Special Issue "Mountain Glaciers, Permafrost, and Snow"

A special issue of Geosciences (ISSN 2076-3263). This special issue belongs to the section "Cryosphere".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 25 May 2023 | Viewed by 6213

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Ulrich Kamp
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Natural Sciences, University of Michigan-Dearborn, 4901 Evergreen Rd., 114 Science Faculty Center, Dearborn, MI 48128, USA
Interests: cryosphere; environmental change; hazards; human–environment interactions; mountains
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Dmitry Ganyushkin
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Physical Geography and Landscape Design, Saint-Petersburg State University, 199034 St. Petersburg, Russia
Interests: glaciology and glacial geomorphology; geocryology; palaeogeography of mountainous Eurasian countries in Pleistocene and Holocene; rhythms in landscape and space
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Bijeesh Kozhikkodan Veettil
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute of Fundamental and Applied Sciences, Duy Tan University, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam 700000, Vietnam
Interests: climate change; glacial lack; ice cover; mountain glaciers

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Mountain systems store water in glaciers, permafrost, and snowpacks, contributing meltwater to watershed runoff that goes on to supply ecosystems and communities. Nearly two billion people globally depend on these water towers. The mountain cryosphere is of particular importance and interest in climate change science as it is sensitive to changes in temperature and precipitation. However, the cryosphere is in decline in many mountain systems, often at an ever-accelerating pace. Receding glaciers, thawing permafrost, and shorter snowfall seasons can result in hazards and risks, for example, global lake outburst floods (GLOFs), damage to technical infrastructure, water shortages, and forced human migrations. On the other hand, receding ice and shrinking snow cover have created new habitable landscapes for species and economic development, such as agriculture and mining. Understanding our water towers is crucial for environmental preparedness.

This Special Issue will present pioneering research on the changing cryosphere in mountains and its socio-ecological impacts. We welcome contributions considering the earth and space sciences as well as inter- and transdisciplinary studies.

Prof. Dr. Ulrich Kamp
Prof. Dr. Dmitry Ganyushkin
Dr. Bijeesh Kozhikkodan Veettil
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Geosciences is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1500 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • cryosphere
  • glacier
  • mountains
  • permafrost
  • snow

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Article
On the Evaluation of the SAR-Based Copernicus Snow Products in the French Alps
Geosciences 2022, 12(11), 420; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences12110420 - 15 Nov 2022
Viewed by 526
Abstract
We perform a first evaluation of the Copernicus pan-European wet snow products in mountainous terrain in the French Alps. Mountains are very challenging due to the complexity of the terrain and the multiple interactions between soil, snow and atmosphere that can impact the [...] Read more.
We perform a first evaluation of the Copernicus pan-European wet snow products in mountainous terrain in the French Alps. Mountains are very challenging due to the complexity of the terrain and the multiple interactions between soil, snow and atmosphere that can impact the snowpack state. We focused on the evaluation of the Sentinel-1 derived SAR Wet Snow (SWS) product with the use of Sentinel-2 derived Fractional Snow Cover (FSC) products for the evaluation during wet snow periods. Comparisons were also made with snowpack reanalyses from the Crocus model. We showed that melt lines computed from the SWS product at the scale of massifs show realistic variations in elevation, orientation and season supported by comparisons with some snow variables as simulated by the Crocus model. We developed a new score, which is particularly suitable for mountain products and allows a very useful comparison of satellite products of different ground resolutions. We show that for melting periods, Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-2 snow cover probability curves calculated at the scale of a mountain range are very close for altitudes below 2000 m with RMS errors lower than 0.2. We also illustrate how the generated probability curves can be used to infer highly relevant information on the extent of snow by altitude and on its melting process evolution by connecting information from Sentinel-2 and Sentinel-1 (taking into account morning and evening orbits). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mountain Glaciers, Permafrost, and Snow)
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Article
The Evolution of the Two Largest Tropical Ice Masses since the 1980s
Geosciences 2022, 12(10), 365; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences12100365 - 30 Sep 2022
Viewed by 724
Abstract
As tropical glaciers continue to retreat, we need accurate knowledge about where they are located, how large they are, and their retreat rates. Remote sensing data are invaluable for tracking these hard-to-reach glaciers. However, remotely identifying tropical glaciers is prone to misclassification errors [...] Read more.
As tropical glaciers continue to retreat, we need accurate knowledge about where they are located, how large they are, and their retreat rates. Remote sensing data are invaluable for tracking these hard-to-reach glaciers. However, remotely identifying tropical glaciers is prone to misclassification errors due to ephemeral snow cover. We reevaluate the size and retreat rates of the two largest tropical ice masses, the Quelccaya Ice Cap (Peru) and Nevado Coropuna (Peru), using remote sensing data from the Landsat missions. To quantify their glacial extents more accurately, we expand the time window for our analysis beyond the dry season (austral winter), processing in total 529 Landsat scenes. We find that Landsat scenes from October, November, and December, which are after the dry season, better capture the glacial extent since ephemeral snow cover is minimized. We compare our findings to past studies of tropical glaciers, which have mainly analyzed scenes from the dry season. Our reevaluation finds that both tropical ice masses are smaller but retreating less rapidly than commonly reported. These findings have implications for these ice masses as sustained water resources for downstream communities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mountain Glaciers, Permafrost, and Snow)
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Article
Topographical Impact on Snow Cover Distribution in the Trans-Himalayan Region of Ladakh, India
Geosciences 2022, 12(8), 311; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences12080311 - 20 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 4175
Abstract
This article presents the distribution of seasonal snow cover in the Trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh over the observation period of 2000–2019. Seasonal snow cover area and duration have been monitored and mapped based on the MODIS Normalised Difference Snow Index (NDSI). Using different [...] Read more.
This article presents the distribution of seasonal snow cover in the Trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh over the observation period of 2000–2019. Seasonal snow cover area and duration have been monitored and mapped based on the MODIS Normalised Difference Snow Index (NDSI). Using different MODIS cloud removal algorithms, monthly mean cloud-covered areas have been reduced to 3%. Pixel-wise approaches using Mann–Kendall (MK) and Sen’s slope trend tests allow to assess seasonal and annual trends of snow cover days (SCD) and snow cover area (SCA) across seven delineated subregions of Ladakh. Analyses include the impact of topographical parameters (elevation, slope, aspect). Overall, the mean annual SCA amounts to 42%, varying from 15% in August to 71% in February. However, large differences of SCA have been detected between and within subregions. The trend analysis of SCA shows a non-significant, slight increase for summer as well as for the entire year and a decrease for spring and winter seasons. The SCD trend analysis indicates more pixels with a significant increase than a decrease. In total, 12% of all pixels show an increasing trend in summer, 6% over the entire year, 3% in autumn, and 2% in spring and winter, whereas less than 2% of all pixels show a decreasing trend in all seasons. The results are important for regional irrigated agricultural production and freshwater supply in the context of climate change. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mountain Glaciers, Permafrost, and Snow)
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