of this irregular flow, the moraines at the edges and between glaciers can become folded, compressed, and sheared to form the characteristic loops seen on Malaspina. For instance, a surge in 1986 displaced moraines on the east side of Malaspina by as much as 5 kilometers (3 miles). NASA Earth Observatory image by Jesse Allen, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey. Caption by Kathryn Hansen. Credit: NASA Earth Observatory NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission

  5. Susitna Glacier, Alaska

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-28

    NASA image acquired August 27, 2009 Like rivers of liquid water, glaciers flow downhill, with tributaries joining to form larger rivers. But where water rushes, ice crawls. As a result, glaciers gather dust and dirt, and bear long-lasting evidence of past movements. Alaska’s Susitna Glacier revealed some of its long, grinding journey when the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA’s Terra satellite passed overhead on August 27, 2009. This satellite image combines infrared, red, and green wavelengths to form a false-color image. Vegetation is red and the glacier’s surface is marbled with dirt-free blue ice and dirt-coated brown ice. Infusions of relatively clean ice push in from tributaries in the north. The glacier surface appears especially complex near the center of the image, where a tributary has pushed the ice in the main glacier slightly southward. A photograph taken by researchers from the U.S. Geological Survey (archived by the National Snow and Ice Data Center) shows an equally complicated Susitna Glacier in 1970, with dirt-free and dirt-encrusted surfaces forming stripes, curves, and U-turns. Susitna flows over a seismically active area. In fact, a 7.9-magnitude quake struck the region in November 2002, along a previously unknown fault. Geologists surmised that earthquakes had created the steep cliffs and slopes in the glacier surface, but in fact most of the jumble is the result of surges in tributary glaciers. Glacier surges—typically short-lived events where a glacier moves many times its normal rate—can occur when melt water accumulates at the base and lubricates the flow. This water may be supplied by meltwater lakes that accumulate on top of the glacier; some are visible in the lower left corner of this image. The underlying bedrock can also contribute to glacier surges, with soft, easily deformed rock leading to more frequent surges. NASA Earth Observatory image created by Jesse Allen and Robert

  6. Getz Ice Shelf, West Antarctica: Little glacier speed increase despite basal ice shelf melting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alley, K. E.; Scambos, T. A.

    2013-12-01

    The Getz Ice Shelf, stretching along ~500 km of coastline in the Amundsen Sea Sector of West Antarctica, occupies a region of changing climatic and oceanic conditions. Climatically, the region is influenced by the Amundsen Sea Low, a mean atmospheric circulation feature of West Antarctica that has slowly increased in intensity over the past several decades. Oceanographically, the shelf is affected by intrusions of Antarctic Circumpolar Deep Water, which are currently melting the shelf from below at a rate of 4.3 × 0.4 meters of water per year. Recent results from gravity-based assessments of mass change in the region indicate significant mass loss for the entire Getz ice drainage area, and altimetry studies of grounded ice in the Getz Ice Shelf catchment area show significant elevation loss since the 1990s. Our study examines the history of ice velocities from 1972-present on the Getz Ice Shelf, with particular attention to the ice shelf edge and the grounding zone area during the last decade. The shelf and grounded ice are characterized by relatively narrow zones of faster outflow and steep grounded ice surface slopes. The fastest outflow speeds are found toward the western edge at DeVicq Glacier, typically 800-1000 ma-1 near the ice edge and 400-800 ma-1 at the grounding line. Slower speeds towards the east are generally 250-500 ma-1 at the ice edge and 150-400 ma-1 near the grounding line. Despite significant basal melt and thinning of grounded ice, the Getz Ice Shelf has exhibited only modest accelerations: ~20% near the grounding line in the DeVicq Glacier region, ~35% at the far eastern edge, and <10% across central sections of the shelf. This contrasts with the nearly 50% flow speed increase of Pine Island Glacier between 1972 and 2012, and >100% for the adjacent Smith Glacier between 1992 and 2008. We postulate that steep slopes in the grounded ice flow just above the grounding line imply high basal shear stresses for the feeder glaciers and therefore

  7. Retreating glacier fronts on the Antarctic Peninsula over the past half-century

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cook, A.J.; Fox, A.J.; Vaughan, D.G.; Ferrigno, J.G.

    2005-01-01

    The continued retreat of ice shelves on the Antarctic Peninsula has been widely attributed to recent atmospheric warming, but there is little published work describing changes in glacier margin positions. We present trends in 244 marine glacier fronts on the peninsula and associated islands over the past 61 years. Of these glaciers, 87% have retreated and a clear boundary between mean advance and retreat has migrated progressively southward. The pattern is broadly compatible with retreat driven by atmospheric warming, but the rapidity of the migration suggests that this may not be the sole driver of glacier retreat in this region.

  8. Context for the Recent Massive Petermann Glacier Calving Event

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Falkner, Kelly K.; Melling, Humfrey; Münchow, Andreas M.; Box, Jason E.; Wohlleben, Trudy; Johnson, Helen L.; Gudmandsen, Preben; Samelson, Roger; Copland, Luke; Steffen, Konrad; Rignot, Eric; Higgins, Anthony K.

    2011-04-01

    On 4 August 2010, about one fifth of the floating ice tongue of Petermann Glacier (also known as “Petermann Gletscher”) in northwestern Greenland calved (Figure 1). The resulting “ice island” had an area approximately 4 times that of Manhattan Island (about 253±17 square kilometers). The ice island garnered much attention from the media, politicians, and the public, who raised concerns about downstream implications for shipping, offshore oil and gas operations, and possible connections to Arctic and global warming. Does this event signal a change in the glacier's dynamics? Or can it be characterized as part of the glacier's natural variability? Understanding the known historical context of this event allows scientists and the public to judge its significance.

  9. Patagonia Glacier, Chile

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2001-07-21

    This ASTER image was acquired on May 2, 2000 over the North Patagonia Ice Sheet, Chile near latitude 47 degrees south, longitude 73 degrees west. The image covers 36 x 30 km. The false color composite displays vegetation in red. The image dramatically shows a single large glacier, covered with crevasses. A semi-circular terminal moraine indicates that the glacier was once more extensive than at present. ASTER data are being acquired over hundreds of glaciers worldwide to measure their changes over time. Since glaciers are sensitive indicators of warming or cooling, this program can provide global data set critical to understand climate change. This image is located at 46.5 degrees south latitude and 73.9 degrees west longitude. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA02670

  10. Ablation of Martian glaciers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moore, Henry J.; Davis, Philip A.

    1987-01-01

    Glacier like landforms are observed in the fretted terrain of Mars in the latitude belts near + or - 42 deg. It was suggested that sublimation or accumulation-ablation rates could be estimated for these glaciers if their shapes were known. To this end, photoclinometric profiles were obtained of a number of these landforms. On the basis of analyses of these profiles, it was concluded that ice is chiefly ablating from these landforms that either are inactive rock-glaciers or have materials within them that are moving exceedingly slowly at this time. These conclusions are consistent with other geologic information. The analyses were performed using a two-dimensional model of an isothermal glacier.

  11. GLACIER Express Rack Setup

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2010-09-01

    ISS024-E-012995 (1 Sept. 2010) --- NASA astronaut Tracy Caldwell Dyson, Expedition 24 flight engineer, works with the General Laboratory Active Cryogenic ISS Experiment Refrigerator (GLACIER) in the Destiny laboratory of the International Space Station.

  12. Rift in Antarctic Glacier: a Unique Chance to Study Ice Shelf Retreat

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howat, Ian M.; Jezek, Ken; Studinger, Michael; Macgregor, Joseph A.; Paden, John; Floricioiu, Dana; Russell, Rob; Linkswiler, Matt; Dominguez, Roseanne T.

    2012-01-01

    It happened again, but this time it was caught in the act. During the last week of September 2011 a large transverse rift developed across thefloating terminus of West Antarcticas PineIsland Glacier, less than 5 years after its lastlarge calving event, in 2007 (Figure 1). PineIsland Glaciers retreat has accelerated substantiallyin the past 2 decades, and it is nowlosing 50 gigatons of ice per year, or roughly 25 of Antarcticas total annual contributionto sea level rise [Rignot et al., 2008]. The glaciers recent accelerated retreat is likely triggered by ocean warming and increased submarine melting. As such, it is of significant interest to glaciologists and of heightened societal relevance.

  13. Bathymetric Controls On Observed Tidewater Glacier Retreat In Northwest Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Porter, D. F.; Tinto, K. J.; Boghosian, A.; Cochran, J. R.; Bell, R. E.

    2013-12-01

    contact with more warm water, is flowing faster and experiencing larger mass loss over the past decade. Such broad correlations between grounding line depths and mass wastage are a starting point in an effort to understand the variability of observed retreat of outlet glaciers in northern Greenland.

  14. Malaspina Glacier, Alaska

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2002-02-26

    This image from the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) instrument on NASA's Terra satellite covers an area of 55 by 40 kilometers (34 by 25 miles) over the southwest part of the Malaspina Glacier and Icy Bay in Alaska. The composite of infrared and visible bands results in the snow and ice appearing light blue, dense vegetation is yellow-orange and green, and less vegetated, gravelly areas are in orange. According to Dr. Dennis Trabant (U.S. Geological Survey, Fairbanks, Alaska), the Malaspina Glacier is thinning. Its terminal moraine protects it from contact with the open ocean; without the moraine, or if sea level rises sufficiently to reconnect the glacier with the ocean, the glacier would start calving and retreat significantly. ASTER data are being used to help monitor the size and movement of some 15,000 tidal and piedmont glaciers in Alaska. Evidence derived from ASTER and many other satellite and ground-based measurements suggests that only a few dozen Alaskan glaciers are advancing. The overwhelming majority of them are retreating. This ASTER image was acquired on June 8, 2001. With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region, and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER will image Earth for the next six years to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA03475

  15. Estimation of Shie Glacier Surface Movement Using Offset Tracking Technique with Cosmo-Skymed Images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Q.; Zhou, W.; Fan, J.; Yuan, W.; Li, H.; Sousa, J. J.; Guo, Z.

    2017-09-01

    Movement is one of the most important characteristics of glaciers which can cause serious natural disasters. For this reason, monitoring this massive blocks is a crucial task. Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) can operate all day in any weather conditions and the images acquired by SAR contain intensity and phase information, which are irreplaceable advantages in monitoring the surface movement of glaciers. Moreover, a variety of techniques like DInSAR and offset tracking, based on the information of SAR images, could be applied to measure the movement. Sangwang lake, a glacial lake in the Himalayas, has great potentially danger of outburst. Shie glacier is situated at the upstream of the Sangwang lake. Hence, it is significant to monitor Shie glacier surface movement to assess the risk of outburst. In this paper, 6 high resolution COSMO-SkyMed images spanning from August to December, 2016 are applied with offset tracking technique to estimate the surface movement of Shie glacier. The maximum velocity of Shie glacier surface movement is 51 cm/d, which was observed at the end of glacier tongue, and the velocity is correlated with the change of elevation. Moreover, the glacier surface movement in summer is faster than in winter and the velocity decreases as the local temperature decreases. Based on the above conclusions, the glacier may break off at the end of tongue in the near future. The movement results extracted in this paper also illustrate the advantages of high resolution SAR images in monitoring the surface movement of small glaciers.

  16. Accelerating retreat and high-elevation thinning of glaciers in central Spitsbergen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Małecki, Jakub

    2016-06-01

    Svalbard is a heavily glacier-covered archipelago in the Arctic. Dickson Land (DL), in the central part of the largest island, Spitsbergen, is relatively arid and, as a result, glaciers there are relatively small and restricted mostly to valleys and cirques. This study presents a comprehensive analysis of glacier changes in DL based on inventories compiled from topographic maps and digital elevation models for the Little Ice Age (LIA) maximum, the 1960s, 1990, and 2009/2011. Total glacier area has decreased by ˜ 38 % since the LIA maximum, and front retreat increased over the study period. Recently, most of the local glaciers have been consistently thinning in all elevation bands, in contrast to larger Svalbard ice masses which remain closer to balance. The mean 1990-2009/2011 geodetic mass balance of glaciers in DL is among the most negative from the Svalbard regional means known from the literature.

  17. Malaspina Glacier, Alaska, Anaglyph with Landsat Overlay

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    This anaglyph view of Malaspina Glacier in southeastern Alaska was created from a Landsat satellite image and an elevation model generated by the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM). Malaspina Glacier is considered the classic example of a piedmont glacier. Piedmont glaciers occur where valley glaciers exit a mountain range onto broad lowlands, are no longer laterally confined, and spread to become wide lobes. Malaspina Glacier is actually a compound glacier, formed by the merger of several valley glaciers, the most prominent of which seen here are Agassiz Glacier (left) and Seward Glacier (right). In total, Malaspina Glacier is up to 65 kilometers (40 miles) wide and extends up to 45 kilometers (28 miles) from the mountain front nearly to the sea.

    Glaciers erode rocks, carry them down slope, and deposit them at the edge of the melting ice, typically in elongated piles called moraines. The moraine patterns at Malaspina Glacier are quite spectacular in that they have huge contortions that result from the glacier crinkling as it gets pushed from behind by the faster-moving valley glaciers.

    Numerous other features of the glaciers and the adjacent terrain are clearly seen when viewing this image at full resolution. The series of tonal arcs on Agassiz Glacier's extension onto the piedmont are called 'ogives.' These arcs are believed to be seasonal features created by deformation of the glacier as it passes over bedrock irregularities at differing speeds through the year. Assuming one light-and-dark ogive pair per year, the rate of motion of the glacial ice can be estimated (in this case, about 200 meters per year where the ogives are most prominent). Just to the west, moraine deposits abut the eroded bedrock terrain, forming a natural dam that has created a lake. Near the northwest corner of the scene, a recent landslide has deposited rock debris atop a small glacier. Sinkholes are common in many areas of the moraine deposits. The sinkholes form when

  18. The Glaciers of HARMONIE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mottram, Ruth; Gleeson, Emily; Pagh Nielsen, Kristian

    2016-04-01

    Developed by the large ALADIN-HIRLAM consortium, the numerical weather prediction (NWP) model system HARMONIE is run by a large number of national weather services and research institutions in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa for weather forecasting. It is now being adopted for climate research purposes as a limited area model in a form known as HCLIM. It is currently run for a number of domains, mostly in Europe but also including Greenland, at a very high resolution (~2.5 km). HARMONIE is a convection permitting non-hydrostatic model that includes the multi-purpose SURFEX surface model. By improving the characterization of glacier surfaces within SURFEX we show that weather forecast errors over both the Greenland ice sheet and over Icelandic glaciers can be significantly reduced. The improvements also facilitate increasingly accurate ice melt and runoff computations, which are important both for ice surface mass balance estimations and hydropower forecasting. These improvements will also benefit the operational HARMONIE domains that cover the Svalbard archipelago, the Alps and the Scandinavian mountain glaciers. Future uses of HCLIM for these regions, where accurately characterizing glacial terrain will be crucial for climate and glaciological applications, are also expected to benefit from this improvement. Here, we report the first results with a new glacier surface scheme in the HARMONIE model, validated with observations from the PROMICE network of automatic weather stations in Greenland. The scheme upgrades the existing surface energy balance over glaciers by including a new albedo parameterization for bare glacier ice and appropriate coefficients for calculating the turbulent fluxes. In addition the snow scheme from the SURFEX land surface module has been upgraded to allow the retention and refreezing of meltwater in the snowpack. These changes allow us to estimate surface mass balance over glaciers at a range of model resolutions that can take full

  19. Cryospheric science: Asia's glacier changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farinotti, Daniel

    2017-09-01

    Mass changes in High Mountain Asia's glaciers have been under dispute for almost a decade. An analysis of satellite data archives provides an observation-based mass budget for every single glacier in the region.

  20. Greenland Glacier Albedo Variability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    The program for Arctic Regional Climate Assessment (PARCA) is a NASA-funded project with the prime goal of addressing the mass balance of the Greenland ice sheet. Since the formal initiation of the program in 1995, there has been a significant improvement in the estimates of the mass balance of the ice sheet. Results from this program reveal that the high-elevation regions of the ice sheet are approximately in balance, but the margins are thinning. Laser surveys reveal significant thinning along 70 percent of the ice sheet periphery below 2000 m elevations, and in at least one outlet glacier, Kangerdlugssuaq in southeast Greenland, thinning has been as much as 10 m/yr. This study examines the albedo variability in four outlet glaciers to help separate out the relative contributions of surface melting versus ice dynamics to the recent mass balance changes. Analysis of AVHRR Polar Pathfinder albedo shows that at the Petermann and Jakobshavn glaciers, there has been a negative trend in albedo at the glacier terminus from 1981 to 2000, whereas the Stor+strommen and Kangerdlugssuaq glaciers show slightly positive trends in albedo. These findings are consistent with recent observations of melt extent from passive microwave data which show more melt on the western side of Greenland and slightly less on the eastern side. Significance of albedo trends will depend on where and when the albedo changes occur. Since the majority of surface melt occurs in the shallow sloping western margin of the ice sheet where the shortwave radiation dominates the energy balance in summer (e.g. Jakobshavn region) this region will be more sensitive to changes in albedo than in regions where this is not the case. Near the Jakobshavn glacier, even larger changes in albedo have been observed, with decreases as much as 20 percent per decade.

  1. Climate regime of Asian glaciers revealed by GAMDAM glacier inventory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakai, A.; Nuimura, T.; Fujita, K.; Takenaka, S.; Nagai, H.; Lamsal, D.

    2015-05-01

    Among meteorological elements, precipitation has a large spatial variability and less observation, particularly in high-mountain Asia, although precipitation in mountains is an important parameter for hydrological circulation. We estimated precipitation contributing to glacier mass at the median elevation of glaciers, which is presumed to be at equilibrium-line altitude (ELA) such that mass balance is zero at that elevation, by tuning adjustment parameters of precipitation. We also made comparisons between the median elevation of glaciers, including the effect of drifting snow and avalanche, and eliminated those local effects. Then, we could obtain the median elevation of glaciers depending only on climate to estimate glacier surface precipitation. The calculated precipitation contributing to glacier mass can elucidate that glaciers in arid high-mountain Asia receive less precipitation, while much precipitation makes a greater contribution to glacier mass in the Hindu Kush, the Himalayas, and the Hengduan Shan due to not only direct precipitation amount but also avalanche nourishment. We classified glaciers in high-mountain Asia into summer-accumulation type and winter-accumulation type using the summer-accumulation ratio and confirmed that summer-accumulation-type glaciers have a higher sensitivity than winter-accumulation-type glaciers.

  2. The health of glaciers: Recent changes in glacier regime

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Meier, M.F.; Dyurgerov, M.B.; McCabe, G.J.

    2003-01-01

    Glacier wastage has been pervasive during the last century; small glaciers and those in marginal environments are disappearing, large mid-latitude glaciers are shrinking slightly, and arctic glaciers are warming. Net mass balances during the last 40 years are predominately negative and both winter and summer balances (accumulation and ablation) and mass turnover are increasing, especially after 1988. Two principal components of winter balance time-series explain about 50% of the variability in the data. Glacier winter balances in north and central Europe correlate with the Arctic Oscillation, and glaciers in western North America correlate with the Southern Oscillation and Northern Hemisphere air temperature. The degree of synchronization for distant glaciers relates to changes in time of atmospheric circulation patterns as well as differing dynamic responses.

  3. Svalbard surging glacier landsystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lovell, Harold; Benn, Douglas; Lukas, Sven; Flink, Anne

    2014-05-01

    The percentage of Svalbard glaciers thought to be of surge-type is somewhere between 13-90% according to different sources variously based on statistical analysis and observations of diagnostic glaciological and geomorphological features, e.g. looped moraines. Developing a better understanding of which of these figures, if either, is most realistic is important in the context of glacier dynamics and related contributions of small glaciers and ice caps to sea level change in the immediate future. We present detailed geomorphological assessments of the margins of several known surge-type glaciers in Svalbard in order to update and improve the existing framework by which they are identified, and to provide a foundation for future reassessments of the surge-type glacier population based on distinct landform-sediment assemblages. Three landsystems are proposed: (1) Surges of small valley glaciers produce a prominent ice-cored latero-frontal moraine at their surge maximum and are characterised by an inner zone of ice stagnation terrain (hummocky topography, kettle lakes, debris flows) with no or only very few poorly-defined bedforms (crevasse squeeze ridges, eskers and flutes) and no recessional moraines. Many of these glaciers may have surged in the past but show no signs that they have the capability to do so again in the future. (2) Larger land-terminating glaciers, often with several tributaries, typically produce a push moraine complex which contains evidence for multiple advances, as identified from ridge-meltwater channel relationships. The inner zone often contains a large lagoon, partly dammed by the push moraine complex, and widespread ice stagnation terrain. Crevasse squeeze ridges, eskers and flutes are well-defined but small and limited in number and distribution. (3) Surges of large tidewater glaciers produce distinctive, often multi-generational, landform assemblages both in submarine and lateral terrestrial positions. The well-preserved submarine record

  4. Modeling the Rock Glacier Cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, R. S.; Anderson, L. S.

    2016-12-01

    Rock glaciers are common in many mountain ranges in which the ELA lies above the peaks. They represent some of the most identifiable components of today's cryosphere in these settings. Their oversteepened snouts pose often-overlooked hazards to travel in alpine terrain. Rock glaciers are supported by avalanches and by rockfall from steep headwalls. The winter's avalanche cone must be sufficiently thick not to melt entirely in the summer. The spatial distribution of rock glaciers reflects this dependence on avalanche sources; they are most common on lee sides of ridges where wind-blown snow augments the avalanche source. In the absence of rockfall, this would support a short, cirque glacier. Depending on the relationship between rockfall and avalanche patterns, "talus-derived" and "glacier-derived" rock glaciers are possible. Talus-derived: If the spatial distribution of rock delivery is similar to the avalanche pattern, the rock-ice mixture will travel an englacial path that is downward through the short accumulation zone before turning upward in the ablation zone. Advected debris is then delivered to the base of a growing surface debris layer that reduces the ice melt rate. The physics is identical to the debris-covered glacier case. Glacier-derived: If on the other hand rockfall from the headwall rolls beyond the avalanche cone, it is added directly to the ablation zone of the glacier. The avalanche accumulation zone then supports a pure ice core to the rock glacier. We have developed numerical models designed to capture the full range of glacier to debris-covered glacier to rock glacier behavior. The hundreds of meter lengths, tens of meters thicknesses, and meter per year speeds of rock glaciers are well described by the models. The model can capture both "talus-derived" and "glacier-derived" rock glaciers. We explore the dependence of glacier behavior on climate histories. As climate warms, a pure ice debris-covered glacier can transform to a much shorter rock

  5. Too Much Sitting Ages You Faster

    MedlinePlus

    ... Much Sitting Ages You Faster Cells of elderly sedentary women look much older than their actual age, ... Our study found cells age faster with a sedentary lifestyle. Chronological age doesn't always match biological ...

  6. Glacier generated floods

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Walder, J.S.; Fountain, A.G.; ,

    1997-01-01

    Destructive floods result from drainage of glacier-dammed lakes and sudden release of water stored within glaciers. There is a good basis - both empirical and theoretical - for predicting the magnitude of floods from ice-dammed lakes, although some aspects of flood initiation need to be better understood. In contrast, an understanding of floods resulting from release of internally stored water remains elusive, owing to lack of knowledge of how and where water is stored and to inadequate understanding of the complex physics of the temporally and spatially variable subglacial drainage system.Destructive floods result from drainage of glacier-dammed lakes and sudden release of water stored within glaciers. There is a good basis - both empirical and theoretical - for predicting the magnitude of floods from ice-dammed lakes, although some aspects of flood initiation need to be better understood. In contrast, an understanding of floods resulting from release of internally stored water remains elusive, owing to lack of knowledge of how and where water is stored and to inadequate understanding of the complex physics of the temporally and spatially variable subglacial drainage system.

  7. Alaska Glaciers and Rivers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2007-01-01

    The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA's Terra satellite captured this image on October 7, 2007, showing the Alaska Mountains of south-central Alaska already coated with snow. Purple shadows hang in the lee of the peaks, giving the snow-clad land a crumpled appearance. White gives way to brown on the right side of the image where the mountains yield to the lower-elevation Susitna River Valley. The river itself cuts a silver, winding path through deep green forests and brown wetlands and tundra. Extending from the river valley, are smaller rivers that originated in the Alaska Mountains. The source of these rivers is evident in the image. Smooth white tongues of ice extend into the river valleys, the remnants of the glaciers that carved the valleys into the land. Most of the water flowing into the Gulf of Alaska from the Susitna River comes from these mountain glaciers. Glacier melt also feeds glacier lakes, only one of which is large enough to be visible in this image. Immediately left of the Kahiltna River, the aquamarine waters of Chelatna Lake stand out starkly against the brown and white landscape.

  8. MELFI / GLACIER Transfers

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2013-03-12

    ISS034-E-067263 (12 March 2013) --- Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, right, assists fellow Expedition 34 flight engineer and NASA astronaut Tom Marshburn during Minus Eighty-Degree Laboratory Freezer for International Space Station (MELFI)operations. The two are doing transfers of samples connected to the General Laboratory Active Cryogenic ISS Experiment Refrigerator or GLACIER in the U.S. lab Destiny.

  9. Step-change in retreat rates on Novaya Zemlya outlet glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carr, Rachel; Bell, Heather; Killick, Rebecca; Holt, Tom

    2017-04-01

    Arctic ice masses have rapidly lost ice from the mid-1990s, through a combination of negative surface mass balance and accelerated ice discharge from marine-terminating outlet glaciers. In the past decade, substantial mass deficits have been identified on Novaya Zemlya (NVZ), Russian High Arctic, and its outlet glaciers began to retreat rapidly, from 2000 onwards. However, little is known about longer-term glacier behaviour on NVZ, meaning we have limited context for their recent acceleration in retreat. Here, we greatly extend the available record of glacier retreat, and assess multi-decadal glacier response to forcing between 1976 and 2015, using remotely sensed data. Using statistical changepoint analysis, we demonstrate a significant change in retreat rates for many glaciers, during the early 2000s. We also show that retreat slowed on numerous outlets from 2013 onwards, and that some glaciers even began to advance. NVZ glaciers have previously shown step-like changes in retreat rates, so we cannot determine whether this represents a longer-term trend or short-term slow-down, but it warrants future monitoring. We also assessed spatial patterns of retreat and found no significant differences in retreat rates according to coast or ice mass. Instead, the rate and temporal pattern of retreat were strongly dependant on terminus type: outlets terminating in lakes or the ocean retreated significantly faster than those ending on land. Interestingly, retreat rates on marine- and lake-terminating glaciers were not significantly different. However, the lake-terminating glaciers showed very little variation in retreat rates between glacier or over time, whereas the variability was very large on ocean-terminating glaciers. In terms of climatic controls, significant changes in Jul-Sep sea ice on both coasts of NVZ coincide with the onset of more rapid retreat, but there is large internnual variability in the data.

  10. Late nineteenth to early twenty-first century behavior of Alaskan glaciers as indicators of changing regional climate

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Molnia, B.F.

    2007-01-01

    Alaska's climate is changing and one of the most significant indications of this change has been the late 19th to early 21st century behavior of Alaskan glaciers. Weather station temperature data document that air temperatures throughout Alaska have been increasing for many decades. Since the mid-20th century, the average change is an increase of ?????2.0????C. In order to determine the magnitude and pattern of response of glaciers to this regional climate change, a comprehensive analysis was made of the recent behavior of hundreds of glaciers located in the eleven Alaskan mountain ranges and three island areas that currently support glaciers. Data analyzed included maps, historical observations, thousands of ground-and-aerial photographs and satellite images, and vegetation proxy data. Results were synthesized to determine changes in length and area of individual glaciers. Alaskan ground photography dates from 1883, aerial photography dates from 1926, and satellite photography and imagery dates from the early 1960s. Unfortunately, very few Alaskan glaciers have any mass balance observations. In most areas analyzed, every glacier that descends below an elevation of ?????1500??m is currently thinning and/or retreating. Many glaciers have an uninterrupted history of continuous post-Little-Ice-Age retreat that spans more than 250??years. Others are characterized by multiple late 19th to early 21st century fluctuations. Today, retreating and/or thinning glaciers represent more than 98% of the glaciers examined. However, in the Coast Mountains, St. Elias Mountains, Chugach Mountains, and the Aleutian Range more than a dozen glaciers are currently advancing and thickening. Many currently advancing glaciers are or were formerly tidewater glaciers. Some of these glaciers have been expanding for more than two centuries. This presentation documents the post-Little-Ice-Age behavior and variability of the response of many Alaskan glaciers to changing regional climate. ?? 2006.

  11. Geoengineering Outlet Glaciers and Ice Streams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolovick, Michael

    2017-04-01

    Mass loss from Greenland and Antarctica is highly sensitive to the presence of warm ocean water that drives melting of ice shelves and marine terminated glaciers. This warm water resides offshore at depth and accesses the grounding line through deep but narrow troughs and fjords. Here, we investigate the possibility of blocking warm water transport through these choke points with an artificial sill. Using a simple width-averaged model of ice stream flow coupled to a buoyant-plume model of submarine melt, we find that grounding line retreat and sea level rise can be delayed or reversed for hundreds of years if warm water is prevented from accessing outlet glaciers and ice-shelf cavities. Glaciers with a floating shelf exhibit a strong response to the presence of the artificial sill regardless of our choice of calving law, while tidewater glaciers require a strong linkage between submarine melt and iceberg calving for the artificial sill to have an effect. As a result of this difference and as a result of differing degrees of overdeepening in the basal topography, Antarctica and Greenland present very different societal cost-benefit analyses. Intervention in Greenland would be low-cost and low-reward: the volume of the artificial sill is comparable to existing large public works projects such as the Dubai Islands or the Suez Canal, but the magnitude of averted sea-level rise is small, the success of the intervention depends on the choice of calving law, and the glaciers return to their non-geoengineered trajectories within one to two centuries. Intervention in Antarctica, on the other hand, would be high-cost and high-reward: the volume of the artificial sill is one to two orders of magnitude greater, but the averted sea level rise is much larger, the intervention is successful regardless of the choice of calving law, and the ice streams remain far from their non-geoengineered trajectories throughout the 1000 year duration of our model runs. In both cases, an

  12. Islands of the Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dowdeswell, Julian; Hambrey, Michael

    2002-11-01

    The Arctic islands are characterized by beautiful mountains and glaciers, in which the wildlife lives in delicate balance with its environment. It is a fragile region with a long history of exploration and exploitation that is now experiencing rapid environmental change. All of these themes are explored in Islands of the Arctic, a richly illustrated volume with superb photographs from the Canadian Arctic archipelago, Greenland, Svalbard and the Russian Arctic. It begins with the various processes shaping the landscape: glaciers, rivers and coastal processes, the role of ice in the oceans and the weather and climate. Julian Dowdeswell and Michael Hambrey describe the flora and fauna in addition to the human influences on the environment, from the sustainable approach of the Inuit, to the devastating damage inflicted by hunters and issues arising from the presence of military security installations. Finally, they consider the future prospects of the Arctic islands Julian Dowdeswell is Director of the Scott Polar Research Institute and Professor of Physical Geography at 0he University of Cambridge. He received the Polar Medal from Queen Elizabeth for his contributions to the study of glacier geophysics and the Gill Memorial Award from the Royal Geographical Society. He is chair of the Publications Committee of the International Glaciological Society and head of the Glaciers and Ice Sheets Division of the International Commission for Snow and Ice. Michael Hambrey is Director of the Centre for Glaciology at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. A past recipient of the Polar Medal, he was also given the Earth Science Editors' Outstanding Publication Award for Glaciers (Cambridge University Press). Hambrey is also the author of Glacial Environments (British Columbia, 1994).

  13. Assessing the Response of Alaska's Glaciers to Post-Little Ice Age Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molnia, B. F.

    2001-12-01

    A comprehensive survey of the eleven mountain ranges and three island areas in Alaska that presently support glaciers was conducted to determine how glaciers in each area have responded to post-Little Ice Age (LIA) climate change. Today, glaciers cover 5 percent of Alaska, about 75,000 sq. km., range in elevation from 6,000 m to below sea level, and span latitudes from south of 55 degrees N to north of 69 degrees N. During the LIA, Alaskan glaciers expanded significantly, covering 10 percent more area than today. Many different types of data were used to construct baselines and determine glacier change. These include: published descriptions of glaciers (1794 - 2000), historic and modern maps (1794 - 2000), aerial photography (1926 - 2001), ground photography (1884 - 2001), airborne radar (1981 - 1991), satellite radar (1978 - 1998), space photography (1984 - 1994), multi-spectral satellite imagery (1972 - 2001), aerial reconnaissance and field observations by the author (1968 - 2001), and various types of proxy data. Data available varied for each region and glacier. Every mountain range and island group investigated is characterized by significant glacier retreat, thinning, and/or stagnation, especially at lower elevations. At some locations, glaciers have completely disappeared during the twentieth century. In other areas, retreat that started as early as the early eighteenth century, has continued into the twenty-first century. Ironically, in several areas, retreat is resulting in the number of glaciers is actually increasing, but the volume and area of ice is decreasing. The key survey findings are: ALEXANDER ARCHIPELAGO, KODIAK ISLAND, ALEUTIAN ISLANDS: every glacier examined showed evidence of thinning and retreat. Some have disappeared since last being mapped in the mid-twentieth century; COAST MOUNTAINS, ST. ELIAS MOUNTAINS, CHUGACH MOUNTAINS, KENAI MOUNTAINS, WRANGELL MOUNTAINS, ALASKA RANGE, AND THE ALEUTIAN RANGE: more than 95 percent of glaciers ending

  14. Glacier and Climate Studies West Gulkana Glacier and Environs, Alaska

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-09-01

    Columbia and Alberta). The target glaciers ranged from Blue Glacier on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula through Lemon Creek Glacier in 2 VAIAGM # W iri at...free land masses were plotted at a contour interval of 25 m. The inked manuscript was photographically superimposed on scribe and peel -coat materials...by the Department of Graphic Arts, Defense Mapping School. As part of a classroom training exercise, they further scribed the contours, peeled ice and

  15. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    Calving front of the Perito Moreno Glacier (Argentina). Contrary to the majority of the glaciers from the southern Patagonian ice field, the Perito Moreno Glacier is currently stable. It is also one of the most visited glaciers in the world. To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: Etienne Berthier, Université de Toulouse NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  16. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2013-01-01

    Calving front of the Perito Moreno Glacier (Argentina). Contrary to the majority of the glaciers from the southern Patagonian ice field, the Perito Moreno Glacier is currently stable. It is also one of the most visited glaciers in the world. To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: Etienne Berthier, Université de Toulouse NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  17. Modeling Ocean-Forced Changes in Smith Glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lilien, D.; Joughin, I. R.; Smith, B. E.

    2014-12-01

    Glaciers along the Amundsen Coast are changing rapidly, which has drawn substantial scientific and public attention. Modeling and observation suggest warm-water intrusion and consequent melting as the cause of observed changes, and that unstoppable retreat may have already been triggered in some drainages. While Pine Island and Thwaites Glaciers are losing the most mass and have been the predominant objects study, other systems, particularly Smith, Pope and Kohler Glaciers and the corresponding Dotson and Crosson Shelves, are changing more rapidly relative to their size. Though smaller, these glaciers still have potentially large implications for overall regional dynamics as their beds connect below sea level to surrounding basins. In particular, the long, deep trough of Smith Glacier nearly links to the large eastern tributary of Thwaites, potentially causing rapid changes of Smith to have significant impact on the continuing retreat of Thwaites.We implemented a numerical model in Elmer/Ice, an open-source, full-Stokes, finite-element software package, to investigate the response of the Smith/Pope/Kohler system to different initial conditions. We use various parameterizations of sub-shelf melting with constant magnitude to examine the sensitivity of overall dynamics to melt distribution. Because melt distribution affects lateral buttressing and upstream grounded areas, it is potentially an important control on ice shelf and outlet glacier dynamics. Through comparison to the most recent velocity data, we evaluate the ability of differing melt parameterizations to reproduce the behavior currently seen in Smith/Pope/Kohler glaciers. In addition, we investigate the effect of using different years of velocity data with constant elevation input when initiating model runs. By comparing results over the satellite record to initiation with synchronous observations, we assess the accuracy of the often necessary practice of using differently timestamped datasets.

  18. Mt. Kilimanjaro's Receding Glaciers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Mt. Kilimanjaro (Tanzania), the highest point in all Africa, was photographed by the crew of Space Shuttle mission STS-97 on December 2, 2000 (STS097-701-17). Kilimanjaro (Kilima Njaro or 'shining mountain' in Swahili) is capped by glaciers on its southern and southwestern flanks. The glaciers and snow cap covered a far greater area ten years prior to the view above. Compare the photograph above with a photograph of Kilimanjaro taken in November 1990 by the Space Shuttle mission STS-38 crew. Shuttle photograph provided by the Earth Sciences and Image Analysis Laboratory, Johnson Space Center. Additional photographs taken by astronauts and cosmonauts can be viewed via the NASA - JSC Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth.

  19. Ice speed of a calving glacier modulated by small fluctuations in basal water pressure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugiyama, Shin; Skvarca, Pedro; Naito, Nozomu; Enomoto, Hiroyuki; Tsutaki, Shun; Tone, Kenta; Marinsek, Sebastián; Aniya, Masamu

    2011-09-01

    Ice flow acceleration has played a crucial role in the rapid retreat of calving glaciers in Alaska, Greenland and Antarctica. Glaciers that calve in water flow much faster than those that terminate on land, as a result of enhanced basal ice motion where basal water pressure is high. However, a scarcity of subglacial observations in calving glaciers limits a mechanistic understanding. Here we present high-frequency measurements of ice speed and basal water pressures from Glaciar Perito Moreno, a fast-flowing calving glacier in Patagonia. We measured water pressure in boreholes drilled at a site where the glacier is 515+/-5m thick, and where more than 60% of the ice is below the level of proglacial lakes. We found that the mean basal water pressure was about 95% of the pressure imposed by the weight of the overlying ice. Moreover, changes in basal water pressure by a few per cent drove nearly 40% of the variations in ice flow speed. The ice speed was strongly correlated to air temperature, suggesting that glacier motion was modulated by water pressure changes as meltwater entered the system. We conclude that basal water pressure in calving glaciers is important for glacier dynamics, and closely connected to climate conditions.

  20. Recent glacier variations in Mongolia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsutomu, Kadota; Gombo, Davaa

    2007-10-01

    Glacier monitoring enables us to detect influences of global warming in high mountain regions. To initiate the establishment of a glacier-monitoring network in northern Eurasia, we studied recent glacier variations in Mongolia using topographical maps, aerial photographs and satellite images (Corona and Landsat). Glaciers in Mongolia exist in the Altai mountains which span approximately 1400 km within Russia, China and Mongolia. Four regions were selected to form the study area: Tavan Bogd region, Turgen massif, Kharkhiraa massif and Tsambagarav massif. During the period from the 1940s to 2000 or from 1968 to 2000, the glaciers in these regions lost 10.2%, 19.3%, 28.0% and 28.8% of their area respectively. The glaciers in the Tavan Bogd, Kharkhiraa and Turgen regions were found to have been almost stationary since 1987/88, while those in Tsambagarav massif showed no significant change in area since 1963. Shrinkage of the glaciers occurred between 1945/68 and 1987/88 in the former regions and between 1948 and 1963 in the latter. Mongolian glaciers seem to behave differently from other glaciers which have been experiencing steady shrinkage recently.

  1. Surge-like behavior at the non-surge type Matanuska Glacier, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furuya, M.; Abe, T.

    2014-12-01

    Seasonal glacier velocity changes are attributed to subglacial slip associated with water pressure changes that occur because of the seasonal variability of meltwater input. Abe and Furuya (2014) reported winter speed-up signals and their downglacier propagation at a number of glaciers near the border of Alaska and Yukon, based on ALOS/PALSAR radar image analyses. Here we perform the similar analyses at the Chugach mountain range of South Central Alaska, and report the spatial-temporal evolution of the Matanuska Glacier. Matanuska Glacier is the largest accessible glacier in Alaska with its nearly 40 km length and 5 km width near the terminus. Comparing the winter velocity images in 2007, 2008 and 2010, those in 2010 were about 1.5-2 times faster than those during the previous two years. In addition, comparing the fall and winter velocities, winter velocities were apparently faster at every 2007-2008, 2009-2010, and 2010-2011 season. These data indicate winter speed-up or mini-surge signals even at a temperate and non-surgetype Matanuska Glacier. We also examine the spatial-temporal elevation changes, using data from the LiDAR altimeter in the Icebridge mission, and found significant elevation increase near the terminus. Winter speed-up may not be uncommon at Alaskan/Yukon glaciers. Lingle and Fatland (2003) detected faster speed in winter than in fall at non-surging Seward Glacier in the St. Elias Mountains; this is the only published and unambiguous report of winter speed-up, to our knowledge. Combined with earlier glacier hydrological studies, Lingle and Fatland proposed englacial water storage and gravity-driven water flow toward the bed in winter regardless of whether a given glacier is surge-type or not, and considered that the capacity of englacial water storage would control if a given glacier was surge-type or not. We consider that our measurements are complementary to Lingle and Fatland's observations and lend further support for their hypothesis. Basal

  2. Radiocarbon Dates Link Marine Incursion and Neoglacial Ice Terminus Advance With Tlingit Ethnohistory and Archeology in Lower Glacier Bay

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Connor, C. L.; Monteith, D.; Howell, W.; Strevelar, G.; Leirer, M.

    2004-12-01

    Radiocarbon dates from wood, organic sediments, and marine shells were collected from eroded beach terraces and upper beach sediments in the Beardslee Islands and Berg Bay in Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska. These provide a timetable for the the outwash plain construction and final advance of the Late Neoglacial glacier front over this outwash plain into lower Glacier Bay. On Kidney Island in the central Beardslee Islands, marine sediments containing Macoma baltica shells were deposited 4310 +/- 40 years BP. Outwash from advancing up-bay glaciers, buried these sediments and created terrestrial substrates upon which forests existed by 1630 +/- 60 BP and 1300 +/- 50 yrs BP. Final ice advance over this forested outwash plain occurred after 430 +/- 60 BP (1430 to 1510 AD) on Kidney Island. This ice arrived at the southern edge of Lester Island in Bartlett Cove after 370 +/- 50 BP (1440 to 1520 AD); preceding the arrival of George Vancouver in 1794 AD. In nearby Icy Straits, archeological investigations have yielded some of the oldest dates of human occupation in the region at 10,180 +/- 800 uncorrected years BP (Ackerman, 1968). In Glacier Bay's ethno-historically rich areas of Bartlett Cove, the Beardslee Islands and Berg Bay the Huna people have names for places and narratives that describe late Neoglacial landscapes. S'é Shuyee is the "area at the end of the glacial mud", L'awsha Shakee Aan "town on top of the glacial sand dunes". There are accounts of villages overrun by surging glaciers, and a name for the bay Sit' eeti Geeyi that translates as "bay in place of the glacier". These dates provide linkage between the geological, archeological, and ethnohistorical evidence that chronicles the history of the Huna people in this dynamic glacier marine environment.

  3. Listening to Glaciers: Passive hydroacoustics near marine-terminating glaciers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pettit, E.C.; Nystuen, J.A.; O'Neel, Shad

    2012-01-01

    The catastrophic breakup of the Larsen B Ice Shelf in the Weddell Sea in 2002 paints a vivid portrait of the effects of glacier-climate interactions. This event, along with other unexpected episodes of rapid mass loss from marine-terminating glaciers (i.e., tidewater glaciers, outlet glaciers, ice streams, ice shelves) sparked intensified study of the boundaries where marine-terminating glaciers interact with the ocean. These dynamic and dangerous boundaries require creative methods of observation and measurement. Toward this effort, we take advantage of the exceptional sound-propagating properties of seawater to record and interpret sounds generated at these glacial ice-ocean boundaries from distances safe for instrument deployment and operation.

  4. FASTER Test Reactor Preconceptual Design Report

    SciTech Connect

    Grandy, C.; Belch, H.; Brunett, A. J.; Heidet, F.; Hill, R.; Hoffman, E.; Jin, E.; Mohamed, W.; Moisseytsev, A.; Passerini, S.; Sienicki, J.; Sumner, T.; Vilim, R.; Hayes, S.

    2016-03-31

    The FASTER test reactor plant is a sodium-cooled fast spectrum test reactor that provides high levels of fast and thermal neutron flux for scientific research and development. The 120MWe FASTER reactor plant has a superheated steam power conversion system which provides electrical power to a local grid allowing for recovery of operating costs for the reactor plant.

  5. FASTER test reactor preconceptual design report summary

    SciTech Connect

    Grandy, C.; Belch, H.; Brunett, A.; Heidet, F.; Hill, R.; Hoffman, E.; Jin, E.; Mohamed, W.; Moisseytsev, A.; Passerini, S.; Sienicki, J.; Sumner, T.; Vilim, R.; Hayes, Steven

    2016-02-29

    The FASTER reactor plant is a sodium-cooled fast spectrum test reactor that provides high levels of fast and thermal neutron flux for scientific research and development. The 120MWe FASTER reactor plant has a superheated steam power conversion system which provides electrical power to a local grid allowing for recovery of operating costs for the reactor plant.

  6. Chernobyl fallout on Alpine glaciers

    SciTech Connect

    Ambach, W.; Rehwald, W.; Blumthaler, M.; Eisner, H.; Brunner, P.

    1989-01-01

    Measurements of the gross beta activity of snow samples from four Alpine glaciers contaminated by radioactive fallout from the Chernobyl nuclear accident and a gamma-spectrum analysis of selected samples are reported. The results are discussed with respect to possible risks to the population from using meltwater from these glaciers as drinking water.

  7. Chernobyl fallout on Alpine glaciers.

    PubMed

    Ambach, W; Rehwald, W; Blumthaler, M; Eisner, H; Brunner, P

    1989-01-01

    Measurements of the gross beta activity of snow samples from four Alpine glaciers contaminated by radioactive fallout from the Chernobyl nuclear accident and a gamma-spectrum analysis of selected samples are reported. The results are discussed with respect to possible risks to the population from using meltwater from these glaciers as drinking water.

  8. Malaspina Glacier, Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    This image from the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) instrument on NASA's Terra satellite covers an area of 55 by 40 kilometers (34 by 25 miles) over the southwest part of the Malaspina Glacier and Icy Bay in Alaska. The composite of infrared and visible bands results in the snow and ice appearing light blue, dense vegetation is yellow-orange and green, and less vegetated, gravelly areas are in orange. According to Dr. Dennis Trabant (U.S. Geological Survey, Fairbanks, Alaska), the Malaspina Glacier is thinning. Its terminal moraine protects it from contact with the open ocean; without the moraine, or if sea level rises sufficiently to reconnect the glacier with the ocean, the glacier would start calving and retreat significantly. ASTER data are being used to help monitor the size and movement of some 15,000 tidal and piedmont glaciers in Alaska. Evidence derived from ASTER and many other satellite and ground-based measurements suggests that only a few dozen Alaskan glaciers are advancing. The overwhelming majority of them are retreating.

    This ASTER image was acquired on June 8, 2001. With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region, and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER will image Earth for the next six years to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet.

    ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18,1999, on NASA's Terra satellite. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products. Dr. Anne Kahle at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., is the U.S. science team leader; Bjorn Eng of JPL is the project manager. ASTER is the only high-resolution imaging sensor on Terra. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Earth Science Enterprise, along-term research and

  9. Potential climatic refugia in semi-arid, temperate mountains: plant and arthropod assemblages associated with rock glaciers, talus slopes, and their forefield wetlands, Sierra Nevada, California, USA

    Treesearch

    Constance I. Millar; Robert D. Westfall; Angela Evenden; Jeffrey G. Holmquist; Jutta Schmidt-Gengenbach; Rebecca S. Franklin; Jan Nachlinger; Diane L. Delany

    2015-01-01

    Unique thermal and hydrologic regimes of rock-glacier and periglacial talus environments support little-studied mountain ecosystems. We report the first studies of vascular plant and arthropod diversity for these habitats in the central Sierra Nevada, California, USA. Surfaces of active rock glaciers develop scattered islands of soil that provide habitat for vegetation...

