Centreline and cross-glacier air temperature variability on an Alpine glacier: assessing temperature distribution methods and their influence on melt model calculations

Shaw, Thomas, Brock, Benjamin, Ayala, Álvaro, Rutter, Nick and Pellicciotti, Francesca (2017) Centreline and cross-glacier air temperature variability on an Alpine glacier: assessing temperature distribution methods and their influence on melt model calculations. Journal of Glaciology, 63 (242). pp. 973-988. ISSN 0022-1430

[img]
Preview
Text
centreline_and_crossglacier_air_temperature_variability.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution 4.0.

Download (1MB) | Preview
Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1017/jog.2017.65

Abstract

The spatio-temporal distribution of air temperature over mountain glaciers can demonstrate complex patterns, yet it is often represented simplistically using linear vertical temperature gradients (VTGs) extrapolated from off-glacier locations. We analyse a network of centreline and lateral air temperature observations at Tsanteleina Glacier, Italy, during summer 2015. On average, VTGs are steep (<−0.0065 °C m−1), but they are shallow under warm ambient conditions when the correlation between air temperature and elevation becomes weaker. Published along-flowline temperature distribution methods explain centreline observations well, including warming on the lower glacier tongue, but cannot estimate lateral temperature variability. Application of temperature distribution methods improves simulation of melt rates (RMSE) in an energy-balance model by up to 36% compared to the environmental lapse rate extrapolated from an off-glacier station. However, results suggest that model parameters are not easily transferable to glaciers with a small fetch without recalibration. Such methods have potential to improve estimates of temperature across a glacier, but their parameter transferability should be further linked to the glacier and atmospheric characteristics. Furthermore, ‘cold spots’, which can be >2°C cooler than expected for their elevation, whose occurrence is not predicted by the temperature distribution models, are identified at one-quarter of the measurement sites.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: energy balance, glacier mass balance, glacier meteorology, glacier modelling
Subjects: F800 Physical and Terrestrial Geographical and Environmental Sciences
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Geography and Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 16 Nov 2017 15:08
Last Modified: 12 Apr 2018 17:14
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/32532

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Downloads

Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics


Policies: NRL Policies | NRL University Deposit Policy | NRL Deposit Licence