CR5.2

Understanding the impacts of climate change on ice sheets and glaciers requires accurate surface mass balance. The interaction of ice sheets and glaciers with the atmosphere means that coupled atmosphere-ocean modes and large-scale weather patterns, meso-scale circulations over mountains, and local-scale energy and mass exchanges in the near-surface boundary layer can control the surface mass balance. Surface processes including melt-albedo feedbacks and firn densification introduce further complexity in determining surface mass balance. The Ice Sheets Model Intercomparison Project (ISMIP6), part of the Climate Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP6), aims to constrain the total mass balance contribution of ice sheets and glaciers to sea level rise. In this context, accurate estimates of surface mass balance from both models and observations are crucial, and so intercomparisons of models are currently underway.

This session focuses on (i) novel field- and remotely-sensed advances in measuring the surface energy balance and surface mass balance and (ii) process-based modelling that improves our understanding of glacier and ice sheet surface mass balance and atmospheric interaction. We invite contributions from a broad range of theoretical, numerical or observational studies that explore historic, recent and projected changes to glacier and ice sheet surface mass balance and atmospheric interaction. The range of topics includes but is not limited to: surface energy balance; improvements to satellite SMB retrievals; firn densification; future atmospheric circulation impacts; changes in cloudiness; and the impact of impurities upon albedo. We particularly welcome contributions which focus on improvements to process understanding that will lead to better SMB estimates in the future.

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Co-organized as CL2.12
Convener: Andrew Tedstone | Co-conveners: Willem Jan van de Berg, Ruth Mottram, Charles Amory, Emily Collier
Orals
| Fri, 12 Apr, 14:00–15:45, 16:15–18:00
 
Room N2
Posters
| Attendance Thu, 11 Apr, 16:15–18:00
 
Hall X4
Understanding the impacts of climate change on ice sheets and glaciers requires accurate surface mass balance. The interaction of ice sheets and glaciers with the atmosphere means that coupled atmosphere-ocean modes and large-scale weather patterns, meso-scale circulations over mountains, and local-scale energy and mass exchanges in the near-surface boundary layer can control the surface mass balance. Surface processes including melt-albedo feedbacks and firn densification introduce further complexity in determining surface mass balance. The Ice Sheets Model Intercomparison Project (ISMIP6), part of the Climate Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP6), aims to constrain the total mass balance contribution of ice sheets and glaciers to sea level rise. In this context, accurate estimates of surface mass balance from both models and observations are crucial, and so intercomparisons of models are currently underway.

This session focuses on (i) novel field- and remotely-sensed advances in measuring the surface energy balance and surface mass balance and (ii) process-based modelling that improves our understanding of glacier and ice sheet surface mass balance and atmospheric interaction. We invite contributions from a broad range of theoretical, numerical or observational studies that explore historic, recent and projected changes to glacier and ice sheet surface mass balance and atmospheric interaction. The range of topics includes but is not limited to: surface energy balance; improvements to satellite SMB retrievals; firn densification; future atmospheric circulation impacts; changes in cloudiness; and the impact of impurities upon albedo. We particularly welcome contributions which focus on improvements to process understanding that will lead to better SMB estimates in the future.