Proglacial and Ice Marginal Processes
In high latitudes, recent research has demonstrated that both thermo-erosion and temperature dependence influence sediment release into fluvial systems. An analysis of proglacial suspended sediment concentration (SSC) dynamics is presented for three glacier-ized basins: cold-based Austre Brøggerbreen (Svalbard), polythermal Midre Lovénbreen (Svalbard) and polythermal Glacier B28 (Bylot Island). The temporal variation in processes dominating SSC patterns is assessed using stepwise multivariate regression following the subdivision of the time series. Partitioning of the time series is achieved through principal components and change point analyses. The regression models use discharge and surrogate predictor variables to model SSC, while improvements are made by using air temperature and radiation terms as independent variables. Comparisons are drawn between two sets of models with contrasting subseasonal division. By interpretation of the regression model characteristics, temporal changes in physical processes are implied over the course of the time periods. Numerical analyses suggest there is a trend for changes between fluvial, glacial and periglacial factors forcing responses in SSC. Therefore, it is conjectured that glaciofluvial sediment transfer at high latitudes is influenced by periglacial processes and conditions. This has implications for the predictions of fluvial sediment loads in a changing environment, and the use of sedimentary records for environmental reconstruction.
Figures & Tables
The introduction of the term periglacial by Łoziński in 1909 to describe the cold-climate conditions in the zone adjacent to, but beyond, the Pleistocene glaciers encouraged the separate development of geocryological and glaciological research. Geological and geomorphological processes at the interface between glaciers and permafrost have, as a result, been given less attention than they warrant, and the influence of one on the other has in many respects been neglected. This book includes a collection of papers that emphasize glacier-permafrost interactions. Papers consider permafrost and its influence on glacitectonic processes, glacial meltwater systems and ground-ice development in proglacial and ice-marginal environments. In addition, recent research findings are reported on paraglacial processes, permafrost evolution, rock glaciers, the formation of ice-wedge casts and periglacial slope evolution. It is hoped that this book will stimulate interest in the interface between glacial and periglacial systems, and encourage further collaborative research involving glaciologists and glacial geologists on the one hand, and geocryologists and permafrost scientists on the other.