Articles | Volume 12, issue 9
Research article
06 Sep 2018
Research article |  | 06 Sep 2018

Seasonal dynamics of Totten Ice Shelf controlled by sea ice buttressing

Chad A. Greene, Duncan A. Young, David E. Gwyther, Benjamin K. Galton-Fenzi, and Donald D. Blankenship


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Short summary
We show that Totten Ice Shelf accelerates each spring in response to the breakup of seasonal landfast sea ice at the ice shelf calving front. The previously unreported seasonal flow variability may have aliased measurements in at least one previous study of Totten's response to ocean forcing on interannual timescales. The role of sea ice in buttressing the flow of the ice shelf implies that long-term changes in sea ice cover could have impacts on the mass balance of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet.