Satellite Images (35-mm Color Slides) of the Earth's Glaciers

Click on slide for larger image.

Landsat 2 MSS image of southwestern Greenland on 7 Sep 1978. Numerous outlet glaciers from the margin of the Greenland ice sheet extend into fjords. Bare glacier ice (blue) grades into snow (white) on the ice sheet at higher elevations. NASA Landsat image 21324-13340 from the Canada Centre for Remote Sensing. Similar to the cover of USGS Prof. Paper 1386-C (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386c).

A satellite photograph of a glacier from Southwestern Greenland taken in 1978.
Landsat 2 MSS image of southwestern Greenland on 3 Aug 1979. The margin of the Greenland ice sheet (bare glacier ice) is visible in the upper right corner. The 150-km-long Søndre Strømfjord extends diagonally across the image. Separate ice caps with small outlet glaciers are visible in the bottom of the image. NASA Landsat image 21654-14185 from the Canada Centre for Remote Sensing. North of Figure 17 (p. C31) in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-C (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386c).

A Landsat 2 image of a glacier from Southwestern Greenland in 1979.
Space Shuttle (Space Transportation System or STS)photograph of the southern part of Greenland taken on 29 Mar 1992. NASA photograph no. S45-152-105. Frontispiece in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-C (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386c).

Space shuttle photograph of Greenland taken in 1992.
Landsat 1 MSS image of the Queen Fabiola (Yamato) Mountains, Queen Maud Land, East Antarctica, on 16 Dec 1973. Blue ice (bare glacier ice) dominates the center of the image. Mountain peaks (nunataks) protrude through the ice sheet. Thousands of meteorites have been collected by Japanese scientists from blue-ice areas around the Queen Fabiola Mountains. NASA Landsat image 1511-05240 from the U.S. Geological Survey's EROS Data Center.   Fig. 60 (p. B82) in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-B (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386b).

A satellite image of East Antarctica taken in 1973.
Landsat 1 MSS image of the Ellsworth Mountains, West Antarctica, on 4 Feb 1974. The Ellsworth Mountains are the highest in Antarctica (Vinson Massif at 5,140 m) and lie at the base of the Ronne Ice Shelf. The Rutford Ice Stream is visible across the top part of the image. Ice streams are faster moving glaciers within an ice sheet. NASA Landsat image 1561-11550 courtesy of Baerbel K. Lucchitta and the U.S. Geological Survey's Flagstaff (Arizona) Image Processing Facility. Similar to Fig. 90 (p. B122) in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-B (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386b).

A satellite image taken of West Antarctica taken in 1974.
Landsat 1 MSS image of the Byrd Glacier, Antarctica, on 16 Jan 1974. The image shows the Byrd Glacier, which originates in the East Antarctic ice sheet, passing through the Transantarctic Mountains into the western margin of the Ross Ice Shelf, West Antarctica. Bedrock outcrops are visible in the left center of the image. NASA Landsat image 1542-18435 courtesy of Baerbel K. Lucchitta and the U.S. Geological Survey's Flagstaff (Arizona) Image Processing Facility.   Fig. 23 (p. B27) in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-B (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386b).

A satellite image of the Byrd Glacier in Antarctive taken in 1974.
Landsat 2 MSS image of the Jutulstraumen ice stream, Queen Maud Land, East Antarctica, on 30 Oct 1975. The ice stream joins the Fimbul Ice Shelf in the upper part of the image. Flow lines, blue ice, and nunataks (rock outcrops surrounded by the ice sheet) are visible on the image. NASA Landsat image 2281-07474 courtesy of Baerbel K. Lucchitta and the U.S. Geological Survey's Flagstaff (Arizona) Image Processing Facility.   Fig. 70 (p. B95) in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-B (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386b).

A satellite image of an ice stream from East Antarctica taken in 1975.
Landsat 3 RBV image 30927-20382-C of the Rennick Glacier and the Oates Coast, northern Victoria Land, Antarctica, taken on 17 Sep 1980.  Fig. 40 (p. B50) in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-B (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386b).

A satellite image of the Rennick Glacier from Antartica.
Landsat 3 RBV image 30927-20382-D of the Lillie Glacier and the Pennell Coast, Antarctica, taken on 17 Sep 1980.  Fig. 39 (p. B49) in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-B (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386b).

A satellite image of the Lillie Glacier from Antarctica taken in 1980.
Landsat 2 MSS image of the ice field and outlet glaciers on Bylot Island, Northwest Territories, Canada; on 14 Aug 1975. Small ice caps can be seen on the Borden Peninsula (left center) of Baffin Island. NASA Landsat image 20204-16513 from the Canada Centre for Remote Sensing. Cover image on USGS Prof. Paper 1386-J (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386j).

