Title From ice-shelf tributary to tidewater glacier; continued rapid recession, acceleration and thinning of Rohss Glacier following the 1995 collapse of the Prince Gustav Ice Shelf, Antarctic Peninsula
Author Glasser, N.F.; Scambos, T.A.; Bohlander, J.; Truffer, M.; Pettit, E.; Davies, B.J.
Author Affil Glasser, N.F., Aberystwyth University, Institute of Geography and Earth Sciences, Aberystwyth, United Kingdom. Other: University of Colorado; University of Alaska Fairbanks
Source Journal of Glaciology, 57(203), p.397- 406, . Publisher: International Glaciological Society, Cambridge, United Kingdom. ISSN: 0022-1430
Publication Date 2011
Notes In English. 33 refs. Ant. Acc. No: 91629. GeoRef Acc. No: 310276
Index Terms glacial geology; glacier surveys; glaciers; ice; ice cover; ice shelves; LANDSAT; mass balance; radar; remote sensing; Antarctica--Antarctic Peninsula; Antarctica-- James Ross Island; Antarctic Peninsula; Antarctica; ASTER instrument; deglaciation; Earth Observing System; James Ross Island; Landsat; Prince Gustav Ice Shelf; radar methods; Rohss Glacier; satellite methods; Sjogren Glacier; tidewater glaciers
Abstract We use optical (ASTER and Landsat) and radar (ERS-1 and ERS-2) satellite imagery to document changes in the Prince Gustav Ice Shelf, Antarctic Peninsula, and its tributary glaciers before and after its January 1995 collapse. The satellite image record captures the transition from an ice-shelf glacier system to a tidewater glacial system and the subsequent rapid retreat and inferred "fatal" negative mass balances that occur as lower glacier elevations lead to higher ablation and tidewater-style calving collapse. Pre- 1995 images show that the central ice shelf was fed primarily by Sjogren Glacier flowing from the Antarctic Peninsula and by Rohss Glacier flowing from James Ross Island. Numerous structural discontinuities (rifts and crevasses) and melt ponds were present on the ice shelf before the collapse. After the ice shelf collapsed, Rohss Glacier retreated rapidly, becoming a tidewater glacier in 2002 and receding a total of approx. 15 km between January 2001 and March 2009, losing 70% of its area. Topographic profiles of Rohss Glacier from ASTER-derived digital elevation models show a thinning of up to approx. 150 m, and surface speeds increased up to ninefold (0.1-0.9 m d-1) over the same period. The rates of speed increase and elevation loss, however, are not monotonic; both rates slowed between late 2002 and 2005, accelerated in 2006 and slowed again in 2008- 09. We conclude that tributary glaciers react to ice-shelf removal by rapid (if discontinuous) recession, and that the response of tidewater glaciers on the Antarctic Peninsula to ice-shelf removal occurs over timescales ranging from sub- annual to decadal.
URL http://hdl.handle.net/10.3189/002214311796905578
Publication Type journal article
Record ID 65007284