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Sample records for sea ice snow

  1. MODIS Snow and Sea Ice Products

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  2. Microwave remote sensing of snow-covered sea ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Borgeaud, M.; Kong, J. A.; Lin, F. C.

    1986-01-01

    Snow and ice are modeled as random media characterized by different dielectric constants and correlation functions. In order to model the brine inclusions of sea ice, the random medium is assumed to be anisotropic. A three-layer model is used to simulate a snow-covered ice field with the top layer being snow, the middle layer being ice, and the bottom layer being sea water. The theoretical results are illustrated for thick first-year sea ice covered by dry snow, and for artificial, thin first-year sea ice covered by wet snow as measured in controlled model tank experiments. The radar backscattering cross sections are seen to increase with snow cover for snow-covered sea ice owing to large volume scattering effects of snow.

  3. Winter snow cover on sea ice in the Weddell Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Massom, Robert A.; Drinkwater, Mark R.; Haas, Christian

    1997-01-01

    Measurements of snow thickness, temperature, salinity, density, and stratigraphy acquired during the 1992 Winter Weddell Gyre Study are presented. Results indicate that the winter snow cover on sea ice in the Weddell Sea is extremely variable. Extreme fluctuations in Antarctic synoptic conditions (air temperature, precipitation, humidity, and wind speed) occur during the austral winter. They result in unique modifications and additions to the snow layer during the aging process and act to stabilize an otherwise easily wind-redistributed shallow snow cover and develop well-packed drift features. The latter occur even over relatively undeformed areas of sea ice and have a significant localized effect on the snow thickness distribution. Significant variability in snow grain size (mean 2.733.12 mm) and density (0.320.09 g cm-3) is observed as a result of cyclical switches between high- and low-temperature gradient metamorphism. Multiple icy layers indicate multiple thaw-freeze events. One such event occurred during a 3-day station, during which the air temperature rose by 22C in 12 hours (to approximately 0C). This paper also examines mechanisms for flooding of the snow-ice interface, including snow loading. Even where the latter is not a factor, the layer of snow immediately above the snow-ice interface is commonly damp and saline (>10). Limitations in the data set are discussed, and comparisons are drawn with other experiments.

  4. Interdecadal Changes in Snow Depth on Arctic Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Webster, Melinda A.; Rigor, Ignatius G.; Nghiem, Son V.; Kurtz, Nathan T.; Farrell, Sinead L.; Perovich, Donald K.; Sturm, Matthew

    2014-01-01

    Snow plays a key role in the growth and decay of Arctic sea ice. In winter, it insulates sea ice from cold air temperatures, slowing sea ice growth. From spring to summer, the albedo of snow determines how much insolation is absorbed by the sea ice and underlying ocean, impacting ice melt processes. Knowledge of the contemporary snow depth distribution is essential for estimating sea ice thickness and volume, and for understanding and modeling sea ice thermodynamics in the changing Arctic. This study assesses spring snow depth distribution on Arctic sea ice using airborne radar observations from Operation IceBridge for 2009-2013. Data were validated using coordinated in situ measurements taken in March 2012 during the Bromine, Ozone, and Mercury Experiment (BROMEX) field campaign. We find a correlation of 0.59 and root-mean-square error of 5.8 cm between the airborne and in situ data. Using this relationship and Ice- Bridge snow thickness products, we compared the recent results with data from the 1937, 1954-1991 Soviet drifting ice stations. The comparison shows thinning of the snowpack, from 35.169.4 to 22.261.9 cm in the western Arctic, and from 32.869.4 to 14.561.9 cm in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas. These changes suggest a snow depth decline of 37629% in the western Arctic and 56633% in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas. Thinning is negatively correlated with the delayed onset of sea ice freezeup during autumn.

  5. Winter snow cover variability on East Antarctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Massom, R. A.; Lytle, V. I.; Worby, A. P.; Allison, I.

    1998-10-01

    Analysis of the first detailed data set of snow characteristics collected over East Antarctic sea ice in winter confirms that on small scales, snow on Antarctic sea ice is highly variable in both thickness and properties. High-amplitude cyclical variability in atmospheric forcing related to the passage of storms is responsible for the high degree of textural heterogeneity observed. Changes in snow properties were examined over a 3-week period, during which a largely icy snow cover, formed at near-freezing temperatures, metamorphosed to snow in which facetted crystals and depth hoar dominated, as the air temperature plummeted. Even on flat ice, significant localized thickening of snow occurs in the form of barchan dunes. Although we observed great variability in snow thickness and properties on local scales, overall snow thickness distribution and the complex textural assemblage of snow types are similar from region to region. Similar observations were made by Sturm et al. [1998] in West Antarctica. Large-scale similarities are also apparent in mean snow density, grain size, and bulk snow salinity, although high variability is again found across individual floes. Rapid depth hoar formation is a ubiquitous process that greatly affects the density, texture, grain size, and effective thermal conductivity of the snow cover. The observed heterogeneity results in varying snow effective thermal conductivities. The mean bulk effective thermal conductivity, computed from the proportion of observed snow types, is 0.164 W m-1 K-1, significantly lower than values typically used in large-scale sea ice modeling but similar to that derived by Sturm et al. [1998] in a near-simultaneous experiment in the Bellingshausen and Ross Seas. It varies from 0.097 to 0.383 W m-1 K-1 in different snow pits. The findings support those of Sturm et al. [1998] that periodic flooding and subsequent snow ice formation, which are also ubiquitous processes, effectively diminish the degree to which basal snow processes create inhomogeneities in the snow pack.

  6. The Effect of Excess Snow on Sea Ice in a Global Ice-Ocean Prediction System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winter, B.; Bélair, S.; Lemieux, J. F.

    2014-12-01

    Snow cover on sea ice acts as a thermal insulator, greatly reducing the upward heat flux from the ocean through the ice, specifically through thin ice. The treatment of snow in the CICE sea ice model does not include the effects of blowing snow, thereby leading to an unrealistically thick snow layer on the ice. We investigate the consequences of this excess snow for the upward heat fluxes throughout the year, and how this impacts forecast accuracy in a global ice-ocean prediction model (GIOPS). First results will be presented, and computationally efficient solutions will be discussed.

  7. Simulating Snow Over Sea Ice In Climate Models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arnold, James E. (Technical Monitor); Marshall, Susan; Oglesby, Robert J.; Drobot, Sheldon; Anderson, Mark

    2002-01-01

    We have evaluated two methods of simulating the seasonal cycle of snow over sea ice in and around the Arctic: The NCAR global climate model CCM3, with its standard snow hydrology, and the snow pack model SNTHERM, forced with hourly atmospheric output from CCM3. A new dataset providing dates for the onset of snow melt over Arctic sea ice provides a means for assessing basin-wide how well the models simulate melt onset, but contains no information on how long it then takes for all the snow to melt. Use of data from the SHEBA site provides very detailed information on the behavior of the snow before and during the melt season, but only for a very limited area. Russian drift data provide climatological data on the seasonal cycle of snow water equivalent and snow density, over multi-year sea ice in the central Arctic basin. These datasets are used to compare the two modeling methods, and to see if use of the more physically-realistic SNTHERM provides any significant improvements. Conclusions obtained so far include: 1. Both CCM3 and CCM3/SNTHERM do a good job overall of matching the onset of snow melt dataset; although CCM3/SNTHERM consistently trends to underestimate the date and CCM3 to overestimate it. 2. SHEBA and ice drift data for the Arctic show that CCM3/ SNTHERM does a better job than CCM3 at simulating the total melt period. 3. Ice drift snow density and accumulation data suggest that while providing superior results, CCM3/SNTHERM may still suffer from overly vigorous melting. 4. Both the large-scale atmospheric forcing and snow pack physical processes are important in proper simulation of the snow seasonal cycle. Ongoing work includes further diagnosis of CCM3/SNTHERM, use of more observational datasets, especially from marginal seas in the pan-Arctic, and full coupling of SNTHERM into CCM3 (work to date has all been off-line simulations).

  8. Airborne Surveys of Snow Depth over Arctic Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kwok, R.; Panzer, B.; Leuschen, C.; Pang, S.; Markus, T.; Holt, B.; Gogineni, S.

    2011-01-01

    During the spring of 2009, an ultrawideband microwave radar was deployed as part of Operation IceBridge to provide the first cross-basin surveys of snow thickness over Arctic sea ice. In this paper, we analyze data from three approx 2000 km transects to examine detection issues, the limitations of the current instrument, and the regional variability of the retrieved snow depth. Snow depth is the vertical distance between the air \\snow and snow-ice interfaces detected in the radar echograms. Under ideal conditions, the per echogram uncertainty in snow depth retrieval is approx 4 - 5 cm. The finite range resolution of the radar (approx 5 cm) and the relative amplitude of backscatter from the two interfaces limit the direct retrieval of snow depths much below approx 8 cm. Well-defined interfaces are observed over only relatively smooth surfaces within the radar footprint of approx 6.5 m. Sampling is thus restricted to undeformed, level ice. In early April, mean snow depths are 28.5 +/- 16.6 cm and 41.0 +/- 22.2 cm over first-year and multiyear sea ice (MYI), respectively. Regionally, snow thickness is thinner and quite uniform over the large expanse of seasonal ice in the Beaufort Sea, and gets progressively thicker toward the MYI cover north of Ellesmere Island, Greenland, and the Fram Strait. Snow depth over MYI is comparable to that reported in the climatology by Warren et al. Ongoing improvements to the radar system and the utility of these snow depth measurements are discussed.

  9. Optical Properties of Snow and Sea-ice, Barrow Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reay, H. J.; France, J. L.; King, M. D.

    2009-12-01

    Sunlit snowpacks and sea-ice produce a flux of chemicals from the snow or ice to the atmosphere. The chemical flux (1) changes the oxidising capacity of the atmosphere above the snowpack (2) alters chemical concentrations in snow, via reaction with photo-generated hydroxyl radicals. Photochemistry in snow and ice affect concentration chemicals in ice cores which are used to infer past (and therefore future) climates. Impurities in snow changes the optical absorption properties of the snowpack and thus the efficiency with which they melt as highlighted by the IPCC. Measurements of the solar irradiance in the snow and above the snow were undertaken as part of the OASIS 2009 campaign Barrow, Alaska. A model has been used to compute the amount of chemistry driven by this sunlight in and above the snow and to calculate fluxes of NO, NO2 from the snow and depth integrated hydroxyl radical production rate. The values can be compared to measurements of these gases at Barrow as part of the large OASIS field campaign. We have studied the optical properties of different Arctic snowpacks at UV-visible wavelength (350-700nm) by measuring the e-folding depth and albedos of many windpacks. Optically the snowpacks can be classified into four main snowpack types: snow on sea-ice, snow inland, soft and hard windpack. The albedo was measured using nadir reflectance and the e-folding depth was measured by recording the diffuse irradiance using fibre optic probes inserted into the snow at known depths. Using the TUV-Snow radiative transfer model we have determined the optical variables for scattering and absorption. We have produce absorption spectra of the impurities in the snowpack demonstrating a combination of black carbon and humic-like material (fig1). Fig 1. Absorption spectrum of inland snow

  10. The Effects of Snow Depth Forcing on Southern Ocean Sea Ice Simulations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Powel, Dylan C.; Markus, Thorsten; Stoessel, Achim

    2003-01-01

    The spatial and temporal distribution of snow on sea ice is an important factor for sea ice and climate models. First, it acts as an efficient insulator between the ocean and the atmosphere, and second, snow is a source of fresh water for altering the already weak Southern Ocean stratification. For the Antarctic, where the ice thickness is relatively thin, snow can impact the ice thickness in two ways: a) As mentioned above snow on sea ice reduces the ocean-atmosphere heat flux and thus reduces freezing at the base of the ice flows; b) a heavy snow load can suppress the ice below sea level which causes flooding and, with subsequent freezing, a thickening of the sea ice (snow-to-ice conversion). In this paper, we compare different snow fall paramterizations (incl. the incorporation of satellite-derived snow depth) and study the effect on the sea ice using a sea ice model.

  11. Large-Scale Surveys of Snow Depth on Arctic Sea Ice from Operation IceBridge

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kurtz, Nathan T.; Farrell, Sinead L.

    2011-01-01

    We show the first results of a large ]scale survey of snow depth on Arctic sea ice from NASA fs Operation IceBridge snow radar system for the 2009 season and compare the data to climatological snow depth values established over the 1954.1991 time period. For multiyear ice, the mean radar derived snow depth is 33.1 cm and the corresponding mean climatological snow depth is 33.4 cm. The small mean difference suggests consistency between contemporary estimates of snow depth with the historical climatology for the multiyear ice region of the Arctic. A 16.5 cm mean difference (climatology minus radar) is observed for first year ice areas suggesting that the increasingly seasonal sea ice cover of the Arctic Ocean has led to an overall loss of snow as the region has transitioned away from a dominantly multiyear ice cover.

  12. ICESat: Sea ice freeboard, snow depth, and thickness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kwok, R.

    2007-12-01

    Total freeboard (snow and ice) and thickness of the Arctic Ocean sea ice cover are derived from ICESat data for two 35-day periods: one during the fall (Oct-Nov) of 2005 and the other during the winter (Feb-Mar) of 2006. Our freeboard retrieval approach is based on reflectivity and the expected statistics of freeboard variability from combined analysis of RADARSAT/ICESat data. Results suggest that our retrieval procedures could provide consistent freeboard estimates along 25-km segments with uncertainties of better than several centimeters. With a climatology of snow density, ECMWF snowfall is used to construct a time-varying field of snow depth for the conversion of freeboard to sea ice thickness. The derived ice thickness estimates are compared with ice draft observations from moored upward looking sonar data and the snow depth/thickness data from mass balance buoys in the Beaufort Sea. Preliminary results show that the estimated ICESat thickness estimates are within 0.5 m of the ice drafts reported by moorings. In this talk, we highlight some of the issues associated with the process of freeboard retrieval, thickness estimation, and quality assessment due to the disparity of spatial resolution between the ICESat footprint and those from in-situ measurements.

  13. Sensitivity of simulated Arctic sea ice to realistic ice thickness distributions and snow parameterizations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castro-Morales, K.; Kauker, F.; Losch, M.; Hendricks, S.; Riemann-Campe, K.; Gerdes, R.

    2014-01-01

    Sea ice and snow on sea ice to a large extent determine the surface heat budget in the Arctic Ocean. In spite of the advances in modeling sea-ice thermodynamics, a good number of models still rely on simple parameterizations of the thermodynamics of ice and snow. Based on simulations with an Arctic sea-ice model coupled to an ocean general circulation model, we analyzed the impact of changing two sea-ice parameterizations: (1) the prescribed ice thickness distribution (ITD) for surface heat budget calculations, and (2) the description of the snow layer. For the former, we prescribed a realistic ITD derived from airborne electromagnetic induction sounding measurements. For the latter, two different types of parameterizations were tested: (1) snow thickness independent of the sea-ice thickness below, and (2) a distribution proportional to the prescribed ITD. Our results show that changing the ITD from seven uniform categories to fifteen nonuniform categories derived from field measurements, and distributing the snow layer according to the ITD, leads to an increase in average Arctic-wide ice thickness by 0.56 m and an increase by 1 m in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and Canadian Basin. This increase is found to be a direct consequence of 524 km3 extra thermodynamic growth during the months of ice formation (January, February, and March). Our results emphasize that these parameterizations are a key factor in sea-ice modeling to improve the representation of the sea-ice energy balance.

  14. Snow cover on Arctic sea ice in observations and an Earth System Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blanchard-Wrigglesworth, E.; Farrell, S. L.; Newman, T.; Bitz, C. M.

    2015-12-01

    Spring snow depth on Arctic sea ice is assessed in observations and an Earth System Model. In both, snow depth is mainly driven by the ice type on which the snow lies. Snow depths on multiyear ice are approximately double snow depths on first-year ice. In the model spring snow depths are greater on multiyear ice compared to first-year ice primarily because multiyear ice begins to accumulate snow earlier in the fall but also due to snow cover survival through the summer on multiyear ice. The model simulates a decline in spring snow depth driven mainly by a transition from a multiyear to first-year ice regime throughout the Arctic. Agreement in the loss of multiyear ice in the model with estimates from observations suggests that declining snow depths in observations mainly result from the loss of multiyear sea ice.

  15. Effects of subgrid-scale snow thickness variability on radiative transfer in sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abraham, Carsten; Steiner, Nadja; Monahan, Adam; Michel, Christine

    2015-08-01

    Snow is a principal factor in controlling heat and light fluxes through sea ice. With the goal of improving radiative and heat flux estimates through sea ice in regional and global models without the need of detailed snow property descriptions, a new parameterization including subgrid-scale snow thickness variability is presented. One-parameter snow thickness distributions depending only on the gridbox-mean snow thickness are introduced resulting in analytical solutions for the fluxes of heat and light through the snow layer. As the snowpack melts, these snow thickness distributions ensure a smooth seasonal transition of the light field under sea ice. Spatially homogenous melting applied to an inhomogeneous distribution of snow thicknesses allows the appearance of bare sea ice areas and melt ponds before all snow has melted. In comparison to uniform-thickness snow used in previous models, the bias in the under sea-ice light field is halved with this parameterization. Model results from a one-dimensional ocean turbulence model coupled with a thermodynamic sea ice model are compared to observations near Resolute in the Canadian High Arctic. The simulations show substantial improvements not only to the light field at the sea ice base which will affect ice algal growth but also to the sea ice and seasonal snowpack evolution. During melting periods, the snowpack can survive longer while sea ice thickness starts to reduce earlier.

  16. Sea Ice Thickness, Freeboard, and Snow Depth products from Operation IceBridge Airborne Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kurtz, N. T.; Farrell, S. L.; Studinger, M.; Galin, N.; Harbeck, J. P.; Lindsay, R.; Onana, V. D.; Panzer, B.; Sonntag, J. G.

    2013-01-01

    The study of sea ice using airborne remote sensing platforms provides unique capabilities to measure a wide variety of sea ice properties. These measurements are useful for a variety of topics including model evaluation and improvement, assessment of satellite retrievals, and incorporation into climate data records for analysis of interannual variability and long-term trends in sea ice properties. In this paper we describe methods for the retrieval of sea ice thickness, freeboard, and snow depth using data from a multisensor suite of instruments on NASA's Operation IceBridge airborne campaign. We assess the consistency of the results through comparison with independent data sets that demonstrate that the IceBridge products are capable of providing a reliable record of snow depth and sea ice thickness. We explore the impact of inter-campaign instrument changes and associated algorithm adaptations as well as the applicability of the adapted algorithms to the ongoing IceBridge mission. The uncertainties associated with the retrieval methods are determined and placed in the context of their impact on the retrieved sea ice thickness. Lastly, we present results for the 2009 and 2010 IceBridge campaigns, which are currently available in product form via the National Snow and Ice Data Center

  17. Contaminants in arctic snow collected over northwest Alaskan sea ice

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Garbarino, J.R.; Snyder-Conn, E.; Leiker, T.J.; Hoffman, G.L.

    2002-01-01

    Snow cores were collected over sea ice from four northwest Alaskan Arctic estuaries that represented the annual snowfall from the 1995-1996 season. Dissolved trace metals, major cations and anions, total mercury, and organochlorine compounds were determined and compared to concentrations in previous arctic studies. Traces (<4 nanograms per liter, ng L-1) of cis- and trans-chlordane, dimethyl 2,3,5,6-tetrachloroterephthalate, dieldrin, endosulfan II, and PCBs were detected in some samples, with endosulfan I consistently present. High chlorpyrifos concentrations (70-80 ng L-1) also were estimated at three sites. The snow was highly enriched in sulfates (69- 394 mg L-1), with high proportions of nonsea salt sulfates at three of five sites (9 of 15 samples), thus indicating possible contamination through long-distance transport and deposition of sulfate-rich atmospheric aerosols. Mercury, cadmium, chromium, molybdenum, and uranium were typically higher in the marine snow (n = 15) in relation to snow from arctic terrestrial studies, whereas cations associated with terrigenous sources, such as aluminum, frequently were lower over the sea ice. One Kasegaluk Lagoon site (Chukchi Sea) had especially high concentrations of total mercury (mean = 214 ng L-1, standard deviation = 5 ng L-1), but no methyl mercury was detected above the method detection limit (0.036 ng L-1) at any of the sites. Elevated concentrations of sulfate, mercury, and certain heavy metals might indicate mechanisms of contaminant loss from the arctic atmosphere over marine water not previously reported over land areas. Scavenging by snow, fog, or riming processes and the high content of deposited halides might facilitate the loss of such contaminants from the atmosphere. Both the mercury and chlorpyrifos concentrations merit further investigation in view of their toxicity to aquatic organisms at low concentrations.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  19. Impact of declining Arctic sea ice on recent decreasing terrestrial Arctic snow depths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    PARK, H.; Walsh, J. E.; Kim, Y.; Nakai, T.; Ohata, T.

    2012-12-01

    The dramatic decline in Arctic sea ice cover is anticipated to influence atmospheric temperatures and circulation patterns. These changes will affect the terrestrial climate beyond the boundary of the Arctic, consequently modulating terrestrial snow cover. Therefore, an improved understanding of the relationship between Arctic sea ice and snow depth over the terrestrial Arctic is warranted. We examined responses of snow depth to the declining Arctic sea ice extent in September, during the period of 1979-2006. The major reason for a focus on snow depth, rather than snow cover, is because its variability has a climatic memory that impacts hydrothermal processes during the following summer season. Analyses of combined data sets of satellite measurements of sea ice extent and snow depth, simulated by a land surface model (CHANGE), suggested that an anomalously larger snow depth over northeastern Siberia during autumn and winter was significantly correlated to the declining September Arctic sea ice extent, which has resulted in cooling temperatures, along with an increase in precipitation. Meanwhile, the reduction of Arctic sea ice has amplified warming temperatures in North America, which has readily offset the input of precipitation to snow cover, consequently further decreasing snow depth. However, a part of the Canadian Arctic recorded an increase in snow depth driven locally by the diminishing September Arctic sea ice extent. Decreasing snow depth at the hemispheric scale, outside the northernmost regions (i.e., northeastern Siberia and Canadian Arctic), indicated that Arctic amplification related to the diminishing Arctic sea ice has already impacted the terrestrial Arctic snow depth. The strong reduction in Arctic sea ice anticipated in the future also suggests a potential long-range impact on Arctic snow cover. Moreover, the snow depth during the early snow season tends to contribute to the warming of soil temperatures in the following summer, at least in the northernmost regions.

  20. The role of declining Arctic sea ice in recent decreasing terrestrial Arctic snow depths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Hotaek; Walsh, John E.; Kim, Yongwon; Nakai, Taro; Ohata, Tetsuo

    2013-06-01

    The dramatic decline in Arctic sea ice cover is anticipated to influence atmospheric temperatures and circulation patterns. These changes will affect the terrestrial climate beyond the boundary of the Arctic, consequently modulating terrestrial snow cover. Therefore, an improved understanding of the relationship between Arctic sea ice and snow depth over the terrestrial Arctic is warranted. We examined responses of snow depth to the declining Arctic sea ice extent in September, during the period of 1979-2006. The major reason for a focus on snow depth, rather than snow cover, is because its variability has a climatic memory that impacts hydrothermal processes during the following summer season. Analyses of combined data sets of satellite measurements of sea ice extent and snow depth, simulated by a land surface model (CHANGE), suggested that an anomalously larger snow depth over northeastern Siberia during autumn and winter was significantly correlated to the declining September Arctic sea ice extent, which has resulted in cooling temperatures, along with an increase in precipitation. Meanwhile, the reduction of Arctic sea ice has amplified warming temperatures in North America, which has readily offset the input of precipitation to snow cover, consequently further decreasing snow depth. However, a part of the Canadian Arctic recorded an increase in snow depth driven locally by the diminishing September Arctic sea ice extent. Decreasing snow depth at the hemispheric scale, outside the northernmost regions (i.e., northeastern Siberia and Canadian Arctic), indicated that Arctic amplification related to the diminishing Arctic sea ice has already impacted the terrestrial Arctic snow depth. The strong reduction in Arctic sea ice anticipated in the future also suggests a potential long-range impact on Arctic snow cover. Moreover, the snow depth during the early snow season tends to contribute to the warming of soil temperatures in the following summer, at least in the northernmost regions.

  1. Interannual and Regional Variability of Southern Ocean Snow on Sea Ice and its Correspondence with Sea Ice Cover and Atmospheric Circulation Patterns

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markus, T.; Cavalieri, D. J.

    2006-01-01

    Snow depth on sea ice plays a critical role in the heat exchange between ocean and atmosphere because of its thermal insulation property. Furthermore, a heavy snow load on the relatively thin Southern Ocean sea-ice cover submerges the ice floes below sea level, causing snow-to-ice conversion. Snowfall is also an important freshwater source into the weakly stratified ocean. Snow depth on sea-ice information can be used as an indirect measure of solid precipitation. Satellite passive microwave data are used to investigate the interannual and regional variability of the snow cover on sea ice. In this study we make use of 12 years (1992-2003) of Special Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSM/I) radiances to calculate average monthly snow depth on the Antarctic sea-ice cover. The results show a slight increase in snow depth and a partial eastward propagation of maximum snow depths, which may be related to the Antarctic Circumpolar Wave.

  2. Snow distribution on Antarctic sea ice: precipitation, accumulation, and connections to sea ice thickness from in situ and NASA IceBridge observations.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maksym, T. L.; Kunz, C.; Kwok, R.; Leonard, K. C.; Singh, H.; Trujillo, E.; Williams, G. D.; White, S.; Wever, N.

    2014-12-01

    Snow plays a dominant role in Antarctic sea ice mass balance and its seasonal evolution. It is a primary control on sea ice thickness and the structure of sea ice ecosystems, it dominates the uncertainty in satellite estimates of ice thickness, and it may significantly modulate the response of sea ice to climate change and variability. Here, we provide an overview of recent surveys of snow distribution (both small and large scale), its temporal evolution, and its connection with the processes that drive it - precipitation, accumulation, blowing snow events, flooding, and the role of ice deformation. We present recent 3-D in situ floe-scale measurements of snow surface topography, snow depth, and ice thickness distribution that allow relationships between surface roughness features, snow accumulation, and ice thickness to be examined in unprecedented detail. These data are compared with estimates of snow depth from the NASA IceBridge radar from spring surveys in the Weddell and Amundsen/Bellingshausen Seas. Both airborne and in situ measurements suggest a significant extent of thick ice with a deep snow cover that is underrepresented in prior surveys. Finally, the seasonal evolution of precipitation, snow depth, and accumulation is examined with data from drifting buoy platforms deployed in several regions of the Antarctic. These observations show that precipitation is not necessarily a good estimator for snow accumulation and that treatment of blowing snow must be included for sea ice models to accurately simulate Antarctic snow and sea ice mass balance. The implications of these results for modeling and satellite measurement of the sea ice thickness distribution are discussed.

  3. Snow depth on Arctic sea ice derived from radar: In situ comparisons and time series analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holt, Benjamin; Johnson, Michael P.; Perkovic-Martin, Dragana; Panzer, Ben

    2015-06-01

    The snow radar being flown on NASA's Operation IceBridge, ongoing aircraft campaigns to the Arctic and the Antarctic are providing unique observations of the depth of snow on the sea ice cover. In this paper, we focus on the radar-derived snow depth results from the 2009-2012 Arctic campaigns. We develop and evaluate the use of a distinct snow layer tracker to measure snow depth based on a Support Vector Machine (SVM) supervised learning algorithm. The snow radar is designed to detect both the air-snow and snow-ice interfaces using ultrawideband frequencies from 2 to 8 GHz. The quality, errors, and repeatability of the snow radar snow depth estimates are examined, based on comparisons with in situ data obtained during two separate sea ice field campaigns, the GreenArc 2009 and the CryoVEx 2011 campaigns off Greenland in the Lincoln Sea. Finally, we analyze 4 years (2009-2012) of three annually repeated sea ice flight lines obtained in early spring, located off Greenland and the Canadian Arctic. We examine the annual variations of snow depth differences between perennial and seasonal ice when available. Overall, the snow layer tracker produced consistent, accurate results for snow depths between 0.10 and ˜0.60 m. This was confirmed with comparisons with the two data sets from the in situ measurement campaigns as well as with the time series analysis, and is consistent with other published results.

  4. Wideband radar for airborne measurements of snow thickness on sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panzer, B.; Leuschen, C.; Blake, W.; Crowe, R.; Patel, A.; Gogineni, P. S.; Markus, T.

    2010-12-01

    Ocean-ice-atmosphere interactions are modulated by snow cover on the sea ice due to the low thermal conductivity and high reflectivity of snow. Current sea ice models use climatological data to simulate a snow cover on the sea ice. Snow cover is also the main source of error in deriving sea ice thickness from freeboard height measurements made by satellite-borne radar and laser altimeters. To improve sea ice models, and, ultimately, global climate models accurate knowledge of snow thickness of sea ice over a large area, with fine spatial resolution is desired. The Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets at the University of Kansas has developed a wideband, frequency-modulated, continuous-wave (FMCW) radar for measuring snow thickness on sea ice from a fast-moving, long-range aircraft. The wideband radar, referred to as the Snow Radar, has been successfully deployed on multiple NASA Operation IceBridge missions. Basic waveform parameters of the Snow Radar are a 2.0 to 6.5 GHz bandwidth with a 250-us pulse length. However, with the FMCW radar architecture intermediate frequencies in the range of 31-62 MHz are digitized. The Snow Radar was designed to operate from a nominal altitude of 1500 ft above ground level, but can withstand +/- 500 ft of altitude variation without tweaking the nominal waveform parameters. Vertical resolution of the Snow Radar in snow, assuming a density of 0.3 g/cm3 and after application of a fast-time Hann window, is approximately 5.25 cm. We will discuss radar hardware, performance specifications, signal processing, measurements attained and provide preliminary results from the 2009-2010 Operation IceBridge missions. Representative Snow Radar processing output from 04/02/09 Thule to Fairbanks flight

  5. Snow Cover on the Arctic Sea Ice: Model Validation, Sensitivity, and 21st Century Projections

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blazey, Benjamin Andrew

    The role of snow cover in controlling Arctic Ocean sea ice thickness and extent is assessed with a series of models. Investigations with the stand alone Community Ice CodE (CICE) show, first, a reduction in snow depth triggers a decrease in ice volume and area, and, second, that the impact of increased snow is heavily dependent on ice and atmospheric conditions. Hindcast snow depths on the Arctic ice, simulated by the fully coupled Community Climate System Model (CCSM) are validated with 20th century in situ snow depth measurements. The snow depths in CCSM are found to be deeper than observed, likely due to excessive precipitation produced by the component atmosphere model. The sensitivity of the ice to the thermal barrier imposed by the biased snow depth is assessed. The removal of the thermodynamic impact of the exaggerated snow depth increases ice area and volume. The initial increases in ice due to enhanced conductive flux triggers feedback mechanisms with the atmosphere and ocean, reinforcing the increase in ice. Finally, the 21st century projections of decreased Arctic Ocean snow depth in CCSM are reported and diagnosed. The changes in snow are dominated by reduced accumulation due to the lack of autumn ice cover. Without this platform, much of the early snowfall is lost directly to the ocean. While this decrease in snow results in enhanced conductive flux through the ice as in the validation sensitivity experiment, the decreased summer albedo is found to dominate, as in the CICE stand alone sensitivity experiment. As such, the decrease in snow projected by CCSM in the 21st century presents a mechanism to continued ice loss. These negative (ice growth due decreased insulation) and positive (ice melt due to decreased albedo) feedback mechanisms highlight the need for an accurate representation snow cover on the ice in order to accurately simulate the evolution of Arctic Ocean sea ice.

  6. The impact of snow depth, snow density and ice density on sea ice thickness retrieval from satellite radar altimetry: results from the ESA-CCI Sea Ice ECV Project Round Robin Exercise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kern, S.; Khvorostovsky, K.; Skourup, H.; Rinne, E.; Parsakhoo, Z. S.; Djepa, V.; Wadhams, P.; Sandven, S.

    2015-01-01

    We assess different methods and input parameters, namely snow depth, snow density and ice density, used in freeboard-to-thickness conversion of Arctic sea ice. This conversion is an important part of sea ice thickness retrieval from spaceborne altimetry. A data base is created comprising sea ice freeboard derived from satellite radar altimetry between 1993 and 2012 and co-locate observations of total (sea ice + snow) and sea ice freeboard from the Operation Ice Bridge (OIB) and CryoSat Validation Experiment (CryoVEx) airborne campaigns, of sea ice draft from moored and submarine upward looking sonar (ULS), and of snow depth from OIB campaigns, Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) and the Warren climatology (Warren et al., 1999). We compare the different data sets in spatiotemporal scales where satellite radar altimetry yields meaningful results. An inter-comparison of the snow depth data sets emphasizes the limited usefulness of Warren climatology snow depth for freeboard-to-thickness conversion under current Arctic Ocean conditions reported in other studies. We test different freeboard-to-thickness and freeboard-to-draft conversion approaches. The mean observed ULS sea ice draft agrees with the mean sea ice draft derived from radar altimetry within the uncertainty bounds of the data sets involved. However, none of the approaches are able to reproduce the seasonal cycle in sea ice draft observed by moored ULS. A sensitivity analysis of the freeboard-to-thickness conversion suggests that sea ice density is as important as snow depth.

  7. Snow Depth and Ice Thickness Measurements From the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas Collected During the AMSR-Ice03 Campaign

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sturm, M.; Holmgren, J.; Maslanik, J. A.; Perovich, D. K.; Richter-Menge, J.; Stroeve, J. C.; Markus, T.; Heinrichs, J. F.; Tape, K.

    2006-01-01

    In March 2003, a field validation campaign was conducted on the sea ice near Barrow, AK. The goal of this campaign was to produce an extensive dataset of sea ice thickness and snow properties (depth and stratigraphy) against which remote sensing products collected by aircraft and satellite could be compared. Chief among these were products from the Polarimetric Scanning Radiometer (PSR) flown aboard a NASA P-3B aircraft and the Aqua Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for the Earth Observing System (AMSR-E). The data were collected in four field areas: three on the coastal sea ice near Barrow, AK, and the fourth out on the open ice pack 175 km northeast of Barrow. The snow depth ranged from 9.4-20.8 cm in coastal areas (n = 9881 for three areas) with the thinnest snow on ice that had formed late in the winter. Out in the main pack ice, the snow was 20.6 cm deep (n = 1906). The ice in all four areas ranged from 138-219 cm thick (n = 1952), with the lower value again where the ice had formed late in the winter. Snow layer and grain characteristics observed in 118 snow pits indicated that 44% of observed snow layers were depth hoar; 46% were wind slab. Snow and ice measurements were keyed to photomosaics produced from low-altitude vertical aerial photographs. Using these, and a distinctive three-way relationship between ice roughness, snow surface characteristics, and snow depth, strip maps of snow depth, each about 2 km wide, were produced bracketing the traverse lines. These maps contain an unprecedented level of snow depth detail against which to compare remote sensing products. The maps are used in other papers in this special issue to examine the retrieval of snow properties from the PSR and AMSR-E sensors.

  8. Snow on Arctic sea ice: model representation and last decade changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castro-Morales, K.; Ricker, R.; Gerdes, R.

    2015-10-01

    Together with sea ice, Arctic snow has experienced vast changes during the last decade due to a warming climate. Thus, it is relevant to study the past and present changes of Arctic snow to understand the implications to the sea ice component, precipitation, heat and radiation budgets. In this study, we analyze the changes of snow depth between 2000 and 2013 at regional scale represented in an Arctic coupled sea ice-general circulation model. We evaluate the model performance by direct comparison of the modeled snow depths (hs_mod) to snow depths from radar measurements from the NASA Operation IceBridge (hs_OIB) during the flight campaigns completed from 2009 to 2013. Despite the description of the snow in our model is simple (i.e. single layer without explicit snow redistribution processes) as in many current sea-ice models; the latitudinal distribution of hs_mod in the western Arctic is in good agreement to observations. The hs_mod is on average 3 cm thicker than hs_OIB in latitudes > 76° N. According to the model results, the hs in 2013 decreased 21 % with respect to the multi-year mean between 2000 and 2013. This snow reduction occurred mainly in FYI dominated areas, and is in good agreement to the year-to-year loss of sea ice, also well reproduced by the model. In a simple snow mass budget, our results show that 65 % of the yearly accumulated snow is lost by sublimation and snowmelt due to the heat transfer between the snow/ice interface and the atmosphere. Although the snow layer accumulates again every year, the long-term reduction in the summer sea-ice extent ultimately affects the maximum spring accumulation of snow. The model results exhibit a last decade thinning of the snowpack that is however one order of magnitude lower than previous estimates based on radar measurements. We suggest that the later is partially due to the lack of explicit snow redistribution processes in the model, emphasizing the need to include these in current sea-ice models to improve the snow representations.

  9. Evaluation of Operation IceBridge quick-look snow depth estimates on sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, Joshua; Howell, Stephen; Derksen, Chris; Rutter, Nick; Toose, Peter; Beckers, Justin F.; Haas, Christian; Kurtz, Nathan; Richter-Menge, Jacqueline

    2015-11-01

    We evaluate Operation IceBridge (OIB) "quick-look" snow depth on sea ice retrievals using in situ measurements taken over immobile first-year ice (FYI) and multiyear ice (MYI) during March of 2014. Good agreement was found over undeformed FYI (-4.5 cm mean bias) with reduced agreement over deformed FYI (-6.6 cm mean bias). Over MYI, the mean bias was -5.7 cm, but 54% of retrievals were discarded by the OIB retrieval process as compared to only 10% over FYI. Footprint scale analysis revealed a root-mean-square error (RMSE) of 6.2 cm over undeformed FYI with RMSE of 10.5 cm and 17.5 cm in the more complex deformed FYI and MYI environments. Correlation analysis was used to demonstrate contrasting retrieval uncertainty associated with spatial aggregation and ice surface roughness.

  10. Validation of Airborne FMCW Radar Measurements of Snow Thickness Over Sea Ice in Antarctica

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Galin, Natalia; Worby, Anthony; Markus, Thorsten; Leuschen, Carl; Gogineni, Prasad

    2012-01-01

    Antarctic sea ice and its snow cover are integral components of the global climate system, yet many aspects of their vertical dimensions are poorly understood, making their representation in global climate models poor. Remote sensing is the key to monitoring the dynamic nature of sea ice and its snow cover. Reliable and accurate snow thickness data are currently a highly sought after data product. Remotely sensed snow thickness measurements can provide an indication of precipitation levels, predicted to increase with effects of climate change in the polar regions. Airborne techniques provide a means for regional-scale estimation of snow depth and distribution. Accurate regional-scale snow thickness data will also facilitate an increase in the accuracy of sea ice thickness retrieval from satellite altimeter freeboard estimates. The airborne data sets are easier to validate with in situ measurements and are better suited to validating satellite algorithms when compared with in situ techniques. This is primarily due to two factors: better chance of getting coincident in situ and airborne data sets and the tractability of comparison between an in situ data set and the airborne data set averaged over the footprint of the antennas. A 28-GHz frequency modulated continuous wave (FMCW) radar loaned by the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets to the Australian Antarctic Division is used to measure snow thickness over sea ice in East Antarctica. Provided with the radar design parameters, the expected performance parameters of the radar are summarized. The necessary conditions for unambiguous identification of the airsnow and snowice layers for the radar are presented. Roughnesses of the snow and ice surfaces are found to be dominant determinants in the effectiveness of layer identification for this radar. Finally, this paper presents the first in situ validated snow thickness estimates over sea ice in Antarctica derived from an FMCW radar on a helicopterborne platform.

  11. Impacts of Arctic sea ice and continental snow cover changes on atmospheric winter teleconnections

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Handorf, Drthe; Jaiser, Ralf; Dethloff, Klaus; Rinke, Annette; Cohen, Judah

    2015-04-01

    Extreme winters in Northern Hemisphere midlatitudes in recent years have been connected to declining Arctic sea ice and continental snow cover changes in autumn following modified planetary waves in the coupled troposphere-stratosphere system. Through analyses of reanalysis data and model simulations with a state-of-the-art atmospheric general circulation model, we investigate the mechanisms between Arctic Ocean sea ice and Northern Hemisphere land snow cover changes in autumn and atmospheric teleconnections in the following winter. The observed negative Arctic Oscillation in response to sea ice cover changes is too weakly reproduced by the model. The planetary wave train structures over the Pacific and North America regions are well simulated. The strengthening and westward shift of the Siberian high-pressure system in response to sea ice and snow cover changes is underestimated compared to ERA-Interim data due to deficits in the simulated changes in planetary wave propagation characteristics.

  12. Snow Dunes: A Controlling Factor of Melt Pond Distribution on Arctic Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Petrich, Chris; Eicken, Hajo; Polashenski, Christopher M.; Sturm, Matthew; Harbeck, Jeremy P.; Perovich, Donald K.; Finnegan, David C.

    2012-01-01

    The location of snow dunes over the course of the ice-growth season 2007/08 was mapped on level landfast first-year sea ice near Barrow, Alaska. Landfast ice formed in mid-December and exhibited essentially homogeneous snow depths of 4-6 cm in mid-January; by early February distinct snow dunes were observed. Despite additional snowfall and wind redistribution throughout the season, the location of the dunes was fixed by March, and these locations were highly correlated with the distribution of meltwater ponds at the beginning of June. Our observations, including ground-based light detection and ranging system (lidar) measurements, show that melt ponds initially form in the interstices between snow dunes, and that the outline of the melt ponds is controlled by snow depth contours. The resulting preferential surface ablation of ponded ice creates the surface topography that later determines the melt pond evolution.

  13. MODIS Snow and Ice Production

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hall, Dorthoy K.; Hoser, Paul (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Daily, global snow cover maps, and sea ice cover and sea ice surface temperature (IST) maps are derived from NASA's Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), are available at no cost through the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC). Included on this CD-ROM are samples of the MODIS snow and ice products. In addition, an animation, done by the Scientific Visualization studio at Goddard Space Flight Center, is also included.

  14. Impact of snow and sea-ice variations on global climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Ledley, T.S.

    1992-03-01

    Recent work with a coupled energy balance climate-sea ice model has shown that sea ice has a large impact on the energy fluxes between the ocean and the atmosphere and thus on climate, especially in the polar regions. In this study the impact of the addition of snowfall on sea ice and its effect on climate is examined. The results show that the addition of snow introduces three major competing effects. The first effect is that the snow acts as an insulator, keeping the ice warm and thus thin. This would seem to produce a warming effect on the climate. The second is that snow has a lower volumetric specific heat than ice causing it to cool during the winter and warm during the summer more rapidly than ice. The third is that snow has a higher albedo than ice. This causes a reduction in the absorbed solar energy by the entire earth-atmosphere system and thus a cooling of the climate. The results described here indicate that the albedo effect is dominant, so that the addition of snow cools the climate.

  15. A Coordinated Ice-based and Airborne Snow and Ice Thickness Measurement Campaign on Arctic Sea Ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richter-Menge, J.; Farrell, S.; Elder, B. C.; Gardner, J. M.; Brozena, J. M.

    2011-12-01

    A rare opportunity presented itself in March 2011 when the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) and NASA IceBridge teamed with scientists from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) to coordinate a multi-scale approach to mapping snow depth and sea ice thickness distribution in the Arctic. Ground-truth information for calibration/validation of airborne and CryoSat-2 satellite data were collected near a manned camp deployed in support of the US Navy's Ice Expedition 2011 (ICEX 2011). The ice camp was established at a location approximately 230 km north of Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, at the edge of the perennial ice zone. The suite of measurements was strategically organized around a 9-km-long survey line that covered a wide range of ice types, including refrozen leads, deformed and undeformed first year ice, and multiyear ice. A highly concentrated set of in situ measurements of snow depth and ice thickness were taken along the survey line. Once the survey line was in place, NASA IceBridge flew a dedicated mission along the survey line, collecting data with an instrument suite that included the Airborne Topographic Mapper (ATM), a high precision, airborne scanning laser altimeter; the Digital Mapping System (DMS), nadir-viewing digital camera; and the University of Kansas ultra-wideband Frequency Modulated Continuous Wave (FMCW) snow radar. NRL also flew a dedicated mission over the survey line with complementary airborne radar, laser and photogrammetric sensors (see Brozena et al., this session). These measurements were further leveraged by a series of CryoSat-2 under flights made in the region by the instrumented NRL and NASA planes, as well as US Navy submarine underpasses of the 9-km-long survey line to collect ice draft measurements. This comprehensive suite of data provides the full spectrum of sampling resolutions from satellite, to airborne, to ground-based, to submarine and will allow for a careful determination of snow depth on sea ice and characterization of the regional sea ice thickness distribution. This poster will present preliminary data from the measurement campaign. This includes the in situ measurements of snow depth and ice thickness along the survey line. The NASA IceBridge airborne survey consisted of eleven parallel flight lines along the main in situ transect and two perpendicular passes at the northern and southern ends of the survey line, coincident with two corner reflectors. We will present initial IceBridge data, including ATM sea ice elevation and DMS photography which we use to estimate surface roughness and delineate sea ice provinces nearby the in situ survey. Preliminary data from the NRL over flights of the survey line will be presented in the poster by Brozena et al. (this session). The in situ and airborne data collected during the March 2011 campaign will be fully-documented and archived on the NASA IceBridge websites at NSIDC, allowing for their free access by the broad research community.

  16. A High Resolution Sea-Ice Model with Variable Snow Cover and Resolved Melt Ponds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skyllingstad, E. D.; Shell, K. M.; Polashenski, C.

    2014-12-01

    A three-dimensional sea ice model is presented capable of resolving spatial snow depth variations and melt ponds over an O(100 m) area. The model calculates a surface heat budget and internal heating from solar radiative transfer, and simulates the formation and movement of brine/melt water through the ice/snow system. Initialization for the model is based on observations of snow topography made during the summer melt seasons of 2009, 2010, and 2012 from a location off the coast of Barrow, AK. Experiments are conducted that examine the melting period from the middle of May through June. Key processes simulated by the model are the flooding and drainage of melt water from snow that is commonly observed at the beginning of the melt season. Results indicate that resulting long-term melt pond coverage is sensitive to both the spatial variability of snow cover and the minimum snow depth. For thin snow cover, initial melting results in extensive flooding that limits pond formation after drainage of the melt water. Deeper snow tends to delay flooding of the ice surface, and can lead to more ponds after the surface drains. Simulated pond albedo tends to be too high in comparison with measurements, suggesting that the radiative transfer scheme is not properly calibrated for first year ice or that the role of sediments in the ice is underestimated. Nevertheless, predicted pond fraction time series are in good agreement with observations for each of the study years.

  17. Applications of ISES for snow, ice, and sea state

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang, Alfred T. C.; Delnore, Victor E.

    1990-01-01

    There will be six facility instruments on the NASA NPOP-1 and NPOP-2 and additional instruments on the Japanese and European satellites. Also, there are the 24 selected NASA instruments that may be flown on one of the platforms. Many of these instruments can provide data that could be very useful for real-time data studies in the snow and ice area. Any one instrument is not addressed in particular, but emphasis is placed on what is potentially possible using the capabilities of some of these instruments.

  18. Chemical Atmosphere-Snow-Sea Ice Interactions: defining future research in the field, lab and modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frey, Markus

    2015-04-01

    The air-snow-sea ice system plays an important role in the global cycling of nitrogen, halogens, trace metals or carbon, including greenhouse gases (e.g. CO2 air-sea flux), and therefore influences also climate. Its impact on atmospheric composition is illustrated for example by dramatic ozone and mercury depletion events which occur within or close to the sea ice zone (SIZ) mostly during polar spring and are catalysed by halogens released from SIZ ice, snow or aerosol. Recent field campaigns in the high Arctic (e.g. BROMEX, OASIS) and Antarctic (Weddell sea cruises) highlight the importance of snow on sea ice as a chemical reservoir and reactor, even during polar night. However, many processes, participating chemical species and their interactions are still poorly understood and/or lack any representation in current models. Furthermore, recent lab studies provide a lot of detail on the chemical environment and processes but need to be integrated much better to improve our understanding of a rapidly changing natural environment. During a 3-day workshop held in Cambridge/UK in October 2013 more than 60 scientists from 15 countries who work on the physics, chemistry or biology of the atmosphere-snow-sea ice system discussed research status and challenges, which need to be addressed in the near future. In this presentation I will give a summary of the main research questions identified during this workshop as well as ways forward to answer them through a community-based interdisciplinary approach.

  19. A Comparison of Sea Ice Type, Sea Ice Temperature, and Snow Thickness Distributions in the Arctic Seasonal Ice Zones with the DMSP SSM/I

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    St.Germain, Karen; Cavalieri, Donald J.; Markus, Thorsten

    1997-01-01

    Global climate studies have shown that sea ice is a critical component in the global climate system through its effect on the ocean and atmosphere, and on the earth's radiation balance. Polar energy studies have further shown that the distribution of thin ice and open water largely controls the distribution of surface heat exchange between the ocean and atmosphere within the winter Arctic ice pack. The thickness of the ice, the depth of snow on the ice, and the temperature profile of the snow/ice composite are all important parameters in calculating surface heat fluxes. In recent years, researchers have used various combinations of DMSP SSMI channels to independently estimate the thin ice type (which is related to ice thickness), the thin ice temperature, and the depth of snow on the ice. In each case validation efforts provided encouraging results, but taken individually each algorithm gives only one piece of the information necessary to compute the energy fluxes through the ice and snow. In this paper we present a comparison of the results from each of these algorithms to provide a more comprehensive picture of the seasonal ice zone using passive microwave observations.

  20. Estimation of Sea Ice Thickness Distributions through the Combination of Snow Depth and Satellite Laser Altimetry Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kurtz, Nathan T.; Markus, Thorsten; Cavalieri, Donald J.; Sparling, Lynn C.; Krabill, William B.; Gasiewski, Albin J.; Sonntag, John G.

    2009-01-01

    Combinations of sea ice freeboard and snow depth measurements from satellite data have the potential to provide a means to derive global sea ice thickness values. However, large differences in spatial coverage and resolution between the measurements lead to uncertainties when combining the data. High resolution airborne laser altimeter retrievals of snow-ice freeboard and passive microwave retrievals of snow depth taken in March 2006 provide insight into the spatial variability of these quantities as well as optimal methods for combining high resolution satellite altimeter measurements with low resolution snow depth data. The aircraft measurements show a relationship between freeboard and snow depth for thin ice allowing the development of a method for estimating sea ice thickness from satellite laser altimetry data at their full spatial resolution. This method is used to estimate snow and ice thicknesses for the Arctic basin through the combination of freeboard data from ICESat, snow depth data over first-year ice from AMSR-E, and snow depth over multiyear ice from climatological data. Due to the non-linear dependence of heat flux on ice thickness, the impact on heat flux calculations when maintaining the full resolution of the ICESat data for ice thickness estimates is explored for typical winter conditions. Calculations of the basin-wide mean heat flux and ice growth rate using snow and ice thickness values at the 70 m spatial resolution of ICESat are found to be approximately one-third higher than those calculated from 25 km mean ice thickness values.

  1. Ku-Band radar penetration into Snow over Arctic Sea Ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hendricks, S.; Stenseng, L.; Helm, V.; Hanson, S.; Haas, C.

    2009-12-01

    Sea ice freeboard measurements are of great interest for basin-scale ice mass balance monitoring. Typically, laser- and radar-altimeters are used for freeboard retrieval in operational systems such as aircrafts and satellites. For laser beams it can be assumed that the dominant reflector is the snow/air interface, whereas radar waves interact with the variable physical properties of the snow cover on the Arctic sea ice. In addition, radar elevation measurements may vary for different retracker algorithms, which determine the track point of the scattered echo power distribution. Since accurate knowledge of the reflection horizon is critical for sea ice thickness retrieval, validation data is necessary to investigate the penetration of radar waves into the snow for the upcoming CryoSat-2 mission. Furthermore, the combination of both optical and RF wavelengths might be used to derive snow thickness, if radar altimeters are capable of measuring the distance to the snow-ice interface reliably. We present the results of aircraft campaigns in the Arctic with a scanning laser altimeter and the Airborne SAR/Interferometric Radar Altimeter System (ASIRAS) of the European Space Agency. The elevation observations are converted into freeboard profiles, taking the different footprints into account when comparing the two systems. Based on the probability distribution of laser and radar freeboard we discuss the specific characteristics of both systems and the apparent radar penetration over sea ice in the northern Baltic Sea, the Greenland and Lincoln Sea. The results show differences in the penetration of Ku-Band radar between regions and interannual variability. In general, snow thickness could not be derived in the Arctic, whereas the penetration behavior correlates with other (QuikScat) remote sensing products.

  2. The Role of Blowing Snow in the Activation of Bromine over First-Year Antarctic Sea Ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lieb-Lappen, R.; Obbard, R. W.

    2014-12-01

    It is well known that during the polar springtime, halide sea salt ions, in particular Br-, are through a series of heterogeneous reactions photochemically activated into reactive halogen species, such as Br and BrO, that breakdown polar tropospheric ozone. This research investigated the role of blowing snow in transporting salts from the sea ice/snow surface into reactive bromine species in the air. For two different locations over first-year ice in the Ross Sea, Antarctica, collection baskets captured blowing snow at four different heights on October 25, following a blowing snow event the day before. In addition, sea ice cores and surface snow samples were collected throughout the month long campaign. Cl-/Br- ratios were constant in sea ice and surface snow, and only in lofted snow did bromide become depleted relative to chloride. This suggests that replenishment of bromide in the snowpack occurs faster than bromine activation in mid-strength wind conditions (approximately 10 m/s). Sulfate concentrations were stable through the bottom half of sea ice cores, but were quite variable in the upper half and in surface snow. Lofted snow was greatly depleted in sulfate, likely as a result of mirabilite precipitation in brine prior to brine uptake in the snow and subsequent lofting. Nitrate was found in greater quantities for upper level baskets and in some surface snow samples, consistent with active cycling through atmospheric chemical reactions.

  3. Evidence for a Significant Source of Sea Salt Aerosol from Blowing Snow Above Sea Ice in the Southern Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frey, M. M.; Brooks, I. M.; Anderson, P. A.; Nishimura, K.; Yang, X.; Jones, A. E.; Wolff, E. W.

