Temperature measurements in a subpolar surge-type glacier reveal a distinctive thermal structure associated with the boundary between the ice reservoir and receiving areas. In the receiving area the glacier is cold based, but bottom temperature has increased as much as 0.5 °C between 1981 and 1982, and the basal heat flux is roughly 10 times the expected geothermal flux. Water percolation through permeable subglacial material is the probable energy source. Deformation of the substrate could destroy this drainage system and trigger a surge.

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