Archive for May 7, 2018

Scientists: how 11B gallons of water vanished from lake in 90 minutes

For years, scientists have known glacial lakes can rapidly empty themselves of billions of gallons of water—in at least one case, faster than the speed at which water flows over Niagara Falls.

In this July 19, 2011 file photo, a large melt pool forms in the Ilulissat ice fjord below the Jakobshavn Glacier, at the fringe of the vast Greenland ice sheet.

Now, they finally know how it’s done. Researchers had guessed that the weight of the water caused cracks to form in the lake’s icy bottoms that let water drain thousands of feet to the ice sheet’s bed, but that didn’t explain why some lakes cracked and others didn’t. Read more