WorldWideScience

Sample records for sea ice extent

  1. Multisensor Analyzed Sea Ice Extent - Northern Hemisphere (MASIE-NH)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Multisensor Analyzed Sea Ice Extent Northern Hemisphere (MASIE-NH) products provide measurements of daily sea ice extent and sea ice edge boundary for the...

  2. Variability and Trends in Sea Ice Extent and Ice Production in the Ross Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comiso, Josefino; Kwok, Ronald; Martin, Seelye; Gordon, Arnold L.

    2011-01-01

    Salt release during sea ice formation in the Ross Sea coastal regions is regarded as a primary forcing for the regional generation of Antarctic Bottom Water. Passive microwave data from November 1978 through 2008 are used to examine the detailed seasonal and interannual characteristics of the sea ice cover of the Ross Sea and the adjacent Bellingshausen and Amundsen seas. For this period the sea ice extent in the Ross Sea shows the greatest increase of all the Antarctic seas. Variability in the ice cover in these regions is linked to changes in the Southern Annular Mode and secondarily to the Antarctic Circumpolar Wave. Over the Ross Sea shelf, analysis of sea ice drift data from 1992 to 2008 yields a positive rate of increase in the net ice export of about 30,000 sq km/yr. For a characteristic ice thickness of 0.6 m, this yields a volume transport of about 20 cu km/yr, which is almost identical, within error bars, to our estimate of the trend in ice production. The increase in brine rejection in the Ross Shelf Polynya associated with the estimated increase with the ice production, however, is not consistent with the reported Ross Sea salinity decrease. The locally generated sea ice enhancement of Ross Sea salinity may be offset by an increase of relatively low salinity of the water advected into the region from the Amundsen Sea, a consequence of increased precipitation and regional glacial ice melt.

  3. IceMap250—Automatic 250 m Sea Ice Extent Mapping Using MODIS Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charles Gignac

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The sea ice cover in the North evolves at a rapid rate. To adequately monitor this evolution, tools with high temporal and spatial resolution are needed. This paper presents IceMap250, an automatic sea ice extent mapping algorithm using MODIS reflective/emissive bands. Hybrid cloud-masking using both the MOD35 mask and a visibility mask, combined with downscaling of Bands 3–7 to 250 m, are utilized to delineate sea ice extent using a decision tree approach. IceMap250 was tested on scenes from the freeze-up, stable cover, and melt seasons in the Hudson Bay complex, in Northeastern Canada. IceMap250 first product is a daily composite sea ice presence map at 250 m. Validation based on comparisons with photo-interpreted ground-truth show the ability of the algorithm to achieve high classification accuracy, with kappa values systematically over 90%. IceMap250 second product is a weekly clear sky map that provides a synthesis of 7 days of daily composite maps. This map, produced using a majority filter, makes the sea ice presence map even more accurate by filtering out the effects of isolated classification errors. The synthesis maps show spatial consistency through time when compared to passive microwave and national ice services maps.

  4. Sea Ice Edge Location and Extent in the Russian Arctic, 1933-2006

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Sea Ice Edge Location and Extent in the Russian Arctic, 1933-2006 data are derived from sea ice charts from the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (AARI),...

  5. Arctic sea ice decline: Projected changes in timing and extent of sea ice in the Bering and Chukchi Seas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglas, David C.

    2010-01-01

    The Arctic region is warming faster than most regions of the world due in part to increasing greenhouse gases and positive feedbacks associated with the loss of snow and ice cover. One consequence has been a rapid decline in Arctic sea ice over the past 3 decades?a decline that is projected to continue by state-of-the-art models. Many stakeholders are therefore interested in how global warming may change the timing and extent of sea ice Arctic-wide, and for specific regions. To inform the public and decision makers of anticipated environmental changes, scientists are striving to better understand how sea ice influences ecosystem structure, local weather, and global climate. Here, projected changes in the Bering and Chukchi Seas are examined because sea ice influences the presence of, or accessibility to, a variety of local resources of commercial and cultural value. In this study, 21st century sea ice conditions in the Bering and Chukchi Seas are based on projections by 18 general circulation models (GCMs) prepared for the fourth reporting period by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in 2007. Sea ice projections are analyzed for each of two IPCC greenhouse gas forcing scenarios: the A1B `business as usual? scenario and the A2 scenario that is somewhat more aggressive in its CO2 emissions during the second half of the century. A large spread of uncertainty among projections by all 18 models was constrained by creating model subsets that excluded GCMs that poorly simulated the 1979-2008 satellite record of ice extent and seasonality. At the end of the 21st century (2090-2099), median sea ice projections among all combinations of model ensemble and forcing scenario were qualitatively similar. June is projected to experience the least amount of sea ice loss among all months. For the Chukchi Sea, projections show extensive ice melt during July and ice-free conditions during August, September, and October by the end of the century, with high agreement

  6. Seasonal regional forecast of the minimum sea ice extent in the LapteV Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tremblay, B.; Brunette, C.; Newton, R.

    2017-12-01

    Late winter anomaly of sea ice export from the peripheral seas of the Atctic Ocean was found to be a useful predictor for the minimum sea ice extent (SIE) in the Arctic Ocean (Williams et al., 2017). In the following, we present a proof of concept for a regional seasonal forecast of the min SIE for the Laptev Sea based on late winter coastal divergence quantified using a Lagrangian Ice Tracking System (LITS) forced with satellite derived sea-ice drifts from the Polar Pathfinder. Following Nikolaeva and Sesterikov (1970), we track an imaginary line just offshore of coastal polynyas in the Laptev Sea from December of the previous year to May 1 of the following year using LITS. Results show that coastal divergence in the Laptev Sea between February 1st and May 1st is best correlated (r = -0.61) with the following September minimum SIE in accord with previous results from Krumpen et al. (2013, for the Laptev Sea) and Williams et a. (2017, for the pan-Arctic). This gives a maximum seasonal predictability of Laptev Sea min SIE anomalies from observations of approximately 40%. Coastal ice divergence leads to formation of thinner ice that melts earlier in early summer, hence creating areas of open water that have a lower albedo and trigger an ice-albedo feedback. In the Laptev Sea, we find that anomalies of coastal divergence in late winter are amplified threefold to result in the September SIE. We also find a correlation coefficient r = 0.49 between February-March-April (FMA) anomalies of coastal divergence with the FMA averaged AO index. Interestingly, the correlation is stronger, r = 0.61, when comparing the FMA coastal divergence anomalies to the DJFMA averaged AO index. It is hypothesized that the AO index at the beginning of the winter (and the associated anomalous sea ice export) also contains information that impact the magnitude of coastal divergence opening later in the winter. Our approach differs from previous approaches (e.g. Krumpen et al and Williams et al

  7. Dynamic and thermodynamic impacts of the winter Arctic Oscillation on summer sea ice extent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, H. S.; Stewart, A.

    2017-12-01

    Arctic summer sea ice extent exhibits substantial interannual variability, as is highlighted by the remarkable recovery in sea ice extent in 2013 following the record minimum in the summer of 2012. Here, we explore the mechanism via which Arctic Oscillation (AO)-induced ice thickness changes impact summer sea ice, using observations and reanalysis data. A positive AO weakens the basin-scale anticyclonic sea ice drift and decreases the winter ice thickness by 15cm and 10cm in the Eurasian and the Pacific sectors of the Arctic respectively. Three reanalysis datasets show that the (upward) surface heat fluxes are reduced over wide areas of the Arctic, suppressing the ice growth during the positive AO winters. The winter dynamic and thermodynamic thinning preconditions the ice for enhanced radiative forcing via the ice-albedo feedback in late spring-summer, leading to an additional 8-10 cm of thinning over the Pacific sector of the Arctic. Because of these winter AO-induced dynamic and thermodynamics effects, the winter AO explains about 22% (r = -0.48) of the interannual variance of September sea ice extent from year 1980 to 2015.

  8. Northern Alaskan land surface response to reduced Arctic sea ice extent

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Higgins, Matthew E. [University of Colorado, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, Boulder, CO (United States); Cassano, John J. [University of Colorado, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, Boulder, CO (United States)

    2012-05-15

    With Arctic sea ice extent at near-record lows, an improved understanding of the relationship between sea ice and the land surface is warranted. We examine the land surface response to changing sea ice by first conducting a simulation using the Community Atmospheric Model version 3.1 with end of the twenty-first century sea ice extent. This future atmospheric response is then used to force the Weather and Research Forecasting Model version 3.1 to examine the terrestrial land surface response at high resolution over the North Slope of Alaska. Similar control simulations with twentieth century sea ice projections are also performed, and in both simulations only sea ice extent is altered. In the future sea ice extent experiment, atmospheric temperature increases significantly due to increases in latent and sensible heat flux, particularly in the winter season. Precipitation and snow pack increase significantly, and the increased snow pack contributes to warmer soil temperatures for most seasons by insulating the land surface. In the summer, however, soil temperatures are reduced due to increased albedo. Despite warmer near-surface atmospheric temperatures, it is found that spring melt is delayed throughout much of the North Slope due to the increased snow pack, and the growing season length is shortened. (orig.)

  9. Halogen species record Antarctic sea ice extent over glacial–interglacial periods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Spolaor

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Sea ice is an integral part of the earth's climate system because it affects planetary albedo, sea-surface salinity, and the atmosphere–ocean exchange of reactive gases and aerosols. Bromine and iodine chemistry is active at polar sea ice margins with the occurrence of bromine explosions and the biological production of organoiodine from sea ice algae. Satellite measurements demonstrate that concentrations of bromine oxide (BrO and iodine oxide (IO decrease over sea ice toward the Antarctic interior. Here we present speciation measurements of bromine and iodine in the TALDICE (TALos Dome Ice CorE ice core (159°11' E, 72°49' S; 2315 m a.s.l. spanning the last 215 ky. The Talos Dome ice core is located 250 km inland and is sensitive to marine air masses intruding onto the Antarctic Plateau. Talos Dome bromide (Br− is positively correlated with temperature and negatively correlated with sodium (Na. Based on the Br−/Na seawater ratio, bromide is depleted in the ice during glacial periods and enriched during interglacial periods. Total iodine, consisting of iodide (I− and iodate (IO3−, peaks during glacials with lower values during interglacial periods. Although IO3− is considered the most stable iodine species in the atmosphere it was only observed in the TALDICE record during glacial maxima. Sea ice dynamics are arguably the primary driver of halogen fluxes over glacial–interglacial timescales, by altering the distance between the sea ice edge and the Antarctic plateau and by altering the surface area of sea ice available to algal colonization. Based on our results we propose the use of both halogens for examining Antarctic variability of past sea ice extent.

  10. Sensitivity Analysis of Arctic Sea Ice Extent Trends and Statistical Projections Using Satellite Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ge Peng

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available An ice-free Arctic summer would have pronounced impacts on global climate, coastal habitats, national security, and the shipping industry. Rapid and accelerated Arctic sea ice loss has placed the reality of an ice-free Arctic summer even closer to the present day. Accurate projection of the first Arctic ice-free summer year is extremely important for business planning and climate change mitigation, but the projection can be affected by many factors. Using an inter-calibrated satellite sea ice product, this article examines the sensitivity of decadal trends of Arctic sea ice extent and statistical projections of the first occurrence of an ice-free Arctic summer. The projection based on the linear trend of the last 20 years of data places the first Arctic ice-free summer year at 2036, 12 years earlier compared to that of the trend over the last 30 years. The results from a sensitivity analysis of six commonly used curve-fitting models show that the projected timings of the first Arctic ice-free summer year tend to be earlier for exponential, Gompertz, quadratic, and linear with lag fittings, and later for linear and log fittings. Projections of the first Arctic ice-free summer year by all six statistical models appear to converge to the 2037 ± 6 timeframe, with a spread of 17 years, and the earliest first ice-free Arctic summer year at 2031.

  11. On the relationship between atmospheric circulation and the fluctuations in the sea ice extents of the Bering and Okhotsk Seas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavalieri, D. J.; Parkinson, C. L.

    1987-01-01

    The influence of the hemispheric atmospheric circulation on the sea ice covers of the Bering Sea and the Sea of Okhotsk is examined using data obtained with the Nimbus 5 electrically scanning microwave radiometer for the four winters of the 1973-1976 period. The 3-day averaged sea ice extent data were used to establish periods for which there is an out-of-phase relationship between fluctuations of the two ice covers. A comparison of the sea-level atmospheric pressure field with the seasonal, interannual, and short-term sea ice fluctuations reveal an association between changes in the phase and the amplitude of the long waves in the atmosphere and advance and retreat of Arctic ice covers.

  12. Data-adaptive Harmonic Decomposition and Real-time Prediction of Arctic Sea Ice Extent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kondrashov, Dmitri; Chekroun, Mickael; Ghil, Michael

    2017-04-01

    Decline in the Arctic sea ice extent (SIE) has profound socio-economic implications and is a focus of active scientific research. Of particular interest is prediction of SIE on subseasonal time scales, i.e. from early summer into fall, when sea ice coverage in Arctic reaches its minimum. However, subseasonal forecasting of SIE is very challenging due to the high variability of ocean and atmosphere over Arctic in summer, as well as shortness of observational data and inadequacies of the physics-based models to simulate sea-ice dynamics. The Sea Ice Outlook (SIO) by Sea Ice Prediction Network (SIPN, http://www.arcus.org/sipn) is a collaborative effort to facilitate and improve subseasonal prediction of September SIE by physics-based and data-driven statistical models. Data-adaptive Harmonic Decomposition (DAH) and Multilayer Stuart-Landau Models (MSLM) techniques [Chekroun and Kondrashov, 2017], have been successfully applied to the nonlinear stochastic modeling, as well as retrospective and real-time forecasting of Multisensor Analyzed Sea Ice Extent (MASIE) dataset in key four Arctic regions. In particular, DAH-MSLM predictions outperformed most statistical models and physics-based models in real-time 2016 SIO submissions. The key success factors are associated with DAH ability to disentangle complex regional dynamics of MASIE by data-adaptive harmonic spatio-temporal patterns that reduce the data-driven modeling effort to elemental MSLMs stacked per frequency with fixed and small number of model coefficients to estimate.

  13. Sea Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perovich, D.; Gerland, S.; Hendricks, S.; Meier, Walter N.; Nicolaus, M.; Richter-Menge, J.; Tschudi, M.

    2013-01-01

    During 2013, Arctic sea ice extent remained well below normal, but the September 2013 minimum extent was substantially higher than the record-breaking minimum in 2012. Nonetheless, the minimum was still much lower than normal and the long-term trend Arctic September extent is -13.7 per decade relative to the 1981-2010 average. The less extreme conditions this year compared to 2012 were due to cooler temperatures and wind patterns that favored retention of ice through the summer. Sea ice thickness and volume remained near record-low levels, though indications are of slightly thicker ice compared to the record low of 2012.

  14. The Impact of Stratospheric Circulation Extremes on Minimum Arctic Sea Ice Extent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, K. L.; Polvani, L. M.; Tremblay, B.

    2017-12-01

    The interannual variability of summertime Arctic sea ice extent (SIE) is anti-correlated with the leading mode of extratropical atmospheric variability in preceding winter, the Arctic Oscillation (AO). Given this relationship and the need for better seasonal predictions of Arctic SIE, we here examine the role of stratospheric circulation extremes and stratosphere-troposphere coupling in linking the AO and Arctic SIE variability. We show that extremes in the stratospheric circulation during the winter season, namely stratospheric sudden warming (SSW) and strong polar vortex (SPV) events, are associated with significant anomalies in sea ice concentration in the Bering Straight and the Sea of Okhotsk in winter, the Barents Sea in spring and along the Eurasian coastline in summer in both observations and a fully-coupled, stratosphere-resolving general circulation model. The accompanying figure shows the composite mean sea ice concentration anomalies from the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM) for SSWs (N = 126, top row) and SPVs (N = 99, bottom row) for winter (a,d), spring (b,e) and summer (c,f). Consistent with previous work on the AO, we find that SSWs, which are followed by the negative phase of the AO at the surface, result in sea ice growth, whereas SPVs, which are followed by the positive phase of the AO at the surface, result in sea ice loss, although the dynamic and thermodynamic processes driving these sea ice anomalies in the three Arctic regions, noted above, are different. Our analysis suggests that the presence or absence of stratospheric circulation extremes in winter may play a non-trivial role in determining total September Arctic SIE when combined with other factors.

  15. Recent ice cap snowmelt in Russian High Arctic and anti-correlation with late summer sea ice extent

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhao, Meng; Ramage, Joan; Semmens, Kathryn; Obleitner, Friedrich

    2014-01-01

    Glacier surface melt dynamics throughout Novaya Zemlya (NovZ) and Severnaya Zemlya (SevZ) serve as a good indicator of ice mass ablation and regional climate change in the Russian High Arctic. Here we report trends of surface melt onset date (MOD) and total melt days (TMD) by combining multiple resolution-enhanced active and passive microwave satellite datasets and analyze the TMD correlations with local temperature and regional sea ice extent. The glacier surface snowpack on SevZ melted significantly earlier (−7.3 days/decade) from 1992 to 2012 and significantly longer (7.7 days/decade) from 1995 to 2011. NovZ experienced large interannual variability in MOD, but its annual mean TMD increased. The snowpack melt on NovZ is more sensitive to temperature fluctuations than SevZ in recent decades. After ruling out the regional temperature influence using partial correlation analysis, the TMD on both archipelagoes is statistically anti-correlated with regional late summer sea ice extent, linking land ice snowmelt dynamics to regional sea ice extent variations. (letter)

  16. Seasonal and interannual variability of fast ice extent in the southeastern Laptev Sea between 1999 and 2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selyuzhenok, V.; Krumpen, T.; Mahoney, A.; Janout, M.; Gerdes, R.

    2015-12-01

    Along with changes in sea ice extent, thickness, and drift speed, Arctic sea ice regime is characterized by a decrease of fast ice season and reduction of fast ice extent. The most extensive fast ice cover in the Arctic develops in the southeastern Laptev Sea. Using weekly operational sea ice charts produced by Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (AARI, Russia) from 1999 to 2013, we identified five main key events that characterize the annual evolution of fast ice in the southeastern Laptev Sea. Linking the occurrence of the key events with the atmospheric forcing, bathymetry, freezeup, and melt onset, we examined the processes driving annual fast ice cycle. The analysis revealed that fast ice in the region is sensitive to thermodynamic processes throughout a season, while the wind has a strong influence only on the first stages of fast ice development. The maximal fast ice extent is closely linked to the bathymetry and local topography and is primarily defined by the location of shoals, where fast ice is likely grounded. The annual fast ice cycle shows significant changes over the period of investigation, with tendencies toward later fast ice formation and earlier breakup. These tendencies result in an overall decrease of the fast ice season by 2.8 d/yr, which is significantly higher than previously reported trends.

  17. Critical Mechanisms for the Formation of Extreme Arctic Sea-Ice Extent in the Summers of 2007 and 1996

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dong, Xiquan [Beijing Normal Univ. (China); Univ. of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND (United States); Zib, Benjamin J. [Univ. of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND (United States); Xi, Baike [Univ. of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND (United States); Stanfield, Ryan [Univ. of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND (United States); Deng, Yi [Georgia Inst. of Technology, Atlanta, GA (United States); Zhang, Xiangdong [Univ. of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK (United States); Lin, B. [NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA (United States); Long, Charles N. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2013-08-29

    A warming Arctic climate is undergoing significant e 21 nvironmental change, most evidenced by the reduction of Arctic sea-ice extent during the summer. In this study, we examine two extreme anomalies of September sea-ice extent in 2007 and 1996, and investigate the impacts of cloud fraction (CF), atmospheric precipitable water vapor (PWV), downwelling longwave flux (DLF), surface air temperature (SAT), pressure and winds on the sea-ice variation in 2007 and 1996 using both satellite-derived sea-ice products and MERRA reanalysis. The area of the Laptev, East Siberian and West Chukchi seas (70-90oN, 90-180oE) has experienced the largest variation in sea-ice extent from year-to-year and defined here as the Area Of Focus (AOF). The record low September sea-ice extent in 2007 was associated with positive anomalies 30 of CF, PWV, DLF, and SAT over the AOF. Persistent anti-cyclone positioned over the Beaufort Sea coupled with low pressure over Eurasia induced easterly zonal and southerly meridional winds. In contrast, negative CF, PWV, DLF and SAT anomalies, as well as opposite wind patterns to those in 2007, characterized the 1996 high September sea-ice extent. Through this study, we hypothesize the following positive feedbacks of clouds, water vapor, radiation and atmospheric variables on the sea-ice retreat during the summer 2007. The record low sea-ice extent during the summer 2007 is initially triggered by the atmospheric circulation anomaly. The southerly winds across the Chukchi and East Siberian seas transport warm, moist air from the north Pacific, which is not only enhancing sea-ice melt across the AOF, but also increasing clouds. The positive cloud feedback results in higher SAT and more sea-ice melt. Therefore, 40 more water vapor could be evaporated from open seas and higher SAT to form more clouds, which will enhance positive cloud feedback. This enhanced positive cloud feedback will then further increase SAT and accelerate the sea-ice retreat during the

  18. Sources of multi-decadal variability in Arctic sea ice extent

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Day, J J; Hargreaves, J C; Annan, J D; Abe-Ouchi, A

    2012-01-01

    The observed dramatic decrease in September sea ice extent (SIE) has been widely discussed in the scientific literature. Though there is qualitative agreement between observations and ensemble members of the Third Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP3), it is concerning that the observed trend (1979–2010) is not captured by any ensemble member. The potential sources of this discrepancy include: observational uncertainty, physical model limitations and vigorous natural climate variability. The latter has received less attention and is difficult to assess using the relatively short observational sea ice records. In this study multi-centennial pre-industrial control simulations with five CMIP3 climate models are used to investigate the role that the Arctic oscillation (AO), the Atlantic multi-decadal oscillation (AMO) and the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC) play in decadal sea ice variability. Further, we use the models to determine the impact that these sources of variability have had on SIE over both the era of satellite observation (1979–2010) and an extended observational record (1953–2010). There is little evidence of a relationship between the AO and SIE in the models. However, we find that both the AMO and AMOC indices are significantly correlated with SIE in all the models considered. Using sensitivity statistics derived from the models, assuming a linear relationship, we attribute 0.5–3.1%/decade of the 10.1%/decade decline in September SIE (1979–2010) to AMO driven variability. (letter)

  19. A 21-Year Record of Arctic Sea Ice Extents and Their Regional, Seasonal, and Monthly Variability and Trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, Claire L.; Cavalieri, Donald J.; Zukor, Dorothy J. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Satellite passive-microwave data have been used to calculate sea ice extents over the period 1979-1999 for the north polar sea ice cover as a whole and for each of nine regions. Over this 21-year time period, the trend in yearly average ice extents for the ice cover as a whole is -32,900 +/- 6,100 sq km/yr (-2.7 +/- 0.5 %/decade), indicating a reduction in sea ice coverage that has decelerated from the earlier reported value of -34,000 +/- 8,300 sq km/yr (-2.8 +/- 0.7 %/decade) for the period 1979-1996. Regionally, the reductions are greatest in the Arctic Ocean, the Kara and Barents Seas, and the Seas of Okhotsk and Japan, whereas seasonally, the reductions are greatest in summer, for which season the 1979-1999 trend in ice extents is -41,600 +/- 12,900 sq km/ yr (-4.9 +/- 1.5 %/decade). On a monthly basis, the reductions are greatest in July and September for the north polar ice cover as a whole, in September for the Arctic Ocean, in June and July for the Kara and Barents Seas, and in April for the Seas of Okhotsk and Japan. Only two of the nine regions show overall ice extent increases, those being the Bering Sea and the Gulf of St. Lawrence.For neither of these two regions is the increase statistically significant, whereas the 1079 - 1999 ice extent decreases are statistically significant at the 99% confidence level for the north polar region as a whole, the Arctic Ocean, the Seas of Okhotsk and Japan, and Hudson Bay.

  20. How much should we believe correlations between Arctic cyclones and sea ice extent?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rae, Jamie G. L.; Todd, Alexander D.; Blockley, Edward W.; Ridley, Jeff K.

    2017-12-01

    This paper presents an investigation of the robustness of correlations between characteristics of Arctic summer cyclones and September Arctic sea ice extent. A cyclone identification and tracking algorithm is run for output from 100-year coupled climate model simulations at two resolutions and for 30 years of reanalysis data, using two different tracking variables (mean sea-level pressure, MSLP; and 850 hPa vorticity) for identification of the cyclones. The influence of the tracking variable, the spatial resolution of the model, and spatial and temporal sampling on the correlations is then explored. We conclude that the correlations obtained depend on all of these factors and that care should be taken when interpreting the results of such analyses. Previous studies of this type have used around 30 years of reanalysis and observational data, analysed with a single tracking variable. Our results therefore cast some doubt on the conclusions drawn in those studies.

  1. How much should we believe correlations between Arctic cyclones and sea ice extent?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. G. L. Rae

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents an investigation of the robustness of correlations between characteristics of Arctic summer cyclones and September Arctic sea ice extent. A cyclone identification and tracking algorithm is run for output from 100-year coupled climate model simulations at two resolutions and for 30 years of reanalysis data, using two different tracking variables (mean sea-level pressure, MSLP; and 850 hPa vorticity for identification of the cyclones. The influence of the tracking variable, the spatial resolution of the model, and spatial and temporal sampling on the correlations is then explored. We conclude that the correlations obtained depend on all of these factors and that care should be taken when interpreting the results of such analyses. Previous studies of this type have used around 30 years of reanalysis and observational data, analysed with a single tracking variable. Our results therefore cast some doubt on the conclusions drawn in those studies.

  2. Influence of Arctic Sea Ice Extent on Polar Cloud Fraction and Vertical Structure and Implications for Regional Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palm, Stephen P.; Strey, Sara T.; Spinhirne, James; Markus, Thorsten

    2010-01-01

    Recent satellite lidar measurements of cloud properties spanning a period of 5 years are used to examine a possible connection between Arctic sea ice amount and polar cloud fraction and vertical distribution. We find an anticorrelation between sea ice extent and cloud fraction with maximum cloudiness occurring over areas with little or no sea ice. We also find that over ice!free regions, there is greater low cloud frequency and average optical depth. Most of the optical depth increase is due to the presence of geometrically thicker clouds over water. In addition, our analysis indicates that over the last 5 years, October and March average polar cloud fraction has increased by about 7% and 10%, respectively, as year average sea ice extent has decreased by 5% 7%. The observed cloud changes are likely due to a number of effects including, but not limited to, the observed decrease in sea ice extent and thickness. Increasing cloud amount and changes in vertical distribution and optical properties have the potential to affect the radiative balance of the Arctic region by decreasing both the upwelling terrestrial longwave radiation and the downward shortwave solar radiation. Because longwave radiation dominates in the long polar winter, the overall effect of increasing low cloud cover is likely a warming of the Arctic and thus a positive climate feedback, possibly accelerating the melting of Arctic sea ice.

  3. The Influence of Arctic Sea Ice Extent on Polar Cloud Fraction and Vertical Structure and Implications for Regional Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palm, Stephen P.; Strey, Sara T.; Spinhirne, James; Markus, Thorsten

    2010-01-01

    Recent satellite lidar measurements of cloud properties spanning a period of five years are used to examine a possible connection between Arctic sea ice amount and polar cloud fraction and vertical distribution. We find an anti-correlation between sea ice extent and cloud fraction with maximum cloudiness occurring over areas with little or no sea ice. We also find that over ice free regions, there is greater low cloud frequency and average optical depth. Most of the optical depth increase is due to the presence of geometrically thicker clouds over water. In addition, our analysis indicates that over the last 5 years, October and March average polar cloud fraction has increased by about 7 and 10 percent, respectively, as year average sea ice extent has decreased by 5 to 7 percent. The observed cloud changes are likely due to a number of effects including, but not limited to, the observed decrease in sea ice extent and thickness. Increasing cloud amount and changes in vertical distribution and optical properties have the potential to affect the radiative balance of the Arctic region by decreasing both the upwelling terrestrial longwave radiation and the downward shortwave solar radiation. Since longwave radiation dominates in the long polar winter, the overall effect of increasing low cloud cover is likely a warming of the Arctic and thus a positive climate feedback, possibly accelerating the melting of Arctic sea ice.

  4. Preconditioning of Antarctic maximum sea-ice extent by upper-ocean stratification on a seasonal timescale

    OpenAIRE

    Su, Zhan

    2017-01-01

    This study uses an observationally constrained and dynamically consistent ocean and sea ice state estimate. The author presents a remarkable agreement between the location of the edge of Antarctic maximum sea ice extent, reached in September, and the narrow transition band for the upper ocean (0–100 m depths) stratification, as early as April to June. To the south of this edge, the upper ocean has high stratification, which forbids convective fluxes to cross through; consequently, the ocean h...

  5. The influence of the hydrologic cycle on the extent of sea ice with climatic implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dean, Kenneson G.; Stringer, William J.; Searcy, Craig

    1993-01-01

    Multi-temporal satellite images, field observations, and field measurements were used to investigate the mechanisms by which sea ice melts offshore from the Mackenzie River delta. Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) satellite data recorded in 1986 were analyzed. The satellite data were geometrically corrected and radiometrically calibrated so that albedo and temperature values could be extracted. The investigation revealed that sea ice melted approximately 2 weeks earlier offshore from the Mackenzie River delta than along coasts where river discharge is minimal or non-existent. There is significant intra-delta variability in the timing and patterns of ice melt. An estimation of energy flux indicates that 30 percent more of the visible wavelength energy and 25 percent more of the near-infrared wavelength energy is absorbed by water offshore of the delta compared to coastal areas with minimal river discharge. The analysis also revealed that the removal of sea ice involves the following: over-ice-flooding along the coast offshore from river delta channels; under-ice flow of 'warm' river water; melting and calving of the fast ice; and, the formation of a bight in the pack ice edge. Two stages in the melting of sea ice were identified: (1) an early stage where heat is supplied to overflows largely by solar radiation, and (2) a later stage where heat is supplied by river discharge in addition to solar radiation. A simple thermodynamic model of the thaw process in the fast ice zone was developed and parameterized based on events recorded by the satellite images. The model treats river discharge as the source of sensible heat at the base of the ice cover. The results of a series of sensitivity tests to assess the influence of river discharge on the near shore ice are presented.

  6. The influence of the hydrologic cycle on the extent of sea ice with climatic implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dean, Ken; Gosink, Joan

    1991-01-01

    The role was analyzed of the hydrologic cycle on the distribution of sea ice, and its influence on forcings and fluxes between the marine environment and the atmosphere. River discharge plays a significant role in degrading the sea ice before any melting occurs elsewhere along the coast. The influence is considered of river discharge on the albedo, thermal balance, and distribution of sea ice. Quantitative atmospheric-hydrologic models are being developed to describe these processes in the coastal zone. Input for the models will come from satellite images, hydrologic data, and field observations. The resulting analysis provides a basis for the study of the significance of the hydrologic cycle throughout the Arctic Basin and its influence on the regional climate as a result of possible climatic scenarios. The area offshore from the Mackenzie River delta was selected as the study area.

  7. Autumn atmospheric response to the 2007 low Arctic sea ice extent in coupled ocean-atmosphere hindcasts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Orsolini, Yvan J. [Norwegian Institute for Air Research (NILU), PO BOX 100, Kjeller (Norway); Senan, Retish; Benestad, Rasmus E.; Melsom, Arne [Norwegian Meteorological Institute (met. no), Oslo (Norway)

    2012-06-15

    The autumn and early winter atmospheric response to the record-low Arctic sea ice extent at the end of summer 2007 is examined in ensemble hindcasts with prescribed sea ice extent, made with the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts state-of-the-art coupled ocean-atmosphere seasonal forecast model. Robust, warm anomalies over the Pacific and Siberian sectors of the Arctic, as high as 10 C at the surface, are found in October and November. A regime change occurs by December, characterized by weaker temperatures anomalies extending through the troposphere. Geopotential anomalies extend from the surface up to the stratosphere, associated to deeper Aleutian and Icelandic Lows. While the upper-level jet is weakened and shifted southward over the continents, it is intensified over both oceanic sectors, especially over the Pacific Ocean. On the American and Eurasian continents, intensified surface Highs are associated with anomalous advection of cold (warm) polar air on their eastern (western) sides, bringing cooler temperatures along the Pacific coast of Asia and Northeastern North America. Transient eddy activity is reduced over Eurasia, intensified over the entrance and exit regions of the Pacific and Atlantic storm tracks, in broad qualitative agreement with the upper-level wind anomalies. Potential predictability calculations indicate a strong influence of sea ice upon surface temperatures over the Arctic in autumn, but also along the Pacific coast of Asia in December. When the observed sea ice extent from 2007 is prescribed throughout the autumn, a higher correlation of surface temperatures with meteorological re-analyses is found at high latitudes from October until mid-November. This further emphasises the relevance of sea ice for seasonal forecasting in the Arctic region, in the autumn. (orig.)

  8. Effects of sea-ice extent and krill or salp dominance on the Antarctic food web

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loeb, V.; Siegel, V.; Holm-Hansen, O.; Hewitt, R.; Fraser, W.; Trivelpiece, W.; Trivelpiece, S.

    1997-06-01

    Krill (Euphausia superba) provide a direct link between primary producers and higher trophic levels in the Antarctic marine food web. The pelagic tunicate Salpa thompsoni can also be important during spring and summer through the formation of extensive and dense blooms. Although salps are not a major dietary item for Antarctic vertebrate predators,, their blooms can affect adult krill reproduction and survival of krill larvae. Here we provide data from 1995 and 1996 that support hypothesized relationships between krill, salps and region-wide sea-ice conditions,. We have assessed salp consumption as a proportion of net primary production, and found correlations between herbivore densities and integrated chlorophyll-a that indicate that there is a degree of competition between krill and salps. Our analysis of the relationship between annual sea-ice cover and a longer time series of air temperature measurements, indicates a decreased frequency of winters with extensive sea-ice development over the last five decades. Our data suggest that decreased krill availability may affect the levels of their vertebrate predators. Regional warming and reduced krill abundance therefore affect the marine food web and krill resource management.

  9. Nimbus Satellite Data Rescue Project for Sea Ice Extent: Data Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, G. G.; Sandler, M.; Moses, J. F.; Gallaher, D. W.

    2011-12-01

    scanning and simple quality control of more than 200,000 pictures. Preliminary results from September 1964, 1966 and 1969 data analysis will be discussed in this presentation. Our scientific use of the data will focus on recovering the sea ice extent around the poles. We especially welcome new users interested in the meteorology from 50N to 50S in the 1960's. Lessons and examples of the scanning and quality control procedures will be highlighted in the presentation. Illustrations will include mapped and reformatted data. When the project is finished a public archive from September 1964, April to November 1966 and May to December 1969 will be available for general use.

  10. Sea Ice Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arrigo, Kevin R.

    2014-01-01

    Polar sea ice is one of the largest ecosystems on Earth. The liquid brine fraction of the ice matrix is home to a diverse array of organisms, ranging from tiny archaea to larger fish and invertebrates. These organisms can tolerate high brine salinity and low temperature but do best when conditions are milder. Thriving ice algal communities, generally dominated by diatoms, live at the ice/water interface and in recently flooded surface and interior layers, especially during spring, when temperatures begin to rise. Although protists dominate the sea ice biomass, heterotrophic bacteria are also abundant. The sea ice ecosystem provides food for a host of animals, with crustaceans being the most conspicuous. Uneaten organic matter from the ice sinks through the water column and feeds benthic ecosystems. As sea ice extent declines, ice algae likely contribute a shrinking fraction of the total amount of organic matter produced in polar waters.

  11. The role of summer surface wind anomalies in the summer Arctic sea ice extent in 2010 and 2011

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogi, M.; Wallace, J. M.

    2012-12-01

    Masayo Ogi 1 and John M. Wallace 2 masayo.ogi@jamstec.go.jp wallace@atmos.washington.edu 1Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, Yokohama, Japan 2 Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington The seasonal evolutions of Arctic sea ice extent (SIE) during the summers of 2010 and 2011 are contrasted with that in 2007. The June SIE in 2010 was lower than that in 2007 and was the lowest for that calendar month in the 32-year (1979-2010) record. The September SIE in 2010 would have set a new record low had it not been for the fact that the ice retreated more slowly during the summer months in that year than it did in 2007. Hence from early July onward, the SIE in 2010 remained at levels above those observed in 2007. The SIE minimum in September 2010 proved to be the third lowest on record, eclipsed by values in both 2007 and 2008. In spring and summer of 2011, the Arctic SIE was as low as it was in 2007, but the SIE in September 2011 did not reach record low levels. The SIE minimum in 2011 proved to be the second lowest on record for the period of 1979-2011. Summertime atmospheric conditions play an important role in controlling the variations in Arctic SIE. In a previous study based on statistical analysis of data collected prior to 2007, we showed that anticyclonic summertime circulation anomalies over the Arctic Ocean during the summer months favor low September SIE. We also found that the record-low ice summer year 2007 was characterized by a strong anticyclonic circulation anomaly, accompanied by an Ekman drift of ice out of the marginal seas toward the central Arctic and eventually toward the Fram Strait, as evidenced by the tracks of drifting buoys. Here we assess the extent to which year-to-year differences in summer winds over the Arctic might have contributed to the differing rates of retreat of ice during the summers of 2007, 2010, and 2011. Our results show that the May-June (MJ) pattern in 2010 is

  12. Changes in sea ice cover and ice sheet extent at the Yermak Plateau during the last 160 ka - Reconstructions from biomarker records

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kremer, A.; Stein, R.; Fahl, K.; Ji, Z.; Yang, Z.; Wiers, S.; Matthiessen, J.; Forwick, M.; Löwemark, L.; O'Regan, M.; Chen, J.; Snowball, I.

    2018-02-01

    The Yermak Plateau is located north of Svalbard at the entrance to the Arctic Ocean, i.e. in an area highly sensitive to climate change. A multi proxy approach was carried out on Core PS92/039-2 to study glacial-interglacial environmental changes at the northern Barents Sea margin during the last 160 ka. The main emphasis was on the reconstruction of sea ice cover, based on the sea ice proxy IP25 and the related phytoplankton - sea ice index PIP25. Sea ice was present most of the time but showed significant temporal variability decisively affected by movements of the Svalbard Barents Sea Ice Sheet. For the first time, we prove the occurrence of seasonal sea ice at the eastern Yermak Plateau during glacial intervals, probably steered by a major northward advance of the ice sheet and the formation of a coastal polynya in front of it. Maximum accumulation of terrigenous organic carbon, IP25 and the phytoplankton biomarkers (brassicasterol, dinosterol, HBI III) can be correlated to distinct deglaciation events. More severe, but variable sea ice cover prevailed at the Yermak Plateau during interglacials. The general proximity to the sea ice margin is further indicated by biomarker (GDGT) - based sea surface temperatures below 2.5 °C.

  13. Sea-level records from the U.S. mid-Atlantic constrain Laurentide Ice Sheet extent during Marine Isotope Stage 3.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pico, T; Creveling, J R; Mitrovica, J X

    2017-05-30

    The U.S. mid-Atlantic sea-level record is sensitive to the history of the Laurentide Ice Sheet as the coastline lies along the ice sheet's peripheral bulge. However, paleo sea-level markers on the present-day shoreline of Virginia and North Carolina dated to Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 3, from 50 to 35 ka, are surprisingly high for this glacial interval, and remain unexplained by previous models of ice age adjustment or other local (for example, tectonic) effects. Here, we reconcile this sea-level record using a revised model of glacial isostatic adjustment characterized by a peak global mean sea level during MIS 3 of approximately -40 m, and far less ice volume within the eastern sector of the Laurentide Ice Sheet than traditional reconstructions for this interval. We conclude that the Laurentide Ice Sheet experienced a phase of very rapid growth in the 15 kyr leading into the Last Glacial Maximum, thus highlighting the potential of mid-field sea-level records to constrain areal extent of ice cover during glacial intervals with sparse geological observables.

  14. New details about the LGM extent and subsequent retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet from the easternmost Amundsen Sea Embayment shelf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klages, J. P.; Hillenbrand, C. D.; Kuhn, G.; Smith, J. A.; Graham, A. G. C.; Nitsche, F. O.; Frederichs, T.; Arndt, J. E.; Gebhardt, C.; Robin, Z.; Uenzelmann-Neben, G.; Gohl, K.; Jernas, P.; Wacker, L.

    2017-12-01

    In recent years several previously undiscovered grounding-zone wedges (GZWs) have been described within the Abbot-Cosgrove palaeo-ice stream trough on the easternmost Amundsen Sea Embayment shelf. These GZWs document both the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM; 26.5-19 cal. ka BP) grounding-line extent and the subsequent episodic retreat within this trough that neighbors the larger Pine Island-Thwaites trough to the west. Here we combine bathymetric, seismic, and geologic data showing that 1) the grounding line in Abbot Trough did not reach the continental shelf break at any time during the last glacial period, and 2) a prominent stacked GZW constructed from six individual wedges lying upon another was deposited 100 km upstream from the LGM grounding-line position. The available data allow for calculating volumes for most of these individual GZWs and for the entire stack. Sediment cores were recovered seawards from the outermost GZW in the trough, and from the individual wedges of the stacked GZW in order to define the LGM grounding-line extent, and provide minimum grounding-line retreat ages for the respective positions on the stacked GZW. We present implications of a grounded-ice free outer shelf throughout the last glacial period. Furthermore, we assess the significance of the grounding-line stillstand period recorded by the stacked GZW in Abbot Trough for the timing of post-LGM retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet from the Amundsen Sea Embayment shelf.

  15. Winter sea ice export from the Laptev Sea preconditions the local summer sea ice cover and fast ice decay

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Itkin

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Ice retreat in the eastern Eurasian Arctic is a consequence of atmospheric and oceanic processes and regional feedback mechanisms acting on the ice cover, both in winter and summer. A correct representation of these processes in numerical models is important, since it will improve predictions of sea ice anomalies along the Northeast Passage and beyond. In this study, we highlight the importance of winter ice dynamics for local summer sea ice anomalies in thickness, volume and extent. By means of airborne sea ice thickness surveys made over pack ice areas in the south-eastern Laptev Sea, we show that years of offshore-directed sea ice transport have a thinning effect on the late-winter sea ice cover. To confirm the preconditioning effect of enhanced offshore advection in late winter on the summer sea ice cover, we perform a sensitivity study using a numerical model. Results verify that the preconditioning effect plays a bigger role for the regional ice extent. Furthermore, they indicate an increase in volume export from the Laptev Sea as a consequence of enhanced offshore advection, which has far-reaching consequences for the entire Arctic sea ice mass balance. Moreover we show that ice dynamics in winter not only preconditions local summer ice extent, but also accelerate fast-ice decay.

  16. A new pattern of the moisture transport for precipitation related to the drastic decline in Arctic sea ice extent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gimeno-Sotelo, Luis; Nieto, Raquel; Vázquez, Marta; Gimeno, Luis

    2018-05-01

    In this study we use the term moisture transport for precipitation for a target region as the moisture coming to this region from its major moisture sources resulting in precipitation over the target region (MTP). We have identified changes in the pattern of moisture transport for precipitation over the Arctic region, the Arctic Ocean, and its 13 main subdomains concurrent with the major sea ice decline that occurred in 2003. The pattern consists of a general decrease in moisture transport in summer and enhanced moisture transport in autumn and early winter, with different contributions depending on the moisture source and ocean subregion. The pattern is statistically significant and consistent with changes in the vertically integrated moisture fluxes and frequency of circulation types. The results of this paper also reveal that the assumed and partially documented enhanced poleward moisture transport from lower latitudes as a consequence of increased moisture from climate change seems to be less simple and constant than typically recognised in relation to enhanced Arctic precipitation throughout the year in the present climate.

  17. Loss of sea ice in the Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perovich, Donald K; Richter-Menge, Jacqueline A

    2009-01-01

    The Arctic sea ice cover is in decline. The areal extent of the ice cover has been decreasing for the past few decades at an accelerating rate. Evidence also points to a decrease in sea ice thickness and a reduction in the amount of thicker perennial sea ice. A general global warming trend has made the ice cover more vulnerable to natural fluctuations in atmospheric and oceanic forcing. The observed reduction in Arctic sea ice is a consequence of both thermodynamic and dynamic processes, including such factors as preconditioning of the ice cover, overall warming trends, changes in cloud coverage, shifts in atmospheric circulation patterns, increased export of older ice out of the Arctic, advection of ocean heat from the Pacific and North Atlantic, enhanced solar heating of the ocean, and the ice-albedo feedback. The diminishing Arctic sea ice is creating social, political, economic, and ecological challenges.

  18. Determining the ice seasons severity during 1982-2015 using the ice extents sum as a new characteristic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rjazin, Jevgeni; Pärn, Ove

    2016-04-01

    Sea ice is a key climate factor and it restricts considerably the winter navigation in sever seasons on the Baltic Sea. So determining ice conditions severity and describing ice cover behaviour at severe seasons interests scientists, engineers and navigation managers. The present study is carried out to determine the ice seasons severity degree basing on the ice seasons 1982 to 2015. A new integrative characteristic is introduced to describe the ice season severity. It is the sum of ice extents of the ice season id est the daily ice extents of the season are summed. The commonly used procedure to determine the ice season severity degree by the maximal ice extent is in this research compared to the new characteristic values. The remote sensing data on the ice concentrations on the Baltic Sea published in the European Copernicus Programme are used to obtain the severity characteristic values. The ice extents are calculated on these ice concentration data. Both the maximal ice extent of the season and a newly introduced characteristic - the ice extents sum are used to classify the winters with respect of severity. The most severe winter of the reviewed period is 1986/87. Also the ice seasons 1981/82, 1984/85, 1985/86, 1995/96 and 2002/03 are classified as severe. Only three seasons of this list are severe by both the criteria. They are 1984/85, 1985/86 and 1986/87. We interpret this coincidence as the evidence of enough-during extensive ice cover in these three seasons. In several winters, for example 2010/11 ice cover extended enough for some time, but did not endure. At few other ice seasons as 2002/03 the Baltic Sea was ice-covered in moderate extent, but the ice cover stayed long time. At 11 winters the ice extents sum differed considerably (> 10%) from the maximal ice extent. These winters yield one third of the studied ice seasons. The maximal ice extent of the season is simple to use and enables to reconstruct the ice cover history and to predict maximal ice

  19. History of sea ice in the Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Polyak, Leonid; Alley, Richard B.; Andrews, John T.

    2010-01-01

    Arctic sea-ice extent and volume are declining rapidly. Several studies project that the Arctic Ocean may become seasonally ice-free by the year 2040 or even earlier. Putting this into perspective requires information on the history of Arctic sea-ice conditions through the geologic past. This inf......Arctic sea-ice extent and volume are declining rapidly. Several studies project that the Arctic Ocean may become seasonally ice-free by the year 2040 or even earlier. Putting this into perspective requires information on the history of Arctic sea-ice conditions through the geologic past...... Optimum, and consistently covered at least part of the Arctic Ocean for no less than the last 13–14 million years. Ice was apparently most widespread during the last 2–3 million years, in accordance with Earth’s overall cooler climate. Nevertheless, episodes of considerably reduced sea ice or even...

  20. Arctic landfast sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konig, Christof S.

    Landfast ice is sea ice which forms and remains fixed along a coast, where it is attached either to the shore, or held between shoals or grounded icebergs. Landfast ice fundamentally modifies the momentum exchange between atmosphere and ocean, as compared to pack ice. It thus affects the heat and freshwater exchange between air and ocean and impacts on the location of ocean upwelling and downwelling zones. Further, the landfast ice edge is essential for numerous Arctic mammals and Inupiat who depend on them for their subsistence. The current generation of sea ice models is not capable of reproducing certain aspects of landfast ice formation, maintenance, and disintegration even when the spatial resolution would be sufficient to resolve such features. In my work I develop a new ice model that permits the existence of landfast sea ice even in the presence of offshore winds, as is observed in mature. Based on viscous-plastic as well as elastic-viscous-plastic ice dynamics I add tensile strength to the ice rheology and re-derive the equations as well as numerical methods to solve them. Through numerical experiments on simplified domains, the effects of those changes are demonstrated. It is found that the modifications enable landfast ice modeling, as desired. The elastic-viscous-plastic rheology leads to initial velocity fluctuations within the landfast ice that weaken the ice sheet and break it up much faster than theoretically predicted. Solving the viscous-plastic rheology using an implicit numerical method avoids those waves and comes much closer to theoretical predictions. Improvements in landfast ice modeling can only verified in comparison to observed data. I have extracted landfast sea ice data of several decades from several sources to create a landfast sea ice climatology that can be used for that purpose. Statistical analysis of the data shows several factors that significantly influence landfast ice distribution: distance from the coastline, ocean depth, as

  1. Sea ice dynamics across the Mid-Pleistocene transition in the Bering Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Detlef, H; Belt, S T; Sosdian, S M; Smik, L; Lear, C H; Hall, I R; Cabedo-Sanz, P; Husum, K; Kender, S

    2018-03-05

    Sea ice and associated feedback mechanisms play an important role for both long- and short-term climate change. Our ability to predict future sea ice extent, however, hinges on a greater understanding of past sea ice dynamics. Here we investigate sea ice changes in the eastern Bering Sea prior to, across, and after the Mid-Pleistocene transition (MPT). The sea ice record, based on the Arctic sea ice biomarker IP 25 and related open water proxies from the International Ocean Discovery Program Site U1343, shows a substantial increase in sea ice extent across the MPT. The occurrence of late-glacial/deglacial sea ice maxima are consistent with sea ice/land ice hysteresis and land-glacier retreat via the temperature-precipitation feedback. We also identify interactions of sea ice with phytoplankton growth and ocean circulation patterns, which have important implications for glacial North Pacific Intermediate Water formation and potentially North Pacific abyssal carbon storage.

  2. High resolution modelling of the decreasing Arctic sea ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, K. S.; Rasmussen, T. A. S.; Blüthgen, Jonas

    2012-01-01

    The Arctic sea ice cover has been rapidly decreasing and thinning over the last decade, with minimum ice extent in 2007 and almost as low extent in 2011. This study investigates two aspects of the decreasing ice cover; first the large scale thinning and changing dynamics of the polar sea ice, and...

  3. Investigating Arctic Sea Ice Survivability in the Beaufort Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew Tooth

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Arctic sea ice extent has continued to decline in recent years, and the fractional coverage of multi-year sea ice has decreased significantly during this period. The Beaufort Sea region has been the site of much of the loss of multi-year sea ice, and it continues to play a large role in the extinction of ice during the melt season. We present an analysis of the influence of satellite-derived ice surface temperature, ice thickness, albedo, and downwelling longwave/shortwave radiation as well as latitude and airborne snow depth estimates on the change in sea ice concentration in the Beaufort Sea from 2009 to 2016 using a Lagrangian tracking database. Results from this analysis indicate that parcels that melt during summer in the Beaufort Sea reside at lower latitudes and have lower ice thickness at the beginning of the melt season in most cases. The influence of sea ice thickness and snow depth observed by IceBridge offers less conclusive results, with some years exhibiting higher thicknesses/depths for melted parcels. Parcels that melted along IceBridge tracks do exhibit lower latitudes and ice thicknesses, however, which indicates that earlier melt and breakup of ice may contribute to a greater likelihood of extinction of parcels in the summer.

  4. The effect of Arctic sea-ice extent on the absorbed (net solar flux at the surface, based on ISCCP-D2 cloud data for 1983–2007

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Matsoukas

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available We estimate the effect of the Arctic sea ice on the absorbed (net solar flux using a radiative transfer model. Ice and cloud input data to the model come from satellite observations, processed by the International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project (ISCCP and span the period July 1983–June 2007. The sea-ice effect on the solar radiation fluctuates seasonally with the solar flux and decreases interannually in synchronisation with the decreasing sea-ice extent. A disappearance of the Arctic ice cap during the sunlit period of the year would radically reduce the local albedo and cause an annually averaged 19.7 W m−2 increase in absorbed solar flux at the Arctic Ocean surface, or equivalently an annually averaged 0.55 W m−2 increase on the planetary scale. In the clear-sky scenario these numbers increase to 34.9 and 0.97 W m−2, respectively. A meltdown only in September, with all other months unaffected, increases the Arctic annually averaged solar absorption by 0.32 W m−2. We examined the net solar flux trends for the Arctic Ocean and found that the areas absorbing the solar flux more rapidly are the North Chukchi and Kara Seas, Baffin and Hudson Bays, and Davis Strait. The sensitivity of the Arctic absorbed solar flux on sea-ice extent and cloud amount was assessed. Although sea ice and cloud affect jointly the solar flux, we found little evidence of strong non-linearities.

  5. Less ice on the Baltic reduces the extent of hypoxic bottom waters and sedimentary phosphorus release

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vermaat, J.E.; Bouwer, L.M.

    2009-01-01

    A significant relation was established between the maximum extent of sea ice covering the Baltic Sea and the hypoxic area in the deeper parts of the Baltic Proper, with a lag of 2 years: for the period 1970-2000, less ice was correlated with a smaller anoxic area. At the same time, maximum ice

  6. Sea ice - Multiyear cycles and white ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ledley, T. S.

    1985-01-01

    The multiyear thickness cycles represent one of the interesting features of the sea ice studies performed by Semtner (1976) and Washington et al. (1976) with simple thermodynamic models of sea ice. In the present article, a description is given of results which show that the insulating effect of snow on the surface of the sea ice is important in producing these multiyear cycles given the physics included in the model. However, when the formation of white ice is included, the cycles almost disappear. White ice is the ice which forms at the snow-ice interface when the snow layer becomes thick enough to depress the ice below the water level. Water infiltrates the snow by coming through the ice at leads and generally freezes there, forming white ice.

  7. Coordinated Mapping of Sea Ice Deformation Features with Autonomous Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maksym, T.; Williams, G. D.; Singh, H.; Weissling, B.; Anderson, J.; Maki, T.; Ackley, S. F.

    2016-12-01

    Decreases in summer sea ice extent in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas has lead to a transition from a largely perennial ice cover, to a seasonal ice cover. This drives shifts in sea ice production, dynamics, ice types, and thickness distribution. To examine how the processes driving ice advance might also impact the morphology of the ice cover, a coordinated ice mapping effort was undertaken during a field campaign in the Beaufort Sea in October, 2015. Here, we present observations of sea ice draft topography from six missions of an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle run under different ice types and deformation features observed during autumn freeze-up. Ice surface features were also mapped during coordinated drone photogrammetric missions over each site. We present preliminary results of a comparison between sea ice surface topography and ice underside morphology for a range of sample ice types, including hummocked multiyear ice, rubble fields, young ice ridges and rafts, and consolidated pancake ice. These data are compared to prior observations of ice morphological features from deformed Antarctic sea ice. Such data will be useful for improving parameterizations of sea ice redistribution during deformation, and for better constraining estimates of airborne or satellite sea ice thickness.

  8. MODIS Snow and Sea Ice Products

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Dorothy K.; Riggs, George A.; Salomonson, Vincent V.

    2004-01-01

    In this chapter, we describe the suite of Earth Observing System (EOS) Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Terra and Aqua snow and sea ice products. Global, daily products, developed at Goddard Space Flight Center, are archived and distributed through the National Snow and Ice Data Center at various resolutions and on different grids useful for different communities Snow products include binary snow cover, snow albedo, and in the near future, fraction of snow in a 5OO-m pixel. Sea ice products include ice extent determined with two different algorithms, and sea ice surface temperature. The algorithms used to develop these products are described. Both the snow and sea ice products, available since February 24,2000, are useful for modelers. Validation of the products is also discussed.

  9. New Tools for Sea Ice Data Analysis and Visualization: NSIDC's Arctic Sea Ice News and Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vizcarra, N.; Stroeve, J.; Beam, K.; Beitler, J.; Brandt, M.; Kovarik, J.; Savoie, M. H.; Skaug, M.; Stafford, T.

    2017-12-01

    Arctic sea ice has long been recognized as a sensitive climate indicator and has undergone a dramatic decline over the past thirty years. Antarctic sea ice continues to be an intriguing and active field of research. The National Snow and Ice Data Center's Arctic Sea Ice News & Analysis (ASINA) offers researchers and the public a transparent view of sea ice data and analysis. We have released a new set of tools for sea ice analysis and visualization. In addition to Charctic, our interactive sea ice extent graph, the new Sea Ice Data and Analysis Tools page provides access to Arctic and Antarctic sea ice data organized in seven different data workbooks, updated daily or monthly. An interactive tool lets scientists, or the public, quickly compare changes in ice extent and location. Another tool allows users to map trends, anomalies, and means for user-defined time periods. Animations of September Arctic and Antarctic monthly average sea ice extent and concentration may also be accessed from this page. Our tools help the NSIDC scientists monitor and understand sea ice conditions in near real time. They also allow the public to easily interact with and explore sea ice data. Technical innovations in our data center helped NSIDC quickly build these tools and more easily maintain them. The tools were made publicly accessible to meet the desire from the public and members of the media to access the numbers and calculations that power our visualizations and analysis. This poster explores these tools and how other researchers, the media, and the general public are using them.

  10. There goes the sea ice: following Arctic sea ice parcels and their properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tschudi, M. A.; Tooth, M.; Meier, W.; Stewart, S.

    2017-12-01

    Arctic sea ice distribution has changed considerably over the last couple of decades. Sea ice extent record minimums have been observed in recent years, the distribution of ice age now heavily favors younger ice, and sea ice is likely thinning. This new state of the Arctic sea ice cover has several impacts, including effects on marine life, feedback on the warming of the ocean and atmosphere, and on the future evolution of the ice pack. The shift in the state of the ice cover, from a pack dominated by older ice, to the current state of a pack with mostly young ice, impacts specific properties of the ice pack, and consequently the pack's response to the changing Arctic climate. For example, younger ice typically contains more numerous melt ponds during the melt season, resulting in a lower albedo. First-year ice is typically thinner and more fragile than multi-year ice, making it more susceptible to dynamic and thermodynamic forcing. To investigate the response of the ice pack to climate forcing during summertime melt, we have developed a database that tracks individual Arctic sea ice parcels along with associated properties as these parcels advect during the summer. Our database tracks parcels in the Beaufort Sea, from 1985 - present, along with variables such as ice surface temperature, albedo, ice concentration, and convergence. We are using this database to deduce how these thousands of tracked parcels fare during summer melt, i.e. what fraction of the parcels advect through the Beaufort, and what fraction melts out? The tracked variables describe the thermodynamic and dynamic forcing on these parcels during their journey. This database will also be made available to all interested investigators, after it is published in the near future. The attached image shows the ice surface temperature of all parcels (right) that advected through the Beaufort Sea region (left) in 2014.

  11. Polar Sea Ice Monitoring Using HY-2A Scatterometer Measurements

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mingming Li

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available A sea ice detection algorithm based on Fisher’s linear discriminant analysis is developed to segment sea ice and open water for the Ku-band scatterometer onboard the China’s Hai Yang 2A Satellite (HY-2A/SCAT. Residual classification errors are reduced through image erosion/dilation techniques and sea ice growth/retreat constraint methods. The arctic sea-ice-type classification is estimated via a time-dependent threshold derived from the annual backscatter trends based on previous HY-2A/SCAT derived sea ice extent. The extent and edge of the sea ice obtained in this study is compared with the Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder (SSMIS sea ice concentration data and the Sentinel-1 SAR imagery for verification, respectively. Meanwhile, the classified sea ice type is compared with a multi-sensor sea ice type product based on data from the Advanced Scatterometer (ASCAT and SSMIS. Results show that HY-2A/SCAT is powerful in providing sea ice extent and type information, while differences in the sensitivities of active/passive products are found. In addition, HY-2A/SCAT derived sea ice products are also proved to be valuable complements for existing polar sea ice data products.

  12. Iron-oxide Magnetic, Morphologic, and Compositional Tracers of Sediment Provenance and Ice Sheet Extent in the ANDRILL AND-1B Drill Core, Ross Sea, Antarctica (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brachfeld, S. A.; Pinzon, J.; Darley, J. S.; Sagnotti, L.; Kuhn, G.; Florindo, F.; Wilson, G. S.; Ohneiser, C.; Monien, D.; Joseph, L. H.

    2013-12-01

    The first drilling season of the Antarctic Drilling Program (ANDRILL) recovered a 13.57 million year Miocene through Pleistocene record of paleoclimate change (core AND-1B) within the Ross Sea. The magnetic mineral assemblage records the varying contributions of biological productivity, changing sediment sources, the emergence of volcanic centers, and post-depositional diagenesis. Characterization of bedrock samples from the McMurdo Volcanic Group (MVG) and Transantarctic Mountain (TAM) lithologic units allows us to construct fingerprints for the major source rocks bordering the Ross Sea, and identify their signatures within the AND-1B sediment. Key parameters that can be traced from source rock to sediment for the MVG-derived sediment include a 100-200 C order-disorder transition, titanomaghemite grains with homogenous textures but with substantial Al and Mg content, Fe-spinels with substantial Al, Cr, Mg, and Ti content, and titanomagnetite host grains with 1-3 swarms of ilmenite lamellae (both with variable amounts of oxidation). Distinctive signatures in TAM lithologies include low S-ratios in Koettlitz Group gneisses and Fe-sulfides with magnetite intergrowths in Byrd Glacier basement samples. The Cambrian Granite Harbor Intrusive Complex is characterized by coarse, homogeneous Mn-bearing ilmenite and nearly pure magnetite. The Jurassic dolerites and basalts of the Ferrar Group contain pseudo single domain to stable single domain-sized Fe-oxides with low-Ti content and homogeneous textures. Cu-Fe sulfides are also present in the Ferrar Group. Diamictites in the Pliocene-Pleistocene section of the AND-1B drill core contains Fe-oxide assemblages with MVG-type rock magnetic and textural characteristics, while the Miocene diamictites contain TAM-type signatures. These observations can be explained by increased ice flow from the west during the Miocene and/or the absence of MVG volcanic centers, which had not yet reached a significant size. During the Pliocene and

  13. Polar bears and sea ice habitat change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durner, George M.; Atwood, Todd C.; Butterworth, Andy

    2017-01-01

    The polar bear (Ursus maritimus) is an obligate apex predator of Arctic sea ice and as such can be affected by climate warming-induced changes in the extent and composition of pack ice and its impacts on their seal prey. Sea ice declines have negatively impacted some polar bear subpopulations through reduced energy input because of loss of hunting habitats, higher energy costs due to greater ice drift, ice fracturing and open water, and ultimately greater challenges to recruit young. Projections made from the output of global climate models suggest that polar bears in peripheral Arctic and sub-Arctic seas will be reduced in numbers or become extirpated by the end of the twenty-first century if the rate of climate warming continues on its present trajectory. The same projections also suggest that polar bears may persist in the high-latitude Arctic where heavy multiyear sea ice that has been typical in that region is being replaced by thinner annual ice. Underlying physical and biological oceanography provides clues as to why polar bear in some regions are negatively impacted, while bears in other regions have shown no apparent changes. However, continued declines in sea ice will eventually challenge the survival of polar bears and efforts to conserve them in all regions of the Arctic.

  14. Variational Ridging in Sea Ice Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, A.; Hunke, E. C.; Lipscomb, W. H.; Maslowski, W.; Kamal, S.

