Skip to main content

Lake Ellsworth

  • 358 Accesses

Part of the Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences Series book series (EESS)

Introduction

Subglacial Lake Ellsworth is located near the Ellsworth Mountains in West Antarctica at 78.9°S 90.6°W. The lake basin is in the center of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) in the Pine Island Glacier drainage basin, 20 km from the ice divide with the Institute Ice Stream. The lake is approximately 15 km long and over 3 km across at its widest point. Seismic surveys have revealed that the lake is over 100 m deep in places. The ice sheet above the lake is between 2.9 and 3.3 km thick, with the lake surface over 1 km beneath present sea level within a distinct topographic hollow, ∼1.5 km deeper than the surrounding subglacial bed. The basin is fjord-like in its topographic setting, and is one of a series of fjord-like over-deepenings on the western flank of the Ellsworth Subglacial Highlands.

This summary of our current knowledge will document the series of radio-echo sounding (RES) transects and field campaigns from which the lake has been identified. Basal thermal regime...

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Buying options

Chapter
USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • DOI: 10.1007/978-90-481-2642-2_317
  • Chapter length: 4 pages
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
eBook
USD   549.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-90-481-2642-2
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Hardcover Book
USD   699.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Lake Ellsworth, Figure 1

Bibliography

  • Hulbe, C. L., and MacAyeal, D. R., 1999. A new numerical model of coupled inland ice sheet, ice stream, and ice shelf flow and its application to the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Journal of Geophysical Research, 104(25), 25,349–25,366.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lake Ellsworth Consortium, 2007. Exploration of Ellsworth Subglacial Lake: a concept paper on the development, organisation and execution of an experiment to explore, measure and sample the environment of a West Antarctic subglacial lake. Reviews in Environmental Science and Biotechnology, 6, 161–179.

    Google Scholar 

  • Mayer, C., Grosfeld, K., and Siegert, M. J., 2003. The effect of salinity on water circulation within subglacial Lake Vostok. Geophysical Research Letters, 30(14), 1767, doi:10.1029/2003GL017380.

    Google Scholar 

  • Oswald, G. K. A., and Robin, G. de Q., 1973. Lakes beneath the Antarctic Ice Sheet. Nature, 245, 251–254.

    Google Scholar 

  • Rivera, A., et al., 2006. Expedicion al lago subglacial Ellsworth, Boletin Antarctico Chileno, 25(1), 7–11.

    Google Scholar 

  • Siegert, M. J., Dowdeswell, J. A., Gorman, M. R., and McIntyre, N. F., 1996. An inventory of Antarctic sub-glacial lakes. Antarctic Science, 8, 281–286.

    Google Scholar 

  • Siegert, M. J., Hindmarsh, R., Corr, H., Smith, A. M., Woodward, J., King, E. C., Payne, T., and Joughin, I., 2004. Subglacial Lake Ellsworth: a candidate for in situ exploration in West Antarctica. Geophysical Research Letters, 31, L23403.

    Google Scholar 

  • Vaughan, D. G., Rivera, A., Woodward, J., Corr, H. F. J., Wendt, J., and Zamora, R., 2007. Topographic and hydrological controls on Subglacial Lake Ellsworth, West Antarctica. Geophysical Research Letters, 34, L18501, doi:10.1029 /2007GL030769.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgments

Funding was provided by UK NERC grants NER/D008751/1, NE/D009200/1 and NER/D008638/1.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to John Woodward .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 2011 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

About this entry

Cite this entry

Woodward, J., Siegert, M.J., Smith, A.M., Ross, N. (2011). Lake Ellsworth. In: Singh, V.P., Singh, P., Haritashya, U.K. (eds) Encyclopedia of Snow, Ice and Glaciers. Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences Series. Springer, Dordrecht. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-90-481-2642-2_317

Download citation