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Title: Greenland ice sheet surface mass-balance modeling in a 131-year perspective, 1950-2080

Abstract

Fluctuations in the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) surface mass-balance (SMB) and freshwater influx to the surrounding oceans closely follow climate fluctuations and are of considerable importance to the global eustatic sea level rise. SnowModel, a state-of-the-art snow-evolution modeling system, was used to simulate variations in the GrIS melt extent, surface water balance components, changes in SMB, and freshwater influx to the ocean. The simulations are based on the IPCC scenario AlB modeled by the HIRHAM4 RCM (using boundary conditions from ECHAM5 AOGCM) from 1950 through 2080. In-situ meteorological station (GC-Net and WMO DMI) observations from inside and outside the GrIS were used to validate and correct RCM output data before it was used as input for SnowModel. Satellite observations and independent SMB studies were used to validate the SnowModel output and confirm the model's robustness. We simulated a {approx}90% increase in end-of-summer surface melt extent (0.483 x 10{sup 6} km{sup 2}) from 1950 to 2080, and a melt index (above 2,000-m elevation) increase of 138% (1.96 x 10{sup 6} km{sup 2} x days). The greatest difference in melt extent occured in the southern part of the GrIS, and the greatest changes in the number of melt days was seen inmore » the eastern part of the GrIS ({approx}50-70%) and was lowest in the west ({approx}20-30%). The rate of SMB loss, largely tied to changes in ablation processes, lead to an enhanced average loss of 331 km{sup 3} from 1950 to 2080, an average 5MB level of -99 km{sup 3} for the period 2070-2080. GrIS surface freshwater runoff yielded an eustatic rise in sea level from 0.8 {+-} 0.1 (1950-1959) to 1.9 {+-} 0.1 mm (2070-2080) sea level equivalent (SLE) y{sup -1}. The accumulated GrIS freshwater runoff contribution from surface melting equaled 160 mm SLE from 1950 through 2080.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [2];  [3]
  1. Los Alamos National Laboratory
  2. COLORADO STATE UNIV.
  3. DANISH METEOROLOGICAL INS.
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
971306
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-09-06177; LA-UR-09-6177
TRN: US201004%%68
DOE Contract Number:  
AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Journal of Hydrometeorology
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Journal of Hydrometeorology
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
58; 97; ABLATION; BOUNDARY CONDITIONS; CLIMATES; FLUCTUATIONS; GREENLAND; MASS BALANCE; MELTING; RUNOFF; SATELLITES; SEA LEVEL; SIMULATION; SURFACE WATERS; WMO

Citation Formats

Mernild, Sebastian Haugard, Liston, Glen, Hiemstra, Christopher, and Christensen, Jens. Greenland ice sheet surface mass-balance modeling in a 131-year perspective, 1950-2080. United States: N. p., 2009. Web.
Mernild, Sebastian Haugard, Liston, Glen, Hiemstra, Christopher, & Christensen, Jens. Greenland ice sheet surface mass-balance modeling in a 131-year perspective, 1950-2080. United States.
Mernild, Sebastian Haugard, Liston, Glen, Hiemstra, Christopher, and Christensen, Jens. 2009. "Greenland ice sheet surface mass-balance modeling in a 131-year perspective, 1950-2080". United States. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/971306.
@article{osti_971306,
title = {Greenland ice sheet surface mass-balance modeling in a 131-year perspective, 1950-2080},
author = {Mernild, Sebastian Haugard and Liston, Glen and Hiemstra, Christopher and Christensen, Jens},
abstractNote = {Fluctuations in the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) surface mass-balance (SMB) and freshwater influx to the surrounding oceans closely follow climate fluctuations and are of considerable importance to the global eustatic sea level rise. SnowModel, a state-of-the-art snow-evolution modeling system, was used to simulate variations in the GrIS melt extent, surface water balance components, changes in SMB, and freshwater influx to the ocean. The simulations are based on the IPCC scenario AlB modeled by the HIRHAM4 RCM (using boundary conditions from ECHAM5 AOGCM) from 1950 through 2080. In-situ meteorological station (GC-Net and WMO DMI) observations from inside and outside the GrIS were used to validate and correct RCM output data before it was used as input for SnowModel. Satellite observations and independent SMB studies were used to validate the SnowModel output and confirm the model's robustness. We simulated a {approx}90% increase in end-of-summer surface melt extent (0.483 x 10{sup 6} km{sup 2}) from 1950 to 2080, and a melt index (above 2,000-m elevation) increase of 138% (1.96 x 10{sup 6} km{sup 2} x days). The greatest difference in melt extent occured in the southern part of the GrIS, and the greatest changes in the number of melt days was seen in the eastern part of the GrIS ({approx}50-70%) and was lowest in the west ({approx}20-30%). The rate of SMB loss, largely tied to changes in ablation processes, lead to an enhanced average loss of 331 km{sup 3} from 1950 to 2080, an average 5MB level of -99 km{sup 3} for the period 2070-2080. GrIS surface freshwater runoff yielded an eustatic rise in sea level from 0.8 {+-} 0.1 (1950-1959) to 1.9 {+-} 0.1 mm (2070-2080) sea level equivalent (SLE) y{sup -1}. The accumulated GrIS freshwater runoff contribution from surface melting equaled 160 mm SLE from 1950 through 2080.},
doi = {},
url = {https://www.osti.gov/biblio/971306}, journal = {Journal of Hydrometeorology},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2009},
month = {1}
}