Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Remote sounding of Greenland supraglacial melt lakes: implications for subglacial hydraulics

  • Jason E. Box (a1) (a2) and Kathleen Ski (a1)
Abstract

A supraglacial lake-depth retrieval function is developed, based on the correspondence between moderate-resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) reflectance and water depth measured during raft surveys. Individual lake depth, area and volume statistics, including short-term temporal changes for Greenland’s southwestern ablation region, were compiled for 2000–05. The maximum area of an individual lake was found to be 8.9 km2, the maximum volume 53.0 × 106 m3 and the maximum depth 12.2 m, sampling over 0.0625 km2 pixel areas. The total lake volume reaches >1 km3 in this region by July each year. The importance of melt lake reservoirs to Greenland ice-sheet flow may be a feedback between abrupt lake drainage events and ice dynamics. Lake-outburst volumes up to 31.5 × 106 m3 d−1 are capable of providing sufficient water via moulins to hydraulically pressurize the subglacial environment. Since the overburden pressure at the base of a flooded moulin is greater than that provided by ice, lake-outburst events seem capable of exerting sufficient upward force to lift the ice sheet locally, if water flow in the subglacial environment is constrained laterally. Considering a moulin with a 10 m2 cross-sectional area, basal pressurization can be maintained over lake-outburst episodes lasting hours to days.

  • View HTML
    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

      Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

      Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

      Remote sounding of Greenland supraglacial melt lakes: implications for subglacial hydraulics
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Dropbox

      To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      Remote sounding of Greenland supraglacial melt lakes: implications for subglacial hydraulics
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Google Drive

      To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      Remote sounding of Greenland supraglacial melt lakes: implications for subglacial hydraulics
      Available formats
      ×
Copyright
References
Hide All
Abdalati, W and Steffen, K.. 2001 Greenland ice sheet melt extent: 1979–1999. J. Geophys. Res., 106(D24), 33,98333,988.
Alley, R.B., Dupont, T.K., Parizek, B.R. and Anandakrishnan, S.. 2005 Access of surface meltwater to beds of subfreezing glaciers: preliminary insights. Ann. Glaciol., 40, 814.
Bindschadler, R 1983 The importance of pressurized subglacial water in separation and sliding at the glacier bed. J. Glaciol., 29(101), 319.
Boon, S and Sharp, M.. 2003 The role of hydrologically-driven ice fracture in drainage system evolution on an Arctic glacier. Geophys. Res. Lett., 30(18), 1916. (10.1029/2003GL018034.)
Box, J.E. and 8 others. 2006 Greenland ice sheet surface mass balance variability (1988–2004) from calibrated polar MM5 output. J. Climate, 19(12), 27832800.
Bryzgis, G and Box, J.E.. 2005 West Greenland ice sheet melt lake observations and modeling. EOS Trans. AGU, 86(52), C41A-07.
Curry, J.A., Schramm, J.L. and Ebert, E.E.. 1995 Sea ice–albedo climate feedback mechanism. J. Climate, 8(2), 240247.
Echelmeyer, K., Clarke, T.S. and Harrison, W.D.. 1991 Surficial glaciology of Jakobshavns Isbræ, West Greenland: Part I. Surface morphology. J. Glaciol., 37(127), 368382.
Engelhardt, H 1978 Water in glaciers: observations and theory of the behaviour of water levels in boreholes. Z. Gletscherkd. Glazialgeol., 14(1), 3560.
Gerdel, R.W. and Drouet, F.. 1960 The cryoconite of the Thule area, Greenland. Trans. Am. Microsc. Soc., 79(3), 256272.
Haran, T.M., Khalsa, S.J.S.. Knowles, K. and Gumley, L.E.. 2001 The MODIS Swath-to-Grid Toolbox. EOS Trans. AGU, 82(20), U21A-22.
Joughin, I., Tulaczyk, S., Fahnestock, M. and Kwok, R.. 1996 A minisurge on the Ryder Glacier, Greenland, observed by satellite radar interferometry. Science, 274(5285), 228230.
Liestøl, O., Repp, K. and Wold, B.. 1980 Supra-glacial lakes in Spitsbergen. Nor. Geogr. Tidsskr., 34(2), 8992.
Lüthje, M, Pedersen, L.T., Reeh, N. and Greuell, W.. 2006 Modelling the evolution of supraglacial lakes on the West Greenland ice-sheet margin. J. Glaciol., 52(179), 608618.
Morassutti, M.P. and LeDrew, E.F.. 1996 Albedo and depth of melt ponds on sea ice. Int. J. Climatol., 16(7), 817838.
Parizek, B.R. and Alley, R.B.. 2004 Implications of increased Greenland surface melt under global-warming scenarios: ice-sheet simulations. Quat. Sci. Rev., 23(9–10), 10131027.
Perovich, D.K., Tucker, W.B., III and Ligett, K.A.. 2002 Aerial observations of the evolution of ice surface conditions during summer. J. Geophys. Res., 107(C10), 8048. (10.1029/2000JC000449.)
Rignot, E and Kanagaratnam, P.. 2006 Changes in the velocity structure of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Science, 311(5673), 986990.
Steffen, K. and Box, J. 2001 Surface climatology of the Greenland ice sheet: Greenland Climate Network 1995–1999. J. Geophys. Res., 106(D24), 33, 951–33, 964.
Steffen, K., Box, J. and Abdalati, W.. 1996 Greenland climate network: GC-Net. CRREL Spec. Rep. 96–27, 98103.
Thomsen, H.H., Thorning, L. and Braithwaite, R.J.. 1988 Glacier-hydrological conditions on the Inland Ice north-east of Jacobshavn/Ilulissat, West Greenland. Grønl. Geol. Unders. Rapp. 138.
Van der Veen, an der Veen.J. 1998 Fracture mechanics approach to penetration of surface crevasses on glaciers. Cold Reg. Sci. Technol., 27(1), 3147.
Vieli, A., Jania, J., Blatter, H. and Funk, M.. 2004 Short-term velocity variations on Hansbreen, a tidewater glacier in Spitsbergen. J.Glaciol., 50(170), 389398.
Weertman, J 1973 Can a water-filled crevasse reach the bottom surface of a glacier? IASH Publ. 95 (Symposium at Cambridge 1969Hydrology of Glaciers), 139145.
Zwally, H.J., Abdalati, W., Herring, T., Larson, K., Saba, J. and Steffen, K.. 2002 Surface melt-induced acceleration of Greenland ice-sheet flow. Science, 297(5579), 218222.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Journal of Glaciology
  • ISSN: 0022-1430
  • EISSN: 1727-5652
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-glaciology
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed