Glacial landforms of extreme size in the Keewatin sector of the Laurentide Ice Sheet
2010 (English)In: Quaternary Science Reviews, ISSN 0277-3791, Vol. 29, no 15-16, 1894-1910 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Assemblages of glacial landforms of a 'mega-scale' are here identified in the Keewatin sector of the Laurentide Ice Sheet. Large till 'belts' or 'ridges', apparent only on satellite imagery and lying beneath the drumlins, flutes and ribbed moraine which comprise the known regional glacial landform record, form extensive and coherent patterns throughout the Keewatin region. Planform and crestline mapping from remotely sensed imagery yields a mapped population of >2500 individual landforms, whose dimensions are on average similar to 10 km long and similar to 1.5 km wide. Based on analysis of their morphology and morphometry, their spatial arrangement and pattern, and comparison with analogues and reference populations of glacial landform types, we interpret three morphological groups of different genetic origin. Two of these are examples of currently known landform types: i) a set of heavily overprinted, i.e. non-pristine, mega-scale glacial lineations, feeding from the heart of the Keewatin region north into Queen Maud Gulf; and ii) a 350 km long moraine zone, overrun by later ice flow paths, and likely associated with the terminal position of an ice sheet prior to the final deglacial episode. A third group, comprising a significant number of the Keewatin population, does not fit any existing category of glacial landforms. Here we report a major new finding: subglacial bedforms, of a mega-scale, transverse to the palaeo-ice flow direction. Mega-scale transverse bedforms have not been previously reported from any palaeo-(or contemporary) ice sheet. Close spatial integration with the ribbed moraine population in Keewatin suggests a similar mode of genesis. The Keewatin landforms indicate there is a fundamental transverse organisation of till at a scale beyond that of conventional transverse bedforms (ribbed moraine), and with as yet unknown implications for our understanding of subglacial processes and ice-bed coupling.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 29, no 15-16, 1894-1910 p.
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-49199DOI: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2010.04.010ISI: 000279758400015OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-49199DiVA: diva2:377072
authorCount :22010-12-132010-12-132010-12-13Bibliographically approved