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Volume 12 (2) - 1989


Analisi delle misure alle fronti dei ghiacciai delle Alpi Giulie e correlazioni con i dati climatici – Statistical analysis of historical data at the Giulie Alps glacier terminus and their correlation to climatic data

Pages 139-149


Some specific statistical analyses were carried out on data recorded since 1921 at the terminus of the «Occidentale di Montasio», «Occidentale del Canin» and «Orientale del Canin» glaciers. Their frequency distribution, standard deviation and squared coefficient of variation indicate the statistical homogeneity of the data once substracted their mean values. The linear correlation among the values of glacier terminus variations measured at different stations identifies the series of data representative of the frontal dynamics. The presence of climatic stations at different altitudes permitted to compute the winter and summer thermal gradient to extrapolate climatic data at the mean elevation of the glaciers, thus making is possilie to verify the approximate duration of ablation and accumulation periods. The climatic parameters described are mean summer and annual temperature, total winter and annual precipitation, and snow depth. Their long term trend is represented by a polynomial regression curve; the value of deviations from this curve is made evident by filtering out components of the signal of less than a five-year period. Summer temperature and winter precipitations, normalized and filtered, are correlated to the curve of the variation of position of the single glacier terminus and to that of the total variation of all three glaciers. Information obtained is that the use of mean curves will increase the theoretical time lag of the glacier terminus to climatic parameters due to the undifferentiated contribution of different information on the glacier dynamics. This result is confirmed by the correlation between climate and variations in the position of the glacier terminus with respect to each measuring station, from which it generally results a one year time lag.

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