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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2015-01-27
    Description: The Lena River forms one of the largest deltas in the Arctic. We compare two sets of data to reveal new insights into the hydrological, hydrochemical, and geochemical processes within the delta: (i) long-term hydrometric observations at the Khabarova station at the head of the delta from 1951 to 2005; (ii) field hydrological and geochemical observations carried out within the delta since 2002. Periods with differing relative discharge and intensity of fluvial processes were identified from the long-term record of water and sediment discharge. Ice events during spring melt (high water) reconfigured branch channels and probably influenced sediment transport within the delta. Based on summer field measurements during 2005–2012 of discharge and sediment fluxes along main delta channels, both are increased between the apex and the front of the delta. This increase is to a great extent connected with an additional influx of water from tributaries, as well as an increase of suspended and dissolved material released from the ice complex. Summer concentrations of major ion and biogenic substances along the delta branches are partly explained by water sources within the delta, such as thawing ice complex waters, small Lena River branches and estuarine areas.
    Repository Name: EPIC Alfred Wegener Institut
    Type: Article , NonPeerReviewed
    Format: application/pdf
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Patterned ground is a characteristic periglacial landform in polar and alpine environments but has not been systematically studied in karst caves. Here we characterize the periglacial environment and sorted stripes within the Ledenica pod Hrušico ice cave, western Slovenia. The stripes were mapped, sediment depth and grain size were measured, and cave and outside air temperatures were monitored together with ground temperatures. Eleven sorted stripes of coarse limestone debris had developed on 1 m thick silt-rich sediment, underlain by limestone bedrock. Silt-rich cave sediments can accumulate as insoluble carbonate residue or during flood events, whereas coarse debris may result from frost shattering. Cold winter air entered the ice cave, but little air exchange occurred during summer, when the cave air temperature slowly rose to a maximum of 5°C. Winter temperature oscillations propagated efficiently to the snow-free cave floor. Fourteen freeze-thaw cycles were observed at the patterned-ground surface during winter 2015/2016 and may cause the differential frost heaving necessary for sediment sorting. Such periglacial conditions and mixtures of silty and coarse sediments can produce sorted patterns in karst caves.
    Repository Name: EPIC Alfred Wegener Institut
    Type: Article , NonPeerReviewed
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2014-07-14
    Description: The Arctic’s climate system is changing: air temperatures, major river discharges and open water season length have increased, and storm intensities and tracks are changing. Thirteen quantitative studies of the rates of coastline position change throughout the Arctic show that recently observed changes have not increased coastal erosion rates, which currently range between 0 and 2 m/yr when averaged for the arctic shelf seas. Current data is probably insufficient, both spatially and temporally, however, to capture change at decadal to sub-decadal time scales. In this context, we describe the current understanding of arctic coastal geomorphodynamics with an emphasis on erosional regimes of coasts with ice-rich sedimentary deposits in the Laptev, East Siberian and Beaufort seas, where local coastal erosion can reach 30 m/yr. We also examine coasts with lithified (rocky) substrates where geomorphodynamics are intensified by rapid glacial retreat. Coastlines of Svalbard, Greenland, and the Canadian Archipelago are less frequently studied than ice-rich continental coasts of North America and Siberia and studies often focus on coastal sections composed of unlithified material. As air temperature and sea ice duration and extent change, longer thaw and wave seasons will intensify coastal dynamics in the Arctic.
    Repository Name: EPIC Alfred Wegener Institut
    Type: Article , NonPeerReviewed
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2014-11-25
    Description: Enhanced permafrost warming and increased Arctic river discharges have heightened concern about the input of terrigenous matter into Arctic coastal waters. We used optical operational satellite data from the ocean colour sensor MERIS (Medium-Resolution Imaging Spectrometer) aboard the ENVISAT satellite mission for synoptic monitoring of the pathways of terrigenous matter on the shallow Laptev Sea shelf. Despite the high cloud coverage in summer that is inherent to this Arctic region, time series from MERIS satellite data from 2006 on to 2011 could be acquired and were processed using the Case-2 Regional Processor (C2R) for optically complex surface waters installed in the open-source software ESA BEAM-VISAT. Since optical remote sensing using ocean colour satellite data has seen little application in Siberian Arctic coastal and shelf waters, we assess the applicability of the calculated MERIS C2R parameters with surface water sampling data from the Russian–German ship expeditions LENA2008, LENA2010 and TRANSDRIFT-XVII taking place in August 2008 and August and September 2010 in the southern Laptev Sea. The shallow Siberian shelf waters are optically not comparable to the deeper, more transparent waters of the Arctic Ocean. The inner-shelf waters are characterized by low transparencies, due to turbid river water input, terrestrial input by coastal erosion, resuspension events and, therefore, high background concentrations of suspended particulate matter and coloured dissolved organic matter. We compared the field-based measurements with the satellite data that are closest in time. The match-up analyses related to LENA2008 and LENA2010 expedition data show the technical limits of matching in optically highly heterogeneous and dynamic shallow inner-shelf waters. The match-up analyses using the data from the marine TRANSDRIFT expedition were constrained by several days' difference between a match-up pair of satellite-derived and in situ parameters but are also based on the more stable hydrodynamic conditions of the deeper inner- and the outer-shelf waters. The relationship of satellite-derived turbidity-related parameters versus in situ suspended matter from TRANSDRIFT data shows that the backscattering coefficient C2R_bb_spm can be used to derive a Laptev-Sea-adapted SPM algorithm. Satellite-derived Chl a estimates are highly overestimated by a minimum factor of 10 if applied to the inner-shelf region due to elevated concentrations of terrestrial organic matter. To evaluate the applicability of ocean colour remote sensing, we include the visual analysis of lateral hydrographical features. The mapped turbidity-related MERIS C2R parameters show that the Laptev Sea is dominated by resuspension above submarine shallow banks and by frontal instabilities such as frontal meanders with amplitudes up to 30 km and eddies and filaments with horizontal scales up to 100 km that prevail throughout the sea-ice-free season. The widespread turbidity above submarine shallow banks indicates inner-shelf vertical mixing that seems frequently to reach down to submarine depths of a minimum of 10 m. The resuspension events and the frontal meanders, filaments and eddies indicate enhanced vertical mixing being widespread on the inner shelf. It is a new finding for the Laptev Sea that numerous frontal instabilities are made visible, and how highly time-dependent and turbulent the Laptev Sea shelf is. The meanders, filaments and eddies revealed by the ocean colour parameters indicate the lateral transportation pathways of terrestrial and living biological material in surface waters.
    Repository Name: EPIC Alfred Wegener Institut
    Type: Article , NonPeerReviewed
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2018-01-03
    Print ISSN: 1045-6740
    Electronic ISSN: 1099-1530
    Topics: Geography , Geosciences
    Published by Wiley
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  • 6
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    In:  In: Expeditions in Siberia in 2005. , ed. by Schirrmeister, L. Berichte zur Polar- und Meeresforschung = Reports on Polar and Marine Research, 550 . AWI, Bremerhaven, pp. 1-39.
    Publication Date: 2015-03-17
    Type: Book chapter , PeerReviewed
    Format: text
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