Articles | Volume 10, issue 1
The Cryosphere, 10, 159–177, 2016

Special issue: Interactions between climate change and the Cryosphere: SVALI,...

The Cryosphere, 10, 159–177, 2016

Research article 19 Jan 2016

Research article | 19 Jan 2016

Geodetic mass balance record with rigorous uncertainty estimates deduced from aerial photographs and lidar data – Case study from Drangajökull ice cap, NW Iceland

E. Magnússon et al.

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Cited articles

Aðalgeirsdóttir, G., Guðmundsson, S., Björnsson, H., Pálsson, F., Jóhannesson, T., Hannesdóttir, H., Sigurðsson, S. Þ. and Berthier, E.: Modelling the 20th and 21st century evolution of Hoffellsjökull glacier, SE-Vatnajökull, Iceland, The Cryosphere, 5, 961–975,, 2011.
Barrand, N. E., Murray, T., James, T. D., Barr, S. L., and Mills, J. P.: Optimizing photogrammetric DEMs for glacier volume change assessment using laser-scanning derived ground-control points, J. Glaciol., 55, 106–116, 2009.
Bauer, H. and Müller, J.: Heigh accuracy of blocks and bundle block adjustment with additional parameters, Pres. Paper Comm. III. ISPRS 12th Congress, Ottawa, 1972.
Berthier, E., Schiefer, E., Clarke, G. K. C., Menounos, B., and Remy, F.: Contribution of Alaskan glaciers to sea-level rise derived from satellite imagery, Nat. Geosci, 3, 92–95,, 2010.
Berthier, E., Vincent, C., Magnússon, E., Gunnlaugsson, Á.  Þ., Pitte, P., Le Meur, E., Masiokas, M., Ruiz, L., Pálsson, F., Belart, J. M. C., and Wagnon, P.: Glacier topography and elevation changes derived from Pléiades sub-meter stereo images, The Cryosphere, 8, 2275–2291,, 2014.
Short summary
We demonstrate the opportunities given by high resolution digital elevation models (DEMs) to improve procedures for obtaining mass balance records from archives of aerial photographs. We also describe a geostatistical approach to estimate uncertainty of elevation changes derived by differencing DEMs. This method is more statistically robust than other described in the literature. Our study highlights a common tendency of overestimating this uncertainty, downgrading geodetic mass balance records.