    2017-12-01

    This work presents the results of a new development to make basin-scale sea ice models aware of the shape, porosity and extent of individual ridges within the pack. We have derived an analytic solution for the Euler-Lagrange equation of individual ridges that accounts for non-conservative forces, and therefore the compressive strength of individual ridges. Because a region of the pack is simply a collection of paths of individual ridges, we are able to solve the Euler-Lagrange equation for a large-scale sea ice field also, and therefore the compressive strength of a region of the pack that explicitly accounts for the macro-porosity of ridged debris. We make a number of assumptions that have simplified the problem, such as treating sea ice as a granular material in ridges, and assuming that bending moments associated with ridging are perturbations around an isostatic state. Regardless of these simplifications, the ridge model is remarkably predictive of macro-porosity and ridge shape, and, because our equations are analytic, they do not require costly computations to solve the Euler-Lagrange equation of ridges on the large scale. The new ridge model is therefore applicable to large-scale sea ice models. We present results from this theoretical development, as well as plans to apply it to the Regional Arctic System Model and a community sea ice code. Most importantly, the new ridging model is particularly useful for pinpointing gaps in our observational record of sea ice ridges, and points to the need for improved measurements of the evolution of porosity of deformed ice in the Arctic and Antarctic. Such knowledge is not only useful for improving models, but also for improving estimates of sea ice volume derived from altimetric measurements of sea ice freeboard.

  15. The future of ice sheets and sea ice: between reversible retreat and unstoppable loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Notz, Dirk

    2009-12-08

    We discuss the existence of cryospheric "tipping points" in the Earth's climate system. Such critical thresholds have been suggested to exist for the disappearance of Arctic sea ice and the retreat of ice sheets: Once these ice masses have shrunk below an anticipated critical extent, the ice-albedo feedback might lead to the irreversible and unstoppable loss of the remaining ice. We here give an overview of our current understanding of such threshold behavior. By using conceptual arguments, we review the recent findings that such a tipping point probably does not exist for the loss of Arctic summer sea ice. Hence, in a cooler climate, sea ice could recover rapidly from the loss it has experienced in recent years. In addition, we discuss why this recent rapid retreat of Arctic summer sea ice might largely be a consequence of a slow shift in ice-thickness distribution, which will lead to strongly increased year-to-year variability of the Arctic summer sea-ice extent. This variability will render seasonal forecasts of the Arctic summer sea-ice extent increasingly difficult. We also discuss why, in contrast to Arctic summer sea ice, a tipping point is more likely to exist for the loss of the Greenland ice sheet and the West Antarctic ice sheet.

  16. Dating glacimarine sediments from the continental shelf in the Amundsen Sea using a multi-tool box: Implications for West Antarctic ice-sheet extent and retreat during the last glacial cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hillenbrand, C. D.; Smith, J.; Klages, J. P.; Kuhn, G.; Maher, B.; Moreton, S.; Wacker, L.; Frederichs, T.; Wiers, S.; Jernas, P.; Anderson, J. B.; Ehrmann, W. U.; Graham, A. G. C.; Gohl, K.; Larter, R. D.

    2016-02-01

    Satellite data and in-situ measurements show that today considerable mass loss is occurring from the Amundsen Sea sector of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). The observational record only spans the past four decades, and until recently the long-term context of the current deglaciation was poorly constrained. This information is, however, crucial for understanding WAIS dynamics, evaluating the role of forcing mechanisms for ice-sheet melting, and testing and calibrating ice-sheet models that attempt to predict future WAIS behavior and its impact on global sea level. Over the past decade several multinational marine expeditions and terrestrial fieldwork campaigns have targeted the Amundsen Sea shelf and its hinterland to reconstruct the WAIS configuration during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and its subsequent deglacial history. The resulting studies succeeded in shedding light on the maximum WAIS extent at the LGM and the style, pattern and speed of its retreat and thinning thereafter. Despite this progress, however, significant uncertainties and discrepancies between marine and terrestrial reconstructions remain, which may arise from difficulties in dating sediment cores from the Antarctic shelf, especially their deglacial sections. Resolving these issues is crucial for understanding the WAIS' contribution to post-LGM sea-level rise, its sensitivity to different forcing mechanisms and its future evolution. Here we present chronological constraints on WAIS advance in the Amundsen Sea and its retreat from 20 ka BP into the Holocene that were obtained by various techniques, such as 14C dating of large ( 10 mg) and small (sample aliquots of calcareous microfossils, 14C dating of acid-insoluble organic matter combusted at low (300 °C) and high (800 °C) temperatures and dating of sediment cores by using geomagnetic paleointensity. We will compare the different age constraints and discuss their reliability, applicability and implications for WAIS history.

  17. Sea ice and pollution-modulated changes in Greenland ice core methanesulfonate and bromine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maselli, Olivia J.; Chellman, Nathan J.; Grieman, Mackenzie; Layman, Lawrence; McConnell, Joseph R.; Pasteris, Daniel; Rhodes, Rachael H.; Saltzman, Eric; Sigl, Michael

    2017-01-01

    Reconstruction of past changes in Arctic sea ice extent may be critical for understanding its future evolution. Methanesulfonate (MSA) and bromine concentrations preserved in ice cores have both been proposed as indicators of past sea ice conditions. In this study, two ice cores from central and north-eastern Greenland were analysed at sub-annual resolution for MSA (CH3SO3H) and bromine, covering the time period 1750-2010. We examine correlations between ice core MSA and the HadISST1 ICE sea ice dataset and consult back trajectories to infer the likely source regions. A strong correlation between the low-frequency MSA and bromine records during pre-industrial times indicates that both chemical species are likely linked to processes occurring on or near sea ice in the same source regions. The positive correlation between ice core MSA and bromine persists until the mid-20th century, when the acidity of Greenland ice begins to increase markedly due to increased fossil fuel emissions. After that time, MSA levels decrease as a result of declining sea ice extent but bromine levels increase. We consider several possible explanations and ultimately suggest that increased acidity, specifically nitric acid, of snow on sea ice stimulates the release of reactive Br from sea ice, resulting in increased transport and deposition on the Greenland ice sheet.

  18. Intercomparison of passive microwave sea ice concentration retrievals over the high-concentration Arctic sea ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    andersen, susanne; Tonboe, R.; Kaleschke, L.

    2007-01-01

    [1] Measurements of sea ice concentration from the Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSM/I) using seven different algorithms are compared to ship observations, sea ice divergence estimates from the Radarsat Geophysical Processor System, and ice and water surface type classification of 59 wide...... with sensor noise between 1.3 and 1.8%. This is in accord with variability estimated from analysis of SSM/I time series. Algorithms, which primarily use 85 GHz information, consistently give the best agreement with both SAR ice concentrations and ship observations. Although the 85 GHz information is more...... sensitive to atmospheric influences, it was found that the atmospheric contribution is secondary to the influence of the surface emissivity variability. Analysis of the entire SSM/I time series shows that there are significant differences in trend between sea ice extent and area, using different algorithms...

  19. Arctic Sea Ice Freeboard and Thickness

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set provides measurements of sea ice freeboard and sea ice thickness for the Arctic region. The data were derived from measurements made by from the Ice,...

  20. The Sea-Ice Floe Size Distribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, H. L., III; Schweiger, A. J. B.; Zhang, J.; Steele, M.

    2017-12-01

    The size distribution of ice floes in the polar seas affects the dynamics and thermodynamics of the ice cover and its interaction with the ocean and atmosphere. Ice-ocean models are now beginning to include the floe size distribution (FSD) in their simulations. In order to characterize seasonal changes of the FSD and provide validation data for our ice-ocean model, we calculated the FSD in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas over two spring-summer-fall seasons (2013 and 2014) using more than 250 cloud-free visible-band scenes from the MODIS sensors on NASA's Terra and Aqua satellites, identifying nearly 250,000 ice floes between 2 and 30 km in diameter. We found that the FSD follows a power-law distribution at all locations, with a seasonally varying exponent that reflects floe break-up in spring, loss of smaller floes in summer, and the return of larger floes after fall freeze-up. We extended the results to floe sizes from 10 m to 2 km at selected time/space locations using more than 50 high-resolution radar and visible-band satellite images. Our analysis used more data and applied greater statistical rigor than any previous study of the FSD. The incorporation of the FSD into our ice-ocean model resulted in reduced sea-ice thickness, mainly in the marginal ice zone, which improved the simulation of sea-ice extent and yielded an earlier ice retreat. We also examined results from 17 previous studies of the FSD, most of which report power-law FSDs but with widely varying exponents. It is difficult to reconcile the range of results due to different study areas, seasons, and methods of analysis. We review the power-law representation of the FSD in these studies and discuss some mathematical details that are important to consider in any future analysis.

  1. Aircraft Surveys of the Beaufort Sea Seasonal Ice Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morison, J.

    2016-02-01

    The Seasonal Ice Zone Reconnaissance Surveys (SIZRS) is a program of repeated ocean, ice, and atmospheric measurements across the Beaufort-Chukchi sea seasonal sea ice zone (SIZ) utilizing US Coast Guard Arctic Domain Awareness (ADA) flights of opportunity. The SIZ is the region between maximum winter sea ice extent and minimum summer sea ice extent. As such, it contains the full range of positions of the marginal ice zone (MIZ) where sea ice interacts with open water. The increasing size and changing air-ice-ocean properties of the SIZ are central to recent reductions in Arctic sea ice extent. The changes in the interplay among the atmosphere, ice, and ocean require a systematic SIZ observational effort of coordinated atmosphere, ice, and ocean observations covering up to interannual time-scales, Therefore, every year beginning in late Spring and continuing to early Fall, SIZRS makes monthly flights across the Beaufort Sea SIZ aboard Coast Guard C-130H aircraft from USCG Air Station Kodiak dropping Aircraft eXpendable CTDs (AXCTD) and Aircraft eXpendable Current Profilers (AXCP) for profiles of ocean temperature, salinity and shear, dropsondes for atmospheric temperature, humidity, and velocity profiles, and buoys for atmosphere and upper ocean time series. Enroute measurements include IR imaging, radiometer and lidar measurements of the sea surface and cloud tops. SIZRS also cooperates with the International Arctic Buoy Program for buoy deployments and with the NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory atmospheric chemistry sampling program on board the aircraft. Since 2012, SIZRS has found that even as SIZ extent, ice character, and atmospheric forcing varies year-to-year, the pattern of ocean freshening and radiative warming south of the ice edge is consistent. The experimental approach, observations and extensions to other projects will be discussed.

  2. Recurring Spring Leads and Landfast Ice in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas, 1993-2004

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — In the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas, the most significant sea ice anomalies have occurred in the summer ice extent (Eicken et al. 2006). In addition, there has been a...

  3. Early Winter Sea Ice Dynamics in the Ross Sea from In Situ and Satellite Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maksym, T.; Ackley, S. F.; Stammerjohn, S. E.; Tison, J. L.; Hoeppner, K.

    2017-12-01

    The Ross Sea sea ice cover is one of the few regions of the cryosphere that have been expanding in recent decades. However, 2017 saw a significantly delayed autumn ice advance and record low early winter sea ice extent. Understanding the causes and impacts of this variability has been hampered by a lack of in situ observations. A winter cruise into the Ross Sea in April-June 2017 provided some of the only in situ winter observations of sea ice processes in this region in almost 20 years. We present a first look at data from arrays of drifting buoys deployed in the ice pack and outflow from these polynyas, supplemented by a suite of high-resolution synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data. Additional observations included high-resolution sonar imagery of ice deformation features from an autonomous underwater vehicle, shipboard visual observations of sea ice properties, and in situ measurements of snow and thickness and structural properties. These data show that the delay in ice advance led to a thin, highly dynamic sea ice pack, with substantial ice production and export from the Ross Ice Shelf and Terra Nova Bay polynyas. Despite these high rates of ice production, the pack ice remained thin due to rapid export and northward drift. Compared to the only prior winter observations made in 1995 and 1998, the ice was thinner, with less ridging and snow cover, reflecting a younger ice cover. Granular ice was less prevalent than in these prior cruises, particularly in the outer pack, likely due to less snow ice formation and less pancake ice formation at the advancing ice edge. Despite rapid basal ice growth, the buoy data suggest that deformation may be the dominant mechanism for sea ice thickening in the pack once an initial ice cover forms.

  4. Biologically-Oriented Processes in the Coastal Sea Ice Zone of the White Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melnikov, I. A.

    2002-12-01

    The annual advance and retreat of sea ice is a major physical determinant of spatial and temporal changes in the structure and function of marine coastal biological communities. Sea ice biological data obtained in the tidal zone of Kandalaksha Gulf (White Sea) during 1996-2001 period will be presented. Previous observations in this area were mainly conducted during the ice-free summer season. However, there is little information on the ice-covered winter season (6-7 months duration), and, especially, on the sea-ice biology in the coastal zone within tidal regimes. During the January-May period time-series observations were conducted on transects along shorelines with coastal and fast ice. Trends in the annual extent of sea ice showed significant impacts on ice-associated biological communities. Three types of sea ice impact on kelps, balanoides, littorinas and amphipods are distinguished: (i) positive, when sea ice protects these populations from grinding (ii) negative, when ice grinds both fauna and flora, and (iii) a combined effect, when fast ice protects, but anchored ice grinds plant and animals. To understand the full spectrum of ecological problems caused by pollution on the coastal zone, as well as the problems of sea ice melting caused by global warming, an integrated, long-term study of the physical, chemical, and biological processes is needed.

  5. Autonomous Sea-Ice Thickness Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-06-01

    the conductivity of an infinitely thick slab of sea ice. Ice thickness, Hice, is then obtained by subtracting the height of the ...Thickness Survey of Sea Ice Runway” ERDC/CRREL SR-16-4 ii Abstract We conducted an autonomous survey of sea -ice thickness using the Polar rover Yeti...efficiency relative to manual surveys routinely con- ducted to assess the safety of roads and runways constructed on the sea ice. Yeti executed the

  6. Arctic Sea Ice Charts from Danish Meteorological Institute, 1893 - 1956

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — From 1893 to 1956, the Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI) created charts of observed and inferred sea ice extent for each summer month. These charts are based on...

  7. Nudging the Arctic Ocean to quantify Arctic sea ice feedbacks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dekker, Evelien; Severijns, Camiel; Bintanja, Richard

    2017-04-01

    It is well-established that the Arctic is warming 2 to 3 time faster than rest of the planet. One of the great uncertainties in climate research is related to what extent sea ice feedbacks amplify this (seasonally varying) Arctic warming. Earlier studies have analyzed existing climate model output using correlations and energy budget considerations in order to quantify sea ice feedbacks through indirect methods. From these analyses it is regularly inferred that sea ice likely plays an important role, but details remain obscure. Here we will take a different and a more direct approach: we will keep the sea ice constant in a sensitivity simulation, using a state-of -the-art climate model (EC-Earth), applying a technique that has never been attempted before. This experimental technique involves nudging the temperature and salinity of the ocean surface (and possibly some layers below to maintain the vertical structure and mixing) to a predefined prescribed state. When strongly nudged to existing (seasonally-varying) sea surface temperatures, ocean salinity and temperature, we force the sea ice to remain in regions/seasons where it is located in the prescribed state, despite the changing climate. Once we obtain fixed' sea ice, we will run a future scenario, for instance 2 x CO2 with and without prescribed sea ice, with the difference between these runs providing a measure as to what extent sea ice contributes to Arctic warming, including the seasonal and geographical imprint of the effects.

  8. Arctic and Antarctic Sea Ice Changes and Impacts (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nghiem, S. V.

    2013-12-01

    The extent of springtime Arctic perennial sea ice, important to preconditioning summer melt and to polar sunrise photochemistry, continues its precipitous reduction in the last decade marked by a record low in 2012, as the Bromine, Ozone, and Mercury Experiment (BROMEX) was conducted around Barrow, Alaska, to investigate impacts of sea ice reduction on photochemical processes, transport, and distribution in the polar environment. In spring 2013, there was further loss of perennial sea ice, as it was not observed in the ocean region adjacent to the Alaskan north coast, where there was a stretch of perennial sea ice in 2012 in the Beaufort Sea and Chukchi Sea. In contrast to the rapid and extensive loss of sea ice in the Arctic, Antarctic sea ice has a trend of a slight increase in the past three decades. Given the significant variability in time and in space together with uncertainties in satellite observations, the increasing trend of Antarctic sea ice may arguably be considered as having a low confidence level; however, there was no overall reduction of Antarctic sea ice extent anywhere close to the decreasing rate of Arctic sea ice. There exist publications presenting various factors driving changes in Arctic and Antarctic sea ice. After a short review of these published factors, new observations and atmospheric, oceanic, hydrological, and geological mechanisms contributed to different behaviors of sea ice changes in the Arctic and Antarctic are presented. The contribution from of hydrologic factors may provide a linkage to and enhance thermal impacts from lower latitudes. While geological factors may affect the sensitivity of sea ice response to climate change, these factors can serve as the long-term memory in the system that should be exploited to improve future projections or predictions of sea ice changes. Furthermore, similarities and differences in chemical impacts of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice changes are discussed. Understanding sea ice changes and

  9. The effect of changing sea ice on the vulnerability of Arctic coasts

    OpenAIRE

    K. R. Barnhart; I. Overeem; R. S. Anderson

    2014-01-01

    Shorefast sea ice prevents the interaction of the land and the ocean in the Arctic winter and influences this interaction in the summer by governing the fetch. In many parts of the Arctic the sea-ice-free season is increasing in duration, and the summertime sea ice extents are decreasing. Sea ice provides a first order control on the vulnerability of Arctic coasts to erosion, inundation, and damage to settlements and infrastructure. We ask how the changing sea ic...

  10. Global warming: Sea ice and snow cover

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Walsh, J.E.

    1993-01-01

    In spite of differences among global climate simulations under scenarios where atmospheric CO 2 is doubled, all models indicate at least some amplification of greenouse warming at the polar regions. Several decades of recent data on air temperature, sea ice, and snow cover of the high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere are summarized to illustrate the general compatibility of recent variations in those parameters. Despite a data void over the Arctic Ocean, some noteworthy patterns emerge. Warming dominates in winter and spring, as projected by global climate models, with the warming strongest over subpolar land areas of Alaska, northwestern Canada, and northern Eurasia. A time-longitude summary of Arctic sea ice variations indicates that timescales of most anomalies range from several months to several years. Wintertime maxima of total sea ice extent contain no apparent secular trends. The statistical significance of trends in recent sea ice variations was evaluated by a Monte Carlo procedure, showing a statistically significant negative trend in the summer. Snow cover data over the 20-y period of record show a noticeable decrease of Arctic snow cover in the late 1980s. This is of potential climatic significance since the accompanying decrease of surface albedo leads to a rapid increase of solar heating. 21 refs., 3 figs., 1 tab

  11. Arctic sea ice decline contributes to thinning lake ice trend in northern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexeev, Vladimir; Arp, Christopher D.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Cai, Lei

    2016-01-01

    Field measurements, satellite observations, and models document a thinning trend in seasonal Arctic lake ice growth, causing a shift from bedfast to floating ice conditions. September sea ice concentrations in the Arctic Ocean since 1991 correlate well (r = +0.69,p Research and Forecasting model output produced a 7% decrease in lake ice growth when 2007/08 sea ice was imposed on 1991/92 climatology and a 9% increase in lake ice growth for the opposing experiment. Here, we clearly link early winter 'ocean-effect' snowfall and warming to reduced lake ice growth. Future reductions in sea ice extent will alter hydrological, biogeochemical, and habitat functioning of Arctic lakes and cause sub-lake permafrost thaw.

  12. Collaborations for Arctic Sea Ice Information and Tools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheffield Guy, L.; Wiggins, H. V.; Turner-Bogren, E. J.; Rich, R. H.

    2017-12-01

    The dramatic and rapid changes in Arctic sea ice require collaboration across boundaries, including between disciplines, sectors, institutions, and between scientists and decision-makers. This poster will highlight several projects that provide knowledge to advance the development and use of sea ice knowledge. Sea Ice for Walrus Outlook (SIWO: https://www.arcus.org/search-program/siwo) - SIWO is a resource for Alaskan Native subsistence hunters and other interested stakeholders. SIWO provides weekly reports, during April-June, of sea ice conditions relevant to walrus in the northern Bering and southern Chukchi seas. Collaboration among scientists, Alaskan Native sea-ice experts, and the Eskimo Walrus Commission is fundamental to this project's success. Sea Ice Prediction Network (SIPN: https://www.arcus.org/sipn) - A collaborative, multi-agency-funded project focused on seasonal Arctic sea ice predictions. The goals of SIPN include: coordinate and evaluate Arctic sea ice predictions; integrate, assess, and guide observations; synthesize predictions and observations; and disseminate predictions and engage key stakeholders. The Sea Ice Outlook—a key activity of SIPN—is an open process to share and synthesize predictions of the September minimum Arctic sea ice extent and other variables. Other SIPN activities include workshops, webinars, and communications across the network. Directory of Sea Ice Experts (https://www.arcus.org/researchers) - ARCUS has undertaken a pilot project to develop a web-based directory of sea ice experts across institutions, countries, and sectors. The goal of the project is to catalyze networking between individual investigators, institutions, funding agencies, and other stakeholders interested in Arctic sea ice. Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH: https://www.arcus.org/search-program) - SEARCH is a collaborative program that advances research, synthesizes research findings, and broadly communicates the results to support

  13. Cook Inlet and Kenai Peninsula, Alaska ESI: ICE (Ice Extent Lines)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains locations of ice extent in Cook Inlet, Alaska. Vector lines in the data set represent 50 percent ice coverage. Location-specific type and...

  14. Multiscale Models of Melting Arctic Sea Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-30

    Sea ice reflectance or albedo , a key parameter in climate modeling, is primarily determined by melt pond and ice floe configurations. Ice - albedo ...determine their albedo - a key parameter in climate modeling. Here we explore the possibility of a conceptual sea ice climate model passing through a...bifurcation points. Ising model for melt ponds on Arctic sea ice Y. Ma, I. Sudakov, and K. M. Golden Abstract: The albedo of melting

  15. Sea Ice Prediction Has Easy and Difficult Years

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, Lawrence C.; Bitz, Cecilia M.; Blanchard-Wrigglesworth, Edward; Cutler, Matthew; Kay, Jennifer; Meier, Walter N.; Stroeve, Julienne; Wiggins, Helen

    2014-01-01

    Arctic sea ice follows an annual cycle, reaching its low point in September each year. The extent of sea ice remaining at this low point has been trending downwards for decades as the Arctic warms. Around the long-term downward trend, however, there is significant variation in the minimum extent from one year to the next. Accurate forecasts of yearly conditions would have great value to Arctic residents, shipping companies, and other stakeholders and are the subject of much current research. Since 2008 the Sea Ice Outlook (SIO) (http://www.arcus.org/search-program/seaiceoutlook) organized by the Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH) (http://www.arcus.org/search-program) has invited predictions of the September Arctic sea ice minimum extent, which are contributed from the Arctic research community. Individual predictions, based on a variety of approaches, are solicited in three cycles each year in early June, July, and August. (SEARCH 2013).

  16. Sea ice-albedo climate feedback mechanism

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schramm, J.L.; Curry, J.A. [Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO (United States); Ebert, E.E. [Bureau of Meterology Research Center, Melbourne (Australia)

    1995-02-01

    The sea ice-albedo feedback mechanism over the Arctic Ocean multiyear sea ice is investigated by conducting a series of experiments using several one-dimensional models of the coupled sea ice-atmosphere system. In its simplest form, ice-albedo feedback is thought to be associated with a decrease in the areal cover of snow and ice and a corresponding increase in the surface temperature, further decreasing the area cover of snow and ice. It is shown that the sea ice-albedo feedback can operate even in multiyear pack ice, without the disappearance of this ice, associated with internal processes occurring within the multiyear ice pack (e.g., duration of the snow cover, ice thickness, ice distribution, lead fraction, and melt pond characteristics). The strength of the ice-albedo feedback mechanism is compared for several different thermodynamic sea ice models: a new model that includes ice thickness distribution., the Ebert and Curry model, the Mayjut and Untersteiner model, and the Semtner level-3 and level-0 models. The climate forcing is chosen to be a perturbation of the surface heat flux, and cloud and water vapor feedbacks are inoperative so that the effects of the sea ice-albedo feedback mechanism can be isolated. The inclusion of melt ponds significantly strengthens the ice-albedo feedback, while the ice thickness distribution decreases the strength of the modeled sea ice-albedo feedback. It is emphasized that accurately modeling present-day sea ice thickness is not adequate for a sea ice parameterization; the correct physical processes must be included so that the sea ice parameterization yields correct sensitivities to external forcing. 22 refs., 6 figs., 1 tab.

  17. Reducing uncertainty in high-resolution sea ice models.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peterson, Kara J.; Bochev, Pavel Blagoveston

    2013-07-01

    Arctic sea ice is an important component of the global climate system, reflecting a significant amount of solar radiation, insulating the ocean from the atmosphere and influencing ocean circulation by modifying the salinity of the upper ocean. The thickness and extent of Arctic sea ice have shown a significant decline in recent decades with implications for global climate as well as regional geopolitics. Increasing interest in exploration as well as climate feedback effects make predictive mathematical modeling of sea ice a task of tremendous practical import. Satellite data obtained over the last few decades have provided a wealth of information on sea ice motion and deformation. The data clearly show that ice deformation is focused along narrow linear features and this type of deformation is not well-represented in existing models. To improve sea ice dynamics we have incorporated an anisotropic rheology into the Los Alamos National Laboratory global sea ice model, CICE. Sensitivity analyses were performed using the Design Analysis Kit for Optimization and Terascale Applications (DAKOTA) to determine the impact of material parameters on sea ice response functions. Two material strength parameters that exhibited the most significant impact on responses were further analyzed to evaluate their influence on quantitative comparisons between model output and data. The sensitivity analysis along with ten year model runs indicate that while the anisotropic rheology provides some benefit in velocity predictions, additional improvements are required to make this material model a viable alternative for global sea ice simulations.

  18. The Satellite Passive-Microwave Record of Sea Ice in the Ross Sea Since Late 1978

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, Claire L.

    2009-01-01

    Satellites have provided us with a remarkable ability to monitor many aspects of the globe day-in and day-out and sea ice is one of numerous variables that by now have quite substantial satellite records. Passive-microwave data have been particularly valuable in sea ice monitoring, with a record that extends back to August 1987 on daily basis (for most of the period), to November 1970 on a less complete basis (again for most of the period), and to December 1972 on a less complete basis. For the period since November 1970, Ross Sea sea ice imagery is available at spatial resolution of approximately 25 km. This allows good depictions of the seasonal advance and retreat of the ice cover each year, along with its marked interannual variability. The Ross Sea ice extent typically reaches a minimum of approximately 0.7 x 10(exp 6) square kilometers in February, rising to a maximum of approximately 4.0 x 10(exp 6) square kilometers in September, with much variability among years for both those numbers. The Ross Sea images show clearly the day-by-day activity greatly from year to year. Animations of the data help to highlight the dynamic nature of the Ross Sea ice cover. The satellite data also allow calculation of trends in the ice cover over the period of the satellite record. Using linear least-squares fits, the Ross Sea ice extent increased at an average rate of 12,600 plus or minus 1,800 square kilometers per year between November 1978 and December 2007, with every month exhibiting increased ice extent and the rates of increase ranging from a low of 7,500 plus or minus 5,000 square kilometers per year for the February ice extents to a high of 20,300 plus or minus 6,100 kilometers per year for the October ice extents. On a yearly average basis, for 1979-2007 the Ross Sea ice extent increased at a rate of 4.8 plus or minus 1.6 % per decade. Placing the Ross Sea in the context of the Southern Ocean as a whole, over the November 1978-December 2007 period the Ross Sea had

  19. A multivariate analysis of Antarctic sea ice since 1979

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Magalhaes Neto, Newton de; Evangelista, Heitor [Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (Uerj), LARAMG - Laboratorio de Radioecologia e Mudancas Globais, Maracana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Tanizaki-Fonseca, Kenny [Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (Uerj), LARAMG - Laboratorio de Radioecologia e Mudancas Globais, Maracana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF), Dept. Analise Geoambiental, Inst. de Geociencias, Niteroi, RJ (Brazil); Penello Meirelles, Margareth Simoes [Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (UERJ)/Geomatica, Maracana, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Garcia, Carlos Eiras [Universidade Federal do Rio Grande (FURG), Laboratorio de Oceanografia Fisica, Rio Grande, RS (Brazil)

    2012-03-15

    Recent satellite observations have shown an increase in the total extent of Antarctic sea ice, during periods when the atmosphere and oceans tend to be warmer surrounding a significant part of the continent. Despite an increase in total sea ice, regional analyses depict negative trends in the Bellingshausen-Amundsen Sea and positive trends in the Ross Sea. Although several climate parameters are believed to drive the formation of Antarctic sea ice and the local atmosphere, a descriptive mechanism that could trigger such differences in trends are still unknown. In this study we employed a multivariate analysis in order to identify the response of the Antarctic sea ice with respect to commonly utilized climate forcings/parameters, as follows: (1) The global air surface temperature, (2) The global sea surface temperature, (3) The atmospheric CO{sub 2} concentration, (4) The South Annular Mode, (5) The Nino 3, (6) The Nino (3 + 4, 7) The Nino 4, (8) The Southern Oscillation Index, (9) The Multivariate ENSO Index, (10) the Total Solar Irradiance, (11) The maximum O{sub 3} depletion area, and (12) The minimum O{sub 3} concentration over Antarctica. Our results indicate that western Antarctic sea ice is simultaneously impacted by several parameters; and that the minimum, mean, and maximum sea ice extent may respond to a separate set of climatic/geochemical parameters. (orig.)

  20. The role of feedbacks in Antarctic sea ice change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feltham, D. L.; Frew, R. C.; Holland, P.

    2017-12-01

    The changes in Antarctic sea ice over the last thirty years have a strong seasonal dependence, and the way these changes grow in spring and decay in autumn suggests that feedbacks are strongly involved. The changes may ultimately be caused by atmospheric warming, the winds, snowfall changes, etc., but we cannot understand these forcings without first untangling the feedbacks. A highly simplified coupled sea ice -mixed layer model has been developed to investigate the importance of feedbacks on the evolution of sea ice in two contrasting regions in the Southern Ocean; the Amundsen Sea where sea ice extent has been decreasing, and the Weddell Sea where it has been expanding. The change in mixed layer depth in response to changes in the atmosphere to ocean energy flux is implicit in a strong negative feedback on ice cover changes in the Amundsen Sea, with atmospheric cooling leading to a deeper mixed layer resulting in greater entrainment of warm Circumpolar Deep Water, causing increased basal melting of sea ice. This strong negative feedback produces counter intuitive responses to changes in forcings in the Amundsen Sea. This feedback is absent in the Weddell due to the complete destratification and strong water column cooling that occurs each winter in simulations. The impact of other feedbacks, including the albedo feedback, changes in insulation due to ice thickness and changes in the freezing temperature of the mixed layer, were found to be of secondary importance compared to changes in the mixed layer depth.

  1. Regional Changes in the Sea Ice Cover and Ice Production in the Antarctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comiso, Josefino C.

    2011-01-01

    Coastal polynyas around the Antarctic continent have been regarded as sea ice factories because of high ice production rates in these regions. The observation of a positive trend in the extent of Antarctic sea ice during the satellite era has been intriguing in light of the observed rapid decline of the ice extent in the Arctic. The results of analysis of the time series of passive microwave data indicate large regional variability with the trends being strongly positive in the Ross Sea, strongly negative in the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas and close to zero in the other regions. The atmospheric circulation in the Antarctic is controlled mainly by the Southern Annular Mode (SAM) and the marginal ice zone around the continent shows an alternating pattern of advance and retreat suggesting the presence of a propagating wave (called Antarctic Circumpolar Wave) around the circumpolar region. The results of analysis of the passive microwave data suggest that the positive trend in the Antarctic sea ice cover could be caused primarily by enhanced ice production in the Ross Sea that may be associated with more persistent and larger coastal polynyas in the region. Over the Ross Sea shelf, analysis of sea ice drift data from 1992 to 2008 yields a positive rate-of-increase in the net ice export of about 30,000 km2 per year. For a characteristic ice thickness of 0.6 m, this yields a volume transport of about 20 km3/year, which is almost identical, within error bars, to our estimate of the trend in ice production. In addition to the possibility of changes in SAM, modeling studies have also indicated that the ozone hole may have a role in that it causes the deepening of the lows in the western Antarctic region thereby causing strong winds to occur offthe Ross-ice shelf.

  2. Climate change and ice hazards in the Beaufort Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Barber, D. G.; McCullough, G.; Babb, D.

    2014-01-01

    Recent reductions in the summer extent of sea ice have focused the world’s attention on the effects of climate change. Increased CO2-derived global warming is rapidly shrinking the Arctic multi-year ice pack. This shift in ice regimes allows for increasing development opportunities for large oil...... will be a much more complex task than modeling average ice circulation. Given the observed reduction in sea ice extent and thickness this rather counterintuitive situation, associated with a warming climate, poses significant hazards to Arctic marine oil and gas development and marine transportation. Accurate...... forecasting of hazardous ice motion will require improved real-time surface wind and ocean current forecast models capable of ingesting local satellite-derived wind data and/or local, closely-spaced networks of anemometers and improved methods of determining high-frequency components of surface ocean current...

  3. Arctic Sea Ice Trafficability - New Strategies for a Changing Icescape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dammann, Dyre Oliver

    Sea ice is an important part of the Arctic social-environmental system, in part because it provides a platform for human transportation and for marine flora and fauna that use the ice as a habitat. Sea ice loss projected for coming decades is expected to change ice conditions throughout the Arctic, but little is known about the nature and extent of anticipated changes and in particular potential implications for over-ice travel and ice use as a platform. This question has been addressed here through an extensive effort to link sea ice use and key geophysical properties of sea ice, drawing upon extensive field surveys around on-ice operations and local and Indigenous knowledge for the widely different ice uses and ice regimes of Utqiagvik, Kotzebue, and Nome, Alaska.. A set of nine parameters that constrain landfast sea ice use has been derived, including spatial extent, stability, and timing and persistence of landfast ice. This work lays the foundation for a framework to assess and monitor key ice-parameters relevant in the context of ice-use feasibility, safety, and efficiency, drawing on different remote-sensing techniques. The framework outlines the steps necessary to further evaluate relevant parameters in the context of user objectives and key stakeholder needs for a given ice regime and ice use scenario. I have utilized this framework in case studies for three different ice regimes, where I find uses to be constrained by ice thickness, roughness, and fracture potential and develop assessment strategies with accuracy at the relevant spatial scales. In response to the widely reported importance of high-confidence ice thickness measurements, I have developed a new strategy to estimate appropriate thickness compensation factors. Compensation factors have the potential to reduce risk of misrepresenting areas of thin ice when using point-based in-situ assessment methods along a particular route. This approach was tested on an ice road near Kotzebue, Alaska, where

  4. Correlating Ice Cores from Quelccaya Ice Cap with Chronology from Little Ice Age Glacial Extents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stroup, J. S.; Kelly, M. A.; Lowell, T. V.

    2010-12-01

    Proxy records indicate Southern Hemisphere climatic changes during the Little Ice Age (LIA; ~1300-1850 AD). In particular, records of change in and around the tropical latitudes require attention because these areas are sensitive to climatic change and record the dynamic interplay between hemispheres (Oerlemans, 2005). Despite this significance, relatively few records exist for the southern tropics. Here we present a reconstruction of glacial fluctuations of Quelccaya Ice Cap (QIC), Peruvian Andes, from pre-LIA up to the present day. In the Qori Kalis valley, extensive sets of moraines exist beginning with the 1963 AD ice margin (Thompson et al., 2006) and getting progressively older down valley. Several of these older moraines can be traced and are continuous with moraines in the Challpa Cocha valley. These moraines have been dated at chronology of past ice cap extents are correlated with ice core records from QIC which show an accumulation increase during ~1500-1700 AD and an accumulation decrease during ~1720-1860 AD (Thompson et al., 1985; 1986; 2006). In addition, other proxy records from Peru and the tropics are correlated with the records at QIC as a means to understand climate conditions during the LIA. This work forms the basis for future modeling of the glacial system during the LIA at QIC and for modeling of past temperature and precipitation regimes at high altitude in the tropics.

  5. Visualizing Glaciers and Sea Ice via Google Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballagh, L. M.; Fetterer, F.; Haran, T. M.; Pharris, K.

    2006-12-01

    The NOAA team at NSIDC manages over 60 distinct cryospheric and related data products. With an emphasis on data rescue and in situ data, these products hold value for both the scientific and non-scientific user communities. The overarching goal of this presentation is to promote products from two components of the cryosphere (glaciers and sea ice). Our Online Glacier Photograph Database contains approximately 3,000 photographs taken over many decades, exemplifying change in the glacier terminus over time. The sea ice product shows sea ice extent and concentration along with anomalies and trends. This Sea Ice Index product, which starts in 1979 and is updated monthly, provides visuals of the current state of sea ice in both hemispheres with trends and anomalies. The long time period covered by the data set means that many of the trends in ice extent and concentration shown in this product are statistically significant despite the large natural variability in sea ice. The minimum arctic sea ice extent has been a record low in September 2002 and 2005, contributing to an accelerated trend in sea ice reduction. With increasing world-wide interest in indicators of global climate change, and the upcoming International Polar Year, these data products are of interest to a broad audience. To further extend the impact of these data, we have made them viewable through Google Earth via the Keyhole Markup Language (KML). This presents an opportunity to branch out to a more diverse audience by using a new and innovative tool that allows spatial representation of data of significant scientific and educational interest.

  6. Expanding Antarctic Sea Ice: Anthropogenic or Natural Variability?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bitz, C. M.

    2016-12-01

    Antarctic sea ice extent has increased over the last 36 years according to the satellite record. Concurrent with Antarctic sea-ice expansion has been broad cooling of the Southern Ocean sea-surface temperature. Not only are Southern Ocean sea ice and SST trends at odds with expectations from greenhouse gas-induced warming, the trend patterns are not reproduced in historical simulations with comprehensive global climate models. While a variety of different factors may have contributed to the observed trends in recent decades, we propose that it is atmospheric circulation changes - and the changes in ocean circulation they induce - that have emerged as the most likely cause of the observed Southern Ocean sea ice and SST trends. I will discuss deficiencies in models that could explain their incorrect response. In addition, I will present results from a series of experiments where the Antarctic sea ice and ocean are forced by atmospheric perturbations imposed within a coupled climate model. Figure caption: Linear trends of annual-mean SST (left) and annual-mean sea-ice concentration (right) over 1980-2014. SST is from NOAA's Optimum Interpolation SST dataset (version 2; Reynolds et al. 2002). Sea-ice concentration is from passive microwave observations using the NASA Team algorithm. Only the annual means are shown here for brevity and because the signal to noise is greater than in the seasonal means. Figure from Armour and Bitz (2015).

  7. Can regional climate engineering save the summer Arctic sea ice?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tilmes, S.; Jahn, Alexandra; Kay, Jennifer E.; Holland, Marika; Lamarque, Jean-Francois

    2014-02-01

    Rapid declines in summer Arctic sea ice extent are projected under high-forcing future climate scenarios. Regional Arctic climate engineering has been suggested as an emergency strategy to save the sea ice. Model simulations of idealized regional dimming experiments compared to a business-as-usual greenhouse gas emission simulation demonstrate the importance of both local and remote feedback mechanisms to the surface energy budget in high latitudes. With increasing artificial reduction in incoming shortwave radiation, the positive surface albedo feedback from Arctic sea ice loss is reduced. However, changes in Arctic clouds and the strongly increasing northward heat transport both counteract the direct dimming effects. A 4 times stronger local reduction in solar radiation compared to a global experiment is required to preserve summer Arctic sea ice area. Even with regional Arctic dimming, a reduction in the strength of the oceanic meridional overturning circulation and a shut down of Labrador Sea deep convection are possible.

  8. Statistical Analysis of SSMIS Sea Ice Concentration Threshold at the Arctic Sea Ice Edge during Summer Based on MODIS and Ship-Based Observational Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Qing; Li, Fei; Pang, Xiaoping; Luo, Cong

    2018-04-05

    The threshold of sea ice concentration (SIC) is the basis for accurately calculating sea ice extent based on passive microwave (PM) remote sensing data. However, the PM SIC threshold at the sea ice edge used in previous studies and released sea ice products has not always been consistent. To explore the representable value of the PM SIC threshold corresponding on average to the position of the Arctic sea ice edge during summer in recent years, we extracted sea ice edge boundaries from the Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sea ice product (MOD29 with a spatial resolution of 1 km), MODIS images (250 m), and sea ice ship-based observation points (1 km) during the fifth (CHINARE-2012) and sixth (CHINARE-2014) Chinese National Arctic Research Expeditions, and made an overlay and comparison analysis with PM SIC derived from Special Sensor Microwave Imager Sounder (SSMIS, with a spatial resolution of 25 km) in the summer of 2012 and 2014. Results showed that the average SSMIS SIC threshold at the Arctic sea ice edge based on ice-water boundary lines extracted from MOD29 was 33%, which was higher than that of the commonly used 15% discriminant threshold. The average SIC threshold at sea ice edge based on ice-water boundary lines extracted by visual interpretation from four scenes of the MODIS image was 35% when compared to the average value of 36% from the MOD29 extracted ice edge pixels for the same days. The average SIC of 31% at the sea ice edge points extracted from ship-based observations also confirmed that choosing around 30% as the SIC threshold during summer is recommended for sea ice extent calculations based on SSMIS PM data. These results can provide a reference for further studying the variation of sea ice under the rapidly changing Arctic.

  9. Improving Surface Mass Balance Over Ice Sheets and Snow Depth on Sea Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koenig, Lora Suzanne; Box, Jason; Kurtz, Nathan

    2013-01-01

    Surface mass balance (SMB) over ice sheets and snow on sea ice (SOSI) are important components of the cryosphere. Large knowledge gaps remain in scientists' abilities to monitor SMB and SOSI, including insufficient measurements and difficulties with satellite retrievals. On ice sheets, snow accumulation is the sole mass gain to SMB, and meltwater runoff can be the dominant single loss factor in extremely warm years such as 2012. SOSI affects the growth and melt cycle of the Earth's polar sea ice cover. The summer of 2012 saw the largest satellite-recorded melt area over the Greenland ice sheet and the smallest satellite-recorded Arctic sea ice extent, making this meeting both timely and relevant.

  10. Linking Regional Winter Sea Ice Thickness and Surface Roughness to Spring Melt Pond Fraction on Landfast Arctic Sea Ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sasha Nasonova

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The Arctic sea ice cover has decreased strongly in extent, thickness, volume and age in recent decades. The melt season presents a significant challenge for sea ice forecasting due to uncertainty associated with the role of surface melt ponds in ice decay at regional scales. This study quantifies the relationships of spring melt pond fraction (fp with both winter sea ice roughness and thickness, for landfast first-year sea ice (FYI and multiyear sea ice (MYI. In 2015, airborne measurements of winter sea ice thickness and roughness, as well as high-resolution optical data of melt pond covered sea ice, were collected along two ~5.2 km long profiles over FYI- and MYI-dominated regions in the Canadian Arctic. Statistics of winter sea ice thickness and roughness were compared to spring fp using three data aggregation approaches, termed object and hybrid-object (based on image segments, and regularly spaced grid-cells. The hybrid-based aggregation approach showed strongest associations because it considers the morphology of the ice as well as footprints of the sensors used to measure winter sea ice thickness and roughness. Using the hybrid-based data aggregation approach it was found that winter sea ice thickness and roughness are related to spring fp. A stronger negative correlation was observed between FYI thickness and fp (Spearman rs = −0.85 compared to FYI roughness and fp (rs = −0.52. The association between MYI thickness and fp was also negative (rs = −0.56, whereas there was no association between MYI roughness and fp. 47% of spring fp variation for FYI and MYI can be explained by mean thickness. Thin sea ice is characterized by low surface roughness allowing for widespread ponding in the spring (high fp whereas thick sea ice has undergone dynamic thickening and roughening with topographic features constraining melt water into deeper channels (low fp. This work provides an important contribution towards the parameterizations of fp in

  11. Sea Ice and Hydrographic Variability in the Northwest North Atlantic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fenty, I. G.; Heimbach, P.; Wunsch, C. I.

    2010-12-01

    marginal ice zone is mainly ablated via large sustained turbulent ocean enthalpy fluxes. The sensible heat required for these sustained fluxes is drawn from a reservoir of warm subsurface waters of subtropical origin entrained into the mixed layer via convective mixing. Analysis of ocean surface buoyancy fluxes during the period preceding quasi-equilibrium reveals that low-salinity upper ocean anomalies are required for ice to advance seaward of the Arctic Water/Irminger Water thermohaline front in the northern Labrador Sea. Anomalous low-salinity waters inhibit mixed layer deepening, shielding the advancing ice pack from the subsurface heat reservoir, and are conducive to a positive surface stratification enhancement feedback from ice meltwater release. Interestingly, the climatological location of the front coincides with the minimum observed wintertime ice extent; positive ice extent anomalies may require hydrographic preconditioning. If true, the export of low-salinity anomalies from melting Arctic ice associated with future warming may be predicted to lead positive ice extent anomalies in Labrador Sea via the positive surface stratification enhancement mechanism feedback outlined above.

  12. Antartic sea ice, 1973 - 1976: Satellite passive-microwave observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwally, H. J.; Comiso, J. C.; Parkinson, C. L.; Campbell, W. J.; Carsey, F. D.; Gloersen, P.

    1983-01-01

    Data from the Electrically Scanning Microwave Radiometer (ESMR) on the Nimbus 5 satellite are used to determine the extent and distribution of Antarctic sea ice. The characteristics of the southern ocean, the mathematical formulas used to obtain quantitative sea ice concentrations, the general characteristics of the seasonal sea ice growth/decay cycle and regional differences, and the observed seasonal growth/decay cycle for individual years and interannual variations of the ice cover are discussed. The sea ice data from the ESMR are presented in the form of color-coded maps of the Antarctic and the southern oceans. The maps show brightness temperatures and concentrations of pack ice averaged for each month, 4-year monthly averages, and month-to-month changes. Graphs summarizing the results, such as areas of sea ice as a function of time in the various sectors of the southern ocean are included. The images demonstrate that satellite microwave data provide unique information on large-scale sea ice conditions for determining climatic conditions in polar regions and possible global climatic changes.

  13. A Detailed Geophysical Investigation of the Grounding of Henry Ice Rise, with Implications for Holocene Ice-Sheet Extent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wearing, M.; Kingslake, J.

    2017-12-01

    It is generally assumed that since the Last Glacial Maximum the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) has experienced monotonic retreat of the grounding line (GL). However, recent studies have cast doubt on this assumption, suggesting that the retreat of the WAIS grounding line may have been followed by a significant advance during the Holocene in the Weddell and Ross Sea sectors. Constraining this evolution is important as reconstructions of past ice-sheet extent are used to spin-up predictive ice-sheet models and correct mass-balance observations for glacial isostatic adjustment. Here we examine in detail the formation of the Henry Ice Rise (HIR), which ice-sheet model simulations suggest played a key role in Holocene ice-mass changes in the Weddell Sea sector. Observations from a high-resolution ground-based, ice-penetrating radar survey are best explained if the ice rise formed when the Ronne Ice Shelf grounded on a submarine high, underwent a period of ice-rumple flow, before the GL migrated outwards to form the present-day ice rise. We constrain the relative chronology of this evolution by comparing the alignment and intersection of isochronal internal layers, relic crevasses, surface features and investigating the dynamic processes leading to their complex structure. We also draw analogies between HIR and the neighbouring Doake Ice Rumples. The date of formation is estimated using vertical velocities derived with a phase-sensitive radio-echo sounder (pRES). Ice-sheet models suggest that the formation of the HIR and other ice rises may have halted and reversed large-scale GL retreat. Hence the small-scale dynamics of these crucial regions could have wide-reaching consequences for future ice-sheet mass changes and constraining their formation and evolution further would be beneficial. One stringent test of our geophysics-based conclusions would be to drill to the bed of HIR to sample the ice for isotopic analysis and the bed for radiocarbon analysis.

  14. Arctic Landfast Sea Ice 1953-1998

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The files in this data set contain landfast sea ice data (monthly means) gathered from both Russian Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (AARI) and Canadian Ice...

  15. Modelling sea ice formation in the Terra Nova Bay polynya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sansiviero, M.; Morales Maqueda, M. Á.; Fusco, G.; Aulicino, G.; Flocco, D.; Budillon, G.

    2017-02-01

    realistic polynya extent estimates. The model-derived polynya extent has been validated by comparing the modelled sea ice concentration against MODIS high resolution satellite images, confirming that the model is able to reproduce reasonably well the TNB polynya evolution in terms of both shape and extent.

  16. Sea-ice evaluation of NEMO-Nordic 1.0: a NEMO-LIM3.6-based ocean-sea-ice model setup for the North Sea and Baltic Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pemberton, Per; Löptien, Ulrike; Hordoir, Robinson; Höglund, Anders; Schimanke, Semjon; Axell, Lars; Haapala, Jari

    2017-08-01

    The Baltic Sea is a seasonally ice-covered marginal sea in northern Europe with intense wintertime ship traffic and a sensitive ecosystem. Understanding and modeling the evolution of the sea-ice pack is important for climate effect studies and forecasting purposes. Here we present and evaluate the sea-ice component of a new NEMO-LIM3.6-based ocean-sea-ice setup for the North Sea and Baltic Sea region (NEMO-Nordic). The setup includes a new depth-based fast-ice parametrization for the Baltic Sea. The evaluation focuses on long-term statistics, from a 45-year long hindcast, although short-term daily performance is also briefly evaluated. We show that NEMO-Nordic is well suited for simulating the mean sea-ice extent, concentration, and thickness as compared to the best available observational data set. The variability of the annual maximum Baltic Sea ice extent is well in line with the observations, but the 1961-2006 trend is underestimated. Capturing the correct ice thickness distribution is more challenging. Based on the simulated ice thickness distribution we estimate the undeformed and deformed ice thickness and concentration in the Baltic Sea, which compares reasonably well with observations.

  17. Sea Ice, Climate and Fram Strait

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunkins, K.

    1984-01-01

    When sea ice is formed the albedo of the ocean surface increases from its open water value of about 0.1 to a value as high as 0.8. This albedo change effects the radiation balance and thus has the potential to alter climate. Sea ice also partially seals off the ocean from the atmosphere, reducing the exchange of gases such as carbon dioxide. This is another possible mechanism by which climate might be affected. The Marginal Ice Zone Experiment (MIZEX 83 to 84) is an international, multidisciplinary study of processes controlling the edge of the ice pack in that area including the interactions between sea, air and ice.

  18. Sea-ice induced growth decline in Arctic shrubs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forchhammer, Mads

    2017-08-01

    Measures of increased tundra plant productivity have been associated with the accelerating retreat of the Arctic sea-ice. Emerging studies document opposite effects, advocating for a more complex relationship between the shrinking sea-ice and terrestrial plant productivity. I introduce an autoregressive plant growth model integrating effects of biological and climatic conditions for analysing individual ring-width growth time series. Using 128 specimens of Salix arctica , S. glauca and Betula nana sampled across Greenland to Svalbard, an overall negative effect of the retreating June sea-ice extent was found on the annual growth. The negative effect of the retreating June sea-ice was observed for younger individuals with large annual growth allocations and with little or no trade-off between previous and current year's growth. © 2017 The Author(s).

  19. [Reflectance of sea ice in Liaodong Bay].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Zhan-tang; Yang, Yue-zhong; Wang, Gui-fen; Cao, Wen-xi; Kong, Xiang-peng

    2010-07-01

    In the present study, the relationships between sea ice albedo and the bidirectional reflectance distribution in Liaodong Bay were investigated. The results indicate that: (1) sea ice albedo alpha(lambda) is closely related to the components of sea ice, the higher the particulate concentration in sea ice surface is, the lower the sea ice albedo alpha(lambda) is. On the contrary, the higher the bubble concentration in sea ice is, the higher sea ice albedo alpha(lambda) is. (2) Sea ice albedo alpha(lambda) is similar to the bidirectional reflectance factor R(f) when the probe locates at nadir. The R(f) would increase with the increase in detector zenith theta, and the correlation between R(f) and the detector azimuth would gradually increase. When the theta is located at solar zenith 63 degrees, the R(f) would reach the maximum, and the strongest correlation is also shown between the R(f) and the detector azimuth. (3) Different types of sea ice would have the different anisotropic reflectance factors.

  20. Implications of fractured Arctic perennial ice cover on thermodynamic and dynamic sea ice processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asplin, Matthew G.; Scharien, Randall; Else, Brent; Howell, Stephen; Barber, David G.; Papakyriakou, Tim; Prinsenberg, Simon

    2014-04-01

    Decline of the Arctic summer minimum sea ice extent is characterized by large expanses of open water in the Siberian, Laptev, Chukchi, and Beaufort Seas, and introduces large fetch distances in the Arctic Ocean. Long waves can propagate deep into the pack ice, thereby causing flexural swell and failure of the sea ice. This process shifts the floe size diameter distribution smaller, increases floe surface area, and thereby affects sea ice dynamic and thermodynamic processes. The results of Radarsat-2 imagery analysis show that a flexural fracture event which occurred in the Beaufort Sea region on 6 September 2009 affected ˜40,000 km2. Open water fractional area in the area affected initially decreased from 3.7% to 2.7%, but later increased to ˜20% following wind-forced divergence of the ice pack. Energy available for lateral melting was assessed by estimating the change in energy entrainment from longwave and shortwave radiation in the mixed-layer of the ocean following flexural fracture. 11.54 MJ m-2 of additional energy for lateral melting of ice floes was identified in affected areas. The impact of this process in future Arctic sea ice melt seasons was assessed using estimations of earlier occurrences of fracture during the melt season, and is discussed in context with ocean heat fluxes, atmospheric mixing of the ocean mixed layer, and declining sea ice cover. We conclude that this process is an important positive feedback to Arctic sea ice loss, and timing of initiation is critical in how it affects sea ice thermodynamic and dynamic processes.

  1. Satellite altimetry in sea ice regions - detecting open water for estimating sea surface heights

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Felix L.; Dettmering, Denise; Bosch, Wolfgang

    2017-04-01

    The Greenland Sea and the Farm Strait are transporting sea ice from the central Arctic ocean southwards. They are covered by a dynamic changing sea ice layer with significant influences on the Earth climate system. Between the sea ice there exist various sized open water areas known as leads, straight lined open water areas, and polynyas exhibiting a circular shape. Identifying these leads by satellite altimetry enables the extraction of sea surface height information. Analyzing the radar echoes, also called waveforms, provides information on the surface backscatter characteristics. For example waveforms reflected by calm water have a very narrow and single-peaked shape. Waveforms reflected by sea ice show more variability due to diffuse scattering. Here we analyze altimeter waveforms from different conventional pulse-limited satellite altimeters to separate open water and sea ice waveforms. An unsupervised classification approach employing partitional clustering algorithms such as K-medoids and memory-based classification methods such as K-nearest neighbor is used. The classification is based on six parameters derived from the waveform's shape, for example the maximum power or the peak's width. The open-water detection is quantitatively compared to SAR images processed while accounting for sea ice motion. The classification results are used to derive information about the temporal evolution of sea ice extent and sea surface heights. They allow to provide evidence on climate change relevant influences as for example Arctic sea level rise due to enhanced melting rates of Greenland's glaciers and an increasing fresh water influx into the Arctic ocean. Additionally, the sea ice cover extent analyzed over a long-time period provides an important indicator for a globally changing climate system.

  2. Upper Ocean Evolution Across the Beaufort Sea Marginal Ice Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, C.; Rainville, L.; Gobat, J. I.; Perry, M. J.; Freitag, L. E.; Webster, S.

    2016-12-01

    The observed reduction of Arctic summertime sea ice extent and expansion of the marginal ice zone (MIZ) have profound impacts on the balance of processes controlling sea ice evolution, including the introduction of several positive feedback mechanisms that may act to accelerate melting. Examples of such feedbacks include increased upper ocean warming though absorption of solar radiation, elevated internal wave energy and mixing that may entrain heat stored in subsurface watermasses (e.g., the relatively warm Pacific Summer and Atlantic waters), and elevated surface wave energy that acts to deform and fracture sea ice. Spatial and temporal variability in ice properties and open water fraction impact these processes. To investigate how upper ocean structure varies with changing ice cover, how the balance of processes shift as a function of ice fraction and distance from open water, and how these processes impact sea ice evolution, a network of autonomous platforms sampled the atmosphere-ice-ocean system in the Beaufort, beginning in spring, well before the start of melt, and ending with the autumn freeze-up. Four long-endurance autonomous Seagliders occupied sections that extended from open water, through the marginal ice zone, deep into the pack during summer 2014 in the Beaufort Sea. Gliders penetrated up to 200 km into the ice pack, under complete ice cover for up to 10 consecutive days. Sections reveal strong fronts where cold, ice-covered waters meet waters that have been exposed to solar warming, and O(10 km) scale eddies near the ice edge. In the pack, Pacific Summer Water and a deep chlorophyll maximum form distinct layers at roughly 60 m and 80 m, respectively, which become increasingly diffuse late in the season as they progress through the MIZ and into open water. Stratification just above the Pacific Summer Water rapidly weakens near the ice edge and temperature variance increases, likely due to mixing or energetic vertical exchange associated with strong

  3. Sea ice inertial oscillations in the Arctic Basin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Gimbert

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available An original method to quantify the amplitude of inertial motion of oceanic and ice drifters, through the introduction of a non-dimensional parameter M defined from a spectral analysis, is presented. A strong seasonal dependence of the magnitude of sea ice inertial oscillations is revealed, in agreement with the corresponding annual cycles of sea ice extent, concentration, thickness, advection velocity, and deformation rates. The spatial pattern of the magnitude of the sea ice inertial oscillations over the Arctic Basin is also in agreement with the sea ice thickness and concentration patterns. This argues for a strong interaction between the magnitude of inertial motion on one hand, the dissipation of energy through mechanical processes, and the cohesiveness of the cover on the other hand. Finally, a significant multi-annual evolution towards greater magnitudes of inertial oscillations in recent years, in both summer and winter, is reported, thus concomitant with reduced sea ice thickness, concentration and spatial extent.

  4. Some Results on Sea Ice Rheology for the Seasonal Ice Zone, Obtained from the Deformation Field of Sea Ice Drift Pattern

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toyota, T.; Kimura, N.

    2017-12-01

    Sea ice rheology which relates sea ice stress to the large-scale deformation of the ice cover has been a big issue to numerical sea ice modelling. At present the treatment of internal stress within sea ice area is based mostly on the rheology formulated by Hibler (1979), where the whole sea ice area behaves like an isotropic and plastic matter under the ordinary stress with the yield curve given by an ellipse with an aspect ratio (e) of 2, irrespective of sea ice area and horizontal resolution of the model. However, this formulation was initially developed to reproduce the seasonal variation of the perennial ice in the Arctic Ocean. As for its applicability to the seasonal ice zones (SIZ), where various types of sea ice are present, it still needs validation from observational data. In this study, the validity of this rheology was examined for the Sea of Okhotsk ice, typical of the SIZ, based on the AMSR-derived ice drift pattern in comparison with the result obtained for the Beaufort Sea. To examine the dependence on a horizontal scale, the coastal radar data operated near the Hokkaido coast, Japan, were also used. Ice drift pattern was obtained by a maximum cross-correlation method with grid spacings of 37.5 km from the 89 GHz brightness temperature of AMSR-E for the entire Sea of Okhotsk and the Beaufort Sea and 1.3 km from the coastal radar for the near-shore Sea of Okhotsk. The validity of this rheology was investigated from a standpoint of work rate done by deformation field, following the theory of Rothrock (1975). In analysis, the relative rates of convergence were compared between theory and observation to check the shape of yield curve, and the strain ellipse at each grid cell was estimated to see the horizontal variation of deformation field. The result shows that the ellipse of e=1.7-2.0 as the yield curve represents the observed relative conversion rates well for all the ice areas. Since this result corresponds with the yield criterion by Tresca and

  5. Multi-decadal Arctic sea ice roughness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsamados, M.; Stroeve, J.; Kharbouche, S.; Muller, J. P., , Prof; Nolin, A. W.; Petty, A.; Haas, C.; Girard-Ardhuin, F.; Landy, J.

    2017-12-01

    The transformation of Arctic sea ice from mainly perennial, multi-year ice to a seasonal, first-year ice is believed to have been accompanied by a reduction of the roughness of the ice cover surface. This smoothening effect has been shown to (i) modify the momentum and heat transfer between the atmosphere and ocean, (ii) to alter the ice thickness distribution which in turn controls the snow and melt pond repartition over the ice cover, and (iii) to bias airborne and satellite remote sensing measurements that depend on the scattering and reflective characteristics over the sea ice surface topography. We will review existing and novel remote sensing methodologies proposed to estimate sea ice roughness, ranging from airborne LIDAR measurement (ie Operation IceBridge), to backscatter coefficients from scatterometers (ASCAT, QUICKSCAT), to multi angle maging spectroradiometer (MISR), and to laser (Icesat) and radar altimeters (Envisat, Cryosat, Altika, Sentinel-3). We will show that by comparing and cross-calibrating these different products we can offer a consistent multi-mission, multi-decadal view of the declining sea ice roughness. Implications for sea ice physics, climate and remote sensing will also be discussed.

  6. Ice–ocean coupled computations for sea-ice prediction to support ice navigation in Arctic sea routes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liyanarachchi Waruna Arampath De Silva

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available With the recent rapid decrease in summer sea ice in the Arctic Ocean extending the navigation period in the Arctic sea routes (ASR, the precise prediction of ice distribution is crucial for safe and efficient navigation in the Arctic Ocean. In general, however, most of the available numerical models have exhibited significant uncertainties in short-term and narrow-area predictions, especially in marginal ice zones such as the ASR. In this study, we predict short-term sea-ice conditions in the ASR by using a mesoscale eddy-resolving ice–ocean coupled model that explicitly treats ice floe collisions in marginal ice zones. First, numerical issues associated with collision rheology in the ice–ocean coupled model (ice–Princeton Ocean Model [POM] are discussed and resolved. A model for the whole of the Arctic Ocean with a coarser resolution (about 25 km was developed to investigate the performance of the ice–POM model by examining the reproducibility of seasonal and interannual sea-ice variability. It was found that this coarser resolution model can reproduce seasonal and interannual sea-ice variations compared to observations, but it cannot be used to predict variations over the short-term, such as one to two weeks. Therefore, second, high-resolution (about 2.5 km regional models were set up along the ASR to investigate the accuracy of short-term sea-ice predictions. High-resolution computations were able to reasonably reproduce the sea-ice extent compared to Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer–Earth Observing System satellite observations because of the improved expression of the ice–albedo feedback process and the ice–eddy interaction process.

  7. CICE, The Los Alamos Sea Ice Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    2017-05-12

    The Los Alamos sea ice model (CICE) is the result of an effort to develop a computationally efficient sea ice component for a fully coupled atmosphere–land–ocean–ice global climate model. It was originally designed to be compatible with the Parallel Ocean Program (POP), an ocean circulation model developed at Los Alamos National Laboratory for use on massively parallel computers. CICE has several interacting components: a vertical thermodynamic model that computes local growth rates of snow and ice due to vertical conductive, radiative and turbulent fluxes, along with snowfall; an elastic-viscous-plastic model of ice dynamics, which predicts the velocity field of the ice pack based on a model of the material strength of the ice; an incremental remapping transport model that describes horizontal advection of the areal concentration, ice and snow volume and other state variables; and a ridging parameterization that transfers ice among thickness categories based on energetic balances and rates of strain. It also includes a biogeochemical model that describes evolution of the ice ecosystem. The CICE sea ice model is used for climate research as one component of complex global earth system models that include atmosphere, land, ocean and biogeochemistry components. It is also used for operational sea ice forecasting in the polar regions and in numerical weather prediction models.

