Investigations on the retreat of two small cirque glaciers (Gößnitzkees and Hornkees) in the Austrian Alps, Europe

    Project: Research project

    Description

    The aim of the study is to show the variations in area, altitude and volume of two neighbouring glaciers since the Little Ice Age advance. The respective glaciers are situated in the Schober group (Hohe Tauern range, Central Alps) between 2500 and 3100 m.a.s.l. The reconstruction of the maximum extent in 1850 was possible due to well-preserved moraines, while the other stages ere derived from old maps (1872/73, 1928/29) and aerial photographs (1954, 1969, 1974, 1983, 1992 and 1997).
    As a result digital maps and high-resolution digital terrain models of all these glacial stages were obtained and numerically evaluated in respect to glacier-characteristic parameters and other hypsographical values.
    Furthermore, an orthophoto map at 1:10 000 scale was produced in order to show the present glaciation of 1997
    Summarizing the results it can be said that the two glaciers have lost 51.5% (Goessnitzkees) and 60.6% (Hornkees) of their area since 1850, the decrease in volume was 77.5 x 10 m³ and 38.2 x 10 m³ respectively. These values as well as some other data on changes in area and volume according to elevational intervals correspond quite well with results from other glaciers of the Central Alps.
    StatusFinished
    Effective start/end date1/01/9531/01/99