The influence of debris on the ablation rate of the snowpack at the base of the Sulztal glacier, Austria
J. Charge, Z. Cohen, R. Fewster, B. Holyoak, E. Mason, K. Parker, E. Payne, and K. Thompson School of Geography, University of Leeds May 2018
Over the next century, ablation rates will contribute significantly to the impacts of climate change. The majority of studies have focused mainly on glacial ablation rates, with little attention towards snowpack melting. In order to quantify the ablation of the Sulztal glacier snowpack, the effects of three main variables; debris cover and non-debris cover, debris clast size and black body radiation were measured. Observations were made over a week and ablation measurements were taken overnight. It was concluded that debris covered snowpacks melted faster than non-debris covered (t=-3.4515, df=7.0369, p = 0.01058). With increased clast size ablation rates fell (p=0.06949, r2=0.6255). Increasing distance away from the surrounding black body caused ablation rates to fall (p=0.0298, r2=0.9118).