Articles | Volume 4, issue 3
Research article 29 Sep 2010
Research article | 29 Sep 2010
Investigating the sensitivity of numerical model simulations of the modern state of the Greenland ice-sheet and its future response to climate change
E. J. Stone et al.
Related subject area
Numerical ModellingSnow cover duration trends observed at sites and predicted by multiple modelsMapping the age of ice of Gauligletscher combining surface radionuclide contamination and ice flow modelingModelling the evolution of Djankuat Glacier, North Caucasus, from 1752 until 2100 CEQuantifying the effect of ocean bed properties on ice sheet geometry over 40 000 years with a full-Stokes modelToward a method for downscaling sea ice pressure for navigation purposesDeep ice layer formation in an alpine snowpack: monitoring and modelingBrief communication: Time step dependence (and fixes) in Stokes simulations of calving ice shelvesModelling regional glacier length changes over the last millennium using the Open Global Glacier ModelEvaluating permafrost physics in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project 6 (CMIP6) models and their sensitivity to climate changeBayesian calibration of firn densification modelsA kinematic formalism for tracking ice–ocean mass exchange on the Earth's surface and estimating sea-level changeThe contrasting response of outlet glaciers to interior and ocean forcingThe Arctic Ocean Observation Operator for 6.9 GHz (ARC3O) – Part 1: How to obtain sea ice brightness temperatures at 6.9 GHz from climate model outputThe Arctic Ocean Observation Operator for 6.9 GHz (ARC3O) – Part 2: Development and evaluationResults of the third Marine Ice Sheet Model Intercomparison Project (MISMIP+)Satellite-retrieved sea ice concentration uncertainty and its effect on modelling wave evolution in marginal ice zonesSensitivity of ice sheet surface velocity and elevation to variations in basal friction and topography in the Full Stokes and Shallow Shelf Approximation frameworksOcean-forced evolution of the Amundsen Sea catchment, West Antarctica, by 2100Multi-physics ensemble snow modelling in the western HimalayaParameter sensitivity analysis of dynamic ice sheet models – numerical computationsDeep learning applied to glacier evolution modellingFeature-based comparison of sea ice deformation in lead-permitting sea ice simulationsMicromechanical modeling of snow failureChanging characteristics of runoff and freshwater export from watersheds draining northern AlaskaInitialization of a global glacier model based on present-day glacier geometry and past climate information: an ensemble approachSimulated retreat of Jakobshavn Isbræ during the 21st centuryWave energy attenuation in fields of colliding ice floes – Part 1: Discrete-element modelling of dissipation due to ice–water dragContrasting thinning patterns between lake- and land-terminating glaciers in the Bhutanese HimalayaImpact of frontal ablation on the ice thickness estimation of marine-terminating glaciers in AlaskaModeling the response of Greenland outlet glaciers to global warming using a coupled flow line–plume modelBuoyant forces promote tidewater glacier iceberg calving through large basal stress concentrationsDevelopment of physically based liquid water schemes for Greenland firn-densification modelsValidation of the sea ice surface albedo scheme of the regional climate model HIRHAM–NAOSIM using aircraft measurements during the ACLOUD/PASCAL campaignsRegional grid refinement in an Earth system model: impacts on the simulated Greenland surface mass balanceinitMIP-Antarctica: an ice sheet model initialization experiment of ISMIP6Winter tourism under climate change in the Pyrenees and the French Alps: relevance of snowmaking as a technical adaptationSimulating intersection angles between conjugate faults in sea ice with different viscous–plastic rheologiesPathways of ice-wedge degradation in polygonal tundra under different hydrological conditionsModeling the response of northwest Greenland to enhanced ocean thermal forcing and subglacial dischargeThaw processes in ice-rich permafrost landscapes represented with laterally coupled tiles in a land surface modelIcePAC – a probabilistic tool to study sea ice spatio-temporal dynamics: application to the Hudson Bay areaAssessment of the Greenland ice sheet–atmosphere feedbacks for the next century with