Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2022-6
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2022-6
 
08 Feb 2022
08 Feb 2022
Status: a revised version of this preprint was accepted for the journal TC and is expected to appear here in due course.

Impact of runoff temporal distribution on ice dynamics

Basile de Fleurian1, Richard Davy2, and Petra M. Langebroek3 Basile de Fleurian et al.
  • 1Department of Earth Science, University of Bergen, Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, Bergen, NORWAY
  • 2Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Centre, Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, Bergen, NORWAY
  • 3NORCE Norwegian Research Centre AS, Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, Bergen, NORWAY

Abstract. Records of meltwater production at the surface of the Greenland ice sheet have been recorded with a surprisingly high recurrence over the last decades. Those longer and/or more intense melt seasons have a direct impact on the surface mass balance of the ice sheet and on its contribution to sea level rise. Moreover, the surface melt also affects the ice dynamics through the meltwater lubrication feedback. It is still not clear how the meltwater lubrication feedback impacts the long term ice velocities on the Greenland ice sheet. Here we take a modelling approach with simplified ice sheet geometry and climate forcings to investigate in more detail the impacts of the changing characteristics of the melt season on ice dynamics. We model the ice dynamics through the coupling of the Double Continuum (DoCo) subglacial hydrology model with a shallow shelf approximation for the ice dynamics in the Ice-sheet and Sea-level System Model (ISSM). The climate forcing is generated from the ERA5 dataset to allow the length and intensity of the melt season to be varied in a comparable range of values. Our simulations present different behaviours between the lower and higher part of the glacier but overall, a longer melt season will yield a faster glacier for a given runoff value. Furthermore, an increase in the intensity of the melt season, even under increasing runoff, tends to reduce glacier velocities. Those results emphasise the complexity of the meltwater lubrication feedback and urge us to use subglacial drainage models with efficient drainage components to give an accurate assessment of its impact on the overall dynamics of the Greenland Ice sheet.

Basile de Fleurian et al.

Status: closed

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on tc-2022-6', Michael Wolovick, 18 Mar 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Basile de Fleurian, 12 Apr 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on tc-2022-6', Anonymous Referee #2, 07 Apr 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Basile de Fleurian, 12 Apr 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Basile de Fleurian, 12 Apr 2022

Status: closed

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on tc-2022-6', Michael Wolovick, 18 Mar 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Basile de Fleurian, 12 Apr 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on tc-2022-6', Anonymous Referee #2, 07 Apr 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Basile de Fleurian, 12 Apr 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Basile de Fleurian, 12 Apr 2022

Basile de Fleurian et al.

Basile de Fleurian et al.

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Short summary
As temperature increases more snow and ice melt at the surface of ice sheets. Here we use an ice dynamics and subglacial hydrology model with simplified geometry and climate forcing to study the impact of variations in melt-water on ice dynamics. We focus on the variations in length and intensity of the melt season. Our results show that a longer melt season lead to faster glaciers. However, more intense melt season reduces glaciers seasonal velocities albeit leading to higher peak velocities.