    2014-12-01

    Over most of the Earth, sea salt aerosol (SSA) derives from sea spray and bubble bursting at the open ocean surface. SSA as the major component of marine aerosol contributes directly to the radiative balance and can act as cloud condensation nuclei. SSA can also significantly impact the lifetime of methane, ozone or mercury through the photochemical release of reactive halogens. A recent model study suggested that the sublimation of saline blowing snow above sea ice can generate more SSA than is produced from a similar area of open ocean. A winter cruise through the Weddell Sea during June - August 2013 provided unique access to a potential SSA source region in the Antarctic sea ice zone to test this hypothesis.Reported are first measurements of snow particle as well as aerosol concentrations, size distributions and chemical composition, during blowing snow events above sea ice. Snow particle spectra are found to be similar to those observed on the continent. Even though the salinity of surface and blowing snow was very low (<0.1 psu) a significant increase of aerosol in the SSA size range was observed during and after blowing snow events. This is consistent with model runs including a blowing snow parameterisation which suggest low sensitivity of SSA number densities to snow salinity within the observed range. First estimates of SSA flux from blowing snow using eddy correlation are significant, although falling below published values of the sea spray source function. We discuss the dependance of observed SSA production rates on ambient conditions as well as the significance to the Southern Ocean environment.

  4. Melt Pond Development on Arctic Land-Fast Sea Ice in Relation to Snow and Ice Properties During the Ice Growth Season

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrich, C.; Eicken, H.; Pringle, D.; Sturm, M.; Perovich, D.; Polashenski, C.; Finnegan, D.

    2008-12-01

    The dynamics of melt pond development on sea ice were studied on a well-defined patch of level land-fast sea ice off the coast of Barrow, Alaska in 2008. The pond development was correlated with both sea ice properties and the history of snow distribution during the ice growth season. In mid January, the ice was covered by an almost level snow layer of 4~cm thickness. We observed an increase in snow depth and development of snow dunes since February. At least some snow dunes stayed in place, and at the end of April ice thickness was negatively correlated with the thickness of compacted snow dunes. Snow salinity remained above 5~psu in the bottom 4 to 5~cm of the snow pack throughout the ice growth season. In comparison, snow more than 5~cm above the snow--ice interface was almost devoid of salt. The air temperature increased rapidly in early May and started to exceed 0C on May 15. From this day on, thermistor string data show that the sea ice temperature profile deviated from linear with the lowest temperature inside the body of ice rather than at the surface. Superimposed ice was present with certainty after May 24. The superimposed ice investigated in early June exhibited a rough texture consistent with meltwater percolation columns in the snow pack. It was found only under snow dunes; no superimposed ice was observed under thin snow (2~cm) or melt ponds. Meltwater collected at topographic low points that surrounded distinct ice islands. Aerial photography and surface LiDAR measurements at various times during the early melt season showed that the location of these ice islands coincided with the locations of wind packed snow dunes that had been tracked since February. The lateral movement of surface waters was relatively slow during the very early stages of melt pond formation. However, we observed a significant lateral redistribution of meltwater under the ice surface; this redistribution happened through distinct veins. The sea ice salinity profiles showed evidence of meltwater flushing during the period of increasing melt pond coverage. At the same time, a significant amount of meltwater appeared to have drained through natural flaws (seal holes) rather than ice. Over the course of a few days, the area covered by melt ponds shrank as the meltwater table dropped toward the freeboard level. However, patches of near-impermeable ice persisted beyond this point. Laser-level transects showed that isolated puddles of elevated water level remained. The ice islands that developed during the early stages of melt persisted throughout the mature stages of ice melt. They were surrounded by ponds that typically contained dark ice patches that were apparent in the early stage of melt. Our observations on melt pond evolution may be useful in the context of interpreting and modeling regional differences in sea ice albedo and assessing the sensitivity of spring and early-summer ice albedo to changing Arctic snow and sea ice conditions.

  5. The impact of atmospheric mineral aerosol deposition on the albedo of snow and sea ice: are snow and sea ice optical properties more important than mineral aerosol optical properties?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lamare, M. L.; Lee-Taylor, J.; King, M. D.

    2015-08-01

    Knowledge of the albedo of polar regions is crucial for understanding a range of climatic processes that have an impact on a global scale. Light absorbing impurities in atmospheric aerosols deposited on snow and sea ice by aeolian transport absorb solar radiation, reducing albedo. Here, the effects of five mineral aerosol deposits reducing the albedo of polar snow and sea ice are considered. Calculations employing a coupled atmospheric and snow/sea ice radiative-transfer model (TUV-snow) show that the effects of mineral aerosol deposits is strongly dependent on the snow or sea ice type rather than the differences between the aerosol optical characteristics. The change in albedo between five different mineral aerosol deposits with refractive indices varying by a factor of 2 reaches a maximum of 0.0788, whereas the difference between cold polar snow and melting sea ice is 0.8893 for the same mineral loading. Surprisingly, the thickness of a surface layer of snow or sea ice loaded with the same mass-ratio of mineral dust has little effect on albedo. On the contrary, multiple layers of mineral aerosols deposited during episodic events evenly distributed play a similar role in the surface albedo of snow as a loading distributed throughout, even when the layers are further apart. The impact of mineral aerosol deposits is much larger on melting sea ice than on other types of snow and sea ice. Therefore, the higher input of shortwave radiation during the summer melt cycle associated with melting sea ice accelerates the melt process.

  6. Influence of projected snow and sea-ice changes on future climate in heavy snowfall region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsumura, S.; Sato, T.

    2011-12-01

    Snow/ice albedo and cloud feedbacks are critical for climate change projection in cryosphere regions. However, future snow and sea-ice distributions are significantly different in each GCM. Thus, surface albedo in cryosphere regions is one of the causes of the uncertainty for climate change projection. Northern Japan is one of the heaviest snowfall regions in the world. In particular, Hokkaido is bounded on the north by the Okhotsk Sea, where is the southernmost ocean in the Northern Hemisphere that is covered with sea ice during winter. Wintertime climate around Hokkaido is highly sensitive to fluctuations in snow and sea-ice. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the influence of global warming on future climate around Hokkaido, using the Pseudo-Global-Warming method (PGW) by a regional climate model. The boundary conditions of the PGW run were obtained by adding the difference between the future (2090s) and past (1990s) climates simulated by coupled general circulation model (MIROC3.2 medres), which is from the CMIP3 multi-model dataset, into the 6-hourly NCEP reanalysis (R-2) and daily OISST data in the past climate (CTL) run. The PGW experiments show that snow depth significantly decreases over mountainous areas and snow cover mainly decreases over plain areas, contributing to higher surface warming due to the decreased snow albedo. Despite the snow reductions, precipitation mainly increases over the mountainous areas because of enhanced water vapor content. However, precipitation decreases over the Japan Sea and the coastal areas, indicating the weakening of a convergent cloud band, which is formed by convergence between cold northwesteries from the Eurasian continent and anticyclonic circulation over the Okhotsk Sea. These results suggest that Okhotsk sea-ice decline may change the atmospheric circulation and the resulting effect on cloud formation, resulting in changes in winter snow or precipitation. We will also examine another CMIP3 model (MRI-CGCM2.3.2), which sensitivity of surface albedo to surface air temperature is the lowest in the CMIP3 models.

  7. Snow Radar Derived Surface Elevations and Snow Depths Multi-Year Time Series over Greenland Sea-Ice During IceBridge Campaigns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perkovic-Martin, D.; Johnson, M. P.; Holt, B.; Panzer, B.; Leuschen, C.

    2012-12-01

    This paper presents estimates of snow depth over sea ice from the 2009 through 2011 NASA Operation IceBridge [1] spring campaigns over Greenland and the Arctic Ocean, derived from Kansas University's wideband Snow Radar [2] over annually repeated sea-ice transects. We compare the estimates of the top surface interface heights between NASA's Atmospheric Topographic Mapper (ATM) [3] and the Snow Radar. We follow this by comparison of multi-year snow depth records over repeated sea-ice transects to derive snow depth changes over the area. For the purpose of this paper our analysis will concentrate on flights over North/South basin transects off Greenland, which are the closest overlapping tracks over this time period. The Snow Radar backscatter returns allow for surface and interface layer types to be differentiated between snow, ice, land and water using a tracking and classification algorithm developed and discussed in the paper. The classification is possible due to different scattering properties of surfaces and volumes at the radar's operating frequencies (2-6.5 GHz), as well as the geometries in which they are viewed by the radar. These properties allow the returns to be classified by a set of features that can be used to identify the type of the surface or interfaces preset in each vertical profile. We applied a Support Vector Machine (SVM) learning algorithm [4] to the Snow Radar data to classify each detected interface into one of four types. The SVM algorithm was trained on radar echograms whose interfaces were visually classified and verified against coincident aircraft data obtained by CAMBOT [5] and DMS [6] imaging sensors as well as the scanning ATM lidar. Once the interface locations were detected for each vertical profile we derived a range to each interface that was used to estimate the heights above the WGS84 ellipsoid for direct comparisons with ATM. Snow Radar measurements were calibrated against ATM data over areas free of snow cover and over GPS land surveyed areas of Thule and Sondrestrom air bases. The radar measurements were compared against the ATM and the GPS measurements that were located in the estimated radar footprints, which resulted in an overall error of ~ 0.3 m between the radar and ATM. The agreement between ATM and GPS survey is within +/- 0.1 m. References: [1] http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/icebridge/ [2] Panzer, B. et. al, "An ultra-wideband, microwave radar for measuring snow thickness on sea ice and mapping near-surface internal layers in polar firn," Submitted to J. of Glaciology Instr. and Tech., July 23, 2012. [3] Krabill, William B. 2009 and 2011, updated current year. IceBridge ATM L1B Qfit Elevation and Return Strength. Boulder, Colorado USA: National Snow and Ice Data Center. Digital media. [4] Chih-Chung Chang and Chih-Jen Lin. "Libsvm: a library for support vector machines", ACM Transactions on Intelligent Systems and Technology, 2:2:27:1-27:27, 2011. [5] Krabill, William B. 2009 and 2011, updated current year. IceBridge CAMBOT L1B Geolocated Images, [2009-04-25, 2011-04-15]. Boulder, Colorado USA: National Snow and Ice Data Center. Digital media. [6] Dominguez, Roseanne. 2011, updated current year. IceBridge DMS L1B Geolocated and Orthorectified Images. Boulder, Colorado USA: National Snow and Ice Data Center. Digital media

  8. Comparison of a coupled snow thermodynamic and radiative transfer model with in-situ active microwave signatures of snow-covered smooth first-year sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fuller, M. C.; Geldsetzer, T.; Yackel, J.; Gill, J. P. S.

    2015-06-01

    Within the context of developing data inversion and assimilation techniques for C-band backscatter over sea ice, snow physical models may be used to drive backscatter models for comparison and optimization with satellite observations. Such modeling has potential to enhance understanding of snow on sea ice properties required for unambiguous interpretation of active microwave imagery. An end-to-end modeling suite is introduced, incorporating regional reanalysis data (NARR), a snow model (SNTHERM), and a multi-layer snow and ice active microwave backscatter model (MSIB). This modeling suite is assessed against measured snow on sea ice geophysical properties, and against measured active microwave backscatter. NARR data was input to the SNTHERM snow thermodynamic model, in order to drive the MISB model for comparison to detailed geophysical measurements and surface-based observations of C-band backscatter of snow on first-year sea ice. The NARR data was well correlated to available in-situ measurements, with the exception of long wave incoming radiation and relative humidity, which impacted SNTHERM simulations of snow temperature. SNTHERM reasonably represented snow grain size and density when compared to observations. The application of in-situ salinity profiles to one SNTHERM snow profile resulted in simulated backscatter close to that driven by in-situ snow properties. In other test cases, the simulated backscatter remained 4 to 6 dB below observed for higher incidence angles, and when compared to an average simulated backscatter of in-situ end-member snowcovers. Development of C-band inversion and assimilation schemes employing SNTHERM89.rev4 should consider sensitivity of the model to bias in incoming longwave radiation, the effects of brine, and the inability of SNTHERM89.Rev4 to simulate water accumulation and refreezing at the bottom and mid-layers of the snowpack with regard to thermodynamic response, brine wicking and volume processes, snow dielectrics, and microwave backscatter from snow on first-year sea-ice.

  9. The impact of atmospheric mineral aerosol deposition on the albedo of snow & sea ice: are snow and sea ice optical properties more important than mineral aerosol optical properties?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lamare, M. L.; Lee-Taylor, J.; King, M. D.

    2016-01-01

    Knowledge of the albedo of polar regions is crucial for understanding a range of climatic processes that have an impact on a global scale. Light-absorbing impurities in atmospheric aerosols deposited on snow and sea ice by aeolian transport absorb solar radiation, reducing albedo. Here, the effects of five mineral aerosol deposits reducing the albedo of polar snow and sea ice are considered. Calculations employing a coupled atmospheric and snow/sea ice radiative-transfer model (TUV-snow) show that the effects of mineral aerosol deposits are strongly dependent on the snow or sea ice type rather than the differences between the aerosol optical characteristics. The change in albedo between five different mineral aerosol deposits with refractive indices varying by a factor of 2 reaches a maximum of 0.0788, whereas the difference between cold polar snow and melting sea ice is 0.8893 for the same mineral loading. Surprisingly, the thickness of a surface layer of snow or sea ice loaded with the same mass ratio of mineral dust has little effect on albedo. On the contrary, the surface albedo of two snowpacks of equal depth, containing the same mineral aerosol mass ratio, is similar, whether the loading is uniformly distributed or concentrated in multiple layers, regardless of their position or spacing. The impact of mineral aerosol deposits is much larger on melting sea ice than on other types of snow and sea ice. Therefore, the higher input of shortwave radiation during the summer melt cycle associated with melting sea ice accelerates the melt process.

  10. Interactions between wind-blown snow redistribution and melt ponds in a coupled ocean-sea ice model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lecomte, Olivier; Fichefet, Thierry; Flocco, Daniela; Schroeder, David; Vancoppenolle, Martin

    2015-03-01

    Introducing a parameterization of the interactions between wind-driven snow depth changes and melt pond evolution allows us to improve large scale models. In this paper we have implemented an explicit melt pond scheme and, for the first time, a wind dependant snow redistribution model and new snow thermophysics into a coupled ocean-sea ice model. The comparison of long-term mean statistics of melt pond fractions against observations demonstrates realistic melt pond cover on average over Arctic sea ice, but a clear underestimation of the pond coverage on the multi-year ice (MYI) of the western Arctic Ocean. The latter shortcoming originates from the concealing effect of persistent snow on forming ponds, impeding their growth. Analyzing a second simulation with intensified snow drift enables the identification of two distinct modes of sensitivity in the melt pond formation process. First, the larger proportion of wind-transported snow that is lost in leads directly curtails the late spring snow volume on sea ice and facilitates the early development of melt ponds on MYI. In contrast, a combination of higher air temperatures and thinner snow prior to the onset of melting sometimes make the snow cover switch to a regime where it melts entirely and rapidly. In the latter situation, seemingly more frequent on first-year ice (FYI), a smaller snow volume directly relates to a reduced melt pond cover. Notwithstanding, changes in snow and water accumulation on seasonal sea ice is naturally limited, which lessens the impacts of wind-blown snow redistribution on FYI, as compared to those on MYI. At the basin scale, the overall increased melt pond cover results in decreased ice volume via the ice-albedo feedback in summer, which is experienced almost exclusively by MYI.

  11. Recent Increases in Snow Accumulation and Decreases in Sea-Ice Concentration Recorded in a Coastal NW Greenland Ice Core

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osterberg, E. C.; Thompson, J. T.; Wong, G. J.; Hawley, R. L.; Kelly, M. A.; Lutz, E.; Howley, J.; Ferris, D. G.

    2013-12-01

    A significant rise in summer temperatures over the past several decades has led to widespread retreat of the Greenland Ice Sheet (GIS) margin and surrounding sea ice. Recent observations from geodetic stations and GRACE show that ice mass loss progressed from South Greenland up to Northwest Greenland by 2005 (Khan et al., 2010). Observations from meteorological stations at the U.S. Thule Air Force Base, remote sensing platforms, and climate reanalyses indicate a 3.5C mean annual warming in the Thule region and a 44% decrease in summer (JJAS) sea-ice concentrations in Baffin Bay from 1980-2010. Mean annual precipitation near Thule increased by 12% over this interval, with the majority of the increase occurring in fall (SON). To improve projections of future ice loss and sea-level rise in a warming climate, we are currently developing multi-proxy records (lake sediment cores, ice cores, glacial geologic data, glaciological models) of Holocene climate variability and cryospheric response in NW Greenland, with a focus on past warm periods. As part of our efforts to develop a millennial-length ice core paleoclimate record from the Thule region, we collected and analyzed snow pit samples and short firn cores (up to 20 m) from the coastal region of the GIS (2Barrel site; 76.9317 N, 63.1467 W) and the summit of North Ice Cap (76.938 N, 67.671 W) in 2011 and 2012, respectively. The 2Barrel ice core was sampled using a continuous ice core melting system at Dartmouth, and subsequently analyzed for major anion and trace element concentrations and stable water isotope ratios. Here we show that the 2Barrel ice core spanning 1990-2010 records a 25% increase in mean annual snow accumulation, and is positively correlated (r = 0.52, p<0.01) with ERA-Interim precipitation. The 2Barrel annual sea-salt Na concentration is strongly correlated (r = 0.5-0.8, p<0.05) with summer and fall sea-ice concentrations in northern Baffin Bay near Thule (Figure 1). We hypothesize that the positive correlation represents a significant Na contribution from frost flowers growing on fall frazil ice. Ongoing analyses will evaluate the relationship between MSA concentrations and sea ice extent. Our results show that a deep ice core collected from this dynamic and climate-sensitive region of NW Greenland would produce a valuable record of late Holocene climate and sea ice extent.

  12. The role of blowing snow in the activation of bromine over first-year Antarctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lieb-Lappen, R. M.; Obbard, R. W.

    2015-07-01

    It is well known that during polar springtime halide sea salt ions, in particular Br-, are photochemically activated into reactive halogen species (e.g., Br and BrO), where they break down tropospheric ozone. This research investigated the role of blowing snow in transporting salts from the sea ice/snow surface into reactive bromine species in the air. At two different locations over first-year ice in the Ross Sea, Antarctica, collection baskets captured blowing snow at different heights. In addition, sea ice cores and surface snow samples were collected throughout the month-long campaign. Over this time, sea ice and surface snow Br- / Cl- mass ratios remained constant and equivalent to seawater, and only in lofted snow did bromide become depleted relative to chloride. This suggests that replenishment of bromide in the snowpack occurs faster than bromine activation in mid-strength wind conditions (approximately 10 m s-1) or that blowing snow represents only a small portion of the surface snowpack. Additionally, lofted snow was found to be depleted in sulfate and enriched in nitrate relative to surface snow.

  13. Arctic climate response to forcing from light-absorbing particles in snow and sea ice in CESM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldenson, N.; Doherty, S. J.; Bitz, C. M.; Holland, M. M.; Light, B.; Conley, A. J.

    2012-09-01

    The presence of light-absorbing aerosol particles deposited on arctic snow and sea ice influences the surface albedo, causing greater shortwave absorption, warming, and loss of snow and sea ice, lowering the albedo further. The Community Earth System Model version 1 (CESM1) now includes the radiative effects of light-absorbing particles in snow on land and sea ice and in sea ice itself. We investigate the model response to the deposition of black carbon and dust to both snow and sea ice. For these purposes we employ a slab ocean version of CESM1, using the Community Atmosphere Model version 4 (CAM4), run to equilibrium for year 2000 levels of CO2 and fixed aerosol deposition. We construct experiments with and without aerosol deposition, with dust or black carbon deposition alone, and with varying quantities of black carbon and dust to approximate year 1850 and 2000 deposition fluxes. The year 2000 deposition fluxes of both dust and black carbon cause 1-2 C of surface warming over large areas of the Arctic Ocean and sub-Arctic seas in autumn and winter and in patches of Northern land in every season. Atmospheric circulation changes are a key component of the surface-warming pattern. Arctic sea ice thins by on average about 30 cm. Simulations with year 1850 aerosol deposition are not substantially different from those with year 2000 deposition, given constant levels of CO2. The climatic impact of particulate impurities deposited over land exceeds that of particles deposited over sea ice. Even the surface warming over the sea ice and sea ice thinning depends more upon light-absorbing particles deposited over land. For CO2 doubled relative to year 2000 levels, the climate impact of particulate impurities in snow and sea ice is substantially lower than for the year 2000 equilibrium simulation.

  14. Arctic climate response to forcing from light-absorbing particles in snow and sea ice in CESM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldenson, N.; Doherty, S. J.; Bitz, C. M.; Holland, M. M.; Light, B.; Conley, A. J.

    2012-02-01

    The presence of light-absorbing aerosol particles deposited on arctic snow and sea ice influences the surface albedo, causing greater shortwave absorption, warming, and loss of snow and sea ice, lowering the albedo further. The Community Earth System Model version 1 (CESM1) now includes the radiative effects of light-absorbing particles in snow on land and sea ice and in sea ice itself. We investigate the model response to the deposition of black carbon and dust to both snow and sea ice. For these purposes we employ a slab ocean version of CESM1, using the Community Atmosphere Model version 4 (CAM4), run to equilibrium for year 2000 levels of CO2 and fixed aerosol deposition. We construct experiments with and without aerosol deposition, with dust or black carbon deposition alone, and with varying quantities of black carbon and dust to approximate year 1850 and 2000 deposition fluxes. The year 2000 deposition fluxes of both dust and black carbon cause 1-2 C of surface warming over large areas of the Arctic Ocean and sub-Arctic seas in autumn and winter and in patches of Northern land in every season. Atmospheric circulation changes are a key component of the surface-warming pattern. Arctic sea ice thins by on average about 30 cm. Simulations with year 1850 aerosol deposition are not substantially different from those with year 2000 deposition, given constant levels of CO2. The climatic impact of particulate impurities deposited over land exceeds that of particles deposited over sea ice. Even the surface warming over the sea ice and sea ice thinning depends more upon light-absorbing particles deposited over land. For CO2 doubled relative to year 2000 levels, the climate impact of particulate impurities in snow and sea ice is substantially lower than for the year 2000 equilibrium simulation.

  15. The role of blowing snow in the activation of bromine over first-year Antarctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lieb-Lappen, R. M.; Obbard, R. W.

    2015-04-01

    It is well known that during polar springtime halide sea salt ions, in particular Br-, are photochemically activated into reactive halogen species (e.g. Br and BrO), where they break down tropospheric ozone. This research investigated the role of blowing snow in transporting salts from the sea ice/snow surface into reactive bromine species in the air. At two different locations over first-year ice in the Ross Sea, Antarctica, collection baskets captured blowing snow at different heights. In addition, sea ice cores and surface snow samples were collected throughout the month-long campaign. Over this time, sea ice and surface snow Cl-/Br- mass ratios remained constant and equivalent to seawater, and only in lofted snow did bromide become depleted relative to chloride. This suggests that replenishment of bromide in the snowpack occurs faster than bromine activation in mid-strength wind conditions (approximately 10 m s-1). Additionally, lofted snow was found to be depleted in sulfate and enriched in nitrate relative to surface snow.

  16. The seasonal cycle of snow cover, sea ice and surface albedo

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robock, A.

    1980-01-01

    The paper examines satellite data used to construct mean snow cover caps for the Northern Hemisphere. The zonally averaged snow cover from these maps is used to calculate the seasonal cycle of zonally averaged surface albedo. The effects of meltwater on the surface, solar zenith angle, and cloudiness are parameterized and included in the calculations of snow and ice albedo. The data allows a calculation of surface albedo for any land or ocean 10 deg latitude band as a function of surface temperature ice and snow cover; the correct determination of the ice boundary is more important than the snow boundary for accurately simulating the ice and snow albedo feedback.

  17. Arctic report card: Sea ice and snow reached record lows in 2012

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balcerak, Ernie

    2012-12-01

    Despite air temperatures that were not abnormally high, the Arctic set new record lows for snow cover and sea ice extent in 2012. Studies detailing these records are included in the 2012 update of NOAA's Arctic Report Card, which was released 5 December at a press conference at the AGU Fall Meeting. This is the sixth annual update of the report card, which covers a wide variety of indicators about the Arctic, including the atmosphere, sea ice, glaciers and terrestrial snow cover, and marine and terrestrial ecosystems. Among the records noted is extensive melting of the Greenland ice sheet. "I've studied Greenland for 20 years nowI've devoted my career to itand 2012 was an astonishing year," said Jason Box of the Byrd Polar Research Center at Ohio State University. He noted that the duration of the melting season in 2012 was the longest in the recent record, there were record high areas and volumes of ice lost, and surface melting was documented at the highest elevations of the ice sheet.

  18. Freeboard, Snow Depth and Sea-Ice Roughness in East Antarctica from In Situ and Multiple Satellite Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markus, Thorsten; Masson, Robert; Worby, Anthony; Lytle, Victoria; Kurtz, Nathan; Maksym, Ted

    2011-01-01

    In October 2003 a campaign on board the Australian icebreaker Aurora Australis had the objective to validate standard Aqua Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) sea-ice products. Additionally, the satellite laser altimeter on the Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) was in operation. To capture the large-scale information on the sea-ice conditions necessary for satellite validation, the measurement strategy was to obtain large-scale sea-ice statistics using extensive sea-ice measurements in a Lagrangian approach. A drifting buoy array, spanning initially 50 km 100 km, was surveyed during the campaign. In situ measurements consisted of 12 transects, 50 500 m, with detailed snow and ice measurements as well as random snow depth sampling of floes within the buoy array using helicopters. In order to increase the amount of coincident in situ and satellite data an approach has been developed to extrapolate measurements in time and in space. Assuming no change in snow depth and freeboard occurred during the period of the campaign on the floes surveyed, we use buoy ice-drift information as well as daily estimates of thin-ice fraction and rough-ice vs smooth-ice fractions from AMSR-E and QuikSCAT, respectively, to estimate kilometer-scale snow depth and freeboard for other days. The results show that ICESat freeboard estimates have a mean difference of 1.8 cm when compared with the in situ data and a correlation coefficient of 0.6. Furthermore, incorporating ICESat roughness information into the AMSR-E snow depth algorithm significantly improves snow depth retrievals. Snow depth retrievals using a combination of AMSR-E and ICESat data agree with in situ data with a mean difference of 2.3 cm and a correlation coefficient of 0.84 with a negligible bias.

  19. Comparison of a coupled snow thermodynamic and radiative transfer model with in situ active microwave signatures of snow-covered smooth first-year sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fuller, M. C.; Geldsetzer, T.; Yackel, J.; Gill, J. P. S.

    2015-11-01

    Within the context of developing data inversion and assimilation techniques for C-band backscatter over sea ice, snow physical models may be used to drive backscatter models for comparison and optimization with satellite observations. Such modeling has the potential to enhance understanding of snow on sea-ice properties required for unambiguous interpretation of active microwave imagery. An end-to-end modeling suite is introduced, incorporating regional reanalysis data (NARR), a snow model (SNTHERM89.rev4), and a multilayer snow and ice active microwave backscatter model (MSIB). This modeling suite is assessed against measured snow on sea-ice geophysical properties and against measured active microwave backscatter. NARR data were input to the SNTHERM snow thermodynamic model in order to drive the MSIB model for comparison to detailed geophysical measurements and surface-based observations of C-band backscatter of snow on first-year sea ice. The NARR variables were correlated to available in situ measurements with the exception of long-wave incoming radiation and relative humidity, which impacted SNTHERM simulations of snow temperature. SNTHERM snow grain size and density were comparable to observations. The first assessment of the forward assimilation technique developed in this work required the application of in situ salinity profiles to one SNTHERM snow profile, which resulted in simulated backscatter close to that driven by in situ snow properties. In other test cases, the simulated backscatter remained 4-6 dB below observed for higher incidence angles and when compared to an average simulated backscatter of in situ end-member snow covers. Development of C-band inversion and assimilation schemes employing SNTHERM89.rev4 should consider sensitivity of the model to bias in incoming long-wave radiation, the effects of brine, and the inability of SNTHERM89.Rev4 to simulate water accumulation and refreezing at the bottom and mid-layers of the snowpack. These impact thermodynamic response, brine wicking and volume processes, snow dielectrics, and thus microwave backscatter from snow on first-year sea ice.

  20. Refining the Parameterisation of Sea Salt Aerosol Production from Blowing Snow on Sea Ice Based on Data Collected in the Weddell Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, X.; Frey, M. M.; Levine, J. G.; Brooks, I. M.; Anderson, P. A.; Jones, A. E.; Wolff, E. W.

    2014-12-01

    The hypothesis of blowing snow lifted snow particles, via a subsequent sublimation process, as a significant sea salt aerosol (SSA) source over sea ice has recently been strongly supported by a winter cruise through the Weddell Sea during June-August 2013. The newly collected data, including both physical and chemical components, provide a unique way to test and validate the parameterisation used to date. The observed salinity of surface and blowing snow is very low; on average more than an order in magnitude smaller than column mean value. Here we apply a low salinity of 0.27 PSU (representing an average of the top 10cm of snow plus blowing snow samples) in the p-TOMCAT model to test its effect on sea salt concentrations reaching the Antarctic. The comparison with previous model output (using column mean salinity) shows that SSA concentration in central Antarctica is insensitive to change in snow salinity, due to the compensating effect of increasing fine SSA partitioning upon reducing the salinity. We also investigate the impact of changing the number of SSA particles formed from each snow particle on SSA concentration and size distribution. Applying a ratio of 10 SSA particles per blowing snow particle, rather than one as assumed to date, greatly increases the amount of sub-micrometer SSA reaching central Antarctica. Without applying blowing snow related SSA production in the p-TOMCAT model, the observed elevated SSA in the Weddell Sea could not be reproduced.

  1. (abstract) A Polarimetric Model for Effects of Brine Infiltrated Snow Cover and Frost Flowers on Sea Ice Backscatter

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nghiem, S. V.; Kwok, R.; Yueh, S. H.

    1995-01-01

    A polarimetric scattering model is developed to study effects of snow cover and frost flowers with brine infiltration on thin sea ice. Leads containing thin sea ice in the Artic icepack are important to heat exchange with the atmosphere and salt flux into the upper ocean. Surface characteristics of thin sea ice in leads are dominated by the formation of frost flowers with high salinity. In many cases, the thin sea ice layer is covered by snow, which wicks up brine from sea ice due to capillary force. Snow and frost flowers have a significant impact on polarimetric signatures of thin ice, which needs to be studied for accessing the retrieval of geophysical parameters such as ice thickness. Frost flowers or snow layer is modeled with a heterogeneous mixture consisting of randomly oriented ellipsoids and brine infiltration in an air background. Ice crystals are characterized with three different axial lengths to depict the nonspherical shape. Under the covering multispecies medium, the columinar sea-ice layer is an inhomogeneous anisotropic medium composed of ellipsoidal brine inclusions preferentially oriented in the vertical direction in an ice background. The underlying medium is homogeneous sea water. This configuration is described with layered inhomogeneous media containing multiple species of scatterers. The species are allowed to have different size, shape, and permittivity. The strong permittivity fluctuation theory is extended to account for the multispecies in the derivation of effective permittivities with distributions of scatterer orientations characterized by Eulerian rotation angles. Polarimetric backscattering coefficients are obtained consistently with the same physical description used in the effective permittivity calculation. The mulitspecies model allows the inclusion of high-permittivity species to study effects of brine infiltrated snow cover and frost flowers on thin ice. The results suggest that the frost cover with a rough interface significantly increases the backscatter from thin saline ice and the polarimetric signature becomes closer to the isotropic characteristics. The snow cover also modifies polarimetric signatures of thin sea ice depending on the snow mixture and the interface condition.

  2. An Ultra-Wideband, Microwave Radar for Measuring Snow Thickness on Sea Ice and Mapping Near-Surface Internal Layers in Polar Firn

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Panzer, Ben; Gomez-Garcia, Daniel; Leuschen, Carl; Paden, John; Rodriguez-Morales, Fernando; Patel, Azsa; Markus, Thorsten; Holt, Benjamin; Gogineni, Prasad

    2013-01-01

    Sea ice is generally covered with snow, which can vary in thickness from a few centimeters to >1 m. Snow cover acts as a thermal insulator modulating the heat exchange between the ocean and the atmosphere, and it impacts sea-ice growth rates and overall thickness, a key indicator of climate change in polar regions. Snow depth is required to estimate sea-ice thickness using freeboard measurements made with satellite altimeters. The snow cover also acts as a mechanical load that depresses ice freeboard (snow and ice above sea level). Freeboard depression can result in flooding of the snow/ice interface and the formation of a thick slush layer, particularly in the Antarctic sea-ice cover. The Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets (CReSIS) has developed an ultra-wideband, microwave radar capable of operation on long-endurance aircraft to characterize the thickness of snow over sea ice. The low-power, 100mW signal is swept from 2 to 8GHz allowing the air/snow and snow/ ice interfaces to be mapped with 5 c range resolution in snow; this is an improvement over the original system that worked from 2 to 6.5 GHz. From 2009 to 2012, CReSIS successfully operated the radar on the NASA P-3B and DC-8 aircraft to collect data on snow-covered sea ice in the Arctic and Antarctic for NASA Operation IceBridge. The radar was found capable of snow depth retrievals ranging from 10cm to >1 m. We also demonstrated that this radar can be used to map near-surface internal layers in polar firn with fine range resolution. Here we describe the instrument design, characteristics and performance of the radar.

  3. Simulation of the melt season using a resolved sea ice model with snow cover and melt ponds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skyllingstad, Eric D.; Shell, Karen M.; Collins, Lee; Polashenski, Chris

    2015-07-01

    A three-dimensional sea ice model is presented with resolved snow thickness variations and melt ponds. The model calculates heating from solar radiative transfer and simulates the formation and movement of brine/melt water through the ice system. Initialization for the model is based on observations of snow topography made during the summer melt seasons of 2009, 2010, and 2012 from a location off the coast of Barrow, AK. Experiments are conducted to examine the importance of snow properties and snow and ice thickness by comparing observed and modeled pond fraction and albedo. One key process simulated by the model is the formation of frozen layers in the ice as relatively warm fresh water grid cells freeze when cooled by adjacent, cold brine-filled grid cells. These layers prevent vertical drainage and lead to flooding of melt water commonly observed at the beginning of the melt season. Flooding persists until enough heat is absorbed to melt through the frozen layer. The resulting long-term melt pond coverage is sensitive to both the spatial variability of snow cover and the minimum snow depth. For thin snow cover, initial melting results in earlier, reduced flooding with a small change in pond fraction after drainage of the melt water. Deeper snow tends to generate a delayed, larger peak pond fraction before drainage.

  4. NASA sea ice and snow validation plan for the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program special sensor microwave/imager

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cavalieri, Donald J. (Editor); Swift, Calvin T. (Editor)

    1987-01-01

    This document addresses the task of developing and executing a plan for validating the algorithm used for initial processing of sea ice data from the Special Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSMI). The document outlines a plan for monitoring the performance of the SSMI, for validating the derived sea ice parameters, and for providing quality data products before distribution to the research community. Because of recent advances in the application of passive microwave remote sensing to snow cover on land, the validation of snow algorithms is also addressed.

  5. Characterizing the sea ice algae chlorophyll a-snow depth relationship over Arctic spring melt using transmitted irradiance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Campbell, K.; Mundy, C. J.; Barber, D. G.; Gosselin, M.

    2015-07-01

    The bottom ice algae chlorophyll a (chl a)-snow depth (HS) relationship was investigated for first-year sea ice in Allen Bay, Nunavut, from 27 April to 13 June 2011. A transmitted irradiance technique was used to estimate ice algae chl a throughout the period at time series locations covered and cleared of snow. Furthermore, chl a was estimated along transects perpendicular to dominant snowdrift orientation, and at short-term snow clear experimental sites. The association between chl a and most snow depths was characterized by four phases over the spring; light limitation (negative relationship), a transitional period (no relationship), chl a decline associated with higher transmitted irradiance (positive relationship), and a final phase of chl a decline independent from HS (no relationship). Algal chl a under areas cleared of snow was lower, reached zero chl a earlier and declined faster than snow-covered control sites. Results indicated that snow removal caused these chl a responses through photoinhibition, as well as ice melt later in the spring. Based on this research we propose that weather events that can rapidly melt the snowpack could significantly deplete bottom ice chl a and cause early termination of the bloom if they occur late in the spring.

  6. Snow and Ice.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Minneapolis Independent School District 275, Minn.

    This experimental edition provides a number of activities useful for investigating snow and ice with elementary school children. Commencing with games with ice cubes, the activities lead through studies of snowflakes, snowdrifts, effects of wind and obstacles on the shape and formation of drifts, to a study of animals living under snow. The

  7. An AeroCom Assessment of Black Carbon in Arctic Snow and Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jiao, C.; Flanner, M. G.; Balkanski, Y.; Bauer, S. E.; Bellouin, N.; Bernsten, T. K.; Bian, H.; Carslaw, K. S.; Chin, M.; DeLuca, N.; Diehl, T.; Ghan, S. J.; Iversen, T.; Kirkevag, A.; Koch, D.; Liu, X.; Mann, G. W.; Penner, J. E.; Pitari, G.; Schulz, M.; Seland, O; Skeie, R. B.; Steenrod, S. D.; Stier, P.; Tkemura, T.

    2014-01-01

    Though many global aerosols models prognose surface deposition, only a few models have been used to directly simulate the radiative effect from black carbon (BC) deposition to snow and sea ice. Here, we apply aerosol deposition fields from 25 models contributing to two phases of the Aerosol Comparisons between Observations and Models (AeroCom) project to simulate and evaluate within-snow BC concentrations and radiative effect in the Arctic. We accomplish this by driving the offline land and sea ice components of the Community Earth System Model with different deposition fields and meteorological conditions from 2004 to 2009, during which an extensive field campaign of BC measurements in Arctic snow occurred. We find that models generally underestimate BC concentrations in snow in northern Russia and Norway, while overestimating BC amounts elsewhere in the Arctic. Although simulated BC distributions in snow are poorly correlated with measurements, mean values are reasonable. The multi-model mean (range) bias in BC concentrations, sampled over the same grid cells, snow depths, and months of measurements, are -4.4 (-13.2 to +10.7) ng/g for an earlier phase of AeroCom models (phase I), and +4.1 (-13.0 to +21.4) ng/g for a more recent phase of AeroCom models (phase II), compared to the observational mean of 19.2 ng/g. Factors determining model BC concentrations in Arctic snow include Arctic BC emissions, transport of extra-Arctic aerosols, precipitation, deposition efficiency of aerosols within the Arctic, and meltwater removal of particles in snow. Sensitivity studies show that the model-measurement evaluation is only weakly affected by meltwater scavenging efficiency because most measurements were conducted in non-melting snow. The Arctic (60-90degN) atmospheric residence time for BC in phase II models ranges from 3.7 to 23.2 days, implying large inter-model variation in local BC deposition efficiency. Combined with the fact that most Arctic BC deposition originates from extra-Arctic emissions, these results suggest that aerosol removal processes are a leading source of variation in model performance. The multi-model mean (full range) of Arctic radiative effect from BC in snow is 0.15 (0.07-0.25) W/sq m and 0.18 (0.06-0.28) W/sq m in phase I and phase II models, respectively. After correcting for model biases relative to observed BC concentrations in different regions of the Arctic, we obtain a multi-model mean Arctic radiative effect of 0.17 W/sq m for the combined AeroCom ensembles. Finally, there is a high correlation between modeled BC concentrations sampled over the observational sites and the Arctic as a whole, indicating that the field campaign provided a reasonable sample of the Arctic.

  8. An AeroCom Assessment of Black Carbon in Arctic Snow and Sea Ice

    SciTech Connect

    Jiao, C.; Flanner, M. G.; Balkanski, Y.; Bauer, S.; Bellouin, N.; Berntsen, T.; Bian, Huisheng; Carslaw, K. S.; Chin, Mian; De Luca, N.; Diehl, Thomas; Ghan, Steven J.; Iversen, T.; Kirkevag, A.; Koch, Dorothy; Liu, Xiaohong; Mann, G. W.; Penner, Joyce E.; Pitari, G.; Schulz, M.; Seland, O.; Skeie, R. B.; Steenrod, Stephen D.; Stier, P.; Takemura, T.; Tsigaridis, Kostas; van Noije, T.; Yun, Yuxing; Zhang, Kai

    2014-03-07

    Though many global aerosols models prognose surface deposition, only a few models have been used to directly simulate the radiative effect from black carbon (BC) deposition to snow and sea-ice. Here, we apply aerosol deposition fields from 25 models contributing to two phases of the Aerosol Comparisons between Observations and Models (AeroCom) project to simulate and evaluate within snow BC concentrations and radiative effect in the Arctic. We accomplish this by driving the offline land and sea-ice components of the Community Earth System Model with different deposition fields and meteorological conditions from 2004-2009, during which an extensive field campaign of BC measurements in Arctic snow occurred. We find that models generally underestimate BC concentrations in snow in northern Russia and Norway, while overestimating BC amounts elsewhere in the Arctic. Although simulated BC distributions in snow are poorly correlated with measurements, mean values are reasonable. The multi-model mean (range) bias in BC concentrations, sampled over the same grid cells, snow depths, and months of measurements, are -4.4 (-13.2 to +10.7) ng g−1 for an earlier Phase of AeroCom models (Phase I), and +4.1 (-13.0 to +21.4) ng g−1 for a more recent Phase of AeroCom models (Phase II), compared to the observational mean of 19.2 ng g−1. Factors determining model BC concentrations in Arctic snow include Arctic BC emissions, transport of extra-Arctic aerosols, precipitation, deposition efficiency of aerosols within the Arctic, and meltwater removal of particles in snow. Sensitivity studies show that the model–measurement evaluation is only weakly affected by meltwater scavenging efficiency because most measurements were conducted in non-melting snow. The Arctic (60-90◦N) atmospheric residence time for BC in Phase II models ranges from 3.7 to 23.2 days, implying large inter-model variation in local BC deposition efficiency. Combined with the fact that most Arctic BC deposition originates from extra-Arctic emissions, these results suggest that aerosol removal processes are a leading source of variation in model performance. The multi-model mean (full range) of Arctic radiative effect from BC in snow is 0.15 (0.07-0.25) W m−2 and 0.18 (0.06-0.28) W m−2 in Phase I and Phase II models, respectively. After correcting for model biases relative to observed BC concentrations in different regions of the Arctic, we obtain a multi-model mean Arctic radiative effect of 0.17 W m−2 for the combined AeroCom ensembles. Finally, there is a high correlation between modeled BC concentrations sampled over the observational sites and the Arctic as a whole, indicating that the field campaign provided a reasonable sample of the Arctic.

  9. Spatial and temporal variability in snow melt onset over Arctic sea ice and associated atmospheric conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Drobot, Sheldon Dean

    The snow melt onset date represents an important transitional point in the Arctic energy balance, when the surface albedo decreases rapidly and surface energy absorption increases rapidly in response to the appearance of liquid water. An improved understanding of the spatial and temporal variability of melt onset is valuable for climate change detection, climate simulations, and model validation in the Arctic region. Passive microwave satellite data are indispensable in this task because they are relatively unaffected by cloud cover, not reliant on solar illumination, and have relatively high repeat coverage capabilities. In this study, snow melt onset dates are derived for 1979-1998 using horizontal polarizations at 18 and 37 GHz from the Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer (SMMR) and 19 and 37 GHz from the Special Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSM/I) sensors. Trends towards earlier snow melt onset occur from 1979-1998 throughout much of the western Arctic, including areas of the Laptev, East Siberian, and Beaufort Seas. Correlation and principal component analyses further suggest significant spatial variability exists in the melt onset dates between geographic areas located approximately 180 of longitude apart. The underlying cause of the variations in the snow melt onset date over sea ice is a combination of high-frequency synoptic events and the larger atmospheric patterns, described by teleconnection indices, within which they occur. For instance, day to day variations in near surface air temperature and surface longwave radiation flux over two case study regions related to the progression of melt onset. On an annual time scale, positive phases of the Arctic Oscillation (AO) are related to earlier than average melt onset dates in the Kara, Laptev, and East Siberian Seas, the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, and western portions of the Arctic Ocean, but are related to delayed melt onset in Baffin Bay. Positive phases of the North Pacific (NP) pattern are also related to earlier than average melt onset in the East Siberian Sea, but delayed melt onset in the Laptev Sea and Arctic Ocean. Positive phases of the Pacific- North American (PNA) anomaly are associated with later than average melt onset in the East Siberian and Beaufort Seas, and earlier than average melt onset in Baffin Bay. Analysis of the 500hPa height patterns suggests a combination of abnormally low heights and thermal advection are associated with earlier than average melt onset.

  10. An Ultra Wide-Band Radar Altimeter for Ice Sheet Surface Elevation and Snow Cover Over Sea Ice Measurement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patel, A. E.; Gogineni, P. S.; Leuschen, C.; Rodriguez-Morales, F.; Panzer, B.

    2010-12-01

    The Ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica are losing mass at a rapid rate and there has been significant decrease in sea ice volume over the last few years. CryoSat-II with optimized radar altimeter for ice-sheet and sea ice surface elevation measurements is launched. We developed ultra wide-band FM-CW radar that operates over the frequency range from 13-17 GHz for airborne measurements. The radar is designed to provide high-resolution surface-elevation data and also map near surface layers in polar firn with high precision. It is designed to generate an ultra linear transmit chirp using a fast settling PLL with a reference signal from Direct Digital Synthesizer (DDS). The pulse length of the transmit chirp is 240-us and pulse repetition frequency is 2-KHz. The peak transmit power of the system is 100-mW, radiated using horn antennas. The radar was deployed in Greenland and Antarctica in 2009-10 as a part of Operation Ice Bridge campaign to collect data in conjunction with other instruments including Airborne Topographic Mapper (ATM) and Digital Mapping System Camera (DMS). The radar also collected data under the Cryosat-II path. This paper will provide an overview of the Ku-Band radar design along with results from the 2009-2010 field campaigns. The data collected over polar firn shows near surface internal layers down to a depth of about 15-m with a resolution of 15-cm. When flying over sea ice the radar provides snow cover thickness data to a depth of about 0.5-m. Even over highly crevassed areas, such as outlet glaciers, the radar is able to detect large surface elevation changes of a few tens of meters with high resolution.

  11. Optical remote sensing of snow on sea ice: Ground measurements, satellite data analysis, and radiative transfer modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Xiaobing

    2002-01-01

    The successful launch of the Terra satellite on December 18, 1999 opened a new era of earth observation from space. This thesis is motivated by the need for validation and promotion of the use of snow and sea ice products derived from MODIS, one of the main sensors aboard the Terra and Aqua satellites. Three cruises were made in the Southern Ocean, in the Ross, Amundsen and Bellingshausen seas. Measurements of all-wave albedo, spectral albedo, BRDF, snow surface temperature, snow grain size, and snow stratification etc. were carried out on pack ice floes and landfast ice. In situ measurements were also carried out concurrently with MODIS. The effect of snow physical parameters on the radiative quantities such as all-wave albedo, spectral albedo and bidirectional reflectance are studied using statistical techniques and radiative transfer modeling, including single scattering and multiple scattering. The whole thesis consists of six major parts. The first part (chapter 1) is a review of the present research work on the optical remote sensing of snow. The second part (chapter 2) describes the instrumentation and data-collection of ground measurements of all-wave albedo, spectral albedo and bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF) of snow and sea ice in the visible-near-infrared (VNIR) domain in Western Antarctica. The third part (chapter 3) contains a detailed multivariate correlation and regression analysis of the measured radiative quantities with snow physical parameters such as snow density, surface temperature, single and composite grain size and number density. The fourth part (chapter 4) describes the validation of MODIS satellite data acquired concurrently with the ground measurements. The radiances collected by the MODIS sensor are converted to ground snow surface reflectances by removing the atmospheric effect using a radiative transfer algorithm (6S). Ground measured reflectance is corrected for ice concentration at the subpixel level so that the in situ and space-borne measured reflectance data are comparable. The fifth part (chapter 5) investigates the single scattering properties (extinction optical depth, single albedo, and the phase function or asymmetry factor) of snow grains (single or composite), which were calculated using the geometrical optical method. A computer code, GOMsnow, is developed and is tested against benchmark results obtained from an exact Mie scattering code (MIE0) and a Monte Carlo code. The sixth part (chapter 6) describes radiative transfer modeling of spectral albedo using a multi-layer snow model with a multiple scattering algorithm (DISORT). The effect of snow stratification on the spectral albedo is explored. The vertical heterogeneity of the snow grain-size and snow mass density is investigated. It is found that optical remote sensing of snow physical parameters from satellite measurements should take the vertical variation of snow physical parameters into account. The albedo of near-infrared bands is more sensitive to the grain-size at the very top snow layer (<5cm), while the albedo of the visible bands is sensitive to the grain-size of a much thicker snow layer. Snow parameters (grain-size, for instance) retrieved with near-infrared channels only represent the very top snow layer (most probably 1--3 cm). Multi-band measurements from visible to near-infrared have the potential to retrieve the vertical profile of snow parameters up to a snow depth limited by the maximum penetration depth of blue light.

  12. Correlations between Inter-Annual Variations in Arctic Sea Ice Extent, Greenland Surface Melt, and Boreal Snow Cover

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markus, Thorstena; Stroeve, Julienne C.; Armstrong, Richard L.

    2004-01-01

    Intensification of global warming in recent decades has caused a rise of interest in year-to-year and decadal-scale climate variability in the Arctic. This is because the Arctic is believed to be one of the most sensitive and vulnerable regions to climatic changes. For over two decades satellite passive microwave observations have been utilized to continuously monitor the Arctic environment. Derived parameters include sea ice cover, snow cover and snow water equivalent over land, and Greenland melt extent and length of melt season. Most studies have primarily concentrated on trends and variations of individual variables. In this study we investigated how variations in sea ice cover, Greenland surface melt, and boreal snow cover are correlated. This was done on hemispheric as well as on regional scales. Latest results will be presented including data from the summer of 2004.

  13. Derivation and Validation of Snow Depth over Arctic Sea Ice by Integrating Snow Radar, Airborne Topographic Mapper, and In-Situ Measurement Data from the Greenland 2009 IceBridge Campaign

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, M. P.; Perkovic, D.; Panzer, B.; Holt, B.; Leuschen, C.

    2011-12-01

    Using NASA's Operation IceBridge airborne data, this paper examines the derivation of snow depth on sea ice using measurements from two instruments, the Snow Radar and Atmospheric Topographic Mapper (ATM), taken off the northern coast of Greenland in April 2009. In-situ measurements of sea ice thickness, freeboard and snow depth obtained at the GreenArc ice camp are used as comparison points to the estimates made where possible. We also present range estimation and geolocation methodology for the Snow Radar data and analyze possible sources of error within these estimates. The Snow Radar is an ultra-wideband (2 - 6.5 GHz) Frequency Modulated Continuous-Wave (FMCW) radar that penetrates the snow layer and is able to discern both the snow-ice (SI) and the snow-air (SA) interfaces. The detected radar backscatter signature contains peaks in the return where the boundaries occur, with the SI interface having a stronger power return than the SA boundary. Level 1B data of radar echo strength range profiles are used to generate estimates of the distance from the radar antenna to the SI and SA interfaces. Aircraft position and attitude data are then used to georeference the radar range data as height estimates above the WGS-84 ellipsoid. The ATM is a conically scanning LIDAR that measures the range from the aircraft to the Earth's surface. Because the laser does not penetrate the snow or ice surface, the surface is interpreted to be the SA interface or the ice-air (IA) interface in the case of bare ice. Level 1B ATM data of WGS-84 referenced elevations are used in the comparison. Validation of the ATM-provided elevations and calibration of the Snow Radar-derived elevations were performed using data collected over GPS surveyed areas of the Thule air force base in Greenland. ATM surface height elevations will be shown to agree with the GPS surveyed area to within 10 cm. Initial calibrations of the radar estimated heights with the GPS surveyed area show an offset of approximately 1 m. When the radar measurements are corrected for the estimated offset and compared to the ATM measurements over bare ice, the two will be shown to be in very good agreement. This paper will then show how the collocated Snow Radar and ATM measurements are used to derive estimates of snow depth over sea ice, which are also compared where possible with the snow depth measurements.

  14. Interannual variations of light-absorbing particles in snow on Arctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doherty, Sarah J.; Steele, Michael; Rigor, Ignatius; Warren, Stephen G.

    2015-11-01

    Samples of snow on sea ice were collected in springtime of the 6 years 2008-2013 in the region between Greenland, Ellesmere Island, and the North Pole (82°N -89°N, 0°W-100°W). The meltwater was passed through filters, whose spectral absorption was then measured to determine the separate contributions by black carbon (BC) and other light-absorbing impurities. The median mixing ratio of BC across all years' samples was 4 ± 3 ng g-1, and the median fraction of absorption due to non-BC absorbers was 36 ± 11%. Variances represent both spatial and interannual variability; there was no interannual trend in either variable. The absorption Ångström exponent, however, decreased with latitude, suggesting a transition from dominance by biomass-burning sources in the south to an increased influence by fossil-fuel-burning sources in the north, consistent with earlier measurements of snow in Svalbard and at the North Pole.

  15. The Role of Snow Thickness over Arctic Winter Sea Ice in the Survival and Dispersal of Brine-Derived Microbes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deming, J. W.; Ewert, M.; Bowman, J. S.

    2013-12-01

    The brines of polar winter sea ice are inhabited by significant densities of microbes (Bacteria and Archaea) that experience a range of extreme conditions depending on location in, and age of, the ice. Newly formed sea ice in winter expels microbes (and organic exudates) onto the surface of the ice, where they can be wicked into frost flowers or into freshly deposited snow, resulting in populations at the ice-air and air-snow interfaces characterized by even more extreme conditions. The influence of snow thickness over the ice on the fate of these microbes, and their potential for dispersal or mediation of exchanges with other components of the ice-snow system, is not well known. Examination of in situ temperature data from the Mass Balance Observatory (MBO) offshore of Barrow, Alaska, during the winter of 2011 allowed recognition of an hierarchy of fluctuation regimes in temperature and (by calculation) brine salinity, where the most stable conditions were encountered within the sea ice and the least stable highest in the snow cover, where temperature fluctuations were significantly more energetic as determined by an analysis of power spectral density. A prior analysis of snow thickness near the MBO had already revealed significant ablation events, potentially associated with bacterial mortality, that would have exposed the saline (microbe-rich) snow layer to wind-based dispersal. To better understand the survival of marine bacteria under these dynamic and extreme conditions, we conducted laboratory experiments with Arctic bacterial isolates, subjecting them to simulations of the freezing regimes documented at the MBS. The impact of the fluctuation regime was shown to be species-specific, with the organism of narrower temperature and salinity growth ranges suffering 30-50% mortality (which could be partially relieved by providing protection against salt-shock). This isolate, the psychrophilic marine bacterium Colwellia psychrerythraea strain 34H (temperature range of -12 to 18C, salinity range of 20 to 50), was originally isolated from Arctic marine sediments. The other isolate, the psychrotolerant and extremely halophilic bacterium Psychrobacter sp. strain 7E (temperature range of -1 [possibly lower] to 25C, salinity range of 32 to 125), not only survived the most extreme conditions but demonstrated a potentially effective dispersal strategy of cell fragmentation and miniaturization (resulting in higher cell numbers). This extremophile was isolated from upper winter sea-ice brine in the Beaufort Sea. Bacterial survival and dispersal from sea-ice brines in Arctic winter thus appears to depend on the nature of the organisms involved and on the thickness of snow cover, which determines how dynamic and extreme are the exposure conditions. The observed species-specific reactions to extreme and fluctuating conditions may help to explain the different structures of microbial communities inhabiting the range of environments defined by the ice-snow system and provide model organisms and research directions for future work to evaluate potential activity or exchanges with other components of the system.

