• Spatio-temporal variability of snow water equivalent over the Vestre Broggerbreen and Feiringbreen glaciers, Ny-Alesund, Svalbard

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    • Keywords


      Mass balance; snow water equivalent; Vestre Broggerbreen; Feiringbreen; Svalbard.

    • Abstract


      Snow water equivalent (SWE) is important for understanding the hydrological significance of glaciers. In this study, the spatial and temporal variability in SWE and its impact over the Vestre Broggerbreen and Feiringbreen glaciers around Ny-Alesund in Svalbard (high Arctic) were investigated in the early snow season for the period 2012–2017. The physical properties like depth and density were measured directly in the field and spatial characteristics curvature, slope and aspect were extracted from the digital elevation model. The Vestre Broggerbreen (4.1 km$^{2}$) is a NE flowing glacier, situated around 3 km SW to Ny-Alesund village while the Feiringbreen (7.5 km$^{2}$) is a SW flowing glacier, situated around 14 km NE across the Kongsfjorden. The SWE for the studied period (2012–2017) varied from 141 to 1188 mm. The significant (R$^{2}$ = 0.97) correlation indicated a possible control of snow depth over SWE compared to altitude (R$^{2}$ = 0.65) and other spatial characteristics. The glaciers have experienced negative balance and lost a significant amount of ice ($\sim$4 m.w.e.) since 2012. The observations suggest that the increased liquid precipitation and temperature in the early snow season have reduced SWE over both these valley glaciers. The reduced SWE has also contributed to decreases in the mass balance of these glaciers.

    • Author Affiliations


      Lavkush Patel1 Parmanand Sharma1 Meloth Thamban1

      1. National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research, Vasco-Da-Gama, Goa 403 804, India.
    • Dates

  • Journal of Earth System Science | News

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      Posted on July 25, 2019

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