  10. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    Calving front of the Upsala Glacier (Argentina). This glacier has been thinning and retreating at a rapid rate during the last decades – from 2006 to 2010, it receded 43.7 yards (40 meters) per year. During summer 2012, large calving events prevented boat access to the glacier. To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: Etienne Berthier, Université de Toulouse NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  11. Patagonia Glacier, Chile

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    This ASTER images was acquired on May 2, 2000 over the North Patagonia Ice Sheet, Chile near latitude 47 degrees south, longitude 73 degrees west. The image covers 36 x 30 km. The false color composite displays vegetation in red. The image dramatically shows a single large glacier, covered with crevasses. A semi-circular terminal moraine indicates that the glacier was once more extensive than at present. ASTER data are being acquired over hundreds of glaciers worldwide to measure their changes over time. Since glaciers are sensitive indicators of warming or cooling, this program can provide global data set critical to understand climate change.

    This image is located at 46.5 degrees south latitude and 73.9 degrees west longitude.

    Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18, 1999, on NASA's Terra satellite. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products. Dr. Anne Kahle at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., is the U.S. Science team leader; Moshe Pniel of JPL is the project manager. ASTER is the only high resolution imaging sensor on Terra. The primary goal of the ASTER mission is to obtain high-resolution image data in 14 channels over the entire land surface, as well as black and white stereo images. With revisit time of between 4 and 16 days, ASTER will provide the capability for repeat coverage of changing areas on Earth's surface.

    The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER will provide scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping, and monitoring dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats, monitoring potentially active volcanoes, identifying crop stress, determining cloud

  12. Patagonia Glacier, Chile

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    This ASTER images was acquired on May 2, 2000 over the North Patagonia Ice Sheet, Chile near latitude 47 degrees south, longitude 73 degrees west. The image covers 36 x 30 km. The false color composite displays vegetation in red. The image dramatically shows a single large glacier, covered with crevasses. A semi-circular terminal moraine indicates that the glacier was once more extensive than at present. ASTER data are being acquired over hundreds of glaciers worldwide to measure their changes over time. Since glaciers are sensitive indicators of warming or cooling, this program can provide global data set critical to understand climate change.

    This image is located at 46.5 degrees south latitude and 73.9 degrees west longitude.

    Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18, 1999, on NASA's Terra satellite. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products. Dr. Anne Kahle at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., is the U.S. Science team leader; Moshe Pniel of JPL is the project manager. ASTER is the only high resolution imaging sensor on Terra. The primary goal of the ASTER mission is to obtain high-resolution image data in 14 channels over the entire land surface, as well as black and white stereo images. With revisit time of between 4 and 16 days, ASTER will provide the capability for repeat coverage of changing areas on Earth's surface.

    The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER will provide scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping, and monitoring dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats, monitoring potentially active volcanoes, identifying crop stress, determining cloud

  13. Break-up of the Thwaites Ice Tongue and its implication, Thwaites Glacier, West Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, S.; Kim, D.; Kim, J.

    2011-12-01

    Thwaites Glaciers (TG) is proved to be one of the most vulnerable sectors of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) because its inland sub-glacial topography slopes theoretically cause destabilization of the ice sheet. The recent studies also indicate that ice sheets in the Amundsen Sea are thinning and grounding lines are retreating rapidly due to warming of ocean temperature. In March 2002, a huge iceberg, named B-22, broke away from the Thwaites Ice Tongue in the Amunsen Sea and according to the MODIS images, it has been caught in the same region in contrast to other normal icebergs that break off from ice sheet and usually move freely along with ocean current. It is also observed that the advancing velocity of the ice tongue had been stayed constant. According to the recent publications, it can be inferred that that the bathymetry under the iceberg might have caused this. The MODIS images also show that the iceberg started to move in 2006 and correspondingly, the Thwaites Ice Tongue started to advance more quickly. In 2011, it is observed that the Thwaites Ice Tongue is breaking apart from the grounded ice sheet of Thwaites Glacier, and although calving is a normal process for floating ice shelves beyond a specific threshold, the break-up of the ice tongue in 2011 is abnormal in terms of carving rate and fracturing location. In this study, CryoSat-2 and ENVISAT Radar Altimeter (RA-2) data, provided by the European Space Agency, are used to verify the annual variation of the surface elevation as well as the retreat of grounding line of the ice tongue in the region where the break-up is speculated since 2002. It is suspected that the bathymetry, B-22A iceberg, and much warmer sea temperature in the Amundsen Sea are inter-related to cause faster thinning and retreat of grounding line of ice shelves. Similarly, it is asserted that Pine Island Glacier (PIG) might also be standing at a tip point where a break-up can happen in the near future. We are expected to carry

  14. Rapid Late Holocene glacier fluctuations reconstructed from South Georgia lake sediments using novel analytical and numerical techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Bilt, Willem; Bakke, Jostein; Werner, Johannes; Paasche, Øyvind; Rosqvist, Gunhild

    2016-04-01

    The collapse of ice shelves, rapidly retreating glaciers and a dramatic recent temperature increase show that Southern Ocean climate is rapidly shifting. Also, instrumental and modelling data demonstrate transient interactions between oceanic and atmospheric forcings as well as climatic teleconnections with lower-latitude regions. Yet beyond the instrumental period, a lack of proxy climate timeseries impedes our understanding of Southern Ocean climate. Also, available records often lack the resolution and chronological control required to resolve rapid climate shifts like those observed at present. Alpine glaciers are found on most Southern Ocean islands and quickly respond to shifts in climate through changes in mass balance. Attendant changes in glacier size drive variations in the production of rock flour, the suspended product of glacial erosion. This climate response may be captured by downstream distal glacier-fed lakes, continuously recording glacier history. Sediment records from such lakes are considered prime sources for paleoclimate reconstructions. Here, we present the first reconstruction of Late Holocene glacier variability from the island of South Georgia. Using a toolbox of advanced physical, geochemical (XRF) and magnetic proxies, in combination with state-of-the-art numerical techniques, we fingerprinted a glacier signal from glacier-fed lake sediments. This lacustrine sediment signal was subsequently calibrated against mapped glacier extent with the help of geomorphological moraine evidence and remote sensing techniques. The outlined approach enabled us to robustly resolve variations of a complex glacier at sub-centennial timescales, while constraining the sedimentological imprint of other geomorphic catchment processes. From a paleoclimate perspective, our reconstruction reveals a dynamic Late Holocene climate, modulated by long-term shifts in regional circulation patterns. We also find evidence for rapid medieval glacier retreat as well as a

  15. Uneven onset and pace of ice drawdown from the glaciers in the Amundsen Sea Sector, West Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konrad, H.; Gilbert, L.; Cornford, S. L.; Payne, A. J.; Hogg, A.; Muir, A.; Shepherd, A.

    2016-12-01

    Glaciers draining the Amundsen Sea Sector in West Antarctica have been observed to be in a state of widespread dynamical imbalance throughout the satellite era, manifesting in retreat, acceleration, and thinning of their grounded portions. Satellite altimetry observations of these glaciers have been continuously available since the early 1990s. This uninterrupted record now allows us to assess the glaciers' response to sub-ice shelf melting, which is thought to be the main driver of the imbalance in this part of Antarctica. We combine elevation measurements from ERS-1, ERS-2, Envisat, ICESat, and CryoSat-2 satellite altimetry missions to investigate the onset and pace of ice drawdown across the Amundsen Sea Sector by tracking threshold values of elevation rates upstream along various flowlines. Persistent drawdown from the western glaciers - Pope, Smith, and Kohler Glaciers - has started before the altimetry era. Pine Island Glacier responded around 1990 and Thwaites Glacier around 2000, leading to an approximately decadal delay between the onsets in these three main drainage basins of the area. Drawdown spreads slowly at rates below 6 km/yr along Pope, Smith, and Kohler Glaciers, due to their limited extent. The spreading of drawdown is most steady on Pine Island Glacier and occurs at a larger range of rates, specifically high (13 km/yr) along the tributaries draining the southeastern inner basin, possibly due to the basal setting. Drawdown on Thwaites Glacier is less pronounced due to the later onset. It spreads fastest along the central portions (13 km/yr) and slower along the marginal areas (6 km/yr), possibly due to slower velocities and lateral decay of longitudinal strain rates. The observed differences in drawdown onset and spatial variation in pace of inward drawdown migration can be used to constrain numerical models aiming at the quantification of the future imbalance of the respective glaciers.

  16. Glacier and Ice Shelves Studies Using Satellite SAR Interferometry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rignot, Eric

    1999-01-01

    Satellite radar interferometry is a powerful technique to measure the surface velocity and topography of glacier ice. On ice shelves, a quadruple difference technique separates tidal motion from the steady creep flow deformation of ice. The results provide a wealth of information about glacier grounding lines , mass fluxes, stability, elastic properties of ice, and tidal regime. The grounding line, which is where the glacier detaches from its bed and becomes afloat, is detected with a precision of a few tens of meters. Combining this information with satellite radar altimetry makes it possible to measure glacier discharge into the ocean and state of mass balance with greater precision than ever before, and in turn provide a significant revision of past estimates of mass balance of the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets. Analysis of creep rates on floating ice permits an estimation of basal melting at the ice shelf underside. The results reveal that the action of ocean water in sub-ice-shelf cavities has been largely underestimated by oceanographic models and is the dominant mode of mass release to the ocean from an ice shelf. Precise mapping of grounding line positions also permits the detection of grounding line migration, which is a fine indicator of glacier change, independent of our knowledge of snow accumulation and ice melting. This technique has been successfully used to detect the rapid retreat of Pine Island Glacier, the largest ice stream in West Antarctica. Finally, tidal motion of ice shelves measured interferometrically provides a modern, synoptic view of the physical processes which govern the formation of tabular icebergs in the Antarctic.

  17. Glacier and Ice Shelves Studies Using Satellite SAR Interferometry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rignot, Eric

    1999-01-01

    Satellite radar interferometry is a powerful technique to measure the surface velocity and topography of glacier ice. On ice shelves, a quadruple difference technique separates tidal motion from the steady creep flow deformation of ice. The results provide a wealth of information about glacier grounding lines , mass fluxes, stability, elastic properties of ice, and tidal regime. The grounding line, which is where the glacier detaches from its bed and becomes afloat, is detected with a precision of a few tens of meters. Combining this information with satellite radar altimetry makes it possible to measure glacier discharge into the ocean and state of mass balance with greater precision than ever before, and in turn provide a significant revision of past estimates of mass balance of the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets. Analysis of creep rates on floating ice permits an estimation of basal melting at the ice shelf underside. The results reveal that the action of ocean water in sub-ice-shelf cavities has been largely underestimated by oceanographic models and is the dominant mode of mass release to the ocean from an ice shelf. Precise mapping of grounding line positions also permits the detection of grounding line migration, which is a fine indicator of glacier change, independent of our knowledge of snow accumulation and ice melting. This technique has been successfully used to detect the rapid retreat of Pine Island Glacier, the largest ice stream in West Antarctica. Finally, tidal motion of ice shelves measured interferometrically provides a modern, synoptic view of the physical processes which govern the formation of tabular icebergs in the Antarctic.

  18. Aletsch Glacier, Switzerland

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2002-09-03

    Aletsch Glacier, the largest glacier of Europe, covers more than 120 square kilometers (more than 45 square miles) in southern Switzerland. At its eastern extremity lies a glacierlake, Mdrjelensee (2,350 meters/7,711 feet above sea level). To the west rises Aletschhorn (4,195 meters/13,763 feet), which was first climbed in 1859. The Rhone River flows along the southern flank of the mountains. This image was acquired on July 23, 2001 by the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA's Terra satellite. With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region, and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER will image Earth for the next 6 years to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet. ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18, 1999, on NASA's Terra satellite. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA03857

  19. Holocene record of glacier variability from lake sediments reveals tripartite climate history for Svalbard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Bilt, Willem; Bakke, Jostein; Vasskog, Kristian; D`Andrea, William; Bradley, Raymond; Olafsdottir, Sædis

    2016-04-01

    The Arctic is responding sensitively to ongoing global climate change, warming and moistening faster than any other region on the planet. Holocene proxy paleoclimate time series are increasingly used to put this amplified response in perspective by understanding Arctic climate processes beyond the instrumental period. Glaciers rapidly respond to climate shifts as demonstrated by their current demise around the world. This response has a composite climate signature, marked by shifts in hydroclimate (winter precipitation) as well as (summer) temperature. Attendant changes in glacier size are recorded by variations in glacigenic rock flour that may be deposited in downstream lakes. Here, we present a Holocene reconstruction of glacier activity, based on sediments from Hajeren, a glacier-fed lake on northwest Spitsbergen in the High Arctic Svalbard archipelago. Owing to undisturbed sediments and robust age control, we could resolve variability on a sub-centennial scale. To ensure the accurate detection of glacier activity, we applied a toolbox of physical, magnetic and geochemical proxies in conjunction with multivariate statistics. Our findings indicate a three-stage Holocene climate history for Svalbard, driving by melt water pulses, episodic Atlantic cooling and a decline in orbitally driven summer insolation. Correspondence between inferred advances, including a Holocene glacier maximum around 9.5 ka BP, suggests forcing by the melting LIS during the Early Holocene. Following a late Holocene Thermal Maximum around 7.4 ka BP, glaciers disappeared from the catchment. Glaciers reformed around 4.2 ka BP during the regional onset of the Neoglacial, supporting previous findings. This transition did, however, not mark the onset of persistent glacier activity in the catchment, but a series of centennial-scale cycles of growth and decay, including events around 3.3 and 1.1 ka BP. As orbitally driven insolation declined towards the present, the glaciation threshold

  20. 73X Faster Than a Speeding Bullet

    NASA Image and Video Library

    On Nov. 17, 2011, a NASA camera in Tullahoma, Tenn., saw a Leonid meteor -- moving 73 times faster than a bullet fired from an M-16 rifle -- as it burned up 71 miles above Nolensville, Tenn., at an...

  1. New Technology Makes Gene Mapping Cheaper, Faster

    MedlinePlus

    ... page: https://medlineplus.gov/news/fullstory_164255.html New Technology Makes Gene Mapping Cheaper, Faster: Study Researchers ... 10 years and cost $4 billion, but this new 3-D assembly method did the same in ...

  2. Outlet glacier response to the 2012 collapse of the Matusevich Ice Shelf, Severnaya Zemlya, Russian Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Willis, Michael J.; Melkonian, Andrew K.; Pritchard, Matthew E.

    2015-10-01

    The Matusevich Ice Shelf (MIS), located within the Severnaya Zemlya Archipelago in the Russian Arctic, rapidly broke apart between 10 August and 7 September 2012. We examine the response of the outlet glaciers that fed the MIS from local ice caps to the removal of the ice shelf. We use spaceborne laser altimetry and multiple optically derived digital elevation models to track ice surface elevation change rates (dh/dt) between 1984 and 2014. Glacier speeds are measured by pixel-tracking from optical and RADAR imagery between 2010 and 2014 and interferometric synthetic aperture radar in 1995 to compare precollapse and postcollapse velocities. We find that the three main outlet glaciers that fed the MIS are thinning an order of magnitude more rapidly than most of the rest of Severnaya Zemyla, based upon ICESat data from 2003 to 2009. Recent, 2012 to 2014 thinning rates are three to four times faster than the 30 year average thinning rate, calculated between 1984 and 2014. The springtime speeds of the largest outlet glacier (Issledovateley) have increased more than 200% at the terminus between April 2010 and April 2014. To date, changes in surface elevation (dh/dt) and velocity at the outlet glaciers near MIS are smaller than glacier responses to ice shelf collapse in Antarctica. It is possible that the MIS was already very weak prior to the 2012 collapse and unable to support back stress. Further observations are required to assess whether the thinning and nonmelt season glacier speeds are continuing to accelerate.

  3. New faster CHARMM molecular dynamics engine

    PubMed Central

    Hynninen, Antti-Pekka; Crowley, Michael F

    2014-01-01

    We introduce a new faster molecular dynamics (MD) engine into the CHARMM software package. The new MD engine is faster both in serial (i.e., single CPU core) and parallel execution. Serial performance is approximately two times higher than in the previous version of CHARMM. The newly programmed parallelization method allows the MD engine to parallelize up to hundreds of CPU cores. PMID:24302199

  4. Faster, Better, Cheaper - The Fallacy of MBSE?

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-11-01

    UNCLASSIFIED DSTO-GD-0734 3. Faster, Better, Cheaper – The Fallacy of MBSE ? – David Long Vitech Corporation Abstract Scope, time, and cost...cheaper was widely derided, and we once again returned to the model of “pick any two”. Today, with the rise of Model-Based Systems Engineering ( MBSE ...the concept of faster- better-cheaper has re-emerged, albeit under new monikers. The standard INCOSE MBSE briefing ( MBSE Workshop, February 2010

  5. UAVs for Glacier Mapping: Lessons Learned

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKinnon, T.; McKinnon, K. A.; Anderson, B.

    2014-12-01

    Using two different unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) mounted with cameras, we created a digital elevation model (DEM) of the lower 12 km^2 of Tasman Glacier, South Island, New Zealand in March 2014. The project served primarily as a proof-of-concept, and here we discuss the lessons learned, emphasizing the practical, logistical, and flight issues. We tested two different fixed-wing airframes -- a twin-boom tradition and flying wing; two different camera types, both consumer-grade RGB; and various combinations of RC and telemetry radios. We used both commercial and open-source photogrammetry software to create the mosaic and DEM imagery. Some of the most critical UAV-specific issues are: access to a launch/landing site, adequate landing zones, range, airspace contention with manned aircraft, and hardware reliability. While UAVs provide a lower-cost method for photogrammetry access, it also comes with a unique set of challenges.

  6. Water flow through temperate glaciers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fountain, A.G.; Walder, J.S.

    1998-01-01

    Understanding water movement through a glacier is fundamental to several critical issues in glaciology, including glacier dynamics, glacier-induced floods, and the prediction of runoff from glacierized drainage basins. to this end we have synthesized a conceptual model os water movement through a temperate glacier from the surface to the outlet stream. Processes that regulate the rate and distribution of water input at the glacier surface and that regulate water movement from the surface to the bed play important but commonly neglected roles in glacier hydrology. Where a glacier is covered by a layer of porous, permeable firn (the accumulation zone), the flux of water to the glacier interior varies slowly because the firn temporarily stores water and thereby smooths out variations in the supply rate. In the firn-free ablation zone, in contrast, the flux of water into the glacier depends directly on the rate of surface melt or rainfall and therefore varies greatly in time. Water moves from the surface to the bed through an upward branching arborescent network consisting of both steeply inclined conduits, formed by the enlargement of intergranular veins, and gently inclined conduits, sprqwned by water flow along the bottoms of near-surface fractures (crevasses). Englacial drainage conduits deliver water to the glacier bed at a linited number of points, probably a long distance downglacier of where water enters the glacier. Englacial conduits supplied from the accumulation zone are quasi steady state features that convey the slowly varying water flux delivered via the firn. their size adjusts so that they are usually full of water and flow is pressurized. In contrast, water flow in englacial conduits supplied from the ablation area is pressurized only near times of peak daily flow or during rainstorms; flow is otherwise in an open-channel configuration. The subglacial drainage system typically consists of several elements that are distinct both morpphologically and

  7. 3-D modelling of glacier calving processes (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Navarro, F. J.

    2010-12-01

    latter that computes the tensile deviatoric stress opening the crevasse using the full-stress solution; (iii) a further improvement based on finding the depth at which the model-computed tensile deviatoric stress, considered as a function of depth, equals the ice overburden closure pressure; (iv) an experiment that adds, to the above, the effect of a threshold strain rate required for crevasses initiation. We found that the improvements considered in experiments (ii) and (iii) were necessary to reproduce accurately the observed calving front. In ongoing work, we intend to apply our model in a prognostic mode, to predict the observed front position changes of Hansbreen, a tidewater glacier in Svalbard. REFERENCES: Benn, D.I., R.J. Hulton and R.H. Mottram. 2007. Calving laws, sliding laws and the stability of tidewater glaciers. Ann. Glaciol., 46, 126-130. Nye, J.F. 1957. The distribution of stress and velocity in glaciers and ice-sheets. Proc. Roy. Soc., Ser. A, 239(1216), 113-133. Otero, J., F.J. Navarro, C. Martín, M.L. Cuadrado and M.I. Corcuera. 2010. A three-dimensional calving model: numerical experiments on Johnsons Glacier, Livingston Island, Antarctica. J. Glaciol., 56(196), 200-214.

  8. Hispar Glacier on the run

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paul, Frank; Strozzi, Tazio; Schellenberger, Thomas; Kääb, Andreas

    2017-04-01

    The Karakoram Mountain Range is well known for its numerous surge-type and recently or currently surging glaciers. Latest analysis of time-series from satellite data has revealed several new insights in the related variability of glacier extents, flow velocities and elevation changes. As surge-type glaciers have their own dynamic playbook and show a very limited direct response to climatic forcing, it is important to correctly identify them when glacier changes are interpreted in climatic terms. One of the glaciers known to be influenced by surges from tributary glaciers but not surging itself is the 50 km long, debris-covered and comparably flat Hispar Glacier in the Hunza catchment (Pakistan). Its terminus is at the same location for more than 120 years and no signs of unusual activity were reported before. However, in late autumn of 2014 the entire middle section of the glacier started to increase its flow velocity from about 40 to 4000 m/yr by May 2015. The surge continued until spring 2016 with flow velocities around 1500-2000 m/yr and a sudden drop back to pre-surge levels in summer 2016. Thereby, a well-defined surge front advanced by about 3 km from May to July 2015 and a further 3 km afterwards. Animated time-series from archived Landsat images (OLI and ETM+) clearly show the mass wave traveling down-glacier over this period. The temporal variability of flow velocities has been captured with Sentinel 1 data acquired every 11 to 22 days starting from February 2015 and previous image pairs from Radarsat-2, ALOS PALSAR and Landsat 8. Results suggest that changes of the hydrologic regime are responsible for the observed seasonal variability. A further analysis of historic Corona reconissance satellite imagery from 1965 and 1969 revealed that the 2015/16 surge of Hispar Glacier seems not to be unprecedented, but should have occured in a similar way around 1960 and maybe several times before as numerous elongated surge marks indicate. They might have been

  9. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-28

    Melt water ponded at surface in the accumulation zone of Columbia Glacier, Alaska, in July 2008. To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: W. Tad Pfeffer, University of Colorado at Boulder NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  10. Glacier outburst floods from Ghulkin Glacier, upper Hunza Valley, Pakistan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richardson, S. D.; Quincey, D. J.

    2009-04-01

    Outburst floods from Ghulkin Glacier in 2008 caused localised damage to properties, land and infrastructure of Ghulkin village and to the Karakoram Highway in the upper Hunza Valley of northern Pakistan. The unexpected nature of the floods highlights a poor understanding of glacial flood potential related to advancing glaciers in the Karakoram. Here we describe the Ghulkin floods and examine the broader glaciological controls on flood generation. Ghulkin Glacier is an active mountain glacier, its steep (up to 12˚ ), debris-covered snout bound by a continuous latero-terminal moraine. Three separate outburst floods during May and June 2008 exited the right lateral moraine close to the glacier terminus, resulting in two separate flood paths; one flowing down the existing outwash fan that resulted in no damage and the other flowing directly through properties and land of Ghulkin village. In 2008, the snout of Ghulkin Glacier was overriding its terminal moraine, and local villagers report an associated increase in debris flows and rock fall since 2005. High surface velocities (of the order of 50 m a-1) near the terminus are associated with the current period of advance, and an increase in the number and size of transient supraglacial lakes during the melt season has been observed. Assessment of the processes and characteristics of the summer 2008 floods provides a conceptual model for local glacier hazards associated with advancing mountain glaciers in the Karakoram. Crevasses and seracs associated with the high flow velocities have steep, debris-free ice cliffs that melt rapidly during the summer ablation season and provide a route for the meltwater to enter the englacial drainage system. Meltwater is stored temporarily in supraglacial, and probably englacial, settings; whilst drainage is facilitated by the formation of new, or re-organisation of existing, conduits under the active ice conditions. The steep glacier surface gradient and active ice results in

  11. Accelerating Ice Loss from the Fastest Greenland and Antarctic Glaciers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thomas, R.; Frederick, E.; Li, J.; Krabill, W.; Manizade, S.; Paden, J.; Sonntag, J.; Swift, R.; Yungel, J.

    2011-01-01

    Ice discharge from the fastest glaciers draining the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets . Jakobshavn Isbrae (JI) and Pine Island Glacier (PIG). continues to increase, and is now more than double that needed to balance snowfall in their catchment basins. Velocity increase probably resulted from decreased buttressing from thinning (and, for JI, breakup) of their floating ice tongues, and from reduced basal drag as grounding lines on both glaciers retreat. JI flows directly into the ocean as it becomes afloat, and here creep rates are proportional to the cube of bed depth. Rapid thinning of the PIG ice shelf increases the likelihood of its breakup, and subsequent rapid increase in discharge velocity. Results from a simple model indicate that JI velocities should almost double to >20 km/a by 2015, with velocities on PIG increasing to >10 km/a after breakup of its ice shelf. These high velocities would probably be sustained over many decades as the glaciers retreat within their long, very deep troughs. Resulting sea ]level rise would average about 1.5 mm/a.

  12. Accelerating Ice Loss from the Fastest Greenland and Antarctic Glaciers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thomas, R.; Frederick, E.; Li, J.; Krabill, W.; Manizade, S.; Paden, J.; Sonntag, J.; Swift, R.; Yungel, J.

    2011-01-01

    Ice discharge from the fastest glaciers draining the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets . Jakobshavn Isbrae (JI) and Pine Island Glacier (PIG). continues to increase, and is now more than double that needed to balance snowfall in their catchment basins. Velocity increase probably resulted from decreased buttressing from thinning (and, for JI, breakup) of their floating ice tongues, and from reduced basal drag as grounding lines on both glaciers retreat. JI flows directly into the ocean as it becomes afloat, and here creep rates are proportional to the cube of bed depth. Rapid thinning of the PIG ice shelf increases the likelihood of its breakup, and subsequent rapid increase in discharge velocity. Results from a simple model indicate that JI velocities should almost double to >20 km/a by 2015, with velocities on PIG increasing to >10 km/a after breakup of its ice shelf. These high velocities would probably be sustained over many decades as the glaciers retreat within their long, very deep troughs. Resulting sea ]level rise would average about 1.5 mm/a.

  13. Glacier Primitive Area, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Granger, H.C.; Patten, L.L.

    1984-01-01

    A mineral survey of the Glacier Primitive Area and an adjoining area to the northwest was made in 1968 and 1969. The study area was mapped geologically, an aeromagnetic survey was made, a geochemical study was done, and known mineralized occurrences and claims were examined. Two localities were found to contain small concentrations of uranium and several samples displayed minor anomalies in base and precious metals. A probable resource potential for lead, molybdenum, arsenic, barium, fluorite, and uranium exists in the area near the Ross Lakes shear zone and a small area of probable uranium resource potential exists around the Dubois claims. The study area, in general, is believed to have little promise for the occurrence of additional mineral or energy resources.

  14. GLACIER PRIMITIVE AREA, WYOMING.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Granger, Harry C.; Patten, Lowell L.

    1984-01-01

    A mineral survey of the Glacier Primitive Area, Wyoming and an adjoining area to the northeast was made. The study area was mapped geologically, an aeromagnetic survey was made, a geochemical study was done, and known mineralized occurrences and claims were examined. Two localities were found to contain small concentrations of uranium and several samples displayed minor anomalies in base and precious metals. A probable resource potential for lead, molybdenum, arsenic, barium, fluorite, and uranium exists in the area near the Ross Lakes shear zone and a small area of probable uranium resource potential exists around the Dubois claims. The study area, in general, is believed to have little promise for the occurrence of additional mineral or energy resources.

  15. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-28

    The Aletsch Glacier in Switzerland is the largest valley glacier in the Alps. Its volume loss since the middle of the 19th century is well-visible from the trimlines to the right of the image. To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: Frank Paul, University of Zurich NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  16. Martian Glaciers and Brain Terrain

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2013-09-18

    This image from NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows one of these icy lobate features wrapping around a small hill. Many lobate features are now known to be almost pure ice, like glaciers on the Earth.

  17. Flow instabilities of Alaskan glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turrin, James Bradley

    Over 300 of the largest glaciers in southern Alaska have been identified as either surge-type or pulse-type, making glaciers with flow instabilities the norm among large glaciers in that region. Consequently, the bulk of mass loss due to climate change will come from these unstable glaciers in the future, yet their response to future climate warming is unknown because their dynamics are still poorly understood. To help broaden our understanding of unstable glacier flow, the decadal-scale ice dynamics of 1 surging and 9 pulsing glaciers are investigated. Bering Glacier had a kinematic wave moving down its ablation zone at 4.4 +/- 2.0 km/yr from 2002 to 2009, which then accelerated to 13.9 +/- 2.0 km/yr as it traversed the piedmont lobe. The wave first appeared in 2001 near the confluence with Bagley Ice Valley and it took 10 years to travel ~64 km. A surge was triggered in 2008 after the wave activated an ice reservoir in the midablation zone, and it climaxed in 2011 while the terminus advanced several km into Vitus Lake. Ruth Glacier pulsed five times between 1973 and 2012, with peak velocities in 1981, 1989, 1997, 2003, and 2010; approximately every 7 years. A typical pulse increased ice velocity 300%, from roughly 40 m/yr to 160 m/yr in the midablation zone, and involved acceleration and deceleration of the ice en masse; no kinematic wave was evident. The pulses are theorized to be due to deformation of a subglacial till causing enhanced basal motion. Eight additional pulsing glaciers are identified based on the spatiotemporal pattern of their velocity fields. These glaciers pulsed where they were either constricted laterally or joined by a tributary, and their surface slopes are 1-2°. These traits are consistent with an overdeepening. This observation leads to a theory of ice motion in overdeepenings that explains the cyclical behavior of pulsing glaciers. It is based on the concept of glaciohydraulic supercooling, and includes sediment transport and erosion

  18. Antarctic Peninsula Tidewater Glacier Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pettit, E. C.; Scambos, T. A.; Haran, T. M.; Wellner, J. S.; Domack, E. W.; Vernet, M.

    2015-12-01

    The northern Antarctic Peninsula (nAP, north of 66°S) is a north-south trending mountain range extending transverse across the prevailing westerly winds of the Southern Ocean resulting in an extreme west-to-east precipitation gradient. Snowfall on the west side of the AP is one to two orders of magnitude higher than the east side. This gradient drives short, steep, fast-flowing glaciers into narrow fjords on the west side, while longer lower-sloping glaciers flow down the east side into broader fjord valleys. This pattern in ice dynamics affects ice-ocean interaction on timescales of decades to centuries, and shapes the subglacial topography and submarine bathymetry on timescales of glacial cycles. In our study, we calculate ice flux for the western and eastern nAP using a drainage model that incorporates the modern ice surface topography, the RACMO-2 precipitation estimate, and recent estimates of ice thinning. Our results, coupled with observed rates of ice velocity from InSAR (I. Joughin, personal communication) and Landsat 8 -derived flow rates (this study), provide an estimate of ice thickness and fjord depth in grounded-ice areas for the largest outlet glaciers. East-side glaciers either still terminate in or have recently terminated in ice shelves. Sedimentary evidence from the inner fjords of the western glaciers indicates they had ice shelves during LIA time, and may still have transient floating ice tongues (tabular berg calvings are observed). Although direct oceanographic evidence is limited, the high accumulation rate and rapid ice flux implies cold basal ice for the western nAP glaciers and therefore weak subglacial discharge relative to eastern nAP glaciers and or other tidewater fjord systems such as in Alaska. Finally, despite lower accumulation rates on the east side, the large elongate drainage basins result in a greater ice flux funneled through fewer deeper glaciers. Due to the relation between ice flux and erosion, these east-side glaciers

  19. Reconstruction of glacier variability from lake sediments reveals dynamic Holocene climate in Svalbard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Bilt, Willem G. M.; Bakke, Jostein; Vasskog, Kristian; D'Andrea, William J.; Bradley, Raymond S.; Ólafsdóttir, Sædis

    2015-10-01

    The Arctic is warming faster than anywhere else on Earth. Holocene proxy time-series are increasingly used to put this amplified response in perspective by understanding Arctic climate processes beyond the instrumental period. However, available datasets are scarce, unevenly distributed and often of coarse resolution. Glaciers are sensitive recorders of climate shifts and variations in rock-flour production transfer this signal to the lacustrine sediment archives of downstream lakes. Here, we present the first full Holocene record of continuous glacier variability on Svalbard from glacier-fed Lake Hajeren. This reconstruction is based on an undisturbed lake sediment core that covers the entire Holocene and resolves variability on centennial scales owing to 26 dating points. A toolbox of physical, geochemical (XRF) and magnetic proxies in combination with multivariate statistics has allowed us to fingerprint glacier activity in addition to other processes affecting the sediment record. Evidence from variations in sediment density, validated by changes in Ti concentrations, reveal glaciers remained present in the catchment following deglaciation prior to 11,300 cal BP, culminating in a Holocene maximum between 9.6 and 9.5 ka cal BP. Correspondence with freshwater pulses from Hudson Strait suggests that Early Holocene glacier advances were driven by the melting Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS). We find that glaciers disappeared from the catchment between 7.4 and 6.7 ka cal BP, following a late Hypsithermal. Glacier reformation around 4250 cal BP marks the onset of the Neoglacial, supporting previous findings. Between 3380 and 3230 cal BP, we find evidence for a previously unreported centennial-scale glacier advance. Both events are concurrent with well-documented episodes of North Atlantic cooling. We argue that this brief forcing created suitable conditions for glaciers to reform in the catchment against a background of gradual orbital cooling. These findings highlight the

  20. Surface melt dominates Alaska glacier mass balance

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Larsen Chris F,; Burgess, E; Arendt, A.A.; O'Neel, Shad; Johnson, A.J.; Kienholz, C.

    2015-01-01

    Mountain glaciers comprise a small and widely distributed fraction of the world's terrestrial ice, yet their rapid losses presently drive a large percentage of the cryosphere's contribution to sea level rise. Regional mass balance assessments are challenging over large glacier populations due to remote and rugged geography, variable response of individual glaciers to climate change, and episodic calving losses from tidewater glaciers. In Alaska, we use airborne altimetry from 116 glaciers to estimate a regional mass balance of −75 ± 11 Gt yr−1 (1994–2013). Our glacier sample is spatially well distributed, yet pervasive variability in mass balances obscures geospatial and climatic relationships. However, for the first time, these data allow the partitioning of regional mass balance by glacier type. We find that tidewater glaciers are losing mass at substantially slower rates than other glaciers in Alaska and collectively contribute to only 6% of the regional mass loss.

  1. Surface melt dominates Alaska glacier mass balance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larsen, C. F.; Burgess, E.; Arendt, A. A.; O'Neel, S.; Johnson, A. J.; Kienholz, C.

    2015-07-01

    Mountain glaciers comprise a small and widely distributed fraction of the world's terrestrial ice, yet their rapid losses presently drive a large percentage of the cryosphere's contribution to sea level rise. Regional mass balance assessments are challenging over large glacier populations due to remote and rugged geography, variable response of individual glaciers to climate change, and episodic calving losses from tidewater glaciers. In Alaska, we use airborne altimetry from 116 glaciers to estimate a regional mass balance of -75 ± 11 Gt yr-1 (1994-2013). Our glacier sample is spatially well distributed, yet pervasive variability in mass balances obscures geospatial and climatic relationships. However, for the first time, these data allow the partitioning of regional mass balance by glacier type. We find that tidewater glaciers are losing mass at substantially slower rates than other glaciers in Alaska and collectively contribute to only 6% of the regional mass loss.

  2. Low-latitude mountain glacier evidence for abrupt climate changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thompson, L. G.; Mosley-Thompson, E. S.; Lin, P.; Davis, M. E.; Mashiotta, T. A.; Brecher, H. H.

    2004-12-01

    Clear evidence that a widespread warming of Earth's climate system is now underway comes from low latitude mountain glaciers. Proxy temperature histories reconstructed from ice cores, and the rapidly accelerating loss of both the total ice area and ice volume on a near global scale suggest that these glaciers responding to increasing rates of melting. In situ observations reveal the startling rates at which many tropical glaciers are disappearing. For example, the retreat of the terminus of the Qori Kalis Glacier in Peru is roughly 200 meters per year, 40 times faster than its retreat rate in 1978. Similarly, in 1912 the ice on Mount Kilimanjaro covered 12.1 km2, but today it covers only 2.6 km2. If the current rate of retreat continues, the perennial ice fields may disappear within the next few decades, making this the first time in the past 11,700 years that Kilimanjaro will be devoid of the ice that shrouds its summit. Tropical glaciers may be considered ``the canaries in the coal mine'' for the global climate system as they integrate and respond to key climatological variables, such as temperature, precipitation, cloudiness, humidity, and incident solar radiation. A composite of the decadally-averaged oxygen isotopic records from three Andean and three Tibetan ice cores extending back over the last two millennia shows an isotopic enrichment in the 20th century that suggests a large-scale warming is underway at lower latitudes. Multiple lines of evidence from Africa, the Middle East, Europe and South America indicate an abrupt mid-Holocene climate event in the low latitudes. If such an event were to occur now with a global human population of 6.3 billion people, the consequences could be severe. Clearly, we need to understand the nature and cause of abrupt climate events.

  3. Ocean forcing drives glacier retreat sometimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bassis, J. N.; Ultee, E.; Ma, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Observations show that marine-terminating glaciers respond to climate forcing nonlinearly, with periods of slow or negligible glacier advance punctuated by abrupt, rapid retreat. Once glacier retreat has initiated, glaciers can quickly stabilize with a new terminus position. Alternatively, retreat can be sustained for decades (or longer), as is the case for Columbia Glacier, Alaska where retreat initiated ~1984 and continues to this day. Surprisingly, patterns of glacier retreat show ambiguous or even contradictory correlations with atmospheric temperature and glacier surface mass balance. Despite these puzzles, observations increasingly show that intrusion of warm subsurface ocean water into fjords can lead to glacier erosion rates that can account for a substantial portion of the total mass lost from glaciers. Here we use a simplified flowline model to show that even relatively modest submarine melt rates (~100 m/a) near the terminus of grounded glaciers can trigger large increases in iceberg calving leading to rapid glacier retreat. However, the strength of the coupling between submarine melt and calving is a strong function of the geometry of the glacier (bed topography, ice thickness and glacier width). This can lead to irreversible retreat when the terminus is thick and grounded deeply beneath sea level or result in little change when the glacier is relatively thin, grounded in shallow water or pinned in a narrow fjord. Because of the strong dependence on glacier geometry, small perturbations in submarine melting can trigger glaciers in their most advanced—and geometrically precarious—state to undergo sudden retreat followed by much slower re-advance. Although many details remain speculative, our model hints that some glaciers are more sensitive than others to ocean forcing and that some of the nonlinearities of glacier response to climate change may be attributable to variations in difficult-to-detect subsurface water temperatures that need to be better

  4. Mapping of debris-covered glaciers in parts of the Greater Himalaya Range, Ladakh, western Himalaya, using remote sensing and GIS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghosh, Swagata; Pandey, Arvind C.; Nathawat, Mahendra S.

    2014-01-01

    Glacier inventories based on visual interpretation and manual delineation of glacier boundaries are time consuming. Supraglacial debris (debris accumulated on glacier terrain) of Himalayan glaciers creates difficulty with automated glacier mapping when using satellite images. In the present study, a combination of band ratio using the TM image and slope parameter was proven to be useful for delineating glaciers' debris-covered areas. Compared to original TM bands, supervised classification using a combination of principal components two, three, and six of debris and nonglacierized areas facilitated identification of various types of supraglacial debris. Use of principal components four, three, and two of snow- and ice-covered areas as input bands for supervised classification was helpful in classifying different types of snow and ice. Results corresponded well with manually delineated glacier outlines and field observations. Error matrix revealed that the accuracy of classification of the snow- and ice-covered parts of glaciers was 86.29%. Although manual editing was required to differentiate supraglacial debris from periglacial debris (debris outside the glacier boundary), the approach using the ability of morphometric parameter combined with band ratio for delineation of debris-covered parts of glaciers and supervised classification with principal component analysis for mapping of supraglacial covers is observed to be faster than manual delineation.

  5. Spatiotemporal variability of oxygen isotope compositions in three contrasting glacier river catchments in Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yde, J. C.; Tvis Knudsen, N.; Steffensen, J. P.; Carrivick, J. L.; Hasholt, B.; Ingeman-Nielsen, T.; Kronborg, C.; Larsen, N. K.; Mernild, S. H.; Oerter, H.; Roberts, D. H.; Russell, A. J.

    2015-06-01

    Analysis of stable oxygen isotope (δ18O) characteristics is a useful tool to investigate water provenance in glacier river systems. In order to attain knowledge on the diversity of spatio-temporal δ18O variations in glacier rivers, we have examined three glacierized catchments in Greenland with different areas, glacier hydrology and thermal regimes. At Mittivakkat Gletscher River, a small river draining a local temperate glacier in southeast Greenland, diurnal oscillations in δ18O occur with a three-hour time lag to the diurnal oscillations in runoff. Throughout the peak flow season the δ18O composition is controlled by the proportion between snowmelt and ice melt with episodic inputs of rainwater and occasional storage and release of a specific water component due to changes in the subglacial drainage system. At Kuannersuit Glacier River on the island Qeqertarsuaq, the δ18O characteristics were examined after the major 1995-1998 glacier surge event. Despite large variations in the δ18O values of glacier ice on the newly formed glacier tongue, there were no diurnal oscillations in the bulk meltwater emanating from the glacier in the post-surge years 2000-2001. In 2002 there were indications of diurnal oscillations, and in 2003 there were large diurnal fluctuations in δ18O. At Watson River, a large catchment at the western margin of the Greenland Ice Sheet, the spatial distribution of δ18O in the river system was applied to fingerprint the relative runoff contributions from sub-catchments. Spot sampling indicates that during the early melt season most of the river water (64-73 %) derived from the Qinnguata Kuussua tributary, whereas the water flow on 23 July 2009 was dominated by bulk meltwater from the Akuliarusiarsuup Kuua tributary (where 7 and 67 % originated from the Russell Glacier and Leverett Glacier sub-catchments, respectively). A comparison of the δ18O compositions from glacial river water in Greenland shows distinct differences between water

  6. Relationships between fjord bathymetries and recent glacier behavior: gaining new insight from IceBridge flights over Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Porter, D.; Boghosian, A.; Tinto, K. J.; Cochran, J. R.; Bell, R. E.

    2012-12-01

    The geometry of glacial fjords may play a large role in determining the stability of outlet glaciers. Sloping seafloors will feedback on a moving grounding line and shallow sills and deep continental shelf troughs will allow greater interaction with the surrounding ocean water. To better understand the role of fjord bathymetry in the glacier system, Operation IceBridge (OIB) has flown a suite of radar, lidar, gravity and magnetic instruments along the flow lines of previously inaccessible outlet glaciers and their fjords around the Greenlandic coast. Here, we combine newly collected surface elevation, ice thickness data, and gravity and magnetic anomalies from OIB flights, along with ship-based bathymetric profiles, into a single dataset. The combination of these new data are used in the construction of forward models that provide the framework for performing gravity inversions, finally resulting in many new bathymetric charts of previously unmapped fjords in Greenland. These newly created fjord bathymetries are compared to several important characteristics their outlet glaciers and ocean waters. We investigate the importance of glacier parameters such as surface velocity and area changes, as well as newly available oceanographic data from within the fjord, on recent changes in glacier behavior. Are faster flowing glaciers found in fjords with deep sills and a greater exchange with continental shelf water? Comparisons of these glacier-fjord relationships are also separated by region and by glacier type. Are glaciers in the southeast mostly changing in a similar way even though their bed geometries are quite different? These broad correlations are a starting point in an effort to investigate the role of bed geometry in the relationship between external forcing and the observed recent change of many of Greenland's largest outlet glaciers.

  7. Particles That Travel Faster than Light?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newton, Roger G.

    1970-01-01

    A discussion of the possible existence of tachyons, particles that travel faster than light, and their theoretical properties. Suggests that if tachyons were found, the consequences for relativity theory, quantum mechanics and the concept of casuality would be far-reaching. Concludes that the final answer rests with the experimentalist.…

  8. Modelling Greenland Outlet Glaciers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    vanderVeen, Cornelis; Abdalati, Waleed (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The objective of this project was to develop simple yet realistic models of Greenland outlet glaciers to better understand ongoing changes and to identify possible causes for these changes. Several approaches can be taken to evaluate the interaction between climate forcing and ice dynamics, and the consequent ice-sheet response, which may involve changes in flow style. To evaluate the icesheet response to mass-balance forcing, Van der Veen (Journal of Geophysical Research, in press) makes the assumption that this response can be considered a perturbation on the reference state and may be evaluated separately from how this reference state evolves over time. Mass-balance forcing has an immediate effect on the ice sheet. Initially, the rate of thickness change as compared to the reference state equals the perturbation in snowfall or ablation. If the forcing persists, the ice sheet responds dynamically, adjusting the rate at which ice is evacuated from the interior to the margins, to achieve a new equilibrium. For large ice sheets, this dynamic adjustment may last for thousands of years, with the magnitude of change decreasing steadily over time as a new equilibrium is approached. This response can be described using kinematic wave theory. This theory, modified to pertain to Greenland drainage basins, was used to evaluate possible ice-sheet responses to perturbations in surface mass balance. The reference state is defined based on measurements along the central flowline of Petermann Glacier in north-west Greenland, and perturbations on this state considered. The advantage of this approach is that the particulars of the dynamical flow regime need not be explicitly known but are incorporated through the parameterization of the reference ice flux or longitudinal velocity profile. The results of the kinematic wave model indicate that significant rates of thickness change can occur immediately after the prescribed change in surface mass balance but adjustments in flow

  9. Aletsch Glacier, Switzerland

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Aletsch Glacier, the largest glacier of Europe, covers more than 120 square kilometers (more than 45 square miles)in southern Switzerland. At its eastern extremity lies a glacierlake, Mdrjelensee (2,350 meters/7,711 feet above sea level). To the west rises Aletschhorn (4,195 meters/13,763 feet), which was first climbed in 1859. The Rhone River flows along the southern flank of the mountains.

    This image was acquired on July 23, 2001 by the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA's Terra satellite. With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region, and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER will image Earth for the next 6 years to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet. ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18, 1999, on NASA's Terra satellite. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products.

    The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER will provide scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping, and monitoring dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats; monitoring potentially active volcanoes; identifying crop stress; determining cloud morphology and physical properties; wetlands evaluation; thermal pollution monitoring; coral reef degradation; surface temperature mapping of soils and geology; and measuring surface heat balance.

    Dr. Anne Kahle at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, is the U.S. Science team leader; Bjorn Eng of JPL is the project manager. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Earth Science Enterprise, a long-term research and technology program designed to examine Earth's land, oceans, atmosphere, ice and life as

  10. Recent Advances in the GLIMS Glacier Database

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raup, Bruce; Cogley, Graham; Zemp, Michael; Glaus, Ladina

    2017-04-01

    Glaciers are shrinking almost without exception. Glacier losses have impacts on local water availability and hazards, and contribute to sea level rise. To understand these impacts and the processes behind them, it is crucial to monitor glaciers through time by mapping their areal extent, changes in volume, elevation distribution, snow lines, ice flow velocities, and changes to associated water bodies. The glacier database of the Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) initiative is the only multi-temporal glacier database capable of tracking all these glacier measurements and providing them to the scientific community and broader public. Here we present recent results in 1) expansion of the geographic and temporal coverage of the GLIMS Glacier Database by drawing on the Randolph Glacier Inventory (RGI) and other new data sets; 2) improved tools for visualizing and downloading GLIMS data in a choice of formats and data models; and 3) a new data model for handling multiple glacier records through time while avoiding double-counting of glacier number or area. The result of this work is a more complete glacier data repository that shows not only the current state of glaciers on Earth, but how they have changed in recent decades. The database is useful for tracking changes in water resources, hazards, and mass budgets of the world's glaciers.

  11. Recent Advances in the GLIMS Glacier Database

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raup, B. H.; Cogley, G.; Zemp, M.; Glaus, L.

    2016-12-01

    Glaciers are shrinking almost without exception. Glacier losses have impacts on local water availability and hazards, and contribute to sea level rise. To understand these impacts and the processes behind them, it is crucial to monitor glaciers through time by mapping their areal extent, changes in volume, elevation distribution, snow lines, ice flow velocities, and changes to associated water bodies. The glacier database of the Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) initiative is the only multi-temporal glacier database capable of tracking all these glacier measurements and providing them to the scientific community and broader public.Here we present recent results in 1) expansion of the GLIMS Glacier Database in geographic and temporal coverage by drawing on the Randolph Glacier Inventory (RGI) and other new data sets; 2) improved tools for visualizing and downloading GLIMS data in a choice of formats and data models; and 3) a new data model for handling multiple glacier records through time while avoiding double-counting of glacier number or area. The result of this work is a more complete glacier data repository that shows not only the current state of glaciers on Earth, but how they have changed in recent decades. The database is useful for tracking changes in water resources, hazards, and mass budgets of the world's glaciers.

