• DEBANGSHU BANERJEE

      Articles written in Journal of Earth System Science

    • A satellite-based comprehensive observation of glaciological characteristics of Shunkalpa (Ralam) Glacier, Central Himalaya, India

      PRATIMA PANDEY DEBANGSHU BANERJEE PRASHANT K CHAMPATI RAY

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      Shunkalpa Glacier, union of two glaciers namely Kalabaland (10 km long) and Yankchar glaciers (9 km long), is one of the largest glaciers in the Central Indian Himalaya with snout records available since 1886. We aimed to provide a comprehensive status of the glaciological characteristics of the glacier from satellite-based observations by providing the status of the snout fluctuation, surface velocity map, and spatial ice thickness of the glacier. The snout of the Shunkalpa Glacier was receding with a rate of 16 m/yr from 1990 to 2016. The satellite-derived surface velocity and ice thickness of the glacier have spatial variations owing to different topographical characteristics of the glacier. The mean velocity of the Shunkalpa Glacier was 22 m/yr and the mean ice thickness was 109 m. In terms of velocity, the Kalabaland Glacier was more dynamic than the Yankchar Glacier.

    • Simulation and risk assessment of a possible glacial lake outburst flood (GLOF) in the Bhilangna Valley, central Himalaya, India

      PRATIMA PANDEY DEBANGSHU BANERJEE SHEIKH NAWAZ ALI MD ATAULLAH RAZA KHAN PRAKASH CHAUHAN SHAKTIMAN SINGH

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      Catastrophic hyper-concentrated flow during the glacial lake outburst flood (GLOFs) and its far-reaching consequences on life, property and infrastructure are the foremost concern throughout the high mountain areas. The present investigation focuses on a potentially dangerous morainedammed proglacial lake in the Bhilangna Valley, central Himalaya, India, which has been expanding at an alarming rate during the last two decades. This lake has expanded from ${\sim}$0.15 to ${\sim}$0.35 km$^2$ during 1999–2020 at the cost of loss in the associated glacier area by ${\sim}$0.21 km$^2$ during the same time period. We have tried to understand the possible trigger and simulated the worst-case outburst scenario and its impact on the settlements and infrastructure in the downstream valley. Two breaching scenarios: (1) overtopping and (2) piping which may be caused by the ice calving into the lake or through avalanches, have been generated, and a maximum possible discharge amount of ${\sim}$4377 cumec has been estimated considering the lake depth as 30 m. The discharge can inundate an area of ${\sim}$19 km$^2$ along the river channel with a mean water depth of ${\sim}$38 m and an average velocity of ${\sim}$16 m/s. The MODIS-based land surface temperature analysis from 2002 to 2020 suggests that ${\sim}$19% of the total area of the Bhilangna Basin has biennial surface temperature ${\le}$0°C, indicating possible permafrost zone. Both the temperature analysis and the surface features surrounding the lake suggest the region to be dominated by permafrost.

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