a regional atmospheric model coupled to an ice sheet modelGlobal glacier volume projections under high-end climate change scenariosSensitivity of centennial mass loss projections of the Amundsen basin to the friction lawNew insight from CryoSat-2 sea ice thickness for sea ice modellingRetreat of Thwaites Glacier, West Antarctica, over the next 100 years using various ice flow models, ice shelf melt scenarios and basal friction lawsA simulation of a large-scale drifting snowstorm in the turbulent boundary layerComparison of four calving laws to model Greenland outlet glaciersObservation and modelling of snow at a polygonal tundra permafrost site: spatial variability and thermal implicationsNeutral equilibrium and forcing feedbacks in marine ice sheet modelling
Richard Essery, Hyungjun Kim, Libo Wang, Paul Bartlett, Aaron Boone, Claire Brutel-Vuilmet, Eleanor Burke, Matthias Cuntz, Bertrand Decharme, Emanuel Dutra, Xing Fang, Yeugeniy Gusev, Stefan Hagemann, Vanessa Haverd, Anna Kontu, Gerhard Krinner, Matthieu Lafaysse, Yves Lejeune, Thomas Marke, Danny Marks, Christoph Marty, Cecile B. Menard, Olga Nasonova, Tomoko Nitta, John Pomeroy, Gerd Schädler, Vladimir Semenov, Tatiana Smirnova, Sean Swenson, Dmitry Turkov, Nander Wever, and Hua Yuan
The Cryosphere, 14, 4687–4698,Short summary
Climate models are uncertain in predicting how warming changes snow cover. This paper compares 22 snow models with the same meteorological inputs. Predicted trends agree with observations at four snow research sites: winter snow cover does not start later, but snow now melts earlier in spring than in the 1980s at two of the sites. Cold regions where snow can last until late summer are predicted to be particularly sensitive to warming because the snow then melts faster at warmer times of year.
Guillaume Jouvet, Stefan Röllin, Hans Sahli, José Corcho, Lars Gnägi, Loris Compagno, Dominik Sidler, Margit Schwikowski, Andreas Bauder, and Martin Funk
The Cryosphere, 14, 4233–4251,Short summary
We show that plutonium is an effective tracer to identify ice originating from the early 1960s at the surface of a mountain glacier after a long time within the ice flow, giving unique information on the long-term former ice motion. Combined with ice flow modelling, the dating can be extended to the entire glacier, and we show that an airplane which crash-landed on the Gauligletscher in 1946 will likely soon be released from the ice close to the place where pieces have emerged in recent years.
Yoni Verhaegen, Philippe Huybrechts, Oleg Rybak, and Victor V. Popovnin
The Cryosphere, 14, 4039–4061,Short summary
We use a numerical flow model to simulate the behaviour of the Djankuat Glacier, a WGMS reference glacier situated in the North Caucasus (Republic of Kabardino-Balkaria, Russian Federation), in response to past, present and future climate conditions (1752–2100 CE). In particular, we adapt a more sophisticated and physically based debris model, which has not been previously applied in time-dependent numerical flow line models, to look at the impact of a debris cover on the glacier’s evolution.
Clemens Schannwell, Reinhard Drews, Todd A. Ehlers, Olaf Eisen, Christoph Mayer, Mika Malinen, Emma C. Smith, and Hannes Eisermann
The Cryosphere, 14, 3917–3934,Short summary
To reduce uncertainties associated with sea level rise projections, an accurate representation of ice flow is paramount. Most ice sheet models rely on simplified versions of the underlying ice flow equations. Due to the high computational costs, ice sheet models based on the complete ice flow equations have been restricted to < 1000 years. Here, we present a new model setup that extends the applicability of such models by an order of magnitude, permitting simulations of 40 000 years.
Jean-François Lemieux, L. Bruno Tremblay, and Mathieu Plante
The Cryosphere, 14, 3465–3478,Short summary
Sea ice pressure poses great risk for navigation; it can lead to ship besetting and damages. Sea ice forecasting systems can predict the evolution of pressure. However, these systems have low spatial resolution (a few km) compared to the dimensions of ships. We study the downscaling of pressure from the km-scale to scales relevant for navigation. We find that the pressure applied on a ship beset in heavy ice conditions can be markedly larger than the pressure predicted by the forecasting system.
