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Antarctica, showing rates of surface-elevation change derived from satellite radar-altimeter measurements

Antarctica, showing rates of surface-elevation change derived from satellite radar-altimeter measurements

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Uploaded 21 Feb 2012 by GRID-Arendal
Year: 2007 Author: Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
Description:
The figure shows rates at which the ice-sheet mass was estimated to be changing based on radar-altimeter data (black), mass-budget calculations (red), and satellite gravity measurements (blue). Rectangles depict the time periods of observations (horizontal) and the upper and lower estimates of mass balance (vertical). Measurements by satellite techniques based on gravity indicate mass loss at a rate of 138 ± 73 billion tonnes per year during 2002–2005, mostly from the West Antarctica Ice Sheet. That is equivalent to a rise in global sea level of 0.4 ± 0.2 mm per year, or 10–30% of the global rate measured since the 1950s, and is in good agreement with recent massbudget estimates. However, two interpretations of satellite radar altimetry pointed to a much smaller loss of about 31 billion tonnes of ice per year or a net gain of about 27 billion tonnes per year. The difference between these estimates from totally independent techniques reflects the uncertainties in these difficult me ...
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