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Ice-sheet flow conditions deduced from mechanical tests of ice core

  • Atsushi Miyamoto (a1), Hideki Narita (a1), Takeo Hondoh (a1), Hitoshi Shoji (a2), Kunio Kawada (a3), Okitsugu Watanabe (a4), Dorthe Dahl-Jensen (a5), Niels S. Gundestrup (a5), Henrik B. Clausen (a5) and Paul Duval (a6)...

Abstract

Uniaxial compression tests were performed on samples of the Greenland Ice Gore Project (GRIP) deep ice core, both in the field and later in a cold-room laboratory, in order to understand the ice-flow behavior of large ice sheets. Experiments were conducted under conditions of constant strain rate (type A) and constant load (type B). Fifty-four uniaxial-compression test specimens from 1327-2922 m were selected. Each test specimen (25 mm x 25 mm x 90 mm) was prepared with its uniaxial stress axis inclined 45° from the core axis in order to examine the flow behavior of strong single-maximum ice-core samples with basal planes parallel to the horizontal plane of the ice sheet. The ice-flow enhancement factors show a gradual increase with depth down to approximately 2000 m. These results can be interpreted in terms of an increase in the fourth-order Schmid factor. Below 2000 m depth, the flow-enhancement factor increases to about 20-30 with a relatively high variability When the Schmid factor was > 0.46, the enhancement factor obtained was higher than expected from the .-axis concentrations measured. The higher values of flow-enhancement factor were obtained from specimens with a cloudy band structure. It was revealed that cloudy bands affect ice-deformation processes, but the details remain unclear.

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References

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