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Fjord floor landforms and processes at the termini of Kongsvegen and Kronebreen Glaciers, Svalbard


Glacimarine sediment deposition reduces relative water depth, thereby increasing the potential for tidewater glacier stability. Here we relate glacier stability and sedimentation processes to the fjord floor morphology in front of the Kronebreen-Kongsvegen glacial system, Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. We used 28 kHz and 200 kHz echosounding to map the bathymetry of the fjord floor over a total survey area of 5 km2. The Kronebreen-Kongsvegen glacier complex has retreated significantly since Kongsvegen’s last surge ended in 1956. In the last 20 years, Kongsvegen has retreated back onto land and a new ice-marginal delta has emerged in front of the glacier. We link different sediment sources to the observed features on the fjord floor, including the ice-marginal delta, grounding-line fans, and morainal banks. We compare our results to a similar echosounding study from 2005.