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Glaciological studies on the King George Island ice cap, South Shetland Islands, Antarctica

  • Wen Jiahong (a1) (a2), Kang Jiancheng (a1), Han Jiankang (a3), Xie Zichu (a3), Liu Leibao (a1) and Wang Dali (a1)...

Abstract

The King George Island ice cap, South Shetland Islands, Antarctica, was studied between 1985 and 1992. At the steady-state equilibrium-line altitude of the ice cap, the mean annual temperature is -3.6°C, the mean summer (December-February) temperature is 0°C and annual precipitation is 800 mm w.e. Precipitation increases rapidly with elevation, and annual accumulation rate at the Main Dome summit reaches 2480 mm a−1. Between 1985 and 1991 the equilibrium-line elevation averaged 140-150 m a.s.l. The ice cap has been in an overall stable state for the past 20 years, going from a weak negative to a small positive mass imbalance as increased precipitation outweighs the effects of rising temperatures. Temperatures at the bottom of the active layer over most of the accumulation area are close to 0°C, with colder temperatures down to -1.9°C in the ablation zone. Soluble impurities in the ice cap are mainly from marine sources, while undissolved mineral material amounts to only 15-54% of the total microparticle content.

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References

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Glaciological studies on the King George Island ice cap, South Shetland Islands, Antarctica

  • Wen Jiahong (a1) (a2), Kang Jiancheng (a1), Han Jiankang (a3), Xie Zichu (a3), Liu Leibao (a1) and Wang Dali (a1)...

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