  16. Climate response of fossil fuel and biofuel soot, accounting for soot's feedback to snow and sea ice albedo and emissivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jacobson, Mark Z.

    2004-11-01

    The first three-dimensional global model in which time-dependent spectral albedos and emissivities over snow and sea ice are predicted with a radiative transfer solution, rather than prescribed, is applied to study the climate response of fossil fuel plus biofuel black carbon plus organic matter (ff+bf BC+OM) when BC absorption in snow and sea ice is accounted for. The model treats the cycling of size-resolved BC+OM between emission and removal by dry deposition and precipitation from first principles. Particles produce and enter size-resolved clouds and precipitation by nucleation scavenging and aerosol-hydrometeor coagulation. Removal brings BC to the surface, where internally and externally mixed BC in snow and sea ice affects albedo and emissivity through radiative transfer. Climate response simulations were run with a ff+bf BC+OC emission inventory lower than that used in a previous study. The 10-year, globally averaged ff+bf BC+OM near-surface temperature response due to all feedbacks was about +0.27 K (+0.32 in the last 3 years), close to those from the previous study (5-year average of +0.3 K and fifth-year warming of +0.35 K) and its modeled range (+0.15 to +0.5 K) because warming due to soot absorption in snow and sea ice here (10-year average of +0.06 K with a modeled range of +0.03 to +0.11 K) offset reduced warming due to lower emission. BC was calculated to reduce snow and sea ice albedo by ˜0.4% in the global average and 1% in the Northern Hemisphere. The globally averaged modeled BC concentration in snow and sea ice was ˜5 ng/g; that in rainfall was ˜22 ng/g. About 98% of BC removal from the atmosphere was due to precipitation; the rest was due to dry deposition. The results here support previous findings that controlling ff+bf BC+OM and CO2 emission may slow global warming.

  17. Recent progress in snow and ice research

    SciTech Connect

    Richter-menge, J.A.; Colbeck, S.C.; Jezek, K.C. )

    1991-01-01

    A review of snow and ice research in 1987-1990 is presented, focusing on the effects of layers in seasonal snow covers, ice mechanics on fresh water and sea ice, and remote sensig of polar ice sheets. These topics provide useful examples of general needs in snow and ice research applicable to most areas, such as better representation in models of detailed processes, controlled laboratory experiments to quantify processes, and field studies to provide the appropriate context for interpretation of processes from remote sensing.

  18. Spatially-resolved mean flow and turbulence help explain observed erosion and deposition patterns of snow over Antarctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trujillo, E.; Giometto, M. G.; Leonard, K. C.; Maksym, T. L.; Meneveau, C. V.; Parlange, M. B.; Lehning, M.

    2014-12-01

    Sea ice-atmosphere interactions are major drivers of patterns of sea ice drift and deformations in the Polar regions, and affect snow erosion and deposition at the surface. Here, we combine analyses of sea ice surface topography at very high-resolutions (1-10 cm), and Large Eddy Simulations (LES) to study surface drag and snow erosion and deposition patterns from process scales to floe scales (1 cm - 100 m). The snow/ice elevations were obtained using a Terrestrial Laser Scanner during the SIPEX II (Sea Ice Physics and Ecosystem eXperiment II) research voyage to East Antarctica (September-November 2012). LES are performed on a regular domain adopting a mixed pseudo-spectral/finite difference spatial discretization. A scale-dependent dynamic subgrid-scale model based on Lagrangian time averaging is adopted to determine the eddy-viscosity in the bulk of the flow. Effects of larger-scale features of the surface on wind flows (those features that can be resolved in the LES) are accounted for through an immersed boundary method. Conversely, drag forces caused by subgrid-scale features of the surface should be accounted for through a parameterization. However, the effective aerodynamic roughness parameter z0 for snow/ice is not known. Hence, a novel dynamic approach is utilized, in which z0 is determined using the constraint that the total momentum flux (drag) must be independent on grid-filter scale. We focus on three ice floe surfaces. The first of these surfaces (October 6, 2012) is used to test the performance of the model, validate the algorithm, and study the spatial distributed fields of resolved and modeled stress components. The following two surfaces, scanned at the same location before and after a snow storm event (October 20/23, 2012), are used to propose an application to study how spatially resolved mean flow and turbulence relates to observed patterns of snow erosion and deposition. We show how erosion and deposition patterns are correlated with the computed stresses, with modeled stresses having higher explanatory power. Deposition is mainly occurring in wake regions of specific ridges that strongly affect wind flow patterns. These larger ridges also lock in place elongated streaks of relatively high speeds with axes along the stream-wise direction, and which are largely responsible for the observed erosion.

  19. Sea ice - Multiyear cycles and white ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  20. A Comparison of Snow Depth on Sea Ice Retrievals Using Airborne Altimeters and an AMSR-E Simulator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cavalieri, D. J.; Marksu, T.; Ivanoff, A.; Miller, J. A.; Brucker, L.; Sturm, M.; Maslanik, J. A.; Heinrichs, J. F.; Gasiewski, A.; Leuschen, C.; Krabill, W.; Sonntag, J.

    2011-01-01

    A comparison of snow depths on sea ice was made using airborne altimeters and an Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for the Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) simulator. The data were collected during the March 2006 National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Arctic field campaign utilizing the NASA P-3B aircraft. The campaign consisted of an initial series of coordinated surface and aircraft measurements over Elson Lagoon, Alaska and adjacent seas followed by a series of large-scale (100 km ? 50 km) coordinated aircraft and AMSR-E snow depth measurements over portions of the Chukchi and Beaufort seas. This paper focuses on the latter part of the campaign. The P-3B aircraft carried the University of Colorado Polarimetric Scanning Radiometer (PSR-A), the NASA Wallops Airborne Topographic Mapper (ATM) lidar altimeter, and the University of Kansas Delay-Doppler (D2P) radar altimeter. The PSR-A was used as an AMSR-E simulator, whereas the ATM and D2P altimeters were used in combination to provide an independent estimate of snow depth. Results of a comparison between the altimeter-derived snow depths and the equivalent AMSR-E snow depths using PSR-A brightness temperatures calibrated relative to AMSR-E are presented. Data collected over a frozen coastal polynya were used to intercalibrate the ATM and D2P altimeters before estimating an altimeter snow depth. Results show that the mean difference between the PSR and altimeter snow depths is -2.4 cm (PSR minus altimeter) with a standard deviation of 7.7 cm. The RMS difference is 8.0 cm. The overall correlation between the two snow depth data sets is 0.59.

  1. Snow melt on sea ice surfaces as determined from passive microwave satellite data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, Mark R.

    1987-01-01

    SMMR data for the year 1979, 1980 and 1984 have been analyzed to determine the variability in the onset of melt for the Arctic seasonal sea ice zone. The results show melt commencing in either the Kara/Barents Seas or Chukchi Sea and progressing zonally towards the central Asian coast (Laptev Sea). Individual regions had interannual variations in melt onset in the 10-20 day range. To determine whether daily changes occur in the sea ice surface melt, the SMMR 18 and 37 GHz brightness temperature data are analyzed at day/night/twilight periods. Brightness temperatures illustrate diurnal variations in most regions during melt. In the East Siberian Sea, however, daily variations are observed in 1979, throughout the analysis period, well before any melt would usually have commenced. Understanding microwave responses to changing surface conditions during melt will perhaps give additional information about energy budgets during the winter to summer transition of sea ice.

  2. Spatial distribution and radiative effects of soot in the snow and sea ice during the SHEBA experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grenfell, Thomas C.; Light, Bonnie; Sturm, Matthew

    2002-08-01

    Soot observations around the periphery of the Arctic Ocean indicate snowpack concentrations ranging from about 1 to more than 200 ng carbon/g snow (ngC/g), with typical values being near 40-50 ngC/g. Values of this magnitude would significantly affect not only the albedo and transmissivity of the ice cover but also surface melt rates and internal heat storage in the ice. During the Surface Heat Budget of the Arctic Ocean (SHEBA) drift, there was concern that soot emitted from the ship could adversely impact the heat and mass balance measurements, producing results that would not be representative of the region as a whole. To investigate this possibility, a series of soot measurements was carried out starting in the spring of 1998 during the time of maximum snowpack thickness. On the upwind side of the ship, where the heat and mass balance program was carried out, soot concentrations averaged over the depth of the snowpack spanned a range from 1 to 7 ngC/g, with average values of 4-5 ngC/g. On the downwind side, concentrations increased to 35 ngC/g and above. Measurements made up to 16 km from the ship yielded average background soot levels of approximately 4.4 ngC/g, with a standard deviation of 2.9 ngC/g evenly distributed throughout the different snow layers. These concentrations were not statistically distinguishable from the values measured in the observing areas on the upwind side of the ship. This indicates that soot concentrations in the central Arctic Basin are substantially lower than those reported for the coastal regions and are not sufficient to produce a significant decrease in the albedo. Although measurements of sea ice samples gave similarly low values, parameter studies show that the snow soot levels could be significant if the summer melt caused all the soot to be concentrated at the ice surface.

  3. State of the Arctic and Antarctic sea ice covers from Operation IceBridge snow and ice thickness observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurtz, N. T.; Farrell, S. L.; Harbeck, J. P.; Koenig, L.; Onana, V.; Sonntag, J. G.; Studinger, M.

    2011-12-01

    We present a model of subglacial water flow below ice sheets, and particularly below ice streams. This hydrologic model is coupled to a vertically integrated model for ice flow that describes vertical, lateral, and longitudinal stresses. We show that under some conditions, this coupled system gives rise to ice streams by instability of the internal dynamics. The base-level water flow is fed by subglacial melting and is presumed to take the form of a Weertman-Creyts-Schoof rough-bedded film, in which the ice is supported by larger clasts, but there is a millimetric water film which submerges the smaller particles. A model for the film is given by two coupled partial differential equations, representing mass conservation of water and ice closure. We assume there is no sediment transport, and solve for water film depth, H, and effective pressure, N. If there is sufficiently small amount of meltwater produced (e.g. if ice flux is low), the distributed film is stable, while for larger amounts of melt, the ice-water system can become unstable, and ice streams form spontaneously as a consequence. We show that this can be explained as a result of a multivalued flux law, which arises from a simplified, one-dimensional analysis of the coupled model.

  4. The Role of Snow and Ice in the Climate System

    SciTech Connect

    Barry, Roger

    2007-12-19

    Global snow and ice cover (the 'cryosphere') plays a major role in global climate and hydrology through a range of complex interactions and feedbacks, the best known of which is the ice - albedo feedback. Snow and ice cover undergo marked seasonal and long term changes in extent and thickness. The perennial elements - the major ice sheets and permafrost - play a role in present-day regional and local climate and hydrology, but the large seasonal variations in snow cover and sea ice are of importance on continental to hemispheric scales. The characteristics of these variations, especially in the Northern Hemisphere, and evidence for recent trends in snow and ice extent are discussed.

  5. The Role of Snow and Ice in the Climate System

    ScienceCinema

    Barry, Roger G.

    2009-09-01

    Global snow and ice cover (the 'cryosphere') plays a major role in global climate and hydrology through a range of complex interactions and feedbacks, the best known of which is the ice - albedo feedback. Snow and ice cover undergo marked seasonal and long term changes in extent and thickness. The perennial elements - the major ice sheets and permafrost - play a role in present-day regional and local climate and hydrology, but the large seasonal variations in snow cover and sea ice are of importance on continental to hemispheric scales. The characteristics of these variations, especially in the Northern Hemisphere, and evidence for recent trends in snow and ice extent are discussed.

  6. Observations of the PCB distribution within and in-between ice, snow, ice-rafted debris, ice-interstitial water, and seawater in the Barents Sea marginal ice zone and the North Pole area.

    PubMed

    Gustafsson, O; Andersson, P; Axelman, J; Bucheli, T D; Kmp, P; McLachlan, M S; Sobek, A; Thrngren, J-O

    2005-04-15

    To evaluate the two hypotheses of locally elevated exposure of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in ice-associated microenvironments and ice as a key carrier for long-range transport of POPs to the Arctic marginal ice zone (MIZ), dissolved and particulate polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) were analyzed in ice, snow, ice-interstitial water (IIW), seawater in the melt layer underlying the ice, and in ice-rafted sediment (IRS) from the Barents Sea MIZ to the high Arctic in the summer of 2001. Ultra-clean sampling equipment and protocols were specially developed for this expedition, including construction of a permanent clean room facility and a stainless steel seawater intake system on the I/B ODEN as well as two mobile 370 l ice-melting systems. Similar concentrations were found in several ice-associated compartments. For instance, the concentration of one of the most abundant congeners, PCB 52, was typically on the order of 0.1-0.3 pg l(-1) in the dissolved (melted) phase of the ice, snow, IIW, and underlying seawater while its particulate organic-carbon (POC) normalized concentrations were around 1-3 ng gPOC(-1) in the ice, snow, IIW, and IRS. The solid-water distribution of PCBs in ice was well correlated with and predictable from K(ow) (ice log K(oc)-log K(ow) regressions: p<0.05, r2=0.78-0.98, n=9), indicating near-equilibrium partitioning of PCBs within each local ice system. These results do generally not evidence the existence of physical microenvironments with locally elevated POP exposures. However, there were some indications that the ice-associated system had harbored local environments with higher exposure levels earlier/before the melting/vegetative season, as a few samples had PCB concentrations elevated by factors of 5-10 relative to the typical values, and the elevated levels were predominantly found at the station where melting had putatively progressed the least. The very low PCB concentrations and absence of any significant concentration gradients, both in-between different matrices and over the Eurasian Arctic basin scale, suggest that ice is not an important long-range transport purveyor of POPs to the Arctic MIZ ecosystem. PMID:15866279

  7. Snow cover and short-term synoptic events drive biogeochemical dynamics in winter Weddell Sea pack ice (AWECS cruise - June to August 2013)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tison, Jean-Louis; Delille, Bruno; Dieckmann, Gherard; de Jong, Jeroen; Janssens, Julie; Rintala, Janne; Luhtanen, Annemari; Gussone, Niklaus; Uhlig, Christiane; Nomura, Daki; Schoemann, Vronique; Zhou, Jiayun; Carnat, Gauthier; Fripiat, Franois

    2014-05-01

    This paper presents the preliminary results of an integrated multidisciplinary study of pack ice biogeochemistry in the Weddell Sea during the winter 2013 (June-August). The sea ice biogeochemistry group was one of the components of the AWECS (Antarctic Winter Ecosystem and Climate Study) cruise (Polarstern ANTXXIX-6). A total of 12 stations were carried out by the sea ice biogeochemistry group, which collected a suite of variables in the fields of physics, inorganic chemistry, gas content and composition, microbiology, biogeochemistry, trace metals and the carbonate system in order to give the best possible description of the sea ice cover and its interactions at interfaces. Samples were collected in the atmosphere above (gas fluxes), in the snow cover, in the bulk ice (ice cores), in the brines (sackholes) and in the sea water below (0m, 1m, 30 m). Here we present the results of basic physico-chemical (T , bulk ice salinity, brine volumes, brine salinity, Rayleigh numbers) and biological (Chla) measurements in order to give an overview of the general status of the Weddell Sea winter pack ice encountered, and discuss how it controls climate relevant biogeochemical processes. Our results from the first set of 9 stations, mainly sampled along the Greenwich meridian and the easternmost part of the Weddell Sea definitively refute the view of a biogeochemically 'frozen' sea ice during the Winter. This has already been demonstrated for the Spring and Summer, but we now see that sea ice sustains considerable biological stocks and activities throughout the Winter, despite the reduced amount of available PAR radiation. Accretion of the snow cover appears to play an essential role in driving biogeochemical activity, through warming from insulation, thus favouring brine transport, be it through potential convection, surface brine migration (brine tubes) or flooding. This results in a 'widening' of the internal autumn layer (quite frequent in this rafting-dominated sea ice cover) and increase of the chla burden with age. Results from the second set of 3 stations in the western branch of the Weddell Sea gyre confirm that it comprises a mixture of older fast/second year ice floes with younger first-year ice floes. The older ice had the highest Chlaconcentrations of the entire cruise (>200 ?gl-1), in an internal community enclosed within desalinized impermeable upper and lower layers. The first-year ice differs from that in the eastern Weddell Sea as it is dominated by columnar ice and (weak) algal communities are only found on the bottom or near the surface (no internal maximum).

  8. Impact of snow accumulation on CryoSat-2 range retrievals over Arctic sea ice: An observational approach with buoy data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ricker, Robert; Hendricks, Stefan; Perovich, Donald K.; Helm, Veit; Gerdes, Rdiger

    2015-06-01

    Radar altimetry measurements of the current satellite mission CryoSat-2 show an increase of Arctic sea ice thickness in autumn 2013, compared to previous years but also related to March 2013. Such an increase over the melting season seems unlikely and needs to be investigated. Recent studies show that the influence of the snow cover is not negligible and can highly affect the CryoSat-2 range retrievals if it is assumed that the main scattering horizon is given by the snow-ice interface. Our analysis of Arctic ice mass balance buoy records and coincident CryoSat-2 data between 2012 and 2014 adds observational evidence to these findings. Linear trends of snow and ice freeboard measurements from buoys and nearby CryoSat-2 freeboard retrievals are calculated during accumulation events. We find a positive correlation between buoy snow freeboard and CryoSat-2 freeboard estimates, revealing that early snow accumulation might have caused a bias in CryoSat-2 sea ice thickness in autumn 2013.

  9. Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parkinson, Claire L.; Cavalieri, Donald J.

    2005-01-01

    Sea ice covers vast areas of the polar oceans, with ice extent in the Northern Hemisphere ranging from approximately 7 x 10(exp 6) sq km in September to approximately 15 x 10(exp 6) sq km in March and ice extent in the Southern Hemisphere ranging from approximately 3 x 10(exp 6) sq km in February to approximately 18 x 10(exp 6) sq km in September. These ice covers have major impacts on the atmosphere, oceans, and ecosystems of the polar regions, and so as changes occur in them there are potential widespread consequences. Satellite data reveal considerable interannual variability in both polar sea ice covers, and many studies suggest possible connections between the ice and various oscillations within the climate system, such as the Arctic Oscillation, North Atlantic Oscillation, and Antarctic Oscillation, or Southern Annular Mode. Nonetheless, statistically significant long-term trends are also apparent, including overall trends of decreased ice coverage in the Arctic and increased ice coverage in the Antarctic from late 1978 through the end of 2003, with the Antarctic ice increases following marked decreases in the Antarctic ice during the 1970s. For a detailed picture of the seasonally varying ice cover at the start of the 21st century, this chapter includes ice concentration maps for each month of 2001 for both the Arctic and the Antarctic, as well as an overview of what the satellite record has revealed about the two polar ice covers from the 1970s through 2003.

  10. Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  11. X-ray computed microtomography of sea ice - comment on "A review of air-ice chemical and physical interactions (AICI): liquids, quasi-liquids, and solids in snow", by Bartels-Rausch et al. (2014)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obbard, R. W.

    2015-05-01

    This comment addresses a statement made in "A review of air-ice chemical and physical interactions (AICI): liquids, quasi-liquids, and solids in snow" by Bartels-Rausch et al. (2014). Here we rebut the assertion that X-ray computed microtomography of sea ice fails to reveal liquid brine inclusions, by discussing the phases present at the analysis temperature.

  12. Role of sea surface temperature, Arctic sea ice and Siberian snow in forcing the atmospheric circulation in winter of 2012-2013

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peings, Yannick; Magnusdottir, Gudrun

    2015-09-01

    During the 2012-2013 winter, the negative phase of the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) predominated, resulting in a cold winter over Europe and northern Asia punctuated by episodes of frigid weather. This climate anomaly is part of a recent trend towards negative values of the NAO index that has occurred over recent winters. The negative trend of the NAO may be related to atmospheric internal variability but it may also be partly forced by slowly varying components of the climate system. In the present study, we investigate the influence of surface conditions on the atmospheric circulation for the 2012-2013 winter using an atmospheric global climate model. In particular, the role of low Arctic sea ice concentration, warm tropical/North Atlantic sea surface temperature and positive Siberian snow cover anomalies are isolated by prescribing them in a set of different numerical experiments. Our simulations suggest that each of these surface forcings favored a negative NAO during the 2012-2013 winter. In our model, the combined NAO response to tropical/North Atlantic SST, Arctic sea ice and Siberian snow anomalies accounts for about 30 % of the observed NAO anomaly. Different physical mechanisms are explored to elucidate the atmospheric responses and are shown to involve both tropical and extratropical processes.

  13. A Simple Scheme for Estimating Turbulent Heat Flux over Landfast Arctic Sea Ice from Dry Snow to Advanced Melt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raddatz, R. L.; Papakyriakou, T. N.; Else, B. G.; Swystun, K.; Barber, D. G.

    2015-05-01

    We describe a dynamic-parameter aggregation scheme to estimate hourly turbulent heat fluxes over landfast sea ice during the transition from winter to spring. Hourly albedo measurements are used to track the morphology of the surface as it evolved from a fairly smooth homogeneous dry snow surface to a rougher heterogeneous surface with spatially differential melting and melt ponds. The estimates of turbulent heat fluxes for 928 h are compared with eddy-covariance measurements. The model performance metrics (W m) for sensible heat flux were found to be: mean bias , root-mean-square error 6 and absolute accuracy 4, and for latent heat flux near zero, 3 and 2, respectively. The correlation coefficient between modelled and measured sensible heat fluxes was 0.82, and for latent heat fluxes 0.88. The turbulent heat fluxes were estimated more accurately without adjustments than with adjustments for atmospheric stability based on the bulk Richardson number. Overall, and across all metrics for both sensible and latent heat fluxes, the dynamic-parameter aggregation scheme outperformed the static Community Ice (C-ICE) scheme, part of the Community Climate System model, applied to the same winter-to-spring transition period.

  14. Meteorological factors controlling year-to-year variations in the spring onset of snow melt over the Arctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maksimovich, E.

    2010-09-01

    The spring onset of snow melt on the Arctic sea ice shows large inter-annual variability. Surface melt triggers positive feedback mechanisms between the albedo, snow properties and thickness, as well as sea ice thickness. Hence, it is important to quantify the factors contributing to inter-annual variability of the melt onset (MO) in various parts of the Arctic Ocean. Meteorological factors controlling surface heat budget and surface melting/freezing are the shortwave and longwave radiative fluxes and the turbulent fluxes of sensible and latent heat. These fluxes depend on the weather conditions, including the radiative impact of clouds, heat advection and wind speed. We make use of SSM/I-based MO time series (Markus, Miller and Stroeve) and the ECMWF ERA Interim reanalysis on the meteorological conditions and surface fluxes, both data sets spanning the period 1989-2008 and covering recent years with a rapid sea ice decline. The advantage is that SSM/I-based MO time series are independent of the ERA-Interim data. Our objective is to investigate if there exists a physically consistent and statistically significant relationship between MO timing and corresponding meteorological conditions. Results based on the regression analysis between the MO timing and seasonal anomalies of surface longwave radiative fluxes reveal strong relationships. Synoptic scale (3-14 days) anomalies in downward longwave radiation are essential in the Western Arctic. Regarding the longer history (20-60 days) the distinct contribution from the downward longwave radiative fluxes is captured within the whole study region. Positive anomalies in the downward longwave radiation dominate over the simultaneous negative anomalies in the downward shortwave radiation. The anomalies in downward radiative fluxes are consistent with the total column water vapor, sea level pressure and 10-m wind direction. Sensible and latent heat fluxes affect surface melt timing in the Beaufort Sea and in the Atlantic sector of the Arctic Basin. Stronger winds strengthen the relationship between the turbulent fluxes and the MO timing. The turbulent surface fluxes in spring are relatively weak, of the order of 1-10W/m2, compared to the downward shortwave and longwave radiative fluxes, which are of the order of 100-150W/m2. As soon as data uncertainties are comparable to the anomaly in turbulent fluxes, statistical relationships found between MO timing and preceding anomaly in turbulent fluxes do not necessarily prove their reasonal-causal relationship. This joint study of SSM/I-based MO record and the ERA-Interim meteorological fields region-wide with a focus on the seasonal transition demonstrates their consistency in time and space. Such result could be regarded as an important indicator that both data sets have the appropriate performance of the surface state in the Arctic Ocean. Nevertheless, an important additional effort is needed for to resolve better the cloud radiative and boundary layer turbulent processes over the sea ice.

  15. The role of sea ice dynamics in global climate change

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hibler, William D., III

    1992-01-01

    The topics covered include the following: general characteristics of sea ice drift; sea ice rheology; ice thickness distribution; sea ice thermodynamic models; equilibrium thermodynamic models; effect of internal brine pockets and snow cover; model simulations of Arctic Sea ice; and sensitivity of sea ice models to climate change.

  16. [Psycrophilic organisms in snow and ice].

    PubMed

    Kohshima, S

    2000-12-01

    Psychrophilic and psycrotrophic organisms are important in global ecology as a large proportion of our planet is cold. Two-third of sea-water covering more than 70% of Earth is cold deep sea water with temperature around 2 degrees C, and more than 90% of freshwater is in polar ice-sheets and mountain glaciers. Though biological activity in snow and ice had been believed to be extremely limited, various specialized biotic communities were recently discovered at glaciers of various part of the world. The glacier is relatively simple and closed ecosystem with special biotic community containing various psychrophilic and psycrotrophic organisms. Since psychrophilic organisms was discovered in the deep ice-core recovered from the antarctic ice-sheet and a lake beneath it, snow and ice environments in Mars and Europa are attracting a great deal of scientific attention as possible extraterrestrial habitats of life. This paper briefly reviews the results of the studies on ecology of psychrophilic organisms living in snow and ice environments and their physiological and biochemical adaptation to low temperature. PMID:11589227

  17. Polarimetric backscattering from sea ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nghiem, S. V.; Kwok, R.; Yueh, S. H.

    1993-01-01

    Polarimetric backscattering from sea ice is presented. Theoretical models for backscattering are first presented for various ice types. Then, theoretical results are compared with experimental data for new thin ice, first-year ice, and multi-year ice. Sea ice is modeled as a layer medium containing random scatterers and rough interfaces. For multi-year sea ice with snow cover, the sea ice layer is modeled as an ice background with embedded spheroidal air bubbles and the snow layer as air with ice grains. The hummocky topography on multi-year ice is characterized by a Gaussian distribution which has an averaging effect on backscattering coefficients. First-year sea ice is described by an ice medium hosting ellipsoidal brine inclusions. These inclusions are oriented preferentially in the vertical direction due to the columnar structure of first-year sea ice. Azimuthally, the orientation of the brine pockets are random corresponding to the random c-axes in sea ice, unless the axes are oriented by sea currents. For thin ice in newly opened leads, it has been observed that there exists a thin brine layer with very high salinity on the top surface of the new ice. This brine layer is depicted as a medium with high permittivity which can significantly affect electromagnetic scattering signatures from the lower thin ice layer, with a higher fractional volume of brine inclusions due to higher salinity as compared to thick first-year sea ice. The rough medium interfaces are described as Gaussian rough surfaces characterized by root-mean-square heights and surface correlation lengths. The contribution from rough surface, calculated under the Kirchhoff approximation or small perturbation method, is assumed to be independent from volume scattering. The total loss including absorption and scattering losses in the scattering media is represented by the imaginary part of effective permittivity obtained from the strong fluctuation theory. The polarimetric scattering coefficients for different ice types are then derived under the distorted Born approximation.

  18. Snow and Ice Products from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2003-01-01

    Snow and sea ice products, derived from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument, flown on the Terra and Aqua satellites, are or will be available through the National Snow and Ice Data Center Distributed Active Archive Center (DAAC). The algorithms that produce the products are automated, thus providing a consistent global data set that is suitable for climate studies. The suite of MODIS snow products begins with a 500-m resolution, 2330-km swath snow-cover map that is then projected onto a sinusoidal grid to produce daily and 8-day composite tile products. The sequence proceeds to daily and 8-day composite climate-modeling grid (CMG) products at 0.05 resolution. A daily snow albedo product will be available in early 2003 as a beta test product. The sequence of sea ice products begins with a swath product at 1-km resolution that provides sea ice extent and ice-surface temperature (IST). The sea ice swath products are then mapped onto the Lambert azimuthal equal area or EASE-Grid projection to create a daily and 8-day composite sea ice tile product, also at 1 -km resolution. Climate-Modeling Grid (CMG) sea ice products in the EASE-Grid projection at 4-km resolution are planned for early 2003.

  19. Frost flowers growing in the Arctic ocean-atmosphere-sea ice-snow interface: 1. Chemical composition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Douglas, Thomas A.; Domine, Florent; Barret, Manuel; Anastasio, Cort; Beine, Harry J.; Bottenheim, Jan; Grannas, Amanda; Houdier, Stephan; Netcheva, Stoyka; Rowland, Glenn; Staebler, Ralf; Steffen, Alexandra

    2012-07-01

    Frost flowers, intricate featherlike crystals that grow on refreezing sea ice leads, have been implicated in lower atmospheric chemical reactions. Few studies have presented chemical composition information for frost flowers over time and many of the chemical species commonly associated with Polar tropospheric reactions have never been reported for frost flowers. We undertook this study on the sea ice north of Barrow, Alaska to quantify the major ion, stable oxygen and hydrogen isotope, alkalinity, light absorbance by soluble species, organochlorine, and aldehyde composition of seawater, brine, and frost flowers. For many of these chemical species we present the first measurements from brine or frost flowers. Results show that major ion and alkalinity concentrations, stable isotope values, and major chromophore (NO3- and H2O2) concentrations are controlled by fractionation from seawater and brine. The presence of these chemical species in present and future sea ice scenarios is somewhat predictable. However, aldehydes, organochlorine compounds, light absorbing species, and mercury (part 2 of this research and Sherman et al. (2012)) are deposited to frost flowers through less predictable processes that probably involve the atmosphere as a source. The present and future concentrations of these constituents in frost flowers may not be easily incorporated into future sea ice or lower atmospheric chemistry scenarios. Thinning of Arctic sea ice will likely present more open sea ice leads where young ice, brine, and frost flowers form. How these changing ice conditions will affect the interactions between ice, brine, frost flowers and the lower atmosphere is unknown.

  20. Diversity and vertical distribution of microbial eukaryotes in the snow, sea ice and seawater near the north pole at the end of the polar night.

    PubMed

    Bachy, Charles; Lpez-Garca, Purificacin; Vereshchaka, Alexander; Moreira, David

    2011-01-01

    Our knowledge about the microorganisms living in the high Arctic Ocean is still rudimentary compared to other oceans mostly because of logistical challenges imposed by its inhospitable climate and the presence of a multi-year ice cap. We have used 18S rRNA gene libraries to study the diversity of microbial eukaryotes in the upper part of the water column (0-170?m depth), the sea ice (0-1.5?m depth) and the overlying snow from samples collected in the vicinity of the North Pole (N8835', E01559) at the very end of the long polar night. We detected very diverse eukaryotes belonging to Alveolata, Fungi, Amoebozoa, Viridiplantae, Metazoa, Rhizaria, Heterokonta, and Telonemia. Different alveolates (dinoflagellates and Marine Alveolate Groups I and II species) were the most abundant and diverse in gene libraries from water and sea ice, representing 80% of the total number of clones and operational taxonomic units. Only contaminants and/or species from continental ecosystems were detected in snow, suggesting wind- and animal- or human-mediated cosmopolitan dispersal of some taxa. By contrast, sea ice and seawater samples harbored a larger and more similar inter-sample protist diversity as compared with snow. The North Pole was found to harbor distinctive eukaryotic communities along the vertical gradient with an unparalleled diversity of core dinoflagellates, largely dominant in libraries from the water column, as compared to other oceanic locations. In contrast, phototrophic organisms typical of Arctic sea ice and plankton, such as diatoms and prasinophytes, were very rare in our samples. This was most likely due to a decrease of their populations after several months of polar night darkness and to the presence of rich populations of diverse grazers. Whereas strict phototrophs were scarce, we identified a variety of likely mixotrophic taxa, which supports the idea that mixotrophy may be important for the survival of diverse protists through the long polar night. PMID:21833337

  1. Diversity and Vertical Distribution of Microbial Eukaryotes in the Snow, Sea Ice and Seawater Near the North Pole at the End of the Polar Night

    PubMed Central

    Bachy, Charles; Lpez-Garca, Purificacin; Vereshchaka, Alexander; Moreira, David

    2011-01-01

    Our knowledge about the microorganisms living in the high Arctic Ocean is still rudimentary compared to other oceans mostly because of logistical challenges imposed by its inhospitable climate and the presence of a multi-year ice cap. We have used 18S rRNA gene libraries to study the diversity of microbial eukaryotes in the upper part of the water column (0170?m depth), the sea ice (01.5?m depth) and the overlying snow from samples collected in the vicinity of the North Pole (N8835?, E01559) at the very end of the long polar night. We detected very diverse eukaryotes belonging to Alveolata, Fungi, Amoebozoa, Viridiplantae, Metazoa, Rhizaria, Heterokonta, and Telonemia. Different alveolates (dinoflagellates and Marine Alveolate Groups I and II species) were the most abundant and diverse in gene libraries from water and sea ice, representing 80% of the total number of clones and operational taxonomic units. Only contaminants and/or species from continental ecosystems were detected in snow, suggesting wind- and animal- or human-mediated cosmopolitan dispersal of some taxa. By contrast, sea ice and seawater samples harbored a larger and more similar inter-sample protist diversity as compared with snow. The North Pole was found to harbor distinctive eukaryotic communities along the vertical gradient with an unparalleled diversity of core dinoflagellates, largely dominant in libraries from the water column, as compared to other oceanic locations. In contrast, phototrophic organisms typical of Arctic sea ice and plankton, such as diatoms and prasinophytes, were very rare in our samples. This was most likely due to a decrease of their populations after several months of polar night darkness and to the presence of rich populations of diverse grazers. Whereas strict phototrophs were scarce, we identified a variety of likely mixotrophic taxa, which supports the idea that mixotrophy may be important for the survival of diverse protists through the long polar night. PMID:21833337

  2. NASA Sea Ice and Snow Validation Program for the DMSP SSM/I: NASA DC-8 flight report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cavalieri, D. J.

    1988-01-01

    In June 1987 a new microwave sensor called the Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSM/I) was launched as part of the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP). In recognition of the importance of this sensor to the polar research community, NASA developed a program to acquire the data, to convert the data into sea ice parameters, and finally to validate and archive both the SSM/I radiances and the derived sea ice parameters. Central to NASA's sea ice validation program was a series of SSM/I aircraft underflights with the NASA DC-8 airborne Laboratory. The mission (the Arctic '88 Sea Ice Mission) was completed in March 1988. This report summarizes the mission and includes a summary of aircraft instrumentation, coordination with participating Navy aircraft, flight objectives, flight plans, data collected, SSM/I orbits for each day during the mission, and lists several piggyback experiments supported during this mission.

  3. Biogeochemistry in Sea Ice: CICE model developments

    SciTech Connect

    Jeffery, Nicole; Hunke, Elizabeth; Elliott, Scott; Turner, Adrian

    2012-06-18

    Polar primary production unfolds in a dynamic sea ice environment, and the interactions of sea ice with ocean support and mediate this production. In spring, for example, fresh melt water contributes to the shoaling of the mixed layer enhancing ice edge blooms. In contrast, sea ice formation in the fall reduces light penetration to the upper ocean slowing primary production in marine waters. Polar biogeochemical modeling studies typically consider these types of ice-ocean interactions. However, sea ice itself is a biogeochemically active medium, contributing a significant and, possibly, essential source of primary production to polar regions in early spring and fall. Here we present numerical simulations using the Los Alamos Sea Ice Model (CICE) with prognostic salinity and sea ice biogeochemistry. This study investigates the relationship between sea ice multiphase physics and sea ice productivity. Of particular emphasis are the processes of gravity drainage, melt water flushing, and snow loading. During sea ice formation, desalination by gravity drainage facilitates nutrient exchange between ocean and ice maintaining ice algal blooms in early spring. Melt water flushing releases ice algae and nutrients to underlying waters limiting ice production. Finally, snow loading, particularly in the Southern Ocean, forces sea ice below the ocean surface driving an upward flow of nutrient rich water into the ice to the benefit of interior and freeboard communities. Incorporating ice microphysics in CICE has given us an important tool for assessing the importance of these processes for polar algal production at global scales.

  4. Seasonality of halogen deposition in polar snow and ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spolaor, A.; Vallelonga, P.; Gabrieli, J.; Martma, T.; Björkman, M. P.; Isaksson, E.; Cozzi, G.; Turetta, C.; Kjær, H. A.; Curran, M. A. J.; Moy, A. D.; Schönhardt, A.; Blechschmidt, A.-M.; Burrows, J. P.; Plane, J. M. C.; Barbante, C.

    2014-09-01

    The atmospheric chemistry of iodine and bromine in Polar regions is of interest due to the key role of halogens in many atmospheric processes, particularly tropospheric ozone destruction. Bromine is emitted from the open ocean but is enriched above first-year sea ice during springtime bromine explosion events, whereas iodine emission is attributed to biological communities in the open ocean and hosted by sea ice. It has been previously demonstrated that bromine and iodine are present in Antarctic ice over glacial-interglacial cycles. Here we investigate seasonal variability of bromine and iodine in polar snow and ice, to evaluate their emission, transport and deposition in Antarctica and the Arctic and better understand potential links to sea ice. We find that bromine and iodine concentrations and Br enrichment (relative to sea salt content) in polar ice do vary seasonally in Arctic snow and Antarctic ice. Although seasonal variability in halogen emission sources is recorded by satellite-based observations of tropospheric halogen concentrations, seasonal patterns observed in snowpack are likely also influenced by photolysis-driven processes. Peaks of bromine concentration and Br enrichment in Arctic snow and Antarctic ice occur in spring and summer, when sunlight is present. A secondary bromine peak, observed at the end of summer, is attributed to bromine deposition at the end of the polar day. Iodine concentrations are largest in winter Antarctic ice strata, contrary to contemporary observations of summer maxima in iodine emissions. These findings support previous observations of iodine peaks in winter snow strata attributed to the absence of sunlight-driven photolytic re-mobilisation of iodine from surface snow. Further investigation is required to confirm these proposed mechanisms explaining observations of halogens in polar snow and ice, and to evaluate the extent to which halogens may be applied as sea ice proxies.

  5. Sea ice-albedo climate feedback mechanism

    SciTech Connect

    Schramm, J.L.; Curry, J.A.; Ebert, E.E.

    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.

  6. Sea ice data for all: NSIDC's Arctic Sea Ice News & Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vizcarra, N.; Stroeve, J. C.; Serreze, M. C.; Scambos, T. A.; Meier, W.

    2014-12-01

    Arctic sea ice has long been recognized as a sensitive climate indicator and has undergone a dramatic decline over the past thirty years. The National Snow and Ice Data Center's Arctic Sea Ice News & Analysis blog continues to offer the public a transparent view of sea ice data and analysis. We have expanded our interactive sea ice graph to include Antarctic sea ice in response to increased attention from the public as a result of unexpected behavior of sea ice in the south. This poster explores the blog's new features and how other researchers, the media, and the public are currently using them.

  7. Seasonality of halogen deposition in polar snow and ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spolaor, A.; Vallelonga, P.; Gabrieli, J.; Martma, T.; Björkman, M. P.; Isaksson, E.; Cozzi, G.; Turetta, C.; Kjær, H. A.; Curran, M. A. J.; Moy, A. D.; Schönhardt, A.; Blechschmidt, A.-M.; Burrows, J. P.; Plane, J. M. C.; Barbante, C.

    2014-03-01

    The atmospheric chemistry of iodine and bromine in polar regions is of interest due to the key role of halogens in many atmospheric processes, particularly tropospheric ozone destruction. Bromine is emitted from the open ocean but is enriched above first-year sea ice during springtime bromine explosion events, whereas iodine is emitted from biological communities hosted by sea ice. It has been previously demonstrated that bromine and iodine are present in Antarctic ice over glacial-interglacial cycles. Here we investigate seasonal variability of bromine and iodine in polar snow and ice, to evaluate their emission, transport and deposition in Antarctica and the Arctic and better understand potential links to sea ice. We find that bromine enrichment (relative to sea salt content) and iodine concentrations in polar ice do vary seasonally in Arctic snow and Antarctic ice and we relate such variability to satellite-based observations of tropospheric halogen concentrations. Peaks of bromine enrichment in Arctic snow and Antarctic ice occur in spring and summer, when sunlight is present. Iodine concentrations are largest in winter Antarctic ice strata, contrary to contemporary observations of summer maxima in iodine emissions.

  8. Summer Arctic Atmospheric Circulation Response to Spring Eurasian Snow Cover and its Possible Linkage to Accelerated Sea Ice Decrease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsumura, S.; Zhang, X.; Yamazaki, K.

    2014-12-01

    Anticyclonic circulation has intensified over the Arctic Ocean in summer during recent decades. However, the underlying mechanism is, as yet, not well understood. Here we show that earlier spring Eurasian snowmelt leads to anomalously negative sea level pressure (SLP) over Eurasia and positive SLP over the Arctic, which has strong projection on the negative phase of the Northern Annular Mode (NAM) in summer through the wave-mean flow interaction. Specifically, earlier spring snowmelt over Eurasia leads to a warmer land surface, due to reduced surface albedo. The warmed surface amplifies stationary Rossby waves, leading to a deceleration of the subpolar jet. As a consequence, rising motion is enhanced over the land, and compensating subsidence and adiabatic heating occur in the Arctic troposphere, forming the negative NAM. The intensified anticyclonic circulation has played a contributing role in accelerating the sea ice decline observed during the last two decades. The results here provide important information for improving seasonal prediction of summer sea ice cover.

  9. Development of an autonomous sea ice tethered buoy for the study of ocean-atmosphere-sea ice-snow pack interactions: the O-buoy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knepp, T. N.; Bottenheim, J.; Carlsen, M.; Carlson, D.; Donohoue, D.; Friederich, G.; Matrai, P. A.; Netcheva, S.; Perovich, D. K.; Santini, R.; Shepson, P. B.; Simpson, W.; Valentic, T.; Williams, C.; Wyss, P. J.

    2010-02-01

    A buoy based instrument platform (the "O-buoy") was designed, constructed, and field tested for year-round measurement of ozone, bromine monoxide, carbon dioxide, and meteorological variables over Arctic sea ice. The O-buoy operated in an autonomous manner with daily, bi-directional data transmissions using Iridium satellite communication. The O-buoy was equipped with three power sources: primary lithium-ion battery packs, rechargeable lead acid packs, and solar panels that recharge the lead acid packs, and can fully power the O-buoy during summer operation. This system was designed to operate under the harsh conditions present in the Arctic, with minimal direct human interaction, to aid in our understanding of the atmospheric chemistry that occurs in this remote region of the world. The current design requires approximately yearly maintenance limited by the lifetime of the primary power supply. The O-buoy system was field tested in Elson Lagoon, Barrow, Alaska from February to May 2009, and deployed in the Beaufort Sea in October 2009. Here, we describe the design and present preliminary data.

  10. X-ray computed microtomography of sea ice - comment on "A review of air-ice chemical and physical interactions (AICI): liquids, quasi-liquids, and solids in snow" by Bartels-Rausch et al. (2014)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obbard, R. W.

    2015-07-01

    This comment addresses a statement made in "A review of air-ice chemical and physical interactions (AICI): liquids, quasi-liquids, and solids in snow" by Bartels-Rausch et al. (Atmos. Chem. Phys., 14, 1587-1633, doi:10.5194/acp-14-1587-2014, 2014). Here we rebut the assertion that X-ray computed microtomography of sea ice fails to reveal liquid brine inclusions by discussing the phases present at the analysis temperature.

  11. Synoptic controls on precipitation pathways and snow delivery to high-accumulation ice core sites in the Ross Sea region, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinclair, K. E.; Bertler, N. A. N.; Trompetter, W. J.

    2010-11-01

    Dominant storm tracks to two ice core sites on the western margin of the Ross Sea, Antarctica (Skinner Saddle (SKS) and Evans Piedmont Glacier), are investigated to establish key synoptic controls on snow accumulation. This is critical in terms of understanding the seasonality, source regions, and transport pathways of precipitation delivered to these sites. In situ snow depth and meteorological observations are used to identify major accumulation events in 2007-2008, which differ considerably between sites in terms of their magnitude and seasonal distribution. While snowfall at Evans Piedmont Glacier occurs almost exclusively during summer and spring, Skinner Saddle receives precipitation year round with a lull during the months of April and May. Cluster analysis of daily back trajectories reveals that the highest-accumulation days at both sites result from fast-moving air masses, associated with synoptic-scale low-pressure systems. There is evidence that short-duration pulses of snowfall at SKS also originate from mesocyclone development over the Ross Ice Shelf and local moisture sources. Changes in the frequency and seasonal distribution of these mechanisms of precipitation delivery will have a marked impact on annual accumulation over time and will therefore need careful consideration during the interpretation of stable isotope and geochemical records from these ice cores.

  12. Development of an autonomous sea ice tethered buoy for the study of ocean-atmosphere-sea ice-snow pack interactions: the O-buoy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knepp, T. N.; Bottenheim, J.; Carlsen, M.; Carlson, D.; Donohoue, D.; Friederich, G.; Matrai, P. M.; Netcheva, S.; Perovich, D. K.; Santini, R.; Shepson, P. B.; Simpson, W.; Stehle, R.; Valentic, T.; Williams, C.; Wyss, P. J.

    2009-09-01

    A buoy based instrument platform (the "O-buoy") was designed, constructed, and field tested for year-round measurement of ozone, bromine monoxide, carbon dioxide, and meteorological variables over Arctic sea ice. The O-buoy operated in an autonomous manner with daily, bi-directional data transmissions using Iridium satellite communication. The O-buoy was equipped with three power sources: primary lithium-ion battery packs, rechargeable lead acid packs, and solar panels that recharge the lead acid packs, and can fully power the O-buoy during summer operation. This system was designed to operate under the harsh conditions present in the Arctic, with minimal direct human interaction, to aid in our understanding of the atmospheric chemistry that occurs in this remote region of the world. The current design requires approximately yearly maintenance limited by the lifetime of the primary power supply. The O-buoy system was field tested in Elson Lagoon, Barrow, Alaska from February to May 2009, and here we describe the design and present preliminary data.

  13. Operational satellites and the global monitoring of snow and ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Walsh, John E.

    1991-01-01

    The altitudinal dependence of the global warming projected by global climate models is at least partially attributable to the albedo-temperature feedback involving snow and ice, which must be regarded as key variables in the monitoring for global change. Statistical analyses of data from IR and microwave sensors monitoring the areal coverage and extent of sea ice have led to mixed conclusions about recent trends of hemisphere sea ice coverage. Seasonal snow cover has been mapped for over 20 years by NOAA/NESDIS on the basis of imagery from a variety of satellite sensors. Multichannel passive microwave data show some promise for the routine monitoring of snow depth over unforested land areas.

  14. Satellite and ground-based observations of patterns and seasonality of sea-ice, summer warmth, snow, and NDVI along the North America and Eurasia Arctic transects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walker, D. A.; Epstein, H. E.; Raynolds, M. K.; Bhatt, U. S.; Bieniek, P. A.

    2011-12-01

    We analyzed vegetation, climate, and spectral data from zonal sites along two >1500 km long transects that span all five Arctic bioclimate subzones in North America and Eurasia to help interpret the long-term changes in satellite-derived trends of pattern and seasonality of vegetation greenness. Despite large differences in environment and vegetation along the two transects, there is nearly an identical logarithmic relationship between biomass and the summer maximum normalized difference vegetation index derived from AVHRR sensors (MaxNDVI) along the two transects. Summer open water in the Northern Alaska/Beaufort Sea region has increased by 39%, the summer warmth index (SWI) of the tundra increased by 14%, MaxNDVI by 28% and time-integrated NDVI (TI-NDVI) by 21%. The increased open water in the Beaufort is associated with a warming of the land and a large positive increase in the NDVI. In the eastern Kara Sea/Yamal Peninsula region, summer-fall open water has increased by 115%, the SWI decreased by -3%, MaxNDVI increased by only 6%, and TI-NDVI by 2%. The greatly reduced sea ice has affected the summer total warmth and NDVI of the Eurasia transect minimally possibly due to increased winter snow and delayed snowmelt in much of northwest Russian Arctic. In northern Alaska, there is distinctive trend of earlier snow melt at most stations; whereas the northern Yamal has seen an increase in the snow water equivalent and delayed melt on much of the Yagorsky, Yamal, Gydan, and Taimyr peninsulas. This appears to be associated with the reduction in the total summer warmth and relatively small increase in NDVI.

  15. Snow and Ice Products from the Aqua, Terra, and ICESat Satellites at the National Snow and Ice Data Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meier, W. N.; Marquis, M.; Kaminski, M.; Armstrong, R.; Brodzik, M.

    2004-05-01

    The National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) at the University of Colorado, Boulder - one of eight NASA Distributed Active Archive Centers (DAACs) - archives and distributes several products from sensors on the suite of NASA Earth Observing System (EOS) satellites. These include the sun-synchronous polar-orbiting Aqua (launched 4 May 2002) and Terra (launched 18 December 1999) platforms and the Ice, Cloud, and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) (launched 12 January 2003). The Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer-EOS (AMSR-E) is a multi-channel passive microwave radiometer on Aqua (http://nsidc.org/daac/amsr/). AMSR-E Level 3 snow products are produced in EASE-Grid format for both the Northern and Southern Hemisphere and are available as daily, 5-day, and monthly fields. Daily AMSR-E Level 3 sea ice products are produced on a polar stereographic projection at gridded spatial resolutions of 6.25 km, 12.5 km and 25 km. Since April 2004, these products have been available for public distribution from NSIDC. The Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on Terra and Aqua is a 36-channel visible/infrared sensor that produces a consistent long-term time series of fully-automated, quality-controlled data. Level 2 swath products are available for both snow cover and sea ice. Daily and 8-day Level 3 gridded snow cover products are available with estimates of snow extent and albedo at 500m resolution, along with daily Level 3 gridded sea ice products with estimates for sea ice extent and ice surface temperature at 1 km resolution. These products are currently available from NSIDC (http://nsidc.org/daac/modis/). The Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) is the sole instrument on ICESat. The standard GLAS Level 2 ice sheet altimetry product contains the ice sheet elevation and elevation distribution calculated from algorithms fine-tuned for ice sheet returns. The standard GLAS Level 2 sea ice altimetry product contains the sea ice freeboard and sea ice roughness calculated from algorithms fine-tuned for sea ice returns. Both products also include the laser footprint geolocation, reflectance, and the geodetic, instrument, and atmospheric corrections used to correct the range measurements. An 8-day sample of these products has been available to the public (http://nsidc.org/daac/glas/) since October 2003. Improved versions, covering additional dates, have continued to be released since March 2004. In addition to the standard snow and ice products distributed by the data center, NSIDC scientists are also developing a variety of experimental products. One such product combines snow extent data from MODIS visible bands with snow water equivalent data from AMSR-E to improve snow cover estimates. Another product under investigation at NSIDC is a sea ice motion product derived from AMSR-E brightness temperature fields using cross-correlation feature matching techniques. These EOS sensors substantially enhance our ability to observe the cryosphere. GLAS represent an entirely new type of sensor for the cryosphere, while AMSR-E and MODIS offer significant improvements over the previous generation of sensors. The products from these sensors are a valuable resource for the investigation of regional and global climate issues and should yield new insights into the cryospheric system.

  16. Oxygen isotope composition of water and snow-ice cover of isolated lakes at various stages of separation from the White Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lisitzin, A. P.; Vasil'chuk, Yu. K.; Shevchenko, V. P.; Budantseva, N. A.; Krasnova, E. D.; Pantyulin, A. N.; Filippov, A. S.; Chizhova, Ju. N.

    2013-04-01

    This study aimed to analyze the oxygen isotope composition of water, ice, and snow in water bodies isolated from the White Sea and to identify the structural peculiarities of these pools during the winter period. The studies were performed during early spring in Kandalaksha Bay of the White Sea, in Velikaya Salma Strait and in Rugoserskaya Inlet. The studied water bodies differ in their degree of isolation from the sea. In particular, Ermolinskaya Inlet has normal water exchange with the sea; the Lake on Zelenyi Cape represents the first stage of isolation; i. e., it has permanent water exchange with the sea by the tide. Kislo-Sladkoe Lake receives sea water from time to time. Trekhtsvetnoe Lake is totally isolated from the sea and is a typical meromictic lake. Finally, Nizhnee Ershovskoe Lake exhibits some features of a saline water body. The oxygen isotope profile of the water column in Trekhtsvetnoe Lake allows defining three layers; this lake may be called typically meromictic. The oxygen isotope profile of the water column in Kislo-Sladkoe Lake is even from the surface to the bottom. The variability of ?18O is minor in Lake on Zelenyi Cape. A surface layer (0-1 m) exists in Nizhnee Ershovskoe Lake, and the oxygen isotope variability is well pronounced. Deeper, where the freshwater dominates, the values of ?18vary insignificantly disregarding the water depth and temperature. This fresh water lake is not affected by the seawater and is not stratified according to the isotope profile. It is found that applying the values of ?18 and profiles of temperature and salinity may appear as an effective method in defining the water sources feeding the water bodies isolated from the sea environment.

  17. 2013 Arctic Sea Ice Minimum - Duration: 27 seconds.

    NASA Video Gallery

    After an unusually cold summer in the northernmost latitudes, Arctic sea ice appears to have reached its annual minimum summer extent for 2013 on Sept. 13, the NASA-supported National Snow and Ice ...

  18. Volcanic deposits in Antarctic snow and ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delmas, Robert J.; Legrand, Michel; Aristarain, Alberto J.; Zanolini, FranOise

    1985-12-01

    Major volcanic eruptions are able to spread large amounts of sulfuric acid all over the world. Acid layers of volcanic origin were detected for the first time a few years ago by Hammer in Greenland ice. The present paper deals with volcanic deposits in the Antarctic. The different methods that can be used to find volcanic acid deposits in snow and ice cores are compared: electrical conductivity, sulfate, and acidity measurements. Numerous snow and ice samples collected at several Antarctic locations were analyzed. The results reveal that the two major volcanic events recorded by H2SO4, fallout in Antarctic ice over the last century are the eruptions of Krakatoa (1883) and Agung (1963), both located at equatorial latitudes in the southern hemisphere. The volcanic signals are found to be particularly well defined at central Antarctic locations apparently in relation to the low snow accumulation rates in these areas. It is demonstrated that volcanic sulfuric acid in snow is not even partially neutralized by ammonia. The possible influence of Antarctic volcanic activity on snow chemistry is also discussed, using the three recent eruptions of the Deception Island volcano as examples. Only one of them seems to have had a significant effect on the chemistry of snow at a location 200 km from this volcano. It is concluded that Antarctic volcanic ice records are less complicated than Greenland records because of the limited number of volcanos in the southern hemisphere and the apparently higher signal to background ratio for acidity in Antarctica than in Greenland.

  19. Interferometric System for Measuring Thickness of Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hussein, Ziad; Jordan, Rolando; McDonald, Kyle; Holt, Benjamin; Huang, John; Kugo, Yasuo; Ishimaru, Akira; Jaruwatanadilok, Semsak; Akins, Torry; Gogineni, Prasad

    2006-01-01

    The cryospheric advanced sensor (CAS) is a developmental airborne (and, potentially, spaceborne) radar-based instrumentation system for measuring and mapping the thickness of sea ice. A planned future version of the system would also provide data on the thickness of snow covering sea ice. Frequent measurements of the thickness of polar ocean sea ice and its snow cover on a synoptic scale are critical to understanding global climate change and ocean circulation.

  20. Amundsen Sea ice production and transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Assmann, Karen M.; Hellmer, Hartmut H.; Jacobs, Stanley S.

    2005-12-01

    Drift and variability of sea ice in the Amundsen Sea are investigated with ice buoys deployed in March 2000 and a coupled ice-ocean model. The Bremerhaven Regional Ice Ocean Simulations (BRIOS) model results are compared with in situ ocean, atmosphere, and sea ice measurements; satellite observations; and 8-19 months of buoy drift data. We identify a zone of coastal westward drift and a band of faster eastward drift, separated by a broad transition region characterized by variable ice motions. The model represents drift events at scales approaching its resolution but is limited at smaller scales and by deficiencies in the National Centers for Environmental Prediction forcing. Two thirds of the modeled ice production in the southern Amundsen moves westward near the coast, its transport modulated by meridional wind strength, damping sea ice formation in the eastern Ross Sea. Half of the ice exported from the Ross moves eastward into the northern Amundsen Sea, a net sea ice sink that also receives more than one third of the ice generated to its south. A low rate of exchange occurs with the Bellingshausen Sea, which must have a more independent ice regime. Snow ice formation resulting from high precipitation accounts for one quarter of the ice volume in the Amundsen Sea, aiding the formation of thick ice in a region with generally divergent ice drift. Freshwater extraction by sea ice formation is roughly balanced by precipitation and ice shelf melting, but a positive trend in the surface flux is consistent with an Amundsen source for reported freshening in the Ross Sea.

  1. Sea Ice Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  2. Bacterial diversity in snow on North Pole ice floes.

    PubMed

    Hauptmann, Aviaja L; Stibal, Marek; Blum, Jacob; Sicheritz-Pontn, Thomas; Brunak, Sren; Bowman, Jeff S; Hansen, Lars H; Jacobsen, Carsten S; Blom, Nikolaj

    2014-11-01

    The microbial abundance and diversity in snow on ice floes at three sites near the North Pole was assessed using quantitative PCR and 454 pyrosequencing. Abundance of 16S rRNA genes in the samples ranged between 43 and 248 gene copies per millilitre of melted snow. A total of 291,331 sequences were obtained through 454 pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes, resulting in 984 OTUs at 97 % identity. Two sites were dominated by Cyanobacteria (72 and 61 %, respectively), including chloroplasts. The third site differed by consisting of 95 % Proteobacteria. Principal component analysis showed that the three sites clustered together when compared to the underlying environments of sea ice and ocean water. The Shannon indices ranged from 2.226 to 3.758, and the Chao1 indices showed species richness between 293 and 353 for the three samples. The relatively low abundances and diversity found in the samples indicate a lower rate of microbial input to this snow habitat compared to snow in the proximity of terrestrial and anthropogenic sources of microorganisms. The differences in species composition and diversity between the sites show that apparently similar snow habitats contain a large variation in biodiversity, although the differences were smaller than the differences to the underlying environment. The results support the idea that a globally distributed community exists in snow and that the global snow community can in part be attributed to microbial input from the atmosphere. PMID:24951969

  3. Improving the WRF model's simulation over sea ice surface through coupling with a complex thermodynamic sea ice model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Y.; Huang, J.; Luo, Y.; Zhao, Z.

    2015-12-01

    Sea ice plays an important role in the air-ice-ocean interaction, but it is often represented simply in many regional atmospheric models. The Noah sea ice model, which has been widely used in the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model, exhibits cold bias in simulating the Arctic sea ice temperature when validated against the Surface Heat Budget of the Arctic Ocean (SHEBA) in situ observations. According to sensitivity tests, this bias is attributed not only to the simulation of snow depth and turbulent fluxes but also to the heat conduction within snow and ice. Compared with the Noah sea ice model, the high-resolution thermodynamic snow and ice model (HIGHTSI) has smaller bias in simulating the sea ice temperature. HIGHTSI is further coupled with the WRF model to evaluate the possible added value from better resolving the heat transport and solar penetration in sea ice from a complex thermodynamic sea ice model. The cold bias in simulating the surface temperature over sea ice in winter by the original Polar WRF is reduced when HIGHTSI rather than Noah is coupled with the WRF model, and this also leads to a better representation of surface upward longwave radiation and 2 m air temperature. A discussion on the impact of specifying sea ice thickness in the WRF model is presented. Consistent with previous research, prescribing the sea ice thickness with observational information would result in the best simulation among the available methods. If no observational information is available, using an empirical method based on the relationship between sea ice concentration and sea ice thickness could mimic the large-scale spatial feature of sea ice thickness. The potential application of a thermodynamic sea ice model in predicting the change in sea ice thickness in a RCM is limited by the lack of sea ice dynamic processes in the model and the coarse assumption on the initial value of sea ice thickness.

  4. Is sea salt in ice cores a proxy of past sea ice extent?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levine, James; Wolff, Eric; Frey, Markus; Jenkins, Hazel; Jones, Anna; Yang, Xin

    2014-05-01

    A number of marine, coastal and ice core proxies have been used to try to assess the past extent of sea ice. Sea salt has been proposed as a proxy for past ice extent, at least in the Southern Ocean. The idea is that the sea ice surface itself holds a source of sea salt, that is stronger than the source from the open ocean it replaces. That a sea ice source exists is apparent from observations of the ratio of sulphate to sodium in coastal aerosol and snow samples. While the idea behind using sea salt as a proxy is attractive, and leads to sensible inferences, many doubts remain. Firstly the exact nature of the source remains uncertain, and secondly it is not clear if ice extent, as opposed to changes in atmospheric transport and lifetime, would dominate variability in the ice core record of sea salt. Here we use a model of atmospheric transport and chemistry (p-TOMCAT) to assess the consequences of a sea ice source, focussing particularly on a source that has been proposed to arise from the sublimation of salty blowing snow. We will briefly report some new observations from a winter cruise, that will allow us to comment on the likelihood that blowing snow does pose a significant source. We will then present results from the model (implemented using existing parameters). The model has been run with seasonally and interannually varying sea ice extent and meteorology for the Antarctic, tracking, at different ice core sites, the concentration that arises from the open ocean and sea ice sources. We have already shown that the model, after tuning, is able to reproduce the magnitude and seasonal cycle of sea salt at a range of sites globally. By varying each component separately we explore which factors (sea ice presence, wind speed at source, transporting winds) and which source regions control the delivery of sea salt to sites in Antarctica. Such work suggests that sea salt cannot be used as a sea ice proxy on interannual timescales, but may be suitable on longer timescales. By employing much larger sea ice extents, such as at the last glacial maximum (LGM), we find a strong increase in concentration at ice core sites when ice extent increases. The increase in modelled sea salt concentration tails off sharply as ice approaches the LGM extent, so that the sensitivity of the proxy is greater at lower ice extents, for example in interglacials. We will discuss the implications of this work for the proposed use of sea salt as a sea ice proxy.

  5. Snow and ice ecosystems: not so extreme.

    PubMed

    Maccario, Lorrie; Sanguino, Laura; Vogel, Timothy M; Larose, Catherine

    2015-12-01

    Snow and ice environments cover up to 21% of the Earth's surface. They have been regarded as extreme environments because of their low temperatures, high UV irradiation, low nutrients and low water availability, and thus, their microbial activity has not been considered relevant from a global microbial ecology viewpoint. In this review, we focus on why snow and ice habitats might not be extreme from a microbiological perspective. Microorganisms interact closely with the abiotic conditions imposed by snow and ice habitats by having diverse adaptations, that include genetic resistance mechanisms, to different types of stresses in addition to inhabiting various niches where these potential stresses might be reduced. The microbial communities inhabiting snow and ice are not only abundant and taxonomically diverse, but complex in terms of their interactions. Altogether, snow and ice seem to be true ecosystems with a role in global biogeochemical cycles that has likely been underestimated. Future work should expand past resistance studies to understanding the function of these ecosystems. PMID:26408452

  6. Sea ice in the China Sea

    SciTech Connect

    Deng Shuqi

    1993-12-31

    In every winter, sea ice occurring in Bohai Sea and the North Yellow Sea is the first-year ice which is going through generating, developing and thawing processes. Therefore, it is necessary to spatially and temporally describe ice period, freezing range, thickness variations and general motion of sea ice. The purpose of this paper is to provide initial general situation and features of sea ice for forecasting and researching sea ice.

  7. An optical model for the microwave properties of sea ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gloersen, P.; Larabee, J. K.

    1981-01-01

    The complex refractive index of sea ice is modeled and used to predict the microwave signatures of various sea ice types. Results are shown to correspond well with the observed values of the complex index inferred from dielectic constant and dielectric loss measurements performed in the field, and with observed microwave signatures of sea ice. The success of this modeling procedure vis a vis modeling of the dielectric properties of sea ice constituents used earlier by several others is explained. Multiple layer radiative transfer calculations are used to predict the microwave properties of first-year sea ice with and without snow, and multiyear sea ice.

  8. First Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Snow and Ice Workshop

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hall, Dorothy K. (Editor)

    1995-01-01

    This document is a compilation of summaries of talks presented at a 2-day workshop on Moderate Resolution maging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) snow and ice products. The objectives of the workshop were to: inform the snow and ce community of potential MODIS products, seek advice from the participants regarding the utility of the products, and letermine the needs for future post-launch MODIS snow and ice products. Four working groups were formed to discuss at-launch snow products, at-launch ice products, post-launch snow and ice products and utility of MODIS snow and ice products, respectively. Each working group presented recommendations at the conclusion of the workshop.

  9. Remote sensing of snow and ice: A review of the research in the United States 1975 - 1978

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rango, A.

    1979-01-01

    Research work in the United States from 1975-1978 in the field of remote sensing of snow and ice is reviewed. Topics covered include snowcover mapping, snowmelt runoff forecasting, demonstration projects, snow water equivalent and free water content determination, glaciers, river and lake ice, and sea ice. A bibliography of 200 references is included.

  10. Modeling Sea Ice Albedo Feedback and the Ice Mass Balance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weatherly, J. W.

    2005-12-01

    The mass balance of sea ice in the Arctic and Antarctic has been measured over several years using both manual ice thickness gauges and remotely deployed ice mass buoys that record in situ temperatures (in ice, ocean and air), snow depth, and basal ice accretion. Measurements of ice mass balance have been collected in the Arctic during SHEBA (1997-1998), the North Pole Observatory (2000-2005), and Barrow, Alaska ice experiments (2001-2002), and with buoys deployed in the Antarctic during the Southern GLOBEC (2002-2003). Comparisons between these measurements have illustrated the significant differences in ice mass balance and the growth and melt cycles in these regions. Modeling the sea ice mass balance in these regions using a thermodynamic sea ice model with atmospheric and ocean forcing from observational data provides a validation of the model processes involved in the mass balance. Differences in surface albedo evolution, surface melt and ponds, and temperature profiles all contribute to the combined effect on the ice mass balance. The result is that the representation of the sea ice interactions in climate models, including ice-albedo feedback, can be significantly different from that derived from in situ observations.

  11. Record Arctic Sea Ice Loss in 2007

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2007-01-01

    This image of the Arctic was produced from sea ice observations collected by the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) Instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite on September 16, overlaid on the NASA Blue Marble. The image captures ice conditions at the end of the melt season. Sea ice (white, image center) stretches across the Arctic Ocean from Greenland to Russia, but large areas of open water were apparent as well. In addition to record melt, the summer of 2007 brought an ice-free opening though the Northwest Passage that lasted several weeks. The Northeast Passage did not open during the summer of 2007, however, as a substantial tongue of ice remained in place north of the Russian coast. According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), on September 16, 2007, sea ice extent dropped to 4.13 million square kilometers (1.59 million square miles)--38 percent below average and 24 percent below the 2005 record.

  12. 14 CFR 139.313 - Snow and ice control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 3 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Snow and ice control. 139.313 Section 139... AIRPORTS Operations § 139.313 Snow and ice control. (a) As determined by the Administrator, each certificate holder whose airport is located where snow and icing conditions occur must prepare, maintain,...

  13. 14 CFR 139.313 - Snow and ice control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 3 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Snow and ice control. 139.313 Section 139... AIRPORTS Operations § 139.313 Snow and ice control. (a) As determined by the Administrator, each certificate holder whose airport is located where snow and icing conditions occur must prepare, maintain,...

  14. 14 CFR 139.313 - Snow and ice control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 3 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Snow and ice control. 139.313 Section 139... AIRPORTS Operations § 139.313 Snow and ice control. (a) As determined by the Administrator, each certificate holder whose airport is located where snow and icing conditions occur must prepare, maintain,...

  15. 14 CFR 139.313 - Snow and ice control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 3 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Snow and ice control. 139.313 Section 139... AIRPORTS Operations § 139.313 Snow and ice control. (a) As determined by the Administrator, each certificate holder whose airport is located where snow and icing conditions occur must prepare, maintain,...

  16. 14 CFR 139.313 - Snow and ice control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 3 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Snow and ice control. 139.313 Section 139... AIRPORTS Operations § 139.313 Snow and ice control. (a) As determined by the Administrator, each certificate holder whose airport is located where snow and icing conditions occur must prepare, maintain,...

  17. Enhanced Sea Ice Concentration and Ice Temperature Algorithms for AMSR

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Comiso, Josefino C.; Manning, Will; Gersten, Robert

    1998-01-01

    Accurate quantification of sea ice concentration and ice temperature from satellite passive microwave data is important because they provide the only long term, spatially detailed and consistent data set needed to study the climatology of the polar regions. Sea ice concentration data are used to derive large-scale daily ice extents that are utilized in trend analysis of the global sea ice cover. They are also used to quantify the amount of open water and thin ice in polynya and divergence regions which together with ice temperatures are in turn needed to estimate vertical heat and salinity fluxes in these regions. Sea ice concentrations have been derived from the NASA Team and Bootstrap algorithms while a separate technique for deriving ice temperature has been reported. An integrated technique that will utilizes most of the channels of AMSR (Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer) has been developed. The technique uses data from the 6 GHz and 37 GHz channels at vertical polarization obtain an initial estimate of sea ice concentration and ice temperature. The derived ice temperature is then utilized to estimate the emissivities for the corresponding observations at all the other channels. A procedure for calculating the ice concentration similar to the Bootstrap technique is then used but with variables being emissivities instead of brightness temperatures to minimizes errors associated with spatial changes in ice temperatures within the ice pack. Comparative studies of ice concentration results with those from other algorithms, including the original Bootstrap algorithm and those from high resolution satellite visible and infrared data will be presented. Also, results from a simulation study that demonstrates the effectiveness of the technique in correcting for spatial variations in ice temperatures will be shown. The ice temperature results are likewise compared with satellite infrared and buoy data with the latter adjusted to account for the effects of the snow cover.

  18. Monitoring Snow on ice as Critical Habitat for Ringed Seals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelly, B. P.; Moran, J.; Douglas, D. C.; Nghiem, S. V.

    2007-12-01

    Ringed seals are the primary prey of polar bears, and they are found in all seasonally ice covered seas of the northern hemisphere as well as in several freshwater lakes. The presence of snow covered sea ice is essential for successful ringed seal reproduction. Ringed seals abrade holes in the ice allowing them to surface and breathe under the snow cover. Where snow accumulates to sufficient depths, ringed seals excavate subnivean lairs above breathing holes. They rest, give birth, and nurse their young in those lairs. Temperatures within the lairs remain within a few degrees of freezing, well within the zone of thermal neutrality for newborn ringed seals, even at ambient temperatures of -30° C. High rates of seal mortality have been recorded when early snow melt caused lairs to collapse exposing newborn seals to predators and to subsequent extreme cold events. As melt onset dates come earlier in the Arctic Ocean, ringed seal populations (and the polar bears that depend upon them) will be increasingly challenged. We determined dates of lair abandonment by ringed seals fitted with radio transmitters in the Beaufort Sea (n = 60). We compared abandonment dates to melt onset dates measured in the field, as well as estimated dates derived from active (Ku-band backscatter) and passive (SSM/I) microwave satellite imagery. Date of snow melt significantly improved models of environmental influences on the timing of lair abandonment. We used an algorithm based on multi-channel means and variances of passive microwave data to detect melt onset dates. Those melt onset dates predicted the date of lair abandonment ± 3 days (r 2 = 0.982, p = 0.001). The predictive power of passive microwave proxies combined with their historical record suggest they could serve to monitor critical changes to ringed seal habitat.

  19. EOS Aqua AMSR-E Arctic Sea Ice Validation Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cavalieri, D. J.; Markus, T.; Gasiewski, A.; Klein, M.; Maslanik, J.; Sturm, M.; Stroeve, J.; Heinrichs, J.

    2004-01-01

    A coordinated Arctic sea ice validation field campaign using the NASA Wallops P-3B aircraft was successfully completed in March 2003. This campaign was part of the program for validating the Earth Observing System (EOS) Aqua Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) sea ice products. The AMSR-E, designed and built by the Japanese National Space Development Agency for NASA, was launched May 4,2002 on the EOS Aqua spacecraft. The AMSR-E sea ice products include sea ice concentration, sea ice temperature, and snow depth on sea ice. The primary instrument on the P-3B aircraft was the NOAA ETL Polarimetric Scanning Radiometer (PSR) covering the same frequencies and polarizations as the AMSR-E. This paper describes the objectives of each of the seven flights, the Arctic regions overflown, and the coordination among satellite, aircraft, and surface-based measurements. Two of the seven aircraft flights were coordinated with scientists making surface measurements of snow and ice properties including sea ice temperature and snow depth on sea ice at a study area near Barrow, AK and at a Navy ice camp located in the Beaufort Sea. The remaining flights covered portions of the Bering Sea ice edge, the Chukchi Sea, and Norton Sound. Comparisons among the satellite and aircraft PSR data sets are presented.

  20. Soot climate forcing via snow and ice albedos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, James; Nazarenko, Larissa

    2004-01-01

    Plausible estimates for the effect of soot on snow and ice albedos (1.5% in the Arctic and 3% in Northern Hemisphere land areas) yield a climate forcing of +0.3 W/m2 in the Northern Hemisphere. The "efficacy" of this forcing is 2, i.e., for a given forcing it is twice as effective as CO2 in altering global surface air temperature. This indirect soot forcing may have contributed to global warming of the past century, including the trend toward early springs in the Northern Hemisphere, thinning Arctic sea ice, and melting land ice and permafrost. If, as we suggest, melting ice and sea level rise define the level of dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system, then reducing soot emissions, thus restoring snow albedos to pristine high values, would have the double benefit of reducing global warming and raising the global temperature level at which dangerous anthropogenic interference occurs. However, soot contributions to climate change do not alter the conclusion that anthropogenic greenhouse gases have been the main cause of recent global warming and will be the predominant climate forcing in the future. aerosols | air pollution | climate change | sea level

  1. Microwave remote sensing of sea ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Comiso, J. C.

    1988-01-01

    The long term objectives are: (1) to understand the physics of the multispectral microwave radiative characteristics of sea ice as it goes through different phases; (2) to improve characterization of sea ice cover using satellite microwave sensors; and (3) to study ice/ocean physical and biological processes associated with polynya formations and variability of the marginal sea ice region. Two field experiments were conducted to pursue these objectives. One involved measurements of radiative and physical characteristics of sea ice from a ship during a 3-month long cruise through the Weddell Sea ice pack during the Austral winter of 1986. The other involved similar measurements from two aircrafts and a submarine over the Central Arctic and Greenland Sea region. Preliminary results have already led to an enhanced understanding of the microwave signatures of pancake ice, nilas, first year ice, multiyear ice and effects of snow cover. Coastal and deep ocean polynyas and their role in bottom water formation and ocean circulation were studied using a time series of ice images from SMMR. An unsupervised cluster analysis of Arctic sea ice using SMMR and THIR emissivity and brightness temperature data was implemented. The analysis indicates the existence of several unique and persistent clusters in the Central Arctic region during winter and that the sum of the area of these clusters excluding those of first year ice is about 20 percent less than minimum ice cover area inferred from a previous summer data. This result is consistent with saline surface for some multiyear ice floes as observed during MIZEZ and suggests that a significant fraction of multiyear ice floes in the Arctic have first year ice signatures.

  2. Diatom vertical migration within land-fast Arctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aumack, C. F.; Juhl, A. R.; Krembs, C.

    2014-11-01

    Light levels inside first-year, landfast sea ice were experimentally altered by manipulating overlying snow depths. Irradiance available for ice algae growing near the ice-bottom, and under the ice, was highly dependent on snow depths ranging from 0 to > 30 cm. Importantly, algal vertical distributions also changed under different irradiances. Under thick snow (low light), the majority of algae were found several cm above the ice-seawater interface, while progressively more were found nearer the interface at locations with thinner overlying snow (higher light). Short-term field experiments suggested that ice algae were able to reposition themselves within the ice column within 3 days after manipulating snow depths. Laboratory gliding rate measurements of a cultured ice diatom suggested that it is capable of daily cm-scale movement. Vertical migration may help ice diatoms balance opposing light and nutrient resource gradients, similar to strategies used by some benthic and pelagic algae. Moreover, when ice algae congregate near the ice-seawater interface, they may be especially susceptible to loss from the ice environment. Vertical repositioning in response to changing light dynamics may be a mechanism to optimize between vertically-opposing environmental factors and help explain the connection between melting snow cover and export of biomass from sea ice.

  3. Sea ice in the Baltic Sea A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Granskog, Mats; Kaartokallio, Hermanni; Kuosa, Harri; Thomas, David N.; Vainio, Jouni

    2006-10-01

    Although the seasonal ice cover of the Baltic Sea has many similarities to its oceanic counterpart in Polar Seas and Oceans, there are many unique characteristics that mainly result from the brackish waters from which the ice is formed, resulting in low bulk salinities and porosities. In addition, due to the milder climate than Polar regions, the annual maximum ice extent is highly variable, and rain and freeze-melt cycles can occur throughout winter. Up to 35% of the sea ice mass can be composed from metamorphic snow, rather than frozen seawater, and in places snow and superimposed ice can make up to 50% of the total ice thickness. There is pronounced atmospheric deposition of inorganic nutrients and heavy metals onto the ice, and in the Bothnian Bay it is estimated that 5% of the total annual flux of nitrogen and phosphorus and 20-40% of lead and cadmium may be deposited onto the ice fields from the atmosphere. It is yet unclear whether or not the ice is simply a passive store for atmospherically deposited compounds, or if they are transformed through photochemical processes or biological accumulation before released at ice and snow melt. As in Polar sea ice, the Baltic ice can harbour rich biological assemblages, both within the ice itself, and on the peripheries of the ice at the ice/water interface. Much progress has been made in recent years to study the composition of these assemblages as well as measuring biogeochemical processes within the ice related to those in underlying waters. The high dissolved organic matter loading of Baltic waters and ice result in the ice having quite different chemical characteristics than those known from Polar Oceans. The high dissolved organic material load is also responsible in large degree to shape the optical properties of Baltic Sea ice, with high absorption of solar radiation at shorter wavelengths, a prerequisite for active photochemistry of dissolved organic matter. Land-fast ice in the Baltic also greatly alters the mixing characteristics of river waters flowing into coastal waters. River plumes extend under the ice to a much greater distance, and with greater stability than in ice-free conditions. Under-ice plumes not only alter the mixing properties of the waters, but also result in changed ice growth dynamics, and ice biological assemblages, with the underside of the ice being encased, in the extreme case, with a frozen freshwater layer. There is a pronounced gradient in ice types from more saline ice in the south to freshwater ice in the north. The former is characteristically more porous and supports more ice-associated biology than the latter. Ice conditions also vary considerably in different parts of the Baltic Sea, with ice persisting for over half a year in the northernmost part of the Baltic Sea, the Bothnian Bay. In the southern Baltic Sea, ice appears only during severe winters.

  4. Tortuosity of the Antarctic Sea Ice over the Weddell Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beard, J.; Heinrichs, J. F.

    2011-12-01

    The objective of the research was to mathematically characterize the edge of the Antarctic sea ice in the Weddell Sea. Because the sea ice may reflect processes involved in the atmosphere and ocean near the ice edge, it may suggest broader changes on the ice. The chosen method was to compare the tortuosity of the edge over time and across seasons. Because the sea ice may reflect processes involved in the atmosphere and ocean near the ice edge, it may suggest broader changes on the ice. Throughout the research, the shapefiles for the Antarctic sea ice were collected from the National Snow and Ice Data Center website and the coordinates were extracted using an add-in for the MapWindow GIS. These points were then put into Excel separated by year and then the distance factor (an approximation to the tortuosity) was calculated and compared by month over time. Preliminary data has shown that the closer to the winter months, the higher the tortuosity. Statistical analysis has shown that there is no clear relationship between tortuosity and the area of the sea ice, and the tortuosity exhibits a weak negative trend over the past 32 years.

  5. Record Sea Ice Minimum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2007-01-01

    Arctic sea ice reached a record low in September 2007, below the previous record set in 2005 and substantially below the long-term average. This image shows the Arctic as observed by the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for EOS (AMSR-E) aboard NASA's Aqua satellite on September 16, 2007. In this image, blue indicates open water, white indicates high sea ice concentration, and turquoise indicates loosely packed sea ice. The black circle at the North Pole results from an absence of data as the satellite does not make observations that far north. Three contour lines appear on this image. The red line is the 2007 minimum, as of September 15, about the same time the record low was reached, and it almost exactly fits the sea ice observed by AMSR-E. The green line indicates the 2005 minimum, the previous record low. The yellow line indicates the median minimum from 1979 to 2000.

  6. Tertiary ice sheet dynamics: The Snow Gun Hypothesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prentice, M. L.; Matthews, R. K.

    1991-04-01

    We observe strong negative correlation between Tertiary low- to mid-latitude planktonic foraminiferal ?18O and the difference between these data and coeval benthic foraminiferal ?18O. Late Quaternary data do not show this correlation. Coupling statistical model/?18O comparisons and evidence for Antarctic ice and ocean temperature variation, we infer that Tertiary ice volume, recorded by tropical planktonic ?18O, increased as the deep ocean warmed. Because the isotopic signatures of deepwater temperature variation and ice volume change were of opposite sign, the sum of these signals in Tertiary benthic ?18O became lost in the noise. This renders low correlation between Tertiary planktonic and benthic ?18O time series compared to late Quaternary data. We contend that Tertiary ice sheet growth was commonly driven by warming of deep water from low- to mid-latitude marginal seas (snow gun hypothesis). In contrast, late Quaternary ice sheets grew as deep water, formed at high latitude, cooled. Because tectonic forcing and orbital forcing at low-latitude primarily controlled production and temperature variations of this Warm Saline Deep Water, these influences largely dictated Tertiary ice volume fluctuations. Through the Tertiary, we infer ice volume fluctuations to be an important component of sea level history on timescales between 103 and 107 years.

  7. Surface-based passive microwave observations of sea ice in the Bering and Greenland Seas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grenfell, T. C.

    1986-01-01

    Brightness temperatures of sea ice was measured during the Marginal Ice Zone Experiment (MIZEX) field experiments in February in the Bering Sea and in June/July in the northern Greenland Sea. In the Bering Sea thin growing sea ice types from black ice to 40 cm thick snow covered floes were investigated. Brightness temperatures increase with ice thickness up to 10 cm from values of 100 K for open water to as high as 250 K (e = 0.97) for thick ice, and a moderate dependence on snow thickness is found. In the Greenland Sea thick first and multiyear (FY, MY) ice types were studied. Brightness temperatures vary, depending on the daily melt-freeze cycle superimposed on the seasonal warming, ranging from near blackbody values for melting conditions to multiyear-like spectra when the surface layers refroze. The melt season was sufficiently advanced, however, that FY and MY ice could not be differentiated radiometrically.

  8. Soot climate forcing via snow and ice albedos

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, James; Nazarenko, Larissa

    2004-01-01

    Plausible estimates for the effect of soot on snow and ice albedos (1.5% in the Arctic and 3% in Northern Hemisphere land areas) yield a climate forcing of +0.3 W/m2 in the Northern Hemisphere. The “efficacy” of this forcing is ∼2, i.e., for a given forcing it is twice as effective as CO2 in altering global surface air temperature. This indirect soot forcing may have contributed to global warming of the past century, including the trend toward early springs in the Northern Hemisphere, thinning Arctic sea ice, and melting land ice and permafrost. If, as we suggest, melting ice and sea level rise define the level of dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system, then reducing soot emissions, thus restoring snow albedos to pristine high values, would have the double benefit of reducing global warming and raising the global temperature level at which dangerous anthropogenic interference occurs. However, soot contributions to climate change do not alter the conclusion that anthropogenic greenhouse gases have been the main cause of recent global warming and will be the predominant climate forcing in the future. PMID:14699053

  9. Soot climate forcing via snow and ice albedos.

    PubMed

    Hansen, James; Nazarenko, Larissa

    2004-01-13

    Plausible estimates for the effect of soot on snow and ice albedos (1.5% in the Arctic and 3% in Northern Hemisphere land areas) yield a climate forcing of +0.3 W/m(2) in the Northern Hemisphere. The "efficacy" of this forcing is approximately 2, i.e., for a given forcing it is twice as effective as CO(2) in altering global surface air temperature. This indirect soot forcing may have contributed to global warming of the past century, including the trend toward early springs in the Northern Hemisphere, thinning Arctic sea ice, and melting land ice and permafrost. If, as we suggest, melting ice and sea level rise define the level of dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system, then reducing soot emissions, thus restoring snow albedos to pristine high values, would have the double benefit of reducing global warming and raising the global temperature level at which dangerous anthropogenic interference occurs. However, soot contributions to climate change do not alter the conclusion that anthropogenic greenhouse gases have been the main cause of recent global warming and will be the predominant climate forcing in the future. PMID:14699053

  10. Airborne Spectral Measurements of Surface-Atmosphere Anisotropy for Arctic Sea Ice and Tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arnold, G. Thomas; Tsay, Si-Chee; King, Michael D.; Li, Jason Y.; Soulen, Peter F.

    1999-01-01

    Angular distributions of spectral reflectance for four common arctic surfaces: snow-covered sea ice, melt-season sea ice, snow-covered tundra, and tundra shortly after snowmelt were measured using an aircraft based, high angular resolution (1-degree) multispectral radiometer. Results indicate bidirectional reflectance is higher for snow-covered sea ice than melt-season sea ice at all wavelengths between 0.47 and 2.3 pm, with the difference increasing with wavelength. Bidirectional reflectance of snow-covered tundra is higher than for snow-free tundra for measurements less than 1.64 pm, with the difference decreasing with wavelength. Bidirectional reflectance patterns of all measured surfaces show maximum reflectance in the forward scattering direction of the principal plane, with identifiable specular reflection for the melt-season sea ice and snow-free tundra cases. The snow-free tundra had the most significant backscatter, and the melt-season sea ice the least. For sea ice, bidirectional reflectance changes due to snowmelt were more significant than differences among the different types of melt-season sea ice. Also the spectral-hemispherical (plane) albedo of each measured arctic surface was computed. Comparing measured nadir reflectance to albedo for sea ice and snow-covered tundra shows albedo underestimated 5-40%, with the largest bias at wavelengths beyond 1 pm. For snow-free tundra, nadir reflectance underestimates plane albedo by about 30-50%.

  11. Fluid and electromagnetic transport in sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gully, Adam Spence

    Covering 7-10% of the Earth's ocean surface, sea ice is both an indicator and agent of climate change. The sea ice cover controls the exchange of heat, momentum, and gases between the ocean and atmosphere. As a material, sea ice is a polycrystalline composite consisting of a pure ice host containing brine, air, and solid salt inclusions. This dissertation examines sea ice processes that are important to climate studies. In particular, we investigate the fluid transport properties of sea ice, which mediate melt pond evolution and ice pack reflectance, snow-ice formation, nutrient replenishment for microbial communities, and the evolution of salinity profiles. We also examine the electromagnetic monitoring of these processes, which rely on some knowledge of the effective electrical properties of sea ice. Columnar sea ice is effectively impermeable to fluid flow below a 5% brine volume fraction, yet is permeable for brine volume fractions above this threshold value. In two different experiments conducted in the Arctic and Antarctic, we have found that this critical transition in fluid flow at the brine connectivity threshold displays a strong electrical signature. The sea ice conductivity data are accurately explained by percolation theory with a universal critical exponent of 2. The data also indicate marked changes in the conductivity profile with the onset of surface ponding. Further, resistance data from classical four-probe Wenner arrays on the surfaces of ice floes in Antarctica were used to indirectly reconstruct the conductivity profiles with depth, involving both the horizontal and vertical components. We note the close agreement with the actual data for some models and the inadequacy of others. Additionally, a network model for the electrical conductivity of sea ice is developed, 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. Together, these results lay the foundation for electromagnetic monitoring of transport phenomena in sea ice and help provide a rigorous basis for electromagnetic methods to obtain sea ice thickness data. We also modify traditional percolation models for columnar sea ice, hypothesizing that granular sea ice has a percolation threshold near a 10% brine volume fraction. This modified percolation model is then in excellent agreement with our fluid permeability field data taken in Antarctica, where granular ice is a significant component of the ice cover. Here we also develop theoretical bounds on two extensive sets of effective complex permittivity sea ice data taken in the Arctic and Antarctic. 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 the effective complex permittivity. We find that the temporal variations of the reconstructed porosity, which is directly related to temperature, closely follow the actual behavior. Additionally, an analytic method for obtaining bounds on the effective complex permittivity of polycrystalline composite materials is developed and applied to the effective complex permittivity of sea ice. Here we use mean single crystal orientation data and single crystal complex permittivity tensor data to obtain polycrystalline forward bounds for sea ice. The single crystal complex permittivity tensor is obtained by evaluating X-ray CT data of sea ice with known ice and brine permittivites and brine volume fraction using Comsol 3.5a. Further, inverse bounds are developed and the mean single crystal orientation can be bounded from measurements of the effective complex pe

  12. Anomalous snow accumulation over the southeast region of the Greenland ice sheet during 2002-2003 snow season

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nghiem, S. V.; Steffen, K.; Huff, R.; Neumann, G.

    2005-01-01

    Our objective is to determine seasonal snow accumulation in the percolation zone of the Greenland ice sheet on the daily-weekly basis over the large scale. Our approach utilizes data from the Greenland Climate Network (GC-Net) and from the SeaWinds Scatterometer on the QuikSCAT satellite (QSCAT) to measure snow accumulation (SA) in the percolation zone of the Greenland ice sheet. GC-Net measurements provide crucial in-situ data to facilitate the interpretation of QSCAT backscatter signature for the development of an algorithm to map SA.

  13. Seasonal evolution of melt ponds on Arctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Webster, Melinda A.; Rigor, Ignatius G.; Perovich, Donald K.; Richter-Menge, Jacqueline A.; Polashenski, Christopher M.; Light, Bonnie

    2015-09-01

    The seasonal evolution of melt ponds has been well documented on multiyear and landfast first-year sea ice, but is critically lacking on drifting, first-year sea ice, which is becoming increasingly prevalent in the Arctic. Using 1 m resolution panchromatic satellite imagery paired with airborne and in situ data, we evaluated melt pond evolution for an entire melt season on drifting first-year and multiyear sea ice near the 2011 Applied Physics Laboratory Ice Station (APLIS) site in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas. A new algorithm was developed to classify the imagery into sea ice, thin ice, melt pond, and open water classes on two contrasting ice types: first-year and multiyear sea ice. Surprisingly, melt ponds formed 3 weeks earlier on multiyear ice. Both ice types had comparable mean snow depths, but multiyear ice had 0-5 cm deep snow covering 37% of its surveyed area, which may have facilitated earlier melt due to its low surface albedo compared to thicker snow. Maximum pond fractions were 53 3% and 38 3% on first-year and multiyear ice, respectively. APLIS pond fractions were compared with those from the Surface Heat Budget of the Arctic Ocean (SHEBA) field campaign. APLIS exhibited earlier melt and double the maximum pond fraction, which was in part due to the greater presence of thin snow and first-year ice at APLIS. These results reveal considerable differences in pond formation between ice types, and underscore the importance of snow depth distributions in the timing and progression of melt pond formation.

  14. Seafloor Control on Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nghiem, S. V.; Clemente-Colon, P.; Rigor, I. G.; Hall, D. K.; Neumann, G.

    2011-01-01

    The seafloor has a profound role in Arctic sea ice formation and seasonal evolution. Ocean bathymetry controls the distribution and mixing of warm and cold waters, which may originate from different sources, thereby dictating the pattern of sea ice on the ocean surface. Sea ice dynamics, forced by surface winds, are also guided by seafloor features in preferential directions. Here, satellite mapping of sea ice together with buoy measurements are used to reveal the bathymetric control on sea ice growth and dynamics. Bathymetric effects on sea ice formation are clearly observed in the conformation between sea ice patterns and bathymetric characteristics in the peripheral seas. Beyond local features, bathymetric control appears over extensive ice-prone regions across the Arctic Ocean. The large-scale conformation between bathymetry and patterns of different synoptic sea ice classes, including seasonal and perennial sea ice, is identified. An implication of the bathymetric influence is that the maximum extent of the total sea ice cover is relatively stable, as observed by scatterometer data in the decade of the 2000s, while the minimum ice extent has decreased drastically. Because of the geologic control, the sea ice cover can expand only as far as it reaches the seashore, the continental shelf break, or other pronounced bathymetric features in the peripheral seas. Since the seafloor does not change significantly for decades or centuries, sea ice patterns can be recurrent around certain bathymetric features, which, once identified, may help improve short-term forecast and seasonal outlook of the sea ice cover. Moreover, the seafloor can indirectly influence cloud cover by its control on sea ice distribution, which differentially modulates the latent heat flux through ice covered and open water areas.

  15. The Importance of Snow and Ice Surface Roughness in Ablation Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herzfeld, U. C.; Box, J. E.; Steffen, K.; Mayer, H.; Caine, N.; Losleben, M. V.

    2002-12-01

    The influence of surface roughness of snow and ice on melt energy has been greatly underestimated to date. Surface roughness has usually been included in climatological, meteorological, and snow-hydrological models as a one-dimensional parameter, roughness length, than has been estimated rather than measured. We define surface roughness as a spatial variable and measure it with the Glacier Roughness Sensor (GRS). GRS data from a part of the ablation area in the Greenland Ice Sheet (ice surfaces) and from a continental alpine environment (snow surfaces) are analyzed using geostatistical classification. A mathematical relationship between aerodynamic roughness length and spatial surface roughness is developed. Using this relationship, roughness length of a range of snow and ice surfaces is calculated from the GRS measurements, and the resultant values are input in energy balance calculations. As a result, melt energy varies by a factor of two or more dependent on surface roughness. Consequently, it is important to measure snow and ice surface roughness and include it more accurately in climatological, meteorological, and snow-hydrological models. Applications are the assessment of ablation and surface processes on glaciers and ice sheets in general, and in response to global warming in particular, resultant changes in sea level, study of changes in alpine glaciers and snowfields, and modeling of snow-hydrological processes.

  16. Characterizing sea ice surface morphology using high-resolution IceBridge data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petty, A.; Farrell, S. L.; Newman, T.; Kurtz, N. T.; Richter-Menge, J.; Tsamados, M.; Feltham, D. L.

    2014-12-01

    Sea ice pressure ridges form when ice floes collide while drifting under the combined forces of atmospheric drag, oceanic drag and ice-ice interaction. Sea ice ridges, in-turn, affect the resultant form drag on the sea ice cover and thus impact the fluxes of momentum and heat between the atmosphere and ocean. Here we present initial results of a new sea ice ridge detection approach that utilizes high resolution, three-dimensional ice/snow surface elevation data from the NASA Operation IceBridge Airborne Topographic Mapper (ATM) laser altimeter merged with coincident high-resolution imagery from the Digital Mapping System (DMS). We derive novel information regarding sea ice deformation across a variety of ice types and regimes. Statistical information regarding sea ice ridges (height/frequency/orientation) and floe edges (freeboard height) are presented for several IceBridge flight lines. These novel characterizations of sea ice surface morphology will be used to validate and inform drag parameterizations in state-of-the-art sea ice models. Furthermore, they will advance our ability to quantify uncertainties introduced by pressure ridges in the estimation of sea ice freeboard/thickness from airborne and satellite altimeters.

  17. Characterizing sea ice surface morphology using high-resolution IceBridge data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-04-01

    Sea ice pressure ridges form when ice floes collide while drifting under the combined forces of atmospheric drag, oceanic drag and ice-ice interaction. Sea ice ridges, in-turn, affect the resultant form drag on the sea ice cover and thus impact the fluxes of momentum and heat between the atmosphere and ocean. Here we present initial results of a new sea ice ridge detection approach that utilizes high resolution, three-dimensional ice/snow surface elevation data from the NASA Operation IceBridge Airborne Topographic Mapper (ATM) laser altimeter merged with coincident high-resolution imagery from the Digital Mapping System (DMS). We derive novel information regarding sea ice deformation across a variety of ice types and regimes. Statistical information regarding sea ice ridges (height/frequency/orientation) and floe edges (freeboard height) are presented for several IceBridge flight lines. These novel characterizations of sea ice surface morphology will be used to validate and inform drag parameterizations in state-of-the-art sea ice models. Furthermore, they will advance our ability to quantify uncertainties introduced by pressure ridges in the estimation of sea ice freeboard/thickness from airborne and satellite altimeters.

  18. Sea salt as an ice core proxy for past sea ice extent: A process-based model study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levine, J. G.; Yang, X.; Jones, A. E.; Wolff, E. W.

    2014-05-01

    Sea ice is a reflection of, and a feedback on, the Earth's climate. We explore here, using a global atmospheric chemistry-transport model, the use of sea salt in Antarctic ice cores to obtain continuous long-term, regionally integrated records of past sea ice extent, synchronous with ice core records of climate. The model includes the production, transport, and deposition of sea salt aerosol from the open ocean and "blowing snow" on sea ice. Under current climate conditions, we find that meteorology, not sea ice extent, is the dominant control on the atmospheric concentration of sea salt reaching coastal and continental Antarctic sites on interannual timescales. However, through a series of idealized sensitivity experiments, we demonstrate that sea salt has potential as a proxy for larger changes in sea ice extent (e.g., glacial-interglacial). Treating much of the sea ice under glacial conditions as a source of salty blowing snow, we demonstrate that the increase in sea ice extent alone (without changing the meteorology) could drive, for instance, a 68% increase in atmospheric sea salt concentration at the site of the Dome C ice core, which exhibits an approximate twofold glacial increase in sea salt flux. We also show how the sensitivity of this potential proxy decreases toward glacial sea ice extentthe basis of an explanation previously proposed for the lag observed between changes in sea salt flux and ?D (an ice core proxy for air temperature) at glacial terminations. The data thereby permit simultaneous changes in sea ice extent and climate.

  19. Arctic Sea ice model sensitivities.

    SciTech Connect

    Peterson, Kara J.; Bochev, Pavel Blagoveston; Paskaleva, Biliana Stefanova

    2010-12-01

    Arctic sea ice is an important component of the global climate system and, due to feedback effects, the Arctic ice cover is changing rapidly. Predictive mathematical models are of paramount importance for accurate estimates of the future ice trajectory. However, the sea ice components of Global Climate Models (GCMs) vary significantly in their prediction of the future state of Arctic sea ice and have generally underestimated the rate of decline in minimum sea ice extent seen over the past thirty years. One of the contributing factors to this variability is the sensitivity of the sea ice state to internal model parameters. A new sea ice model that holds some promise for improving sea ice predictions incorporates an anisotropic elastic-decohesive rheology and dynamics solved using the material-point method (MPM), which combines Lagrangian particles for advection with a background grid for gradient computations. We evaluate the variability of this MPM sea ice code and compare it with the Los Alamos National Laboratory CICE code for a single year simulation of the Arctic basin using consistent ocean and atmospheric forcing. Sensitivities of ice volume, ice area, ice extent, root mean square (RMS) ice speed, central Arctic ice thickness,and central Arctic ice speed with respect to ten different dynamic and thermodynamic parameters are evaluated both individually and in combination using the Design Analysis Kit for Optimization and Terascale Applications (DAKOTA). We find similar responses for the two codes and some interesting seasonal variability in the strength of the parameters on the solution.

  20. Beyond Point Measurements: Sea Ice Floes Characterized in 3-D

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, Guy D.; Maksym, Ted; Kunz, Clayton; Kimball, Peter; Singh, Hanumant; Wilkinson, Jeremy; Lachlan-Cope, Tom; Trujillo, Ernesto; Steer, Adam; Massom, Rob; Meiners, Klaus; Heil, Petra; Lieser, Jan; Leonard, Katherine

    2013-02-01

    A new methodology for coincident floe-scale measurements of the surface elevation, snow depth, and ice draft (the thickness below the water line) of Antarctic sea ice has been demonstrated during two recent research voyages: the Australian-led Sea Ice Physics and Ecosystem Experiment II (SIPEX II) to East Antarctica in September-November 2012 and the United Kingdom-led Ice Mass Balance in the Bellingshausen Sea (ICEBell) voyage to the Weddell and Bellingshausen Seas in November 2010 (Figure 1a).

  1. Extreme Weather in Northern Mid-latitudes Linked to Arctic Ice and Snow Losses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Qiuhong; Zhang, Xuejun; Francis, Jennifer A.

    2014-05-01

    The past decade has seen an exceptional number of unprecedented extreme weather events in northern mid-latitudes, along with record declines in both Arctic sea ice and snow cover on high-latitude land. The underlying mechanisms that link the shrinking cryosphere with the extreme weather in the mid-latitude continent, however, remain unclear. Previous studies have linked changes in winter atmospheric circulation, anomalously cold extremes and large snowfalls in mid-latitudes to rapid decline of Arctic sea ice in the preceding autumn. Using observational analyses, we show that the winter atmospheric circulation change and cold extremes are associated with winter sea ice reduction through an apparently distinct mechanism from those related to autumn sea ice loss. The associations between the increased summer extreme heat events in mid-latitudes and losses of snow and sea ice are also demonstrated using satellite observations of early summer snow cover and summer sea-ice extent. Although there is still much to learn about the interactions between a rapidly changing Arctic and large-scale circulation patterns, our results provide further evidence linking cryospheric loss with the mid-latitude extreme weather.

  2. Sea Ice and Oceanographic Conditions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oceanus, 1986

    1986-01-01

    The coastal waters of the Beaufort Sea are covered with ice three-fourths of the year. These waters (during winter) are discussed by considering: consolidation of coastal ice; under-ice water; brine circulation; biological energy; life under the ice (including kelp and larger animals); food chains; and ice break-up. (JN)

  3. Applied Sea Ice Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lset, S.

    2009-04-01

    In the late 1960s oil and gas development became an issue in the northern coastal areas of Alaska and Canada. More lately this has also become an issue in the Euroasian Arctic with the Barents and Kara Seas as example on where offshore hydrocarbon production now is being planned. In such waters the key questions prior to a development are related to water depths at the site and in case of ice, how frequent and what type of ice features will be met. Especially the ice conditions and knowledge about them are very decisive for the field development solutions to be chosen. The paper will highlight examples on development solutions where the ice conditions have played a paramount role in the field development plans. An example is the consequences of iceberg threaten in an area and the effect sudden changes in ice drift directions may have on the exploration and drilling solutions chosen. The paper will also discuss how to derive design ice actions values for such waters including scaling from nature to model ice basins.

  4. Global mountain snow and ice loss driven by dust and black carbon radiative forcing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Painter, T. H.

    2014-12-01

    Changes in mountain snow and glaciers have been our strongest indicators of the effects of changing climate. Earlier melt of snow and losses of glacier mass have perturbed regional water cycling, regional climate, and ecosystem dynamics, and contributed strongly to sea level rise. Recent studies however have revealed that in some regions, the reduction of albedo by light absorbing impurities in snow and ice such as dust and black carbon can be distinctly more powerful than regional warming at melting snow and ice. In the Rocky Mountains, dust deposition has increased 5 to 7 fold in the last 150 years, leading to ~3 weeks earlier loss of snow cover from forced melt. In absolute terms, in some years dust radiative forcing there can shorten snow cover duration by nearly two months. Remote sensing retrievals are beginning to reveal powerful dust and black carbon radiative forcing in the Hindu Kush through Himalaya. In light of recent ice cores that show pronounced increases in loading of dust and BC during the Anthropocene, these forcings may have contributed far more to glacier retreat than previously thought. For example, we have shown that the paradoxical end of the Little Ice Age in the European Alps beginning around 1850 (when glaciers began to retreat but temperatures continued to decline and precipitation was unchanged) very likely was driven by the massive increases in deposition to snow and ice of black carbon from industrialization in surrounding nations. A more robust understanding of changes in mountain snow and ice during the Anthropocene requires that we move past simplistic treatments (e.g. temperature-index modeling) to energy balance approaches that assess changes in the individual forcings such as the most powerful component for melt - net solar radiation. Remote sensing retrievals from imaging spectrometers and multispectral sensors are giving us more powerful insights into the time-space variation of snow and ice albedo.

  5. Interannual Variability of Snow and Ice and Impact on the Carbon Cycle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yung, Yuk L.

    2004-01-01

    The goal of this research is to assess the impact of the interannual variability in snow/ice using global satellite data sets acquired in the last two decades. This variability will be used as input to simulate the CO2 interannual variability at high latitudes using a biospheric model. The progress in the past few years is summarized as follows: 1) Albedo decrease related to spring snow retreat; 2) Observed effects of interannual summertime sea ice variations on the polar reflectance; 3) The Northern Annular Mode response to Arctic sea ice loss and the sensitivity of troposphere-stratosphere interaction; 4) The effect of Arctic warming and sea ice loss on the growing season in northern terrestrial ecosystem.

  6. Remote sensing as a research tool. [sea ice surveillance from aircraft and spacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carsey, F. D.; Zwally, H. J.

    1986-01-01

    The application of aircraft and spacecraft remote sensing techniques to sea ice surveillance is evaluated. The effects of ice in the air-sea-ice system are examined. The measurement principles and characteristics of remote sensing methods for aircraft and spacecraft surveillance of sea ice are described. Consideration is given to ambient visible light, IR, passive microwave, active microwave, and laser altimeter and sonar systems. The applications of these systems to sea ice surveillance are discussed and examples are provided. Particular attention is placed on the use of microwave data and the relation between ice thickness and sea ice interactions. It is noted that spacecraft and aircraft sensing techniques can successfully measure snow cover; ice thickness; ice type; ice concentration; ice velocity field; ocean temperature; surface wind vector field; and air, snow, and ice surface temperatures.

  7. Comparisons of Arctic In-Situ Snow and Ice Data with Airborne Passive Microwave Measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markus, T.; Cavalien, D. J.; Gasiewski, A.; Sturm, M.; Klein, M.; Maslanik, J.; Stroeve, J.; Heinrichs, J.; Holmgren, J.; Irisov, V.

    2004-01-01

    As part of the AMSR-E sea ice validation campaign in March 2003, aircraft flights over the Arctic sea ice were coordinated with ground measurements of snow and sea ice properties. The surface-based measurements were in the vicinity of Barrow, AK, and at a Navy ice camp located in the Beaufort Sea. The NASA P-3 aircraft was equipped with the NOAA ETL PSR microwave radiometer that has the same frequencies as the AMSR-E sensor. The goal was to validate the standard AMSR-E products ice temperature and snow depth on sea ice. Ground measurements are the only way to validate these parameters. The higher spatial resolution of the PSR instrument (between 30 and 500 m, depending on altitude) enables a better comparison between ground measurements and microwave data because of the expected smaller spatial variability. Maps of PSR data can then be used for further down-scaling to AMSR-E pixel areas. Initial results show a good qualitative agreement between the in-situ snow depths and the PSR data. Detailed studies are underway and latest results will be presented.

  8. Halogen-based reconstruction of Russian Arctic sea ice area from the Akademii Nauk ice core (Severnaya Zemlya)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spolaor, A.; Opel, T.; McConnell, J. R.; Maselli, O. J.; Spreen, G.; Varin, C.; Kirchgeorg, T.; Fritzsche, D.; Vallelonga, P.

    2015-08-01

    The role of sea ice in the Earth climate system is still under debate, although it is known to influence albedo, ocean circulation, and atmosphere-ocean heat and gas exchange. Here we present a reconstruction of AD 1950 to 1998 sea ice in the Laptev Sea based on the Akademii Nauk ice core (Severnaya Zemlya, Russian Arctic). The halogens bromine (Br) and iodine (I) are strongly influenced by sea ice processes. Bromine reacts with the sea ice surface in auto-catalyzing "Bromine explosion" events causing an enrichment of the Br / Na ratio and the bromine excess (Brexc) in snow compared to that in seawater. Iodine is emitted from algal communities growing under sea ice. The results suggest a connection between Brexc and spring sea ice area, as well as a connection between iodine concentration and summer sea ice area. These two halogens are therefore good candidates for extended reconstructions of past sea ice changes in the Arctic.

  9. Sea ice thickness variability in the Canadian Beaufort Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haas, C.; Bublitz, A.

