Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Regional warming triggers sustained mass loss in Northeast Greenland ice sheet


Northeast Greenland, where the glacier is found, is of particular interest as numerical model predictions have suggested there is no significant mass loss for this sector, leading to a probable underestimation of future global sea-level rise from the region.

An international team of scientists, including Professor Jonathan Bamber from the University of Bristol, studied the Northeast Greenland Ice Stream which extends more than 600 km into the interior of the ice sheet: much further than any other in Greenland.

Professor Bamber said: "The Greenland ice sheet has contributed more than any other ice mass to sea level rise over the last two decades and has the potential, if it were completely melted, to raise global sea level by more than seven metres.

"About half of the increased contribution of the ice sheet is due to the speed up of glaciers in the south and northwest. Until recently, Northeast Greenland has been relatively stable. This new study shows that is no longer the case."

The researchers analysed a large collection of historical aerial photography, radar measurements and satellite data that measure the surface elevation, ice speed and bed elevation of the Northeast Greenland Ice Stream.

They found that the glacier started to speed up and lose mass around 2003 as a consequence of a localised increase in temperatures. Their results also showed that mass loss has continued up to the most recent observations in 2012 despite regional temperatures falling back to more typical values.

Professor Bamber said: "Most projections of the future behaviour of the ice sheet have no, or little, contribution from this part of Greenland but these new results suggest that this region is sensitive to changes in climate and has the potential to contribute significantly now and in the future."



'Sustained mass loss of the Northeast Greenland ice sheet triggered by regional warming' by Shfaqat A. Khan, Kurt H. Kjær, Michael Bevis, Jonathan L. Bamber, John Wahr, Kristian K. Kjeldsen, Anders A. Bjørk, Niels J. Korsgaard, Leigh A. Stearns, Michiel R. van den Broeke, Lin Liu, Nicolaj K. Larsen and Ioana S. Muresan in Nature Climate Change

Hannah Johnson | EurekAlert!
Further information:

Further reports about: Bristol Greenland Nature large satellite sensitive stable temperatures triggers

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht NASA's Terra satellite sees Typhoon In-fa stretching
24.11.2015 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

nachricht To save the earth, better nitrogen use on a hungrier planet must be addressed
24.11.2015 | Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Lactate for Brain Energy

Nerve cells cover their high energy demand with glucose and lactate. Scientists of the University of Zurich now provide new support for this. They show for the first time in the intact mouse brain evidence for an exchange of lactate between different brain cells. With this study they were able to confirm a 20-year old hypothesis.

In comparison to other organs, the human brain has the highest energy requirements. The supply of energy for nerve cells and the particular role of lactic acid...

Im Focus: Laser process simulation available as app for first time

In laser material processing, the simulation of processes has made great strides over the past few years. Today, the software can predict relatively well what will happen on the workpiece. Unfortunately, it is also highly complex and requires a lot of computing time. Thanks to clever simplification, experts from Fraunhofer ILT are now able to offer the first-ever simulation software that calculates processes in real time and also runs on tablet computers and smartphones. The fast software enables users to do without expensive experiments and to find optimum process parameters even more effectively.

Before now, the reliable simulation of laser processes was a job for experts. Armed with sophisticated software packages and after many hours on computer...

Im Focus: Quantum Simulation: A Better Understanding of Magnetism

Heidelberg physicists use ultracold atoms to imitate the behaviour of electrons in a solid

Researchers at Heidelberg University have devised a new way to study the phenomenon of magnetism. Using ultracold atoms at near absolute zero, they prepared a...

Im Focus: Climate Change: Warm water is mixing up life in the Arctic

AWI researchers’ unique 15-year observation series reveals how sensitive marine ecosystems in polar regions are to change

The warming of arctic waters in the wake of climate change is likely to produce radical changes in the marine habitats of the High North. This is indicated by...

Im Focus: Nanocarriers may carry new hope for brain cancer therapy

Berkeley Lab researchers develop nanoparticles that can carry therapeutics across the brain blood barrier

Glioblastoma multiforme, a cancer of the brain also known as "octopus tumors" because of the manner in which the cancer cells extend their tendrils into...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

Gluten oder nicht Gluten? Überempfindlichkeit auf Weizen kann unterschiedliche Ursachen haben

17.11.2015 | Event News

Art Collection Deutsche Börse zeigt Ausstellung „Traces of Disorder“

21.10.2015 | Event News

Siemens Healthcare introduces the Cios family of mobile C-arms

20.10.2015 | Event News

Latest News

Siemens offers concrete solution portfolio for Industrie 4.0 with Digital Enterprise

24.11.2015 | Trade Fair News

Compact, rugged, three-phase power supplies for worldwide use

24.11.2015 | Trade Fair News

Sensor sees nerve action as it happens

24.11.2015 | Life Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>