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Analytical solutions for the effect of topography, accumulation rate and lateral flow divergence on isochrone layer geometry

Parrenin, F.; Hindmarsh, R.C.A.; Remy, F.. 2006 Analytical solutions for the effect of topography, accumulation rate and lateral flow divergence on isochrone layer geometry. Journal of Glaciology, 52 (177). 191-202.

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Abstract/Summary

The effect of spatial variations in ice thickness, accumulation rate and lateral flow divergence on radar-detected isochrone geometry in ice sheets is computed using an analytical method, under assumptions of a steady-state ice-sheet geometry, a steady-state accumulation pattern and a horizontally uniform velocity shape function. By using a new coordinate transform, we show that the slope of the isochrones (with a normalized vertical coordinate) depends on three terms: a principal term which determines the sign of the slope, and two scale factors which can modify only the amplitude of the slope. The principal term depends only on a local characteristic time (ice thickness divided by accumulation rate minus melting rate) between the initial and final positions of the ice particle. For plug flow, only the initial and final values have an influence. Further applications are a demonstration of how the vertical velocity profile can be deduced from sharp changes in isochrone slopes induced by abrupt steps in bedrock or mass balance along the ice flow. We also demonstrate ways the new coordinate system may be used to test the accuracy of numerical flow models.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Programmes: BAS Programmes > Antarctic Science in the Global Context (2000-2005) > Global Interactions of the Antarctic Ice Sheet
ISSN: 0022-1430
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: Full text not available from this repository
Additional Keywords: Ice sheets
NORA Subject Terms: Glaciology
Date made live: 20 Aug 2007 15:24
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/92

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