The International Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
Publications Copernicus
Articles | Volume XLVIII-1-2024
10 May 2024
 | 10 May 2024

A comparative study of mass balance in the Lambert Glacier and Amery Ice Shelf along the Chinese inland traverse during 2019–2023 using altimetry, gravity, and in-situ observations

Hongwei Li, Youquan He, Yuanyuan Gu, and Gang Qiao

Keywords: ICESat-2, photon-counting laser altimetry, GRACE-FO, mass balance

Abstract. The new photon-counting laser altimetry satellite ICESat-2 was successfully launched on September 15, 2018 with an unprecedented ice surface elevation measurement accuracy of 2–4 cm. It is meaningful for accurately estimating volumetric changes in the Antarctic Ice Sheet. Cross-validation of different types of data, especially comparison with in-situ data, is important for the ice sheet mass balance results of a new satellite. This paper proposes an elevation-difference method of grid elevation change rate model, based on ICESat-2 ATL11 elevation time series data, to distinguish the linear change trend of ice sheet surface elevation from the elevation change resulting from periodic precipitation. In order to compare the estimated elevation-change rate with the flux computed from in-situ snow stake velocity measurements and GRACE-FO gravity survey data, we made corrections for firn air content, elastic, and glacier isostatic adjustment. Based on the ATL11 data from 2019 to 2023, our results show that the ice sheet change in Basin 11 along the CHINARE traverse is from ~0.019 m yr−1 to ~0.121 m yr−1, and the mass balance in the upstream of the traverse in Basin 11 is ~1.9±0.2 Gt yr−1. It is comparable to ~2.4±1.2 Gt yr−1 from GRACE-FO during the same time period. Furthermore, the flux across traverse-11.9±1.1 Gt yr−1 is comparable to that of ~-9.7±0.9 Gt yr−1 across the same flux gate during 1997–2009 which is calculated based on GNSS-derived ice velocity observations, considering the time period difference and uncertainties.