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Vertical shear is recognized today as a key component of the stress balance of ice shelves. However, the first ice shelf models were built on the neglect of vertical shear. Partly due to its historical treatment, it remains common to discuss vertical shear as though it were still considered negligible in ice shelf models. Here, we offer a historical perspective on the changing treatment of vertical shear over time, and we emphasize the term's non-negligibility in current ice shelf modeling. We illustrate our discussion in the simplest context of an analytic, isothermal, shallow-ice-shelf model.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.