  12. Spatial and temporal patterns of recent area change of glacier systems on the Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cook, Alison; Murray, Tavi; Luckman, Adrian; Vaughan, David

    2013-04-01

    Glaciers on the Antarctic Peninsula (AP) have recently shown changes in extent, velocity and thickness. Understanding the response of glaciers to warming air temperatures and ocean circulation changes in this region is critical for understanding future mass balance changes, and yet there is little quantification of change in the mass balance of individual basins and the processes controlling changes in their extent. One reason for this is that the AP is a complex mountainous glacier system and without a topographic model at sufficient resolution the boundaries between individual glacier systems have been difficult to identify. With outlines it becomes possible to calculate changes in area and compare characteristics of individual glaciers. We present a new Digital Elevation Model (DEM) and a new drainage basin data set for the Antarctic Peninsula, along with an assessment of changes in area of marine-terminating glacier systems from the 1940s to 2010. We explain the methodology used in producing the new 100-m DEM of the region using ASTER GDEM, and the semi-automated drainage basin delineation method based on this DEM. This approach has resulted in outlines for 1598 glacier systems: these include outlet and mountain glaciers, ice caps, piedmonts, ice-covered islands and 'ice walls'. Of these, 903 are marine-terminating glaciers, all of which have coastal-change data at various time periods since the 1940s. Area calculations, along with other attributes, were assigned to individual basins, thus enabling comparative statistical analyses. We give a summary of these changes both by overall area change and by change in extent at 5-year time intervals, and describe patterns of ice loss both spatially (by latitude and by specific regions) and temporally (trends across time intervals). Although 90% of the 903 glaciers have reduced in size since the earliest recorded date, the area lost varies considerably between glaciers. Largest area loss has occurred to glaciers flowing

  13. From Glaciers to Icebergs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Wendy

    I will describe works from a collaboration between physics and glaciology that grew out of interactions at the Computations in Science seminar Leo Kadanoff organized at the University of Chicago. The first project considers the interaction between ocean waves and Antarctic ice shelves, large floating portions of ice formed by glacial outflows. Back-of-envelop calculation and seismic sensor data suggest that crevasses may be distributed within an ice shelf to shield it from wave energy. We also examine numerical scenarios in which changes in environmental forcing causes the ice shelf to fail catastrophically. The second project investigates the aftermath of iceberg calving off glacier terminus in Greenland using data recorded via time-lapse camera and terrestrial radar. Our observations indicate that the mélange of icebergs within the fjord experiences widespread jamming during a calving event and therefore is always close to being in a jammed state during periods of terminus quiescence. Joint work with Jason Amundson, Ivo R. Peters, Julian Freed Brown, Nicholas Guttenberg, Justin C Burton, L. Mac Cathles, Ryan Cassotto, Mark Fahnestock, Kristopher Darnell, Martin Truffer, Dorian S. Abbot and Douglas MacAyeal. Kadanoff Session DCMP.

  14. Exceptional retreat of Novaya Zemlya's marine-terminating outlet glaciers between 2000 and 2013

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carr, J. Rachel; Bell, Heather; Killick, Rebecca; Holt, Tom

    2017-09-01

    Novaya Zemlya (NVZ) has experienced rapid ice loss and accelerated marine-terminating glacier retreat during the past 2 decades. However, it is unknown whether this retreat is exceptional longer term and/or whether it has persisted since 2010. Investigating this is vital, as dynamic thinning may contribute substantially to ice loss from NVZ, but is not currently included in sea level rise predictions. Here, we use remotely sensed data to assess controls on NVZ glacier retreat between 1973/76 and 2015. Glaciers that terminate into lakes or the ocean receded 3.5 times faster than those that terminate on land. Between 2000 and 2013, retreat rates were significantly higher on marine-terminating outlet glaciers than during the previous 27 years, and we observe widespread slowdown in retreat, and even advance, between 2013 and 2015. There were some common patterns in the timing of glacier retreat, but the magnitude varied between individual glaciers. Rapid retreat between 2000 and 2013 corresponds to a period of significantly warmer air temperatures and reduced sea ice concentrations, and to changes in the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO). We need to assess the impact of this accelerated retreat on dynamic ice losses from NVZ to accurately quantify its future sea level rise contribution.

  15. Thinning of the Monte Perdido Glacier in the Spanish Pyrenees since 1981

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López-Moreno, Juan Ignacio; Revuelto, Jesús; Rico, Ibai; Chueca-Cía, Javier; Julián, Asunción; Serreta, Alfredo; Serrano, Enrique; Martín Vicente-Serrano, Sergio; Azorin-Molina, Cesar; Alonso-González, Esteban; María García-Ruiz, José

    2016-03-01

    This paper analyzes the evolution of the Monte Perdido Glacier, the third largest glacier in the Pyrenees, from 1981 to the present. We assessed the evolution of the glacier's surface area by analysis of aerial photographs from 1981, 1999, and 2006, and changes in ice volume by geodetic methods with digital elevation models (DEMs) generated from topographic maps (1981 and 1999), airborne lidar (2010) and terrestrial laser scanning (TLS, 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014) data. We interpreted the changes in the glacier based on climate data from nearby meteorological stations. The results indicate that the degradation of this glacier accelerated after 1999. The rate of ice surface loss was almost three times greater during 1999-2006 than during earlier periods. Moreover, the rate of glacier thinning was 1.85 times faster during 1999-2010 (rate of surface elevation change = -8.98 ± 1.80 m, glacier-wide mass balance = -0.73 ± 0.14 m w.e. yr-1) than during 1981-1999 (rate of surface elevation change = -8.35 ± 2.12 m, glacier-wide mass balance = -0.42 ± 0.10 m w.e. yr-1). From 2011 to 2014, ice thinning continued at a slower rate (rate of surface elevation change = -1.93 ± 0.4 m yr-1, glacier-wide mass balance = -0.58 ± 0.36 m w.e. yr-1). This deceleration in ice thinning compared to the previous 17 years can be attributed, at least in part, to two consecutive anomalously wet winters and cool summers (2012-2013 and 2013-2014), counteracted to some degree by the intense thinning that occurred during the dry and warm 2011-2012 period. However, local climatic changes observed during the study period do not seem sufficient to explain the acceleration of ice thinning of this glacier, because precipitation and air temperature did not exhibit statistically significant trends during the study period. Rather, the accelerated degradation of this glacier in recent years can be explained by a strong disequilibrium between the glacier and the current climate, and likely by other

  16. Glacier albedo decrease in the European Alps: potential causes and links with mass balances

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Di Mauro, Biagio; Julitta, Tommaso; Colombo, Roberto

    2016-04-01

    Both mountain glaciers and polar ice sheets are losing mass all over the Earth. They are highly sensitive to climate variation, and the widespread reduction of glaciers has been ascribed to the atmospheric temperature increase. Beside this driver, also ice albedo plays a fundamental role in defining mass balance of glaciers. In fact, dark ice absorbs more energy causing faster glacier melting, and this can drive to more negative balances. Previous studies showed that the albedo of Himalayan glaciers and the Greenland Ice Sheet is decreasing with important rates. In this contribution, we tested the hypothesis that also glaciers in the European Alps are getting darker. We analyzed 16-year time series of MODIS (MODerate resolution Imaging Spectrometer) snow albedo from Terra (MOD13A1, 2000-2015) and Aqua (MYD13A1, 2002-2015) satellites. These data feature a spatial resolution of 500m and a daily temporal resolution. We evaluated the existence of a negative linear and nonlinear trend of the summer albedo values both at pixel and at glacier level. We also calculated the correlation between MODIS summer albedo and glacier mass balances (from the World Glaciological Monitoring Service, WGMS database), for all the glaciers with available mass balance during the considered period. In order to estimate the percentage of the summer albedo that can be explained by atmospheric temperature, we correlated MODIS albedo and monthly air temperature extracted from the ERA-Interim reanalysis dataset. Results show that decreasing trends exist with a strong spatial variability in the whole Alpine chain. In large glaciers, such as the Aletch (Swiss Alps), the trend varies significantly also within the glacier, showing that the trend is higher in the area across the accumulation and ablation zone. Over the 17 glaciers with mass balance available in the WGMS data set, 11 gave significant relationship with the MODIS summer albedo. Moreover, the comparison between ERA-Interim temperature

  17. Surface Velocities of Himalayan Glaciers: Implications for Glacial Erosion Potential During Climatic Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scherler, D.; Bookhagen, B.; Strecker, M. R.

    2007-12-01

    Mountain glaciers in the high elevations (> 3.5 km) of the Himalaya are very efficient erosion agents. Glacier size and thus the area affected by glacial erosion are controlled by climatic conditions. Understanding the impact of climate change and variability on glacial budgets and erosion requires knowledge of the erosive potential of glaciers, which is inferred to scale with ice flux. Here, we use ASTER satellite imagery in combination with the orthorectification and correlation tool COSI-Corr to derive horizontal surface velocities of glaciers from several regions across the Himalayan-Karakoram domain. Our results show that glaciers in the Eastern and Central Himalaya, where precipitation is mainly supplied by the Indian Summer Monsoon, are relatively slow, with velocities usually below 50-60 m/a. In contrast, glaciers in the Western Himalaya and Karakoram, receive a significant amount of precipitation during the winter months and are considerably faster with velocities often exceeding 80-100 m/a. This discrepancy is visible among glaciers of different size and orientation although local slope and catchment area effects may cause velocity excursions. A relatively sharp gradient appears to exist in the catchment area of the Sutlej River in the NW Himalaya of India at approximately 79°E. To the east, glaciers in the Garhwal Himalaya - among them Gangotri glacier, the largest in the Indian Himalaya - have mean velocities of around 20-40 m/a, whereas glaciers in the much drier Lahul region to the west attain mean velocities of around 30-60 m/a. Importantly, the Sutlej River valley marks a climatic transition zone from an annual summer-rainfall maximum (more than 75% of annual rainfall during the summer) to the east to a winter-rainfall maximum (more than 60% of annual rainfall during the winter) to the west. These observations corroborate the notion of a significant climatic boundary in this part of the Himalaya, which may have shifted west- and northward during

  18. Arctic polynya and glacier interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edwards, Laura

    2013-04-01

    Major uncertainties surround future estimates of sea level rise attributable to mass loss from the polar ice sheets and ice caps. Understanding changes across the Arctic is vital as major potential contributors to sea level, the Greenland Ice Sheet and the ice caps and glaciers of the Canadian Arctic archipelago, have experienced dramatic changes in recent times. Most ice mass loss is currently focused at a relatively small number of glacier catchments where ice acceleration, thinning and calving occurs at ocean margins. Research suggests that these tidewater glaciers accelerate and iceberg calving rates increase when warming ocean currents increase melt on the underside of floating glacier ice and when adjacent sea ice is removed causing a reduction in 'buttressing' back stress. Thus localised changes in ocean temperatures and in sea ice (extent and thickness) adjacent to major glacial catchments can impact hugely on the dynamics of, and hence mass lost from, terrestrial ice sheets and ice caps. Polynyas are areas of open water within sea ice which remain unfrozen for much of the year. They vary significantly in size (~3 km2 to > ~50,000 km2 in the Arctic), recurrence rates and duration. Despite their relatively small size, polynyas play a vital role in the heat balance of the polar oceans and strongly impact regional oceanography. Where polynyas develop adjacent to tidewater glaciers their influence on ocean circulation and water temperatures may play a major part in controlling subsurface ice melt rates by impacting on the water masses reaching the calving front. Areas of open water also play a significant role in controlling the potential of the atmosphere to carry moisture, as well as allowing heat exchange between the atmosphere and ocean, and so can influence accumulation on (and hence thickness of) glaciers and ice caps. Polynya presence and size also has implications for sea ice extent and therefore potentially the buttressing effect on neighbouring

  19. Columbia Glacier, Alaska, 1986-2011

    NASA Image and Video Library

    The Columbia Glacier in Alaska is one of many vanishing around the world. Glacier retreat is one of the most direct and understandable effects of climate change. The consequences of the decline in ...

  20. Erosion by an Alpine glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herman, Frédéric; Beyssac, Olivier; Lane, Stuart; Brughelli, Mattia; Leprince, Sebastien; Brun, Fanny

    2015-04-01

    Most mountain ranges on Earth owe their morphology to the action of glaciers and icecaps over the last few million years. Our current understanding of how glaciers have modified mountainous landforms has mainly been driven through landscape evolution models. These have included an array of erosion laws and mainly progressed through the implementation of various levels of sophistication regarding ice dynamics, subglacial hydrology or thermodynamics of water flow. However, the complex nature of the erosion processes involved and the difficulty of directly examining the ice-bedrock interface of contemporary glaciers has precluded the establishment of a prevailing erosion theory. Here we quantify the spatial variations in ice sliding velocity and erosion rate of a fast-flowing Alpine glacier in New Zealand during a 5-month period. By combining high resolution 3D measurements of surface velocity from optical satellite imagery with the quantification of both the production and provenance of sediments by the glacier, we show that erosion rates are proportional to sliding velocity raised to a power of about two. This result is consistent with abrasion theory. Given that the ice sliding velocity is a nonlinear function of ice thickness and ice surface slope, the response of glacial erosion to precipitation changes is highly nonlinear. Finally, our ability to constrain the glacial abrasion law present opportunities to further examine the interaction between glaciation and mountain evolution.

  1. Rapid thinning and collapse of lake calving Yakutat Glacier, Southeast Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trussel, Barbara Lea

    Glaciers around the globe are experiencing a notable retreat and thinning, triggered by atmospheric warming. Tidewater glaciers in particular have received much attention, because they have been recognized to contribute substantially to global sea level rise. However, lake calving glaciers in Alaska show increasingly high thinning and retreat rates and are therefore contributors to sea level rise. The number of such lake calving systems is increasing worldwide as land-terminating glaciers retreat into overdeepened basins and form proglacial lakes. Yakutat Glacier in Southeast Alaska is a low elevation lake calving glacier with an accumulation to total area ratio of 0.03. It experienced rapid thinning of 4.43 +/- 0.06 m w.e. yr-1 between 2000-2010 and terminus retreat of over 15 km since the beginning of the 20th century. Simultaneously, adjacent Yakutat Icefield land-terminating glaciers thinned at lower but still substantial rates (3.54 +/- 0.06 m w.e. yr -1 for the same time period), indicating lake calving dynamics help drive increased mass loss. Yakutat Glacier sustained a ˜3 km long floating tongue for over a decade, which started to disintegrate into large tabular icebergs in 2010. Such floating tongues are rarely seen on temperate tidewater glaciers. The floating ice was weakened by surface ablation, which then allowed rifts to form and intersect. Ice velocity from GPS measurements showed that the ice on the floating tongue was moving substantially faster than grounded ice, which was attributed to rift opening between the floating and grounded ice. Temporal variations of rift opening were determined from time-lapse imagery, and correlated well with variations in ice speeds. Larger rift opening rates occurred during and after precipitation or increased melt episodes. Both of these events increased subglacial discharge and could potentially increase the subaqueous currents towards the open lake and thus increase drag on the ice underside. Simultaneously

  2. Relativistic kinematics for motion faster than light

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, R. T.

    1982-01-01

    The use of conformal coordinates in relativistic kinematics is illustrated and a simple extension of the theory of motions faster than light is provided. An object traveling at a speed greater than light discloses its presence by appearing suddenly at a point, splitting into two apparent objects which then recede from each other at sublight velocities. According to the present theory motion at speeds faster than light would not benefit a space traveler, since the twin paradox becomes inverted at such speeds. In Einstein's theory travel at the velocity of light in an intertial system is equivalent to infinite velocity for the traveler. In the present theory the converse is also true; travel at infinite velocity is equivalent to the velocity of light for the traveler.

  3. FASTER project - data fusion for trafficability assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skocki, K.; Nevatia, Y.

    2013-09-01

    Martian surface missions since Sojourner mission typically use robotic rover platform for carrying the science instrumentation. Such concept, successfully demonstrated by twin MER rovers, is however risky due to low trafficability soil patches unrecognized. Idea of soil traversability assessment is the base for FASTER project activities. This article shortly presents topics of special interest for planetary rover safe path finding and decision making process. The data fusion aspect of such process is analyzed shortly.

  4. Market Research: Faster, Smarter and Predictive

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-08-01

    Defense AT&L: July–August 2015 40 Market Research Faster, Smarter and Predictive Kenyata Wesley n Farhad Chowdhury 41 Defense AT&L: July–August...Par-ticipation, Including Through More Effective Use of Market Research” Better Buying Power (BBP) 2.0 initiative, several ac- tions were completed to...support improving market research capa- bility within the Department of Defense (DoD). Although acquisition professionals perform market research

  5. Integrated Ground-Based LiDAR and Global Fiducials Program Satellite Imagery Time Series Analysis of the Terminus of Bering Glacier, Alaska During the 2008-2011 Surge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bawden, G. W.; Molnia, B. F.; Howle, J.; Bond, S.; Angeli, K.; Shuchman, R. A.

    2012-12-01

    Satellite imagery from the Global Fiducials Program (GFP: classified satellite imagery released to the general public for science use: http://gfl.usgs.gov) tracked the 2008-2011 surge of the Bering Glacier, the largest and longest glacier in North America. The terminus displacement began in late 2010, with maximum velocities of greater than 20 meters per day by late January 2011, as measured using feature tracking with GFP imagery. By July, the velocities had decreased to less than 10 m/d. We used the GFP imagery to locate three helicopter accessible targets on the terminus of the Bering Glacier to collect high-resolution (0.5-4 cm spot spacing) 4D time-series tripod/terrestrial LiDAR (T-LiDAR) data. During the week of July 24, 2011 we collected hourly and daily T-LiDAR data to resolve spatially and temporally varied advancement rates at each of the sites. The first site was located on the west side of Tashalich arm on the western side of the Bering Lobe terminus proximal to the region where the maximum GFP velocities had previously been measured. Using the T-LiDAR data, we found that the terminus advanced 5.4 m over 76 hours of observation. The hourly advancement rates for the same location are a very consistent 4.2 cm/h during our daylight hours of observation (0900-1800 local) and when daily rate are extrapolated to the full 76 hours, we should have measured 3.2 m of horizontal displacement: this is a discrepancy between the total and hourly measured displacements of an additional 2.2 m of motion during the night and early morning hours (1800-0900 local). The additional motion may be explained by accelerated terminus velocity associated with daily thermal heating and resulting melt. Motion may also be explained by rain on the second day of the survey that "lubricated" the glacier bed thereby allowing it to advance at a faster velocity. The second site was on Arrowhead Island, located on the eastern side of the terminus where the vertical relieve of the glacier

  6. Compressing bitmap indexes for faster search operations

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, Kesheng; Otoo, Ekow J.; Shoshani, Arie

    2002-04-25

    In this paper, we study the effects of compression on bitmap indexes. The main operations on the bitmaps during query processing are bitwise logical operations such as AND, OR, NOT, etc. Using the general purpose compression schemes, such as gzip, the logical operations on the compressed bitmaps are much slower than on the uncompressed bitmaps. Specialized compression schemes, like the byte-aligned bitmap code(BBC), are usually faster in performing logical operations than the general purpose schemes, but in many cases they are still orders of magnitude slower than the uncompressed scheme. To make the compressed bitmap indexes operate more efficiently, we designed a CPU-friendly scheme which we refer to as the word-aligned hybrid code (WAH). Tests on both synthetic and real application data show that the new scheme significantly outperforms well-known compression schemes at a modest increase in storage space. Compared to BBC, a scheme well-known for its operational efficiency, WAH performs logical operations about 12 times faster and uses only 60 percent more space. Compared to the uncompressed scheme, in most test cases WAH is faster while still using less space. We further verified with additional tests that the improvement in logical operation speed translates to similar improvement in query processing speed.

  7. Evaluation of Existing Image Matching Methods for Deriving Glacier Surface Displacements Globally from Optical Satellite Imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heid, T.; Kääb, A.

    2011-12-01

    Automatic matching of images from two different times is a method that is often used to derive glacier surface velocity. Nearly global repeat coverage of the Earth's surface by optical satellite sensors now opens the possibility for global-scale mapping and monitoring of glacier flow with a number of applications in, for example, glacier physics, glacier-related climate change and impact assessment, and glacier hazard management. The purpose of this study is to compare and evaluate different existing image matching methods for glacier flow determination over large scales. The study compares six different matching methods: normalized cross-correlation (NCC), the phase correlation algorithm used in the COSI-Corr software, and four other Fourier methods with different normalizations. We compare the methods over five regions of the world with different representative glacier characteristics: Karakoram, the European Alps, Alaska, Pine Island (Antarctica) and southwest Greenland. Landsat images are chosen for matching because they expand back to 1972, they cover large areas, and at the same time their spatial resolution is as good as 15 m for images after 1999 (ETM+ pan). Cross-correlation on orientation images (CCF-O) outperforms the three similar Fourier methods, both in areas with high and low visual contrast. NCC experiences problems in areas with low visual contrast, areas with thin clouds or changing snow conditions between the images. CCF-O has problems on narrow outlet glaciers where small window sizes (about 16 pixels by 16 pixels or smaller) are needed, and it also obtains fewer correct matches than COSI-Corr in areas with low visual contrast. COSI-Corr has problems on narrow outlet glaciers and it obtains fewer correct matches compared to CCF-O when thin clouds cover the surface, or if one of the images contains snow dunes. In total, we consider CCF-O and COSI-Corr to be the two most robust matching methods for global-scale mapping and monitoring of glacier

  8. Get Close to Glaciers with Satellite Imagery.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hall, Dorothy K.

    1986-01-01

    Discusses the use of remote sensing from satellites to monitor glaciers. Discusses efforts to use remote sensing satellites of the Landsat series for examining the global distribution, mass, balance, movements, and dynamics of the world's glaciers. Includes several Landsat images of various glaciers. (TW)

  9. A Worldwide Glacier Information System to go

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mölg, N.; Steinmann, M.; Zemp, M.

    2016-12-01

    In the forefront of the Paris Climate Conference COP21 in December 2015, the WGMS and UNESCO jointly launched a glacier application for mobile devices. This new information system aims at bringing scientifically sound facts and figures on worldwide glacier changes to decision makers at governmental and intergovernmental levels as well as reaching out to the interested public. The wgms Glacier App provides a map interface based on satellite images that display all the observed glaciers in the user's proximity. Basic information is provided for each glacier, including photographs and general information on size and elevation. Graphs with observation data illustrate the glacier's development, along with information on latest principal investigators and their sponsoring agencies as well as detailed explanations of the measurement types. A text search allows the user to filter the glacier by name, country, region, measurement type and the current "health" status, i.e. if the glacier has gained or lost ice over the past decade. A compass shows the closest observed glaciers in all directions from the user's current position. Finally, the card game allows the user to compete against the computer on the best monitored glaciers in the world. Our poster provides a visual entrance point to the wgms Glacier App and, hence, provides access to fluctuation series of more than 3'700 glaciers around the world.

  10. Get Close to Glaciers with Satellite Imagery.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hall, Dorothy K.

    1986-01-01

    Discusses the use of remote sensing from satellites to monitor glaciers. Discusses efforts to use remote sensing satellites of the Landsat series for examining the global distribution, mass, balance, movements, and dynamics of the world's glaciers. Includes several Landsat images of various glaciers. (TW)

  11. Flow velocities of Alaskan glaciers.

    PubMed

    Burgess, Evan W; Forster, Richard R; Larsen, Christopher F

    2013-01-01

    Our poor understanding of tidewater glacier dynamics remains the primary source of uncertainty in sea level rise projections. On the ice sheets, mass lost from tidewater calving exceeds the amount lost from surface melting. In Alaska, the magnitude of calving mass loss remains unconstrained, yet immense calving losses have been observed. With 20% of the global new-water sea level rise coming from Alaska, partitioning of mass loss sources in Alaska is needed to improve sea level rise projections. Here we present the first regionally comprehensive map of glacier flow velocities in Central Alaska. These data reveal that the majority of the regional downstream flux is constrained to only a few coastal glaciers. We find regional calving losses are 17.1 Gt a(-1), which is equivalent to 36% of the total annual mass change throughout Central Alaska.

  12. Erosion by an Alpine glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herman, Frédéric; Beyssac, Olivier; Brughelli, Mattia; Lane, Stuart N.; Leprince, Sébastien; Adatte, Thierry; Lin, Jiao Y. Y.; Avouac, Jean-Philippe; Cox, Simon C.

    2015-10-01

    Assessing the impact of glaciation on Earth’s surface requires understanding glacial erosion processes. Developing erosion theories is challenging because of the complex nature of the erosion processes and the difficulty of examining the ice/bedrock interface of contemporary glaciers. We demonstrate that the glacial erosion rate is proportional to the ice-sliding velocity squared, by quantifying spatial variations in ice-sliding velocity and the erosion rate of a fast-flowing Alpine glacier. The nonlinear behavior implies a high erosion sensitivity to small variations in topographic slope and precipitation. A nonlinear rate law suggests that abrasion may dominate over other erosion processes in fast-flowing glaciers. It may also explain the wide range of observed glacial erosion rates and, in part, the impact of glaciation on mountainous landscapes during the past few million years.

  13. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-28

    Peripheral glaciers and ice caps (isolated from the main ice sheet, which is seen in the upper right section of the image) in eastern Greenland. To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: Frank Paul, University of Zurich NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  14. Erosion by an Alpine glacier.

    PubMed

    Herman, Frédéric; Beyssac, Olivier; Brughelli, Mattia; Lane, Stuart N; Leprince, Sébastien; Adatte, Thierry; Lin, Jiao Y Y; Avouac, Jean-Philippe; Cox, Simon C

    2015-10-09

    Assessing the impact of glaciation on Earth's surface requires understanding glacial erosion processes. Developing erosion theories is challenging because of the complex nature of the erosion processes and the difficulty of examining the ice/bedrock interface of contemporary glaciers. We demonstrate that the glacial erosion rate is proportional to the ice-sliding velocity squared, by quantifying spatial variations in ice-sliding velocity and the erosion rate of a fast-flowing Alpine glacier. The nonlinear behavior implies a high erosion sensitivity to small variations in topographic slope and precipitation. A nonlinear rate law suggests that abrasion may dominate over other erosion processes in fast-flowing glaciers. It may also explain the wide range of observed glacial erosion rates and, in part, the impact of glaciation on mountainous landscapes during the past few million years. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  15. Assessing streamflow sensitivity to variations in glacier mass balance

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    O'Neel, Shad; Hood, Eran; Arendt, Anthony; Sass, Louis

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to evaluate relationships among seasonal and annual glacier mass balances, glacier runoff and streamflow in two glacierized basins in different climate settings. We use long-term glacier mass balance and streamflow datasets from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) Alaska Benchmark Glacier Program to compare and contrast glacier-streamflow interactions in a maritime climate (Wolverine Glacier) with those in a continental climate (Gulkana Glacier). Our overall goal is to improve our understanding of how glacier mass balance processes impact streamflow, ultimately improving our conceptual understanding of the future evolution of glacier runoff in continental and maritime climates.

  16. Maintenance of biodiversity on islands

    PubMed Central

    Chisholm, Ryan A.; Fung, Tak; Chimalakonda, Deepthi; O'Dwyer, James P.

    2016-01-01

    MacArthur and Wilson's theory of island biogeography predicts that island species richness should increase with island area. This prediction generally holds among large islands, but among small islands species richness often varies independently of island area, producing the so-called ‘small-island effect’ and an overall biphasic species–area relationship (SAR). Here, we develop a unified theory that explains the biphasic island SAR. Our theory's key postulate is that as island area increases, the total number of immigrants increases faster than niche diversity. A parsimonious mechanistic model approximating these processes reproduces a biphasic SAR and provides excellent fits to 100 archipelago datasets. In the light of our theory, the biphasic island SAR can be interpreted as arising from a transition from a niche-structured regime on small islands to a colonization–extinction balance regime on large islands. The first regime is characteristic of classic deterministic niche theories; the second regime is characteristic of stochastic theories including the theory of island biogeography and neutral theory. The data furthermore confirm our theory's key prediction that the transition between the two SAR regimes should occur at smaller areas, where immigration is stronger (i.e. for taxa that are better dispersers and for archipelagos that are less isolated). PMID:27122558

  17. Maintenance of biodiversity on islands.

    PubMed

    Chisholm, Ryan A; Fung, Tak; Chimalakonda, Deepthi; O'Dwyer, James P

    2016-04-27

    MacArthur and Wilson's theory of island biogeography predicts that island species richness should increase with island area. This prediction generally holds among large islands, but among small islands species richness often varies independently of island area, producing the so-called 'small-island effect' and an overall biphasic species-area relationship (SAR). Here, we develop a unified theory that explains the biphasic island SAR. Our theory's key postulate is that as island area increases, the total number of immigrants increases faster than niche diversity. A parsimonious mechanistic model approximating these processes reproduces a biphasic SAR and provides excellent fits to 100 archipelago datasets. In the light of our theory, the biphasic island SAR can be interpreted as arising from a transition from a niche-structured regime on small islands to a colonization-extinction balance regime on large islands. The first regime is characteristic of classic deterministic niche theories; the second regime is characteristic of stochastic theories including the theory of island biogeography and neutral theory. The data furthermore confirm our theory's key prediction that the transition between the two SAR regimes should occur at smaller areas, where immigration is stronger (i.e. for taxa that are better dispersers and for archipelagos that are less isolated). © 2016 The Author(s).

  18. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-28

    Summit camp on top of the Austfonna Ice Cap in Svalbard (Norwegian Arctic). To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: Thorben Dunse, University of Oslo NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  19. Reconstruction of Equilibrium Line Altitudes of Nevado Coropuna Glaciers (Southern Peru) from the Late Pleistocene to the present

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Úbeda, J.; Palacios, D.; Vázquez, L.

    2009-04-01

    also higher for all periods in the Northern section (5968, 5930, 5923, 5886 and 5186 m) than in the Southern section (5862, 5806, 5787 and 4951 m). The depression in ELAs during the LIA was similar in the NE (~82 m) and in the SE (~86 m). However, the 2007 ELA shows a depression of 106 m in the Southern direction. The magnitude of this depression has shown a marked tendency towards reduction in recent decades (136 m in 1955 and 124 m in 1986). Furthermore, the decrease in ELA depression seems to occur faster, with ↓Z ~12 m between 1955 and 1986 and ↓Z ~18 m between 1986 and 2007. However, during the Little Ice Age (~110 m) that value was closer to the current value (106 m). Depression in ELAs during the last maximum glacier advance has been estimated at ~782 m (NE) and ~847 m (SE). During that period, the N-S depression reached a maximum value of 235 m. These results agree with those obtained for the eastern range of the Central Andes (Smith et al. 2005 a and b) and are also within the depression intervals and trends proposed in regional-scale studies (Kelin et al. 1999). Analyses performed on a sample from a block situated on a lateral moraine in the Queñua Ranra Quebrada (NE group of the complex) suggest a chronology of ~17 Cl36 ky. for the last maximum ice mass advance. This date is in agreement with the depression in SST temperature during the same period, deduced from analyzing Mg/Ca ratios in marine foraminifera shells from the Galapagos Islands (Lea, 2006). Using surfaces and ELAs as geoindicators, deglaciation rates and the Horizon without glaciers (H0) have been calculated globally, for the complete glacier system in scenarios 1 and 2, and for glaciers in the pilot group in scenarios 1, 2 and 3. Results show that the deglaciation process is occurring differentially. Whereas several masses could disappear in a few decades, others could be preserved for centuries. Regarding the last phase of volcanic activity, a lava sample has been dated at only ~2

  20. Younger Dryas Age advance of Franz Josef Glacier in the Southern Alps of New Zealand

    SciTech Connect

    Denton, G.H. ); Hendy, C.H. )

    1994-06-03

    A corrected radiocarbon age of 11,050 [+-] 14 years before present for an advance of the Franz Josef Glacier to the Waiho Loop terminal moraine on the western flank of New Zealand's Southern Alps shows that glacier advance on a South Pacific island was synchronous with initiation of the Younger Dryas in the North Atlantic region. Hence, cooling at the beginning of the Younger Dryas probably reflects global rather than regional forcing. The source for Younger Dryas climatic cooling may thus lie in the atmosphere rather than in a North Atlantic thermohaline switch. 36 refs., 2 figs., 1 tab.

  1. Response of glacier mass on recent temperature cooling in northeastern Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Láska, Kamil; Engel, Zbyněk; Nývlt, Daniel; Stachoň, Zdeněk; Lippl, Stefan; Braun, Matthias

    2017-04-01

    The Antarctic Peninsula (AP) region has been often recognized as one of the most rapidly warming parts of our planet during the second half of the 20th century (Turner and others, 2014). However, recent study of Oliva and others (2016) has documented that significant warming trend was shifted to a prominent cooling trend during 2006-2015. The recent cooling is particularly pronounced in the northeastern part of the AP, with the largest temperature drops of 0.7-0.9 ˚ C between 1996-2005 and 2006-2015. Therefore, we aim to study response of small glaciers on James Ross Island, north-eastern part of the AP, that are considered to be sensitive to recent temperature fluctuations. We have studied annual changes of mass balance and equilibrium line altitude of Whisky Glacier, a cold-bases land-terminating valley glacier (˜2.4 km2), in the northern part of James Ross Island. The surface mass balance changes were estimated based on ablation stake measurements, carried out in late summer over the five years period (2009/10-2013/14). In addition, glacier surface velocity and area changes were determined for this period from aerial and satellite imageries based digital elevation models. Automatic weather stations in the northern part of James Ross Island reflect the recent cold period and indicate a prominent cooling by 1.2 ˚ C over the period 2006-2015. A response of glaciers on colder conditions can be observed throughout the area where negative mass changes turned to predominantly positive values after 2009. The total mass of Whisky Glacier has increased by 0.8 m w.e. in 2009/10-2013/14 and the annual mass changes were positive except for 2011 (-0.1 m w.e.). A comparison of annual mass balance changes with the data reported from glaciers on nearby Vega Island (Marinsek and Ermolin, 2015) indicates similar values of glacier mass changes in northeastern AP. Acknowledgments: This research was supported by the Czech Science Foundation (project GC 16-14122J) and Czech

  2. Mesoscale Icefield Breezes over Athbasca Glacier.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conway, J. P.; Helgason, W.; Pomeroy, J. W.; Sicart, J. E.

    2015-12-01

    Atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) dynamics over glaciers are of great interest as they can modify the response of glacier mass balance to large scale climate forcing. A key feature of the glacier ABL is formation of katabatic winds driven by turbulent sensible heat exchange with a cooler underlying ice surface. These winds can markedly alter the spatio-temporal distribution of air temperature over glacier surfaces from the environmental lapse rate, which in turn affects the distribution of melt. An intensive field campaign was conducted over 13 days in June 2015 at Athabasca Glacier, an outlet of Columbia Icefield in the Rocky Mountains of Canada. Multiple automatic weather stations, eddy covariance systems, distributed temperature sensors, SODAR and kite profiling systems were used to characterise how the glacier ABL evolved spatially and temporally, how the differences in glacier ABL properties were related to valley and regional circulation and what effect these differences had on surface lapse rates. In general strong daytime down-glacier winds were observed over the glacier. These winds extended well beyond the glacier into the proglacial area and through the depth of lower ice-free valley. On most days wind speed was consistent or increasing through to the top of the above-glacier profiles (100 to 200 m), indicating a quite well mixed surface boundary layer. A wind speed maximum in the lowest few metres above the glacier surface, characteristic of a katabatic wind, was only observed on one day. The dominant circulation within the valley appears to be what could be termed an 'icefield breeze'; strong down-glacier winds driven by mesoscale pressure gradients that are set up by differential suface heating over the non-glaciated valleys and much the larger Columbia Icefield upstream of the glacier. The effect of the different circulations on lapse rates will be explored with a view to developing variable lapse rates for modelling glacier mass balance.

  3. Heat Islands

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    EPA's Heat Island Effect Site provides information on heat islands, their impacts, mitigation strategies, related research, a directory of heat island reduction initiatives in U.S. communities, and EPA's Heat Island Reduction Program.

  4. Latest Pleistocene and Holocene glaciation of Baffin Island, Arctic Canada: key patterns and chronologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briner, Jason P.; Davis, P. Thompson; Miller, Gifford H.

    2009-10-01

    Melting glaciers and ice caps on Baffin Island contribute roughly half of the sea-level rise from all ice in Arctic Canada, although they comprise only one-fourth of the total ice in the region. The uncertain future response of arctic glaciers and ice caps to climate change motivates the use of paleodata to evaluate the sensitivity of glaciers to past warm intervals and to constrain mechanisms that drive glacier change. We review the key patterns and chronologies of latest Pleistocene and Holocene glaciation on Baffin Island. The deglaciation by the Laurentide Ice Sheet occurred generally slowly and steadily throughout the Holocene to its present margin (Barnes Ice Cap) except for two periods of rapid retreat: An early interval ˜12 to 10 ka when outlet glaciers retreated rapidly through deep fiords and sounds, and a later interval ˜7 ka when ice over Foxe Basin collapsed. In coastal settings, alpine glaciers were smaller during the Younger Dryas period than during the Little Ice Age. At least some alpine glaciers apparently survived the early Holocene thermal maximum, which was several degrees warmer than today, although data on glacier extent during the early Holocene is extremely sparse. Following the early Holocene thermal maximum, glaciers advanced during Neoglaciation, beginning in some places as early as ˜6 ka, although most sites do not record near-Little Ice Age positions until ˜3.5 to 2.5 ka. Alpine glaciers reached their largest Holocene extents during the Little Ice Age, when temperatures were ˜1-1.5 °C cooler than during the late 20th century. Synchronous advances across Baffin Island throughout Neoglaciation indicate sub-Milankovitch controls on glaciation that could involve major volcanic eruptions and solar variability. Future work should further elucidate the state of glaciers and ice caps during the early Holocene thermal maximum and glacier response to climate forcing mechanisms.

  5. Glacier fluctuations during the past 2000 years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Solomina, Olga N.; Bradley, Raymond S.; Jomelli, Vincent; Geirsdottir, Aslaug; Kaufman, Darrell S.; Koch, Johannes; McKay, Nicholas P.; Masiokas, Mariano; Miller, Gifford; Nesje, Atle; Nicolussi, Kurt; Owen, Lewis A.; Putnam, Aaron E.; Wanner, Heinz; Wiles, Gregory; Yang, Bao

    2016-10-01

    A global compilation of glacier advances and retreats for the past two millennia grouped by 17 regions (excluding Antarctica) highlights the nature of glacier fluctuations during the late Holocene. The dataset includes 275 time series of glacier fluctuations based on historical, tree ring, lake sediment, radiocarbon and terrestrial cosmogenic nuclide data. The most detailed and reliable series for individual glaciers and regional compilations are compared with summer temperature and, when available, winter precipitation reconstructions, the most important parameters for glacier mass balance. In many cases major glacier advances correlate with multi-decadal periods of decreased summer temperature. In a few cases, such as in Arctic Alaska and western Canada, some glacier advances occurred during relatively warm wet times. The timing and scale of glacier fluctuations over the past two millennia varies greatly from region to region. However, the number of glacier advances shows a clear pattern for the high, mid and low latitudes and, hence, points to common forcing factors acting at the global scale. Globally, during the first millennium CE glaciers were smaller than between the advances in 13th to early 20th centuries CE. The precise extent of glacier retreat in the first millennium is not well defined; however, the most conservative estimates indicate that during the 1st and 2nd centuries in some regions glaciers were smaller than at the end of 20th/early 21st centuries. Other periods of glacier retreat are identified regionally during the 5th and 8th centuries in the European Alps, in the 3rd-6th and 9th centuries in Norway, during the 10th-13th centuries in southern Alaska, and in the 18th century in Spitsbergen. However, no single period of common global glacier retreat of centennial duration, except for the past century, has yet been identified. In contrast, the view that the Little Ice Age was a period of global glacier expansion beginning in the 13th century

  6. Glacier recession in Iceland and Austria

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hall, Dorothy K.; Williams, Richard S., Jr.; Bayr, Klaus J.

    1992-01-01

    It has been possible to measure glacier recession on the basis of Landsat data, in conjunction with comparisons of the magnitude of recession of a glacier margin with in situ measurements at fixed points along the same margin. Attention is presently given to the cases of Vatnajokull ice cap, in Iceland, and the Pasterze Glacier, in Austria, on the basis of satellite data from 1973-1987 and 1984-1990, respectively. Indications of a trend toward negative mass balance are noted. Nevertheless, while most of the world's small glaciers have been receding, some are advancing either due to local climate or the tidewater glacier cycle.

  7. Effects of basal debris on glacier flow.

    PubMed

    Iverson, Neal R; Cohen, Denis; Hooyer, Thomas S; Fischer, Urs H; Jackson, Miriam; Moore, Peter L; Lappegard, Gaute; Kohler, Jack

    2003-07-04

    Glacier movement is resisted partially by debris, either within glaciers or under glaciers in water-saturated layers. In experiments beneath a thick, sliding glacier, ice containing 2 to 11% debris exerted shear traction of 60 to 200 kilopascals on a smooth rock bed, comparable to the total shear traction beneath glaciers and contrary to the usual assumption that debris-bed friction is negligible. Imposed pore-water pressure that was 60 to 100% of the normal stress in a subglacial debris layer reduced shear traction on the debris sufficiently to halt its deformation and cause slip of ice over the debris. Slip resistance was thus less than debris shearing resistance.

  8. Glacier recession in Iceland and Austria

    SciTech Connect

    Hall, D.K.; Williams, R.S. Jr.; Bayr, K.J. USGS, Reston, VA Keene State College, NH )

    1992-03-01

    It has been possible to measure glacier recession on the basis of Landsat data, in conjunction with comparisons of the magnitude of recession of a glacier margin with in situ measurements at fixed points along the same margin. Attention is presently given to the cases of Vatnajokull ice cap, in Iceland, and the Pasterze Glacier, in Austria, on the basis of satellite data from 1973-1987 and 1984-1990, respectively. Indications of a trend toward negative mass balance are noted. Nevertheless, while most of the world's small glaciers have been receding, some are advancing either due to local climate or the tidewater glacier cycle. 21 refs.

  9. Harnessing Light for Faster Data Processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Looking for a faster computer? How about an optical computer that processes data streams simultaneously and works with the speed of light? In space, NASA researchers have formed optical thin-film. By turning these thin-films into very fast optical computer components, scientists could improve computer tasks, such as pattern recognition. Dr. Hossin Abdeldayem, physicist at NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) in Huntsville, Al, is working with lasers as part of an optical system for pattern recognition. These systems can be used for automated fingerprinting, photographic scarning and the development of sophisticated artificial intelligence systems that can learn and evolve. Photo credit: NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC)

  10. Harnessing Light for Faster Data Processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Looking for a faster computer? How about an optical computer that processes data streams simultaneously and works with the speed of light? In space, NASA researchers have formed optical thin-film. By turning these thin-films into very fast optical computer components, scientists could improve computer tasks, such as pattern recognition. Dr. Hossin Abdeldayem, physicist at NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) in Huntsville, Al, is working with lasers as part of an optical system for pattern recognition. These systems can be used for automated fingerprinting, photographic scarning and the development of sophisticated artificial intelligence systems that can learn and evolve. Photo credit: NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC)

  11. Iron from melting glaciers fuels phytoplankton blooms in the Amundsen Sea (Southern Ocean): Phytoplankton characteristics and productivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alderkamp, Anne-Carlijn; Mills, Matthew M.; van Dijken, Gert L.; Laan, Patrick; Thuróczy, Charles-Edouard; Gerringa, Loes J. A.; de Baar, Hein J. W.; Payne, Christopher D.; Visser, Ronald J. W.; Buma, Anita G. J.; Arrigo, Kevin R.

    2012-09-01

    The phytoplankton community composition and productivity in waters of the Amundsen Sea and surrounding sea ice zone were characterized with respect to iron (Fe) input from melting glaciers. High Fe input from glaciers such as the Pine Island Glacier, and the Dotson and Crosson ice shelves resulted in dense phytoplankton blooms in surface waters of Pine Island Bay, Pine Island Polynya, and Amundsen Polynya. Phytoplankton biomass distribution was the opposite of the distribution of dissolved Fe (DFe), confirming the uptake of glacial DFe in surface waters by phytoplankton. Phytoplankton biomass in the polynyas ranged from 0.6 to 14 μg Chl a L-1, with lower biomass at glacier sites where strong upwelling of Modified Circumpolar Deep Water from beneath glacier tongues was observed. Phytoplankton blooms in the polynyas were dominated by the haptophyte Phaeocystis antarctica, whereas the phytoplankton community in the sea ice zone was a mix of P. antarctica and diatoms, resembling the species distribution in the Ross Sea. Water column productivity based on photosynthesis versus irradiance characteristics averaged 3.00 g C m-2 d-1 in polynya sites, which was approximately twice as high as in the sea ice zone. The highest water column productivity was observed in the Pine Island Polynya, where both thermally and salinity stratified waters resulted in a shallow surface mixed layer with high phytoplankton biomass. In contrast, new production based on NO3 uptake was similar between different polynya sites, where a deeper UML in the weakly, thermally stratified Pine Island Bay resulted in deeper NO3 removal, thereby offsetting the lower productivity at the surface. These are the first in situ observations that confirm satellite observations of high phytoplankton biomass and productivity in the Amundsen Sea. Moreover, the high phytoplankton productivity as a result of glacial input of DFe is the first evidence that melting glaciers have the potential to increase phytoplankton

  12. Isabela Island, Galapagos Islands

    NASA Image and Video Library

    1996-01-20

    STS072-732-072 (11-20 Jan. 1996) --- Three of the nineteen Galapagos Islands are visible in this image, photographed from the Earth-orbiting Space Shuttle Endeavour. The Galapagos Islands are located 600 miles (1,000 kilometers) to the west of Ecuador. The largest of the islands, Isabela, is at center (north is toward the upper right corner). The numerous circular features on the island, highlighted by clouds, are volcanoes. The Galapagos Islands owe their existence to a hot spot, or persistent heat source in the mantle, which also is located over a rift, or place where plates are separating and new crust is being created. The rift is located between the Cocos and Nazca Plates. The dark linear features on the islands are lava flows from past eruptions. The island to the left of Isabela is Fernandina, while the island to the right is San Salvador. The Galapagos Islands were visited by the English naturalist Charles Darwin in 1835.

  13. Imaging evidence for Hubbard Glacier advances and retreats since the last glacial maximum in Yakutat and Disenchantment Bays, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zurbuchen, Julie M.; Gulick, Sean P. S.; Walton, Maureen A. L.; Goff, John A.

    2015-06-01

    High-resolution 2-D multichannel seismic data, collected during the 2012 UTIG-USGS National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program survey of Disenchantment and Yakutat Bays in southeast Alaska, provide insight into their glacial history. These data show evidence of two unconformities, appearing in the form of channels, and are interpreted to be advance pathways for Hubbard Glacier. The youngest observable channel, thought to have culminated near the main phase of the Little Ice Age (LIA), is imaged in Disenchantment Bay and ends at a terminal moraine near Blizhni Point. An older channel, thought to be from an advance that culminated in the early phase of the LIA, extends from Disenchantment Bay into the northeastern edge of Yakutat Bay, turning southward at Knight Island and terminating on the southeastern edge of Yakutat Bay. Our interpretation is that Hubbard Glacier has repeatedly advanced around the east side of Yakutat Bay in Knight Island Channel, possibly due to the presence of Malaspina Glacier cutting off access to central Yakutat Bay during times of mutual advance. We observe two distinct erosional surfaces and retreat sequences of Hubbard Glacier in Yakutat Bay, supporting the hypothesis that minor glacial advances in fjords do not erode all prior sediment accumulations. Interpretation of chaotic seismic facies between these two unconformities suggests that Hubbard Glacier exhibits rapid retreats and that Disenchantment Bay is subject to numerous episodes of outburst flooding and morainal bank collapse. These findings also suggest that tidewater glaciers preferentially reoccupy the same channels in bay and marine settings during advances.

  14. The contribution of glacier melt to streamflow

    SciTech Connect

    Schaner, Neil; Voisin, Nathalie; Nijssen, Bart; Lettenmaier, D. P.

