Articles | Volume 17, issue 1
Research article
 | Highlight paper
01 Feb 2023
Research article | Highlight paper |  | 01 Feb 2023

Slowdown of Shirase Glacier, East Antarctica, caused by strengthening alongshore winds

Bertie W. J. Miles, Chris R. Stokes, Adrian Jenkins, Jim R. Jordan, Stewart S. R. Jamieson, and G. Hilmar Gudmundsson

Data sets

MEaSUREs ITS_LIVE Landsat Image-Pair Glacier and Ice Sheet Surface Velocities, Version 1 A. Gardner, M. Fahnestock, and T. Scambos

Global Land Ice Velocity Extraction from Landsat 8 (GoLIVE), Version 1 T. Scambos, M. Fahnestock, T. Moon, A. Gardner, and M. Klinger

ERA5 hourly data on single levels from 1959 to present H. Hersbach, B. Bell, P. Berrisford, G. Biavati, A. Horányi, J. Muñoz Sabater, J. Nicolas, C. Peubey, R. Radu, I. Rozum, D. Schepers, A. Simmons, C. Soci, D. Dee, and J-N. Thépaut

Surface meteorology at British Antarctic Survey Stations, 1947-2013 British Antarctic Survey

MODIS Mosaic of Antarctica 2008-2009 (MOA2009) Image Map, Version 2 T. Haran, J. Bohlander, T. Scambos, T. Painter, and M. Fahnestock

MEaSUREs BedMachine Antarctica, Version 2 M. Morlighem

Data for "Modeling intensive ocean-cyrosphere interactions in Lützow-Holm Bay, East Antarctica" Kazuya Kusahara, Daisuke Hirano,Masakazu Fujii, AlexanderFraser, and Takeshi Tamura

RAMP AMM-1 SAR Image Mosaic of Antarctica, Version 2 K. C. Jezek, J. C. Curlander, F. Carsey, C. Wales, and R. G. Barry

SUMER Antarctic Ice-shelf Buttressing, Version 1 G. Durand, F. Gillet-Chaulet, O. Gagliardini, and J. J. Fürst

Kittel et al. (2021), The Cryosphere : MAR and ESMs data Christoph Kittel

The study shows a rare example of the thickening of a glacier ice tongue in East Antarctica. The authors attribute the thickening to changes in wind patterns leading to a decrease in the transport of warm water reaching the glacier. The results highlight the intricate relationship between glaciers and atmosphere/ocean dynamics.
Short summary
Satellite observations have shown that the Shirase Glacier catchment in East Antarctica has been gaining mass over the past 2 decades, a trend largely attributed to increased snowfall. Our multi-decadal observations of Shirase Glacier show that ocean forcing has also contributed to some of this recent mass gain. This has been caused by strengthening easterly winds reducing the inflow of warm water underneath the Shirase ice tongue, causing the glacier to slow down and thicken.