A Pressure-sintering Model for the Densification of Polar Firn and Glacier Ice Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Abstract A comprehensive multi-mechanism theory of pressure sintering has been applied to the densification of two polar ice sheets. The comparison, which is made using pressure-sintering mechanism maps, indicates that power-law creep is the controlling mechanism between 50% and 98% theoretical density. Lattice diffusion becomes dominant at low porosities. The densification rates predicted by the theory are in good agreement with the data, and suggest that a reasonable estimation of the densification behaviour of a polar ice sheet can be made using the theory, based on information obtained from a relatively shallow core.

publication date

  • 1988