Advertisement

Glacier Stress Pattern as an Indicator for Climate Change

  • Ashit Kumar SwainEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

Response of glaciers and Polar ice sheet to ongoing climate change is of global concern as the ice mass in the region can impact the earth system adversely. The crevasses formed as a response of the stress pattern to surface slope, bedrock slope and ice mass thickness in the glaciers, indicate the trend of the climate change. The stress patterns were studied on the Polar ice sheet near Schirmacher Oasis in central Dronning Maud Land of East Antarctica. These studies were carried out by estimating the bedrock slope and ice thickness using Ground Penetrating Radar along with surface elevation, surface slope and bedrock elevation estimation. The surface elevation and surface slope of the Polar ice sheet of Antarctica near the Schirmacher Oasis show gradual increase towards southwest from northeast. The study area to the south of the eastern Schirmacher Oasis shows a variation of stress in the range of 25–100 kPa. The change in the stress pattern is not abrupt in the Polar ice sheet. The variation of stress is less in the study area, with a large tract in the central part showing less stress. There is an elongated zone of moderate stress with a trend of ENE – WSW observed towards the northern part and close to the Schirmacher Oasis – Polar ice sheet margin. The crevasse pattern in the study area shows an intimate link with the glacial stress in the region, for which repeat observations are required frequently to understand the influence of climate change.

Keywords

Glacier stress Ice thickness Surface slope Bedrock slope Crevasse pattern Polar ice sheet 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The author thanks the Director General, Geological Survey of India (GSI) and Director, National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR) for permission to work in Antarctica during the winter period of 27th Indian Antarctic Expedition (IAE) as well as the summer period of 29th, 30th, 32nd, 34th and 36th expeditions. He is grateful to Shri Arun Chaturvedi, leader of 27th IAE, for supporting and guiding him throughout the polar winter period in Antarctica as well as the leaders of the subsequent expeditions for facilitating the work for the studies on Polar ice sheet. He also acknowledges the logistic support provided by the staff and fellow expedition members at Maitri station. The Director and officers of Polar Studies Division are acknowledged for providing assistance in the work at headquarters. The guidance of Prof. S. Goswami, Sambalpur University and the support of Dr. Reenu Joshi, GSI in writing this manuscript are acknowledged. The author also expresses his gratitude to the anonymous reviewer for valuable comments in the upgradation of the manuscript.

