Tributaries of West Antarctic Ice Streams Revealed by RADARSAT Interferometry

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Science  08 Oct 1999:
Vol. 286, Issue 5438, pp. 283-286
DOI: 10.1126/science.286.5438.283

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Interferometric RADARSAT data are used to map ice motion in the source areas of four West Antarctic ice streams. The data reveal that tributaries, coincident with subglacial valleys, provide a spatially extensive transition between slow inland flow and rapid ice stream flow and that adjacent ice streams draw from shared source regions. Two tributaries flow into the stagnant ice stream C, creating an extensive region that is thickening at an average rate of 0.49 meters per year. This is one of the largest rates of thickening ever reported in Antarctica.

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