A Model of Viscoelastic Ice-Shelf Flexure
MacAyeal, Douglas R
Sergienko, Olga V
Journal of Glaciology
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MacAyeal, D. R., Sergienko, O. V., & Banwell, A. (2015). A Model of Viscoelastic Ice-Shelf Flexure. Journal of Glaciology, 61 635-645. https://doi.org/10.3189/2015JoG14J169
We develop a formal thin-shelf treatment of the viscoelas tic flexure of floating ice shelves as an initial step in treating various problems relevant to ice-shelf response to sudden changes of surface loads and applied bending moments (e.g., draining supraglacial lakes, iceberg calving, surface and basal crevassing). Our analysis is based on the assumption that total deformation is the sum of elastic and viscous (or power-law creep) deformations (i.e., akin to a Maxwell model of viscoelasticity, having a spring and dashpot in series). The treatment follows the assumptions of well-known thin-plate approximation, but is presented in a manner familiar to glaciology and with Glen’s flow law. We present an analysis of the viscoelastic evolution of an ice-shelf subject to a filling and draining supraglacial lake. This demonstration is motivated by the proposition that flexure in response to the filling/drainage of meltwater features on the Larsen B Ice Shelf contributed to the fragmentation process that accompanied its collapse in 2002.
Olga Sergienko acknowledges the support of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration of the US (NOAA) grant NA13OAR431009. Alison Banwell acknowledges the support of a Bowring Junior Research Fellowship from St Catharine’s College, Cambridge, and a bursary from Antarctic Science Ltd.
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.3189/2015JoG14J169
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/248980