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Seminar talk: Considering Greenland: How to model and observe an ice sheet

Ruth Mottram from DMI will give a seminar talk on Wednesday 20 November.

Portrett Mottram
Ruth Mottram


Short biography:

Dr. Ruth Mottram is a climate scientist at the Danish Climate Centre, Danish Meteorological Institute

Dr. Mottram with a keen interest in climate-ice sheet dynamics. In particular, she works at the interface between climate modelling and ice sheet modelling, coupling the regional climate model (HIRHAM) constructed and run at DMI, with an ice sheet model (PiSM), using an energy balance model to derive the mass budget of the Greenland ice sheet.

Dr. Mottram was awarded her PhD from the University of St Andrews in Scotland for her research on models of crevasse formation with regard to calving glaciers.

Previously, she worked at GEUS (Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland) on a range of mainly commercially focused projects in Greenland.




The Greenland ice sheet is losing mass at its fastest observed rate, but not all parts of the ice sheet are contributing equally and rates vary markedly on interannual timescales. There has been an explosion of new research in the last decade and we now know much more about the important processes that control ice sheet evolution, however implementing this understanding in models remains challenging.

With a full 7 metres of global sea level rise the future of the ice sheet matters globally but palaeo evidence for large ice loss is hard to reconcile with present day observed mass loss rates. Similarly, ice dynamic model results for rates of ice sheet retreat are highly dependent on different and still poorly parameterized processes. In this talk I will present an overview of some recently published and ongoing research into rates of Greenland ice sheet change both observed and modelled on past, present and potential future timescales. I will explore what we can learn from models, both coupled and uncoupled and map out some future research directions.


Arranged date for the seminar talk: Nov 20, 2019 at 14:15

Place: BCCR lecture room 4020, Jahnebakken 5