ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201705.0168.v2
Subject: Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences Keywords: GNSS-R; ice sheet; TDS-1; greenland; altimetry
Online: 17 July 2017 (17:00:23 CEST)
Radar altimetry provides valuable measurements to characterize the state and the evolution of the Antartica and Greenland ice sheet cover. Global Navigation Satellite System Reflectometry (GNSS-R) has the potential capacity of complementing the dedicated radar altimeters incrementing the temporal and spatial resolution of the surface height measurements. In this work we perform an study of the Greenland ice sheet using data obtained by the GNSS-R instrument aboard the British TechDemoSat-1 (TDS-1) satellite mission, designed primarily to provide sea state information, like sea surface roughness or wind, but not altimetric products. The data has been analyzed with altimetric methodologies, already proved in aircraft based experiments, to extract signal delay observables to be used to infer the topography of the Greenland cover. The penetration depth of the GNSS signals into ice has also considered. The topographic signal obtained is consistent with those obtained with other passive or active microwave sensors. The main conclusion derived from this work is that GNSS-R also provides valuable measurements of the ice sheet cover and, as taken at a variety of geometries and at least two frequency bands, they prospect different depths into the ice. They have thus potential to complement our understanding of the ice firn and its evolution.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201908.0196.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Geophysics Keywords: ablation zone; Greenland; ice sheet; surface mass balance; mass balance; altimetry; albedo; scatterometry; lidar; sea level rise
Online: 20 August 2019 (02:55:39 CEST)
The Greenland Ice Sheet is now the largest land ice contributor to global sea level rise, largely driven by increased surface meltwater runoff from the ablation zone, i.e. areas of the ice sheet where annual mass losses exceed gains. This small but critically important area of the ice sheet has expanded in size by ~50% since the early 1960s, and satellite remote sensing is a powerful tool for monitoring the physical processes that influence its surface mass balance. This review synthesizes key remote sensing methods and scientific findings from satellite remote sensing of the Greenland Ice Sheet ablation zone, covering progress in 1) radar altimetry, 2) laser (lidar) altimetry, 3) gravimetry, 4) multispectral optical imagery and, 5) microwave and thermal imagery. Physical characteristics and quantities examined include surface elevation change, gravimetric mass balance, reflectance, albedo, and mapping of surface melt extent and glaciological facies and zones. The review concludes that future progress will benefit most from methods that combine multi-sensor, multi-wavelength, and cross-platform datasets designed to discriminate the widely varying surface processes in the ablation zone. Specific examples include fusing laser altimetry, radar altimetry, and optical stereophotogrammetry to enhance spatial measurement density, cross-validate surface elevation change, and diagnose radar elevation bias; fusing optical imagery, radar imagery, and microwave scatterometry to discriminate between snow, liquid water, refrozen meltwater, and bare ice near the equilibrium line altitude; combining optical reflectance with laser altimetry to map supraglacial lake, stream, and crevasse bathymetry; and monitoring the inland migration of snowlines, surface melt extent, and supraglacial hydrologic features.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201810.0337.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Geophysics Keywords: essential climate variables (ECV); climate change initiative (CCI); Greenland ice sheet; mass budget; cryosphere; sea level rise
Online: 16 October 2018 (07:53:22 CEST)
The Greenland ice sheet is a major contributor to sea level rise, adding an estimated 0.47 +/− 0.23 mm/yr to global mean sea level between 1991 and 2015 (van den Broeke et al., 2016). Making sea level rise projections for the future and understanding the processes controlling current observed rates of sea level rise are crucially dependent on understanding the present-day state of the ice sheet. Here, we provide an overview of the current state of the mass budget of Greenland based on satellite gravimetry and remote sensing observations of surface elevation change, ice sheet velocity and calving front positions. We also combine these essential climate variables with a regional climate model (RCM) output from an ice sheet model (ISM) to gain insight into poorly understood ice sheet dynamical and surface mass processes. On average from 1992 to 2017 the ice sheet in some locations has lost up −2.65 m/yr in elevation based on ESA Radar altimetry analysis. Calving fronts have retreated all around Greenland since the 1990s and in