• Parmanand Sharma

      Articles written in Journal of Earth System Science

    • Chemical characterisation of meltwater draining from Gangotri Glacier, Garhwal Himalaya, India

      Virendra Bahadur Singh A L Ramanathan Jose George Pottakkal Parmanand Sharma Anurag Linda Mohd Farooq Azam C Chatterjee

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      A detailed analytical study of major cations (Ca2+, Mg2+, Na+, K+) and anions (SO$^{2−}_{4}$, HCO$^{−}_{3}$, Cl, NO$^{−}_{3}$) of meltwater draining from Gangotri Glacier was carried out to understand major ion chemistry and to get an insight into geochemical weathering processes controlling hydrochemistry of the glacier. In the meltwater, the abundance order of cations and anions varied as follows: Ca2+ > Mg2+ > K+ > Na+ and SO$^{2−}_{4}$ > HCO$^{−}_{3}$ < Cl > NO$^{−}_{3}$, respectively. Calcium and magnesium are dominant cations while sulphate and bicarbonate are dominant anions. Weathering of rocks is the dominant mechanism controlling the hydrochemistry of drainage basin. The relative high contribution of (Ca+Mg) to the total cations (TZ+), high (Ca+Mg)/(Na+K) ratio (2.63) and low (Na+K)/TZ+ ratio (0.29) indicate the dominance of carbonate weathering as a major source for dissolved ions in the glacier meltwater. Sulphide oxidation and carbonation are the main proton supplying geochemical reactions controlling the rock weathering in the study area. Statistical analysis was done to identify various factors controlling the dissolved ionic strength of Gangotri Glacier meltwater.

    • Role of debris cover to control specific ablation of adjoining Batal and Sutri Dhaka glaciers in Chandra Basin (Himachal Pradesh) during peak ablation season

      Parmanand Sharma Lavkush K Patel Rasik Ravindra Ajit Singh K Mahalinganathan Meloth Thamban

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      As part of the on-going annual mass balance measurements on Batal and Sutri Dhaka glaciers, observationswere made during peak ablation (August–September) season in 2013 to understand the responseof debris covered and clean-ice (debris free) glacier surface to melting processes. Though, both the Bataland Sutri Dhaka glaciers have almost similar geographical disposition, Batal shows extensive debriscover (90% of the ablation area), while the latter is free from debris (only 5% of the ablation area). Thethickness of debris in Batal glacier is inversely proportional to altitude, whereas Sutri Dhaka mostlyexperienced debris-free zone except snout area. Observation revealed that the vertical gradient of ablationrate in ablation area is contrastingly opposite in these two glaciers, reflecting significant control ofdebris thickness and their distribution over glacier surface on the ablation rates. While different thickness(2–100 cm) of debris have attenuated melting rates up to 70% of total melting, debris cover of 2 cm thickness has accelerated melting up to 10% of the total melting. Estimated melt ratio revealsthat about 90% of the ablation area has experienced inhibited melting in Batal glacier, whereas only lessthan 5% ablation area of Sutri Dhaka has undergone inhibited melting. Comparison of topographicalmaps of 1962 with successive satellite images of the area demonstrates a terminus retreat of 373 ± 33.5 mand 579 ± 33.5 m for Batal and Sutri Dhaka glaciers for the period 1962–2013, respectively.

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

      Lavkush Patel Parmanand Sharma Meloth Thamban

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      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.

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