Modelling annual mass balances of eight Scandinavian glaciers using statistical models
Summary: We employ statistical models to model annual glacier mass balances of eight Scandinavian glaciers as function of summer temperature and winter precipitation. Relative importances of winter precipitation and summer temperature vary in time. Relative importances are influenced by AMO and NAO.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1401-1414, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1401-2015, 2015
The impact of Saharan dust and black carbon on albedo and long-term mass balance of an Alpine glacier
Summary: Light-absorbing impurities in snow and ice increase the absorption of solar radiation and thus enhance melting. We investigated the effect of Saharan dust and black carbon on the mass balance of an Alpine glacier over 1914-2014. Snow impurities increased melt by 15-19% depending on the location on the glacier. From the accumulation area towards the equilibrium line, the effect of impurities increased as more frequent years with negative mass balance led to a re-exposure of dust-enriched layers.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1385-1400, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1385-2015, 2015
Comparison between observed and simulated aeolian snow mass fluxes in Adélie Land, East Antarctica
The Cryosphere, 9, 1373-1383, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1373-2015, 2015
Tomography-based monitoring of isothermal snow metamorphism under advective conditions
Summary: Time-lapse X-ray microtomography was used to investigate the structural dynamics of isothermal snow metamorphism exposed to an advective airflow and possible effects on natural snowpacks were discussed. The results showed that isothermal advection with saturated air have no influence on the coarsening rate that is typical for isothermal snow metamorphism. It is driven by sublimation-deposition caused by Kelvin effect and is the limiting factor independently of the transport regime in the pores.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1363-1371, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1363-2015, 2015
Site-level model intercomparison of high latitude and high altitude soil thermal dynamics in tundra and barren landscapes
Summary: This paper compares the performance of different land models in estimating soil thermal regimes at distinct cold region landscape types. Comparing models with different processes reveal the importance of surface insulation (snow/moss layer) and soil internal processes (heat/water transfer). The importance of model processes also depend on site conditions such as high/low snow cover, dry/wet soil types.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1343-1361, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1343-2015, 2015
Wintertime storage of water in buried supraglacial lakes across the Greenland Ice Sheet
Summary: The Greenland Ice Sheet is storing meltwater through the winter season just below its surface in buried supraglacial lakes. Airborne radar from Operation IceBridge between 2009 and 2012 was used to detect buried lakes, distributed extensively around the margin of the ice sheet. The volume of retained water in the buried lakes is likely insignificant compared to the total mass loss from the ice sheet but has important implications for ice temperatures.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1333-1342, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1333-2015, 2015
Changes in the timing and duration of the near-surface soil freeze/thaw status from 1956 to 2006 across China
The Cryosphere, 9, 1321-1331, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1321-2015, 2015
A ground temperature map of the North Atlantic permafrost region based on remote sensing and reanalysis data
Summary: We use remotely sensed land surface temperature and land cover in conjunction with air temperature and snowfall from a reanalysis product as input for a simple permafrost model. The scheme is applied to the permafrost regions bordering the North Atlantic. A comparison with ground temperatures in boreholes suggests a modeling accuracy of 2 to 2.5 °C.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1303-1319, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1303-2015, 2015
Parameterization of single-scattering properties of snow
Summary: While snow grains are distinctly non-spherical, spheres are often assumed in radiative transfer calculations. Here, angular scattering measurements for blowing snow are used to select an optically equivalent snow grain shape model. Parameterizations are then developed for the asymmetry parameter, single-scattering co-albedo and phase function of snow. The parameterizations will help to improve the treatment of snow in radiative transfer applications, including remote sensing and climate models.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1277-1301, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1277-2015, 2015
Automatic monitoring of the effective thermal conductivity of snow in a low-Arctic shrub tundra
Summary: The thermal conductivity of Arctic snow strongly impacts ground temperature, nutrient recycling and vegetation growth. We have monitored the thermal conductivity of snow in low-Arctic shrub tundra for two consecutive winters using heated needle probes. We observe very different thermal conductivity evolutions in both winters studied, with more extensive melting in the second winter. Results illustrate the effect of vegetation on snow properties and the need to include it in snow physics models.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1265-1276, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1265-2015, 2015
Theoretical analysis of errors when estimating snow distribution through point measurements
Summary: In this article, we present a methodology for the objective evaluation of the error in capturing mean snow depths from point measurements. We demonstrate, using LIDAR snow depths, how the model can be used for assisting the design of survey strategies such that the error is minimized or an estimation threshold is achieved. Furthermore, the model can be extended to other spatially distributed snow variables (e.g., SWE) whose statistical properties are comparable to those of snow depth.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1249-1264, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1249-2015, 2015