    2014-12-01

    Sea ice in the Canadian Beaufort Sea has retreated strongly in recent summers, raising interest in its role for the Arctic climate and eco system, and in allowing access for shipping and offshore resources extraction both in Canada and in Alaskan waters further downstream. However, little is known about the thickness of its first- and multiyear ice regimes at the end of winter which are important in preconditioning the ice cover for summer retreat. Here we present results from spring-time airborne electromagnetic ice thickness surveys performed since 2009 over hundreds of kilometers of various first- and multiyear ice regimes. Surveys are complemented by satellite radar imagery allowing regional extrapolation of results. Results show large regional thickness variability with bands of first-year ice in the south and east, of heavily deformed old multiyear ice further north, and of younger multiyear ice in the Canada Basin further to the Northwest. This regional variability is hard to capture with moored ice thickness echo sounders. While the regions of multiyear ice have become thinner overall, there is little evidence for thinning of first-year ice despite later fall freeze-up. This may be related to a thinner snow cover and supports hypotheses about the resilience of first-year ice in a warmer Arctic. Due to the spatial extent of the surveys our data provide unique opportunities for the validation of satellite and airborne radar and laser altimeter and microwave radiometer ice thickness retrievals for which we will show a few examples. We have also analysed the occurrence of extreme ice features and hummock fields and show that these occur frequently both in the first- and multiyear ice regimes. These continue to pose hazards for marine infrastructure.

  10. Intercomparison of the Arctic sea ice cover in global ocean-sea ice reanalyses from the ORA-IP project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chevallier, Matthieu; Smith, Gregory C.; Dupont, Frédéric; Lemieux, Jean-François; Forget, Gael; Fujii, Yosuke; Hernandez, Fabrice; Msadek, Rym; Peterson, K. Andrew; Storto, Andrea; Toyoda, Takahiro; Valdivieso, Maria; Vernieres, Guillaume; Zuo, Hao; Balmaseda, Magdalena; Chang, You-Soon; Ferry, Nicolas; Garric, Gilles; Haines, Keith; Keeley, Sarah; Kovach, Robin M.; Kuragano, Tsurane; Masina, Simona; Tang, Yongming; Tsujino, Hiroyuki; Wang, Xiaochun

    2016-01-01

    Ocean-sea ice reanalyses are crucial for assessing the variability and recent trends in the Arctic sea ice cover. This is especially true for sea ice volume, as long-term and large scale sea ice thickness observations are inexistent. Results from the Ocean ReAnalyses Intercomparison Project (ORA-IP) are presented, with a focus on Arctic sea ice fields reconstructed by state-of-the-art global ocean reanalyses. Differences between the various reanalyses are explored in terms of the effects of data assimilation, model physics and atmospheric forcing on properties of the sea ice cover, including concentration, thickness, velocity and snow. Amongst the 14 reanalyses studied here, 9 assimilate sea ice concentration, and none assimilate sea ice thickness data. The comparison reveals an overall agreement in the reconstructed concentration fields, mainly because of the constraints in surface temperature imposed by direct assimilation of ocean observations, prescribed or assimilated atmospheric forcing and assimilation of sea ice concentration. However, some spread still exists amongst the reanalyses, due to a variety of factors. In particular, a large spread in sea ice thickness is found within the ensemble of reanalyses, partially caused by the biases inherited from their sea ice model components. Biases are also affected by the assimilation of sea ice concentration and the treatment of sea ice thickness in the data assimilation process. An important outcome of this study is that the spatial distribution of ice volume varies widely between products, with no reanalysis standing out as clearly superior as compared to altimetry estimates. The ice thickness from systems without assimilation of sea ice concentration is not worse than that from systems constrained with sea ice observations. An evaluation of the sea ice velocity fields reveals that ice drifts too fast in most systems. As an ensemble, the ORA-IP reanalyses capture trends in Arctic sea ice area and extent relatively well. However, the ensemble can not be used to get a robust estimate of recent trends in the Arctic sea ice volume. Biases in the reanalyses certainly impact the simulated air-sea fluxes in the polar regions, and questions the suitability of current sea ice reanalyses to initialize seasonal forecasts.

  11. Sea ice and polar climate in the NCAR CSM

    SciTech Connect

    Weatherly, J.W.; Briegleb, B.P.; Large, W.G.; Maslanik, J.A.

    1998-06-01

    The Climate System Model (CSM) consists of atmosphere, ocean, land, and sea-ice components linked by a flux coupler, which computes fluxes of energy and momentum between components. The sea-ice component consists of a thermodynamic formulation for ice, snow, and leads within the ice pack, and ice dynamics using the cavitating-fluid ice rheology, which allows for the compressive strength of ice but ignores shear viscosity. The results of a 300-yr climate simulation are presented, with the focus on sea ice and the atmospheric forcing over sea ice in the polar regions. The atmospheric model results are compared to analyses from the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts and other observational sources. The sea-ice concentrations and velocities are compared to satellite observational data. The atmospheric sea level pressure (SLP) in CSM exhibits a high in the central Arctic displaced poleward from the observed Beaufort high. The Southern Hemisphere SLP over sea ice is generally 5 mb lower than observed. Air temperatures over sea ice in both hemispheres exhibit cold biases of 2--4 K. The precipitation-minus-evaporation fields in both hemispheres are greatly improved over those from earlier versions of the atmospheric GCM.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Jin, Z.; Stamnes, K.; Weeks, W.F.; Tsay, S.C.

    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.

  13. Polarimetric Signatures of Sea Ice. Part 1; Theoretical Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nghiem, S. V.; Kwok, R.; Yueh, S. H.; Drinkwater, M. R.

    1995-01-01

    Physical, structural, and electromagnetic properties and interrelating processes in sea ice are used to develop a composite model for polarimetric backscattering signatures of sea ice. Physical properties of sea ice constituents such as ice, brine, air, and salt are presented in terms of their effects on electromagnetic wave interactions. Sea ice structure and geometry of scatterers are related to wave propagation, attenuation, and scattering. Temperature and salinity, which are determining factors for the thermodynamic phase distribution in sea ice, are consistently used to derive both effective permittivities and polarimetric scattering coefficients. Polarimetric signatures of sea ice depend on crystal sizes and brine volumes, which are affected by ice growth rates. Desalination by brine expulsion, drainage, or other mechanisms modifies wave penetration and scattering. Sea ice signatures are further complicated by surface conditions such as rough interfaces, hummocks, snow cover, brine skim, or slush layer. Based on the same set of geophysical parameters characterizing sea ice, a composite model is developed to calculate effective permittivities and backscattering covariance matrices at microwave frequencies for interpretation of sea ice polarimetric signatures.

  14. Polarimetric signatures of sea ice. 1: Theoretical model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nghiem, S. V.; Kwok, R.; Yueh, S. H.; Drinkwater, M. R.

    1995-01-01

    Physical, structral, and electromagnetic properties and interrelating processes in sea ice are used to develop a composite model for polarimetric backscattering signatures of sea ice. Physical properties of sea ice constituents such as ice, brine, air, and salt are presented in terms of their effects on electromagnetic wave interactions. Sea ice structure and geometry of scatterers are related to wave propagation, attenuation, and scattering. Temperature and salinity, which are determining factors for the thermodynamic phase distribution in sea ice, are consistently used to derive both effective permittivities and polarimetric scattering coefficients. Polarmetric signatures of sea ice depend on crystal sizes and brine volumes, which are affected by ice growth rates. Desalination by brine expulsion, drainage, or other mechanisms modifies wave penetration and scattering. Sea ice signatures are further complicated by surface conditions such as rough interfaces, hummocks, snow cover, brine skim, or slush layer. Based on the same set of geophysical parameters characterizing sea ice, a composite model is developed to calculate effective permittivities and backscattering covariance matrices at microwave frequencies to interpretation of sea ice polarimetric signatures.

  15. Modeling of Antarctic sea ice in a general circulation model

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, Xingren; Budd, W.F.; Simmonds, I.

    1997-04-01

    A dynamic-thermodynamic sea ice model is developed and coupled with the Melbourne University general circulation model to simulate the seasonal cycle of the Antarctic sea ice distributions The model is efficient, rapid to compute, and useful for a range of climate studies. The thermodynamic part of the sea ice model is similar to that developed by Parkinson and Washington, the dynamics contain a simplified ice rheology that resists compression. The thermodynamics is based on energy conservation at the top surface of the ice/snow, the ice/water interface, and the open water area to determine the ice formation, accretion, and ablation. A lead parameterization is introduced with an effective partitioning scheme for freezing between and under the ice floes. The dynamic calculation determines the motion of ice, which is forced with the atmospheric wind, taking account of ice resistance and rafting. The simulated sea ice distribution compares reasonably well with observations. The seasonal cycle of ice extent is well simulated in phase as well as in magnitude. Simulated sea ice thickness and concentration are also in good agreement with observations over most regions and serve to indicate the importance of advection and ocean drift in the determination of the sea ice distribution. 64 refs., 15 figs., 2 tabs.

  16. Arctic Sea Ice Model Sensitivities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peterson, K. J.; Bochev, P.; Paskaleva, B.

    2010-12-01

    Arctic sea ice is an important component of the global climate system and, due to feedback effects, the Arctic ice cover is changing rapidly. Predictive mathematical models are of paramount importance for accurate estimates of the future ice trajectory. However, the sea ice components of Global Climate Models (GCMs) vary significantly in their prediction of the future state of Arctic sea ice and have generally underestimated the rate of decline in minimum sea ice extent seen over the past thirty years. One of the contributing factors to this variability is the sensitivity of the sea ice state to internal model parameters. A new sea ice model that holds some promise for improving sea ice predictions incorporates an anisotropic elastic-decohesive rheology and dynamics solved using the material-point method (MPM), which combines Lagrangian particles for advection with a background grid for gradient computations. We evaluate the variability of this MPM sea ice code and compare it with the Los Alamos National Laboratory CICE code for a single year simulation of the Arctic basin using consistent ocean and atmospheric forcing. Sensitivities of ice volume, ice area, ice extent, root mean square (RMS) ice speed, central Arctic ice thickness,and central Arctic ice speed with respect to ten different dynamic and thermodynamic parameters are evaluated both individually and in combination using the Design Analysis Kit for Optimization and Terascale Applications (DAKOTA). We find similar responses for the two codes and some interesting seasonal variability in the strength of the parameters on the solution. Sandia National Laboratories is a multi-program laboratory operated by Sandia Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Corporation, for the U. S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration under Contract DE-AC04-94-AL85000.

  17. Evolution of microwave sea ice signatures during early summer and midsummer in the marginal ice zone

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Onstott, R. G.; Grenfell, T. C.; Matzler, C.; Luther, C. A.; Svendsen, E. A.

    1987-01-01

    Emissivities at frequencies from 5 to 94 GHz and backscatter at frequencies from 1 to 17 GHz were measured from sea ice in Fram Strait during the marginal Ice Zone Experiment in June and July of 1983 and 1984. The ice observed was primarily multiyear; the remainder, first-year ice, was often deformed. Results from this active and passive microwave study include the description of the evolution of the sea ice during early summer and midsummer; the absorption properties of summer snow; the interrelationship between ice thickness and the state and thickness of snow; and the modulation of the microwave signature, especially at the highest frequencies, by the freezing of the upper few centimeters of the ice.

  18. Modeling the winter-spring transition of first-year ice in the western Weddell Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jeffery, N.; Hunke, E. C.

    2014-09-01

    A new halodynamic scheme is coupled with the Los Alamos sea ice model to simulate western Weddell Sea ice during the winter-spring transition. One-dimensional temperature and salinity profiles are consistent with the warming and melt stages exhibited in first-year ice cores from the 2004 Ice Station POLarstern (ISPOL) expedition. Results are highly sensitive to snowfall. Simulations which use reanalysis precipitation data do not retain a snow cover beyond mid-December, and the warming transition occurs too rapidly. Model performance is greatly improved by prescribing a snowfall rate based on reported snow thicknesses. During ice growth prior to ISPOL, simulations indicate a period of thick snow and upper ice salinity enrichment. Gravity drainage model parameters impact the simulation immediately, while effects from the flushing parameter (snow porosity at the ice top) appear as the freeboard becomes negative. Simulations using a snow porosity of 0.3, consistent with that of wet snow, agree with salinity observations. The model does not include lateral sources of sea-water flooding, but vertical transport processes account for the high upper-ice salinities observed in ice cores at the start of the expedition. As the ice warms, a fresh upper-ice layer forms, and the high salinity layer migrates downward. This pattern is consistent with the early spring development stages of high-porosity layers observed in Antarctic sea ice that are associated with rich biological production. Future extensions of the model may be valuable in Antarctic ice-biogeochemical applications.

  19. EOS Aqua AMSR-E Arctic Sea Ice Validation Program: Arctic2003 Aircraft Campaign Flight Report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cavalieri, D. J.; Markus,T.

    2003-01-01

    In March 2003 a coordinated Arctic sea ice validation field campaign using the NASA Wallops P-3B aircraft was successfully completed. This campaign was part of the program for validating the Earth Observing System (EOS) Aqua Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) sea ice products. The AMSR-E, designed and built by the Japanese National Space Development Agency for NASA, was launched May 4, 2002 on the EOS Aqua spacecraft. The AMSR-E sea ice products to be validated include sea ice concentration, sea ice temperature, and snow depth on sea ice. This flight report describes the suite of instruments flown on the P-3, the objectives of each of the seven flights, the Arctic regions overflown, and the coordination among satellite, aircraft, and surface-based measurements. Two of the seven aircraft flights were coordinated with scientists making surface measurements of snow and ice properties including sea ice temperature and snow depth on sea ice at a study area near Barrow, AK and at a Navy ice camp located in the Beaufort Sea. Two additional flights were dedicated to making heat and moisture flux measurements over the St. Lawrence Island polynya to support ongoing air-sea-ice processes studies of Arctic coastal polynyas. The remaining flights covered portions of the Bering Sea ice edge, the Chukchi Sea, and Norton Sound.

  20. NASA IceBridge: Airborne surveys of the polar sea ice covers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richter-Menge, J.; Farrell, S. L.

    2014-12-01

    The NASA Operation IceBridge (OIB) airborne sea ice surveys are designed to continue a valuable series of sea ice thickness measurements by bridging the gap between NASA's Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite (ICESat), which operated from 2003 to 2009, and ICESat-2, which is scheduled for launch in 2017. Initiated in 2009, OIB has conducted campaigns over the western Arctic Ocean (March/April) and Southern Oceans (October/November) on an annual basis. Primary OIB sensors being used for sea ice observations include the Airborne Topographic Mapper laser altimeter, the Digital Mapping System digital camera, a Ku-band radar altimeter, a frequency-modulated continuous-wave (FMCW) snow radar, and a KT-19 infrared radiation pyrometer. Data from the campaigns are available to the research community at: http://nsidc.org/data/icebridge/. This presentation will summarize the spatial and temporal extent of the campaigns and highlight key scientific accomplishments, which include: Documented changes in the Arctic marine cryosphere since the dramatic sea ice loss of 2007 Novel snow depth measurements over sea ice in the Arctic Improved skill of April-to-September sea ice predictions via numerical ice/ocean models Validation of satellite altimetry measurements (ICESat, CryoSat-2, and IceSat-2/MABEL)

  1. Winter Ice and Snow as Models of Igneous Rock Formation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Romey, William D.

    1983-01-01

    Examines some features of ice and snow that offer teachers and researchers help in understanding many aspects of igneous processes and configurations. Careful observation of such processes as melting, decay, evolution, and snow accumulation provide important clues to understanding processes by which many kinds of rocks form. (Author/JN)

  2. Spatial and Temporal Variability of Surface Snow Accumulation and Snow Chemistry at East Antarctic Ice Sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Motoyama, H.; Ito, K.; Hirabayashi, M.

    2014-12-01

    Snow stakes along the traverse routes have been observed for long term monitoring program 'the variation of ice sheet surface mass balance' from the 1960's by the Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition in Shirase glacier drainage basin, East Antarctica. During the traverse route between coastal S16 point (69 02'S, 40 03'E, 580m a.s.l.) to inland Dome Fuji (77 22'S, 39 42'E, 3,810m a.s.l.), the snow stake observations every 2 km have been carried out from 1993. Yearly net snow accumulations from S16 to Dome Fuji were calculated. Heavy, modern and light snow events were observed. They were different in way accumulating spatial pattern depending on places. The yearly accumulation rates were compared with seasonal change of AAO-index (SAM). As a result, yearly accumulation rate and AAO-index showed the positive correlation.Surface snow samplings were conducted every 10km along the traverse route. Generally, the snow surface features are classified into three regions. (1) the coastal region: smooth surface, high snow accumulation (2) the katabatic slope region: rough sastrugi surface and smooth glazed surface(3) the high plateau region: smooth surface, little snow accumulation The chemistry of surface snow changes from the coast to inland. Furthermore, the chemical properties of snow are different for each surface at the same area. We can classify the surface snow with fresh drifting snow, deposited drift snow, soft and hard surface snow, sustrugi, surface hoar and so on. The value of each isotope ration and ion concentration greatly varied. Sometimes, snow might deposit thick equally. But the deposited snow was redistributed by the wind. When the snowstorm occurred, the blowing snow started to deposit in a certain opportunity. As for it, the area was not the uniform. It is necessary to discuss inhomogeneity of the depositional condition quantitatively.

  3. Mapping of ice layer extent and snow accumulation in the percolation zone of the Greenland ice sheet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nghiem, S. V.; Steffen, K.; Neumann, G.; Huff, R.

    2005-01-01

    The Greenland ice sheet underwent record extensive melt in 2002 and prolonged melt in 2003. The severe melting created a significant and extensive ice layer over the Greenland ice sheet. An innovative approach is developed to detect the ice layer formation using data acquired by the SeaWinds scatterometer on the QuikSCAT satellite. QuikSCAT backscatter together with in situ data from automatic weather stations of the Greenland Climate Network are used to map the extent of ice layer formation. The results reveal areas of extensive ice layer formed by the 2002 melt, which is consistent with the maximum melt extent in 2002. Moreover, during freezing seasons, QuikSCAT data show a linear decrease in backscatter (in decibels or dB) that is related to the amount of snow accumulation in the ice layer formation region. This snow accumulation signature is caused by the attenuation of radar waves in the snow layer, accumulating since the last major melt event, whose thickness appears as an exponential function in relation to the backscatter signature. We use the Greenland Climate Network data to calibrate the QuikSCAT accumulation rate in order to estimate and map snow accumulation. QuikSCAT results capture the extreme snowfall in mid-April 2003, which deposited more than 0.5 m of snow in a day as measured by the automated weather station at the NASA South East site. Large-scale QuikSCAT results show an anomalous increase of snow accumulation over the southeast region of Greenland during the 2002-2003 freezing season.

  4. Snow and Ice Applications of AVHRR in Polar Regions: Report of a Workshop

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Steffen, K.; Bindschadler, R.; Casassa, G.; Comiso, J.; Eppler, D.; Fetterer, F.; Hawkins, J.; Key, J.; Rothrock, D.; Thomas, R.; Weaver, R.; Welch, R.

    1993-01-01

    The third symposium on Remote Sensing of Snow and Ice, organized by the International Glaciological Society, took place in Boulder, Colorado, 17-22 May 1992. As part of this meeting a total of 21 papers was presented on snow and ice applications of Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) satellite data in polar regions. Also during this meeting a NASA sponsored Workshop was held to review the status of polar surface measurements from AVHRR. In the following we have summarized the ideas and recommendations from the workshop, and the conclusions of relevant papers given during the regular symposium sessions. The seven topics discussed include cloud masking, ice surface temperature, narrow-band albedo, ice concentration, lead statistics, sea-ice motion and ice-sheet studies with specifics on applications, algorithms and accuracy, following recommendations for future improvements. In general, we can affirm the strong potential of AVHRR for studying sea ice and snow covered surfaces, and we highly recommend this satellite data set for long-term monitoring of polar process studies. However, progress is needed to reduce the uncertainty of the retrieved parameters for all of the above mentioned topics to make this data set useful for direct climate applications such as heat balance studies and others. Further, the acquisition and processing of polar AVHRR data must become better coordinated between receiving stations, data centers and funding agencies to guarantee a long-term commitment to the collection and distribution of high quality data.

  5. Sea Ice on the Southern Ocean

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jacobs, Stanley S.

    1998-01-01

    Year-round satellite records of sea ice distribution now extend over more than two decades, providing a valuable tool to investigate related characteristics and circulations in the Southern Ocean. We have studied a variety of features indicative of oceanic and atmospheric interactions with Antarctic sea ice. In the Amundsen & Bellingshausen Seas, sea ice extent was found to have decreased by approximately 20% from 1973 through the early 1990's. This change coincided with and probably contributed to recently warmer surface conditions on the west side of the Antarctic Peninsula, where air temperatures have increased by approximately 0.5 C/decade since the mid-1940's. The sea ice decline included multiyear cycles of several years in length superimposed on high interannual variability. The retreat was strongest in summer, and would have lowered the regional mean ice thickness, with attendant impacts upon vertical heat flux and the formation of snow ice and brine. The cause of the regional warming and loss of sea ice is believed to be linked to large-scale circulation changes in the atmosphere and ocean. At the eastern end of the Weddell Gyre, the Cosmonaut Polyna revealed greater activity since 1986, a recurrence pattern during recent winters and two possible modes of formation. Persistence in polynya location was noted off Cape Ann, where the coastal current can interact more strongly with the Antarctic Circumpolar Current. As a result of vorticity conservation, locally enhanced upwelling brings warmer deep water into the mixed layer, causing divergence and melting. In the Ross Sea, ice extent fluctuates over periods of several years, with summer minima and winter maxima roughly in phase. This leads to large interannual cycles of sea ice range, which correlate positively with meridinal winds, regional air temperatures and subsequent shelf water salinities. Deep shelf waters display considerable interannual variability, but have freshened by approximately 0.03/decade since the late 1950's. That could have slowed the thermohaline circulation beneath the Ross Ice Shelf and the properties or volume of local bottom water production.

  6. Temporal dynamics of ikaite in experimental sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.; Srensen, 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 ?mol kg-1, (2) an internal layer with ikaite concentrations of 200-400 ?mol kg-1, and (3) a bottom layer with ikaite concentrations of <100 ?mol kg-1. Snowfall events caused the sea ice to warm and 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.

  7. Albedo over rough snow and ice surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lhermitte, Stef; Abermann, Jakob; Kinnard, Christophe

    2014-05-01

    Surface albedo determines the shortwave radiation balance, arguably the largest energy balance component of snow and ice surfaces. Consequently, incorporation of the spatio-temporal variability of albedo is essential when assessing the surface energy balance of snow and ice surfaces. This can be done by using ground-based measurements or albedo data derived from remote sensing, or by modelling albedo based on radiative transfer models or empirically based parameterizations. One decisive factor when incorporating albedo data is the representativeness of surface albedo, certainly over rough surfaces where albedo measurements at a specific location (i.e., apparent albedo) can differ strongly from the material albedo or the true albedo (i.e., effective albedo) depending on the position of the sun/sensor and the surface roughness. This stresses the need for a comprehensive understanding of the effect of surface roughness on albedo and its impact when using albedo data for validation of remote sensing imagery, interpretation of automated weather station (AWS) radiation data or incorporation in energy balance models. To assess the effect of surface roughness on albedo an intra-surface radiative transfer (ISRT) model was combined with albedo measurements on a penitente field on Glaciar Tapado in the semi-arid Andes of Northern Chile. The ISRT model shows albedo reductions between 0.06 and 0.35 relative to flat surfaces with a uniform material albedo. The magnitude of these reductions primarily depends on the penitente geometry, but the shape and spatial variability of the material albedo also play a major role. Secondly, the ISRT model was used to reveal the effect of using apparent albedo to infer the effective albedo over a rough surface. This effect is especially strong for narrow penitentes, resulting in sampling biases up to 0.05. The sampling biases are more pronounced when the sensor is low above the surface, but remain relatively constant throughout the day. Consequently, the only beneficial approach to minimize the sampling bias of surface albedo over rough surfaces is to use a large number of samples at various places. Thirdly, the temporal evolution of broadband albedo over a penitente-covered surface was analyzed to place the experiments and their uncertainty into a larger temporal context. Time series of albedo measurements at an automated weather station over two seasons reveal albedo decreases early in the ablation season. These decreases stabilize from February onwards with variations being caused by fresh snow-fall events. The 2009/2010 and 2011/2012 seasons differ notably, where the latter shows lower albedo caused by larger penitentes. Finally, a comparison of the ground-based albedo observations with Landsat and MODIS-derived albedo showed that both satellite derived albedo products capture the albedo evolution with root mean square errors of 0.08 and 0.15, respectively, but also illustrate their shortcomings related to temporal resolution and spatial heterogeneity over mountain glaciers.

  8. Microwave signatures of snow and fresh water ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schmugge, T.; Wilheit, T. T.; Gloersen, P.; Meier, M. F.; Frank, D.; Dirmhirn, I.

    1973-01-01

    During March of 1971, the NASA Convair 990 Airborne Observatory carrying microwave radiometers in the wavelength range 0.8 to 21 cm was flown over dry snow with different substrata: Lake ice at Bear Lake in Utah; wet soil in the Yampa River Valley near Steamboat Springs, Colorado; and glacier ice, firm and wet snow on the South Cascade Glacier in Washington. The data presented indicate that the transparency of the snow cover is a function of wavelength. False-color images of microwave brightness temperatures obtained from a scanning radiometer operating at a wavelength of 1.55 cm demonstrate the capability of scanning radiometers for mapping snowfields.

  9. Arctic Sea Ice Predictability and the Sea Ice Prediction Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiggins, H. V.; Stroeve, J. C.

    2014-12-01

    Drastic reductions in Arctic sea ice cover have increased the demand for Arctic sea ice predictions by a range of stakeholders, including local communities, resource managers, industry and the public. The science of sea-ice prediction has been challenged to keep up with these developments. Efforts such as the SEARCH Sea Ice Outlook (SIO; http://www.arcus.org/sipn/sea-ice-outlook) and the Sea Ice for Walrus Outlook have provided a forum for the international sea-ice prediction and observing community to explore and compare different approaches. The SIO, originally organized by the Study of Environmental Change (SEARCH), is now managed by the new Sea Ice Prediction Network (SIPN), which is building a collaborative network of scientists and stakeholders to improve arctic sea ice prediction. The SIO synthesizes predictions from a variety of methods, including heuristic and from a statistical and/or dynamical model. In a recent study, SIO data from 2008 to 2013 were analyzed. The analysis revealed that in some years the predictions were very successful, in other years they were not. Years that were anomalous compared to the long-term trend have proven more difficult to predict, regardless of which method was employed. This year, in response to feedback from users and contributors to the SIO, several enhancements have been made to the SIO reports. One is to encourage contributors to provide spatial probability maps of sea ice cover in September and the first day each location becomes ice-free; these are an example of subseasonal to seasonal, local-scale predictions. Another enhancement is a separate analysis of the modeling contributions. In the June 2014 SIO report, 10 of 28 outlooks were produced from models that explicitly simulate sea ice from dynamic-thermodynamic sea ice models. Half of the models included fully-coupled (atmosphere, ice, and ocean) models that additionally employ data assimilation. Both of these subsets (models and coupled models with data assimilation) have a far narrower spread in their prediction, indicating that the results of these more sophisticated methods are converging. Here we summarize and synthesize the 2014 contributions to the SIO, highlight the important questions and challenges that remain to be addressed, and present data on stakeholder uses of the SIO and related SIPN products.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-04-01

    The observed changes in physical properties of sea ice such as decreased thickness and increased melt pond cover severely impact the energy balance of Arctic sea ice. Increased light transmission leads to increased deposition of solar energy and thus plays a crucial role for sea-ice-melt as well as for the amount and timing of under-ice primary production. Recent developments in underwater technology provide new opportunities to undertake challenging research at the largely inaccessible underside of sea ice. We measured spectral under-ice radiance and irradiance onboard the new Nereid Under-Ice (Nereid-UI) underwater robotic vehicle, during a cruise of the R/V Polarstern to 83°N 6°W in the Arctic Ocean in July 2014. Nereid-UI is a next generation hybrid remotely operated vehicle (H-ROV) designed for both remotely-piloted and autonomous surveys underneath fixed and moving sea ice. Here we present results from the first comprehensive scientific dive of Nereid-UI 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 on floe scale. Our results indicate that surface properties dominate the spatial distribution of the under-ice light field, while sea ice-thickness and snow-depth are most important for mean light levels.

  11. Observations of Recent Arctic Sea Ice Volume Loss and Its Impact on Ocean-Atmosphere Energy Exchange and Ice Production

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  12. Sea-ice velocity fields estimation on Ross Sea with NOAA-AVHRR

    SciTech Connect

    Flores, M.M.; Maitre, H.; Parmiggiani, F.

    1995-09-01

    A complete methodology is proposed for automatic tracking of sea-ice in daylight AVHRR data. Two aspects are specially outlined: the use of partially cloudy monocular images and the estimation of ice pack trajectories along an image sequence. First, a classification technique is applied for the detection of snow-ice regions. Then, an optimal matching filter is used for the sea-ice motion estimation. The derived vector field is homogeneous and shows the ice pack motion along three days image data.

  13. Sea Ice Thickness Variability in Fram Strait

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gerland, S.; Renner, A.; Haas, C.; Nicolaus, M.; Granskog, M.; Hansen, E.; Hendricks, S.; Hudson, S. R.; Beckers, J.; Goodwin, H.

    2011-12-01

    On this poster, we show results from airborne electromagnetic (EM) sea ice thickness measurements demonstrating the temporal and spatial complexity of the ice thickness distribution in Fram Strait between Greenland and Svalbard. Knowledge about the spatial and temporal sea ice thickness distribution in the Arctic Ocean is necessary to assess the state of the sea-ice cover, and to understand relevant processes and changes. Since 2003, the Norwegian Polar Institute (NPI) has been conducting systematic in situ monitoring of sea ice thickness in the western Fram Strait, using both ground and airborne techniques. Fram Strait is a key region for large-scale ice dynamics in the Arctic. It represents the main export route for sea ice from the Arctic and the only deep strait connecting the interior Arctic Ocean and the rest of the world oceans. The ice thickness distribution in this region is the result of a combination of dynamic and thermodynamic sea ice processes. Transects for airborne EM observations were flown by NPI in spring 2005, 2008, and late summer 2010, and by the Alfred Wegener Institute in spring 2009. The regional ice thickness distributions are supplemented with ground measurements including snow thickness observations taken on ice stations during ship expeditions in spring 2005, 2007, and 2008 and annually in late summer from 2003 to 2011. From all these observations, we can show the differing characteristics of the thickness distributions in spring (2005, 2008, 2009) and late summer (2010) when the ice thickness is at its annual maximum (end of the freezing period) and minimum (end of the melting period), respectively. The ice thickness distribution can also vary spatially over short distances in north-south direction. Features such as the East Greenland Polynya, which varies in size for a given time from year to year, contribute to the spatial and temporal variability on the Greenlandic Shelf. In spring 2005, a gradient is visible across Fram Strait from thinner pack ice at the eastern ice edge towards thicker pack ice on the Greenland shelf in the western part of Fram Strait with thick multiyear ice. The spring modal thickness ranged from about 2 m to 3.5 m. In contrast, the spatial variability of the modal thickness in 2008 is larger than observed in the previous campaigns with a wider range of modal ice thicknesses, predominantly due to thinner ice than in 2005. Finally, during late summer 2010 modal thicknesses in the central and eastern part of Fram Strait ranged from about 1 to 2 m. At the same time distributions were in general narrower than observed in previous years, showing a decrease of the fraction of thick pressure ridges. Thick ice was measured only in the westernmost part of Fram Strait. These observations are in agreement with a reported trend towards a generally larger amount of first-year ice versus multiyear ice in the Arctic.

  14. About uncertainties in sea ice thickness retrieval from satellite radar altimetry: results from the ESA-CCI Sea Ice ECV Project Round Robin Exercise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kern, S.; Khvorostovsky, K.; Skourup, H.; Rinne, E.; Parsakhoo, Z. S.; Djepa, V.; Wadhams, P.; Sandven, S.

    2014-03-01

    One goal of the European Space Agency Climate Change Initiative sea ice Essential Climate Variable project is to provide a quality controlled 20 year long data set of Arctic Ocean winter-time sea ice thickness distribution. An important step to achieve this goal is to assess the accuracy of sea ice thickness retrieval based on satellite radar altimetry. For this purpose a data base is created comprising sea ice freeboard derived from satellite radar altimetry between 1993 and 2012 and collocated observations of snow and sea ice freeboard from Operation Ice Bridge (OIB) and CryoSat Validation Experiment (CryoVEx) air-borne campaigns, of sea ice draft from moored and submarine Upward Looking Sonar (ULS), and of snow depth from OIB campaigns, Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer aboard EOS (AMSR-E) and the Warren Climatology (Warren et al., 1999). An inter-comparison of the snow depth data sets stresses the limited usefulness of Warren climatology snow depth for freeboard-to-thickness conversion under current Arctic Ocean conditions reported in other studies. This is confirmed by a comparison of snow freeboard measured during OIB and CryoVEx and snow freeboard computed from radar altimetry. For first-year ice the agreement between OIB and AMSR-E snow depth within 0.02 m suggests AMSR-E snow depth as an appropriate alternative. Different freeboard-to-thickness and freeboard-to-draft conversion approaches are realized. The mean observed ULS sea ice draft agrees with the mean sea ice draft computed from radar altimetry within the uncertainty bounds of the data sets involved. However, none of the realized approaches is able to reproduce the seasonal cycle in sea ice draft observed by moored ULS satisfactorily. A sensitivity analysis of the freeboard-to-thickness conversion suggests: in order to obtain sea ice thickness as accurate as 0.5 m from radar altimetry, besides a freeboard estimate with centimetre accuracy, an ice-type dependent sea ice density is as mandatory as a snow depth with centimetre accuracy.

  15. Helicopter borne radar derived snow thickness estimates over fast ice in East Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galin, N.; Markus, T.; Worby, A. P.; Leuschen, C.; Gogineni, P. S.

    2009-12-01

    The polar regions play a key role in the Earth's climate system, and sea ice has a major influence on ocean-atmosphere interaction and ocean circulation. Antarctic sea ice and its snow cover are integral components of the global climate system, yet their thickness and variability are poorly understood and subsequently their representation in global climate models is poor. Remote sensing is the key to monitoring the dynamic nature and changes of sea ice and its snow cover. Snow depth on sea ice is operationally derived from the EOS Aqua Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) measurements but thorough validation is still an issue. To address this, research is currently directed to airborne snow depth investigation techniques capable of covering large areas to validate satellite data. In October - November, 2008 a helicopter equipped with a laser altimeter, a 2 - 8 GHz FMCW radar and a digital camera was flown over the fast ice near to the Australian base, Davis, 68.35' S, 77.58' E. An area 80 x 200 m was over flown repeatedly by the helicopter at varying altitudes and velocities for cross validation and precision assessment purposes. Thorough in-situ measurements were gathered over the area for ground truth purposes. From this data it is seen that the range of snow thickness is up to 300mm, placing stringent requirements on the accuracy of the radar that theoretically has a vertical resolution of 25mm. The process of extracting snow thickness estimates from the helicopter borne radar measurements has so far been hampered by the noise in the radar not only by the instability of the helicopter, but also by the aggravation of the noise with increasing altitude. Fortunately, it was found that the noise is of a predicable nature and it has been possible to clean up the radar signal. Subsequently, implementing this denoising algorithm across the full gathered dataset, in this paper the first helicopter borne radar derived snow thickness estimates over fast ice in Antarctica are presented and compared with the in-situ data. Five mile long transects over which ship based observation data was gathered will also be analysed for snow thickness distribution.

  16. Sea ice in the northern Alaskan coastal system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perovich, D. K.

    2006-12-01

    Sea ice is an integral part of the northern Alaskan coastal system. It serves as a barrier to energy and moisture exchange between the ocean and atmosphere, protects shorelines from storm induced coastal erosion, influences atmospheric chemistry, provides a habitat for an ice-ocean ecosystem, and supports human activities from transportation to hunting. The ice cover of the northern Alaskan coastal system is a mixture of shorefast ice and moving pack ice. It is predominantly first year ice with an occasional multiyear floe. The extent of the shorefast ice varies spatially along the coast and temporally over the course of the ice season and depends primarily on seafloor topography, ice conditions, and wind forcing. Shore leads appear episodically throughout the winter, greatly influencing the heat, moisture, and chemistry of the local atmosphere. By spring, undeformed first year ice is between one and two meters thick, while the thickness of deformed ice in ridges can exceed ten meters. The snow cover on level ice is relatively thin, typically typically averaging less than 20 cm. The snow pack often has a salty basal layer resulting from the highly saline surface skim formed during initial ice growth. During the melt season extensive ponding of the surfaceoccurs, with pond fractions exceeding 50%. The albedo of the ice cover sharply decreases in response to the extensive ponding. Surface melting on shorefast ice is accelerated by the close proximity to land, where air temperatures are warmer than the freezing point.

  17. C-Band Backscatter Measurements of Winter Sea-Ice in the Weddell Sea, Antarctica

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Drinkwater, M. R.; Hosseinmostafa, R.; Gogineni, P.

    1995-01-01

    During the 1992 Winter Weddell Gyre Study, a C-band scatterometer was used from the German ice-breaker R/V Polarstern to obtain detailed shipborne measurement scans of Antarctic sea-ice. The frequency-modulated continuous-wave (FM-CW) radar operated at 4-3 GHz and acquired like- (VV) and cross polarization (HV) data at a variety of incidence angles (10-75 deg). Calibrated backscatter data were recorded for several ice types as the icebreaker crossed the Weddell Sea and detailed measurements were made of corresponding snow and sea-ice characteristics at each measurement site, together with meteorological information, radiation budget and oceanographic data. The primary scattering contributions under cold winter conditions arise from the air/snow and snow/ice interfaces. Observations indicate so e similarities with Arctic sea-ice scattering signatures, although the main difference is generally lower mean backscattering coefficients in the Weddell Sea. This is due to the younger mean ice age and thickness, and correspondingly higher mean salinities. In particular, smooth white ice found in 1992 in divergent areas within the Weddell Gyre ice pack was generally extremely smooth and undeformed. Comparisons of field scatterometer data with calibrated 20-26 deg incidence ERS-1 radar image data show close correspondence, and indicate that rough Antarctic first-year and older second-year ice forms do not produce as distinctively different scattering signatures as observed in the Arctic. Thick deformed first-year and second-year ice on the other hand are clearly discriminated from younger undeformed ice. thereby allowing successful separation of thick and thin ice. Time-series data also indicate that C-band is sensitive to changes in snow and ice conditions resulting from atmospheric and oceanographic forcing and the local heat flux environment. Variations of several dB in 45 deg incidence backscatter occur in response to a combination of thermally-regulated parameters including sea-ice brine volume, snow and ice complex dielectric properties, and snow physical properties.

  18. Cladoceran zooplankton abundance under clear and snow-covered ice

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    DeBates, T.J.; Chipps, S.R.; Ward, M.C.; Werlin, K.B.; Lorenzen, P.B.

    2003-01-01

    We described the distribution of cladoceran zooplankton under the ice in a natural, glacial lake. Local light availability apparently altered the spatial distribution of cladocerans. Light levels measured under snow-covered areas (0.178 lux) were an order of magnitude less than those measured at the same depth under clear ice (1.750 lux). Cladoceran density under snow-covered areas was significantly higher (Bosmina spp.=3.34/L; Daphnia spp.=0.61/L) than cladoceran abundance under clear ice (Bosmina spp.=0.91/L; Daphnia spp.=0.19/L).

  19. Snow and ice volume on Mount Spurr Volcano, Alaska, 1981

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    March, Rod S.; Mayo, Lawrence R.; Trabant, Dennis C.

    1997-01-01

    Mount Spurr (3,374 meters altitude) is an active volcano 130 kilometers west of Anchorage, Alaska, with an extensive covering of seasonal and perennial snow, and glaciers. Knowledge of the volume and distribution of snow and ice on a volcano aids in assessing hydrologic hazards such as floods, mudflows, and debris flows. In July 1981, ice thickness was measured at 68 locations on the five main glaciers of Mount Spurr: 64 of these measurements were made using a portable 1.7 megahertz monopulse ice-radar system, and 4 measurements were made using the helicopter altimeter where the glacier bed was exposed by ice avalanching. The distribution of snow and ice derived from these measurements is depicted on contour maps and in tables compiled by altitude and by drainage basins. Basal shear stresses at 20 percent of the measured locations ranged from 200 to 350 kilopascals, which is significantly higher than the 50 to 150 kilopascals commonly referred to in the literature as the 'normal' range for glaciers. Basal shear stresses higher than 'normal' have also been found on steep glaciers on volcanoes in the Cascade Range in the western United States. The area of perennial snow and ice coverage on Mount Spurr was 360 square kilometers in 1981, with an average thickness of 190?50 meters. Seasonal snow increases the volume about 1 percent and increases the area about 30 percent with a maximum in May or June. Runoff from Mount Spurr feeds the Chakachatna River and the Chichantna River (a tributary of the Beluga River). The Chakachatna River drainage contains 14 cubic kilometers of snow and ice and the Chichantna River drainage contains 53 cubic kilometers. The snow and ice volume on the mountain was 67?17 cubic kilometers, approximately 350 times more snow and ice than was on Mount St. Helens before its May 18, 1980, eruption, and 15 times more snow and ice than on Mount Rainier, the most glacierized of the measured volcanoes in the Cascade Range. On the basis of these relative quantities, hazard-producing glaciovolcanic phenomena at Mount Spurr could be significantly greater than similar phenomena at Cascade Volcanoes.

  20. Geochemical Characteristics And Zones Of Surface Snow On East Antarctic Ice sheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kang, J.

    2004-12-01

    Geochemical characteristics and zones of surface snow on east Antarctic Ice Sheet Jiancheng KANG1,4, Leibao LIU1, Dahe QIN2, Dali WANG1, Jiahong WEN1, Dejun TAN1, Zhongqin LI2, Jun LI3 & Xiaowei ZHANG1,4 1 Polar Research Institute of China, Shanghai 200129, China; 2 Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China; 3 Australian Antarctic Division and Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems CRC, Private Bag 80 Hobart, Tasmania, 7001, Australia; 4 Geography Department of Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000, China Correspondence should be addressed to Jiancheng KANG (email: kangjc@sh163.net, kangjc@126.com ) Abstract The surface-snow geochemical characteristics are discussed on the East Antarctic Ice Sheet, depending on the stable isotopes ratios of oxygen and hydrogen, concentration of impurities (soluble-ions and insoluble micro-particle) in surface snow collected on the ice sheet. The purpose is to study geochemical zones on the East Antarctic Ice Sheet and to research sources and transportation route of the water vapor and the impurities in surface snow. It has been found that the ratio coefficients, as S1, d1 in the equation OD = S1O18O + d1, are changed near the elevation 2000m on the ice sheet. The weight ratio of Cl-/Na+ at the area below the elevation of 2000m is close to the ratio in the sea salt; but it is about 2 times that of the sea salt, at the inland area up to the elevation of 2000m. The concentrations of non-sea-salt Ca2+ ion (nssCa2+) and fine-particle increase at the interior up to the elevation 2000m. At the region below the elevation of 2000m, the impurity concentration is decreasing with the elevation increasing. Near coastal region, the surface snow has a high concentration of impurity, where the elevation is below 800m. Combining the translating processes of water-vapor and impurities, it suggests that the region up to the elevation 2000m is affected by large-scale circulation with longitude-direction, and that water-vapor and impurities in surface snow come from long sources. The region below the elevation 2000m is affected by some strong cyclones acting at peripheral region of the ice sheet, the sources of water and impurities could be at high latitude sea and coast. The area below elevation 800m is affected by local coastal cyclones. Keywords: Antarctic Ice Sheet, Snow, Geochemical Zones

  1. Measurements of sea ice proxies from Antarctic coastal shallow cores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maffezzoli, Niccol; Vallelonga, Paul; Spolaor, Andrea; Barbante, Carlo; Frezzotti, Massimo

    2015-04-01

    Despite its close relationship with climate, the climatic impact of sea ice remains only partially understood: an indication of this is the Arctic sea ice which is declining at a faster rate than models predict. Thus, the need for reliable sea ice proxies is of crucial importance. Among the sea ice proxies that can be extracted from ice cores, interest has recently been shown in the halogens Iodine (I) and Bromine (Br) (Spolaor, A., et al., 2013a, 2013b). The production of sea ice is a source of Sodium and Bromine aerosols through frost flower crystal formation and sublimation of salty blowing snow, while Iodine is emitted by the algae living underneath sea ice. We present here the results of Na, Br and I measurements in Antarctic shallow cores, drilled during a traverse made in late 2013 - early 2014 from Talos Dome (72 00'S, 15912'E) to GV7 (70 41'S, 158 51'E) seeking for sea ice signature. The samples were kept frozen until the analyses, that were carried out by Sector Field Mass Spectroscopy Inductive Coupled Plasma (SFMS-ICP): special precautions and experimental steps were adopted for the detection of such elements. The coastal location of the cores allows a clear signal from the nearby sea ice masses. The multiple cores are located about 50 km from each other and can help us to infer the provenance of the sea ice that contributed to the proxy signature. Moreover, by simultaneously determining other chemical elements and compounds in the snow, it is possible to determine the relative timing of their deposition, thus helping us to understand their processes of emission and deposition.

  2. LES modeling of wind over Antarctic snow-ice formations using a dynamic surface roughness approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giometto, M. G.; Trujillo, E.; Leonard, K. C.; Maksym, T. L.; Meneveau, C. V.; Lehning, M.; Parlange, M. B.

    2013-12-01

    Wind surface drag over sea-ice is a primary control on sea-ice flow patterns and deformations at scales that are important for climate and weather prediction models. Here, we perform a series of Large Eddy Simulations (LES) of fully developed flow over high-resolution snow-ice surfaces of Antarctic sea ice floes to study surface drag and roughness parameters at process scales from 1 cm to 100 m. Snow/ice surface morphology was obtained using a Terrestrial Laser Scanner during the SIPEX II (Sea Ice Physics and Ecosystem experiment II) research voyage to East Antarctica (September-November 2012). LES are performed on a regular domain adopting a mixed pseudo-spectral/finite difference spatial discretization. A scale-dependent dynamic subgrid-scale model based on Lagrangian time averaging is adopted to determine the eddy-viscosity in the bulk of the flow. The effects of large-scale features of the surface on the wind flow (those features that can be resolved in LES) are accounted for through an immersed boundary method. Conversely, the drag forces caused by subgrid-scale features of the surface should be accounted for through a parameterization. However the effective aerodynamic surface roughness parameter z0 for snow ice is not known. Hence, a dynamic approach is utilized, in which this parameter is determined using the first-principles based constraint that the total momentum flux (drag) must be independent on grid-filter scale. This dynamic surface roughness model is inspired by the Germano identity, traditionally used to determine model parameters for closing subgrid-scale stresses in the bulk of a turbulent flow. This type of model has been previously applied to flow over multi-scale terrain and ocean waves but never for snow-ice surfaces. The resulting dynamic parameter will be compared with values obtained for solid terrain and ocean sea surface values, and the implications on overall drag forces on snow ice surfaces will be discussed.

  3. Kindergarten Explorations with Snow, Ice, and Water

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carroll, Martha A.

    1978-01-01

    Using winter snow, kindergarten students can explore the properties of water. Students demonstrate melting, freezing, expansion, and evaporation through a number of activities involving a paper cup and a scoop of snow. Procedures and student reactions are described in detail by the teacher-author. (MA)

  4. Numerical simulations on artificial reduction of snow and ice ablation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olefs, M.; Obleitner, F.

    2007-06-01

    This snow modeling study investigates two methods to artificially reduce ablation in Alpine glacier ski resorts. Using the snow cover model SNTHERM, a first set of sensitivity studies focuses on the potential effects of artificial compaction of snow during winter. In comparison to a reference run representing the natural conditions, a stepwise increase of the model's new snow density toward 500 kg m-3 yields no more than 218 kg m-2 water equivalent being saved at the end of the ablation period. Further studies consider effects of covering the snow surface with different materials in spring. The physical properties and the energetic processes at the model's surface node are parameterized accordingly. The results show that 2489 kg m-2 water equivalent are saved compared to the reference run. Thus 15% of the winter snow cover as well as the whole amount of the underlying glacier ice are preserved. This indicates that surface covering reduces snow and ice ablation more effectively than snow compaction, which is confirmed by field measurements.

  5. Physical characteristics of summer sea ice across the Arctic Ocean

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tucker, W. B., III; Gow, A.J.; Meese, D.A.; Bosworth, H.W.; Reimnitz, E.

    1999-01-01

    Sea ice characteristics were investigated during July and August on the 1994 transect across the Arctic Ocean. Properties examined from ice cores included salinity, temperature, and ice structure. Salinities measured near zero at the surface, increasing to 3-4??? at the ice-water interface. Ice crystal texture was dominated by columnar ice, comprising 90% of the ice sampled. Surface albedos of various ice types, measured with radiometers, showed integrated shortwave albedos of 0.1 to 0.3 for melt ponds, 0.5 for bare, discolored ice, and 0.6 to 0.8 for a deteriorated surface or snow-covered ice. Aerial photography was utilized to document the distribution of open melt ponds, which decreased from 12% coverage of the ice surface in late July at 76??N to almost none in mid-August at 88??N. Most melt ponds were shallow, and depth bore no relationship to size. Sediment was pervasive from the southern Chukchi Sea to the north pole, occurring in bands or patches. It was absent in the Eurasian Arctic, where it had been observed on earlier expeditions. Calculations of reverse trajectories of the sediment-bearing floes suggest that the southernmost sediment was entrained during ice formation in the Beaufort Sea while more northerly samples probably originated in the East Siberian Sea, some as far west as the New Siberian Islands.

  6. Managing IceBridge Airborne Mission Data at the National Snow and Ice Data Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brodzik, M.; Kaminski, M. L.; Deems, J. S.; Scambos, T. A.

    2010-12-01

    Operation IceBridge (OIB) is a NASA airborne geophysical survey mission conducting laser altimetry, ice-penetrating radar profiling, gravimetry and other geophysical measurements to monitor and characterize the Earth's cryosphere. The IceBridge mission will operate from 2009 until after the launch of ICESat-II (currently planned for 2015), and provides continuity of measurements between that mission and its predecessor. Data collection sites include the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets and the sea ice pack regions of both poles. These regions include some of the most rapidly changing areas of the cryosphere. IceBridge is also collecting data in East Antarctica via the University of Texas ICECAP program and in Alaska via the University of Alaska, Fairbanks glacier mapping program. The NSIDC Distributed Active Archive Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder provides data archive and distribution support for the IceBridge mission. Our IceBridge work is based on two guiding principles: ensuring preservation of the data, and maximizing usage of the data. This broadens our work beyond the typical scope of a data archive. In addition to the necessary data management, discovery, distribution, and outreach functions, we are also developing tools that will enable broader use of the data, and integrating diverse data types to enable new science research. Researchers require expeditious access to data collected from the IceBridge missions; our archive approach balances that need with our long-term preservation goal. We have adopted a "fast-track" approach to publish data quickly after collection and make it available via FTP download. Subsequently, data sets are archived in the NASA EOSDIS ECS system, which enables data discovery and distribution with the appropriate backup, documentation, and metadata to assure its availability for future research purposes. NSIDC is designing an IceBridge data portal to allow interactive data search, exploration, and subsetting via a map-based interface. This portal will provide flight line rendering and multi-instrument data previewing capabilities to facilitate use of the wide array of data types, resolutions, and configurations in this dynamic airborne mission. Together with the IceBridge Science Team and Ice Bridge Science Working Groups, NSIDC is generating value-added products from the Ice Bridge data streams and other ancillary data. These products will provide simple, useful combinations of Ice Bridge products and regional maps of important geophysical parameters from other sources. Planned value-added products include: (1) gridded products in which new profiles from Ice Bridge (e.g. elevation or ice thickness) are combined with existing DEMs or bed maps to produce revised grids and (2) flight-profile multi-instrument products in which data from several instruments are combined into ice sheet profiles (surface elevation, ice thickness, internal reflection data, bed reflection intensity, and gravimetry), sea ice profiles (freeboard, snow cover, and thickness), and surface data profiles (elevation, slope, roughness, near-surface layering, and imagery).

  7. Sea-ice-thickness variability in the Chukchi Sea, spring and summer 2002-2004

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shirasawa, Kunio; Eicken, Hajo; Tateyama, Kazutaka; Takatsuka, Toru; Kawamura, Toshiyuki

    2009-08-01

    Measurements of sea-ice thickness were obtained from drill holes, an ice-based electromagnetic induction instrument (IEM), and a ship-borne electromagnetic induction instrument (SEM) during the early-melt season in the southern Chukchi Sea in 2002 and 2004, and in late summer 2003 at the time of minimum ice extent in the northern Chukchi Sea. An ice roughness criterion was applied to distinguish between level and rough or ridged ice. Ice-thickness modes in the probability density functions (PDFs) derived from drill-hole and IEM measurements agreed well, with modes at 1.5-1.6 and 1.8-1.9 m for all data from level ice. The PDFs derived from SEM measurements show that the primary modes are at 0.1 and 1.1 m in 2003 and 0.7 m in 2004. In 2002 and 2004, significant fractions (between one-third and one-half) of level ice were found to consist of rafted ice segments. Snow depth varied significantly between years, with 2004 data showing more than half the snow cover on level ice to be at or below 0.05 m depth in late spring. Ice growth simulations and examination of ice drift and deformation history indicate that impacts of atmospheric and oceanic warming on level-ice thickness in the region over the past few decades are masked to a large extent by variability in snow depth and the contribution of deformation processes. In comparison with submarine sonar ice-thickness data from previous decades, a reduction in ice thickness by about 0.5-1 m is in part explained by the replacement of multi-year with first-year ice over the Chukchi and Beaufort shelves.

  8. Cold, Ice, and Snow Safety (For Parents)

    MedlinePLUS

    ... the top layer gets wet from snow or freezing rain, they can peel off some clothes down ... both directions. Operate at a reasonable and prudent speed for trail conditions. Remember that alcohol and snowmobiles ...

  9. Mercury content of Antarctic ice and snow: Further results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sheppard, D. S.; Patterson, J. E.; McAdam, M. K.

    Surface and subsurface snow and ice samples from a remote site on the Antarctic Plateau near the Victoria Land Dry Valleys, Antarctica, have been analysed for mercury. Ultra-clean sampling techniques followed by on site extraction and analysis gave a mean result of 0.96 pg g -1 for surface snows, and 0.4 pg g -1 for samples from the 4.6 m deep pit. The results confirm the indications of a previous study, that the mercury levels in Antarctic snows are very much lower than determined in other studies.

  10. Seasonal Variation of Antarctic Sea-Ice Freeboard Heights and Thicknesses from ICESat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yi, D.; Zwally, H. J.