  8. On the Predictability of Sea Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanchard-Wrigglesworth, Edward

    We investigate the persistence and predictability of sea ice in numerical models and observations. We first use the 3rd generation Community Climate System Model (CCSM3) General Circulation Model (GCM) to investigate the inherent persistence of sea-ice area and thickness. We find that sea-ice area anomalies have a seasonal decay timescale, exhibiting an initial decorrelation similar to a first order auto-regressive (AR1, or red noise) process. Beyond this initial loss of memory, there is a re-emergence of memory at certain times of the year. There are two distinct modes of re-emergence in the model, one driven by the seasonal coupling of area and thickness anomalies in the summer, the other by the persistence of upper ocean temperature anomalies that originate from ice anomalies in the melt season and then influence ice anomalies in the growth season. Comparison with satellite observations where available indicate these processes appear in nature. We then use the 4th generation CCSM (CCSM4) to investigate the partition of Arctic sea-ice predictability into its initial-value and boundary forced components under present day forcing conditions. We find that initial-value predictability lasts for 1-2 years for sea-ice area, and 3-4 years for sea-ice volume. Forced predictability arises after just 4-5 years for both area and volume. Initial-value predictability of sea-ice area during the summer hinges on the coupling between thickness and area anomalies during that season. We find that the loss of initial-value predictability with time is not uniform --- there is a rapid loss of predictability of sea-ice volume during the late spring early summer associated with snow melt and albedo feedbacks. At the same time, loss of predictability is not uniform across different regions. Given the usefulness of ice thickness as a predictor of summer sea-ice area, we obtain a hindcast of September sea-ice area initializing the GCM on May 1with an estimate of observed sea-ice thickness

  9. Arctic tides from GPS on sea ice

    OpenAIRE

    Kildegaard Rose, Stine; Skourup, Henriette; Forsberg, René

    2012-01-01

    The presence of sea-ice in the Arctic Ocean plays a significant role in the Arctic climate. Sea ice dampens the ocean tide amplitude with the result that global tidal models which use only astronomical data perform less accurately in the polar regions. This study presents a kinematic processing of Global Positioning System (GPS) buoys placed on sea-ice at five different sites north of Greenland for the study of sea level height and tidal analysis to improve tidal models in the Central Arctic....

  10. The effects of additional black carbon on Arctic sea ice surface albedo: variation with sea ice type and snow cover

    OpenAIRE

    A. A. Marks; M. D. King

    2013-01-01

    Black carbon in sea ice will decrease sea ice surface albedo through increased absorption of incident solar radiation, exacerbating sea ice melting. Previous literature has reported different albedo responses to additions of black carbon in sea ice and has not considered how a snow cover may mitigate the effect of black carbon in sea ice. Sea ice is predominately snow covered. Visible light absorption and light scattering coefficients are calculated for a typical first year and multi-y...

  11. Sea ice biogeochemistry: a guide for modellers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Letizia Tedesco

    Full Text Available Sea ice is a fundamental component of the climate system and plays a key role in polar trophic food webs. Nonetheless sea ice biogeochemical dynamics at large temporal and spatial scales are still rarely described. Numerical models may potentially contribute integrating among sparse observations, but available models of sea ice biogeochemistry are still scarce, whether their relevance for properly describing the current and future state of the polar oceans has been recently addressed. A general methodology to develop a sea ice biogeochemical model is presented, deriving it from an existing validated model application by extension of generic pelagic biogeochemistry model parameterizations. The described methodology is flexible and considers different levels of ecosystem complexity and vertical representation, while adopting a strategy of coupling that ensures mass conservation. We show how to apply this methodology step by step by building an intermediate complexity model from a published realistic application and applying it to analyze theoretically a typical season of first-year sea ice in the Arctic, the one currently needing the most urgent understanding. The aim is to (1 introduce sea ice biogeochemistry and address its relevance to ocean modelers of polar regions, supporting them in adding a new sea ice component to their modelling framework for a more adequate representation of the sea ice-covered ocean ecosystem as a whole, and (2 extend our knowledge on the relevant controlling factors of sea ice algal production, showing that beyond the light and nutrient availability, the duration of the sea ice season may play a key-role shaping the algal production during the on going and upcoming projected changes.

  12. Do pelagic grazers benefit from sea ice? Insights from the Antarctic sea ice proxy IPSO25

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Katrin; Brown, Thomas A.; Belt, Simon T.; Ireland, Louise C.; Taylor, Kyle W. R.; Thorpe, Sally E.; Ward, Peter; Atkinson, Angus

    2018-04-01

    Sea ice affects primary production in polar regions in multiple ways. It can dampen water column productivity by reducing light or nutrient supply, provide a habitat for ice algae and condition the marginal ice zone (MIZ) for phytoplankton blooms on its seasonal retreat. The relative importance of three different carbon sources (sea ice derived, sea ice conditioned, non-sea-ice associated) for the polar food web is not well understood, partly due to the lack of methods that enable their unambiguous distinction. Here we analysed two highly branched isoprenoid (HBI) biomarkers to trace sea-ice-derived and sea-ice-conditioned carbon in Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) and relate their concentrations to the grazers' body reserves, growth and recruitment. During our sampling in January-February 2003, the proxy for sea ice diatoms (a di-unsaturated HBI termed IPSO25, δ13C = -12.5 ± 3.3 ‰) occurred in open waters of the western Scotia Sea, where seasonal ice retreat was slow. In suspended matter from surface waters, IPSO25 was present at a few stations close to the ice edge, but in krill the marker was widespread. Even at stations that had been ice-free for several weeks, IPSO25 was found in krill stomachs, suggesting that they gathered the ice-derived algae from below the upper mixed layer. Peak abundances of the proxy for MIZ diatoms (a tri-unsaturated HBI termed HBI III, δ13C = -42.2 ± 2.4 ‰) occurred in regions of fast sea ice retreat and persistent salinity-driven stratification in the eastern Scotia Sea. Krill sampled in the area defined by the ice edge bloom likewise contained high amounts of HBI III. As indicators for the grazer's performance we used the mass-length ratio, size of digestive gland and growth rate for krill, and recruitment for the biomass-dominant calanoid copepods Calanoides acutus and Calanus propinquus. These indices consistently point to blooms in the MIZ as an important feeding ground for pelagic grazers. Even though ice

  13. An Interdecadal Increase in the Spring Bering Sea Ice Cover in 2007

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renguang eWu

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The sea ice coverage of the Northern Hemisphere as a whole has been declining since 1979. On contrary, the March-April sea ice concentration in the Bering Sea experienced a prominent increase in year 2007. The present study documents the changes in surface air temperature, surface heat fluxes, sea surface temperature, and atmospheric circulation accompanying the above interdecadal change in the Bering Sea ice concentration. It is shown that an obvious decrease in surface air temperature, sea surface temperature, and surface net shortwave radiation occurred in concurrent with the sea ice increase. The surface air temperature decrease is associated with a large-scale circulation change, featuring a decrease in sea level pressure extending from the Pacific coast of Alaska to northwestern Europe and an increase in sea level pressure over the high-latitude Asia and the high-latitude North Atlantic Ocean. The enhancement of northwesterly winds over the Bering Sea led to a large decrease in surface air temperature there. The associated increase in upward turbulent heat flux cooled the sea surface temperature in the waters south of the ice covered region, favoring the southward expansion of ice extent. This, together with a positive ice-albedo feedback, amplified the sea ice anomalies after they were initiated, leading to the interdecadal increase in sea ice in the Bering Sea.

  14. Air-sea interactions in the marginal ice zone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seth Zippel

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The importance of waves in the Arctic Ocean has increased with the significant retreat of the seasonal sea-ice extent. Here, we use wind, wave, turbulence, and ice measurements to evaluate the response of the ocean surface to a given wind stress within the marginal ice zone, with a focus on the local wind input to waves and subsequent ocean surface turbulence. Observations are from the Beaufort Sea in the summer and early fall of 2014, with fractional ice cover of up to 50%. Observations showed strong damping and scattering of short waves, which, in turn, decreased the wind energy input to waves. Near-surface turbulent dissipation rates were also greatly reduced in partial ice cover. The reductions in waves and turbulence were balanced, suggesting that a wind-wave equilibrium is maintained in the marginal ice zone, though at levels much less than in open water. These results suggest that air-sea interactions are suppressed in the marginal ice zone relative to open ocean conditions at a given wind forcing, and this suppression may act as a feedback mechanism in expanding a persistent marginal ice zone throughout the Arctic.

  15. Evidence for radionuclide transport by sea ice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meese, D.A.; Tucker, W.B.; Gow, A.J.; Reimnitz, E.; Bischof, J.; Darby, D.

    1997-01-01

    Ice and ice-borne sediments were collected across the Arctic Basin during the Arctic Ocean Section, 1994 (AOS-94), a recent US/Canada trans-Arctic expedition. Sediments were analysed for 137 Cs, clay mineralogy and carbon. Concentrations of 137 Cs ranged from 5 to 73 Bq kg -1 in the ice-borne sediments. Concentrations of ice samples without sediment were all less than 1 Bq m -3 . The sediment sample with the highest 137 Cs concentration (73 Bq kg -1 ) was collected in the Beaufort Sea. This concentration was significantly higher than in bottom sediments collected in the same area, indicating an ice transport mechanism from an area with correspondingly higher concentrations. Recent results from the application of ice transport models and sediment analyses indicate that it is very likely that sediments are transported by ice, from the Siberian shelf areas to the Beaufort Sea

  16. Albedo of the ice-covered Weddell and Bellingshausen Sea

    OpenAIRE

    A. I. Weiss; J. C. King; T. A. Lachlan-Cope; R. S. Ladkin

    2011-01-01

    This study investigates the surface albedo of the sea ice areas adjacent to the Antarctic Peninsula during the austral summer. Aircraft measurements of the surface albedo which were conducted in the sea ice areas of the Weddell and Bellingshausen Sea show significant differences between these two regions. The averaged surface albedo varied between 0.13 and 0.81. The ice cover of the Bellingshausen Sea consisted mainly of first year ice and the sea surface showed an averaged sea ice albed...

  17. Incorporation of a physically based melt pond scheme into the sea ice component of a climate model

    OpenAIRE

    Flocco, Daniela; Feltham, Danny; Turner, Adrian K.

    2010-01-01

    The extent and thickness of the Arctic sea ice cover has decreased dramatically in the past few decades with minima in sea ice extent in September 2005 and 2007. These minima have not been predicted in the IPCC AR4 report, suggesting that the sea ice component of climate models should more realistically represent the processes controlling the sea ice mass balance. One of the processes poorly represented in sea ice models is the formation and evolution of melt ponds. Melt ponds accumulate on t...

  18. Modelling snow ice and superimposed ice on landfast sea ice in Kongsfjorden, Svalbard

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caixin Wang

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Snow ice and superimposed ice formation on landfast sea ice in a Svalbard fjord, Kongsfjorden, was investigated with a high-resolution thermodynamic snow and sea-ice model, applying meteorological weather station data as external forcing. The model shows that sea-ice formation occurs both at the ice bottom and at the snow/ice interface. Modelling results indicated that the total snow ice and superimposed ice, which formed at the snow/ice interface, was about 14 cm during the simulation period, accounting for about 15% of the total ice mass and 35% of the total ice growth. Introducing a time-dependent snow density improved the modelled results, and a time-dependent oceanic heat flux parameterization yielded reasonable ice growth at the ice bottom. Model results suggest that weather conditions, in particular air temperature and precipitation, as well as snow thermal properties and surface albedo are the most critical factors for the development of snow ice and superimposed ice in Kongsfjorden. While both warming air and higher precipitation led to increased snow ice and superimposed ice forming in Kongsfjorden in the model runs, the processes were more sensitive to precipitation than to air temperature.

  19. Variability and Anomalous Trends in the Global Sea Ice Cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comiso, Josefino C.

    2012-01-01

    The advent of satellite data came fortuitously at a time when the global sea ice cover has been changing rapidly and new techniques are needed to accurately assess the true state and characteristics of the global sea ice cover. The extent of the sea ice in the Northern Hemisphere has been declining by about -4% per decade for the period 1979 to 2011 but for the period from 1996 to 2010, the rate of decline became even more negative at -8% per decade, indicating an acceleration in the decline. More intriguing is the drastically declining perennial sea ice area, which is the ice that survives the summer melt and observed to be retreating at the rate of -14% per decade during the 1979 to 2012 period. Although a slight recovery occurred in the last three years from an abrupt decline in 2007, the perennial ice extent was almost as low as in 2007 in 2011. The multiyear ice, which is the thick component of the perennial ice and regarded as the mainstay of the Arctic sea ice cover is declining at an even higher rate of -19% per decade. The more rapid decline of the extent of this thicker ice type means that the volume of the ice is also declining making the survival of the Arctic ice in summer highly questionable. The slight recovery in 2008, 2009 and 2010 for the perennial ice in summer was likely associated with an apparent cycle in the time series with a period of about 8 years. Results of analysis of concurrent MODIS and AMSR-E data in summer also provide some evidence of more extensive summer melt and meltponding in 2007 and 2011 than in other years. Meanwhile, the Antarctic sea ice cover, as observed by the same set of satellite data, is showing an unexpected and counter intuitive increase of about 1 % per decade over the same period. Although a strong decline in ice extent is apparent in the Bellingshausen/ Amundsen Seas region, such decline is more than compensated by increases in the extent of the sea ice cover in the Ross Sea region. The results of analysis of

  20. Atmospheric forcing of sea ice leads in the Beaufort Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, B. J.; Hutchings, J.; Mahoney, A. R.; Shapiro, L. H.

    2016-12-01

    Leads in sea ice play an important role in the polar marine environment where they allow heat and moisture transfer between the oceans and atmosphere and act as travel pathways for both marine mammals and ships. Examining AVHRR thermal imagery of the Beaufort Sea, collected between 1994 and 2010, sea ice leads appear in repeating patterns and locations (Eicken et al 2005). The leads, resolved by AVHRR, are at least 250m wide (Mahoney et al 2012), thus the patterns described are for lead systems that extend up to hundreds of kilometers across the Beaufort Sea. We describe how these patterns are associated with the location of weather systems relative to the coastline. Mean sea level pressure and 10m wind fields from ECMWF ERA-Interim reanalysis are used to identify if particular lead patterns can be uniquely forecast based on the location of weather systems. Ice drift data from the NSIDC's Polar Pathfinder Daily 25km EASE-Grid Sea Ice Motion Vectors indicates the role shear along leads has on the motion of ice in the Beaufort Gyre. Lead formation is driven by 4 main factors: (i) coastal features such as promontories and islands influence the origin of leads by concentrating stresses within the ice pack; (ii) direction of the wind forcing on the ice pack determines the type of fracture, (iii) the location of the anticyclone (or cyclone) center determines the length of the fracture for certain patterns; and (iv) duration of weather conditions affects the width of the ice fracture zones. Movement of the ice pack on the leeward side of leads originating at promontories and islands increases, creating shear zones that control ice transport along the Alaska coast in winter. . Understanding how atmospheric conditions influence the large-scale motion of the ice pack is needed to design models that predict variability of the gyre and export of multi-year ice to lower latitudes.

  1. Sea ice thickness measurements collected during the LOMROG 2007 and 2009 expeditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skourup, Henriette; Forsberg, René; Hanson, Susanne

    and 2009 we have collected a unique data set of late summer sea ice thickness, freeboard height and snow depth from the high Arctic Ocean during the time of the annual minimum sea ice extent. The data were collected by on-the-ground drilling and EM measurements. Here we give a brief overview of the data......According to scientific measurements, the Arctic sea ice extent has declined dramatically over the past thirty years, with the most extreme decline seen in the summer melt season. Other observations indicate that the sea ice has become thinner and perennial ice less widely distributed...... collection, as well as the results including the freeboard-to-sea-ice thickness conversion factor, which is used when interpreting freeboard heights measured by remote sensing....

  2. Sunlight, Sea Ice, and the Ice Albedo Feedback in a Changing Arctic Sea Ice Cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-30

    fraction product and the remotely sensed albedo product in the context of understanding the surface radiation budget. Particular attention is paid to...Stamnes, Chapter 2 The Polar Environment: Sun, Clouds, and Ice, in Ocean Colour Remote Sensing in Polar Seas, p 5-25, in press. Istomina, L, G

  3. Sunlight, Sea Ice, and the Ice Albedo Feedback in a Changing Artic Sea Ice Cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-11-30

    the remotely sensed albedo product in the context of understanding the surface radiation budget. Particular attention is paid to the infrequent...Chapter 2 The Polar Environment: Sun, Clouds, and Ice, in Ocean Colour Remote Sensing in Polar Seas, p 5-25, in press. Istomina, L, G. Heygster, M

  4. Autonomous Ice Mass Balance Buoys for Seasonal Sea Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitlock, J. D.; Planck, C.; Perovich, D. K.; Parno, J. T.; Elder, B. C.; Richter-Menge, J.; Polashenski, C. M.

    2017-12-01

    The ice mass-balance represents the integration of all surface and ocean heat fluxes and attributing the impact of these forcing fluxes on the ice cover can be accomplished by increasing temporal and spatial measurements. Mass balance information can be used to understand the ongoing changes in the Arctic sea ice cover and to improve predictions of future ice conditions. Thinner seasonal ice in the Arctic necessitates the deployment of Autonomous Ice Mass Balance buoys (IMB's) capable of long-term, in situ data collection in both ice and open ocean. Seasonal IMB's (SIMB's) are free floating IMB's that allow data collection in thick ice, thin ice, during times of transition, and even open water. The newest generation of SIMB aims to increase the number of reliable IMB's in the Arctic by leveraging inexpensive commercial-grade instrumentation when combined with specially developed monitoring hardware. Monitoring tasks are handled by a custom, expandable data logger that provides low-cost flexibility for integrating a large range of instrumentation. The SIMB features ultrasonic sensors for direct measurement of both snow depth and ice thickness and a digital temperature chain (DTC) for temperature measurements every 2cm through both snow and ice. Air temperature and pressure, along with GPS data complete the Arctic picture. Additionally, the new SIMB is more compact to maximize deployment opportunities from multiple types of platforms.

  5. Arctic sea-ice ridges—Safe heavens for sea-ice fauna during periods of extreme ice melt?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gradinger, Rolf; Bluhm, Bodil; Iken, Katrin

    2010-01-01

    The abundances and distribution of metazoan within-ice meiofauna (13 stations) and under-ice fauna (12 stations) were investigated in level sea ice and sea-ice ridges in the Chukchi/Beaufort Seas and Canada Basin in June/July 2005 using a combination of ice coring and SCUBA diving. Ice meiofauna abundance was estimated based on live counts in the bottom 30 cm of level sea ice based on triplicate ice core sampling at each location, and in individual ice chunks from ridges at four locations. Under-ice amphipods were counted in situ in replicate ( N=24-65 per station) 0.25 m 2 quadrats using SCUBA to a maximum water depth of 12 m. In level sea ice, the most abundant ice meiofauna groups were Turbellaria (46%), Nematoda (35%), and Harpacticoida (19%), with overall low abundances per station that ranged from 0.0 to 10.9 ind l -1 (median 0.8 ind l -1). In level ice, low ice algal pigment concentrations (Turbellaria, Nematoda and Harpacticoida also were observed in pressure ridges (0-200 ind l -1, median 40 ind l -1), although values were highly variable and only medians of Turbellaria were significantly higher in ridge ice than in level ice. Median abundances of under-ice amphipods at all ice types (level ice, various ice ridge structures) ranged from 8 to 114 ind m -2 per station and mainly consisted of Apherusa glacialis (87%), Onisimus spp. (7%) and Gammarus wilkitzkii (6%). Highest amphipod abundances were observed in pressure ridges at depths >3 m where abundances were up to 42-fold higher compared with level ice. We propose that the summer ice melt impacted meiofauna and under-ice amphipod abundance and distribution through (a) flushing, and (b) enhanced salinity stress at thinner level sea ice (less than 3 m thickness). We further suggest that pressure ridges, which extend into deeper, high-salinity water, become accumulation regions for ice meiofauna and under-ice amphipods in summer. Pressure ridges thus might be crucial for faunal survival during periods of

  6. Computing and Representing Sea Ice Trends: Toward a Community Consensus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wohlleben, T.; Tivy, A.; Stroeve, J.; Meier, Walter N.; Fetterer, F.; Wang, J.; Assel, R.

    2013-01-01

    Estimates of the recent decline in Arctic Ocean summer sea ice extent can vary due to differences in sea ice data sources, in the number of years used to compute the trend, and in the start and end years used in the trend computation. Compounding such differences, estimates of the relative decline in sea ice cover (given in percent change per decade) can further vary due to the choice of reference value (the initial point of the trend line, a climatological baseline, etc.). Further adding to the confusion, very often when relative trends are reported in research papers, the reference values used are not specified or made clear. This can lead to confusion when trend studies are cited in the press and public reports.

  7. Arctic and Southern Ocean Sea Ice Concentrations

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Monthly sea ice concentration for Arctic (1901 to 1995) and Southern oceans (1973 to 1990) were digitized on a standard 1-degree grid (cylindrical projection) to...

  8. SENTINEL-1 RESULTS: SEA ICE OPERATIONAL MONITORING

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Toudal Pedersen, Leif; Saldo, Roberto; Fenger-Nielsen, Rasmus

    2015-01-01

    In the present paper we demonstrate the capabilities of the Sentinel-1 SAR data for operational sea-ice and iceberg monitoring. Most of the examples are drawn from the Copernicus Marine Environmental Monitoring Service (CMEMS) production.......In the present paper we demonstrate the capabilities of the Sentinel-1 SAR data for operational sea-ice and iceberg monitoring. Most of the examples are drawn from the Copernicus Marine Environmental Monitoring Service (CMEMS) production....

  9. Arctic tides from GPS on sea ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kildegaard Rose, Stine; Skourup, Henriette; Forsberg, René

    The presence of sea-ice in the Arctic Ocean plays a significant role in the Arctic climate. Sea ice dampens the ocean tide amplitude with the result that global tidal models which use only astronomical data perform less accurately in the polar regions. This study presents a kinematic processing o......-gauges and altimetry data. Furthermore, we prove that the geodetic reference ellipsoid WGS84, can be interpolated to the tidal defined zero level by applying geophysical corrections to the GPS data....

  10. Fragmentation and melting of the seasonal sea ice cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feltham, D. L.; Bateson, A.; Schroeder, D.; Ridley, J. K.; Aksenov, Y.

    2017-12-01

    Recent years have seen a rapid reduction in the summer extent of Arctic sea ice. This trend has implications for navigation, oil exploration, wildlife, and local communities. Furthermore the Arctic sea ice cover impacts the exchange of heat and momentum between the ocean and atmosphere with significant teleconnections across the climate system, particularly mid to low latitudes in the Northern Hemisphere. The treatment of melting and break-up processes of the seasonal sea ice cover within climate models is currently limited. In particular floes are assumed to have a uniform size which does not evolve with time. Observations suggest however that floe sizes can be modelled as truncated power law distributions, with different exponents for smaller and larger floes. This study aims to examine factors controlling the floe size distribution in the seasonal and marginal ice zone. This includes lateral melting, wave induced break-up of floes, and the feedback between floe size and the mixed ocean layer. These results are then used to quantify the proximate mechanisms of seasonal sea ice reduction in a sea ice—ocean mixed layer model. Observations are used to assess and calibrate the model. The impacts of introducing these processes to the model will be discussed and the preliminary results of sensitivity and feedback studies will also be presented.

  11. The Hamburg sea-ice model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stoessel, A.; Owens, W.B.

    1992-10-01

    The general purpose of the model is to simulate sea ice dynamically as well as thermodynamically. Pure sea-ice models are generally highly dependent on the specified atmospheric and oceanic forcing, especially on the winds and the vertical oceanic heat flux. In order to reduce these dependencies, the sea-ice [SI] model was extended to optionally include a prognostic oceanic mixed layer [OML], a diagnostic atmospheric surface layer [ASL] and/or a diagnostic atmospheric boundary layer [ABL], thus shifting the forcing levels further away from the surface (i.e. from the sea ice) and simultaneously providing a modification of the forcing considering boundary-layer adjustments to the instantaneous sea-ice conditions given by the SI model. A further major extension of the model is the (optional) employment of a prognostic snow layer. The special application characterising the present code was sea-ice simulation in the Southern Ocean, employing a spherical, circumpolar grid with a resolution of 2.5 in latitude and 5 in longitude, extending from 50 S to 80 S and using a daily time step. (orig.)

  12. How reversible is sea ice loss?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. K. Ridley

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available It is well accepted that increasing atmospheric CO2 results in global warming, leading to a decline in polar sea ice area. Here, the specific question of whether there is a tipping point in the sea ice cover is investigated. The global climate model HadCM3 is used to map the trajectory of sea ice area under idealised scenarios. The atmospheric CO2 is first ramped up to four times pre-industrial levels (4 × CO2, then ramped down to pre-industrial levels. We also examine the impact of stabilising climate at 4 × CO2 prior to ramping CO2 down to pre-industrial levels. Against global mean temperature, Arctic sea ice area is reversible, while the Antarctic sea ice shows some asymmetric behaviour – its rate of change slower, with falling temperatures, than its rate of change with rising temperatures. However, we show that the asymmetric behaviour is driven by hemispherical differences in temperature change between transient and stabilisation periods. We find no irreversible behaviour in the sea ice cover.

  13. Tropospheric characteristics over sea ice during N-ICE2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kayser, Markus; Maturilli, Marion; Graham, Robert; Hudson, Stephen; Cohen, Lana; Rinke, Annette; Kim, Joo-Hong; Park, Sang-Jong; Moon, Woosok; Granskog, Mats

    2017-04-01

    Over recent years, the Arctic Ocean region has shifted towards a younger and thinner sea-ice regime. The Norwegian young sea ICE (N-ICE2015) expedition was designed to investigate the atmosphere-snow-ice-ocean interactions in this new ice regime north of Svalbard. Here we analyze upper-air measurements made by radiosondes launched twice daily together with surface meteorology observations during N-ICE2015 from January to June 2015. We study the multiple cyclonic events observed during N-ICE2015 with respect to changes in the vertical thermodynamic structure, sudden increases in moisture content and temperature, temperature inversions and boundary layer dynamics. The influence of synoptic cyclones is strongest under polar night conditions, when radiative cooling is most effective and the moisture content is low. We find that transitions between the radiatively clear and opaque state are the largest drivers of changes to temperature inversion and stability characteristics in the boundary layer during winter. In spring radiative fluxes warm the surface leading to lifted temperature inversions and a statically unstable boundary layer. The unique N-ICE2015 dataset is used for case studies investigating changes in the vertical structure of the atmosphere under varying synoptic conditions. The goal is to deepen our understanding of synoptic interactions within the Arctic climate system, to improve model performance, as well as to identify gaps in instrumentation, which precludes further investigations.

  14. Canadian Ice Service Arctic Regional Sea Ice Charts in SIGRID-3 Format

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Canadian Ice Service (CIS) produces digital Arctic regional sea ice charts for marine navigation, climate research, and input to the Global Digital Sea Ice Data...

  15. Influence of sea ice on Arctic coasts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnhart, K. R.; Kay, J. E.; Overeem, I.; Anderson, R. S.

    2017-12-01

    Coasts form the dynamic interface between the terrestrial and oceanic systems. In the Arctic, and in much of the world, the coast is a focal point for population, infrastructure, biodiversity, and ecosystem services. A key difference between Arctic and temperate coasts is the presence of sea ice. Changes in sea ice cover can influence the coast because (1) the length of the sea ice-free season controls the time over which nearshore water can interact with the land, and (2) the location of the sea ice edge controls the fetch over which storm winds can interact with open ocean water, which in turn governs nearshore water level and wave field. We first focus on the interaction of sea ice and ice-rich coasts. We combine satellite records of sea ice with a model for wind-driven storm surge and waves to estimate how changes in the sea ice-free season have impacted the nearshore hydrodynamic environment along Alaska's Beaufort Sea Coast for the period 1979-2012. This region has experienced some of the greatest changes in both sea ice cover and coastal erosion rates in the Arctic: the median length of the open-water season has expanded by 90 percent, while coastal erosion rates have more than doubled from 8.7 to 19 m yr-1. At Drew Point, NW winds increase shoreline water levels that control the incision of a submarine notch, the rate-limiting step of coastal retreat. The maximum water-level setup at Drew Point has increased consistently with increasing fetch. We extend our analysis to the entire Arctic using both satellite-based observations and global coupled climate model output from the Community Earth System Model Large Ensemble (CESM-LE) project. This 30-member ensemble employs a 1-degree version of the CESM-CAM5 historical forcing for the period 1920-2005, and RCP 8.5 forcing from 2005-2100. A control model run with constant pre-industrial (1850) forcing characterizes internal variability in a constant climate. Finally, we compare observations and model results to

  16. Mass loss of the Greenland Ice Sheet since the Little Ice Age, implications on sea level

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjeldsen, K. K.; Bjork, A. A.; Khan, Shfaqat Abbas

    The impact of mass loss from the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) on 20th Century sea level rise (SLR) has long been subject to intense discussions. While globally distributed tide gauges suggest a global mean SLR of 15-20 cm, quantifying the separate components is of great concern - in particular...... for modeling sea level projections into the 21st Century. Estimates of the past GrIS contribution to SLR have been derived using a number of different approaches, e.g. surface mass balance (SMB) calculations combined with estimates of ice discharge found by in correlating SMB anomalies and calving rates. Here......-2010, NASA's Ice, Cloud, and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) from 2003-2009, and NASA's Land, Vegetation, and Ice Sensor (LVIS) from 2010, to estimate mass loss throughout the 20th and early 21st Century. We present mass balance estimates of the GrIS since retreat commence from the maximum extent...

  17. Processes driving sea ice variability in the Bering Sea in an eddying ocean/sea ice model: Mean seasonal cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Linghan; McClean, Julie L.; Miller, Arthur J.; Eisenman, Ian; Hendershott, Myrl C.; Papadopoulos, Caroline A.

    2014-12-01

    The seasonal cycle of sea ice variability in the Bering Sea, together with the thermodynamic and dynamic processes that control it, are examined in a fine resolution (1/10°) global coupled ocean/sea-ice model configured in the Community Earth System Model (CESM) framework. The ocean/sea-ice model consists of the Los Alamos National Laboratory Parallel Ocean Program (POP) and the Los Alamos Sea Ice Model (CICE). The model was forced with time-varying reanalysis atmospheric forcing for the time period 1970-1989. This study focuses on the time period 1980-1989. The simulated seasonal-mean fields of sea ice concentration strongly resemble satellite-derived observations, as quantified by root-mean-square errors and pattern correlation coefficients. The sea ice energy budget reveals that the seasonal thermodynamic ice volume changes are dominated by the surface energy flux between the atmosphere and the ice in the northern region and by heat flux from the ocean to the ice along the southern ice edge, especially on the western side. The sea ice force balance analysis shows that sea ice motion is largely associated with wind stress. The force due to divergence of the internal ice stress tensor is large near the land boundaries in the north, and it is small in the central and southern ice-covered region. During winter, which dominates the annual mean, it is found that the simulated sea ice was mainly formed in the northern Bering Sea, with the maximum ice growth rate occurring along the coast due to cold air from northerly winds and ice motion away from the coast. South of St Lawrence Island, winds drive the model sea ice southwestward from the north to the southwestern part of the ice-covered region. Along the ice edge in the western Bering Sea, model sea ice is melted by warm ocean water, which is carried by the simulated Bering Slope Current flowing to the northwest, resulting in the S-shaped asymmetric ice edge. In spring and fall, similar thermodynamic and dynamic

  18. Structural Uncertainty in Antarctic sea ice simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, D. P.

    2016-12-01

    The inability of the vast majority of historical climate model simulations to reproduce the observed increase in Antarctic sea ice has motivated many studies about the quality of the observational record, the role of natural variability versus forced changes, and the possibility of missing or inadequate forcings in the models (such as freshwater discharge from thinning ice shelves or an inadequate magnitude of stratospheric ozone depletion). In this presentation I will highlight another source of uncertainty that has received comparatively little attention: Structural uncertainty, that is, the systematic uncertainty in simulated sea ice trends that arises from model physics and mean-state biases. Using two large ensembles of experiments from the Community Earth System Model (CESM), I will show that the model is predisposed towards producing negative Antarctic sea ice trends during 1979-present, and that this outcome is not simply because the model's decadal variability is out-of-synch with that in nature. In the "Tropical Pacific Pacemaker" ensemble, in which observed tropical Pacific SST anomalies are prescribed, the model produces very realistic atmospheric circulation trends over the Southern Ocean, yet the sea ice trend is negative in every ensemble member. However, if the ensemble-mean trend (commonly interpreted as the forced response) is removed, some ensemble members show a sea ice increase that is very similar to the observed. While this results does confirm the important role of natural variability, it also suggests a strong bias in the forced response. I will discuss the reasons for this systematic bias and explore possible remedies. This an important problem to solve because projections of 21st -Century changes in the Antarctic climate system (including ice sheet surface mass balance changes and related changes in the sea level budget) have a strong dependence on the mean state of and changes in the Antarctic sea ice cover. This problem is not unique to

  19. Biogeochemical Cycling and Sea Ice Dynamics in the Bering Sea across the Mid-Pleistocene Transition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Detlef, H.; Sosdian, S. M.; Belt, S. T.; Smik, L.; Lear, C. H.; Hall, I. R.; Kender, S.; Leng, M. J.; Husum, K.; Cabedo-Sanz, P.

    2017-12-01

    Today the Bering Sea is characterized by high primary productivity (PP) along the eastern shelf, maintained by CO2 and nutrient rich upwelled deep waters and nutrient release during spring sea ice melting. As such, low oxygen concentrations are pervasive in mid-depth waters. Changes in ventilation and export productivity in the past have been shown to impact this oxygen minimum zone. On glacial/interglacial (G/IG) timescales sea ice formation plays a pivotal role on intermediate water ventilation with evidence pointing to the formation of North Pacific Intermediate Water (NPIW) in the Bering Sea during Pleistocene glacial intervals. In addition, sea ice plays a significant role in both long- and short-term climate change via associated feedback mechanisms. Thus, records of sea ice dynamics and biogeochemical cycling in the Bering Sea are necessary to fully understand the interaction between PP, circulation patterns, and past G/IG climates with potential implications for the North Pacific carbon cycle. Here we use a multi-proxy approach to study sea ice dynamics and bottom water oxygenation, across three intervals prior to, across, and after the Mid-Pleistocene Transition (MPT, 1.2-0.7 Ma) from International Ocean Discovery Program Site U1343. The MPT, most likely driven by internal climate mechanisms, is ideal to study changes in sea ice dynamics and sedimentary redox conditions on orbital timescales and to investigate the implications for associated feedback mechanisms. The sea ice record, based on various biomarkers, including IP25, shows substantial increase in sea ice extent across the MPT and the occurrence of a late-glacial/deglacial sea ice spike, with consequences for glacial NPIW formation and land glacier retreat via the temperature-precipitation feedback. U/Mn of foraminiferal authigenic coatings, a novel proxy for bottom water oxygenation, also shows distinct variability on G/IG timescales across the MPT, most likely a result of PP and water mass

  20. Sea-ice dynamics strongly promote Snowball Earth initiation and destabilize tropical sea-ice margins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Voigt

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The Snowball Earth bifurcation, or runaway ice-albedo feedback, is defined for particular boundary conditions by a critical CO2 and a critical sea-ice cover (SI, both of which are essential for evaluating hypotheses related to Neoproterozoic glaciations. Previous work has shown that the Snowball Earth bifurcation, denoted as (CO2, SI*, differs greatly among climate models. Here, we study the effect of bare sea-ice albedo, sea-ice dynamics and ocean heat transport on (CO2, SI* in the atmosphere–ocean general circulation model ECHAM5/MPI-OM with Marinoan (~ 635 Ma continents and solar insolation (94% of modern. In its standard setup, ECHAM5/MPI-OM initiates a~Snowball Earth much more easily than other climate models at (CO2, SI* ≈ (500 ppm, 55%. Replacing the model's standard bare sea-ice albedo of 0.75 by a much lower value of 0.45, we find (CO2, SI* ≈ (204 ppm, 70%. This is consistent with previous work and results from net evaporation and local melting near the sea-ice margin. When we additionally disable sea-ice dynamics, we find that the Snowball Earth bifurcation can be pushed even closer to the equator and occurs at a hundred times lower CO2: (CO2, SI* ≈ (2 ppm, 85%. Therefore, the simulation of sea-ice dynamics in ECHAM5/MPI-OM is a dominant determinant of its high critical CO2 for Snowball initiation relative to other models. Ocean heat transport has no effect on the critical sea-ice cover and only slightly decreases the critical CO2. For disabled sea-ice dynamics, the state with 85% sea-ice cover is stabilized by the Jormungand mechanism and shares characteristics with the Jormungand climate states. However, there is no indication of the Jormungand bifurcation and hysteresis in ECHAM5/MPI-OM. The state with 85% sea-ice cover therefore is a soft Snowball state rather than a true

  1. The Role of Sea Ice in 2 x CO2 Climate Model Sensitivity. Part 2; Hemispheric Dependencies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rind, D.; Healy, R.; Parkinson, C.; Martinson, D.

    1997-01-01

    How sensitive are doubled CO2 simulations to GCM control-run sea ice thickness and extent? This issue is examined in a series of 10 control-run simulations with different sea ice and corresponding doubled CO2 simulations. Results show that with increased control-run sea ice coverage in the Southern Hemisphere, temperature sensitivity with climate change is enhanced, while there is little effect on temperature sensitivity of (reasonable) variations in control-run sea ice thickness. In the Northern Hemisphere the situation is reversed: sea ice thickness is the key parameter, while (reasonable) variations in control-run sea ice coverage are of less importance. In both cases, the quantity of sea ice that can be removed in the warmer climate is the determining factor. Overall, the Southern Hemisphere sea ice coverage change had a larger impact on global temperature, because Northern Hemisphere sea ice was sufficiently thick to limit its response to doubled CO2, and sea ice changes generally occurred at higher latitudes, reducing the sea ice-albedo feedback. In both these experiments and earlier ones in which sea ice was not allowed to change, the model displayed a sensitivity of -0.02 C global warming per percent change in Southern Hemisphere sea ice coverage.

  2. Carbon Dioxide Transfer Through Sea Ice: Modelling Flux in Brine Channels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, L.; Mitchelson-Jacob, G.; Hardman-Mountford, N.

    2010-12-01

    For many years sea ice was thought to act as a barrier to the flux of CO2 between the ocean and atmosphere. However, laboratory-based and in-situ observations suggest that while sea ice may in some circumstances reduce or prevent transfer (e.g. in regions of thick, superimposed multi-year ice), it may also be highly permeable (e.g. thin, first year ice) with some studies observing significant fluxes of CO2. Sea ice covered regions have been observed to act both as a sink and a source of atmospheric CO2 with the permeability of sea ice and direction of flux related to sea ice temperature and the presence of brine channels in the ice, as well as seasonal processes such as whether the ice is freezing or thawing. Brine channels concentrate dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) as well as salinity and as these dense waters descend through both the sea ice and the surface ocean waters, they create a sink for CO2. Calcium carbonate (ikaite) precipitation in the sea ice is thought to enhance this process. Micro-organisms present within the sea ice will also contribute to the CO2 flux dynamics. Recent evidence of decreasing sea ice extent and the associated change from a multi-year ice to first-year ice dominated system suggest the potential for increased CO2 flux through regions of thinner, more porous sea ice. A full understanding of the processes and feedbacks controlling the flux in these regions is needed to determine their possible contribution to global CO2 levels in a future warming climate scenario. Despite the significance of these regions, the air-sea CO2 flux in sea ice covered regions is not currently included in global climate models. Incorporating this carbon flux system into Earth System models requires the development of a well-parameterised sea ice-air flux model. In our work we use the Los Alamos sea ice model, CICE, with a modification to incorporate the movement of CO2 through brine channels including the addition of DIC processes and ice algae production to

  3. Winter Arctic sea ice growth: current variability and projections for the coming decades

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petty, A.; Boisvert, L.; Webster, M.; Holland, M. M.; Bailey, D. A.; Kurtz, N. T.; Markus, T.

    2017-12-01

    Arctic sea ice increases in both extent and thickness during the cold winter months ( October to May). Winter sea ice growth is an important factor controlling ocean ventilation and winter water/deep water formation, as well as determining the state and vulnerability of the sea ice pack before the melt season begins. Key questions for the Arctic community thus include: (i) what is the current magnitude and variability of winter Arctic sea ice growth and (ii) how might this change in a warming Arctic climate? To address (i), our current best guess of pan-Arctic sea ice thickness, and thus volume, comes from satellite altimetry observations, e.g. from ESA's CryoSat-2 satellite. A significant source of uncertainty in these data come from poor knowledge of the overlying snow depth. Here we present new estimates of winter sea ice thickness from CryoSat-2 using snow depths from a simple snow model forced by reanalyses and satellite-derived ice drift estimates, combined with snow depth estimates from NASA's Operation IceBridge. To address (ii), we use data from the Community Earth System Model's Large Ensemble Project, to explore sea ice volume and growth variability, and how this variability might change over the coming decades. We compare and contrast the model simulations to observations and the PIOMAS ice-ocean model (over recent years/decades). The combination of model and observational analysis provide novel insight into Arctic sea ice volume variability.

  4. Ice Draft and Ice Velocity Data in the Beaufort Sea, 1990-2003, Version 1

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set provides measurement of sea ice draft (m) and the movement of sea ice (cm/s) over the continental shelf of the Eastern Beaufort Sea. The data set spans...

  5. Sea Ice Summer Camp: Bringing Together Arctic Sea Ice Modelers and Observers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perovich, D. K.; Holland, M. M.

    2016-12-01

    The Arctic sea ice has undergone dramatic change and numerical models project this to continue for the foreseeable future. Understanding the mechanisms behind sea ice loss and its consequences for the larger Arctic and global systems is of critical importance if we are to anticipate and plan for the future. One impediment to progress is a disconnect between the observational and modeling communities. A sea ice summer camp was held in Barrow Alaska from 26 May to 1 June 2016 to overcome this impediment and better integrate the sea ice community. The 25 participants were a mix of modelers and observers from 13 different institutions at career stages from graduate student to senior scientist. The summer camp provided an accelerated program on sea ice observations and models and also fostered future collaborative interdisciplinary activities. Each morning was spent in the classroom with a daily lecture on an aspect of modeling or remote sensing followed by practical exercises. Topics included using models to assess sensitivity, to test hypotheses and to explore sources of uncertainty in future Arctic sea ice loss. The afternoons were spent on the ice making observations. There were four observational activities; albedo observations, ice thickness measurements, ice coring and physical properties, and ice morphology surveys. The last field day consisted of a grand challenge where the group formulated a hypothesis, developed an observational and modeling strategy to test the hypothesis, and then integrated the observations and model results. The impacts of changing sea ice are being felt today in Barrow Alaska. We opened a dialog with Barrow community members to further understand these changes. This included an evening discussion with two Barrow sea ice experts and a community presentation of our work in a public lecture at the Inupiat Heritage Center.

  6. Modulation of Sea Ice Melt Onset and Retreat in the Laptev Sea by the Timing of Snow Retreat in the West Siberian Plain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crawford, A. D.; Stroeve, J.; Serreze, M. C.; Rajagopalan, B.; Horvath, S.

    2017-12-01

    As much of the Arctic Ocean transitions to ice-free conditions in summer, efforts have increased to improve seasonal forecasts of not only sea ice extent, but also the timing of melt onset and retreat. This research investigates the potential of regional terrestrial snow retreat in spring as a predictor for subsequent sea ice melt onset and retreat in Arctic seas. One pathway involves earlier snow retreat enhancing atmospheric moisture content, which increases downwelling longwave radiation over sea ice cover downstream. Another pathway involves manipulation of jet stream behavior, which may affect the sea ice pack via both dynamic and thermodynamic processes. Although several possible connections between snow and sea ice regions are identified using a mutual information criterion, the physical mechanisms linking snow retreat and sea ice phenology are most clearly exemplified by variability of snow retreat in the West Siberian Plain impacting melt onset and sea ice retreat in the Laptev Sea. The detrended time series of snow retreat in the West Siberian Plain explains 26% of the detrended variance in Laptev Sea melt onset (29% for sea ice retreat). With modest predictive skill and an average time lag of 53 (88) days between snow retreat and sea ice melt onset (retreat), West Siberian Plains snow retreat is useful for refining seasonal sea ice predictions in the Laptev Sea.

  7. Determination of a Critical Sea Ice Thickness Threshold for the Central Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ford, V.; Frauenfeld, O. W.; Nowotarski, C. J.

    2017-12-01

    While sea ice extent is readily measurable from satellite observations and can be used to assess the overall survivability of the Arctic sea ice pack, determining the spatial variability of sea ice thickness remains a challenge. Turbulent and conductive heat fluxes are extremely sensitive to ice thickness but are dominated by the sensible heat flux, with energy exchange expected to increase with thinner ice cover. Fluxes over open water are strongest and have the greatest influence on the atmosphere, while fluxes over thick sea ice are minimal as heat conduction from the ocean through thick ice cannot reach the atmosphere. We know that turbulent energy fluxes are strongest over open ocean, but is there a "critical thickness of ice" where fluxes are considered non-negligible? Through polar-optimized Weather Research and Forecasting model simulations, this study assesses how the wintertime Arctic surface boundary layer, via sensible heat flux exchange and surface air temperature, responds to sea ice thinning. The region immediately north of Franz Josef Land is characterized by a thickness gradient where sea ice transitions from the thickest multi-year ice to the very thin marginal ice seas. This provides an ideal location to simulate how the diminishing Arctic sea ice interacts with a warming atmosphere. Scenarios include both fixed sea surface temperature domains for idealized thickness variability, and fixed ice fields to detect changes in the ocean-ice-atmosphere energy exchange. Results indicate that a critical thickness threshold exists below 1 meter. The threshold is between 0.4-1 meters thinner than the critical thickness for melt season survival - the difference between first year and multi-year ice. Turbulent heat fluxes and surface air temperature increase as sea ice thickness transitions from perennial ice to seasonal ice. While models predict a sea ice free Arctic at the end of the warm season in future decades, sea ice will continue to transform

  8. Under Sea Ice phytoplankton bloom detection and contamination in Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, C.; Zeng, T.; Xu, H.

    2017-12-01

    Previous researches reported compelling sea ice phytoplankton bloom in Arctic, while seldom reports studied about Antarctic. Here, lab experiment showed sea ice increased the visible light albedo of the water leaving radiance. Even a new formed sea ice of 10cm thickness increased water leaving radiance up to 4 times of its original bare water. Given that phytoplankton preferred growing and accumulating under the sea ice with thickness of 10cm-1m, our results showed that the changing rate of OC4 estimated [Chl-a] varied from 0.01-0.5mg/m3 to 0.2-0.3mg/m3, if the water covered by 10cm sea ice. Going further, varying thickness of sea ice modulated the changing rate of estimating [Chl-a] non-linearly, thus current routine OC4 model cannot estimate under sea ice [Chl-a] appropriately. Besides, marginal sea ice zone has a large amount of mixture regions containing sea ice, water and snow, where is favorable for phytoplankton. We applied 6S model to estimate the sea ice/snow contamination on sub-pixel water leaving radiance of 4.25km spatial resolution ocean color products. Results showed that sea ice/snow scale effectiveness overestimated [Chl-a] concentration based on routine band ratio OC4 model, which contamination increased with the rising fraction of sea ice/snow within one pixel. Finally, we analyzed the under sea ice bloom in Antarctica based on the [Chl-a] concentration trends during 21 days after sea ice retreating. Regardless of those overestimation caused by sea ice/snow sub scale contamination, we still did not see significant under sea ice blooms in Antarctica in 2012-2017 compared with Arctic. This research found that Southern Ocean is not favorable for under sea ice blooms and the phytoplankton bloom preferred to occur in at least 3 weeks after sea ice retreating.

  9. Modelling the future of the arctic sea ice cover

    OpenAIRE

    Myklebust, Erik Bryhn

    2017-01-01

    Record lows in sea ice cover have recently sparked new interest in the small ice cap instability. The change in albedo when sea ice becomes open water introduces a nonlinearity called the ice-albedo feedback. Forcing a joint energy- balance and sea ice model can lead to unstable ice caps in certain parameter regimes. When the ice caps are unstable, a small perturbation will initiate a tipping point in the sea ice cover. For tipping points in general, a number of studies have pointed out that ...

  10. Variability of sea salts in ice and firn cores from Fimbul Ice Shelf, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paulina Vega, Carmen; Isaksson, Elisabeth; Schlosser, Elisabeth; Divine, Dmitry; Martma, Tõnu; Mulvaney, Robert; Eichler, Anja; Schwikowski-Gigar, Margit

    2018-05-01

    Major ions were analysed in firn and ice cores located at Fimbul Ice Shelf (FIS), Dronning Maud Land - DML, Antarctica. FIS is the largest ice shelf in the Haakon VII Sea, with an extent of approximately 36 500 km2. Three shallow firn cores (about 20 m deep) were retrieved in different ice rises, Kupol Ciolkovskogo (KC), Kupol Moskovskij (KM), and Blåskimen Island (BI), while a 100 m long core (S100) was drilled near the FIS edge. These sites are distributed over the entire FIS area so that they provide a variety of elevation (50-400 m a.s.l.) and distance (3-42 km) to the sea. Sea-salt species (mainly Na+ and Cl-) generally dominate the precipitation chemistry in the study region. We associate a significant sixfold increase in median sea-salt concentrations, observed in the S100 core after the 1950s, to an enhanced exposure of the S100 site to primary sea-salt aerosol due to a shorter distance from the S100 site to the ice front, and to enhanced sea-salt aerosol production from blowing salty snow over sea ice, most likely related to the calving of Trolltunga occurred during the 1960s. This increase in sea-salt concentrations is synchronous with a shift in non-sea-salt sulfate (nssSO42-) toward negative values, suggesting a possible contribution of fractionated aerosol to the sea-salt load in the S100 core most likely originating from salty snow found on sea ice. In contrast, there is no evidence of a significant contribution of fractionated sea salt to the ice-rises sites, where the signal would be most likely masked by the large inputs of biogenic sulfate estimated for these sites. In summary, these results suggest that the S100 core contains a sea-salt record dominated by the proximity of the site to the ocean, and processes of sea ice formation in the neighbouring waters. In contrast, the ice-rises firn cores register a larger-scale signal of atmospheric flow conditions and a less efficient transport of sea-salt aerosols to these sites. These findings are a

  11. The Secret of the Svalbard Sea Ice Barrier

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nghiem, Son V.; Van Woert, Michael L.; Neumann, Gregory

    2004-01-01

    An elongated sea ice feature called the Svalbard sea ice barrier rapidly formed over an area in the Barents Sea to the east of Svalbard posing navigation hazards. The secret of its formation lies in the bottom bathymetry that governs the distribution of cold Arctic waters masses, which impacts sea ice growth on the water surface.

  12. Polarimetric signatures of sea ice in the Greenland Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skriver, Henning; Pedersen, Leif Toudal

    1995-01-01

    Polarimetric SAR data of sea ice have been acquired by the Danish polarimetric SAR (EMISAR) during a mission at the Greenland Sea in August 1994. Video recordings from a low-altitude acquisition have been used for interpretation of the SAR data. Also, ERS-1 SAR data and NOAA AVHRR-data have been...

  13. Future Arctic marine access: analysis and evaluation of observations, models, and projections of sea ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. S. Rogers

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available There is an emerging need for regional applications of sea ice projections to provide more accuracy and greater detail to scientists, national, state and local planners, and other stakeholders. The present study offers a prototype for a comprehensive, interdisciplinary study to bridge observational data, climate model simulations, and user needs. The study's first component is an observationally based evaluation of Arctic sea ice trends during 1980–2008, with an emphasis on seasonal and regional differences relative to the overall pan-Arctic trend. Regional sea ice loss has varied, with a significantly larger decline of winter maximum (January–March extent in the Atlantic region than in other sectors. A lead–lag regression analysis of Atlantic sea ice extent and ocean temperatures indicates that reduced sea ice extent is associated with increased Atlantic Ocean temperatures. Correlations between the two variables are greater when ocean temperatures lag rather than lead sea ice. The performance of 13 global climate models is evaluated using three metrics to compare sea ice simulations with the observed record. We rank models over the pan-Arctic domain and regional quadrants and synthesize model performance across several different studies. The best performing models project reduced ice cover across key access routes in the Arctic through 2100, with a lengthening of seasons for marine operations by 1–3 months. This assessment suggests that the Northwest and Northeast Passages hold potential for enhanced marine access to the Arctic in the future, including shipping and resource development opportunities.

  14. Response of Antarctic sea surface temperature and sea ice to ozone depletion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, D.; Gnanadesikan, A.; Kostov, Y.; Marshall, J.; Seviour, W.; Waugh, D.

    2017-12-01

    The influence of the Antarctic ozone hole extends all the way from the stratosphere through the troposphere down to the surface, with clear signatures on surface winds, and SST during summer. In this talk we discuss the impact of these changes on the ocean circulation and sea ice state. We are notably motivated by the observed cooling of the surface Southern Ocean and associated increase in Antarctic sea ice extent since the 1970s. These trends are not reproduced by CMIP5 climate models, and the underlying mechanism at work in nature and the models remain unexplained. Did the ozone hole contribute to the observed trends?Here, we review recent advances toward answering these issues using "abrupt ozone depletion" experiments. The ocean and sea ice response is rather complex, comprising two timescales: a fast ( 1-2y) cooling of the surface ocean and sea ice cover increase, followed by a slower warming trend, which, depending on models, flip the sign of the SST and sea ice responses on decadal timescale. Although the basic mechanism seems robust, comparison across climate models reveal large uncertainties in the timescales and amplitude of the response to the extent that even the sign of the ocean and sea ice response to ozone hole and recovery remains unconstrained. After briefly describing the dynamics and thermodynamics behind the two-timescale response, we will discuss the main sources of uncertainties in the modeled response, namely cloud effects and air-sea heat exchanges, surface wind stress response and ocean eddy transports. Finally, we will consider the implications of our results on the ability of coupled climate models to reproduce observed Southern Ocean changes.

  15. Record low sea-ice concentration in the central Arctic during summer 2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Jinping; Barber, David; Zhang, Shugang; Yang, Qinghua; Wang, Xiaoyu; Xie, Hongjie

    2018-01-01

    The Arctic sea-ice extent has shown a declining trend over the past 30 years. Ice coverage reached historic minima in 2007 and again in 2012. This trend has recently been assessed to be unique over at least the last 1450 years. In the summer of 2010, a very low sea-ice concentration (SIC) appeared at high Arctic latitudes—even lower than that of surrounding pack ice at lower latitudes. This striking low ice concentration—referred to here as a record low ice concentration in the central Arctic (CARLIC)—is unique in our analysis period of 2003-15, and has not been previously reported in the literature. The CARLIC was not the result of ice melt, because sea ice was still quite thick based on in-situ ice thickness measurements. Instead, divergent ice drift appears to have been responsible for the CARLIC. A high correlation between SIC and wind stress curl suggests that the sea ice drift during the summer of 2010 responded strongly to the regional wind forcing. The drift trajectories of ice buoys exhibited a transpolar drift in the Atlantic sector and an eastward drift in the Pacific sector, which appeared to benefit the CARLIC in 2010. Under these conditions, more solar energy can penetrate into the open water, increasing melt through increased heat flux to the ocean. We speculate that this divergence of sea ice could occur more often in the coming decades, and impact on hemispheric SIC and feed back to the climate.

  16. A sea ice model for the marginal ice zone with an application to the Greenland Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Leif Toudal; Coon, Max D.

    2004-01-01

    A model is presented that describes the formation, transport, and desalinization of frazil and pancake ice as it is formed in marginal seas. This model uses as input the total ice concentration evaluated from Special Sensor Microwave Imager and wind speed and direction. The model calculates...... the areal concentration, thickness, volume concentration, and salinity of frazil ice as well as the areal concentration, thickness, and salinity of pancakes. A simple parameterization for the Odden region of the Greenland Sea is presented. The model is run for the winter of 1996-1997. There are direct...... observations of the thickness and salinity of pancakes and the volume concentration of frazil ice to compare with the model. The model results compare very well with the measured data. This new ice model can be tuned to work in marginal seas elsewhere to calculate ice thickness, motion, and brine rejection...

  17. The Sea Ice Index: A Resource for Cryospheric Knowledge Mobilization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Windnagel, A. K.; Fetterer, F. M.

    2017-12-01

    The Sea Ice Index is a popular source of information about Arctic and Antarctic sea ice data and trends created at the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) in 2002. It has been used by cryospheric scientists, cross-discipline scientists, the press, policy makers, and the public for the past 15 years. The Index started as a prototype sea ice extent product in 2001 and was envisioned as a website that would meet a need for readily accessible, easy-to-use information on sea ice trends and anomalies, with products that would assist in monitoring and diagnosing the ice extent minima that were gaining increasing attention in the research community in the late 1990s. The goal was to easily share these valuable data with everyone that needed them, which is the essence of knowledge mobilization. As time has progressed, we have found new ways of disseminating the information carried by the data by providing simple pictures on a website, animating those images, creating Google Earth animations that show the data on a globe, providing simple text files of data values that do not require special software to read, writing a monthly blog about the data that has over 1.7 million readers annually, providing the data to NOAA's Science on Sphere to be seen in museums and classrooms across 23 countries, and creating geo-registered images for use in geospatial software. The Index helps to bridge the gap between sea ice science and the public. Through NSIDC's User Services Office, we receive feedback on the Index and have endeavored to meet the changing needs of our stakeholder communities to best mobilize this knowledge in their direction. We have learned through trial-by-fire the best practices for delivering these data and data services. This tells the tale of managing an unassuming data set as it has journeyed from a simple product consisting of images of sea ice to one that is robust enough to be used in the IPCC Climate Change Report but easy enough to be understood by K-12

  18. Do pelagic grazers benefit from sea ice? Insights from the Antarctic sea ice proxy IPSO25

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Schmidt

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Sea ice affects primary production in polar regions in multiple ways. It can dampen water column productivity by reducing light or nutrient supply, provide a habitat for ice algae and condition the marginal ice zone (MIZ for phytoplankton blooms on its seasonal retreat. The relative importance of three different carbon sources (sea ice derived, sea ice conditioned, non-sea-ice associated for the polar food web is not well understood, partly due to the lack of methods that enable their unambiguous distinction. Here we analysed two highly branched isoprenoid (HBI biomarkers to trace sea-ice-derived and sea-ice-conditioned carbon in Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba and relate their concentrations to the grazers' body reserves, growth and recruitment. During our sampling in January–February 2003, the proxy for sea ice diatoms (a di-unsaturated HBI termed IPSO25, δ13C  =  −12.5 ± 3.3 ‰ occurred in open waters of the western Scotia Sea, where seasonal ice retreat was slow. In suspended matter from surface waters, IPSO25 was present at a few stations close to the ice edge, but in krill the marker was widespread. Even at stations that had been ice-free for several weeks, IPSO25 was found in krill stomachs, suggesting that they gathered the ice-derived algae from below the upper mixed layer. Peak abundances of the proxy for MIZ diatoms (a tri-unsaturated HBI termed HBI III, δ13C  =  −42.2 ± 2.4 ‰ occurred in regions of fast sea ice retreat and persistent salinity-driven stratification in the eastern Scotia Sea. Krill sampled in the area defined by the ice edge bloom likewise contained high amounts of HBI III. As indicators for the grazer's performance we used the mass–length ratio, size of digestive gland and growth rate for krill, and recruitment for the biomass-dominant calanoid copepods Calanoides acutus and Calanus propinquus. These indices consistently point to blooms in the MIZ as an important feeding

  19. Atmospheric Icing on Sea Structures,

    Science.gov (United States)

    1984-04-01

    results. ESTIMATION OF ICING INTENSITY Freezing process When supercooled water drops fall or move with wind, hit a structure, and freeze, the...a collision with another drop- let, with the ground, or with a structure. When a supercooled droplet hits a solid obstacle, it spreads and turns to...accretion is likely. The meteorological conditions that prevail during ship icing have been studied widely (Shektman 1968, Tabata 1968, Borisenkov and

  20. Arctic Sea Ice Variability and Trends, 1979-2006

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, Claire L.; Cavalieri, Donald J.

    2008-01-01

    Analysis of Arctic sea ice extents derived from satellite passive-microwave data for the 28 years, 1979-2006 yields an overall negative trend of -45,100 +/- 4,600 km2/yr (-3.7 +/- 0.4%/decade) in the yearly averages, with negative ice-extent trends also occurring for each of the four seasons and each of the 12 months. For the yearly averages the largest decreases occur in the Kara and Barents Seas and the Arctic Ocean, with linear least squares slopes of -10,600 +/- 2,800 km2/yr (-7.4 +/- 2.0%/decade) and -10,100 +/- 2,200 km2/yr (-1.5 +/- 0.3%/decade), respectively, followed by Baffin Bay/Labrador Sea, with a slope of -8,000 +/- 2,000 km2/yr) -9.0 +/- 2.3%/decade), the Greenland Sea, with a slope of -7,000 +/- 1,400 km2/yr (-9.3 +/- 1.9%/decade), and Hudson Bay, with a slope of -4,500 +/- 900 km2/yr (-5.3 +/- 1.1%/decade). These are all statistically significant decreases at a 99% confidence level. The Seas of Okhotsk and Japan also have a statistically significant ice decrease, although at a 95% confidence level, and the three remaining regions, the Bering Sea, Canadian Archipelago, and Gulf of St. Lawrence, have negative slopes that are not statistically significant. The 28-year trends in ice areas for the Northern Hemisphere total are also statistically significant and negative in each season, each month, and for the yearly averages.

  1. Arctic sea ice trends, variability and implications for seasonal ice forecasting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serreze, Mark C; Stroeve, Julienne

    2015-07-13

    September Arctic sea ice extent over the period of satellite observations has a strong downward trend, accompanied by pronounced interannual variability with a detrended 1 year lag autocorrelation of essentially zero. We argue that through a combination of thinning and associated processes related to a warming climate (a stronger albedo feedback, a longer melt season, the lack of especially cold winters) the downward trend itself is steepening. The lack of autocorrelation manifests both the inherent large variability in summer atmospheric circulation patterns and that oceanic heat loss in winter acts as a negative (stabilizing) feedback, albeit insufficient to counter the steepening trend. These findings have implications for seasonal ice forecasting. In particular, while advances in observing sea ice thickness and assimilating thickness into coupled forecast systems have improved forecast skill, there remains an inherent limit to predictability owing to the largely chaotic nature of atmospheric variability. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  2. The sea ice in Young Sound: Implications for carbon cycling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Glud, Ronnie Nøhr; Rysgaard, Søren; Kühl, Michael

    2007-01-01

    on the available nutrients. The sea-ice algal community adapts effi ciently to the local light environment, and in areas with natural (or man-made) holes and cracks sea-ice algae bloom. However, despite ample nutrients, the overall phototrophic biomass in Young Sound remains very low, with maximum values of c. 15......–30 μg Chl a l-1 sea ice at the underside of the ice and with maximum area integrated values of c. 3 mg Chl a m-2. We speculate that the extreme dynamics in sea-ice appearance, structure and brine percolation, which is driven primarily by large but variable freshwater inputs during snow melt...... the sea-ice matrix were extremely dynamic and strongly regulated by physical processes related to freezing and thawing of sea water rather than biological activity. Enclosure experiments on sea-ice samples performed in June 2002 revealed a high heterotrophic potential causing the sea-ice environment...

  3. The Antarctic Ice Sheet, Sea Ice, and the Ozone Hole: Satellite Observations of how they are Changing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, Claire L.

