Our research aims to understand recent changes and evaluate forthcoming ones in Arctic and alpine landscapes undergoing glacier retreat, changing hydrology, and climate warming. To accomplish this, we collect and analyze sediment discharge records, either from river systems or sediment cores. We also implement and develop numerical models that describe the interactions amongst ice dynamics, fluvial sediment transport, and glacial erosion.
Changing Glacier Erosion in Greenland
The project aims to understand changes to glacier erosion and sediment transport that may have occurred from the Greenland Ice Sheet in response to recent changes to the ice dynamics. To better, understand the potential changes to the ice sheet, we aim to collect records of sediment transport from the ice sheet, either from sediment cores or river gauging. Our hope is that by relating these records to observed changes in glacier dynamics, we can understand the cause of any changes and what may be expected in the future. This research is funded by an SNSF Ambizione project.
Numerical Model Development
We believe that much can be gained by developing methods that quantify sediment transport and erosion process. For us, this usually means working with the SUbGlacial SEdiment Transport model. Please contact us if you are curious about SUGSET or its application.
Numerical Experiments of Glacier Erosion
Many aspects of glacier erosion and sediment transport occur in places where we cannot see them (under glaciers) and over timescales where we cannot observe and monitor them (many seasons or 1000’s of years). As a result, experiments with numerical models provide us with a laboratory to test our ideas and understand these systems better. We have worked on understanding erosion over the last glaciation and tried to understand the differences in erosional processes between debris-covered and clean glaciers.
Sediment Transport in the Watson River
One question we wonder about is: what happens to the sediment once it leaves the glacier? what if this glacier is the Greenland Ice Sheet with large quantities of water discharge? To answer this, we deployed some instruments along the Watson River in Southwestern Greenland to understand the amount of sediment transferred through the river system fed by the glacier. This project is funded by the Swiss Polar Institute’s Polar Access Fund.
Arctic Century Expedition
We had the opportunity to participate in the Arctic Century Expedition to the Russian Arctic in the Summer of 2021. The goal here was to collect sediment cores from near islands that may yield insights into the history of the landscape. A link to the expedition can be found here.