Explaining the presence of perennial liquid water bodies in the firn of the Greenland Ice Sheet

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Publication Type pre-print
School or College College of Social & Behavioral Science
Department Geography
Creator Forster, Richard R.
Other Author Munneke, P. Kuipers; Ligtenberg, S. R. M.; van den Broeke, M. R.; van Angelen, J. H.
Title Explaining the presence of perennial liquid water bodies in the firn of the Greenland Ice Sheet
Date 2014-01-01
Description Recent observations have shown that the firn layer on the Greenland Ice Sheet features subsurface bodies of liquid water at the end of the winter season. Using a model with basic firn hydrology, thermodynamics, and compaction in one dimension, we find that a combination of moderate to strong surface melt and a high annual accumulation rate is required to form such a perennial firn aquifer. The high accumulation rate ensures that there is pore space available to store water at a depth where it is protected from the winter cold. Low-accumulation sites cannot provide sufficiently deep pore space to store liquid water. However, for even higher accumulation rates, the total cold content of the winter accumulation becomes sufficient to refreeze the total amount of liquid water. As a consequence, wintertime or springtime observations of subsurface liquid water in these specific accumulation conditions cannot distinguish between a truly perennial firn aquifer and water layers that will ultimately refreeze completely.
Type Text
Publisher American Geophysical Union (AGU)
Volume 41
Issue 2
First Page 476
Last Page 483
Language eng
Bibliographic Citation Munneke, P. K., Ligtenberg, S. R. M., van den Broeke, M. R., van Angelen, J. H., & Forster, R. R. (2014). Explaining the presence of perennial liquid water bodies in the firn of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Geophysical Research Letters, 41(2), 476-83.
Rights Management Munneke, P. K., Ligtenberg, S. R. M., van den Broeke, M. R., van Angelen, J. H., & Forster, R. R. (2014). Explaining the presence of perennial liquid water bodies in the firn of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Geophysical Research Letters, 41. Copyright 2014 American Geophysical Union. Reproduced/modified by permission of American Geophysical Union.
Format Medium application/pdf
Format Extent 2,949,774 bytes
Identifier uspace,18452
ARK ark:/87278/s6jq4939
Setname ir_uspace
Date Created 2014-08-15
Date Modified 2014-08-20
ID 712645
Reference URL https://collections.lib.utah.edu/ark:/87278/s6jq4939
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