Weak precipitation, warm winters and springs impact glaciers of south slopes of Mt. Everest (central Himalaya) in the last 2 decades (1994–2013)
Summary: Climate-trends data in Himalaya are completely absent at high elevation. We explore the south slopes of Mt Everest though time series reconstructed from 7 stations (2660-5600m) during 1994-2013. The main increase in temp is concentrated outside of the monsoon, minimum temp increased far more than maximum, while we note a precipitation weakening. We contribute to change the perspective on which climatic drivers (temperature vs. precipitation) led mainly the glacier responses in the last 20 yr.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1229-1247, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1229-2015, 2015
Brief Communication: Newly developing rift in Larsen C Ice Shelf presents significant risk to stability
Summary: Within the last year, a large rift in the southern part of the Larsen C Ice Shelf, Antarctic Peninsula, propagated towards the inner part of the ice shelf. In this study we present the development of the rift as derived from remote sensing data and assess the impact of possible calving scenarios on the future stability of the Larsen C Ice Shelf, using a numerical model. We find that the calving front is likely to become unstable after the anticipated calving events.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1223-1227, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1223-2015, 2015
Dramatic loss of glacier accumulation area on the Tibetan Plateau revealed by ice core tritium and mercury records
The Cryosphere, 9, 1213-1222, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1213-2015, 2015
Changes in the firn structure of the western Greenland Ice Sheet caused by recent warming
Summary: This paper presents an assessment of changes in the near-surface structure of the accumulation zone of the Greenland Ice Sheet caused by an increase of melt at higher elevations in the last decade, especially during the unusually warm years of 2010 and 2012. The increase in melt and firn densification complicate the interpretation of changes in the ice volume, and the observed increase in firn ice content may reduce the important meltwater buffering capacity of the Greenland Ice Sheet.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1203-1211, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1203-2015, 2015
User requirements for the snow and land ice services – CryoLand
Summary: The paper provides detailed information on the outcome of a user survey carried out in the EU FP7 project CryoLand. The project focuses on monitoring of seasonal snow, glaciers and lake/river ice. The user survey showed that a European operational snow and land ice service is required and that there exists products that can meet the specific needs. The majority of the users were mainly interested in the snow services, but also the lake/river ice products and the glacier products were desired.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1191-1202, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1191-2015, 2015
Winter speed-up of quiescent surge-type glaciers in Yukon, Canada
Summary: Whereas glacier surge is known to often initiate in winter, we show significant winter speed-up signals in the upstream region even at quiescent surge-type glaciers in Yukon, Canada. Moreover, the winter speed-up region expanded from upstream to downstream. Given the absence of surface meltwater input in winter, we speculate the presence of englacial water storage that does not directly connect to the surface, yet can promote basal sliding through increased water pressure.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1183-1190, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1183-2015, 2015
Evolution of ice-shelf channels in Antarctic ice shelves
Summary: Floating ice shelves extend the continental ice of Antarctica seawards and mediate ice-ocean interactions. Many ice shelves are incised with channels where basal melting is enhanced. With data and modeling it is shown how the channel geometry depends on basal melting and along-flow advection (also for channels which are not freely floating), and how channel formation imprints the general flow pattern. This opens up the opportunity to map the channel formation from surface velocities only.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1169-1181, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1169-2015, 2015
Snowfall in the Himalayas: an uncertain future from a little-known past
Summary: Snow and ice provide large amounts of meltwater to the Indus, Ganges and Brahmaputra rivers. In this study we show that climate change will reduce the amount of snow falling in the Himalayas, Hindu Kush and Karakoram substantially. The limited number of observations in remote upper-level terrain makes it difficult to get a complete overview of the situation today, but our results indicate that by 2071–2100 snowfall may be reduced by 30–70% with the strongest anthropogenic forcing scenario.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1147-1167, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1147-2015, 2015
Air temperature variability over three glaciers in the Ortles–Cevedale (Italian Alps): effects of glacier fragmentation, comparison of calculation methods, and impacts on mass balance modeling
Summary: Using a dataset from 12 weather stations collected in 2010 and 2011, we analyzed the air temperature variability and wind regime over three different glaciers in the Ortles-Cevedale. The magnitude of the cooling effect and the occurrence of katabatic boundary layer processes showed remarkable differences among the three ice bodies, suggesting the likely existence of important reinforcing mechanisms during glacier decay and fragmentation, with significant impacts for glacier mass balance modeling.
The Cryosphere, 9, 1129-1146, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1129-2015, 2015