    2004-12-01

    The distribution of sea ice affects Earth's radiative balance and atmosphere and ocean circulation. The study of sea-ice thickness distribution and volume variation is an important part of understanding the Earth's climate system. ICESat measures the mean surface elevation of flat surfaces to better than 3 cm over its 70 m laser footprints spaced at 170 m. This provides an important tool to study sea ice. Previous knowledge of Antarctic sea-ice freeboard and thickness is based on very limited information from surface and ship-based measurements. The ICESat orbit has an inclination of 94 and its ground tracks cover all sea ice surrounding Antarctica. Using open water and thin ice as reference sea level, a novel technique has been developed to measure sea-ice freeboard using ICESat measured elevation data. With estimates of snow, brine, and sea-ice density, combined with snow depth data from AMSR-E, sea-ice thickness can be derived from the freeboard. Sea-ice freeboard and thickness were calculated along ICESat ground tracks first and then gridded to 50 x 50 km grid maps. Three periods of Antarctic sea-ice freeboard and thickness data have been studied. Sea-ice freeboard and thickness distributions show clear seasonal variation. During the Antarctic winter (Oct-Nov, 2003), sea ice grows to its seasonal maximum. Thicker sea ice surrounds the Antarctic continent; thinner sea ice is distributed near Princess Ragnhild Coast and the Amundsen and Bellingshausen Seas; the mean thickness of winter sea ice is 2.9 m. During the Antarctic summer (Feb-Mar, 2004), thinner sea ice melts away. Sea ice is mainly distributed in the Weddell Sea near the Antarctic Peninsula and Ross Sea, with a mean thickness of 2.4 m. During the Antarctic fall (May-Jun, 2004), large areas of new, thinner sea ice forms. Thinner sea ice covers large areas of the Weddell and Ross Seas, and the overall mean thickness is 1.9 m. Overall, ICESat measurements provide unprecedented accuracy and spatial and temporal coverage of sea-ice freeboard and thickness and can be used to monitor sea-ice volume, which is an indicator of climate change.

  11. Surface-based passive microwave studies of multiyear sea ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grenfell, T. C.

    1992-01-01

    Results are presented on surface-based multifrequency passive microwave observations of multiyear (MY) sea ice in the eastern Arctic Basin, the Beaufort Sea, the Canadian archipelago, and the northern Greenland Sea. The analyses of these data show that the magnitude of the spectral gradient of emissivity is directly related to the existence and the thickness of a decomposed surface ice layer with very high porosity. Spectra for melt ponds with a frozen surface layer closely resembled those of lake ice and showed a positive spectral gradient. The variance among emissivity spectra for MY ice was caused primarily by the distributions of melt ponds and by the presence of significant amounts of scattering inhomogeneities in the snow and the upper 20-30-cm layer of the ice.

  12. Multiple Scattering of Laser Pulses in Snow Over Ice: Modeling the Potential Bias in ICESat Altimetry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davis, A. B.; Varnai, T.; Marshak, A.

    2010-01-01

    The primary goal of NASA's current ICESat and future ICESat2 missions is to map the altitude of the Earth's land ice with high accuracy using laser altimetry technology, and to measure sea ice freeboard. Ice however is a highly transparent optical medium with variable scattering and absorption properties. Moreover, it is often covered by a layer of snow with varying depth and optical properties largely dependent on its age. We describe a modeling framework for estimating the potential altimetry bias caused by multiple scattering in the layered medium. We use both a Monte Carlo technique and an analytical diffusion model valid for optically thick media. Our preliminary numerical results are consistent with estimates of the multiple scattering delay from laboratory measurements using snow harvested in Greenland, namely, a few cm. Planned refinements of the models are described.

  13. Formation of Singlet Molecular Oxygen on Illuminated Ice and Snow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKellar, S. R.; Anastasio, C.

    2005-12-01

    Pollutants and other trace compounds on snow and ice are transformed both by direct photolysis as well as indirect photoreactions mediated by oxidants such as hydroxyl radical (OH). These reactions likely play a major role in the fate of environmental contaminants in regions with permanent or seasonal snow cover, but we know relatively little about which reactions are important and at what rates they transform trace pollutants. The indirect photodegradation of organics is most likely caused by oxidants such as OH and singlet molecular oxygen (1O2* ), which can be formed in the snowpack by illumination from the sun. While some recent work has characterized the formation of OH in snow, the presence of 1O2* on illuminated snow or ice has not been studied previously. In this study, our goal is to determine the steady state concentrations of singlet molecular oxygen in illuminated snow samples collected from Summit, Greenland during the summer of 2005. We add furfuryl alcohol (FFA), which acts as a chemical probe of singlet molecular oxygen, to ice pellets made from Greenland snow samples and monitor the rate of loss of FFA during illumination. Our initial results indicate that 1O2* is formed in illuminated Summit samples and that the steady-state concentration of 1O2* is much larger on ice (-10 °C) than in liquid solution (°C) using the same prepared sample. We will present our measured steady-state concentrations of 1O2* as well as the impacts of this oxidant on the lifetimes of trace organics such as PAHs and biogenic phenols in Greenland snow.

  14. Halogen-based reconstruction of Russian Arctic sea ice area from the Akademii Nauk ice core (Severnaya Zemlya)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spolaor, A.; Opel, T.; McConnell, J. R.; Maselli, O. J.; Spreen, G.; Varin, C.; Kirchgeorg, T.; Fritzsche, D.; Saiz-Lopez, A.; Vallelonga, P.

    2016-01-01

    The role of sea ice in the Earth climate system is still under debate, although it is known to influence albedo, ocean circulation, and atmosphere-ocean heat and gas exchange. Here we present a reconstruction of 1950 to 1998 AD sea ice in the Laptev Sea based on the Akademii Nauk ice core (Severnaya Zemlya, Russian Arctic). The chemistry of halogens bromine (Br) and iodine (I) is strongly active and influenced by sea ice dynamics, in terms of physical, chemical and biological process. Bromine reacts on the sea ice surface in autocatalyzing "bromine explosion" events, causing an enrichment of the Br / Na ratio and hence a bromine excess (Brexc) in snow compared to that in seawater. Iodine is suggested to be emitted from algal communities growing under sea ice. The results suggest a connection between Brexc and spring sea ice area, as well as a connection between iodine concentration and summer sea ice area. The correlation coefficients obtained between Brexc and spring sea ice (r = 0.44) as well as between iodine and summer sea ice (r = 0.50) for the Laptev Sea suggest that these two halogens could become good candidates for extended reconstructions of past sea ice changes in the Arctic.

  15. Snow and Ice Crust Changes over Northern Eurasia since 1966

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bulygina, O.; Groisman, P. Y.; Razuvaev, V.; Radionov, V.

    2009-12-01

    When temperature of snow cover reaches zero Celsius first time since its establishment, snowmelt starts. In many parts of the world this process can be lengthy. The initial amount of heat that “arrives” to the snowpack might be insufficient for complete snowmelt, during the colder nights re-freeze of the melted snow may occur (thus creating the ice crust layers), and a new cold front (or the departure of the warm front that initiated melt) can decrease temperatures below the freezing point again and stop the snowmelt completely. It well can be that first such snowmelt occurs in winter (thaw day) and for several months thereafter snowpack stays on the ground. However, even the first such melt initiates a process of snow metamorphosis on its surface changing snow albedo and generating snow crust as well as on its bottom generating ice crust. Once emerged, the crusts will not disappear until the complete snowmelt. Furthermore, these crusts have numerous pathways of impact on the wild birds and animals in the Arctic environment as well as on domesticated reindeers. In extreme cases, the crusts may kill some wild species and prevent reindeers’ migration and feeding. Ongoing warming in high latitudes created situations when in the western half of Eurasian continent days with thaw became more frequent. Keeping in mind potential detrimental impacts of winter thaws and associated with them snow/ice crust development, it is worthwhile to study directly what are the major features of snow and ice crust over Eurasia and what is their dynamics. For the purpose of this study, we employed the national snow survey data set archived at the Russian Institute for Hydrometeorological Information. The dataset has routine snow surveys run throughout the cold season each decade (during the intense snowmelt, each 5 days) at all meteorological stations of the former USSR, thereafter, in Russia since 1966. Prior to 1966 snow surveys are also available but the methodology of observations has substantially changed at that year. Therefore, this analysis includes only data of 585 Russian stations from 1966 to 2008 that have all years of data with a minimal number of missing observations. Surveys run separately along all types of environment typical for the site for 1 to 2 km, describing the current snow cover properties including characteristics of snow and ice crust. Joint analysis of these characteristics of crust together with a suite of synoptic information at the stations allows us to empirically assess the process of snow and ice crust formation and development throughout the cold season and outline major factors responsible for their dynamics. Finally, regional averaging and time series analysis of both, these factors and the crust characteristics themselves, answer the question about the regional climatic changes of snow and ice crusts over Northern Eurasia, including those crust characteristics that are of practical importance for reindeer husbandry. These results for the Russian Federation will be presented at the Meeting.

  16. Antarctic Sea Ice-a Habitat for Extremophiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, D. N.; Dieckmann, G. S.

    2002-01-01

    The pack ice of Earth's polar oceans appears to be frozen white desert, devoid of life. However, beneath the snow lies a unique habitat for a group of bacteria and microscopic plants and animals that are encased in an ice matrix at low temperatures and light levels, with the only liquid being pockets of concentrated brines. Survival in these conditions requires a complex suite of physiological and metabolic adaptations, but sea-ice organisms thrive in the ice, and their prolific growth ensures they play a fundamental role in polar ecosystems. Apart from their ecological importance, the bacterial and algae species found in sea ice have become the focus for novel biotechnology, as well as being considered proxies for possible life forms on ice-covered extraterrestrial bodies.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Douglas, D.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 among models. High agreement also accompanies projections that the Chukchi Sea will be completely ice covered during February, March, and April at the end of the century. Large uncertainties, however, are associated with the timing and amount of partial ice cover during the intervening periods of melt and freeze. For the Bering Sea, median March ice extent is projected to be about 25 percent less than the 1979-1988 average by mid-century and 60 percent less by the end of the century. The ice-free season in the Bering Sea is projected to increase from its contemporary average of 5.5 months to a median of about 8.5 months by the end of the century. A 3-month longer ice- free season in the Bering Sea is attained by a 1-month advance in melt and a 2-month delay in freeze, meaning the ice edge typically will pass through the Bering Strait in May and January at the end of the century rather than June and November as presently observed.

  18. 30 CFR 56.11016 - Snow and ice on walkways and travelways.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. 56... Travelways § 56.11016 Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. Regularly used walkways and travelways shall be sanded, salted, or cleared of snow and ice as soon as practicable....

  19. 30 CFR 56.11016 - Snow and ice on walkways and travelways.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. 56... Travelways § 56.11016 Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. Regularly used walkways and travelways shall be sanded, salted, or cleared of snow and ice as soon as practicable....

  20. 30 CFR 56.11016 - Snow and ice on walkways and travelways.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. 56... Travelways § 56.11016 Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. Regularly used walkways and travelways shall be sanded, salted, or cleared of snow and ice as soon as practicable....

  1. 30 CFR 56.11016 - Snow and ice on walkways and travelways.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. 56... Travelways § 56.11016 Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. Regularly used walkways and travelways shall be sanded, salted, or cleared of snow and ice as soon as practicable....

  2. 30 CFR 56.11016 - Snow and ice on walkways and travelways.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. 56... Travelways § 56.11016 Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. Regularly used walkways and travelways shall be sanded, salted, or cleared of snow and ice as soon as practicable....

  3. Polar bear and walrus response to the rapid decline in Arctic sea ice

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Oakley, K.; Whalen, M.; Douglas, D.; Udevitz, M.; Atwood, T.; 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?

  4. The sensitivity of a one-dimensional thermodynamic sea ice model to changes in cloudiness

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shine, K. P.; Crane, R. G.

    1984-01-01

    A thermodynamic sea ice-lead model is used to assess the importance of cloud cover changes to modeled ice thickness. For regions of either permanent multiyear ice or seasonal sea ice, the cloud amount variations have relatively little impact. However, for regions where the presence of summer ice is variable from year to year, the predicted ice thickness is strongly dependent on cloud cover. In general, with a snow covered surface, decreased cloud leads to surface cooling while increased cloud gives rise to a surface warming. For a melting bare ice surface, the reverse occurs. The ice model response time is too long for interannual variations in cloud amount to explain interannual variations in ice thickness and extent. Nevertheless, the implication of the results is that numerical modeling of sea ice distribution requires accurate cloud data or cloud prediction and that trends in cloud cover may lead to significant perturbations in sea ice extent and thickness.

  5. The NRL 2011 Airborne Sea-Ice Thickness Campaign

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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 pulse-limited radar altimeter that has a footprint that varies from a few meters to a few tens of meters depending on altitude and roughness of the reflective surface. Intercalibration of the two instruments was accomplished at leads in the ice and by multiple over-flights of four radar corner-cubes set ~ 2 m above the snow along the ground-truth line. Direct comparison of successive flights of the ground-truth line to flights done in a grid pattern over and adjacent to the line was complicated by the ~ 20-30 m drift of the ice-floe between successive flight-lines. This rapid ice movement required the laser and radar data be translated into an ice-fixed, rather than a geographic reference frame. This was facilitated by geodetic GPS receiver measurements at the ice-camp and Pt. Barrow. The NRL data set, in combination with the ground-truth line and submarine upward-looking sonar data, will aid in understanding the error budgets of our systems, the ICEBRIDGE airborne measurements (also flown over the ground-truth line), and the CRYOSAT-2 data over a wide range of ice types.

  6. Ice nucleation: elemental identification of particles in snow crystals.

    PubMed

    Parungo, F P; Pueschel, R F

    1973-06-01

    A scanning field-emission electron microscope combined with an x-ray analyzer is used to locate the ice nucleus within a three-dimensional image of a snow crystal and determine the chemical composition of the nucleus. This makes it possible to better understand the effect of nuclei in cloud seeding. PMID:17806581

  7. EOS Aqua AMSR-E Arctic Sea Ice Validation Program: Intercomparison Between Modeled and Measured Sea Ice Brightness Temperatures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stroeve, J.; Markus, T.; Cavalieri, D. J.; Maslanik, J.; Sturm, M.; Henrichs, J.; Gasiewski, A.; Klein, M.

    2004-01-01

    During March 2003, an extensive field campaign was conducted near Barrow, Alaska to validate AQUA Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR) sea ice products. Field, airborne and satellite data were collected over three different types of sea ice: 1) first year ice with little deformation, 2) first year ice with various amounts of deformation and 3) mixed first year ice and multi-year ice with various degrees of deformation. The validation plan relies primarily on comparisons between satellite, aircraft flights and ground-based measurements. Although these efforts are important, key aspects such as the effects of atmospheric conditions, snow properties, surface roughness, melt processes, etc on the sea ice algorithms are not sufficiently well understood or documented. To improve our understanding of these effects, we combined the detailed, in-situ data collection from the 2003 field campaign with radiance modeling using a radiative transfer model to simulate the top of the atmosphere AMSR brightness temperatures. This study reports on the results of the simulations for a variety of snow and ice types and compares the results with the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration Environmental Technology Laboratory Polarimetric Scanning Radiometer (NOAA) (ETL) (PSR) microwave radiometer that was flown on the NASA P-3.

  8. Winter spring dynamics in sea-ice carbon cycling in the coastal Arctic Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riedel, Andrea; Michel, Christine; Gosselin, Michel; LeBlanc, Bernard

    2008-12-01

    An understanding of microbial interactions in first-year sea ice on Arctic shelves is essential for identifying potential responses of the Arctic Ocean carbon cycle to changing sea-ice conditions. This study assessed dissolved and particulate organic carbon (DOC, POC), exopolymeric substances (EPS), chlorophyll a, bacteria and protists, in a seasonal (24 February to 20 June 2004) investigation of first-year sea ice and associated surface waters on the Mackenzie Shelf. The dynamics of and relationships between different sea-ice carbon pools were investigated for the periods prior to, during and following the sea-ice-algal bloom, under high and low snow cover. A predominantly heterotrophic sea-ice community was observed prior to the ice-algal bloom under high snow cover only. However, the heterotrophic community persisted throughout the study with bacteria accounting for, on average, 44% of the non-diatom particulate carbon biomass overall the study period. There was an extensive accumulation of sea-ice organic carbon following the onset of the ice-algal bloom, with diatoms driving seasonal and spatial trends in particulate sea-ice biomass. DOC and EPS were also significant sea-ice carbon contributors such that sea-ice DOC concentrations were higher than, or equivalent to, sea-ice-algal carbon concentrations prior to and following the algal bloom, respectively. Sea-ice-algal carbon, DOC and EPS-carbon concentrations were significantly interrelated under high and low snow cover during the algal bloom ( r values ? 0.74, p < 0.01). These relationships suggest that algae are primarily responsible for the large pools of DOC and EPS-carbon and that similar stressors and/or processes could be involved in regulating their release. This study demonstrates that DOC can play a major role in organic carbon cycling on Arctic shelves.

  9. Snow crystal imaging using scanning electron microscopy: III. Glacier ice, snow and biota

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rango, A.; Wergin, W.P.; Erbe, E.F.; Josberger, E.G.

    2000-01-01

    Low-temperature scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was used to observe metamorphosed snow, glacial firn, and glacial ice obtained from South Cascade Glacier in Washington State, USA. Biotic samples consisting of algae (Chlamydomonas nivalis) and ice worms (a species of oligochaetes) were also collected and imaged. In the field, the snow and biological samples were mounted on copper plates, cooled in liquid nitrogen, and stored in dry shipping containers which maintain a temperature of -196??C. The firn and glacier ice samples were obtained by extracting horizontal ice cores, 8 mm in diameter, at different levels from larger standard glaciological (vertical) ice cores 7.5 cm in diameter. These samples were cooled in liquid nitrogen and placed in cryotubes, were stored in the same dry shipping container, and sent to the SEM facility. In the laboratory, the samples were sputter coated with platinum and imaged by a low-temperature SEM. To image the firn and glacier ice samples, the cores were fractured in liquid nitrogen, attached to a specimen holder, and then imaged. While light microscope images of snow and ice are difficult to interpret because of internal reflection and refraction, the SEM images provide a clear and unique view of the surface of the samples because they are generated from electrons emitted or reflected only from the surface of the sample. In addition, the SEM has a great depth of field with a wide range of magnifying capabilities. The resulting images clearly show the individual grains of the seasonal snowpack and the bonding between the snow grains. Images of firn show individual ice crystals, the bonding between the crystals, and connected air spaces. Images of glacier ice show a crystal structure on a scale of 1-2 mm which is considerably smaller than the expected crystal size. Microscopic air bubbles, less than 15 ??m in diameter, clearly marked the boundaries between these crystal-like features. The life forms associated with the glacier were easily imaged and studied. The low-temperature SEM sample collecting and handling methods proved to be operable in the field; the SEM analysis is applicable to glaciological studies and reveals details unattainable by conventional light microscopic methods.Low temperature scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was used to observe metamorphosed snow, glacial firn, and glacial ice obtained from South Cascade Glacier in Washington State, USA. Biotic samples consisting of algae and ice worms were also collected and imaged. The SEM images provide a clear and unique view of the surface of the samples because they are generated from electrons emitted or reflected only from the surface of the sample. The SEM has a great depth of field with a wide range of magnifying capabilities.

  10. Sea Ice Concentration and Extent

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Comiso, Josefino C.

    2014-01-01

    Among the most seasonal and most dynamic parameters on the surface of the Earth is sea ice which at any one time covers about 3-6% of the planet. In the Northern Hemisphere, sea ice grows in extent from about 6 x 10(exp 6) sq km to 16 x 10(exp 6) sq km, while in the Southern Hemisphere, it grows from about 3 x 10(exp 6) sq km to about 19 x 10(exp 6) sq km (Comiso, 2010; Gloersen et al., 1992). Sea ice is up to about 2-3 m thick in the Northern Hemisphere and about 1 m thick in the Southern Hemisphere (Wadhams, 2002), and compared to the average ocean depth of about 3 km, it is a relatively thin, fragile sheet that can break due to waves and winds or melt due to upwelling of warm water. Being constantly advected by winds, waves, and currents, sea ice is very dynamic and usually follows the directions of the many gyres in the polar regions. Despite its vast expanse, the sea ice cover was previously left largely unstudied and it was only in recent years that we have understood its true impact and significance as related to the Earths climate, the oceans, and marine life.

  11. Variability of Arctic Sea Ice as Viewed from Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parkinson, Claire L.

    1998-01-01

    Over the past 20 years, satellite passive-microwave radiometry has provided a marvelous means for obtaining information about the variability of the Arctic sea ice cover and particularly about sea ice concentrations (% areal coverages) and from them ice extents and the lengths of the sea ice season. This ability derives from the sharp contrast between the microwave emissions of sea ice versus liquid water and allows routine monitoring of the vast Arctic sea ice cover, which typically varies in extent from a minimum of about 8,000,000 sq km in September to a maximum of about 15,000,000 sq km in March, the latter value being over 1.5 times the area of either the United States or Canada. The vast Arctic ice cover has many impacts, including hindering heat, mass, and y momentum exchanges between the oceans and the atmosphere, reducing the amount of solar radiation absorbed at the Earth's surface, affecting freshwater transports and ocean circulation, and serving as a vital surface for many species of polar animals. These direct impacts also lead to indirect impacts, including effects on local and perhaps global atmospheric temperatures, effects that are being examined in general circulation modeling studies, where preliminary results indicate that changes on the order of a few percent sea ice concentration can lead to temperature changes of 1 K or greater even in local areas outside of the sea ice region. Satellite passive-microwave data for November 1978 through December 1996 reveal marked regional and interannual variabilities in both the ice extents and the lengths of the sea ice season, as well as some statistically significant trends. For the north polar ice cover as a whole, maximum ice extents varied over a range of 14,700,000 - 15,900,000 km(2), while individual regions showed much greater percentage variations, e.g., with the Greenland Sea experiencing a range of 740,000 - 1,1110,000 km(2) in its yearly maximum ice coverage. Although variations from year to year and region to region are large, overall the Arctic ice extents did show a statistically significant, 2.8%/ decade negative trend over the 18.2-year period. Ice season lengths, which vary from only a few weeks near the ice margins to the full year in the large region of perennial ice coverage, also experienced interannual variability, and mapping their trends allows detailed geographic information on exactly where the ice season lengthened and where it shortened. Over the 18 years, ice season lengthening occurred predominantly in the western hemisphere and was strongest in the western Labrador Sea, while ice season shortening occurred predominantly in the eastern hemisphere and was strongest in the eastern Barents Sea. Much information about other important Arctic sea ice variables has also been obtained from satellite data, including information about melt ponding, temperature, snow cover, and ice velocities. For instance, maps of ice velocities have now been made from satellite scatterometry data, including information about melt ponding, temperature, snow cover, and ice velocities.

  12. Processes and imagery of first-year fast sea ice during the melt season

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holt, B.; Digby, S. A.

    1985-01-01

    In June and July 1982, a field program was conducted in the Canadian Arctic on Prince Patrick Island to study sea ice during the melt season with in situ measurements and microwave instrumentation operated near the surface and from aircraft. The objective of the program was to measure physical characteristics together with microwave backscatter and emission coefficients of sea ice during this major period of transition. The present paper is concerned with a study of both surface measurements and imagery of first-year fast ice during the melt season. The melting process observed in first-year fast ice was found to begin with the gradual reduction of the snow cover. For a two- to three-day period in this melt stage, a layer of superimposed ice nodules formed at the snow/ice interface as meltwater froze around ice and snow grains.

  13. Arctic sea ice freeboard from AltiKa and comparison with CryoSat-2 and Operation IceBridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Armitage, Thomas W. K.; Ridout, Andy L.

    2015-08-01

    Satellite radar altimeters have improved our knowledge of Arctic sea ice thickness over the past decade. The main sources of uncertainty in sea ice thickness retrievals are associated with inadequate knowledge of the snow layer depth and the radar interaction with the snow pack. Here we adapt a method of deriving sea ice freeboard from CryoSat-2 to data from the AltiKa Ka band radar altimeter over the 2013-14 Arctic sea ice growth season. AltiKa measures basin-averaged freeboards between 4.4 cm and 6.9 cm larger than CryoSat-2 in October and March, respectively. Using airborne laser and radar measurements from spring 2013 and 2014, we estimate the effective scattering horizon for each sensor. While CryoSat-2 echoes penetrate to the ice surface over first-year ice and penetrate the majority (82 ± 3%) of the snow layer over multiyear ice, AltiKa echoes are scattered from roughly the midpoint (46 ± 5%) of the snow layer over both ice types.

  14. Observed and Modeled Trends in Southern Ocean Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parkinson, Claire L.

    2003-01-01

    Conceptual models and global climate model (GCM) simulations have both indicated the likelihood of an enhanced sensitivity to climate change in the polar regions, derived from the positive feedbacks brought about by the polar abundance of snow and ice surfaces. Some models further indicate that the changes in the polar regions can have a significant impact globally. For instance, 37% of the temperature sensitivity to a doubling of atmospheric CO2 in simulations with the GCM of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) is attributable exclusively to inclusion of sea ice variations in the model calculations. Both sea ice thickness and sea ice extent decrease markedly in the doubled CO, case, thereby allowing the ice feedbacks to occur. Stand-alone sea ice models have shown Southern Ocean hemispherically averaged winter ice-edge retreats of 1.4 deg latitude for each 1 K increase in atmospheric temperatures. Observations, however, show a much more varied Southern Ocean ice cover, both spatially and temporally, than many of the modeled expectations. In fact, the satellite passive-microwave record of Southern Ocean sea ice since late 1978 has revealed overall increases rather than decreases in ice extents, with ice extent trends on the order of 11,000 sq km/year. When broken down spatially, the positive trends are strongest in the Ross Sea, while the trends are negative in the Bellingshausen/Amundsen Seas. Greater spatial detail can be obtained by examining trends in the length of the sea ice season, and those trends show a coherent picture of shortening sea ice seasons throughout almost the entire Bellingshausen and Amundsen Seas to the west of the Antarctic Peninsula and in the far western Weddell Sea immediately to the east of the Peninsula, with lengthening sea ice seasons around much of the rest of the continent. This pattern corresponds well with the spatial pattern of temperature trends, as the Peninsula region is the one region in the Antarctic with a strong record of temperature increases. Still, although the patterns of the temperature and ice changes match fairly well, there is a substantial ways to go before these patterns are understood (and can be modeled) in the full context of global change.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kwok, Ron; Zwally, H. Jay; Yi, Dong-Hui

    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 free-board along the altimeter tracks. This step is necessitated by the large uncertainties in the time-varying sea surface topography compared to that required for accurate determination of free-board. Unknown snow depth introduces the largest uncertainty in the conversion of free-board 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.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  17. Fracture of multiyear sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sammonds, P. R.; Murrell, S. A. F.; Rist, M. A.

    1998-09-01

    The fracture and flow of multiyear sea ice was investigated under triaxial compression and uniaxial tension in the temperature range -40 to -3.5C, for strain rates from 10-7 to 10-2s-1 and for confining pressures up to 30 MPa using 40 mm diameter specimens. Specimens both in the horizontal plane of the multiyear floe and perpendicular to this plane were tested. The results of short-rod fracture toughness tests on multiyear and first-year sea ice at temperatures -20C are also reported. The multiyear sea ice came from an unridged portion of a single floe about 7 m thick, which was found to be massive and not blocky with large voids. The ice had low salinity and high porosity. The inelastic deformation of multiyear sea ice was found to be strongly dependent upon strain rate, temperature, and confining pressure. In compression, four main types of deformation were observed. (1) Under uniaxial compression, completely brittle fracture at high strain rates (of 10-3 to 10-2 s-1) was characterized by multiple axial splitting. (2) Application of even a small confining pressure inhibited splitting, and fracture took place by the formation of a narrow shear fault inclined at 453. (3) At higher confining pressures, plastic deformation accompanied substantial cracking activity. (4) However, at still higher confining pressures, cracking was completely inhibited and deformation was entirely plastic. At -20C, shear fracture occurred according to a maximum shear stress criterion and hence was pressure independent, with crack nucleation dominating the fracture behavior. At -40C, however, the shear fracture stress was found to be strongly pressure dependent up to 14 MPa and could be described in terms of a Coulombic failure envelope. The unusual 45 orientation of ice shear fractures, together with the unusual pressure dependencies of ice peak strengths, may be explained by the fact that low-stress slip and cleavage occurs in the basal planes of ice crystals.

  18. Comparison of the MASIE with Other Sea Ice Extent Products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Helfrich, S.; Jackson, B. M.; Clemente-Colon, P.; Fetterer, F. M.; Savoie, M.

    2011-12-01

    The Multisensor Analyzed Sea Ice Extent (MASIE) has been made available to the public via the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) since 2010, with daily data covering from January 2006 on. The MASIE is based on NOAA ice and snow cover analysis utilizing nearly 30 data sources to generate an integrated daily ice cover. While the resolution of the imagery sources ranges from 100m resolution synthetic aperture radar (SAR) to coarse 48km passive microwave (PM) data, the MASIE analysis attempts to synthesize the data sources into a 4km identification of sea-ice covered areas over the Northern Hemisphere. The MASIE differs from other ice extent data sources in three key ways. First, MASIE applies multiple data sources ranging from point sources and models to imagery acquired through a wide range in the electromagnetic spectrum. Second, MASIE has a moderate resolution so it is able to account relatively well for the ice extent in smaller bays, straits, coastlines, and along the marginal ice zone, particularly when compared to passive microwave sources. And third, MASIE relies on expert identification of the ice and manual assimilation of the multiple data sources rather than on a given automated algorithm. This study compares the MASIE with other sea extent products to understand their similarities and try to explain their differences. We analyze temporal and spatial behavior between ice extents from different products over the Northern Hemisphere, as well as within selected regions of interest. This comparison will help users in the interpretation of popular ice cover products and their applications in weather forecasting, ocean and ice modeling, safe navigation, and climate monitoring.

  19. The ability of CryoSat-2 to measure Antarctic sea ice freeboard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Price, Daniel; Rack, Wolfgang; Beckers, Justin; Ricker, Robert; Kurtz, Nathan; Haas, Christian; Helm, Veit; Hendricks, Stefan; Leonard, Greg; Langhorne, Pat

    2015-04-01

    Antarctic sea ice cover has been routinely monitored since 1979 but sea ice thickness remains one of the least understood physical components of the global cryosphere. Quantification of thickness is of crucial importance, since when combined with areal data it allows the computation of sea ice volume providing insight into the heat budget of the Antarctic sea ice system and quantification of freshwater and saltwater fluxes in the Southern Ocean. The use of satellite altimetry for sea ice thickness estimation relies on the measurement of freeboard. Thickness can then be estimated based on the assumptions of hydrostatic equilibrium given densities of snow, ice, water, and snow thickness are known. Using in situ data for 2011 and 2013 we evaluate the ability of CryoSat-2 (CS-2) to retrieve sea ice freeboard over fast-ice in McMurdo Sound. European Space Agency Level 2 data (ESAL2) is compared with results of a Waveform Fitting procedure (WfF) and a Threshold-First-Maximum-Retracker-Algorithm employed at 40% (TFMRA40). A supervised freeboard retrieval procedure is used to reduce errors associated with sea surface height identification and radar velocity in snow. We find ESAL2 freeboards located between the ice and snow freeboard rather than the frequently assumed snow-ice interface. WfF is within 0.04 m of the ice freeboard but is influenced by variable snow conditions causing increased radar backscatter from the air/snow interface; in such conditions a positive bias of 0.14 m away from the ice freeboard is observed. TFMRA40 freeboards are within 0.03 m of the snow freeboard. The difference in freeboard estimates is primarily driven by different retracker assumptions, although waveform alteration by variations in snow properties and surface roughness is evident. Techniques were amended where necessary and automatic freeboard retrieval procedures for ESAL2, WfF and TFMRA40 were developed. CS-2 detects annual fast-ice freeboard trends in McMurdo Sound using all three automatic procedures that are in line with known sea ice growth rates in the region. We present a systematic validation of CS-2 in the coastal Antarctic and provide insight into the assumptions currently used to process CS-2 data.

  20. Export of algal biomass from the melting Arctic sea ice.

    PubMed

    Boetius, Antje; Albrecht, Sebastian; Bakker, Karel; Bienhold, Christina; Felden, Janine; Fernndez-Mndez, Mar; Hendricks, Stefan; Katlein, Christian; Lalande, Catherine; Krumpen, Thomas; Nicolaus, Marcel; Peeken, Ilka; Rabe, Benjamin; Rogacheva, Antonina; Rybakova, Elena; Somavilla, Raquel; Wenzhfer, Frank

    2013-03-22

    In the Arctic, under-ice primary production is limited to summer months and is restricted not only by ice thickness and snow cover but also by the stratification of the water column, which constrains nutrient supply for algal growth. Research Vessel Polarstern visited the ice-covered eastern-central basins between 82 to 89N and 30 to 130E in summer 2012, when Arctic sea ice declined to a record minimum. During this cruise, we observed a widespread deposition of ice algal biomass of on average 9 grams of carbon per square meter to the deep-sea floor of the central Arctic basins. Data from this cruise will contribute to assessing the effect of current climate change on Arctic productivity, biodiversity, and ecological function. PMID:23413190

  1. Export of Algal Biomass from the Melting Arctic Sea Ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boetius, Antje; Albrecht, Sebastian; Bakker, Karel; Bienhold, Christina; Felden, Janine; Fernndez-Mndez, Mar; Hendricks, Stefan; Katlein, Christian; Lalande, Catherine; Krumpen, Thomas; Nicolaus, Marcel; Peeken, Ilka; Rabe, Benjamin; Rogacheva, Antonina; Rybakova, Elena; Somavilla, Raquel; Wenzhfer, Frank; aff1

    2013-03-01

    In the Arctic, under-ice primary production is limited to summer months and is restricted not only by ice thickness and snow cover but also by the stratification of the water column, which constrains nutrient supply for algal growth. Research Vessel Polarstern visited the ice-covered eastern-central basins between 82 to 89N and 30 to 130E in summer 2012, when Arctic sea ice declined to a record minimum. During this cruise, we observed a widespread deposition of ice algal biomass of on average 9 grams of carbon per square meter to the deep-sea floor of the central Arctic basins. Data from this cruise will contribute to assessing the effect of current climate change on Arctic productivity, biodiversity, and ecological function.

  2. March 2003 EOS Aqua AMSR-E Arctic Sea Ice Field Campaign

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cavalieri, Donald J.; Markus, Thorsten; Maslanik, James A.; Sturm, Matthew; Lobl, Elena

    2006-01-01

    An overview of the March 2003 coordinated sea ice field campaign in the Alaskan Arctic is presented with reference to the papers in this special section. This campaign is part of the program to validate the Aqua Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) sea ice products. Standard AMSR-E sea ice products include sea ice concentration, sea ice temperature, and snow depth on sea ice. The validation program consists of three elements, namely: 1) satellite data comparisons; 2) coordinated satellite/aircraft surface measurements; and 3) modeling and sensitivity analyses. Landsat-7 and RADARSAT observations were used in comparative studies with the retrieved AMSR-E sea ice concentrations. The aircraft sensors provided high-resolution microwave imagery of the surface, atmospheric profiles of temperature and humidity, and digital records of sea ice conditions. When combined with in situ measurements, aircraft data were used to validate the AMSR-E sea ice temperature and snow-depth products. The modeling studies helped interpret the field-data comparisons, provided insight on the limitations of the AMSR-E sea ice algorithms, and suggested potential improvements to the AMSR-E retrieval algorithms.

  3. Annual sea ice. An air-sea gas exchange moderator

    SciTech Connect

    Gosink, T.A.; Kelley, J.J.

    1982-01-01

    Arctic annual sea ice, particularly when it is relatively warm (> -15/sup 0/C) permits significant gas exchange between the sea and air throughout the entire year. Sea ice, particularly annual sea ice, differs from freshwater ice with respect to its permeability to gases. The presence of brine allows for significant air-sea-ice exchange of CO/sub 2/ throughout the winter, which may significantly affect the global carbon dioxide balance. Other trace gases are also noted to be enriched in sea ice, but less is known about their importance to air-sea-interactions at this time. Both physical and biological factors cause and modify evolution of gases from the surface of sea ice. Quantitative and qualitative descriptions of the nature and physical behavior of sea ice with respect to brine and gases are discussed.

  4. Perennial snow and ice volumes on Iliamna Volcano, Alaska, estimated with ice radar and volume modeling

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Trabant, Dennis C.

    1999-01-01

    The volume of four of the largest glaciers on Iliamna Volcano was estimated using the volume model developed for evaluating glacier volumes on Redoubt Volcano. The volume model is controlled by simulated valley cross sections that are constructed by fitting third-order polynomials to the shape of the valley walls exposed above the glacier surface. Critical cross sections were field checked by sounding with ice-penetrating radar during July 1998. The estimated volumes of perennial snow and glacier ice for Tuxedni, Lateral, Red, and Umbrella Glaciers are 8.6, 0.85, 4.7, and 0.60 cubic kilometers respectively. The estimated volume of snow and ice on the upper 1,000 meters of the volcano is about 1 cubic kilometer. The volume estimates are thought to have errors of no more than ?25 percent. The volumes estimated for the four largest glaciers are more than three times the total volume of snow and ice on Mount Rainier and about 82 times the total volume of snow and ice that was on Mount St. Helens before its May 18, 1980 eruption. Volcanoes mantled by substantial snow and ice covers have produced the largest and most catastrophic lahars and floods. Therefore, it is prudent to expect that, during an eruptive episode, flooding and lahars threaten all of the drainages heading on Iliamna Volcano. On the other hand, debris avalanches can happen any time. Fortunately, their influence is generally limited to the area within a few kilometers of the summit.

  5. Detection of ice crust formation on snow with satellite data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartsch, Annett; Bulygina, Olga N.; Kumpula, Timo; Forbes, Bruce; Stammler, Florian

    2010-05-01

    Short term thawing of the snow surface and subsequent refreeze can lead to the formation of ice crusts. These events are related to specific meteorological conditions such us rain-on-snow events and/or temporary increase of air temperature above zero degree Celsius. The structure change in the snow pack has adverse effect especially on wild life and also the local community related to reindeer herding. Active microwave satellite data can be used to monitor changes of snow related to thawing. So far they have been mostly employed for spring thaw detection. Coarse spatial resolution sensors such as scatterometer feature short revisit intervals. Seawinds QuikScat (Ku-band, 25km, 1999-2009) acquired data several times per day at high latitudes. This allows precise detection of the timing of thaw events. Also the change of structure in the snow itself impacts the backscatter. Values increase significantly. A method has been developed to monitor these events at high latitudes (>60N) on circumpolar scale. Validation is carried out based on air temperature records and snow course data over Northern Eurasia. Events during midwinter of the last nine years (November - February 2000/1 - 2008/9) have been frequent in northern Europe, European Russia and Alaska. They have occurred up to once a year in central Siberia, the Russian Far East and most of northern Canada. Monitoring is important as such events are discussed in relation to climate change especially over Northern Eurasia.

  6. A mechanism for biologically induced iodine emissions from sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saiz-Lopez, A.; Blaszczak-Boxe, C. S.; Carpenter, L. J.

    2015-09-01

    Ground- and satellite-based measurements have reported high concentrations of iodine monoxide (IO) in coastal Antarctica. The sources of such a large iodine burden in the coastal Antarctic atmosphere remain unknown. We propose a mechanism for iodine release from sea ice based on the premise that micro-algae are the primary source of iodine emissions in this environment. The emissions are triggered by the biological production of iodide (I-) and hypoiodous acid (HOI) from micro-algae (contained within and underneath sea ice) and their diffusion through sea-ice brine channels, ultimately accumulating in a thin brine layer (BL) on the surface of sea ice. Prior to reaching the BL, the diffusion timescale of iodine within sea ice is depth-dependent. The BL is also a vital component of the proposed mechanism as it enhances the chemical kinetics of iodine-related reactions, which allows for the efficient release of iodine to the polar boundary layer. We suggest that iodine is released to the atmosphere via three possible pathways: (1) emitted from the BL and then transported throughout snow atop sea ice, from where it is released to the atmosphere; (2) released directly from the BL to the atmosphere in regions of sea ice that are not covered with snowpack; or (3) emitted to the atmosphere directly through fractures in the sea-ice pack. To investigate the proposed biology-ice-atmosphere coupling at coastal Antarctica we use a multiphase model that incorporates the transport of iodine species, via diffusion, at variable depths, within brine channels of sea ice. Model simulations were conducted to interpret observations of elevated springtime IO in the coastal Antarctic, around the Weddell Sea. While a lack of experimental and observational data adds uncertainty to the model predictions, the results nevertheless show that the levels of inorganic iodine (i.e. I2, IBr, ICl) released from sea ice through this mechanism could account for the observed IO concentrations during this timeframe. The model results also indicate that iodine may trigger the catalytic release of bromine from sea ice through phase equilibration of IBr. Considering the extent of sea ice around the Antarctic continent, we suggest that the resulting high levels of iodine may have widespread impacts on catalytic ozone destruction and aerosol formation in the Antarctic lower troposphere.

  7. Microstructural Considerations of Transporting Sea Ice Samples from Polar Regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lieb-Lappen, R.; Obbard, R. W.

    2012-12-01

    High latitude regions are at the forefront of climate change research as these regions have and will experience the greatest impact due to changing environmental conditions (e.g. Antarctic and recent Arctic stratospheric ozone holes, large temperature increases on the Antarctic Peninsula, changes in the extent and age of Arctic sea ice). One of the major challenges of polar scientific research is the preservation of frozen sea ice samples during their transport back to the laboratory and subsequent storage. Small fluctuations in temperature have been shown to have a significant effect on the microstructure of snow and ice samples. This is especially true for sea ice specimens where transport and storage temperatures are often only slightly below the eutectic point for its different constituents (i.e. salts). Furthermore, sea ice can have a 30 deg C in situ vertical temperature gradient that is lost during transport and storage. Sea ice plays a critical role in mediating the exchange of heat, gases, and chemical species across the ocean-atmosphere interface. The kinetics of these exchanges is highly dependent upon the brine channel microstructure, which is strongly coupled to temperature. To determine the degree of microstructural variation between samples shipped at different temperatures, ten samples of a single sea ice core collected in March 2012 were transported from Barrow, Alaska to Hanover, NH using two common techniques: with blue ice packs enclosed in a Styrofoam box (~ -25 deg C) and in a dry liquid nitrogen cryoshipper (~ -182 deg C). In addition, snow lying on the sea ice and blowing snow samples were collected and shipped via both techniques. All samples were then stored for analysis in a cold room maintained at ~ -33 deg C. The microstructure of both sets of samples was analyzed using x-ray micro-computed tomography (μ-CT), with samples on a Peltier cold stage to maintain a scanning temperature of -20 deg C. We compare sea ice porosity and brine channel morphology between the samples shipped at -25 deg C and those from the same core depth shipped at -182 deg C. This work informed the transport and analysis of our samples collected in Antarctica in October - November 2012.

  8. Atmospheric mercury over sea ice during the OASIS-2009 campaign

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steffen, A.; Bottenheim, J.; Cole, A.; Douglas, T. A.; Ebinghaus, R.; Friess, U.; Netcheva, S.; Nghiem, S.; Sihler, H.; Staebler, R.

    2013-07-01

    Measurements of gaseous elemental mercury (GEM), reactive gaseous mercury (RGM) and particulate mercury (PHg) were collected on the Beaufort Sea ice near Barrow, Alaska, in March 2009 as part of the Ocean-Atmosphere-Sea Ice-Snowpack (OASIS) and OASIS-Canada International Polar Year programmes. These results represent the first atmospheric mercury speciation measurements collected on the sea ice. Concentrations of PHg averaged 393.5 pg m-3 (range 47.1-900.1 pg m-3) and RGM concentrations averaged 30.1 pg m-3 (range 3.5-105.4 pg m-3) during the two-week-long study. The mean concentration of GEM during the study was 0.59 ng m-3 (range 0.01-1.51 ng m-3) and was depleted compared to annual Arctic ambient boundary layer concentrations. It is shown that when ozone (O3) and bromine oxide (BrO) chemistry were active there is a positive linear relationship between GEM and O3, a negative one between PHg and O3, a positive correlation between RGM and BrO, and none between RGM and O3. For the first time, GEM was measured simultaneously over the tundra and the sea ice. The results show a significant difference in the magnitude of the emission of GEM from the two locations, with significantly higher emission over the tundra. Elevated chloride levels in snow over sea ice are proposed to be the cause of lower GEM emissions over the sea ice because chloride has been shown to suppress photoreduction processes of RGM to GEM in snow. Since the snowpack on sea ice retains more mercury than inland snow, current models of the Arctic mercury cycle may greatly underestimate atmospheric deposition fluxes because they are based predominantly on land-based measurements. Land-based measurements of atmospheric mercury deposition may also underestimate the impacts of sea ice changes on the mercury cycle in the Arctic. The predicted changes in sea ice conditions and a more saline future snowpack in the Arctic could enhance retention of atmospherically deposited mercury and increase the amount of mercury entering the Arctic Ocean and coastal ecosystems.

  9. Distribution and biomass transport of ice amphipods in drifting sea ice around Svalbard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hop, Haakon; Pavlova, Olga

    2008-10-01

    Diversity and distribution of ice amphipods were determined in drifting sea ice around Svalbard during May-August 2003-2005. Sea-ice concentrations were determined visually and by satellite recordings. Backward trajectories for ice drift, based on satellite observations, indicated that multi-year ice in the area had originated 3-5 years earlier in the Kara Sea and western Laptev Sea, whereas some of the younger ice (1-2 years) may have originated in Franz Josef Land area. Quantitative collections of ice amphipods were obtained by SCUBA divers from flat areas and ridges below sea ice. The abundance and biomass were generally higher on ridges, particularly for the large Gammarus wilkitzkii, whereas Apherusa glacialis was more abundant on flat areas. Abundance and biomass varied among seasons (May-August) and years, with low values in May and higher values in July. The high values were similar to abundance and biomass values from July 1996. Redundancy analysis showed that 33% and 52% of the variability in respective species abundance and biomass could be explained by environmental variables, with ice draft and snow cover being the most important. The overall mean biomass for flats (0.30±0.05 g m -2) and ridges (1.64+0.46 g m -2) were used to calculate ice-associated biomass transport based on revised mean annual ice flux through Fram Strait (662,000 km 2 yr -1) and into the Barents Sea (total 228,000 km 2 yr -1). About 478×10 3 t WW (57×10 3 t C) of ice amphipods are transported annually through Fram Strait and 194×10 3 t WW (23×10 3 t C) into the northern Barents Sea, implying that 71% of the amphipod biomass in drifting sea ice passes through Fram Strait and 29% enters the Barents Sea. Climate induced reduction in ice thickness and extent will likely decrease this southward biomass transport, and thus the current carbon input of about 80×10 3 t C yr -1 into these marginal seas. Ice amphipod populations probably cannot be sustained if the summers become ice free in the Arctic Ocean, and particularly reduction of multi-year ice in the Arctic Ocean will affect long-lived species such as Gammarus wilkitzkii.

  10. Improved Upper Ocean/Sea Ice Modeling in the GISS GCM for Investigating Climate Change

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1998-01-01

    This project built on our previous results in which we highlighted the importance of sea ice in overall climate sensitivity by determining that for both warming and cooling climates, when sea ice was not allowed to change, climate sensitivity was reduced by 35-40%. We also modified the GISS 8 deg x lO deg atmospheric GCM to include an upper-ocean/sea-ice model involving the Semtner three-layer ice/snow thermodynamic model, the Price et al. (1986) ocean mixed layer model and a general upper ocean vertical advection/diffusion scheme for maintaining and fluxing properties across the pycnocline. This effort, in addition to improving the sea ice representation in the AGCM, revealed a number of sensitive components of the sea ice/ocean system. For example, the ability to flux heat through the ice/snow properly is critical in order to resolve the surface temperature properly, since small errors in this lead to unrestrained climate drift. The present project, summarized in this report, had as its objectives: (1) introducing a series of sea ice and ocean improvements aimed at overcoming remaining weaknesses in the GCM sea ice/ocean representation, and (2) performing a series of sensitivity experiments designed to evaluate the climate sensitivity of the revised model to both Antarctic and Arctic sea ice, determine the sensitivity of the climate response to initial ice distribution, and investigate the transient response to doubling CO2.

  11. Improved Upper Ocean/Sea Ice Modeling in the GISS GCM for Investigating Climate Change

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1997-01-01

    This project built on our previous results in which we highlighted the importance of sea ice in overall climate sensitivity by determining that for both warming and cooling climates, when sea ice was not allowed to change, climate sensitivity was reduced by 35-40%. We also modified the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) 8 deg x lO deg atmospheric General Circulation Model (GCM) to include an upper-ocean/sea-ice model involving the Semtner three-layer ice/snow thermodynamic model, the Price et al. (1986) ocean mixed layer model and a general upper ocean vertical advection/diffusion scheme for maintaining and fluxing properties across the pycnocline. This effort, in addition to improving the sea ice representation in the AGCM, revealed a number of sensitive components of the sea ice/ocean system. For example, the ability to flux heat through the ice/snow properly is critical in order to resolve the surface temperature properly, since small errors in this lead to unrestrained climate drift. The present project, summarized in this report, had as its objectives: (1) introducing a series of sea ice and ocean improvements aimed at overcoming remaining weaknesses in the GCM sea ice/ocean representation, and (2) performing a series of sensitivity experiments designed to evaluate the climate sensitivity of the revised model to both Antarctic and Arctic sea ice, determine the sensitivity of the climate response to initial ice distribution, and investigate the transient response to doubling CO2.

  12. An inter-sensor comparison of the microwave signatures of Arctic sea ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Onstott, R. G.

    1986-01-01

    Active and passive microwave and physical properties of Arctic sea ice in the marginal ice zone were measured during the summer. Results of an intercomparison of data acquired by an aircraft synthetic aperture radar, a passive microwave imager and a helicopter-mounted scatterometer indicate that early-to-mid summer sea ice microwave signatures are dominated by snowpack characteristics. Measurements show that the greatest contrast between thin first-year and multiyear sea ice occurs when operating actively between 5 and 10 GHz. Significant information about the state of melt of snow and ice is contained in the active and passive microwave signatures.

  13. Surveying Arctic Sea Ice

    USGS Multimedia Gallery

    Two U.S. Coast Guard members are being transported by crane from U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy onto a piece of multi-year ice. This was during a scientific expedition to map the Arctic seafloor. The expedition was a joint effort using two ships, Healy and the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Louis S. St. L...

  14. The Sea Ice Board Game

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bertram, Kathryn Berry

    2008-01-01

    The National Science Foundation-funded Arctic Climate Modeling Program (ACMP) provides "curriculum resource-based professional development" materials that combine current science information with practical classroom instruction embedded with "best practice" techniques for teaching science to diverse students. The Sea Ice Board Game, described…

  15. The Sea Ice Board Game

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bertram, Kathryn Berry

    2008-01-01

    The National Science Foundation-funded Arctic Climate Modeling Program (ACMP) provides "curriculum resource-based professional development" materials that combine current science information with practical classroom instruction embedded with "best practice" techniques for teaching science to diverse students. The Sea Ice Board Game, described

  16. A physical algorithm to measure sea ice concentration from passive microwave remote sensing data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tikhonov, V. V.; Repina, I. A.; Raev, M. D.; Sharkov, E. A.; Ivanov, V. V.; Boyarskii, D. A.; Alexeeva, T. A.; Komarova, N. Yu.

    2015-10-01

    A conceptually new algorithm of sea ice concentration retrieval in polar regions from satellite microwave radiometry data is discussed. The algorithm design favorably contrasts with that of known modern algorithms. Its design is based on a physical emission model of the "sea surface - sea ice - snow cover - atmosphere" system. No tie-points are used in the algorithm. All the calculation expressions are derived from theoretical modeling. The design of the algorithm minimizes the impact of atmospheric variability on sea ice concentration retrieval. Beside estimating sea ice concentration, the algorithm makes it possible to indicate ice areas with melting snow and melt ponds. The algorithm is simple to use, no complicated or time consuming calculations are involved.

  17. 30 CFR 57.11016 - Snow and ice on walkways and travelways.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. 57... MINES Travelways and Escapeways Travelways-Surface and Underground § 57.11016 Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. Regularly used walkways and travelways shall be sanded, salted, or cleared of snow...

  18. 30 CFR 57.11016 - Snow and ice on walkways and travelways.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. 57... MINES Travelways and Escapeways Travelways-Surface and Underground § 57.11016 Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. Regularly used walkways and travelways shall be sanded, salted, or cleared of snow...

  19. 30 CFR 57.11016 - Snow and ice on walkways and travelways.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. 57... MINES Travelways and Escapeways Travelways-Surface and Underground § 57.11016 Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. Regularly used walkways and travelways shall be sanded, salted, or cleared of snow...

  20. 30 CFR 57.11016 - Snow and ice on walkways and travelways.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. 57... MINES Travelways and Escapeways Travelways-Surface and Underground § 57.11016 Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. Regularly used walkways and travelways shall be sanded, salted, or cleared of snow...

  1. 30 CFR 57.11016 - Snow and ice on walkways and travelways.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 30 Mineral Resources 1 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. 57... MINES Travelways and Escapeways Travelways-Surface and Underground § 57.11016 Snow and ice on walkways and travelways. Regularly used walkways and travelways shall be sanded, salted, or cleared of snow...

  2. Sea Ice Entrainment and Sediment Sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miles, S.; Darby, D. A.; Jakobsson, M.; Rigor, I.

    2007-12-01

    More than 20 sea ice sediment samples collected during the Healy-Oden Trans-Arctic Expedition (HOTRAX-'05) and the Lomonosov Ridge off Greenland Expedition (LOMROG-'07) along with 18 dirty ice samples from previous expeditions back to the early 1970's show a consistent trend of several sources especially the Laptev and Kara Seas and northern Canada. Modern sea ice back-trajectories from the coordinates of the dirty sea ice samples using past drifts of this ice from the International Buoy Drift Program indicate a close match to the Fe grain sources. Comparison with several sediment cores from across the Arctic and in Fram Strait indicate that Holocene sediment that is primarily transported by sea ice contains the same sources based on Fe oxide grain chemical fingerprint matches with circum-Arctic source areas previously characterized. Observations of encounters with dirty ice by HOTRAX and LOMROG icebreaker expeditions indicate that while a small percentage of sea ice contains sediment, this dirty ice is concentrated in bands extending several kilometers and consisting of irregularly spaced patches of dirty ice that are usually less than a 100 meters in width. Also, sea ice containing coarse sediment and/or large shells due to anchor ice are less than 10 percent of dirty sea ice but that they may contain much higher concentrations of sediment than sea ice containing finer sediment from suspension freezing.

  3. Heated abrasives on snow and ice covered roads

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swanson, H. N.

