Articles | Volume 15, issue 1
13 Jan 2021
Research article | 13 Jan 2021
Spectral characterization, radiative forcing and pigment content of coastal Antarctic snow algae: approaches to spectrally discriminate red and green communities and their impact on snowmelt
Alia L. Khan et al.
No articles found.
Michelle L. Maclennan, Jan T. M. Lenaerts, Christine A. Shields, Andrew O. Hoffman, Nander Wever, Megan Thompson-Munson, Andrew C. Winters, Erin C. Pettit, Theodore A. Scambos, and Jonathan D. Wille
The Cryosphere Discuss.,
Preprint under review for TCShort summary
Atmospheric rivers are masses of air that transport large amounts of moisture and heat towards the poles. Here, we use a combination of weather observations and models to quantify the amount of snowfall caused by atmospheric rivers in West Antarctica, which is about 10 % of the total snowfall each year. We then examine a unique event that occurred in early February 2020, when three atmospheric rivers made landfall over West Antarctica in rapid succession, leading to snowfall and surface melt.
Alexandre Castagna, Luz Amadei Martínez, Margarita Bogorad, Ilse Daveloose, Renaat Dasseville, Heidi Melita Dierssen, Matthew Beck, Jonas Mortelmans, Héloïse Lavigne, Ana Dogliotti, David Doxaran, Kevin Ruddick, Wim Vyverman, and Koen Sabbe
Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 14, 2697–2719,Short summary
Here we describe a dataset of optical measurements paired with the concentration and composition of dissolved and particulate components of water systems in Belgium. Sampling was performed over eight lakes, a coastal lagoon, an estuary, and coastal waters, covering the period of 2017 to 2019. The data cover a broad range of conditions and can be useful for development and evaluation of hyperspectral methods in hydrology optics and remote sensing.
Alessandro Damiani, Hitoshi Irie, Dmitry Belikov, Shuei Kaizuka, Hossain Mohammed Syedul Hoque, and Raul R. Cordero
Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss.,
Preprint under review for ACPShort summary
We analyzed the variabilities in tropospheric gases and aerosols within the Greater Tokyo Area, Japan. Beyond highlighting air quality changes caused by the pandemic during the lockdown, we found out that the degree of weekly cycling of most gases and aerosols was enhanced during the whole of 2020. The latter changes were unprecedented in recent years and potentially related to coincident reduced mobility in Japan, which, in contrast to other countries, was anomalously low on weekends in 2020.
Christian T. Wild, Karen E. Alley, Atsuhiro Muto, Martin Truffer, Ted A. Scambos, and Erin C. Pettit
The Cryosphere, 16, 397–417,Short summary
Thwaites Glacier has the potential to significantly raise Antarctica's contribution to global sea-level rise by the end of this century. Here, we use satellite measurements of surface elevation to show that its floating part is close to losing contact with an underwater ridge that currently acts to stabilize. We then use computer models of ice flow to simulate the predicted unpinning, which show that accelerated ice discharge into the ocean follows the breakup of the floating part.
Karen E. Alley, Christian T. Wild, Adrian Luckman, Ted A. Scambos, Martin Truffer, Erin C. Pettit, Atsuhiro Muto, Bruce Wallin, Marin Klinger, Tyler Sutterley, Sarah F. Child, Cyrus Hulen, Jan T. M. Lenaerts, Michelle Maclennan, Eric Keenan, and Devon Dunmire
The Cryosphere, 15, 5187–5203,Short summary
We present a 20-year, satellite-based record of velocity and thickness change on the Thwaites Eastern Ice Shelf (TEIS), the largest remaining floating extension of Thwaites Glacier (TG). TG holds the single greatest control on sea-level rise over the next few centuries, so it is important to understand changes on the TEIS, which controls much of TG's flow into the ocean. Our results suggest that the TEIS is progressively destabilizing and is likely to disintegrate over the next few decades.
Julie Z. Miller, David G. Long, Kenneth C. Jezek, Joel T. Johnson, Mary J. Brodzik, Christopher A. Shuman, Lora S. Koenig, and Ted A. Scambos
The Cryosphere, 14, 2809–2817,
Alice Bradley, Juan Höfer, Valentina Savaglia, and Clare Eayrs
Adv. Geosci., 53, 73–85,Short summary
Scientific meetings and workshops are critical for career development, but attending these events can involve expensive travel. A survey of early career researchers found that cost prevented most respondents from attending important events and they frequently have needed to use personal funds. Replacing travel reimbursements with advances helps the financial burden. Addressing disparities in travel support will promote diversity in the next generation of polar scientists.