Louis Quéno, Charles Fierz, Alec van Herwijnen, Dylan Longridge, and Nander Wever
The Cryosphere, 14, 3449–3464,Short summary
Deep ice layers may form in the snowpack due to preferential water flow with impacts on the snowpack mechanical, hydrological and thermodynamical properties. We studied their formation and evolution at a high-altitude alpine site, combining a comprehensive observation dataset at a daily frequency (with traditional snowpack observations, penetration resistance and radar measurements) and detailed snowpack modeling, including a new parameterization of ice formation in the 1-D SNOWPACK model.
Brandon Berg and Jeremy Bassis
The Cryosphere, 14, 3209–3213,Short summary
Computer models of ice sheets and glaciers are an important component of projecting sea level rise due to climate change. For models that seek to simulate the full balance of forces within the ice, if portions of the glacier are allowed to quickly break off in a process called iceberg calving, a numerical issue arises that can cause inaccurate results. We examine the issue and propose a solution so that future models can more accurately predict the future behavior of ice sheets and glaciers.
David Parkes and Hugues Goosse
The Cryosphere, 14, 3135–3153,Short summary
Direct records of glacier changes rarely go back more than the last 100 years and are few and far between. We used a sophisticated glacier model to simulate glacier length changes over the last 1000 years for those glaciers that we do have long-term records of, to determine whether the model can run in a stable, realistic way over a long timescale, reproducing recent observed trends. We find that post-industrial changes are larger than other changes in this time period driven by recent warming.
Eleanor J. Burke, Yu Zhang, and Gerhard Krinner
The Cryosphere, 14, 3155–3174,Short summary
Permafrost will degrade under future climate change. This will have implications locally for the northern high-latitude regions and may well also amplify global climate change. There have been some recent improvements in the ability of earth system models to simulate the permafrost physical state, but further model developments are required. Models project the thawed volume of soil in the top 2 m of permafrost will increase by 10 %–40 % °C−1 of global mean surface air temperature increase.
Vincent Verjans, Amber A. Leeson, Christopher Nemeth, C. Max Stevens, Peter Kuipers Munneke, Brice Noël, and Jan Melchior van Wessem
The Cryosphere, 14, 3017–3032,Short summary
Ice sheets are covered by a firn layer, which is the transition stage between fresh snow and ice. Accurate modelling of firn density properties is important in many glaciological aspects. Current models show disagreements, are mostly calibrated to match specific observations of firn density and lack thorough uncertainty analysis. We use a novel calibration method for firn models based on a Bayesian statistical framework, which results in improved model accuracy and in uncertainty evaluation.
Surendra Adhikari, Erik R. Ivins, Eric Larour, Lambert Caron, and Helene Seroussi
The Cryosphere, 14, 2819–2833,Short summary
The mathematical formalism presented in this paper aims at simplifying computational strategies for tracking ice–ocean mass exchange in the Earth system. To this end, we define a set of generic, and quite simple, descriptions of evolving land, ocean and ice interfaces and present a unified method to compute the sea-level contribution of evolving ice sheets. The formalism can be applied to arbitrary geometries and at all timescales.
John Erich Christian, Alexander A. Robel, Cristian Proistosescu, Gerard Roe, Michelle Koutnik, and Knut Christianson
The Cryosphere, 14, 2515–2535,Short summary
We use simple, physics-based models to compare how marine-terminating glaciers respond to changes at their marine margin vs. inland surface melt. Initial glacier retreat is more rapid for ocean changes than for inland changes, but in both cases, glaciers will continue responding for millennia. We analyze several implications of these differing pathways of change. In particular, natural ocean variability must be better understood to correctly identify the anthropogenic role in glacier retreat.
