Mountain glaciers are highly sensitive to temperature and precipitation fluctuations and active geomorphic agents in shaping the landforms of glaciated regions which are direct imprints of past glaciations, providing reliable evidence of the evolution of the past Cryosphere and contain important information on climatic variables. But most importantly, glaciers have aroused a lot of concern in terms of glacier area changes, thickness change, mass balance and their consequences on water resources as well as related hazards. The contribution of glacier mass loss to global sea-level rise and increasing number of glacier-related hazards are the most important and current socioeconomic concerns. Therefore, understanding the dynamics of the changes and constant monitoring of glaciers are essential for studying climate, water resource management and hydropower and also to predict and evade glacier-related hazards. The recent advances in the techniques of earth observations have proved as a boon for investigating glaciers and glacier-related hazards. Remote sensing technology enables extraction of glacier parameters such as albedo/reflectance/scattering, glacier area, glacier zones and facies, equilibrium line, glacier thickness, volume, mass balance, velocity and glacier topography. The present chapter explores the prospective of remote sensing technology for understanding and surveying glaciers formed at high, inaccessible mountains and glacier-induced hazards.
Part of the book: Environmental Applications of Remote Sensing