Articles | Volume 14, issue 12
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-14-4603-2020
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-14-4603-2020
Brief communication
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18 Dec 2020
Brief communication | Highlight paper |  | 18 Dec 2020

Brief communication: Heterogenous thinning and subglacial lake activity on Thwaites Glacier, West Antarctica

Andrew O. Hoffman, Knut Christianson, Daniel Shapero, Benjamin E. Smith, and Ian Joughin

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Cited articles

Carter, S., Blankenship, D., Peters, M., Young, D., Holt, J., and Morse, D.: Radar-based subglacial lake classification in Antarctica, Geochem. Geophy. Geosy., 8, 3, https://doi.org/10.1029/2006GC001408, 2007. 
Chen, G.: GPS kinematics positioning for airborne laser altimetry at Long Valley, PhD thesis, Mass. Inst. of Technol., Cambridge, 1998. 
Fricker, H. A., Scambos, T., Bindshadler, R., and Padman, L.: An Active Subglacial Water System in West Antarctica Mapped from Space, Science, 315, 1544–1548, https://doi.org/10.1126/science.1136897, 2007. 
Friedl, P., Weiser, F., Fluhrer, A., and Braun, M. H.: Remote sensing of glacier and ice sheet grounding lines: A review, Earth-Sci. Rev., 201, 102948, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2019.102948, 2020. 
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Short summary
The West Antarctic Ice Sheet has long been considered geometrically prone to collapse, and Thwaites Glacier, the largest glacier in the Amundsen Sea, is likely in the early stages of disintegration. Using observations of Thwaites Glacier velocity and elevation change, we show that the transport of ~2 km3 of water beneath Thwaites Glacier has only a small and transient effect on glacier speed relative to ongoing thinning driven by ocean melt.