    2012-01-01

    Antarctica is the Earth's coldest and highest continent and has major impacts on the climate and life of the south polar vicinity. It is covered almost entirely by the Earth's largest ice sheet by far, with a volume of ice so great that if all the Antarctic ice were to go into the ocean (as ice or liquid water), this would produce a global sea level rise of about 60 meters (197 feet). The continent is surrounded by sea ice that in the wintertime is even more expansive than the continent itself and in the summertime reduces to only about a sixth of its wintertime extent. Like the continent, the expansive sea ice cover has major impacts, reflecting the sun's radiation back to space, blocking exchanges between the ocean and the atmosphere, and providing a platform for some animal species while impeding other species. Far above the continent, the Antarctic ozone hole is a major atmospheric phenomenon recognized as human-caused and potentially quite serious to many different life forms. Satellites are providing us with remarkable information about the ice sheet, the sea ice, and the ozone hole. Satellite visible and radar imagery are providing views of the large scale structure of the ice sheet never seen before; satellite laser altimetry has produced detailed maps of the topography of the ice sheet; and an innovative gravity-measuring two-part satellite has allowed mapping of regions of mass loss and mass gain on the ice sheet. The surrounding sea ice cover has a satellite record that goes back to the 1970s, allowing trend studies that show a decreasing sea ice presence in the region of the Bellingshausen and Amundsen seas, to the west of the prominent Antarctic Peninsula, but increasing sea ice presence around much of the rest of the continent. Overall, sea ice extent around Antarctica has increased at an average rate of about 17,000 square kilometers per year since the late 1970s, as determined from satellite microwave data that can be collected under both light and

  4. Improving Arctic Sea Ice Observations and Data Access to Support Advances in Sea Ice Forecasting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrell, S. L.

    2017-12-01

    The economic and strategic importance of the Arctic region is becoming apparent. One of the most striking and widely publicized changes underway is the declining sea ice cover. Since sea ice is a key component of the climate system, its ongoing loss has serious, and wide-ranging, socio-economic implications. Increasing year-to-year variability in the geographic location, concentration, and thickness of the Arctic ice cover will pose both challenges and opportunities. The sea ice research community must be engaged in sustained Arctic Observing Network (AON) initiatives so as to deliver fit-for-purpose remote sensing data products to a variety of stakeholders including Arctic communities, the weather forecasting and climate modeling communities, industry, local, regional and national governments, and policy makers. An example of engagement is the work currently underway to improve research collaborations between scientists engaged in obtaining and assessing sea ice observational data and those conducting numerical modeling studies and forecasting ice conditions. As part of the US AON, in collaboration with the Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee (IARPC), we are developing a strategic framework within which observers and modelers can work towards the common goal of improved sea ice forecasting. Here, we focus on sea ice thickness, a key varaible of the Arctic ice cover. We describe multi-sensor, and blended, sea ice thickness data products under development that can be leveraged to improve model initialization and validation, as well as support data assimilation exercises. We will also present the new PolarWatch initiative (polarwatch.noaa.gov) and discuss efforts to advance access to remote sensing satellite observations and improve communication with Arctic stakeholders, so as to deliver data products that best address societal needs.

  5. Arctic ice island and sea ice movements and mechanical properties. First quarterly report, October 1-December 31, 1983

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sackinger, W.M.; Stringer, W.J.

    1984-01-01

    Research activities for the first quarter are presented for the following tasks: (1) ice island; (2) intrusion of the pack ice edge in the Chukchi Sea; and (3) spray ice adhesion to offshore structure coatings. With respect to the ice island portion of this project the following activities are planned for the year: (1) use aerial photography, satellite imagery, and all available historical records to establish a time history of all of the ice shelves of Ellesmere Island; (2) establish positioning buoys on the existing ice islands to track their trajectories daily and to telemeter daily barometric pressure and temperature, via System Argos; (3) relate geostrophic winds to the observed trajectories; (4) begin to build a pseudo-random model for ice island motion over the long term which would enable a determination of the probability of interaction between ice islands and offshore structures. The overall objective of task 2 is to investigate and analyze the causes and extent of summer time pace ice intrusions into the Chukchi Sea, which would interfere with exploration drilling and emplacement of permanent production structures. For task three a method for evaluating shear and tensile strengths of the interface bond between the sea spray ice layer and the structure or ship surface will be developed. A second more detailed task is to then measure the mechanical properties of this bonded layer for a variety of candidate coatings, as functions of temperature, loading rate, strain rate, salinity, and ice type. 25 references, 92 figures.

  6. Albedo of the ice covered Weddell and Bellingshausen Seas

    OpenAIRE

    A. I. Weiss; J. C. King; T. A. Lachlan-Cope; R. S. Ladkin

    2012-01-01

    This study investigates the surface albedo of the sea ice areas adjacent to the Antarctic Peninsula during the austral summer. Aircraft measurements of the surface albedo, which were conducted in the sea ice areas of the Weddell and Bellingshausen Seas show significant differences between these two regions. The averaged surface albedo varied between 0.13 and 0.81. The ice cover of the Bellingshausen Sea consisted mainly of first year ice and the sea surface showed an averaged sea ice albedo o...

  7. Remarkable separability of the circulation response to Arctic sea ice loss and greenhouse gas forcing

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCusker, K. E.; Kushner, P. J.; Fyfe, J. C.; Sigmond, M.; Kharin, V. V.; Bitz, C. M.

    2017-12-01

    Arctic sea ice loss has an important effect on local climate through increases in ocean to atmosphere heat flux and associated feedbacks, and may influence midlatitude climate by changing large-scale circulation that can enhance or counter changes that are due to greenhouse gases. The extent to which climate change in a warming world can be understood as greenhouse gas-induced changes that are modulated by Arctic sea ice loss depends on how additive the responses to the separate influences are. Here we use a novel sea ice nudging methodology in the Canadian Earth System Model, which has a fully coupled ocean, to isolate the effects of Arctic sea ice loss and doubled atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) to determine their additivity and sensitivity to mean state. We find that the separate effects of Arctic sea ice loss and doubled CO2 are remarkably additive and relatively insensitive to mean climate state. This separability is evident in several thermodynamic and dynamic fields throughout most of the year, from hemispheric to synoptic scales. The extent to which the regional response to sea ice loss sometimes agrees with and sometimes cancels the response to CO2 is quantified. In this model, Arctic sea ice loss enhances the CO2-induced surface air temperature changes nearly everywhere and zonal wind changes over the Pacific sector, whereas sea ice loss counters CO2-induced sea level pressure changes nearly everywhere over land and zonal wind changes over the Atlantic sector. This separability of the response to Arctic sea ice loss from the response to CO2 doubling gives credence to the body of work in which Arctic sea ice loss is isolated from the forcing that modified it, and might provide a means to better interpret the diverse array of modeling and observational studies of Arctic change and influence.

  8. NASA Team 2 Sea Ice Concentration Algorithm Retrieval Uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brucker, Ludovic; Cavalieri, Donald J.; Markus, Thorsten; Ivanoff, Alvaro

    2014-01-01

    Satellite microwave radiometers are widely used to estimate sea ice cover properties (concentration, extent, and area) through the use of sea ice concentration (IC) algorithms. Rare are the algorithms providing associated IC uncertainty estimates. Algorithm uncertainty estimates are needed to assess accurately global and regional trends in IC (and thus extent and area), and to improve sea ice predictions on seasonal to interannual timescales using data assimilation approaches. This paper presents a method to provide relative IC uncertainty estimates using the enhanced NASA Team (NT2) IC algorithm. The proposed approach takes advantage of the NT2 calculations and solely relies on the brightness temperatures (TBs) used as input. NT2 IC and its associated relative uncertainty are obtained for both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres using the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for the Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) TB. NT2 IC relative uncertainties estimated on a footprint-by-footprint swath-by-swath basis were averaged daily over each 12.5-km grid cell of the polar stereographic grid. For both hemispheres and throughout the year, the NT2 relative uncertainty is less than 5%. In the Southern Hemisphere, it is low in the interior ice pack, and it increases in the marginal ice zone up to 5%. In the Northern Hemisphere, areas with high uncertainties are also found in the high IC area of the Central Arctic. Retrieval uncertainties are greater in areas corresponding to NT2 ice types associated with deep snow and new ice. Seasonal variations in uncertainty show larger values in summer as a result of melt conditions and greater atmospheric contributions. Our analysis also includes an evaluation of the NT2 algorithm sensitivity to AMSR-E sensor noise. There is a 60% probability that the IC does not change (to within the computed retrieval precision of 1%) due to sensor noise, and the cumulated probability shows that there is a 90% chance that the IC varies by less than

  9. Current state and future perspectives on coupled ice-sheet - sea-level modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Boer, Bas; Stocchi, Paolo; Whitehouse, Pippa L.; van de Wal, Roderik S. W.

    2017-08-01

    The interaction between ice-sheet growth and retreat and sea-level change has been an established field of research for many years. However, recent advances in numerical modelling have shed new light on the precise interaction of marine ice sheets with the change in near-field sea level, and the related stability of the grounding line position. Studies using fully coupled ice-sheet - sea-level models have shown that accounting for gravitationally self-consistent sea-level change will act to slow down the retreat and advance of marine ice-sheet grounding lines. Moreover, by simultaneously solving the 'sea-level equation' and modelling ice-sheet flow, coupled models provide a global field of relative sea-level change that is consistent with dynamic changes in ice-sheet extent. In this paper we present an overview of recent advances, possible caveats, methodologies and challenges involved in coupled ice-sheet - sea-level modelling. We conclude by presenting a first-order comparison between a suite of relative sea-level data and output from a coupled ice-sheet - sea-level model.

  10. Quaternary Sea-ice history in the Arctic Ocean based on a new Ostracode sea-ice proxy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cronin, T. M.; Gemery, L.; Briggs, W.M.; Jakobsson, M.; Polyak, L.; Brouwers, E.M.

    2010-01-01

    Paleo-sea-ice history in the Arctic Ocean was reconstructed using the sea-ice dwelling ostracode Acetabulastoma arcticum from late Quaternary sediments from the Mendeleyev, Lomonosov, and Gakkel Ridges, the Morris Jesup Rise and the Yermak Plateau. Results suggest intermittently high levels of perennial sea ice in the central Arctic Ocean during Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 3 (25-45 ka), minimal sea ice during the last deglacial (16-11 ka) and early Holocene thermal maximum (11-5 ka) and increasing sea ice during the mid-to-late Holocene (5-0 ka). Sediment core records from the Iceland and Rockall Plateaus show that perennial sea ice existed in these regions only during glacial intervals MIS 2, 4, and 6. These results show that sea ice exhibits complex temporal and spatial variability during different climatic regimes and that the development of modern perennial sea ice may be a relatively recent phenomenon. ?? 2010.

  11. Correlated declines in Pacific arctic snow and sea ice cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stone, Robert P.; Douglas, David C.; Belchansky, Gennady I.; Drobot, Sheldon

    2005-01-01

    Simulations of future climate suggest that global warming will reduce Arctic snow and ice cover, resulting in decreased surface albedo (reflectivity). Lowering of the surface albedo leads to further warming by increasing solar absorption at the surface. This phenomenon is referred to as “temperature–albedo feedback.” Anticipation of such a feedback is one reason why scientists look to the Arctic for early indications of global warming. Much of the Arctic has warmed significantly. Northern Hemisphere snow cover has decreased, and sea ice has diminished in area and thickness. As reported in the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment in 2004, the trends are considered to be outside the range of natural variability, implicating global warming as an underlying cause. Changing climatic conditions in the high northern latitudes have influenced biogeochemical cycles on a broad scale. Warming has already affected the sea ice, the tundra, the plants, the animals, and the indigenous populations that depend on them. Changing annual cycles of snow and sea ice also affect sources and sinks of important greenhouse gases (such as carbon dioxide and methane), further complicating feedbacks involving the global budgets of these important constituents. For instance, thawing permafrost increases the extent of tundra wetlands and lakes, releasing greater amounts of methane into the atmosphere. Variable sea ice cover may affect the hemispheric carbon budget by altering the ocean–atmosphere exchange of carbon dioxide. There is growing concern that amplification of global warming in the Arctic will have far-reaching effects on lower latitude climate through these feedback mechanisms. Despite the diverse and convincing observational evidence that the Arctic environment is changing, it remains unclear whether these changes are anthropogenically forced or result from natural variations of the climate system. A better understanding of what controls the seasonal distributions of snow and ice

  12. The Formation each Winter of the Circumpolar Wave in the Sea Ice around Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gloersen, Per; White, Warren B.

    1999-01-01

    Seeking to improve upon the visualization of the Antarctic Circumpolar Wave (ACW) , we compare a 16-year sequence of 6-month winter averages of Antarctic sea ice extents and concentrations with those of adjacent sea surface temperatures (SSTs). Here we follow SSTs around the globe along the maximum sea ice edge rather than in a zonal band equatorward of it. The results are similar to the earlier ones, but the ACWs do not propagate with equal amplitude or speed. Additionally in a sequence of 4 polar stereographic plots of these SSTs and sea ice concentrations, we find a remarkable correlation between SST minima and sea ice concentration maxima, even to the extent of matching contours across the ice-sea boundary, in the sector between 900E and the Palmer Peninsula. Based on these observations, we suggest that the memory of the ACW in the sea ice is carried from one Austral winter to the next by the neighboring SSTS, since the sea ice is nearly absent in the Austral summer.

  13. Polar bear population dynamics in the southern Beaufort Sea during a period of sea ice decline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bromaghin, Jeffrey F; Mcdonald, Trent L; Stirling, Ian; Derocher, Andrew E; Richardson, Evan S; Regehr, Eric V; Douglas, David C; Durner, George M; Atwood, Todd; Amstrup, Steven C

    2015-04-01

    In the southern Beaufort Sea of the United States and Canada, prior investigations have linked declines in summer sea ice to reduced physical condition, growth, and survival of polar bears (Ursus maritimus). Combined with projections of population decline due to continued climate warming and the ensuing loss of sea ice habitat, those findings contributed to the 2008 decision to list the species as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Here, we used mark-recapture models to investigate the population dynamics of polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea from 2001 to 2010, years during which the spatial and temporal extent of summer sea ice generally declined. Low survival from 2004 through 2006 led to a 25-50% decline in abundance. We hypothesize that low survival during this period resulted from (1) unfavorable ice conditions that limited access to prey during multiple seasons; and possibly, (2) low prey abundance. For reasons that are not clear, survival of adults and cubs began to improve in 2007 and abundance was comparatively stable from 2008 to 2010, with ~900 bears in 2010 (90% CI 606-1212). However, survival of subadult bears declined throughout the entire period. Reduced spatial and temporal availability of sea ice is expected to increasingly force population dynamics of polar bears as the climate continues to warm. However, in the short term, our findings suggest that factors other than sea ice can influence survival. A refined understanding of the ecological mechanisms underlying polar bear population dynamics is necessary to improve projections of their future status and facilitate development of management strategies.

  14. Polar bear population dynamics in the southern Beaufort Sea during a period of sea ice decline

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bromaghin, Jeffrey F.; McDonald, Trent L.; Stirling, Ian; Derocher, Andrew E.; Richardson, Evan S.; Regehr, Eric V.; Douglas, David C.; Durner, George M.; Atwood, Todd C.; Amstrup, Steven C.

    2015-01-01

    In the southern Beaufort Sea of the United States and Canada, prior investigations have linked declines in summer sea ice to reduced physical condition, growth, and survival of polar bears (Ursus maritimus). Combined with projections of population decline due to continued climate warming and the ensuing loss of sea ice habitat, those findings contributed to the 2008 decision to list the species as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Here, we used mark–recapture models to investigate the population dynamics of polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea from 2001 to 2010, years during which the spatial and temporal extent of summer sea ice generally declined. Low survival from 2004 through 2006 led to a 25–50% decline in abundance. We hypothesize that low survival during this period resulted from (1) unfavorable ice conditions that limited access to prey during multiple seasons; and possibly, (2) low prey abundance. For reasons that are not clear, survival of adults and cubs began to improve in 2007 and abundance was comparatively stable from 2008 to 2010, with ~900 bears in 2010 (90% CI 606–1212). However, survival of subadult bears declined throughout the entire period. Reduced spatial and temporal availability of sea ice is expected to increasingly force population dynamics of polar bears as the climate continues to warm. However, in the short term, our findings suggest that factors other than sea ice can influence survival. A refined understanding of the ecological mechanisms underlying polar bear population dynamics is necessary to improve projections of their future status and facilitate development of management strategies.

  15. On the influence of model physics on simulations of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Massonnet

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Two hindcast (1983–2007 simulations are performed with the global, ocean-sea ice models NEMO-LIM2 and NEMO-LIM3 driven by atmospheric reanalyses and climatologies. The two simulations differ only in their sea ice component, while all other elements of experimental design (resolution, initial conditions, atmospheric forcing are kept identical. The main differences in the sea ice models lie in the formulation of the subgrid-scale ice thickness distribution, of the thermodynamic processes, of the sea ice salinity and of the sea ice rheology. To assess the differences in model skill over the period of investigation, we develop a set of metrics for both hemispheres, comparing the main sea ice variables (concentration, thickness and drift to available observations and focusing on both mean state and seasonal to interannual variability. Based upon these metrics, we discuss the physical processes potentially responsible for the differences in model skill. In particular, we suggest that (i a detailed representation of the ice thickness distribution increases the seasonal to interannual variability of ice extent, with spectacular improvement for the simulation of the recent observed summer Arctic sea ice retreats, (ii the elastic-viscous-plastic rheology enhances the response of ice to wind stress, compared to the classical viscous-plastic approach, (iii the grid formulation and the air-sea ice drag coefficient affect the simulated ice export through Fram Strait and the ice accumulation along the Canadian Archipelago, and (iv both models show less skill in the Southern Ocean, probably due to the low quality of the reanalyses in this region and to the absence of important small-scale oceanic processes at the models' resolution (~1°.

  16. Late Holocene sea ice conditions in Herald Canyon, Chukchi Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearce, C.; O'Regan, M.; Rattray, J. E.; Hutchinson, D. K.; Cronin, T. M.; Gemery, L.; Barrientos, N.; Coxall, H.; Smittenberg, R.; Semiletov, I. P.; Jakobsson, M.

    2017-12-01

    Sea ice in the Arctic Ocean has been in steady decline in recent decades and, based on satellite data, the retreat is most pronounced in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas. Historical observations suggest that the recent changes were unprecedented during the last 150 years, but for a longer time perspective, we rely on the geological record. For this study, we analyzed sediment samples from two piston cores from Herald Canyon in the Chukchi Sea, collected during the 2014 SWERUS-C3 Arctic Ocean Expedition. The Herald Canyon is a local depression across the Chukchi Shelf, and acts as one of the main pathways for Pacific Water to the Arctic Ocean after entering through the narrow and shallow Bering Strait. The study site lies at the modern-day seasonal sea ice minimum edge, and is thus an ideal location for the reconstruction of past sea ice variability. Both sediment cores contain late Holocene deposits characterized by high sediment accumulation rates (100-300 cm/kyr). Core 2-PC1 from the shallow canyon flank (57 m water depth) is 8 meter long and extends back to 4200 cal yrs BP, while the upper 3 meters of Core 4-PC1 from the central canyon (120 mwd) cover the last 3000 years. The chronologies of the cores are based on radiocarbon dates and the 3.6 ka Aniakchak CFE II tephra, which is used as an absolute age marker to calculate the marine radiocarbon reservoir age. Analysis of biomarkers for sea ice and surface water productivity indicate stable sea ice conditions throughout the entire late Holocene, ending with an abrupt increase of phytoplankton sterols in the very top of both sediment sequences. The shift is accompanied by a sudden increase in coarse sediments (> 125 µm) and a minor change in δ13Corg. We interpret this transition in the top sediments as a community turnover in primary producers from sea ice to open water biota. Most importantly, our results indicate that the ongoing rapid ice retreat in the Chukchi Sea of recent decades was unprecedented during the

  17. Arctic Sea Ice: Using Airborne Topographic Mapper Measurements (ATM) to Determine Sea Ice Thickness

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-05-10

    Track Distance (Km) E le v a ti o n ( m ) ATM Elevation Profile Elevation 18 Figure 13: Geoid shape of earth’s equipotential surface , which is...inferred for the region between successive leads. Therefore, flying over a lead in the ice is very important for determining the exact sea surface elevation...inferred for the region between successive leads. Therefore, flying over a lead in the ice is very important for determining the exact sea surface

  18. The refreezing of melt ponds on Arctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flocco, Daniela; Feltham, Daniel L.; Bailey, Eleanor; Schroeder, David

    2015-02-01

    The presence of melt ponds on the surface of Arctic sea ice significantly reduces its albedo, inducing a positive feedback leading to sea ice thinning. While the role of melt ponds in enhancing the summer melt of sea ice is well known, their impact on suppressing winter freezing of sea ice has, hitherto, received less attention. Melt ponds freeze by forming an ice lid at the upper surface, which insulates them from the atmosphere and traps pond water between the underlying sea ice and the ice lid. The pond water is a store of latent heat, which is released during refreezing. Until a pond freezes completely, there can be minimal ice growth at the base of the underlying sea ice. In this work, we present a model of the refreezing of a melt pond that includes the heat and salt balances in the ice lid, trapped pond, and underlying sea ice. The model uses a two-stream radiation model to account for radiative scattering at phase boundaries. Simulations and related sensitivity studies suggest that trapped pond water may survive for over a month. We focus on the role that pond salinity has on delaying the refreezing process and retarding basal sea ice growth. We estimate that for a typical sea ice pond coverage in autumn, excluding the impact of trapped ponds in models overestimates ice growth by up to 265 million km3, an overestimate of 26%.

  19. Variability and trends in the Arctic Sea ice cover: Results from different techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comiso, Josefino C.; Meier, Walter N.; Gersten, Robert

    2017-08-01

    Variability and trend studies of sea ice in the Arctic have been conducted using products derived from the same raw passive microwave data but by different groups using different algorithms. This study provides consistency assessment of four of the leading products, namely, Goddard Bootstrap (SB2), Goddard NASA Team (NT1), EUMETSAT Ocean and Sea Ice Satellite Application Facility (OSI-SAF 1.2), and Hadley HadISST 2.2 data in evaluating variability and trends in the Arctic sea ice cover. All four provide generally similar ice patterns but significant disagreements in ice concentration distributions especially in the marginal ice zone and adjacent regions in winter and meltponded areas in summer. The discrepancies are primarily due to different ways the four techniques account for occurrences of new ice and meltponding. However, results show that the different products generally provide consistent and similar representation of the state of the Arctic sea ice cover. Hadley and NT1 data usually provide the highest and lowest monthly ice extents, respectively. The Hadley data also show the lowest trends in ice extent and ice area at -3.88%/decade and -4.37%/decade, respectively, compared to an average of -4.36%/decade and -4.57%/decade for all four. Trend maps also show similar spatial distribution for all four with the largest negative trends occurring at the Kara/Barents Sea and Beaufort Sea regions, where sea ice has been retreating the fastest. The good agreement of the trends especially with updated data provides strong confidence in the quantification of the rate of decline in the Arctic sea ice cover.Plain Language SummaryThe declining Arctic sea ice cover, especially in the summer, has been the center of attention in recent years. Reports on the sea ice cover have been provided by different institutions using basically the same set of satellite data but different techniques for estimating key parameters such as ice concentration, ice extent, and ice area. In

  20. Formation of brine channels in sea ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morawetz, Klaus; Thoms, Silke; Kutschan, Bernd

    2017-03-01

    Liquid salty micro-channels (brine) between growing ice platelets in sea ice are an important habitat for CO 2 -binding microalgaea with great impact on polar ecosystems. The structure formation of ice platelets is microscopically described and a phase field model is developed. The pattern formation during solidification of the two-dimensional interstitial liquid is considered by two coupled order parameters, the tetrahedricity as structure of ice and the salinity. The coupling and time evolution of these order parameters are described by a consistent set of three model parameters. They determine the velocity of the freezing process and the structure formation, the phase diagram, the super-cooling and super-heating region, and the specific heat. The model is used to calculate the short-time frozen micro-structures. The obtained morphological structure is compared with the vertical brine pore space obtained from X-ray computed tomography.

  1. Arctic sea ice melt leads to atmospheric new particle formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dall Osto, M; Beddows, D C S; Tunved, P; Krejci, R; Ström, J; Hansson, H-C; Yoon, Y J; Park, Ki-Tae; Becagli, S; Udisti, R; Onasch, T; O Dowd, C D; Simó, R; Harrison, Roy M

    2017-06-12

    Atmospheric new particle formation (NPF) and growth significantly influences climate by supplying new seeds for cloud condensation and brightness. Currently, there is a lack of understanding of whether and how marine biota emissions affect aerosol-cloud-climate interactions in the Arctic. Here, the aerosol population was categorised via cluster analysis of aerosol size distributions taken at Mt Zeppelin (Svalbard) during a 11 year record. The daily temporal occurrence of NPF events likely caused by nucleation in the polar marine boundary layer was quantified annually as 18%, with a peak of 51% during summer months. Air mass trajectory analysis and atmospheric nitrogen and sulphur tracers link these frequent nucleation events to biogenic precursors released by open water and melting sea ice regions. The occurrence of such events across a full decade was anti-correlated with sea ice extent. New particles originating from open water and open pack ice increased the cloud condensation nuclei concentration background by at least ca. 20%, supporting a marine biosphere-climate link through sea ice melt and low altitude clouds that may have contributed to accelerate Arctic warming. Our results prompt a better representation of biogenic aerosol sources in Arctic climate models.

  2. Inuit and Scientific Perspectives on the Relationship Between Sea Ice and Climate Change. The Ideal Complement?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Laidler, G.J. [Department of Geography, University of Toronto at Mississauga, 3359 Mississauga Road North, Mississauga, Ontario, L5L 1C6 (Canada)

    2006-10-15

    Sea ice is influential in regulating energy exchanges between the ocean and the atmosphere, and has figured prominently in scientific studies of climate change and climate feedbacks. However, sea ice is also a vital component of everyday life in Inuit communities of the circumpolar Arctic. Therefore, it is important to understand the links between the potential impacts of climate change on Arctic sea ice extent, distribution, and thickness as well as the related consequences for northern coastal populations. This paper explores the relationship between sea ice and climate change from both scientific and Inuit perspectives. Based on an overview of diverse literature the experiences, methods, and goals which differentiate local and scientific sea ice knowledge are examined. These efforts are considered essential background upon which to develop more accurate assessments of community vulnerability to climate, and resulting sea ice, change. Inuit and scientific perspectives may indeed be the ideal complement when investigating the links between sea ice and climate change, but effective and appropriate conceptual bridges need to be built between the two types of expertise. The complementary nature of these knowledge systems may only be realized, in a practical sense, if significant effort is expended to: (1) understand sea ice from both Inuit and scientific perspectives, along with their underlying differences; (2) investigate common interests or concerns; (3) establish meaningful and reciprocal research partnerships with Inuit communities; (4) engage in, and improve, collaborative research methods; and, (5) maintain ongoing dialogue.

  3. Sea ice classification using dual polarization SAR data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huiying, Liu; Huadong, Guo; Lu, Zhang

    2014-01-01

    Sea ice is an indicator of climate change and also a threat to the navigation security of ships. Polarimetric SAR images are useful in the sea ice detection and classification. In this paper, backscattering coefficients and texture features derived from dual polarization SAR images are used for sea ice classification. Firstly, the HH image is recalculated based on the angular dependences of sea ice types. Then the effective gray level co-occurrence matrix (GLCM) texture features are selected for the support vector machine (SVM) classification. In the end, because sea ice concentration can provide a better separation of pancake ice from old ice, it is used to improve the SVM result. This method provides a good classification result, compared with the sea ice chart from CIS

  4. A Quantitative Proxy for Sea-Ice Based on Diatoms: A Cautionary Tale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesterovich, A.; Caissie, B.

    2016-12-01

    Sea ice in the Polar Regions supports unique and productive ecosystems, but the current decline in the Arctic sea ice extent prompts questions about previous sea ice declines and the response of ice related ecosystems. Since satellite data only extend back to 1978, the study of sea ice before this time requires a proxy. Being one of the most productive, diatom-dominated regions in the world and having a wide range of sea ice concentrations, the Bering and Chukchi seas are a perfect place to find a relationship between the presence of sea ice and diatom community composition. The aim of this work is to develop a diatom-based proxy for the sea ice extent. A total of 473 species have been identified in 104 sediment samples, most of which were collected on board the US Coast Guard Cutter Healy ice breaker (2006, 2007) and the Norseman II (2008). The study also included some of the archived diatom smear slides made from sediments collected in 1969. The assemblages were compared to satellite-derived sea ice extent data averaged over the 10 years preceding the sampling. Previous studies in the Arctic and Antarctic regions demonstrated that the Generalized Additive Model (GAM) is one of the best choices for proxy construction. It has the advantage of using only several species instead of the whole assemblage, thus including only sea ice-associated species and minimizing the noise created by species responding to other environmental factors. Our GAM on three species (Connia compita, Fragilariopsis reginae-jahniae, and Neodenticula seminae) has low standard deviation, high level of explained variation, and holds under the ten-fold cross-validation; the standard residual analysis is acceptable. However, a spatial residual analysis revealed that the model consistently over predicts in the Chukchi Sea and under predicts in the Bering Sea. Including a spatial model into the GAM didn't improve the situation. This has led us to test other methods, including a non-parametric model

  5. Ice and AIS: ship speed data and sea ice forecasts in the Baltic Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    U. Löptien

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The Baltic Sea is a seasonally ice-covered marginal sea located in a densely populated area in northern Europe. Severe sea ice conditions have the potential to hinder the intense ship traffic considerably. Thus, sea ice fore- and nowcasts are regularly provided by the national weather services. Typically, the forecast comprises several ice properties that are distributed as prognostic variables, but their actual usefulness is difficult to measure, and the ship captains must determine their relative importance and relevance for optimal ship speed and safety ad hoc. The present study provides a more objective approach by comparing the ship speeds, obtained by the automatic identification system (AIS, with the respective forecasted ice conditions. We find that, despite an unavoidable random component, this information is useful to constrain and rate fore- and nowcasts. More precisely, 62–67% of ship speed variations can be explained by the forecasted ice properties when fitting a mixed-effect model. This statistical fit is based on a test region in the Bothnian Sea during the severe winter 2011 and employs 15 to 25 min averages of ship speed.

  6. Remarkable separability of circulation response to Arctic sea ice loss and greenhouse gas forcing

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCusker, K. E.; Kushner, P. J.; Fyfe, J. C.; Sigmond, M.; Kharin, V. V.; Bitz, C. M.

    2017-08-01

    Arctic sea ice loss may influence midlatitude climate by changing large-scale circulation. The extent to which climate change can be understood as greenhouse gas-induced changes that are modulated by this loss depends on how additive the responses to the separate influences are. A novel sea ice nudging methodology in a fully coupled climate model reveals that the separate effects of doubled atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations and associated Arctic sea ice loss are remarkably additive and insensitive to the mean climate state. This separability is evident in several fields throughout most of the year, from hemispheric to synoptic scales. The extent to which the regional response to sea ice loss sometimes agrees with and sometimes cancels the response to CO2 is quantified. The separability of the responses might provide a means to better interpret the diverse array of modeling and observational studies of Arctic change and influence.

  7. Evidence for middle Eocene Arctic sea ice from diatoms and ice-rafted debris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stickley, Catherine E; St John, Kristen; Koç, Nalân; Jordan, Richard W; Passchier, Sandra; Pearce, Richard B; Kearns, Lance E

    2009-07-16

    Oceanic sediments from long cores drilled on the Lomonosov ridge, in the central Arctic, contain ice-rafted debris (IRD) back to the middle Eocene epoch, prompting recent suggestions that ice appeared in the Arctic about 46 million years (Myr) ago. However, because IRD can be transported by icebergs (derived from land-based ice) and also by sea ice, IRD records are restricted to providing a history of general ice-rafting only. It is critical to differentiate sea ice from glacial (land-based) ice as climate feedback mechanisms vary and global impacts differ between these systems: sea ice directly affects ocean-atmosphere exchanges, whereas land-based ice affects sea level and consequently ocean acidity. An earlier report assumed that sea ice was prevalent in the middle Eocene Arctic on the basis of IRD, and although somewhat preliminary supportive evidence exists, these data are neither comprehensive nor quantified. Here we show the presence of middle Eocene Arctic sea ice from an extraordinary abundance of a group of sea-ice-dependent fossil diatoms (Synedropsis spp.). Analysis of quartz grain textural characteristics further supports sea ice as the dominant transporter of IRD at this time. Together with new information on cosmopolitan diatoms and existing IRD records, our data strongly suggest a two-phase establishment of sea ice: initial episodic formation in marginal shelf areas approximately 47.5 Myr ago, followed approximately 0.5 Myr later by the onset of seasonally paced sea-ice formation in offshore areas of the central Arctic. Our data establish a 2-Myr record of sea ice, documenting the transition from a warm, ice-free environment to one dominated by winter sea ice at the start of the middle Eocene climatic cooling phase.

  8. A network model for electrical transport in sea ice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhu, J.; Golden, K.M.; Gully, A.; Sampson, C.

    2010-01-01

    Monitoring the thickness of sea ice is an important tool in assessing the impact of global warming on Earth's polar regions, and most methods of measuring ice thickness depend on detailed knowledge of its electrical properties. We develop a network model for the electrical conductivity of sea ice, which incorporates statistical measurements of the brine microstructure. The numerical simulations are in close agreement with direct measurements we made in Antarctica on the vertical conductivity of first year sea ice.

  9. Atmospheric Influences on the Anomalous 2016 Antarctic Sea Ice Decay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raphael, M. N.; Schlosser, E.; Haumann, A.

    2017-12-01

    Over the past three decades, a small but significant increase in sea ice extent (SIE) has been observed in the Antarctic. However, in 2016 there was a surprisingly early onset of the melt season. The maximum Antarctic SIE was reached in August rather than end of September, and was followed by a rapid decrease. The decline of the sea ice area (SIA) started even earlier, in July. The retreat of the ice was particularly large in November where Antarctic SIE exhibited a negative anomaly (compared to the 1981-2010 average) of almost 2 Mio. km2, which, combined with reduced Arctic SIE, led to a distinct minimum in global SIE. And, satellite observations show that from November 2016 to February 2017, the daily Antarctic SIE has been at record low levels. We use sea level pressure and geopotential height data from the ECMWF- Interim reanalysis, in conjunction with sea ice data obtained from the National Snow and Ice Data Centre (NSIDC), to investigate possible atmospheric influences on the observed phenomena. Indications are that both the onset of the melt in July and the rapid decrease in SIA and SIE in November were triggered by atmospheric flow patterns related to a positive Zonal Wave 3 index, i.e. synoptic situations leading to strong meridional flow. Additionally the Southern Annular Mode (SAM) index reached its second lowest November value since the beginning of the satellite observations. It is likely that the SIE decrease was preconditioned by SIA decrease. Positive feedback effects led to accelerated melt and consequently to the extraordinary low November SIE.

  10. Tropically driven and externally forced patterns of Antarctic sea ice change: reconciling observed and modeled trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, David P.; Deser, Clara

    2017-09-01

    Recent work suggests that natural variability has played a significant role in the increase of Antarctic sea ice extent during 1979-2013. The ice extent has responded strongly to atmospheric circulation changes, including a deepened Amundsen Sea Low (ASL), which in part has been driven by tropical variability. Nonetheless, this increase has occurred in the context of externally forced climate change, and it has been difficult to reconcile observed and modeled Antarctic sea ice trends. To understand observed-model disparities, this work defines the internally driven and radiatively forced patterns of Antarctic sea ice change and exposes potential model biases using results from two sets of historical experiments of a coupled climate model compared with observations. One ensemble is constrained only by external factors such as greenhouse gases and stratospheric ozone, while the other explicitly accounts for the influence of tropical variability by specifying observed SST anomalies in the eastern tropical Pacific. The latter experiment reproduces the deepening of the ASL, which drives an increase in regional ice extent due to enhanced ice motion and sea surface cooling. However, the overall sea ice trend in every ensemble member of both experiments is characterized by ice loss and is dominated by the forced pattern, as given by the ensemble-mean of the first experiment. This pervasive ice loss is associated with a strong warming of the ocean mixed layer, suggesting that the ocean model does not locally store or export anomalous heat efficiently enough to maintain a surface environment conducive to sea ice expansion. The pervasive upper-ocean warming, not seen in observations, likely reflects ocean mean-state biases.

  11. Tropically driven and externally forced patterns of Antarctic sea ice change: reconciling observed and modeled trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, David P.; Deser, Clara

    2018-06-01

    Recent work suggests that natural variability has played a significant role in the increase of Antarctic sea ice extent during 1979-2013. The ice extent has responded strongly to atmospheric circulation changes, including a deepened Amundsen Sea Low (ASL), which in part has been driven by tropical variability. Nonetheless, this increase has occurred in the context of externally forced climate change, and it has been difficult to reconcile observed and modeled Antarctic sea ice trends. To understand observed-model disparities, this work defines the internally driven and radiatively forced patterns of Antarctic sea ice change and exposes potential model biases using results from two sets of historical experiments of a coupled climate model compared with observations. One ensemble is constrained only by external factors such as greenhouse gases and stratospheric ozone, while the other explicitly accounts for the influence of tropical variability by specifying observed SST anomalies in the eastern tropical Pacific. The latter experiment reproduces the deepening of the ASL, which drives an increase in regional ice extent due to enhanced ice motion and sea surface cooling. However, the overall sea ice trend in every ensemble member of both experiments is characterized by ice loss and is dominated by the forced pattern, as given by the ensemble-mean of the first experiment. This pervasive ice loss is associated with a strong warming of the ocean mixed layer, suggesting that the ocean model does not locally store or export anomalous heat efficiently enough to maintain a surface environment conducive to sea ice expansion. The pervasive upper-ocean warming, not seen in observations, likely reflects ocean mean-state biases.

  12. Observation and modeling of snow melt and superimposed ice formation on sea ice

    OpenAIRE

    Nicolaus, Marcel; Haas, Christian

    2004-01-01

    Sea ice plays a key role within the global climate system. It covers some 7% of earths surface and processes a strong seasonal cycle. Snow on sea ice even amplifies the importance of sea ice in the coupled atmosphere-ice-ocean system, because it dominates surface properties and energy balance (incl. albedo).Several quantitative observations of summer sea ice and its snow cover show the formation of superimposed ice and a gap layer underneath, which was found to be associated to high standing ...

  13. Sensitivity of open-water ice growth and ice concentration evolution in a coupled atmosphere-ocean-sea ice model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Xiaoxu; Lohmann, Gerrit

    2017-09-01

    A coupled atmosphere-ocean-sea ice model is applied to investigate to what degree the area-thickness distribution of new ice formed in open water affects the ice and ocean properties. Two sensitivity experiments are performed which modify the horizontal-to-vertical aspect ratio of open-water ice growth. The resulting changes in the Arctic sea-ice concentration strongly affect the surface albedo, the ocean heat release to the atmosphere, and the sea-ice production. The changes are further amplified through a positive feedback mechanism among the Arctic sea ice, the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), and the surface air temperature in the Arctic, as the Fram Strait sea ice import influences the freshwater budget in the North Atlantic Ocean. Anomalies in sea-ice transport lead to changes in sea surface properties of the North Atlantic and the strength of AMOC. For the Southern Ocean, the most pronounced change is a warming along the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC), owing to the interhemispheric bipolar seasaw linked to AMOC weakening. Another insight of this study lies on the improvement of our climate model. The ocean component FESOM is a newly developed ocean-sea ice model with an unstructured mesh and multi-resolution. We find that the subpolar sea-ice boundary in the Northern Hemisphere can be improved by tuning the process of open-water ice growth, which strongly influences the sea ice concentration in the marginal ice zone, the North Atlantic circulation, salinity and Arctic sea ice volume. Since the distribution of new ice on open water relies on many uncertain parameters and the knowledge of the detailed processes is currently too crude, it is a challenge to implement the processes realistically into models. Based on our sensitivity experiments, we conclude a pronounced uncertainty related to open-water sea ice growth which could significantly affect the climate system sensitivity.

  14. A New Discrete Element Sea-Ice Model for Earth System Modeling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Turner, Adrian Keith [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)

    2017-03-10

    Sea ice forms a frozen crust of sea water oating in high-latitude oceans. It is a critical component of the Earth system because its formation helps to drive the global thermohaline circulation, and its seasonal waxing and waning in the high north and Southern Ocean signi cantly affects planetary albedo. Usually 4{6% of Earth's marine surface is covered by sea ice at any one time, which limits the exchange of heat, momentum, and mass between the atmosphere and ocean in the polar realms. Snow accumulates on sea ice and inhibits its vertical growth, increases its albedo, and contributes to pooled water in melt ponds that darken the Arctic ice surface in the spring. Ice extent and volume are subject to strong seasonal, inter-annual and hemispheric variations, and climatic trends, which Earth System Models (ESMs) are challenged to simulate accurately (Stroeve et al., 2012; Stocker et al., 2013). This is because there are strong coupled feedbacks across the atmosphere-ice-ocean boundary layers, including the ice-albedo feedback, whereby a reduced ice cover leads to increased upper ocean heating, further enhancing sea-ice melt and reducing incident solar radiation re ected back into the atmosphere (Perovich et al., 2008). A reduction in perennial Arctic sea-ice during the satellite era has been implicated in mid-latitude weather changes, including over North America (Overland et al., 2015). Meanwhile, most ESMs have been unable to simulate observed inter-annual variability and trends in Antarctic sea-ice extent during the same period (Gagne et al., 2014).

  15. Ice formation and growth shape bacterial community structure in Baltic Sea drift ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eronen-Rasimus, Eeva; Lyra, Christina; Rintala, Janne-Markus; Jürgens, Klaus; Ikonen, Vilma; Kaartokallio, Hermanni

    2015-02-01

    Drift ice, open water and under-ice water bacterial communities covering several developmental stages from open water to thick ice were studied in the northern Baltic Sea. The bacterial communities were assessed with 16S rRNA gene terminal-restriction fragment length polymorphism and cloning, together with bacterial abundance and production measurements. In the early stages, open water and pancake ice were dominated by Alphaproteobacteria and Actinobacteria, which are common bacterial groups in Baltic Sea wintertime surface waters. The pancake ice bacterial communities were similar to the open-water communities, suggesting that the parent water determines the sea-ice bacterial community in the early stages of sea-ice formation. In consolidated young and thick ice, the bacterial communities were significantly different from water bacterial communities as well as from each other, indicating community development in Baltic Sea drift ice along with ice-type changes. The thick ice was dominated by typical sea-ice genera from classes Flavobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria, similar to those in polar sea-ice bacterial communities. Since the thick ice bacterial community was remarkably different from that of the parent seawater, results indicate that thick ice bacterial communities were recruited from the rarer members of the seawater bacterial community. © FEMS 2014. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. Sea Ice Microorganisms: Environmental Constraints and Extracellular Responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jody W. Deming

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Inherent to sea ice, like other high latitude environments, is the strong seasonality driven by changes in insolation throughout the year. Sea-ice organisms are exposed to shifting, sometimes limiting, conditions of temperature and salinity. An array of adaptations to survive these and other challenges has been acquired by those organisms that inhabit the ice. One key adaptive response is the production of extracellular polymeric substances (EPS, which play multiple roles in the entrapment, retention and survival of microorganisms in sea ice. In this concept paper we consider two main areas of sea-ice microbiology: the physico-chemical properties that define sea ice as a microbial habitat, imparting particular advantages and limits; and extracellular responses elicited in microbial inhabitants as they exploit or survive these conditions. Emphasis is placed on protective strategies used in the face of fluctuating and extreme environmental conditions in sea ice. Gaps in knowledge and testable hypotheses are identified for future research.

  17. Knowledge-based sea ice classification by polarimetric SAR

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skriver, Henning; Dierking, Wolfgang

    2004-01-01

    Polarimetric SAR images acquired at C- and L-band over sea ice in the Greenland Sea, Baltic Sea, and Beaufort Sea have been analysed with respect to their potential for ice type classification. The polarimetric data were gathered by the Danish EMISAR and the US AIRSAR which both are airborne...... systems. A hierarchical classification scheme was chosen for sea ice because our knowledge about magnitudes, variations, and dependences of sea ice signatures can be directly considered. The optimal sequence of classification rules and the rules themselves depend on the ice conditions/regimes. The use...... of the polarimetric phase information improves the classification only in the case of thin ice types but is not necessary for thicker ice (above about 30 cm thickness)...

  18. Local Effects of Ice Floes on Skin Sea Surface Temperature in the Marginal Ice Zone from UAVs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zappa, C. J.; Brown, S.; Emery, W. J.; Adler, J.; Wick, G. A.; Steele, M.; Palo, S. E.; Walker, G.; Maslanik, J. A.

    2013-12-01

    Recent years have seen extreme changes in the Arctic. Particularly striking are changes within the Pacific sector of the Arctic Ocean, and especially in the seas north of the Alaskan coast. These areas have experienced record warming, reduced sea ice extent, and loss of ice in areas that had been ice-covered throughout human memory. Even the oldest and thickest ice types have failed to survive through the summer melt period in areas such as the Beaufort Sea and Canada Basin, and fundamental changes in ocean conditions such as earlier phytoplankton blooms may be underway. Marginal ice zones (MIZ), or areas where the "ice-albedo feedback" driven by solar warming is highest and ice melt is extensive, may provide insights into the extent of these changes. Airborne remote sensing, in particular InfraRed (IR), offers a unique opportunity to observe physical processes at sea-ice margins. It permits monitoring the ice extent and coverage, as well as the ice and ocean temperature variability. It can also be used for derivation of surface flow field allowing investigation of turbulence and mixing at the ice-ocean interface. Here, we present measurements of visible and IR imagery of melting ice floes in the marginal ice zone north of Oliktok Point AK in the Beaufort Sea made during the Marginal Ice Zone Ocean and Ice Observations and Processes EXperiment (MIZOPEX) in July-August 2013. The visible and IR imagery were taken from the unmanned airborne vehicle (UAV) ScanEagle. The visible imagery clearly defines the scale of the ice floes. The IR imagery show distinct cooling of the skin sea surface temperature (SST) as well as a intricate circulation and mixing pattern that depends on the surface current, wind speed, and near-surface vertical temperature/salinity structure. Individual ice floes develop turbulent wakes as they drift and cause transient mixing of an influx of colder surface (fresh) melt water. The upstream side of the ice floe shows the coldest skin SST, and

  19. Seeking an optimal algorithm for a new satellite-based Sea Ice Drift Climate Data Record : Motivations, plans and initial results from the ESA CCI Sea Ice project

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lavergne, T.; Dybkjær, Gorm; Girard-Ardhuin, Fanny

    The Sea Ice Essential Climate Variable (ECV) as defined by GCOS pertains of both sea ice concentration, thickness, and drift. Now in its second phase, the ESA CCI Sea Ice project is conducting the necessary research efforts to address sea ice drift.Accurate estimates of sea ice drift direction an...... in the final product. This contribution reviews the motivation for the work, the plans for sea ice drift algorithms intercomparison and selection, and early results from our activity....

  20. Statistical Modeling of Sea Ice Concentration Using Satellite Imagery and Climate Reanalysis Data in the Barents and Kara Seas, 1979–2012

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jihye Ahn

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Extensive sea ice over Arctic regions is largely involved in heat, moisture, and momentum exchanges between the atmosphere and ocean. Some previous studies have been conducted to develop statistical models for the status of Arctic sea ice and showed considerable possibilities to explain the impacts of climate changes on the sea ice extent. However, the statistical models require improvements to achieve better predictions by incorporating techniques that can deal with temporal variation of the relationships between sea ice concentration and climate factors. In this paper, we describe the statistical approaches by ordinary least squares (OLS regression and a time-series method for modeling sea ice concentration using satellite imagery and climate reanalysis data for the Barents and Kara Seas during 1979–2012. The OLS regression model could summarize the overall climatological characteristics in the relationships between sea ice concentration and climate variables. We also introduced autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA models because the sea ice concentration is such a long-range dataset that the relationships may not be explained by a single equation of the OLS regression. Temporally varying relationships between sea ice concentration and the climate factors such as skin temperature, sea surface temperature, total column liquid water, total column water vapor, instantaneous moisture flux, and low cloud cover were modeled by the ARIMA method, which considerably improved the prediction accuracies. Our method may also be worth consideration when forecasting future sea ice concentration by using the climate data provided by general circulation models (GCM.

  1. Changes in the seasonality of Arctic sea ice and temperature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bintanja, R.

    2012-04-01

    Observations show that the Arctic sea ice cover is currently declining as a result of climate warming. According to climate models, this retreat will continue and possibly accelerate in the near-future. However, the magnitude of this decline is not the same throughout the year. With temperatures near or above the freezing point, summertime Arctic sea ice will quickly diminish. However, at temperatures well below freezing, the sea ice cover during winter will exhibit a much weaker decline. In the future, the sea ice seasonal cycle will be no ice in summer, and thin one-year ice in winter. Hence, the seasonal cycle in sea ice cover will increase with ongoing climate warming. This in itself leads to an increased summer-winter contrast in surface air temperature, because changes in sea ice have a dominant influence on Arctic temperature and its seasonality. Currently, the annual amplitude in air temperature is decreasing, however, because winters warm faster than summer. With ongoing summer sea ice reductions there will come a time when the annual temperature amplitude will increase again because of the large seasonal changes in sea ice. This suggests that changes in the seasonal cycle in Arctic sea ice and temperature are closely, and intricately, connected. Future changes in Arctic seasonality (will) have an profound effect on flora, fauna, humans and economic activities.

  2. Precession and atmospheric CO2 modulated variability of sea ice in the central Okhotsk Sea since 130,000 years ago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lo, Li; Belt, Simon T.; Lattaud, Julie; Friedrich, Tobias; Zeeden, Christian; Schouten, Stefan; Smik, Lukas; Timmermann, Axel; Cabedo-Sanz, Patricia; Huang, Jyh-Jaan; Zhou, Liping; Ou, Tsong-Hua; Chang, Yuan-Pin; Wang, Liang-Chi; Chou, Yu-Min; Shen, Chuan-Chou; Chen, Min-Te; Wei, Kuo-Yen; Song, Sheng-Rong; Fang, Tien-Hsi; Gorbarenko, Sergey A.; Wang, Wei-Lung; Lee, Teh-Quei; Elderfield, Henry; Hodell, David A.

    2018-04-01

    Recent reduction in high-latitude sea ice extent demonstrates that sea ice is highly sensitive to external and internal radiative forcings. In order to better understand sea ice system responses to external orbital forcing and internal oscillations on orbital timescales, here we reconstruct changes in sea ice extent and summer sea surface temperature (SSST) over the past 130,000 yrs in the central Okhotsk Sea. We applied novel organic geochemical proxies of sea ice (IP25), SSST (TEX86L) and open water marine productivity (a tri-unsaturated highly branched isoprenoid and biogenic opal) to marine sediment core MD01-2414 (53°11.77‧N, 149°34.80‧E, water depth 1123 m). To complement the proxy data, we also carried out transient Earth system model simulations and sensitivity tests to identify contributions of different climatic forcing factors. Our results show that the central Okhotsk Sea was ice-free during Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 5e and the early-mid Holocene, but experienced variable sea ice cover during MIS 2-4, consistent with intervals of relatively high and low SSST, respectively. Our data also show that the sea ice extent was governed by precession-dominated insolation changes during intervals of atmospheric CO2 concentrations ranging from 190 to 260 ppm. However, the proxy record and the model simulation data show that the central Okhotsk Sea was near ice-free regardless of insolation forcing throughout the penultimate interglacial, and during the Holocene, when atmospheric CO2 was above ∼260 ppm. Past sea ice conditions in the central Okhotsk Sea were therefore strongly modulated by both orbital-driven insolation and CO2-induced radiative forcing during the past glacial/interglacial cycle.

  3. Temporal dynamics of ikaite in experimental sea ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rysgaard, Søren; Wang, F.; Galley, R.J.

    2014-01-01

    Ikaite (CaCO3·6H2O) is a metastable phase of calcium carbonate that normally forms in a cold environment and/or under high pressure. Recently, ikaite crystals have been found in sea ice, and it has been suggested that their precipitation may play an important role in air–sea CO2 exchange in ice......-covered seas. Little is known, however, of the spatial and temporal dynamics of ikaite in sea ice. Here we present evidence for highly dynamic ikaite precipitation and dissolution in sea ice grown at an outdoor pool of the Sea-ice Environmental Research Facility (SERF) in Manitoba, Canada. During...... the experiment, ikaite precipitated in sea ice when temperatures were below −4 C, creating three distinct zones of ikaite concentrations: (1) a millimeter-to-centimeter-thin surface layer containing frost flowers and brine skim with bulk ikaite concentrations of > 2000 μmol kg−1, (2) an internal layer...

  4. Gypsum crystals observed in experimental and natural sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geilfus, N.-X.; Galley, R. J.; Cooper, M.; Halden, N.; Hare, A.; Wang, F.; Søgaard, D. H.; Rysgaard, S.

    2013-12-01

    gypsum has been predicted to precipitate in sea ice, it has never been observed. Here we provide the first report on gypsum precipitation in both experimental and natural sea ice. Crystals were identified by X-ray diffraction analysis. Based on their apparent distinguishing characteristics, the gypsum crystals were identified as being authigenic. The FREeZing CHEMistry (FREZCHEM) model results support our observations of both gypsum and ikaite precipitation at typical in situ sea ice temperatures and confirms the "Gitterman pathway" where gypsum is predicted to precipitate. The occurrence of authigenic gypsum in sea ice during its formation represents a new observation of precipitate formation and potential marine deposition in polar seas.

  5. Analysis of Arctic Sea ice coverage in 2012 using multi-source scatterometer data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhai, M.

    2013-12-01

    Arctic sea ice extent, regarded as an indicator of climate change, has been declining for the past few decades and reached the lowest ice extent in satellite record during the summer of 2012. Scatterometers can be used in sea ice identification, due to its ability to measure the backscatter characteristics of surface coverage. Thus, daily scatterometer data can be used in Arctic sea ice monitoring. In this paper, we compared the similarity and difference of three different scatterometer datasets, including ASCAT(METOP-A/B Advanced scatterometer) data, OSCAT(Oceansat-2 scatterometer)data and China's HY-2 scatterometer data, and then evaluated their performance in Artic sea ice investigation. We also constructed the sea ice coverage time series in 2012 using different scatterometer data and analyzed its temporal and spatial variation. Preliminary Results show that the maximum extent was set on 19 March, 2012. Cracks started to appear in Arctic sea ice coverage near New Siberian Islands on 18,May. Later, melt process accelerates in July and August. The northeast passage is not open until late August. On 18 September, the extent reached the minimum level and the refreezing process began. The duration of melting season is slightly shorter than the average level over the period of 1978 to 2012(ERS-1/2 scattermeter and Quickscat scatterometer data are used as supplementary records). The record low extent is likely resulted from (1)Arctic dipole pressure pattern, bringing in warm southerly winds and enhancing arctic ice discharge in Fram Strait and (2)relatively warm conditions over the Arctic areas.

  6. The effect of sea ice loss on sea salt aerosol concentrations and the radiative balance in the Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Struthers

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Understanding Arctic climate change requires knowledge of both the external and the local drivers of Arctic climate as well as local feedbacks within the system. An Arctic feedback mechanism relating changes in sea ice extent to an alteration of the emission of sea salt aerosol and the consequent change in radiative balance is examined. A set of idealized climate model simulations were performed to quantify the radiative effects of changes in sea salt aerosol emissions induced by prescribed changes in sea ice extent. The model was forced using sea ice concentrations consistent with present day conditions and projections of sea ice extent for 2100. Sea salt aerosol emissions increase in response to a decrease in sea ice, the model results showing an annual average increase in number emission over the polar cap (70–90° N of 86 × 106 m−2 s−1 (mass emission increase of 23 μg m−2 s−1. This in turn leads to an increase in the natural aerosol optical depth of approximately 23%. In response to changes in aerosol optical depth, the natural component of the aerosol direct forcing over the Arctic polar cap is estimated to be between −0.2 and −0.4 W m−2 for the summer months, which results in a negative feedback on the system. The model predicts that the change in first indirect aerosol effect (cloud albedo effect is approximately a factor of ten greater than the change in direct aerosol forcing although this result is highly uncertain due to the crude representation of Arctic clouds and aerosol-cloud interactions in the model. This study shows that both the natural aerosol direct and first indirect effects are strongly dependent on the surface albedo, highlighting the strong coupling between sea ice, aerosols, Arctic clouds and their radiative effects.

  7. Assessment of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice predictability in CMIP5 decadal hindcasts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C.-Y. Yang

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper examines the ability of coupled global climate models to predict decadal variability of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice. We analyze decadal hindcasts/predictions of 11 Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5 models. Decadal hindcasts exhibit a large multi-model spread in the simulated sea ice extent, with some models deviating significantly from the observations as the predicted ice extent quickly drifts away from the initial constraint. The anomaly correlation analysis between the decadal hindcast and observed sea ice suggests that in the Arctic, for most models, the areas showing significant predictive skill become broader associated with increasing lead times. This area expansion is largely because nearly all the models are capable of predicting the observed decreasing Arctic sea ice cover. Sea ice extent in the North Pacific has better predictive skill than that in the North Atlantic (particularly at a lead time of 3–7 years, but there is a re-emerging predictive skill in the North Atlantic at a lead time of 6–8 years. In contrast to the Arctic, Antarctic sea ice decadal hindcasts do not show broad predictive skill at any timescales, and there is no obvious improvement linking the areal extent of significant predictive skill to lead time increase. This might be because nearly all the models predict a retreating Antarctic sea ice cover, opposite to the observations. For the Arctic, the predictive skill of the multi-model ensemble mean outperforms most models and the persistence prediction at longer timescales, which is not the case for the Antarctic. Overall, for the Arctic, initialized decadal hindcasts show improved predictive skill compared to uninitialized simulations, although this improvement is not present in the Antarctic.

  8. Estimates of ikaite export from sea ice to the underlying seawater in a sea ice-seawater mesocosm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geilfus, Nicolas-Xavier; Galley, Ryan J.; Else, Brent G. T.; Campbell, Karley; Papakyriakou, Tim; Crabeck, Odile; Lemes, Marcos; Delille, Bruno; Rysgaard, Søren

    2016-09-01

    The precipitation of ikaite and its fate within sea ice is still poorly understood. We quantify temporal inorganic carbon dynamics in sea ice from initial formation to its melt in a sea ice-seawater mesocosm pool from 11 to 29 January 2013. Based on measurements of total alkalinity (TA) and total dissolved inorganic carbon (TCO2), the main processes affecting inorganic carbon dynamics within sea ice were ikaite precipitation and CO2 exchange with the atmosphere. In the underlying seawater, the dissolution of ikaite was the main process affecting inorganic carbon dynamics. Sea ice acted as an active layer, releasing CO2 to the atmosphere during the growth phase, taking up CO2 as it melted and exporting both ikaite and TCO2 into the underlying seawater during the whole experiment. Ikaite precipitation of up to 167 µmol kg-1 within sea ice was estimated, while its export and dissolution into the underlying seawater was responsible for a TA increase of 64-66 µmol kg-1 in the water column. The export of TCO2 from sea ice to the water column increased the underlying seawater TCO2 by 43.5 µmol kg-1, suggesting that almost all of the TCO2 that left the sea ice was exported to the underlying seawater. The export of ikaite from the ice to the underlying seawater was associated with brine rejection during sea ice growth, increased vertical connectivity in sea ice due to the upward percolation of seawater and meltwater flushing during sea ice melt. Based on the change in TA in the water column around the onset of sea ice melt, more than half of the total ikaite precipitated in the ice during sea ice growth was still contained in the ice when the sea ice began to melt. Ikaite crystal dissolution in the water column kept the seawater pCO2 undersaturated with respect to the atmosphere in spite of increased salinity, TA and TCO2 associated with sea ice growth. Results indicate that ikaite export from sea ice and its dissolution in the underlying seawater can potentially hamper

  9. Optical properties of melting first-year Arctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Light, Bonnie; Perovich, Donald K.; Webster, Melinda A.; Polashenski, Christopher; Dadic, Ruzica

    2015-11-01

    The albedo and transmittance of melting, first-year Arctic sea ice were measured during two cruises of the Impacts of Climate on the Eco-Systems and Chemistry of the Arctic Pacific Environment (ICESCAPE) project during the summers of 2010 and 2011. Spectral measurements were made for both bare and ponded ice types at a total of 19 ice stations in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas. These data, along with irradiance profiles taken within boreholes, laboratory measurements of the optical properties of core samples, ice physical property observations, and radiative transfer model simulations are employed to describe representative optical properties for melting first-year Arctic sea ice. Ponded ice was found to transmit roughly 4.4 times more total energy into the ocean, relative to nearby bare ice. The ubiquitous surface-scattering layer and drained layer present on bare, melting sea ice are responsible for its relatively high albedo and relatively low transmittance. Light transmittance through ponded ice depends on the physical thickness of the ice and the magnitude of the scattering coefficient in the ice interior. Bare ice reflects nearly three-quarters of the incident sunlight, enhancing its resiliency to absorption by solar insolation. In contrast, ponded ice absorbs or transmits to the ocean more than three-quarters of the incident sunlight. Characterization of the heat balance of a summertime ice cover is largely dictated by its pond coverage, and light transmittance through ponded ice shows strong contrast between first-year and multiyear Arctic ice covers.

  10. Sea ice roughness: the key for predicting Arctic summer ice albedo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landy, J.; Ehn, J. K.; Tsamados, M.; Stroeve, J.; Barber, D. G.

    2017-12-01

    Although melt ponds on Arctic sea ice evolve in stages, ice with smoother surface topography typically allows the pond water to spread over a wider area, reducing the ice-albedo and accelerating further melt. Building on this theory, we simulated the distribution of meltwater on a range of statistically-derived topographies to develop a quantitative relationship between premelt sea ice surface roughness and summer ice albedo. Our method, previously applied to ICESat observations of the end-of-winter sea ice roughness, could account for 85% of the variance in AVHRR observations of the summer ice-albedo [Landy et al., 2015]. Consequently, an Arctic-wide reduction in sea ice roughness over the ICESat operational period (from 2003 to 2008) explained a drop in ice-albedo that resulted in a 16% increase in solar heat input to the sea ice cover. Here we will review this work and present new research linking pre-melt sea ice surface roughness observations from Cryosat-2 to summer sea ice albedo over the past six years, examining the potential of winter roughness as a significant new source of sea ice predictability. We will further evaluate the possibility for high-resolution (kilometre-scale) forecasts of summer sea ice albedo from waveform-level Cryosat-2 roughness data in the landfast sea ice zone of the Canadian Arctic. Landy, J. C., J. K. Ehn, and D. G. Barber (2015), Albedo feedback enhanced by smoother Arctic sea ice, Geophys. Res. Lett., 42, 10,714-10,720, doi:10.1002/2015GL066712.

  11. Impacts of projected sea ice changes on trans-Arctic navigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephenson, S. R.; Smith, L. C.

    2012-12-01

    Reduced Arctic sea ice continues to be a palpable signal of global change. Record lows in September sea ice extent from 2007 - 2011 have fueled speculation that trans-Arctic navigation routes may become physically viable in the 21st century. General Circulation Models project a nearly ice-free Arctic Ocean in summer by mid-century; however, how reduced sea ice will realistically impact navigation is not well understood. Using the ATAM (Arctic Transportation Accessibility Model) we present simulations of 21st-century trans-Arctic voyages as a function of climatic (ice) conditions and vessel class. Simulations are based on sea ice projections for three climatic forcing scenarios (RCP 4.5, 6.0, and 8.5 W/m^2) representing present-day and mid-century conditions, assuming Polar Class 6 (PC6) and open-water vessels (OW) with medium and no ice-breaking capability, respectively. Optimal least-cost routes (minimizing travel time while avoiding ice impassible to a given vessel class) between the North Atlantic and the Bering Strait were calculated for summer months of each time window. While Arctic navigation depends on other factors besides sea ice including economics, infrastructure, bathymetry, current, and weather, these projections should be useful for strategic planning by governments, regulatory and environmental agencies, and the global maritime industry to assess potential changes in the spatial and temporal ranges of Arctic marine operations.

