(Article of periodic en Anglais - 1982)

Document title

Plucking as an effect of water-pressure variations at the glacier bed

Authors(s) and Affiliation(s)



A rapid displacement of glaciers occurs at times when the water supply from melting ore lake drainage surmounts the capacity of the subglacial drainage system. It is explained by the hydraulic action of water at high pressure in cavities opened on the lee side of undulations or steps of the glacier bed. It is suggested that because of pressure-induced temperature fluctuations, rock fragments may freeze on to the glacier sole and be lifted out into an opening cavity. Laboratory experiments have shown that small pressure fluctuations of a few bars only are sufficient for rock slabs of a considerable thickness to be moved in this way.


Article of periodic

published at : Annals of Glaciology Cambridge

Editor :

Millesime : 1982, vol. 2 [pp. 57-62]

Bibliographic references : 13 réf.



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