IUGG 2011 Meeting - Subglacial water: Properties, processes and role in ice-mass dynamics

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IUGG 2011 Meeting - Subglacial water: Properties, processes and role in ice-mass dynamics

Stefan Vogel
Dear Colleagues

We would like to draw your attention to the IUGG meeting in Melbourne June 27 until July 7, 2011 and the session J-HW04 on Subglacial water: Properties, processes and role in ice-mass dynamics
Below a link to the scientific program and attached below the abstract to our session.

The deadline for submitting an abstract is February 1, 2011

We hope to see you in Melbourne

kind regards

Bryn, Stefan, Rob & Helen, 

Organisers: IAHS (ICSIH), IACS 
Lead Convenor: Bryn Hubbard (United Kingdom) 
Co-convenors: Stefan Vogel (United States of America), Robert Bingham (United Kingdom), Helen Fricker (United States of America) 

Subglacial water represents one of the most important yet poorly-understood aspects of glaciology. It exerts a key control over the dynamic behaviour of glaciers and ice sheets, contributes to unique ecological habitats, and acts as a potent geomorphic agent. For example, a growing number of remote sensing and ground-based observations across Antarctica and Greenland are highlighting the existence of subglacial water in a variety of forms, ranging from vast subglacial lakes (providing distinctive habitats for potentially unique life forms) to mm-thick water flows at the ice-substrate interface. These hydrological phenomena have great potential to impact on ice dynamics – from the scale of valley glaciers to large ice sheets - feeding back into the response of ice masses to climate change and their consequent contributions to changes in sea level. The precise nature of this control is far from well-constrained, despite the sensitivity of numerical models to (what are currently at best approximated basal sliding terms).

Characterizing the role of basal meltwater quantitatively therefore remains an important outstanding glaciological problem, as does structuring and scaling that knowledge for use in models of ice mass motion. However, it is difficult to access the base of ice masses, and it is perhaps even more challenging to characterize spatio-temporal variations in the water that may be present there. These challenges continually drive the application of innovative methods and new technologies in the investigation of subglacial water.

We solicit scientific contributions that include, but are not limited to, measurements and/or modelling of: (i) water flows at the ice-mass bed and through subglacial sediments; (ii) feedbacks between ice-mass hydrology and ice dynamics, and the impact of that relationship on ice-mass response to climate change; (iii) theoretical-, field-, or laboratory-based parameterization of basal hydrological processes, including the application of innovative technologies; (iv) formation, geometry and potential linkages between subglacial lakes; (v) subglacial lake drainage and meltwater outbursts from ice-mass margins; and (vi) geomorphological evidence of subglacial water flows from contemporary ice-sheet margins and across formerly glaciated regions.

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Stefan Vogel
Science and Technology Consultancy
Outdoor and Leadership Skill Training
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