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Influence of high-order mechanics on simulation of glacier response to climate change: insights from Haig Glacier, Canadian Rocky Mountains

Adhikari, S. and Marshall, S. J. (2013) Influence of high-order mechanics on simulation of glacier response to climate change: insights from Haig Glacier, Canadian Rocky Mountains. Cryosphere, 7 (5). pp. 1527-1541. ISSN 1994-0416. doi:10.5194/tc-7-1527-2013. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20140116-135357783

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Abstract

Evolution of glaciers in response to climate change has mostly been simulated using simplified dynamical models. Because these models do not account for the influence of high-order physics, corresponding results may exhibit some biases. For Haig Glacier in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, we test this hypothesis by comparing simulation results obtained from 3-D numerical models that deal with different assumptions concerning physics, ranging from simple shear deformation to comprehensive Stokes flow. In glacier retreat scenarios, we find a minimal role of high-order mechanics in glacier evolution, as geometric effects at our site (the presence of an overdeepened bed) result in limited horizontal movement of ice (flow speed on the order of a few meters per year). Consequently, high-order and reduced models all predict that Haig Glacier ceases to exist by ca. 2080 under ongoing climate warming. The influence of high-order mechanics is evident, however, in glacier advance scenarios, where ice speeds are greater and ice dynamical effects become more important. Although similar studies on other glaciers are essential to generalize such findings, we advise that high-order mechanics are important and therefore should be considered while modeling the evolution of active glaciers. Reduced model predictions may be adequate for other glaciologic and topographic settings, particularly where flow speeds are low and where mass balance changes dominate over ice dynamics in determining glacier geometry.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
http://dx.doi.org/10.5194/tc-7-1527-2013 DOIArticle
http://www.the-cryosphere.net/7/1527/2013/tc-7-1527-2013.htmlPublisherArticle
Additional Information:© 2013 Author(s). This work is distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Published by Copernicus Publications on behalf of the European Geosciences Union. Received: 27 March 2013 – Published in The Cryosphere Discuss.: 24 April 2013 Revised: 4 August 2013 – Accepted: 9 August 2013 – Published: 25 September 2013. This research forms a part of the Western Canadian Cryospheric Network (WC2N), funded by the Canadian Foundation for Climate and Atmospheric Sciences (CFCAS). We also acknowledge support from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada and the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR). S. Adhikari is thankful to E. Larour for hosting him at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) of California Institute of Technology (Caltech) that made the completion of this write-up possible. Constructive comments from M. Pelto, reviewers J. Johnson and T. Zwinger, and the editor F. Pattyn have improved this contribution.
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Canadian Foundation for Climate and Atmospheric Sciences (CFCAS)UNSPECIFIED
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)UNSPECIFIED
Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIfAR)UNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:5
DOI:10.5194/tc-7-1527-2013
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20140116-135357783
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20140116-135357783
Official Citation:Adhikari, S. and Marshall, S. J.: Influence of high-order mechanics on simulation of glacier response to climate change: insights from Haig Glacier, Canadian Rocky Mountains, The Cryosphere, 7, 1527-1541, doi:10.5194/tc-7-1527-2013, 2013
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:43414
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:17 Jan 2014 22:40
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 16:37

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