Clara Burgard, Dirk Notz, Leif T. Pedersen, and Rasmus T. Tonboe
The Cryosphere, 14, 2369–2386,Short summary
The high disagreement between observations of Arctic sea ice makes it difficult to evaluate climate models with observations. We investigate the possibility of translating the model state into what a satellite could observe. We find that we do not need complex information about the vertical distribution of temperature and salinity inside the ice but instead are able to assume simplified distributions to reasonably translate the simulated sea ice into satellite
Clara Burgard, Dirk Notz, Leif T. Pedersen, and Rasmus T. Tonboe
The Cryosphere, 14, 2387–2407,Short summary
The high disagreement between observations of Arctic sea ice inhibits the evaluation of climate models with observations. We develop a tool that translates the simulated Arctic Ocean state into what a satellite could observe from space in the form of brightness temperatures, a measure for the radiation emitted by the surface. We find that the simulated brightness temperatures compare well with the observed brightness temperatures. This tool brings a new perspective for climate model evaluation.
Stephen L. Cornford, Helene Seroussi, Xylar S. Asay-Davis, G. Hilmar Gudmundsson, Rob Arthern, Chris Borstad, Julia Christmann, Thiago Dias dos Santos, Johannes Feldmann, Daniel Goldberg, Matthew J. Hoffman, Angelika Humbert, Thomas Kleiner, Gunter Leguy, William H. Lipscomb, Nacho Merino, Gaël Durand, Mathieu Morlighem, David Pollard, Martin Rückamp, C. Rosie Williams, and Hongju Yu
The Cryosphere, 14, 2283–2301,Short summary
We present the results of the third Marine Ice Sheet Intercomparison Project (MISMIP+). MISMIP+ is one in a series of exercises that test numerical models of ice sheet flow in simple situations. This particular exercise concentrates on the response of ice sheet models to the thinning of their floating ice shelves, which is of interest because numerical models are currently used to model the response to contemporary and near-future thinning in Antarctic ice shelves.
Takehiko Nose, Takuji Waseda, Tsubasa Kodaira, and Jun Inoue
The Cryosphere, 14, 2029–2052,Short summary
Accurate wave modelling in and near ice-covered ocean requires true sea ice concentration mapping of the model region. The information derived from satellite instruments has considerable uncertainty depending on retrieval algorithms and sensors. This study shows that the accuracy of satellite-retrieved sea ice concentration estimates is a major error source in wave–ice models. A similar feedback effect of sea ice concentration uncertainty may also apply to modelling lower atmospheric conditions.
Gong Cheng, Nina Kirchner, and Per Lötstedt
The Cryosphere Discuss.,
Revised manuscript accepted for TCShort summary
We present an inverse modeling approach to improve the understanding of spatio-temporally variable processes at the inaccessible base of an ice sheet by determining the sensitivity of direct surface observations to perturbations of basal conditions. Time dependency is proved to be important in these types of problems. The effect of perturbations is analyzed based on analytical and numerical solutions.
Alanna V. Alevropoulos-Borrill, Isabel J. Nias, Antony J. Payne, Nicholas R. Golledge, and Rory J. Bingham
The Cryosphere, 14, 1245–1258,
David M. W. Pritchard, Nathan Forsythe, Greg O'Donnell, Hayley J. Fowler, and Nick Rutter
The Cryosphere, 14, 1225–1244,Short summary
This study compares different snowpack model configurations applied in the western Himalaya. The results show how even sparse local observations can help to delineate climate input errors from model structure errors, which provides insights into model performance variation. The results also show how interactions between processes affect sensitivities to climate variability in different model configurations, with implications for model selection in climate change projections.
Gong Cheng and Per Lötstedt
The Cryosphere, 14, 673–691,Short summary
We present a time-dependent inverse method for ice sheet modeling. By investigating the sensitivity of the observations of the velocity and the height at the surface to the basal conditions of the ice, we show that if the basal parameters are time dependent, then time cannot be ignored in the inversion. By looking at the numerical features, we conclude that adding the height information of an ice sheet in the velocity inversion procedure could improve the robustness of the inference.
Jordi Bolibar, Antoine Rabatel, Isabelle Gouttevin, Clovis Galiez, Thomas Condom, and Eric Sauquet
The Cryosphere, 14, 565–584,Short summary
We introduce a novel approach for simulating glacier mass balances using a deep artificial neural network (i.e. deep learning) from climate and topographical data. This has been added as a component of a new open-source parameterized glacier evolution model. Deep learning is found to outperform linear machine learning methods, mainly due to its nonlinearity. Potential applications range from regional mass balance reconstructions from observations to simulations for past and future climates.
