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GPS rates of vertical bedrock motion suggest late Holocene ice-sheet readvance in a critical sector of East Antarctica


King, MA and Watson, CS and White, D, GPS rates of vertical bedrock motion suggest late Holocene ice-sheet readvance in a critical sector of East Antarctica, Geophysical Research Letters Article e2021GL097232. ISSN 0094-8276 (2022) [Refereed Article]

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© 2022. The Authors.This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) License, ( which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited

DOI: doi:10.1029/2021GL097232


We investigate present-day bedrock vertical motion using new GPS timeseries from the Totten-Denman glacier region of East Antarctica (∼77-120įE) where models of glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) disagree, glaciers are likely losing mass, and few data constraints on GIA exist. We show that varying surface mass balance loading (SMBL) is a dominant signal, contributing random-walk-like noise to GPS timeseries across Antarctica. In the study region, it induces site velocity biases of up to ∼+1 mm/yr over 2010-2020. After correcting for SMBL displacement and GPS common mode error, subsidence is evident at all sites aside from the Totten Glacier region where uplift is ∼1.5 mm/yr. Uplift near the Totten Glacier is consistent with late Holocene ice retreat while the widespread subsidence further west suggests possible late Holocene readvance of the regionís ice sheet, in broad agreement with limited glacial geological data and highlighting the need for sampling beneath the current ice sheet.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:glacial isostatic adjustment, Antarctica, GPS, late Holocene, surface mass balance, common mode error
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Geophysics
Research Field:Geodesy
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the earth sciences
UTAS Author:King, MA (Professor Matt King)
UTAS Author:Watson, CS (Dr Christopher Watson)
ID Code:148850
Year Published:2022
Web of Science® Times Cited:3
Deposited By:Geography and Spatial Science
Deposited On:2022-02-16
Last Modified:2022-03-03
Downloads:8 View Download Statistics

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