Articles | Volume 11, issue 6
Research article
05 Dec 2017
Research article |  | 05 Dec 2017

Centuries of intense surface melt on Larsen C Ice Shelf

Suzanne L. Bevan, Adrian Luckman, Bryn Hubbard, Bernd Kulessa, David Ashmore, Peter Kuipers Munneke, Martin O'Leary, Adam Booth, Heidi Sevestre, and Daniel McGrath


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Short summary
Five 90 m boreholes drilled into an Antarctic Peninsula ice shelf show units of ice that are denser than expected and must have formed from refrozen surface melt which has been buried and transported downstream. We used surface flow speeds and snow accumulation rates to work out where and when these units formed. Results show that, as well as recent surface melt, a period of strong melt occurred during the 18th century. Surface melt is thought to be a factor in causing recent ice-shelf break-up.