    2012-09-13

    Ongoing and projected future changes in glacier extent and water storage globally have lead to concerns about the implications for water supplies. However, the current magnitude of glacier contributions to river runoff is not well known, nor is the population at risk to future glacier changes. We estimate an upper bound on glacier melt contribution to seasonal streamflow by computing the energy balance of glaciers globally. Melt water quantities are computed as a fraction of total streamflow simulated using a hydrology model and the melt fraction is tracked down the stream network. In general, our estimates of the glacier melt contribution to streamflow are lower than previously published values. Nonetheless, we find that globally an estimated 225 (36) million people live in river basins where maximum seasonal glacier melt contributes at least 10% (25%) of streamflow, mostly in the High Asia region.

  15. Spatially heterogeneous wastage of Himalayan glaciers.

    PubMed

    Fujita, Koji; Nuimura, Takayuki

    2011-08-23

    We describe volumetric changes in three benchmark glaciers in the Nepal Himalayas on which observations have been made since the 1970s. Compared with the global mean of glacier mass balance, the Himalayan glaciers showed rapid wastage in the 1970s-1990s, but similar wastage in the last decade. In the last decade, a glacier in an arid climate showed negative but suppressed mass balance compared with the period 1970s-1990s, whereas two glaciers in a humid climate showed accelerated wastage. A mass balance model with downscaled gridded datasets depicts the fate of the observed glaciers. We also show a spatially heterogeneous distribution of glacier wastage in the Asian highlands, even under the present-day climate warming.

  16. Spatially heterogeneous wastage of Himalayan glaciers

    PubMed Central

    Fujita, Koji; Nuimura, Takayuki

    2011-01-01

    We describe volumetric changes in three benchmark glaciers in the Nepal Himalayas on which observations have been made since the 1970s. Compared with the global mean of glacier mass balance, the Himalayan glaciers showed rapid wastage in the 1970s–1990s, but similar wastage in the last decade. In the last decade, a glacier in an arid climate showed negative but suppressed mass balance compared with the period 1970s–1990s, whereas two glaciers in a humid climate showed accelerated wastage. A mass balance model with downscaled gridded datasets depicts the fate of the observed glaciers. We also show a spatially heterogeneous distribution of glacier wastage in the Asian highlands, even under the present-day climate warming. PMID:21808042

  17. Microbial Habitat on Kilimanjaro's Glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ponce, A.; Beaty, S. M.; Lee, C.; Lee, C.; Noell, A. C.; Stam, C. N.; Connon, S. A.

    2011-03-01

    Kilimanjaro glaciers captured a history of microbial diversity and abundance of supraglacial habitats. We show that a majority of bacterial clones, as determined by bacterial 16S rRNA gene sequencing, are most closely related to those isolated from cold-water environments.

  18. Mountain Glaciers and Ice Caps

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ananichheva, Maria; Arendt, Anthony; Hagen, Jon-Ove; Hock, Regine; Josberger, Edward G.; Moore, R. Dan; Pfeffer, William Tad; Wolken, Gabriel J.

    2011-01-01

    Projections of future rates of mass loss from mountain glaciers and ice caps in the Arctic focus primarily on projections of changes in the surface mass balance. Current models are not yet capable of making realistic forecasts of changes in losses by calving. Surface mass balance models are forced with downscaled output from climate models driven by forcing scenarios that make assumptions about the future rate of growth of atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations. Thus, mass loss projections vary considerably, depending on the forcing scenario used and the climate model from which climate projections are derived. A new study in which a surface mass balance model is driven by output from ten general circulation models (GCMs) forced by the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) A1B emissions scenario yields estimates of total mass loss of between 51 and 136 mm sea-level equivalent (SLE) (or 13% to 36% of current glacier volume) by 2100. This implies that there will still be substantial glacier mass in the Arctic in 2100 and that Arctic mountain glaciers and ice caps will continue to influence global sea-level change well into the 22nd century.

  19. Intricate Valley Glaciers on Pluto

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2015-09-17

    The backlighting highlights the intricate flow lines on the glaciers. The flow front of the ice is moving into the informally named Sputnik Planum. The origin of the ridges and pits on the right side of the image remains uncertain. This image is 390 miles (630 kilometers) across. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA19943

  20. Faster sequence homology searches by clustering subsequences

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Shuji; Kakuta, Masanori; Ishida, Takashi; Akiyama, Yutaka

    2015-01-01

    Motivation: Sequence homology searches are used in various fields. New sequencing technologies produce huge amounts of sequence data, which continuously increase the size of sequence databases. As a result, homology searches require large amounts of computational time, especially for metagenomic analysis. Results: We developed a fast homology search method based on database subsequence clustering, and implemented it as GHOSTZ. This method clusters similar subsequences from a database to perform an efficient seed search and ungapped extension by reducing alignment candidates based on triangle inequality. The database subsequence clustering technique achieved an ∼2-fold increase in speed without a large decrease in search sensitivity. When we measured with metagenomic data, GHOSTZ is ∼2.2–2.8 times faster than RAPSearch and is ∼185–261 times faster than BLASTX. Availability and implementation: The source code is freely available for download at http://www.bi.cs.titech.ac.jp/ghostz/ Contact: akiyama@cs.titech.ac.jp Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:25432166

  1. Faster Algorithms on Branch and Clique Decompositions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bodlaender, Hans L.; van Leeuwen, Erik Jan; van Rooij, Johan M. M.; Vatshelle, Martin

    We combine two techniques recently introduced to obtain faster dynamic programming algorithms for optimization problems on graph decompositions. The unification of generalized fast subset convolution and fast matrix multiplication yields significant improvements to the running time of previous algorithms for several optimization problems. As an example, we give an O^{*}(3^{ω/2k}) time algorithm for Minimum Dominating Set on graphs of branchwidth k, improving on the previous O *(4 k ) algorithm. Here ω is the exponent in the running time of the best matrix multiplication algorithm (currently ω< 2.376). For graphs of cliquewidth k, we improve from O *(8 k ) to O *(4 k ). We also obtain an algorithm for counting the number of perfect matchings of a graph, given a branch decomposition of width k, that runs in time O^{*}(2^{ω/2k}). Generalizing these approaches, we obtain faster algorithms for all so-called [ρ,σ]-domination problems on branch decompositions if ρ and σ are finite or cofinite. The algorithms presented in this paper either attain or are very close to natural lower bounds for these problems.

  2. Development of the FASTER Wheeled Bevameter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richter, L.; Eder, V.; Hoheneder, W.; Imhof, B.; Lewinger, W.; Ransom, S.; Saaj, C.; Weclewski, P.; Waclavicek, R.,

    2014-04-01

    This paper describes the development of a Wheeled Bevameter (WB) within the FASTER project (Forward Acquisition of Soil and Terrain Data for Exploration Rovers), funded by the European Union's FP7 programme. In FASTER, novel and innovative concepts for in situ forward sensing of soil properties and terrain conditions in the planned path of a planetary rover are developed. Terrain strength measurements for assessment of the mobility of crosscountry vehicles have decades of heritage on Earth, but typically trafficability of terrains is only gauged by human operators ahead of vehicle operations rather than in-line by probes deployed from the vehicle itself, as is intended for FASTER. For FASTER, a Wheeled Bevameter (WB) has been selected as the terrain sensing instrument for the vehicle. Wheeled Bevameters are suitable for terrain measurements while driving but traditionally have mostly been employed on terrestrial vehicles to evaluate particular wheel designs. The WB as conceived in FASTER uses a dedicated, passive-rolling test wheel (‚test wheel') placed on the terrain as the loading device to enable to determine bearing strength, compressive strength and shear strength of the terrain immediately ahead of the vehicle, as well as rover-terrain interaction parameters used in semi-empirical vehicle-terrain traction models. The WB includes a placement mechanism for the test wheel. The test wheel would remain lowered onto the ground during nominal rover motion, including when climbing and descending slopes. During normal operations, the placement mechanism assumes the function of a passive suspension of the wheel, allowing it to follow the terrain contour. Quantities measured with the WB are: test wheel sinkage (through a laser sensor), test wheel vertical load, test wheel horizontal reaction force, and test wheel rotation rate. Measurements are performed while the rover is in motion. Measured test wheel rotation rate (with appropriate corrections for slight skid) can

  3. Heterogeneity in Karakoram glacier surges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quincey, Duncan J.; Glasser, Neil F.; Cook, Simon J.; Luckman, Adrian

    2015-07-01

    Many Karakoram glaciers periodically undergo surges during which large volumes of ice and debris are rapidly transported downglacier, usually at a rate of 1-2 orders of magnitude greater than during quiescence. Here we identify eight recent surges in the region and map their surface velocities using cross-correlation feature tracking on optical satellite imagery. In total, we present 44 surface velocity data sets, which show that Karakoram surges are generally short-lived, lasting between 3 and 5 years in most cases, and have rapid buildup and relaxation phases, often lasting less than a year. Peak velocities of up to 2 km a-1 are reached during summer months, and the surges tend to diminish during winter months. Otherwise, they do not follow a clearly identifiable pattern. In two of the surges, the peak velocity travels down-ice through time as a wave, which we interpret as a surge front. Three other surges are characterized by high velocities that occur simultaneously across the entire glacier surface, and acceleration and deceleration are close to monotonic. There is also no consistent seasonal control on surge initiation or termination. We suggest that the differing styles of surge can be partly accounted for by individual glacier configurations and that while some characteristics of Karakoram surges are akin to thermally controlled surges elsewhere (e.g., Svalbard), the dominant surge mechanism remains unclear. We thus propose that these surges represent a spectrum of flow instabilities and the processes controlling their evolution may vary on a glacier by glacier basis.

  4. Circadian clocks of faster developing fruit fly populations also age faster.

    PubMed

    Yadav, Pankaj; Sharma, Vijay Kumar

    2014-02-01

    Age-related changes in circadian rhythms have been studied in several model organisms including fruit flies Drosophila melanogaster. Although a general trend of period (τ) lengthening, reduction in rhythm strength and eventual arrhythmicity with increasing age has been reported, age-related changes in circadian rhythms have seldom been examined in the light of differences in the rate of ageing of the organism. We used four populations of fruit flies D. melanogaster which were selected to develop faster (as pre-adults) to ask if circadian clocks of these flies age faster than their controls. After 55 generations, the selected populations (FD) started developing ~29-h (~12 %) faster than the controls (BD) while their circadian clocks exhibited τ ~0.5-h shorter than the controls. We assayed the activity/rest behaviour and adult lifespan of virgin males from the FD and BD populations under constant dark (DD) conditions. The results revealed that FD flies live significantly shorter, and markers of ageing of circadian rhythms set-in earlier in the FD flies compared to the BD controls, which suggests that circadian clocks of faster developing flies age faster than controls. These results can be taken to suggest that ageing of circadian clocks in fruit flies D. melanogaster is a function of its physiological rather than chronological age.

  5. Numerical modelling of the effect of changing surface geometry on mountain glacier mass balance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, Chris; Carrivick, Jonathan; Evans, Andrew; Carver, Steve

    2013-04-01

    Mountain glaciers and ice caps are extremely useful indicators of environmental change. Due to their small size, they have much faster response times to climate changes than the large ice masses of Greenland and Antarctica. Mountain glaciers are important for society as sources of water for energy production and irrigation and the meltwater cycles significantly impact local ecology. We have applied a spatially distributed surface energy balance model to a glacier record spanning 100 years. Our study encompasses (i) the creation of a GIS enabling quantitative analysis of changing glacier geometry; absolute length, area, surface lowering and volume change, over the 20th and early 21st Centuries and (ii) the development and testing of a novel user-friendly distributed-surface energy balance model that is designed specifically to consider the effect that these geometrical changes have on mountain glacier mass balance. Our study site is Kårsaglaciären in Arctic Sweden for which there is a variety of data for the past 100 years, sourced from historical surveys, satellite imagery and recent field work. This contrasts with other Arctic mountain glaciers where long-term records are rare, making model development and evaluation very difficult. Kårsaglaciären has been in a state of negative balance throughout the 20th century. Disintegration of the glacier occurred during the 1920s, breaking the glacier into two separate bodies. Between 1926 and 2008, the glacier retreated 1.3 km and reduced in area by 3.41km2. In 2008 the glacier had an estimated surface area of 0.89km2 and a length of approximately 1.0km. Firstly, we present the GIS based construction of robust three-dimensional glacier surface reconstructions for Kårsaglaciären from 1926 to 2010 using a decadal interval. We highlight the kriging interpolation methods used for surface development and the importance of inter-model sensitivity analyses as well as the use of Monte Carlo simulations used to assess the

  6. Pigeons home faster through polluted air

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Zhongqiu; Courchamp, Franck; Blumstein, Daniel T.

    2016-01-01

    Air pollution, especially haze pollution, is creating health issues for both humans and other animals. However, remarkably little is known about how animals behaviourally respond to air pollution. We used multiple linear regression to analyse 415 pigeon races in the North China Plain, an area with considerable air pollution, and found that while the proportion of pigeons successfully homed was not influenced by air pollution, pigeons homed faster when the air was especially polluted. Our results may be explained by an enhanced homing motivation and possibly an enriched olfactory environment that facilitates homing. Our study provides a unique example of animals’ response to haze pollution; future studies are needed to identify proposed mechanisms underlying this effect.

  7. Hasty retreat of glaciers in northern Patagonia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paul, Frank; Mölg, Nico

    2014-05-01

    Mapping glacier extent from optical satellite data has become a most efficient tool to create or update glacier inventories and determine glacier changes over time. A most valuable archive in this regard is the nearly 30-year time series of Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) data that is freely available (already orthorectified) for most regions in the world from the USGS. One region with a most dramatic glacier shrinkage and a missing systematic assessment of changes, is the Palena province in Chile, located south of Puerto Montt in northern Patagonia. A major bottleneck for accurate determination of glacier changes in this region is related to the huge amounts of snow falling in this very maritime region, hiding the perimeter of glaciers throughout the year. Consequently, we found only three years with Landsat scenes that can be used to map glacier extent through time. We here present the results of a glacier change analysis from six Landsat scenes (path-rows 232-89/90) acquired in 1985, 2000 and 2011 covering the Palena district in Chile and neighbouring regions. Clean glacier ice was mapped automatically with a standard technique (TM3/TM band ratio) and manual editing was applied to remove wrongly classified lakes and to add debris-covered glacier parts. The digital elevation model (DEM) from ASTER (GDEM2) was used to derive drainage divides, determine glacier specific topographic parameters, and analyse the area changes in regard to topography. The scene from the year 2000 has the best snow conditions and was used to eliminate seasonal snow in the other two scenes by digital combination of the binary glacier masks and neighbourhood analysis. The derived mean relative area loss over the entire study area is 25%, showing a large spatial variability and a strong dependence on elevation. While small mountain glaciers at high elevations and steep slopes show only little change over the 26-year period, ice at low elevations from large valley glaciers shows a dramatic

  8. Glaciers in the Rupal Valley (Nanga Parbat)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidt, Susanne; Nüsser, Marcus

    2014-05-01

    The widely discussed controversy about Himalayan glacier changes instigated a current boom in studies on a regional scale. In contrast to often simplified assumptions of general and mostly rapid glacier retreat, recent studies show a more complex pattern with stable, advancing and retreating glaciers. Furthermore, changes of debris covered glaciers are discussed controversial. Due to the great vertical span and steep relief, large ice streams in the Himalaya and Karakoram are often primarily fed by avalanches. Their impact on glacier mass balances is often unconsidered in present studies. However, Hewitt (2014) highlighted the crucial role of snow and ice re-distribution by avalanches for Karakoram glaciers. He used a concept of glacier typology based on different nourishment processes introduced at the beginning of the 20th century. By using this concept, Hewitt classified large glaciers in order to identify the effect of avalanches on the mass balance, because many Karakoram glaciers show low down-wasting or even thickening processes described as the "Karakoram anomaly" (Hewitt 2005). Also in the Nanga Parbat region, the western corner of the High Himalaya, the topography is characterized by steep rock walls with vertical distances up to 4700 m. The debris covered glaciers reach down to 2920 m a.s.l. and are regularly fed by small and large avalanches. Our field based investigations show that the glaciers are characterized by small retreating rates since 1857, when Adolph Schlagintweit has mapped them for the first time; others such as the Raikot Glacier are fluctuating since 1934. Furthermore, the extent of down-wasting varies between different glaciers. By using multi-temporal satellite data, topographical maps, sketches and terrestrial photographs changes of glacier lengths were measured. In order to calculate the down-wasting rates, a digital elevation model (DEM) with a spatial resolution of 30x30 m² was derived from the digitized contour lines of the

  9. OMEGA - an operational glacier monitoring system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pellikka, P. K. E.

    2003-04-01

    Glacier changes reflect local climate changes and are one of the most important direct indicators of global climate change. In general, the glaciers are retreating in Europe, but some glaciers are advancing. However, even in small areas glacier responses can be different. The application of glaciers as indicators requires sufficient amount of glaciers, which is possible only with remote sensing methods. Remote sensing data have been used for glacier monitoring from the late 19th century, first as terrestrial photographs, but later as aerial photographs. A new era began in the 1970’s as optical satellite data became available. Since late 1990’s the glacier monitoring could be performed with numerous satellite and airborne sensors ranging from satellite radar data to airborne laser scanner data. All together, the development of new remote sensing technologies and methods provides many possibilities for studies of glacier features and parameters. The glacier parameters of interest in operational monitoring are the changes of glacier area and volume, and the variation of glacier zones, such as snow, firn and ice. These parameters enable the estimation of relative volume change, AAR and equilibrium line, for example. Operational monitoring involves that the remote sensing data to be used is available continuously, the image processing methods are accurate and the processing chain is developed so that the derivation of the aimed parameters works fluently. The OMEGA project aims at the development of an operational glacier monitoring system applying all the potential remote sensing data. The objectives are to develop workflows and semi-automatic image processing methodologies for different data types in order to retrieve glacier parameters, to construct databases of the study glaciers and to develop the prototype of an operational monitoring system. The test glaciers are Hintereisferner in Austria and Engabreen in Norway. The deliverable of the project is the OMEGA

  10. Glacier area changes in Northern Eurasia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khromova, Tatiana; Nosenko, Gennady; Kutuzov, Stanislav; Muraviev, Anton; Chernova, Ludmila

    2014-01-01

    Glaciers are widely recognized as key indicators of climate change. Recent evidence suggests an acceleration of glacier mass loss in several key mountain regions. Glacier recession implies landscape changes in the glacial zone, the origin of new lakes and activation of natural disaster processes, catastrophic mudflows, ice avalanches, outburst floods, etc. The absence or inadequacy of such information results in financial and human losses. A more comprehensive evaluation of glacier changes is imperative to assess ice contributions to global sea level rise and the future of water resources from glacial basins. One of the urgent steps is a full inventory of all ice bodies and their changes. The first estimation of glacier state and glacier distribution on the territory of the former Soviet Union has been done in the USSR Glacier Inventory (UGI) published in 1965-1982. The UGI is based on topographic maps and air photos and reflects the status of the glaciers in the 1940s-1970s. There is information about 28 884 glaciers with an area of 7830.75 km2 in the inventory. It covers 25 glacier systems in Northern Eurasia. In the 1980s the UGI has been transformed into digital form as a part of the World Glacier Inventory (WGI). Recent satellite data provide a unique opportunity to look again at these glaciers and to evaluate changes in glacier extent for the second part of the 20th century. About 15 000 glacier outlines for the Caucasus, Polar Urals, Pamir Alay, Tien Shan, Altai, Kamchatka and Russian Arctic have been derived from ASTER and Landsat imagery and can be used for glacier change evaluation. Results of the analysis indicate the steady trend in glacier shrinkage in all mountain regions for the second part of the 20th century. Glacier area loss for the studied regions varies from 13% (Tien Shan) to 22.3% (Polar Urals). The common driver, most likely, is an increase in summer air temperature. There is also a very large variability in the degree of individual

  11. Generation of the relationship between glacier area and volume for a tropical glacier in Bolivian Andes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, T.; Kinouchi, T.; Hasegawa, A.; Tsuda, M.; Iwami, Y.; Asaoka, Y.; Mendoza, J.

    2015-12-01

    In Andes, retreat of tropical glaciers is rapid, thus water resources currently available from glacierized catchments would be changed in its volume and temporal variations due to climate change and glacier shrinkage. The relationship between glacier area and volume is difficult to define however which is important to monitor glaciers especially those are remote or inaccessible. Water resources in La Paz and El Alto in Bolivia, strongly depend on the runoff from glacierized headwater catchments in the Cordillera Real, Andes, which is therefore selected as our study region.To predict annual glacier mass balances, PWRI-Distributed Hydrological Model (PWRI-DHM) was applied to simulate runoff from the partially glacierized catchments in high mountains (i.e. Condoriri-Huayna West headwater catchment located in the Cordillera Real, Bolivian Andes). PWRI-DHM is based on tank model concept in a distributed and 4-tank configuration including surface, unsaturated, aquifer, and river course tanks. The model was calibrated and validated with observed meteorological and hydrological data from 2011 to 2014 by considering different phases of precipitation, various runoff components from glacierized and non-glacierized areas, and the retarding effect by glacial lakes and wetlands. The model is then applied with MRI-AGCM outputs from 1987 to 2003 considering the shrinkage of glacier outlines since 1980s derived from Landsat data. Annual glacier mass balance in each 100m-grid was reproduced, with which the glacier area-volume relationship was generated with reasonable initial volume setting. Out study established a method to define the relationship between glacier area and volume by remote sensing information and glacier mass balances simulated by distributed hydrological model. Our results demonstrated that the changing trend of local glacier had a consistency the previous observed glacier area-volume relationship in the Cordillera Real.

  12. Subglacial Geology of the Thwaites Glacier Catchment, West Antarctica: Airborne Gravity Reduction and Inversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diehl, T. M.; Blankenship, D. D.; Holt, J. W.

    2006-12-01

    The Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) is one of the most vulnerable areas of the continent to global warming, based on the behavior of its two major glaciers: Thwaites and Pine Island. These glaciers are among the fastest moving and highest discharge in West Antarctica and they lack protective, buttressing ice shelves. Warm ocean currents around Antarctica are diverted away from the Siple Coast ice streams by the Ross Ice Shelf. The ASE is not so fortunate and is exposed to these warm currents because the glaciers lack any sizable ice shelves. However, modeling the response of the ASE glaciers to climate-induced melting requires understanding the ASE subglacial environment. Based on the Siple Coast ice streams, we know that the character of subglacial geology, especially the availability of basal sediment, can greatly influence ice flow. Yet despite the ASE's recognized potential of being an access point of ocean waters to the interior of the WAIS, very little data has been collected in the area until recently. The University of Texas, in conjunction with the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), completed the first comprehensive surveys of the ASE during a 2004-2005 aerogeophysical field campaign. Together our investigations covered over 290,000 sq. km. of the ASE, with BAS working primarily in the Pine Island Glacier catchment and UT in the Thwaites Glacier catchment. Our geophysical platform includes ice-penetrating radar, gravity, magnetics, laser and pressure altimetry, and GPS. Here we present the results of the airborne gravity reduction. This was the first use of the LaCoste & Romberg Air/Sea II gravity meter in an airborne survey and it performed very well, especially considering the extreme flight conditions and unusual survey design required for the region. The data were acquired on a 15km grid; the free-air gravity anomaly results have a mean deviation crossover error of 3.8 mGals and a half-wavelength spatial resolution of 9

  13. Using Metaphorical Models for Describing Glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Felzmann, Dirk

    2014-11-01

    To date, there has only been little conceptual change research regarding conceptions about glaciers. This study used the theoretical background of embodied cognition to reconstruct different metaphorical concepts with respect to the structure of a glacier. Applying the Model of Educational Reconstruction, the conceptions of students and scientists regarding glaciers were analysed. Students' conceptions were the result of teaching experiments whereby students received instruction about glaciers and ice ages and were then interviewed about their understandings. Scientists' conceptions were based on analyses of textbooks. Accordingly, four conceptual metaphors regarding the concept of a glacier were reconstructed: a glacier is a body of ice; a glacier is a container; a glacier is a reflexive body and a glacier is a flow. Students and scientists differ with respect to in which context they apply each conceptual metaphor. It was observed, however, that students vacillate among the various conceptual metaphors as they solve tasks. While the subject context of the task activates a specific conceptual metaphor, within the discussion about the solution, the students were able to adapt their conception by changing the conceptual metaphor. Educational strategies for teaching students about glaciers require specific language to activate the appropriate conceptual metaphors and explicit reflection regarding the various conceptual metaphors.

  14. Monitoring Jakobshavn Glacier using Sequential Landsat Images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jian, Z.; Zhuoqi, C.; Cheng, X.

    2016-12-01

    Jakobshavn Glacier is the fastest (19 m per day) and one of the most active glaciers around the world. Discharging more than 35km3 of ice every year, its mass loss surpasses anyone else outside the Antarctic. From Landsat 8 OLI Images on August 14, 2015, we find a huge iceberg about 5 km2 calved from resulting in the front shrinking for 1060.8m. NSIDC ice velocity data and weather station data on Jakobshavn glacier are used to analyze the cause of calving. On one hand, upstream glacier push forward the Jakobshavn glacier westward continually, many cracks were formed over the glacier surface. Surface melting water flow into the interior of glaciers to accelerate calving. On the other hand with the gradually rising temperature, the bottom of glaciers accelerate ablation. When glaciers move into the ocean and the thin bottom can not provide strong enough support, calving occurs. Before this incident, we trace sequential Landsat data during 1986 to 2015. In 2010, it had another large-scale calving. We draw from our data that Jakobshavn retreated intensely in the past 30 years although in the last 10 years it appears more stable. The speed of glacier shrinking during 1996 to 2006 is three times as fast as past 10 years.

  15. Revised ice flux of Pine Island Bay, West Antarctica over the last 40 years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mouginot, J.; Rignot, E. J.; Scheuchl, B.

    2012-12-01

    Large uncertainties remain in the current and future contribution to sea level rise from Antarctica. The mass budget of Antarctica is determined from the difference between two competing processes of ice discharge into the ocean by glaciers and accumulation of snowfall in the vast interior. Pine Island and Thwaites Glaciers alone drain about 20% of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet or half the discharge of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Here, we use satellite interferometric synthetic-aperture radar observations (ERS-1&2, RADARSAT-2, ALOS PALSAR, TANDEM-X) from 1992 to 2012 and Landsat images from 1972 to 1991 to revisit the total ice flux into the Pine Island Bay over the last 40 years. We examine the most recent velocity changes over Thwaites, Pine Island and Smith Glaciers and find that Thwaites glacier is now accelerating, Pine Island Glacier stopped accelerating and Smith Glacier is still accelerating. We compare the relative velocity change of these glaciers with the InSAR grounding lines position from 1992 to 2011. This work is performed at University of California, Irvine under a contract with the NASA Cryosphere Science Program.

  16. Future glacier runoff at the global scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huss, Matthias; Hock, Regine

    2016-04-01

    Water resources in mountain areas worldwide importantly depend on the runoff contribution by glaciers. Glacial water storage acts as an equilibrating element in the global hydrological cycle on various temporal scales. With ongoing and future glacier retreat a growing concern regarding water supply security in glacier-fed basins arises. However, glacier runoff projections at the regional or global scale are still rare and better models are urgently needed for planning and adaptation measures to cope with a changing seasonal distribution of water yields. Moreover, it is still an open debate in which region "peak water" - the maximum contribution of melting glaciers to runoff - has already been reached, i.e. whether increasing or declining annual runoff volumes must be expected. Here, we present results of a novel global glacier model for calculating the 21st century response of surface mass balance, three-dimensional glacier geometry and monthly water discharge for each individual glacier around the globe. The current surface geometry and thickness distribution for each of the world's roughly 200'000 glaciers is extracted from the Randolph Glacier Inventory and terrain models. Our simulations are driven with 14 Global Circulation Models from the CMIP5 project using the RCP4.5, RCP8.5 and RCP2.6 scenarios. We focus on the timing of peak water from glacierized catchments in all climatic regions of the earth and the corresponding importance of changes in the runoff regime on hydrological stress. The maximum rate of water release from glacial storage is subject to a high spatio-temporal variability depending on glacier characteristics and the transient response to climatic change. Furthermore, we discuss the significance of projected variations in glacier runoff in relation to the hydrology of the world's large-scale drainage basins and population distribution, and highlight 'hot spot' regions where the wastage of current ice volume is particularly relevant.

  17. Benthic Trophic Interactions in an Antarctic Shallow Water Ecosystem Affected by Recent Glacier Retreat.

    PubMed

    Pasotti, Francesca; Saravia, Leonardo Ariel; De Troch, Marleen; Tarantelli, Maria Soledad; Sahade, Ricardo; Vanreusel, Ann

    2015-01-01

    The western Antarctic Peninsula is experiencing strong environmental changes as a consequence of ongoing regional warming. Glaciers in the area are retreating rapidly and increased sediment-laden meltwater runoff threatens the benthic biodiversity at shallow depths. We identified three sites with a distinct glacier-retreat related history and different levels of glacial influence in the inner part of Potter Cove (King George Island, South Shetland Islands), a fjord-like embayment impacted since the 1950s by a tidewater glacier retreat. We compared the soft sediment meio- and macrofauna isotopic niche widths (δ13C and δ15N stable isotope analysis) at the three sites to investigate possible glacier retreat-related influences on benthic trophic interactions. The isotopic niches were locally shaped by the different degrees of glacier retreat-related disturbance within the Cove. Wider isotopic niche widths were found at the site that has become ice-free most recently, and narrower niches at the older ice-free sites. At an intermediate state of glacier retreat-related disturbance (e.g. via ice-growler scouring) species with different strategies could settle. The site at the earliest stage of post-retreat development was characterized by an assemblage with lower trophic redundancy. Generally, the isotopic niche widths increased with increasing size spectra of organisms within the community, excepting the youngest assemblage, where the pioneer colonizer meiofauna size class displayed the highest isotopic niche width. Meiofauna at all sites generally occupied positions in the isotopic space that suggested a detrital-pool food source and/or the presence of predatory taxa. In general ice scour and glacial impact appeared to play a two-fold role within the Cove: i) either stimulating trophic diversity by allowing continuous re-colonization of meiofaunal species or, ii) over time driving the benthic assemblages into a more compact trophic structure with increased

  18. Benthic Trophic Interactions in an Antarctic Shallow Water Ecosystem Affected by Recent Glacier Retreat

    PubMed Central

    Pasotti, Francesca; Saravia, Leonardo Ariel; De Troch, Marleen; Tarantelli, Maria Soledad; Sahade, Ricardo; Vanreusel, Ann

    2015-01-01

    The western Antarctic Peninsula is experiencing strong environmental changes as a consequence of ongoing regional warming. Glaciers in the area are retreating rapidly and increased sediment-laden meltwater runoff threatens the benthic biodiversity at shallow depths. We identified three sites with a distinct glacier-retreat related history and different levels of glacial influence in the inner part of Potter Cove (King George Island, South Shetland Islands), a fjord-like embayment impacted since the 1950s by a tidewater glacier retreat. We compared the soft sediment meio- and macrofauna isotopic niche widths (δ13C and δ15N stable isotope analysis) at the three sites to investigate possible glacier retreat-related influences on benthic trophic interactions. The isotopic niches were locally shaped by the different degrees of glacier retreat-related disturbance within the Cove. Wider isotopic niche widths were found at the site that has become ice-free most recently, and narrower niches at the older ice-free sites. At an intermediate state of glacier retreat-related disturbance (e.g. via ice-growler scouring) species with different strategies could settle. The site at the earliest stage of post-retreat development was characterized by an assemblage with lower trophic redundancy. Generally, the isotopic niche widths increased with increasing size spectra of organisms within the community, excepting the youngest assemblage, where the pioneer colonizer meiofauna size class displayed the highest isotopic niche width. Meiofauna at all sites generally occupied positions in the isotopic space that suggested a detrital-pool food source and/or the presence of predatory taxa. In general ice scour and glacial impact appeared to play a two-fold role within the Cove: i) either stimulating trophic diversity by allowing continuous re-colonization of meiofaunal species or, ii) over time driving the benthic assemblages into a more compact trophic structure with increased

  19. Recent acceleration of Thwaites Glacier

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ferrigno, J. G.

    1993-01-01

    The first velocity measurements for Thwaites Glacier were made by R. J. Allen in 1977. He compared features of Thwaites Glacier and Iceberg Tongue on aerial photography from 1947 and 1967 with 1972 Landsat images, and measured average annual displacements of 3.7 and 2.3 km/a. Using his photogrammetric experience and taking into consideration the lack of definable features and the poor control in the area, he estimated an average velocity of 2.0 to 2.9 km/a to be more accurate. In 1985, Lindstrom and Tyler also made velocity estimates for Thwaites Glacier. Using Landsat imagery from 1972 and 1983, their estimates of the velocities of 33 points ranged from 2.99 to 4.02 km/a, with an average of 3.6 km/a. The accuracy of their estimates is uncertain, however, because in the absence of fixed control points, they assumed that the velocities of icebergs in the fast ice were uniform. Using additional Landsat imagery in 1984 and 1990, accurate coregistration with the 1972 image was achieved based on fixed rock points. For the period 1972 to 1984, 25 points on the glacier surface ranged in average velocity from 2.47 to 2.76 km/a, with an overall average velocity of 2.62 +/- 0.02 km/a. For the period 1984 to 1990, 101 points ranged in velocity from 2.54 to 3.15 km/a, with an overall average of 2.84 km/a. During both time periods, the velocity pattern showed the same spatial relationship for three longitudinal paths. The 8-percent acceleration in a decade is significant. This recent acceleration may be associated with changes observed in this region since 1986. Fast ice melted and several icebergs calved from the base of the Iceberg Tongue and the terminus of Thwaites Glacier. However, as early as 1972, the Iceberg Tongue had very little contact with the glacier.

  20. Recent acceleration of Thwaites Glacier

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ferrigno, J. G.

    1993-01-01

    The first velocity measurements for Thwaites Glacier were made by R. J. Allen in 1977. He compared features of Thwaites Glacier and Iceberg Tongue on aerial photography from 1947 and 1967 with 1972 Landsat images, and measured average annual displacements of 3.7 and 2.3 km/a. Using his photogrammetric experience and taking into consideration the lack of definable features and the poor control in the area, he estimated an average velocity of 2.0 to 2.9 km/a to be more accurate. In 1985, Lindstrom and Tyler also made velocity estimates for Thwaites Glacier. Using Landsat imagery from 1972 and 1983, their estimates of the velocities of 33 points ranged from 2.99 to 4.02 km/a, with an average of 3.6 km/a. The accuracy of their estimates is uncertain, however, because in the absence of fixed control points, they assumed that the velocities of icebergs in the fast ice were uniform. Using additional Landsat imagery in 1984 and 1990, accurate coregistration with the 1972 image was achieved based on fixed rock points. For the period 1972 to 1984, 25 points on the glacier surface ranged in average velocity from 2.47 to 2.76 km/a, with an overall average velocity of 2.62 +/- 0.02 km/a. For the period 1984 to 1990, 101 points ranged in velocity from 2.54 to 3.15 km/a, with an overall average of 2.84 km/a. During both time periods, the velocity pattern showed the same spatial relationship for three longitudinal paths. The 8-percent acceleration in a decade is significant. This recent acceleration may be associated with changes observed in this region since 1986. Fast ice melted and several icebergs calved from the base of the Iceberg Tongue and the terminus of Thwaites Glacier. However, as early as 1972, the Iceberg Tongue had very little contact with the glacier.

  1. From 'true' glaciers to rock glaciers? The case of the Llanos la Liebre rock glacier, dry Andes of Chile.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monnier, S.; Kinnard, C.

    2012-04-01

    In the dry Andes of Chile, rock glaciers are the most widespread and remarkable superficial landforms, and may constitute important solid water reservoirs. The existence of huge (up to 2-3 kilometres of length) rock glaciers located in deep cirques questions possible derivation from former 'true' glaciers. The issue is of importance (i) for understanding the mechanisms of the landscape evolution from glacial realm to periglacial realm, and (ii) because it may determine the ice content of the concerned rock glaciers. In the Colorado Río valley, in the upper part of the Elqui catchment (~30.15 deg. S and 70.80 deg. W), we investigated the internal structure of the Llanos la Liebre rock glacier using ground-penetrating radar (GPR). With 50 MHz antennas and a constant offset of 2 m between antennas, we performed various GPR profiles, especially a ~2.2 km-long one almost covering the entire length of the rock glacier. The processing and the subsequent interpretation of the GPR data were mainly based on the modelling of the radar wave velocity. Hence, the final representation of the internal structure of the rock glacier integrates the reconstructed stratigraphy, the 2-D velocity model, and first attempts for estimating the ice/water contents. The most striking results are: the neat identification of the base of the superficial blocky layer and of the rock glacier floor; the occurrence of stratigraphic patterns reminiscent of 'true' glaciers; the supremacy of high radar wave velocities in the upper part of the rock glacier. On the latter bases and taking into account the whole geomorphology of the site, the derivation of the Llanos la Liebre rock glacier from a former, buried glacier is debated.

  2. Recent Observations and Structural Analysis of Surge-Type Glaciers in the Glacier Bay Area

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayer, H.; Herzfeld, U. C.

    2003-12-01

    The Chugach-St.-Elias Mountains in North America hold the largest non-polar connected glaciated area of the world. Most of its larger glaciers are surge-type glaciers. In the summer of 2003, we collected aerial photographic and GPS data over numerous glaciers in the eastern St. Elias Mountains, including the Glacier Bay area. Observed glaciers include Davidson, Casement, McBride, Riggs, Cushing, Carroll, Rendu, Tsirku, Grand Pacific, Melbern, Ferris, Margerie, Johns Hopkins, Lamplugh, Reid, Burroughs, Morse, Muir and Willard Glaciers, of which Carroll, Rendu, Ferris, Grand Pacific, Johns Hopkins and Margerie Glaciers are surge-type glaciers. Our approach utilizes a quantitative analysis of surface patterns, following the principles of structural geology for the analysis of brittle-deformation patterns (manifested in crevasses) and ductile deformation patterns (visible in folded moraines). First results will be presented.

  3. Attribution of glacier fluctuations to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oerlemans, J.

    2012-04-01

    Glacier retreat is a worlwide phenomenon, which started around the middle of the 19th century. During the period 1800-1850 the number of retreating and advancing glaciers was roughly equal (based on 42 records from different continents). During the period 1850-1900 about 92% of all mountain glaciers became shorter (based on 65 records). After this, the percentage of shrinking glaciers has been around 90% until the present time. The glacier signal is rather coherent over the globe, especially when surging and calving glaciers are not considered (for such glaciers the response to climate change is often masked by length changes related to internal dynamics). From theoretical studies as well as extensive meteorological work on glaciers, the processes that control the response of glaciers to climate change are now basically understood. It is useful to make a difference between geometric factors (e.g. slope, altitudinal range, hypsometry) and climatic setting (e.g. seasonal cycle, precipitation). The most sensitive glaciers appear to be flat glaciers in a maritime climate. Characterizing the dynamic properties of a glacier requires at least two quantities: the climate sensitivity, expressing how the equilibrium glacier state depends on the climatic conditions, and the response time, indicating how fast a glacier approaches a new equilibrium state after a stepwise change in the climatic forcing. These quantities can be estimated from relatively simple theory, showing that differences among glaciers are substantial. For larger glaciers, climate sensitivities (in terms of glacier length) vary from 1 to 8 km per 100 m change in the equilibrium-line altitude. Response times are mainly in the range of 20 to 200 years, with most values between 30 and 80 years. Changes in the equilibrium-line altitude or net mass balance of a glacier are mainly driven by fluctuations in air temperature, precipitation, and global radiation. Energy-balance modelling for many glaciers shows that

  4. Modelled glacier equilibrium line altitudes during the mid-Holocene in the southern mid-latitudes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bravo, C.; Rojas, M.; Anderson, B. M.; Mackintosh, A. N.; Sagredo, E.; Moreno, P. I.

    2015-03-01

    Glacier behaviour during the mid-Holocene (MH, 6000 year BP) in the Southern Hemisphere provides observational data to constrain our understanding of the origin and propagation of palaeo-climatic signals. We examine the climatic forcing of glacier expansion in the MH by evaluating modelled glacier equilibrium line altitude (ELA) and climate conditions during the MH compared with pre-industrial time (PI, year 1750) in the mid latitudes of the Southern Hemisphere, specifically in Patagonia and the South Island of New Zealand. Climate conditions for the MH are obtained from PMIP2 models simulations, which in turn force a simple glacier mass balance model to simulate changes in equilibrium-line altitude during this period. Climate conditions during the MH show significantly (p ≤ 0.05) colder temperatures in summer, autumn and winter, and significantly (p ≤ 0.05) warmer temperatures in spring. These changes are a consequence of insolation differences between the two periods. Precipitation does not show significant changes, but exhibits a temporal pattern with less precipitation from August to September and more precipitation from October to April during the MH. In response to these climatic changes, glaciers in both analysed regions have an ELA that is 15-33 m lower than PI during the MH. The main causes of this difference are the colder temperature during the MH, reinforcing previous results that mid-latitude glaciers are more sensitive to temperature change compared to precipitation changes. Differences in temperature have a dual effect on mass balance. First, during summer and early autumn less energy is available for melting. Second in late autumn and winter, lower temperatures cause more precipitation to fall as snow rather than rain, resulting in more accumulation and higher surface albedo. For these reasons, we postulate that the modelled ELA changes, although small, may help to explain larger glacier extents observed in the mid Holocene in both South America

  5. Molecular analysis of bacterial communities from a Canadian high Arctic polythermal glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhatia, M.; Sharp, M.; Foght, J.

    2003-04-01

    The goal of this study is to characterize the bacterial communities beneath, on, and adjacent to a high Arctic polythermal glacier, with a view to understanding the origins of the subglacial microbial population. The study site is John Evans Glacier (JEG), Ellesmere Island, Canada. JEG is a polythermal glacier consisting of a core of ice at the pressure melting point, surrounded by an outer layer of cold ice. Basal melting and seasonal inputs of meltwater from the glacier surface provide liquid water for subglacial microbial life. Samples were collected from the subglacial, supraglacial, and proglacial environments at JEG. Subglacial samples included basal ice and water that had been stored beneath the glacier. Dry snow, wet snow, and water from supraglacial streams were collected as representatives of the supraglacial environment, which changes in character through the melt season. Sediments and algal mats were collected from an area directly in front of the glacier terminus and along a transect adjacent to the glacier to reflect the developing proglacial environment. Hydrochemical analyses were conducted to assess the role of microbial activity in biogeochemical processes. To compare the bacterial communities, molecular techniques were applied to total community DNA that was released from the samples by a physical cell disruption technique. The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was used with bacterial-specific primers, one of which was fluorescently labeled, to amplify community 16S rDNA genes. Single digestions with the restriction enzymes HaeIII and HhaI were performed to conduct inter- and intra-community comparisons of the terminal restriction fragment length polymorphisms (tRFLPs) of the fluorescently tagged amplified 16S rDNA genes. Preliminary results indicate that although some species are present throughout the different environments, several species are unique to each particular habitat. Further study of replicate tRFLP data and statistical analyses will

  6. Glaciers and Sea Level Rise

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    An airplane drops essential support on the Austfonna Ice Cap in Svalbard (Norwegian Arctic). The triangular structure is a corner reflector used as ground reference for airborne radar surveys. To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit: www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html Credit: Andrea Taurisano, Norwegian Polar Institute NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  7. Preliminary bathymetry of Blackstone Bay and Neoglacial changes of Blackstone Glaciers, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Post, Austin

    1980-01-01

    Preliminary bathymetry (at 1:20,000 scale) and scientific studies of Blackstone Bay Alaska, by the Research Vessel Growler in 1978 disclose that the head of the bay consists of two basins separated by Willard Island and a submarine ridge. Both basins are closed on the north by terminal-moraine bars where Blackstone Glacier and its tributaries terminated as recently as about A.D. 1350; a carbon-14 date of 580 years before present on Badger Point, and old trees farther up the bay, disclose that the glaciers retreated to two narrow inlets at the head of the bay before 1400. The inlets were still glacier-covered until at least 1909. Glaciers in both inlets have continued to retreat; at present they terminate at the head of tidewater, where they discharge small icebergs. Only relatively thin sediments have accumulated in the eastern basin south of the terminal-moraine bar, and most of the bottom is hard and irregular as disclosed by soundings and profiles. The northern part of Blackstone Bay is very deep; at more than 1,100 feet below sea level a large, level accumulation of sediment is present which is presumably as much as 1,000 feet deep and has been accumulating since late Pleistocene glaciers retreated. (USGS)

  8. Atmospheric drying as the main driver of dramatic glacier wastage in the southern Indian Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Favier, V.; Verfaillie, D.; Berthier, E.; Menegoz, M.; Jomelli, V.; Kay, J. E.; Ducret, L.; Malbéteau, Y.; Brunstein, D.; Gallée, H.; Park, Y.-H.; Rinterknecht, V.

    2016-09-01

    The ongoing retreat of glaciers at southern sub-polar latitudes is particularly rapid and widespread. Akin to northern sub-polar latitudes, this retreat is generally assumed to be linked to warming. However, no long-term and well-constrained glacier modeling has ever been performed to confirm this hypothesis. Here, we model the Cook Ice Cap mass balance on the Kerguelen Islands (Southern Indian Ocean, 49°S) since the 1850s. We show that glacier wastage during the 2000s in the Kerguelen was among the most dramatic on Earth. We attribute 77% of the increasingly negative mass balance since the 1960s to atmospheric drying associated with a poleward shift of the mid-latitude storm track. Because precipitation modeling is very challenging for the current generation of climate models over the study area, models incorrectly simulate the climate drivers behind the recent glacier wastage in the Kerguelen. This suggests that future glacier wastage projections should be considered cautiously where changes in atmospheric circulation are expected.

  9. Atmospheric drying as the main driver of dramatic glacier wastage in the southern Indian Ocean.

    PubMed

    Favier, V; Verfaillie, D; Berthier, E; Menegoz, M; Jomelli, V; Kay, J E; Ducret, L; Malbéteau, Y; Brunstein, D; Gallée, H; Park, Y-H; Rinterknecht, V

    2016-09-01

    The ongoing retreat of glaciers at southern sub-polar latitudes is particularly rapid and widespread. Akin to northern sub-polar latitudes, this retreat is generally assumed to be linked to warming. However, no long-term and well-constrained glacier modeling has ever been performed to confirm this hypothesis. Here, we model the Cook Ice Cap mass balance on the Kerguelen Islands (Southern Indian Ocean, 49°S) since the 1850s. We show that glacier wastage during the 2000s in the Kerguelen was among the most dramatic on Earth. We attribute 77% of the increasingly negative mass balance since the 1960s to atmospheric drying associated with a poleward shift of the mid-latitude storm track. Because precipitation modeling is very challenging for the current generation of climate models over the study area, models incorrectly simulate the climate drivers behind the recent glacier wastage in the Kerguelen. This suggests that future glacier wastage projections should be considered cautiously where changes in atmospheric circulation are expected.

  10. Atmospheric drying as the main driver of dramatic glacier wastage in the southern Indian Ocean

    PubMed Central

    Favier, V.; Verfaillie, D.; Berthier, E.; Menegoz, M.; Jomelli, V.; Kay, J. E.; Ducret, L.; Malbéteau, Y.; Brunstein, D.; Gallée, H.; Park, Y.-H.; Rinterknecht, V.