Nils Hutter and Martin Losch
The Cryosphere, 14, 93–113,Short summary
Sea ice is composed of a multitude of floes that constantly deform due to wind and ocean currents and thereby form leads and pressure ridges. These features are visible in the ice as stripes of open-ocean or high-piled ice. High-resolution sea ice models start to resolve these deformation features. In this paper we present two simulations that agree with satellite data according to a new evaluation metric that detects deformation features and compares their spatial and temporal characteristics.
Grégoire Bobillier, Bastian Bergfeld, Achille Capelli, Jürg Dual, Johan Gaume, Alec van Herwijnen, and Jürg Schweizer
The Cryosphere, 14, 39–49,
Michael A. Rawlins, Lei Cai, Svetlana L. Stuefer, and Dmitry Nicolsky
The Cryosphere, 13, 3337–3352,Short summary
We investigate the changing character of runoff, river discharge and other hydrological elements across watershed draining the North Slope of Alaska over the period 1981–2010. Our synthesis of observations and modeling reveals significant increases in the proportion of subsurface runoff and cold season discharge. These and other changes we describe are consistent with warming and thawing permafrost, and have implications for water, carbon and nutrient cycling in coastal environments.
Julia Eis, Fabien Maussion, and Ben Marzeion
The Cryosphere, 13, 3317–3335,Short summary
To provide estimates of past glacier mass changes, an adequate initial state is required. However, information about past glacier states at regional or global scales is largely incomplete. Our study presents a new way to initialize the Open Global Glacier Model from past climate information and present-day geometries. We show that even with perfectly known but incomplete boundary conditions, the problem of model initialization leads to nonunique solutions, and we propose an ensemble approach.
Xiaoran Guo, Liyun Zhao, Rupert M. Gladstone, Sainan Sun, and John C. Moore
The Cryosphere, 13, 3139–3153,
Agnieszka Herman, Sukun Cheng, and Hayley H. Shen
The Cryosphere, 13, 2887–2900,Short summary
Sea ice interactions with waves are extensively studied in recent years, but mechanisms leading to wave energy attenuation in sea ice remain poorly understood. Close to the ice edge, processes contributing to dissipation include collisions between ice floes and turbulence generated under the ice due to velocity differences between ice and water. This paper analyses details of those processes both theoretically and by means of a numerical model.
Shun Tsutaki, Koji Fujita, Takayuki Nuimura, Akiko Sakai, Shin Sugiyama, Jiro Komori, and Phuntsho Tshering
The Cryosphere, 13, 2733–2750,Short summary
We investigate thickness change of Bhutanese glaciers during 2004–2011 using repeat GPS surveys and satellite-based observations. The thinning rate of Lugge Glacier (LG) is > 3 times that of Thorthormi Glacier (TG). Numerical simulations of ice dynamics and surface mass balance (SMB) demonstrate that the rapid thinning of LG is driven by both negative SMB and dynamic thinning, while the thinning of TG is minimised by a longitudinally compressive flow regime.
Beatriz Recinos, Fabien Maussion, Timo Rothenpieler, and Ben Marzeion
The Cryosphere, 13, 2657–2672,Short summary
We have implemented a frontal ablation parameterization into the Open Global Glacier Model and have shown that inversion methods based on mass conservation systematically underestimate the mass turnover (and therefore the thickness) of tidewater glaciers when neglecting frontal ablation. This underestimation can rise up to 19 % on a regional scale. Not accounting for frontal ablation will have an impact on the estimate of the glaciers’ potential contribution to sea level rise.
Johanna Beckmann, Mahé Perrette, Sebastian Beyer, Reinhard Calov, Matteo Willeit, and Andrey Ganopolski
The Cryosphere, 13, 2281–2301,Short summary
Submarine melting (SM) has been discussed as potentially triggering the recently observed retreat at outlet glaciers in Greenland. How much it may contribute in terms of future sea level rise (SLR) has not been quantified yet. When accounting for SM in our experiments, SLR contribution of 12 outlet glaciers increases by over 3-fold until the year 2100 under RCP8.5. Scaling up from 12 to all of Greenland's outlet glaciers increases future SLR contribution of Greenland by 50 %.