Shungudzemwoyo P. Garaba and Heidi M. Dierssen
Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 12, 77–86,Short summary
As remote sensing is becoming more integral in future plastic litter monitoring strategies, there is need to improve our understanding of the optical properties of plastics. We present spectral reflectance data (350–2500 nm) of wet and dry marine-harvested (Atlantic and Pacific oceans), washed-ashore, and virgin plastics. Absorption features were identified at ~ 931, 1215, 1417 and 1732 nm in both the marine-harvested and washed-ashore plastics.
Bas Altena, Ted Scambos, Mark Fahnestock, and Andreas Kääb
The Cryosphere, 13, 795–814,Short summary
Many glaciers in southern Alaska and the Yukon experience changes in flow speed, which occur in episodes or sporadically. These flow changes can be measured with satellites, but the resulting raw velocity products are messy. Thus in this study we developed an automatic method to produce a synthesized velocity product over a large glacier region of roughly 600 km by 200 km. Velocities are at a monthly resolution and at 300 m resolution, making all kinds of glacier dynamics observable.
Alessandro Damiani, Hitoshi Irie, Takashi Horio, Tamio Takamura, Pradeep Khatri, Hideaki Takenaka, Takashi Nagao, Takashi Y. Nakajima, and Raul R. Cordero
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 11, 2501–2521,Short summary
The Tohoku Earthquake of March 2011 stressed the need for energy source diversity, and the governmental policy in Japan has been stimulating a broader use of renewable energy. Solar power is potentially able to mitigate climate change triggered by greenhouse gas emissions, but its instability caused by cloudiness is a critical issue for suppliers. To develop an appropriate control system, surface solar radiation data must be made available as accurately as possible.
Alex S. Gardner, Geir Moholdt, Ted Scambos, Mark Fahnstock, Stefan Ligtenberg, Michiel van den Broeke, and Johan Nilsson
The Cryosphere, 12, 521–547,Short summary
We map present-day Antarctic surface velocities from Landsat imagery and compare to earlier estimates from radar. Flow accelerations across the grounding lines of West Antarctica's Amundsen Sea Embayment, Getz Ice Shelf and the western Antarctic Peninsula, account for 89 % of the observed increase in ice discharge. In contrast, glaciers draining the East Antarctic have been remarkably stable. Our work suggests that patterns of mass loss are part of a longer-term phase of enhanced flow.
Byeong-Hoon Kim, Choon-Ki Lee, Ki-Weon Seo, Won Sang Lee, and Ted Scambos
The Cryosphere, 10, 2971–2980,Short summary
Kamb Ice Stream (KIS) in Antarctica ceased rapid ice flow approximately 160 years ago, still influencing on the current mass balance of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. We identify two previously unknown subglacial lakes beneath the stagnated trunk of the KIS. Rapid fill-drain hydrologic events over several months indicate that the lakes are probably connected by a subglacial drainage network. Our findings support previously published conceptual models of the KIS shutdown.
J. M. van Wessem, S. R. M. Ligtenberg, C. H. Reijmer, W. J. van de Berg, M. R. van den Broeke, N. E. Barrand, E. R. Thomas, J. Turner, J. Wuite, T. A. Scambos, and E. van Meijgaard
The Cryosphere, 10, 271–285,Short summary
This study presents the first high-resolution (5.5 km) modelled estimate of surface mass balance (SMB) over the period 1979–2014 for the Antarctic Peninsula (AP). Precipitation (snowfall and rain) largely determines the SMB, and is exceptionally high over the western mountain slopes, with annual values > 4 m water equivalent. Snowmelt is widespread over the AP, but only runs off into the ocean at some locations: the Larsen B,C, and Wilkins ice shelves, and along the north-western mountains.
A. Pope, T. A. Scambos, M. Moussavi, M. Tedesco, M. Willis, D. Shean, and S. Grigsby
The Cryosphere, 10, 15–27,Short summary
Liquid water stored on the surface of ice sheets and glaciers, such as that in surface (supraglacial) lakes, plays a key role in the glacial hydrological system. Multispectral remote sensing can be used to detect lakes and estimate their depth. Here, we use in situ data to assess lake depth retrieval using the recently launched Landsat 8. We validate Landsat 8-derived depths and provide suggestions for future applications. We apply our method to a case study are in Greenland for summer 2014.
