Updated Jakobshavn Glacier Calving Front Retreat from 2001 through 2006
Since measurements of Jakobshavn Isbrae were first taken in 1850, the glacier has gradually receded, finally coming to rest at a certain point for the past 5 decades. However, from 1997 to 2006, the glacier has begun to recede again, this time almost doubling in speed. The finding is important for many reasons. As more ice moves from glaciers on land into the ocean, ocean sea levels raise. Jakobshavn Isbrae is Greenland's largest outlet glacier, draining 6.5 percent of Greenland's ice sheet area. The ice stream's speed-up and near-doubling of ice flow from land into the ocean has increased the rate of sea level rise by about .06 millimeters (about .002 inches) per year, or roughly 4 percent of the 20th century rate of sea level increase. This animation shows the glacier's flow in 2000, along with changes in the glacier's calving front between 2001 and 2006.
This animation is an update of and extension to animation ID #3374. In this version, a pause is added on the approach to the Jakobshavn glacier in order to highlight the meltwater lakes visible on the Greenland ice sheet. In addition, semi-transparent overlays and text indicate different regions of the glacier before the calving lines are shown. After the calving front retreat, an additional segment shows a zoom to a global view. During the pull out, historic calving front locations are shown followed by a color overlay showing regions of increase and decrease in the Greenland ice sheet.
The recession of calving front locations is shown over an image of the Jakobshavn glacier on 08/06/2006. Historic calving front locations from 1851 through 1964, compiled by Anker Weidick and Ole Bennike, are shown here in gray. Recent calving front locations, 2001 through 2006, derived from satellite imagery are show in colors.
Please give credit for this item to:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio The Blue Marble data is courtesy of Reto Stockli (NASA/GSFC).
- Cindy Starr (Global Science and Technology, Inc.) [Lead]
- Anker Weidick (Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland)
- Bob Bindschadler (NASA/GSFC)
- Gordon Hamilton (University of Maine)
- Jay Zwally (NASA/GSFC)
- Konrad Steffen (University of Colorado)
- Ole Bennike (Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland)
- Richard Alley (Pennsylvania State University)
- Robert Thomas (NASA/GSFC-LaRC)
- Serdar Manizade (NASA/GSFC Wallops)
- Waleed Abdalati (University of Colorado Boulder/CIRES)
Datasets used in this visualization
Aqua Sea Ice Concentration (Daily L3 12.5km Tb, Sea Ice Concentration, and Snow Depth)ID: 237Collected with AMSR-E
Aqua Daily L3 6.25 km 89 GHz Brightness Temperature (Tb)ID: 236Collected with AMSR-E
Terra and Aqua Blue Marble Land CoverID: 510Collected with MODIS
Credit: The Blue Marble data is courtesy of Reto Stockli (NASA/GSFC).See all pages that use this dataset
Terra Band Combination 3, 2, 1ID: 584Collected with ASTER 07/02/2005, 08/08/2006
ICESatID: 38Collected with GLAS 2003 - 2006
TerraID: 116Collected with MODIS 06/25/2003 (Greenland)
Landsat-7 Band Combination 3, 2, 1ID: 537Collected with ETM+ 07/07/2001, 09/03/2002, 08/23/2003, 10/03/2004
Terra Calving Front LinesID: 705Analysis Collected with ASTER 07/02/2005, 08/08/2006
Calving front lines derived from Terra/ASTER imagery.See all pages that use this dataset
Landsat Calving Front LineID: 704Analysis Collected with TM 07/07/2001, 09/03/2002, 08/23/2003, 10/03/2004
Calving front lines derived from Landsat imagery.See all pages that use this dataset
Note: While we identify the data sets used in these visualizations, we do not store any further details, nor the data sets themselves on our site.