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Introduction

Here, we model the contribution of polar ice sheets to local sea level rise. This work was presented in Adhikari et al., GMD 2016. The simulation captures the evolution of sea level rise over the entire planet, taking into account eustatic sea level, sea level rise from perturbations to the gravity field, and sea level rise from local elastic rebound of the Earth's crust. The mass balance of the ice is not modeled, but forced by GRACE time series of ice thickness change in Greenland and Antarctica from 2003 to present-day.

Surface Mass Balance (SMB)

SMB captures snow fall, surface melt, water runoff, and other forcings that control the mass balance at the surface of glacier ice. By perturbing it, we try to understand the reaction of Alaskan glaciers to climate change. For each perturbation, this simulation computes the impact on stress-balance and mass-transport of the glacier, for a 10 year period. The final output of the simulation is a 10 year movie of the evolution in ice thickness and ice surface velocity of the glacier.

Datasets Used for the Simulation

  • Coastline from Wessel, P., and W. H. F. Smith, A Global Self-consistent, Hierarchical, High-resolution Shoreline Database, J. Geophys. Res., 101, #B4, pp. 8741-8743, 1996.
  • Ice forcing from 2003 to present-day from JPL RL05M GRACE mascon solution, provided by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (GRACE-JPL) (Watkins et al., 2015).

Model Settings

  • Anisotropic mesh refined to best capture the coastlines. Initial resolution, 400 km, anisotropically refined to 100 km for coastlines of both Greenland and Antarctica.
  • Coastline mapping using GMT - The Generic Mapping Tools, Version 5.1.1 (r12968) [64-bit] (c) 1991-2014 Paul Wessel, Walter H. F. Smith, R. Scharroo, J. Luis, and F. Wobbe.
  • Ocean vs. Ice vs. Continent mask determined using GMT and GSHHG.
  • Spherical geometry, radius = 6371.012 km.
  • Sea-level rise solution following Farrel and Clarke, 1976, according to algorithms described in Adhikari et al., GMD 2016.

How to Run the Simulation

Activate solver options such as Gravity (for computation of sea level rise from perturbations to the gravity field) and Elasticity (for sea level rise due to local elastic rebound of the Earth's crust). Click "RUN" button and the new sea level increase rate (in mm/year) will be computed by the JPL ISSM server, downloaded, and overlaid on the globe.

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