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GPS-observed elastic deformation due to surface mass balance variability in the Southern Antarctic Peninsula


Koulali, A and Whitehouse, PL and Clarke, PJ and van den Broeke, MR and Nield, GA and King, MA and Bentley, MJ and Wouters, B and Wilson, T, GPS-observed elastic deformation due to surface mass balance variability in the Southern Antarctic Peninsula, Geophysical Research Letters Article e2021GL097109. ISSN 0094-8276 (2022) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

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:10.1029/2021GL097109


In Antarctica, GPS vertical time series exhibit non-linear signals over a wide range of temporal scales. To explain these non-linearities, a number of hypotheses have been proposed, among them the short-term rapid solid Earth response to contemporaneous ice mass change. Here we use GPS vertical time series to reveal the solid Earth response to variations in surface mass balance (SMB) in the Southern Antarctic Peninsula (SAP). At four locations in the SAP we show that interannual variations of SMB anomalies cause measurable elastic deformation. We use regional climate model SMB products to calculate the induced displacement assuming a perfectly elastic Earth. Our results show a reduction of the misfit when fitting a linear trend to GPS time series corrected for the elastic response to SMB variations. Our results imply that, for a better understanding of the glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) signal in Antarctica, SMB variability must be considered.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
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)
ID Code:148851
Year Published:2022
Funding Support:Australian Research Council (SR200100008)
Web of Science® Times Cited:2
Deposited By:Geography and Spatial Science
Deposited On:2022-02-16
Last Modified:2022-03-03
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