Athabasca Glacier

Alpine glaciers are extremely important water reservoirs providing both freshwater and bioavailable nutrients. Regions relying on melting snowpacks and/or glaciers for their water supply are extremely vulnerable with respect to freshwater availability as snowpack and glaciers are diminishing throughout the world.

In this study of the subglacial meltwater from the Athabasca Glacier (AG), British Columbia, we use noble gas concentrations and isotopic ratios in an effort to quantify the relative contributions of modern precipitation versus ice melt, and to identify the original source of glacial meltwater.

This project is being carried out in collaboration with Dr. Sarah Aciego's Group at UM.
It is being funded by the University of Michigan and the Packard Foundation awarded to Dr. Aciego.


Niu Y., Castro M.C., Aciego S.M., Hall C.M., and Arendt C. (2017), Characterizing Glacial Meltwater Sources in the Athabasca Glacier, Canada, using Noble Gases as Tracers,, , Appl. Geochem..

M. Clara Castro,
Jan 8, 2017, 6:22 AM