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Automatic weather stations for basic and applied glaciological research
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS).
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6553-8982
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS).
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS).
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2015 (English)In: Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland Bulletin, ISSN 1811-4598, E-ISSN 1604-8156, Vol. 33, 69-72 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Resource type
Text
Abstract [en]

Since the early 1980s, the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS) glaciology group has developed automatic weather stations (AWSs) and operated them on the Greenland ice sheet and on local glaciers to support glaciological research and monitoring projects (e.g. Olesen & Braithwaite 1989; Ahlstrøm et al. 2008). GEUS has also operated AWSs in connection with consultancy services in relation to mining and hydropower pre-feasibility studies (Colgan et al. 2015). Over the years, the design of the AWS has evolved, partly due to technological advances and partly due to lessons learned in the field. At the same time, we have kept the initial goal in focus: long-term, year-round accurate recording of ice ablation, snow depth and the physical parameters that determine the energy budget of glacierised surfaces. GEUS has an extensive record operating AWSs in the harsh Arctic environment of the diverse ablation areas of the Greenland ice sheet, glaciers and ice caps [...].

The GEUS AWS model in use now is a reliable tool that is adapted to the environmental and logistical conditions of polar regions. It has a proven record of more than 150 stationyears of deployment in Greenland since its introduction in 2007–2008, and a success rate of c. 90% defined as the fraction of months with more than 80% valid air-temperature measurements over the total deployment time of the 25 stations in the field. The rest of this paper focuses on the technical aspects of the GEUS AWS, and provides an overview of its design and capabilities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 33, 69-72 p.
Keyword [en]
Greenland, AWS, automatic weather stations
National Category
Climate Research Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-280714OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-280714DiVA: diva2:911851
Projects
Programme for Monitoring of the Greenland Ice Sheet (PROMICE)
Available from: 2016-03-14 Created: 2016-03-14 Last updated: 2017-11-30
In thesis
1. Climatology and firn processes in the lower accumulation area of the Greenland ice sheet
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Climatology and firn processes in the lower accumulation area of the Greenland ice sheet
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The Greenland ice sheet is the largest Northern Hemisphere store of fresh water, and it is responding rapidly to the warming climate. In situ observations document the changing ice sheet properties in the lower accumulation area, Southwest Greenland. Firn densities from 1840 meters above sea level retrieved in May 2012 revealed the existence of a 5.5-meter-thick, near-surface ice layer in response to the recent increased melt and refreezing in firn. As a consequence, vertical meltwater percolation in the extreme summer 2012 was inefficient, resulting in surface runoff. Meltwater percolated and refroze at six meters depth only after the end of the melt season. This prolonged autumn refreezing under the newly accumulated snowpack resulted in unprecedented firn warming with temperature at ten meters depth increased by more than four degrees Celsius. Simulations confirm that meltwater reached nine meters depth at most. The refrozen meltwater was estimated at 0.23 meters water equivalent, amounting to 25 % of the total 2012 ablation.

A surface energy balance model was used to evaluate the seasonal and interannual variability of all surface energy fluxes at that elevation in the years 2009 to 2013. Due to the meltwater presence at the surface in 2012, the summer-averaged albedo was significantly reduced (0.71 in 2012; typically 0.78). A sensitivity analysis revealed that 71 % of the subsequent additional solar radiation in 2012 was used for melt, corresponding to 36 % of the total 2012 surface lowering. This interplay between melt and firn properties highlights that the lower accumulation area of the Greenland ice sheet will be responding rapidly in a warming climate.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2016. 81 p.
Series
Digital Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Science and Technology, ISSN 1651-6214 ; 1372
Keyword
climate change, Greenland ice sheet, accumulation area, automatic weather stations, surface energy balance, melt–albedo feedback, surface mass budget, snow, firn, meltwater, percolation, refreezing, runoff
National Category
Climate Research Environmental Sciences Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-284365 (URN)978-91-554-9571-8 (ISBN)
Public defence
2016-06-10, Hambergsalen, Geocentrum, Villavägen 16, Uppsala, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Projects
Stability and Variations of Arctic Land Ice (SVALI)Programme for Monitoring of the Greenland Ice Sheet (PROMICE)Greenland Analogue Project (GAP)
Available from: 2016-05-20 Created: 2016-04-17 Last updated: 2016-06-15

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van As, DirkBox, Jason E.Charalampidis, CharalamposColgan, William T.

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