Geologic Provinces Beneath the Greenland Ice Sheet Constrained by Geophysical Data Synthesis

Joseph A. MacGregor, William T. Colgan, Guy J.G. Paxman, Kirsty J. Tinto, Beáta Csathó, Fiona A. Darbyshire, Mark A. Fahnestock, Thomas F. Kokfelt, Emma J. MacKie, Mathieu Morlighem, Olga V. Sergienko

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Present understanding of Greenland's subglacial geology is derived mostly from interpolation of geologic mapping of its ice-free margins and unconstrained by geophysical data. Here we refine the extent of its geologic provinces by synthesizing geophysical constraints on subglacial geology from seismic, gravity, magnetic and topographic data. North of 72°N, no province clearly extends across the whole island, leaving three distinct subglacial regions yet to be reconciled with margin geology. Geophysically coherent anomalies and apparent province boundaries are adjacent to the onset of faster ice flow at both Petermann Glacier and the Northeast Greenland Ice Stream. Separately, based on their subaerial expression, dozens of unusually long, straight and sub-parallel subglacial valleys cross Greenland's interior and are not yet resolved by current syntheses of its subglacial topography.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2023GL107357
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 28 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


  • Greenland Ice Sheet
  • remote sensing
  • subglacial geology


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