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Temporally stable surface mass balance asymmetry across an ice rise derived from radar internal reflection horizons through inverse modeling

  • DENIS CALLENS (a1), REINHARD DREWS (a1), EMMANUEL WITRANT (a1) (a2), MORGANE PHILIPPE (a1) and FRANK PATTYN (a1)...
Abstract

Ice rises are locally grounded parts of Antarctic ice shelves that play an important role in regulating ice flow from the continent towards the ocean. Because they protrude out of the otherwise horizontal ice shelves, ice rises induce an orographic uplift of the atmospheric flow, resulting in an asymmetric distribution of the surface mass balance (SMB). Here, we combine younger and older internal reflection horizons (IRHs) from radar to quantify this distribution in time and space across Derwael Ice Rise (DIR), Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. We employ two methods depending on the age of the IRHs, i.e. the shallow layer approximation for the younger IRHs near the surface and an optimization technique based on an ice flow model for the older IRHs. We identify an SMB ratio of 2.5 between the flanks and the ice divide with the SMB ranging between 300 and 750 kg m−2 a−1. The SMB maximum is located on the upwind side, ~4 km offset to today's topographic divide. The large-scale asymmetry is consistently observed in time until 1966. The SMB from older IRHs is less-well constrained, but the asymmetry has likely persisted for >ka, indicating that DIR has been a stable features over long time spans.

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Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the same Creative Commons licence is included and the original work is properly cited. The written permission of Cambridge University Press must be obtained for commercial re-use.
Corresponding author
Correspondence: Reinhard Drews <rdrews@ulb.ac.be>
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