  12. Calibration of sea ice dynamic parameters in an ocean-sea ice model using an ensemble Kalman filter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massonnet, F.; Goosse, H.; Fichefet, T.; Counillon, F.

    2014-07-01

    The choice of parameter values is crucial in the course of sea ice model development, since parameters largely affect the modeled mean sea ice state. Manual tuning of parameters will soon become impractical, as sea ice models will likely include more parameters to calibrate, leading to an exponential increase of the number of possible combinations to test. Objective and automatic methods for parameter calibration are thus progressively called on to replace the traditional heuristic, "trial-and-error" recipes. Here a method for calibration of parameters based on the ensemble Kalman filter is implemented, tested and validated in the ocean-sea ice model NEMO-LIM3. Three dynamic parameters are calibrated: the ice strength parameter P*, the ocean-sea ice drag parameter Cw, and the atmosphere-sea ice drag parameter Ca. In twin, perfect-model experiments, the default parameter values are retrieved within 1 year of simulation. Using 2007-2012 real sea ice drift data, the calibration of the ice strength parameter P* and the oceanic drag parameter Cw improves clearly the Arctic sea ice drift properties. It is found that the estimation of the atmospheric drag Ca is not necessary if P* and Cw are already estimated. The large reduction in the sea ice speed bias with calibrated parameters comes with a slight overestimation of the winter sea ice areal export through Fram Strait and a slight improvement in the sea ice thickness distribution. Overall, the estimation of parameters with the ensemble Kalman filter represents an encouraging alternative to manual tuning for ocean-sea ice models.

  13. Mapping Arctic Bottomfast Sea Ice Using SAR Interferometry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dyre O. Dammann

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Bottomfast sea ice is an integral part of many near-coastal Arctic ecosystems with implications for subsea permafrost, coastal stability and morphology. Bottomfast sea ice is also of great relevance to over-ice travel by coastal communities, industrial ice roads, and marine habitats. There are currently large uncertainties around where and how much bottomfast ice is present in the Arctic due to the lack of effective approaches for detecting bottomfast sea ice on large spatial scales. Here, we suggest a robust method capable of detecting bottomfast sea ice using spaceborne synthetic aperture radar interferometry. This approach is used to discriminate between slowly deforming floating ice and completely stationary bottomfast ice based on the interferometric phase. We validate the approach over freshwater ice in the Mackenzie Delta, Canada, and over sea ice in the Colville Delta and Elson Lagoon, Alaska. For these areas, bottomfast ice, as interpreted from the interferometric phase, shows high correlation with local bathymetry and in-situ ice auger and ground penetrating radar measurements. The technique is further used to track the seasonal evolution of bottomfast ice in the Kasegaluk Lagoon, Alaska, by identifying freeze-up progression and areas of liquid water throughout winter.

  14. Arctic Landfast Sea Ice 1953-1998, Version 1

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The files in this data set contain landfast sea ice data (monthly means) gathered from both Russian Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (AARI) and Canadian Ice...

  15. ICESat Observations of Seasonal and Interannual Variations of Sea-Ice Freeboard and Estimated Thickness in the Weddell Sea, Antarctica (2003-2009)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yi, Donghui; Robbins, John W.

    2010-01-01

    Sea-ice freeboard heights for 17 ICESat campaign periods from 2003 to 2009 are derived from ICESat data. Freeboard is combined with snow depth from Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) data and nominal densities of snow, water and sea ice, to estimate sea-ice thickness. Sea-ice freeboard and thickness distributions show clear seasonal variations that reflect the yearly cycle of growth and decay of the Weddell Sea (Antarctica) pack ice. During October-November, sea ice grows to its seasonal maximum both in area and thickness; the mean freeboards are 0.33-0.41 m and the mean thicknesses are 2.10-2.59 m. During February-March, thinner sea ice melts away and the sea-ice pack is mainly distributed in the west Weddell Sea; the mean freeboards are 0.35-0.46 m and the mean thicknesses are 1.48-1.94 m. During May-June, the mean freeboards and thicknesses are 0.26-0.29 m and 1.32-1.37 m, respectively. The 6 year trends in sea-ice extent and volume are (0.023+/-0.051) x 10(exp 6)sq km/a (0.45%/a) and (0.007+/-1.0.092) x 10(exp 3)cu km/a (0.08%/a); however, the large standard deviations indicate that these positive trends are not statistically significant.

  16. The relationship between sea ice bacterial community structure and biogeochemistry: A synthesis of current knowledge and known unknowns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeff S. Bowman

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Sea ice plays an important role in high latitude biogeochemical cycles, ecosystems, and climate. A complete understanding of how sea ice biogeochemistry contributes to these processes must take into account the metabolic functions of the sea ice bacterial community. While the roles of sea ice bacteria in the carbon cycle and sea ice microbial loop are evidenced by high rates of bacterial production (BP, their metabolic diversity extends far beyond heterotrophy, and their functionality encompasses much more than carbon turnover. Work over the last three decades has identified an active role for sea ice bacteria in phosphate and nitrogen cycling, mutualistic partnerships with ice algae, and even prokaryotic carbon fixation. To better understand the role of sea ice bacteria in the carbon cycle the existing sea ice BP and primary production data were synthesized. BP in sea ice was poorly correlated with primary production, but had a strong, variable relationship with chlorophyll a, with a positive correlation below 50 mg chlorophyll a m-3 and a negative correlation above this value. These results concur with previous work suggesting that BP can be inhibited by grazing or the production of bacteriostatic compounds. To extend existing observations and predictions of other community functions a metabolic inference technique was used on the available 16S rRNA gene data. This analysis provided taxonomic support for some observed metabolic processes, as well as underexplored processes such as sulfur oxidation and nitrogen fixation. The decreasing spatial and temporal extent of sea ice, and altered timing of ice formation and melt, are likely to impact the structure and function of sea ice bacterial communities. An adequate modeling framework and studies that can resolve the functional dynamics of the sea ice bacterial community, such as community gene expression studies, are urgently needed to predict future change.

  17. New Visualizations Highlight New Information on the Contrasting Arctic and Antarctic Sea-Ice Trends Since the Late 1970s

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, Claire L.; DiGirolamo, Nicolo E.

    2016-01-01

    Month-by-month ranking of 37 years (1979-2015) of satellite-derived sea-ice extents in the Arctic and Antarctic reveals interesting new details in the overall trends toward decreasing sea-ice coverage in the Arctic and increasing sea-ice coverage in the Antarctic. The Arctic decreases are so definitive that there has not been a monthly record high in Arctic sea-ice extents in any month since 1986, a time period during which there have been 75 monthly record lows. The Antarctic, with the opposite but weaker trend toward increased ice extents, experienced monthly record lows in 5 months of 1986, then 6 later monthly record lows scattered through the dataset, with the last two occurring in 2006, versus 45 record highs since 1986. However, in the last three years of the 1979-2015 dataset, the downward trends in Arctic sea-ice extents eased up, with no new record lows in any month of 2013 or 2014 and only one record low in 2015,while the upward trends in Antarctic ice extents notably strengthened, with new record high ice extents in 4 months (August-November) of 2013, in 6 months (April- September) of 2014, and in 3 months (January, April, and May) of 2015. Globally, there have been only 3 monthly record highs since 1986 (only one since 1988), whereas there have been 43 record lows, although the last record lows (in the 1979-2015 dataset) occurred in 2012.

  18. A network model for characterizing brine channels in sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lieblappen, Ross M.; Kumar, Deip D.; Pauls, Scott D.; Obbard, Rachel W.

    2018-03-01

    The brine pore space in sea ice can form complex connected structures whose geometry is critical in the governance of important physical transport processes between the ocean, sea ice, and surface. Recent advances in three-dimensional imaging using X-ray micro-computed tomography have enabled the visualization and quantification of the brine network morphology and variability. Using imaging of first-year sea ice samples at in situ temperatures, we create a new mathematical network model to characterize the topology and connectivity of the brine channels. This model provides a statistical framework where we can characterize the pore networks via two parameters, depth and temperature, for use in dynamical sea ice models. Our approach advances the quantification of brine connectivity in sea ice, which can help investigations of bulk physical properties, such as fluid permeability, that are key in both global and regional sea ice models.

  19. How robust is the atmospheric circulation response to Arctic sea-ice loss in isolation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kushner, P. J.; Hay, S. E.; Blackport, R.; McCusker, K. E.; Oudar, T.

    2017-12-01

    . Less robust is the part of the response that scales with low-latitude warming, which, depending on the model, can reinforce or cancel the response to sea-ice loss. The extent to which a "tug of war" exists between tropical and high-latitude influences on the general circulation might thus be model dependent.

  20. Arctic sea ice concentration observed with SMOS during summer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabarro, Carolina; Martinez, Justino; Turiel, Antonio

    2017-04-01

    The Arctic Ocean is under profound transformation. Observations and model predictions show dramatic decline in sea ice extent and volume [1]. A retreating Arctic ice cover has a marked impact on regional and global climate, and vice versa, through a large number of feedback mechanisms and interactions with the climate system [2]. The launch of the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission, in 2009, marked the dawn of a new type of space-based microwave observations. Although the mission was originally conceived for hydrological and oceanographic studies [3,4], SMOS is also making inroads in the cryospheric sciences by measuring the thin ice thickness [5,6]. SMOS carries an L-band (1.4 GHz), passive interferometric radiometer (the so-called MIRAS) that measures the electromagnetic radiation emitted by the Earth's surface, at about 50 km spatial resolution, continuous multi-angle viewing, large wide swath (1200-km), and with a 3-day revisit time at the equator, but more frequently at the poles. A novel radiometric method to determine sea ice concentration (SIC) from SMOS is presented. The method uses the Bayesian-based Maximum Likelihood Estimation (MLE) approach to retrieve SIC. The advantage of this approach with respect to the classical linear inversion is that the former takes into account the uncertainty of the tie-point measured data in addition to the mean value, while the latter only uses a mean value of the tie-point data. When thin ice is present, the SMOS algorithm underestimates the SIC due to the low opacity of the ice at this frequency. However, using a synergistic approach with data from other satellite sensors, it is possible to obtain accurate thin ice thickness estimations with the Bayesian-based method. Despite its lower spatial resolution relative to SSMI or AMSR-E, SMOS-derived SIC products are little affected by the atmosphere and the snow (almost transparent at L-band). Moreover L-band measurements are more robust in front of the

  1. What About Sea Ice? People, animals, and climate change in the polar regions: An online resource for the International Polar Year and beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renfrow, S.; Meier, W. N.; Wolfe, J.; Scott, D.; Leon, A.; Weaver, R.

    2005-12-01

    Decreasing Arctic sea ice has been one of the most noticeable changes on Earth over the past quarter-century. The years 2002 through 2005 have had much lower summer sea ice extents than the long-term (1979-2000). Reduced sea ice extent has a direct impact on Arctic wildlife and people, as well as ramifications for regional and global climate. Students, educators, and the general public want and need to have a better understanding of sea ice. Most of us are unfamiliar with sea ice: what it is, where it occurs, and how it affects global climate. The upcoming International Polar Year will provide an opportunity for the public to learn about sea ice. Here, we provide an overview of sea ice, the changes that the sea ice is undergoing, and information about the relation between sea ice and climate. The information presented here is condensed from the National Snow and Ice Data Center's new 'All About Sea Ice' Web site (http://www.nsidc.org/seaice/), a comprehensive resource of information for sea ice.

  2. Sea-ice indicators of polar bear habitat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. L. Stern

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Nineteen subpopulations of polar bears (Ursus maritimus are found throughout the circumpolar Arctic, and in all regions they depend on sea ice as a platform for traveling, hunting, and breeding. Therefore polar bear phenology – the cycle of biological events – is linked to the timing of sea-ice retreat in spring and advance in fall. We analyzed the dates of sea-ice retreat and advance in all 19 polar bear subpopulation regions from 1979 to 2014, using daily sea-ice concentration data from satellite passive microwave instruments. We define the dates of sea-ice retreat and advance in a region as the dates when the area of sea ice drops below a certain threshold (retreat on its way to the summer minimum or rises above the threshold (advance on its way to the winter maximum. The threshold is chosen to be halfway between the historical (1979–2014 mean September and mean March sea-ice areas. In all 19 regions there is a trend toward earlier sea-ice retreat and later sea-ice advance. Trends generally range from −3 to −9 days decade−1 in spring and from +3 to +9 days decade−1 in fall, with larger trends in the Barents Sea and central Arctic Basin. The trends are not sensitive to the threshold. We also calculated the number of days per year that the sea-ice area exceeded the threshold (termed ice-covered days and the average sea-ice concentration from 1 June through 31 October. The number of ice-covered days is declining in all regions at the rate of −7 to −19 days decade−1, with larger trends in the Barents Sea and central Arctic Basin. The June–October sea-ice concentration is declining in all regions at rates ranging from −1 to −9 percent decade−1. These sea-ice metrics (or indicators of habitat change were designed to be useful for management agencies and for comparative purposes among subpopulations. We recommend that the National Climate Assessment include the timing of sea-ice retreat and advance in

  3. Sea-ice indicators of polar bear habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Harry L.; Laidre, Kristin L.

    2016-09-01

    Nineteen subpopulations of polar bears (Ursus maritimus) are found throughout the circumpolar Arctic, and in all regions they depend on sea ice as a platform for traveling, hunting, and breeding. Therefore polar bear phenology - the cycle of biological events - is linked to the timing of sea-ice retreat in spring and advance in fall. We analyzed the dates of sea-ice retreat and advance in all 19 polar bear subpopulation regions from 1979 to 2014, using daily sea-ice concentration data from satellite passive microwave instruments. We define the dates of sea-ice retreat and advance in a region as the dates when the area of sea ice drops below a certain threshold (retreat) on its way to the summer minimum or rises above the threshold (advance) on its way to the winter maximum. The threshold is chosen to be halfway between the historical (1979-2014) mean September and mean March sea-ice areas. In all 19 regions there is a trend toward earlier sea-ice retreat and later sea-ice advance. Trends generally range from -3 to -9 days decade-1 in spring and from +3 to +9 days decade-1 in fall, with larger trends in the Barents Sea and central Arctic Basin. The trends are not sensitive to the threshold. We also calculated the number of days per year that the sea-ice area exceeded the threshold (termed ice-covered days) and the average sea-ice concentration from 1 June through 31 October. The number of ice-covered days is declining in all regions at the rate of -7 to -19 days decade-1, with larger trends in the Barents Sea and central Arctic Basin. The June-October sea-ice concentration is declining in all regions at rates ranging from -1 to -9 percent decade-1. These sea-ice metrics (or indicators of habitat change) were designed to be useful for management agencies and for comparative purposes among subpopulations. We recommend that the National Climate Assessment include the timing of sea-ice retreat and advance in future reports.

  4. Synthesis of User Needs for Arctic Sea Ice Predictions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiggins, H. V.; Turner-Bogren, E. J.; Sheffield Guy, L.

    2017-12-01

    Forecasting Arctic sea ice on sub-seasonal to seasonal scales in a changing Arctic is of interest to a diverse range of stakeholders. However, sea ice forecasting is still challenging due to high variability in weather and ocean conditions and limits to prediction capabilities; the science needs for observations and modeling are extensive. At a time of challenged science funding, one way to prioritize sea ice prediction efforts is to examine the information needs of various stakeholder groups. This poster will present a summary and synthesis of existing surveys, reports, and other literature that examines user needs for sea ice predictions. The synthesis will include lessons learned from the Sea Ice Prediction Network (a collaborative, multi-agency-funded project focused on seasonal Arctic sea ice predictions), the Sea Ice for Walrus Outlook (a resource for Alaska Native subsistence hunters and coastal communities, that provides reports on weather and sea ice conditions), and other efforts. The poster will specifically compare the scales and variables of sea ice forecasts currently available, as compared to what information is requested by various user groups.

  5. Record Low Sea-Ice Concentration in the Central Arctic during Summer 2010

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jinping ZHAO; David BARBER; Shugang ZHANG; Qinghua YANG; Xiaoyu WANG; Hongjie XIE

    2018-01-01

    The Arctic sea-ice extent has shown a declining trend over the past 30 years.Ice coverage reached historic minima in 2007 and again in 2012.This trend has recently been assessed to be unique over at least the last 1450 years.In the summer of 2010,a very low sea-ice concentration (SIC) appeared at high Arctic latitudes—even lower than that of surrounding pack ice at lower latitudes.This striking low ice concentration—referred to here as a record low ice concentration in the central Arctic (CARLIC)—is unique in our analysis period of 2003-15,and has not been previously reported in the literature.The CARLIC was not the result of ice melt,because sea ice was still quite thick based on in-situ ice thickness measurements.Instead,divergent ice drift appears to have been responsible for the CARLIC.A high correlation between SIC and wind stress curl suggests that the sea ice drift during the summer of 2010 responded strongly to the regional wind forcing.The drift trajectories of ice buoys exhibited a transpolar drift in the Atlantic sector and an eastward drift in the Pacific sector,which appeared to benefit the CARLIC in 2010.Under these conditions,more solar energy can penetrate into the open water,increasing melt through increased heat flux to the ocean.We speculate that this divergence of sea ice could occur more often in the coming decades,and impact on hemispheric SIC and feed back to the climate.

  6. Ice Draft and Ice Velocity Data in the Beaufort Sea, 1990-2003

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set provides measurement of sea ice draft (m) and the movement of sea ice (cm/s) over the continental shelf of the Eastern Beaufort Sea. The data set spans...

  7. Nonlinear threshold behavior during the loss of Arctic sea ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisenman, I; Wettlaufer, J S

    2009-01-06

    In light of the rapid recent retreat of Arctic sea ice, a number of studies have discussed the possibility of a critical threshold (or "tipping point") beyond which the ice-albedo feedback causes the ice cover to melt away in an irreversible process. The focus has typically been centered on the annual minimum (September) ice cover, which is often seen as particularly susceptible to destabilization by the ice-albedo feedback. Here, we examine the central physical processes associated with the transition from ice-covered to ice-free Arctic Ocean conditions. We show that although the ice-albedo feedback promotes the existence of multiple ice-cover states, the stabilizing thermodynamic effects of sea ice mitigate this when the Arctic Ocean is ice covered during a sufficiently large fraction of the year. These results suggest that critical threshold behavior is unlikely during the approach from current perennial sea-ice conditions to seasonally ice-free conditions. In a further warmed climate, however, we find that a critical threshold associated with the sudden loss of the remaining wintertime-only sea ice cover may be likely.

  8. Trends in Arctic Sea Ice Volume 2010-2013 from CryoSat-2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tilling, R.; Ridout, A.; Wingham, D.; Shepherd, A.; Haas, C.; Farrell, S. L.; Schweiger, A. J.; Zhang, J.; Giles, K.; Laxon, S.

    2013-12-01

    Satellite records show a decline in Arctic sea ice extent over the past three decades with a record minimum in September 2012, and results from the Pan-Arctic Ice-Ocean Modelling and Assimilation System (PIOMAS) suggest that this has been accompanied by a reduction in volume. We use three years of measurements recorded by the European Space Agency CryoSat-2 (CS-2) mission, validated with in situ data, to generate estimates of seasonal variations and inter-annual trends in Arctic sea ice volume between 2010 and 2013. The CS-2 estimates of sea ice thickness agree with in situ estimates derived from upward looking sonar measurements of ice draught and airborne measurements of ice thickness and freeboard to within 0.1 metres. Prior to the record minimum in summer 2012, autumn and winter Arctic sea ice volume had fallen by ~1300 km3 relative to the previous year. Using the full 3-year period of CS-2 observations, we estimate that winter Arctic sea ice volume has decreased by ~700 km3/yr since 2010, approximately twice the average rate since 1980 as predicted by the PIOMAS.

  9. Influence of winter sea-ice motion on summer ice cover in the Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noriaki Kimura

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Summer sea-ice cover in the Arctic varies largely from year to year owing to several factors. This study examines one such factor, the relationship between interannual difference in winter ice motion and ice area in the following summer. A daily-ice velocity product on a 37.5-km resolution grid is prepared using the satellite passive microwave sensor Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer—Earth Observing System data for the nine years of 2003–2011. Derived daily-ice motion reveals the dynamic modification of the winter ice cover. The winter ice divergence/convergence is strongly related to the summer ice cover in some regions; the correlation coefficient between the winter ice convergence and summer ice area ranges between 0.5 and 0.9 in areas with high interannual variability. This relation implies that the winter ice redistribution controls the spring ice thickness and the summer ice cover.

  10. National Ice Center Arctic Sea Ice Charts and Climatologies in Gridded Format

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The U.S. National Ice Center (NIC) is an inter-agency sea ice analysis and forecasting center comprised of the Department of Commerce/NOAA, the Department of...

  11. Analysis of Sea Ice Cover Sensitivity in Global Climate Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. P. Parhomenko

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents joint calculations using a 3D atmospheric general circulation model, an ocean model, and a sea ice evolution model. The purpose of the work is to analyze a seasonal and annual evolution of sea ice, long-term variability of a model ice cover, and its sensitivity to some parameters of model as well to define atmosphere-ice-ocean interaction.Results of 100 years simulations of Arctic basin sea ice evolution are analyzed. There are significant (about 0.5 m inter-annual fluctuations of an ice cover.The ice - atmosphere sensible heat flux reduced by 10% leads to the growth of average sea ice thickness within the limits of 0.05 m – 0.1 m. However in separate spatial points the thickness decreases up to 0.5 m. An analysis of the seasonably changing average ice thickness with decreasing, as compared to the basic variant by 0.05 of clear sea ice albedo and that of snow shows the ice thickness reduction in a range from 0.2 m up to 0.6 m, and the change maximum falls for the summer season of intensive melting. The spatial distribution of ice thickness changes shows, that on the large part of the Arctic Ocean there was a reduction of ice thickness down to 1 m. However, there is also an area of some increase of the ice layer basically in a range up to 0.2 m (Beaufort Sea. The 0.05 decrease of sea ice snow albedo leads to reduction of average ice thickness approximately by 0.2 m, and this value slightly depends on a season. In the following experiment the ocean – ice thermal interaction influence on the ice cover is estimated. It is carried out by increase of a heat flux from ocean to the bottom surface of sea ice by 2 W/sq. m in comparison with base variant. The analysis demonstrates, that the average ice thickness reduces in a range from 0.2 m to 0.35 m. There are small seasonal changes of this value.The numerical experiments results have shown, that an ice cover and its seasonal evolution rather strongly depend on varied parameters

  12. Estimation of Melt Ponds over Arctic Sea Ice using MODIS Surface Reflectance Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Y.; Cheng, X.; Liu, J.

    2017-12-01

    Melt ponds over Arctic sea ice is one of the main factors affecting variability of surface albedo, increasing absorption of solar radiation and further melting of snow and ice. In recent years, a large number of melt ponds have been observed during the melt season in Arctic. Moreover, some studies have suggested that late spring to mid summer melt ponds information promises to improve the prediction skill of seasonal Arctic sea ice minimum. In the study, we extract the melt pond fraction over Arctic sea ice since 2000 using three bands MODIS weekly surface reflectance data by considering the difference of spectral reflectance in ponds, ice and open water. The preliminary comparison shows our derived Arctic-wide melt ponds are in good agreement with that derived by the University of Hamburg, especially at the pond distribution. We analyze seasonal evolution, interannual variability and trend of the melt ponds, as well as the changes of onset and re-freezing. The melt pond fraction shows an asymmetrical growth and decay pattern. The observed melt ponds fraction is almost within 25% in early May and increases rapidly in June and July with a high fraction of more than 40% in the east of Greenland and Beaufort Sea. A significant increasing trend in the melt pond fraction is observed for the period of 2000-2017. The relationship between melt pond fraction and sea ice extent will be also discussed. Key Words: melt ponds, sea ice, Arctic

  13. SEDNA: Sea ice Experiment - Dynamic Nature of the Arctic

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Sea Ice Experiment - Dynamic Nature of the Arctic (SEDNA) is an international collaborative effort to improve the understanding of the interaction between sea...

  14. Controls on Arctic sea ice from first-year and multi-year ice survival rates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armour, K.; Bitz, C. M.; Hunke, E. C.; Thompson, L.

    2009-12-01

    The recent decrease in Arctic sea ice cover has transpired with a significant loss of multi-year (MY) ice. The transition to an Arctic that is populated by thinner first-year (FY) sea ice has important implications for future trends in area and volume. We develop a reduced model for Arctic sea ice with which we investigate how the survivability of FY and MY ice control various aspects of the sea-ice system. We demonstrate that Arctic sea-ice area and volume behave approximately as first-order autoregressive processes, which allows for a simple interpretation of September sea-ice in which its mean state, variability, and sensitivity to climate forcing can be described naturally in terms of the average survival rates of FY and MY ice. This model, used in concert with a sea-ice simulation that traces FY and MY ice areas to estimate the survival rates, reveals that small trends in the ice survival rates explain the decline in total Arctic ice area, and the relatively larger loss of MY ice area, over the period 1979-2006. Additionally, our model allows for a calculation of the persistence time scales of September area and volume anomalies. A relatively short memory time scale for ice area (~ 1 year) implies that Arctic ice area is nearly in equilibrium with long-term climate forcing at all times, and therefore observed trends in area are a clear indication of a changing climate. A longer memory time scale for ice volume (~ 5 years) suggests that volume can be out of equilibrium with climate forcing for long periods of time, and therefore trends in ice volume are difficult to distinguish from its natural variability. With our reduced model, we demonstrate the connection between memory time scale and sensitivity to climate forcing, and discuss the implications that a changing memory time scale has on the trajectory of ice area and volume in a warming climate. Our findings indicate that it is unlikely that a “tipping point” in September ice area and volume will be

  15. Calcium carbonate as ikaite crystals in Antarctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dieckmann, Gerhard S.; Nehrke, Gernot; Papadimitriou, Stathys; Göttlicher, Jörg; Steininger, Ralph; Kennedy, Hilary; Wolf-Gladrow, Dieter; Thomas, David N.

    2008-04-01

    We report on the discovery of the mineral ikaite (CaCO3.6H2O) in sea-ice from the Southern Ocean. The precipitation of CaCO3 during the freezing of seawater has previously been predicted from thermodynamic modelling, indirect measurements, and has been documented in artificial sea ice during laboratory experiments but has not been reported for natural sea-ice. It is assumed that CaCO3 formation in sea ice may be important for a sea ice-driven carbon pump in ice-covered oceanic waters. Without direct evidence of CaCO3 precipitation in sea ice, its role in this and other processes has remained speculative. The discovery of CaCO3.6H2O crystals in natural sea ice provides the necessary evidence for the evaluation of previous assumptions and lays the foundation for further studies to help elucidate the role of ikaite in the carbon cycle of the seasonally sea ice-covered regions

  16. Sea-ice thickness from field measurements in the northwestern Barents Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Jennifer; Spreen, Gunnar; Gerland, Sebastian; Haas, Christian; Hendricks, Stefan; Kaleschke, Lars; Wang, Caixin

    2017-02-01

    The Barents Sea is one of the fastest changing regions of the Arctic, and has experienced the strongest decline in winter-time sea-ice area in the Arctic, at -23±4% decade-1. Sea-ice thickness in the Barents Sea is not well studied. We present two previously unpublished helicopter-borne electromagnetic (HEM) ice thickness measurements from the northwestern Barents Sea acquired in March 2003 and 2014. The HEM data are compared to ice thickness calculated from ice draft measured by ULS deployed between 1994 and 1996. These data show that ice thickness varies greatly from year to year; influenced by the thermodynamic and dynamic processes that govern local formation vs long-range advection. In a year with a large inflow of sea-ice from the Arctic Basin, the Barents Sea ice cover is dominated by thick multiyear ice; as was the case in 2003 and 1995. In a year with an ice cover that was mainly grown in situ, the ice will be thin and mechanically unstable; as was the case in 2014. The HEM data allow us to explore the spatial and temporal variability in ice thickness. In 2003 the dominant ice class was more than 2 years old; and modal sea-ice thickness varied regionally from 0.6 to 1.4 m, with the thinner ice being either first-year ice, or multiyear ice which had come into contact with warm Atlantic water. In 2014 the ice cover was predominantly locally grown ice less than 1 month old (regional modes of 0.5-0.8 m). These two situations represent two extremes of a range of possible ice thickness distributions that can present very different conditions for shipping traffic; or have a different impact on heat transport from ocean to atmosphere.

  17. Sea ice dynamics influence halogen deposition to Svalbard

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Spolaor

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Sea ice is an important parameter in the climate system and its changes impact upon the polar albedo and atmospheric and oceanic circulation. Iodine (I and bromine (Br have been measured in a shallow firn core drilled at the summit of the Holtedahlfonna glacier (Northwest Spitsbergen, Svalbard. Changing I concentrations can be linked to the March–May maximum sea ice extension. Bromine enrichment, indexed to the Br / Na sea water mass ratio, appears to be influenced by changes in the seasonal sea ice area. I is emitted from marine biota and so the retreat of March–May sea ice coincides with enlargement of the open-ocean surface which enhances marine primary production and consequent I emission. The observed Br enrichment could be explained by greater Br emissions during the Br explosions that have been observed to occur mainly above first year sea ice during the early springtime. In this work we present the first comparison between halogens in surface snow and Arctic sea ice extension. Although further investigation is required to characterize potential depositional and post-depositional processes, these preliminary findings suggest that I and Br can be linked to variability in the spring maximum sea ice extension and seasonal sea ice surface area.

  18. ICESat-2, its retrievals of ice sheet elevation change and sea ice freeboard, and potential synergies with CryoSat-2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neumann, Thomas; Markus, Thorsten; Smith, Benjamin; Kwok, Ron

    2017-04-01

    Understanding the causes and magnitudes of changes in the cryosphere remains a priority for Earth science research. Over the past decade, NASA's and ESA's Earth-observing satellites have documented a decrease in both the areal extent and thickness of Arctic sea ice, and an ongoing loss of grounded ice from the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. Understanding the pace and mechanisms of these changes requires long-term observations of ice-sheet mass, sea-ice thickness, and sea-ice extent. NASA's ICESat-2 mission is the next-generation space-borne laser altimeter mission and will use three pairs of beams, each pair separated by about 3 km across-track with a pair spacing of 90 m. The spot size is 17 m with an along-track sampling interval of 0.7 m. This measurement concept is a result of the lessons learned from the original ICESat mission. The multi-beam approach is critical for removing the effects of ice sheet surface slope from the elevation change measurements of most interest. For sea ice, the dense spatial sampling (eliminating along-track gaps) and the small footprint size are especially useful for sea surface height measurements in the, often narrow, leads needed for sea ice freeboard and ice thickness retrievals. Currently, algorithms are being developed to calculate ice sheet elevation change and sea ice freeboard from ICESat-2 data. The orbits of ICESat-2 and Cryosat-2 both converge at 88 degrees of latitude, though the orbit altitude differences result in different ground track patterns between the two missions. This presentation will present an overview of algorithm approaches and how ICESat-2 and Cryosat-2 data may augment each other.

  19. Influence of sea ice cover and icebergs on circulation and water mass formation in a numerical circulation model of the Ross Sea, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dinniman, Michael S.; Klinck, John M.; Smith, Walker O.

    2007-11-01

    Satellite imagery shows that there was substantial variability in the sea ice extent in the Ross Sea during 2001-2003. Much of this variability is thought to be due to several large icebergs that moved through the area during that period. The effects of these changes in sea ice on circulation and water mass distributions are investigated with a numerical general circulation model. It would be difficult to simulate the highly variable sea ice from 2001 to 2003 with a dynamic sea ice model since much of the variability was due to the floating icebergs. Here, sea ice concentration is specified from satellite observations. To examine the effects of changes in sea ice due to iceberg C-19, simulations were performed using either climatological ice concentrations or the observed ice for that period. The heat balance around the Ross Sea Polynya (RSP) shows that the dominant term in the surface heat budget is the net exchange with the atmosphere, but advection of oceanic warm water is also important. The area average annual basal melt rate beneath the Ross Ice Shelf is reduced by 12% in the observed sea ice simulation. The observed sea ice simulation also creates more High-Salinity Shelf Water. Another simulation was performed with observed sea ice and a fixed iceberg representing B-15A. There is reduced advection of warm surface water during summer from the RSP into McMurdo Sound due to B-15A, but a much stronger reduction is due to the late opening of the RSP in early 2003 because of C-19.

  20. Rapid formation of a sea ice barrier east of Svalbard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nghiem, S. V.; van Woert, M. L.; Neumann, G.

    2005-11-01

    Daily SeaWinds scatterometer images acquired by the QuikSCAT satellite show an elongated sea ice feature that formed very rapidly (˜1-2 days) in November 2001 east of Svalbard over the Barents Sea. This sea ice structure, called "the Svalbard sea ice barrier," spanning approximately 10° in longitude and 2° in latitude, restricts the sea route and poses a significant navigation hazard. The secret of its formation appears to lie in the bottom of the sea: A comparison between bathymetry from the International Bathymetric Chart of the Arctic Ocean data and the pattern of sea ice formation from scatterometer data reveals that the sea ice barrier conforms well with and stretches above a deep elongated channel connecting the Franz Josef-Victoria Trough to the Hinlopen Basin between Svalbard and Franz Josef Land. Historic hydrographic data from this area indicate that this sea channel contains cold Arctic water less than 50 m below the surface. Strong and persistent cold northerly winds force strong heat loss from this shallow surface layer, leading to the rapid formation of the sea ice barrier. Heat transfer rates estimated from European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts temperature and wind data over this region suggest that the surface water along the deep channel can be rapidly cooled to the freezing point. Scatterometer results in 1999-2003 show that sea ice forms in this area between October and December. Understanding the ice formation mechanisms helps to select appropriate locations for deployment of buoys measuring wind and air-sea temperature profile and to facilitate ice monitoring, modeling, and forecasting.

  1. Complex yet translucent: the optical properties of sea ice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perovich, Donald K.

    2003-01-01

    Sea ice is a naturally occurring material with an intricate and highly variable structure consisting of ice platelets, brine pockets, air bubbles, and precipitated salt crystals. The optical properties of sea ice are directly dependent on this ice structure. Because sea ice is a material that exists at its salinity determined freezing point, its structure and optical properties are significantly affected by small changes in temperature. Understanding the interaction of sunlight with sea ice is important to a diverse array of scientific problems, including those in polar climatology. A key optical parameter for climatological studies is the albedo, the fraction of the incident sunlight that is reflected. The albedo of sea ice is quite sensitive to surface conditions. The presence of a snow cover enhances the albedo, while surface meltwater reduces the albedo. Radiative transfer in sea ice is a combination of absorption and scattering. Differences in the magnitude of sea ice optical properties are ascribable primarily to differences in scattering, while spectral variations are mainly a result of absorption. Physical changes that enhance scattering, such as the formation of air bubbles due to brine drainage, result in more light reflection and less transmission

  2. Radiative transfer in atmosphere-sea ice-ocean system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jin, Z.; Stamnes, K.; Weeks, W.F. [Univ. of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK (United States); Tsay, S.C. [NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD (United States)

    1996-04-01

    Radiative energy is critical in controlling the heat and mass balance of sea ice, which significantly affects the polar climate. In the polar oceans, light transmission through the atmosphere and sea ice is essential to the growth of plankton and algae and, consequently, to the microbial community both in the ice and in the ocean. Therefore, the study of radiative transfer in the polar atmosphere, sea ice, and ocean system is of particular importance. Lacking a properly coupled radiative transfer model for the atmosphere-sea ice-ocean system, a consistent study of the radiative transfer in the polar atmosphere, snow, sea ice, and ocean system has not been undertaken before. The radiative transfer processes in the atmosphere and in the ice and ocean have been treated separately. Because the radiation processes in the atmosphere, sea ice, and ocean depend on each other, this separate treatment is inconsistent. To study the radiative interaction between the atmosphere, clouds, snow, sea ice, and ocean, a radiative transfer model with consistent treatment of radiation in the coupled system is needed and is under development.

  3. Quantifying uncertainty and sensitivity in sea ice models

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Urrego Blanco, Jorge Rolando [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Hunke, Elizabeth Clare [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Urban, Nathan Mark [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)

    2016-07-15

    The Los Alamos Sea Ice model has a number of input parameters for which accurate values are not always well established. We conduct a variance-based sensitivity analysis of hemispheric sea ice properties to 39 input parameters. The method accounts for non-linear and non-additive effects in the model.

  4. Arctic Sea Ice Structure and Texture over Four Decades Using Landsat Archive Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doulgeris, A. P.; Scambos, T.; Tiampo, K. F.

    2017-12-01

    Arctic sea ice cover is a sensitive indicator of Arctic climate change, and has shown dramatic changes in recent decades, having thinned by 70% ( 3.5 m to 1.2 m between 1980 and 2015). Age distribution of the ice has changed in a similar fashion, with over 90% of the ice older than 5 winters now lost relative to 1985. To date, most of the data have been based on the continuous passive microwave record that began in 1978, which has 25 km grid resolution, or on SAR imagery with somewhat less frequent, less continuous observations. Landsat image data exist for the Arctic sea ice region north of Alaska and the MacKenzie River Delta area in Canada, the Canadian Archipelago, and Baffin Bay, extending back over 40 years. Resolution of the earliest Landsat MSS data is 56-70 m per pixel, and after 1984 many additional images at 30 m resolution are available. This 40+ year time period is used to investigate long-term changes in sea ice properties, such as comparing image-based snapshots with the trend in seasonal extents today, as well as more novel properties like sea ice roughness, lead structure and texture. The proposed study will initially investigate Landsat image analysis techniques to extract quantitative measures of ice roughness, lead fraction and perhaps morphological measures like lead linearity (which potentially indicate strength and compression history within the ice), and to explore these measures over the 40+ year time frame.

  5. Extreme Low Light Requirement for Algae Growth Underneath Sea Ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hancke, Kasper; Lund-Hansen, Lars C.; Lamare, Maxim L.

    2018-01-01

    Microalgae colonizing the underside of sea ice in spring are a key component of the Arctic foodweb as they drive early primary production and transport of carbon from the atmosphere to the ocean interior. Onset of the spring bloom of ice algae is typically limited by the availability of light......, and the current consensus is that a few tens-of-centimeters of snow is enough to prevent sufficient solar radiation to reach underneath the sea ice. We challenge this consensus, and investigated the onset and the light requirement of an ice algae spring bloom, and the importance of snow optical properties...... for light penetration. Colonization by ice algae began in May under >1 m of first-year sea ice with approximate to 1 m thick snow cover on top, in NE Greenland. The initial growth of ice algae began at extremely low irradiance (...

  6. Polarimetric C-Band SAR Observations of Sea Ice in the Greenland Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Bjørn Bavnehøj; Nghiem, S.V.; Kwok, R.

    1998-01-01

    The fully polarimetric EMISAR acquired C-band radar signatures of sea ice in the Greenland Sea during a campaign in March 1995. The authors present maps of polarimetric signatures over an area containing various kinds of ice and discuss the use of polarimetric SAR for identification of ice types...

  7. SMOS sea ice product: Operational application and validation in the Barents Sea marginal ice zone

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kaleschke, Lars; Tian-Kunze, Xiangshan; Maaß, Nina

    2016-01-01

    system for ship route optimisation has been developed and was tested during this field campaign with the ice-strengthened research vessel RV Lance. The ship cruise was complemented with coordinated measurements from a helicopter and the research aircraft Polar 5. Sea ice thickness was measured using...... an electromagnetic induction (EM) system from the bow of RV Lance and another EM-system towed below the helicopter. Polar 5 was equipped among others with the L-band radiometer EMIRAD-2. The experiment yielded a comprehensive data set allowing the evaluation of the operational forecast and route optimisation system...

  8. Sea Ice Drift Monitoring in the Bohai Sea Based on GF4 Satellite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Y.; Wei, P.; Zhu, H.; Xing, B.

    2018-04-01

    The Bohai Sea is the inland sea with the highest latitude in China. In winter, the phenomenon of freezing occurs in the Bohai Sea due to frequent cold wave influx. According to historical records, there have been three serious ice packs in the Bohai Sea in the past 50 years which caused heavy losses to our economy. Therefore, it is of great significance to monitor the drift of sea ice and sea ice in the Bohai Sea. The GF4 image has the advantages of short imaging time and high spatial resolution. Based on the GF4 satellite images, the three methods of SIFT (Scale invariant feature - the transform and Scale invariant feature transform), MCC (maximum cross-correlation method) and sift combined with MCC are used to monitor sea ice drift and calculate the speed and direction of sea ice drift, the three calculation results are compared and analyzed by using expert interpretation and historical statistical data to carry out remote sensing monitoring of sea ice drift results. The experimental results show that the experimental results of the three methods are in accordance with expert interpretation and historical statistics. Therefore, the GF4 remote sensing satellite images have the ability to monitor sea ice drift and can be used for drift monitoring of sea ice in the Bohai Sea.

  9. Summer Arctic sea ice albedo in CMIP5 models

    OpenAIRE

    Koenigk, T.; Devasthale, A.; Karlsson, K.-G.

    2014-01-01

    Spatial and temporal variations of summer sea ice albedo over the Arctic are analyzed using an ensemble of historical CMIP5 model simulations. The results are compared to the CLARA-SAL product that is based on long-term satellite observations. The summer sea ice albedo varies substantially among CMIP5 models, and many models show large biases compared to the CLARA-SAL product. Single summer months show an extreme spread of ice albedo among models; July values vary between 0....

  10. Understanding the Importance of Oceanic Forcing on Sea Ice Variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-12-01

    problem, which includes ice thickness. Thorndike et al. (1975) recognized that many of the physical properties of sea ice depend upon its thickness...IMB2005B are presented below. In agreement with previous studies (e.g., Thorndike and Colony 1982), they show that during the winter months (December...During the Past 100 Years, 33, 2, 143– 154. 148 Thorndike , A.S., and R. Colony, 1982: Sea ice motion in response to geostrophic winds. Journal of

  11. Drivers of inorganic carbon dynamics in first-year sea ice: A model study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreau, Sébastien; Vancoppenolle, Martin; Delille, Bruno; Tison, Jean-Louis; Zhou, Jiayun; Kotovich, Marie; Thomas, David; Geilfus, Nicolas-Xavier; Goosse, Hugues

    2015-04-01

    Sea ice is an active source or a sink for carbon dioxide (CO2), although to what extent is not clear. Here, we analyze CO2 dynamics within sea ice using a one-dimensional halo-thermodynamic sea ice model including gas physics and carbon biogeochemistry. The ice-ocean fluxes, and vertical transport, of total dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) and total alkalinity (TA) are represented using fluid transport equations. Carbonate chemistry, the consumption and release of CO2 by primary production and respiration, the precipitation and dissolution of ikaite (CaCO3•6H2O) and ice-air CO2 fluxes, are also included. The model is evaluated using observations from a 6-month field study at Point Barrow, Alaska and an ice-tank experiment. At Barrow, results show that the DIC budget is mainly driven by physical processes, wheras brine-air CO2 fluxes, ikaite formation, and net primary production, are secondary factors. In terms of ice-atmosphere CO2 exchanges, sea ice is a net CO2 source and sink in winter and summer, respectively. The formulation of the ice-atmosphere CO2 flux impacts the simulated near-surface CO2 partial pressure (pCO2), but not the DIC budget. Because the simulated ice-atmosphere CO2 fluxes are limited by DIC stocks, and therefore < 2 mmol m-2 day-1, we argue that the observed much larger CO2 fluxes from eddy covariance retrievals cannot be explained by a sea ice direct source and must involve other processes or other sources of CO2. Finally, the simulations suggest that near surface TA/DIC ratios of ~2, sometimes used as an indicator of calcification, would rather suggest outgassing.

  12. Antarctic krill under sea ice: elevated abundance in a narrow band just south of ice edge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brierley, Andrew S; Fernandes, Paul G; Brandon, Mark A; Armstrong, Frederick; Millard, Nicholas W; McPhail, Steven D; Stevenson, Peter; Pebody, Miles; Perrett, James; Squires, Mark; Bone, Douglas G; Griffiths, Gwyn

    2002-03-08

    We surveyed Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba) under sea ice using the autonomous underwater vehicle Autosub-2. Krill were concentrated within a band under ice between 1 and 13 kilometers south of the ice edge. Within this band, krill densities were fivefold greater than that of open water. The under-ice environment has long been considered an important habitat for krill, but sampling difficulties have previously prevented direct observations under ice over the scale necessary for robust krill density estimation. Autosub-2 enabled us to make continuous high-resolution measurements of krill density under ice reaching 27 kilometers beyond the ice edge.

  13. Temporal dynamics of ikaite in experimental sea ice

    OpenAIRE

    S. Rysgaard; F. Wang; R. J. Galley; R. Grimm; D. Notz; M. Lemes; N.-X. Geilfus; A. Chaulk; A. A. Hare; O. Crabeck; B. G. T. Else; K. Campbell; L. L. Sørensen; J. Sievers; T. Papakyriakou

    2014-01-01

    Ikaite (CaCO3 · 6H2O) is a metastable phase of calcium carbonate that normally forms in a cold environment and/or under high pressure. Recently, ikaite crystals have been found in sea ice, and it has been suggested that their precipitation may play an important role in air–sea CO2 exchange in ice-covered seas. Little is known, however, of the spatial and temporal dynamics of ikaite in sea ice. Here we present evidence for highly dynamic ikaite precipitation and dissolution i...

  14. Sea ice contribution to the air-sea CO(2) exchange in the Arctic and Southern Oceans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rysgaard...[], Søren; Bendtsen, Jørgen; Delille, B.

    2011-01-01

    Although salt rejection from sea ice is a key process in deep-water formation in ice-covered seas, the concurrent rejection of CO(2) and the subsequent effect on air-sea CO(2) exchange have received little attention. We review the mechanisms by which sea ice directly and indirectly controls the air......-sea CO(2) exchange and use recent measurements of inorganic carbon compounds in bulk sea ice to estimate that oceanic CO(2) uptake during the seasonal cycle of sea-ice growth and decay in ice-covered oceanic regions equals almost half of the net atmospheric CO(2) uptake in ice-free polar seas. This sea......-sea CO(2) exchange during winter, and (3) release of CO(2)-depleted melt water with excess total alkalinity during sea-ice decay and (4) biological CO(2) drawdown during primary production in sea ice and surface oceanic waters....

  15. Linescan camera evaluation of SSM/I 85.5 GHz sea ice retrieval

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Garrity, Caren; Lubin, Dan; Kern, Stefan

    2002-01-01

    misclassify clouds over open water as sea ice, and is therefore unreliable for locating the sea ice edge. The best algorithm for locating the sea ice edge is found to be the SEA LION algorithm, which explicitly uses meteorological reanalysis data to correct for atmospheric contamination. For total sea ice...

  16. Smoluchowski coagulation models of sea ice thickness distribution dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godlovitch, D.; Illner, R.; Monahan, A.

    2011-12-01

    Sea ice thickness distributions display a ubiquitous exponential decrease with thickness. This tail characterizes the range of ice thickness produced by mechanical redistribution of ice through the process of ridging, rafting, and shearing. We investigate how well the thickness distribution can be simulated by representing mechanical redistribution as a generalized stacking process. Such processes are naturally described by a well-studied class of models known as Smoluchowski Coagulation Models (SCMs), which describe the dynamics of a population of fixed-mass "particles" which combine in pairs to form a "particle" with the combined mass of the constituent pair at a rate which depends on the mass of the interacting particles. Like observed sea ice thickness distributions, the mass distribution of the populations generated by SCMs has an exponential or quasi-exponential form. We use SCMs to model sea ice, identifying mass-increasing particle combinations with thickness-increasing ice redistribution processes. Our model couples an SCM component with a thermodynamic component and generates qualitatively accurate thickness distributions with a variety of rate kernels. Our results suggest that the exponential tail of the sea ice thickness distribution arises from the nature of the ridging process, rather than specific physical properties of sea ice or the spatial arrangement of floes, and that the relative strengths of the dynamic and thermodynamic processes are key in accurately simulating the rate at which the sea ice thickness tail drops off with thickness.

  17. Influence of ice thickness and surface properties on light transmission through Arctic sea ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katlein, Christian; Arndt, Stefanie; Nicolaus, Marcel; Perovich, Donald K; Jakuba, Michael V; Suman, Stefano; Elliott, Stephen; Whitcomb, Louis L; McFarland, Christopher J; Gerdes, Rüdiger; Boetius, Antje; German, Christopher R

    2015-09-01

    The observed changes in physical properties of sea ice such as decreased thickness and increased melt pond cover severely impact the energy budget of Arctic sea ice. Increased light transmission leads to increased deposition of solar energy in the upper ocean and thus plays a crucial role for amount and timing of sea-ice-melt and under-ice primary production. Recent developments in underwater technology provide new opportunities to study light transmission below the largely inaccessible underside of sea ice. We measured spectral under-ice radiance and irradiance using the new Nereid Under-Ice (NUI) underwater robotic vehicle, during a cruise of the R/V Polarstern to 83°N 6°W in the Arctic Ocean in July 2014. NUI is a next generation hybrid remotely operated vehicle (H-ROV) designed for both remotely piloted and autonomous surveys underneath land-fast and moving sea ice. Here we present results from one of the first comprehensive scientific dives of NUI employing its interdisciplinary sensor suite. We combine under-ice optical measurements with three dimensional under-ice topography (multibeam sonar) and aerial images of the surface conditions. We investigate the influence of spatially varying ice-thickness and surface properties on the spatial variability of light transmittance during summer. Our results show that surface properties such as melt ponds dominate the spatial distribution of the under-ice light field on small scales (sea ice-thickness is the most important predictor for light transmission on larger scales. In addition, we propose the use of an algorithm to obtain histograms of light transmission from distributions of sea ice thickness and surface albedo.

  18. Victoria Land, Ross Sea, and Ross Ice Shelf, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-01-01

    On December 19, 2001, MODIS acquired data that produced this image of Antarctica's Victoria Land, Ross Ice Shelf, and the Ross Sea. The coastline that runs up and down along the left side of the image denotes where Victoria Land (left) meets the Ross Ice Shelf (right). The Ross Ice Shelf is the world's largest floating body of ice, approximately the same size as France. Credit: Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC

  19. Gypsum and hydrohalite dynamics in sea ice brines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butler, Benjamin M.; Papadimitriou, Stathys; Day, Sarah J.; Kennedy, Hilary

    2017-09-01

    Mineral authigenesis from their dissolved sea salt matrix is an emergent feature of sea ice brines, fuelled by dramatic equilibrium solubility changes in the large sub-zero temperature range of this cryospheric system on the surface of high latitude oceans. The multi-electrolyte composition of seawater results in the potential for several minerals to precipitate in sea ice, each affecting the in-situ geochemical properties of the sea ice brine system, the habitat of sympagic biota. The solubility of two of these minerals, gypsum (CaSO4 ·2H2O) and hydrohalite (NaCl · 2H2O), was investigated in high ionic strength multi-electrolyte solutions at below-zero temperatures to examine their dissolution-precipitation dynamics in the sea ice brine system. The gypsum dynamics in sea ice were found to be highly dependent on the solubilities of mirabilite and hydrohalite between 0.2 and - 25.0 ° C. The hydrohalite solubility between - 14.3 and - 25.0 ° C exhibits a sharp change between undersaturated and supersaturated conditions, and, thus, distinct temperature fields of precipitation and dissolution in sea ice, with saturation occurring at - 22.9 ° C. The sharp changes in hydrohalite solubility at temperatures ⩽-22.9 °C result from the formation of an ice-hydrohalite aggregate, which alters the structural properties of brine inclusions in cold sea ice. Favourable conditions for gypsum precipitation in sea ice were determined to occur in the region of hydrohalite precipitation below - 22.9 ° C and in conditions of metastable mirabilite supersaturation above - 22.9 ° C (investigated at - 7.1 and - 8.2 ° C here) but gypsum is unlikely to persist once mirabilite forms at these warmer (>-22.9 °C) temperatures. The dynamics of hydrohalite in sea ice brines based on its experimental solubility were consistent with that derived from thermodynamic modelling (FREZCHEM code) but the gypsum dynamics derived from the code were inconsistent with that indicated by its

  20. Sea ice algal biomass and physiology in the Amundsen Sea, Antarctica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin R. Arrigo

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Sea ice covers approximately 5% of the ocean surface and is one of the most extensive ecosystems on the planet. The microbial communities that live in sea ice represent an important food source for numerous organisms at a time of year when phytoplankton in the water column are scarce. Here we describe the distributions and physiology of sea ice microalgae in the poorly studied Amundsen Sea sector of the Southern Ocean. Microalgal biomass was relatively high in sea ice in the Amundsen Sea, due primarily to well developed surface communities that would have been replenished with nutrients during seawater flooding of the surface as a result of heavy snow accumulation. Elevated biomass was also occasionally observed in slush, interior, and bottom ice microhabitats throughout the region. Sea ice microalgal photophysiology appeared to be controlled by the availability of both light and nutrients. Surface communities used an active xanthophyll cycle and effective pigment sunscreens to protect themselves from harmful ultraviolet and visible radiation. Acclimation to low light microhabitats in sea ice was facilitated by enhanced pigment content per cell, greater photosynthetic accessory pigments, and increased photosynthetic efficiency. Photoacclimation was especially effective in the bottom ice community, where ready access to nutrients would have allowed ice microalgae to synthesize a more efficient photosynthetic apparatus. Surprisingly, the pigment-detected prymnesiophyte Phaeocystis antarctica was an important component of surface communities (slush and surface ponds where its acclimation to high light may precondition it to seed phytoplankton blooms after the sea ice melts in spring.

  1. Role of polar anticyclones and mid-latitude cyclones for Arctic summertime sea-ice melting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wernli, Heini; Papritz, Lukas

    2018-02-01

    Annual minima in Arctic sea-ice extent and volume have been decreasing rapidly since the late 1970s, with substantial interannual variability. Summers with a particularly strong reduction of Arctic sea-ice extent are characterized by anticyclonic circulation anomalies from the surface to the upper troposphere. Here, we investigate the origin of these seasonal circulation anomalies by identifying individual Arctic anticyclones (with a lifetime of typically ten days) and analysing the air mass transport into these systems. We reveal that these episodic upper-level induced Arctic anticyclones are relevant for generating seasonal circulation anomalies. Sea-ice reduction is systematically enhanced during the transient episodes with Arctic anticyclones and the seasonal reduction of sea-ice volume correlates with the area-averaged frequency of Arctic anticyclones poleward of 70° N (correlation coefficient of 0.57). A trajectory analysis shows that these anticyclones result from extratropical cyclones injecting extratropical air masses with low potential vorticity into the Arctic upper troposphere. Our results emphasize the fundamental role of extratropical cyclones and associated diabatic processes in establishing Arctic anticyclones and, in turn, seasonal circulation anomalies, which are of key importance for understanding the variability of summertime Arctic sea-ice melting.

  2. Characterizing Arctic Sea Ice Topography Using High-Resolution IceBridge Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petty, Alek; Tsamados, Michel; Kurtz, Nathan; Farrell, Sinead; Newman, Thomas; Harbeck, Jeremy; Feltham, Daniel; Richter-Menge, Jackie

    2016-01-01

    We present an analysis of Arctic sea ice topography using high resolution, three-dimensional, surface elevation data from the Airborne Topographic Mapper, flown as part of NASA's Operation IceBridge mission. Surface features in the sea ice cover are detected using a newly developed surface feature picking algorithm. We derive information regarding the height, volume and geometry of surface features from 2009-2014 within the Beaufort/Chukchi and Central Arctic regions. The results are delineated by ice type to estimate the topographic variability across first-year and multi-year ice regimes.

  3. Improving Arctic Sea Ice Edge Forecasts by Assimilating High Horizontal Resolution Sea Ice Concentration Data into the US Navy’s Ice Forecast Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-06-13

    1735-2015 © Author(s) 2015. CC Attribution 3.0 License. Improving Arctic sea ice edge forecasts by assimilating high horizontal resolution sea ice...concentration data into the US Navy’s ice forecast systems P. G. Posey1, E. J. Metzger1, A. J. Wallcraft1, D. A. Hebert1, R. A. Allard1, O. M. Smedstad2...error within the US Navy’s operational sea ice forecast systems gained by assimilating high horizontal resolution satellite-derived ice concentration

  4. In Situ Experimental Study of the Friction of Sea Ice and Steel on Sea Ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qingkai Wang

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The kinetic coefficient of friction μk was measured for sea ice, stainless steel, and coated steel sliding on a natural sea ice cover. The effects of normal stress (3.10–8.11 kPa, ice columnar grain orientation (vertical and parallel to the sliding direction, sliding velocity (0.02–2.97 m·s–1, and contact material were investigated. Air temperature was higher than −5.0 °C for the test duration. The results showed a decline of μk with increasing normal stress with μk independent of ice grain orientation. The μk of different materials varied, partly due to distinct surface roughnesses, but all cases showed a similar increasing trend with increasing velocity because of the viscous resistance of melt-water film. The velocity dependence of μk was quantified using the rate- and state- dependent model, and μk was found to increase logarithmically with increasing velocity. In addition, μk obtained at higher air temperatures was greater than at lower temperatures. The stick-slip phenomenon was observed at a relatively high velocity compared with previous studies, which was partly due to the low-stiffness device used in the field. Based on the experimental data, the calculation of physical models can be compared.

  5. Temporal dynamics of ikaite in experimental sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rysgaard, S.; Wang, F.; Galley, R. J.; Grimm, R.; Notz, D.; Lemes, M.; Geilfus, N.-X.; Chaulk, A.; Hare, A. A.; Crabeck, O.; Else, B. G. T.; Campbell, K.; Sørensen, L. L.; Sievers, J.; Papakyriakou, T.

    2014-08-01

    Ikaite (CaCO3 · 6H2O) is a metastable phase of calcium carbonate that normally forms in a cold environment and/or under high pressure. Recently, ikaite crystals have been found in sea ice, and it has been suggested that their precipitation may play an important role in air-sea CO2 exchange in ice-covered seas. Little is known, however, of the spatial and temporal dynamics of ikaite in sea ice. Here we present evidence for highly dynamic ikaite precipitation and dissolution in sea ice grown at an outdoor pool of the Sea-ice Environmental Research Facility (SERF) in Manitoba, Canada. During the experiment, ikaite precipitated in sea ice when temperatures were below -4 °C, creating three distinct zones of ikaite concentrations: (1) a millimeter-to-centimeter-thin surface layer containing frost flowers and brine skim with bulk ikaite concentrations of >2000 μmol kg-1, (2) an internal layer with ikaite concentrations of 200-400 μmol kg-1, and (3) a bottom layer with ikaite concentrations of ikaite crystals to dissolve. Manual removal of the snow cover allowed the sea ice to cool and brine salinities to increase, resulting in rapid ikaite precipitation. The observed ikaite concentrations were on the same order of magnitude as modeled by FREZCHEM, which further supports the notion that ikaite concentration in sea ice increases with decreasing temperature. Thus, varying snow conditions may play a key role in ikaite precipitation and dissolution in sea ice. This could have a major implication for CO2 exchange with the atmosphere and ocean that has not been accounted for previously.

  6. Sea-ice cover in the Nordic Seas and the sensitivity to Atlantic water temperatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jensen, Mari F.; Nisancioglu, Kerim H.; Spall, Michael A.

    2017-04-01

    Changes in the sea-ice cover of the Nordic Seas have been proposed to play a key role for the dramatic temperature excursions associated with the Dansgaard-Oeschger events during the last glacial. However, with its proximity to the warm Atlantic water, how a sea-ice cover can persist in the Nordic Seas is not well understood. In this study, we apply an eddy-resolving configuration of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology general circulation model with an idealized topography to study the presence of sea ice in a Nordic Seas-like domain. We assume an infinite amount of warm Atlantic water present in the south by restoring the southern area to constant temperatures. The sea-surface temperatures are restored toward cold, atmospheric temperatures, and as a result, sea ice is present in the interior of the domain. However, the sea-ice cover in the margins of the Nordic Seas, an area with a warm, cyclonic boundary current, is sensitive to the amount of heat entering the domain, i.e., the restoring temperature in the south. When the temperature of the warm, cyclonic boundary current is high, the margins are free of sea ice and heat is released to the atmosphere. We show that with a small reduction in the temperature of the incoming Atlantic water, the Nordic Seas-like domain is fully covered in sea ice. Warm water is still entering the Nordic Seas, however, this happens at depths below a cold, fresh surface layer produced by melted sea ice. Consequently, the heat release to the atmosphere is reduced along with the eddy heat fluxes. Results suggest a threshold value in the amount of heat entering the Nordic Seas before the sea-ice cover disappears in the margins. We study the sensitivity of this threshold to changes in atmospheric temperatures and vertical diffusivity.

  7. Complex bounds and microstructural recovery from measurements of sea ice permittivity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gully, A.; Backstrom, L.G.E.; Eicken, H.; Golden, K.M.

    2007-01-01

    Sea ice is a porous composite of pure ice with brine, air, and salt inclusions. The polar sea ice packs play a key role in the earth's ocean-climate system, and they host robust algal and bacterial communities that support the Arctic and Antarctic ecosystems. Monitoring the sea ice packs on global or regional scales is an increasingly important problem, typically involving the interaction of an electromagnetic wave with sea ice. In the quasistatic regime where the wavelength is much longer than the composite microstructural scale, the electromagnetic behavior is characterized by the effective complex permittivity tensor ε*. In assessing the impact of climate change on the polar sea ice covers, current satellites and algorithms can predict ice extent, but the thickness distribution remains an elusive, yet most important feature. In recent years, electromagnetic induction devices using low frequency waves have been deployed on ships, helicopters and planes to obtain thickness data. Here we compare two sets of theoretical bounds to extensive outdoor tank and in situ field data on ε* at 50MHz taken in the Arctic and Antarctic. The sea ice is assumed to be a two phase composite of ice and brine with known constituent permittivities. The first set of bounds assumes only knowledge of the brine volume fraction or porosity, and the second set further assumes statistical isotropy of the microstructure. We obtain excellent agreement between theory and experiment, and are able to observe the apparent violation of the isotropic bounds as the vertically oriented microstructure becomes increasingly connected for higher porosities. Moreover, these bounds are inverted to obtain estimates of the porosity from the measurements of ε*. We find that the temporal variations of the reconstructed porosity, which is directly related to temperature, closely follow the actual behavior

  8. Remote sensing of sea ice: advances during the DAMOCLES project

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Heygster

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available In the Arctic, global warming is particularly pronounced so that we need to monitor its development continuously. On the other hand, the vast and hostile conditions make in situ observation difficult, so that available satellite observations should be exploited in the best possible way to extract geophysical information. Here, we give a résumé of the sea ice remote sensing efforts of the European Union's (EU project DAMOCLES (Developing Arctic Modeling and Observing Capabilities for Long-term Environmental Studies. In order to better understand the seasonal variation of the microwave emission of sea ice observed from space, the monthly variations of the microwave emissivity of first-year and multi-year sea ice have been derived for the frequencies of the microwave imagers like AMSR-E (Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer on EOS and sounding frequencies of AMSU (Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit, and have been used to develop an optimal estimation method to retrieve sea ice and atmospheric parameters simultaneously. In addition, a sea ice microwave emissivity model has been used together with a thermodynamic model to establish relations between the emissivities from 6 GHz to 50 GHz. At the latter frequency, the emissivity is needed for assimilation into atmospheric circulation models, but is more difficult to observe directly. The size of the snow grains on top of the sea ice influences both its albedo and the microwave emission. A method to determine the effective size of the snow grains from observations in the visible range (MODIS is developed and demonstrated in an application on the Ross ice shelf. The bidirectional reflectivity distribution function (BRDF of snow, which is an essential input parameter to the retrieval, has been measured in situ on Svalbard during the DAMOCLES campaign, and a BRDF model assuming aspherical particles is developed. Sea ice drift and deformation is derived from satellite observations with the scatterometer

  9. Study suggests Arctic sea ice loss not irreversible

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balcerak, Ernie

    2011-10-01

    The Arctic has been losing sea ice as Earth's climate warms, and some studies have suggested that the Arctic could reach a tipping point, beyond which ice would not recover even if global temperatures cooled down again. However, a new study by Armour et al. that uses a state-of-the-art atmosphere-ocean global climate model found no evidence of such irreversibility. In their simulations, the researchers increased atmospheric carbon dioxide levels until Arctic sea ice disappeared year-round and then watched what happened as global temperatures were then decreased. They found that sea ice steadily recovered as global temperatures dropped. An implication of this result is that future sea ice loss will occur only as long as global temperatures continue to rise. (Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1029/2011GL048739, 2011)

  10. Tradition and Technology: Sea Ice Science on Inuit Sleds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkinson, Jeremy P.; Hanson, Susanne; Hughes, Nick E.; James, Alistair; Jones, Bryn; MacKinnon, Rory; Rysgaard, Søren; Toudal, Leif

    2011-01-01

    The Arctic is home to a circumpolar community of native people whose culture and traditions have enabled them to thrive in what most would perceive as a totally inhospitable and untenable environment. In many ways, sea ice can be viewed as the glue that binds these northern communities together; it is utilized in all aspects of their daily life. Sea ice acts as highways of the north; indeed, one can travel on these highways with dogsleds and snowmobiles. These travels over the frozen ocean occur at all periods of the sea ice cycle and over different ice types and ages. Excursions may be hunting trips to remote regions or social visits to nearby villages. Furthermore, hunting on the sea ice contributes to the health, culture, and commercial income of a community.