    1982-08-01

    The effectiveness of using heated abrasives versus cold, wet abrasives in snow and ice control was studied. It was concluded that: (1) sand is blown or whipped off the road only a small percentage of the time under specific conditions; (2) the traveling public adjusts to driving conditions rather well in the Colorado Rockies; and (3) covered sand sheds would be a definite advantage but should have mechanisms for filling from the top.

  4. Validation of EOS Aqua AMSR Sea Ice Products for East Antarctica

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Massom, Rob; Lytle, Vicky; Allison, Ian; Worby, Tony; Markus, Thorsten; Scambos, Ted; Haran, Terry; Enomoto, Hiro; Tateyama, Kazu; Pfaffling, Andi

    2004-01-01

    This paper presents results from AMSR-E validation activities during a collaborative international cruise onboard the RV Aurora Australis to the East Antarctic sea ice zone (64-65 deg.S, 110-120 deg.E) in the early Austral spring of 2003. The validation strategy entailed an IS-day survey of the statistical characteristics of sea ice and snowcover over a Lagrangian grid 100 x 50 km in size (demarcated by 9 drifting ice beacons) i.e. at a scale representative of Ah4SR pixels. Ice conditions ranged h m consolidated first-year ice to a large polynya offshore from Casey Base. Data sets collected include: snow depth and snow-ice interface temperatures on 24 (?) randomly-selected floes in grid cells within a 10 x 50 km area (using helicopters); detailed snow and ice measurements at 13 dedicated ice stations, one of which lasted for 4 days; time-series measurements of snow temperature and thickness at selected sites; 8 aerial photography and thermal-IR radiometer flights; other satellite products (SAR, AVHRR, MODIS, MISR, ASTER and Envisat MERIS); ice drift data; and ancillary meteorological (ship-based, meteorological buoys, twice-daily radiosondes). These data are applied to a validation of standard AMSR-E ice concentration, snowcover thickness and ice-temperature products. In addition, a validation is carried out of ice-surface skin temperature products h m the NOAA AVHRR and EOS MODIS datasets.

  5. Epidemic of fractures during period of snow and ice.

    PubMed

    Rális, Z A

    1981-02-21

    During four days of snow and ice in which more than 70% of pavements in the Cardiff area were covered by slippery hard snow and ice the number of patients who attended the accident and emergency department at this hospital with fractured bones increased 2.85 times as compared with those who attended during four control days with comparable hours of sunshine and four control calendar days a year later. Fractures of the arm were increased 3.7 times and of the forearm and wrist 7.3 times. For a town population of one million people who may walk on untreated slippery and icy pavements this means that on average in a single day 74 more people than usual sustain a fracture unnecessarily. This traumatic epidemic has all the characteristics of a "major accident" and should be treated as such, since mobilisation of additional facilities, staff, and reserves might be necessary. Snow and ice injuries, however, differ from injuries sustained in a major accident in one important point: they may be predicted and prevented. The mass media should warn the population about the oncoming hazards and give practical advice on safer walking on slippery surfaces. The most important aspect of prevention, however, is instant cleaning of pavements around buildings, shops, and houses, especially in town centres and other areas busy with pedestrians. PMID:6781587

  6. Temporal evolution of decaying summer first-year sea ice in the Western Weddell Sea, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tison, J.-L.; Worby, A.; Delille, B.; Brabant, F.; Papadimitriou, S.; Thomas, D.; de Jong, J.; Lannuzel, D.; Haas, C.

    2008-04-01

    The evolution of the main physico-chemical properties of the unflooded 90-cm-thick first-year sea-ice cover at the Ice Station POLarstern (ISPOL) "clean site" is described. ISPOL was an international experiment of the German research icebreaker R.V. Polarstern. The vessel was anchored to an ice floe for an observation period of 5 weeks, during the early summer melt onset in the Western Weddell Sea. The "clean site" was specially designed and accessed so as to prevent any trace metal contamination of the sampling area. Observations were made at 5-day intervals during December 2004 in the central part of the main floe. Results show the succession of two contrasting phases in the behavior of the brine network (brine channels, pockets, and tubes). Initially, brine salinity was higher than that of sea-water, leading to brine migration and a decrease in the mean bulk salinity of the ice cover. This process is highly favored by the already high bulk porosity (14%), which ensures full connectivity of the brine network. Gravity drainage rather than convection seems to be the dominant brine transfer process. Half-way through the observation period, the brine salinity became lower than that of the sea-water throughout the ice column. The brine network therefore switched to a "stratified" regime in which exchange with sea-water was limited to molecular diffusion, strongly stabilizing the bulk mean sea-ice salinity. During the transition between the two regimes, and in areas closer to ridges, slush water (resulting from a mixture of snow meltwater and sea water accumulated at the snow-ice interface) penetrated through the growing "honeycomb-like structure" and replaced the downward draining brines. This resulted in a slight local replenishment of nutrients (as indicated by dissolved silicic acid). However, as a whole, the described decaying regime in this globally unflooded location with limited snow cover should be unfavorable to the development of healthy and active surface and internal microbial communities. The switch from gravity to diffusion controlled transport mechanisms within the ice column also should affect the efficiency of gas exchange across the sea-ice cover. The observed late build-up of a continuous, impermeable, superimposed ice layer should further significantly hamper gas exchange. Statistical estimates of the evolution of the ice thickness during the observation period and salinity trends of the under-ice water salinity down to 30 m corroborate model predictions of a moderate bottom melting (5-10 cm) from ocean heat fluxes.

  7. The U.S. Navy's Emerging Sea Ice Prediction Capabilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allard, Richard; Campbell, Tim; Hebert, David; Metzger, E. Joseph; Posey, Pamela; Wallcraft, Alan; Smedstad, Ole Martin; Gaberek, Saa; Jin, Yi; Wang, Shouping

    2014-05-01

    The U.S. Navy's regional and global coupled sea ice modeling activities are described. The Arctic Cap Nowcast Forecast System (ACNFS) is a 3.5 km coupled sea ice-ocean model that produces 7 day forecasts of the Arctic sea ice state in all ice covered areas in the northern hemisphere (poleward of 40N). The ocean component is the HYbrid Coordinate Ocean Model (HYCOM) and is coupled to the Los Alamos National Laboratory Community Ice CodE (CICE) via the Earth System Modeling Framework (ESMF). The ocean and sea ice models are run in an assimilative cycle with the Navy's Coupled Ocean Data Assimilation (NCODA) system. The ACNFS was transitioned to operations at the Naval Oceanographic Office in 2013 to serve its customer, the National Ice Center. The Global Ocean forecast System (GOFS3.1) is essentially an extension of ACNFS to the globe at 1/12 (equatorial) resolution, still 3.5 km in the Arctic, and it will provide sea ice predictions for the Arctic and Antarctic. Testing and validation is underway and an operational transition is planned for 2015, when GOFS3.1 will replace the ACNFS. A relocatable regional capability is being developed by coupling CICE to the Coupled Ocean/Atmosphere Mesoscale Prediction System (COAMPS). This new system will have an advanced snow-ice albedo representation and produce coupled forecasts out to 7-10 days with resolutions for the atmosphere and sea ice models at 1-3 km. Examples of these emerging capabilities will be presented.

  8. Finite-Element Sea Ice Model (FESIM), version 2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Danilov, S.; Wang, Q.; Timmermann, R.; Iakovlev, N.; Sidorenko, D.; Kimmritz, M.; Jung, T.; Schrter, J.

    2015-02-01

    The Finite-Element Sea-Ice Model, used as a component of the Finite-Element Sea ice Ocean Model, is presented. Version 2 includes the elastic-viscous-plastic (EVP) and viscous-plastic (VP) solvers and employs a flux corrected transport algorithm to advect the ice and snow mean thicknesses and concentration. The EVP part also includes a modified approach proposed recently by Bouillon et al., which is characterized by an improved stability compared to the standard EVP approach. The model is formulated on unstructured triangular meshes. It assumes a collocated placement of ice velocities, mean thicknesses and concentration at mesh vertices, and relies on a piecewise-linear (P1) continuous elements. Simple tests for the modified EVP and VP solvers are presented to show that they may produce very close results provided the number of iterations is sufficiently high.

  9. Finite-Element Sea Ice Model (FESIM), version 2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Danilov, S.; Wang, Q.; Timmermann, R.; Iakovlev, N.; Sidorenko, D.; Kimmritz, M.; Jung, T.; Schrter, J.

    2015-06-01

    The Finite-Element Sea Ice Model (FESIM), used as a component of the Finite-Element Sea ice Ocean Model, is presented. Version 2 includes the elastic-viscous-plastic (EVP) and viscous-plastic (VP) solvers and employs a flux corrected transport algorithm to advect the ice and snow mean thicknesses and concentration. The EVP part also includes a modified approach proposed recently by Bouillon et al. (2013), which is characterized by an improved stability compared to the standard EVP approach. The model is formulated on unstructured triangular meshes. It assumes a collocated placement of ice velocities, mean thicknesses and concentration at mesh vertices, and relies on piecewise-linear (P1) continuous elements. Simple tests for the modified EVP and VP solvers are presented to show that they may produce very close results provided the number of iterations is sufficiently high.

  10. Skillful prediction of Barents Sea ice cover

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Onarheim, Ingrid H.; Eldevik, Tor; rthun, Marius; Ingvaldsen, Randi B.; Smedsrud, Lars H.

    2015-07-01

    A main concern of present climate change is the Arctic sea ice cover. In wintertime, its observed variability is largely carried by the Barents Sea. Here we propose and evaluate a simple quantitative and prognostic framework based on first principles and rooted in observations to predict the annual mean Barents Sea ice cover, which variance is carried by the winter ice (96%). By using observed ocean heat transport and sea ice area, the proposed framework appears skillful and explains 50% of the observed sea ice variance up to 2 years in advance. The qualitative prediction of increase versus decrease in ice cover is correct 88% of the time. Model imperfections can largely be diagnosed from simultaneous meridional winds. The framework and skill are supported by a 60 year simulation from a regional ice-ocean model. We particularly predict that the winter sea ice cover for 2016 will be slightly less than 2015.

  11. Arctic sea ice thickness change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haas, C.; Hendricks, S.

    2011-12-01

    Area and extent of Arctic sea ice are shrinking rapidly, but rates and regional patterns of this decline are still not well understood. Knowledge of spatial and temporal ice thickness variability and change is essential for a better understanding and prediction of the present and future fate of Arctic sea ice. Airborne electromagnetic ice thickness surveys obtained sporadically since the 1990s and more systematically in recent years showed thinning rates of 20 to 50 % per decade over the observation period in the region of the North Pole, with minimum thicknesses of only 0.9 m observed in 2007. In contrast, modal thicknesses of more than 4 m were observed between the North Pole and Canada, showing pronounced thinning only in recent years, with modal thicknesses of around 3 m or less observed in 2008 and 2011. The latter may be related to continuing reductions of the area of old multiyear ice residing in the Arctic Ocean, which is now receding to a narrow fringe along the coast of North America. This presentation will provide a summary of past results, and will discuss these in light of reductions of the area of old ice deduced from satellite and buoy data. We will focus on results from new airborne surveys obtained in 2010 and 2011, with ever increasing regional coverage and range due to the utilization of fixed-wing aircraft. From these long-range surveys small-scale regional variability and spatial thickness gradients emerge which give new insights into the disappearance of old and thick ice regimes.

  12. Antarctic sea ice mapping using the AVHRR

    SciTech Connect

    Zibordi, G. ); Van Woert, M.L. . SeaSpace, Inc.)

    1993-08-01

    A sea ice mapping scheme based on Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) polar orbiting satellites has been developed and applied to daylight images taken between November 1989 to January 1990 and November 1990 to January 1991 over the Weddell and the Ross Seas. After masking the continent and ice shelves, sea ice is discriminated from clouds and open sea using thresholds applied to the multidimensional space formed by AVHRR Channel 2, 3, and 4 radiances. Sea ice concentrations in cloud-free regions are then computed using the tie-point method. Results based on the analysis of more than 70 images show that the proposed scheme is capable of properly discriminating between sea ice, open sea, and clouds, under most conditions, thus allowing high resolution sea ice maps to be produced during the austral summer season.

  13. Drones application on snow and ice surveys in alpine areas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    La Rocca, Leonardo; Bonetti, Luigi; Fioletti, Matteo; Peretti, Giovanni

    2015-04-01

    First results from Climate change are now clear in Europe, and in Italy in particular, with the natural disasters that damaged irreparably the territory and the habitat due to extreme meteorological events. The Directive 2007/60/EC highlight that an "effective natural hazards prevention and mitigation that requires coordination between Member States above all on natural hazards prevention" is necessary. A climate change adaptation strategy is identified on the basis of the guidelines of the European Community program 2007-2013. Following the directives provided in the financial instrument for civil protection "Union Civil Protection Mechanism" under Decision No. 1313/2013 / EU of the European Parliament and Council, a cross-cutting approach that takes into account a large number of implementation tools of EU policies is proposed as climate change adaptation strategy. In last 7 years a network of trans-Alpine area's authorities was created between Italy and Switzerland to define an adaptive strategy on climate change effects on natural enviroment based on non structural remedies. The Interreg IT - CH STRADA Project (STRategie di ADAttamento al cambiamento climatico) was born to join all the non structural remedies to climate change effects caused by snow and avalanches, on mountain sources, extreme hydrological events and to manage all transnational hydrological resources, involving all stakeholders from Italy and Switzerland. The STRADA project involved all civil protection authorities and all research centers in charge of snow, hydrology end civil protection. The Snow - meteorological center of the Regional Agency for Environment Protection (CNM of ARPA Lombardia) and the Civil Protection of Lombardy Region created a research team to develop tools for avalanche prediction and to observe and predict snow cover on Alpine area. With this aim a lot of aerial photo using Drone as been performed in unusual landscape. Results of all surveys were really interesting on a scientific point of view. All flight was performed by remote controlled aero models with high resolution camera. Aero models were able to take off and to ground on snow covered or icy surfaces since the specific aerodynamic configuration and specific engine used to. All winter surveys were executed flying low to obtain a tridimensional reconstruction of an High resolution Digital Elevation Model (DEM) of snow cover and ice cover and on summer as been developed the DEM were snow amass in the maximum avalanche risk period. The difference between winter and summer DEM (difference between two point clouds) let to individuate the snow depth, and it was used as input data for the snow avalanche model for the Aprica site (Bergamo - Italy).

  14. Sea Ice Characteristics and the Open-Linked Data World

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khalsa, S. J. S.; McGuinness, D. L.; Duerr, R.; Pulsifer, P. L.; Fox, P. A.; Thompson, C.; Yan, R.

    2014-12-01

    The audience for sea ice data sets has broadened dramatically over the past several decades. Initially the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) sea ice products were used primarily by sea ice specialists. However, now they are in demand by researchers in many different domains and some are used by the public. This growth in the number and type of users has presented challenges to content providers aimed particularly at supporting interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary data use. In our experience, it is generally insufficient to simply make the data available as originally formatted. New audiences typically need data in different forms; forms that meet their needs, that work with their specific tools. Moreover, simple data reformatting is rarely enough. The data needs to be aggregated, transformed or otherwise converted into forms that better serve the needs of the new audience. The Semantic Sea Ice Interoperability Initiative (SSIII) is an NSF-funded research project aimed at making sea ice data more useful to more people using semantic technologies. The team includes domain and science data experts as well as knowledge representation and linked data experts. Beginning with a series of workshops involving members of the operations, sea ice research and modeling communities, as well as members of local communities in Alaska, a suite of ontologies describing the physical characteristics of sea ice have been developed and used to provide one of NSIDC's data sets, the operational Arctic sea ice charts obtained from the Canadian Ice Center, as open-linked data. These data extend nearly a decade into the past and can now be queried either directly through a publicly available SPARQL end point (for those who are familiar with open-linked data) or through a simple Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) standards map-based query tool. Questions like "What were the characteristics (i.e., sea ice concentration, form and stage of development) of the sea ice in the region surrounding my ship/polar bear on date X?" can now be answered. This service may be of interest within the broad polar community - especially those who already are familiar with either open-linked data or OGC services. We seek feedback, collaborators, and users.

  15. Brine-ecosystem interactions in sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vancoppenolle, M.; Bitz, C. M.; Fichefet, T.; Goosse, H.; Lancelot, C.; Tison, J.

    2010-12-01

    Microalgae grow in brine inclusions in sea ice. Previous sea ice-ecosystem models neglect brine-microalgae interactions, prescribing the location of the microbial communities. In this study, a sea ice model with explicit brine dynamics coupled to a simple nutrient-phytoplankton (N-P) module (diatoms and dissolved silicates) is introduced. The model predicts bottom and surface microalgal populations. In fall, brine convection in cooling ice supplies nutrients, which favors microalgal growth. In early summer, the vertical brine density profile in warmer ice stabilizes, nutrient supply shuts off, which prevents further biomass building. Sensitivity tests in an idealized Antarctic pack ice configuration suggest that mode of microalgal transport within brine (passive or active) induces important population differences. This study is a step toward a more realistic sea ice-ecosystem model, which is required to understand the role of sea ice and associated ecosystems in global biogeochemical cycles.

  16. Sea ice, climate, and multiscale composites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Golden, Kenneth

    2014-03-01

    In September of 2012, the area of the Arctic Ocean covered by sea ice reached its lowest level ever recorded in more than three decades of satellite measurements. In fact, compared to the 1980's and 1990's, this represents a loss of more than half of the summer Arctic sea ice pack. While global climate models generally predict sea ice declines over the 21st century, the precipitous losses observed so far have significantly outpaced most projections. I will discuss how mathematical models of composite materials and statistical physics are being used to study key sea ice processes and advance how sea ice is represented in climate models. This work is helping to improve projections of the fate of Earth's ice packs, and the response of polar ecosystems. A brief video of a recent Antarctic expedition where sea ice properties were measured will be shown. Supported by NSF and ONR.

  17. CBSIT 2009: Airborne Validation of Envisat Radar Altimetry and In Situ Ice Camp Measurements Over Arctic Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Connor, Laurence; Farrell, Sinead; McAdoo, David; Krabill, William; Laxon, Seymour; Richter-Menge, Jacqueline; Markus, Thorsten

    2010-01-01

    The past few years have seen the emergence of satellite altimetry as valuable tool for taking quantitative sea ice monitoring beyond the traditional surface extent measurements and into estimates of sea ice thickness and volume, parameters that arc fundamental to improved understanding of polar dynamics and climate modeling. Several studies have now demonstrated the use of both microwave (ERS, Envisat/RA-2) and laser (ICESat/GLAS) satellite altimeters for determining sea ice thickness. The complexity of polar environments, however, continues to make sea ice thickness determination a complicated remote sensing task and validation studies remain essential for successful monitoring of sea ice hy satellites. One such validation effort, the Arctic Aircraft Altimeter (AAA) campaign of2006. included underflights of Envisat and ICESat north of the Canadian Archipelago using NASA's P-3 aircraft. This campaign compared Envisat and ICESat sea ice elevation measurements with high-resolution airborne elevation measurements, revealing the impact of refrozen leads on radar altimetry and ice drift on laser altimetry. Continuing this research and validation effort, the Canada Basin Sea Ice Thickness (CBSIT) experiment was completed in April 2009. CBSIT was conducted by NOAA. and NASA as part of NASA's Operation Ice Bridge, a gap-filling mission intended to supplement sea and land ice monitoring until the launch of NASA's ICESat-2 mission. CBIST was flown on the NASA P-3, which was equipped with a scanning laser altimeter, a Ku-band snow radar, and un updated nadir looking photo-imaging system. The CB5IT campaign consisted of two flights: an under flight of Envisat along a 1000 km track similar to that flown in 2006, and a flight through the Nares Strait up to the Lincoln Sea that included an overflight of the Danish GreenArc Ice Camp off the coast of northern Greenland. We present an examination of data collected during this campaign, comparing airborne laser altimeter measurements with (1) Envisat RA-2 returns retracked optimally for sea ice and (2) in situ measurements of sea ice thickness and snow depth gathered from ice camp surveys. Particular attention is given to lead identification and classification using the continuous photo-imaging system along the Envisat underflight as well as the performance of the snow radar over the ice camp survey lines.

  18. A Novel and Low Cost Sea Ice Mass Balance Buoy.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, Keith; Meldrum, David; Wilkinson, Jeremy; Maksym, Ted; Beckers, Justin; Haas, Christian

    2013-04-01

    Understanding of sea ice mass balance processes requires continuous monitoring of the seasonal evolution of ice thickness. While autonomous ice mass balance buoys (IMBs) deployed over the past two decades have contributed to our understanding of ice growth and decay processes, deployment has been limited, in part, by the cost of such systems. Routine, basin-wide monitoring of the ice cover is realistically achievable through a network of reliable and affordable autonomous instrumentation. We describe the development of a novel autonomous platform and sensor that replaces the traditional thermistors string for monitoring temperature profiles in the ice and snow using a chain of inexpensive digital temperature chip sensors linked by a single-wire data bus. By incorporating a heating element on each sensor, the instrument is capable of resolving material interfaces (e.g. air-snow and ice-ocean boundaries) even under isothermal conditions. The instrument is small, low-cost and easy to deploy. Field and laboratory tests of the sensor chain demonstrate that the technology can reliably resolve material boundaries to within a few centimetres and over 50 scientific deployments have been made with encouraging results. The discrimination between different media based on sensor thermal response is weak in some deployments and efforts to optimise the measurement continue.

  19. Evolution of the Passive Microwave Signature of Thin Sea Ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wensnahn, Mark Robert

    1995-11-01

    Thin sea ice regulates heat exchange between the ocean and atmosphere, salt fluxes into the ocean and the exchange of shortwave radiation at the ocean surface. The degree of regulation depends critically on the ice thickness for ice less than 50 cm thick. It was found from a statistical study of SSM/I satellite data of the Bering Sea that thin ice has its own unique passive microwave signature differentiable from open water and mature, thick ice. Further, the Horizontal polarization brightness temperature at 19 and 37 GHz steadily increased downwind of land with the signature changing or evolving as the ice aged and thickened. Field observations indicate that thin ice with a bare surface can produce only part of this evolution and that the signature of mature first-year ice ultimately is the result of frost flower formation or snow deposition. A theoretical model of emission from sea was developed and simulations of emission corroborated the observations and further indicated that the evolution of the thin ice signature can be explained either by the gradual drying out of a surface slush layer or by the slow, steady formation of frost flowers in combination with brine wicking. Time sequences of passive microwave satellite data were then compared with meteorological data. It was determined that the thin ice signature near land was, at times, sensitive to changes in windspeed, air temperature, and shortwave radiation, but, away from land, that sensitivity was substantially reduced. Snow also had a dramatic effect on emission from thin ice, increasing H polarization brightness temperature by as much as 50K. Finally, a theoretical model of ice dynamics was developed from which fields of ice age and thickness calculated. Relationships between brightness temperature and ice age and thickness were calculated from a regression analysis of these fields and SSM/I data. It was shown that 37 GHz, H pol brightness temperature provides a reasonable estimate of ice age and thickness up to as much as 12 days old and 30 cm in thickness.

  20. The strength anisotropia of sea ice

    SciTech Connect

    Evdokimov, G.N.; Rogachko, S.I.

    1994-12-31

    The hydraulic-engineering structure calculations of sea ice formation force require the sea ice strength data. The strength characteristics values and the types of sea ice formations in view of water depth define the type and the design of future structures in each particular region of supposed construction. The most objective information on the sea ice physical and technical properties can be obtained by field investigations ad the existing methods of their calculations refer to a great number of errors. The accumulated bank of data on studying the sea ice formation strength properties show one that ice as a natural material is of great crystalline structure variety. The level ice fields have a number of particularities. The crystal sizes increase in ice thickness. The crystals consist of fresh-water thin plates 0.5--0.6 mm in thickness oriented by pickle-water interlayers. Difference in thickness of the sea ice cover structure is one of the main causes of the changes strength characteristics layer. Besides that the sea ice strength depends upon the destroying force direction in reference to crystal orientation which characterizes the sea ice anisotropia as a material.

  1. Growth of false bottoms under sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Naomi; Feltham, Daniel; Flocco, Daniela

    2015-04-01

    In the summer months, melt water from the surface of Arctic sea ice can percolate through the relatively porous ice and collect at the ice-ocean interface, filling hollows in the base of the ice. These pools are called under-ice melt ponds. Freezing can occur at the interface between the fresh water and the oceanic mixed layer, forming a sheet of ice called a false bottom. These have been observed to thicken and migrate upwards over time. False bottoms insulate the true base of the sea ice from the ocean and their formation is a significant mechanism of Arctic sea ice summer growth. Current parameterisations of basal ablation of sea ice in climate models do not account for these processes, the inclusion of which could improve the accuracy of predictions of Arctic sea ice. In this poster, a one-dimensional thermodynamic model of the evolution of under-ice melt ponds and false bottoms is presented. Our aim is to develop a parameterisation of the impact of under ice melt ponds and false bottoms on basal ablation of Arctic sea ice appropriate for use in gridded climate models.

  2. USGS and NOAA Monitor Arctic Sea Ice

    USGS Multimedia Gallery

    USGS scientist Jonathan Childs and NOAA oceanographer Pablo Clemente-Colón, also Chief Scientist of the National Ice Center, looking out on the Arctic sea ice. This was during a scientific expedition to map the Arctic seafloor....

  3. Summer Arctic Sea Ice Intra-Seasonal Predictability Using a Vector Auto-Regressive Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ting, M.; Wang, L.; Yuan, X.

    2014-12-01

    Recent Arctic sea ice changes have important societal and economic impacts: the accelerated melting of Arctic sea ice in summer provides new fishery opportunities and increases the feasibility of trans-Arctic shipping, yet it may also lead to adverse effects on the Arctic ecosystem, weather and climate. Understanding the predictability of Arctic sea ice melting is thus an important task. A Vector Auto-Regressive (VAR) model is evaluated for predicting the summer time (May through September) daily Arctic sea ice concentrations. The intra-seasonal forecast skill of the Arctic sea ice is assessed using 1979-2012 satellite data provided by the National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC). The cross-validated forecast skill of the VAR model is superior over persistence and climatological seasonal cycle for a lead-time of 15~60 days, especially over marginal seas. In addition to capturing the general seasonal melt of sea ice, the VAR model is also able to capture the interannual variability of the melting, from partial melt of the marginal sea ice in the beginning of the period to almost a complete melt in the later years. While the detailed mechanism leading to the high predictability of intra-seasonal sea ice concentration needs to be further examined, the study reveals for the first time that Arctic sea ice concentration can be predicted statistically with reasonable skills at the intra-seasonal time scales.

  4. The CReSIS Radar Suite for Measurements of the Ice Sheets and Sea Ice during Operation Ice Bridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leuschen, C.; Gogineni, P. S.; Allen, C.; Paden, J. D.; Hale, R.; Rodriguez-Morales, F.; Harish, A.; Seguin, S.; Arnold, E.; Blake, W.; Byers, K.; Crowe, R.; Lewis, C.; Panzer, B.; Patel, A.; Shi, L.

    2010-12-01

    The University of Kansas, Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets (CReSIS) has developed a suite of radar instrumentation operating at frequencies ranging from 180 MHz to 18 GHz to monitor the major Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets at varying resolution from the surface to the bed as well as the surface topography and snow cover characteristics of sea ice. The radar suite includes a VHF multi-channel coherent radar depth sounder/imager (MCoRDS/I) to measure ice sheet thickness, internal layering, and image ice-bed interface with fine resolution; a UHF accumulation radar to measure shallow (up to 500 m) ice sheet thickness, internal layering, and accumulation rates at decimeter resolutions; an ultra-wideband snow radar to measure thickness of snow over sea ice and accumulation rates at centimeter scale resolution; and a wideband Ku-band altimeter to measure surface topography and accumulation layer for comparison with CryoSat-2. To support recent NASA Operation Ice Bridge activities, CReSIS radars were adapted for installation and operation on the NASA DC-8 for deployments primarily to Antarctica for measurements over glacial ice in West Antarctica and sea ice, and on the NASA P-3 for deployments to Greenland and Arctic sea ice. The major integration activities included the development of antenna subsystems specifically tailored for the DC-8 and P-3 aircraft. This included a low-profile radar depth sounder/imager antenna assembly for the DC-8 with a minimal impact on the aircraft range, one of the largest VHF antenna arrays for the P-3, and a set of internal antennas structures and radomes for the P-3 bomb bay. The design and development of the antenna assemblies were focused on meeting a combination of instrument and mission requirements. We will present a description of each radar system including the antenna assemblies, instrument block diagrams, modes of operation, installation specifics for each OIB deployment, example results, and availability of data to external investigators.

  5. Distinguishing Clouds from Ice over the East Siberian Sea, Russia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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 typically remains until August or September.

    The Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer views almost the entire Earth every 9 days. These images were acquired during Terra orbit 12986 and cover an area of about 380 kilometers x 1117 kilometers. They utilize data from blocks 24 to 32 within World Reference System-2 path 117.

    MISR was built and is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA, for NASA's Office of Earth Science, Washington, DC. The Terra satellite is managed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology.

  6. The role of satellites in snow and ice measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wiesnet, D. R.

    1974-01-01

    Earth-orbiting polar satellites are desirable platforms for the remote sensing of snow and ice. Geostationary satellites at a very high altitude (35,900 km) are also desirable platforms for many remote sensors, for communications relay, for flood warning systems, and for telemetry of data from unattended instrumentation in remote, inaccessible places such as the Arctic, Antarctic, or mountain tops. Optimum use of satellite platforms is achieved only after careful consideration of the temporal, spatial, and spectral requirements of the environmental mission. The National Environmental Satellite Service will maintain both types of environmental satellites as part of its mission.

  7. The Antarctic sea ice concentration budget of an ocean-sea ice coupled model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lecomte, Olivier; Goosse, Hugues; Fichefet, Thierry; Holland, Paul R.; Uotila, Petteri

    2015-04-01

    The Antarctic sea ice concentration budget of the NEMO-LIM ocean-sea ice coupled model is computed and analyzed. Following a previously developed method, the sea ice concentration balance over the autumn-winter seasons is decomposed into four terms, including the sea ice concentration change during the period of interest, advection, divergence and a residual accounting for the net contribution of thermodynamics and ice deformation. Preliminary results from this analysis show that the geographical patterns of all budget terms over 1992-2010 are in qualitative agreement with the observed ones. Sea ice thermodynamic growth is maintained by horizontal divergence near the continent and in the central ice pack, while melting close to the ice edge is led by sea ice advection. Quantitatively however, the inner ice pack divergence and associated sea ice freezing are much stronger, as compared to observations. The advection of sea ice in both the central pack and the marginal areas are likewise stronger, which corroborates the findings of a previous study in which the same methods were applied to a fully coupled climate model. Nonetheless, the seasonal evolution of sea ice area and total extent are reasonably well simulated, since enhanced sea ice freezing due to larger divergence in the central pack is compensated by intensified melting in the outer pack owing to faster advection. Those strong dynamic components in the sea ice concentration budget are due to ice velocities that tend to be biased high all around Antarctica and particularly near the ice edge. The obtained results show that the applied method is particularly well suited for assessing the skills of an ocean-sea ice coupled model in simulating the seasonal and regional evolution of Antarctic sea ice for the proper physical reasons.

  8. Sea-ice thermodynamics and brine drainage.

    PubMed

    Worster, M Grae; Rees Jones, David W

    2015-07-13

    Significant changes in the state of the Arctic ice cover are occurring. As the summertime extent of sea ice diminishes, the Arctic is increasingly characterized by first-year rather than multi-year ice. It is during the early stages of ice growth that most brine is injected into the oceans, contributing to the buoyancy flux that mediates the thermo-haline circulation. Current operational sea-ice components of climate models often treat brine rejection between sea ice and the ocean similarly to a thermodynamic segregation process, assigning a fixed salinity to the sea ice, typical of multi-year ice. However, brine rejection is a dynamical, buoyancy-driven process and the salinity of sea ice varies significantly during the first growth season. As a result, current operational models may over predict the early brine fluxes from newly formed sea ice, which may have consequences for coupled simulations of the polar oceans. Improvements both in computational power and our understanding of the processes involved have led to the emergence of a new class of sea-ice models that treat brine rejection dynamically and should enhance predictions of the buoyancy forcing of the oceans. PMID:26032321

  9. The Last Arctic Sea Ice Refuge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pfirman, S. L.; Tremblay, B.; Newton, R.; Fowler, C.

    2010-12-01

    Summer sea ice may persist along the northern flank of Canada and Greenland for decades longer than the rest of the Arctic, raising the possibility of a naturally formed refugium for ice-associated species. Observations and models indicate that some ice in this region forms locally, while some is transported to the area by winds and ocean currents. Depending on future changes in melt patterns and sea ice transport rates, both the central Arctic and Siberian shelf seas may be sources of ice to the region. An international system of monitoring and management of the sea ice refuge, along with the ice source regions, has the potential to maintain viable habitat for ice-associated species, including polar bears, for decades into the future. Issues to consider in developing a strategy include: + the likely duration and extent of summer sea ice in this region based on observations, models and paleoenvironmental information + the extent and characteristics of the ice shed contributing sea ice to the refuge, including its dynamics, physical and biological characteristics as well as potential for contamination from local or long-range sources + likely assemblages of ice-associated species and their habitats + potential stressors such as transportation, tourism, resource extraction, contamination + policy, governance, and development issues including management strategies that could maintain the viability of the refuge.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  11. ASPECTS OF ARCTIC SEA ICE OBSERVABLE BY SEQUENTIAL PASSIVE MICROWAVE OBSERVATIONS FROM THE NIMBUS-5 SATELLITE.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Campbell, William J.; Gloersen, Per; Zwally, H. Jay

    1984-01-01

    Observations made from 1972 to 1976 with the Electrically Scanning Microwave Radiometer on board the Nimbus-5 satellite provide sequential synoptic information of the Arctic sea ice cover. This four-year data set was used to construct a fairly continuous series of three-day average 19-GHz passive microwave images which has become a valuable source of polar information, yielding many anticipated and unanticipated discoveries of the sea ice canopy observed in its entirety through the clouds and during the polar night. Short-term, seasonal, and annual variations of key sea ice parameters, such as ice edge position, ice types, mixtures of ice types, ice concentrations, and snow melt on the ice, are presented for various parts of the Arctic.

  12. Fracture Networks in Sea Ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vevatne, Jonas; Rimstad, Eivind; Hansen, Alex; Korsnes, Reinert; Hope, Sigmund

    2014-04-01

    Fracturing and refreezing of sea ice in the Kara sea are investigated using complex networkanalysis. By going to the dual network, where the fractures are nodes and their intersectionslinks, we gain access to topological features which are easy to measure and hence comparewith modeled networks. Resulting network reveal statistical properties of the fracturing process.The dual networks have a broad degree distribution, with a scale-free tail, high clusteringand efficiency. The degree-degree correlation profile shows disassortative behavior, indicatingpreferential growth. This implies that long, dominating fractures appear earlier than shorterfractures, and that the short fractures which are created later tend to connect to the longfractures.The knowledge of the fracturing process is used to construct growing fracture network (GFN)model which provides insight into the generation of fracture networks. The GFN model isprimarily based on the observation that fractures in sea ice are likely to end when hitting existingfractures. Based on an investigation of which fractures survive over time, a simple model forrefreezing is also added to the GFN model, and the model is analyzed and compared to the realnetworks.

  13. Thickness distribution, texture and stratigraphy, and a simple probabilistic model for dynamical thickening of sea ice in the southern Sea of Okhotsk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toyota, Takenobu; Kawamura, Toshiyuki; Ohshima, Kay I.; Shimoda, Haruhito; Wakatsuchi, Masaaki

    2004-06-01

    Sea ice thickness data and sea ice samples were analyzed to examine the characteristics of the ice thickness distribution and ice texture, and to understand ice growth processes in the southern Sea of Okhotsk. Ice thickness data and samples were obtained aboard the icebreaker Soya in early February, the ice growth season. Ice thickness data, which were obtained with a video monitoring system installed on the side deck of the ship each winter from 1991 to 2000 except 1995, show that the average thickness ranges from 19 7 to 55 23 cm and that it matches the characteristics of a Poisson distribution. Ice structure analysis reveals that granular texture occupies about three quarters of the total ice thickness and that the ice exhibits a layered structure with unit thickness averaging 5 to 10 cm. Stratigraphy and stable isotopic composition of the ice indicate that snow ice accounts for 10% and frazil ice accounts for 64% of the total ice thickness. This suggests that dynamic ice thickening processes such as frazil ice growth and piling up are more significant than congelation growth. On the basis of these characteristics, which resemble more those of Antarctic than Arctic sea ice, we propose a conceptual model for the ice thickening process in this region. It is shown that this model can explain the shape of the ice thickness distribution well, and is analogous with the concept of the "pancake cycle" and multiple rafting of Antarctic sea ice growth and thickening.

  14. Iron and macro-nutrient concentrations in sea ice and their impact on the nutritional status of surface waters in the southern Okhotsk Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kanna, Naoya; Toyota, Takenobu; Nishioka, Jun

    2014-08-01

    To elucidate the roles of sea ice in biogeochemical cycles in the Sea of Okhotsk, the concentrations of macro-nutrients (NO3 + NO2, PO4, SiO2, and NH4) and trace elements (Fe, Al) were measured in samples of sea ice, overlying snow, and seawater. The oxygen isotope ratio (δ18O) in the sea ice was used to distinguish between snow ice and seawater-origin ice. Except for NH4, the macro-nutrient concentrations were lower in sea ice than in surface water in the ice-covered area. A linear relationship between salinity and concentrations of NO3 + NO2, PO4, and SiO2 in the sea ice indicated that these macro-nutrients originated mainly from seawater. The Fe concentrations in sea ice were variable and several orders of magnitude higher than those in surface water in the ice-covered area. The Fe concentrations in the sea ice were positively correlated with Al concentrations, the suggestion being that the Fe contained in the sea ice originated mainly from lithogenic mineral particles. The annual Fe flux into the surface water from sea ice melting in the southern Sea of Okhotsk was estimated to be ∼740 μmol Fe m-2 yr-1. This flux is comparable to the reported annual atmospheric Fe flux (267-929 μmol Fe m-2 yr-1) in the western North Pacific. In spring, sea ice melting may slightly dilute macro-nutrient concentrations but increase Fe concentrations in surface water. These results suggest that sea ice may contribute to phytoplankton growth by release of Fe into the water column and have a large impact on biogeochemical cycles in the Sea of Okhotsk.

  15. MODIS Data and Services at the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McAllister, M.; Booker, L.; Fowler, D. K.; Haran, T. M.

    2014-12-01

    For close to 15 years, the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) NASA Distributed Active Archive Center (NDAAC) has archived and distributed snow and sea ice products derived from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instruments on the NASA Earth Observing System (EOS) Aqua and Terra satellites. The archive contains a wide selection of snow and sea ice data products relevant to cryospheric science. NSIDC offers a variety of methods for obtaining these data. Users can ftp data directly from an online archive which allows for a very quick download. The Reverb Search & Order Tool contains a complete set of metadata for all products which can be searched for and ordered. Reverb allows a user to order spatial, temporal, and parameter subsets of the data. Users can also request that they be added to our subscription list which makes it possible to have new MODIS data automatically ftp'd or staged on a local server as it is archived at NSIDC. Since MODIS products are in HDF-EOS format, a number of tools have been developed to assist with browsing, editing, reprojection, resampling, and format conversion. One such service, Data Access, can be accessed through Reverb and performs subsetting, reformatting, and reprojection. This service can also be accessed via an Application Programming Interface (API) from a user-written client. Other tools include the MODIS Swath-to-Grid Toolbox (MS2GT) and the MODIS Interactive Subsetting Tool (MIST). MS2GT was created to produce a seamless output grid from multiple input files corresponding to successively acquired, 5-minute MODIS scenes. NSIDC also created the MIST to provide subsets of certain Version 5 MODIS products, over the Greenland Climate Network (GC-Net) and the International Arctic Systems for Observing the Atmosphere (IASOA) stations. Tools from other sources include HDFView from the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), and the MODIS Reprojection Tool (MRT) and MRT Swath developed by the Land Processes DAAC (LP-DAAC).

  16. MODIS Data and Services at the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McAllister, M.; Fowler, D. K.

    2010-12-01

    For nearly a decade, the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) has archived and distributed snow and sea ice products derived from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instruments on the NASA Earth Observing System (EOS) Aqua and Terra satellites. The archive contains a wide selection of data products relevant to cryospheric science, including snow and sea ice. NSIDC offers a variety of methods for obtaining these data. Our Data Pool is an online archive which allows a user to very quickly download desired products and also has a spatial and temporal search capability. The Warehouse Inventory Search Tool (WIST) contains a complete set of metadata for all products which can be searched for and ordered. WIST also allows a user to order spatial, temporal, and parameter subsets of the data. Users can also request that they be added to our subscription list which makes it possible to have new MODIS data automatically ftpd or staged on a local server as it is archived at NSIDC. Since MODIS products are in HDF-EOS format, NSIDC has developed a number of tools to assist with browsing, editing, reprojection, resampling, and format conversion including MODIS Swath-to-Grid Toolbox (MS2GT) and the MODIS Interactive Subsetting Tool (MIST). MS2GT was created to produce a seamless output grid from multiple input files corresponding to successively acquired, 5-minute MODIS scenes. NSIDC created the MIST to also provide subsets of certain Version 5 MODIS products, over the Greenland Climate Network (GC-Net) and the International Arctic Systems for Observing the Atmosphere (IASOA) stations.

  17. The seasonal evolution of sea ice floe size distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perovich, Donald K.; Jones, Kathleen F.

    2014-12-01

    The Arctic sea ice cover undergoes large changes over an annual cycle. In winter and spring, the ice cover consists of large, snow-covered plate-like ice floes, with very little open water. By the end of summer, the snow cover is gone and the large floes have broken into a complex mosaic of smaller, rounded floes surrounded by a lace of open water. This evolution strongly affects the distribution and fate of the solar radiation deposited in the ice-ocean system and consequently the heat budget of the ice cover. In particular, increased floe perimeter can result in enhanced lateral melting. We attempt to quantify the floe evolution process through the concept of a floe size distribution that is modified by lateral melting and floe breaking. A time series of aerial photographic surveys made during the SHEBA field experiment is analyzed to determine evolution of the floe size distribution from spring through summer. Based on earlier studies, we assume the floe size cumulative distribution could be represented by a power law D-?, where D is the floe diameter. The exponent ? as well as the number density of floes Ntot are estimated from measurements of total ice area and perimeter. As summer progressed, there was an increase in ? as the size distribution shifted toward smaller floes and the number of floes increased. Lateral melting causes the distribution to deviate from a power law for small floe sizes.

  18. Unlocking a Sea Ice Secret

    SciTech Connect

    Dr. Rachel Obbard

    2013-04-22

    Dr. Rachel Obbard and her research group from Dartmouth College traveled to the Antarctic to collect samples of sea ice. Next stop: the GeoSoilEnviroCARS x-ray beamline at the Advanced Photon Source at Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois. This U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science synchrotron x-ray research facility gave the Obbard team the frontier scientific tools they needed to study the path bromide takes as it travels from the ocean to the atmosphere.

  19. Snow and Ice Mask for the MODIS Aerosol Products

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Li, Rong-Rong; Remer, Lorraine; Kaufman, Yoram J.; Mattoo, Shana; Gao, Bo-Cai; Vermote, Eric

    2005-01-01

    The atmospheric products have been derived operationally from multichannel imaging data collected with the Moderate Resolution Imaging SpectroRadiometers (MODIS) on board the NASA Terra and Aqua spacecrafts. Preliminary validations of the products were previously reported. Through analysis of more extensive time-series of MODIS aerosol products (Collection 4), we have found that the aerosol products over land areas are slightly contaminated by snow and ice during the springtime snow-melting season. We have developed an empirical technique using MODIS near-IR channels centered near 0.86 and 1.24 pm and a thermal emission channel near 11 pm to mask out these snow-contaminated pixels over land. Improved aerosol retrievals over land have been obtained. Sample results from application of the technique to MODIS data acquired over North America, northern Europe, and northeastern Asia are presented. The technique has been implemented into the MODIS Collection 5 operational algorithm for retrieving aerosols over land from MODIS data.

  20. Object-Based Aerial Photos Analysis for Arctic Sea Ice Melt Ponds and Pressure Ridges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miao, X.; Xie, H.; Ke, C.; Lei, R.

    2014-12-01

    High resolution aerial photographs can provide detailed distribution of sea ice features so as to extract physical parameters to refine, validate, and improve climate models. For example, melt ponds play an important role in Earth's radiation balance since they strongly absorb solar radiation rather than reflecting it as snow and ice do. Furthermore, no previous studies have ever considered shadow in sea ice detection, which is ubiquitous in the aerial photographs especially in multi-year ice regions and during late melting phase. Based on our previous study, an object-based classification scheme is used to extract sea ice features including melt ponds and shadow from 163 selected aerial photographs taken during the Chinese National Arctic Research Expedition (CHINARE 2010). The classification algorithm includes three major steps as follows. (1) Image segmentation groups the neighboring pixels into objects according to the similarity of spectral and texture information; (2) random forest ensemble classifier can distinguish the following objects: water, general submerged ice, shadow, and ice/snow; and (3) polygon neighbor analysis can further separate melt ponds from general submerged ice according to the spatial neighboring relationship. Finally, the shadows are used to estimate the sea ice ridge distribution based on local solar illumination geometry. Our results illustrate the spatial distribution and morphological characters of melt ponds and ridges in different latitudes of the Arctic Pacific sector. This method can be applied to massive photos and images taken in past years and future years, in deriving the detailed sea ice feature distribution and changes through years.

  1. Monitoring Land-fast Sea Ice in the Western Antarctic Through Multi-sensor Data Fusion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, M.; Im, J.; Kim, J. W.; Lee, S.; Shin, M.

    2014-12-01

    Land-fast sea ice is almost motionless and fixed to shorelines, contrary to pack ice floating on the sea. As the spatiotemporal distribution of land-fast sea ice is closely related to the global and polar climate systems, it is crucial to accurately monitor land-fast sea ice to better understand the climate systems. Remote sensing can be used to monitor land-fast sea ice as it provides data covering vast areas at high temporal resolution. While remote sensing-based land-fast sea ice monitoring has been investigated in the Arctic areas, very few studies were conducted over the Antarctic areas. In particular, no studies have been conducted in the western Antarctic due to much greater variability of sea ice and more complex topography than the eastern Antarctic. The purpose of this study was to develop an automated land-fast sea ice monitoring approach using multi-sensor data fusion and machine learning approaches in the entire Antarctic especially focusing on the western part. The basic assumptions of land-fast sea ice with almost 100% of sea ice concentration and almost 0 m/s of sea ice velocity were used. Based on these assumptions, a total of 11 variables including sea ice concentration, 8 dual polarization frequency channels from The Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for EOS (AMSR-E), ice surface temperature from visible/TIR sensor such as the MODerate resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and ice velocity from Special Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSM/I) were used to identify land-fast sea ice. In addition to the 11 remote sensing-based variables, previous land-fast sea ice results visually identified using MODIS data by Fraser in the eastern Antarctic were used as reference data. Two rule-based machine learning approaches including See5.0 and random forest were used to map land-fast sea ice. Long-term temporal changes of the Antarctic land-fast sea ice distribution were analyzed during the period of 2000 to 2008 at multiple time scales. National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC)-provided 250m MODIS Antarctic ice shelf images and high resolution Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) data (Radarsat 2) were used to validate the spatial distribution of the predicted land-fast sea ice.

  2. Singlet molecular oxygen on natural snow and ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bower, J. P.; Anastasio, C.

    2010-12-01

    Singlet molecular oxygen (1O2*) is a reactive intermediate formed when a chromophore absorbs light and subsequently transfers energy to dissolved oxygen. As an oxidant, 1O2* reacts rapidly with a number of electron-rich environmental pollutants. In our work, we show enhanced kinetics for 1O2* in frozen solutions, where its rate of formation (Rf) and steady state concentration ([1O2*]) can be many orders of magnitude higher than found in the same unfrozen solution. Our goal here is to identify the contribution of 1O2* to the decay of pollutants on snow and ice. We conducted experiments in laboratory solutions made to simulate the concentrations and characteristics of natural snow, as well as in natural snow collected in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California and at Summit, Greenland. Natural snow contains a mixture of inorganic salts and organic species that can function as sources and/or sinks for oxidants, as well as contribute colligative control on the volume of quasi-liquid layers that occur at the surface and grain boundaries of ice. In our experiments, solutions typically contained up to five components: (1) Furfuryl alcohol (FFA), a commonly used probe for 1O2*, (2) Rose Bengal (RB), a 1O2* sensitizer, (3) HOOH, a photochemical precursor for hydroxyl radical (●OH), (4) glycerol to simulate unknown, naturally occurring sinks for ●OH, and (5) sodium sulfate to control the total concentration of solutes. We illuminated samples in a temperature-controlled solar simulator and subsequently measured the loss of FFA using high performance liquid chromatography. To differentiate reactions of 1O2* from other sinks (e.g. ●OH), selective sink species were added to determine the fraction of FFA loss due to direct photolysis, reaction with 1O2*, and reaction with ●OH. We verified reactions of 1O2* with FFA by two methods. First, we utilized the kinetic solvent isotope effect, where an enhancement of FFA loss in a mixture of D2O/water is indicative 1O2* since [1O2*] is higher in D2O than it is in pure water. Secondly, we conducted tests looking at pyranone formed from the reaction of FFA + 1O2*. A combination of these methods will allow us to determine 1O2* kinetics in natural snow, where its sources and sinks are unknown. This research will help determine the importance of 1O2* to the decay of pollutants in cold regions.

  3. Measurements of thermal infrared spectral reflectance of frost, snow, and ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salisbury, John W.; D'Aria, Dana M.; Wald, Andrew

    1994-01-01

    Because much of Earth's surface is covered by frost, snow, and ice, the spectral emissivities of these materials are a significant input to radiation balance calculations in global atmospheric circulation and climate change models. Until now, however, spectral emissivities of frost and snow have been calculated from the optical constants of ice. We have measured directional hemispherical reflectance spectra of frost, snow, and ice from which emissivities can be predicted using Kirchhoff's law (e = 1-R). These measured spectra show that contrary to conclusions about the emissivity of snow drawn from previously calculated spectra, snow emissivity departs significantly from blackbody behavior in the 8-14 micrometer region of the spectrum; snow emissivity decreases with both increasing particle size and increasing density due to packing or grain welding; while snow emissivity increases due to the presence of meltwater.

  4. Measurements of thermal infrared spectral reflectance of frost, snow, and ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salisbury, John W.; D'Aria, Dana M.; Wald, Andrew

    1994-12-01

    Because much of Earth's surface is covered by frost, snow, and ice, the spectral emissivities of these materials are a significant input to radiation balance calculations in global atmospheric circulation and climate change models. Until now, however, spectral emissivities of frost and snow have been calculated from the optical constants of ice. We have measured directional hemispherical reflectance spectra of frost, snow, and ice from which emissivities can be predicted using Kirchhoff's law (e=1-R). These measured spectra show that contrary to conclusions about the emissivity of snow drawn from previously calculated spectra, snow emissivity departs significantly from blackbody behavior in the 8-14 μm region of the spectrum; snow emissivity decreases with both incresing particle size and increasing density due to packing or grain welding; while snow emissivity increases due to the presence of meltwater.

  5. Satellite Observations of Blowing Snow in and Around Antarctica: Implications for Ice Sheet Mass Balance and Atmospheric Chemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palm, S. P.; Yang, Y.; Marshak, A.

    2014-12-01

    Blowing snow in the polar regions is known to be important for a variety of reasons including ice sheet mass balance, atmospheric water vapor transport, interpretation of paleoclimate records and atmospheric chemistry. Over Antarctica, persistent katabatic winds produce extreme blowing snow events often covering 100,000 square kilometers or more and reaching heights of 300-400 meters. New techniques of blowing snow detection using active and passive satellite data are providing a new understanding of the frequency, magnitude and spatial coverage of blowing snow over and around the Antarctic continent. Current research is utilizing these methods to obtain a nearly 10 year climatology of blowing snow events over Antarctica and estimate the amount of mass being blown off the continent and sublimated into the atmosphere on an annual basis. In addition, recent research indicates that blowing snow over sea ice may be important in the process of transporting seal salt aerosol into the atmosphere where it is implicated in the production of bromine compounds that strongly influence many aspects of tropospheric chemistry.

  6. Evidence for platelet ice accretion in Arctic sea ice development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jeffries, M. O.; Schwartz, K.; Morris, K.; Veazey, A. D.; Krouse, H. R.; Gushing, S.

    1995-06-01

    Moderate quantities of platelet ice are reported in ice cores obtained from floes in the central and western Beaufort Sea, Arctic Ocean. The crystal structure characteristics include a fabric of long, thin, ragged-edged crystals with randomly oriented c axes. The cellular substructure that is characteristic of congelation ice is not evident in individual platelet ice crystals, but they do occur together with congelation ice in layers ranging from 0.05 to 0.6 m thick. Platelet ice crystals are observed primarily in second-year and multiyear floes. The structural characteristics of Arctic platelet ice are similar to those of Antarctic platelet ice. The platelet ice layers have a minimum ? 18O value of -5.3, and in some cases the platelet ice layers have more negative ? 18O values than the ice layers above and below them. The salinity of platelet ice layers is not significantly different from other ice layers. A number of platelet ice growth mechanisms and sources are discussed. Processes associated with the Ellesmere ice shelves, nearshore processes such as anchor ice growth in shallow waters off the north coast of Alaska, and ice growth in freshwater impounded behind grounded ice dams might be locally important but are unlikely to contribute significant quantities of platelet ice to pack ice floes. Two processes probably account for the presence of platelet ice. The first is growth in underice melt ponds which form in inverted depressions at the base of floes when meltwater floes off the ice surface. The second is the operation of ice pumps in which ice that is melted off the deeper parts of floes and ridges is deposited as platelet ice at a higher level. In either case, initially loose accumulations of platelet crystals are entrained in the floes by the growth of congelation ice. The widespread occurrence of platelet ice in the central and western Beaufort Sea suggests that ice growth in both underice melt ponds and associated with the operation of ice pumps might be more common than was previously realized.

  7. Comparing springtime ice-algal chlorophyll a and physical properties of multi-year and first-year sea ice from the Lincoln Sea.