    2016-01-01

    The ongoing retreat of glaciers at southern sub-polar latitudes is particularly rapid and widespread. Akin to northern sub-polar latitudes, this retreat is generally assumed to be linked to warming. However, no long-term and well-constrained glacier modeling has ever been performed to confirm this hypothesis. Here, we model the Cook Ice Cap mass balance on the Kerguelen Islands (Southern Indian Ocean, 49°S) since the 1850s. We show that glacier wastage during the 2000s in the Kerguelen was among the most dramatic on Earth. We attribute 77% of the increasingly negative mass balance since the 1960s to atmospheric drying associated with a poleward shift of the mid-latitude storm track. Because precipitation modeling is very challenging for the current generation of climate models over the study area, models incorrectly simulate the climate drivers behind the recent glacier wastage in the Kerguelen. This suggests that future glacier wastage projections should be considered cautiously where changes in atmospheric circulation are expected. PMID:27580801

  11. 1. PARKING LOT AT GLACIER POINT. HALF DOME AT CENTER ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    1. PARKING LOT AT GLACIER POINT. HALF DOME AT CENTER REAR. LOOKING NE. GIS: N-36 43 45.8 / W-119 34 14.1 - Glacier Point Road, Between Chinquapin Flat & Glacier Point, Yosemite Village, Mariposa County, CA

  12. 5. GLACIER POINT ROAD VIEW AT SENTINEL DOME PARKING AREA. ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    5. GLACIER POINT ROAD VIEW AT SENTINEL DOME PARKING AREA. LOOKING E. GIS: N-37 42 43.8 / W-119 35 12.1 - Glacier Point Road, Between Chinquapin Flat & Glacier Point, Yosemite Village, Mariposa County, CA

  13. Late Quaternary evolution of Reedy Glacier, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Todd, Claire; Stone, John; Conway, Howard; Hall, Brenda; Bromley, Gordon

    2010-06-01

    Fresh deposits above the margins of Reedy Glacier show that maximum ice levels during the last glaciation were several hundred meters above present near the glacier mouth and converged to less than 60 m above the present-day surface at the head of the glacier. Exposure ages of samples from five sites along its margin show that Reedy Glacier and its tributaries thickened asynchronously between 17 and 7 kyr BP At the Quartz Hills, located midway along the glacier, maximum ice levels were reached during the period 17-14 kyr BP. Farther up-glacier the ice surface reached its maximum elevation more recently: 14.7-10.2 kyr BP at the Caloplaca Hills; 9.1-7.7 kyr BP at Mims Spur; and around 7 kyr BP at Hatcher Bluffs. We attribute this time-transgressive behavior to two different processes: At the glacier mouth, growth of grounded ice and subsequent deglaciation in the Ross Sea embayment caused a wave of thickening and then thinning to propagate up-glacier. During the Lateglacial and Holocene, increased snow accumulation on the East Antarctic Ice Sheet caused transient thickening at the head of the glacier. An important result of this work is that moraines deposited along Reedy Glacier during the last ice age cannot be correlated to reconstruct a single glacial maximum longitudinal profile. The profile steepened during deglaciation of the Ross Sea, thinning at the Quartz Hills after 13 kyr BP while thickening upstream. Near its confluence with Mercer Ice Stream, rapid thinning beginning prior to 7-8 kyr BP reduced the level of Reedy Glacier to close to its present level. Thinning over the past 1000 years has lowered the glacier by less than 20 m.

  14. Why are halo coronal mass ejections faster?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Qing-Min; Guo, Yang; Chen, Peng-Fei; Ding, Ming-De; Fang, Cheng

    2010-05-01

    Halo coronal mass ejections (CMEs) have been to be significantly faster than normal CMEs, which is a long-standing puzzle. In order to solve the puzzle, we first investigate the observed properties of 31 limb CMEs that clearly display loop-shaped frontal loops. The observational results show a strong tendency that slower CMEs are weaker in white-light intensity. Then, we perform a Monte Carlo simulation of 20000 artificial limb CMEs that have an average velocity of ~523 km s-1. The Thomson scattering of these events is calculated when they are assumed to be observed as limb and halo events, respectively. It is found that the white-light intensity of many slow CMEs becomes remarkably reduced when they turn from being viewed as a limb event to being viewed as a halo event. When the intensity is below the background solar wind fluctuation, it is assumed that they would be missed by coronagraphs. The average velocity of “detectable" halo CMEs is ~922 km s-1 very close to the observed value. This also indicates that wider events are more likely to be recorded. The results soundly suggest that the higher average velocity of halo CMEs is due to that a majority of slow events and some of narrow fast events carrying less material are so faint that they are blended with the solar wind fluctuations, and therefore are not observed.

  15. Faster, Better, Cheaper: An Institutional View

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dumas, Larry N.; Walton, Amy L.

    2000-07-01

    The focus in solar system exploration has shifted to a "faster, better, cheaper" approach featuring focused, technically sophisticated, fast track missions. To implement this approach, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) has modified its management practices and its developmental process and tools. This paper examines the challenges, responses, and early results of this new way of doing business. The focus of this evaluation is at the institutional rather than the project level; that is, how is JPL managing a suite of many small missions rather than a few big ones? Current JPL missions are designed to fixed cost targets that are an order of magnitude lower than their predecessors. They have focused scientific objectives, are usually pan of an ongoing program of related missions, and are being developed in about half the time previously allowed. They utilize new technology to reduce mass and improve performance. The Laboratory has responded to the challenges of the new approach with modern design and development practices and information technologies, which result in an interdependence and need for resource sharing at many levels —project to project, organization to organization, and nation to nation. The early results are encouraging. Eight missions developed under the new paradigm have been launched from 1997 to 1999, with a wide range of destinations and objectives. The program architecture concept has proven to be a robust one. While many implementation issues still need to be resolved, progress is being made and the resilience of the underlying architecture has been validated.

  16. How to drill horizontal sections faster

    SciTech Connect

    Chaffin, M. )

    1991-12-01

    This paper reports that fewer trips, reduced slide time and lower drag during sliding have resulted from the application of downhole-adjustable stabilizers to horizontal drilling. Faster drilling times mean lower measurement while drilling (MWD) cost, and less wear on downhole equipment, motors and bits. These advantages combined with reduced drilling shocks have increased drilling rates and efficiency. Applying existing technology in new situations is an important way of reducing the cost of finding, exploring for and developing reserves. Engineers are responsible for using current technology to its fullest and developing new technology to reduce drilling expenses. Horizontal drilling was used in its early stages to develop the Austin chalk formation in Pearsall oil field more effectively. As procedures were generated to drill horizontal wells, Oryx drilling engineers began to develop new technology and investigate ways for existing technology to be used or altered to fit horizontal drilling programs. The new technology of downhole-adjustable stabilizers has been used successfully to further improve horizontal drilling efficiency.

  17. Fast Physics Testbed for the FASTER Project

    SciTech Connect

    Lin, W.; Liu, Y.; Hogan, R.; Neggers, R.; Jensen, M.; Fridlind, A.; Lin, Y.; Wolf, A.

    2010-03-15

    This poster describes the Fast Physics Testbed for the new FAst-physics System Testbed and Research (FASTER) project. The overall objective is to provide a convenient and comprehensive platform for fast turn-around model evaluation against ARM observations and to facilitate development of parameterizations for cloud-related fast processes represented in global climate models. The testbed features three major components: a single column model (SCM) testbed, an NWP-Testbed, and high-resolution modeling (HRM). The web-based SCM-Testbed features multiple SCMs from major climate modeling centers and aims to maximize the potential of SCM approach to enhance and accelerate the evaluation and improvement of fast physics parameterizations through continuous evaluation of existing and evolving models against historical as well as new/improved ARM and other complementary measurements. The NWP-Testbed aims to capitalize on the large pool of operational numerical weather prediction products. Continuous evaluations of NWP forecasts against observations at ARM sites are carried out to systematically identify the biases and skills of physical parameterizations under all weather conditions. The highresolution modeling (HRM) activities aim to simulate the fast processes at high resolution to aid in the understanding of the fast processes and their parameterizations. A four-tier HRM framework is established to augment the SCM- and NWP-Testbeds towards eventual improvement of the parameterizations.

  18. Morphological evidence and direct estimates of rapid melting beneath Totten Glacier Ice Shelf, East Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greenbaum, Jamin; Schroeder, Dustin; Grima, Cyril; Habbal, Feras; Dow, Christine; Roberts, Jason; Gwyther, David; van Ommen, Tas; Siegert, Martin; Blankenship, Donald

    2017-04-01

    Totten Glacier drains at least 3.5 meters of eustatic sea level potential from marine-based ice in the Aurora Subglacial Basin (ASB) in East Antarctica, more than the combined total of all glaciers in West Antarctica. Totten Glacier has been the most rapidly thinning glacier in East Antarctica since satellite altimetry time series began and the nature of the thinning suggests that it is driven by enhanced basal melting due to ocean processes. While grounded ice thinning rates have been steady, recent work has shown that Totten's floating ice shelf may not have the same thinning behavior; as a result, it is critical to observe ice shelf and cavity boundary conditions and basal processes to understand this apparent discrepancy. Warm Modified Circumpolar Deep Water (MCDW), which has been linked to glacier retreat in West Antarctica, has been observed in summer and winter on the nearby Sabrina Coast continental shelf and deep depressions in the seafloor provide access for MCDW to reach the ice shelf cavity. Given its northern latitude, numerical ice sheet modeling indicates that Totten Glacier may be prone to retreat caused by hydrofracture in a warming climate, so it is important to understand how intruding MCDW is affecting thinning of Totten Glacier's ice shelf. Here we use post-processed, focused airborne radar observations of the Totten Glacier Ice Shelf to delineate multi-km wide basal channels and flat basal terraces associated with high basal reflectivity and specularity (flatness) anomalies and correspondingly large ice surface depressions that indicate active basal melting. Using a simple temperature-attenuation model, and basal roughness corrections, we present basal melt rates associated with the radar reflection and specularity anomalies and compare them to those derived from numerical ocean circulation modeling and an ice flow divergence calculation. Sub-ice shelf ocean circulation modeling and under-ice robotic observations of Pine Island Glacier Ice

  19. Stable oxygen isotope variability in two contrasting glacier river catchments in Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yde, Jacob C.; Knudsen, Niels T.; Steffensen, Jørgen P.; Carrivick, Jonathan L.; Hasholt, Bent; Ingeman-Nielsen, Thomas; Kronborg, Christian; Larsen, Nicolaj K.; Mernild, Sebastian H.; Oerter, Hans; Roberts, David H.; Russell, Andrew J.

    2016-03-01

    Analysis of stable oxygen isotope (δ18O) characteristics is a useful tool to investigate water provenance in glacier river systems. In order to attain knowledge on the diversity of δ18O variations in Greenlandic rivers, we examined two contrasting glacierised catchments disconnected from the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS). At the Mittivakkat Gletscher river, a small river draining a local temperate glacier in southeast Greenland, diurnal oscillations in δ18O occurred with a 3 h time lag to the diurnal oscillations in run-off. The mean annual δ18O was -14.68 ± 0.18 ‰ during the peak flow period. A hydrograph separation analysis revealed that the ice melt component constituted 82 ± 5 % of the total run-off and dominated the observed variations during peak flow in August 2004. The snowmelt component peaked between 10:00 and 13:00 local time, reflecting the long travel time and an inefficient distributed subglacial drainage network in the upper part of the glacier. At the Kuannersuit Glacier river on the island Qeqertarsuaq in west Greenland, the δ18O characteristics were examined after the major 1995-1998 glacier surge event. The mean annual δ18O was -19.47 ± 0.55 ‰. Despite large spatial variations in the δ18O values of glacier ice on the newly formed glacier tongue, there were no diurnal oscillations in the bulk meltwater emanating from the glacier in the post-surge years. This is likely a consequence of a tortuous subglacial drainage system consisting of linked cavities, which formed during the surge event. Overall, a comparison of the δ18O compositions from glacial river water in Greenland shows distinct differences between water draining local glaciers and ice caps (between -23.0 and -13.7 ‰) and the GrIS (between -29.9 and -23.2 ‰). This study demonstrates that water isotope analyses can be used to obtain important information on water sources and the subglacial drainage system structure that is highly desired for understanding glacier hydrology.

  20. The GAMDAM Glacier Inventory: a quality controlled inventory of Asian glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nuimura, T.; Sakai, A.; Taniguchi, K.; Nagai, H.; Lamsal, D.; Tsutaki, S.; Kozawa, A.; Hoshina, Y.; Takenaka, S.; Omiya, S.; Tsunematsu, K.; Tshering, P.; Fujita, K.

    2014-06-01

    We present a new glacier inventory for the high mountain Asia named "Glacier Area Mapping for Discharge from the Asian Mountains" (GAMDAM). Glacier outlines were delineated manually using more than 226 Landsat ETM+ scenes from the period 1999-2003, in conjunction with a digital elevation model (DEM) and high-resolution Google Earth imagery. Geolocations are consistent between the Landsat imagery and DEM due to systematic radiometric and geometric corrections made by the United States Geological Survey. We performed repeated delineation tests and rigorous peer review of all scenes used in order to maintain the consistency and quality of the inventory. Our GAMDAM Glacier Inventory (GGI) includes 82776 glaciers covering a total area of 87507 ± 13126 km2 in the high mountain Asia. Thus, our inventory represents a greater number (+4%) of glaciers but significantly less surface area (-31%) than a recent global glacier inventory (Randolph Glacier Inventory, RGI). The employed definition of the upper boundaries of glaciers, glacier recession since the 1970s, and misinterpretation of seasonal snow cover are likely causes of discrepancies between the inventories, though it is difficult to evaluate these effects quantitatively. The GGI will help improve the temporal consistency of the RGI, which incorporated glacier outlines from the 1970s for the Tibetan Plateau, and will provide new opportunities to study Asian glaciers.

  1. Antarctica: measuring glacier velocity from satellite images

    SciTech Connect

    Lucchitta, B.K.; Ferguson, H.M.

    1986-11-28

    Many Landsat images of Antarctica show distinctive flow and crevasse features in the floating part of ice streams and outlet glaciers immediately below their grounding zones. Some of the features, which move with the glacier or ice stream, remain visible over many years and thus allow time-lapse measurements of ice velocities. Measurements taken from Landsat images of features on Byrd Glacier agree well with detailed ground and aerial observations. The satellite-image technique thus offers a rapid and cost-effective method of obtaining average velocities, to a first order of accuracy, of many ice streams and outlet glaciers near their termini.

  2. Antarctica: measuring glacier velocity from satellite images.

    PubMed

    Lucchitta, B K; Ferguson, H M

    1986-11-28

    Many Landsat images of Antarctica show distinctive flow and crevasse features in the floating part of ice streams and outlet glaciers immediately below their grounding zones. Some of the features, which move with the glacier or ice stream, remain visible over many years and thus allow time-lapse measurements of ice velocities. Measurements taken from Landsat images of features on Byrd Glacier agree well with detailed ground and aerial observations. The satellite-image technique thus offers a rapid and cost-effective method of obtaining average velocities, to a first order of accuracy, of many ice streams and outlet glaciers near their termini.

  3. Antarctica: Measuring glacier velocity from satellite images

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lucchitta, B.K.; Ferguson, H.M.

    1986-01-01

    Many Landsat images of Antarctica show distinctive flow and crevasse features in the floating part of ice streams and outlet glaciers immediately below their grounding zones. Some of the features, which move with the glacier or ice stream, remain visible over many years and thus allow time-lapse measurements of ice velocities. Measurements taken from Landsat images of features on Byrd Glacier agree well with detailed ground and aerial observations. The satellite-image technique thus offers a rapid and cost-effective method of obtaining average velocities, to a first order of accuracy, of many ice streams and outlet glaciers near their termini.

  4. Mass balance of Potanin glacier, Mongolia Altai

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konya, K.; Kadota, T.; Ohata, T.

    2008-12-01

    Field observation has conducted at Potanin glacier, Mongolia Altai. There are many glaciers in Altai Mountains which range around border of Mongolia, Russia and China. Although some glaciers in Russian Altay are monitored for several decades, those in Mongolia are not well surveyed. Potanin glacier ranges from 2800 to 4000 m a.s.l. and its length is about 11km. We conducted meteorological observation in ablation area of the glacier. We installed automatic weather station and ablation stakes. Although the accumulation rate data was not obtained in winter, small amount of snowpack was seen at the beginning of ablation season in ablation area. Thus, we assumed mass balance with assuming that accumulation rate is very small in winter. For estimating specific net balance, net balance in each altitude has examined. Our stakes data showed linear trend toward altitude. ELA was roughly estimated as 3600 m.a.s.l.. Accounting for the area allocation, mass balance of Potanin glacier is negative. And it is probable that mass balance of Potanin glacier is in negative trend. This characteristic of mass balance of Potanin glacier is likely to be similar to that of a glacier in Russia Altay.

  5. Internationally coordinated glacier monitoring: strategy and datasets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoelzle, Martin; Armstrong, Richard; Fetterer, Florence; Gärtner-Roer, Isabelle; Haeberli, Wilfried; Kääb, Andreas; Kargel, Jeff; Nussbaumer, Samuel; Paul, Frank; Raup, Bruce; Zemp, Michael

    2014-05-01

    Internationally coordinated monitoring of long-term glacier changes provide key indicator data about global climate change and began in the year 1894 as an internationally coordinated effort to establish standardized observations. Today, world-wide monitoring of glaciers and ice caps is embedded within the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) in support of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) as an important Essential Climate Variable (ECV). The Global Terrestrial Network for Glaciers (GTN-G) was established in 1999 with the task of coordinating measurements and to ensure the continuous development and adaptation of the international strategies to the long-term needs of users in science and policy. The basic monitoring principles must be relevant, feasible, comprehensive and understandable to a wider scientific community as well as to policy makers and the general public. Data access has to be free and unrestricted, the quality of the standardized and calibrated data must be high and a combination of detailed process studies at selected field sites with global coverage by satellite remote sensing is envisaged. Recently a GTN-G Steering Committee was established to guide and advise the operational bodies responsible for the international glacier monitoring, which are the World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS), the US National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), and the Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) initiative. Several online databases containing a wealth of diverse data types having different levels of detail and global coverage provide fast access to continuously updated information on glacier fluctuation and inventory data. For world-wide inventories, data are now available through (a) the World Glacier Inventory containing tabular information of about 130,000 glaciers covering an area of around 240,000 km2, (b) the GLIMS-database containing digital outlines of around 118,000 glaciers with different time stamps and

  6. Kerguelen Islands

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2014-05-27

    This image from NASA Terra spacecraft shows the Kerguelen Islands also known as the Desolation Islands, which are part of the French Southern and Antarctic lands. The islands are among the most isolated places on Earth.

  7. Integration of glacier databases within the Global Terrestrial Network for Glaciers (GTN-G)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zemp, M.; Raup, B. H.; Armstrong, R.; Ballagh, L.; Gärtner-Roer, I.; Haeberli, W.; Hoelzle, M.; Kääb, A.; Kargel, J.; Paul, F.

    2009-04-01

    Changes in glaciers and ice caps provide some of the clearest evidence of climate change and have impacts on global sea level fluctuations, regional hydrological cycles and local natural hazard situations. Internationally coordinated collection and distribution of standardized information about glaciers and ice caps was initiated in 1894 and is today coordinated within the Global Terrestrial Network for Glaciers (GTN-G). A recently established GTN-G Steering Committee coordinates, supports and advices the operational bodies responsible for the international glacier monitoring, which are the World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS), the US National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) and the Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) initiative. In this presentation, we provide an overview of (i) the integration of the various operational databases, (ii) the development of a one-stop web-interface to these databases, and (iii) the available datasets. By joint efforts consistency and interoperability of the different glacier databases is elaborated. Thereby, the lack of a complete worldwide, detailed glacier inventory as well as different historical developments and methodological contexts of the datasets are major challenges for linking individual glaciers throughout the databases. A map-based web-interface, implemented based on OpenLayer 2.0 and Web Map/Feature Services, is elaborated to spatially link the available data and to provide data users a fast overview of all available data. With this new online service, GTN-G provides fast access to information on glacier inventory data from 100,000 glaciers mainly based on aerial photographs and from 80,000 glaciers mainly based on satellite images, length change series from 1,800 glaciers, mass balance series from 230 glaciers, special events (e.g., hazards, surges, calving instabilities) from 130 glaciers, as well as 10,000 photographs from some 470 glaciers.

  8. Glacier Sensitivity in the Monsoonal Himalayas: Relative Contributions of Feedback Mechanisms to Regional Glacier Mass Balance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, E. S.; Rupper, S.

    2016-12-01

    Despite their societal relevance, glacier mass balances across High Mountain Asia (HMA) remain poorly constrained due, in part, to the limited number of direct measurements, regional climate heterogeneity, and uncertainty in glacier mass balance models. Many studies that model glaciers throughout HMA cite surface feedbacks as an important factor affecting glacier melt, however, little has been done to actually quantify their effects. This study develops a fully distributed surface energy- and mass-balance model to quantify the contributions of 3 surface feedbacks to glacier mass balance. The 3 target feedbacks are an accumulation/snow depth feedback, a sensible heat feedback, and an albedo feedback. The model follows well-known energy balance methods, but includes unique "switches" which allow individual feedbacks to be independently turned on and off. The model applies meteorological inputs from the High Asia Refined analysis to an idealized glacier for 4 different climate settings in HMA. The results show that surface feedbacks increase melt by up to 67% for a +1°C temperature forcing, but that feedback contributions vary significantly under different climate settings. For any given glacier, the feedback strength is highest near the equilibrium line altitude. Furthermore, feedbacks that directly reduce surface albedo consistently contribute the most to glacier mass loss. Feedback magnitude depends most strongly on the frequency of snowfall events occurring concurrently with the melt season, and on the magnitude of incoming shortwave radiation for that region. These results highlight the potential significance of feedbacks on glacier mass balance in HMA, what conditions maximize these feedback magnitudes, and what regions are likely most sensitive to them. They also highlight physical processes that need to be especially well constrained in future glacier mass balance models for glaciers in regions with high feedback sensitivity. Creating glacier mass balance

  9. Brief communication: Getting Greenland's glaciers right - a new data set of all official Greenlandic glacier names

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bjørk, A. A.; Kruse, L. M.; Michaelsen, P. B.

    2015-12-01

    Place names in Greenland can be difficult to get right, as they are a mix of Greenlandic, Danish, and other foreign languages. In addition, orthographies have changed over time. With this new data set, we give the researcher working with Greenlandic glaciers the proper tool to find the correct name for glaciers and ice caps in Greenland and to locate glaciers described in the historic literature with the old Greenlandic orthography. The data set contains information on the names of 733 glaciers, 285 originating from the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) and 448 from local glaciers and ice caps (LGICs).

  10. Advances in Modelling of Valley Glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adhikari, Surendra

    For glaciological conditions typical of valley glaciers, the central idea of this research lies in understanding the effects of high-order mechanics and parameterizing these for simpler dynamical and statistical methods in glaciology. As an effective tool for this, I formulate a new brand of dynamical models that describes distinct physical processes of deformational flow. Through numerical simulations of idealized glacier domains, I calculate empirical correction factors to capture the effects of longitudinal stress gradients and lateral drag for simplified dynamical models in the plane-strain regime. To get some insights into real glacier dynamics, I simulate Haig Glacier in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. As geometric effects overshadow dynamical effects in glacier retreat scenarios, it appears that high-order physics are not very important for Haig Glacier, particularly for evaluating its fate. Indeed, high-order and reduced models all predict that Haig Glacier ceases to exist by about AD2080 under ongoing climate warming. This finding regarding the minimal role of high-order physics may not be broadly valid, as it is not true in advance scenarios at Haig Glacier and it may not be representative of other glaciological settings. Through a 'bulk' parameterization of high-order physics, geometric and climatic settings, sliding conditions, and transient effects, I also provide new insights into the volume-area relation, a widely used statistical method for estimating glacier volume. I find a steady-state power-law exponent of 1:46, which declines systematically to 1:38 after 100 years of sustained retreat, in good accord with the observations. I recommend more accurate scaling relations through characterization of individual glacier morphology and degree of climatic disequilibrium. This motivates a revision of global glacier volume estimates, of some urgency in sea level rise assessments.

  11. Recent mass balance of Arctic glaciers derived from repeat-track ICESat altimetry (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moholdt, G.; Nuth, C.; Hagen, J. M.; Wolken, G. J.; Gardner, A.

    2010-12-01

    The Arctic region is more affected by climate change than the lower latitudes. Glaciers and ice caps are sensitive indicators of climate change, and there is a high demand for more accurate quantifications of glacier changes in the Arctic. ICESat laser altimetry has been a popular tool for assessing recent elevation changes of the Greenland ice sheet. Other high Arctic glaciers have an equally dense coverage of ICESat tracks, but the quantity and quality of elevation comparisons are degraded due to smaller glacier sizes and steeper slopes. A methodological study at the Svalbard archipelago in the Norwegian Arctic has shown that it is feasible to obtain reasonable elevation change estimates from repeat-track ICESat altimetry (Moholdt et al., 2010). The best results were achieved using all available ICESat data in a joint analysis where surface slope and elevation change were estimated for homogeneous planes that were fitted to the data along each track. The good performance of the plane method implies that it can also be used in other Arctic regions of similar characteristics where accurate DEMs are typically not available. We present 2003-2009 elevation change rates for the Norwegian Arctic (Svalbard), the Russian Arctic (Novaya Zemlya, Severnaya Zemlya and Franz Josefs Land) and the Canadian Arctic (Queen Elizabeth Islands and Baffin Island). The glaciers and ice caps of these regions cover a total area of ~230 000 km2 which is about 30% of the world-wide glacier cover outside of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. Most regions experience strong thinning at low elevations, while the pattern at higher elevations varies from slight thinning to slight thickening. There are also examples of local anomalous elevation changes due to unstable glacier dynamics, e.g. glacier surging. Hypsometric calculations are performed to calculate regional volume changes on a bi-annual time scale and over the entire ICESat period (2003-2009). Short-term variations in firn layer

  12. Rock avalanches and glacier dynamics: a case study in the Chugach Mountains, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uhlmann, Manuela; Fischer, Luzia; Huggel, Christian; Kargell, Jeffrey; Korup, Oliver

    2010-05-01

    of several years to decades. Such long-term averaged flow velocities are difficult to be achieved by measurement techniques such as satellite based SAR or GPS as they operate over much shorter periods of time. Most of the inferred flow velocities are in the range of 50 to 100 m/a. A few calving or surging glaciers displayed flow velocities of > 300 m/a. In the case of several rock avalanche deposits on the same glacier, differential flow velocities were evaluated, which confirmed the expected patterns of faster velocities in the middle of the glacier and slower velocities at the margins. This study adds important evidence on the spatio-temporal distribution of rock avalanches in glacial environments, their relation to seismic triggers and climate. The successful identification of glacier flow velocities over a larger mountain region and a larger period of time is unique and can provide important insights into glacier dynamics and change in a region that is highly sensitive to climate change, and the contribution to sea level rise from melting glaciers under ongoing debate.

  13. Faster Reading--One Hundred Years after Javal.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williams, Ray

    1979-01-01

    Discusses the origins of the interest in faster reading, oculomotor activity in reading in relation to eye movement and eye span, misapplication of eye movement data in courses designed to promote faster reading, and objections to some of the more common mechanical devices used in faster reading courses. (GT)

  14. Glaciers. Attribution of global glacier mass loss to anthropogenic and natural causes.

    PubMed

    Marzeion, Ben; Cogley, J Graham; Richter, Kristin; Parkes, David

    2014-08-22

    The ongoing global glacier retreat is affecting human societies by causing sea-level rise, changing seasonal water availability, and increasing geohazards. Melting glaciers are an icon of anthropogenic climate change. However, glacier response times are typically decades or longer, which implies that the present-day glacier retreat is a mixed response to past and current natural climate variability and current anthropogenic forcing. Here we show that only 25 ± 35% of the global glacier mass loss during the period from 1851 to 2010 is attributable to anthropogenic causes. Nevertheless, the anthropogenic signal is detectable with high confidence in glacier mass balance observations during 1991 to 2010, and the anthropogenic fraction of global glacier mass loss during that period has increased to 69 ± 24%.

  15. Reconstructing the history of major Greenland glaciers since the Little Ice Age

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Csatho, B. M.; Schenk, A. F.; van der Veen, C. J.; Stearns, L.; Babonis, G. S.

    2008-12-01

    The Greenland Ice Sheet may have been responsible for rapid sea level rise during the last interglacial period and recent studies indicate that it is likely to make a faster contribution to sea-level rise than previously believed. Rapid thinning and velocity increase has been observed on most major outlet glaciers with terminus retreat that might lead to increased discharge from the interior and consequent further thinning and retreat. Potentially, such behavior could have serious implications for global sea level. However, the current thinning may simply be a manifestation of longer-term behavior of the ice sheet as it responds to the general warming following the Little Ice Age (LIA). Although Greenland outlet glaciers have been comprehensively monitored since the 1980s, studies of long-term changes mostly rely on records of the calving front position. Such records can be misleading because the glacier terminus, particularly if it is afloat, can either advance or retreat as ice further upstream thins and accelerates. To assess whether recent trends deviate from longer-term behavior, we examined three rapidly thinning and retreating outlet glaciers, Jakobshavn Isbrae in west, Kangerdlussuaq Glacier in east and Petermann Glacier in northwest Greenland. Glacier surface and trimline elevations, as well as terminus positions were measured using historical photographs and declassified satellite imagery acquired between the 1940s and 1985. These results were combined with data from historical records, ground surveys, airborne laser altimetry, satellite observations and field mapping of lateral moraines and trimlines, to reconstruct the history of changes since the (LIA) up to the present. We identified several episodes of rapid thinning and ice shelf break-up, including thinning episodes that occurred when the calving front was stationary. Coastal weather station data are used to assess the influence of air temperatures and intensity of surface melting, and to isolate

  16. Islands of the Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Overpeck, Jonathan

    2004-02-01

    Few environments on Earth are changing more dramatically than the Arctic. Sea ice retreat and thinning is unprecedented in the period of the satellite record. Surface air temperatures are the warmest in centuries. The biology of Arctic lakes is changing like never before in millennia. Everything is pointing to the meltdown predicted by climate model simulations for the next 100 years. At the same time, the Arctic remains one of the most pristine and beautiful places on Earth. For both those who know the Arctic and those who want to know it, this book is worth its modest price. There is much more to the Arctic than its islands, but there's little doubt that Greenland and the major northern archipelagos can serve as a great introduction to the environment and magnificence of the Arctic. The book uses the islands of the Arctic to give a good introduction to what the Arctic environment is all about. The first chapter sets the stage with an overview of the geography of the Arctic islands, and this is followed by chapters that cover many key aspects of the Arctic: the geology (origins), weather and climate, glaciers, ice sheets, sea ice, permafrost and other frozen ground issues, coasts, rivers, lakes, animals, people, and environmental impacts. The material is pitched at a level well suited for the interested layperson, but the book will also appeal to those who study the science of the Arctic.

  17. Birth of a Large Iceberg in Pine Island Bay, Antarctica

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    A large tabular iceberg (42 kilometers x 17 kilometers) broke off Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica (75oS latitude, 102oW longitude) sometime between November 4 and 12, 2001. Images of the glacier were acquired by the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) instrument aboard NASA's Terra spacecraft. This event was preceded by the formation of a large crack across the glacier in mid 2000. Data gathered by other imaging instruments revealed the crack to be propagating through the shelf ice at a rate averaging 15 meters per day, accompanied by a slight rotation of about one percent per year at the seaward margin of the rift.

    The image set shows three views of Pine Island Glacier acquired by MISR's vertical-viewing (nadir) camera. The first was captured in late 2000, early in the development of the crack. The second and third views were acquired in November 2001, just before and just after the new iceberg broke off. The existence of the crack took the glaciological community by surprise, and the rapid rate at which the crack propagated was also not anticipated. Glaciologists predicted that the rift would reach the other side of the glacier sometime in 2002. However, the iceberg detached much sooner than anticipated, and the last 10-kilometer segment that was still attached to the ice shelf snapped off in a matter of days.

    The animated sequence consists of 11 snapshots acquired by MISR's nadir camera between September 16, 2000 and November 12, 2001. Due to frequent cloud cover, the time interval between successive frames is not uniform. The flow of the glacier, widening of the rift, and subsequent break-off of the iceberg are evident. A 'jump' in the position of the rift near the middle of the sequence is due to a gap in image acquisition during Antarctic winter, when the glacier was in continuous darkness.

    Pine Island Glacier is the largest discharger of ice in Antarctica and the continent's fastest moving glacier. This area of the West

  18. Birth of a Large Iceberg in Pine Island Bay, Antarctica

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    A large tabular iceberg (42 kilometers x 17 kilometers) broke off Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica (75oS latitude, 102oW longitude) sometime between November 4 and 12, 2001. Images of the glacier were acquired by the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) instrument aboard NASA's Terra spacecraft. This event was preceded by the formation of a large crack across the glacier in mid 2000. Data gathered by other imaging instruments revealed the crack to be propagating through the shelf ice at a rate averaging 15 meters per day, accompanied by a slight rotation of about one percent per year at the seaward margin of the rift.

    The image set shows three views of Pine Island Glacier acquired by MISR's vertical-viewing (nadir) camera. The first was captured in late 2000, early in the development of the crack. The second and third views were acquired in November 2001, just before and just after the new iceberg broke off. The existence of the crack took the glaciological community by surprise, and the rapid rate at which the crack propagated was also not anticipated. Glaciologists predicted that the rift would reach the other side of the glacier sometime in 2002. However, the iceberg detached much sooner than anticipated, and the last 10-kilometer segment that was still attached to the ice shelf snapped off in a matter of days.

    The animated sequence consists of 11 snapshots acquired by MISR's nadir camera between September 16, 2000 and November 12, 2001. Due to frequent cloud cover, the time interval between successive frames is not uniform. The flow of the glacier, widening of the rift, and subsequent break-off of the iceberg are evident. A 'jump' in the position of the rift near the middle of the sequence is due to a gap in image acquisition during Antarctic winter, when the glacier was in continuous darkness.

    Pine Island Glacier is the largest discharger of ice in Antarctica and the continent's fastest moving glacier. This area of the West

  19. Glacier-derived August runoff in northwest Montana

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Adam; Harper, Joel T.; Fagre, Daniel B.

    2015-01-01

    The second largest concentration of glaciers in the U.S. Rocky Mountains is located in Glacier National Park (GNP), Montana. The total glacier-covered area in this region decreased by ∼35% over the past 50 years, which has raised substantial concern about the loss of the water derived from glaciers during the summer. We used an innovative weather station design to collect in situ measurements on five remote glaciers, which are used to parameterize a regional glacier melt model. This model offered a first-order estimate of the summer meltwater production by glaciers. We find, during the normally dry month of August, glaciers in the region produce approximately 25 × 106 m3 of potential runoff. We then estimated the glacier runoff component in five gaged streams sourced from GNP basins containing glaciers. Glacier-melt contributions range from 5% in a basin only 0.12% glacierized to >90% in a basin 28.5% glacierized. Glacier loss would likely lead to lower discharges and warmer temperatures in streams draining basins >20% glacier-covered. Lower flows could even be expected in streams draining basins as little as 1.4% glacierized if glaciers were to disappear.

  20. GIS-based glacier inventory of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, X.; Wu, L.-Z.

    2003-04-01

    The project of the Glacier Inventory of China initialized in 1979 was just accomplished in 2000. This inventory was complied based on numerous LandSat TM images, aerial photographs, and topographic maps. More than 40 Chinese glaciologists made their great efforts in this work. With the newest statistics from the inventory, there are total 46,928 glaciers in China; the total area is 59,406 km2 and the ice volume is 5,598 km3. We launched a new project to digitize the 11 volumes of published glacier data and all the distribution maps of glaciers in China. Large-scale topographic maps were also used as reference to reconstruct a more accurate geographic coordinate system of the inventory. We paid particularly attention to the data quality control. The properties of both the spatial and attribute data were carefully examined with a few operations by manual and computerized checks. Since the digital inventory lays a baseline for the monitoring of glacier change, we are going to release the database on the Internet and with CD-ROMs. In additions, the second glacier inventory in some glaciered drainages were carried out. Chinese glaciologist are using new generation remote sensors such as ASTER and LandSat ETM+ to identify glacier change in many areas. Preliminary results showed that the change is significant.

  1. Using Metaphorical Models for Describing Glaciers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Felzmann, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    To date, there has only been little conceptual change research regarding conceptions about glaciers. This study used the theoretical background of embodied cognition to reconstruct different metaphorical concepts with respect to the structure of a glacier. Applying the Model of Educational Reconstruction, the conceptions of students and scientists…

  2. Climate science: The future of Asia's glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cogley, J. Graham

    2017-09-01

    Glaciers in the high mountains of Asia are a crucial water resource, but are at risk from global warming. Modelling suggests that the glaciers will shed mass in direct proportion to the warming to which they are exposed. See Letter p.257

  3. Microbial biodiversity in glacier-fed streams

    PubMed Central

    Wilhelm, Linda; Singer, Gabriel A; Fasching, Christina; Battin, Tom J; Besemer, Katharina

    2013-01-01

    While glaciers become increasingly recognised as a habitat for diverse and active microbial communities, effects of their climate change-induced retreat on the microbial ecology of glacier-fed streams remain elusive. Understanding the effect of climate change on microorganisms in these ecosystems is crucial given that microbial biofilms control numerous stream ecosystem processes with potential implications for downstream biodiversity and biogeochemistry. Here, using a space-for-time substitution approach across 26 Alpine glaciers, we show how microbial community composition and diversity, based on 454-pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, in biofilms of glacier-fed streams may change as glaciers recede. Variations in streamwater geochemistry correlated with biofilm community composition, even at the phylum level. The most dominant phyla detected in glacial habitats were Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria and Cyanobacteria/chloroplasts. Microorganisms from ice had the lowest α diversity and contributed marginally to biofilm and streamwater community composition. Rather, streamwater apparently collected microorganisms from various glacial and non-glacial sources forming the upstream metacommunity, thereby achieving the highest α diversity. Biofilms in the glacier-fed streams had intermediate α diversity and species sorting by local environmental conditions likely shaped their community composition. α diversity of streamwater and biofilm communities decreased with elevation, possibly reflecting less diverse sources of microorganisms upstream in the catchment. In contrast, β diversity of biofilms decreased with increasing streamwater temperature, suggesting that glacier retreat may contribute to the homogenisation of microbial communities among glacier-fed streams. PMID:23486246

  4. Using Metaphorical Models for Describing Glaciers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Felzmann, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    To date, there has only been little conceptual change research regarding conceptions about glaciers. This study used the theoretical background of embodied cognition to reconstruct different metaphorical concepts with respect to the structure of a glacier. Applying the Model of Educational Reconstruction, the conceptions of students and scientists…

  5. Microbial biodiversity in glacier-fed streams.

    PubMed

    Wilhelm, Linda; Singer, Gabriel A; Fasching, Christina; Battin, Tom J; Besemer, Katharina

    2013-08-01

    While glaciers become increasingly recognised as a habitat for diverse and active microbial communities, effects of their climate change-induced retreat on the microbial ecology of glacier-fed streams remain elusive. Understanding the effect of climate change on microorganisms in these ecosystems is crucial given that microbial biofilms control numerous stream ecosystem processes with potential implications for downstream biodiversity and biogeochemistry. Here, using a space-for-time substitution approach across 26 Alpine glaciers, we show how microbial community composition and diversity, based on 454-pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, in biofilms of glacier-fed streams may change as glaciers recede. Variations in streamwater geochemistry correlated with biofilm community composition, even at the phylum level. The most dominant phyla detected in glacial habitats were Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria and Cyanobacteria/chloroplasts. Microorganisms from ice had the lowest α diversity and contributed marginally to biofilm and streamwater community composition. Rather, streamwater apparently collected microorganisms from various glacial and non-glacial sources forming the upstream metacommunity, thereby achieving the highest α diversity. Biofilms in the glacier-fed streams had intermediate α diversity and species sorting by local environmental conditions likely shaped their community composition. α diversity of streamwater and biofilm communities decreased with elevation, possibly reflecting less diverse sources of microorganisms upstream in the catchment. In contrast, β diversity of biofilms decreased with increasing streamwater temperature, suggesting that glacier retreat may contribute to the homogenisation of microbial communities among glacier-fed streams.

  6. Pine Island Glacier, Antarctica, MISR Multi-angle Composite

    Atmospheric Science Data Center

    2013-12-17

    ...   View Larger Image (JPEG) A large iceberg has finally separated from the calving front of Antarctica's Pine ... completely across the ice shelf to the southwestern edge. Iceberg B-31 is finally moving away from the coast, with open water between the ...

  7. Debris-covered Himalayan glaciers under a changing climate: observations and modelling of Khumbu Glacier, Nepal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowan, Ann; Quincey, Duncan; Egholm, David; Gibson, Morgan; Irvine-Fynn, Tristram; Porter, Philip; Glasser, Neil

    2016-04-01

    Many mountain glaciers are characterised in their lower reaches by thick layers of rock debris that insulate the glacier surface from solar radiation and atmospheric warming. Supraglacial debris modifies the response of these glaciers to climate change compared to glaciers with clean-ice surfaces. However, existing modelling approaches to predicting variations in the extent and mass balance of debris-covered glaciers have relied on numerical models that represent the processes governing glaciers with clean-ice surfaces, and yield conflicting results. Moreover, few data exist describing the mass balance of debris-covered glaciers and many observations are only made over short periods of time, but these data are needed to constrain and validate numerical modelling experiments. To investigate the impact of supraglacial debris on the response of a glacier to climate change, we developed a numerical model that couples the flow of ice and debris to include important feedbacks between mass balance, ice flow and debris accumulation. We applied this model to a large debris-covered Himalayan glacier - Khumbu Glacier in the Everest region of Nepal. Our results demonstrate that supraglacial debris prolongs the response of the glacier to warming air temperatures and causes lowering of the glacier surface in situ, concealing the magnitude of mass loss when compared with estimates based on glacierised area. Since the Little Ice Age, the volume of Khumbu Glacier has reduced by 34%, while glacier area has reduced by only 6%. We predict a further decrease in glacier volume of 8-10% by AD2100 accompanied by dynamic and physical detachment of the debris-covered tongue from the active glacier within the next 150 years. For five months during the 2014 summer monsoon, we measured temperature profiles through supraglacial debris and proglacial discharge on Khumbu Glacier. We found that temperatures at the ice surface beneath 0.4-0.7 m of debris were sufficient to promote considerable

  8. Recent fluctuations of the Argentinian glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leiva, Juan Carlos

    1999-10-01

    Some of the results obtained in the glaciological research carried out since 1979 at the Argentinian Andes are shown in this paper. The research covers a wide latitudinal gap extending from the Agua Negra glacier in the province of San Juan to the Frı´as glacier situated at Mount Tronador. Agua Negra and Piloto glaciers show a very similar behavior of almost continuous retreat since 1965 while at the Plomo region a small advance period, starting in 1982, is observed in five of the 10 glaciers studied. Finally, the Frı´as glacier fluctuations record shows a very strong recession since 1850 only interrupted by the 1976 advance that continued in 1977.

  9. Glaciers in 21st Century Himalayan Geopolitics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kargel, J. S.; Wessels, R.; Kieffer, H. H.

    2002-05-01

    Glaciers are ablating rapidly the world over. Nowhere are the rates of retreat and downwasting greater than in the Hindu Kush-Himalaya (HKH) region. It is estimated that over the next century, 40,000 square kilometers of present glacier area in the HKH region will become ice free. Most of this area is in major valleys and the lowest glaciated mountain passes. The existence and characteristics of glaciers have security impacts, and rapidly changing HKH glaciers have broad strategic implications: (1) Glaciers supply much of the fresh water and hydroelectric power in South and Central Asia, and so glaciers are valuable resources. (2) Shared economic interests in water, hydroelectricity, flood hazards, and habitat preservation are a force for common cause and reasoned international relations. (3) Glaciers and their high mountains generally pose a natural barrier tending to isolate people. Historically, they have hindered trade and intercultural exchanges and have protected against aggression. This has further promoted an independent spirit of the region's many ethnic groups. (4) Although glaciers are generally incompatible with human development and habitation, many of the HKH region's glaciers and their mountains have become sanctuaries and transit routes for militants. Siachen Glacier in Kashmir has for 17 years been "the world's highest battlefield," with tens of thousands of troops deployed on both sides of the India/Pakistan line of control. In 1999, that conflict threatened to trigger all-out warfare, and perhaps nuclear warfare. Other recent terrorist and military action has taken place on glaciers in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. As terrorists are forced from easily controlled territories, many may tend to migrate toward the highest ground, where definitive encounters may take place in severe alpine glacial environments. This should be a major concern in Nepali security planning, where an Army offensive is attempting to reign in an increasingly robust and brutal

  10. GLACIER PEAK ROADLESS AREA, WASHINGTON.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Church, S.E.; Johnson, F.L.

    1984-01-01

    A mineral survey outlined areas of mineral-resource potential in the Glacier Peak Roadless Area, Washington. Substantiated resource potential for base and precious metals has been identified in four mining districts included in whole or in part within the boundary of the roadless area. Several million tons of demonstrated base- and precious-metal resources occur in numerous mines in these districts. Probable resource potential for precious metals exists along a belt of fractured and locally mineralized rock extending northeast from Monte Cristo to the northeast edge of the roadless area.

  11. Erosion and transport by Byrd Glacier, Antarctica during the Last Glacial Maximum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Licht, K. J.; Palmer, E. F.

    2013-02-01

    Glacial till samples from seven, modern-Holocene Byrd Glacier moraines were characterized using particle size analysis, sand petrography and detrital zircon geochronology and compared to Ross Sea tills deposited during the Last Glacial Maximum. The goal was to identify the paleoflow path for Byrd Glacier and assess the use of multiple provenance techniques. The coarse sand fraction of Byrd Glacier tills is dominated by lithic fragments of adjacent bedrock outcrops, except samples from the Lonewolf Nunataks, which have a higher proportion of mineral to lithic fragments, as well as a recognizable exotic component. Cluster analysis shows that Byrd Glacier tills, with the exception of the two Lonewolf Nunataks sites, do not cluster strongly with Ross Sea samples because they have a higher proportion of lithic fragments. This indicates that comminution must be an active subglacial process beneath East Antarctic outlet glaciers. Byrd Glacier tills are also typically coarser grained that Ross Sea tills and their maturity is a reflection of both glacial processes and rock type. Measured U/Pb ages of detrital zircons from Byrd Glacier tills range from Triassic to Archean (240-3540 Ma) with a dominance of grains 530-600 Ma. Ross Sea till samples show spatial variability in U/Pb age distributions, with the core sites west of the 180° longitude line showing similarity to most Byrd Glacier tills, whereas core NBP9407-39, east of 180° long., is dominated by ˜100 Ma grains. Ross Sea tills also contain a recognizable detrital zircon fraction eroded inland of the Transantarctic Mountains. Both provenance methods indicate that the ice flow line for Byrd Glacier during the LGM was to the east of Ross Island and extended on either side of Ross Bank, with the majority of ice flowing to the Ross Sea's Central Basin. Our analysis shows that sand petrography and detrital zircon U/Pb age spectra provide complementary datasets that produce similar ice flow reconstructions and reveal

  12. Modelled trends in oceanic conditions of Pine Island Bay between 1991 and 2014

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimuras, Satoshi; Holland, Paul; Regan, Heather; Jenkins, Adrian; Van Wessem, Melchior

    2016-04-01

    Two ice shelves in Pine Island Bay, Pine Island Glacier and its neighbour Thwaites Glacier, have been highlighted as major drainage pathways for the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. We quantify the melting of these ice shelves and oceanic conditions between 1991 and 2014 using a general circulation model. Two different atmospheric forcing scenarios (RACMO2.3 and ERA-Interim) are used as a surface boundary. The ocean heat content of the Pine Island Bay from the simulations shows periodic decrease in the late 1990s and 2012-2014, but the magnitude of cooling is different between RACMO2.3 and ERA-Interim forced simulations. The brine rejection of the sea ice production causes enhanced overturning and cools the water north of Pine Island Glacier Ice Shelf. This cold water flows southward along the coastline, resulting in lower melt rate in the late 1990s and 2012-2014.

  13. The length of the glaciers in the world - a straightforward method for the automated calculation of glacier center lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Machguth, H.; Huss, M.

    2014-05-01

    Glacier length is an important measure of glacier geometry but global glacier inventories are mostly lacking length data. Only recently semi-automated approaches to measure glacier length have been developed and applied regionally. Here we present a first global assessment of glacier length using a fully automated method based on glacier surface slope, distance to the glacier margins and a set of trade-off functions. The method is developed for East Greenland, evaluated for the same area as well as for Alaska, and eventually applied to all ∼200 000 glaciers around the globe. The evaluation highlights accurately calculated glacier length where DEM quality is good (East Greenland) and limited precision on low quality DEMs (parts of Alaska). Measured length of very small glaciers is subject to a certain level of ambiguity. The global calculation shows that only about 1.5% of all glaciers are longer than 10 km with Bering Glacier (Alaska/Canada) being the longest glacier in the world at a length of 196 km. Based on model output we derive global and regional area-length scaling laws. Differences among regional scaling parameters appear to be related to characteristics of topography and glacier mass balance. The present study adds glacier length as a central parameter to global glacier inventories. Global and regional scaling laws might proof beneficial in conceptual glacier models.

