Encompasses all the ways in which a body of ice (a glacier or ice sheet) gains mass at its surface, such as snowfall and rime formation. However, it excludes ice gained from ice flow. The opposite of accumulation is ablation. Rates of ablation and accumulation affect the mass balance of a glacier.

  • > Glacier

    Glossary

    A glacierA glacier is a large, persistent body of land-based ice that forms over many years where the accumulation of snow is greater than its

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  • > Ablation

    Glossary

    Encompasses all the ways in which ice mass is lost from the surface of a glacier or ice sheetA mass of glacial land ice extending more than 50,000

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  • > Mass balance

    Glossary

    The difference between the amount of ice a glacier gains in winter and the amount lost in summer. A glacierA glacier is a large, persistent body of

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