Matt Trevers, Antony J. Payne, Stephen L. Cornford, and Twila Moon
The Cryosphere, 13, 1877–1887,Short summary
Iceberg calving is a major factor in the retreat of outlet glaciers of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Massive block overturning calving events occur at major outlet glaciers. A major calving event in 2009 was triggered by the release of a smaller block of ice from above the waterline. Using a numerical model, we investigate the feasibility of this mechanism to drive large calving events. We find that relatively small perturbations induce forces large enough to open cracks in ice at the glacier bed.
Vincent Verjans, Amber A. Leeson, C. Max Stevens, Michael MacFerrin, Brice Noël, and Michiel R. van den Broeke
The Cryosphere, 13, 1819–1842,Short summary
Firn models rely on empirical approaches for representing the percolation and refreezing of meltwater through the firn column. We develop liquid water schemes of different levels of complexity for firn models and compare their performances with respect to observations of density profiles from Greenland. Our results demonstrate that physically advanced water schemes do not lead to better agreement with density observations. Uncertainties in other processes contribute more to model discrepancy.
Evelyn Jäkel, Johannes Stapf, Manfred Wendisch, Marcel Nicolaus, Wolfgang Dorn, and Annette Rinke
The Cryosphere, 13, 1695–1708,Short summary
The sea ice surface albedo parameterization of a coupled regional climate model was validated against aircraft measurements performed in May–June 2017 north of Svalbard. The albedo parameterization was run offline from the model using the measured parameters surface temperature and snow depth to calculate the surface albedo and the individual fractions of the ice surface subtypes. An adjustment of the variables and additionally accounting for cloud cover reduced the root-mean-squared error.
Leonardus van Kampenhout, Alan M. Rhoades, Adam R. Herrington, Colin M. Zarzycki, Jan T. M. Lenaerts, William J. Sacks, and Michiel R. van den Broeke
The Cryosphere, 13, 1547–1564,Short summary
A new tool is evaluated in which the climate and surface mass balance (SMB) of the Greenland ice sheet are resolved at 55 and 28 km resolution, while the rest of the globe is modelled at ~110 km. The local refinement of resolution leads to improved accumulation (SMB > 0) compared to observations; however ablation (SMB < 0) is deteriorated in some regions. This is attributed to changes in cloud cover and a reduced effectiveness of a model-specific vertical downscaling technique.
Hélène Seroussi, Sophie Nowicki, Erika Simon, Ayako Abe-Ouchi, Torsten Albrecht, Julien Brondex, Stephen Cornford, Christophe Dumas, Fabien Gillet-Chaulet, Heiko Goelzer, Nicholas R. Golledge, Jonathan M. Gregory, Ralf Greve, Matthew J. Hoffman, Angelika Humbert, Philippe Huybrechts, Thomas Kleiner, Eric Larour, Gunter Leguy, William H. Lipscomb, Daniel Lowry, Matthias Mengel, Mathieu Morlighem, Frank Pattyn, Anthony J. Payne, David Pollard, Stephen F. Price, Aurélien Quiquet, Thomas J. Reerink, Ronja Reese, Christian B. Rodehacke, Nicole-Jeanne Schlegel, Andrew Shepherd, Sainan Sun, Johannes Sutter, Jonas Van Breedam, Roderik S. W. van de Wal, Ricarda Winkelmann, and Tong Zhang
The Cryosphere, 13, 1441–1471,Short summary
We compare a wide range of Antarctic ice sheet simulations with varying initialization techniques and model parameters to understand the role they play on the projected evolution of this ice sheet under simple scenarios. Results are improved compared to previous assessments and show that continued improvements in the representation of the floating ice around Antarctica are critical to reduce the uncertainty in the future ice sheet contribution to sea level rise.