  14. ICESat laser altimetry over small mountain glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treichler, Désirée; Kääb, Andreas

    2016-09-01

    Using sparsely glaciated southern Norway as a case study, we assess the potential and limitations of ICESat laser altimetry for analysing regional glacier elevation change in rough mountain terrain. Differences between ICESat GLAS elevations and reference elevation data are plotted over time to derive a glacier surface elevation trend for the ICESat acquisition period 2003-2008. We find spatially varying biases between ICESat and three tested digital elevation models (DEMs): the Norwegian national DEM, SRTM DEM, and a high-resolution lidar DEM. For regional glacier elevation change, the spatial inconsistency of reference DEMs - a result of spatio-temporal merging - has the potential to significantly affect or dilute trends. Elevation uncertainties of all three tested DEMs exceed ICESat elevation uncertainty by an order of magnitude, and are thus limiting the accuracy of the method, rather than ICESat uncertainty. ICESat matches glacier size distribution of the study area well and measures small ice patches not commonly monitored in situ. The sample is large enough for spatial and thematic subsetting. Vertical offsets to ICESat elevations vary for different glaciers in southern Norway due to spatially inconsistent reference DEM age. We introduce a per-glacier correction that removes these spatially varying offsets, and considerably increases trend significance. Only after application of this correction do individual campaigns fit observed in situ glacier mass balance. Our correction also has the potential to improve glacier trend significance for other causes of spatially varying vertical offsets, for instance due to radar penetration into ice and snow for the SRTM DEM or as a consequence of mosaicking and merging that is common for national or global DEMs. After correction of reference elevation bias, we find that ICESat provides a robust and realistic estimate of a moderately negative glacier mass balance of around -0.36 ± 0.07 m ice per year. This regional

  15. Canary Islands

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    This easterly looking view shows the seven major volcanic islands of the Canary Island chain (28.0N, 16.5W) and offers a unique view of the islands that have become a frequent vacation spot for Europeans. The northwest coastline of Africa, (Morocco and Western Sahara), is visible in the background. Frequently, these islands create an impact on local weather (cloud formations) and ocean currents (island wakes) as seen in this photo.

  16. Title: Climate-glacier Relationship of Retreating Alaskan Glaciers Author: Elliott Mazur and Umesh K. Haritashya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazur, E. M.

    2012-12-01

    Portage, Whittier, Eklutna, as well as many other well-known "tourism glaciers" in the vicinity of Anchorage, Alaska are known to have retreated in the past 20 years. This begs the question, "what of the other lesser-known glaciers? Do they follow the same patterns and minimal glacier models?" Glaciers such as Byron, Leonard, Matanuska, Raven and Spencer may fit a minimal model. Information on Byron and Leonard is sparse, as both have become hanging glaciers. Other glaciers, such as Raven, are small enough to be deemed insignificant, yet may have information to give. Consequently our objective is to study five Alaskan glaciers and determine wide-ranging variability to changing regional climate. To do this we obtained field geo-location data and characterized glaciers based on the satellite imagery and climate reevaluation. Our result shows that glaciers are retreating and thinning irrespective of their aspects, location and altitudinal variability. Moreover, our presentation establishes the strong climate-glacier relationship and defines retreating snowline patterns over the last few decades.

  17. Seasonal variability of organic matter composition in an Alaskan glacier outflow: insights into glacier carbon sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spencer, Robert G. M.; Vermilyea, Andrew; Fellman, Jason; Raymond, Peter; Stubbins, Aron; Scott, Durelle; Hood, Eran

    2014-05-01

    Glacier ecosystems are a significant source of bioavailable, yet ancient dissolved organic carbon (DOC). Characterizing DOC in Mendenhall Glacier outflow (southeast Alaska) we document a seasonal persistence to the radiocarbon-depleted signature of DOC, highlighting ancient DOC as a ubiquitous feature of glacier outflow. We observed no systematic depletion in Δ 14C-DOC with increasing discharge during the melt season that would suggest mobilization of an aged subglacial carbon store. However, DOC concentration, δ 13C-DOC, Δ 14C-DOC and fluorescence signatures appear to have been influenced by runoff from vegetated hillslopes above the glacier during onset and senescence of melt. In the peak glacier melt period, the Δ 14C-DOC of stream samples at the outflow (-181.7 to -355.3‰) was comparable to the Δ 14C-DOC for snow samples from the accumulation zone (-207.2 to -390.9‰), suggesting that ancient DOC from the glacier surface is exported in glacier runoff. The pre-aged DOC in glacier snow and runoff is consistent with contributions from fossil fuel combustion sources similar to those documented previously in ice cores and thus provides evidence for anthropogenic perturbation of the carbon cycle. Overall, our results emphasize the need to further characterize DOC inputs to glacier ecosystems, particularly in light of predicted changes in glacier mass and runoff in the coming century.

  18. Glacier Change and an Updated Glacier Inventory of Mongolia using Landsat 8

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pope, A.; Scambos, T. A.

    2013-12-01

    Mountain glaciers and ice caps around the world are recognized as significant contributors to both global sea level and local and regional water resources, especially for arid regions. However, the remote and rugged nature of glaciers in many parts of Asia hinders their study. To complicate the picture, not only are glaciers in High Mountain / Central / North Asia exhibiting considerable regional variability in mass balance, but different measurement methods are painting significantly different pictures of glacier health. Mongolia provides a subset of the global glacier inventory which exemplifies low data availability and seemingly contradictory results. Based on previous studies, Mongolia is home to ~500 glaciers totaling ~650 km2, but these figures are quite rough. Regional glacier mass balance estimates vary from -2 × 1 Gt / yr to 3 × 6 Gt / yr. However, the glaciers are important to the local environment and agriculture, as Mongolian glaciers are estimated to store 10% of Mongolia's fresh water. The glaciers have lost ~6% of their area from the 1960s to the 1990s. Most recent studies of high mountain Asia (the large group of glaciated ranges between the Tien Shan, Qilian Mountains, and the Himalayas) show accelerated losses in recent years. Therefore, from within this uncertainty, we harness newly available data from Landsat 8's Operational Land Imager (OLI) to build an updated glacier inventory for Mongolia. Prior regional studies have focused of a variety of sub-ranges across many different epochs within the Altai (i.e. Munkh Khairkhan, Tavan Bogd, Turgen, Kharkhiraa, Munkhkhairkhan, Sair, and Tsambagarav Mountains); here, we unify the picture of recent change for all of Mongolia's glaciers (i.e., the additional glaciated areas eastward of the Altai). In addition to highlighting the ease and utility of Landsat 8's OLI, we will take advantage of a further suite of data (i.e. Landsat archival imagery, ICESat, ASTER, SPOT-5, or submeter imagery) to further

  19. The GAMDAM glacier inventory: a quality-controlled inventory of Asian glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nuimura, T.; Sakai, A.; Taniguchi, K.; Nagai, H.; Lamsal, D.; Tsutaki, S.; Kozawa, A.; Hoshina, Y.; Takenaka, S.; Omiya, S.; Tsunematsu, K.; Tshering, P.; Fujita, K.

    2015-05-01

    We present a new glacier inventory for high-mountain Asia named "Glacier Area Mapping for Discharge from the Asian Mountains" (GAMDAM). Glacier outlines were delineated manually using 356 Landsat ETM+ scenes in 226 path-row sets from the period 1999-2003, in conjunction with a digital elevation model (DEM) and high-resolution Google EarthTM imagery. Geolocations are largely consistent between the Landsat imagery and DEM due to systematic radiometric and geometric corrections made by the United States Geological Survey. We performed repeated delineation tests and peer review of glacier outlines in order to maintain the consistency and quality of the inventory. Our GAMDAM glacier inventory (GGI) includes 87 084 glaciers covering a total area of 91 263 ± 13 689 km2 throughout high-mountain Asia. In the Hindu Kush-Himalaya range, the total glacier area in our inventory is 93% that of the ICIMOD (International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development) inventory. Discrepancies between the two regional data sets are due mainly to the effects of glacier shading. In contrast, our inventory represents significantly less surface area (-24%) than the recent global Randolph Glacier Inventory, version 4.0 (RGI), which includes 119 863 ± 9201 km2 for the entirety of high Asian mountains. Likely causes of this disparity include headwall definition, effects of exclusion of shaded glacier areas, glacier recession since the 1970s, and inclusion of seasonal snow cover in the source data of the RGI, although it is difficult to evaluate such effects quantitatively. Further rigorous peer review of GGI will both improve the quality of glacier inventory in high-mountain Asia and provide new opportunities to study Asian glaciers.

  20. A conceptual model of cyclical glacier flow in overdeepenings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turrin, J. B.; Forster, R. R.

    2014-08-01

    A nearly four-decade, satellite-based velocity survey of the largest glaciers in the Alaska Range, Chugach Mountains, and the Wrangell Mountains of southern Alaska, spanning the early- to mid-1970s through the 2000s, reveals nine pulsing glaciers: Capps, Copper, Eldridge, Kahiltna, Matanuska, Nabesna, Nizina, Ruth, and Sanford glaciers. The pulses increase velocity by up to 2449% (Capps Glacier) or as little as 77% (Nabesna Glacier), with velocity increases for the other glaciers in the range of 100-250%. The pulses may last from between six years (Copper Glacier) to 12 years (Nizina Glacier) and consist of a multi-year acceleration phase followed by a multi-year deceleration phase during which significant portions of each glacier move en masse. The segments of each glacier affected by the pulses may be anywhere from 14 km (Sanford Glacier) to 36 km (Nabesna Glacier) in length and occur where the glaciers are either laterally constricted or joined by a major tributary, and the surface slopes at these locations are very shallow, 1-2°, suggesting the pulses occur where the glaciers are overdeepened. A conceptual model to explain the cyclical behavior of these pulsing glaciers is presented that incorporates the effects of glaciohydraulic supercooling, glacier dynamics, surface ablation, and subglacial sediment erosion, deposition, and deformation in overdeepenings.

  1. Winter speed-up of ice flow at quiescent surge-type glaciers in Yukon, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furuya, M.; Abe, T.

    2013-12-01

    Glacier surge exhibits order-of-magnitude faster velocity and km-scale terminus advance during its short active phase after a long quiescent period. The observations of glacier surge are still limited, and the mechanisms of glacier surge cycle remain elusive. Moreover, with the exception of several well-examined glaciers, the glacier dynamics during their quiescent periods remains even more uncertain due to the paucity of surface velocity measurement data. Here we examined spatial-temporal changes in the ice surface velocity of surge-type glaciers in the St. Elias Mountains near the border of Alaska and Yukon during the period from December 2006 to March 2011. We applied the offset-tracking (feature-tracking) technique to the L-band synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images derived from the Japanese Advanced Land Observation Satellite (ALOS). The Chitina, Anderson, Walsh, and Logan Glaciers, the major subpolar surge-type glaciers of the Chitina River valley system, could be examined with the highest temporal resolution because of the overlap of multiple satellite tracks. We have found significant upstream accelerations from fall to winter at a number of glaciers during their quiescence. Moreover, whereas the upstream propagating summer speed-up was observed, the winter speed-up propagated from upstream to downglacier. Although the winter speed-up seems to be at odds with the well-known summer speed-up, these observations are consistent with the fragmentary but well-known fact of glacier surge that often initiates in winter, suggesting that some of the mechanisms would be valid even during quiescent phases. Ice surface velocity at mountain glaciers and ice sheets typically exhibits the greatest acceleration from spring to early summer, followed by deceleration in mid-summer to fall, and is slowest in winter. These short-term velocity changes are attributed to subglacial slip associated with water pressure changes that occur because of the seasonal variability of

  2. Numerical modelling of the effect of changing surface geometry on mountain glacier mass balance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, C.; Carrivick, J.; Evans, A.; Carver, S.

    2012-12-01

    Mountain glaciers and ice caps are extremely useful indicators of environmental change. Due to their small size, they have much faster response times to climate changes than the large ice masses of Greenland and Antarctica. Mountain glaciers are important for society as sources of water for energy production and irrigation. The meltwater cycles significantly impact local ecology. Consequently, models assessing the effect of complicated glacier surface geometry on glacier mass balance are becoming increasingly popular. Here we apply such a model to a glacier record spanning 100 years. Our study encompasses the creation of a GIS enabling analysis of changing glacier geometry over the 20th and early 21st Centuries and the development and testing of a novel user-friendly distributed-surface energy balance model that is designed specifically to consider the effect that these changes have on mountain glacier mass balance. Long-term records of mass balance are rare for arctic Mountain glaciers, making model development and evaluation difficult. One exception is Kårsaglaciären in arctic Sweden for which there is a variety of data for the past 100 years, sourced from historical surveys, satellite imagery and recent field work. Firstly, we present the construction of robust three-dimensional glacier surface reconstructions for Kårsaglaciären within a GIS, specifically discussing the methods of interpolation used to create the surfaces. We highlight the methods and importance of inter-model sensitivity analyses as well as Monte Carlo simulations used to assess the effect of the input data utilised in the kriging algorithms. Analyses integral to the modelling stage of the project, such as the geometries of the resultant surfaces as well as the interrelationships between them, will be discussed. Secondly, we present the melt model which has been constructed in order to test the effect of changing geometry on mass balance. Our melt model can carry out systematic testing of

  3. Ocean impact on Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden Glacier, Northeast Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaffer, Janin; Kanzow, Torsten; von Appen, Wilken-Jon; Mayer, Christoph

    2017-04-01

    The ocean plays an important role in modulating the mass balance of the Greenland Ice Sheet by delivering heat to the marine-terminating outlet glaciers around Greenland. The largest of three outlet glaciers draining the Northeast Greenland Ice Stream is Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden Glacier (also referred to as 79 North Glacier). Historic observations showed that warm waters of Atlantic origin are present in the subglacial cavity below the 80 km long floating ice tongue of the Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden Glacier and cause strong basal melt at the grounding line, but to date it has been unknown how those warm water enter the cavity. In order to understand how Atlantic origin waters carry heat into the subglacial cavity beneath Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden Glacier, we performed bathymetric, hydrographic, and velocity observations in the vicinity of the main glacier calving front aboard RV Polarstern in summer 2016. The bathymetric multibeam data shows a 500 m deep and 2 km narrow passage downstream of a 310 m deep sill. This turned out to be the only location deep enough for an exchange of Atlantic waters between the glacier cavity and the continental shelf. Hydrographic and velocity measurements revealed a density driven plume in the vicinity of the glacier calving front causing a rapid flow of waters of Atlantic origin warmer 1°C into the subglacial cavity through the 500 m deep passage. In addition, glacially modified waters flow out of the glacier cavity below the 80 m deep ice base. In the vicinity of the glacier, the glacially modified waters form a distinct mixed layer situated above the Atlantic waters and below the ambient Polar water. At greater distances from the glacier this layer is eroded by lateral mixing with ambient water. Based on our observations we will present an estimate of the ocean heat transport into the subglacial cavity. In comparison with historic observations we find an increase in Atlantic water temperatures throughout the last 20 years. The resulting

  4. Quantifying global warming from the retreat of glaciers

    SciTech Connect

    Oerlemans, J. )

    1994-04-08

    Records of glacier fluctuations compiled by the World Glacier Monitoring Service can be used to derive an independent estimate of global warming during the last 100 years. Records of different glaciers are made comparable by a two-step scaling procedure; one allowing for differences in glacier geometry, the other for differences in climate sensitivity. The retreat of glaciers during the last 100 years appears to be coherent over the globe. On the basis of modeling of the climate sensitivity of glaciers, the observed glacier retreat can be explained by a linear warming trend of 0.66 kelvin per century.

  5. Quantifying global warming from the retreat of glaciers.

    PubMed

    Oerlemans, J

    1994-04-08

    Records of glacier fluctuations compiled by the World Glacier Monitoring Service can be used to derive an independent estimate of global warming during the last 100 years. Records of different glaciers are made comparable by a two-step scaling procedure: one allowing for differences in glacier geometry, the other for differences in climate sensitivity. The retreat of glaciers during the last 100 years appears to be coherent over the globe. On the basis of modeling of the climate sensitivity of glaciers, the observed glacier retreat can be explained by a linear warming trend of 0.66 kelvin per century.

  6. Recent Ice Loss from the Fleming and Other Glaciers, Wordie Bay, West Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rignot, E.; Casassa, G.; Gogineni, S.; Kanagaratnam, P.; Krabill, W.; Pritchard, H.; Rivera, A.; Thomas, R.; Turner, J.; Vaughan, D.

    2005-01-01

    Satellite radar interferometry data from 1995 to 2004, and airborne ice thickness data from 2002, reveal that the glaciers flowing into former Wordie Ice Shelf, West Antarctic Peninsula, discharge 6.8 +/- 0.3 km(exp 3)/yr of ice, which is 84 +/- 30 percent larger than a snow accumulation of 3.7 +/- 0.8 km(exp 3)/yr over a 6,300 km(exp 2) drainage basin. Airborne and ICESat laser altimetry elevation data reveal glacier thinning at rates up to 2 m/yr. Fifty km from its ice front, Fleming Glacier flows 50 percent faster than it did in 1974 prior to the main collapse of Wordie Ice Shelf. We conclude that the glaciers accelerated following ice shelf removal, and have been thinning and losing mass to the ocean over the last decade. This and other observations suggest that the mass loss from the northern part of the Peninsula is not negligible at present.

  7. Recent Ice Loss from the Fleming and Other Glaciers, Wordie Bay, West Antarctic Peninsula

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rignot, E.; Casassa, G.; Gogineni, S.; Kanagaratnam, P.; Krabill, W.; Pritchard, H.; Rivera, A.; Thomas, R.; Turner, J.; Vaughan, D.

    2005-01-01

    Satellite radar interferometry data from 1995 to 2004, and airborne ice thickness data from 2002, reveal that the glaciers flowing into former Wordie Ice Shelf, West Antarctic Peninsula, discharge 6.8 +/- 0.3 km(exp 3)/yr of ice, which is 84 +/- 30 percent larger than a snow accumulation of 3.7 +/- 0.8 km(exp 3)/yr over a 6,300 km(exp 2) drainage basin. Airborne and ICESat laser altimetry elevation data reveal glacier thinning at rates up to 2 m/yr. Fifty km from its ice front, Fleming Glacier flows 50 percent faster than it did in 1974 prior to the main collapse of Wordie Ice Shelf. We conclude that the glaciers accelerated following ice shelf removal, and have been thinning and losing mass to the ocean over the last decade. This and other observations suggest that the mass loss from the northern part of the Peninsula is not negligible at present.

  8. Lake sediment-based Late Holocene glacier reconstruction reveals medieval retreat and two-phase Little Ice Age on subantarctic South Georgia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Bilt, W. G. M.; Bakke, J.; Werner, J.; Paasche, O.; Rosqvist, G. N.; Vatle, S. S.

    2016-12-01

    Southern Ocean climate is rapidly changing. Yet beyond the instrumental period (± 100 years), our comprehension of climate variability in the region is restricted by a lack of high-resolution paleoclimate records. Alpine glaciers, ubiquitous on Southern Ocean islands, may provide such data as they rapidly respond to climate shifts, recording attendant changes in extent by variations in glacial erosion. Rock flour, the fine-grained fraction of this process, is suspended in meltwater streams and transfers this signal to the sediments of downstream lakes, continuously recording glacier history. Here, we use this relationship and present the first reconstruction of the Late Holocene (1250 cal. yr BP - present) glacier history of the Southern Ocean island of South Georgia, using sediments from the glacier-fed Middle Hamberg lake. Variations are resolved on multi-centennial scales due to robust chronological control. To fingerprint a glacial erosion signal, we employed a set of routinely used physical, geochemical and magnetic parameters. Using Titanium counts, validated against changes in sediment density and grain size distribution, we continuously reconstruct glacier variations over the past millennium. Refining local moraine evidence and supporting evidence from other Southern Hemisphere sites, this study shows a progressive diminishing of consecutive Late Holocene advances. These include a two-stage Little Ice Age, in agreement with other Southern Hemisphere glacier evidence. The presented record furthermore captures an unreported retreat phase behind present limits around 500 cal. yr BP.

  9. Glaciers in Patagonia: Controversy and prospects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kargel, J. S.; Alho, P.; Buytaert, W.; Célleri, R.; Cogley, J. G.; Dussaillant, A.; Guido, Z.; Haeberli, W.; Harrison, S.; Leonard, G.; Maxwell, A.; Meier, C.; Poveda, G.; Reid, B.; Reynolds, J.; Rodríguez, C. A. Portocarrero; Romero, H.; Schneider, J.

    2012-05-01

    Lately, glaciers have been subjects of unceasing controversy. Current debate about planned hydroelectric facilities—a US7- to 10-billion megaproject—in a pristine glacierized area of Patagonia, Chile [Romero Toledo et al., 2009; Vince, 2010], has raised anew the matter of how glaciologists and global change experts can contribute their knowledge to civic debates on important issues. There has been greater respect for science in this controversy than in some previous debates over projects that pertain to glaciers, although valid economic motivations again could trump science and drive a solution to the energy supply problem before the associated safety and environmental problems are understood. The connection between glaciers and climate change—both anthropogenic and natural—is fundamental to glaciology and to glaciers' practical importance for water and hydropower resources, agriculture, tourism, mining, natural hazards, ecosystem conservation, and sea level [Buytaert et al., 2010; Glasser et al., 2011]. The conflict between conservation and development can be sharper in glacierized regions than almost anywhere else. Glaciers occur in spectacular natural landscapes, but they also supply prodigious exploitable meltwater.

  10. Glacier Contributions to Sea Level Rise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gardner, A. S.; Cogley, J. G.; Moholdt, G.; Wouters, B.; Wiese, D. N.

    2015-12-01

    Global mean sea level is rising in response to two primary factors: warming oceans and diminishing glaciers and ice sheets. If melted completely, glaciers would raise sea levels by half a meter, much less than that the 80 meters or so that would result from total melt of the massive Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. That is why glacier contributions to sea level rise have been less studied, allowing estimates of to vary widely. Glacier contributions to sea level change are challenging to quantify as they are broadly distributed, located in remote and poorly accessible high latitude and high altitude regions, and ground observations are sparse. Advances in satellite altimetry (ICESat) and gravimetry (GRACE) have helped, but they also have their own challenges and limitations. Here we present an updated (2003-2014) synthesis of multiple techniques adapted for varying regions to show that rates of glacier loss change little between the 2003-2009 and 2003-2014 periods, accounting for roughly one third of global mean sea level rise. Over the next century and beyond glaciers are expected to continue to contribute substantial volumes of water to the world's oceans, motivating continued study of how glaciers respond to climate change that will improve projections of future sea levels.

  11. Multiangular Reflectance of a Glacier Surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hendriks, J.; Pellikka, P.

    2004-05-01

    The worldwide retreat of glaciers provides one of the clearest signals of a change in global climate. In order to monitor the temporal behaviour of glacier surfaces and volumes, remote sensing techniques have proved to be extremely useful. Conventional classification techniques like supervised classifications on Landsat ETM+ images allow us to classify glacier surfaces and to monitor their change. These classifications are based upon the conversion of spectral radiance in nadir direction into surface reflectance and require extensive atmospheric and topographic modelling. Currently the Landsat ETM+ sensor shows anomalies. For most of these reasons, we try an experimental classification procedure to classify a glacier surface. We use the multiangular reflectance properties of the glacier Hintereisferner (Austria) to calculate its albedo for glacier surface patches like snow, firn and ice. On the 12th of August 2003, a time-synchronous acquisition of in situ multi-angular spectrometer measurements and digital camera data acquisition was accomplished. Furthermore, four local mode data acquisitions were done in the same month by the MISR instrument, which is onboard of the Terra satellite. After analysis of the various datasets, we attempt to derive BRDFs (Bi-directional Reflectance Distribution Functions) for the different glacier surfaces. Calculations are performed in those areas were digital camera frames overlap and can be validated by the in situ spectrometer measurements. The albedos derived from the MISR data were compared to the other datasets in order to investigate MISR's possibilities in the future for glacier classification schemes. Manual delineations of specific glacier zones help to improve the classification scheme and serve as validation data.

  12. Reconstructing climate variability using tree rings and glacier fluctuations in the southern Chilean Andes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aravena, Juan-Carlos

    -early summer in northwestern Patagonia extends from AD 1600 to 2002, and only explains 14% of the variance in the instrumental record. The southern Patagonia summer-autumn precipitation reconstruction (1600 to 2000) explains 40% of the total variance. Both reconstructed series show oscillatory modes for periodicities between 2 and 4 years and between 20 and 40 years. Droughts recognized in the reconstructed northwestern Patagonia precipitation series coincide with several other precipitation reconstructions of south-central Chile and Argentina over the last 400 years. "Little Ice Age" glacier fluctuations were examined at Mount San Lorenzo (47°30'S) and Santa Ines Island (53°45'S) in southern Chile using dendroglaciologic, geomorphic and historical (documentary, photographic) evidence. At Mount San Lorenzo the glacial advances occurred between 1600 and the late 1800s-early 1900s. At Santa Ines Island, the oldest glacial advance is dated ca. AD 1675 at Alejandro Glacier. Minimum age estimates ca. AD 1758, 1840-45 and 1895-1910 are common to Alejandro and Beatriz glaciers suggesting synchronous glacial activity. Glaciers have been receding at both sites during the last half of the 20th century. Radiocarbon dates from peat at Beatriz Glacier on Santa Ines Island indicate that the seventeenth century advance was the most extensive in the last 5,300 years in this area. Comparison between these glacier histories and climatic reconstructions for the last 400 years shows that glaciers from both study areas respond to a combination of temperature and precipitation. Future work involving a multi-criteria approach to date these moraines should include examination of soils, volcanic tephras and lake deposits within moraines, together with other dating tools to improve the dating control of the glacier histories. Keywords. Precipitation, homogeneity analysis, atmospheric circulation, Pilgerodendron uviferum, tree rings, time series analysis, climate variability, Southern South America

  13. Arctic Warming and Sea Ice Diminution Herald Changing Glacier and Cryospheric Hazard Regimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kargel, Jeffrey; Bush, Andrew; Leonard, Gregory

    2013-04-01

    The recent expansion of summertime melt zones in both Greenland and some Arctic ice caps, and the clearing of perennial sea ice from much of the Arctic, may presage more rapid shifts in mass balances of land ice than glaciologists had generally expected. The summer openings of vast stretches of open water in the Arctic, particularly in straits and the Arctic Ocean shores of the Queen Elizabeth Islands and along some Greenland coastal zones, must have a large impact on summer and early autumn temperatures and precipitation now that the surface boundary condition is no longer limited by the triple-point temperature and water-vapor pressure of H2O. This state change in the Arctic probably is part of the explanation for the expanded melt zones high in the Greenland ice sheet. However, Greenland and the Canadian Arctic are vast regions subject to climatic influences of multiple marine bodies, and the situation with sea ice and climate change remains heterogeneous, and so the local climate feedbacks from sea ice diminution remain patchy. Projected forward just a few decades, it is likely that sea ice will play a significant role in the Queen Elizabeth Islands and around Greenland only in the winter months. The region is in the midst of a dramatic climate change that is affecting the mass balances of the Arctic's ice bodies; some polar-type glaciers must be transforming to polythermal, and polythermal ones to maritime-temperate types. Attendant with these shifts, glacier response times will shorten, the distribution and sizes of glacier lakes will change, unconsolidated debris will be debuttressed, and hazards-related dynamics will shift. Besides changes to outburst flood, debris flow, and rock avalanche occurrences, the tsunami hazard (with ice and debris landslide/avalanche triggers) in glacierized fjords and the surge behaviors of many glaciers is apt to increase or shift locations. For any given location, the past is no longer the key to the present, and the present

  14. Central Himalayan Glaciers and Climate Change- Pinder Glacier- A preliminary study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pillai, J.; Patel, L. K.

    2011-12-01

    Glaciers in the Indian Himalayan Region (IHR) are the prime lifeline of Indian Subcontinent. There are about nine thousand glaciers of different size in this region. It is located within the latitudes 270N to 360N and longitude 720E to 960E. The second largest glacier, outside the polar and sub polar regions, Siachen glacier of length 74 km, is located in IHR. Many rivers in this continent originated from these glaciers. Study on the fluctuations especially of the snow cover and related parameters are important for the proper management of these rivers. Annual balance, fluctuations of glaciers, hydrological behaviour and the assessment of the winter snow pack are also critical for the proper flow and control of Himalayan Rivers. There are many hydroelectric and irrigation facilities in these snow fed rivers. Glacial melt is important as far as the river flow is concerned. Researchers had observed that the glacial mass balance has been found to show an inverse relationship with the monsoon. Glacial hydrometry and glacial melt are important aspects as far the studies of glaciers in this region. Himalayan glaciers are also important for ecosystem stability. In this perspective attempts had been made to examine the various environmental parameters of Pindari glacier and the upper reaches of the Pindari river. Pindari glacier is located in the Central Himalayan region. It is of length 8 Km. A few records available with Geological Survey of India for a period of hundred years reveals that Pindari glacial have an annual retreat of 8-10 M. Pindrai glacier had retreated about 425 M with in a period of fifty seven years. Pindari river originates from the buffer zone of Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve (NDBR) and is located in the lower regime of Pindari glacier. It is one of the prominent tributaries of Alaknanda. Tributaries of Pindari river are from Maktoli glacier, Kafani glacier and Sunderdhunga glacier. The changes in the Pindiari catchment area had been examined from the

  15. Classification of debris-covered glaciers and rock glaciers in the Andes of central Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Janke, Jason R.; Bellisario, Antonio C.; Ferrando, Francisco A.

    2015-07-01

    In the Dry Andes of Chile (17 to 35° S), debris-covered glaciers and rock glaciers are differentiated from true glaciers based on the percentage of surface debris cover, thickness of surface debris, and ice content. Internal ice is preserved by an insulating cover of thick debris, which acts as a storage reservoir to release water during the summer and early fall. These landforms are more numerous than glaciers in the central Andes; however, the existing legislation only recognizes uncovered or semicovered glaciers as a water resource. Glaciers, debris-covered glaciers, and rock glaciers are being altered or removed by mining operations to extract valuable minerals from the mountains. In addition, agricultural expansion and population growth in this region have placed additional demands on water resources. In a warmer climate, as glaciers recede and seasonal water availability becomes condensed over the course of a snowmelt season, rock glaciers and debris-covered glaciers contribute a larger component of base flow to rivers and streams. As a result, identifying and locating these features to implement sustainable regional planning for water resources is important. The objective of this study is to develop a classification system to identify debris-covered glaciers and rock glaciers based on the interpretation of satellite imagery and aerial photographs. The classification system is linked to field observations and measurements of ice content. Debris-covered glaciers have three subclasses: surface coverage of semi (class 1) and fully covered (class 2) glaciers differentiates the first two forms, whereas debris thickness is critical for class 3 when glaciers become buried with more than 3 m of surface debris. Based on field observations, the amount of ice decreases from more than 85%, to 65-85%, to 45-65% for semi, fully, and buried debris-covered glaciers, respectively. Rock glaciers are characterized by three stages. Class 4 rock glaciers have pronounced

  16. A graph-based approach to glacier flowline extraction: An application to glaciers in Switzerland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Moine, Nicolas; Gsell, Pierre-Stéphane

    2015-12-01

    In this paper we propose a new, graph-based approach to glacier segmentation and flowline extraction. The method, which requires a set of glacier contours and a Digital Elevation Model (DEM), consists in finding an optimum branching that connects a set of vertices belonging to the topological skeleton of each glacier. First, the challenges associated with glacier flowline extraction are presented. Then, the three main steps of the method are described: the skeleton extraction and pruning algorithm, the definition and computation of a travel cost between all pairs of skeleton vertices, and the identification of the directed minimum spanning tree in the resulting directed graph. The method, which is mainly designed for valley glaciers, is applied to glaciers in Switzerland.

  17. Late Quaternary climate change shapes island biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Weigelt, Patrick; Steinbauer, Manuel Jonas; Cabral, Juliano Sarmento; Kreft, Holger

    2016-04-07

    Island biogeographical models consider islands either as geologically static with biodiversity resulting from ecologically neutral immigration-extinction dynamics, or as geologically dynamic with biodiversity resulting from immigration-speciation-extinction dynamics influenced by changes in island characteristics over millions of years. Present climate and spatial arrangement of islands, however, are rather exceptional compared to most of the Late Quaternary, which is characterized by recurrent cooler and drier glacial periods. These climatic oscillations over short geological timescales strongly affected sea levels and caused massive changes in island area, isolation and connectivity, orders of magnitude faster than the geological processes of island formation, subsidence and erosion considered in island theory. Consequences of these oscillations for present biodiversity remain unassessed. Here we analyse the effects of present and Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) island area, isolation, elevation and climate on key components of angiosperm diversity on islands worldwide. We find that post-LGM changes in island characteristics, especially in area, have left a strong imprint on present diversity of endemic species. Specifically, the number and proportion of endemic species today is significantly higher on islands that were larger during the LGM. Native species richness, in turn, is mostly determined by present island characteristics. We conclude that an appreciation of Late Quaternary environmental change is essential to understand patterns of island endemism and its underlying evolutionary dynamics.

  18. Sea otter studies in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bodkin, James L.; Kloecker, K.A.; Esslinger, G.G.; Monson, Daniel H.; DeGroot, J.D.; Doherty, J.

    2002-01-01

    Following translocations to the outer coast of Southeast Alaska in 1965, sea otters have been expanding their range and increasing in abundance. We began conducting surveys for sea otters in Cross Sound, Icy Strait, and Glacier Bay, Alaska in 1994, following initial reports (in 1993) of their presence in Glacier Bay. Since 1995, the number of sea otters in Glacier Bay proper has increased from around 5 to more than 1500. Between 1993 and 1997 sea otters were apparently only occasional visitors to Glacier Bay, but in 1998 long-term residence was established as indicated by the presence of adult females and their dependent pups. Sea otter distribution is limited to the Lower Bay, south of Sandy Cove, and is not continuous within that area. Concentrations occur in the vicinity of Sita Reef and Boulder Island and between Pt. Carolus and Rush Pt. on the west side of the Bay (Figure 1). We describe the diet of sea otters during 2001 in Glacier Bay based on visual observations of prey during 456 successful forage dives. In Glacier Bay, diet consisted of 62% clam, 15% mussel, 9% crab, 7% unidentified, 4& urchins, and 4% other. Most prey recovered by sea otters are commercially, socially, or ecologically important species. Species of clam include Saxidomus gigantea, Protothaca staminea, and Mya truncata. Urchins are primarily Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis and the mussel is Modiolus modiolus. Crabs include species of three genera: Cancer, Chinoecetes, and Telmessus. Although we characterize diet at broad geographic scales, we found diet to vary between sites separated by as little as several hundred meters. Dietary variation among and within sites can reflect differences in prey availability and individual specialization. We estimated species composition, density, biomass, and sizes of subtidal clams, urchins, and mussels at 9 sites in lower Glacier Bay. All sites were selected based on the presence of abundant clam siphons. Sites were not selected to allow inference to

  19. Human activities and its Responses to Glacier Melt Water Over Tarim River Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Hai; Zhou, Shenbei; Bai, Minghao

    2017-04-01

    the influence on water demand management. Second, water demand management factors positively relate to ecological improvement in Tarim River Basin. Third, after a further prediction on glacier melt with fuzzy neural network, it finds that the weaker adjustment influence of glacier runoff would put Tarim River Basin into a much weaker mutual-dependent relationship. The research believes that if short-term activity of society has wrongly adapted to runoff increase from faster glacier melt, it would put social development and ecological recovery of Tarim River Basin into a higher vulnerable way. Key words: Tarim River Basin, Changing Condition, Glacier Melt, mutual-dependent vulnerability

  20. Latest Pleistocene advance and collapse of the Matanuska - Knik glacier system, Anchorage Lowland, southern Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kopczynski, Sarah E.; Kelley, Samuel E.; Lowell, Thomas V.; Evenson, Edward B.; Applegate, Patrick J.

    2017-01-01

    At the end of the last ice age, glacier systems worldwide underwent dramatic retreat. Here, we document the advance and retreat of a glacier system with adjacent marine- and land-based components during the latter part of the Termination. We utilize three lines of evidence: lithologic provenance, geomorphic mapping, and radiocarbon ages derived from lake cores to reconstruct glacier extent and timing of advance and retreat within our study area centered at N 61.50°, W 149.50°, just north of Anchorage, Alaska. Two glaciers, sourced in the Talkeetna and Chugach Mountains, flowed down the Matanuska and Knik Valleys forming a coalesced lobe that advanced onto the Anchorage Lowlands and terminated at Elmendorf Moraine. We use the presence of lithologies unique to the Matanuska catchment in glacial drift to delineate the paleoflow lines and to estimate the suture line of the two glacier systems. The eastern side of the lobe, attributed to ice flow from the Knik Valley, was in contact with elevated marine waters within the Knik Arm fjord, and thus retreat was likely dominated by calving. Geomorphic evidence suggests the western side of the lobe, attributed to ice flow from Matanuska Valley, retreated due to stagnation. We constrain retreat of the combined Matanuska and Knik lobe with thirteen new radiocarbon ages, in addition to previously published radiocarbon ages, and with geomorphic evidence suggesting the retreat occurred in two phases. Retreat from the Elmendorf Moraine began between 16.8 and 16.4 ka BP. A second, faster retreat phase occurred later and was completed by 13.7 ka BP. With the 140 km of total retreat occurring over ∼3000 years or less. This pattern of glacial advance and retreats agrees well with the deglacial histories from the southern sectors of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet, as well as many other alpine glacier systems in the western U.S. and northern Alaska. This consistent behavior of glacier systems may indicate that climate oscillated over

  1. Geocryological Structure and Glaciers Novaya Zemlya archipelago in the context of global climate processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kholmiansky, Mikhail; Anokhin, Vladimir

    2015-04-01

    New Earth glaciation due to the Quaternary glaciation .epohami and modern climate. We distinguish four types of ice sheets: small glaciers and snowfields - a capacity of up to 100 m .; mountain-valley glaciation - up to 200 m .; net (transition to the coverslip) - up to 300 m. and glaciation (ice sheet) - up to 500 m. The archipelago is characterized by continuous permafrost raprosraneniem, which is located under the roof of the seasonally thawed layer at a depth of 0.1 to 3.2 m . The depth is increased by its lakes and man-made Taliko up to 35 m. The temperature of the permafrost Paleozoic sandstones and shales at a depth of 15 m. Reaches -3,5°; limestones and shales containing cryopeg it reaches -2,8° at a depth of 130 m. Power Cryolithozone on drilling data and calculations 265-280 m. The average temperature of ice sheets are formed depending on the type of ice, its cut and the power supply type and morphology of the surface. It differs from the temperature of the surrounding glacier rocks on 3-7° and is at a depth from the surface of the glacier 13-15 m .: -3 - -4,5°; at a depth of 30 m .: -2°. In the age of the Quaternary glaciation entire archipelago was covered with continental ice. Global warming has resulted in a reduction of its area by 25% In the northern part of the South Island there are snowfields and small lednichki. In the area of Matochkin Shar and further north to South Bay Sulmenova, found mainly hanging and cirque glaciers, severely degraded, and in most cases do not reach the sea. At the same time, in the South Bay and Sulmenova and a number of other areas there are powerful lobes were associated with the ice sheet interior of the North Island, and reaching the sea. In the west of the archipelago to reach the sea only a few branches of the Central ice sheet; in the eastern part of the North Island ice sheet breaks in the sea in the form of ice walls up to 400 meters. This part is called the Nordenskiöld glacier. The maximum ice thickness

  2. Integrated firn elevation change model for glaciers and ice caps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saß, Björn; Sauter, Tobias; Braun, Matthias

    2016-04-01

    We present the development of a firn compaction model in order to improve the volume to mass conversion of geodetic glacier mass balance measurements. The model is applied on the Arctic ice cap Vestfonna. Vestfonna is located on the island Nordaustlandet in the north east of Svalbard. Vestfonna covers about 2400 km² and has a dome like shape with well-defined outlet glaciers. Elevation and volume changes measured by e.g. satellite techniques are becoming more and more popular. They are carried out over observation periods of variable length and often covering different meteorological and snow hydrological regimes. The elevation change measurements compose of various components including dynamic adjustments, firn compaction and mass loss by downwasting. Currently, geodetic glacier mass balances are frequently converted from elevation change measurements using a constant conversion factor of 850 kg m-³ or the density of ice (917 kg m-³) for entire glacier basins. However, the natural conditions are rarely that static. Other studies used constant densities for the ablation (900 kg m-³) and accumulation (600 kg m-³) areas, whereby density variations with varying meteorological and climate conditions are not considered. Hence, each approach bears additional uncertainties from the volume to mass conversion that are strongly affected by the type and timing of the repeat measurements. We link and adapt existing models of surface energy balance, accumulation and snow and firn processes in order to improve the volume to mass conversion by considering the firn compaction component. Energy exchange at the surface is computed by a surface energy balance approach and driven by meteorological variables like incoming short-wave radiation, air temperature, relative humidity, air pressure, wind speed, all-phase precipitation, and cloud cover fraction. Snow and firn processes are addressed by a coupled subsurface model, implemented with a non-equidistant layer discretisation. On

  3. Preliminary bathymetry of Aialik Bay and Neoglacial changes of Aialik and Pederson glaciers, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Post, Austin

    1980-01-01

    Preliminary bathymetry (at 1:20,000 scale) and scientific studies of Aialik Bay, Alaska, by the Research Vessel Growler in 1978 disclose that the head of the bay consists of a deep basin enclosed by a terminal-moraine shoal. A much smaller basin, into which Aialik Glacier discharges icebergs, is located west of two islands and a submarine ridge. Comparison of 1978 soundings with U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey (now National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) data obtained in 1912 shows shoaling of about 64 feet in the deepest part of the small basin nearest the glacier and of about 40 feet in the large basin. The time of retreat of Aialik Glacier from the moraine bar is unknown; a faint ' trimline ' is still visible in the forest on the east side of the fiord, and a carbon-14 date suggests the retreat could have taken place as recently as 1800. The time of Aialik Glcier 's neoglacial advance to the moraine is unknown. Pederson Glacier, which terminates in part in a tidal lagoon or lake, has retreated about 0.90 mile from a moraine judged by Grant and Higgins to have been in contact with the ice about 1896. (USGS)

  4. Hubbard Glacier, Alaska: growing and advancing in spite of global climate change and the 1986 and 2002 Russell Lake outburst floods

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Trabant, Dennis C.; March, Rod S.; Thomas, Donald S.

    2003-01-01

    Hubbard Glacier, the largest calving glacier on the North American Continent (25 percent larger than Rhode Island), advanced across the entrance to 35-mile-long Russell Fiord during June 2002, temporarily turning it into a lake. Hubbard Glacier has been advancing for more than 100 years and has twice closed the entrance to Russell Fiord during the last 16 years by squeezing and pushing submarine glacial sediments across the mouth of the fiord. Water flowing into the cutoff fiord from mountain streams and glacier melt causes the level of Russell Lake to rise. However, both the 1986 and 2002 dams failed before the lake altitude rose enough for water to spill over a low pass at the far end of the fiord and enter the Situk River drainage, a world-class sport and commercial fishery near Yakutat, Alaska.

  5. Reconsidering the glacier to rock glacier transformation problem: New insights from the central Andes of Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monnier, Sébastien; Kinnard, Christophe

    2015-06-01

    The glacier to rock glacier transformation problem is revisited from a previously unseen angle. A striking case in the Juncal Massif (located in the upper Aconcagua Valley, Chilean central Andes) is documented. There, the Presenteseracae debris-covered glacier has advanced several tens of metres and has developed a rock glacier morphology in its lower part over the last 60 years. The conditions for a theoretically valid glacier to rock glacier transformation are discussed and tested. Permafrost probability in the area of the studied feature is highlighted by regional-scale spatial modelling together with on-site shallow ground temperature records. Two different methods are used to estimate the mean surface temperature during the summer of 2014, and the sub-debris ice ablation rates are calculated as ranging between 0.05 and 0.19 cm d- 1, i.e., 0.04 and 0.17 m over the summer. These low ablation rates are consistent with the development of a coherent surface morphology over the last 60 years. Furthermore, the rates of rock wall retreat required for covering the former glacier at Presenteseracae lie within the common 0.1-2 mm y- 1 range, assuming an average debris thickness and a range of debris-covering time intervals. The integration of the geomorphological observations with the numerical results confirms that the studied debris-covered glacier is evolving into a rock glacier.

  6. Himalayan glaciers: understanding contrasting patterns of glacier behavior using multi-temporal satellite imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Racoviteanu, A.

    2014-12-01

    High rates of glacier retreat for the last decades are often reported, and believed to be induced by 20th century climate changes. However, regional glacier fluctuations are complex, and depend on a combination of climate and local topography. Furthermore, in ares such as the Hindu-Kush Himalaya, there are concerns about warming, decreasing monsoon precipitation and their impact on local glacier regimes. Currently, the challenge is in understanding the magnitude of feedbacks between large-scale climate forcing and small-scale glacier behavior. Spatio-temporal patterns of glacier distribution are still llimited in some areas of the high Hindu-Kush Himalaya, but multi-temporal satellite imagery has helped fill spatial and temporal gaps in regional glacier parameters in the last decade. Here I present a synopsis of the behavior of glaciers across the Himalaya, following a west to east gradient. In particular, I focus on spatial patterns of glacier parameters in the eastern Himalaya, which I investigate at multi-spatial scales using remote sensing data from declassified Corona, ASTER, Landsat ETM+, Quickbird and Worldview2 sensors. I also present the use of high-resolution imagery, including texture and thermal analysis for mapping glacier features at small scale, which are particularly useful in understanding surface trends of debris-covered glaciers, which are prevalent in the Himalaya. I compare and contrast spatial patterns of glacier area and élévation changes in the monsoon-influenced eastern Himalaya (the Everest region in the Nepal Himalaya and Sikkim in the Indian Himalaya) with other observations from the dry western Indian Himalaya (Ladakh and Lahul-Spiti), both field measurements and remote sensing-based. In the eastern Himalaya, results point to glacier area change of -0.24 % ± 0.08% per year from the 1960's to the 2006's, with a higher rate of retreat in the last decade (-0.43% /yr). Debris-covered glacier tongues show thinning trends of -30.8 m± 39 m

  7. A Revised Glacier Inventory of Bhaga Basin Himachal Pradesh, India : Current Status and Recent Glacier Variations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Birajdar, F.; Venkataraman, G.; Bahuguna, I.; Samant, H.

    2014-11-01

    Himalayan glaciers show large uncertainty regarding their present and future state due to their sensitive reaction towards change in climatic condition. Himalayan glaciers are unique as they are located in tropical, high altitude regions, predominantly valley type and many are covered with debris. The great northern plains of India sustain on the perennial melt of glaciers meeting the water requirements of agriculture, industries, domestic sector even in the months of summer when large tracts of the country go dry. Therefore, it is important to monitor and assess the state of snow and glaciers and to know the sustainability of glaciers in view of changing global scenarios of climate and water security of the nation. Any information pertaining to Himalayan glaciers is normally difficult to be obtained by conventional means due to its harsh weather and rugged terrains. Due to the ecological diversity and geographical vividness, major part of the Indian Himalaya is largely un-investigated. Considering the fact that Himalayan glaciers are situated in a harsh environment, conventional techniques of their study is challenging and difficult both in terms of logistics and finances whereas the satellite remote sensing offers a potential mode for monitoring glaciers in long term. In order to gain an updated overview of the present state of the glacier cover and its changes since the previous inventories, an attempt has been made to generate a new remotesensing- derived glacier inventory on 1:50,000 scale for Bhaga basin (N32°28'19.7'' - N33°0'9.9'' ; E76°56'16.3'' - E77°25'23.7'' ) Western Himalaya covering an area of 1695.63 km2. having 231 glaciers and occupying glacierized area of 385.17 ±3.71 km2. ranging from 0.03 km2. to 29.28 km2. Glacier inventory has been carried out using high resolution IRS P6 LISS III data of 2011, ASTER DEM and other ancillary data. Specific measurements of mapped glacier features are the inputs for generating the glacier inventory data

  8. Biogeochemistry of glacier and rock glacier outflow in the western United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fegel, T. S.; Baron, J.; Hall, E.; Boot, C. M.

