From the pen of Dr Ulf Erlingsson
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Article in Geografiska Annaler 88A(1):1-7

Lake Vostok behaves like a ‘captured lake’ and may be near to creating an Antarctic jökulhlaup

ABSTRACT. The most well known sub-glacial lake is probably Grímsvötn under Vatnajökul, Iceland, from where jökulhlaups regularly burst forth. It is created by thermal melting under the ice cap. The Antarctic Lake Vostok, on the other hand, is considered to be located over a region with normal geothermal heat transfer, where it can exist because the ice is so thick that its base is at the pressure melting point. This makes it a candidate for testing the Captured Ice Shelf (CIS) hypothesis, which states that the motion of a totally confined ice shelf creates a hydrostatic seal in the form of an ice rim over the threshold. The CIS hypothesis may offer a source of water for the controversial Laurentian jökulhlaups inferred from field data, implicated in dramatic climatic changes. Here I show that Lake Vostok agrees with the hypothesis, and that it may be on the verge of a jökulhlaup, which could create an ice stream and regional downdraw. The result also implies that the lake may well be of pre-glacial origin, and that it may have experienced jökulhlaups also during previous interglacials.

The last paragraph of the article reads:

"The most profound implications of the CIS hypothesis are, however, predicted to come in our understanding of ice sheet dynamics during the Ice Ages. The possibility of a giant Laurentian CIS appears worth examining, as it might explain observed rapid climatic fluctuations, sudden transgressions, and inferred mega-scale sub-glacial outburst floods."

Lake Vostok
Lake Vostok. Ice surface, and hydrostatic seal draped over the terrain. View to the south.
©Ulf Erlingsson (2006)

Peer-Reviewed Articles
A jökulhlaup from a Laurentian captured ice shelf to the Gulf of Mexico could have caused the Bølling warming. Ulf Erlingsson. Geogr. Ann. A 90A(2):125-140 (2008). [Why did the ice age end?].

Comment to “Outburst flooding and the initiation of ice-stream surges in response to climatic cooling: A hypothesis”. Ulf Erlingsson. Geomorphology 86(1-2):214-216 (2007). [Abstract]

Lake Vostok behaves like a ‘captured lake’ and may be near to creating an Antarctic jökulhlaup. Ulf Erlingsson. Geogr. Ann. 88A(1):1-7 (2006). [ Abstract | pdf ]

Measurements and Calculations of Sedimentation in a Flushed Reservoir Resulting in a Sediment Budget. Regulated Rivers: Research and Management 16:279-306 (2000; Margareta B. Jansson, Ulf Erlingsson). [ Abstract | pdf ]

Development of Methods for Nearshore Sediment Transport and Sorting Studies as Applied in Southernmost Sweden, Baltic Sea. Ulf Erlingsson. J. Coastal Res. Special Issue 26:107-114 (1998).

The 'Captured Ice Shelf' hypothesis and its applicability to the Weichselian glaciation. Ulf Erlingsson. Geogr. Ann. 76A(1):1-12 (1994). [ pdf | doc ]

A computer model along a flow-line of an Ice Dome-'Captured Ice Shelf'. Ulf Erlingsson. Geogr. Ann. 76A(1):13-24 (1994). [ pdf | doc | ]

The Submarine Morphology of Surtsey Volcanic Group. Surtsey Res. Progress Rep. X:45-56 (1992; John O. Norrman, Ulf Erlingsson). [ pdf ]

A sensor for measuring erosion and deposition. J. Sed. Pet., 61(4):620-623 (1991; Ulf Erlingsson). [ SediMeter homepage ]

Under Review
Assessment of Voter Intent Using Three Different Polling Methods in Venezuela October 2015: Evidence for Fear Bias in Traditional Polls and Media Bias in Online Polls. Ulf Erlingsson. Submitted Nov 1, 2015
Atlantis from a Geographer's Perspective - Mapping the Fairy Land. Ulf Erlingsson. Lindorm Publishing, 2004. ISBN 0975594605. | アトランティスは沈まなかった. Hara Shobo, 2005.
Conference Papers
GIS for Natural Hazard Mitigation: Experiences from designing the HazMit GIS expert system suggests the need for an international standard. Ulf Erlingsson. GIS Planet 2005, Portugal. [ pdf ]

A Geographic Comparison of Plato's Atlantis and Ireland as a test of the Megalithic Culture Hypothesis. Ulf Erlingsson. Atlantis 2005, 11-13 July, Greece. [ pdf ]

Consideraciones sobre desastres naturales. Capítulo 2 en: Mapeo de Riesgos Naturales en Nicaragua. Volumen II: Marco teórico (Erlingsson, U., Coone, T., Leonelli, M., Gutierrez, M.A., Valle, M., 2001). Hydroconsult Nr HC01-1025. [ html ]

The Arenal Reservoir: 3. The "Gamalote" Floating Islands Problem. AB Hydroconsult, Technical Report, March 1996 (Ulf Erlingsson). [ pdf ]

Européernas DNA från en geografs perspektiv | European DNA from a geographer's perspective (English version is only partly translated) | pdf: Europeernas DNA från en geografs perspektiv - 40.000 år av omblandning. ISBN 9197511900.

Global Change från en geografs perspektiv

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