References

  1. Arcone SA, Daniel EL, Allan JD (1995) Short pulse radar wavelet recovery and resolution of dielectric contrasts within englacial and basal ice of Matanuska Glacier, Alaska, USA. J Glaciol 41:68–86CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Benn DI, Warren CR, Mottram RH (2007) Calving processes and the dynamics of calving glaciers. Earth Sci Rev 82(3–4):143–179.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earscirev.2007.02.002CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Church JA, White NJ (2006) A 20th century acceleration in global sea level rise. Geophys Res Lett 33(L01602):1–4.  https://doi.org/10.1029/2005GL024826CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Clark PU, Marshall SJ, Clarke GK, Hostetler SW, Licciardi JM, Teller JT (2001) Freshwater forcing of abrupt climate change during the last glaciation. Science 293(5528):283–287CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Davis JL, Annan AP (1989) Ground penetrating radar for high resolution mapping of soil and rock stratigraphy. Geophys Prospect 37:531–551CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Derksen C, Brown R (2012) Spring snow cover extent reductions in the 2008–2012 period exceeding climate model projections. Geophy Res Lett 39(19).  https://doi.org/10.1029/2012GL053387
  7. Dharwadkar A, Roy SK, Kumar P, Swain AK, Raghuram (2013) GPR profiling over Lake Untersee, central Dronning Maud Land, East Antarctica. Indian J Geosci 67:153–158Google Scholar
  8. Gergan JT, Dobhal DP, Kaushik R (1999) Ground penetrating radar ice thickness measurements of Dokrianibamak (glacier), Garhwal Himalaya. Curr Sci 77:169–173Google Scholar
  9. Hansen J, Sato M, Ruedy R, Lo K, Lea DW, Medina-Elizade M (2006) Global temperature change. Proc Nat Acad Sci 103(39):14288–14293.  https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0606291103CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Harris C, Haeberli W, Vonder Mühll D, King L (2001) Permafrost monitoring in the high mountains of Europe: the PACE project in its global context. Permafr Periglac Process 12(1):3–11CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Huang JP, Swain AK, Thacker RW, Ravindra R, Andersen DT, Bej AK (2013) Bacterial diversity of the rock-water interface in an East Antarctic freshwater ecosystem, Lake Tawani (P). Aquat Biosyst 9(1):4–14CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Hock R (2005) Glacier melt: a review of processes and their modelling. Prog Phys Geogr 29(3):362–391.  https://doi.org/10.1191/0309133305pp453raCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Huybrechts P, De Wolde J (1999) The dynamic response of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets to multiple-century climatic warming. J Clim 12(8):2169–2188CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Irvine-Fynn TDL, Sanz-Ablanedo E, Rutter N, Smith MW, Chandler JH (2014) Measuring glacier surface roughness using plot-scale, close-range digital photogrammetry. J Glaciol 60(223):957–969.  https://doi.org/10.3189/2014JoG14J032CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Jol HM, Smith DG (1991) Ground penetrating radar of northern lacustrine deltas. Can J Earth Sci 28:1939–1947CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Kunkel KE, Karl TR, Brooks H, Kossin J, Lawiemore JH, Arndt D, Bosart L, Changnon D, Cutter SL, Doesken N, Emanuel K (2013) Monitoring and understanding trends in extreme storms: state of knowledge. Bull Am Meteorol Soc 94(4):499–514CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Kwok R, Rothrock DA (2009) Decline in Arctic sea ice thickness from submarine and ICESat records: 1958–2008. Geophy Res Lett 36(15).  https://doi.org/10.1029/2009GL039035
  18. Levitus S, Antonov JI, Boyer TP, Locarnini RA, Garcia HE, Mishonov AV (2009) Global ocean heat content 1955–2008 in light of recently revealed instrumentation problems. Geophy Res Lett 36(7).  https://doi.org/10.1029/2008GL037155
  19. Mccarthy JJ, Canziani OF, Leary NA, Dokken DJ, White KS (Eds) (2001) Climate change 2001: impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability: contribution of Working Group II to the Third Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, vol 2. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, pp 3–100Google Scholar
