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Assessing controls on mass budget and surface velocity variations of glaciers in Western Himalaya

Bhushan, S and Syed, TH and Arendt, AA and Kulkarni, AV and Sinha, D (2018) Assessing controls on mass budget and surface velocity variations of glaciers in Western Himalaya. In: Scientific Reports, 8 (1).

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-27014-y


This study analyses spatially resolved estimates of mass budget and surface velocity of glaciers in the Zanskar Basin of Western Himalayas in the context of varying debris cover, glacier hypsometry, and orientation. The regional glacier mass budget for the period of 1999-2014 is -0.38 ± 0.09 m w.e./a. Individual mass budgets of 10 major glaciers in the study area varied between -0.13 ± 0.07 and -0.66 ± 0.09 m w.e./a. Elevation changes on debris-covered ice are considerably less negative than over clean ice. At the same time, glaciers having >20 of their area covered by debris have more negative glacier-wide mass budgets than those with <20 debris cover. This paradox is likely explained by the comparatively larger ablation area of extensively debris-covered glaciers compared to clean-ice glaciers, as indicated by hypsometric analysis. Additionally, surface velocities computed for the 2013-14 period reveal near stagnant debris-covered snouts but dynamically active main trunks, with a maximum recorded velocity of individual glaciers ranging between ~50 ± 5.58 and 90 ± 5.58 m/a. The stagnant debris-covered extent, which varies from glacier to glacier, is also characterized by ice cliffs and melt ponds that appreciably increase the overall surface melting of debris-covered areas.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Scientific Reports
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
Additional Information: The copyright for this article belongs to the Author.
Keywords: article; budget; glacier; melting point; pond; snout; trunk; velocity; velocity
Department/Centre: Division of Mechanical Sciences > Divecha Centre for Climate Change
Date Deposited: 23 Aug 2022 10:05
Last Modified: 23 Aug 2022 10:05
URI: https://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/76203

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