    2013-12-01

    Glaciers are melting at unprecedented rates worldwide, releasing bioavailable minerals and nutrients and altering downstream biogeochemistry. Though much research has focused on the recession of ice-glaciers in alpine environments, far less is known about the melt dynamics and biogeochemistry of rock glaciers. Rock glaciers, which are mixtures of ice and rocks that flow like a glacier, are far more abundant in mountainous regions of the western United States than ice glaciers. Little is known about their influence on downstream hydrology and water quality. We report here preliminary results of a west-wide survey of the influence of glaciers and rock glaciers on headwater properties. Measurements of specific conductance, nitrate (NO3-), ammonium (NH4+), dissolved silica, and dissolved organic matter were compared between glaciers, rock glaciers, and snow-fed reference streams from three basins in the Colorado Front Range. Samples were collected from ice, where possible, and downstream at 500m intervals from the first flowing water to tree line. UV and fluorescence data were analyzed using excitation emission matrices (EEMs) and PARAFAC modeling. High concentrations of NH4+ were only found in ice and the most upstream locations; NH4+ was below detection at all lower elevation sites, whereas NO3- concentrations were low in the headwaters and higher downstream. The fluorescence spectrum of DOC from both ice and the highest elevations had a strong autochthonous (microbial or algal) signal that was replaced by a more allochtonous, terrestrially-derived DOC as it approached tree line. Rock glacier stream chemistry was intermediate between glacier-fed streams and strictly snow fed drainages. DOC levels for ice glaciers ranged 2-3mg/L with increasing values downstream, while rock glaciers ranged from 1-2.5 mg/L with attenuation downstream. Snowfed only streams had DOC values at detection <0.5mg/L, with the exception at Lake Husted outflow, with an upland wetland, unlike the

  9. Assessing the Influence of Tributary Glaciers on Ice Properties and Flow Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quick, A. M.; Rupper, S.; McBride, J. H.; Ritter, S.; Tingey, D. G.; McKean, A.; Parks, E.

    2009-12-01

    from the confluence on Zwillingsgletscher . Preliminary processing and interpretation of the profile suggest an upper zone of low-backscatter ice (e.g., 10-15 m thick) that rests over a layer, of unknown thickness, that is highly diffractive with occasional planar reflections. The results of our survey can be compared to previous lower-frequency and deeper penetration radar surveys on Grenzgletscher, which detected a zone of low backscatter interpreted as cold ice extending to 100-200 m depth (Eisen et al., 2009). All else being equal, the differences in fraction of ice below the pressure melting point is enough to create flow rates of Zwillingsgletscher three times faster than that of Gornergletscher. In summary, the preliminary ice core and radar data indicate significant differences in bulk ice properties between the two, adjacent tributary glaciers, differences large enough to greatly impact the strain rates across this glacier system and, ultimately, the system’s response to climatic change.

  10. Recent transformations in the high-Arctic glacier landsystems based on examples from Svalbard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ewertowski, Marek; Tomczyk, Aleksandra

    2014-05-01

    Glacier recession and landform development in the foreland of several Svalbard's glaciers were quantified for different spatio-temporal scales. Time-series orthophotos and digital elevation models from 1961, 1990 and 2009 (with ground resolution varying from 0.4 m to 0.7 m) were used for quantification of decadal changes for the whole glacial catchments. Time-series geomorphological maps were constructed using a combination of DEM visualization and stereoscopic viewing of aerial photographs. Planar transformations of landforms were quantified based on orthophotomaps, whereas changes of the volume of ice and landforms were assessed by creation of digital elevation models of differences (i.e. elevation changes between sequential DEMs). Repetitive geomorphological and geodetic field surveys were applied to estimates seasonal and inter-seasonal transformations of various landforms assemblages and individual landforms. Research were carried out for several glaciers in the central part of the Spitsbergen Island, including: Nordenskiöldbreen, Ebbabreen, Raganrbreen, Hørbyebreen, Cambridgebreen, Balliolbreen, Svenbreen and Ferdinandbreen. In the period LIA-2013, glaciers' margins retreated seriously, moreover ice volume and glaciers' surface profiles changed enormously emphasizing the relative importance of glaciers' thinning over area loss. In terms of landscape alteration, the landforms response was much more varied between glaciers. Most important transformation included: (1) developing of a terminoglacial and/or supraglacial lakes, which acted as a sedimentary trap and at the same time probably accelerated glacier erosion, (2) developing the lateral moraines whose transformations were divided into creation, initial, mature, and senile phases, with various magnitudes of debris flow and backwasting activity that changed with time (3) developing of end moraine complexes, which are now the most stable components, alternated mainly by dead-ice downwasting and to a lesser

  11. Faster-X Evolution of Gene Expression in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Meisel, Richard P.; Malone, John H.; Clark, Andrew G.

    2012-01-01

    DNA sequences on X chromosomes often have a faster rate of evolution when compared to similar loci on the autosomes, and well articulated models provide reasons why the X-linked mode of inheritance may be responsible for the faster evolution of X-linked genes. We analyzed microarray and RNA–seq data collected from females and males of six Drosophila species and found that the expression levels of X-linked genes also diverge faster than autosomal gene expression, similar to the “faster-X” effect often observed in DNA sequence evolution. Faster-X evolution of gene expression was recently described in mammals, but it was limited to the evolutionary lineages shortly following the creation of the therian X chromosome. In contrast, we detect a faster-X effect along both deep lineages and those on the tips of the Drosophila phylogeny. In Drosophila males, the dosage compensation complex (DCC) binds the X chromosome, creating a unique chromatin environment that promotes the hyper-expression of X-linked genes. We find that DCC binding, chromatin environment, and breadth of expression are all predictive of the rate of gene expression evolution. In addition, estimates of the intraspecific genetic polymorphism underlying gene expression variation suggest that X-linked expression levels are not under relaxed selective constraints. We therefore hypothesize that the faster-X evolution of gene expression is the result of the adaptive fixation of beneficial mutations at X-linked loci that change expression level in cis. This adaptive faster-X evolution of gene expression is limited to genes that are narrowly expressed in a single tissue, suggesting that relaxed pleiotropic constraints permit a faster response to selection. Finally, we present a conceptional framework to explain faster-X expression evolution, and we use this framework to examine differences in the faster-X effect between Drosophila and mammals. PMID:23071459

  12. Distinct patterns of seasonal Greenland glacier velocity.

    PubMed

    Moon, Twila; Joughin, Ian; Smith, Ben; van den Broeke, Michiel R; van de Berg, Willem Jan; Noël, Brice; Usher, Mika

    2014-10-28

    Predicting Greenland Ice Sheet mass loss due to ice dynamics requires a complete understanding of spatiotemporal velocity fluctuations and related control mechanisms. We present a 5 year record of seasonal velocity measurements for 55 marine-terminating glaciers distributed around the ice sheet margin, along with ice-front position and runoff data sets for each glacier. Among glaciers with substantial speed variations, we find three distinct seasonal velocity patterns. One pattern indicates relatively high glacier sensitivity to ice-front position. The other two patterns are more prevalent and appear to be meltwater controlled. These patterns reveal differences in which some subglacial systems likely transition seasonally from inefficient, distributed hydrologic networks to efficient, channelized drainage, while others do not. The difference may be determined by meltwater availability, which in some regions may be influenced by perennial firn aquifers. Our results highlight the need to understand subglacial meltwater availability on an ice sheet-wide scale to predict future dynamic changes.

  13. Complex Greenland outlet glacier flow captured.

    PubMed

    Aschwanden, Andy; Fahnestock, Mark A; Truffer, Martin

    2016-02-01

    The Greenland Ice Sheet is losing mass at an accelerating rate due to increased surface melt and flow acceleration in outlet glaciers. Quantifying future dynamic contributions to sea level requires accurate portrayal of outlet glaciers in ice sheet simulations, but to date poor knowledge of subglacial topography and limited model resolution have prevented reproduction of complex spatial patterns of outlet flow. Here we combine a high-resolution ice-sheet model coupled to uniformly applied models of subglacial hydrology and basal sliding, and a new subglacial topography data set to simulate the flow of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Flow patterns of many outlet glaciers are well captured, illustrating fundamental commonalities in outlet glacier flow and highlighting the importance of efforts to map subglacial topography. Success in reproducing present day flow patterns shows the potential for prognostic modelling of ice sheets without the need for spatially varying parameters with uncertain time evolution.

  14. The geochemical record in rock glaciers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Steig, E.J.; Fitzpatrick, J.J.; Potter, N.; Clark, D.H.

    1998-01-01

    A 9.5 m ice core was extracted from beneath the surficial debris cover of a rock glacier at Galena Creek, northwestern Wyoming. The core contains clean, bubble-rich ice with silty debris layers spaced at roughly 20 cm intervals. The debris layers are similar in appearance to those in typical alpine glaciers, reflecting concentration of debris by melting at the surface during the summer ablation season. Profiles of stable isotope concentrations and electrical conductivity measurements provide independent evidence for melting in association with debris layers. These observations are consistent with a glacial origin for the ice, substantiating the glacigenic model for rock glacier formation. The deuterium excess profile in the ice indicates that the total depth of meltwater infiltration is less than the thickness of one annual layer, suggesting that isotope values and other geochemical signatures are preserved at annual resolution. This finding demonstrates the potential for obtaining useful paleoclimate information from rock glacier ice.

  15. Complex Greenland outlet glacier flow captured

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aschwanden, Andy; Fahnestock, Mark A.; Truffer, Martin

    2016-02-01

    The Greenland Ice Sheet is losing mass at an accelerating rate due to increased surface melt and flow acceleration in outlet glaciers. Quantifying future dynamic contributions to sea level requires accurate portrayal of outlet glaciers in ice sheet simulations, but to date poor knowledge of subglacial topography and limited model resolution have prevented reproduction of complex spatial patterns of outlet flow. Here we combine a high-resolution ice-sheet model coupled to uniformly applied models of subglacial hydrology and basal sliding, and a new subglacial topography data set to simulate the flow of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Flow patterns of many outlet glaciers are well captured, illustrating fundamental commonalities in outlet glacier flow and highlighting the importance of efforts to map subglacial topography. Success in reproducing present day flow patterns shows the potential for prognostic modelling of ice sheets without the need for spatially varying parameters with uncertain time evolution.

  16. Complex Greenland outlet glacier flow captured

    PubMed Central

    Aschwanden, Andy; Fahnestock, Mark A.; Truffer, Martin

    2016-01-01

    The Greenland Ice Sheet is losing mass at an accelerating rate due to increased surface melt and flow acceleration in outlet glaciers. Quantifying future dynamic contributions to sea level requires accurate portrayal of outlet glaciers in ice sheet simulations, but to date poor knowledge of subglacial topography and limited model resolution have prevented reproduction of complex spatial patterns of outlet flow. Here we combine a high-resolution ice-sheet model coupled to uniformly applied models of subglacial hydrology and basal sliding, and a new subglacial topography data set to simulate the flow of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Flow patterns of many outlet glaciers are well captured, illustrating fundamental commonalities in outlet glacier flow and highlighting the importance of efforts to map subglacial topography. Success in reproducing present day flow patterns shows the potential for prognostic modelling of ice sheets without the need for spatially varying parameters with uncertain time evolution. PMID:26830316

  17. Stabilizing feedbacks in glacier-bed erosion.

    PubMed

    Alley, R B; Lawson, D E; Larson, G J; Evenson, E B; Baker, G S

    2003-08-14

    Glaciers often erode, transport and deposit sediment much more rapidly than nonglacial environments, with implications for the evolution of glaciated mountain belts and their associated sedimentary basins. But modelling such glacial processes is difficult, partly because stabilizing feedbacks similar to those operating in rivers have not been identified for glacial landscapes. Here we combine new and existing data of glacier morphology and the processes governing glacier evolution from diverse settings to reveal such stabilizing feedbacks. We find that the long profiles of beds of highly erosive glaciers tend towards steady-state angles opposed to and slightly more than 50 per cent steeper than the overlying ice-air surface slopes, and that additional subglacial deepening must be enabled by non-glacial processes. Climatic or glaciological perturbations of the ice-air surface slope can have large transient effects on glaciofluvial sediment flux and apparent glacial erosion rate.

  18. Radionuclides and soil properties as indicators of glacier retreat in a recently deglaciated permafrost environment of the Maritime Antarctica.

    PubMed

    Navas, Ana; Oliva, Marc; Ruiz-Fernández, Jesús; Gaspar, Leticia; Quijano, Laura; Lizaga, Iván

    2017-12-31

    Many ice-free environments in Maritime Antarctica are undergoing rapid and substantial environmental changes in response to recent climate trends. This is the case of Elephant Point (Livingston Island, South Shetland Islands, SSI), where the glacier retreat recorded during the last six decades exposed 17% of this small peninsula, namely a moraine extending from the western to the eastern coastlines and a relatively flat proglacial surface. In the southern margin of the peninsula, a sequence of Holocene raised beaches and several bedrock plateaus are also distributed. A main issue in this environment is the role of glacier retreat and permafrost controlling the recently formed soils. To this purpose, a total of 10 sites were sampled along a transect crossing raised beaches and moraine materials following the direction of glacier retreat. At the selected sites surface samples were collected until 12cm depth and sectioned at 3cm depth intervals to analyse main properties, grain size, pH, electrical conductivity and carbonates. Besides, elemental composition and fallout (FRNs) and environmental radionuclides (ERNs) were analysed. To assess if profile characteristics within the active layer are affected by glacier retreat variations of organic carbon and carbon fractions and (137)Cs contents were examined. The presence of organic carbon (range: 0.13-3.19%), and (137)Cs (range: bdl-10.1Bqkg(-1)) was only found at the raised beaches. The surface samples had abundant coarse fractions in rich sandy matrix with increasing acidic pH towards the coast. Significant differences were found in the elemental composition and the radionuclides between the moraine and raised beaches. Soil forming processes are related to the time of exposure of the landforms after glacier retreat. The results obtained confirm the potential for using geomorphological, edaphic and geochemical data to assess the influence of different stages of glacier retreat in recent soils and sediments. Copyright

  19. Towards a complete World Glacier Inventory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zemp, Michael

    2013-04-01

    The need for an inventory of the world's glaciers evolved during the International Hydrological Decade (1965-74). As a result, guidelines were established in the mid 1970s to compile a worldwide detailed inventory of existing perennial snow and ice masses. Following these international guidelines, several countries started compiling national glacier inventories based primarily on aerial photographs and maps. In the 1980s, the World Glacier Inventory (WGI) database was launched together with a status report about global and regional glacierised surface areas for the second half of the 20th century. These estimates were based on the detailed inventory data together with preliminary estimates of the remaining glacierised regions derived from early satellite imagery. In the late 1990s, the Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) database was initiated to continue the inventory task with space-borne sensors. In the WGI, glaciers are represented by geographical point coordinates. The GLIMS database includes digital outlines. Both include exact time stamps and tabular information on glacier classifications, length, area, orientation, and altitude range. Both are regularly updated with newly available data: the WGI stores point information for the second half of the 20th century whereas the GLIMS includes digital outlines for the 21st century. Since these detailed glacier inventories are not (yet) globally complete, there have been several efforts towards preliminary estimates of the overall global glacier coverage. A first, well elaborated one was included in the original status report of the WGI, published in 1989, and was refined in 2005 with information from other sources by Dyurgerov and Meier. Other studies used the detailed WGI, or an extended format by Cogley, for regional or global up-scaling of glacier extents. In 2003, Cogley published a global map of percentage glacier coverage per 1°x1° grid box (GGHydro) that is widely used for modeling at global

  20. A fjord-glacier coupled system model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Andrés, Eva; Otero, Jaime; Navarro, Francisco; Prominska, Agnieszka; Lapazaran, Javier; Walczowski, Waldemar

    2017-04-01

    With the aim of studying the processes occurring at the front of marine-terminating glaciers, we couple a fjord circulation model with a flowline glacier dynamics model, with subglacial discharge and calving, which allows the calculation of submarine melt and its influence on calving processes. For ocean modelling, we use a general circulation model, MITgcm, to simulate water circulation driven by both fjord conditions and subglacial discharge, and for calculating submarine melt rates at the glacier front. To constrain freshwater input to the fjord, we use estimations from European Arctic Reanalysis (EAR). To determine the optimal values for each run period, we perform a sensitivity analysis of the model to subglacial discharge variability, aimed to get the best fit of model results to observed temperature and salinity profiles in the fjord for each of these periods. Then, we establish initial and boundary fjord conditions, which we vary weekly-fortnightly, and calculate the submarine melt rate as a function of depth at the calving front. These data are entered into the glacier-flow model, Elmer/Ice, which has been added a crevasse-depth calving model, to estimate the glacier terminus position at a weekly time resolution. We focus our study on the Hansbreen Glacier-Hansbukta Fjord system, in Southern Spitsbergen, Svalbard, where a large set of data are available for both glacier and fjord. The bathymetry of the entire system has been determined from ground penetrating radar and sonar data. In the fjord we have got temperature and salinity data from CTDs (May to September, 2010-2014) and from a mooring (September to May, 2011-2012). For Hansbreen, we use glacier surface topography data from the SPIRIT DEM, surface mass balance from EAR, centre line glacier velocities from stake measurements (May 2005-April 2011), weekly terminus positions from time-lapse photos (Sept. 2009-Sept. 2011), and sea-ice concentrations from time-lapse photos and Nimbus-7 SMMR and DMSP SSM

  1. Birth of a Large Iceberg in Pine Island Bay, Antarctica

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2001-11-14

    A large tabular iceberg (42 kilometers x 17 kilometers) broke off Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica (75ºS latitude, 102ºW longitude) sometime between November 4 and 12, 2001. Images of the glacier were acquired by the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) instrument aboard NASA's Terra spacecraft. This event was preceded by the formation of a large crack across the glacier in mid 2000. Data gathered by other imaging instruments revealed the crack to be propagating through the shelf ice at a rate averaging 15 meters per day, accompanied by a slight rotation of about one percent per year at the seaward margin of the rift. The image set shows three views of Pine Island Glacier acquired by MISR's vertical-viewing (nadir) camera. The first was captured in late 2000, early in the development of the crack. The second and third views were acquired in November 2001, just before and just after the new iceberg broke off. The existence of the crack took the glaciological community by surprise, and the rapid rate at which the crack propagated was also not anticipated. Glaciologists predicted that the rift would reach the other side of the glacier sometime in 2002. However, the iceberg detached much sooner than anticipated, and the last 10-kilometer segment that was still attached to the ice shelf snapped off in a matter of days. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA03431

  2. Major surge of the Bering Glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molnia, Bruce

    Definitive evidence has been obtained in the last few weeks documenting that a new and potentially major surge of Bering Glacier is beginning. According to Bruce F. Molnia, U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, Va., and spokesperson for a USGS research group that includes Austin Post, Dennis Trabant, and Robert Krimmel, as of June 28, several hundred kilometers of the glacier were involved in the surge, displaying intensive crevassing, displaced moraines, ice overriding previously exposed bedrock, and pressure ridge development (Figure 1).

  3. Regional Observations of Alaska Glacier Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burgess, E. W.; Forster, R. R.; Hall, D. K.

    2010-12-01

    Alaska glaciers contribute more to sea level rise than any other glacierized mountain region in the world. Alaska is loosing ~84 Gt of ice annually, which accounts for ~0.23 mm/yr of SLR (Luthcke et al., 2008). Complex glacier flow dynamics, frequently related to tidewater environments, is the primary cause of such rapid mass loss (Larsen et al., 2007). Indirect observations indicate these complex flow dynamics occur on many glaciers throughout Alaska, but no comprehensive velocity measurements exist. We are working to measure glacier surface velocities throughout Alaska using synthetic aperture radar (SAR) offset tracking. This work focuses on the Seward/Malaspina, Bering, Columbia, Kaskawulsh, and Hubbard Glaciers and uses a MODIS land surface temperature "melt-day" product (Hall et al., 2006, 2008) to identify potential links between velocity variability and summertime temperature fluctuations. Hall, D., R. Williams Jr., K. Casey, N. DiGirolamo, and Z. Wan (2006), Satellite-derived, melt-season surface temperature of the Greenland Ice Sheet (2000-2005) and its relationship to mass balance, Geophysical Research Letters, 33(11). Hall, D., J. Box, K. Casey, S. Hook, C. Shuman, and K. Steffen (2008), Comparison of satellite-derived and in-situ observations of ice and snow surface temperatures over Greenland, Remote Sensing of Environment, 112(10), 3739-3749. Larsen, C. F., R. J. Motyka, A. A. Arendt, K. A. Echelmeyer, and P. E. Geissler (2007), Glacier changes in southeast Alaska and northwest British Columbia and contribution to sea level rise, J. Geophys. Res. Luthcke, S., A. Arendt, D. Rowlands, J. McCarthy, and C. Larsen (2008), Recent glacier mass changes in the Gulf of Alaska region from GRACE mascon solutions, Journal of Glaciology, 54(188), 767-777.

  4. International Symposium on Fast Glacier Flow

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lingle, Craig S.

    1990-01-01

    Cryospheric Sciences Program "International Symposium on Fast Glacier Flow" (PI, C. Lingle) provided partial support for publication of Annals of Glaciology 36 by the International Glaciological Society. Annals of Glaciology is a peer-reviewed journal. Annals 36, which was published in 2003, contains 39 peer-reviewed and edited papers from the International Symposium on Fast Glacier Flow, which was held in Yakutat, Alaska, 10-14 June 2002.

  5. Wakata with Glacier on Middeck (MDDK)

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2009-03-20

    S119-E-006764 (20 March 2009) --- Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Koichi Wakata is pictured on Discovery's middeck with the General Laboratory Active Cryogenic ISS Experiment Refrigerator (GLACIER). The astronauts changed out the International Space Station's glacier with a new one on March 20 to return urine, saliva, and blood samples from the Expedition 18 crew to Earth with Discovery's STS-119 astronauts. Wakata will be serving with both the current (Expedition 18) and the following (Expedition 19) crews aboard the station.

  6. Fuzzy Cognitive Maps for Glacier Hazards Assessment: Application to Predicting the Potential for Glacier Lake Outbursts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furfaro, R.; Kargel, J. S.; Fink, W.; Bishop, M. P.

    2010-12-01

    Glaciers and ice sheets are among the largest unstable parts of the solid Earth. Generally, glaciers are devoid of resources (other than water), are dangerous, are unstable and no infrastructure is normally built directly on their surfaces. Areas down valley from large alpine glaciers are also commonly unstable due to landslide potential of moraines, debris flows, snow avalanches, outburst floods from glacier lakes, and other dynamical alpine processes; yet there exists much development and human occupation of some disaster-prone areas. Satellite remote sensing can be extremely effective in providing cost-effective and time- critical information. Space-based imagery can be used to monitor glacier outlines and their lakes, including processes such as iceberg calving and debris accumulation, as well as changing thicknesses and flow speeds. Such images can also be used to make preliminary identifications of specific hazardous spots and allows preliminary assessment of possible modes of future disaster occurrence. Autonomous assessment of glacier conditions and their potential for hazards would present a major advance and permit systematized analysis of more data than humans can assess. This technical leap will require the design and implementation of Artificial Intelligence (AI) algorithms specifically designed to mimic glacier experts’ reasoning. Here, we introduce the theory of Fuzzy Cognitive Maps (FCM) as an AI tool for predicting and assessing natural hazards in alpine glacier environments. FCM techniques are employed to represent expert knowledge of glaciers physical processes. A cognitive model embedded in a fuzzy logic framework is constructed via the synergistic interaction between glaciologists and AI experts. To verify the effectiveness of the proposed AI methodology as applied to predicting hazards in glacier environments, we designed and implemented a FCM that addresses the challenging problem of autonomously assessing the Glacier Lake Outburst Flow

  7. Glacier, glacier lake and permafrost distribution in the Brahmaputra river basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kääb, A.; Frauenfelder, R.; Hoelzle, M.; Sossna, I.; Avian, M.

    2009-04-01

    Glacier distribution, glacier changes, glacier lakes and their changes, and mountain permafrost occurrence are investigated and compared to climate scenarios in order to assess the influence of melting glaciers and degrading permafrost on the long-term runoff of the Upper Brahmaputra River. In this contribution we derive glacier inventories for three test areas in the Upper Brahmaputra River Basin based on semi-automatic classification of Landsat data of 2000 and supplementary ASTER data. The resulting glacier outlines are intersected with the glacier outlines of the Chinese Glacier Inventory from about the 1970s-1980s and compared to selected Corona satellite data from the 1960s. In total, an area loss of about 18% was observed over the period investigated. We estimate the according ice volume loss to be on the order of 20%. Using the Chinese Glacier Inventory and our inventory results we upscale the above glacier change to the entire Upper Brahmaputra River Basin. Glacier lakes are mapped for the boundary region between Bhutan and Tibet using 1990 and 2000 Landsat imagery. Changes in lake area are compared to the observed glacier changes. The permafrost distribution in the study region is estimated using regionally adapted versions of two empirical models, both originally developed to estimate the permafrost distribution on a regional scale in the Swiss Alps. One model (PERMAKART) applies a topo-climatic key, based on the relation between altitude above sea level, aspect, and permafrost probability. The second model (PERMAMAP) is based on a linear spatial relation between the bottom temperature of the winter snow cover (BTS), the mean annual air temperature (MAAT) and the potential direct solar radiation. Adaptation of the models is done through the inclusion of ground based meteorological data and validated using distribution patterns of rock glaciers. The latter are mapped from high resolution satellite data such as CORONA and Quickbird imagery. Both, the

  8. Application of artificial neural networks in hydrological modeling: A case study of runoff simulation of a Himalayan glacier basin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Buch, A. M.; Narain, A.; Pandey, P. C.

    1994-01-01

    The simulation of runoff from a Himalayan Glacier basin using an Artificial Neural Network (ANN) is presented. The performance of the ANN model is found to be superior to the Energy Balance Model and the Multiple Regression model. The RMS Error is used as the figure of merit for judging the performance of the three models, and the RMS Error for the ANN model is the latest of the three models. The ANN is faster in learning and exhibits excellent system generalization characteristics.

  9. Integrated glacier and snow hydrological modelling in the Urumqi No.1 Glacier catchment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Hongkai; Hrachowitz, Markus; Savenije, Hubert

    2015-04-01

    The glacier and snow melt water from mountainous area is an essential water resource in Northwest China, where the climate is arid. Therefore a hydrologic model including glacier and snow melt simulation is in an urgent need for water resources management and prediction under climate change in this region. In this study, the Urumqi No.1 Glacier catchment in Northwest China, with 51% area covered by glacier, was selected as the study site. An integrated daily hydrological model was developed to systematically simulate the hydrograph, runoff separation (glacier and non-glacier runoff), the glacier mass balance (GMB), the equilibrium line altitude (ELA), and the snow water equivalent (SWE). Only precipitation, temperature and sunshine hour data is required as forcing input. A combination method, which applies degree-day approach during dry periods and empirical energy balance formulation during wet seasons, was implemented to simulate snow and glacier melt. Detailed snow melt processes were included in the model, including the water holding capacity of snow pack, the liquid water refreezing process in snow pack, and the change of albedo with time. A traditional rainfall-runoff model (Xinanjiang) was applied to simulate the rainfall(snowmelt)-runoff process in non-glacierized area. Additionally, the influence of elevation on temperature and precipitation distribution, and the impact of different aspect on snow and glacier melting were considered. The model was validated, not only by long-term observed daily runoff data, but also by measured snow (SWE) and glacier data (GMB, ELA) of over 50 years. Furthermore, the calibrated model can be upscaled into a larger catchment, which further supports our proposed model and optimized parameter sets.

  10. Where glaciers meet water: Subaqueous melt and its relevance to glaciers in various settings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Truffer, Martin; Motyka, Roman J.

    2016-03-01

    Glacier change is ubiquitous, but the fastest and largest magnitude changes occur in glaciers that terminate in water. This includes the most rapidly retreating glaciers, and also several advancing ones, often in similar regional climate settings. Furthermore, water-terminating glaciers show a large range in morphology, particularly when ice flow into ocean water is compared to that into freshwater lakes. All water-terminating glaciers share the ability to lose significant volume of ice at the front, either through mechanical calving or direct melt from the water in contact. Here we present a review of the subaqueous melt process. We discuss the relevant physics and show how different physical settings can lead to different glacial responses. We find that subaqueous melt can be an important trigger for glacier change. It can explain many of the morphological differences, such as the existence or absence of floating tongues. Subaqueous melting is influenced by glacial runoff, which is largely a function of atmospheric conditions. This shows a tight connection between atmosphere, oceans and lakes, and glaciers. Subaqueous melt rates, even if shown to be large, should always be discussed in the context of ice supply to the glacier front to assess its overall relevance. We find that melt is often relevant to explain seasonal evolution, can be instrumental in shifting a glacier into a different dynamical regime, and often forms a large part of a glacier's mass loss. On the other hand, in some cases, melt is a small component of mass loss and does not significantly affect glacier response.

  11. The slow advance of a calving glacier: Hubbard Glacier, Alaska, U.S.A

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Trabant, D.C.; Krimmel, R.M.; Echelmeyer, K.A.; Zirnheld, S.L.; Elsberg, D.H.

    2003-01-01

    Hubbard Glacier is the largest tidewater glacier in North America. In contrast to most glaciers in Alaska and northwestern Canada, Hubbard Glacier thickened and advanced during the 20th century. This atypical behavior is an important example of how insensitive to climate a glacier can become during parts of the calving glacier cycle. As this glacier continues to advance, it will close the seaward entrance to 50 km long Russell Fjord and create a glacier-dammed, brackish-water lake. This paper describes measured changes in ice thickness, ice speed, terminus advance and fjord bathymetry of Hubbard Glacier, as determined from airborne laser altimetry, aerial photogrammetry, satellite imagery and bathymetric measurements. The data show that the lower regions of the glacier have thickened by as much as 83 m in the last 41 years, while the entire glacier increased in volume by 14.1 km3. Ice speeds are generally decreasing near the calving face from a high of 16.5 m d-1 in 1948 to 11.5 m d-1 in 2001. The calving terminus advanced at an average rate of about 16 m a-1 between 1895 and 1948 and accelerated to 32 m a-1 since 1948. However, since 1986, the advance of the part of the terminus in Disenchantment Bay has slowed to 28 m a-1. Bathymetric data from the lee slope of the submarine terminal moraine show that between 1978 and 1999 the moraine advanced at an average rate of 32 m a-1, which is the same as that of the calving face.

  12. The Glacial Buzzsaw in the Northern Basin and Range: the Importance of Glacier Size and Uplift Rates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, D.; Brocklehurst, S. H.; Gawthorpe, R. L.

    2007-12-01

    The role of glaciers in limiting mountain range elevations is an important component of studies linking tectonic uplift and climate-driven erosion. Recent investigations suggesting that a glacial buzzsaw effect can efficiently offset rock uplift in tectonically active settings have concentrated on regions that have held large glaciers (10s km long at Last Glacial Maximum, LGM). However, little work has addressed the role small glaciers may play in controlling range topography. This study looks at the effectiveness of smaller (<10 km) glaciers at limiting peak and ridge elevations in both slow and relatively rapid rock uplift settings. The Lost River and Lemhi Ranges, Idaho, and the Beaverhead-Bitterroot Mountains, Idaho-Montana all experience slow rock uplift, with slip rates <0.3 mm/yr on the range-bounding normal faults. Here, swath-elevation profiles show that maximum elevations correlate well to estimates of both LGM and mean Quaternary equilibrium line altitudes (ELAs). Furthermore, peaks in hypsometry and minima in slope-elevation profiles correspond to ELAs, suggesting that small glaciers can efficiently limit range elevations where rock uplift is slow. The Teton Range, Wyoming, experiences 5-10 times faster rock uplift. In general, elevations, slope profiles, and hypsometry all correlate to both LGM and mean Quaternary ELA estimates, although supra-elevated peaks do penetrate through this zone. Comparisons of valley long-profiles show that glacier size is important in controlling valley form under more rapid rock uplift. Small (<5km) glacial valleys perched high on the range front have profiles that have steepened in response to the rapid rock uplift. In contrast, larger (>8km) valleys extend back beyond the high peaks of the range front, and have housed glaciers that have eroded deep into the range, maintaining shallow gradients. Feedback mechanisms are important in snow accumulation on the larger glaciers, which receive extra inputs of snow from the

  13. Understanding changes in ice dynamics of southeast Greenland glaciers from high resolution gravimetry data and satellite remote sensing observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Millan, R.; Rignot, E. J.; Mouginot, J.; Menemenlis, D.; Morlighem, M.; Wood, M.

    2016-12-01

    Southeast Greenland has been one of the largest contributors to ice mass losses in Greenland in the last few decades mostly as a result of changes in ice dynamics, and to a lesser extent due to the steady increase in runoff. In 1996, the region was thinning up to the ice divide (Krabill et al., 1999) and the change were clearly of ice dynamics nature. Ice-ocean interactions played a central role in triggering a faster, systematic retreat around year 2002-2005 as water of Atlantic origin started to intrude the fjords in larger amounts due to a change in oceanic circulation in the Irminger sea. The glacier response varied significantly from one glacier to the next in response to the oceanic change, which we attribute to variatioins in fjord bathymetry, geometry control on the glaciers and calving speed of the glaciers. This region is however characterized by a dearth of topography data: the fjords have never been mapped and bed topography is challenging to obtain with radio echo sounding techniques. Here, we employ a combination of Operation IceBridge (OIB) high-resolution airborne gravity from 2016, Ocean Melting Greenland (OMG) EVS-2 mission low resolution gravity from 2016, and OMG bathymetry data from 2016 to map the bed elevation of the glaciers and fjords over the entire southeast Greenland combining gravity, thickness, and bathymetry. The data reveal the true depth of the fjords and the glacier thickness at the ice front, in a seamless fashion. We combine these data with a history of ice discharge combining estimates of ice thickness with a time series of ice velocity going back to the early 1990s. We form a time series of ice discharge, glacier per glacier, which is compared with surface mass balance from the RACMO 1-km downscaled model. We compare the results with simulations of ice melt along the calving faces of the glaciers to draw conclusions about the sensitivity of each glacier to climate forcing and re-interpret their pattern of retreat in the last

  14. Glacier mass budget measurements by hydrologic means

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tangborn, Wendell V.

    1966-01-01

    Ice storage changes for the South Cascade Glacier drainage basin were determined for the 1957–1964 period using basin runoff and precipitation measurements. Measurements indicate that evaporation and condensation are negligible compared with the large runoff and precipitation values. Runoff, measured by a stream discharge station, averaged 4.04 m/yr; precipitation, determined by snow accumulation measurements at a central point on the glacier and by storage gages, averaged 3.82 m/yr, resulting in a basin net loss of about 0.22 m/yr. During the same period, South Cascade Glacier net budgets were determined by ablation stakes, snow density-depth profiles, and maps. The average glacier net budget for the period was −0.61sol;yr of water. This amount is equivalent to −0.26 m of water when averaged over the drainage basin (43% glacier-covered), which is in fair agreement with the net storage change measured by hydrologic methods. Agreement between the two methods for individual years is slightly less perfect. (Key words: Glaciers; water balance.)

  15. Comparative metagenome analysis of an Alaskan glacier.

    PubMed

    Choudhari, Sulbha; Lohia, Ruchi; Grigoriev, Andrey

    2014-04-01

    The temperature in the Arctic region has been increasing in the recent past accompanied by melting of its glaciers. We took a snapshot of the current microbial inhabitation of an Alaskan glacier (which can be considered as one of the simplest possible ecosystems) by using metagenomic sequencing of 16S rRNA recovered from ice/snow samples. Somewhat contrary to our expectations and earlier estimates, a rich and diverse microbial population of more than 2,500 species was revealed including several species of Archaea that has been identified for the first time in the glaciers of the Northern hemisphere. The most prominent bacterial groups found were Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, and Firmicutes. Firmicutes were not reported in large numbers in a previously studied Alpine glacier but were dominant in an Antarctic subglacial lake. Representatives of Cyanobacteria, Actinobacteria and Planctomycetes were among the most numerous, likely reflecting the dependence of the ecosystem on the energy obtained through photosynthesis and close links with the microbial community of the soil. Principal component analysis (PCA) of nucleotide word frequency revealed distinct sequence clusters for different taxonomic groups in the Alaskan glacier community and separate clusters for the glacial communities from other regions of the world. Comparative analysis of the community composition and bacterial diversity present in the Byron glacier in Alaska with other environments showed larger overlap with an Arctic soil than with a high Arctic lake, indicating patterns of community exchange and suggesting that these bacteria may play an important role in soil development during glacial retreat.

  16. Greenland's pronounced glacier retreat not irreversible

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schultz, Colin

    2012-02-01

    In recent decades, the combined forces of climate warming and short-term variability have forced the massive glaciers that blanket Greenland into retreat, with some scientists worrying that deglaciation could become irreversible. The short history of detailed glacier observations, however, makes pinning the ice loss to either short-term dynamics or long-term change difficult. Research by Young et al. detailing the effects of two bouts of sudden and temporary cooling during an otherwise warm phase in Greenland's climate history could help answer that question by showing just how heavy a hand short-term variability can have in dictating glacier dynamics. Along the western edge of Greenland the massive Jakobshavn Isbræ glacier reaches out to the coast, its outflow dropping icebergs into Baffin Bay during the summer months. Flanking the glacier's tongue are the Tasiussaq and Marrait moraines—piles of rock marking the glacier's former extent. Researchers suspected the moraines were tied to two periods of abrupt cooling that hit Greenland 9300 and 8200 years ago, and that association was reinforced by the authors' radiocarbon and beryllium isotope analyses of the area surrounding the moraines. Beryllium-10 forms when cosmic radiation travels through the atmosphere and strikes the Earth's surface, with surface rock concentrations indicating how long it has been ice-free.

  17. Glacier Dynamics Within a Small Alpine Cirque

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanders, J. W.; Cuffey, K. M.; MacGregor, K. R.; Kavanaugh, J. L.; Dow, C. F.

    2008-12-01

    Cirques, with their steep walls and overdeepened basins, have captivated the imagination of scientists since the mid-1800s. Glaciers in cirques, by generating these spectacular amphitheater-shaped landforms, contribute significantly to erosion in the core of mountain ranges and are one of the principal agents responsible for the relief structure at high elevations. Yet comprehensive studies of the dynamics of cirque glaciers, and their link to erosional processes, have never been undertaken. To this end, we acquired an extensive new set of measurements at the West Washmawapta Glacier, which sits in a cirque on the east side of Helmet Mountain in the Vermillion Range of the Canadian Rockies. Ice thickness surveys with ground penetrating radar revealed that the glacier occupies a classic bowl-shaped depression complete with a nearly continuous riegel. Using GPS-derived surface velocities of a glacier-wide grid network and the tilt of one borehole, we calculated the complete force balance of the glacier. This analysis also produced a map of basal sliding velocity and a value for the viscosity of temperate ice. We will discuss the implications of these findings for the problem of how cirques are formed by glacial erosion.

  18. Rheology of rock glaciers: a preliminary assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Giardino, J.R.; Vitek, J.D.; Hoskins, E.R.

    1985-01-01

    Movement of rock debris under the influence of gravity, i.e., mass movement, generates a range of phenomena from soil creep, through solifluction,debris flows and rock glaciers to rock falls. Whereas the resultant forms of these phenomena are different, common elements in the mechanics of movement are utilized in the basic interpretation of the processes of formation. Measurements of morphologic variables provide data for deductive analyses of processes that operate too slowly to observe or for processes that generated relict phenomena. External and internal characteristics or rock glacier morphometry and measured rates of motion serve as the basis for the development of a rheological model to explain phenomena classified as rock glaciers. A rock glacier in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of Southern Colorado, which exhibits a large number of ridges and furrows and lichen bare fronts of lobes, suggests present day movement. A strain-net established on the surface provides evidence of movement characteristics. These data plus morphologic and fabric data suggest two rheological models to explain the flow of this rock glacier. Model one is based upon perfect plastic flow and model two is based upon stratified fluid movement with viscosity changing with depth. These models permit a better understanding of the movement mechanics and demonstrate that catastrophic events and slow creep contribute to the morphologic characteristics of this rock glacier.

  19. Multi-decadal retreat of Novaya Zemlya outlet glaciers, in response to climatic forcing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carr, Rachel; Bell, Heather

    2016-04-01

    Arctic ice masses have rapidly lost ice from the mid-1990s, through a combination of negative surface mass balance and accelerated ice discharge from marine-terminating outlet glaciers. In the past decade, substantial mass deficits have been identified on Novaya Zemlya (NVZ), Russian High Arctic, and its outlet glaciers have retreated dramatically, likely due to declining sea ice concentrations. However, little is known about longer-term glacier behaviour on NVZ, and its potential impact on overall mass balance. Here we greatly extend the available record of retreat and assess multi-decadal glacier response to forcing between 1976 and 2014 using remotely sensed data. Following at least 25 years of gradual recession, retreat rates accelerated substantially from circa. 2000 and again from 2011 onwards. The rate and temporal pattern of retreat were strongly dependant on terminus type: marine-terminating outlets receded an order of magnitude faster than land- or lagoon-terminating glaciers and land-based termini showed limited change in retreat rate over time. Furthermore, retreat was markedly higher on the Barents Sea coast than the Kara Sea. Comparison with forcing data shows that accelerated retreat from 2011 onwards coincided with exceptionally low sea ice concentration and duration between 2011 and 2013. This suggests that sea ice is an important controlling factor, which agrees with shorter-term studies on NVZ. Although air temperature information is more limited on NVZ, data from both meteorological stations and reanalysis highlight 2011 and 2012 as two of the warmest years during the period 1950 to 2014. The limited response of land-terminating outlets suggests that air temperatures do not cause retreat directly, via melting or enhanced basal lubrication, but may have an indirect influence through melting of sea ice or hydro fracture.

  20. Modeling debris-covered glaciers: response to steady debris deposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Leif S.; Anderson, Robert S.

    2016-05-01

    Debris-covered glaciers are common in rapidly eroding alpine landscapes. When thicker than a few centimeters, surface debris suppresses melt rates. If continuous debris cover is present, ablation rates can be significantly reduced leading to increases in glacier length. In order to quantify feedbacks in the debris-glacier-climate system, we developed a 2-D long-valley numerical glacier model that includes englacial and supraglacial debris advection. We ran 120 simulations on a linear bed profile in which a hypothetical steady state debris-free glacier responds to a step increase of surface debris deposition. Simulated glaciers advance to steady states in which ice accumulation equals ice ablation, and debris input equals debris loss from the glacier terminus. Our model and parameter selections can produce 2-fold increases in glacier length. Debris flux onto the glacier and the relationship between debris thickness and melt rate strongly control glacier length. Debris deposited near the equilibrium-line altitude, where ice discharge is high, results in the greatest glacier extension when other debris-related variables are held constant. Debris deposited near the equilibrium-line altitude re-emerges high in the ablation zone and therefore impacts melt rate over a greater fraction of the glacier surface. Continuous debris cover reduces ice discharge gradients, ice thickness gradients, and velocity gradients relative to initial debris-free glaciers. Debris-forced glacier extension decreases the ratio of accumulation zone to total glacier area (AAR). Our simulations reproduce the "general trends" between debris cover, AARs, and glacier surface velocity patterns from modern debris-covered glaciers. We provide a quantitative, theoretical foundation to interpret the effect of debris cover on the moraine record, and to assess the effects of climate change on debris-covered glaciers.

  1. Soil processes in recently deglaciated environments in Maritime Antarctica: a study case from Elephant Point (Livingston Island, South Shetland Islands)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oliva, Marc; Ruiz-Fernández, Jesús; Quijano, Laura; Palazón, Leticia; Navas, Ana

    2016-04-01

    Many ice-free environments in the northern Antarctic Peninsula are undergoing rapid and substantial environmental changes in response to reent climate trends. This is the case of Elephant Point (Livingston Island, South Shetland Islands), where the glacier retreat recorded during the second half of the XX century, has exposed 17% of this small peninsula (1.16 km2). Glacier retreat has exposed new ice-free land surface in the northern part of Elephant Point: a moraine extending from the western to the eastern coastlines and a relatively flat proglacial surface. Besides, a sequence of present-day beach, Holocece marine terraces and bedrock plateaus are also distributed in the southern margin of the peninsula. Periglacial processes are widespread in all the peninsula, but the type and characteristics of soils depen on the timing of glacier retreat. In this research we aim to assess how the glacier retreat affects the recently formed soils. Ten sites were sampled along a transect crossing different geomorphological units (beach, raised beaches, moraine, proglacial environment), following the direction of glacier retreat. To this purpose the upper part of selected soil profiles was sectioned in 3 cm depth interval increments to examine main soil properties, grain size distribution, soil organic carbon and pH. Besides, elemental composition and patterns of fallout (FRNs) and environmental radionuclides (ERNs) were analysed to assess if soil profile characteristics within the active layer are affected by glacier retreat. The results obtained confirm the potential for using geomorphological, edaphic and geochemical data to derive information for assessing the influence of different stages of glacier retreat in the study soils.

  2. Glaciers in the Earth's Hydrological Cycle: Assessments of Glacier Mass and Runoff Changes on Global and Regional Scales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radić, Valentina; Hock, Regine

    2014-05-01

    Changes in mass contained by mountain glaciers and ice caps can modify the Earth's hydrological cycle on multiple scales. On a global scale, the mass loss from glaciers contributes to sea-level rise. On regional and local scales, glacier meltwater is an important contributor to and modulator of river flow. In light of strongly accelerated worldwide glacier retreat, the associated glacier mass losses raise concerns over the sustainability of water supplies in many parts of the world. Here, we review recent attempts to quantify glacier mass changes and their effect on river runoff on regional and global scales. We find that glacier runoff is defined ambiguously in the literature, hampering direct comparison of findings on the importance of glacier contribution to runoff. Despite consensus on the hydrological implications to be expected from projected future warming, there is a pressing need for quantifying the associated regional-scale changes in glacier runoff and responses in different climate regimes.

  3. Glacier retreat monitoring from SAR coherence images: application to Gangotri glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Varugu, Bhuvan K.; Rao, Yalamanchili S.

    2016-05-01

    Retreat of glaciers is an important phenomenon to be monitored as they have a direct bearing on flow of water in rivers and rise of water level in sea. Use of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) images in glacier dynamics studies has been gaining interest in the recent years. The present study discusses the use of SAR coherence images for demarking the snout position on a glacier and thus measure the retreat. Being sensitive for even the slightest changes over the terrain, SAR coherence images seems to be very useful in glacier retreat measurement. Gangotri is one of the major Himalayan glaciers which has been subjected to dominant retreat since 1850 AD.16 The retreat of Gangotri glacier has a huge impact on the flow of Ganges, the largest perennial river in India. Coherence images were generated over Gangotri glacier from SAR images with different repeat periods from 1996 (ERS-1 & 2), 2004 (Envisat) & 2012 (TerraSAR-X) and are resampled to 50x50 m grid using SRTM DEM. Profiles near the snout position were precisely marked in a GIS environment and the distance between the profiles (1996, 2004, 2012) is reported as retreat. It has been observed that the Gangotri glacier has been retreating at the rate of 24+/- 1 m per year which is in good agreement with several other studies.

  4. Velocities of Thwaites Glacier and smaller glaciers along the Marie Byrd Land coast, West Antarctica

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rosanova, C.E.; Lucchitta, B.K.; Ferrigno, J.G.

    1998-01-01

    Average velocities for time intervals ranging from <1 to 15 years were measured by tracking ice-surface patterns on sequential Landsat and European Remote-sensing Satellite synthetic aperture radar images. Velocities of Thwaites Glacier range from 2.2 km a-1 above the grounding line to 3.4 km a-1 at the limit of measurements on Thwaites Glacier ice tongue. The glacier increases in velocity by about 1 km a-1 where it crosses the grounding line. Over the period 1984-93, Thwaites Glacier ice tongue accelerated by about 0.6 km a-1. Velocities of the floating part of several minor glaciers and some ice shelves are also determined: Land Glacier, 1.7-1.9 km a-1; DeVicq Glacier, 0.7-1.1 km a-1; Dotson Ice Shelf, 0.2-0.5 km a-1; Getz Ice Shelf, 0.2-0.8 km a-1; and Sulzberger Ice Shelf, 0.01-0.02 km a-1. The high velocities along the Marie Byrd Land coast are consistent with the high precipitation rates over West Antarctica and, for some of the glaciers, the lack of buttressing ice shelves.

  5. Glacier Fluctuation and Climate Change: the NOAA/NSIDC Glacier Photo Digitization Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mullins, T. L.; Armstrong, R.; Machado, A.; Wang, I.; Ballagh, L.; Paserba, A.; Edwards, M.; Yohe, L.; Fetterer, F.

