Open Access

Crustal movement of Antarctica and Syowa Station based on GPS measurements

Earth, Planets and Space200658:BF03351984

Received: 6 June 2005

Accepted: 23 March 2006

Published: 26 July 2006


In Antarctica, sea level rise and crustal uplift have occurred due to ice sheet melting and mantle response since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). The International GNSS Service (IGS) provides continuous data at nine sites on the Antarctic plate, and we analyzed data obtained from these sites between 1998 and 2003. Additional data were acquired by campaign observations around Syowa Station carried out by the Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition (JARE). Five sites around Syowa Station have been repeatedly occupied since 1998. Our analysis of the IGS data demonstrates that the Antarctic continent behaves as a rigid plate. Vertical components indicate an uplift of about 1.3–7.0 mm/year at almost all sites, which are attributed to the postglacial rebound. However, some observed velocities disagree with the predictions of glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA) models. It will be necessary to incorporate our results into the modeling of ice sheet melting. Around Syowa Station, the campaign GPS result is basically consistent with the IGS data analysis, thereby demonstrating that GPS observations properly represent the ongoing crustal movement around Syowa Station. However, the GPS results show some disagreement with the VLBI observations; this discrepancy will need to be sorted out using local tie observations that should be carried out in the near future.

Key words

GPSAntarcticaSyowa Stationcrustal movementplate motion