Earth  ID: 4249

Greenland Ice Sheet Stratigraphy

For nearly a century, scientists have been studying the form and flow of the Greenland Ice Sheet. They have measured the change in the elevation of the surface over time using satellites. They have drilled ice cores in the field to reveal a record of what the past climate was like. They have flown aircraft over the surface of the ice sheet laden with instruments to gleen information about the interior of the ice sheet and the bedrock below.

Now a new analysis of this data has revealed a three dimensional map of the age of the ice sheet. This visualization shows this new 3D age map of the Greenland Ice Sheet, explains how it was created and describes the three distinct periods of climate that are evident within the ice sheet.

More information is available here.


For More Information

Visualization Credits

Cindy Starr (GST): Lead Visualizer
Greg Shirah (NASA/GSFC): Animator
Jefferson Beck (USRA): Video Editor
Cindy Starr (GST): Video Editor
Joe MacGregor (University of Texas): Narration
Jefferson Beck (USRA): Narration
Mark Fahnestock (University of Alaska): Narration
Cindy Starr (GST): Narration
Jefferson Beck (USRA): Narrator
Jefferson Beck (USRA): Producer
Joe MacGregor (University of Texas): Lead Scientist
Mark Fahnestock (University of Alaska): Scientist
Laurence Schuler (ADNET): Project Support
Ian Jones (ADNET): Project Support
Stuart A. Snodgrass (HTSI): Video Editor
Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio

AMSR2 data courtesy of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).

The Blue Marble data is courtesy of Reto Stockli (NASA/GSFC).

Science Paper:
MacGregor, J.A., M.A. Fahnestock, G.A. Catania, J.D. Paden, S. Gogineni, S.K. Young, S.C. Rybarski, A.N. Mabrey, B.M. Wagman and M. Morlighem, Radiostratigraphy and age structure of the Greenland Ice Sheet, J. Geophys. Res. Earth Surface, 2015, doi: 10.1002/2014JF003215
( ).

M. Morlighem, E. Rignot, J. Mouginot, H. Seroussi and E. Larour, Deeply incised submarine glacial valleys beneath the Greenland Ice Sheet, Nat. Geosci., 7, 418-422, 2014, doi:10.1038/ngeo2167
( ).

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Data Used:
Greenland Ice Sheet Inferred 3-D Age Volume 1993 - 2013
IceBridge/MCoRDS/L1B Geolocated Radar Echo Strength Profiles, Version 2 05/02/2011
TERRA/MODIS/MODIS Mosaic of Greenland (MOG) Image Map 2005
Greenland Mass Conservation Dataset - Surface Elevation 1993 - 2013
Greenland Mass Conservation Dataset - Bed Topography 1993 - 2013
Greenland Mass Conservation Dataset - Ice Thickness 1993 - 2013
Aircraft/Operation IceBridge Flight Paths 2009 - 2013
Aircraft/Pre-IceBridge Flight Paths 1993 - 2008
SHIZUKU (GCOM-W1)/AMSR2/10 km Daily Sea Ice Concentration 05/16/2013 - 03/28/2014
SHIZUKU (GCOM-W1)/AMSR2/10 km Daily 89 GHz Brightness Temperature 05/16/2013 - 03/28/2014
Terra and Aqua/MODIS/Blue Marble: Next Generation 2004
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.

GCMD >> Earth Science >> Cryosphere >> Glaciers/Ice Sheets >> Ice Sheets
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Hydrosphere >> Glaciers/Ice Sheets >> Ice Sheets
GCMD >> Location >> Greenland
NASA Science >> Earth
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Terrestrial Hydrosphere >> Glaciers/Ice Sheets >> Ice Sheets

GCMD keywords can be found on the Internet with the following citation: Olsen, L.M., G. Major, K. Shein, J. Scialdone, S. Ritz, T. Stevens, M. Morahan, A. Aleman, R. Vogel, S. Leicester, H. Weir, M. Meaux, S. Grebas, C.Solomon, M. Holland, T. Northcutt, R. A. Restrepo, R. Bilodeau, 2013. NASA/Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Earth Science Keywords. Version