EGU General Assembly 2023
© Author(s) 2023. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

A new view of a 1970s radar dataset from Greenland

Nanna Bjørnholt Karlsson1, Dustin Schroeder2,3, Louise S. Sørensen4, Winnie Chu5, Thomas Teisberg2, Angelo Tarzano4, Niels Skou4, and Jørgen Dall4
Nanna Bjørnholt Karlsson et al.
  • 1Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland, Glaciology and Climate, Copenhagen, Denmark (
  • 2Department of Geophysics, Stanford University, USA
  • 3Department of Electrical Engineering, Stanford University, USA
  • 4Denmark Technical University of Denmark, DTU Space, Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark
  • 5School of Earth & Atmospheric Sciences, Georgia Institute of Technology, USA

The short observational record is one of the main obstacles to improving the present understanding of the future of the Polar ice sheets. While the quantity and quality of observations presently are increasing observations from before the 1990s are scarce. Here, we present the first results from a newly digitized ice-penetrating radar dataset acquired over the Greenland Ice Sheet in the 1970s. The data consist of more than 170,000 km of radar flight lines. While the ice thickness information from the data has been digitized by previous studies, the data itself (notably the z-scopes) were until recently only available as 35-mm films, microfiche copies of the films, and enlarged positives: Formats that are not usable for digital analysis.

In 2019, the film rolls were scanned by a digital scanner and subsequently, a large effort has been directed at carrying out quality control of the data with the view of making them publicly available.  Here we present the first results from this digitization. The overall data quality is good, and we are able to retrieve valuable information on layer stratigraphy and ice-flow dynamics.

How to cite: Karlsson, N. B., Schroeder, D., Sørensen, L. S., Chu, W., Teisberg, T., Tarzano, A., Skou, N., and Dall, J.: A new view of a 1970s radar dataset from Greenland, EGU General Assembly 2023, Vienna, Austria, 24–28 Apr 2023, EGU23-6935,, 2023.