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Journal of Applied Remote Sensing

Glacial lakes change and current status in the central Chinese Himalayas from 1990 to 2010
Author(s): Shi-jin Wang; Tao Zhang
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Paper Abstract

Recent evolutions and current status of glacial lakes in the central Chinese Himalayas were analyzed using Landsat satellite imagery acquired in 1990, 2000, and 2010. The datasets show that there are 604 glacial lakes with a total area of 85.17  km 2 in the central Chinese Himalayas in 2010, in which moraine-dammed lakes are the most represented typology (199 lakes, 54.92  km 2 ) in terms of area. From 1990 to 2010, the expansion rate of total glacial lake area was 0.57  km 2 /year in the central Chinese Himalayas and was significantly higher than in the Nepal-Bhutan and Western India-Pakistan-Afghanistan Himalayas (−0.08 to 0.45  km 2 /year ) between 1990 and 2009. Of all glacial lakes, moraine-dammed lakes experienced a rapid increase in size at a rate of 0.45  km 2 /year from 1990 to 2010, while the area of other types of glacial lakes grew more slowly with an expansion rate that did not exceed 0.05  km 2 /year (valley lakes at a rate of 0.003  km 2 /year and glacial erosion lakes at a rate of 0.006  km 2 /year ). In addition, 23 potentially dangerous glacial lakes (PDGLs) are identified and their area increased by 77.46% between 1990 and 2010 and the increase rate is higher than non-PDGLs (39%) in the same period.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 December 2013
PDF: 15 pages
J. Appl. Remote Sens. 7(1) 073459 doi: 10.1117/1.JRS.7.073459
Published in: Journal of Applied Remote Sensing Volume 7, Issue 1
Show Author Affiliations
Shi-jin Wang, Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute (China)
Tao Zhang, Univ. of Chinese Academy of Sciences (China)

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