Articles | Volume 12, issue 6
The Cryosphere, 12, 1957–1968, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-12-1957-2018
The Cryosphere, 12, 1957–1968, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-12-1957-2018

Research article 11 Jun 2018

Research article | 11 Jun 2018

Microtopographic control on the ground thermal regime in ice wedge polygons

Charles J. Abolt et al.

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Cited articles

Abolt, C. J., Young, M. H., and Caldwell, T. G.: Numerical modelling of ice-wedge polygon geomorphic transition, Permafrost Periglac., 28, 347–355, https://doi.org/10.1002/ppp.1909, 2017. 
Abolt, C. J., Young, M. H., Atchley, A. L., and Harp, D. H.: Sensitivity analysis of ice wedge temperature to polygonal microtopography, Zenodo repository, https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1284604, 2018. 
Allard, M. and Kasper, J. N.: Temperature conditions for ice-wedge cracking: Field measurements from Salluit, northern Quebec, Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Permafrost, National Research Council of Canada, 5–12, 1998. 
Atchley, A. L., Painter, S. L., Harp, D. R., Coon, E. T., Wilson, C. J., Liljedahl, A. K., and Romanovsky, V. E.: Using field observations to inform thermal hydrology models of permafrost dynamics with ATS (v0.83), Geosci. Model Dev., 8, 2701–2722, https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-8-2701-2015, 2015. 
Atchley, A. L., Coon, E. T., Painter, S. L., Harp, D. R., and Wilson, C.: Influences and interactions of inundation, peat, and snow on active layer thickness, Geophys. Res. Lett., 43, 5116–5123, https://doi.org/10.1002/2016GL068550, 2016. 
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Short summary
We investigate the relationship between ice wedge polygon topography and near-surface ground temperature using a combination of field work and numerical modeling. We analyze a year-long record of ground temperature across a low-centered polygon, then demonstrate that lower rims and deeper troughs promote warmer conditions in the ice wedge in winter. This finding implies that ice wedge cracking and growth, which are driven by cold conditions, can be impeded by rim erosion or trough subsidence.