  11. Influence of freshwater input on the skill of decadal forecast of sea ice in the Southern Ocean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Zunz

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies have investigated the potential link between the freshwater input derived from the melting of the Antarctic ice sheet and the observed recent increase in sea ice extent in the Southern Ocean. In this study, we assess the impact of an additional freshwater flux on the trend in sea ice extent and concentration in simulations with data assimilation, spanning the period 1850–2009, as well as in retrospective forecasts (hindcasts initialised in 1980. In the simulations with data assimilation, the inclusion of an additional freshwater flux that follows an autoregressive process improves the reconstruction of the trend in ice extent and concentration between 1980 and 2009. This is linked to a better efficiency of the data assimilation procedure but can also be due to a better representation of the freshwater cycle in the Southern Ocean. The results of the hindcast simulations show that an adequate initial state, reconstructed thanks to the data assimilation procedure including an additional freshwater flux, can lead to an increase in the sea ice extent spanning several decades that is in agreement with satellite observations. In our hindcast simulations, an increase in sea ice extent is obtained even in the absence of any major change in the freshwater input over the last decades. Therefore, while the additional freshwater flux appears to play a key role in the reconstruction of the evolution of the sea ice in the simulation with data assimilation, it does not seem to be required in the hindcast simulations. The present work thus provides encouraging results for sea ice predictions in the Southern Ocean, as in our simulation the positive trend in ice extent over the last 30 years is largely determined by the state of the system in the late 1970s.

  12. Sea-level and solid-Earth deformation feedbacks in ice sheet modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konrad, Hannes; Sasgen, Ingo; Klemann, Volker; Thoma, Malte; Grosfeld, Klaus; Martinec, Zdeněk

    2014-05-01

    The interactions of ice sheets with the sea level and the solid Earth are important factors for the stability of the ice shelves and the tributary inland ice (e.g. Thomas and Bentley, 1978; Gomez et al, 2012). First, changes in ice extent and ice thickness induce viscoelastic deformation of the Earth surface and Earth's gravity field. In turn, global and local changes in sea level and bathymetry affect the grounding line and, subsequently, alter the ice dynamic behaviour. Here, we investigate these feedbacks for a synthetic ice sheet configuration as well as for the Antarctic ice sheet using a three-dimensional thermomechanical ice sheet and shelf model, coupled to a viscoelastic solid-Earth and gravitationally self-consistent sea-level model. The respective ice sheet undergoes a forcing from rising sea level, warming ocean, and/or changing surface mass balance. The coupling is realized by exchanging ice thickness, Earth surface deformation and sea level periodically. We apply several sets of viscoelastic Earth parameters to our coupled model, e.g. simulating a low-viscous upper mantle present at the Antarctic Peninsula (Ivins et al., 2011). Special focus of our study lies on the evolution of Earth surface deformation and local sea level changes, as well as on the accompanying grounding line evolution. N. Gomez, D. Pollard, J. X. Mitrovica, P. Huybers, and P. U. Clark 2012. Evolution of a coupled marine ice sheet-sea level model, J. Geophys. Res., 117, F01013, doi:10.1029/2011JF002128. E. R. Ivins, M. M. Watkins, D.-N. Yuan, R. Dietrich, G. Casassa, and A. Rülke 2011. On-land ice loss and glacial isostatic adjustment at the Drake Passage: 2003-2009, J. Geophys. Res. 116, B02403, doi: 10.1029/2010JB007607 R. H. Thomas and C. R. Bentley 1978. A model for Holocene retreat of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, Quaternary Research, 10 (2), pages 150-170, doi: 10.1016/0033-5894(78)90098-4.

  13. Simulation and Domain Identification of Sea Ice Thermodynamic System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bing Tan

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on the measured data and characteristics of sea ice temperature distribution in space and time, this study is intended to consider a parabolic partial differential equation of the thermodynamic field of sea ice (coupled by snow, ice, and sea water layers with a time-dependent domain and its parameter identification problem. An optimal model with state constraints is presented with the thicknesses of snow and sea ice as parametric variables and the deviation between the calculated and measured sea ice temperatures as the performance criterion. The unique existence of the weak solution of the thermodynamic system is proved. The properties of the identification problem and the existence of the optimal parameter are discussed, and the one-order necessary condition is derived. Finally, based on the nonoverlapping domain decomposition method and semi-implicit difference scheme, an optimization algorithm is proposed for the numerical simulation. Results show that the simulated temperature of sea ice fit well with the measured data, and the better fit is corresponding to the deeper sea ice.

  14. GLOBAL CHANGES IN THE SEA ICE COVER AND ASSOCIATED SURFACE TEMPERATURE CHANGES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. C. Comiso

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The trends in the sea ice cover in the two hemispheres have been observed to be asymmetric with the rate of change in the Arctic being negative at −3.8 % per decade while that of the Antarctic is positive at 1.7 % per decade. These observations are confirmed in this study through analyses of a more robust data set that has been enhanced for better consistency and updated for improved statistics. With reports of anthropogenic global warming such phenomenon appears physically counter intuitive but trend studies of surface temperature over the same time period show the occurrence of a similar asymmetry. Satellite surface temperature data show that while global warming is strong and dominant in the Arctic, it is relatively minor in the Antarctic with the trends in sea ice covered areas and surrounding ice free regions observed to be even negative. A strong correlation of ice extent with surface temperature is observed, especially during the growth season, and the observed trends in the sea ice cover are coherent with the trends in surface temperature. The trend of global averages of the ice cover is negative but modest and is consistent and compatible with the positive but modest trend in global surface temperature. A continuation of the trend would mean the disappearance of summer ice by the end of the century but modelling projections indicate that the summer ice could be salvaged if anthropogenic greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are kept constant at the current level.

  15. Assessing, understanding, and conveying the state of the Arctic sea ice cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perovich, D. K.; Richter-Menge, J. A.; Rigor, I.; Parkinson, C. L.; Weatherly, J. W.; Nghiem, S. V.; Proshutinsky, A.; Overland, J. E.

    2003-12-01

    Recent studies indicate that the Arctic sea ice cover is undergoing significant climate-induced changes, affecting both its extent and thickness. Satellite-derived estimates of Arctic sea ice extent suggest a reduction of about 3% per decade since 1978. Ice thickness data from submarines suggest a net thinning of the sea ice cover since 1958. Changes (including oscillatory changes) in atmospheric circulation and the thermohaline properties of the upper ocean have also been observed. These changes impact not only the Arctic, but the global climate system and are likely accelerated by such processes as the ice-albedo feedback. It is important to continue and expand long-term observations of these changes to (a) improve the fundamental understanding of the role of the sea ice cover in the global climate system and (b) use the changes in the sea ice cover as an early indicator of climate change. This is a formidable task that spans a range of temporal and spatial scales. Fortunately, there are numerous tools that can be brought to bear on this task, including satellite remote sensing, autonomous buoys, ocean moorings, field campaigns and numerical models. We suggest the integrated and coordinated use of these tools during the International Polar Year to monitor the state of the Arctic sea ice cover and investigate its governing processes. For example, satellite remote sensing provides the large-scale snapshots of such basic parameters as ice distribution, melt zone, and cloud fraction at intervals of half a day to a week. Buoys and moorings can contribute high temporal resolution and can measure parameters currently unavailable from space including ice thickness, internal ice temperature, and ocean temperature and salinity. Field campaigns can be used to explore, in detail, the processes that govern the ice cover. Numerical models can be used to assess the character of the changes in the ice cover and predict their impacts on the rest of the climate system. This work

  16. How Vulnerable is Perennial Sea Ice? Insights from Earth's Late Cenozoic Natural Experiments (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brigham-Grette, J.; Polyak, L. V.; Caissie, B.; Sharko, C. J.; Petsch, S.

    2010-12-01

    Sea ice is an important component of the climate system. Yet, reconstructions of Arctic sea ice conditions reflecting glacial and interglacial change over the past 3 million years are almost nonexistent. Our work to evaluate the sea ice and sea surface temperature record of the Bering Strait region builds on a review of the sea ice history of the pan-Arctic. The best estimates of sea ice make use of indirect proxies based on reconstructions of treeline, sea surface temperatures, depositional systems, and the ecological preferences of extant marine microfossil species. The development of new proxies of past sea ice extent including microfossil assemblages (diatoms, ostracodes) and biomarker proxies (IP25) show promise for quantifying seasonal concentrations of sea ice cover on centennial to millennial timescales. Using both marine and terrestrial information, periods of restricted sea ice and ice-free Arctic conditions can be inferred for parts of the late Cenozoic. The Arctic Ocean borderlands contain clear stratigraphic evidence for forested conditions at intervals over the past 50 million years, recording the migration of treeline from High Arctic coastal locations within the Canadian Archipelago. Metasequoia forests of the peak Eocene gave way to a variety of biomass-rich circumarctic redwood forests by 46 Ma. Between 23 and 16 Ma, cool-temperate metasequoia forests dominated NE Alaska and the Yukon while mixed conifer-hardwood forests (similar to those of modern southern maritime Canada and New England) dominated the central Canadian Archipelago. By 16 Ma, these forests gave way to larch and spruce. From 5 to 3 Ma the braid plains of the Beaufort Fm were dominated by over 100 vascular plants including pine and birch, while other locations remained dominated by spruce and larch. Boreal conditions across northern Greenland and arctic Alaska are consistent with the presence of bivalve Arctica islandica in marine sediments capping the Beaufort Formation on Meighen

  17. Environmental predictors of ice seal presence in the Bering Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miksis-Olds, Jennifer L; Madden, Laura E

    2014-01-01

    Ice seals overwintering in the Bering Sea are challenged with foraging, finding mates, and maintaining breathing holes in a dark and ice covered environment. Due to the difficulty of studying these species in their natural environment, very little is known about how the seals navigate under ice. Here we identify specific environmental parameters, including components of the ambient background sound, that are predictive of ice seal presence in the Bering Sea. Multi-year mooring deployments provided synoptic time series of acoustic and oceanographic parameters from which environmental parameters predictive of species presence were identified through a series of mixed models. Ice cover and 10 kHz sound level were significant predictors of seal presence, with 40 kHz sound and prey presence (combined with ice cover) as potential predictors as well. Ice seal presence showed a strong positive correlation with ice cover and a negative association with 10 kHz environmental sound. On average, there was a 20-30 dB difference between sound levels during solid ice conditions compared to open water or melting conditions, providing a salient acoustic gradient between open water and solid ice conditions by which ice seals could orient. By constantly assessing the acoustic environment associated with the seasonal ice movement in the Bering Sea, it is possible that ice seals could utilize aspects of the soundscape to gauge their safe distance to open water or the ice edge by orienting in the direction of higher sound levels indicative of open water, especially in the frequency range above 1 kHz. In rapidly changing Arctic and sub-Arctic environments, the seasonal ice conditions and soundscapes are likely to change which may impact the ability of animals using ice presence and cues to successfully function during the winter breeding season.

  18. Environmental predictors of ice seal presence in the Bering Sea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer L Miksis-Olds

    Full Text Available Ice seals overwintering in the Bering Sea are challenged with foraging, finding mates, and maintaining breathing holes in a dark and ice covered environment. Due to the difficulty of studying these species in their natural environment, very little is known about how the seals navigate under ice. Here we identify specific environmental parameters, including components of the ambient background sound, that are predictive of ice seal presence in the Bering Sea. Multi-year mooring deployments provided synoptic time series of acoustic and oceanographic parameters from which environmental parameters predictive of species presence were identified through a series of mixed models. Ice cover and 10 kHz sound level were significant predictors of seal presence, with 40 kHz sound and prey presence (combined with ice cover as potential predictors as well. Ice seal presence showed a strong positive correlation with ice cover and a negative association with 10 kHz environmental sound. On average, there was a 20-30 dB difference between sound levels during solid ice conditions compared to open water or melting conditions, providing a salient acoustic gradient between open water and solid ice conditions by which ice seals could orient. By constantly assessing the acoustic environment associated with the seasonal ice movement in the Bering Sea, it is possible that ice seals could utilize aspects of the soundscape to gauge their safe distance to open water or the ice edge by orienting in the direction of higher sound levels indicative of open water, especially in the frequency range above 1 kHz. In rapidly changing Arctic and sub-Arctic environments, the seasonal ice conditions and soundscapes are likely to change which may impact the ability of animals using ice presence and cues to successfully function during the winter breeding season.

  19. Antarctic sea ice increase consistent with intrinsic variability of the Amundsen Sea Low

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, John; Hosking, J. Scott; Marshall, Gareth J.; Phillips, Tony; Bracegirdle, Thomas J.

    2016-04-01

    We investigate the relationship between atmospheric circulation variability and the recent trends in Antarctic sea ice extent (SIE) using Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) atmospheric data, ECMWF Interim reanalysis fields and passive microwave satellite data processed with the Bootstrap version 2 algorithm. Over 1979-2013 the annual mean total Antarctic SIE increased at a rate of 195 × 103 km2 dec-1 (1.6 % dec-1), p 4.0 % dec-1) has been in the Ross Sea sector. Off West Antarctica there is a high correlation between trends in SIE and trends in the near-surface winds. The Ross Sea SIE seasonal trends are positive throughout the year, but largest in spring. The stronger meridional flow over the Ross Sea has been driven by a deepening of the Amundsen Sea Low (ASL). Pre-industrial control and historical simulations from CMIP5 indicate that the observed deepening of the ASL and stronger southerly flow over the Ross Sea are within the bounds of modeled intrinsic variability. The spring trend would need to continue for another 11 years for it to fall outside the 2 standard deviation range seen in 90 % of the simulations.

  20. Sea ice production and transport of pollutants in Laptev Sea, 1979 to 1992

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rigor, I.; Colony, R.

    1995-01-01

    About 900,000 km 2 of the polar pack ice is transferred annually from the Arctic Basin to the North Atlantic. The largest portion of this exported ice cover is created by the large scale divergence within the ice pack, but a significant portion of the ice cover originates in the marginal seas, either by fall freezing of the seasonally ice free waters or by wintertime advection away from the coast. The main objective of this study was to estimate the annual production of ice in the Laptev Sea and to determine its ultimate fate. The study was motivated by the possibility that ice formed in the Laptev Sea may be an agent for the long range transport of pollutants such as radionuclides. The authors have attempted to characterize the mean and interannual variability of ice production by investigating the winter production and subsequent melt of ice in the Laptev Sea from 1979 through 1992. The general approach was to associate pollution transport with the net exchange of ice area from the Laptev Sea to the perennial ice pack. The primary data sets supporting the study were ice charts, ice motion and geostrophic wind. 3 refs., 4 figs., 1 tab

  1. Arctic cloud-climate feedbacks: On relationships between Arctic clouds, sea ice, and lower tropospheric stability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, P. C.; Boeke, R.; Hegyi, B.

    2017-12-01

    Arctic low clouds strongly affect the Arctic surface energy budget. Through this impact Arctic low clouds influence other important aspects of the Arctic climate system, namely surface and atmospheric temperature, sea ice extent and thickness, and atmospheric circulation. Arctic clouds are in turn influenced by these Arctic climate system elements creating the potential for Arctic cloud-climate feedbacks. To further our understanding of the potential for Arctic cloud-climate feedbacks, we quantify the influence of atmospheric state on the surface cloud radiative effect (CRE). In addition, we quantify the covariability between surface CRE and sea ice concentration (SIC). This paper builds on previous research using instantaneous, active remote sensing satellite footprint data from the NASA A-Train. First, the results indicate significant differences in the surface CRE when stratified by atmospheric state. Second, a statistically insignificant covariability is found between CRE and SIC for most atmospheric conditions. Third, we find a statistically significant increase in the average surface longwave CRE at lower SIC values in fall. Specifically, a +3-5 W m-2 larger longwave CRE is found over footprints with 0% versus 100% SIC. Because systematic changes on the order of 1 W m-2 are sufficient to explain the observed long-term reductions in sea ice extent, our results indicate a potentially significant amplifying sea ice-cloud feedback that could delay the fall freeze-up and influence the variability in sea ice extent and volume, under certain meteorological conditions. Our results also suggest that a small change in the frequency of occurrence of atmosphere states may yield a larger Arctic cloud feedback than any cloud response to sea ice.

  2. Does a Relationship Between Arctic Low Clouds and Sea Ice Matter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Patrick C.

    2016-01-01

    Arctic low clouds strongly affect the Arctic surface energy budget. Through this impact Arctic low clouds influence important aspects of the Arctic climate system, namely surface and atmospheric temperature, sea ice extent and thickness, and atmospheric circulation. Arctic clouds are in turn influenced by these elements of the Arctic climate system, and these interactions create the potential for Arctic cloud-climate feedbacks. To further our understanding of potential Arctic cloudclimate feedbacks, the goal of this paper is to quantify the influence of atmospheric state on the surface cloud radiative effect (CRE) and its covariation with sea ice concentration (SIC). We build on previous research using instantaneous, active remote sensing satellite footprint data from the NASA A-Train. First, the results indicate significant differences in the surface CRE when stratified by atmospheric state. Second, there is a weak covariation between CRE and SIC for most atmospheric conditions. Third, the results show statistically significant differences in the average surface CRE under different SIC values in fall indicating a 3-5 W m(exp -2) larger LW CRE in 0% versus 100% SIC footprints. Because systematic changes on the order of 1 W m(exp -2) are sufficient to explain the observed long-term reductions in sea ice extent, our results indicate a potentially significant amplifying sea ice-cloud feedback, under certain meteorological conditions, that could delay the fall freeze-up and influence the variability in sea ice extent and volume. Lastly, a small change in the frequency of occurrence of atmosphere states may yield a larger Arctic cloud feedback than any cloud response to sea ice.

  3. Late Quaternary Variability of Arctic Sea Ice: Insights From Biomarker Proxy Records and Model Simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, R. H.; Fahl, K.; Gierz, P.; Niessen, F.; Lohmann, G.

    2017-12-01

    Over the last about four decades, coinciding with global warming and atmospheric CO2increase, the extent and thickness of Arctic sea ice has decreased dramatically, a decrease much more rapid than predicted by climate models. The driving forces of this change are still not fully understood. In this context, detailed paleoclimatic records going back beyond the timescale of direct observations, i.e., high-resolution Holocene records but also records representing more distant warm periods, may help to to distinguish and quantify more precisely the natural and anthropogenic greenhouse gas forcing of global climate change and related sea ice decrease. Here, we concentrate on sea ice biomarker records representing the penultimate glacial/last interglacial (MIS 6/MIS 5e) and the Holocene time intervals. Our proxy records are compared with climate model simulations using a coupled atmosphere-ocean general circulation model (AOGCM). Based on our data, polynya-type sea ice conditions probably occurred off the major ice sheets along the northern Barents and East Siberian continental margins during late MIS 6. Furthermore, we demonstrate that even during MIS 5e, i.e., a time interval when the high latitudes have been significantly warmer than today, sea ice existed in the central Arctic Ocean during summer, whereas sea ice was significantly reduced along the Barents Sea continental margin influenced by Atlantic Water inflow. Assuming a closed Bering Strait (no Pacific Water inflow) during early MIS 5, model simulations point to a significantly reduced sea ice cover in the central Arctic Ocean, a scenario that is however not supported by the proxy record and thus seems to be less realistic. Our Holocene biomarker proxy records from the Chukchi Sea indicate that main factors controlling the millennial Holocene variability in sea ice are probably changes in surface water and heat flow from the Pacific into the Arctic Ocean as well as the long-term decrease in summer insolation

  4. Pronounced anomalies of air, water, ice conditions in the Barents and Kara Seas, and the Sea of Azov

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gennady G. Matishov

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper analyses the anomalous hydrometeorological situation that occurred at the beginning of 2012 in the seas of the Russian Arctic and Russian South. Atmospheric blocking in the temperate zone and the extension of the Siberian High to the Iberian Peninsula (known as the Voeikov et al. axis led to a positive anomaly of air and water temperatures and a decrease in the ice extent in the Barents and Kara Seas. At the same time a prolonged negative air temperature anomaly was recorded in central and southern Europe and led to anomalously severe ice conditions in the Sea of Azov. Winter hydrographic conditions in the Barents and Kara Seas are illustrated by a unique set of observations made using expendable bathythermosalinographs (XCTD.

  5. Reviews and syntheses: Ice acidification, the effects of ocean acidification on sea ice microbial communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMinn, Andrew

    2017-09-01

    Sea ice algae, like some coastal and estuarine phytoplankton, are naturally exposed to a wider range of pH and CO2 concentrations than those in open marine seas. While climate change and ocean acidification (OA) will impact pelagic communities, their effects on sea ice microbial communities remain unclear. Sea ice contains several distinct microbial communities, which are exposed to differing environmental conditions depending on their depth within the ice. Bottom communities mostly experience relatively benign bulk ocean properties, while interior brine and surface (infiltration) communities experience much greater extremes. Most OA studies have examined the impacts on single sea ice algae species in culture. Although some studies examined the effects of OA alone, most examined the effects of OA and either light, nutrients or temperature. With few exceptions, increased CO2 concentration caused either no change or an increase in growth and/or photosynthesis. In situ studies on brine and surface algae also demonstrated a wide tolerance to increased and decreased pH and showed increased growth at higher CO2 concentrations. The short time period of most experiments (bacterial communities in general, impacts appear to be minimal. In sea ice also, the few reports available suggest no negative impacts on bacterial growth or community richness. Sea ice ecosystems are ephemeral, melting and re-forming each year. Thus, for some part of each year organisms inhabiting the ice must also survive outside of the ice, either as part of the phytoplankton or as resting spores on the bottom. During these times, they will be exposed to the full range of co-stressors that pelagic organisms experience. Their ability to continue to make a major contribution to sea ice productivity will depend not only on their ability to survive in the ice but also on their ability to survive the increasing seawater temperatures, changing distribution of nutrients and declining pH forecast for the water

  6. Statistical Analyses of High-Resolution Aircraft and Satellite Observations of Sea Ice: Applications for Improving Model Simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrell, S. L.; Kurtz, N. T.; Richter-Menge, J.; Harbeck, J. P.; Onana, V.

    2012-12-01

    Satellite-derived estimates of ice thickness and observations of ice extent over the last decade point to a downward trend in the basin-scale ice volume of the Arctic Ocean. This loss has broad-ranging impacts on the regional climate and ecosystems, as well as implications for regional infrastructure, marine navigation, national security, and resource exploration. New observational datasets at small spatial and temporal scales are now required to improve our understanding of physical processes occurring within the ice pack and advance parameterizations in the next generation of numerical sea-ice models. High-resolution airborne and satellite observations of the sea ice are now available at meter-scale resolution or better that provide new details on the properties and morphology of the ice pack across basin scales. For example the NASA IceBridge airborne campaign routinely surveys the sea ice of the Arctic and Southern Oceans with an advanced sensor suite including laser and radar altimeters and digital cameras that together provide high-resolution measurements of sea ice freeboard, thickness, snow depth and lead distribution. Here we present statistical analyses of the ice pack primarily derived from the following IceBridge instruments: the Digital Mapping System (DMS), a nadir-looking, high-resolution digital camera; the Airborne Topographic Mapper, a scanning lidar; and the University of Kansas snow radar, a novel instrument designed to estimate snow depth on sea ice. Together these instruments provide data from which a wide range of sea ice properties may be derived. We provide statistics on lead distribution and spacing, lead width and area, floe size and distance between floes, as well as ridge height, frequency and distribution. The goals of this study are to (i) identify unique statistics that can be used to describe the characteristics of specific ice regions, for example first-year/multi-year ice, diffuse ice edge/consolidated ice pack, and convergent

  7. Temporal variatiions of Sea ice cover in the Baltic Sea derived from operational sea ice products used in NWP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lange, Martin; Paul, Gerhard; Potthast, Roland

    2014-05-01

    Sea ice cover is a crucial parameter for surface fluxes of heat and moisture over water areas. The isolating effect and the much higher albedo strongly reduces the turbulent exchange of heat and moisture from the surface to the atmosphere and allows for cold and dry air mass flow with strong impact on the stability of the whole boundary layer and consequently cloud formation as well as precipitation in the downstream regions. Numerical weather centers as, ECMWF, MetoFrance or DWD use external products to initialize SST and sea ice cover in their NWP models. To the knowledge of the author there are mainly two global sea ice products well established with operational availability, one from NOAA NCEP that combines measurements with satellite data, and the other from OSI-SAF derived from SSMI/S sensors. The latter one is used in the Ostia product. DWD additionally uses a regional product for the Baltic Sea provided by the national center for shipping and hydrografie which combines observations from ships (and icebreakers) for the German part of the Baltic Sea and model analysis from the hydrodynamic HIROMB model of the Swedish meteorological service for the rest of the domain. The temporal evolution of the three different products are compared for a cold period in Februar 2012. Goods and bads will be presented and suggestions for a harmonization of strong day to day jumps over large areas are suggested.

  8. Interannual Variability of the Sea-Ice-Induced Salt Flux in the Greenland Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Leif Toudal; Coon, M.D.

    2001-01-01

    The Greenland Sea is one of the few places in the World Ocean where deep convection takes place. The convection process is initiated by a density increase originating from rapid cooling and/or a salt flux to the upper layer of the ocean due to brine rejection from ice formation (Rudels, 1990......; Visbeck and others, 1995). The predominant ice types in the Greenland Sea arc frazil/grease ice and pancake ice. A numerical model has been developed relating ice formation and decay of these ice types as observed by the SMMR and SSM/I microwave radiometers and evaluating their contribution to salt...... redistribution in the Greenland Sea. The model has been used to calculate spatial distribution of the annual integrated net salt flux to the Greenland Sea from ice production and advection for the period 1979-97....

  9. ICESat Observations of Arctic Sea Ice: A First Look

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwok, Ron; Zwally, H. Jay; Yi, Donghui

    2004-01-01

    Analysis of near-coincident ICESat and RADARSAT imagery shows that the retrieved elevations from the laser altimeter are sensitive to new openings (containing thin ice or open water) in the sea ice cover as well as to surface relief of old and first-year ice. The precision of the elevation estimates, measured over relatively flat sea ice, is approx. 2 cm. Using the thickness of thin-ice in recent openings to estimate sea level references, we obtain the sea-ice freeboard along the altimeter tracks. This step is necessitated by the large uncertainties in the sea surface topography compared to that required for accurate determination of freeboard. Unknown snow depth introduces the largest uncertainty in the conversion of freeboard to ice thickness. Surface roughness is also derived, for the first time, from the variability of successive elevation estimates along the altimeter track. Overall, these ICESat measurements provide an unprecedented view of the Arctic Ocean ice cover at length scales at and above the spatial dimension of the altimeter footprint of approx. 70 m.

  10. Loss of sea ice during winter north of Svalbard

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ingrid H. Onarheim

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Sea ice loss in the Arctic Ocean has up to now been strongest during summer. In contrast, the sea ice concentration north of Svalbard has experienced a larger decline during winter since 1979. The trend in winter ice area loss is close to 10% per decade, and concurrent with a 0.3°C per decade warming of the Atlantic Water entering the Arctic Ocean in this region. Simultaneously, there has been a 2°C per decade warming of winter mean surface air temperature north of Svalbard, which is 20–45% higher than observations on the west coast. Generally, the ice edge north of Svalbard has retreated towards the northeast, along the Atlantic Water pathway. By making reasonable assumptions about the Atlantic Water volume and associated heat transport, we show that the extra oceanic heat brought into the region is likely to have caused the sea ice loss. The reduced sea ice cover leads to more oceanic heat transferred to the atmosphere, suggesting that part of the atmospheric warming is driven by larger open water area. In contrast to significant trends in sea ice concentration, Atlantic Water temperature and air temperature, there is no significant temporal trend in the local winds. Thus, winds have not caused the long-term warming or sea ice loss. However, the dominant winds transport sea ice from the Arctic Ocean into the region north of Svalbard, and the local wind has influence on the year-to-year variability of the ice concentration, which correlates with surface air temperatures, ocean temperatures, as well as the local wind.

  11. Diagnosing sea ice from the north american multi model ensemble and implications on mid-latitude winter climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elders, Akiko; Pegion, Kathy

    2017-12-01

    Arctic sea ice plays an important role in the climate system, moderating the exchange of energy and moisture between the ocean and the atmosphere. An emerging area of research investigates how changes, particularly declines, in sea ice extent (SIE) impact climate in regions local to and remote from the Arctic. Therefore, both observations and model estimates of sea ice become important. This study investigates the skill of sea ice predictions from models participating in the North American Multi-Model Ensemble (NMME) project. Three of the models in this project provide sea-ice predictions. The ensemble average of these models is used to determine seasonal climate impacts on surface air temperature (SAT) and sea level pressure (SLP) in remote regions such as the mid-latitudes. It is found that declines in fall SIE are associated with cold temperatures in the mid-latitudes and pressure patterns across the Arctic and mid-latitudes similar to the negative phase of the Arctic Oscillation (AO). These findings are consistent with other studies that have investigated the relationship between declines in SIE and mid-latitude weather and climate. In an attempt to include additional NMME models for sea-ice predictions, a proxy for SIE is used to estimate ice extent in the remaining models, using sea surface temperature (SST). It is found that SST is a reasonable proxy for SIE estimation when compared to model SIE forecasts and observations. The proxy sea-ice estimates also show similar relationships to mid-latitude temperature and pressure as the actual sea-ice predictions.

  12. A modified discrete element model for sea ice dynamics

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LI Baohui; LI Hai; LIU Yu; WANG Anliang; JI Shunying

    2014-01-01

    Considering the discontinuous characteristics of sea ice on various scales, a modified discrete element mod-el (DEM) for sea ice dynamics is developed based on the granular material rheology. In this modified DEM, a soft sea ice particle element is introduced as a self-adjustive particle size function. Each ice particle can be treated as an assembly of ice floes, with its concentration and thickness changing to variable sizes un-der the conservation of mass. In this model, the contact forces among ice particles are calculated using a viscous-elastic-plastic model, while the maximum shear forces are described with the Mohr-Coulomb fric-tion law. With this modified DEM, the ice flow dynamics is simulated under the drags of wind and current in a channel of various widths. The thicknesses, concentrations and velocities of ice particles are obtained, and then reasonable dynamic process is analyzed. The sea ice dynamic process is also simulated in a vortex wind field. Taking the influence of thermodynamics into account, this modified DEM will be improved in the future work.

  13. Canadian snow and sea ice: historical trends and projections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mudryk, Lawrence R.; Derksen, Chris; Howell, Stephen; Laliberté, Fred; Thackeray, Chad; Sospedra-Alfonso, Reinel; Vionnet, Vincent; Kushner, Paul J.; Brown, Ross

    2018-04-01

    The Canadian Sea Ice and Snow Evolution (CanSISE) Network is a climate research network focused on developing and applying state of the art observational data to advance dynamical prediction, projections, and understanding of seasonal snow cover and sea ice in Canada and the circumpolar Arctic. Here, we present an assessment from the CanSISE Network on trends in the historical record of snow cover (fraction, water equivalent) and sea ice (area, concentration, type, and thickness) across Canada. We also assess projected changes in snow cover and sea ice likely to occur by mid-century, as simulated by the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) suite of Earth system models. The historical datasets show that the fraction of Canadian land and marine areas covered by snow and ice is decreasing over time, with seasonal and regional variability in the trends consistent with regional differences in surface temperature trends. In particular, summer sea ice cover has decreased significantly across nearly all Canadian marine regions, and the rate of multi-year ice loss in the Beaufort Sea and Canadian Arctic Archipelago has nearly doubled over the last 8 years. The multi-model consensus over the 2020-2050 period shows reductions in fall and spring snow cover fraction and sea ice concentration of 5-10 % per decade (or 15-30 % in total), with similar reductions in winter sea ice concentration in both Hudson Bay and eastern Canadian waters. Peak pre-melt terrestrial snow water equivalent reductions of up to 10 % per decade (30 % in total) are projected across southern Canada.

  14. A Decade of High-Resolution Arctic Sea Ice Measurements from Airborne Altimetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duncan, K.; Farrell, S. L.; Connor, L. N.; Jackson, C.; Richter-Menge, J.

    2017-12-01

    . Variability is linked to the geographic location and extent of multi-year sea ice. Finally, we describe accessing our high-resolution data products at the NOAA Laboratory for Satellite Altimetry.

  15. Past and present stability of the Weddell Sea sector of the Antarctic Ice Sheet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitehouse, P. L.; Vieli, A.; Jamieson, S.; Bentley, M.; Hein, A.; Sugden, D.

    2016-12-01

    The contribution of the Weddell Sea sector of the Antarctic Ice Sheet to sea-level rise since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), along with the processes controlling the past and ongoing dynamics of this sector, are poorly known. Of particular concern is the fact that significant portions of the present-day grounding line are unstably located on bathymetry that deepens towards the interior of the continent. We present new modelling results, constrained by field evidence relating to past ice extent and thickness along the Foundation Ice Stream and Thiel Trough, which suggest that the post-LGM sea-level contribution from this sector was modest, and that the grounding line is unlikely to have been located at the continental shelf break for a prolonged period during the last glacial cycle. Poorly-constrained ice shelf and ocean processes are found to play a crucial role in controlling the past configuration and stability of this sector of the ice sheet. In particular, we find that we cannot rule out a scenario in which the grounding line of the Foundation Ice Stream retreated behind present during deglaciation, and has since re-advanced. This work complements a number of recent studies, based on independent data sets, that explore the possibility that grounding line re-advance occurred within the Weddell Sea sector during the mid-to-late Holocene. If this hypothesis is correct, then current glacial isostatic adjustment models, and hence contemporary estimates of ice mass balance derived from GRACE data, will be significantly biased. Piecing together, and understanding, the reason for recent changes in ice dynamics is crucial for determining the contemporary stability of the Weddell Sea sector of the Antarctic Ice Sheet.

  16. SPH Modelling of Sea-ice Pack Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staroszczyk, Ryszard

    2017-12-01

    The paper is concerned with the problem of sea-ice pack motion and deformation under the action of wind and water currents. Differential equations describing the dynamics of ice, with its very distinct mateFfigrial responses in converging and diverging flows, express the mass and linear momentum balances on the horizontal plane (the free surface of the ocean). These equations are solved by the fully Lagrangian method of smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH). Assuming that the ice behaviour can be approximated by a non-linearly viscous rheology, the proposed SPH model has been used to simulate the evolution of a sea-ice pack driven by wind drag stresses. The results of numerical simulations illustrate the evolution of an ice pack, including variations in ice thickness and ice area fraction in space and time. The effects of different initial ice pack configurations and of different conditions assumed at the coast-ice interface are examined. In particular, the SPH model is applied to a pack flow driven by a vortex wind to demonstrate how well the Lagrangian formulation can capture large deformations and displacements of sea ice.

  17. Last Interglacial climate and sea-level evolution from a coupled ice sheet-climate model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goelzer, Heiko; Huybrechts, Philippe; Loutre, Marie-France; Fichefet, Thierry

    2016-12-01

    As the most recent warm period in Earth's history with a sea-level stand higher than present, the Last Interglacial (LIG, ˜ 130 to 115 kyr BP) is often considered a prime example to study the impact of a warmer climate on the two polar ice sheets remaining today. Here we simulate the Last Interglacial climate, ice sheet, and sea-level evolution with the Earth system model of intermediate complexity LOVECLIM v.1.3, which includes dynamic and fully coupled components representing the atmosphere, the ocean and sea ice, the terrestrial biosphere, and the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. In this setup, sea-level evolution and climate-ice sheet interactions are modelled in a consistent framework.Surface mass balance change governed by changes in surface meltwater runoff is the dominant forcing for the Greenland ice sheet, which shows a peak sea-level contribution of 1.4 m at 123 kyr BP in the reference experiment. Our results indicate that ice sheet-climate feedbacks play an important role to amplify climate and sea-level changes in the Northern Hemisphere. The sensitivity of the Greenland ice sheet to surface temperature changes considerably increases when interactive albedo changes are considered. Southern Hemisphere polar and sub-polar ocean warming is limited throughout the Last Interglacial, and surface and sub-shelf melting exerts only a minor control on the Antarctic sea-level contribution with a peak of 4.4 m at 125 kyr BP. Retreat of the Antarctic ice sheet at the onset of the LIG is mainly forced by rising sea level and to a lesser extent by reduced ice shelf viscosity as the surface temperature increases. Global sea level shows a peak of 5.3 m at 124.5 kyr BP, which includes a minor contribution of 0.35 m from oceanic thermal expansion. Neither the individual contributions nor the total modelled sea-level stand show fast multi-millennial timescale variations as indicated by some reconstructions.

  18. Assessing deformation and morphology of Arctic landfast sea ice using InSAR to support use and management of coastal ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dammann, D. O.; Eicken, H.; Meyer, F. J.; Mahoney, A. R.

    2016-12-01

    Arctic landfast sea ice provides important services to people, including coastal communities and industry, as well as key marine biota. In many regions of the Arctic, the use of landfast sea ice by all stakeholders is increasingly limited by reduced stability of the ice cover, which results in more deformation and rougher ice conditions as well as reduced extent and an increased likelihood of detachment from the shore. Here, we use Synthetic Aperture Radar Interferometry (InSAR) to provide stakeholder-relevant data on key constraints for sea ice use, in particular ice stability and morphology, which are difficult to assess using conventional SAR. InSAR has the capability to detect small-scale landfast ice displacements, which are linked to important coastal hazards, including the formation of cracks, ungrounding of ice pressure ridges, and catastrophic breakout events. While InSAR has previously been used to identify the extent of landfast ice and regions of deformation within, quantitative analysis of small-scale ice motion has yet to be thoroughly validated and its potential remains largely underutilized in sea ice science. Using TanDEM-X interferometry, we derive surface displacements of landfast ice within Elson Lagoon near Barrow, Alaska, which we validate using in-situ DGPS data. We then apply an inverse model to estimate rates and patterns of shorefast ice deformation in other regions of landfast ice using interferograms generated with long-temporal baseline L-band ALOS-1 PALSAR-1 data. The model is able to correctly identify deformation modes and proxies for the associated relative internal elastic stress. The derived potential for fractures corresponds well with large-scale sea ice patterns and local in-situ observations. The utility of InSAR to quantify sea ice roughness has also been explored using TanDEM-X bistatic interferometry, which eliminates the effects of temporal changes in the ice cover. The InSAR-derived DEM shows good correlation with a high

  19. Arctic sea ice a major determinant in Mandt's black guillemot movement and distribution during non-breeding season

    Science.gov (United States)

    Divoky, G.J.; Douglas, David C.; Stenhouse, I. J.

    2016-01-01

    Mandt's black guillemot (Cepphus grylle mandtii) is one of the few seabirds associated in all seasons with Arctic sea ice, a habitat that is changing rapidly. Recent decreases in summer ice have reduced breeding success and colony size of this species in Arctic Alaska. Little is known about the species' movements and distribution during the nine month non-breeding period (September–May), when changes in sea ice extent and composition are also occurring and predicted to continue. To examine bird movements and the seasonal role of sea ice to non-breeding Mandt's black guillemots, we deployed and recovered (n = 45) geolocators on individuals at a breeding colony in Arctic Alaska during 2011–2015. Black guillemots moved north to the marginal ice zone (MIZ) in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas immediately after breeding, moved south to the Bering Sea during freeze-up in December, and wintered in the Bering Sea January–April. Most birds occupied the MIZ in regions averaging 30–60% sea ice concentration, with little seasonal variation. Birds regularly roosted on ice in all seasons averaging 5 h d−1, primarily at night. By using the MIZ, with its roosting opportunities and associated prey, black guillemots can remain in the Arctic during winter when littoral waters are completely covered by ice.

  20. Strong modification of stratospheric ozone forcing by cloud and sea-ice adjustments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Xia

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available We investigate the climatic impact of stratospheric ozone recovery (SOR, with a focus on the surface temperature change in atmosphere–slab ocean coupled climate simulations. We find that although SOR would cause significant surface warming (global mean: 0.2 K in a climate free of clouds and sea ice, it causes surface cooling (−0.06 K in the real climate. The results here are especially interesting in that the stratosphere-adjusted radiative forcing is positive in both cases. Radiation diagnosis shows that the surface cooling is mainly due to a strong radiative effect resulting from significant reduction of global high clouds and, to a lesser extent, from an increase in high-latitude sea ice. Our simulation experiments suggest that clouds and sea ice are sensitive to stratospheric ozone perturbation, which constitutes a significant radiative adjustment that influences the sign and magnitude of the global surface temperature change.

  1. Model Forecast Skill and Sensitivity to Initial Conditions in the Seasonal Sea Ice Outlook

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanchard-Wrigglesworth, E.; Cullather, R. I.; Wang, W.; Zhang, J.; Bitz, C. M.

    2015-01-01

    We explore the skill of predictions of September Arctic sea ice extent from dynamical models participating in the Sea Ice Outlook (SIO). Forecasts submitted in August, at roughly 2 month lead times, are skillful. However, skill is lower in forecasts submitted to SIO, which began in 2008, than in hindcasts (retrospective forecasts) of the last few decades. The multimodel mean SIO predictions offer slightly higher skill than the single-model SIO predictions, but neither beats a damped persistence forecast at longer than 2 month lead times. The models are largely unsuccessful at predicting each other, indicating a large difference in model physics and/or initial conditions. Motivated by this, we perform an initial condition sensitivity experiment with four SIO models, applying a fixed -1 m perturbation to the initial sea ice thickness. The significant range of the response among the models suggests that different model physics make a significant contribution to forecast uncertainty.

  2. Influence of Atlantic on the warming and reduction of sea ice in the Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. V. Alekseev

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Influence of anomalies of the sea surface temperature (SST in low latitudes of the North Atlantic on the sea ice cover and the near-surface air temperature in the marine Arctic is discussed in the article. Data on the SST in the Atlantic Ocean from the HadISST dataset, climatic series of the water temperature at the section along the Kola meridian together with mean monthly data on the sea ice extent and the air surface temperature in the Maritime Arctic and the Northern hemisphere were analyzed. Multivariate cross-correlation analysis was applied to determine the maximum correlation coefficients between the SST anomalies, climate characteristics and their corresponding delays within time limits of 33 to 38 months. Existence of intimate link had been found between changes of the Atlantic SST in low latitudes and the sea ice extent in the Arctic with correlation coefficients up to 0.90 and delays up to 3 years. A mechanism of formation of the remote influence of low-latitude SST anomalies on the sea ice anomalies in the Arctic Ocean is proposed. The interpretation of this mechanism includes into consideration the interaction between atmospheric and oceanic circulation modes.

  3. Photophysiology and cellular composition of sea ice algae

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lizotte, M.P.

    1989-01-01

    The productivity of sea ice algae depends on their physiological capabilities and the environmental conditions within various microhabitats. Pack ice is the dominant form of sea ice, but the photosynthetic activity of associated algae has rarely been studied. Biomass and photosynthetic rates of ice algae of the Weddell-Scotia Sea were investigated during autumn and winter, the period when ice cover grows from its minimum to maximum. Biomass-specific photosynthetic rates typically ranged from 0.3 to 3.0 μg C · μg chl -1 · h -1 higher than land-fast ice algae but similar to Antarctic phytoplankton. Primary production in the pack ice during winter may be minor compared to annual phytoplankton production, but could represent a vital seasonal contribution to the Antarctic ecosystem. Nutrient supply may limit the productivity of ice algae. In McMurdo Sound, congelation ice algae appeared to be more nutrient deficient than underlying platelet ice algae based on: lower nitrogen:carbon, chlorophyll:carbon, and protein:carbohydrate; and 14 C-photosynthate distribution to proteins and phospholipids was lower, while distribution to polysaccharides and neutral lipids was higher. Depletion of nitrate led to decreased nitrogen:carbon, chlorophyll:carbon, protein:carbohydrate, and 14 C-photosynthate to proteins. Studied were conducted during the spring bloom; therefore, nutrient limitation may only apply to dense ice algal communities. Growth limiting conditions may be alleviated when algae are released into seawater during the seasonal recession of the ice cover. To continue growth, algae must adapt to the variable light field encountered in a mixed water column. Photoadaptation was studied in surface ice communities and in bottom ice communities

  4. Late Cenozoic Arctic Ocean sea ice and terrestrial paleoclimate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carter, L.D.; Brigham-Grette, J.; Marincovich, L.; Pease, V.L.; Hillhouse, J.W.

    1986-01-01

    Sea otter remains found in deposits of two marine transgressions (Bigbendian and Fishcreekian) of the Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain which occurred between 2.4 and 3 Ma suggest that during these two events the southern limit of seasonal sea ice was at least 1600 km farther north than at present in Alaskan waters. Perennial sea ice must have been severely restricted or absent, and winters were warmer than at present during these two sea-level highstands. Paleomagnetic, faunal, and palynological data indicate that the later transgression (Fishcreekian) occurred during the early part of the Matuyama Reversed-Polarity Chron. -from Authors

  5. Arctic sea ice albedo from AVHRR

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindsay, R. W.; Rothrock, D. A.

    1994-01-01

    The seasonal cycle of surface albedo of sea ice in the Arctic is estimated from measurements made with the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) on the polar-orbiting satellites NOAA-10 and NOAA-11. The albedos of 145 200-km-square cells are analyzed. The cells are from March through September 1989 and include only those for which the sun is more than 10 deg above the horizon. Cloud masking is performed manually. Corrections are applied for instrument calibration, nonisotropic reflection, atmospheric interference, narrowband to broadband conversion, and normalization to a common solar zenith angle. The estimated albedos are relative, with the instrument gain set to give an albedo of 0.80 for ice floes in March and April. The mean values for the cloud-free portions of individual cells range from 0.18 to 0.91. Monthly averages of cells in the central Arctic range from 0.76 in April to 0.47 in August. The monthly averages of the within-cell standard deviations in the central Arctic are 0.04 in April and 0.06 in September. The surface albedo and surface temperature are correlated most strongly in March (R = -0.77) with little correlation in the summer. The monthly average lead fraction is determined from the mean potential open water, a scaled representation of the temperature or albedo between 0.0 (for ice) and 1.0 (for water); in the central Arctic it rises from an average 0.025 in the spring to 0.06 in September. Sparse data on aerosols, ozone, and water vapor in the atmospheric column contribute uncertainties to instantaneous, area-average albedos of 0.13, 0.04, and 0.08. Uncertainties in monthly average albedos are not this large. Contemporaneous estimation of these variables could reduce the uncertainty in the estimated albedo considerably. The poor calibration of AVHRR channels 1 and 2 is another large impediment to making accurate albedo estimates.

  6. Sea Ice Melt Pond Data from the Canadian Arctic

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains observations of albedo, depth, and physical characteristics of melt ponds on sea ice, taken during the summer of 1994. The melt ponds studied...

  7. Bacterial communities from Arctic seasonal sea ice are more compositionally variable than those from multi-year sea ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hatam, Ido; Lange, Benjamin; Beckers, Justin; Haas, Christian; Lanoil, Brian

    2016-10-01

    Arctic sea ice can be classified into two types: seasonal ice (first-year ice, FYI) and multi-year ice (MYI). Despite striking differences in the physical and chemical characteristics of FYI and MYI, and the key role sea ice bacteria play in biogeochemical cycles of the Arctic Ocean, there are a limited number of studies comparing the bacterial communities from these two ice types. Here, we compare the membership and composition of bacterial communities from FYI and MYI sampled north of Ellesmere Island, Canada. Our results show that communities from both ice types were dominated by similar class-level phylogenetic groups. However, at the operational taxonomic unit (OTU) level, communities from MYI and FYI differed in both membership and composition. Communities from MYI sites had consistent structure, with similar membership (presence/absence) and composition (OTU abundance) independent of location and year of sample. By contrast, communities from FYI were more variable. Although FYI bacterial communities from different locations and different years shared similar membership, they varied significantly in composition. Should these findings apply to sea ice across the Arctic, we predict increased compositional variability in sea ice bacterial communities resulting from the ongoing transition from predominantly MYI to FYI, which may impact nutrient dynamics in the Arctic Ocean.

  8. Arctic marine mammal population status, sea ice habitat loss, and conservation recommendations for the 21st century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Harry; Kovacs, Kit M.; Lowry, Lloyd; Moore, Sue E.; Regehr, Eric V.; Ferguson, Steven H.; Wiig, Øystein; Boveng, Peter; Angliss, Robyn P.; Born, Erik W.; Litovka, Dennis; Quakenbush, Lori; Lydersen, Christian; Vongraven, Dag; Ugarte, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Arctic marine mammals (AMMs) are icons of climate change, largely because of their close association with sea ice. However, neither a circumpolar assessment of AMM status nor a standardized metric of sea ice habitat change is available. We summarized available data on abundance and trend for each AMM species and recognized subpopulation. We also examined species diversity, the extent of human use, and temporal trends in sea ice habitat for 12 regions of the Arctic by calculating the dates of spring sea ice retreat and fall sea ice advance from satellite data (1979–2013). Estimates of AMM abundance varied greatly in quality, and few studies were long enough for trend analysis. Of the AMM subpopulations, 78% (61 of 78) are legally harvested for subsistence purposes. Changes in sea ice phenology have been profound. In all regions except the Bering Sea, the duration of the summer (i.e., reduced ice) period increased by 5–10 weeks and by >20 weeks in the Barents Sea between 1979 and 2013. In light of generally poor data, the importance of human use, and forecasted environmental changes in the 21st century, we recommend the following for effective AMM conservation: maintain and improve comanagement by local, federal, and international partners; recognize spatial and temporal variability in AMM subpopulation response to climate change; implement monitoring programs with clear goals; mitigate cumulative impacts of increased human activity; and recognize the limits of current protected species legislation. PMID:25783745

  9. Effects of sea-ice light attenuation and CDOM absorption in the water below the Eurasian sector of central Arctic Ocean (>88°N)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lund-Hansen, L.C.; Markager, S.; Hancke, K.; Stratmann, T.; Rysgaard, S.; Ramløv, H.; Sorrell, B.K.

    2015-01-01

    This is a study of the optical, physical and biological parameters of sea ice and the water below it at stations (n=25) in the central (>88°N) Eurasian sector of the Arctic Ocean during the summer 2012 record low sea-ice minimum extent. Results show that photosynthetically active radiation (PAR)

  10. Sea Ice Monitoring from Space with Synthetic Aperture Radar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eltoft, T.; Dierking, W.; Doulgeris, A.; Kasapoglu, G.; Kraemer, T.

    2013-03-01

    This paper summarizes the knowledge status in some areas of SAR monitoring of sea ice. It starts with a brief summary of the whitepaper by Breivik et al. from OceanObs’09 [3], and then focuses on segmentation and classification, drift estimation, and assimilation strategies, which are considered as key areas in the development of more mature sea ice products from SAR and polarimetric SAR (PoLSAR) data.

  11. Automated parameter tuning applied to sea ice in a global climate model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roach, Lettie A.; Tett, Simon F. B.; Mineter, Michael J.; Yamazaki, Kuniko; Rae, Cameron D.

    2018-01-01

    This study investigates the hypothesis that a significant portion of spread in climate model projections of sea ice is due to poorly-constrained model parameters. New automated methods for optimization are applied to historical sea ice in a global coupled climate model (HadCM3) in order to calculate the combination of parameters required to reduce the difference between simulation and observations to within the range of model noise. The optimized parameters result in a simulated sea-ice time series which is more consistent with Arctic observations throughout the satellite record (1980-present), particularly in the September minimum, than the standard configuration of HadCM3. Divergence from observed Antarctic trends and mean regional sea ice distribution reflects broader structural uncertainty in the climate model. We also find that the optimized parameters do not cause adverse effects on the model climatology. This simple approach provides evidence for the contribution of parameter uncertainty to spread in sea ice extent trends and could be customized to investigate uncertainties in other climate variables.

  12. Active and Passive Microwave Determination of the Circulation and Characteristics of Weddell and Ross Sea Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drinkwater, Mark R.; Liu, Xiang

    2000-01-01

    A combination of satellite microwave data sets are used in conjunction with ECMWF (Medium Range Weather Forecasts) and NCEP (National Center for Environment Prediction) meteorological analysis fields to investigate seasonal variability in the circulation and sea-ice dynamics of the Weddell and Ross Seas. Results of sea-ice tracking using SSM/I (Special Sensor Microwave Imager), Scatterometer and SAR images are combined with in-situ data derived from Argos buoys and GPS drifters to validate observed drift patterns. Seasonal 3-month climatologies of ice motion and drift speed variance illustrate the response of the sea-ice system to seasonal forcing. A melt-detection algorithm is used to track the onset of seasonal melt, and to determine the extent and duration of atmospherically-led surface melting during austral summer. Results show that wind-driven drift regulates the seasonal distribution and characteristics of sea-ice and the intensity of the cyclonic Gyre circulation in these two regions.

  13. Sea-Ice Feature Mapping using JERS-1 Imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maslanik, James; Heinrichs, John

    1994-01-01

    JERS-1 SAR and OPS imagery are examined in combination with other data sets to investigate the utility of the JERS-1 sensors for mapping fine-scale sea ice conditions. Combining ERS-1 C band and JERS-1 L band SAR aids in discriminating multiyear and first-year ice. Analysis of OPS imagery for a field site in the Canadian Archipelago highlights the advantages of OPS's high spatial and spectral resolution for mapping ice structure, melt pond distribution, and surface albedo.

  14. Toward Sub-seasonal to Seasonal Arctic Sea Ice Forecasting Using the Regional Arctic System Model (RASM)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamal, S.; Maslowski, W.; Roberts, A.; Osinski, R.; Cassano, J. J.; Seefeldt, M. W.

    2017-12-01

    The Regional Arctic system model has been developed and used to advance the current state of Arctic modeling and increase the skill of sea ice forecast. RASM is a fully coupled, limited-area model that includes the atmosphere, ocean, sea ice, land hydrology and runoff routing components and the flux coupler to exchange information among them. Boundary conditions are derived from NCEP Climate Forecasting System Reanalyses (CFSR) or Era Iterim (ERA-I) for hindcast simulations or from NCEP Coupled Forecast System Model version 2 (CFSv2) for seasonal forecasts. We have used RASM to produce sea ice forecasts for September 2016 and 2017, in contribution to the Sea Ice Outlook (SIO) of the Sea Ice Prediction Network (SIPN). Each year, we produced three SIOs for the September minimum, initialized on June 1, July 1 and August 1. In 2016, predictions used a simple linear regression model to correct for systematic biases and included the mean September sea ice extent, the daily minimum and the week of the minimum. In 2017, we produced a 12-member ensemble on June 1 and July 1, and 28-member ensemble August 1. The predictions of September 2017 included the pan-Arctic and regional Alaskan sea ice extent, daily and monthly mean pan-Arctic maps of sea ice probability, concentration and thickness. No bias correction was applied to the 2017 forecasts. Finally, we will also discuss future plans for RASM forecasts, which include increased resolution for model components, ecosystem predictions with marine biogeochemistry extensions (mBGC) to the ocean and sea ice components, and feasibility of optional boundary conditions using the Navy Global Environmental Model (NAVGEM).

  15. Uncertainty Quantification and Sensitivity Analysis in the CICE v5.1 Sea Ice Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urrego-Blanco, J. R.; Urban, N. M.

    2015-12-01

    Changes in the high latitude climate system have the potential to affect global climate through feedbacks with the atmosphere and connections with mid latitudes. Sea ice and climate models used to understand these changes have uncertainties that need to be characterized and quantified. In this work we characterize parametric uncertainty in Los Alamos Sea Ice model (CICE) and quantify the sensitivity of sea ice area, extent and volume with respect to uncertainty in about 40 individual model parameters. Unlike common sensitivity analyses conducted in previous studies where parameters are varied one-at-a-time, this study uses a global variance-based approach in which Sobol sequences are used to efficiently sample the full 40-dimensional parameter space. This approach requires a very large number of model evaluations, which are expensive to run. A more computationally efficient approach is implemented by training and cross-validating a surrogate (emulator) of the sea ice model with model output from 400 model runs. The emulator is used to make predictions of sea ice extent, area, and volume at several model configurations, which are then used to compute the Sobol sensitivity indices of the 40 parameters. A ranking based on the sensitivity indices indicates that model output is most sensitive to snow parameters such as conductivity and grain size, and the drainage of melt ponds. The main effects and interactions among the most influential parameters are also estimated by a non-parametric regression technique based on generalized additive models. It is recommended research to be prioritized towards more accurately determining these most influential parameters values by observational studies or by improving existing parameterizations in the sea ice model.

  16. Modeling the summertime evolution of sea-ice melt ponds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lüthje, Mikael; Feltham, D.L.; Taylor, P.D.

    2006-01-01

    We present a mathematical model describing the summer melting of sea ice. We simulate the evolution of melt ponds and determine area coverage and total surface ablation. The model predictions are tested for sensitivity to the melt rate of unponded ice, enhanced melt rate beneath the melt ponds...

  17. Large sea ice outflow into the Nares Strait in 2007

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kwok, R.; Pedersen, L.T.; Gudmandsen, Preben

    2010-01-01

    Sea ice flux through the Nares Strait is most active during the fall and early winter, ceases in mid- to late winter after the formation of ice arches along the strait, and re-commences after breakup in summer. In 2007, ice arches failed to form. This resulted in the highest outflow of Arctic sea...... at Fram Strait. Clearly, the ice arches control Arctic sea ice outflow. The duration of unobstructed flow explains more than 84% of the variance in the annual area flux. In our record, seasonal stoppages are always associated with the formation of an arch near the same location in the southern Kane Basin...... ice in the 13-year record between 1997 and 2009. The 2007 area and volume outflows of 87 x 10(3) km(2) and 254 km(3) are more than twice their 13-year means. This contributes to the recent loss of the thick, multiyear Arctic sea ice and represents similar to 10% of our estimates of the mean ice export...

  18. Observations of brine plumes below melting Arctic sea ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. K. Peterson

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available In sea ice, interconnected pockets and channels of brine are surrounded by fresh ice. Over time, brine is lost by gravity drainage and flushing. The timing of salt release and its interaction with the underlying water can impact subsequent sea ice melt. Turbulence measurements 1 m below melting sea ice north of Svalbard reveal anticorrelated heat and salt fluxes. From the observations, 131 salty plumes descending from the warm sea ice are identified, confirming previous observations from a Svalbard fjord. The plumes are likely triggered by oceanic heat through bottom melt. Calculated over a composite plume, oceanic heat and salt fluxes during the plumes account for 6 and 9 % of the total fluxes, respectively, while only lasting in total 0.5 % of the time. The observed salt flux accumulates to 7.6 kg m−2, indicating nearly full desalination of the ice. Bulk salinity reduction between two nearby ice cores agrees with accumulated salt fluxes to within a factor of 2. The increasing fraction of younger, more saline ice in the Arctic suggests an increase in desalination processes with the transition to the new Arctic.

  19. Observations of brine plumes below melting Arctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Algot K.

    2018-02-01

    In sea ice, interconnected pockets and channels of brine are surrounded by fresh ice. Over time, brine is lost by gravity drainage and flushing. The timing of salt release and its interaction with the underlying water can impact subsequent sea ice melt. Turbulence measurements 1 m below melting sea ice north of Svalbard reveal anticorrelated heat and salt fluxes. From the observations, 131 salty plumes descending from the warm sea ice are identified, confirming previous observations from a Svalbard fjord. The plumes are likely triggered by oceanic heat through bottom melt. Calculated over a composite plume, oceanic heat and salt fluxes during the plumes account for 6 and 9 % of the total fluxes, respectively, while only lasting in total 0.5 % of the time. The observed salt flux accumulates to 7.6 kg m-2, indicating nearly full desalination of the ice. Bulk salinity reduction between two nearby ice cores agrees with accumulated salt fluxes to within a factor of 2. The increasing fraction of younger, more saline ice in the Arctic suggests an increase in desalination processes with the transition to the new Arctic.

  20. Assimilation of ice and water observations from SAR imagery to improve estimates of sea ice concentration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Andrea Scott

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, the assimilation of binary observations calculated from synthetic aperture radar (SAR images of sea ice is investigated. Ice and water observations are obtained from a set of SAR images by thresholding ice and water probabilities calculated using a supervised maximum likelihood estimator (MLE. These ice and water observations are then assimilated in combination with ice concentration from passive microwave imagery for the purpose of estimating sea ice concentration. Due to the fact that the observations are binary, consisting of zeros and ones, while the state vector is a continuous variable (ice concentration, the forward model used to map the state vector to the observation space requires special consideration. Both linear and non-linear forward models were investigated. In both cases, the assimilation of SAR data was able to produce ice concentration analyses in closer agreement with image analysis charts than when assimilating passive microwave data only. When both passive microwave and SAR data are assimilated, the bias between the ice concentration analyses and the ice concentration from ice charts is 19.78%, as compared to 26.72% when only passive microwave data are assimilated. The method presented here for the assimilation of SAR data could be applied to other binary observations, such as ice/water information from visual/infrared sensors.

  1. Climate Modeling and Causal Identification for Sea Ice Predictability

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hunke, Elizabeth Clare [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Urrego Blanco, Jorge Rolando [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Urban, Nathan Mark [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)

    2018-02-12

    This project aims to better understand causes of ongoing changes in the Arctic climate system, particularly as decreasing sea ice trends have been observed in recent decades and are expected to continue in the future. As part of the Sea Ice Prediction Network, a multi-agency effort to improve sea ice prediction products on seasonal-to-interannual time scales, our team is studying sensitivity of sea ice to a collection of physical process and feedback mechanism in the coupled climate system. During 2017 we completed a set of climate model simulations using the fully coupled ACME-HiLAT model. The simulations consisted of experiments in which cloud, sea ice, and air-ocean turbulent exchange parameters previously identified as important for driving output uncertainty in climate models were perturbed to account for parameter uncertainty in simulated climate variables. We conducted a sensitivity study to these parameters, which built upon a previous study we made for standalone simulations (Urrego-Blanco et al., 2016, 2017). Using the results from the ensemble of coupled simulations, we are examining robust relationships between climate variables that emerge across the experiments. We are also using causal discovery techniques to identify interaction pathways among climate variables which can help identify physical mechanisms and provide guidance in predictability studies. This work further builds on and leverages the large ensemble of standalone sea ice simulations produced in our previous w14_seaice project.

