Articles | Volume 13, issue 2
Research article
 | Highlight paper
05 Feb 2019
Research article | Highlight paper |  | 05 Feb 2019

Four decades of Antarctic surface elevation changes from multi-mission satellite altimetry

Ludwig Schröder, Martin Horwath, Reinhard Dietrich, Veit Helm, Michiel R. van den Broeke, and Stefan R. M. Ligtenberg

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Revised manuscript under review for TC
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Cited articles

Adusumilli, S., Fricker, H. A., Siegfried, M. R., Padman, L., Paolo, F. S., and Ligtenberg, S. R. M.: Variable Basal Melt Rates of Antarctic Peninsula Ice Shelves, 1994–2016, Geophys. Res. Lett., 45, 4086–4095,, 2018. a
Arthern, R., Wingham, D., and Ridout, A.: Controls on ERS altimeter measurements over ice sheets: Footprint-scale topography, backscatter fluctuations, and the dependence of microwave penetration depth on satellite orientation, J. Geophys. Res.-Atmos., 106, 33471–33484,, 2001. a, b
Baarda, W.: A testing procedure for use in geodetic networks, Netherlands Geodetic Commission, Delft, the Netherlands, 1968. a
Bamber, J.: Ice Sheet Altimeter Processing Scheme, Int. J. Remote Sens., 14, 925–938,, 1994. a, b, c, d, e, f
Bamber, J. L., Gomez-Dans, J. L., and Griggs, J. A.: A new 1 km digital elevation model of the Antarctic derived from combined satellite radar and laser data – Part 1: Data and methods, The Cryosphere, 3, 101–111,, 2009. a
Short summary
We developed an approach to combine measurements of seven satellite altimetry missions over the Antarctic Ice Sheet. Our resulting monthly grids of elevation changes between 1978 and 2017 provide unprecedented details of the long-term and interannual variation. Derived mass changes agree well with contemporaneous data of surface mass balance and satellite gravimetry and show which regions were responsible for the significant accelerations of mass loss in recent years.