Glacier surface motion pattern in the Eastern part of West Kunlun Shan estimation using pixel-tracking with PALSAR imagery
- 340 Downloads
Mountain glacier is considered as one of the most sensitive natural indicators of climate change. Glacier surface motion distribution in West Kunlun Shan (WKS) has been attracting considerable attention and represents a fundamental glacier parameter for better understanding glacier dynamics, ice mass balance, and even for the climate change. This paper would present the accurate ice motion observation of mountain glacier in eastern part of WKS by the refined pixel-tracking method with phased array type L-band synthetic aperture radar images acquired on December 13, 2008 and January 28, 2009. The standard deviation values in nonglacial area before/after topographic effect compensation are 0.61 and 0.43 m, respectively, during 46-day temporal interval. In addition, the terrain almost is a determining factor of ice velocity distribution in study area because the elevation of topography is generally shown to be positive correlated with glacier surface velocity along the central line. Furthermore, with estimated detailed glacier surface movement distribution pattern, we found that the continental glaciers were actively moving with spatially variable ice motion, while the icecaps maintain the stable status without apparent motion on most part of surface. Therefore, the refined SAR-based pixel-tracking method, including topographic effect compensation operation, provides a useful and robust tool to map and measure the glacier motion in mountain area with complex terrain.
KeywordsMountain glacier Ice surface velocity Pixel-tracking technique West Kunlun Shan ALOS/PALSAR
The work was supported by the Funds from International Cooperation and Exchange of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 41120114001), Key Program for International Cooperation Projects of CAS (No. 131211KYSB20150035), and Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (No. 2015QNA32). The study also was partially supported by a Project Funded by the Priority Academic Program Development of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions. The ALOS/PALSAR SAR data employed in this study were archived and provided by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
- Cuffey KM, Paterson WSB (2010) The physics of glaciers, 4th edn. Elsevier, AmsterdamGoogle Scholar
- Ma Q, Zheng B, Jiao K, Iwata S, Fushimi H (1989) Glacial geomorphological features in upper reaches of Yurunkax River on the north slope of the West Kunlun Mountains. Bull Glacier Res 7:139–144Google Scholar
- Thompson LG, MosleyThompson E, Davis ME, Lin PN, Dai J, Bolzan JF (1995) A 1000 year climatic ice-core record from the Guliya Ice Cap, China: its relationship to global climate variability. Ann Glaciol 21:175–181Google Scholar
- Trouye E, Vasile G, Gay M, BombrunL Grussenmeyer P, Landes T, Nicolas JM, Bolon P, Petillot I, Julea A, Valet L, Chanussot J, Koehl M (2007) Combining airborne photographs and spaceborne SAR data to monitor temperate glaciers: potentials and limits. IEEE Trans Geosci Remote Sens 45(4):905–924. doi: 10.1109/tgrs.2006.890554 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Yao T, Pu J, Lu A, Wang Y, Yu W (2007) Recent glacial retreat and its impact on hydrological processes on the Tibetan Plateau, China, and surrounding regions. Arct Antarct Alp Res 39(4):642–650. doi:10.1657/1523-0430(07-510)[YAO]2.0.CO;2Google Scholar
- Zhang Z, Jiao K (1987) Modern glaciers on the south slope of West Kunlun Mountains (in Akasyqin Lake and Guozha Co Lake drainage areas). Bull Glacier Res 5:85–91Google Scholar