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WP 3.2: Advance ESMs with new and improved physical processes

Workpackage leader: Shuting Yang, DMI

SVALI PhD students: Ilona Välisuo and Bergur Einarsson


  • Implement the new processes studied under Theme 2 in ESMs, glacial and subglacial hydrology, calving and surface processes.
  • To refine the ice sheet surface mass balance of the Earth system models COSMOS and ECEarth, and to validate the refinements against observations and re-analysis data. The focus will be on the Greenland ice sheet, but as the model are global, the implementation should be applicable to other ice sheets, too.


Earth system models have not taken into account some surface processes that are of importance on ice sheets (e.g. superimposed ice, meltwater refreezing in firn) and therefore is it not possible to use
ESMs to assess the impact of recent changes observed in the Cryosphere that are associated with these processes. Similarly, the implementation of the effect of subglac ial hydrology and calving on
ice velocity in ESMs is rudimentary or lacking. The aim is to implement improved surface mass balance, subglacial hydrology and calving processes in the ESMs and validate and assess the impact
of the improved ice sheet description on the Earth system.

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Last modified : Sep. 13, 2012
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