Complex fabric development revealed by englacial seismic reflectivity: Jakobshavn Isbræ, Greenland

H. J. Horgan, S. Anandakrishnan, R. B. Alley, L. E. Peters, G. P. Tsoflias, D. E. Voigt, J. P. Winbery

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


High-resolution reflection seismic data from Jakobshavn Isbræ, Greenland, reveal complex fabric development. Abundant englacial reflectivity occurs for approximately half the thickness of the ice (the lower half), and disruption of the englacial reflectors occurs in the lower 10-15% of the ice-thickness. These depths correspond to the higher impurity-content, and more easily deformed, ice from the Younger Dryas and Last Glacial Maximum to Stage-3. We conclude that the reflectivity results from contrasting seismic velocities due to changes in the crystal orientation fabric of the ice, and suggest that these fabric changes are caused by variations in impurity loading and subsequent deformation history. These findings emphasize the difference between ice-divide and ice-stream crystal orientation fabrics and have implications for predictive ice sheet modeling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL10501
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number10
StatePublished - May 28 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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