Fig. 1 | Nature Communications

Fig. 1

From: Spatio-temporal variability of processes across Antarctic ice-bed–ocean interfaces

Fig. 1

Conceptual and simplified view of the Antarctic polar system. a The state-of-the-art and the knowledge gaps about subglacial hydrology (1), continental shelf evolution (2), and ocean circulation (3) are discussed in the present review. b Macro-scale (e.g., mountains and lakes) and micro-scale (presence of deformable sediments) subglacial bed roughness influences the relationship between ice sheet and hydrological processes. Basal meltwater can saturate sediments, which helps to accelerating the ice flow and impacts on grounding line dynamics. c Geophysical records suggest that the modern seafloor reached its landward dipping morphology and extent by the late Miocene-early Pliocene ( ≈ 5 Ma), as a result of intense subglacial erosion. d Numerical simulations89 suggest that a smaller Weddell Sea continental shelf, as during the mid Miocene ( ≈ 15 Ma) compared to modern, induces a poleward shift of regional oceanic circulation, and enhances heat transport (CDW/AABW) across the continental shelf edge. The depth and shape of the continental shelf edge and slope determine where the intrusions of CDW occur. The sub-cavity ocean processes and the glacio-isostatic adjustment will be discussed in upcoming reviews by Smith et al. (in preparation) and Whitehouse et al. (in preparation). AABW, Antarctic Bottom Water; ACC, Antarctic Circumpolar Current; ASC, Antarctic Slope Current; CDW, Circumpolar Deep Water; GL, Grounding line; HSSW, High Salinity Shelf Water; mCDW, modified CDW; mISW, modified Ice-Shelf Water. Note that the oceanic processes represented in 2D view for the purpose of the illustration might not occur at the same locations on the continental shelf

Back to article page