Articles | Volume 14, issue 3
The Cryosphere, 14, 841–854, 2020
The Cryosphere, 14, 841–854, 2020

Research article 06 Mar 2020

Research article | 06 Mar 2020

Exceptionally high heat flux needed to sustain the Northeast Greenland Ice Stream

Silje Smith-Johnsen et al.

Data sets

Greenland monthly surface mass balance 1840-2012 J. E. Box

Model code and software

ISSM software JPL

Short summary
The Northeast Greenland Ice Stream (NEGIS) drains a large part of Greenland and displays fast flow far inland. However, the flow pattern is not well represented in ice sheet models. The fast flow has been explained by abnormally high geothermal heat flux. The heat melts the base of the ice sheet and the water produced may lubricate the bed and induce fast flow. By including high geothermal heat flux and a hydrology model, we successfully reproduce NEGIS flow pattern in an ice sheet model.