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Title: The potential risks and future impact of a large Leverett Glacier crevasse along the South Pole Traverse (SPoT)
Authors: Fegyveresi, John M.
Keywords: Antarctic ice stream behavior
Crevasse hazards
Crevasse propagation
Glacial crevasses
Glacier dynamics
Leverett Glacier
Leverett Glacier crevasse
South Pole Traverse
SPoT safety
Traverse hazard assessment
Publisher: Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Series/Report no.: ERDC/CRREL;TR-17-16
Abstract: In December 2013, the inbound South Pole Traverse (SPoT) encountered a large (approximately 15 m × 4 km) open crevasse at the bottom of Leverett Glacier near the traverse route. A crevasse of this size so close to the traverse route could impede future traverses, resulting in significant delays or reroutes, and could pose a significant safety hazard to the SPoT personnel, vehicles, and equipment should it grow or migrate. These risks are difficult to quantify as the glaciological and meteorological setting around Leverett Glacier is particularly dynamic. The uncertainty estimates associated with the possible future growth of the crevasse are thus not well constrained. This report presents a compiled time-series analysis of satellite-derived multispectral imagery, satellite-derived ice-velocity data, and ground-based meteorological data in an effort to determine the timing and dynamics related to the appearance, growth, and migration of this crevasse. Though this study determined that the potential hazard posed by this crevasse is minimal to the existing SPoT route and personnel, the author recommends for future traverses a small (1 km) course reroute correction, new ground-based radar and global positioning system (GPS) surveys, and continued vigilance and proactive hazard awareness with active real-time surveys.
Appears in Collections:Technical Report

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