  2. Numerical modelling of thermodynamics and dynamics of sea ice in the Baltic Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Herman

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, a numerical dynamic-thermo-dynamic sea-ice model for the Baltic Sea is used to analyze the variability of ice conditions in three winter seasons. The modelling results are validated with station (water temperature and satellite data (ice concentration as well as by qualitative comparisons with the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute ice charts. Analysis of the results addresses two major questions. One concerns effects of meteorological forcing on the spatio-temporal distribution of ice concentration in the Baltic. Patterns of correlations between air temperature, wind speed, and ice-covered area are demonstrated to be different in larger, more open sub-basins (e.g., the Bothnian Sea than in the smaller ones (e.g., the Bothnian Bay. Whereas the correlations with the air temperature are positive in both cases, the influence of wind is pronounced only in large basins, leading to increase/decrease of areas with small/large ice concentrations, respectively. The other question concerns the role of ice dynamics in the evolution of the ice cover. By means of simulations with the dynamic model turned on and off, the ice dynamics is shown to play a crucial role in interactions between the ice and the upper layers of the water column, especially during periods with highly varying wind speeds and directions. In particular, due to the fragmentation of the ice cover and the modified surface fluxes, the ice dynamics influences the rate of change of the total ice volume, in some cases by as much as 1 km3 per day. As opposed to most other numerical studies on the sea-ice in the Baltic Sea, this work concentrates on the short-term variability of the ice cover and its response to the synoptic-scale forcing.

  3. Global Daily Sea Ice Concentration Reprocessing Data Set for 1978-2007 from the EUMETSAT Ocean and Sea Ice Satellite Application Facility (NODC Accession 0068294)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data constitute the reprocessed sea ice concentration data set from the EUMETSAT Ocean and Sea Ice Satellite Application Facility (OSI SAF), covering the...

  4. Increased Arctic sea ice drift alters adult female polar bear movements and energetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durner, George M; Douglas, David C; Albeke, Shannon E; Whiteman, John P; Amstrup, Steven C; Richardson, Evan; Wilson, Ryan R; Ben-David, Merav

    2017-09-01

    Recent reductions in thickness and extent have increased drift rates of Arctic sea ice. Increased ice drift could significantly affect the movements and the energy balance of polar bears (Ursus maritimus) which forage, nearly exclusively, on this substrate. We used radio-tracking and ice drift data to quantify the influence of increased drift on bear movements, and we modeled the consequences for energy demands of adult females in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas during two periods with different sea ice characteristics. Westward and northward drift of the sea ice used by polar bears in both regions increased between 1987-1998 and 1999-2013. To remain within their home ranges, polar bears responded to the higher westward ice drift with greater eastward movements, while their movements north in the spring and south in fall were frequently aided by ice motion. To compensate for more rapid westward ice drift in recent years, polar bears covered greater daily distances either by increasing their time spent active (7.6%-9.6%) or by increasing their travel speed (8.5%-8.9%). This increased their calculated annual energy expenditure by 1.8%-3.6% (depending on region and reproductive status), a cost that could be met by capturing an additional 1-3 seals/year. Polar bears selected similar habitats in both periods, indicating that faster drift did not alter habitat preferences. Compounding reduced foraging opportunities that result from habitat loss; changes in ice drift, and associated activity increases, likely exacerbate the physiological stress experienced by polar bears in a warming Arctic. Published 2017. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  5. Multiyear ice transport and small scale sea ice deformation near the Alaska coast measured by air-deployable Ice Trackers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahoney, A. R.; Kasper, J.; Winsor, P.

    2015-12-01

    Highly complex patterns of ice motion and deformation were captured by fifteen satellite-telemetered GPS buoys (known as Ice Trackers) deployed near Barrow, Alaska, in spring 2015. Two pentagonal clusters of buoys were deployed on pack ice by helicopter in the Beaufort Sea between 20 and 80 km offshore. During deployment, ice motion in the study region was effectively zero, but two days later the buoys captured a rapid transport event in which multiyear ice from the Beaufort Sea was flushed into the Chukchi Sea. During this event, westward ice motion began in the Chukchi Sea and propagated eastward. This created new openings in the ice and led to rapid elongation of the clusters as the westernmost buoys accelerated away from their neighbors to the east. The buoys tracked ice velocities of over 1.5 ms-1, with fastest motion occurring closest to the coast indicating strong current shear. Three days later, ice motion reversed and the two clusters became intermingled, rendering divergence calculations based on the area enclosed by clusters invalid. The data show no detectable difference in velocity between first year and multiyear ice floes, but Lagrangian timeseries of SAR imagery centered on each buoy show that first year ice underwent significant small-scale deformation during the event. The five remaining buoys were deployed by local residents on prominent ridges embedded in the landfast ice within 16 km of Barrow in order to track the fate of such features after they detached from the coast. Break-up of the landfast ice took place over a period of several days and, although the buoys each initially followed a similar eastward trajectory around Point Barrow into the Beaufort Sea, they rapidly dispersed over an area more than 50 km across. With rapid environmental and socio-economic change in the Arctic, understanding the complexity of nearshore ice motion is increasingly important for predict future changes in the ice and the tracking ice-related hazards

  6. Ross sea ice motion, area flux, and deformation

    Science.gov (United States)

    kwok, Ron

    2005-01-01

    The sea ice motion, area export, and deformation of the Ross Sea ice cover are examined with satellite passive microwave and RADARSAT observations. The record of high-resolution synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data, from 1998 and 2000, allows the estimation of the variability of ice deformation at the small scale (10 km) and to assess the quality of the longer record of passive microwave ice motion. Daily and subdaily deformation fields and RADARSAT imagery highlight the variability of motion and deformation in the Ross Sea. With the passive microwave ice motion, the area export at a flux gate positioned between Cape Adare and Land Bay is estimated. Between 1992 and 2003, a positive trend can be seen in the winter (March-November) ice area flux that has a mean of 990 x 103 km2 and ranges from a low of 600 x 103 km2 in 1992 to a peak of 1600 x 103 km2 in 2001. In the mean, the southern Ross Sea produces almost twice its own area of sea ice during the winter. Cross-gate sea level pressure (SLP) gradients explain 60% of the variance in the ice area flux. A positive trend in this gradient, from reanalysis products, suggests a 'spinup' of the Ross Sea Gyre over the past 12 yr. In both the NCEP-NCAR and ERA-40 surface pressure fields, longer-term trends in this gradient and mean SLP between 1979 and 2002 are explored along with positive anomalies in the monthly cross-gate SLP gradient associated with the positive phase of the Southern Hemisphere annular mode and the extrapolar Southern Oscillation.

  7. Windows in Arctic sea ice: Light transmission and ice algae in a refrozen lead

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kauko, Hanna M.; Taskjelle, Torbjørn; Assmy, Philipp; Pavlov, Alexey K.; Mundy, C. J.; Duarte, Pedro; Fernández-Méndez, Mar; Olsen, Lasse M.; Hudson, Stephen R.; Johnsen, Geir; Elliott, Ashley; Wang, Feiyue; Granskog, Mats A.

    2017-06-01

    The Arctic Ocean is rapidly changing from thicker multiyear to thinner first-year ice cover, with significant consequences for radiative transfer through the ice pack and light availability for algal growth. A thinner, more dynamic ice cover will possibly result in more frequent leads, covered by newly formed ice with little snow cover. We studied a refrozen lead (≤0.27 m ice) in drifting pack ice north of Svalbard (80.5-81.8°N) in May-June 2015 during the Norwegian young sea ICE expedition (N-ICE2015). We measured downwelling incident and ice-transmitted spectral irradiance, and colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM), particle absorption, ultraviolet (UV)-protecting mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs), and chlorophyll a (Chl a) in melted sea ice samples. We found occasionally very high MAA concentrations (up to 39 mg m-3, mean 4.5 ± 7.8 mg m-3) and MAA to Chl a ratios (up to 6.3, mean 1.2 ± 1.3). Disagreement in modeled and observed transmittance in the UV range let us conclude that MAA signatures in CDOM absorption spectra may be artifacts due to osmotic shock during ice melting. Although observed PAR (photosynthetically active radiation) transmittance through the thin ice was significantly higher than that of the adjacent thicker ice with deep snow cover, ice algal standing stocks were low (≤2.31 mg Chl a m-2) and similar to the adjacent ice. Ice algal accumulation in the lead was possibly delayed by the low inoculum and the time needed for photoacclimation to the high-light environment. However, leads are important for phytoplankton growth by acting like windows into the water column.

  8. Ross Sea Polynyas: Response of Ice Concentration Retrievals to Large Areas of Thin Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwok, R.; Comiso, J. C.; Martin, S.; Drucker, R.

    2007-01-01

    For a 3-month period between May and July of 2005, we examine the response of the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) Enhanced NASA Team 2 (NT2) and AMSR-E Bootstrap (ABA) ice concentration algorithms to large areas of thin ice of the Ross Sea polynyas. Coincident Envisat Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) coverage of the region during this period offers a detailed look at the development of the polynyas within several hundred kilometers of the ice front. The high-resolution imagery and derived ice motion fields show bands of polynya ice, covering up to approximately 105 km(sup 2) of the Ross Sea, that are associated with wind-forced advection. In this study, ice thickness from AMSR-E 36 GHz polarization information serves as the basis for examination of the response. The quality of the thickness of newly formed sea ice (<10 cm) from AMSR-E is first assessed with thickness estimates derived from ice surface temperatures from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument. The effect of large areas of thin ice in lowering the ice concentration estimates from both NT2/ABA approaches is clearly demonstrated. Results show relatively robust relationships between retrieved ice concentrations and thin ice thickness estimates that differ between the two algorithms. These relationships define the approximate spatial coincidence of ice concentration and thickness isopleths. Using the 83% (ABA) and 91% (NT2) isopleths as polynya boundaries, we show that the computed coverage compares well with that using the estimated 10-cm thickness contour. The thin ice response characterized here suggests that in regions with polynyas, the retrieval results could be used to provide useful geophysical information, namely thickness and coverage.

  9. Evolution of a Greenland Ice sheet Including Shelves and Regional Sea Level Variations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradley, Sarah; Reerink, Thomas; van de Wal, Roderik S. W.; Helsen, Michiel; Goelzer, Heiko

    2016-04-01

    Observational evidence, including offshore moraines and marine sediment cores infer that at the Last Glacial maximum (LGM) the Greenland ice sheet (GIS) grounded out across the Davis Strait into Baffin Bay, with fast flowing ice streams extending out to the continental shelf break along the NW margin. These observations lead to a number of questions as to weather the GIS and Laurentide ice sheet (LIS) coalesced during glacial maximums, and if so, did a significant ice shelf develop across Baffin Bay and how would such a configuration impact on the relative contribution of these ice sheets to eustatic sea level (ESL). Most previous paleo ice sheet modelling simulations of the GIS recreated an ice sheet that either did not extend out onto the continental shelf or utilised a simplified marine ice parameterisation to recreate an extended GIS, and therefore did not fully include ice shelf dynamics. In this study we simulate the evolution of the GIS from 220 kyr BP to present day using IMAU-ice; a 3D thermodynamical ice sheet model which fully accounts for grounded and floating ice, calculates grounding line migration and ice shelf dynamics. As there are few observational estimates of the long-term (yrs) sub marine basal melting rates (mbm) for the GIS, we developed a mbm parameterization within IMAU-ice controlled primarily by changes in paleo water depth. We also investigate the influence of the LIS on the GIS evolution by including relative sea level forcing's derived from a Glacial Isostatic Adjustment model. We will present results of how changes in the mbm directly impacts on the ice sheet dynamics, timing and spatial extent of the GIS at the glacial maximums, but also on the rate of retreat and spatial extent at the Last interglacial (LIG) minimum. Results indicate that with the inclusion of ice shelf dynamics, a larger GIS is generated which is grounded out into Davis strait, up to a water depth of -750 m, but significantly reduces the GIS contribution to Last

  10. Simulation of the Greenland Ice Sheet over two glacial–interglacial cycles: investigating a sub-ice-shelf melt parameterization and relative sea level forcing in an ice-sheet–ice-shelf model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. L. Bradley

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Observational evidence, including offshore moraines and sediment cores, confirm that at the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM the Greenland ice sheet (GrIS expanded to a significantly larger spatial extent than seen at present, grounding into Baffin Bay and out onto the continental shelf break. Given this larger spatial extent and its close proximity to the neighbouring Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS and Innuitian Ice Sheet (IIS, it is likely these ice sheets will have had a strong non-local influence on the spatial and temporal behaviour of the GrIS. Most previous paleo ice-sheet modelling simulations recreated an ice sheet that either did not extend out onto the continental shelf or utilized a simplified marine ice parameterization which did not fully include the effect of ice shelves or neglected the sensitivity of the GrIS to this non-local bedrock signal from the surrounding ice sheets. In this paper, we investigated the evolution of the GrIS over the two most recent glacial–interglacial cycles (240 ka BP to the present day using the ice-sheet–ice-shelf model IMAU-ICE. We investigated the solid earth influence of the LIS and IIS via an offline relative sea level (RSL forcing generated by a glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA model. The RSL forcing governed the spatial and temporal pattern of sub-ice-shelf melting via changes in the water depth below the ice shelves. In the ensemble of simulations, at the glacial maximums, the GrIS coalesced with the IIS to the north and expanded to the continental shelf break to the southwest but remained too restricted to the northeast. In terms of the global mean sea level contribution, at the Last Interglacial (LIG and LGM the ice sheet added 1.46 and −2.59 m, respectively. This LGM contribution by the GrIS is considerably higher (∼  1.26 m than most previous studies whereas the contribution to the LIG highstand is lower (∼  0.7 m. The spatial and temporal behaviour of the northern margin was

  11. Ice bridges and ridges in the Maxwell-EB sea ice rheology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Dansereau

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a first implementation of a new rheological model for sea ice on geophysical scales. This continuum model, called Maxwell elasto-brittle (Maxwell-EB, is based on a Maxwell constitutive law, a progressive damage mechanism that is coupled to both the elastic modulus and apparent viscosity of the ice cover and a Mohr–Coulomb damage criterion that allows for pure (uniaxial and biaxial tensile strength. The model is tested on the basis of its capability to reproduce the complex mechanical and dynamical behaviour of sea ice drifting through a narrow passage. Idealized as well as realistic simulations of the flow of ice through Nares Strait are presented. These demonstrate that the model reproduces the formation of stable ice bridges as well as the stoppage of the flow, a phenomenon occurring within numerous channels of the Arctic. In agreement with observations, the model captures the propagation of damage along narrow arch-like kinematic features, the discontinuities in the velocity field across these features dividing the ice cover into floes, the strong spatial localization of the thickest, ridged ice, the presence of landfast ice in bays and fjords and the opening of polynyas downstream of the strait. The model represents various dynamical behaviours linked to an overall weakening of the ice cover and to the shorter lifespan of ice bridges, with implications in terms of increased ice export through narrow outflow pathways of the Arctic.

  12. Ice bridges and ridges in the Maxwell-EB sea ice rheology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dansereau, Véronique; Weiss, Jérôme; Saramito, Pierre; Lattes, Philippe; Coche, Edmond

    2017-09-01

    This paper presents a first implementation of a new rheological model for sea ice on geophysical scales. This continuum model, called Maxwell elasto-brittle (Maxwell-EB), is based on a Maxwell constitutive law, a progressive damage mechanism that is coupled to both the elastic modulus and apparent viscosity of the ice cover and a Mohr-Coulomb damage criterion that allows for pure (uniaxial and biaxial) tensile strength. The model is tested on the basis of its capability to reproduce the complex mechanical and dynamical behaviour of sea ice drifting through a narrow passage. Idealized as well as realistic simulations of the flow of ice through Nares Strait are presented. These demonstrate that the model reproduces the formation of stable ice bridges as well as the stoppage of the flow, a phenomenon occurring within numerous channels of the Arctic. In agreement with observations, the model captures the propagation of damage along narrow arch-like kinematic features, the discontinuities in the velocity field across these features dividing the ice cover into floes, the strong spatial localization of the thickest, ridged ice, the presence of landfast ice in bays and fjords and the opening of polynyas downstream of the strait. The model represents various dynamical behaviours linked to an overall weakening of the ice cover and to the shorter lifespan of ice bridges, with implications in terms of increased ice export through narrow outflow pathways of the Arctic.

  13. The color of melt ponds on Arctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Peng; Leppäranta, Matti; Cheng, Bin; Li, Zhijun; Istomina, Larysa; Heygster, Georg

    2018-04-01

    Pond color, which creates the visual appearance of melt ponds on Arctic sea ice in summer, is quantitatively investigated using a two-stream radiative transfer model for ponded sea ice. The upwelling irradiance from the pond surface is determined and then its spectrum is transformed into RGB (red, green, blue) color space using a colorimetric method. The dependence of pond color on various factors such as water and ice properties and incident solar radiation is investigated. The results reveal that increasing underlying ice thickness Hi enhances both the green and blue intensities of pond color, whereas the red intensity is mostly sensitive to Hi for thin ice (Hi 1.5 m), similar to the behavior of melt-pond albedo. The distribution of the incident solar spectrum F0 with wavelength affects the pond color rather than its intensity. The pond color changes from dark blue to brighter blue with increasing scattering in ice, and the influence of absorption in ice on pond color is limited. The pond color reproduced by the model agrees with field observations for Arctic sea ice in summer, which supports the validity of this study. More importantly, the pond color has been confirmed to contain information about meltwater and underlying ice, and therefore it can be used as an index to retrieve Hi and Hp. Retrievals of Hi for thin ice (Hi measurements than retrievals for thick ice, but those of Hp are not good. The analysis of pond color is a new potential method to obtain thin ice thickness in summer, although more validation data and improvements to the radiative transfer model will be needed in future.

  14. Ocean Profile Measurements During the Seasonal Ice Zone Reconnaissance Surveys

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-30

    ice cover in 2014. The consequent reduced melting early in the summer delays the onset of sea - ice - albedo feed back in accelerating melt throughout the...Chukchi sea seasonal sea ice zone (SIZ) utilizing US Coast Guard Arctic Domain Awareness (ADA) flights of opportunity. This report covers our grant...region between maximum winter sea ice extent and minimum summer sea ice extent. As such, it contains the full range of positions of the marginal ice

  15. Biopolymers form a gelatinous microlayer at the air-sea interface when Arctic sea ice melts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galgani, Luisa; Piontek, Judith; Engel, Anja

    2016-07-20

    The interface layer between ocean and atmosphere is only a couple of micrometers thick but plays a critical role in climate relevant processes, including the air-sea exchange of gas and heat and the emission of primary organic aerosols (POA). Recent findings suggest that low-level cloud formation above the Arctic Ocean may be linked to organic polymers produced by marine microorganisms. Sea ice harbors high amounts of polymeric substances that are produced by cells growing within the sea-ice brine. Here, we report from a research cruise to the central Arctic Ocean in 2012. Our study shows that microbial polymers accumulate at the air-sea interface when the sea ice melts. Proteinaceous compounds represented the major fraction of polymers supporting the formation of a gelatinous interface microlayer and providing a hitherto unrecognized potential source of marine POA. Our study indicates a novel link between sea ice-ocean and atmosphere that may be sensitive to climate change.

  16. Amundsen Sea simulation with optimized ocean, sea ice, and thermodynamic ice shelf model parameters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakayama, Y.; Menemenlis, D.; Schodlok, M.; Heimbach, P.; Nguyen, A. T.; Rignot, E. J.

    2016-12-01

    Ice shelves and glaciers of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet are thinning and melting rapidly in the Amundsen Sea (AS). This is thought to be caused by warm Circumpolar Deep Water (CDW) that intrudes via submarine glacial troughs located at the continental shelf break. Recent studies, however, point out that the depth of thermocline, or thickness of Winter Water (WW, potential temperature below -1 °C located above CDW) is critical in determining the melt rate, especially for the Pine Island Glacier (PIG). For example, the basal melt rate of PIG, which decreased by 50% during summer 2012, has been attributed to thickening of WW. Despite the possible importance of WW thickness on ice shelf melting, previous modeling studies in this region have focused primarily on CDW intrusion and have evaluated numerical simulations based on bottom or deep CDW properties. As a result, none of these models have shown a good representation of WW for the AS. In this study, we adjust a small number of model parameters in a regional Amundsen and Bellingshausen Seas configuration of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology general circulation model (MITgcm) to better fit the available observations during the 2007-2010 period. We choose this time period because summer observations during these years show small interannual variability in the eastern AS. As a result of adjustments, our model shows significantly better match with observations than previous modeling studies, especially for WW. Since density of sea water depends largely on salinity at low temperature, this is crucial for assessing the impact of WW on PIG melt rate. In addition, we conduct several sensitivity studies, showing the impact of surface heat loss on the thickness and properties of WW. We also discuss some preliminary results pertaining to further optimization using the adjoint method. Our work is a first step toward improved representation of ice-shelf ocean interactions in the ECCO (Estimating the Circulation and

  17. Sea ice contribution to the air-sea CO{sub 2} exchange in the Arctic and Southern Oceans

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rysgaard, Soeren (Greenland Climate Research Centre, Greenland Inst. of Natural Resources, Nuuk, Greenland (Denmark); Centre for Earth Observation Science, CHR Faculty of Environment Earth and Resources, Univ. of Manitoba, Winnipeg (Canada)), e-mail: rysgaard@natur.gl; Bendtsen, Joergen (Greenland Climate Research Centre, Greenland Inst. of Natural Resources, Nuuk, Greenland (Denmark); Centre for Ice and Climate, Niels Bohr Inst., Univ. of Copenhagen, Copenhagen O (Denmark)); Delille, Bruno (Unit' e d' Oceanographie Chimique, Interfacultary Centre for Marine Research, Universite de Liege, Liege (Belgium)); Dieckmann, Gerhard S. (Alfred Wegener Inst. for Polar and Marine Research, Bremerhaven (Germany)); Glud, Ronnie N. (Greenland Climate Research Centre, Greenland Inst. of Natural Resources, Nuuk, Greenland (Denmark); Scottish Association of Marine Sciences, Scotland UK, Southern Danish Univ. and NordCee, Odense M (Denmark)); Kennedy, Hilary; Papadimitriou, Stathys (School of Ocean Sciences, Bangor Univ., Menai Bridge, Anglesey, Wales (United Kingdom)); Mortensen, John (Greenland Climate Research Centre, Greenland Inst. of Natural Resources, Nuuk, Greenland (Denmark)); Thomas, David N. (School of Ocean Sciences, Bangor Univ., Menai Bridge, Anglesey, Wales (United Kingdom); Finnish Environment Inst. (SYKE), Marine Research Centre, Helsinki (Finland)); Tison, Jean-Louis (Glaciology Unit, Dept. of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Universite Libre de Bruxelles, Bruxelles, (Belgium))

    2011-11-15

    Although salt rejection from sea ice is a key process in deep-water formation in ice-covered seas, the concurrent rejection of CO{sub 2} and the subsequent effect on air-sea CO{sub 2} exchange have received little attention. We review the mechanisms by which sea ice directly and indirectly controls the air-sea CO{sub 2} exchange and use recent measurements of inorganic carbon compounds in bulk sea ice to estimate that oceanic CO{sub 2} uptake during the seasonal cycle of sea-ice growth and decay in ice-covered oceanic regions equals almost half of the net atmospheric CO{sub 2} uptake in ice-free polar seas. This sea-ice driven CO{sub 2} uptake has not been considered so far in estimates of global oceanic CO{sub 2} uptake. Net CO{sub 2} uptake in sea-ice-covered oceans can be driven by; (1) rejection during sea-ice formation and sinking of CO{sub 2}-rich brine into intermediate and abyssal oceanic water masses, (2) blocking of air-sea CO{sub 2} exchange during winter, and (3) release of CO{sub 2}-depleted melt water with excess total alkalinity during sea-ice decay and (4) biological CO{sub 2} drawdown during primary production in sea ice and surface oceanic waters

  18. Multiscale Observation System for Sea Ice Drift and Deformation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lensu, M.; Haapala, J. J.; Heiler, I.; Karvonen, J.; Suominen, M.

    2011-12-01

    The drift and deformation of sea ice cover is most commonly followed from successive SAR images. The time interval between the images is seldom less than one day which provides rather crude approximation of the motion fields as ice can move tens of kilometers per day. This is particulary so from the viewpoint of operative services, seeking to provide real time information for ice navigating ships and other end users, as leads are closed and opened or ridge fields created in time scales of one hour or less. The ice forecast models are in a need of better temporal resolution for ice motion data as well. We present experiences from a multiscale monitoring system set up to the Bay of Bothnia, the northernmost basin of the Baltic Sea. The basin generates difficult ice conditions every winter while the ports are kept open with the help of an icebreaker fleet. The key addition to SAR imagery is the use of coastal radars for the monitoring of coastal ice fields. An independent server is used to tap the radar signal and process it to suit ice monitoring purposes. This is done without interfering the basic use of the radars, the ship traffic monitoring. About 20 images per minute are captured and sent to the headquarters for motion field extraction, website animation and distribution. This provides very detailed real time picture of the ice movement and deformation within 20 km range. The real time movements are followed in addition with ice drifter arrays, and using AIS ship identification data, from which the translation of ship cannels due to ice drift can be found out. To the operative setup is associated an extensive research effort that uses the data for ice drift model enhancement. The Baltic ice models seek to forecast conditions relevant to ship traffic, especilly hazardous ones like severe ice compression. The main missing link here is downscaling, or the relation of local scale ice dynamics and kinematics to the ice model scale behaviour. The data flow when

  19. Level-Ice Melt Ponds in the Los Alamos Sea Ice Model, CICE

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-12-06

    terms obtained using the Bitz and Lips- comb (1999) thermodynamic model. The thickness distribution ( Thorndike et al., 1975) employs 5 ice thickness...D.L., 2004. A model of melt pond evolution on sea ice. J. Geophys. Res. 109, C12007. http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2004JC002361. Thorndike , A.S., Rothrock

  20. Polynyas in a dynamic-thermodynamic sea-ice model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Ö. Ólason

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available The representation of polynyas in viscous-plastic dynamic-thermodynamic sea-ice models is studied in a simplified test domain, in order to give recommendations about parametrisation choices. Bjornsson et al. (2001 validated their dynamic-thermodynamic model against a polynya flux model in a similar setup and we expand on that work here, testing more sea-ice rheologies and new-ice thickness formulations. The two additional rheologies tested give nearly identical results whereas the two new-ice thickness parametrisations tested give widely different results. Based on our results we argue for using the new-ice thickness parametrisation of Hibler (1979. We also implement a new parametrisation for the parameter h0 from Hibler's scheme, based on ideas from a collection depth parametrisation for flux polynya models.

  1. Summer sea ice characteristics and morphology in the Pacific Arctic sector as observed during the CHINARE 2010 cruise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Xie

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available In the summer of 2010, atmosphere–ice–ocean interaction was studied aboard the icebreaker R/V Xuelong during the Chinese National Arctic Research Expedition (CHINARE, in the sea ice zone of the Pacific Arctic sector between 150° W and 180° W up to 88.5° N. The expedition lasted from 21 July to 28 August and comprised of ice observations and measurements along the cruise track, 8 short-term stations and one 12-day drift station. Ship-based observations of ice thickness and concentration are compared with ice thickness measured by an electromagnetic induction device (EM31 mounted off the ship's side and ice concentrations obtained from AMSR-E. It is found that the modal thickness from ship-based visual observations matches well with the modal thickness from the mounted EM31. A grid of 8 profiles of ice thickness measurements (four repeats was conducted at the 12-day drift station in the central Arctic (~ 86°50´ N–87°20´ N and an average melt rate of 2 cm day−1, primarily bottom melt, was found. As compared with the 2005 data from the Healy/Oden Trans-Arctic Expedition (HOTRAX for the same sector but ~ 20 days later (9 August to 10 September, the summer 2010 was first-year ice dominant (vs. the multi-year ice dominant in 2005, 70% or less in mean ice concentration (vs. 90% in 2005, and 94–114 cm in mean ice thickness (vs. 150 cm in 2005. Those changes suggest the continuation of ice thinning, less concentration, and younger ice for the summer sea ice in the sector since 2007 when a record minimum sea ice extent was observed. Overall, the measurements provide a valuable dataset of sea ice morphological properties over the Arctic Pacific Sector in summer 2010 and can be used as a benchmark for measurements of future changes.

  2. Increased Land Use by Chukchi Sea Polar Bears in Relation to Changing Sea Ice Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rode, Karyn D; Wilson, Ryan R; Regehr, Eric V; St Martin, Michelle; Douglas, David C; Olson, Jay

    2015-01-01

    Recent observations suggest that polar bears (Ursus maritimus) are increasingly using land habitats in some parts of their range, where they have minimal access to their preferred prey, likely in response to loss of their sea ice habitat associated with climatic warming. We used location data from female polar bears fit with satellite radio collars to compare land use patterns in the Chukchi Sea between two periods (1986-1995 and 2008-2013) when substantial summer sea-ice loss occurred. In both time periods, polar bears predominantly occupied sea-ice, although land was used during the summer sea-ice retreat and during the winter for maternal denning. However, the proportion of bears on land for > 7 days between August and October increased between the two periods from 20.0% to 38.9%, and the average duration on land increased by 30 days. The majority of bears that used land in the summer and for denning came to Wrangel and Herald Islands (Russia), highlighting the importance of these northernmost land habitats to Chukchi Sea polar bears. Where bears summered and denned, and how long they spent there, was related to the timing and duration of sea ice retreat. Our results are consistent with other studies supporting increased land use as a common response of polar bears to sea-ice loss. Implications of increased land use for Chukchi Sea polar bears are unclear, because a recent study observed no change in body condition or reproductive indices between the two periods considered here. This result suggests that the ecology of this region may provide a degree of resilience to sea ice loss. However, projections of continued sea ice loss suggest that polar bears in the Chukchi Sea and other parts of the Arctic may increasingly use land habitats in the future, which has the potential to increase nutritional stress and human-polar bear interactions.

  3. Increased Land Use by Chukchi Sea Polar Bears in Relation to Changing Sea Ice Conditions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karyn D Rode

    Full Text Available Recent observations suggest that polar bears (Ursus maritimus are increasingly using land habitats in some parts of their range, where they have minimal access to their preferred prey, likely in response to loss of their sea ice habitat associated with climatic warming. We used location data from female polar bears fit with satellite radio collars to compare land use patterns in the Chukchi Sea between two periods (1986-1995 and 2008-2013 when substantial summer sea-ice loss occurred. In both time periods, polar bears predominantly occupied sea-ice, although land was used during the summer sea-ice retreat and during the winter for maternal denning. However, the proportion of bears on land for > 7 days between August and October increased between the two periods from 20.0% to 38.9%, and the average duration on land increased by 30 days. The majority of bears that used land in the summer and for denning came to Wrangel and Herald Islands (Russia, highlighting the importance of these northernmost land habitats to Chukchi Sea polar bears. Where bears summered and denned, and how long they spent there, was related to the timing and duration of sea ice retreat. Our results are consistent with other studies supporting increased land use as a common response of polar bears to sea-ice loss. Implications of increased land use for Chukchi Sea polar bears are unclear, because a recent study observed no change in body condition or reproductive indices between the two periods considered here. This result suggests that the ecology of this region may provide a degree of resilience to sea ice loss. However, projections of continued sea ice loss suggest that polar bears in the Chukchi Sea and other parts of the Arctic may increasingly use land habitats in the future, which has the potential to increase nutritional stress and human-polar bear interactions.

  4. Biopolymers form a gelatinous microlayer at the air-sea interface when Arctic sea ice melts

    OpenAIRE

    Galgani, Luisa; Piontek, Judith; Engel, Anja

    2016-01-01

    The interface layer between ocean and atmosphere is only a couple of micrometers thick but plays a critical role in climate relevant processes, including the air-sea exchange of gas and heat and the emission of primary organic aerosols (POA). Recent findings suggest that low-level cloud formation above the Arctic Ocean may be linked to organic polymers produced by marine microorganisms. Sea ice harbors high amounts of polymeric substances that are produced by cells growing within the sea-ice ...

  5. Walrus areas of use in the Chukchi Sea during sparse sea ice cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jay, Chadwick V.; Fischbach, Anthony S.; Kochnev, Anatoly A.

    2012-01-01

    The Pacific walrus Odobenus rosmarus divergens feeds on benthic invertebrates on the continental shelf of the Chukchi and Bering Seas and rests on sea ice between foraging trips. With climate warming, ice-free periods in the Chukchi Sea have increased and are projected to increase further in frequency and duration. We radio-tracked walruses to estimate areas of walrus foraging and occupancy in the Chukchi Sea from June to November of 2008 to 2011, years when sea ice was sparse over the continental shelf in comparison to historical records. The earlier and more extensive sea ice retreat in June to September, and delayed freeze-up of sea ice in October to November, created conditions for walruses to arrive earlier and stay later in the Chukchi Sea than in the past. The lack of sea ice over the continental shelf from September to October caused walruses to forage in nearshore areas instead of offshore areas as in the past. Walruses did not frequent the deep waters of the Arctic Basin when sea ice retreated off the shelf. Walruses foraged in most areas they occupied, and areas of concentrated foraging generally corresponded to regions of high benthic biomass, such as in the northeastern (Hanna Shoal) and southwestern Chukchi Sea. A notable exception was the occurrence of concentrated foraging in a nearshore area of northwestern Alaska that is apparently depauperate in walrus prey. With increasing sea ice loss, it is likely that walruses will increase their use of coastal haul-outs and nearshore foraging areas, with consequences to the population that are yet to be understood.

  6. An Investigation of the Radiative Effects and Climate Feedbacks of Sea Ice Sources of Sea Salt Aerosol

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horowitz, H. M.; Alexander, B.; Bitz, C. M.; Jaegle, L.; Burrows, S. M.

    2017-12-01

    In polar regions, sea ice is a major source of sea salt aerosol through lofting of saline frost flowers or blowing saline snow from the sea ice surface. Under continued climate warming, an ice-free Arctic in summer with only first-year, more saline sea ice in winter is likely. Previous work has focused on climate impacts in summer from increasing open ocean sea salt aerosol emissions following complete sea ice loss in the Arctic, with conflicting results suggesting no net radiative effect or a negative climate feedback resulting from a strong first aerosol indirect effect. However, the radiative forcing from changes to the sea ice sources of sea salt aerosol in a future, warmer climate has not previously been explored. Understanding how sea ice loss affects the Arctic climate system requires investigating both open-ocean and sea ice sources of sea-salt aerosol and their potential interactions. Here, we implement a blowing snow source of sea salt aerosol into the Community Earth System Model (CESM) dynamically coupled to the latest version of the Los Alamos sea ice model (CICE5). Snow salinity is a key parameter affecting blowing snow sea salt emissions and previous work has assumed constant regional snow salinity over sea ice. We develop a parameterization for dynamic snow salinity in the sea ice model and examine how its spatial and temporal variability impacts the production of sea salt from blowing snow. We evaluate and constrain the snow salinity parameterization using available observations. Present-day coupled CESM-CICE5 simulations of sea salt aerosol concentrations including sea ice sources are evaluated against in situ and satellite (CALIOP) observations in polar regions. We then quantify the present-day radiative forcing from the addition of blowing snow sea salt aerosol with respect to aerosol-radiation and aerosol-cloud interactions. The relative contributions of sea ice vs. open ocean sources of sea salt aerosol to radiative forcing in polar regions is

  7. Observations of Recent Arctic Sea Ice Volume Loss and Its Impact on Ocean-Atmosphere Energy Exchange and Ice Production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurtz, N. T.; Markus, T.; Farrell, S. L.; Worthen, D. L.; Boisvert, L. N.

    2011-01-01

    Using recently developed techniques we estimate snow and sea ice thickness distributions for the Arctic basin through the combination of freeboard data from the Ice, Cloud, and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) and a snow depth model. These data are used with meteorological data and a thermodynamic sea ice model to calculate ocean-atmosphere heat exchange and ice volume production during the 2003-2008 fall and winter seasons. The calculated heat fluxes and ice growth rates are in agreement with previous observations over multiyear ice. In this study, we calculate heat fluxes and ice growth rates for the full distribution of ice thicknesses covering the Arctic basin and determine the impact of ice thickness change on the calculated values. Thinning of the sea ice is observed which greatly increases the 2005-2007 fall period ocean-atmosphere heat fluxes compared to those observed in 2003. Although there was also a decline in sea ice thickness for the winter periods, the winter time heat flux was found to be less impacted by the observed changes in ice thickness. A large increase in the net Arctic ocean-atmosphere heat output is also observed in the fall periods due to changes in the areal coverage of sea ice. The anomalously low sea ice coverage in 2007 led to a net ocean-atmosphere heat output approximately 3 times greater than was observed in previous years and suggests that sea ice losses are now playing a role in increasing surface air temperatures in the Arctic.

  8. Observational Evidence of a Hemispheric-wide Ice-ocean Albedo Feedback Effect on Antarctic Sea-ice Decay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nihashi, Sohey; Cavalieri, Donald J.

    2007-01-01

    The effect of ice-ocean albedo feedback (a kind of ice-albedo feedback) on sea-ice decay is demonstrated over the Antarctic sea-ice zone from an analysis of satellite-derived hemispheric sea ice concentration and European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ERA-40) atmospheric data for the period 1979-2001. Sea ice concentration in December (time of most active melt) correlates better with the meridional component of the wind-forced ice drift (MID) in November (beginning of the melt season) than the MID in December. This 1 month lagged correlation is observed in most of the Antarctic sea-ice covered ocean. Daily time series of ice , concentration show that the ice concentration anomaly increases toward the time of maximum sea-ice melt. These findings can be explained by the following positive feedback effect: once ice concentration decreases (increases) at the beginning of the melt season, solar heating of the upper ocean through the increased (decreased) open water fraction is enhanced (reduced), leading to (suppressing) a further decrease in ice concentration by the oceanic heat. Results obtained fi-om a simple ice-ocean coupled model also support our interpretation of the observational results. This positive feedback mechanism explains in part the large interannual variability of the sea-ice cover in summer.

  9. Primary production calculations for sea ice from bio-optical observations in the Baltic Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susann Müller

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Bio-optics is a powerful approach for estimating photosynthesis rates, but has seldom been applied to sea ice, where measuring photosynthesis is a challenge. We measured absorption coefficients of chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM, algae, and non-algal particles along with solar radiation, albedo and transmittance at four sea-ice stations in the Gulf of Finland, Baltic Sea. This unique compilation of optical and biological data for Baltic Sea ice was used to build a radiative transfer model describing the light field and the light absorption by algae in 1-cm increments. The maximum quantum yields and photoadaptation of photosynthesis were determined from 14C-incorporation in photosynthetic-irradiance experiments using melted ice. The quantum yields were applied to the radiative transfer model estimating the rate of photosynthesis based on incident solar irradiance measured at 1-min intervals. The calculated depth-integrated mean primary production was 5 mg C m–2 d–1 for the surface layer (0–20 cm ice depth at Station 3 (fast ice and 0.5 mg C m–2 d–1 for the bottom layer (20–57 cm ice depth. Additional calculations were performed for typical sea ice in the area in March using all ice types and a typical light spectrum, resulting in depth-integrated mean primary production rates of 34 and 5.6 mg C m–2 d–1 in surface ice and bottom ice, respectively. These calculated rates were compared to rates determined from 14C incorporation experiments with melted ice incubated in situ. The rate of the calculated photosynthesis and the rates measured in situ at Station 3 were lower than those calculated by the bio-optical algorithm for typical conditions in March in the Gulf of Finland by the bio-optical algorithm. Nevertheless, our study shows the applicability of bio-optics for estimating the photosynthesis of sea-ice algae.

  10. Uncertainty Quantification for Ice Sheet Science and Sea Level Projections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boening, C.; Schlegel, N.; Limonadi, D.; Schodlok, M.; Seroussi, H. L.; Larour, E. Y.; Watkins, M. M.

    2017-12-01

    In order to better quantify uncertainties in global mean sea level rise projections and in particular upper bounds, we aim at systematically evaluating the contributions from ice sheets and potential for extreme sea level rise due to sudden ice mass loss. Here, we take advantage of established uncertainty quantification tools embedded within the Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM) as well as sensitivities to ice/ocean interactions using melt rates and melt potential derived from MITgcm/ECCO2. With the use of these tools, we conduct Monte-Carlo style sampling experiments on forward simulations of the Antarctic ice sheet, by varying internal parameters and boundary conditions of the system over both extreme and credible worst-case ranges. Uncertainty bounds for climate forcing are informed by CMIP5 ensemble precipitation and ice melt estimates for year 2100, and uncertainty bounds for ocean melt rates are derived from a suite of regional sensitivity experiments using MITgcm. Resulting statistics allow us to assess how regional uncertainty in various parameters affect model estimates of century-scale sea level rise projections. The results inform efforts to a) isolate the processes and inputs that are most responsible for determining ice sheet contribution to sea level; b) redefine uncertainty brackets for century-scale projections; and c) provide a prioritized list of measurements, along with quantitative information on spatial and temporal resolution, required for reducing uncertainty in future sea level rise projections. Results indicate that ice sheet mass loss is dependent on the spatial resolution of key boundary conditions - such as bedrock topography and melt rates at the ice-ocean interface. This work is performed at and supported by the California Institute of Technology's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Supercomputing time is also supported through a contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Cryosphere program.

  11. Landfast sea ice break-out events in the Chukchi Sea: Two case studies illuminating long-term observations at Barrow, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, J.; Eicken, H.; Mahoney, A. R.; Mv, R.; Kambhamettu, C.; Fukamachi, Y.; Ohshima, K. I.

    2012-12-01

    Landfast sea ice in northern Alaska is an important coastal feature. It protects coasts from the impacts of storms, acts as a platform for travel and subsistence activities by native communities, and can be an obstacle to near-shore maritime enterprise. These services provided by landfast ice depend upon its presence and extent, as well as the ice cover's capacity to remain stably in place for long periods of time during the ice season. Along the eastern Chukchi coast and specifically at Barrow, Alaska, the near-shore ice conditions are highly dynamic. In recent years, break-outs of the landfast ice have been observed at Barrow, removing larger stretches of previously immobile landfast ice from shore and potentially threatening people and equipment. Indigenous knowledge by local Iñupiaq ice experts extending back several decades indicates that such events were rare or absent until the 1990s. Using imagery from a land-based marine radar, a component of the Barrow Sea Ice Observatory of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, landfast ice formation at Barrow, AK, has been tracked each season since 2005, and a number of break-out events have been identified. A detailed analysis of atmospheric, oceanic and sea ice conditions associated with such events can shed light on local knowledge and understanding of such events, and help develop approaches to predict and respond to break-outs. Here, two break-out events (on February 27, 2009 and March 24, 2010) are the subjects of case studies aimed at determining primary causes of break-outs. The radar imagery is used to track near-shore ice deformation prior to the break-out and to estimate the extent of grounded sea ice ridges. Oceanic and atmospheric data are used to estimate current and wind stress on the landfast ice cover. Sea level measurements provide insight as to whether or not a grounded ridge's keel could be lifted out of its bed, a potential precondition for a break-out to occur. Preliminary results suggest different

  12. Late winter biogeochemical conditions under sea ice in the Canadian High Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helen S. Findlay

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available With the Arctic summer sea-ice extent in decline, questions are arising as to how changes in sea-ice dynamics might affect biogeochemical cycling and phenomena such as carbon dioxide (CO2 uptake and ocean acidification. Recent field research in these areas has concentrated on biogeochemical and CO2 measurements during spring, summer or autumn, but there are few data for the winter or winter–spring transition, particularly in the High Arctic. Here, we present carbon and nutrient data within and under sea ice measured during the Catlin Arctic Survey, over 40 days in March and April 2010, off Ellef Ringnes Island (78° 43.11′ N, 104° 47.44′ W in the Canadian High Arctic. Results show relatively low surface water (1–10 m nitrate (<1.3 µM and total inorganic carbon concentrations (mean±SD=2015±5.83 µmol kg−1, total alkalinity (mean±SD=2134±11.09 µmol kg−1 and under-ice pCO2sw (mean±SD=286±17 µatm. These surprisingly low wintertime carbon and nutrient conditions suggest that the outer Canadian Arctic Archipelago region is nitrate-limited on account of sluggish mixing among the multi-year ice regions of the High Arctic, which could temper the potential of widespread under-ice and open-water phytoplankton blooms later in the season.

  13. Arctic continental shelf morphology related to sea-ice zonation, Beaufort Sea, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reimnitz, E.; Toimil, L.; Barnes, P.

    1978-01-01

    Landsat-1 and NOAA satellite imagery for the winter 1972-1973, and a variety of ice and sea-floor data were used to study sea-ice zonation and dynamics and their relation to bottom morphology and geology on the Beaufort Sea continental shelf of arctic Alaska. In early winter the location of the boundary between undeformed fast ice and westward-drifting pack ice of the Pacific Gyre is controlled by major coastal promontories. Pronounced linear pressure- and shear-ridges, as well as hummock fields, form along this boundary and are stabilized by grounding, generally between the 10- and 20-m isobaths. Slippage along this boundary occurs intermittently at or seaward of the grounded ridges, forming new grounded ridges in a widening zone, the stamukhi zone, which by late winter extends out to the 40-m isobath. Between intermittent events along the stamukhi zone, pack-ice drift and slippage is continuous along the shelf edge, at average rates of 3-10 km/day. Whether slippage occurs along the stamukhi zone or along the shelf edge, it is restricted to a zone several hundred meters wide, and ice seaward of the slip face moves at uniform rates without discernible drag effects. A causal relationship is seen between the spatial distribution of major ice-ridge systems and offshore shoals downdrift of major coastal promontories. The shoals appear to have migrated shoreward under the influence of ice up to 400 m in the last 25 years. The sea floor seaward of these shoals within the stamukhi zone shows high ice-gouge density, large incision depths, and a high degree of disruption of internal sedimentary structures. The concentration of large ice ridges and our sea floor data in the stamukhi zone indicate that much of the available marine energy is expended here, while the inner shelf and coast, where the relatively undeformed fast ice grows, are sheltered. There is evidence that anomalies in the overall arctic shelf profile are related to sea-ice zonation, ice dynamics, and bottom

  14. Controls on Arctic sea ice from first-year and multi-year survival rates

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hunke, Jes [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2009-01-01

    The recent decrease in Arctic sea ice cover has transpired with a significant loss of multi year ice. The transition to an Arctic that is populated by thinner first year sea ice has important implications for future trends in area and volume. Here we develop a reduced model for Arctic sea ice with which we investigate how the survivability of first year and multi year ice control the mean state, variability, and trends in ice area and volume.

  15. Indicators of Arctic Sea Ice Bistability in Climate Model Simulations and Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-30

    associated with the ice - albedo feedback and the seasonal melt and growth of sea ice , as well as horizontal climate variations on a global domain. (2...1 DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. Indicators of Arctic Sea Ice Bistability in Climate...possibility that the climate system supports multiple Arctic sea ice states that are relevant for the evolution of sea ice during the next several

  16. Simulating Arctic clouds during Arctic Radiation- IceBridge Sea and Ice Experiment (ARISE)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bromwich, D. H.; Hines, K. M.; Wang, S. H.

    2015-12-01

    The representation within global and regional models of the extensive low-level cloud cover over polar oceans remains a critical challenge for quantitative studies and forecasts of polar climate. In response, the polar-optimized version of the Weather Research and Forecasting model (Polar WRF) is used to simulate the meteorology, boundary layer, and Arctic clouds during the September-October 2014 Arctic Radiation- IceBridge Sea and Ice Experiment (ARISE) project. Polar WRF was developed with several adjustments to the sea ice thermodynamics in WRF. ARISE was based out of Eielson Air Force Base near Fairbanks, Alaska and included multiple instrumented C-130 aircraft flights over open water and sea ice of the Beaufort Sea. Arctic boundary layer clouds were frequently observed within cold northeasterly flow over the open ocean and ice. Preliminary results indicate these clouds were primarily liquid water, with characteristics differing between open water and sea ice surfaces. Simulated clouds are compared to ARISE observations. Furthermore, Polar WRF simulations are run for the August-September 2008 Arctic Summer Cloud Ocean Study (ASCOS) for comparison to the ARISE. Preliminary analysis shows that simulated low-level water clouds over the sea ice are too extensive during the the second half of the ASCOS field program. Alternatives and improvements to the Polar WRF cloud schemes are considered. The goal is to use the ARISE and ASCOS observations to achieve an improved polar supplement to the WRF code for open water and sea ice that can be provided to the Polar WRF community.

  17. Operational SAR-based sea ice drift monitoring over the Baltic Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Karvonen

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available An algorithm for computing ice drift from pairs of synthetic aperture radar (SAR images covering a common area has been developed at FMI. The algorithm has been developed based on the C-band SAR data over the Baltic Sea. It is based on phase correlation in two scales (coarse and fine with some additional constraints. The algorithm has been running operationally in the Baltic Sea from the beginning of 2011, using Radarsat-1 ScanSAR wide mode and Envisat ASAR wide swath mode data. The resulting ice drift fields are publicly available as part of the MyOcean EC project. The SAR-based ice drift vectors have been compared to the drift vectors from drifter buoys in the Baltic Sea during the first operational season, and also these validation results are shown in this paper. Also some navigationally useful sea ice quantities, which can be derived from ice drift vector fields, are presented.

  18. L-band radiometry for sea ice applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heygster, G.; Hedricks, S.; Mills, P.; Kaleschke, L.; Stammer, D.; Tonboe, R.

    2009-04-01

    Although sea ice remote sensing has reached the level of operational exploitation with well established retrieval methods, several important tasks are still unsolved. In particular during freezing and melting periods with mixed ice and water surfaces, estimates of ice concentration with passive and active microwave sensors remain challenging. Newly formed thin ice is also hard to distinguish from open water with radiometers for frequencies above 8 GHz. The SMOS configuration (planned launch 2009) with a radiometer at 1.4 GHz is a promising technique to complement observations at higher microwave frequencies. ESA has initiated a project to investigate the possibilities for an additional Level-2 sea ice data product based on SMOS. In detail, the project objectives are (1) to model the L band emission of sea ice, and to assess the potential (2) to retrieve sea ice parameters, especially concentration and thickness, and (3) to use cold water regions for an external calibration of SMOS. Modelling of L band emission: Several models have are investigated. All of them work on the same basic principles and have a vertically-layered, plane-parallel geometry. They are comprised of three basic components: (1) effective permittivities are calculated for each layer based on ice bulk and micro-structural properties; (2) these are integrated across the total depth to derive emitted brightness temperature; (3) scattering terms can also be added because of the granular structure of ice and snow. MEMLS (Microwave Emission Model of Layered Snowpacks (Wiesmann and Matzler 1999)) is one such model that contains all three elements in a single Matlab program. In the absence of knowledge about the internal structure of the sea ice, three-layer (air, ice and water) dielectric slab models which take as input a single effective permittivity for the ice layer are appropriate. By ignoring scattering effects one can derive a simple analytic expression for a dielectric slab as shown by Apinis and

  19. Contrasts in Sea Ice Formation and Production in the Arctic Seasonal and Perennial Ice Zones

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwok, R.

    2006-01-01

    Four years (1997-2000) of RADARSAT Geophysical Processor System (RGPS) data are used to contrast the sea ice deformation and production regionally, and in the seasonal (SIZ) and perennial (PIZ) ice zones. Ice production is of seasonal ice in openings during the winter. 3-day estimates of these quantities are provided within Lagrangian elements initially 10 km on a side. A distinct seasonal cycle is seen in both zones with these estimates highest in the late fall and with seasonal minimums in the mid-winter. Regional divergence over the winter could be up to 30%. Spatially, the highest deformation is in the SIZ north of coastal Alaska. Both ice deformation and production are higher in the SIZ: deformation-related ice production in the SIZ (approx.0.5 m) is 1.5-2.3 times that of the PIZ (approx.0.3 m) - this is connected to ice strength and thickness. Atmospheric forcing and boundary layer structure contribute to only the seasonal and interannual variability. Seasonal ice growth in ice fractures accounts for approx.25-40% of the total ice production of the Arctic Ocean. By itself, this deformation-ice production relationship could be considered a negative feedback when thickness is perturbed. However, the overall effect on ice production in the face of increasing seasonal and thinner/weaker ice coverage could be modified by: local destabilization of the water column promoting overturning of warmer water due to increased brine rejection; and, the upwelling of the pynocline associated with increased occurrence of large shear motion in sea ice.

  20. The effects of additional black carbon on the albedo of Arctic sea ice: variation with sea ice type and snow cover

    OpenAIRE

    A. A. Marks; M. D. King

    2013-01-01

    The response of the albedo of bare sea ice and snow-covered sea ice to the addition of black carbon is calculated. Visible light absorption and light-scattering cross-sections are derived for a typical first-year and multi-year sea ice with both "dry" and "wet" snow types. The cross-sections are derived using data from a 1970s field study that recorded both reflectivity and light penetration in Arctic sea ice and snow overlying sea ice. The variation of absorption cross-section ov...

  1. The Arctic-Subarctic Sea Ice System is Entering a Seasonal Regime: Implications for Future Arctic Amplication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haine, T. W. N.; Martin, T.

    2017-12-01

    The loss of Arctic sea ice is a conspicuous example of climate change. Climate models project ice-free conditions during summer this century under realistic emission scenarios, reflecting the increase in seasonality in ice cover. To quantify the increased seasonality in the Arctic-Subarctic sea ice system, we define a non-dimensional seasonality number for sea ice extent, area, and volume from satellite data and realistic coupled climate models. We show that the Arctic-Subarctic, i.e. the northern hemisphere, sea ice now exhibits similar levels of seasonality to the Antarctic, which is in a seasonal regime without significant change since satellite observations began in 1979. Realistic climate models suggest that this transition to the seasonal regime is being accompanied by a maximum in Arctic amplification, which is the faster warming of Arctic latitudes compared to the global mean, in the 2010s. The strong link points to a peak in sea-ice-related feedbacks that occurs long before the Arctic becomes ice-free in summer.

  2. Thin Ice Area Extraction in the Seasonal Sea Ice Zones of the Northern Hemisphere Using Modis Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayashi, K.; Naoki, K.; Cho, K.

    2018-04-01

    Sea ice has an important role of reflecting the solar radiation back into space. However, once the sea ice area melts, the area starts to absorb the solar radiation which accelerates the global warming. This means that the trend of global warming is likely to be enhanced in sea ice areas. In this study, the authors have developed a method to extract thin ice area using reflectance data of MODIS onboard Terra and Aqua satellites of NASA. The reflectance of thin sea ice in the visible region is rather low. Moreover, since the surface of thin sea ice is likely to be wet, the reflectance of thin sea ice in the near infrared region is much lower than that of visible region. Considering these characteristics, the authors have developed a method to extract thin sea ice areas by using the reflectance data of MODIS (NASA MYD09 product, 2017) derived from MODIS L1B. By using the scatter plots of the reflectance of Band 1 (620 nm-670 nm) and Band 2 (841 nm-876 nm)) of MODIS, equations for extracting thin ice area were derived. By using those equations, most of the thin ice areas which could be recognized from MODIS images were well extracted in the seasonal sea ice zones in the Northern Hemisphere, namely the Sea of Okhotsk, the Bering Sea and the Gulf of Saint Lawrence. For some limited areas, Landsat-8 OLI images were also used for validation.

  3. Impact of increasing antarctic glacial freshwater release on regional sea-ice cover in the Southern Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merino, Nacho; Jourdain, Nicolas C.; Le Sommer, Julien; Goosse, Hugues; Mathiot, Pierre; Durand, Gael

    2018-01-01

    The sensitivity of Antarctic sea-ice to increasing glacial freshwater release into the Southern Ocean is studied in a series of 31-year ocean/sea-ice/iceberg model simulations. Glaciological estimates of ice-shelf melting and iceberg calving are used to better constrain the spatial distribution and magnitude of freshwater forcing around Antarctica. Two scenarios of glacial freshwater forcing have been designed to account for a decadal perturbation in glacial freshwater release to the Southern Ocean. For the first time, this perturbation explicitly takes into consideration the spatial distribution of changes in the volume of Antarctic ice shelves, which is found to be a key component of changes in freshwater release. In addition, glacial freshwater-induced changes in sea ice are compared to typical changes induced by the decadal evolution of atmospheric states. Our results show that, in general, the increase in glacial freshwater release increases Antarctic sea ice extent. But the response is opposite in some regions like the coastal Amundsen Sea, implying that distinct physical mechanisms are involved in the response. We also show that changes in freshwater forcing may induce large changes in sea-ice thickness, explaining about one half of the total change due to the combination of atmospheric and freshwater changes. The regional contrasts in our results suggest a need for improving the representation of freshwater sources and their evolution in climate models.

  4. Assessing concentration uncertainty estimates from passive microwave sea ice products

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, W.; Brucker, L.; Miller, J. A.

    2017-12-01

    Sea ice concentration is an essential climate variable and passive microwave derived estimates of concentration are one of the longest satellite-derived climate records. However, until recently uncertainty estimates were not provided. Numerous validation studies provided insight into general error characteristics, but the studies have found that concentration error varied greatly depending on sea ice conditions. Thus, an uncertainty estimate from each observation is desired, particularly for initialization, assimilation, and validation of models. Here we investigate three sea ice products that include an uncertainty for each concentration estimate: the NASA Team 2 algorithm product, the EUMETSAT Ocean and Sea Ice Satellite Application Facility (OSI-SAF) product, and the NOAA/NSIDC Climate Data Record (CDR) product. Each product estimates uncertainty with a completely different approach. The NASA Team 2 product derives uncertainty internally from the algorithm method itself. The OSI-SAF uses atmospheric reanalysis fields and a radiative transfer model. The CDR uses spatial variability from two algorithms. Each approach has merits and limitations. Here we evaluate the uncertainty estimates by comparing the passive microwave concentration products with fields derived from the NOAA VIIRS sensor. The results show that the relationship between the product uncertainty estimates and the concentration error (relative to VIIRS) is complex. This may be due to the sea ice conditions, the uncertainty methods, as well as the spatial and temporal variability of the passive microwave and VIIRS products.

  5. Warming in the Nordic Seas, North Atlantic storms and thinning Arctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexeev, Vladimir A.; Walsh, John E.; Ivanov, Vladimir V.; Semenov, Vladimir A.; Smirnov, Alexander V.

    2017-08-01

    Arctic sea ice over the last few decades has experienced a significant decline in coverage both in summer and winter. The currently warming Atlantic Water layer has a pronounced impact on sea ice in the Nordic Seas (including the Barents Sea). More open water combined with the prevailing atmospheric pattern of airflow from the southeast, and persistent North Atlantic storms such as the recent extremely strong Storm Frank in December 2015, lead to increased energy transport to the high Arctic. Each of these storms brings sizeable anomalies of heat to the high Arctic, resulting in significant warming and slowing down of sea ice growth or even melting. Our analysis indicates that the recently observed sea ice decline in the Nordic Seas during the cold season around Svalbard, Franz Joseph Land and Novaya Zemlya, and the associated heat release from open water into the atmosphere, contributed significantly to the increase in the downward longwave radiation throughout the entire Arctic. Added to other changes in the surface energy budget, this increase since the 1960s to the present is estimated to be at least 10 W m-2, which can result in thinner (up to at least 15-20 cm) Arctic ice at the end of the winter. This change in the surface budget is an important contributing factor accelerating the thinning of Arctic sea ice.

  6. Evaluation of the sea ice proxy IP against observational and diatom proxy data in the SW Labrador Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Weckström, K.; Andersen, M.L.; Kuijpers, A.

    2013-01-01

    The recent rapid decline in Arctic sea ice cover has increased the need to improve the accuracy of the sea ice component in climate models and to provide detailed long-term sea ice concentration records, which are only available via proxy data. Recently, the highly branched isoprenoid IP25...

  7. Diatom-induced silicon isotopic fractionation in Antarctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Francois, F.; Damien, C.; Jean-Louis, T.; Anthony, W.; Luc, A.

    2006-12-01

    We measured silicon-isotopic composition of dissolved silicon and biogenic silica collected by sequential melting from spring 2003 Antarctic pack ice (Australian sector). Sea ice is a key ecosystem in the Southern Ocean and its melting in spring has been often thought to have a seeding effect for the surface waters, triggering blooms in the mixed layer. This work is the first investigation of the silicon isotopes' proxy in sea ice and allows to estimate the activity of sea-ice diatoms in the different brine structures and the influence of sea- ice diatoms on the spring ice edge blooms. The relative use of the dissolved silicon pool by sea-ice diatoms is usually assessed by calculating nutrient:salinity ratios in the brines. However such an approach is biased by difficulties in evaluating the initial nutrient concentrations in the different brines structures, and by the impossibility to account for late sporadic nutrient replenishments. The silicon-isotopic composition of biogenic silica is a convenient alternative since it integrates an average Si utilization on all generations of diatoms. Measurements were performed on a MC-ICP-MS, in dry plasma mode using external Mg doping. Results are expressed as delta29Si relative to the NBS28 standard. From three sea ice cores with contrasted physico-chemical characteristics, we report significant isotopic fractionations linked to the diatoms activity, with distinct silicon biogeochemical dynamics between different brine structure. The diatoms in snow ice and in brine pockets of frazil or congelation ice have the most positive silicon-isotopic composition (+0.53 to +0.86 p.mil), indicating that they grow in a closed system and use a significant part of the small dissolved silicon pool. In the brine channels and skeletal layer, diatoms display a relatively less positive Si-isotopic composition (+0.41 to +0.70 p.mil), although it is still heavier compared to equilibrium fractionation (+0.38 p.mil). This suggests that they have

  8. Indigenous Knowledge and Sea Ice Science: What Can We Learn from Indigenous Ice Users?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eicken, H.

    2010-12-01

    Drawing on examples mostly from Iñupiaq and Yup’ik sea-ice expertise in coastal Alaska, this contribution examines how local, indigenous knowledge (LIK) can inform and guide geophysical and biological sea-ice research. Part of the relevance of LIK derives from its linkage to sea-ice use and the services coastal communities derive from the ice cover. As a result, indigenous experts keep track of a broad range of sea-ice variables at a particular location. These observations are embedded into a broader worldview that speaks to both long-term variability or change and to the system of values associated with ice use. The contribution examines eight different contexts in which LIK in study site selection and assessment of a sampling campaign in the context of inter annual variability, the identification of rare or inconspicuous phenomena or events, the contribution by indigenous experts to hazard assessment and emergency response, the record of past and present climate embedded in LIK, and the value of holistic sea-ice knowledge in detecting subtle, intertwined patterns of environmental change. The relevance of local, indigenous sea-ice expertise in helping advance adaptation and responses to climate change as well as its potential role in guiding research questions and hypotheses are also examined. The challenges that may have to be overcome in creating an interface for exchange between indigenous experts and seaice researchers are considered. Promising approaches to overcome these challenges include cross-cultural, interdisciplinary education, and the fostering of Communities of Practice.

