Articles | Volume 14, issue 8
The Cryosphere, 14, 2687–2713, 2020
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-14-2687-2020
The Cryosphere, 14, 2687–2713, 2020
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-14-2687-2020

Research article 27 Aug 2020

Research article | 27 Aug 2020

Quantifying spatiotemporal variability of glacier algal blooms and the impact on surface albedo in southwestern Greenland

Shujie Wang et al.

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Short summary
Glacial algal blooms play a significant role in darkening the Greenland Ice Sheet during summertime. The dark pigments generated by glacial algae could substantially reduce the bare ice albedo and thereby enhance surface melt. We used satellite data to map the spatial distribution of glacial algae and characterized the seasonal growth pattern and interannual trends of glacial algae in southwestern Greenland. Our study is important for bridging microbial activities with ice sheet mass balance.