Articles | Volume 9, issue 1
Research article
06 Jan 2015
Research article |  | 06 Jan 2015

Quantifying mass balance processes on the Southern Patagonia Icefield

M. Schaefer, H. Machguth, M. Falvey, G. Casassa, and E. Rignot

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Cited articles

Aniya, M., Sato, H., Naruse, R., Skvarca, P., and Casassa, G.: The Use of Satellite and Airborne Imagery to Inventory Outlet Glaciers of the Southern Patagonia Icefield, South America, Photogramm. Eng. Rem. S., 62, 1361–1369, 1996.
Aravena, J.-C. and Luckman, B. H.: Spatio-temporal rainfall patterns in Southern South America, Int. J. Climatol., 29, 2106–2120,, 2009.
Arendt, E. A.: Randolph Glacier Inventory [v3.0]: A Dataset of Global Glacier Outlines, Tech. rep., Global Land Ice Measurements from Space, Boulder Colorado, USA, 2012.
Aristarain, A. and Delmas, R.: Firn-core study from the Southern Patagonia Ice Cap, South America, J. Glaciol., 39, 249–254, 1993.
Carrasco, J., Casassa, G., and Rivera, A.: Meteorological and Climatological aspects of the Southern Patagonia Icefield, in: The Patagonian Icefields A Unique Natural Laboratory for Environmental and Climate Change Studies, Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers, New York, 29–41, 2002.
Short summary
We use a meteorological-glaciological multi-model approach to quantify, for the first time, melt and accumulation of snow on the Southern Patagonia Icefield (SPI). We were able to reproduce the high measured accumulation of snow of up to 15.4 m water equivalent per year as well as the high measured ablation of up to 11 m water equivalent per year. Mass losses of the SPI due to calving of icebergs strongly increased from 1975-2000 to 2000-2011 and were higher than losses due to surface melt.