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Extensive storage of basal meltwater in the onset region of a major West Antarctic ice stream


Peters, LE and Anandakrishnan, S and Alley, RB and Smith, AM, Extensive storage of basal meltwater in the onset region of a major West Antarctic ice stream, Geology, 35, (3) pp. 251-254. ISSN 0091-7613 (2007) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

Copyright 2007 Geological Society of America

DOI: doi:10.1130/G23222A.1


A major meltwater body exists beneath a tributary of Bindschadler Ice Stream, West Antarctica, in a region where subglacial lakes have not been mapped but near where rapid vertical motion of the ice sheet surface has suggested shifting of a subglacial water body. The water is trapped by a local reversal in ice-air surface slope arising from ice flow over variable basal topography and from the positive feedback of basal lubrication from the trapped water. Strong variations in the water content of the sediments upglacier of the water body arise from a similar process. These results are revealed by a novel application of the amplitude variation with offset (AVO) seismic technique. The existence of such water bodies and of the strong spatial variation in subglacial sediment properties is not captured in current models of subglacial hydrology, lubrication of ice stream motion, and sediment transport.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:subglacial environment, seismology
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Physical geography and environmental geoscience
Research Field:Glaciology
Objective Division:Environmental Policy, Climate Change and Natural Hazards
Objective Group:Understanding climate change
Objective Field:Effects of climate change on Antarctic and sub-Antarctic environments (excl. social impacts)
UTAS Author:Peters, LE (Dr Leo Peters)
ID Code:103887
Year Published:2007
Web of Science® Times Cited:46
Deposited By:IMAS Research and Education Centre
Deposited On:2015-10-28
Last Modified:2015-11-17

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