Within the Global Terrestrial Network for Glaciers (GTN-G), the following guidelines and standards have been established regarding glacier fluctuations:

Measurement of glacier front variations

  • Forel, F.A. (1895): Instructions pour l’observation des variations des glaciers. Discours préliminaire. Archives des Sciences physiques et naturelles, XXXIV: 209-229.
  • PSFG (1967): Fluctuations of Glaciers 1959-1965 (Vol. I). P. Kasser (ed.), IAHS (ICSI) / UNESCO, Permanent Service on Fluctuations on Glaciers, Zurich, Switzerland: 52 pp.

Measurement of glacier mass balance

  • Kaser, G., Fountain, A., and Jansson, P. (2003): A manual for monitoring the mass balance of mountain glaciers with particular attention to low latitude characteristics. A contribution from the International Commission on Snow and Ice (ICSI) to the UNESCO HKH-Friend programme. IHP-VI, Technical Documents in Hydrology, No. 59, UNESCO, Paris. 107 p. + Appendices. [pdf]
  • Francou, B., Pouyaud, B. and 12 others (2004). Métodos de observación de glaciares en los Andes opicales. Mediciones de terreno y procesamiento de datos. Versión 1, Great Ice, IRD, France: 238pp. [pdf]
  • Østrem, G. and Stanley, A. (1969): Glacier mass balance measurements. A manual for field and office work. Canadian Department of Energy, Mines and Resources, Norwegian Water Resources and Electricity Board. 125 pp.
  • Østrem, G. and Brugman, M. (1991): Glacier mass-balance measurements: a manual for field and office work, NHRI Science Report. 224 pp. [pdf]
  • UNESCO 1970/73. Combined heat, ice and water balances at selected glacier basins. Part I: A guide for compilation and assemblage of data for glacier mass balance measurements. Part II: Specifications, standards and data exchange. UNESCO/ IAHS Technical Papers in Hydrology 5. [pdf]
  • Zemp, M., Thibert, E., Huss, M., Stumm, D., Rolstad Denby, C., Nuth, C., Nussbaumer, S.U., Moholdt, G., Mercer, A., Mayer, C., Joerg, P.C., Jansson, P., Hynek, B., Fischer, A., Escher-Vetter, H., Elvehøy, H. and L.M. Andreassen (2013): Reanalysing glacier mass balance measurement series. The Cryosphere 7, 1227-1245, doi: 10.5194/tc-7-1227-2013. [pdf]

Mass balance terminology

  • Anonymous (1969): Mass-balance terms. Journal of Glaciology, 8 (52): 3-7.
  • Cogley, J.G. (2010): Mass-balance terms revisited. Journal of Glaciology, 56 (200): 997-1001. [pdf]
  • Cogley, J.G., Hock, R., Rasmussen, L.A., Arendt, A.A., Bauder, A., Braithwaite, R.J., Jansson, P., Kaser, G., Möller, M., Nicholson, L. and Zemp, M. (2011): Glossary of Glacier Mass Balance and Related Terms. IHP_VII Technical Documents in Hydrology No. 86, IACS Contribution No. 2, UNESCO-IHP, Paris. [pdf]

Guidelines for the submission of glacier fluctuations

  • WGMS (2014a, updated from earlier versions): Call-for-Data 2012/13: General Guidelines for Data Submission and Notes on the Completion of Data Sheets. World Glacier Monitoring Service, Zurich, Switzerland: 16 pp. [pdf]
  • WGMS (2014b, updated from earlier versions): Digital Data Submission Form. World Glacier Monitoring Service, Zurich, Switzerland. [excel]

Uncertainty assessment of glacier mass balance

  • Fischer, A. (2010): Glaciers and climate change: Interpretation of 50 years of direct mass balance of Hintereisferner. Global and Planetary Change, 71 (1-2): 13-26. link
  • Huss, M., Bauder, A. and Funk, M. (2009): Homogenization of long-term mass-balance time series. Annals of Glaciology, 50 (50), 198-206. link
  • Koblet, T., Gärtner-Roer, I., Zemp, M., Jansson, P., Thee, P., Haeberli, W. and Holmlund, P. (2010): Reanalysis of multi-temporal aerial images of Storglaciären, Sweden (1959-99) – Part 1: Determination of length, area, and volume changes. The Cryosphere, 4 (3): 333-343. link
  • Nuth, C. and Kääb, A. (2010): Co-registration and bias corrections of satellite elevation data sets for quantifying glacier thickness change. The Cryosphere, 5 (1): 271-290. link
  • Rolstad, C., Haug, T. and Denby, B. (2009): Spatially integrated geodetic glacier mass balance and its uncertainty based on geostatistical analysis: application to the western Svartisen ice cap, Norway. Journal of Glaciology, 55 (192): 666-680. link
  • Thibert, E., Blanc, R., Vincent, C., and Eckert, N. (2008): Glaciological and volumetric mass-balance measurements: error analysis over 51 years for Glacier de Sarennes, French Alps. Journal of Glaciology, 54 (186): 522-532. link
  • Zemp, M., Jansson, P., Holmlund, P., Gärtner-Roer, I., Koblet, T., Thee, P., and Haeberli, W. (2010): Reanalysis of multi-temporal aerial images of Storglaciären, Sweden (1959-99) – Part 2: Comparison of glaciological and volumetric mass balances. The Cryosphere, 4 (3): 345-357. link

For more guidelines related to the monitoring strategy and glacier inventories, please see the GTN-G website.

More selected literature on the international glacier monitoring is listed under literature.

If you have any further questions concerning these guidelines, please do not hesitate to contact us!

last change 30/09/2015