Articles | Volume 15, issue 7
The Cryosphere, 15, 3459–3494, 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-15-3459-2021
The Cryosphere, 15, 3459–3494, 2021
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-15-3459-2021

Research article 26 Jul 2021

Research article | 26 Jul 2021

Energetics of surface melt in West Antarctica

Madison L. Ghiz et al.

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AR: Author's response | RR: Referee report | ED: Editor decision
ED: Publish subject to revisions (further review by editor and referees) (19 May 2021) by Ruth Mottram
AR by Dan Lubin on behalf of the Authors (20 May 2021)  Author's response    Manuscript
ED: Referee Nomination & Report Request started (21 May 2021) by Ruth Mottram
RR by Ella Gilbert (28 May 2021)
ED: Publish as is (01 Jun 2021) by Ruth Mottram
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Short summary
We investigate how melt occurs over the vulnerable ice shelves of West Antarctica and determine that the three primary mechanisms can be evaluated using archived numerical weather prediction model data and satellite imagery. We find examples of each mechanism: thermal blanketing by a warm atmosphere, radiative heating by thin clouds, and downslope winds. Our results signify the potential to make a multi-decadal assessment of atmospheric stress on West Antarctic ice shelves in a warming climate.