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Meltwater Storage in a Temperate Glacier Burroughs Glacier, Southeast Alaska

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Title: Meltwater Storage in a Temperate Glacier Burroughs Glacier, Southeast Alaska
Creators: Larson, Grahame J.
Keywords: Burroughs Glacier, Alaska
Glacier meltwater
Issue Date: 1978
Publisher: Institute of Polar Studies, The Ohio State University.
Citation: Larson, Grahame J. 1978. Meltwater Storage in a Temperate Glacier, Burroughs Glacier, Southeast Alaska. Institute of Polar Studies Report No. 66, Institute of Polar Studies, The Ohio State University, Columbus, 56 pages.
Series/Report no.: Institute of Polar Studies Report No. 66.
Abstract: Burroughs Glacier is a wasting mass of neoglacial ice in the northeastern part of the Glacier Bay National Monument, Alaska. The entire glacier covers approximately 26 km2 and consists of two tongues both of which flow from a central ice divide. The highest point on the glacier (475 m) lies on the divide and is well below the equilibrium line. The average annual rate of downwastage of the ice surface is approximately 3.7 m. During the summer of 1973, a hydrologic study was made of the eastern tongue of the glacier (13.9 km2). The study involved calculating the inflow and outflow of meltwater in the tongue for the purpose of analyzing the storage characteristics of glacier ice. The results of the investigation show that during a four-day period of generally clear skies and mild temperatures, approximately 17.8 cm of water was produced on the glacier surface by melting. The runoff recorded during this period, however, was only 14.2 cm which suggests that at least 3.6 cm of meltwater was retained within the glacier tongue. Most of this meltwater storage appears to occur within channels and open fractures in the ice itself. Analysis of the relationship between the storage in the tongue sub-basins and the runoff in the streams draining the sub-basins indicates that the average basin lag from the glacier to the channel control is approximately three hours. There appears to be no observable relationship between the average basin lag and the area of the sub-basin being drained.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1811/48914
ISSN: 0078-415X
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