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TitleRADARSAT-2 for measuring glacial dynamics and ice berg calving flux from ice caps in the Canadian high Arctic
AuthorBurgess, D; van Wychen, W; Gray, L; Demuth, M
Source9th ASAR Workshop, Canadian Space Agency, 2013, program and abstracts; by Canadian Space Agency; 2013.
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 20130301
Meeting9th ASAR Workshop; CA; October 15 - 18, 2013
File formatpdf
NTS39; 120; 59G; 59H
AreaDevon Island; Ellesmere Island
Lat/Long WENS-96.0000 -72.0000 83.0000 76.0000
Subjectssurficial geology/geomorphology; geophysics; glaciers; glaciation; icefields; ice movement; remote sensing
ProgramEssential Climate Variable Monitoring, Climate Change Geoscience
LinksPresentation online (PDF, 2 MB)
AbstractRecent climate warming at high-latitude and elevation regions of Canada has had a significant impact on the state of health of glaciers as indicated by the in-situ glacier monitoring program within the Climate Change Geoscience (CCG) ¿ Essential Climate Variables (ECV) program at the GSC/NRCan. While results from this long-term (50+ years) program provide valuable insight into climate change patterns and localized mass balance, satellite SAR data (RADARSAT-2 in particular) are being used increasingly to provide synoptic-scale coverage of glacier change. This talk describes the integration of SAR data into the GSC-NRCan glacier-climate observing system, and how these satellite data improve our knowledge of dynamics and net mass balance of Canada¿s ice caps and glaciers ¿ knowledge critical for assessments of sea-level change and water resources.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
RADARSAT-2 data have been used to derive velocity fields across the glaciated regions of the Canadian high Arctic since 2000. These data provide important information on inter-annual variability of glacier flow rates and ice mass lost directly to oceans through calving. Results from this work reveal that while there are over 20 important calving glaciers in the Queen Elizabeth Islands, the majority of ice discharge is generated from ~3 major glaciers, and some of these glaciers have experienced changes in flow rates up to 900 m a-1 over the past 13 years. We conclude that annual monitoring of these glaciers is important to understand net mass balance of the ice caps and as information of interest to shipping in the north.