Multiple steady states in ice-water-till systems

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22 Scopus citations


An ice sheet with fixed boundary conditions may have two steady configurations, as shown by a new one-dimensional model including the physics and continuity of ice, water, and deforming subglacial till. In one steady state, a steep surface slope causes rapid internal ice shearing but forces basal water through subglacial aquifers, suppressing basal velocity; in the other steady state, a gentle surface slope causes only slow ice shearing but allows water to lubricate the ice-bed interface and cause large ice-sheet response during a switch between steady states. -Author

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of Glaciology
StatePublished - 1990

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Earth-Surface Processes


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