C. Lavoie, E. W. Domack, E. C. Pettit, T. A. Scambos, R. D. Larter, H.-W. Schenke, K. C. Yoo, J. Gutt, J. Wellner, M. Canals, J. B. Anderson, and D. Amblas
The Cryosphere, 9, 613–629,
T. A. Scambos, E. Berthier, T. Haran, C. A. Shuman, A. J. Cook, S. R. M. Ligtenberg, and J. Bohlander
The Cryosphere, 8, 2135–2145,Short summary
This study of one of the most rapidly changing glacier regions on earth -- the Antarctic Peninsula -- uses two types of satellite data to measure the rates of ice loss in detail for the individual glaciers. The satellite data is laser altimetry from ICESat and stereo image DEM differences. The results show that 24..9 ± 7.8 billion tons of ice are lost from the region north of 66°S on the peninsula each year. The majority of the data cover 2003-2008.
K. Kawamura, J. P. Severinghaus, M. R. Albert, Z. R. Courville, M. A. Fahnestock, T. Scambos, E. Shields, and C. A. Shuman
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 13, 11141–11155,
J. Peloquin, C. Swan, N. Gruber, M. Vogt, H. Claustre, J. Ras, J. Uitz, R. Barlow, M. Behrenfeld, R. Bidigare, H. Dierssen, G. Ditullio, E. Fernandez, C. Gallienne, S. Gibb, R. Goericke, L. Harding, E. Head, P. Holligan, S. Hooker, D. Karl, M. Landry, R. Letelier, C. A. Llewellyn, M. Lomas, M. Lucas, A. Mannino, J.-C. Marty, B. G. Mitchell, F. Muller-Karger, N. Nelson, C. O'Brien, B. Prezelin, D. Repeta, W. O. Jr. Smith, D. Smythe-Wright, R. Stumpf, A. Subramaniam, K. Suzuki, C. Trees, M. Vernet, N. Wasmund, and S. Wright
Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 5, 109–123,
Related subject area
Discipline: Snow | Subject: AntarcticDistinguishing the impacts of ozone and ozone-depleting substances on the recent increase in Antarctic surface mass balanceRepresentative surface snow density on the East Antarctic PlateauBrief communication: Evaluating Antarctic precipitation in ERA5 and CMIP6 against CloudSat observationsDrifting-snow statistics from multiple-year autonomous measurements in Adélie Land, East AntarcticaImpact of exhaust emissions on chemical snowpack composition at Concordia Station, AntarcticaObservation of the process of snow accumulation on the Antarctic Plateau by time lapse laser scanningEvaluation of CloudSat snowfall rate profiles by a comparison with in situ micro-rain radar observations in East AntarcticaInvestigation of a wind-packing event in Queen Maud Land, AntarcticaArchival processes of the water stable isotope signal in East Antarctic ice cores
Rei Chemke, Michael Previdi, Mark R. England, and Lorenzo M. Polvani
The Cryosphere, 14, 4135–4144,Short summary
The increase in Antarctic surface mass balance (SMB, precipitation vs. evaporation/sublimation) is projected to mitigate sea-level rise. Here we show that nearly half of this increase over the 20th century is attributed to stratospheric ozone depletion and ozone-depleting substance (ODS) emissions. Our results suggest that the phaseout of ODS by the Montreal Protocol, and the recovery of stratospheric ozone, will act to decrease the SMB over the 21st century and the mitigation of sea-level rise.
Alexander H. Weinhart, Johannes Freitag, Maria Hörhold, Sepp Kipfstuhl, and Olaf Eisen
The Cryosphere, 14, 3663–3685,Short summary
From 1 m snow profiles along a traverse on the East Antarctic Plateau, we calculated a representative surface snow density of 355 kg m−3 for this region with an error less than 1.5 %. This density is 10 % higher and density fluctuations seem to happen on smaller scales than climate model outputs suggest. Our study can help improve the parameterization of surface snow density in climate models to reduce the error in future sea level predictions.
