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Changes in glacier area in Tyrol, Austria, between 1969 and 1992 derived from Landsat 5 Thematic Mapper and Austrian Glacier Inventory data

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Results are presented from the use of Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) imagery and data from the Austrian Glacier Inventory for area change detection of a large number of glaciers. A trend analysis of glacier area between 1969, 1985 and 1992 was carried out for 235 glaciers in Tyrol, Austria. Ratio images from TM channels 4 and 5 are thresholded to obtain a glacier mask as revealed by analysis of the data for six sub-regions (Ă–tztal, Pitztal, Gurgl, Stubai North, Stubai South and Zillertal). Glaciers with areas less than 1 km2 shrank significantly between 1969 and 1992 (about -35%). The total loss in area in this period is about 43 km2 or -18.6% of the area in 1969 (230.5 km2). Glaciers smaller than 1 km2 contribute 59% (25 km2) to the total loss although they covered only one-third of the area in 1969.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: February 25, 2002

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