Pierre Spandre, Hugues François, Deborah Verfaillie, Marc Pons, Matthieu Vernay, Matthieu Lafaysse, Emmanuelle George, and Samuel Morin
The Cryosphere, 13, 1325–1347,Short summary
This study investigates the snow reliability of 175 ski resorts in the Pyrenees (France, Spain and Andorra) and the French Alps under past and future conditions (1950–2100) using state-of-the-art climate projections and snowpack modelling accounting for snow management, i.e. grooming and snowmaking. The snow reliability of ski resorts shows strong elevation and regional differences, and our study quantifies changes in snow reliability induced by snowmaking under various climate scenarios.
Damien Ringeisen, Martin Losch, L. Bruno Tremblay, and Nils Hutter
The Cryosphere, 13, 1167–1186,Short summary
We study the creation of fracture in sea ice plastic models. To do this, we compress an ideal piece of ice of 8 km by 25 km. We use two different mathematical expressions defining the resistance of ice. We find that the most common one is unable to model the fracture correctly, while the other gives better results but brings instabilities. The results are often in opposition with ice granular nature (e.g., sand) and call for changes in ice modeling.
Jan Nitzbon, Moritz Langer, Sebastian Westermann, Léo Martin, Kjetil Schanke Aas, and Julia Boike
The Cryosphere, 13, 1089–1123,Short summary
We studied the stability of ice wedges (massive bodies of ground ice in permafrost) under recent climatic conditions in the Lena River delta of northern Siberia. For this we used a novel modelling approach that takes into account lateral transport of heat, water, and snow and the subsidence of the ground surface due to melting of ground ice. We found that wetter conditions have a destabilizing effect on the ice wedges and associated our simulation results with observations from the study area.
Mathieu Morlighem, Michael Wood, Hélène Seroussi, Youngmin Choi, and Eric Rignot
The Cryosphere, 13, 723–734,Short summary
Many glaciers along the coast of Greenland have been retreating. It has been suggested that this retreat is triggered by the presence of warm water in the fjords, and surface melt at the top of the ice sheet is exacerbating this problem. Here, we quantify the vulnerability of northwestern Greenland to further warming using a numerical model. We find that in current conditions, this sector alone will contribute more than 1 cm to sea rise level by 2100, and up to 3 cm in the most extreme scenario.
Kjetil S. Aas, Léo Martin, Jan Nitzbon, Moritz Langer, Julia Boike, Hanna Lee, Terje K. Berntsen, and Sebastian Westermann
The Cryosphere, 13, 591–609,Short summary
Many permafrost landscapes contain large amounts of excess ground ice, which gives rise to small-scale elevation differences. This results in lateral fluxes of snow, water, and heat, which we investigate and show how it can be accounted for in large-scale models. Using a novel model technique which can account for these differences, we are able to model both the current state of permafrost and how these landscapes change as permafrost thaws, in a way that could not previously be achieved.
Charles Gignac, Monique Bernier, and Karem Chokmani
The Cryosphere, 13, 451–468,Short summary
The IcePAC tool is made to estimate the probabilities of specific sea ice conditions based on historical sea ice concentration time series from the EUMETSAT OSI-409 product (12.5 km grid), modelled using the beta distribution and used to build event probability maps, which have been unavailable until now. Compared to the Canadian ice service atlas, IcePAC showed promising results in the Hudson Bay, paving the way for its usage in other regions of the cryosphere to inform stakeholders' decisions.
Sébastien Le clec'h, Sylvie Charbit, Aurélien Quiquet, Xavier Fettweis, Christophe Dumas, Masa Kageyama, Coraline Wyard, and Catherine Ritz
The Cryosphere, 13, 373–395,Short summary
Quantifying the future contribution of the Greenland ice sheet (GrIS) to sea-level rise in response to atmospheric changes is important but remains challenging. For the first time a full representation of the feedbacks between a GrIS model and a regional atmospheric model was implemented. The authors highlight the fundamental need for representing the GrIS topography change feedbacks with respect to the atmospheric component face to the strong impact on the projected sea-level rise.
