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Marine ice beneath the Filchner–Ronne Ice Shelf, Antarctica: a comparison of estimated thickness distributions

  • Ian Joughin (a1) and David G. Vaughan (a2)

Abstract

In an earlier study, melt/freeze rates beneath most of the Filchner–Ronne Ice Shelf, Antarctica, were estimated using an assumption of a steady-state ice shelf applied to a velocity field derived from RADARSAT and ERS-1 interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) data and an ice-thickness map inferred from ERS-1 satellite radar altimeter data. Here, we use these basal accumulation rates and the InSAR velocity data to estimate the distribution and thickness of marine ice beneath the Filchner–Ronne Ice Shelf. These estimates are compared with a marine-ice thickness map derived from radio-echo sounding (RES) data and airborne radar altimetry. In general, we find close agreement between these estimates. In the few locations where there are significant differences, the discrepancies are largely attributable to artifacts in the radar-altimeter thickness map. With improvements such as a much smaller footprint, the next generation of altimeters should overcome many of these limitations, leading to improved marine-ice accumulation estimates. Overall, the good agreement with the RES data validates the InSAR-based estimates over much of the Ronne Ice Shelf.

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References

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