Paleofluvial Mega-Canyon Beneath the Central Greenland Ice Sheet

Jonathan L. Bamber*, Martin J. Siegert, Jennifer A. Griggs, Shawn J. Marshall, Giorgio Spada

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

64 Citations (Scopus)


Subglacial topography plays an important role in modulating the distribution and flow of basal water. Where topography predates ice sheet inception, it can also reveal insights into former tectonic and geomorphological processes. Although such associations are known in Antarctica, little consideration has been given to them in Greenland, partly because much of the ice sheet bed is thought to be relatively flat and smooth. Here, we present evidence from ice-penetrating radar data for a 750-km-long subglacial canyon in northern Greenland that is likely to have influenced basal water flow from the ice sheet interior to the margin. We suggest that the mega-canyon predates ice sheet inception and will have influenced basal hydrology in Greenland over past glacial cycles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)997-999
Number of pages3
Issue number6149
Publication statusPublished - 30 Aug 2013




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