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Modeling ice streams: Derived quantitiesThe model addressed is a finite-element, map-plane, time-dependent, column-averaged continuity equation solver. The key to the fitting process involves the balance between ice motion dominated by flow in internal layers, and ice motion dominated by sliding at the bed. The fitting process involves an iterative process carried out in the time domain. Beginning with the portion of the ice sheet being modeled identical to the present ice sheet with uniform flow, sliding, and fraction specified at nominal values, the model monitors each nodal point surface elevation. As the calculated surface elevation deviates from the present surface, a correction proportional to the difference is applied to selected parameter sets. This correction is in a sense that would tend to improve the fit at the particular nodal point. A calculated surface elevation that was higher than the present surface would result in an increased fraction, which would tend to lower the calculated surface (if the flow or sliding constant were being used as the fitting parameter, they would be lowered to improve the fit). This process is allowed to proceed as long as is necessary for the situation to stabilize. Typically, this takes tens of thousands of model years, but the rate is dependent on other external forcings such as the accumulation rate. The primary result is that while a typical sample of ice streams from around Antarctica can be fitted quite reasonably using only the fraction of the velocity due to sliding, a different mechanism seems to be in play along the Siple Coast, where reduced sliding constants are required to attain a reasonable fit. Flow is more strongly channelized in this region, and velocities are, in general, higher than are observed in other regions. It is unlikely that the mechanism that controls the ice movement along the Siple Coast is exactly similar to the mechanisms in the other ice streams. The concept of deformable sediments and their contribution to the fast flow along the Siple Coast may have limited applicability to other Antarctic ice streams.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Fastook, James
(Maine Univ. Orono, ME, United States)
Date Acquired
September 6, 2013
Publication Date
July 1, 1993
Publication Information
Publication: NASA. Goddard Space Flight Center, The First Annual West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) Science Workshop
Subject Category
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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IDRelationTitle19930022689Analytic PrimaryThe First Annual West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) Science Workshop
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