Modeling sub-sea permafrost in the East Siberian Arctic Shelf: The Laptev Sea region

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Abstract

[1] Models of sub-sea permafrost evolution vary significantly in employed physical assumptions regarding the paleo-geographic scenario, geological structure, thermal properties, initial temperature distribution, and geothermal heat flux. This work aims to review the underlying assumptions of these models as well as to incorporate recent findings, and hence develop an up-to-date model of the sub-sea permafrost dynamics at the Laptev Sea shelf. In particular, the sub-sea permafrost model developed here incorporates thermokarst and land-ocean interaction theory, and shows that the sediment salinity and a temperature-based parametrization of the unfrozen water content are critical factors influencing sub-sea permafrost dynamics. From the numerical calculations, we suggest development of open taliks may occur beneath submerged thaw lakes within a large area of the shelf.

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