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Subglacial lakes and hydrology across the Ellsworth Subglacial Highlands, West Antarctica, 1977-2017
GB/NERC/BAS/PDC/01401

Summary

Abstract:
A new subglacial bed Digital Elevation Model (DEM) from Ellsworth Subglacial Highlands (ESH) was created from previously gridded bed elevation data and new unpublished radar data. The new DEM includes the upper reaches of Pine Island Glacier, Rutford and Institute Ice Streams and reveals new topographical features. The main findings on this new DEM are two linear deep throughs with a perpendicular transection valley near Subglacial Lake Ellsworth. Additionally, using the new DEM and ice surface elevation data from CryoSat2 ice surface DEM, a hydropotential model was built and used to create a detailed hydropotential model of ESH to simulate the subglacial hydrological network. This approach allowed us to characterize basal hydrology, subglacial water catchments and connections between them. In this characterization we noticed the mismatch between subglacial hydrological catchment and ice surfaces catchment of Rutford Ice Stream, Pine Island Glacier and Thwaites Glacier.

Funding was provided by NERC Antarctic Funding Initiative (AFI) grants NE/D008751/1, NE/D009200/1, and NE/D008638/1, and NERC grant NE/G013071/1.

Keywords:
Ellsworth Mountains, Pine Island Glacier, Rutford Ice Stream, Thwaites Glacier, subglacial hydrology

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