Marie-Laure Roussel, Florentin Lemonnier, Christophe Genthon, and Gerhard Krinner
The Cryosphere, 14, 2715–2727,Short summary
The Antarctic precipitation is evaluated against space radar data in the most recent climate model intercomparison CMIP6 and reanalysis ERA5. The seasonal cycle is mostly well reproduced, but relative errors are higher in areas of complex topography, particularly in the higher-resolution models. At continental and regional scales all results are biased high, with no significant progress in the more recent models. Predicting Antarctic contribution to sea level still requires model improvements.
The Cryosphere, 14, 1713–1725,Short summary
This paper presents an assessment of drifting-snow occurrences and snow mass transport from up to 9 years (2010–2018) of half-hourly observational records collected at two remote locations in coastal Adelie Land (East Antarctica) using second-generation IAV Engineering acoustic FlowCapt sensors. The dataset is freely available to the scientific community and can be used to complement satellite products and evaluate snow-transport models close to the surface and at high temporal frequency.
Detlev Helmig, Daniel Liptzin, Jacques Hueber, and Joel Savarino
The Cryosphere, 14, 199–209,Short summary
We present 15 months of trace gas observations from air withdrawn within the snowpack and from above the snow at Concordia Station in Antarctica. The data show occasional positive spikes, indicative of pollution from the station generator. The pollution signal can be seen in snowpack air shortly after it is observed above the snow surface, and lasting for up to several days, much longer than above the surface.
Ghislain Picard, Laurent Arnaud, Romain Caneill, Eric Lefebvre, and Maxim Lamare
The Cryosphere, 13, 1983–1999,Short summary
To study how snow accumulates in Antarctica, we analyze daily surface elevation recorded by an automatic laser scanner. We show that new snow often accumulates in thick patches covering a small fraction of the surface. Most patches are removed by erosion within weeks, implying that only a few contribute to the snowpack. This explains the heterogeneity on the surface and in the snowpack. These findings are important for surface mass and energy balance, photochemistry, and ice core interpretation.
Florentin Lemonnier, Jean-Baptiste Madeleine, Chantal Claud, Christophe Genthon, Claudio Durán-Alarcón, Cyril Palerme, Alexis Berne, Niels Souverijns, Nicole van Lipzig, Irina V. Gorodetskaya, Tristan L'Ecuyer, and Norman Wood
The Cryosphere, 13, 943–954,Short summary
Evaluation of the vertical precipitation rate profiles of CloudSat radar by comparison with two surface-based micro-rain radars (MRR) located at two antarctic stations gives a near-perfect correlation between both datasets, even though climatic and geographic conditions are different for the stations. A better understanding and reassessment of CloudSat uncertainties ranging from −13 % up to +22 % confirms the robustness of the CloudSat retrievals of snowfall over Antarctica.
Christian Gabriel Sommer, Nander Wever, Charles Fierz, and Michael Lehning
The Cryosphere, 12, 2923–2939,Short summary
Wind packing is how wind produces hard crusts at the surface of the snowpack. This is relevant for the local mass balance in polar regions. However, not much is known about this process and it is difficult to capture its high spatial and temporal variability. A wind-packing event was measured in Antarctica. It could be quantified how drifting snow leads to wind packing and generates barchan dunes. The documentation of these deposition dynamics is an important step in understanding polar snow.
Mathieu Casado, Amaelle Landais, Ghislain Picard, Thomas Münch, Thomas Laepple, Barbara Stenni, Giuliano Dreossi, Alexey Ekaykin, Laurent Arnaud, Christophe Genthon, Alexandra Touzeau, Valerie Masson-Delmotte, and Jean Jouzel
The Cryosphere, 12, 1745–1766,Short summary
Ice core isotopic records rely on the knowledge of the processes involved in the archival processes of the snow. In the East Antarctic Plateau, post-deposition processes strongly affect the signal found in the surface and buried snow compared to the initial climatic signal. We evaluate the different contributions to the surface snow isotopic composition between the precipitation and the exchanges with the atmosphere and the variability of the isotopic signal found in profiles from snow pits.
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We present radiative forcing (RF) estimates by snow algae in the Antarctic Peninsula (AP) region from multi-year measurements of solar radiation and ground-based hyperspectral characterization of red and green snow algae collected during a brief field expedition in austral summer 2018. Mean daily RF was double for green (~26 W m−2) vs. red (~13 W m−2) snow algae during the peak growing season, which is on par with midlatitude dust attributions capable of advancing snowmelt.
We present radiative forcing (RF) estimates by snow algae in the Antarctic Peninsula (AP) region...