QUANTIFICATION OF GLACIER DEPLETION IN THE CENTRAL TIBETAN PLATEAU BY USING INTEGRATED SATELLITE REMOTE SENSING AND GRAVIMETRY
Keywords: Landsat, GRACE, Altimetry, Modified Normalized Difference Water Index (MNDWI)
Abstract. Glaciers over the Tibetan Plateau have experienced accelerated depletion in the last few decades due primarily to the global warming. The freshwater drained into brackish lakes is also observed by optical remote sensing and altimetry satellites. However, the actual water storage change is difficult to be quantified since the altimetry or remote sensing only provide data in limited dimensions. The altimetry data give an elevation change of surface while the remote sensing images provide an extent variation in horizontal plane. Hence a data set used to describe the volume change is needed to measure the exact mass transition in a time span. In this study, we utilize GRACE gravimetry mission to quantify the total column mass change in the central Tibetan Plateau, especially focused on the lakes near Tanggula Mountains. By removing these factors, the freshwater storage change of glacier system at study area can be potentially isolated.