A satellite image of an ice field from Canada taken in 1975.
Landsat 1 MSS image of Mount McKinley and environs, Alaska Range, Alaska, on 25 Aug 1972. Numerous glaciers are visible on the flanks of the massif. Yentna Glacier (center) shows contorted medial moraines characteristic of a surging glacier. Surging glaciers move forward rapidly for several months on a recurring basis. Clouds are visible northwest of the range. Reddish hues are various types of vegetation. NASA Landsat image 1033-21020 from the U.S. Geological Survey's EROS Data Center.

A satellite image of Mount McKinley, Alaska from 1972.
Cloud-free Landsat 3 MSS image of approximately the same region as above on 24 Aug 1979. Landsat image 30537-20443 from the U.S. Geological Survey's EROS Data Center. Part of Fig. 404 (Landsat image mosaic) in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-K.

A satellite image of Mount McKinley.
Landsat 2 MSS image of the St. Elias Mountains, Alaska-Canada border, on 24 Aug 1979. The Malaspina Glacier, a piedmont outlet glacier, is visible at center. Contorted moraines on its eastern part signify that it experiences recurring surges. Hubbard Glacier (center) dammed Russell Fiord between 29 May and 8 October 1986. When the ice dam failed, an enormous glacier-outburst flood (jökulhlaup) discharged into Disenchantment Bay. Reddish hues are various types of vegetation. NASA Landsat image 21675-19482 from the U.S. Geological Survey's EROS Data Center. Cover and Fig. 144 (p. K160) of USGS Prof. Paper 1386-K.

A satellite photo of the St. Elias Mountains on the Alaska-Canada Border.
Landsat 1 MSS image of Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, southeastern Alaska, on 12 Sep 1973. In the 18th century, early sailing ships reported that Glacier Bay's glaciers extended to Cross Sound, the entrance on the Gulf of Alaska, so that a considerable retreat of glacier ice has occurred during the past two centuries. Light blue colors in the ocean and bay represent sediment from glacial streams. Landsat image 1416-19480 from the U.S. Geological Survey's EROS Data Center. Fig. 105A (p. K128) in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-K.

A Landsat image of Glacier Bay National Park.
Landsat 1 MSS image of the Vatnajökull ice cap, southeastern Iceland, on 22 Sep 1973. Vatnajökull, at 8,200 km2 , is Iceland's largest ice cap, with numerous outlet glaciers, several of which surge from time to time. The Grímsvötn volcanic caldera is visible at the left center of the image. South of the caldera is Grænalón, an ice-dammed lake (powder-blue color). Several other ice caps are also visible on the image. NASA Landsat image 1426-12070 from the U.S. Geological Survey's EROS Data Center. Will appear in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-D.

Landsat 1 MSS image of the Vatnajökull ice cap,southeastern Iceland, on 22 Sep 1973.
Enlargement of Landsat 2 image of the Langjökull ice cap, western Iceland, on 18 Aug 1980. Langjökull covers an area of 954 km 2 and extends about 55 km along its main axis. NASA Landsat image 22045-12131 from the Canada Centre for Remote Sensing. Will appear in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-D.

Enlargement of Landsat 2 image of the Langjökull ice cap, western Iceland, on 18 Aug 1980.
Part of a Landsat 3 MSS image showing valley glaciers in the Karakorum Shan (Range) along the border of western China (P.R.C.), India, and Pakistan, on 18 Jul 1978. NASA Landsat image 30135-04492 from the U.S. Geological Survey's EROS Data Center. Cover image on USGS Prof. Paper 1386-F.

Part of a satellite image showing valley glaciers in the Karakorum Range of Central Asia.
Salyut 6 oblique satellite photograph of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field, Chile and Argentina, on 10 Mar 1978. Outlet glaciers extend into fjords in Chile and into lakes in Argentina. The 70 mm photograph was one of 40 photographs taken of glaciers in South America by Soviet cosmonauts as part of a satellite glaciology study directed by Vladimir M. Kotlyakov, Director, Institute of Geography, USSR Academy of Sciences (Moscow). Salyut 6 photograph courtesy of V.M. Kotlyakov. Figure 31 (p. I165)in USGS Prof. Paper 1386-I (http://pubs.usgs.gov/prof/p1386i).

A satellite photograph of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field, Chile and Argentina, on 10 Mar 1978