  9. Reviews and syntheses: Ice acidification, the effects of ocean acidification on sea ice microbial communities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. McMinn

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Sea ice algae, like some coastal and estuarine phytoplankton, are naturally exposed to a wider range of pH and CO2 concentrations than those in open marine seas. While climate change and ocean acidification (OA will impact pelagic communities, their effects on sea ice microbial communities remain unclear. Sea ice contains several distinct microbial communities, which are exposed to differing environmental conditions depending on their depth within the ice. Bottom communities mostly experience relatively benign bulk ocean properties, while interior brine and surface (infiltration communities experience much greater extremes. Most OA studies have examined the impacts on single sea ice algae species in culture. Although some studies examined the effects of OA alone, most examined the effects of OA and either light, nutrients or temperature. With few exceptions, increased CO2 concentration caused either no change or an increase in growth and/or photosynthesis. In situ studies on brine and surface algae also demonstrated a wide tolerance to increased and decreased pH and showed increased growth at higher CO2 concentrations. The short time period of most experiments (< 10 days, together with limited genetic diversity (i.e. use of only a single strain, however, has been identified as a limitation to a broader interpretation of the results. While there have been few studies on the effects of OA on the growth of marine bacterial communities in general, impacts appear to be minimal. In sea ice also, the few reports available suggest no negative impacts on bacterial growth or community richness. Sea ice ecosystems are ephemeral, melting and re-forming each year. Thus, for some part of each year organisms inhabiting the ice must also survive outside of the ice, either as part of the phytoplankton or as resting spores on the bottom. During these times, they will be exposed to the full range of co-stressors that pelagic organisms experience. Their ability

  10. Wind-sea surface temperature-sea ice relationship in the Chukchi-Beaufort Seas during autumn

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jing; Stegall, Steve T.; Zhang, Xiangdong

    2018-03-01

    Dramatic climate changes, especially the largest sea ice retreat during September and October, in the Chukchi-Beaufort Seas could be a consequence of, and further enhance, complex air-ice-sea interactions. To detect these interaction signals, statistical relationships between surface wind speed, sea surface temperature (SST), and sea ice concentration (SIC) were analyzed. The results show a negative correlation between wind speed and SIC. The relationships between wind speed and SST are complicated by the presence of sea ice, with a negative correlation over open water but a positive correlation in sea ice dominated areas. The examination of spatial structures indicates that wind speed tends to increase when approaching the ice edge from open water and the area fully covered by sea ice. The anomalous downward radiation and thermal advection, as well as their regional distribution, play important roles in shaping these relationships, though wind-driven sub-grid scale boundary layer processes may also have contributions. Considering the feedback loop involved in the wind-SST-SIC relationships, climate model experiments would be required to further untangle the underlying complex physical processes.

  11. Does Arctic sea ice reduction foster shelf-basin exchange?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivanov, Vladimir; Watanabe, Eiji

    2013-12-01

    The recent shift in Arctic ice conditions from prevailing multi-year ice to first-year ice will presumably intensify fall-winter sea ice freezing and the associated salt flux to the underlying water column. Here, we conduct a dual modeling study whose results suggest that the predicted catastrophic consequences for the global thermohaline circulation (THC), as a result of the disappearance of Arctic sea ice, may not necessarily occur. In a warmer climate, the substantial fraction of dense water feeding the Greenland-Scotland overflow may form on Arctic shelves and cascade to the deep basin, thus replenishing dense water, which currently forms through open ocean convection in the sub-Arctic seas. We have used a simplified model for estimating how increased ice production influences shelf-basin exchange associated with dense water cascading. We have carried out case studies in two regions of the Arctic Ocean where cascading was observed in the past. The baseline range of buoyancy-forcing derived from the columnar ice formation was calculated as part of a 30-year experiment of the pan-Arctic coupled ice-ocean general circulation model (GCM). The GCM results indicate that mechanical sea ice divergence associated with lateral advection accounts for a significant part of the interannual variations in sea ice thermal production in the coastal polynya regions. This forcing was then rectified by taking into account sub-grid processes and used in a regional model with analytically prescribed bottom topography and vertical stratification in order to examine specific cascading conditions in the Pacific and Atlantic sectors of the Arctic Ocean. Our results demonstrate that the consequences of enhanced ice formation depend on geographical location and shelf-basin bathymetry. In the Pacific sector, strong density stratification in slope waters impedes noticeable deepening of shelf-origin water, even for the strongest forcing applied. In the Atlantic sector, a 1.5x increase of

  12. Carbon sources and trophic relationships of ice seals during recent environmental shifts in the Bering Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shiway W; Springer, Alan M; Budge, Suzanne M; Horstmann, Lara; Quakenbush, Lori T; Wooller, Matthew J

    2016-04-01

    Dramatic multiyear fluctuations in water temperature and seasonal sea ice extent and duration across the Bering-Chukchi continental shelf have occurred in this century, raising a pressing ecological question: Do such environmental changes alter marine production processes linking primary producers to upper trophic-level predators? We examined this question by comparing the blubber fatty acid (FA) composition and stable carbon isotope ratios of individual FA (δ¹³CFA) of adult ringed seals (Pusa hispida), bearded seals (Erignathus barbatus), spotted seals (Phoca largha), and ribbon seals (Histriophoca fasciata), collectively known as "ice seals," sampled during an anomalously warm, low sea ice period in 2002-2005 in the Bering Sea and a subsequent cold, high sea ice period in 2007-2010. δ¹³C(FA) values, used to estimate the contribution to seals of carbon derived from sea ice algae (sympagic production) relative to that derived from water column phytoplankton (pelagic production), indicated that during the cold period, sympagic production accounted for 62-80% of the FA in the blubber of bearded seals, 51-62% in spotted seals, and 21-60% in ringed seals. Moreover, the δ¹³CFA values of bearded seals indicated a greater incorporation of sympagic FAs during the cold period than the warm period. This result provides the first empirical evidence of an ecosystem-scale effect of a putative change in sympagic production in the Western Arctic. The FA composition of ice seals showed clear evidence of resource partitioning among ringed, bearded, and spotted seals, and little niche separation between spotted and ribbon seals, which is consistent with previous studies. Despite interannual variability, the FA composition of ringed and bearded seals showed little evidence of differences in diet between the warm and cold periods. The findings that sympagic production contributes significantly to food webs supporting ice seals, and that the contribution apparently is less in

  13. The Impact of Sea Ice Loss on Wave Dynamics and Coastal Erosion Along the Arctic Coast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Overeem, I.; Anderson, R. S.; Wobus, C. W.; Matell, N.; Urban, F. E.; Clow, G. D.; Stanton, T. P.

    2010-12-01

    The extent of Arctic sea ice has been shrinking rapidly over the past few decades, and attendant acceleration of erosion is now occurring along the Arctic coast. This both brings coastal infrastructure into harm’s way and promotes a complex response of the adjacent landscape to global change. We quantify the effects of declining sea ice extent on coastal erosion rates along a 75-km stretch of coastal permafrost bluffs adjacent to the Beaufort Sea, Alaska, where present-day erosion rates are among the highest in the world at ~14 m yr-1. Our own observations reinforce those of others, and suggest that the rate-limiting process is thermal erosion at the base of the several-meter tall bluffs. Here we focus on the interaction between the nearshore sea ice concentration, the location of the sea ice margin, and the fetch-limited, shallow water wave field, since these parameters ultimately control both sea surface temperatures and the height to which these waters can bathe the frozen bluffs. Thirty years of daily or bi-daily passive microwave data from Nimbus-7 SMMR and DMSP SSM/I satellites reveal that the nearshore open water season lengthened ~54 days over 1979-2009. The open water season, centered in August, expands more rapidly into the fall (September and October~0.92 day yr-1) than into the early summer (July~0.71 days yr-1). Average fetch, defined for our purposes as the distance from the sea ice margin to the coast over which the wind is blowing, increased by a factor 1.7 over the same time-span. Given these time series, we modeled daily nearshore wave heights during the open water season for each year, which we integrated to provide a quantitative metric for the annual exposure of the coastal bluffs to thermal erosion. This “annual wave exposure” increased by 250% during 1979-2009. In the same interval, coastal erosion rates reconstructed from satellite and aerial photo records show less acceleration. We attribute this to a disproportionate extension of the

  14. Summer Arctic sea ice character from satellite microwave data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carsey, F. D.

    1985-01-01

    It is pointed out that Arctic sea ice and its environment undergo a number of changes during the summer period. Some of these changes affect the ice cover properties and, in turn, their response to thermal and mechanical forcing throughout the year. The main objective of this investigation is related to the development of a method for estimating the areal coverage of exposed ice, melt ponds, and leads, which are the basic surface variables determining the local surface albedo. The study is based on data obtained in a field investigation conducted from Mould Bay (NWT), Nimbus 5 satellite data, and Seasat data. The investigation demonstrates that microwave data from satellites, especially microwave brightness temperature, provide good data for estimating important characteristics of summer sea ice cover.

  15. Constraining ice sheet history in the Weddell Sea, West Antarctica, using ice fabric at Korff Ice Rise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brisbourne, A.; Smith, A.; Kendall, J. M.; Baird, A. F.; Martin, C.; Kingslake, J.

    2017-12-01

    The grounding history of ice rises (grounded area of independent flow regime within a floating ice shelf) can be used to constrain large scale ice sheet history: ice fabric, resulting from the preferred orientation of ice crystals due to the stress regime, can be used to infer this grounding history. With the aim of measuring the present day ice fabric at Korff Ice Rise, West Antarctica, a multi-azimuth wide-angle seismic experiment was undertaken. Three wide-angle common-midpoint gathers were acquired centred on the apex of the ice rise, at azimuths of 60 degrees to one another, to measure variation in seismic properties with offset and azimuth. Both vertical and horizontal receivers were used to record P and S arrivals including converted phases. Measurements of the variation with offset and azimuth of seismic traveltimes, seismic attenuation and shear wave splitting have been used to quantify seismic anisotropy in the ice column. The observations cannot be reproduced using an isotropic ice column model. Anisotropic ray tracing has been used to test likely models of ice fabric by comparison with the data. A model with a weak girdle fabric overlying a strong cluster fabric provides the best fit to the observations. Fabric of this nature is consistent with Korff Ice Rise having been stable for the order of 10,000 years without any ungrounding or significant change in the ice flow configuration across the ice rise for this period. This observation has significant implications for the ice sheet history of the Weddell Sea sector.

  16. The effects of additional black carbon on the albedo of Arctic sea ice: variation with sea ice type and snow cover

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. A. Marks

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The response of the albedo of bare sea ice and snow-covered sea ice to the addition of black carbon is calculated. Visible light absorption and light-scattering cross-sections are derived for a typical first-year and multi-year sea ice with both "dry" and "wet" snow types. The cross-sections are derived using data from a 1970s field study that recorded both reflectivity and light penetration in Arctic sea ice and snow overlying sea ice. The variation of absorption cross-section over the visible wavelengths suggests black carbon is the dominating light-absorbing impurity. The response of first-year and multi-year sea ice albedo to increasing black carbon, from 1 to 1024 ng g−1, in a top 5 cm layer of a 155 cm-thick sea ice was calculated using a radiative-transfer model. The albedo of the first-year sea ice is more sensitive to additional loadings of black carbon than the multi-year sea ice. An addition of 8 ng g−1 of black carbon causes a decrease to 98.7% of the original albedo for first-year sea ice compared to a decrease to 99.7% for the albedo of multi-year sea ice, at a wavelength of 500 nm. The albedo of sea ice is surprisingly unresponsive to additional black carbon up to 100 ng g−1 . Snow layers on sea ice may mitigate the effects of black carbon in sea ice. Wet and dry snow layers of 0.5, 1, 2, 5 and 10 cm depth were added onto the sea ice surface. The albedo of the snow surface was calculated whilst the black carbon in the underlying sea ice was increased. A layer of snow 0.5 cm thick greatly diminishes the effect of black carbon in sea ice on the surface albedo. The albedo of a 2–5 cm snow layer (less than the e-folding depth of snow is still influenced by the underlying sea ice, but the effect of additional black carbon in the sea ice is masked.

  17. Geoengineering by cloud seeding: influence on sea ice and climate system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rasch, Philip J; Latham, John; Chen, Chih-Chieh

    2009-01-01

    General circulation model computations using a fully coupled ocean-atmosphere model indicate that increasing cloud reflectivity by seeding maritime boundary layer clouds with particles made from seawater may compensate for some of the effects on climate of increasing greenhouse gas concentrations. The chosen seeding strategy (one of many possible scenarios) can restore global averages of temperature, precipitation and sea ice to present day values, but not simultaneously. The response varies nonlinearly with the extent of seeding, and geoengineering generates local changes to important climatic features. The global tradeoffs of restoring ice cover, and cooling the planet, must be assessed alongside the local changes to climate features.

  18. Exopolymer alteration of physical properties of sea ice and implications for ice habitability and biogeochemistry in a warmer Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krembs, Christopher; Eicken, Hajo; Deming, Jody W

    2011-03-01

    The physical properties of Arctic sea ice determine its habitability. Whether ice-dwelling organisms can change those properties has rarely been addressed. Following discovery that sea ice contains an abundance of gelatinous extracellular polymeric substances (EPS), we examined the effects of algal EPS on the microstructure and salt retention of ice grown from saline solutions containing EPS from a culture of the sea-ice diatom, Melosira arctica. We also experimented with xanthan gum and with EPS from a culture of the cold-adapted bacterium Colwellia psychrerythraea strain 34H. Quantitative microscopic analyses of the artificial ice containing Melosira EPS revealed convoluted ice-pore morphologies of high fractal dimension, mimicking features found in EPS-rich coastal sea ice, whereas EPS-free (control) ice featured much simpler pore geometries. A heat-sensitive glycoprotein fraction of Melosira EPS accounted for complex pore morphologies. Although all tested forms of EPS increased bulk ice salinity (by 11-59%) above the controls, ice containing native Melosira EPS retained the most salt. EPS effects on ice and pore microstructure improve sea ice habitability, survivability, and potential for increased primary productivity, even as they may alter the persistence and biogeochemical imprint of sea ice on the surface ocean in a warming climate.

  19. Some aspects of floating ice related to sea surface operations in the Barents sea

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Loeset, S.

    1993-01-01

    The present work highlights some aspects of floating ice related to sea surface operations in the Barents sea. The thesis consists of eight papers which fall into two main categories; one part deals with numerical modeling of the temperature distribution and ablation of icebergs (three papers), and the other part studies the behavior of broken ice, focusing on both laboratory experiments and numerical modeling. The temperature distribution within an iceberg affects the mechanical strength of the ice and is therefore crucial in engineering applications when estimating loads from impinging icebergs on offshore structures. A numerical model which simulates the temperature distribution and ablation of icebergs has been developed. The model shows that the depth of the thermal disturbance and slope of the temperature gradient of an iceberg depend on the boundary conditions and the time at sea. By about 12 m into the ice, the temperature is virtually free of any thermal boundary influence. Oil spill response techniques are vulnerable to the presence of sea ice. Deflecting ice upstream of a spill site by means of a flexible boom will facilitate the application of conventional oil spill recovery systems such as oil skimmers and booms. Experiments with such an ice deflecting boom were conducted in an ice tank to determine the loads on the boom and to study the ice-free wake. The study indicated the technical feasibility of the ice boom concept as an operational tool for oil spill cleanups. A two-dimensional discrete element model has been developed. This model simulates the dynamics and interaction forces between distinct ice floes in a broken ice field. The numerical model was applied to estimate the loads on a boom used for ice management. 121 refs., 70 figs., 10 tabs

  20. Multiphase Reactive Transport and Platelet Ice Accretion in the Sea Ice of McMurdo Sound, Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buffo, J. J.; Schmidt, B. E.; Huber, C.

    2018-01-01

    Sea ice seasonally to interannually forms a thermal, chemical, and physical boundary between the atmosphere and hydrosphere over tens of millions of square kilometers of ocean. Its presence affects both local and global climate and ocean dynamics, ice shelf processes, and biological communities. Accurate incorporation of sea ice growth and decay, and its associated thermal and physiochemical processes, is underrepresented in large-scale models due to the complex physics that dictate oceanic ice formation and evolution. Two phenomena complicate sea ice simulation, particularly in the Antarctic: the multiphase physics of reactive transport brought about by the inhomogeneous solidification of seawater, and the buoyancy driven accretion of platelet ice formed by supercooled ice shelf water onto the basal surface of the overlying ice. Here a one-dimensional finite difference model capable of simulating both processes is developed and tested against ice core data. Temperature, salinity, liquid fraction, fluid velocity, total salt content, and ice structure are computed during model runs. The model results agree well with empirical observations and simulations highlight the effect platelet ice accretion has on overall ice thickness and characteristics. Results from sensitivity studies emphasize the need to further constrain sea ice microstructure and the associated physics, particularly permeability-porosity relationships, if a complete model of sea ice evolution is to be obtained. Additionally, implications for terrestrial ice shelves and icy moons in the solar system are discussed.

  1. Distinguishing Clouds from Ice over the East Siberian Sea, Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-01-01

    As a consequence of its capability to retrieve cloud-top elevations, stereoscopic observations from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) can discriminate clouds from snow and ice. The central portion of Russia's East Siberian Sea, including one of the New Siberian Islands, Novaya Sibir, are portrayed in these views from data acquired on May 28, 2002.The left-hand image is a natural color view from MISR's nadir camera. On the right is a height field retrieved using automated computer processing of data from multiple MISR cameras. Although both clouds and ice appear white in the natural color view, the stereoscopic retrievals are able to identify elevated clouds based on the geometric parallax which results when they are observed from different angles. Owing to their elevation above sea level, clouds are mapped as green and yellow areas, whereas land, sea ice, and very low clouds appear blue and purple. Purple, in particular, denotes elevations very close to sea level. The island of Novaya Sibir is located in the lower left of the images. It can be identified in the natural color view as the dark area surrounded by an expanse of fast ice. In the stereo map the island appears as a blue region indicating its elevation of less than 100 meters above sea level. Areas where the automated stereo processing failed due to lack of sufficient spatial contrast are shown in dark gray. The northern edge of the Siberian mainland can be found at the very bottom of the panels, and is located a little over 250 kilometers south of Novaya Sibir. Pack ice containing numerous fragmented ice floes surrounds the fast ice, and narrow areas of open ocean are visible.The East Siberian Sea is part of the Arctic Ocean and is ice-covered most of the year. The New Siberian Islands are almost always covered by snow and ice, and tundra vegetation is very scant. Despite continuous sunlight from the end of April until the middle of August, the ice between the island and the mainland

  2. Air-Sea Interactions in the Marginal Ice Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-03-31

    elementascience.org Air-sea interactions in the marginal ice zoneAir-Sea interactions in the Marginal Ice Zone Seth Zippel1* • Jim Thomson1 1Applied...Bidlot, 2013; Collins -III et al., 2015). Spectral wave directions and spread are given in Figure 5, where the difference in wave and wind direction...359219a0. Chalikov DV, Belevich MY. 1993. One-dimensional theory of the wave boundary layer. Bound-Lay Meteor 63: 65–96. Collins -III CO, Rogers WE

  3. Arctic Tides from GPS on sea-ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kildegaard Rose, Stine; Skourup, Henriette; Forsberg, René

    2013-01-01

    The presence of sea-ice in the Arctic Ocean plays a significant role in the Arctic climate. Sea-ice dampens the ocean tide amplitude with the result that global tidal models perform less accurately in the polar regions. This paper presents, a kinematic processing of global positioning system (GPS....... The results show coherence between the GPS buoy measurements, and the tide model. Furthermore, we have proved that the reference ellipsoid of WGS84, can be interpolated to the tidal defined zero level by applying geophysical corrections to the GPS data....

  4. Denitrification activity and oxygen dynamics in Arctic sea ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Glud, Ronnie Nøhr; Stahl, Henrik J.; Rysgaard, Søren

    2008-01-01

    denitrification activity (5-194 mu mol N m(-2) day(-1)) and anammox activity (3-5 mu mol N m(-2) day(-1)) in melt water from both first-year and multi-year sea ice was found. These values correspond to 27 and 7%, respectively, of the benthic denitrification and anammox activities in Arctic sediments. Although we...... a mosaic of microsites of high and low O-2 concentrations. Brine enclosures and channels were strongly O-2 depleted in actively melting sea ice, and anoxic conditions in parts of the brine system would favour anaerobic processes....

  5. Aerosol-driven increase in Arctic sea ice over the middle of the twentieth century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gagné, Marie-Ève; Fyfe, John C.; Gillett, Nathan P.; Polyakov, Igor V.; Flato, Gregory M.

    2017-07-01

    Updated observational data sets without climatological infilling show that there was an increase in sea ice concentration in the eastern Arctic between 1950 and 1975, contrary to earlier climatology infilled observational data sets that show weak interannual variations during that time period. We here present climate model simulations showing that this observed sea ice concentration increase was primarily a consequence of cooling induced by increasing anthropogenic aerosols and natural forcing. Indeed, sulphur dioxide emissions, which lead to the formation of sulphate aerosols, peaked around 1980 causing a sharp increase in the burden of sulphate between the 1950s and 1970s; but since 1980, the burden has dropped. Our climate model simulations show that the cooling contribution of aerosols offset the warming effect of increasing greenhouse gases over the midtwentieth century resulting in the expansion of the Arctic sea ice cover. These results challenge the perception that Arctic sea ice extent was unperturbed by human influence until the 1970s, suggesting instead that it exhibited earlier forced multidecadal variations, with implications for our understanding of impacts and adaptation in human and natural Arctic systems.

  6. The NRL 2011 Airborne Sea-Ice Thickness Campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brozena, J. M.; Gardner, J. M.; Liang, R.; Ball, D.; Richter-Menge, J.

    2011-12-01

    In March of 2011, the US Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) performed a study focused on the estimation of sea-ice thickness from airborne radar, laser and photogrammetric sensors. The study was funded by ONR to take advantage of the Navy's ICEX2011 ice-camp /submarine exercise, and to serve as a lead-in year for NRL's five year basic research program on the measurement and modeling of sea-ice scheduled to take place from 2012-2017. Researchers from the Army Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) and NRL worked with the Navy Arctic Submarine Lab (ASL) to emplace a 9 km-long ground-truth line near the ice-camp (see Richter-Menge et al., this session) along which ice and snow thickness were directly measured. Additionally, US Navy submarines collected ice draft measurements under the groundtruth line. Repeat passes directly over the ground-truth line were flown and a grid surrounding the line was also flown to collect altimeter, LiDAR and Photogrammetry data. Five CRYOSAT-2 satellite tracks were underflown, as well, coincident with satellite passage. Estimates of sea ice thickness are calculated assuming local hydrostatic balance, and require the densities of water, ice and snow, snow depth, and freeboard (defined as the elevation of sea ice, plus accumulated snow, above local sea level). Snow thickness is estimated from the difference between LiDAR and radar altimeter profiles, the latter of which is assumed to penetrate any snow cover. The concepts we used to estimate ice thickness are similar to those employed in NASA ICEBRIDGE sea-ice thickness estimation. Airborne sensors used for our experiment were a Reigl Q-560 scanning topographic LiDAR, a pulse-limited (2 nS), 10 GHz radar altimeter and an Applanix DSS-439 digital photogrammetric camera (for lead identification). Flights were conducted on a Twin Otter aircraft from Pt. Barrow, AK, and averaged ~ 5 hours in duration. It is challenging to directly compare results from the swath LiDAR with the

  7. Influence of Sea Ice Crack Formation on the Spatial Distribution of Nutrients and Microalgae in Flooded Antarctic Multiyear Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nomura, Daiki; Aoki, Shigeru; Simizu, Daisuke; Iida, Takahiro

    2018-02-01

    Cracks are common and natural features of sea ice formed in the polar oceans. In this study, a sea ice crack in flooded, multiyear, land-fast Antarctic sea ice was examined to assess its influence on biological productivity and the transport of nutrients and microalgae into the upper layers of neighboring sea ice. The water inside the crack and the surrounding host ice were characterized by a strong discoloration (brown color), an indicator of a massive algal bloom. Salinity and oxygen isotopic ratio measurements indicated that 64-84% of the crack water consisted of snow meltwater supplied during the melt season. Measurements of nutrient and chlorophyll a concentrations within the slush layer pool (the flooded layer at the snow-ice interface) revealed the intrusion of water from the crack, likely forced by mixing with underlying seawater during the tidal cycle. Our results suggest that sea ice crack formation provides conditions favorable for algal blooms by directly exposing the crack water to sunlight and supplying nutrients from the under-ice water. Subsequently, constituents of the crack water modified by biological activity were transported into the upper layer of the flooded sea ice. They were then preserved in the multiyear ice column formed by upward growth of sea ice caused by snow ice formation in areas of significant snow accumulation.

  8. State of Arctic Sea Ice North of Svalbard during N-ICE2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rösel, Anja; King, Jennifer; Gerland, Sebastian

    2016-04-01

    The N-ICE2015 cruise, led by the Norwegian Polar Institute, was a drift experiment with the research vessel R/V Lance from January to June 2015, where the ship started the drift North of Svalbard at 83°14.45' N, 21°31.41' E. The drift was repeated as soon as the vessel drifted free. Altogether, 4 ice stations where installed and the complex ocean-sea ice-atmosphere system was studied with an interdisciplinary Approach. During the N-ICE2015 cruise, extensive ice thickness and snow depth measurements were performed during both, winter and summer conditions. Total ice and snow thickness was measured with ground-based and airborne electromagnetic instruments; snow depth was measured with a GPS snow depth probe. Additionally, ice mass balance and snow buoys were deployed. Snow and ice thickness measurements were performed on repeated transects to quantify the ice growth or loss as well as the snow accumulation and melt rate. Additionally, we collected independent values on surveys to determine the general ice thickness distribution. Average snow depths of 32 cm on first year ice, and 52 cm on multi-year ice were measured in January, the mean snow depth on all ice types even increased until end of March to 49 cm. The average total ice and snow thickness in winter conditions was 1.92 m. During winter we found a small growth rate on multi-year ice of about 15 cm in 2 months, due to above-average snow depths and some extraordinary storm events that came along with mild temperatures. In contrast thereto, we also were able to study new ice formation and thin ice on newly formed leads. In summer conditions an enormous melt rate, mainly driven by a warm Atlantic water inflow in the marginal ice zone, was observed during two ice stations with melt rates of up to 20 cm per 24 hours. To reinforce the local measurements around the ship and to confirm their significance on a larger scale, we compare them to airborne thickness measurements and classified SAR-satellite scenes. The

  9. Arctic Sea Ice in Transformation: A Review of Recent Observed Changes and Impacts on Biology and Human Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, Walter N.; Hovelsrud, Greta K.; van Oort, Bob E. H.; Key, Jeffrey R.; Kovacs, Kit M.; Michel, Christine; Haas, Christian; Granskog, Mats A.; Gerland, Sebastian; Perovich, Donald K.; hide

    2014-01-01

    Sea ice in the Arctic is one of the most rapidly changing components of the global climate system. Over the past few decades, summer areal extent has declined over 30, and all months show statistically significant declining trends. New satellite missions and techniques have greatly expanded information on sea ice thickness, but many uncertainties remain in the satellite data and long-term records are sparse. However, thickness observations and other satellite-derived data indicate a 40 decline in thickness, due in large part to the loss of thicker, older ice cover. The changes in sea ice are happening faster than models have projected. With continued increasing temperatures, summer ice-free conditions are likely sometime in the coming decades, though there are substantial uncertainties in the exact timing and high interannual variability will remain as sea ice decreases. The changes in Arctic sea ice are already having an impact on flora and fauna in the Arctic. Some species will face increasing challenges in the future, while new habitat will open up for other species. The changes are also affecting peoples living and working in the Arctic. Native communities are facing challenges to their traditional ways of life, while new opportunities open for shipping, fishing, and natural resource extraction.

  10. GLAS/ICESat L2 Sea Ice Altimetry Data (HDF5) V034

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — GLAH13 contains sea ice and open ocean elevations corrected for geodetic and atmospheric affects, calculated from algorithms fine-tuned for sea ice returns. Granules...

  11. GLAS/ICESat L2 Sea Ice Altimetry Data V033

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — GLA13 contains sea ice and open ocean elevations corrected for geodetic and atmospheric affects, calculated from algorithms fine-tuned for sea ice returns. Granules...

  12. Unified Sea Ice Thickness Climate Data Record Collection Spanning 1947-2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Unified Sea Ice Thickness Climate Data Record is the result of a concerted effort to collect as many observations as possible of Arctic sea-ice draft, freeboard,...

  13. Observing and Modeling the Surface Scattering Layer of First-Year Arctic Sea Ice

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Moritz, Richard; Light, Bonnie

    2007-01-01

    ...) radiation by sea ice. The partitioning of shortwave radiation into components backscattered to the atmosphere, absorbed by the ice, and transmitted to the ocean is central to the ice-albedo feedback mechanism, the mean...

  14. The Dehn Collection of Arctic Sea Ice Charts, 1953-1986

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Snow and Ice Data Center holds a collection of charts depicting ice conditions in the seas off Alaska and western Canada coasts. Ice edge position and...

  15. Canadian snow and sea ice: assessment of snow, sea ice, and related climate processes in Canada's Earth system model and climate-prediction system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kushner, Paul J.; Mudryk, Lawrence R.; Merryfield, William; Ambadan, Jaison T.; Berg, Aaron; Bichet, Adéline; Brown, Ross; Derksen, Chris; Déry, Stephen J.; Dirkson, Arlan; Flato, Greg; Fletcher, Christopher G.; Fyfe, John C.; Gillett, Nathan; Haas, Christian; Howell, Stephen; Laliberté, Frédéric; McCusker, Kelly; Sigmond, Michael; Sospedra-Alfonso, Reinel; Tandon, Neil F.; Thackeray, Chad; Tremblay, Bruno; Zwiers, Francis W.

    2018-04-01

    The Canadian Sea Ice and Snow Evolution (CanSISE) Network is a climate research network focused on developing and applying state-of-the-art observational data to advance dynamical prediction, projections, and understanding of seasonal snow cover and sea ice in Canada and the circumpolar Arctic. This study presents an assessment from the CanSISE Network of the ability of the second-generation Canadian Earth System Model (CanESM2) and the Canadian Seasonal to Interannual Prediction System (CanSIPS) to simulate and predict snow and sea ice from seasonal to multi-decadal timescales, with a focus on the Canadian sector. To account for observational uncertainty, model structural uncertainty, and internal climate variability, the analysis uses multi-source observations, multiple Earth system models (ESMs) in Phase 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5), and large initial-condition ensembles of CanESM2 and other models. It is found that the ability of the CanESM2 simulation to capture snow-related climate parameters, such as cold-region surface temperature and precipitation, lies within the range of currently available international models. Accounting for the considerable disagreement among satellite-era observational datasets on the distribution of snow water equivalent, CanESM2 has too much springtime snow mass over Canada, reflecting a broader northern hemispheric positive bias. Biases in seasonal snow cover extent are generally less pronounced. CanESM2 also exhibits retreat of springtime snow generally greater than observational estimates, after accounting for observational uncertainty and internal variability. Sea ice is biased low in the Canadian Arctic, which makes it difficult to assess the realism of long-term sea ice trends there. The strengths and weaknesses of the modelling system need to be understood as a practical tradeoff: the Canadian models are relatively inexpensive computationally because of their moderate resolution, thus enabling their

  16. What Models and Satellites Tell Us (and Don't Tell Us) About Arctic Sea Ice Melt Season Length

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahlert, A.; Jahn, A.

    2017-12-01

    Melt season length—the difference between the sea ice melt onset date and the sea ice freeze onset date—plays an important role in the radiation balance of the Arctic and the predictability of the sea ice cover. However, there are multiple possible definitions for sea ice melt and freeze onset in climate models, and none of them exactly correspond to the remote sensing definition. Using the CESM Large Ensemble model simulations, we show how this mismatch between model and remote sensing definitions of melt and freeze onset limits the utility of melt season remote sensing data for bias detection in models. It also opens up new questions about the precise physical meaning of the melt season remote sensing data. Despite these challenges, we find that the increase in melt season length in the CESM is not as large as that derived from remote sensing data, even when we account for internal variability and different definitions. At the same time, we find that the CESM ensemble members that have the largest trend in sea ice extent over the period 1979-2014 also have the largest melt season trend, driven primarily by the trend towards later freeze onsets. This might be an indication that an underestimation of the melt season length trend is one factor contributing to the generally underestimated sea ice loss within the CESM, and potentially climate models in general.

  17. Winter snow conditions on Arctic sea ice north of Svalbard during the Norwegian young sea ICE (N-ICE2015) expedition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merkouriadi, Ioanna; Gallet, Jean-Charles; Graham, Robert M.; Liston, Glen E.; Polashenski, Chris; Rösel, Anja; Gerland, Sebastian

    2017-10-01

    Snow is a crucial component of the Arctic sea ice system. Its thickness and thermal properties control heat conduction and radiative fluxes across the ocean, ice, and atmosphere interfaces. Hence, observations of the evolution of snow depth, density, thermal conductivity, and stratigraphy are crucial for the development of detailed snow numerical models predicting energy transfer through the snow pack. Snow depth is also a major uncertainty in predicting ice thickness using remote sensing algorithms. Here we examine the winter spatial and temporal evolution of snow physical properties on first-year (FYI) and second-year ice (SYI) in the Atlantic sector of the Arctic Ocean, during the Norwegian young sea ICE (N-ICE2015) expedition (January to March 2015). During N-ICE2015, the snow pack consisted of faceted grains (47%), depth hoar (28%), and wind slab (13%), indicating very different snow stratigraphy compared to what was observed in the Pacific sector of the Arctic Ocean during the SHEBA campaign (1997-1998). Average snow bulk density was 345 kg m-3 and it varied with ice type. Snow depth was 41 ± 19 cm in January and 56 ± 17 cm in February, which is significantly greater than earlier suggestions for this region. The snow water equivalent was 14.5 ± 5.3 cm over first-year ice and 19 ± 5.4 cm over second-year ice.

  18. Classification of new-ice in the Greenland Sea using Satellite SSM/I radiometer and SeaWinds scatterometer data and comparison with ice model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tonboe, Rasmus; Pedersen, Leif Toudal

    2005-01-01

    In the ice covered waters of the Greenland Sea the polarisation ratio of QuikSCAT SeaWinds Ku-band (13.4 GHz) scatterometer measurements and the polarisation ratio of DMSP-SSM/I 19 GHz radiometer measurements are used in combination to classify new-ice and mature ice. In particular, the formation...... to the physical transition of the ice cover from pancake ice to a consolidated young-ice sheet. The classification of each pixel into ice or water is done using two scatterometer parameters, namely the polarisation ratio and the daily standard deviation of the backscatter. (C) 2005 Elsevier Inc. All rights...

  19. Estimating the seaward extent of sea breeze from QuickSCAT scatterometry

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Aparna, M.; Shetye, S.R.; Shankar, D.; Shenoi, S.S.C.; Mehra, P.; Desai, R.G.P.

    An objective method for quantifying the seaward extent of the sea breeze is presented. The underlying assumption is that the offshore decay in the strength of the sea breeze results in an offshore decay of the vector correlation between the wind...

  20. Survival and breeding of polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea in relation to sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regehr, E.V.; Hunter, C.M.; Caswell, H.; Amstrup, Steven C.; Stirling, I.

    2010-01-01

    1. Observed and predicted declines in Arctic sea ice have raised concerns about marine mammals. In May 2008, the US Fish and Wildlife Service listed polar bears (Ursus maritimus) - one of the most ice-dependent marine mammals - as threatened under the US Endangered Species Act. 2. We evaluated the effects of sea ice conditions on vital rates (survival and breeding probabilities) for polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea. Although sea ice declines in this and other regions of the polar basin have been among the greatest in the Arctic, to date population-level effects of sea ice loss on polar bears have only been identified in western Hudson Bay, near the southern limit of the species' range. 3. We estimated vital rates using multistate capture-recapture models that classified individuals by sex, age and reproductive category. We used multimodel inference to evaluate a range of statistical models, all of which were structurally based on the polar bear life cycle. We estimated parameters by model averaging, and developed a parametric bootstrap procedure to quantify parameter uncertainty. 4. In the most supported models, polar bear survival declined with an increasing number of days per year that waters over the continental shelf were ice free. In 2001-2003, the ice-free period was relatively short (mean 101 days) and adult female survival was high (0 ∙ 96-0 ∙ 99, depending on reproductive state). In 2004 and 2005, the ice-free period was longer (mean 135 days) and adult female survival was low (0 ∙ 73-0 ∙ 79, depending on reproductive state). Breeding rates and cub litter survival also declined with increasing duration of the ice-free period. Confidence intervals on vital rate estimates were wide. 5. The effects of sea ice loss on polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea may apply to polar bear populations in other portions of the polar basin that have similar sea ice dynamics and have experienced similar, or more severe, sea ice declines. Our findings

  1. Survival and breeding of polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea in relation to sea ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regehr, Eric V; Hunter, Christine M; Caswell, Hal; Amstrup, Steven C; Stirling, Ian

    2010-01-01

    1. Observed and predicted declines in Arctic sea ice have raised concerns about marine mammals. In May 2008, the US Fish and Wildlife Service listed polar bears (Ursus maritimus) - one of the most ice-dependent marine mammals - as threatened under the US Endangered Species Act. 2. We evaluated the effects of sea ice conditions on vital rates (survival and breeding probabilities) for polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea. Although sea ice declines in this and other regions of the polar basin have been among the greatest in the Arctic, to date population-level effects of sea ice loss on polar bears have only been identified in western Hudson Bay, near the southern limit of the species' range. 3. We estimated vital rates using multistate capture-recapture models that classified individuals by sex, age and reproductive category. We used multimodel inference to evaluate a range of statistical models, all of which were structurally based on the polar bear life cycle. We estimated parameters by model averaging, and developed a parametric bootstrap procedure to quantify parameter uncertainty. 4. In the most supported models, polar bear survival declined with an increasing number of days per year that waters over the continental shelf were ice free. In 2001-2003, the ice-free period was relatively short (mean 101 days) and adult female survival was high (0.96-0.99, depending on reproductive state). In 2004 and 2005, the ice-free period was longer (mean 135 days) and adult female survival was low (0.73-0.79, depending on reproductive state). Breeding rates and cub litter survival also declined with increasing duration of the ice-free period. Confidence intervals on vital rate estimates were wide. 5. The effects of sea ice loss on polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea may apply to polar bear populations in other portions of the polar basin that have similar sea ice dynamics and have experienced similar, or more severe, sea ice declines. Our findings therefore are

  2. Expanding research capabilities with sea ice climate records for analysis of long-term climate change and short-term variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, D. J.; Meier, W. N.

    2008-12-01

    Recent sea ice analysis is leading to predictions of a sea ice-free summertime in the Arctic within 20 years, or even sooner. Sea ice topics, such as concentration, extent, motion, and age, are predominately studied using satellite data. At the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), passive microwave sea ice data sets provide timely assessments of seasonal-scale variability as well as consistent long-term climate data records. Such data sets are crucial to understanding changes and assessing their impacts. Noticeable impacts of changing sea ice conditions on native cultures and wildlife in the Arctic region are now being documented. With continued deterioration in Arctic sea ice, global economic impacts will be seen as new shipping routes open. NSIDC is at the forefront of making climate data records available to address the changes in sea ice and its global impacts. By focusing on integrated data sets, NSIDC leads the way by broadening the studies of sea ice beyond the traditional cryospheric community.

  3. How will we ensure the long-term sea ice data record continues?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stroeve, J. C.; Kaleschke, L.

    2017-12-01

    The multi-channel satellite passive microwave record has been of enormous benefit to the science community and society at large since the late 1970s. Starting with the launch of the Nimbus-7 Scanning Multi-Channel Microwave Radiometer (SMMR) in October 1978, and continuing with the launch of a series of Special Sensor Microwave Imagers (SSM/Is) in June 1987 by the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP), places previously difficult to monitor year-round, such as the polar regions, came to light. Together these sensors have provided nearly 4 decades of climate data records on the state of sea ice cover over the ocean and snow on land. This data has also been used to map melt extent on the large ice sheets, timing of snow melt onset over land and sea ice. Application also extend well beyond the polar regions, mapping important climate variables, such as soil moisture content, oceanic wind speed, rainfall, water vapor, cloud liquid water and total precipitable water. Today the current SSMIS operational satellite (F18) is 7 years old and there is no follow-on mission planned by the DMSP. With the end of the SSMI family of Sensors, will the polar regions once again be in the dark? Other sensors that may contribute to the long-term data record include the JAXA AMSR2 (5 years old as of May 2017), the Chinese Fen-Yung-3 and the Russian Meteor-N2. Scatterometry and L-band radiometry from SMOS and NASA's SMOS may also provide some potential means of extending the sea ice extent data record, as well as future sensors by the DoD, JAXA and ESA. However, this will require considerable effort to intercalibrate the different sensors to ensure consistency in the long-term data record. Differences in measurement approach, frequency and spatial resolution make this a non-trivial matter. The passive microwave sea ice extent data record is one of the longest and most consistent climate data records available. It provides daily monitoring of one of the most striking changes in

  4. Implications of sea-ice biogeochemistry for oceanic production and emissions of dimethyl sulfide in the Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Hayashida

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Sea ice represents an additional oceanic source of the climatically active gas dimethyl sulfide (DMS for the Arctic atmosphere. To what extent this source contributes to the dynamics of summertime Arctic clouds is, however, not known due to scarcity of field measurements. In this study, we developed a coupled sea ice–ocean ecosystem–sulfur cycle model to investigate the potential impact of bottom-ice DMS and its precursor dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP on the oceanic production and emissions of DMS in the Arctic. The results of the 1-D model simulation were compared with field data collected during May and June of 2010 in Resolute Passage. Our results reproduced the accumulation of DMS and DMSP in the bottom ice during the development of an ice algal bloom. The release of these sulfur species took place predominantly during the earlier phase of the melt period, resulting in an increase of DMS and DMSP in the underlying water column prior to the onset of an under-ice phytoplankton bloom. Production and removal rates of processes considered in the model are analyzed to identify the processes dominating the budgets of DMS and DMSP both in the bottom ice and the underlying water column. When openings in the ice were taken into account, the simulated sea–air DMS flux during the melt period was dominated by episodic spikes of up to 8.1 µmol m−2 d−1. Further model simulations were conducted to assess the effects of the incorporation of sea-ice biogeochemistry on DMS production and emissions, as well as the sensitivity of our results to changes of uncertain model parameters of the sea-ice sulfur cycle. The results highlight the importance of taking into account both the sea-ice sulfur cycle and ecosystem in the flux estimates of oceanic DMS near the ice margins and identify key uncertainties in processes and rates that should be better constrained by new observations.

  5. Antarctic sea ice losses drive gains in benthic carbon drawdown.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, D K A

    2015-09-21

    Climate forcing of sea-ice losses from the Arctic and West Antarctic are blueing the poles. These losses are accelerating, reducing Earth's albedo and increasing heat absorption. Subarctic forest (area expansion and increased growth) and ice-shelf losses (resulting in new phytoplankton blooms which are eaten by benthos) are the only significant described negative feedbacks acting to counteract the effects of increasing CO2 on a warming planet, together accounting for uptake of ∼10(7) tonnes of carbon per year. Most sea-ice loss to date has occurred over polar continental shelves, which are richly, but patchily, colonised by benthic animals. Most polar benthos feeds on microscopic algae (phytoplankton), which has shown increased blooms coincident with sea-ice losses. Here, growth responses of Antarctic shelf benthos to sea-ice losses and phytoplankton increases were investigated. Analysis of two decades of benthic collections showed strong increases in annual production of shelf seabed carbon in West Antarctic bryozoans. These were calculated to have nearly doubled to >2x10(5) tonnes of carbon per year since the 1980s. Annual production of bryozoans is median within wider Antarctic benthos, so upscaling to include other benthos (combined study species typically constitute ∼3% benthic biomass) suggests an increased drawdown of ∼2.9x10(6) tonnes of carbon per year. This drawdown could become sequestration because polar continental shelves are typically deeper than most modern iceberg scouring, bacterial breakdown rates are slow, and benthos is easily buried. To date, most sea-ice losses have been Arctic, so, if hyperboreal benthos shows a similar increase in drawdown, polar continental shelves would represent Earth's largest negative feedback to climate change. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Developing Remote Sensing Capabilities for Meter-Scale Sea Ice Properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-30

    Malinka and A. Prikchach, The melt pond fraction and spectral sea ice albedo retrieval from MERIS data: validation and trends of sea ice albedo and... Sea Ice Properties Chris Polashenski, PI USACE-CRREL Building 4070 Fort Wainwright, AK 99703 phone: (570) 956-6990 fax: (907) 361-5188...overarching goal of this work is to develop and validate remote sensing techniques to track sea ice physical properties of geophysical importance that

  7. Wave–ice interactions in the neXtSIM sea-ice model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. D. Williams

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we describe a waves-in-ice model (WIM, which calculates ice breakage and the wave radiation stress (WRS. This WIM is then coupled to the new sea-ice model neXtSIM, which is based on the elasto-brittle (EB rheology. We highlight some numerical issues involved in the coupling and investigate the impact of the WRS, and of modifying the EB rheology to lower the stiffness of the ice in the area where the ice has broken up (the marginal ice zone or MIZ. In experiments in the absence of wind, we find that wind waves can produce noticeable movement of the ice edge in loose ice (concentration around 70 % – up to 36 km, depending on the material parameters of the ice that are used and the dynamical model used for the broken ice. The ice edge position is unaffected by the WRS if the initial concentration is higher (≳ 0.9. Swell waves (monochromatic waves with low frequency do not affect the ice edge location (even for loose ice, as they are attenuated much less than the higher-frequency components of a wind wave spectrum, and so consequently produce a much lower WRS (by about an order of magnitude at least.In the presence of wind, we find that the wind stress dominates the WRS, which, while large near the ice edge, decays exponentially away from it. This is in contrast to the wind stress, which is applied over a much larger ice area. In this case (when wind is present the dynamical model for the MIZ has more impact than the WRS, although that effect too is relatively modest. When the stiffness in the MIZ is lowered due to ice breakage, we find that on-ice winds produce more compression in the MIZ than in the pack, while off-ice winds can cause the MIZ to be separated from the pack ice.

  8. Bacterial Standing Stock, Activity, and Carbon Production during Formation and Growth of Sea Ice in the Weddell Sea, Antarctica †

    OpenAIRE

    Grossmann, Sönnke; Dieckmann, Gerhard S.

    1994-01-01

    Bacterial response to formation and growth of sea ice was investigated during autumn in the northeastern Weddell Sea. Changes in standing stock, activity, and carbon production of bacteria were determined in successive stages of ice development. During initial ice formation, concentrations of bacterial cells, in the order of 1 × 108 to 3 × 108 liter-1, were not enhanced within the ice matrix. This suggests that physical enrichment of bacteria by ice crystals is not effective. Due to low conce...

  9. Role of the Tropical Pacific in recent Antarctic Sea-Ice Trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Codron, F.; Bardet, D.; Allouache, C.; Gastineau, G.; Friedman, A. R.; Douville, H.; Voldoire, A.

    2017-12-01

    The recent (up to 2016) trends in Antarctic sea-ice cover - a global increase masking a dipole between the Ross and Bellingshausen-Weddel seas - are still not well understood, and not reproduced by CMIP5 coupled climate models. We here explore the potential role of atmospheric circulation changes around the Amundsen Sea, themselves possibly forced by tropical SSTs, an explanation that has been recently advanced. As a first check on this hypothesis, we compare the atmospheric circulation trends simulated by atmospheric GCMs coupled with an ocean or with imposed SSTs (AMIP experiment from CMIP5); the latter being in theory able to reproduce changes caused by natural SST variability. While coupled models simulate in aggregate trends that project on the SAM structure, strongest in summer, the AMIP simulations add in the winter season a pronounced Amundsen Sea Low signature (and a PNA signature in the northern hemisphere) both consistent with a Niña-like trend in the tropical Pacific. We then use a specific coupled GCM setup, in which surface wind anomalies over the tropical Pacific are strongly nudged towards the observed ones, including their interannual variability, but the model is free to evolve elsewhere. The two GCMs used then simulate a deepening trend in the Amundsen-Sea Low in winter, and are able to reproduce a dipole in sea-ice cover. Further analysis shows that the sea-ice dipole is partially forced by surface heat flux anomalies in early winter - the extent varying with the region and GCM used. The turbulent heat fluxes then act to damp the anomalies in late winter, which may however be maintained by ice-albedo feedbacks.

  10. Arctic energy budget in relation to sea ice variability on monthly-to-annual time scales

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krikken, F.; Hazeleger, W.

    2015-01-01

    The large decrease in Arctic sea ice in recent years has triggered a strong interest in Arctic sea ice predictions on seasonal-to-decadal time scales. Hence, it is important to understand physical processes that provide enhanced predictability beyond persistence of sea ice anomalies. This study

  11. Sea-ice Thickness and Draft Statistics from Submarine ULS, Moored ULS, and a Coupled Model

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set consists of estimates of mean values of sea-ice thickness and sea-ice draft in meters computed from three different input data sets: sea ice draft from...

  12. Polynyas and Ice Production Evolution in the Ross Sea (PIPERS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ackley, S. F.

    2017-12-01

    One focus of the PIPERS cruise into the Ross Sea ice cover during April-June 2017 was the Terra Nova Bay (TNB) polynya where joint measurements of air-ice-ocean wave interaction were conducted over twelve days. In Terra Nova Bay, measurements were made in three katabatic wind events each with sustained winds over 35 ms-1 and air temperatures below -15C. Near shore, intense wave fields with wave amplitudes of over 2m and 7-9 sec periods built and large amounts of frazil ice crystals grew. The frazil ice gathered initially into short and narrow plumes that eventually were added laterally to create longer and wider streaks or bands. Breaking waves within these wider streaks were dampened which appeared to enhance the development of pancake ice. Eventually, the open water areas between the streaks sealed off, developing a complete ice cover of 100 percent concentration (80-90 percent pancakes, 20-10 percent frazil) over a wide front (30km). The pancakes continued to grow in diameter and thickness as waves alternately contracted and expanded the ice cover, with the thicker larger floes further diminishing the wave field and lateral motion between pancakes until the initial pancake ice growth ceased. The equilibrium thickness of the ice was 20-30cm in the pancake ice. While the waves had died off however, katabatic wind velocities were sustained and resulted in a wide area of concentrated, rafted, pancake ice that was rapidly advected downstream until the end of the katabatic event. High resolution TerraSar-X radar satellite imagery showed the length of the ice area produced in one single event extended over 300km or ten times the length of the open water area during one polynya event. The TNB polynya is therefore an "ice factory" where frazil ice is manufactured into pancake ice floes that are then pushed out of the assembly area and advected, rafted (and occasionally piled up into "dragon skin" ice), until the katabatic wind dies off at the coastal source.

  13. The impact of melt ponds on summertime microwave brightness temperatures and sea-ice concentrations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kern, Stefan; Rösel, Anja; Pedersen, Leif Toudal

    2016-01-01

    % sea-ice concentration. None of the algorithms investigated performs best based on our investigation of data from summer 2009. We suggest that those algorithms which are more sensitive to melt ponds could be optimized more easily because the influence of unknown snow and sea-ice surface property...... of eight sea-ice concentration retrieval algorithms to melt ponds by comparing sea-ice concentration with the melt-pond fraction. We derive gridded daily sea-ice concentrations from microwave brightness temperatures of summer 2009. We derive the daily fraction of melt ponds, open water between ice floes......, and the ice-surface fraction from contemporary Moderate Resolution Spectroradiometer (MODIS) reflectance data. We only use grid cells where the MODIS sea ice concentration, which is the melt-pond fraction plus the ice-surface fraction, exceeds 90 %. For one group of algorithms, e.g., Bristol and Comiso...

  14. Predicting responses of the Adélie penguin population of Edmonson Point to future sea ice changes in the Ross Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tosca eBallerini

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Atmosphere-Ocean General Circulation Models (AOGCMs predict changes in the sea ice environment and in atmospheric precipitations over larger areas of Antarctica. These changes are expected to affect the population dynamics of seabirds and marine mammals, but the extent of this influence is not clear. We investigated the future population trajectories of the colony of Adélie penguins at Edmonson Point, in the Ross Sea, from 2010 to 2100. To do so, we incorporated the relationship between sea ice and demographic parameters of the studied colony into a matrix population model. Specifically, we used sea ice projections from AOGCMs and a proxy for snowfall precipitation. Simulations of population persistence under future climate change scenarios showed that a reduction in sea ice extent and an increase in precipitation events during the breeding season will drive the population to extinction. However, the population growth rate estimated by the model was lower than the population growth rate observed during the last decades, suggesting that recruits from other colonies maintain the observed population dynamics at Edmonson Point. This local ‘rescue’ effect is consistent with a metapopulation dynamic for Adélie penguins in the Ross Sea, in which neighboring colonies might exhibit contrasting population trends and different density-dependent effects. In the hypothesis that connectivity with larger source colonies or that local recruitment would decrease, the sink colony at Edmonson Point is predicted to disappear.

  15. Gypsum crystals observed in experimental and natural sea ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Geilfus, Nicolas-Xavier; Galley, Ryan; Cooper, Marc

    2013-01-01

    , the gypsum crystals were identified as being authigenic. The FREeZing CHEMistry (FREZCHEM) model results support our observations of both gypsum and ikaite precipitation at typical in situ sea ice temperatures and confirms the “Gitterman pathway” where gypsum is predicted to precipitate. The occurrence...

  16. On Sea Ice Characterisation By Multi-Frequency SAR

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grahn, Jakob; Brekke, Camilla; Eltoft, Torbjorn; Holt, Benjamin

    2013-12-01

    By means of polarimetric target decomposition, quad-pol SAR data of sea ice is analysed at two frequency bands. In particular, the non negative eigenvalue decomposition (NNED) is applied on L- and C-band NASA/JPL AIR- SAR data acquired over the Beaufort sea in 2004. The de- composition separates the scattered radar signal into three types, dominated by double, volume and single bounce scattering respectively. Using ground truth derived from RADARSAT-1 and meteorological data, we investigate how the different frequency bands compare in terms of these scattering types. The ground truth contains multi year ice and three types of first year ice of different age and thickness. We find that C-band yields a higher scattered intensity in most ice and scattering types, as well as a more homogeneous intensity. L-band on the other hand yields more pronounced deformation features, such as ridges. The mean intensity contrast between the two thinnest ice types is highest in the double scattering component of C- band, although the contrast of the total signal is greater in L-band. This may indicate that the choice of polarimetric parameters is important for discriminating thin ice types.

  17. Polar bear and walrus response to the rapid decline in Arctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oakley, K.; Whalen, M.; Douglas, David C.; Udevitz, Mark S.; Atwood, Todd C.; Jay, C.

    2012-01-01

    The Arctic is warming faster than other regions of the world due to positive climate feedbacks associated with loss of snow and ice. One highly visible consequence has been a rapid decline in Arctic sea ice over the past 3 decades - a decline projected to continue and result in ice-free summers likely as soon as 2030. The polar bear (Ursus maritimus) and the Pacific walrus (Odobenus rosmarus divergens) are dependent on sea ice over the continental shelves of the Arctic Ocean's marginal seas. The continental shelves are shallow regions with high biological productivity, supporting abundant marine life within the water column and on the sea floor. Polar bears use sea ice as a platform for hunting ice seals; walruses use sea ice as a resting platform between dives to forage for clams and other bottom-dwelling invertebrates. How have sea ice changes affected polar bears and walruses? How will anticipated changes affect them in the future?

  18. Wave-induced stress and breaking of sea ice in a coupled hydrodynamic discrete-element wave-ice model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman, Agnieszka

    2017-11-01

    In this paper, a coupled sea ice-wave model is developed and used to analyze wave-induced stress and breaking in sea ice for a range of wave and ice conditions. The sea ice module is a discrete-element bonded-particle model, in which ice is represented as cuboid grains floating on the water surface that can be connected to their neighbors by elastic joints. The joints may break if instantaneous stresses acting on them exceed their strength. The wave module is based on an open-source version of the Non-Hydrostatic WAVE model (NHWAVE). The two modules are coupled with proper boundary conditions for pressure and velocity, exchanged at every wave model time step. In the present version, the model operates in two dimensions (one vertical and one horizontal) and is suitable for simulating compact ice in which heave and pitch motion dominates over surge. In a series of simulations with varying sea ice properties and incoming wavelength it is shown that wave-induced stress reaches maximum values at a certain distance from the ice edge. The value of maximum stress depends on both ice properties and characteristics of incoming waves, but, crucially for ice breaking, the location at which the maximum occurs does not change with the incoming wavelength. Consequently, both regular and random (Jonswap spectrum) waves break the ice into floes with almost identical sizes. The width of the zone of broken ice depends on ice strength and wave attenuation rates in the ice.

  19. Small scale variability of snow density on Antarctic sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wever, N.; Leonard, K. C.; Paul, S.; Jacobi, H. W.; Proksch, M.; Lehning, M.

    2016-12-01

    Snow on sea ice plays an important role in air-ice-sea interactions. For example, snow may smooth the ice surface when snow drift is occurring, while at the same time it may also generate roughness elements by interactions with the wind. Snow density is a key property in many processes, for example by influencing the thermal conductivity of the snow layer, radiative transfer inside the snow as well as the effects of aerodynamic forcing on the snowpack. We present data from an in-situ measurement campaign in the Weddell Sea during two subsequent cruises of RV Polarstern. By comparing snow density from snow pits and snow micro penetrometer (SMP) measurements, augmented by terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) on an area of 50x50 m2, highly resolved density profiles and surface topology were acquired at a horizontal resolution of approximately 30 cm. Average snow densities are about 280 kg/m3, but the analysis also reveals a high spatial variability in snow density on sea ice in both horizontal and vertical direction, ranging from roughly 170 to 360 kg/m3. This variability is expressed by coherent snow structures over several meters, which disappear over larger distances. A comparison with TLS data indicates that the spatial variability is related to deviations in surface topology. This suggests a strong influence from surface processes, for example wind, on the temporal development of density profiles. The fundamental relationship between density variations, surface roughness and changes therein as investigated in this study are interpreted with respect to larger-scale ice-movement and the ice mass balance.

  20. Multiple climate and sea ice states on a coupled Aquaplanet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rose, B.; Ferreira, D.; Marshall, J.

    2010-12-01

    A fully coupled atmosphere-ocean-sea ice GCM is used to explore the climates of Earth-like planets with no continents and idealized ocean basin geometries. We find three qualitatively different stable equilibria under identical external forcing: an equable ice-free climate, a cold climate with ice caps extending into mid-latitudes, and a completely ice-covered "Snowball" state. These multiple states persist for millennia with no drift despite a full seasonal cycle and vigorous internal variability of the system on all time scales. The behavior of the coupled system is rationalized through an extension of the Budyko-Sellers model to include explicit ocean heat transport (OHT), and the insulation of the ice-covered sea surface. Sensitivity tests are also conducted with a slab ocean GCM with prescribed OHT. From these we conclude that albedo feedback and ocean circulation both play essential roles in the maintenance of the multiple states. OHT in the coupled system is dominated by a wind-driven subtropical cell carrying between 2 and 3 PW of thermal energy out of the deep tropics, most of which converges in the subtropics to lower mid-latitudes. This convergence pattern (similar to modern Earth) is robust to changes in the ocean basin geometry, and is directly responsible for the stabilization of the large ice cap. OHT also plays an essential but indirect role in the maintenance of the ice-free pole in the warm states, by driving an enhanced poleward atmospheric latent heat flux. The hysteresis loop for transitions between the warm and large ice cap states spans a much smaller range of parameter space (e.g. ±1.8% variations in solar constant) than the transitions in and out of the Snowball. Three qualitatively different climate states for the same external forcing in a coupled GCM: ice-free, large ice cap, and Snowball. SST and sea ice thickness are plotted. Similar results are found in a pure Aquaplanet (lower) and a "RidgeWorld" with a global-scale ocean basin

  1. Simulating the evolution of the Amundsen Sea Sector with a coupled ice-ocean model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seroussi, H. L.; Nakayama, Y.; Menemenlis, D.; Larour, E. Y.; Morlighem, M.; Rignot, E. J.

    2017-12-01

    Ice shelves and floating glacier termini play an important role in the stability of ice sheets and interact strongly with the ocean. They account for much of the buttressing against the flow of inland glaciers that drain the Antarctic ice sheet. Changes in their geometry due to ice-front retreat, thinning or even collapse profoundly affect the flow of their tributary glaciers, which in turn affects the volume of grounded ice carried by these tributary glaciers into the ocean, and the extent of resulting sea level rise. Recent simulations of glaciers in Antarctica show that the largest climatic impact on ice dynamics is the rate of ice shelf melting, which rapidly affects glaciers' speed over several hundreds of kilometers upstream of the grounding line. These melting rates, however, as well as their spatial and temporal evolution remain largely unknown. In the absence of direct long-term observations, coupled ice-ocean models are the best available approach to address this question. In a previous study, we simulated the coupled ice-ocean system near Thwaites Glacier using a new two-way coupled system between the Massachusetts Institute of Technology general circulation model (MITgcm) and the Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM). Our results highlighted the impact of ocean conditions on glacier evolution and demonstrated the importance of simulating the coupled ice-ocean system to produce accurate melting rates under the ice shelf and at the grounding line. In this study, we focus on the entire Amundsen Sea sector, a region that experienced glacier acceleration, thinning and grounding line retreat over the past three decades. We investigate the feedbacks between changes in the ice and ocean, and the dynamic response of the glacier to changes in the ocean circulation. The simulations suggest that this region is likely to undergo substantial changes in the coming decades. This work was performed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under a

  2. Classification of sea ice types with single-band (33.6 GHz) airborne passive microwave imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eppler, Duane T.; Farmer, L. Dennis; Lohanick, Alan W.; Hoover, Mervyn

    1986-09-01

    During March 1983 extensive high-quality airborne passive Ka band (33.6 GHz) microwave imagery and coincident high-resolution aerial photography were obtained of ice along a 378-km flight line in the Beaufort Sea. Analysis of these data suggests that four classes of winter surfaces can be distinguished solely on the basis of 33.6-GHz brightness temperature: open water, frazil, old ice, and young/first-year ice. New ice (excluding frazil) and nilas display brightness temperatures that overlap the range of temperatures characteristic of old ice and, to a lesser extent, young/first-year ice. Scenes in which a new ice or nilas are present in appreciable amounts are subject to substantial errors in classification if static measures of Ka band radiometric brightness temperature alone are considered. Textural characteristics of nilas and new ice, however, differ significantly from textural features characteristic of other ice types and probably can be used with brightness temperature data to classify ice type in high-resolution single-band microwave images. In any case, open water is radiometrically the coldest surface observed in any scene. Lack of overlap between brightness temperatures characteristic of other surfaces indicates that estimates of the areal extent of open water based on only 33.6-GHz brightness temperatures are accurate.

  3. Methane excess in Arctic surface water-triggered by sea ice formation and melting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Damm, E; Rudels, B; Schauer, U; Mau, S; Dieckmann, G

    2015-11-10

    Arctic amplification of global warming has led to increased summer sea ice retreat, which influences gas exchange between the Arctic Ocean and the atmosphere where sea ice previously acted as a physical barrier. Indeed, recently observed enhanced atmospheric methane concentrations in Arctic regions with fractional sea-ice cover point to unexpected feedbacks in cycling of methane. We report on methane excess in sea ice-influenced water masses in the interior Arctic Ocean and provide evidence that sea ice is a potential source. We show that methane release from sea ice into the ocean occurs via brine drainage during freezing and melting i.e. in winter and spring. In summer under a fractional sea ice cover, reduced turbulence restricts gas transfer, then seawater acts as buffer in which methane remains entrained. However, in autumn and winter surface convection initiates pronounced efflux of methane from the ice covered ocean to the atmosphere. Our results demonstrate that sea ice-sourced methane cycles seasonally between sea ice, sea-ice-influenced seawater and the atmosphere, while the deeper ocean remains decoupled. Freshening due to summer sea ice retreat will enhance this decoupling, which restricts the capacity of the deeper Arctic Ocean to act as a sink for this greenhouse gas.

  4. Ice sheet-ocean interactions and sea level change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heimbach, Patrick

    2014-03-01

    Mass loss from the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets has increased rapidly since the mid-1990s. Their combined loss now accounts for about one-third of global sea level rise. In Greenland, a growing body of evidence points to the marine margins of these glaciers as the region from which this dynamic response originated. Similarly, ice streams in West Antarctica that feed vast floating ice shelves have exhibited lar