Water exchange between the subglacial Lake Vostok and the overlying ice sheet

  • Siegert M
  • Kwok R
  • Mayer C
 et al. 
  • 49


    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • N/A


    Citations of this article.


It has now been known for several years that a 200-km-long lake, called Lake Vostok, lies beneath the ice sheet on which sits Vostok Station in Antarctica. The conditions at the base of the ice sheet above this subglacial lake can provide information about the environment within the lake, including the likelihood that it supports life. Here we present an analysis of the ice-sheet structure from airborne 60-MHz radar studies, which indicates that distinct zones of basal ice loss and accretion occur at the ice-water interface. Subglacial melting and net ice loss occur in the north of the lake and across its 200-km-long western margin, whereas about 150 m of ice is gained by subglacial freezing in the south. This indicates that significant quantities of water are exchanged between the base of the ice sheet and the lake waters, which will enrich the lake with gas hydrates, cause sediment deposition and encourage circulation of the lake water.

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document


  • Martin J. Siegert

  • Ron Kwok

  • Christoph Mayer

  • Bryn Hubbard

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free