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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2018-616
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2018-616
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 21 Dec 2018

Research article | 21 Dec 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Hydrology and Earth System Sciences (HESS).

Modeling experiments on seasonal lake ice mass and energy balance in Qinghai-Tibet Plateau: A case study

Wenfeng Huang1,2, Bin Cheng3, Jinrong Zhang1,2, Zheng Zhang1,2, Timo Vihma3, Zhijun Li4,5, and Fujun Niu5 Wenfeng Huang et al.
  • 1Key Laboratory of Subsurface Hydrology and Ecological Effects in Arid Region (the Ministry of Education), Chang'an University, Xi'an 710054, China
  • 2School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Chang'an University, Xi'an 710054, China
  • 3Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland
  • 4State Key Laboratory of Coastal and Offshore Engineering, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024, China
  • 5State Key Laboratory of Frozen Soil Engineering, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinses Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China

Abstract. The lake-rich Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP) has significant impacts on regional and global water cycles and monsoon systems through heat and water vapor exchange. The lake-atmosphere interactions have been quantified over open-water periods, yet little is known about the lake ice thermodynamics and heat and mass balance during ice-covered season due to a lack of field data. Modeling experiments on ice evolution and energy balance were performed in a shallow lake with a high-resolution snow and ice thermodynamic model. The bottom ice growth and decay dominated the seasonal evolution of the thickness of lake ice. Strong surface sublimation was a crucial pattern of ice loss, which was up to 40 % of the maximum ice thickness. Simulation results matched well with the observations with respect to ice mass balance components, net ice thickness, and ice temperature. Strong solar radiation, consistent freezing air temperature, and low air moisture were the major driving forces controlling the seasonal ice mass balance. Energy balance was estimated at the ice surface and bottom, and within the ice interior and under-ice water. Particularly, almost all heat fluxes showed significant diurnal variations including short- and long-wave radiation, turbulent heat fluxes, water heat fluxes at ice bottom, and absorbed and penetrated solar radiation. The calculated ice surface temperature indicated that the atmospheric boundary layer was consistently stable and neutral over the ice-covered period. The turbulent heat fluxes between the lake ice and air and the net heat gain by the lake were much lower than those during open-water period. Ice surface sublimation (vapor flux) was demonstrated to be a vital seasonal water balance component, accounting for 41 % of lake water loss during the ice seasons.

Wenfeng Huang et al.
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Short summary
Up to now, little is known on ice thermodynamics and lake-atmosphere interaction over Tibetan Plateau during ice-covered seasons due to a lack of field data. In this study, model experiments on ice thermodynamics were conducted in a shallow lake using HIGHTSI. Water-ice heat flux was a major source of uncertainty for lake ice thickness. Heat and mass budgets were estimated within the vertical air-ice-water system. Strong ice sublimation occurred and was responsible for water loss during winter.
Up to now, little is known on ice thermodynamics and lake-atmosphere interaction over Tibetan...
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