Sarah Shannon, Robin Smith, Andy Wiltshire, Tony Payne, Matthias Huss, Richard Betts, John Caesar, Aris Koutroulis, Darren Jones, and Stephan Harrison
The Cryosphere, 13, 325–350,Short summary
We present global glacier volume projections for the end of this century, under a range of high-end climate change scenarios, defined as exceeding 2 °C global average warming. The ice loss contribution to sea level rise for all glaciers excluding those on the peripheral of the Antarctic ice sheet is 215.2 ± 21.3 mm. Such large ice losses will have consequences for sea level rise and for water supply in glacier-fed river systems.
Julien Brondex, Fabien Gillet-Chaulet, and Olivier Gagliardini
The Cryosphere, 13, 177–195,Short summary
Here, we apply a synthetic perturbation to the most active drainage basin of Antarctica and show that centennial mass loss projections obtained through ice flow models depend strongly on the implemented friction law, i.e. the mathematical relationship between basal drag and sliding velocities. In particular, the commonly used Weertman law considerably underestimates the sea-level contribution of this basin in comparison to two water pressure-dependent laws which rely on stronger physical bases.
David Schröder, Danny L. Feltham, Michel Tsamados, Andy Ridout, and Rachel Tilling
The Cryosphere, 13, 125–139,Short summary
This paper uses sea ice thickness data (CryoSat-2) to identify and correct shortcomings in simulating winter ice growth in the widely used sea ice model CICE. Adding a model of snow drift and using a different scheme for calculating the ice conductivity improve model results. Sensitivity studies demonstrate that atmospheric winter conditions have little impact on winter ice growth, and the fate of Arctic summer sea ice is largely controlled by atmospheric conditions during the melting season.
Hongju Yu, Eric Rignot, Helene Seroussi, and Mathieu Morlighem
The Cryosphere, 12, 3861–3876,Short summary
Thwaites Glacier, West Antarctica, has experienced rapid grounding line retreat and mass loss in the past decades. In this study, we simulate the evolution of Thwaites Glacier over the next century using different model configurations. Overall, we estimate a 5 mm contribution to global sea level rise from Thwaites Glacier in the next 30 years. However, a 300 % uncertainty is found over the next 100 years, ranging from 14 to 42 mm, depending on the model setup.
Zhengshi Wang and Shuming Jia
The Cryosphere, 12, 3841–3851,Short summary
Drifting snowstorms that are hundreds of meters in depth are reproduced using a large-eddy simulation model combined with a Lagrangian particle tracking method, which also exhibits obvious spatial structures following large-scale turbulent vortexes. The horizontal snow transport flux at high altitude, previously not observed, actually occupies a significant proportion of the total flux. Thus, previous models may largely underestimate the total mass flux and consequently snow sublimation.
Youngmin Choi, Mathieu Morlighem, Michael Wood, and Johannes H. Bondzio
The Cryosphere, 12, 3735–3746,Short summary
Calving is an important mechanism that controls the dynamics of Greenland outlet glaciers. We test and compare four calving laws and assess which calving law has better predictive abilities. Overall, the calving law based on von Mises stress is more satisfactory than other laws, but new parameterizations should be derived to better capture the detailed processes involved in calving.
Isabelle Gouttevin, Moritz Langer, Henning Löwe, Julia Boike, Martin Proksch, and Martin Schneebeli
The Cryosphere, 12, 3693–3717,Short summary
Snow insulates the ground from the cold air in the Arctic winter, majorly affecting permafrost. This insulation depends on snow characteristics and is poorly quantified. Here, we characterize it at a carbon-rich permafrost site, using a recent technique that retrieves the 3-D structure of snow and its thermal properties. We adapt a snowpack model enabling the simulation of this insulation over a whole winter. We estimate that local snow variations induce up to a 6 °C spread in soil temperatures.
Rupert M. Gladstone, Yuwei Xia, and John Moore
The Cryosphere, 12, 3605–3615,Short summary
Computer models for the simulation of marine ice sheets (ice sheets resting on bedrock below sea level) historically show poor numerical convergence for grounding line (the boundary between grounded and floating parts of the ice sheet) movement. We have further characterised the nature of the numerical problems leading to poor convergence and highlighted implications for the design of computer experiments that test grounding line movement.
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