Surface melting of the Greenland ice sheet is a major component of global sea level rise and is estimated using regional climate models, which are dependent on local observations for validation and calibration. This currently is dependent on data from a single site (Watson River in Kangerlussuaq) covered by PROMICE and dependent on seasonal manual installation and retrieval of instrumentation.
GIOS will upgrade this facility for automation and near real-time data availability. The facilities will provide direct measurements of freshwater and sediment flux, and thus nutrient transport, to the ocean. In addition, the stations will be upgraded with windshield rain gauges and a semi-automated river flow and water quality gauge station at Watson River and a comparable station at Thule Airbase will be installed. Two additional magnetometer stations in East Greenland and a new station at Thule Airbase will be installed.