Candidates for volcanoes under the ice of Antarctica detected by their gravito-topographic signal

Jaroslav Klokocnik, Jan Kostelecky, Ales Bezdek, Ivan Pesek


We analyse the newest gravity field models (given in the form of spherical harmonic expansion to degree and order 2190) EIGEN 6C4 and RET 14, which consist basically from the gravity data from EIGEN 6C4 plus the bedrock topography from the Bedmap 2 model, describing the topography of the ground under ice of Antarctica. From these models we computed the gravity anomalies, the Marussi tensor of the second derivatives of the disturbing potential, the gravity invariants and their specific ratio, the strike angle and the virtual deformations. We apply these results for a selected part of Antarctica; not too far from the Lake Vostok we discovered at least two objects that might be subglacial volcanoes. We present all predictors and arguments we have available to support this hypothesis, but we are well aware that the “last word” waits for other specialists. We provide geographic coordinates on the ice cover where to dig for the possible volcanoes.


Antarctica, gravity field models EIGEN 6C4 and RET 14, Bedmap 2 topography, gravitational aspects, subglacial volcanoes

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Published by INGV, Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - ISSN:  2037-416X