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Subglacial sediments as a control on the onset and location of two Siple Coast ice streams, West Antarctica


Peters, LE and Anandakrishnan, S and Alley, RB and Winberry, JP and Voigt, DE and Smith, AM and Morse, DL, Subglacial sediments as a control on the onset and location of two Siple Coast ice streams, West Antarctica, Journal of Geophysical Research, 111, (B1) Article B01302. ISSN 0148-0227 (2006) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2006 the American Geophysical Union

DOI: doi:10.1029/2005JB003766


Laterally continuous subglacial sediments are a necessary component for ice streaming in the modern onset regions of the ice streams draining the Siple Coast of West Antarctica on the basis of new seismic data combined with previous results. We present geophysical results from seismic reflection and refraction experiments in the upper reaches of ice streams C and D that highlight continuous sedimentary basins within and upstream of the current onset regions of both ice streams, with streaming ice overlying these sedimentary packages. The subglacial environment changes from no-sediment to discontinuous-sediment to continuous-sediment cover along a longitudinal profile from the ice sheet to tributary C1B. Along this same profile, we observe a speedup of ice flow and then full development of the ice stream tributary. Ice stream D flows above a thick sedimentary package with an uppermost low-seismic-velocity zone indicative of soft till, and the upglacier and lateral extensions of ice stream D are tightly constrained by the extent of continuous sediments. The inland termination of these sediments suggests that future migration of high-velocity, low-shear-stress ice flow in these regions appears unlikely.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:subglacial geology, 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:103895
Year Published:2006
Web of Science® Times Cited:56
Deposited By:IMAS Research and Education Centre
Deposited On:2015-10-28
Last Modified:2015-11-17
Downloads:237 View Download Statistics

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