Association of ice and river channel morphology determined using ground-penetrationg radar in the Kuparuk River, Alaska

Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research
By: , and 

Links

Abstract

We collected ground-penetrating radar data at 10 sites along the Kuparuk River and its main tributary, the Toolik River, to detect unfrozen water beneath river ice. We used 250 MHz and 500 MHz antennas to image both the ice-water interface and the river channel in late April 2001, when daily high temperatures were consistently freezing and river ice had attained its maximum seasonal thickness. The presence of water below the river ice appears as a strong, horizontal reflection observed in the radar data and is confirmed by drill hole data. A downstream transition occurs from ice that is frozen to the bed, called bedfast ice, to ice that is floating on unfrozen water, called floating ice. This transition in ice type corresponds to a downstream change in channel size that was detected in previously conducted hydraulic geometry surveys of the Kuparuk River. We propose a conceptual model wherein the downstream transition from bedfast ice to floating ice is responsible for an observed step change in channel size due to enhanced bank erosion in large channels by floating ice.

Study Area

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Association of ice and river channel morphology determined using ground-penetrationg radar in the Kuparuk River, Alaska
Series title Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research
Edition 157
Volume 37
Issue 2
Year Published 2005
Language English
Publisher Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research
Publisher location Boulder, CO
Contributing office(s) Alaska Science Center
Description 6 p.
First page 162
Country United States
State Alaska
Other Geospatial Kuparuk River, Toolik River
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional metadata about this publication, not found in other parts of the page is in this table