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Characteristics of a crater glacier at Ushkovsky volcano, Kamchatka, Russia, as revealed by the physical properties of ice cores and borehole thermometry

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A glacier at the summit of Ushkovskyvolcano, Kamchatka peninsula, Russia, was studied in order to obtain information about the physical characteristics of a glacier that fills a volcanic crater. The glacier has a gentle surface and a concave basal profile with a maximum measured depth of 240 m at site K2. The annual accumulation rate was 0.54 m a-1 w.e., and the 10 m depth temperature was -15.8°C. A 211.70 m long ice core drilled at K2 indicates that (1) the site is categorized as a percolation zone, (2) the stress field in the glacier changes at 180 m depth from vertical and longitudinal compression with transversal extension, which is divergent flow, to a shear-dominated stress field, and (3) the frequent occurrence of ash layers can be a good tool for dating the ice core. The borehole temperature profiles were considered to be non-stationary, but the linear profile made it possible to estimate the basal temperature and the geothermal heat flux at K2. Assuming constant surface and the basal boundary-conditions, we constructed two depth-age relationships at K2. These predicted that the bottom ages of the ice core were about 511 or 603 years.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: June 1, 2001

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  • The Journal of Glaciology is published six times per year. It accepts submissions from any discipline related to the study of snow and ice. All articles are peer reviewed. The Journal is included in the ISI Science Citation Index.
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