only two out of 28 study locations have they remained stable. The locations of grounding lines at 5 key glaciers with floating ice tongues have remained stable over the observation period. However a detailed case study at Petermann glacier with an ice fracture model shows the sensitivity of these floating ice shelves to future climate change. GRACE gravimetric mass balance (GMB) data allows us to tie together disparate lines of evidence showing that Greenland has lost about 265 +/− 25 Gt/yr of ice over the period 2002 to 2015. RCM and ISM simulations show that surface mass processes dominate the overall Greenland ice sheet mass budget except for areas of fast ice sheet flow but marked differences between models and between models and observations indicate that not all processes are captured accurately, indicating areas of greater uncertainty and directions of future research for future sea level rise projections.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202104.0783.v1
Subject: Arts & Humanities, Anthropology & Ethnography Keywords: Iceland; Norse Greenland; Monasticism; Benedictine Order; Augustine Order
Online: 30 April 2021 (10:14:03 CEST)
The aim of the paper is to provide an overview of the monastic houses operated on the northernmost periphery of Roman Catholic Europe during the Middle Ages. The intention is to debunk the long-held theory of Iceland and Norse Greenland’s supposed isolation from the rest of the world, as it is clear that medieval monasticism reached both of these societies, just as it reached their counterparts elsewhere in the North Atlantic. During the Middle Ages, fourteen monastic houses were opened in Iceland and two in Norse Greenland, all following the Benedictine or Augustinian Order.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0006.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Atmospheric Science Keywords: Greenland; photogrammetry; Knud Rasmussen Glacier; RPAS; glaciology; geomatics
Online: 1 December 2020 (09:32:40 CET)
This article discusses an international scientific expedition to Greenland that researched geography, geodesy, botany, and glaciology of the area. The results here focus on the geodetic and glaciological results obtained with the eBee drone in the eastern part of Greenland at the front of the Knud Rasmussen glacier. From two overflights nearby the glacier front, it was possible to obtain the speed of the glacier flow and the distribution of velocities in the glacier stream. The results correlate with other measurement methods and this technology has been shown as feasible. Of course, there are more accurate and long-term options or devices for monitoring the flow of glaciers. In this case of short-term visits to the site, the possibility of using a drone is interesting and the results show not only the flow speed of the glacier, but also the shape and structure from a height of up to 200m. The second part of the paper focuses on the analysis of modern satellite images of the Knud Rasmussen glacier from Google Earth (Landsat series 1984-2016) and a comparison with historical aerial images from 1932-1933. Experimentally, historical images were processed photogrammetrically into a 3D model.
TECHNICAL NOTE | doi:10.20944/preprints201811.0529.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Geoinformatics Keywords: Calving Front; Image Segmentation; U-Net; Convolutional Neural Network; Machine Learning; Greenland
Online: 21 November 2018 (14:05:00 CET)
The continuous and precise mapping of glacier calving fronts is essential for monitoring and understanding rapid glacier changes in Antarctica and Greenland, which have the potential for significant sea level rise within the current century. This effort has been mostly restricted to the slow and painstaking manual digitalization of the calving front positions in thousands of satellite imagery products. Here, we have developed a machine learning toolkit to robustly and automatically detect glacier calving front margins in satellite imagery. The toolkit is based on semantic image segmentation using Convolutional Neural Networks (CNN) with a modified U-Net architecture to isolate the calving fronts from satellite images after having been trained with a dataset of images and their corresponding manually-determined calving fronts. As a case study we train our neural network on a varied set Landsat images with lowered resolutions from Jakobshavn, Sverdrup, and Kangerlussuaq glaciers, Greenland and test the results on novel images from Helheim glacier, Greenland to evaluate the performance of the approach. The neural network is able to identify the calving front in new images with a mean deviation of 96.3 m from the true fronts, equivalent to 1.97 pixels on average, while the corresponding error for manually-determined fronts on the same resolution images is 92.5 m. We find that the trained neural network significantly outperforms common edge detection techniques, and can be used to continuously map out calving-ice fronts with a variety of data products.