Subglacial controls on the flow of Institute Ice Stream, West Antarctica

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Title: Subglacial controls on the flow of Institute Ice Stream, West Antarctica
Author(s): Siegert, MJ
Ross, N
Li, J
Schroeder, DM
Rippin, D
Ashmore, D
Bingham, R
Gogineni, P
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: The Institute Ice Stream (IIS) rests on a reverse-sloping bed, extending >150 km upstream into the ~1.8 km deep Robin Subglacial Basin, placing it at the threshold of marine ice-sheet instability. Understanding IIS vulnerability has focused on the effect of grounding-line melting, which is forecast to increase significantly this century. Changes to ice-flow dynamics are also important to IIS stability, yet little is known about them. Here we reveal the trunk of the IIS occurs downstream of the intersection of three discrete subglacial features; a large ‘active’ subglacial lake, a newly-discovered sharp transition to a zone of weak basal sediments, and a major tectonic rift. The border of IIS trunk flow is confined by the sediment on one side, and by a transition between basal melting and freezing at the border with the Bungenstock Ice Rise. By showing how basal sediment and water dictate present-day flow of IIS, we reveal that ice-sheet stability here is dependent on this unusual arrangement.
Publication Date: 12-May-2016
Date of Acceptance: 4-Apr-2016
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/30606
DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1017/aog.2016.17
ISSN: 1727-5644
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Start Page: 19
End Page: 24
Journal / Book Title: Annals of Glaciology
Volume: 57
Issue: 73
Sponsor/Funder: Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)
Funder's Grant Number: NE/G00465X/3
Copyright Statement: © The Author(s) 2016 This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Science & Technology
Physical Sciences
Geography, Physical
Geosciences, Multidisciplinary
Physical Geography
Geology
basal hydrology
ice dynamics
radio-echo sounding
sediments
WEDDELL SEA SECTOR
THWAITES GLACIER
EAST ANTARCTICA
SHEET
BED
BENEATH
ONSET
CRYOSAT-2
GEOLOGY
SURFACE
Meteorology & Atmospheric Sciences
0401 Atmospheric Sciences
0404 Geophysics
0406 Physical Geography And Environmental Geoscience
Publication Status: Published
Appears in Collections:Centre for Environmental Policy
Faculty of Natural Sciences



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