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The mass-balance characteristics and sensitivities to climate variables of Laohugou Glacier No. 12, western Qilian Mountains, China
Received:July 12, 2017    Click here to download the full text
Citation of this paper:JiZu Chen,ShiChang Kang,Xiang Qin,WenTao Du,WeiJun Sun,YuShuo Liu,2017.The mass-balance characteristics and sensitivities to climate variables of Laohugou Glacier No. 12, western Qilian Mountains, China.Sciences in Cold and Arid Regions,9(6):543~553.
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Author NameAffiliationE-mail
JiZu Chen Qilian Shan Station of Glaciology and Ecological Environment, State Key Laboratory of Cryospheric Sciences, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China;University of CAS, Beijing 100049, China  
ShiChang Kang Qilian Shan Station of Glaciology and Ecological Environment, State Key Laboratory of Cryospheric Sciences, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China;CAS Center for Excellence in Tibetan Plateau Earth Sciences, Beijing 100085, China  
Xiang Qin Qilian Shan Station of Glaciology and Ecological Environment, State Key Laboratory of Cryospheric Sciences, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China qinxiang@lzb.ac.cn 
WenTao Du Qilian Shan Station of Glaciology and Ecological Environment, State Key Laboratory of Cryospheric Sciences, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China;University of CAS, Beijing 100049, China  
WeiJun Sun College of Population, Resources and Environment, Shandong Normal University, Jinan, Shandong 250014, China  
YuShuo Liu Qilian Shan Station of Glaciology and Ecological Environment, State Key Laboratory of Cryospheric Sciences, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China  
 
Abstract:Due to global warming, glaciers on the Tibetan Plateau (TP) are experiencing widespread shrinkage; however, the mechanisms controlling glacier variations across the TP are still rather unclear, especially on the northeastern TP. In this study, a physically based, distributed surface-energy and mass-balance model was used to simulate glacier mass balance forced by meteorological data. The model was applied to Laohugou No. 12 Glacier, western Qilian Mountains, China, during 2010~2012. The simulated albedo and mass balance were validated and calibrated by in situ measurements. The simulated annual glacier-wide mass balances were -385 mm water equivalent (w.e.) in 2010/2011 and -232 mm w.e. in 2011/2012, respectively. The mean equilibrium-line altitude (ELA) was 5,015 m a.s.l., during 2010~2012, which ascended by 215 m compared to that in the 1970s. The mean accumulation area ratio (AAR) was 39% during the two years. Climatic-sensitivity experiments indicated that the change of glacier mass balance resulting from a 1.5 ℃ increase in air temperature could be offset by a 30% increase in annual precipitation. The glacier mass balance varied linearly with precipitation, at a rate of 130 mm w.e. per 10% change in total precipitation.
keywords:glacier  mass balance  energy- and mass-balance model  climate sensitivities
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