Recent glaciological work on Ronne Ice Shelf has focused on an assumed flow line which extends from Rutford Ice Stream grounding line to the ice front. Results from doppler satellite surveying and radio echo-sounding are used in kinematic calculations to determine the basal mass balance, assuming the flow line to be in a steady state. Models suggest that basal melting dominates over most of the flow line and is most pronounced at the extremities. In the region within 300 km of the grounding line and over the final 45 km before the ice front, at least 1 m/a on average must melt away to maintain the observed velocity and thickness profile. More gentle melting occurs over about half the remaining distance, but in a region between 130 and 300 km in from the ice front, basal freezing must occur at an average rate of about 0.1 m/a to maintain a steady state. The existence of a thin layer of saline ice underlying the ice shelf, which persists for a further 80 km down-stream before being melted away entirely, is consistent with the weak returns observed during both airborne and ground-based radio echo-sounding in this region.