Near-total surface melt detected on the Greenland Ice Sheet
Article first published online: 8 JAN 2013
©2013. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
Eos, Transactions American Geophysical Union
Volume 94, Issue 2, page 28, 8 January 2013
How to Cite
2013), Near-total surface melt detected on the Greenland Ice Sheet, Eos Trans. AGU, 94(2), 28.(
- Issue published online: 8 JAN 2013
- Article first published online: 8 JAN 2013
- Cited By
- Greenland ice sheet;
- Oceansat-2 scatterometer;
- extreme melt
On 12 July 2012, 98.6% of the surface of the Greenland Ice Sheet melted, an event so expansive that a similar episode had not previously been seen in the satellite era. Ice core records indicate that the most recent melting event of this scale was 123 years ago. The one before that occurred another 7 centuries prior, during the Medieval Warm Period. Just 2 weeks following the near-total melt of the surface of the Greenland Ice Sheet, after the surface ice had refrozen to seasonal levels, a second episode pushed the melt area back up to 79.2%. Compiling measurements from three different satellite systems and from in-the-field observations, Nghiem et al. describe the extent of the melt. The authors suggest that warm air ridges stagnating over Greenland, coincident with the melt episodes, may have underlain the extensive melting.