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Characterizing the glaciological conditions at Halvfarryggen ice dome, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica

  • Reinhard Drews (a1), Carlos Martín (a2), Daniel Steinhage (a1) and Olaf Eisen (a1)

We present a comprehensive approach (including field data, remote sensing and an anisotropic ice-flow model) to characterize Halvfarryggen ice dome in coastal Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. This is a potential drill site for the International Partnerships in Ice Core Sciences, which has identified the need for ice cores covering atmospheric conditions during the last few millennia. We derive the surface topography, the ice stratigraphy from radar data, and accumulation rates which vary from 400 to 1670 kg m−2 a−1 due to preferred wind directions and changing surface slope. The stratigraphy shows anticlines and synclines beneath the divides. We transfer Dansgaard–Johnsen age–depth scales from the flanks along isochrones to the divide in the upper 20–50% of the ice thickness and show that they compare well with the results of a full-Stokes, anisotropic ice-flow model which predicts (1) 11 ka BP ice at 90% of the ice thickness, (2) a temporally stable divide for at least 2700–4500 years, (3) basal temperatures below the melting point (−12°C to −5°C) and (4) a highly developed crystal orientation fabric (COF). We suggest drilling into the apices of the deep anticlines, providing a good compromise between record length and temporal resolution and also facilitating studies of the interplay of anisotropic COF and ice flow.

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Journal of Glaciology
  • ISSN: 0022-1430
  • EISSN: 1727-5652
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