  20. Murray T, Stuart GW, Miller PJ, Woodward J, Smith AM, Porter PR, Jiskoot H (2000) Glacier surge propagation by thermal evolution at the bed. J Geophy Res Solid Earth 105:13491–13507CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Mottram RH, Benn DI (2009) Testing crevasse-depth models: a field study at Breiðamerkurjökull, Iceland. J Glaciol 55:746–752.  https://doi.org/10.3189/002214309789470905CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Nye JF (1959) A method of determining the strain-rate tensor at the surface of a glacier. J Glaciol 3(25):409–419CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Osterkamp TE, Romanovsky VE (1999) Evidence for warming and thawing of discontinuous permafrost in Alaska. Permafr Periglac Process 10(1):17–37CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Polyak L, Alley RB, Andrews JT, Brigham-Grette J, Cronin TM, Darby DA, Dyke AS, Fitzpatrick JJ, Funder S, Holland M, Jennings AE (2010) History of sea ice in the Arctic. Quat Sci Rev 29(15–16):1757–1778CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Raina VK (2009) Himalayan glaciers. A state-of-art review of glacial studies, glacial retreat and climate change. Ministry of Environment and Forests, India. Available at: http://go.nature.com/pLgJ6D
  26. Ravindra R, Chaturvedi A, Beg MJ (2002) Melt Water Lakes of Schirmacher oasis - their genetic aspects and classification. In: Sahoo D, Pandey PC (eds) Advances in marine and Antarctic science. APH Publishing Corporation, New Delhi, pp 301–313Google Scholar
  27. Robert A (1998) Dielectric permittivity of concrete between 50 MHz and 1 GHz and GPR measurements for building materials evaluation. J Appl Geophys 40:89–94CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Sabine CL, Feely RA, Gruber N, Key RM, Lee K, Bullister JL, Wanninkhof R, Wong CS, Wallace DWR, Tiltbrook B, Millero FJ, Peng T, Kozyr A, Ono T, Rios AF (2004) The oceanic sink for anthropogenic CO2. Science 305(5682):367–371.  https://doi.org/10.1126/science.1097403CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Scherler D, Bookhagen B, Strecker MR (2011) Spatially variable response of Himalayan glaciers to climate change affected by debris cover. Nat Geosci 4(3):156CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Sunil PS, Reddy CD, Ponraj M, Dhar A, Jayapaul D (2007) GPS determination of the velocity and strain rate field on Schirmacher Glacier, central Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. J Glaciol 53:558–564CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Swain AK, Raghuram (2013) Ground penetrating radar survey of Lake Untersee, central Dronning Maud Land, East Antarctica. Report of Geological Survey of India, Kolkata, pp 6–32Google Scholar
  32. Swain AK, Goswami S (2014) Continuous GPR survey using Multiple Low Frequency antennas – case studies from Schirmacher Oasis. East Antarctica Int J Earth Sci Eng 7(4):1623–1629Google Scholar
  33. Swain AK (2015) Geomorphological evolution of Schirmacher Oasis, East Antarctica. Ph.D. Thesis, Ravenshaw University, CuttackGoogle Scholar
  34. Swain AK (2018) Bathymetry of Schirmacher lakes as a tool for geomorphological studies. In: Siegert MJ, Jameison SSR, White DA (eds) Exploration of subsurface Antarctica: uncovering past changes and modern processes. Special publication, vol 461. Geological Society, London, pp 77–93.  https://doi.org/10.1144/SP461.13CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Swain AK, Mukhtar MA, Majeed Z, Shukla SP (2018) Depth profiling and recessional history of the Hamtah and Parang glaciers in Lahaul and Spiti, Himachal Pradesh, Indian Himalaya. In: Pant NC, Ravindra R, Srivastava D, Thompson LG (eds) The Himalayan cryosphere: past and present. Special publication, 462. Geological Society, London.  https://doi.org/10.1144/SP462.11CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Swain AK, Roy SK, Shrivastava PK (2017) Stress pattern in the glaciers and its relationship with the ice thickness and bedrock slope – a case study from Svalbard Arctic. Abstract in 9th international conference on Geomorphology held at New Delhi on 6–11 Nov 2017, pp 176–177Google Scholar
  37. Swain AK (2019) Influence of thermal conductivity of rocks on Polar ice sheet recession near Schirmacher Oasis, East Antarctica. J Geol Soc India 93(4):455–465Google Scholar
  38. Singh SP, Rathore BP, Bahuguna IM, Ramanathan AL, Ajai (2012) Estimation of glacier ice thickness using ground penetrating radar in the Himalayan region. Curr Sci 103:68–73Google Scholar
  39. USSR (1972) Topographic map of the Schirmacher Oasis (1:25000) published in Leningrad, USSR.Google Scholar
  40. Van Der Veen CJ (1998) Fracture mechanics approach to penetration of surface crevasses on glaciers. Cold Reg Sci Technol 27(1):31–47.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S0165-232X(97)00022-0CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Vaughan DG, Comiso JC, Allison I, Carrasco J, Kaser G, Kwok R, Mote P, Murray T, Paul F, Ren J, Rignot E (2013) Observations: cryosphere. Clim Chang 2103:317–382Google Scholar
  42. Weertman J (1964) Rate of growth or shrinkage of nonequilibrium ice sheets. J Glaciol 5(38):145–158CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. GSSI (2003) GEOPHYSICAL SURVEY SYSTEMS INC 2003, RADAN User’s Manual. Geophysical Survey Systems, NashuaGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Geological Survey of IndiaGangtokIndia

Personalised recommendations