    2002-12-01

    The study of historic glacier photographs is an excellent source of information about climate change. Glaciers are sensitive to temperature and precipitation patterns associated with climate change. Ice cores from glaciers can provide a long-term climate record and aid current scientific research in understanding changes that have occurred over tens of thousands of years. Within recent history, a warming climate has resulted in the unfortunate retreat and disappearance of glaciers around the world. Comparisons of glacial area and mass balance over time can help scientists understand a glacier's response to climate change. The National Snow and Ice Data Center is the repository of several thousand glacier photographs taken and collected by the American Geographical Society. The dates of the photographs range from the 1880s to the 1970s and the collection consists of both aerial and terrestrial photos. The digitization of these photographs will help inform users of their existence and will provide easier access to the images. It will also be an important first step in a project to display matching images of the same glaciers over time, thus providing an instantaneous visual representation of climate change. A searchable online database is being created for several thousand photographs and their accompanying metadata. Images will be retrievable by glacier name, photographer name, state, geographic coordinates, and subject keywords. This work is being done with funding by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Climate Database Modernization Program (CDMP), whose goal is to make major climate databases available on the web.

  6. What Influences Climate and Glacier Change in the Southwestern China?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yasunari, Teppei J.

    2012-01-01

    The subject of climate change in the areas of the Tibetan Plateau (TP) and the Himalayas has taken on increasing importance because of available water resources from their mountain glaciers. Many of these glaciers over the region have been retreating, while some are advancing and stable. Other studies report that some glaciers in the Himalayas show acceleration on their shrinkage. However, the causes of the glacier meltings are still difficult to grasp because of the complexity of climatic change and its influence on glacier issues. However, it is vital that we pursue further study to enable the future prediction on glacier changes.

  7. Combined technologies allow rapid analysis of glacier changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paul, Frank

    Monitoring of glacier changes plays an important role within the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) [Haeberli et al., 2000] and Landsat imagery has proven to be a useful tool for monitoring glacier changes over large and remote areas [Aniya et al., 1996; Li et al., 1998]. An accurate glacier map can be obtained by simple segmentation of a ratio image from Thematic Mapper (TM) channels 4 and 5 [Bayr et al., 1994, Jacobs et al., 1997; Paul, 2002] Individual glaciers were recently derived within a Geographic Information System (GIS) using a vector layer with glacier basin boundaries. Glacier changes were calculated and visualized by processing sequential images within a fully automated work flow.

  8. A new satellite-derived glacier inventory for Western Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Bris, Raymond; Frey, Holger; Paul, Frank; Bolch, Tobias

    2010-05-01

    Glaciers and ice caps are essential components of studies related to climate change impact assessment. Glacier inventories provide the required baseline data to perform the related analysis in a consistent and spatially representative manner. In particular, the calculation of the current and future contribution to global sea-level rise from heavily glacierized regions is a major demand. One of the regions, where strong mass losses and geometric changes of glaciers have been observed recently is Alaska. Unfortunately, the digitally available data base of glacier extent is quite rough and based on rather old maps from the 1960s. Accordingly, the related calculations and extrapolations are imprecise and an updated glacier inventory is urgently required. Here we present first results of a new glacier inventory for Western Alaska that is prepared in the framework of the ESA project GlobGlacier and is based on freely available orthorectified Landsat TM and ETM+ scenes from USGS. The analysed region covers the Tordrillo, Chigmit and Chugach Mts. as well as the Kenai Peninsula. In total, 8 scenes acquired between 2002 and 2009 were used covering c. 20.420 km2 of glaciers. All glacier types are present in this region, incl. outlet glaciers from icefields, glacier clad volcanoes, and calving glaciers. While well established automated glacier mapping techniques (band rationing) are applied to map clean and slightly dirty glacier ice, many glaciers are covered by debris or volcanic ash and outlines need manual corrections during post-processing. Prior to the calculation of drainage divides from DEM-based watershed analysis, we performed a cross-comparative analysis of DEMs from USGS, ASTER (GDEM) and SRTM 1 for Kenai Peninsula. This resulted in the decision to use the USGS DEM for calculating the drainage divides and most of the topographic inventory parameters, and the more recent GDEM to derive minimum elevation for each glacier. A first statistical analysis of the results

  9. Aleutian Islands

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-09-27

    Remote, rugged and extraordinarily beautiful, Alaska’s Aleutian Islands are best known for wildlife reserves, military bases, fishing, furs and fog. The sprawling volcanic archipelago was brought into the spotlight by the Russian-supported expedition of Alexey Chirikov and Vitus Bering in 1741, and soon became controlled by the Russian-American Fur Company. In 1867 the United States purchased Alaska, including the Aleutian Islands, from Russia. By 1900 the port in Unalaska was well established as a shipping port for Alaska gold. The archipelago sweeps about 1,200 miles (1,800 km) from the tip of the Alaskan Peninsula to Attu, the most westward island. Four major island groups hold 14 large islands, about 55 smaller islands, and a large number of islets, adding up to roughly 150 islands/islets in total. This chain separates the Bering Sea (north) from the Pacific Ocean (south) and the islands are connected by the Marine Highway Ferry – at least as far as Unalaska. For the most remote islands, such as birding paradise of Attu, the western-most Aleutian Island, travel becomes trickier and relies primarily on custom charter. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) flew over the region and captured this spectacular true-color image of the eastern Aleutian Islands on May 15, 2014. In this image, the Alaskan Peninsula protrudes from the mainland and sweeps to the southwest. The first set of islands are called the Fox Island group. Unalaska Island is part of this group and can be identified, with some imagination, as an island formed in the shape of a flying cherub, with two arms (peninsulas) outstretched towards the northeast, seemingly reaching for the round “balls” of Akutan and Akun Islands. The smallest islands in the west of the image belong to the group known as the Islands of Four Mountains. The Aleutians continue far to the west of this image. Fog surrounds the Aleutians, stretching from just off the southwestern Alaska mainland to the

  10. Glacier Changes in the Russian High Arctic.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pritchard, M. E.; Willis, M. J.; Melkonian, A. K.; Golos, E. M.; Stewart, A.; Ornelas, G.; Ramage, J. M.

    2014-12-01

    We provide new surveys of ice speeds and surface elevation changes for ~40,000 km2 of glaciers and ice caps at the Novaya Zemlya (NovZ) and Severnaya Zemlya (SevZ) Archipelagoes in the Russian High Arctic. The contribution to sea level rise from this ice is expected to increase as the region continues to warm at above average rates. We derive ice speeds using pixel-tracking on radar and optical imagery, with additional information from InSAR. Ice speeds have generally increased at outlet glaciers compared to those measured using interferometry from the mid-1990s'. The most pronounced acceleration is at Inostrantseva Glacier, one of the northernmost glaciers draining into the Barents Sea on NovZ. Thinning rates over the last few decades are derived by regressing stacked elevations from multiple Digital Elevations Models (DEMs) sourced from ASTER and Worldview stereo-imagery and cartographically derived DEMs. DEMs are calibrated and co-registered using ICESat returns over bedrock. On NovZ thinning of between 60 and 100 meters since the 1950s' is common. Similar rates between the late 1980s' and the present are seen at SevZ. We examine in detail the response of the outlet glaciers of the Karpinsky and Russanov Ice Caps on SevZ to the rapid collapse of the Matusevich Ice Shelf in the late summer of 2012. We do not see a dynamic thinning response at the largest feeder glaciers. This may be due to the slow response of the cold polar glaciers to changing boundary conditions, or the glaciers may be grounded well above sea level. Speed increases in the interior are difficult to assess with optical imagery as there are few trackable features. We therefore use pixel tracking on Terra SARX acquisitions before and after the collapse of the ice shelf to compute rates of flow inland, at slow moving ice. Interior ice flow has not accelerated in response to the collapse of the ice shelf but interior rates at the Karpinsky Ice Cap have increased by about 50% on the largest outlet

  11. Evaluating the performance of a glacier erosion model applied to Peyto Glacier, Alberta, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vogt, R.; Mlynowski, T. J.; Menounos, B.

    2013-12-01

    Glaciers are effective agents of erosion for many mountainous regions, but primary rates of erosion are difficult to quantify due to unknown conditions at the glacier bed. We develop a numerical model of subglacial erosion and passively couple it to a vertically integrated ice flow model (UBC regional glaciation model). The model accounts for seasonal changes in water pressure at the glacier bed which affect rates of abrasion and quarrying. We apply our erosion model to Peyto Glacier, and compare estimates of glacier erosion to the mass of fine sediment contained in a lake immediately down valley from the glacier. A series of experiments with our model and ones based on subglacial sliding rates are run to explore model sensitivity to bedrock hardness, seasonal hydrology, changes in mass balance, and longer-term dimensional changes of the glacier. Our experiments show that, as expected, erosion rates are most sensitive to bedrock hardness and changes in glacier mass balance. Silt and clay contained in Peyto Lake primarily originate from the glacier, and represent sediments derived from abrasion and comminution of material produced by quarrying. Average specific sediment yield during the period AD1917-1970 from the lake is 467×190 Mg km-2yr-1 and reaches a maximum of 928 Mg km-2yr-1 in AD1941. Converting to a specific sediment yield, modelled average abrasion and quarrying rates during the comparative period are 142×44 Mg km-2yr-1 and 1167×213 Mg km-2yr-1 respectively. Modelled quarrying accounts for approximately 85-95% of the erosion occurring beneath the glacier. The basal sliding model estimates combined abrasion and quarrying. During the comparative period, estimated yields average 427×136 Mg km-2yr-1, lower than the combined abrasion and quarrying models. Both models predict maximum sediment yield when Peyto Glacier reached its maximum extent. The simplistic erosion model shows higher sensitivity to climate, as seen by accentuated sediment yield peaks

  12. Local VLP signals registered by broadband seismometers at Myrdalsjokull glacier, south Iceland: Observations and tilt analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jonsdottir, K.; Lund, B.; Roberts, R.; Bodvarsson, R.

    2009-04-01

    For decades long period (lp) events have been recorded in the western part of the Katla volcano in South Iceland. The volcano is covered with the ice cap Myrdalsjokull which is the fourth largest glacier on the island. The events show a clear seasonal and climate related correlation where their number increases in the fall as well as during years of warmer climate. In addition they can be divided in groups of similar waveforms. Recent analysis of new broad band seismic data collected in the spring of 2007 suggests that the lp events originate in a steep outlet glacier. The outlet glacier is partly discontinuous as it encompasses an at least 100 m high escarpment. Here, inevitably, big blocks of glacial ice fall and land on the outlet glacier below the escarpment. We believe that the lp seismic events are caused by the impact and the associated glacier rumbling. Here we report for the first time repeating very long period (vlp) near field seismic signals of glacial origin. The events are only observed in the near field of the ice fall and should hence not to be mistaken for surface waves. The vlp events occur simultaneously with some of the largest lp events. The vlp signals are analysed and modelled in terms of displacement and tilt caused by the mass displacement when the ice blocks fall down the escarpment. When the vlp signatures from different events are compared they turn out to be similar but not identical. The vlp events are only observed in association with lp events from two of the four groups of similar lp events. Preliminary results suggest that the vlp signals are approximately symmetrical in time and that the permanent displacement is very small.

  13. Remotely-sensed and field-based observations of glacier change in the Annapurna-Manaslu region, Nepal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lovell, Arminel; Carr, Rachel; Stokes, Chris

    2017-04-01

    Himalayan glaciers have shrunk rapidly during the past twenty years. Understanding the factors controlling these losses is vital for forecasting changes in water resources, as the Himalaya houses the headwaters of major river systems, with densely populated catchments downstream. However, our knowledge of Himalayan glaciers is comparatively limited, due to their high-altitude, remote location. This is particularly the case in the Annapurna-Manaslu region, which has received relatively little scientific attention to date. Here, we present initial findings from remotely sensed data analysis, and our first field campaign in October 2016. Feature tracking of Band 8 Landsat imagery demonstrates that velocities in the region reach a maximum of 70-100 m a-1 , which is somewhat faster than those reported in the Khumbu region (e.g. Quincey et al 2009). A number of glaciers have substantial stagnant ice tongues, and most are flowing faster in the upper ablation zone than in the lower sections. The most rapidly flowing glaciers are located in the south-east of the Annapurna-Manaslu region and tend to also be the largest. Interestingly, initial observations suggest that the debris-covered ablation zones in the south-east are flowing more rapidly than the smaller, clean-ice glaciers in the north of the region. Comparison of velocities between 2000-2001 and 2014-2015 suggests deceleration on some glacier tongues. In October 2016, we conducted fieldwork on Annapurna South Glacier, located at the foot of Annapurna I. Here, we collected a number of datasets, with the aim of assessing the relationship between surface elevation change, ice velocities and debris cover. These included: i) installing ablation stakes in areas with varying debris cover; ii) quantifying debris characteristics, using Wolman counting and by measuring thickness; iii) surveying the glacier surface, using a differential GPS; iv) monitoring ice cliff melting, using Structure from Motion and; v) measuring surface

  14. Warm Oceans, Fast Glaciers: the connections

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Truffer, M.; Fahnestock, M. A.; Amundson, J. M.

    2009-12-01

    Over the last decade many outlet glaciers from the Greenland Ice Sheet have accelerated and thinned, and in a number of cases their termini have retreated. There is much in common from glacier to glacier that emerges as these changes are studied, yet the actual physical mechanisms remain unclear. One can show that the spatial patterns and timing of outlet glacier changes around Greenland coincide with changes in sea surface temperature and length of the sea-ice-free season in the surrounding ocean, and that large glacier changes appear to initiate within one to a few years of shifts in these conditions. While ocean warming has a direct impact on rates of melting at the glacier ice/ocean interface, its impact on ice flow is less direct. The spatial and temporal coincidence between changing ocean conditions and speedup is compelling, but the causal link between warmer ocean water and rapid responses from outlet glaciers around Greenland is more complex. Observations of rapid calving retreats, the appearance of calving-related long-period seismicity at some large glaciers undergoing change, and the loss of floating ice tongues all suggest that the direct impact of ocean-driven change is on the stability of the lowest reach of these tidewater outlets. In glaciers with a floating tongue, enhanced basal melt may be destabilizing by thinning the tongue to below its structural integrity; at grounded termini this effect is lacking. However, rapid melt at the near-vertical face can play a significant role for slowly flowing systems. For large grounded glaciers with terminus flow rates of meters per day, the impact of increased melt in summer would seem less important. At such glaciers the link between ocean temperatures, sea ice cover and terminus stability manifests itself by the cessation of calving in fall and winter, which leads to terminus advance and the formation of a floating tongue. The loss of sea ice cover in early spring leads to a disintegration of the seasonal

  15. Faster-than-Light Particles: A Review of Tachyon Characteristics.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1980-10-01

    A-DlAO9(4 529 RAND CORP SANTA MNtICA CA F/6 20/S FASTER-THAN-LIBI4T PARTICLES: A REVIEW OF TACHYON CHARACTERISTIC--ETCWU) OCT B0 E A PUSCHER F49620...77-C-0023 UNCLASSIFIED RAI0IN-1530-AF N. I nmui ininmuuuI LEVEL A RAND NOTE FASTER-THAN-LIGHT PARTICLES: A REVIEW OF ) ( TACHYON CHARACTERISTICS Edward...RECIPIENT’S CATALOG NUMBER 4TIT LE ( d Subtitle) TYPE OF REPORT & PERIOD COVERED ( Faster-than-Light Particles: A Review of /Interim -i Tachyon

  16. Assessing glacier melt contribution to streamflow at Universidad Glacier, central Andes of Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bravo, Claudio; Loriaux, Thomas; Rivera, Andrés; Brock, Ben W.

    2017-07-01

    Glacier melt is an important source of water for high Andean rivers in central Chile, especially in dry years, when it can be an important contributor to flows during late summer and autumn. However, few studies have quantified glacier melt contribution to streamflow in this region. To address this shortcoming, we present an analysis of meteorological conditions and ablation for Universidad Glacier, one of the largest valley glaciers in the central Andes of Chile at the head of the Tinguiririca River, for the 2009-2010 ablation season. We used meteorological measurements from two automatic weather stations installed on the glacier to drive a distributed temperature-index and runoff routing model. The temperature-index model was calibrated at the lower weather station site and showed good agreement with melt estimates from an ablation stake and sonic ranger, and with a physically based energy balance model. Total modelled glacier melt is compared with river flow measurements at three sites located between 0.5 and 50 km downstream. Universidad Glacier shows extremely high melt rates over the ablation season which may exceed 10 m water equivalent in the lower ablation area, representing between 10 and 13 % of the mean monthly streamflow at the outlet of the Tinguiririca River Basin between December 2009 and March 2010. This contribution rises to a monthly maximum of almost 20 % in March 2010, demonstrating the importance of glacier runoff to streamflow, particularly in dry years such as 2009-2010. The temperature-index approach benefits from the availability of on-glacier meteorological data, enabling the calculation of the local hourly variable lapse rate, and is suited to high melt regimes, but would not be easily applicable to glaciers further north in Chile where sublimation is more significant.

  17. Debris-covered glacier anomaly? Morphological factors controlling changes of Himalayan glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tartari, Gianni; Salerno, Franco

    2017-04-01

    What are the main morphological factors that control the heterogeneous responses of debris-covered glaciers to climate change in the southern central Himalaya? A debate is open on the thinning rates of debris-covered glaciers compared to those of clean ones. Previous studies have adopted a deterministic approach, which is indispensable, but is also limiting in that only a few glaciers can be monitored. In this context, we propose a statistical analysis based on a wider glacier population as a complement (not an alternative) to these deterministic studies. We analysed 28 glaciers situated on the southern slopes of Mt. Everest (central southern Himalaya) during the period 1992-2008. This study combines data that refer to the same glaciers over the same period that come from three recent published works (Nuimura et al., 2012, Salerno et al., 2012, Thakuri et al., 2014) in a unique statistical analysis. Generally, slope was the main morphological factor controlling the features and responses of the glaciers to climate change. In particular, the key points that emerged are as follows. 1) Reduced downstream slope is responsible for increased glacier elevation lowering. 2) The development of supraglacial ponds is a further controlling factor of glacier elevation change; that is, where supraglacial ponds develop, the glaciers register further surface lowering. 3) Debris coverage was not found to be significantly responsible for the development of supraglacial ponds, changes in elevation, or shifts in snow line altitude. However, we noted that this analysis is limited in that it considers, as a morphological factor, only the surface coverage and not the thickness of debris.

  18. Galapagos Islands

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    This true-color image of the Galapagos Islands was acquired on March 12, 2002, by the Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), flying aboard NASA's Terra satellite. The Galapagos Islands, which are part of Ecuador, sit in the Pacific Ocean about 1000 km (620 miles) west of South America. As the three craters on the largest island (Isabela Island) suggest, the archipelago was created by volcanic eruptions, which took place millions of years ago. Unlike most remote islands in the Pacific, the Galapagos have gone relatively untouched by humans over the past few millennia. As a result, many unique species have continued to thrive on the islands. Over 95 percent of the islands' reptile species and nearly three quarters of its land bird species cannot be found anywhere else in the world. Two of the more well known are the Galapagos giant tortoise and marine iguanas. The unhindered evolutionary development of the islands' species inspired Charles Darwin to begin The Origin of Species eight years after his visit there. To preserve the unique wildlife on the islands, the Ecuadorian government made the entire archipelago a national park in 1959. Each year roughly 60,000 tourists visit these islands to experience what Darwin did over a century and a half ago. Image courtesy Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC

  19. Galapagos Islands

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    This true-color image of the Galapagos Islands was acquired on March 12, 2002, by the Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), flying aboard NASA's Terra satellite. The Galapagos Islands, which are part of Ecuador, sit in the Pacific Ocean about 1000 km (620 miles) west of South America. As the three craters on the largest island (Isabela Island) suggest, the archipelago was created by volcanic eruptions, which took place millions of years ago. Unlike most remote islands in the Pacific, the Galapagos have gone relatively untouched by humans over the past few millennia. As a result, many unique species have continued to thrive on the islands. Over 95 percent of the islands' reptile species and nearly three quarters of its land bird species cannot be found anywhere else in the world. Two of the more well known are the Galapagos giant tortoise and marine iguanas. The unhindered evolutionary development of the islands' species inspired Charles Darwin to begin The Origin of Species eight years after his visit there. To preserve the unique wildlife on the islands, the Ecuadorian government made the entire archipelago a national park in 1959. Each year roughly 60,000 tourists visit these islands to experience what Darwin did over a century and a half ago. Image courtesy Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC

  20. A new glacier inventory for the Karakoram-Pamir region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rastner, P.; Paul, F.; Bolch, T.; Moelg, N.

    2015-12-01

    High-quality glacier inventories are required as a reference dataset to determine glacier changes and model their reaction to climate change, among others. In particular in High Mountain Asia such an inventory was missing for several heavily glacierized regions with reportedly strongly changing glaciers. As a contribution to GLIMS and the Randolph Glacier Inventory (RGI) we have mapped all glaciers in the Karakoram and Pamir region within the framework of ESAs Glaciers_cci project. Glacier mapping was performed using the band ratio method (TM3/TM5) and manual editing of Landsat TM/ETM+ imagery acquired around the year 2000. The mapping was challenged by frequent seasonal snow at high elevations, debris-covered glacier tongues, and several surging glaciers. We addressed the snow issue by utilizing multi-temporal imagery and improved manual mapping of debris-covered glacier tongues with ALOS PALSAR coherence images. Slow disintegration of glacier tongues after a surge (leaving still-connected dead ice) results in a difficult identification of the terminus and assignment of entities. Drainage divides were derived from the ASTER GDEM II and manually corrected to calculate topographic parameters. All glaciers larger 0.02 km2 cover an area of about 21,700 km2 in the Karakoram and about 11,800 km² in the Pamir region. Most glaciers are in the 0.1-0.5 km2 size class for Pamir, whereas for the Karakoram they are in the class <0.1 km2. Glaciers between 1 and 5 km2 contribute more than 30% to the total area in Pamir, whereas for the Karakoram region it is only 17%. The mean glacier elevation in the Karakoram (Pamir) region is 5426 (4874) m. A comparison with other recently published inventories reveals differences in the interpretation of glacier extents (mainly in the accumulation region) that would lead to large area changes if unconsidered for change assessment across different inventories.

  1. Climate sensitivity of Tibetan Plateau glaciers - past and future implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heyman, Jakob; Hubbard, Alun; Stroeven, Arjen P.; Harbor, Jonathan M.

    2013-04-01

    The Tibetan Plateau is one of the most extensively glaciated, non-Polar regions of the world, and its mountain glaciers are the primary source of melt water for several of the largest Asian rivers. During glacial cycles, Tibetan Plateau glaciers advanced and retreated multiple times, but remained restricted to the highest mountain areas as valley glaciers and ice caps. Because glacier extent is dominantly controlled by climate, the past extent of Tibetan glaciers provide information on regional climate. Here we present a study analyzing the past maximum extents of glaciers on the Tibetan Plateau with the output of a 3D glacier model, in an effort to quantify Tibetan Plateau climate. We have mapped present-day glaciers and glacial landforms deposited by formerly more extensive glaciers in eight mountain regions across the Tibetan Plateau, allowing us to define present-day and past maximum glacier outlines. Using a high-resolution (250 m) higher-order glacier model calibrated against present-day glacier extents, we have quantified the climate perturbations required to expand present-day glaciers to their past maximum extents. We find that a modest cooling of at most 6°C for a few thousand years is enough to attain past maximum extents, even with 25-75% precipitation reduction. This evidence for limited cooling indicates that the temperature of the Tibetan Plateau remained relatively stable over Quaternary glacial cycles. Given the significant sensitivity to temperature change, the expectation is perhaps that a future warmer climate might result in intense glacier reduction. We have tested this hypothesis and modeled the future glacier development for the three mountain regions with the largest present-day glacier cover using a projected warming of 2.8 to 6.2°C within 100 years (envelope limits from IPCC). These scenarios result in dramatic glacier reductions, including 24-100% ice volume loss after 100 years and 77-100% ice volume loss after 300 years.

  2. Stationary monitoring of glacier response to climate change in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Jiawen; Li, Zhongqin; Qin, Xiang; He, Yuanqing; He, Xiaobo; Li, Huilin

    2016-04-01

    At present, there are about 48571 glaciers with a total area of about 51.8×103 km2 and a volume of about 5.6×103 km3 in China. They are distributed widely in the high mountains in and surrounding the Tibetan Plateau and other high mountains such as Tianshan, Altay and Pamir. In view of differences in climatic conditions and glacier types, stationary monitoring of the glacier variations has been ongoing in different regions in order to investigate the glacier response to climate change. The monitoring results show that all the monitoring glaciers have been in retreat during the past decades and especially since 1990's the retreat rate has an accelerating trend. The accumulative mass balance is much negative and has a large annual variability for the monsoonal maritime glaciers in comparison with the continental and sub-continental glaciers. Under climate warming background, the acceleration of glacier melting is mainly attributed to rise in air temperature, ice temperature augment and albedo reduction of glacier surface. Particularly, the albedo reduction has a positive feedback effect on the glacier melting. Based on long term observation of glacier variations and physical properties, a simple dynamics model is coupled with mass balance modeling to make a projection of a typical glacier change in future. The primary modeling results suggest that the glacier will continue in shrinkage until vanishing within 50-90 years.

  3. Rock glaciers and the sediment dynamics in arid mountain belts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blöthe, Jan Henrik; Höser, Thorsten; Rosenwinkel, Swenja; Korup, Oliver

    2016-04-01

    Rock glaciers are common periglacial features in highest elevations of semiarid to arid mountain ranges. Rock glaciers predominate in realms where precipitation values fall below thresholds that allow for ice glacier formation, then even outranging ice glaciers in size and number. The influence of ice glaciers on high-mountain's sediment dynamics is manifold: ice-glacier-driven erosion produces large amounts of clastic material; ice glaciers act as a conveyor belt for sediments, delivering material from their source regions to their terminus; ice glaciers entering trunk valleys form efficient dams that interrupt sediment delivery. While these mechanisms have been addressed in numerous earlier studies, the role of rock glaciers for the sediment dynamics of arid mountain belts remains elusive. We address this shortcoming by analysing a rock glacier inventory that we compiled for the Himalaya-Karakoram ranges and the Tien Shan ranges in Central Asia. Our inventory comprises more than 1000 specimen, a large number of which form dams of large trunk rivers and minor tributaries, disconnecting the sediment fluxes from upstream. In certain regions that are nearly devoid of ice-glaciers, like the Gamugah surface of NW Pakistan, rock glaciers of >10^4-m length occupy valley bottoms entirely, constituting the only mode of transport for sediments produced in headwaters. In conclusion, we call for a better understanding of the role that rock glaciers take in the sediment dynamics of arid mountain belts.

  4. Spatial features of glacier changes in the Barents-Kara Sector

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharov, A. I.; Schöner, W.; Pail, R.

    2009-04-01

    In the 1950s, the total area of glaciers occupying separate islands and archipelagos of the Barents and Kara seas exceeded 92,300 km² (Atlas of the Arctic 1985). The overall glacier volume reached 20,140 km³ and the average ice thickness was given as 218 m. Our recent remote sensing studies and mass-balance estimates using spaceborne ASTER and LANDSAT imagery, ERS and JERS radar interferometric mosaics, and ICESat altimetry data revealed that, in the 2000s, the areal extent and volume of Barents-Kara glaciation amounted to 86,200±200 km² and 19,330±20 km³, respectively. The annual loss of land ice influenced by severe climate change in longitudinal direction was determined at approx. 8 km³/a in Svalbard, 4 km³/a both in the Franz Josef Land and Novaya Zemlya archipelagos, and less than 0.3 km³/a in Severnaya Zemlya over the past 50 years. The average ice thickness of remaining glaciation increased to 224 m. This fact was explained by rapid disintegration of thinner glacier margins and essential accumulation of snow at higher glacier elevations. Both effects were clearly visible in the series of satellite image maps of glacier elevation changes generated within the framework of the INTEGRAL, SMARAGD and ICEAGE research projects. These maps can be accessed at http://joanneum.dib.at/integral or smaragd (cd results). The largest negative elevation changes were typically detected in the seaward basins of fast-flowing outlet glaciers, both at their fronts and tops. Ablation processes were stronger manifested on southern slopes of ice caps, while the accumulation of snow was generally higher on northern slopes so that main ice divides "shifted" to the north. The largest positive elevation changes (about 100 m) were found in the central part of the study region in the accumulation areas of the biggest ice caps, such as Northern Ice Cap in Novaya Zemlya, Tyndall and Windy ice domes in Franz Josef Land, and Kvitoyjokulen at Kvitøya. The sides of these glaciers

  5. Downscaling the Local Weather Above Glaciers in Complex Topography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horak, Johannes; Hofer, Marlis; Gutmann, Ethan; Gohm, Alexander; Rotach, Mathias

    2017-04-01

    Glaciers have experienced a substantial ice-volume loss during the 20th century. To study their response to climate change, process-based glacier mass-balance models (PBGMs) are employed, which require a faithful representation of the state of the atmosphere above the glacier at high spatial and temporal resolution. Glaciers are usually located in complex topography where weather stations are scarce or not existent at all due to the remoteness of such sites and the associated high cost of maintenance. Furthermore. the effective resolution of global circulation models is too large to adequately capture the local topography and represent local weather, which is prerequisite for atmospheric input used by PBGMs. Dynamical downscaling is a physically consistent but computationally expensive approach to bridge the scale gap between GCM output and input needed by PBGMs, while statistical downscaling is faster but requires measurements for training. Both methods have their merits, however, a computationally frugal approach that does not rely on measurements is desirable, especially for long term studies of glacier response to future climate. In this study the intermediate complexity atmospheric research model (ICAR) is employed (Gutmann et al., 2016). It simplifies the wind field physics by relying on analytical solutions derived with linear theory. ICAR then advects atmospheric quantities within this wind field. This allows for computationally fast downscaling and yields a physically consistent set of atmospheric variables. First results obtained from downscaling air temperature, precipitation amount, relative humidity and wind speed to 4 × 4 km2 are presented. Preliminary ICAR is applied for a six month simulation period during five years and evaluated for three domains located in very distinct climates, namely the Southern Alps of New Zealand, the Cordillera Blanca in Peru and the European Alps using ERA Interim reanalysis data (ERAI) as forcing data set. The

  6. Measured Climate Induced Volume Changes of Three Glaciers and Current Glacier-Climate Response Prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trabant, D. C.; March, R. S.; Cox, L. H.; Josberger, E. G.

    2003-12-01

    Small but hydrologically significant shifts in climate have affected the rates of glacier volume change at the three U.S. Geological Survey Benchmark glaciers. Rate changes are detected as inflections in the cumulative conventional and reference-surface mass-balances of Wolverine and Gulkana Glaciers in Alaska and South Cascade Glacier in Washington. The cumulative mass balances are robust and have recently been corroborated by geodetic determinations of glacier volume change. Furthermore, the four-decade length of record is unique for the western hemisphere. Balance trends at South Cascade Glacier in Washington are generally in the opposite sense compared with Wolverine Glacier in Alaska; NCEP correlation of winter balance with local winter temperatures is positive at 0.59 for Wolverine and -0.64 for South Cascade Glacier. At Wolverine Glacier, the negative trend of cumulative mass balances, since measurements began in 1965, was replaced by a growth trend \\(positive mass balances\\) during the late 1970s and 1980s. The positive mass-balance trend was driven by increased precipitation during the 1976/77 to 1989 period. At Gulkana Glacier, the cumulative mass-balance trend has been negative throughout its measurement history, but with rate-change inflection points that coincide with the interdecadal climate-regime shifts in the North Pacific indices. At South Cascade Glacier, the mass-loss trend, observed since measurements began in 1953, was replaced by a positive trend between 1970 and 1976 then became strongly and continuously negative until 1997 when the rate of loss generally decreased. Since 1989, the trends of the glaciers in Alaska have also been strongly negative. These loss rates are the highest rates in the entire record. The strongly negative trends during the 1990s agree with climate studies that suggest that the period since the 1989 regime shift has been unusual. Volume response time and reference surface balance are the current suggested methods for

  7. Cortex Matures Faster in Youths With Highest IQ

    MedlinePlus

    ... NIH Cortex Matures Faster in Youths With Highest IQ Past Issues / Summer 2006 Table of Contents For ... on. Photo: Getty image (StockDisc) Youths with superior IQ are distinguished by how fast the thinking part ...

  8. FASTER THALAMOCORTICAL PROCESSING FOR DARK THAN LIGHT VISUAL TARGETS

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Jianzhong; Wang, Yushi; Lashgari, Reza; Swadlow, Harvey A.; Alonso, Jose M.

    2012-01-01

    ON and OFF visual pathways originate in the retina at the synapse between photoreceptor and bipolar cells. OFF bipolar cells are shorter in length and use receptors with faster kinetics than ON bipolar cells and, therefore, process information faster. Here, we demonstrate that this temporal advantage is maintained through thalamocortical processing, with OFF visual responses reaching cortex ~ 3–6 milliseconds before ON visual responses. Faster OFF visual responses could be demonstrated in recordings from large populations of cat thalamic neurons representing the center of vision (both X and Y) and from subpopulations making connection with the same cortical orientation column. While the OFF temporal advantage diminished as visual responses reached their peak, the integral of the impulse response was greater in OFF than ON neurons. Given the stimulus preferences from OFF and ON channels, our results indicate that darks are processed faster than lights in the thalamocortical pathway. PMID:22131408

  9. Annual and seasonal mass balances of Chhota Shigri Glacier (benchmark glacier, Western Himalaya), India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mandal, Arindan; Ramanathan, Alagappan; Farooq Azam, Mohd; Wagnon, Patrick; Vincent, Christian; Linda, Anurag; Sharma, Parmanand; Angchuk, Thupstan; Bahadur Singh, Virendra; Pottakkal, Jose George; Kumar, Naveen; Soheb, Mohd

    2015-04-01

    Several studies on Himalayan glaciers have been recently initiated as they are of particular interest in terms of future water supply, regional climate change and sea-level rise. In 2002, a long-term monitoring program was initiated on Chhota Shigri Glacier (15.7 square km, 9 km long, 6263-4050 m a.s.l.) located in Lahaul and Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh, India. This glacier lies in the monsoon-arid transition zone (western Himalaya) and is a representative glacier in Lahaul and Spiti Valley. While annual mass balances have been measured continuously since 2002 using the glaciological method, seasonal scale observations began in 2009. The annual and seasonal mass balances were then analyzed along with meteorological conditions in order to understand the role of winter and summer balances on annual glacier-wide mass balance of Chhota Shigri glacier. During the period 2002-2013, the glacier experienced a negative glacier-wide mass balance of -0.59±0.40 m w.e. a-1 with a cumulative glaciological mass balance of -6.45 m w.e. Annual glacier-wide mass balances were negative except for four years (2004/05, 2008/09, 2009/10 and 2010/11) where it was generally close to balanced conditions. Equilibrium line altitude (ELA) for steady state condition is calculated as 4950 m a.s.l. corresponding to an accumulation area ratio (AAR) of 62% using annual glacier-wide mass balance, ELA and AAR data between 2002 and 2013. The winter glacier-wide mass balance between 2009 and 2013 ranges from a maximum value of 1.38 m w.e. in 2009/10 to a minimum value of 0.89 in 2012/13 year whereas the summer glacier-wide mass balance varies from the highest value of -0.95 m w.e. in 2010/11 to the lowest value of -1.72 m w.e. in 2011/12 year. The mean vertical mass balance gradient between 2002 and 2013 was 0.66 m w.e. (100 m)-1 quite similar to Alps, Nepalese Himalayas etc. Over debris covered area, the gradients are highly variable with a negative mean value of -2.15 m w.e. (100 m)-1 over 2002

  10. GlacierRocks - Glacier-Headwall Interaction and its Influence on Rockfall Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartmeyer, Ingo; Keuschnig, Markus; Krautblatter, Michael; Helfricht, Kay; Leith, Kerry; Otto, Jan-Christoph

    2017-04-01

    Climate models predict continued climate warming and a decrease of Austrian glaciers to less than 20% of their present area by the end of this century. Rockfall from freshly exposed headwalls has been documented as an increasing risk factor with considerable significance for man and high-alpine infrastructure. Recent findings of a five-year terrestrial laserscanning campaign (2011-2016) monitoring glacial headwalls at the Kitzsteinhorn (3.203 m a.s.l.), Hohe Tauern Range, Austria, show the dramatic impact of glacier thinning on adjacent headwalls: 80 % of the detected rockfall volumes were triggered from areas located less than 20 m above the current glacier surface. Despite these implications, little is known about the thermal, mechanical and hydrological processes that operate at the glacier-headwall interface (randkluft). Systemic in-situ monitoring of stability-relevant parameters are lacking, leaving fundamental gaps in the understanding of rockfall preconditioning in glacial headwalls and the geomorphological evolution of glaciated catchments. In this contribution we introduce the recently approved research project 'GlacierRocks', which starts in 2017 and will run for at least three years. 'GlacierRocks' will establish the worldwide first research site for long-term monitoring of stability-relevant processes inside a randkluft system. Based on the acquired monitoring data 'GlacierRocks' is pursuing three overall aims at (1) gaining a better understanding of rockfall preconditioning in randklufts and related geomorphological shaping of headwalls, (2) analyzing poorly understood glacial thinning dynamics near headwalls, and (3) estimating present and future rockfall hazard potential in headwalls on a regional scale. The three system components (headwall, glacier, randkluft) will be investigated by combining geomorphological, glaciological and meteorological methods. 'GlacierRocks' will continuously monitor rock temperature, rock moisture, frost cracking

  11. Grinnell and Sperry Glaciers, Glacier National Park, Montana: A record of vanishing ice

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, Arthur

    1980-01-01

    Grinnell and Sperry Glaciers, in Glacier National Park, Mont., have both shrunk considerably since their discovery in 1887 and 1895, respectively. This shrinkage, a reflection of climatic conditions, is evident when photographs taken at the time of discovery are compared with later photographs. Annual precipitation and terminus-recession measurements, together with detailed systematic topographic mapping since 1900, clearly record the changes in the character and size of these glaciers. Grinnell Glacier decreased in area from 530 acres in 1900 to 315 acres in 1960 and to 298 acres in 1966. Between 1937 and 1969 the terminus receded nearly 1,200 feet. Periodic profile measurements indicate that in 1969 the surface over the main part of the glacier was 25-30 feet lower than in 1950. Observations from 1947 to 1969 indicate annual northeastward movement ranging from 32 to 52 feet and generally averaging 35-45 feet. The annual runoff at the glacier is estimated to be 150 inches, of which approximately 6 inches represents reduction in glacier volume. The average annual runoff at a gaging station on Grinnell Creek 1.5 miles downvalley from the glacier for the 20-year period, 1949-69, was 100 inches. The average annual precipitation over the glacier was probably 120-150 inches. Sperry Glacier occupied 800 acres in 1901; by 1960 it covered only 287 acres, much of its upper part having disappeared from the enclosing cirque. From 1938 to 1969 certain segments of the terminus receded more than 1,000 feet. Profile measurements dating from 1949 indicate a lowering of the glacier surface below an altitude of 7,500 feet, but a fairly constant or slightly increased elevation of the surface above an altitude of 7,500 feet. Along one segment of the 1969 terminus the ice had been more than 100 feet thick in 1950. According to observations during 1949-69, average annual downslope movement was less than 15 feet per year in the central part of the glacier and slightly more rapid toward

  12. Test of a simple glacier retreat parameterization for two Norwegian ice cap glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alesina, Samuel; Beldring, Stein; Melvold, Kjetil; Schaefli, Bettina

    2014-05-01

    In Norway, the ice cap glacier retreat will be an important phenomena under climate change projections and will largely influence water resources.Three new versions of a glacier retreat algorithm based on the parameterization proposed by Huss et al. (2010) are implemented and tested on the Distributed Element Water Model of the Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate. After selection of the best performing algorithm version, the glacier retreat parameters of the model are calibrated on observed discharge and mass balance data for two ice cap glaciers in Norway: Nigardsbreen (maritime glacier) and Midtdalsbreen (semi continental glacier). The calibration performance is acceptable: ice thickness is reproduced with a Root Mean Square Error of 20 respectively 15 m for the two case studies; glacier annual mass balance is overestimated for negative years; daily discharge is reproduced with a Nash Sutcliffe performance criterion between 0.80-0.86 for the period of 1961-1990: Climate change projections are performed for these 2 glaciers using downscaled Regional Climate Models (RCMs) from IPCC A1B emission scenario for greenhouse gases. According to our results, these glaciers are going to decrease dramatically: the ice volume could be reduced by 70 to 80 % in 2100, the annual discharge could increase by 30% till 2070-2080. The annual daily regime can also be assumed to change: the simulation results show that the maximum discharge during summer will decrease whereas winter discharge will increase after a longer recession period in autumn. The beginning of the melting period will not change substantially. The model sensitivity of the applied glacier retreat parameterization (Huss et al. 2010) is analyzed with two approaches: 1/ comparing the ice volume evolution for all Huss parameters sets obtained through calibration in this study to the ones proposed in literature; 2/ varying one parameter after the other keeping the three others fixed. The evolution of the ice

  13. Faster Edge-Define Silicon-Ribbon Growth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Richter, R.

    1986-01-01

    End-cooling allows faster growth and yields single-crystal ribbons. Improvement in edge-defined film-fed process for growing silicon ribbons increases speed of growth and improves quality of silicon product. Also produces silicon sheets, webs, or boules. Cold shoes cool melt at ends of emerging sheet. Since solidification at ends now occurs before end menisci reach maximum height, ribbon drawn substantially faster.

  14. Novel SiGe Coherent Island Coarsening: Ostwald Ripening, Elastic Interactions, and Coalescence

    SciTech Connect

    Chason, E.; Floro, J.A.; Freund, L.B.; Hwang, R.Q.; Lucadamo, G.A.; Sinclair, M.; Twesten, R.D.

    1999-06-30

    Real-time measurements of island coarsening during SiGe/Si (001) deposition reveal unusual kinetics. In particular, the mean island volume increases superlinearly with time, while the areal density of islands decreases at a faster-than-linear rate. Neither observation is consistent with standard considerations of Ostvvald ripening. We attribute our observed kinetics to the effect of elastic interactions in the densely growing island array. Island coalescence likely plays an important role as well.

  15. Timescale dependence of erosion rates, a case of study: Marinelli Glacier, Cordillera Darwin, southern Patagonia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernandez-Vasquez, R. A.; Anderson, J. B.; Wellner, J. S.

    2009-12-01

    Glaciers play a key role in understanding the coupling between tectonics and climate through a number of processes and temporal/spatial scales, ranging from short-term glacial advances and retreats and millennial-scale glacial cycles, to million year-scale orogenies and global climate changes. In particular, glacier erosion is a first order control on mountain range exhumation and isostatic processes through the evacuation and removal of crustal material from orogens and its subsequent transport to continental margins. Erosion rates and associated sediment yield have been estimated for a number of glaciated basins. With few exceptions, all of these estimations are based on modern observations (last few decades) of sediment fluxes, and may not represent long-term (centennial, millennial or million-year time scales) fluxes. Indeed, recent works indicate that contemporary high sediment yields and erosion rates might be the result of high ice fluxes associated with the retreat of modern glaciers from their last Neoglacial positions (Little Ice Age) and that long-term erosion rates could be derived by extrapolating the relationship between short-term erosion v/s retreat rates to the steady state condition of no retreat. However, there is an almost absolute lack of empirical studies that support this statement. We use time-constrained sediment volumes delivered by calving glaciers into Marinelli Fjord (55S), an outlet glacier of the Cordillera Darwin Ice Cap, Southern Patagonian Andes in Tierra del Fuego Island, to estimate sediment yields and erosion rates at different timescales. Sediment volumes are derived using a dense grid of high- and low-frequency single channel seismic data and swath bathymetry data along with piston and Kasten cores. Our results show dramatic differences in erosion rates over different timescales. The recent decadal erosion rate (= 29.31± 10.84 mm/yr; estimated for the last 45 years) is 5 times greater than the centennial value (= 5

  16. Applying Flow Line Modelling, and GIS to Reconstruct the Glacier Volume Loss for Athabasca Glacier, Canadian Rockies.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nath, R.; Marshall, S.

    2016-12-01

    Glaciers respond strongly to small climatic shifts, so records of historical glacier change can be used to reconstruct past climate. In turn, understanding glacier sensitivity to climate variability is important for regional water resources and for projecting glacier response to ongoing climate change. We develop an enhanced flow-line model of glacier dynamics to simulate the past and future extent of glaciers in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, with the aim of coupling this model within larger scale regional climate models of glacier response to climate change. Longitudinal stress and shape factors are introduced to provide a more complete treatment of glacier dynamics. This presentation focuses on glacier volume reconstructions from the Little Ice Age (LIA) to present for Athabasca Glacier, Alberta, Canada. Athabasca Glacier, located on the continental divide of the Canadian Rocky Mountains, is the second largest outlet of the Columbia Icefield. With the availability of SPOT 5 imagery, Digital Elevation Model and GIS Arc Hydro tool, ice catchment properties- glacier width and LIA moraines have been extracted using automated procedures. Simulating backwards in time from present day to 1850, we model glacier thickness, volume and mass change and examine different climate and glaciological parametrizations that are able to give good reconstructions of LIA ice extent. Mass balance modelling is based on modelled and observed temperature records from the region, along with the winter Pacific Decadal Oscillation index as a precipitation proxy. Dated lateral and terminal moraines provide geological control on the LIA maximum glacier geometry. Reconstructions of glacier mass change will inform estimates of meltwater run off over the historical period and model calibration from the LIA reconstruction will aid in future projections of the effects of climate change on glacier recession. Furthermore, the model developed will be effective for further future studies with ensembles

  17. Centennial glacier retreat as categorical evidence of regional climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roe, Gerard H.; Baker, Marcia B.; Herla, Florian

    2016-12-01

    The near-global retreat of glaciers over the last century provides some of the most iconic imagery for communicating the reality of anthropogenic climate change to the public. Surprisingly, however, there has not been a quantitative foundation for attributing the retreats to climate change, except in the global aggregate. This gap, between public perception and scientific basis, is due to uncertainties in numerical modelling and the short length of glacier mass-balance records. Here we present a method for assessing individual glacier change based on the signal-to-noise ratio, a robust metric that is insensitive to uncertainties in glacier dynamics. Using only meteorological and glacier observations, and the characteristic decadal response time of glaciers, we demonstrate that observed retreats of individual glaciers represent some of the highest signal-to-noise ratios of climate change yet documented. Therefore, in many places, the centennial-scale retreat of the local glaciers does indeed constitute categorical evidence of climate change.

  18. Centennial glacier retreat as categorical evidence of regional climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roe, Gerard H.; Baker, Marcia B.; Herla, Florian

    2017-02-01

    The near-global retreat of glaciers over the last century provides some of the most iconic imagery for communicating the reality of anthropogenic climate change to the public. Surprisingly, however, there has not been a quantitative foundation for attributing the retreats to climate change, except in the global aggregate. This gap, between public perception and scientific basis, is due to uncertainties in numerical modelling and the short length of glacier mass-balance records. Here we present a method for assessing individual glacier change based on the signal-to-noise ratio, a robust metric that is insensitive to uncertainties in glacier dynamics. Using only meteorological and glacier observations, and the characteristic decadal response time of glaciers, we demonstrate that observed retreats of individual glaciers represent some of the highest signal-to-noise ratios of climate change yet documented. Therefore, in many places, the centennial-scale retreat of the local glaciers does indeed constitute categorical evidence of climate change.

  19. ASTER Views Large Calving Event at Petermann Glacier, Greenland

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2010-08-12

    This image of Petermann Glacier and the new iceberg was acquired from NASA Terra spacecraft on Aug. 12, 2010. On Aug. 5, 2010, an enormous chunk of ice broke off the Petermann Glacier along the northwestern coast of Greenland.

  20. FASTER - A tool for DSN forecasting and scheduling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Werntz, David; Loyola, Steven; Zendejas, Silvino

    1993-01-01

    FASTER (Forecasting And Scheduling Tool for Earth-based Resources) is a suite of tools designed for forecasting and scheduling JPL's Deep Space Network (DSN). The DSN is a set of antennas and other associated resources that must be scheduled for satellite communications, astronomy, maintenance, and testing. FASTER consists of MS-Windows based programs that replace two existing programs (RALPH and PC4CAST). FASTER was designed to be more flexible, maintainable, and user friendly. FASTER makes heavy use of commercial software to allow for customization by users. FASTER implements scheduling as a two pass process: the first pass calculates a predictive profile of resource utilizatio