Aerial photographs reveal late-20th-century dynamic ice loss in northwestern greenland.

Publication: Research - peer-reviewJournal article – Annual report year: 2012

  • Author: Kjær, Kurt H.

    University of Copenhagen2, Denmark

  • Author: Khan, Shfaqat A

    Geodesy, National Space Institute, Technical University of Denmark, Elektrovej, 2800, Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark

  • Author: Korsgaard, Niels J

    University of Copenhagen2, Denmark

  • Author: Wahr, John

    Department of Physics and Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, University of Colorado, United States

  • Author: Bamber, Jonathan L.

    University of Bristol, United Kingdom

  • Author: Hurkmans, Ruud

    University of Bristol, United Kingdom

  • Author: van den Broeke, Michiel

    Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research, Utrecht University, Netherlands

  • Author: Timm, Lars H.

    University of Copenhagen2, Denmark

  • Author: Kjeldsen, Kristian Kjellerup

    University of Copenhagen2, Denmark

  • Author: Bjørk, Anders Anker

    University of Copenhagen2, Denmark

  • Author: Larsen, Nicolaj Krog

    Aarhus University, Denmark

  • Author: Jørgensen, Lars Tyge

    Danish National Cadastre and Survey, Denmark

  • Author: Færch-Jensen, Anders

    Danish National Cadastre and Survey, Copenhagen, Denmark

  • Author: Willerslev, Eske

    University of Copenhagen2, Denmark

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Global warming is predicted to have a profound impact on the Greenland Ice Sheet and its contribution to global sea-level rise. Recent mass loss in the northwest of Greenland has been substantial. Using aerial photographs, we produced digital elevation models and extended the time record of recent observed marginal dynamic thinning back to the mid-1980s. We reveal two independent dynamic ice loss events on the northwestern Greenland Ice Sheet margin: from 1985 to 1993 and 2005 to 2010, which were separated by limited mass changes. Our results suggest that the ice mass changes in this sector were primarily caused by short-lived dynamic ice loss events rather than changes in the surface mass balance. This finding challenges predictions about the future response of the Greenland Ice Sheet to increasing global temperatures.
Original languageEnglish
JournalScience
Publication date2012
Volume337
Issue6094
Pages569-573
ISSN0036-8075
DOIs
StatePublished
CitationsWeb of Science® Times Cited: 12
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