    PubMed

    Lange, Benjamin A; Michel, Christine; Beckers, Justin F; Casey, J Alec; Flores, Hauke; Hatam, Ido; Meisterhans, Guillaume; Niemi, Andrea; Haas, Christian

    2015-01-01

    With near-complete replacement of Arctic multi-year ice (MYI) by first-year ice (FYI) predicted to occur within this century, it remains uncertain how the loss of MYI will impact the abundance and distribution of sea ice associated algae. In this study we compare the chlorophyll a (chl a) concentrations and physical properties of MYI and FYI from the Lincoln Sea during 3 spring seasons (2010-2012). Cores were analysed for texture, salinity, and chl a. We identified annual growth layers for 7 of 11 MYI cores and found no significant differences in chl a concentration between the bottom first-year-ice portions of MYI, upper old-ice portions of MYI, and FYI cores. Overall, the maximum chl a concentrations were observed at the bottom of young FYI. However, there were no significant differences in chl a concentrations between MYI and FYI. This suggests little or no change in algal biomass with a shift from MYI to FYI and that the spatial extent and regional variability of refrozen leads and younger FYI will likely be key factors governing future changes in Arctic sea ice algal biomass. Bottom-integrated chl a concentrations showed negative logistic relationships with snow depth and bulk (snow plus ice) integrated extinction coefficients; indicating a strong influence of snow cover in controlling bottom ice algal biomass. The maximum bottom MYI chl a concentration was observed in a hummock, representing the thickest ice with lowest snow depth of this study. Hence, in this and other studies MYI chl a biomass may be under-estimated due to an under-representation of thick MYI (e.g., hummocks), which typically have a relatively thin snowpack allowing for increased light transmission. Therefore, we suggest the on-going loss of MYI in the Arctic Ocean may have a larger impact on ice-associated production than generally assumed. PMID:25901605

  8. Short-term sea ice forecasting: An assessment of ice concentration and ice drift forecasts using the U.S. Navy's Arctic Cap Nowcast/Forecast System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hebert, David A.; Allard, Richard A.; Metzger, E. Joseph; Posey, Pamela G.; Preller, Ruth H.; Wallcraft, Alan J.; Phelps, Michael W.; Smedstad, Ole Martin

    2015-12-01

    In this study the forecast skill of the U.S. Navy operational Arctic sea ice forecast system, the Arctic Cap Nowcast/Forecast System (ACNFS), is presented for the period February 2014 to June 2015. ACNFS is designed to provide short term, 1-7 day forecasts of Arctic sea ice and ocean conditions. Many quantities are forecast by ACNFS; the most commonly used include ice concentration, ice thickness, ice velocity, sea surface temperature, sea surface salinity, and sea surface velocities. Ice concentration forecast skill is compared to a persistent ice state and historical sea ice climatology. Skill scores are focused on areas where ice concentration changes by ±5% or more, and are therefore limited to primarily the marginal ice zone. We demonstrate that ACNFS forecasts are skilful compared to assuming a persistent ice state, especially beyond 24 h. ACNFS is also shown to be particularly skilful compared to a climatologic state for forecasts up to 102 h. Modeled ice drift velocity is compared to observed buoy data from the International Arctic Buoy Programme. A seasonal bias is shown where ACNFS is slower than IABP velocity in the summer months and faster in the winter months. In February 2015, ACNFS began to assimilate a blended ice concentration derived from Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer 2 (AMSR2) and the Interactive Multisensor Snow and Ice Mapping System (IMS). Preliminary results show that assimilating AMSR2 blended with IMS improves the short-term forecast skill and ice edge location compared to the independently derived National Ice Center Ice Edge product.

  9. Springtime atmospheric transport controls Arctic summer sea-ice extent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kapsch, Marie; Graversen, Rune; Tjernström, Michael

    2013-04-01

    The sea-ice extent in the Arctic has been steadily decreasing during the satellite remote sensing era, 1979 to present, with the highest rate of retreat found in September. Contributing factors causing the ice retreat are among others: changes in surface air temperature (SAT; Lindsay and Zhang, 2005), ice circulation in response to winds/pressure patterns (Overland et al., 2008) and ocean currents (Comiso et al., 2008), as well as changes in radiative fluxes (e.g. due to changes in cloud cover; Francis and Hunter, 2006; Maksimovich and Vihma, 2012) and ocean conditions. However, large interannual variability is superimposed onto the declining trend - the ice extent by the end of the summer varies by several million square kilometer between successive years (Serreze et al., 2007). But what are the processes causing the year-to-year ice variability? A comparison of years with an anomalously large September sea-ice extent (HIYs - high ice years) with years showing an anomalously small ice extent (LIYs - low ice years) reveals that the ice variability is most pronounced in the Arctic Ocean north of Siberia (which became almost entirely ice free in September of 2007 and 2012). Significant ice-concentration anomalies of up to 30% are observed for LIYs and HIYs in this area. Focusing on this area we find that the greenhouse effect associated with clouds and water-vapor in spring is crucial for the development of the sea ice during the subsequent months. In years where the end-of-summer sea-ice extent is well below normal, a significantly enhanced transport of humid air is evident during spring into the region where the ice retreat is encountered. The anomalous convergence of humidity increases the cloudiness, resulting in an enhancement of the greenhouse effect. As a result, downward longwave radiation at the surface is larger than usual. In mid May, when the ice anomaly begins to appear and the surface albedo therefore becomes anomalously low, the net shortwave radiation anomaly becomes positive. The net shortwave radiation contributes during the rest of the melting season to an enhanced energy flux towards the surface. These findings lead to the conclusion that enhanced longwave radiation associated with positive humidity and cloud anomalies during spring plays a significant role in initiating the summer ice melt, whereas shortwave-radiation anomalies act as an amplifying feedback once the melt has started. References: Lindsay, R. and J. Zhang. The thinning of Arctic Sea Ice, 19882003: Have We Passed a Tipping Point?. J. Clim. 18, 48794894 (2005). Overland, J. E., M. Wang and S. Salo. The recent Arctic warm period. Tellus 60A, 589-597 (2008). Comiso, J. C., C. L. Parkinson, R. Gersten and L. Stock. Accelerated Decline in the Arctic sea ice cover. Geophys. Res. Lett. 35, L01703 (2008). Francis, J. A. and E. Hunter. New Insight Into the Disappearing Arctic Sea Ice. EOS T. Am. Geophys. Un. 87, 509511 (2006). Maksimovich, E. and T. Vihma. The effect of heat fluxes on interannual variability in the spring onset of snow melt in the central Arctic Ocean. J. Geophys. Res. 117, C07012 (2012). Serreze, M. C., M. M. Holland and J. Stroeve. Perspectives on the Arctic's Shrinking Sea-Ice Cover. Science 315, 1533-1536 (2007).

  10. Modeled Trends in Antarctic Sea Ice Thickness

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holland, Paul R.; Bruneau, Nicolas; Enright, Clare; Losch, Martin; Kurtz, Nathan T.; Kwok, Ron

    2014-01-01

    Unlike the rapid sea ice losses reported in the Arctic, satellite observations show an overall increase in Antarctic sea ice concentration over recent decades. However, observations of decadal trends in Antarctic ice thickness, and hence ice volume, do not currently exist. In this study a model of the Southern Ocean and its sea ice, forced by atmospheric reanalyzes, is used to assess 1992-2010 trends in ice thickness and volume. The model successfully reproduces observations of mean ice concentration, thickness, and drift, and decadal trends in ice concentration and drift, imparting some confidence in the hindcasted trends in ice thickness. The model suggests that overall Antarctic sea ice volume has increased by approximately 30 cu km/yr (0.4%/ yr) as an equal result of areal expansion (20 x 10(exp 3) sq km/yr or 0.2%/yr) and thickening (1.5 mm/yr or 0.2%/yr). This ice volume increase is an order of magnitude smaller than the Arctic decrease, and about half the size of the increased freshwater supply from the Antarctic Ice Sheet. Similarly to the observed ice concentration trends, the small overall increase in modeled ice volume is actually the residual of much larger opposing regional trends. Thickness changes near the ice edge follow observed concentration changes, with increasing concentration corresponding to increased thickness. Ice thickness increases are also found in the inner pack in the Amundsen and Weddell Seas, where the model suggests that observed ice-drift trends directed toward the coast have caused dynamical thickening in autumn and winter. Modeled changes are predominantly dynamic in origin in the Pacific sector and thermodynamic elsewhere.

  11. Fram Strait spring ice export and September Arctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halvorsen, M. H.; Smedsrud, L. H.; Zhang, R.; Kloster, K.

    2015-08-01

    The Arctic Basin exports ~ 10 % of the sea ice area southwards annually through Fram Strait. A larger than normal export decreases the remaining mean thickness and ice area. A new updated timeseries from 1979-2013 of Fram Strait sea ice area export shows an overall increase until today, and that more than 1 million km2 has been exported annually in recent years. The new timeseries has been constructed from high resolution radar satellite imagery of sea ice drift across 79 N from 2004-2013, regressed on the observed cross-strait surface pressure difference, and shows an increasing trend of 7 % per decade. The trend is caused by higher southward ice drift speeds due to stronger southward geostrophic winds, largely explained by increasing surface pressure on Greenland. Spring and summer area export increases more (~ 14 % per decade) than in autumn and winter, and these export anomalies have a large influence on the following September mean ice extent.

  12. Optical Thickness and Effective Radius Retrievals of Liquid Water Clouds over Ice and Snow Surface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Platnick, S.; King, M. D.; Tsay, S.-C.; Arnold, G. T.; Gerber, H.; Hobbs, P. V.; Rangno, A.

    1999-01-01

    Cloud optical thickness and effective radius retrievals from solar reflectance measurements traditionally depend on a combination of spectral channels that are absorbing and non-absorbing for liquid water droplets. Reflectances in non-absorbing channels (e.g., 0.67, 0.86 micrometer bands) are largely dependent on cloud optical thickness, while longer wavelength absorbing channels (1.6, 2.1, and 3.7 micrometer window bands) provide cloud particle size information. Retrievals are complicated by the presence of an underlying ice/snow surface. At the shorter wavelengths, sea ice is both bright and highly variable, significantly increasing cloud retrieval uncertainty. However, reflectances at the longer wavelengths are relatively small and may be comparable to that of dark open water. Sea ice spectral albedos derived from Cloud Absorption Radiometer (CAR) measurements during April 1992 and June 1995 Arctic field deployments are used to illustrate these statements. A modification to the traditional retrieval technique is devised. The new algorithm uses a combination of absorbing spectral channels for which the snow/ice albedo is relatively small. Using this approach, preliminary retrievals have been made with the MODIS Airborne Simulator (MAS) imager flown aboard the NASA ER-2 during FIRE-ACE. Data from coordinated ER-2 and University of Washington CV-580 aircraft observations of liquid water stratus clouds on June 3 and June 6, 1998 have been examined. Size retrievals are compared with in situ cloud profile measurements of effective radius made with the CV-580 PMS FSSP probe, and optical thickness retrievals are compared with extinction profiles derived from the Gerber Scientific "g-meter" probe. MAS retrievals are shown to be in good agreement with the in situ measurements.

  13. Comparison between Ground and Helicopter Electromagnetic Sea Ice Thickness Measurements from SEDNA during APLIS07 in the Beaufort Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richter-Menge, J.; Geiger, C.; Sood, S.; Elder, B.; Hendricks, S.; Martin, T.; Haas, C.

    2008-12-01

    The Sea-ice Experiment: Dynamic Nature of the Arctic (SEDNA) project took place in April 2007 in the Beaufort Sae as part of the first ice camp of IPY. Central to the SEDNA project was an array of six 1km survey lines, laid out across all available ice types. Among the many experiments conducted along the survey lines was a comparison between a helicopter-borne electromagnetic induction device (HEM), ground EM profiles using an EM-31, and snow and ice calibration drill holes. Here we report and compare all these measurements of ice thickness, made over the same place at the same time in the Beaufort Sea. We extend this comparison to similar measurements made in another experiment conducted in 2004 in the Baltic Sea over seasonal level and deformed ice. Results are used to assess the capabilities and natural limitations of the instrumentation including insight into the geophysical interpretation of their differences. Despite the footprint limitation of EM systems to resolve the structure of deformed sea ice on a local scale, histogram analysis shows that the mean and median of sea ice derived from these surface-only measurements provide a good representation of the mean and median thickness of sea ice as well as the thickness distribution of all first year ice (both level and deformed).

  14. On the measure of sea ice area from sea ice concentration data sets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boccolari, Mauro; Parmiggiani, Flavio

    2015-10-01

    The measure of sea ice surface variability provides a fundamental information on the climatology of the Arctic region. Sea ice extension is conventionally measured by two parameters, i.e. Sea Ice Extent (SIE) and Sea Ice Area (SIA), both parameters being derived from Sea Ice Concentration (SIC) data sets. In this work a new parameter (CSIA) is introduced, which takes into account only the compact sea-ice, which is defined as the sea-ice having concentration at least equal the 70%. Aim of this study is to compare the performances of the two parameters, SIA and CSIA, in analyzing the trends of three monthly time-series of the whole Arctic region. The SIC data set used in this study was produced by the Institute of Environmental Physics of the University of Bremen and covers the period January 2003 - December 2014, i.e. the period in which the data set is built using the new AMSR passive microwave sensor.

  15. Coupling GELATO 4 sea-ice model to NEMO 3: a new ocean/sea-ice model for global climate studies at CNRM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chevallier, Matthieu; Salas-Melia, David

    2010-05-01

    A new configuration of the ocean-sea ice model in use at the Centre National de Recherches Mtorologiques (CNRM, Mto-France, France) is presented. The sea-ice component of the global coupled model is an updated version of GELATO (Salas-Melia, 2002). GELATO is a dynamic-thermodynamic model, and includes elastic-visco-plastic rheology, redistribution of ice floes of different thicknesses, and also takes into account leads, snow cover and snow ice formation. The new version of GELATO sea-ice model includes also a tracer of ice age. GELATO 4 is coupled to the NEMO3.3 global ocean model (Madec et al., 2008), a hydrostatic, primitive equation, finite difference ocean model in the 1-configuration ORCA1. In this new configuration, the straits in the Arctic Ocean are opened, leading to more realistic features in the sea-ice state compared to previous systems. Model performance is evaluated by performing a hindcast of the Arctic and Antarctic sea-ice covers, forced by the ERA40-based atmospheric forcing DFS4 (DRAKKAR Forcing Set 4, Brodeau et al., 2009) during the 1958-2004 period. To test the impact of a more refined description of melting sea-ice surface albedo, a new sea-ice albedo scheme was also implemented in GELATO. The scheme is based on Pedersen et al.(2009) parametrization, and includes melt ponds evolution. Performance with this latter refinement is also evaluated. The NEMO3.3-GELATO4 model is meant to be used at CNRM for Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 5 (CMIP5) experiments, and also for investigations dealing with seasonal-to-decadal predictability in the Arctic.

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  17. A toy model of sea ice growth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thorndike, Alan S.

    1992-01-01

    My purpose here is to present a simplified treatment of the growth of sea ice. By ignoring many details, it is possible to obtain several results that help to clarify the ways in which the sea ice cover will respond to climate change. Three models are discussed. The first deals with the growth of sea ice during the cold season. The second describes the cycle of growth and melting for perennial ice. The third model extends the second to account for the possibility that the ice melts away entirely in the summer. In each case, the objective is to understand what physical processes are most important, what ice properties determine the ice behavior, and to which climate variables the system is most sensitive.

  18. Antarctic sea ice thickness affects algae populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schultz, Colin

    2013-01-01

    In the waters off Antarctica, algae grow and live in the sea ice that surrounds the southern continent—a floating habitat sure to change as the planet warms. As with most aquatic ecosystems, microscopic algae form the base of the Southern Ocean food web. Distinct algae populations reside in the sea ice surface layers, on the ice's underside, and within the floating ice itself. The algae that reside on the floating ice's underside are particularly important for the region's krill population, while those on the interior or surface layers are less accessible. Understanding how changing sea ice properties will affect the regional biology, then, depends on understanding how algae populations interact with the ice.

  19. What Can Sea Ice Reconstructions Tell Us About Recent Regional Trends in Sea Ice Around Antarctica?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abram, N.; Mulvaney, R.; Murphy, E. J.

    2014-12-01

    Satellite observations of recent sea ice changes around Antarctica reveal regionally heterogeneous trends, but with an overall increasing trend in Antarctic-wide sea ice extent. Proposed mechanisms to account for increasing sea ice extent around Antarctica include freshening of the ocean surface due to melting of land ice and northward wind drift associated with strengthening of the Southern Ocean westerly winds. In this study we use extended, regional reconstructions of Antarctic sea ice changes from ice core chemistry and reanalysis of the South Orkney fast ice series to examine long-term relationships between Antarctic regional sea ice changes and surface winds. The formation and breakout of fast ice at the South Orkney islands (Murphy et al., 2014) indicates that westerly wind strength is an important factor in determining spring sea ice retreat in the Weddell Sea region. In contrast, autumn sea ice formation is more strongly influenced by long-lived ocean temperature anomalies and sea ice migration from the previous year, highlighting the multiple influences that act at different times of the year to determine the overall extent of winter sea ice. To assess the hypothesized role of westerly wind changes in driving opposing patterns of recent sea ice change between the Ross Sea and Bellingshausen Sea, we also present a comparison of ice core MSA evidence for sea ice changes derived from the James Ross Island (Mulvaney et al., 2012) and Erebus Saddle (Rhodes et al., 2012) ice cores, and view this in the context of trends in the Southern Annular Mode (Abram et al., 2014) over the last 200 years. References: Abram et al., 2014. Evolution of the Southern Annular Mode over the past millennium. Nature Climate Change. doi: 10.1038/nclimate2235 Mulvaney et al., 2012. Recent Antarctic Peninsula warming relative to Holocene temperature and ice-shelf history. Nature. doi: 10.1038/nature11391 Murphy et al., 2014. Variability of sea ice in the northern Weddell Sea during the 20th century. Journal of Geophysical Research. doi: 10.1002/2013JC009511 Rhodes et al., 2012. Little Ice Age climate and oceanic conditions of the Ross Sea, Antarctica, from a coastal ice core record. Climate of the Past. doi: 10.5194/cp-8-1223-2012

  20. Distinguishing Ice from Snow for Melt Modeling Using Daily Observations from MODIS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rittger, K.; Brodzik, M. J.; Racoviteanu, A.; Barrett, A. P.; Khalsa, S. J. S.; Painter, T. H.; Armstrong, R. L.; Burgess, A. B.

    2014-12-01

    In Earth's mountainous regions, melt from both seasonal snow and glacier ice contributes to streamflow. Few in-situ observations exist that can help distinguish between the two components of melt, particularly across large mountain ranges. In this study, we analyze daily time series of MODIS data products to distinguish ice from snow as the seasonal snowpack recedes revealing firn and glacier ice surfaces. We run a temperature index melt model for the Hunza, a sub-basin of the Upper Indus basin using the MODIS data to discriminate between glacier ice and snow and partition the corresponding streamflow. During the ablation period, this high elevation mid-latitude snowpack receives intense incoming solar radiation resulting in snow grain growth and surface albedo decreases. To explore snow grain growth, we use estimates of grain size from both the MODIS Snow Covered Area and Grain Size Model (MODSCAG) and MODIS Dust Radiative Forcing in Snow (MODDRFS). To explore albedo reduction we use 2 standard albedo products from MODIS, the Terra Daily Snow Cover algorithm (MOD10A1) and Surface Reflectance BRDF/Albedo (MOD43). We use a threshold on the grain size and albedo products to discriminate ice from snow. We test the ability of the 4 MODIS products to discriminate snow from glacier ice using higher resolution data from the Landsat 8 sensor from July 5th and July 21st, 2013 for a subset of the study area in the Karakoram region of the Himalaya that includes the Yazghil and Hopper Glaciers that drain north and northeast in the Shimshall Valley, part of the Hunza River basin. Snow and glacier ice are mapped using band ratio techniques, and are then separated on the basis of broadband albedo values calculated from Landsat bands for comparison with MODIS-derived snow and glacier ice pixels. We run a temperature index melt model that uses gap filled snow covered area from MODSCAG and interpolated station temperature data for the Hunza River basin. The model outputs daily melt volume from three surface classifications: area of snow over land, snow over glacier ice, and exposed glacier ice. The partitioning is done using a combination of MODICE and 1 of 4 MODIS products. Melt from glacier ice accounts for 25% of the combined melt on average across the 4 MODIS products for the Hunza basin, with fluctuations based on the seasonal variability of snowfall.

  1. Modeling the heating and melting of sea ice through light absorption by microalgae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeebe, Richard E.; Eicken, Hajo; Robinson, Dale H.; Wolf-Gladrow, Dieter; Dieckmann, Gerhard S.

    1996-01-01

    In sea ice of polar regions, high concentrations of microalgae are observed during the spring. Algal standing stocks may attain peak values of over 300 mg chl a m-2 in the congelation ice habitat. As of yet, the effect of additional heating of sea ice through conversion of solar radiation into heat by algae has not been investigated in detail. Local effects, such as a decrease in albedo, increasing melt rates, and a decrease of the physical strength of ice sheets may occur. To investigate the effects of microalgae on the thermal regime of sea ice, a time-dependent, one-dimensional thermodynamic model of sea ice was coupled to a bio-optical model. A spectral one-stream model was employed to determine spectral attenuation by snow, sea ice, and microalgae. Beer's law was assumed to hold for every wavelength. Energy absorption was obtained by calculating the divergence of irradiance in every layer of the model (?z = 1 cm). Changes in sea ice temperature profiles were calculated by solving the heat conduction equation with a finite difference scheme. Model results indicate that when algal biomass is concentrated at the bottom of congelation ice, melting of ice resulting from the additional conversion of solar radiation into heat may effectively destroy the algal habitat, thereby releasing algal biomass into the water column. An algal layer located in the top of the ice sheet induced a significant increase in sea ice temperature (?T > 0.3 K) for snow depths less than 5 cm and algal standing stocks higher than 150 mg chl a m-2. Furthermore, under these conditions, brine volume increased by 21% from 181 to 219 parts per thousand, which decreased the physical strength of the ice.

  2. Comparing Springtime Ice-Algal Chlorophyll a and Physical Properties of Multi-Year and First-Year Sea Ice from the Lincoln Sea

    PubMed Central

    Lange, Benjamin A.; Michel, Christine; Beckers, Justin F.; Casey, J. Alec; Flores, Hauke; Hatam, Ido; Meisterhans, Guillaume; Niemi, Andrea; Haas, Christian

    2015-01-01

    With near-complete replacement of Arctic multi-year ice (MYI) by first-year ice (FYI) predicted to occur within this century, it remains uncertain how the loss of MYI will impact the abundance and distribution of sea ice associated algae. In this study we compare the chlorophyll a (chl a) concentrations and physical properties of MYI and FYI from the Lincoln Sea during 3 spring seasons (2010-2012). Cores were analysed for texture, salinity, and chl a. We identified annual growth layers for 7 of 11 MYI cores and found no significant differences in chl a concentration between the bottom first-year-ice portions of MYI, upper old-ice portions of MYI, and FYI cores. Overall, the maximum chl a concentrations were observed at the bottom of young FYI. However, there were no significant differences in chl a concentrations between MYI and FYI. This suggests little or no change in algal biomass with a shift from MYI to FYI and that the spatial extent and regional variability of refrozen leads and younger FYI will likely be key factors governing future changes in Arctic sea ice algal biomass. Bottom-integrated chl a concentrations showed negative logistic relationships with snow depth and bulk (snow plus ice) integrated extinction coefficients; indicating a strong influence of snow cover in controlling bottom ice algal biomass. The maximum bottom MYI chl a concentration was observed in a hummock, representing the thickest ice with lowest snow depth of this study. Hence, in this and other studies MYI chl a biomass may be under-estimated due to an under-representation of thick MYI (e.g., hummocks), which typically have a relatively thin snowpack allowing for increased light transmission. Therefore, we suggest the on-going loss of MYI in the Arctic Ocean may have a larger impact on ice–associated production than generally assumed. PMID:25901605

  3. Sea Ice Biogeochemistry: A Guide for Modellers

    PubMed Central

    Tedesco, Letizia; Vichi, Marcello

    2014-01-01

    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. PMID:24586604

  4. Optical Measurements and Analysis of Sea Ice in the Chukchi Sea during the Onset of 2014 Melt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arntsen, A. E.; Stwertka, C.; Polashenski, C.; Perovich, D. K.

    2014-12-01

    Partitioning of solar radiation by the sea ice-ocean system controls sea ice melt and light availability for primary production in the upper ocean. Morphological changes occurring as the Chukchi Sea transitions to a first year ice cover with a higher melt pond fraction are likely altering the surface radiation budget and thereby impacting physical and biological systems. Field observations were conducted from the onset of snowmelt to the formation of melt ponds at several locations in the Chukchi Sea from May 18 to June 17, 2014. The state and variability of incident, reflected, and transmitted spectral irradiance as well as vector and scalar photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) were measured coincident with snow depth and ice thickness. These in situ observations were combined with coincident satellite imagery to describe the radiation budget and solar partitioning at an aggregate scale. Results show decreasing albedo and increasing transmission as melt progressed with trends interrupted by a late season snowfall. Albedo declined steadily from a high of 85% to a low of 53%, while transmitted light available for primary production remained well below 1% prior to snow melt and when highly absorbing algae was present at the bottom of the ice. Comparison of our solar partitioning observations with similar observations in multiyear ice highlights the profound impact changing ice morphology has on solar partitioning of the Chukchi Sea.

  5. Air- ice-snow interaction in the Northern Hemisphere under different stability conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Repina, Irina; Chechin, Dmitry; Artamonov, Arseny

    2013-04-01

    The traditional parameterizations of the atmospheric boundary layer are based on similarity theory and the coefficients of turbulent transfer, describing the atmospheric-surface interaction and the diffusion of impurities in the operational models of air pollution, weather forecasting and climate change. Major drawbacks of these parameterizations is that they are not applicable for the extreme conditions of stratification and currents over complex surfaces (such as sea ice, marginal ice zone or stormy sea). These problem could not be overcome within the framework of classical theory, i.e, by rectifying similarity functions or through the introduction of amendments to the traditional turbulent closure schemes. Lack of knowledge on the structure of the surface air layer and the exchange of momentum, heat and moisture between the rippling water surface and the atmosphere at different atmospheric stratifications is at present the major obstacle which impede proper functioning of the operational global and regional weather prediction models and expert models of climate and climate change. This is especially important for the polar regions, where in winter time the development of strong stable boundary layer in the presence of polynyas and leads usually occur. Experimental studies of atmosphere-ice-snow interaction under different stability conditions are presented. Strong stable and unstable conditions are discussed. Parametrizations of turbulent heat and gas exchange at the atmosphere ocean interface are developed. The dependence of the exchange coefficients and aerodynamic roughness on the atmospheric stratification over the snow and ice surface is experimentally confirmed. The drag coefficient is reduced with increasing stability. The behavior of the roughness parameter is simple. This result was obtained in the Arctic from the measurements over hummocked surface. The value of the roughness in the Arctic is much less than that observed over the snow in the middle and even high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere because the stable conditions above Arctic ice field dominate. Under such conditions the air flow over the uneven surface behaves in the way it does over the even one. This happens because depressions between ridges are filled with heavier air up to the height of irreguralities. As a result, the air moves at the level of ridges without entering depressions. Increased heat and mass transfer over polynyas and leads through self-organization of turbulent convection is found. The work was sponsored by RFBR grants and funded by the Government of the Russian Federation grants.

  6. Ice Sheet and Sea Ice Observations from Unmanned Aircraft Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crocker, R. I.; Maslanik, J. A.

    2011-12-01

    A suite of sensors has been assembled to map ice sheet and sea ice surface topography with fine-resolution from small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). This payload is optimized to provide coincident surface elevation and imagery data, and with its low cost and ease of reproduction, it has the potential to become a widely-distributed observational resource to complement polar manned-aircraft and satellite missions. To date, it has been deployed to map ice sheet elevations near Jakobshavn Isbræ in Greenland, and to measure sea ice freeboard and roughness in Fram Strait off the coast of Svalbard. Data collected during these campaigns have facilitate a detailed assessment of the system's surface elevation measurement accuracy, and provide a glimpse of the summer 2009 Fram Strait sea ice conditions. These findings are presented, along with a brief overview of our future Arctic UAS operations.

  7. Physical control of chlorophyll a, POC, and TPN distributions in the pack ice of the Ross Sea, Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arrigo, Kevin R.; Robinson, Dale H.; Dunbar, Robert B.; Leventer, Amy R.; Lizotte, Michael P.

    2003-10-01

    The pack ice ecosystem of the Ross Sea was investigated along a 1470-km north-south transect during the spring 1998 oceanographic program Research on Ocean-Atmosphere Variability and Ecosystem Response in the Ross Sea (ROAVERRS). Snow and sea ice thickness along the transect varied latitudinally, with thinner snow and ice at the northern ice edge and thin new ice in the vicinity of the Ross Sea polynya. Relative to springtime observations in other sea ice regions, algal chlorophyll a (Chl a) concentrations were low. In contrast, particulate organic carbon (POC), total particulate nitrogen (TPN), and POC:Chl a were all high, indicating either that the ice contained substantial amounts of detritus or nonphotosynthetic organisms, or that the algae had a high POC:Chl a ratio. The abundance of Chl a, POC, and TPN in the sea ice was related to ice age and thickness, as well as to snow depth: older ice had thinner snow cover and contained higher algal biomass while new ice in the polynya had lower biomass. Older pack ice was dominated by diatoms (particularly Fragilariopsis cylindrus) and had vertical distributions of Chl a, POC, and TPN that were related to salinity, with higher biomass at the ice-water interface. Fluorescence-based measurements of photosynthetic competence (Fv/Fm) were higher at ice-water interfaces, and photosynthesis-irradiance characteristics measured for bottom ice algae were comparable to those measured in pack ice communities of other regions. Nutrient concentrations in extracted sea ice brines showed depletion of silicate and nitrate, depletion or regeneration of phosphate and nitrite, and production of ammonium when normalized to seawater salinity; however, concentrations of dissolved inorganic nitrogen, phosphorous, and silica were typically above levels likely to limit algal growth. In areas where pack ice and snow cover were thickest, light levels could be limiting to algal photosynthesis. Enrichment of ?13C-POC in the sea ice was correlated with the accumulation of POC, suggesting that carbon sources for photosynthesis might shift in response to decreasing CO2 supply. Comparisons between new ice and underlying waters showed similar algal species dominance (Phaeocystis antarctica) implying incorporation of phytoplankton, with substantially higher POC and TPN concentrations in the ice.

  8. Melt ponds on Arctic sea ice determined from MODIS satellite data using an artificial neural network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rsel, A.; Kaleschke, L.; Birnbaum, G.

    2012-04-01

    Melt ponds on sea ice strongly reduce the surface albedo and accelerate the decay of Arctic sea ice. Due to different spectral properties of snow, ice, and water, the fractional coverage of these distinct surface types can be derived from multispectral sensors like the Moderate Resolution Image Spectroradiometer (MODIS) using a spectral unmixing algorithm. The unmixing was implemented using a multilayer perceptron to reduce computational costs. Arctic-wide melt pond fractions and sea ice concentrations are derived from the level 3 MODIS surface reflectance product. The validation of the MODIS melt pond data set was conducted with aerial photos from the MELTEX campaign 2008 in the Beaufort Sea, data sets from the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) for 2000 and 2001 from four sites spread over the entire Arctic, and with ship observations from the trans-Arctic HOTRAX cruise in 2005. The root-mean-square errors range from 3.8 % for the comparison with HOTRAX data, over 10.7 % for the comparison with NSIDC data, to 10.3 % and 11.4 % for the comparison with MELTEX data, with coefficient of determination ranging from R2=0.28 to R2=0.45. The mean annual cycle of the melt pond fraction per grid cell for the entire Arctic shows a strong increase in June, reaching a maximum of 15 % by the end of June. The zonal mean of melt pond fractions indicates a dependence of the temporal development of melt ponds on the geographical latitude, and has its maximum in mid-July at latitudes between 80 and 88 N. Furthermore, the MODIS results are used to estimate the influence of melt ponds on retrievals of sea ice concentrations from passive microwave data. Results from a case study comparing sea ice concentrations from ARTIST Sea Ice-, NASA Team 2-, and Bootstrap-algorithms with MODIS sea ice concentrations indicate an underestimation of around 40 % for sea ice concentrations retrieved with microwave algorithms.

  9. Development of a Seismic Snow Streamer and Use of Multi- Offset Reflection for Determining Glacier Ice Properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Velez Gonzalez, Jose A.

    Glaciers and ice sheets are important to climate research due to their role in controlling worldwide weather and temperature patterns as well as their potential impact in sea level rise. Because of this, scientists are attempting to model large ice sheets and important fast flowing glaciers. These models are limited in large part to the lack of data which govern the nonlinear behavior of ice flow. Seismic data acquisition can provide high resolution data which can be used to extract information of variables like bed topography, ice temperature and preferred ice crystal orientation. But seismic data acquisition in polar environments is challenging. This is mainly due to the labor intensive process of manually hand planting geophones. In order to improve the efficiency of active source seismic reflection data acquisition in polar environments, two prototype seismic snow-streamers were constructed for this investigation and optimized for deployment in remote locations. The first snow-streamer (experimental snow-streamer) was field tested in the Jakobshavn Glacier located in central western Greenland. The experimental snow-streamer was equipped with multiple geophone configurations and two plate materials. Twenty-two variable angle records were collected using the stationary snow streamer in the center of the survey. The source consisted of 0.5 kg of explosives buried 10 m below the snow surface at 160 m intervals. The resultant data set consisted of offsets ranging from -1760 to +1600 m and the ice-bed interface as well as two internal ice layers were imaged at approximately 1.85, 1.5 and 1.7 km depth respectively. The snow-streamer data was simultaneously collected with a mirror arrangement of hand planted buried geophones in order to test for the effects of plate weight, wind noise, geophone burial and plate to snow coupling in the seismic signal. The signal analysis and the comparison of streamer vs. buried geophones showed that geophone burial can degrade the seismic signal while the wind and signal analysis revealed that the best snow-streamer configuration was a combination of aluminum plates with vertical geophones. Using these results a second 480m full scale snow-streamer was tested in the Thwaites Glacier Antarctica. The snow-streamer data was simultaneously collected with a mirrored arrangement of surface planted and buried geophones. The trace by trace comparison revealed higher signal to noise in the data collected using the snow-streamer when compared to the surface planted and buried geophones. The full scale snow-streamer was easy to maneuver, very light and could be pulled in speeds up to 15 km/h. The use of the snow-streamer proved to be an efficient data acquisition tool, yielding high quality data. Therefore the use of snow-streamers can represent a significant improvement in the efficiency of seismic data acquisition in polar environments opening the possibility of determining important ice column properties for areas of interest. An important parameter affecting glacier flow is preferred ice crystal orientation. Seismic waves in ice travel up to 5% faster along the c-axis than when travelling perpendicular to it. Therefore, reflected seismic wave slowness (inverse of the velocity) variability as a function of angle of incidence can be used to detect anisotropy in ice crystal orientation. By combining the multi-offset seismic reflection data set acquired with the experimental snow-streamer and a 2D seismic reflection profile simultaneously collected for the same location, we investigated the presence of preferred ice crystal orientation for the area of study on the Jakobshavn Glacier. The combination of both data sets allowed the approximation of the average ray velocity as a function of angle of incidence. Given that the seismic velocity varies as a function of ice crystal orientation, we can use an existing model to relate the variation of seismic velocity as a function of offset to estimate the mean ice crystal orientation for the bed and imaged internal layers in terms of a conical c-axes distribution. Based on the anisotropy analysis we concluded that the upper 1640 m of the ice column consists mostly of isotropic. The lower 300 m of the ice column is characterized by ice with preferred ice crystal orientation. These observations are consistent with laterally extensive complex ice fabric development reported over the same region of Jakobshavn Glacier.

  10. Investigation of radar discrimination of sea ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parashar, S. K.; Biggs, A. W.; Fung, A. K.; Moore, R. K.

    1974-01-01

    The ability of radar to discriminate sea ice types and their thickness was studied. Radar backscatter measurements at 400 MHz (multi-polarization) and 13.3 GHz (VV polarization) obtained from NASA Earth Resources Aircraft Program Mission 126 were analyzed in detail. The scatterometer data were separated into seven categories of sea ice according to age and thickness as interpreted from stereo aerial photographs. The variations of radar backscatter cross-section with sea ice thickness at various angles are presented at the two frequencies. There is a reversal of angular character of radar return from sea ice less than 18 cm thick at the two frequencies. Multi-year ice (sea ice greater than 180 cm thick) gives strongest return at 13.3 GHz. First-year ice (30 cm to 90 cm thick) gives strongest return at 400 MHz. Open water can be differentiated at both the frequencies. Four-polarization 16.5 GHz radar imagery was also obtained. Open water and three categories of sea ice can be identified on the images. The results of the imagery analysis are consistent with the radar scatterometer results.

  11. Evidence for radionuclide transport by sea ice

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Meese, D.A.; Reimnitz, E.; Tucker, W. B., III; Gow, A.J.; 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 137Cs, clay mineralogy and carbon. Concentrations of 137Cs 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 137Cs 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.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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 (<0.1-15.8 μg Chl a l -1), low brine salinities (1.8-21.7) and flushing from the melting sea ice likely explain the low ice meiofauna concentrations. Higher abundances of 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 enhanced summer ice melt. Previous estimates of Arctic sea ice meiofauna and under-ice amphipods on regional and pan-Arctic scales likely underestimate abundances at least in summer because they typically do not include pressure ridges.

  13. Satellite Remote Sensing: Passive-Microwave Measurements of Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2001-01-01

    Satellite passive-microwave measurements of sea ice have provided global or near-global sea ice data for most of the period since the launch of the Nimbus 5 satellite in December 1972, and have done so with horizontal resolutions on the order of 25-50 km and a frequency of every few days. These data have been used to calculate sea ice concentrations (percent areal coverages), sea ice extents, the length of the sea ice season, sea ice temperatures, and sea ice velocities, and to determine the timing of the seasonal onset of melt as well as aspects of the ice-type composition of the sea ice cover. In each case, the calculations are based on the microwave emission characteristics of sea ice and the important contrasts between the microwave emissions of sea ice and those of the surrounding liquid-water medium.

  14. Sea ice concentration temporal variability over the Weddell Sea and its relationship with tropical sea surface temperature

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Barreira, S.; Compagnucci, R.

    2007-01-01

    Principal Components Analysis (PCA) in S-Mode (correlation between temporal series) was performed on sea ice monthly anomalies, in order to investigate which are the main temporal patterns, where are the homogenous areas located and how are they related to the sea surface temperature (SST). This analysis provides 9 patterns (4 in the Amundsen and Bellingshausen Seas and 5 in the Weddell Sea) that represent the most important temporal features that dominated sea ice concentration anomalies (SICA) variability in the Weddell, Amundsen and Bellingshausen Seas over the 1979-2000 period. Monthly Polar Gridded Sea Ice Concentrations data set derived from satellite information generated by NASA Team algorithm and acquired from the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) were used. Monthly means SST are provided by the National Center for Environmental Prediction reanalysis. The first temporal pattern series obtained by PCA has its homogeneous area located at the external region of the Weddell and Bellingshausen Seas and Drake Passage, mostly north of 60°S. The second region is centered in 30°W and located at the southeast of the Weddell. The third area is localized east of 30°W and north of 60°S. South of the first area, the fourth PC series has its homogenous region, between 30° and 60°W. The last area is centered at 0° W and south of 60°S. Correlation charts between the five Principal Components series and SST were performed. Positive correlations over the Tropical Pacific Ocean were found for the five PCs when SST series preceded SICA PC series. The sign of the correlation could relate the occurrence of an El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) warm (cold) event with posterior positive (negative) anomalies of sea ice concentration over the Weddell Sea.

  15. Spectral albedo and transmittance of thin young Arctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taskjelle, Torbjørn; Hudson, Stephen R.; Granskog, Mats A.; Nicolaus, Marcel; Lei, Ruibo; Gerland, Sebastian; Stamnes, Jakob J.; Hamre, Børge

    2016-01-01

    Spectral albedo and transmittance in the range were measured on three separate dates on less than thick new Arctic sea ice growing on Kongsfjorden, Svalbard at , . Inherent optical properties, including absorption coefficients of particulate and dissolved material, were obtained from ice samples and fed into a radiative transfer model, which was used to analyze spectral albedo and transmittance and to study the influence of clouds and snow on these. Integrated albedo and transmittance for photosynthetically active radiation () were in the range 0.17-0.21 and 0.77-0.86, respectively. The average albedo and transmittance of the total solar radiation energy were 0.16 and 0.51, respectively. Values inferred from the model indicate that the ice contained possibly up to 40% brine and only 0.6% bubbles. Angular redistribution of solar radiation by clouds and snow was found to influence both the wavelength-integrated value and the spectral shape of albedo and transmittance. In particular, local peaks and depressions in the spectral albedo and spectral transmittance were found for wavelengths within atmospheric absorption bands. Simulated and measured transmittance spectra were within 5% for most of the wavelength range, but deviated up to 25% in the vicinity of , indicating the need for more optical laboratory measurements of pure ice, or improved modeling of brine optical properties in this near-infrared wavelength region.

  16. Radar backscattering from snow facies of the Greenland ice sheet: Results from the AIRSAR 1991 campaign

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rignot, Eric; Jezek, K.; Vanzyl, J. J.; Drinkwater, Mark R.; Lou, Y. L.

    1993-01-01

    In June 1991, the NASA/JPL airborne SAR (AIRSAR) acquired C- (lambda = 5.6cm), L- (lambda = 24cm), and P- (lambda = 68m) band polarimetric SAR data over the Greenland ice sheet. These data are processed using version 3.55 of the AIRSAR processor which provides radiometrically and polarimetrically calibrated images. The internal calibration of the AIRSAR data is cross-checked using the radar response from corner reflectors deployed prior to flight in one of the scenes. In addition, a quantitative assessment of the noise power level at various frequencies and polarizations is made in all the scenes. Synoptic SAR data corresponding to a swath width of about 12 by 50 km in length (compared to the standard 12 x 12 km size of high-resolution scenes) are also processed and calibrated to study transitions in radar backscatter as a function of snow facies at selected frequencies and polarizations. The snow facies on the Greenland ice sheet are traditionally categorized based on differences in melting regime during the summer months. The interior of Greenland corresponds to the dry snow zone where terrain elevation is the highest and no snow melt occurs. The lowest elevation boundary of the dry snow zone is known traditionally as the dry snow line. Beneath it is the percolation zone where melting occurs in the summer and water percolates through the snow freezing at depth to form massive ice lenses and ice pipes. At the downslope margin of this zone is the wet snow line. Below it, the wet snow zone corresponds to the lowest elevations where snow remains at the end of the summer. Ablation produces enough meltwater to create areas of snow saturated with water, together with ponds and lakes. The lowest altitude zone of ablation sees enough summer melt to remove all traces of seasonal snow accumulation, such that the surface comprises bare glacier ice.

  17. Simulation of snow and ice melt discharge into the Gepatsch reservoir (Kaunertal/Austrian Alps)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanzer, Florian; Helfricht, Kay; Schneider, Katrin; Marke, Thomas; Kuhn, Michael; Strasser, Ulrich

    2013-04-01

    We present an enhanced method to simulate snow and ice melt discharge into an Alpine reservoir (Gepatsch reservoir, tztal Alps, Tyrol/Austria) by combining a process based snow model with sophisticated data assimilation techniques. Within the frame of the alpS project MUSICALS (MUltiscale Snow/ICemelt Discharge Simulation into ALpine ReservoirS), snow cover distribution is analysed based on a set of high-resolution surface elevation datasets acquired from airborne laserscan (ALS) flights over the entire catchments (approx. 580 km, 23% glacierized) contributing directly or by diversion to discharge into the Gepatsch reservoir. The resulting maps of spatially distributed snow water equivalent (SWE) are compared to SWE maps produced by the snow model AMUNDSEN, a distributed physically based energy balance model specifically designed for high mountain regions. AMUNDSEN distinguishes between different types of snow and ice (new snow, old snow, firn and glacier ice) and accounts for their distinct properties. The initial ice thickness distribution is modeled based on digital elevation models and glacier outlines from the Austrian glacier inventory. This is required to account for changing runoff generated from glacier melt under conditions of glacier retreat. Discharge generation from calculated meltwater production and precipitation is simulated in AMUNDSEN using a linear reservoir model with five parallel reservoir cascades considering the distinct storage properties of snow, firn, ice, unglacierized areas and soil. Calibration of the recession coefficients is done separately for each subcatchment. MUSICALS aims to model discharge generated by spatially differentiated snow and ice melt more realistically and to develop a robust simulation tool that is able to calculate short-, middle- and long-term forecasts of reservoir inflow based on weather predictions and climate scenarios.

  18. Recent variations of sea ice and air temperature in high latitudes

    SciTech Connect

    Chapman, W.L.; Walsh, J.E. )

    1993-01-01

    Feedbacks resulting from the retreat of sea ice and snow contribute to the polar amplification of the greenhouse warming projected by global climate models. A gridded sea-ice database, for which the record length is now approaching four decades for the Arctic and two decades for the Antarctic, is summarized here. The sea-ice fluctuations derived from the data set are characterized by (1) temporal scales of several seasons to several years and (2) spatial scales of 30[degrees]-180[degrees] of longitude. The ice data are examined in conjunction with air temperature data for evidence of recent climate change in the polar regions. The arctic sea-ice variations over the past several decades are compatible with the corresponding air temperatures, which show a distinct warming that is strongest over northern land areas during the winter and spring. The temperature trends over the sub arctic seas are smaller and even negative in the southern Greenland region. Statistically significant decreases of the summer extent of arctic ice are apparent in the sea-ice data, and new summer minima have been achieved three times in the past 15 years. There is no significant trend of ice extent in the Arctic during winter or in the Antarctic during any season. The seasonal and geographical changes of sea-ice coverage are consistent with the more recent greenhouse experiments performed with coupled atmosphere-ocean models.

  19. Extracellular macromolecules in sea-ice: Effects on sea-ice structure and their implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ewert, M.; Bayer-Giraldi, M.

    2012-04-01

    Brine inclusions within sea-ice offer a favorable environment for certain marine microorganisms which live and thrive within the ice. These assemblages are a crucial element in the polar ecosystem. Partly entrained by ice platelets into the ice sheet, microorganisms closely interact with the liquid and solid phases of this porous environment (brine and ice), likely influencing their properties. Extracellular polysaccharide substances (EPS) and antifreeze proteins (AFP) have been identified as major elements with the potential to affect ice structure and processes, due to their capability to interact with ice crystals (selected planes in the case of AFPs) and with water molecules and salt ions present in the brine. EPS present in sea water can be selectively retained in the ice during ice formation, with implications for ice structure. Likewise, EPS and AFP released by sea-ice organisms would have a local effect, altering the microenvironment for the benefit of the organism. Macroscopic and microscopic observations showed effects on ice microstructure and a possible increase in brine fraction within the ice caused by AFPs and EPS, implicating changes in ice porosity and permeability. In the following we describe some of the interactions between sea-ice macromolecules, EPS and AFP, and the sea-ice system. We show their influence in ice structure, and discuss probable implications and consequences for microbial survival, distribution of dissolved material between sea-ice and the water column, and possible effects on the seasonal evolution of the ice. All of these could be relevant to the understanding of biogeochemical processes and the limits of habitability, as well as suggest possible applications of these substances.

  20. L-band radiometry for sea ice applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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 Peake (1976). This expression was used by Menashi et al. (1993) to derive the thickness of sea ice from UHF (0.6 GHz) radiometer. Second, retrieval algorithms for sea ice parameters with emphasis on ice-water discrimination from L-band observations considering the specific SMOS observations modes and geometries are investigated. A modified Menashi model with the permittivity depending on brine volume and temperature suggests a thickness sensitivity of up to 150 cm for low salinity (multi year or brackish) sea ice at low temperatures. At temperatures approaching the melting point the thickness sensitivity reduces to a few centimetres. For first year ice the modelled thickness sensitivity is roughly half a meter. Runs of the model MEMLS with input data generated from a 1-d thermodynamic sea ice model lead to similar conclusio. The results of the forward model may strongly vary with the input microphysical details. E.g. if the permittivity is modelled to depend in addition on the sea ice thickness as supported by several former field campaigns for thin ice, the model predictions change strongly. Prior to the launch of SMOS, an important source of observational data is the SMOS Sea-Ice campaign held near Kokkola, Finland, March 2007 conducted as an add-on of the POL-ICE campaign. Co-incident L-band observations taken with the EMIRAD instrument of the Technical University of Denmark, ice thickness values determined from the EM bird of AWI and in situ observations during the campaign are combined. Although the campaign data are to be use with care, for selected parts of the flights the sea ice thickness can be retrieved correctly. However, as the instrumental conditions and calibration were not optimal, more in situ data, preferably from the Arctic, will be needed before drawing clear conclusions about a future the sea ice thickness product based on SMOS data. Use of additional information from other microwave sensors like AMSR-E might be needed to constrain the conditions, e.g. on sea ice concentration and temperature. External calibration: to combine SMOS ice information with statistics on temperature and salinity variations derived from a suitable ocean model to identify ocean targets for a vicarious target calibration of the SMOS radiometer. Such a target can be identified most reliably in cold waters as suggested by Ruf (2000) before. At higher microwave frequencies the advantage of the Ruf method is that the absolute minimum of the observed brightness temperatures is a universal constant and can be used for external calibration. However, in the L band the salinity variations may shift the minimum to both directions so that suitable regions of low salinity variations need to be identified. For finding areas with fairly stable, at least known cold temperatures, one has to analyze existing prior (external) knowledge available from ocean observations (in situ and satellite) and from numerical models. From statistics based on daily AMSR SST fields and model simulations, the best area seems to be between Svalbard and Ocean Weather Ship Station (OWS) Mike, at 66N, 02E. However, variations in SST are still comparably large and the area can hardly be used for instrument calibration. It is suggested to deploy a number of drifters in a limited area representing a SMOS footprint to obtain accurate estimates of SSS and SST.

  1. Inorganic carbon system dynamics in landfast Arctic sea ice during the early-melt period

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Kristina A.; Miller, Lisa A.; Mundy, C. J.; Papakyriakou, Tim; Francois, Roger; Gosselin, Michel; Carnat, Gauthier; Swystun, Kyle; Tortell, Philippe D.

    2015-05-01

    We present the results of a 6 week time series of carbonate system and stable isotope measurements investigating the effects of sea ice on air-sea CO2 exchange during the early melt period in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Our observations revealed significant changes in sea ice and sackhole brine carbonate system parameters that were associated with increasing temperatures and the buildup of chlorophyll a in bottom ice. The warming sea-ice column could be separated into distinct geochemical zones where biotic and abiotic processes exerted different influences on inorganic carbon and pCO2 distributions. In the bottom ice, biological carbon uptake maintained undersaturated pCO2 conditions throughout the time series, while pCO2 was supersaturated in the upper ice. Low CO2 permeability of the sea ice matrix and snow cover effectively impeded CO2 efflux to the atmosphere, despite a strong pCO2 gradient. Throughout the middle of the ice column, brine pCO2 decreased significantly with time and was tightly controlled by solubility, as sea ice temperature and in situ melt dilution increased. Once the influence of melt dilution was accounted for, both CaCO3 dissolution and seawater mixing were found to contribute alkalinity and dissolved inorganic carbon to brines, with the CaCO3 contribution driving brine pCO2 to values lower than predicted from melt-water dilution alone. This field study reveals a dynamic carbon system within the rapidly warming sea ice, prior to snow melt. We suggest that the early spring period drives the ice column toward pCO2 undersaturation, contributing to a weak atmospheric CO2 sink as the melt period advances.

  2. SIPEX--Exploring the Antarctic Sea Ice Zone

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zicus, Sandra; Dobson, Jane; Worby, Anthony

    2008-01-01

    Sea ice in the polar regions plays a key role in both regulating global climate and maintaining marine ecosystems. The international Sea Ice Physics and Ecosystem eXperiment (SIPEX) explored the sea ice zone around Antarctica in September and October 2007, investigating relationships between the physical sea ice environment and the structure of

  3. SIPEX--Exploring the Antarctic Sea Ice Zone

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zicus, Sandra; Dobson, Jane; Worby, Anthony

    2008-01-01

    Sea ice in the polar regions plays a key role in both regulating global climate and maintaining marine ecosystems. The international Sea Ice Physics and Ecosystem eXperiment (SIPEX) explored the sea ice zone around Antarctica in September and October 2007, investigating relationships between the physical sea ice environment and the structure of…

  4. Object-based Image Classification of Arctic Sea Ice and Melt Ponds through Aerial Photos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miao, X.; Xie, H.; Li, Z.; Lei, R.

    2013-12-01

    The last six years have marked the lowest Arctic summer sea ice extents in the modern era, with a new record summer minimum (3.4 million km2) set on 13 September 2012. It has been predicted that the Arctic could be free of summer ice within the next 25-30. The loss of Arctic summer ice could have serious consequences, such as higher water temperature due to the positive feedback of albedo, more powerful and frequent storms, rising sea levels, diminished habitats for polar animals, and more pollution due to fossil fuel exploitation and/ or increased traffic through the Northwest/ Northeast Passage. In these processes, melt ponds play an important role in Earth's radiation balance since they strongly absorb solar radiation rather than reflecting it as snow and ice do. Therefore, it is necessary to develop the ability of predicting the sea ice/ melt pond extents and space-time evolution, which is pivotal to prepare for the variation and uncertainty of the future environment, political, economic, and military needs. A lot of efforts have been put into Arctic sea ice modeling to simulate sea ice processes. However, these sea ice models were initiated and developed based on limited field surveys, aircraft or satellite image data. Therefore, it is necessary to collect high resolution sea ice aerial photo in a systematic way to tune up, validate, and improve models. Currently there are many sea ice aerial photos available, such as Chinese Arctic Exploration (CHINARE 2008, 2010, 2012), SHEBA 1998 and HOTRAX 2005. However, manually delineating of sea ice and melt pond from these images is time-consuming and labor-intensive. In this study, we use the object-based remote sensing classification scheme to extract sea ice and melt ponds efficiently from 1,727 aerial photos taken during the CHINARE 2010. The algorithm includes three major steps as follows. (1) Image segmentation groups the neighboring pixels into objects according to the similarity of spectral and texture information; (2) random forest ensemble classifier can distinguish the following objects: water, submerged ice, shadow, and ice/snow; and (3) polygon neighbor analysis can further separate melt ponds from submerged ice according to the spatial neighboring relationship. Our results illustrate the spatial distribution and morphological characters of melt ponds in different latitudes of the Arctic Pacific sector. This method can be applied to massive photos and images taken in past years and future years, in deriving the detailed sea ice and melt pond distribution and changes through years.

  5. Derive Icebridge Sea-Ice Freeboard and Thickness Data through Full Waveform Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yi, D.; Harbeck, J. P.; Manizade, S.; Hofton, M. A.; Kurtz, N. T.; Studinger, M.

    2014-12-01

    The current Operation IceBridge Airborne Topographic Mapper (ATM) sea-ice freeboard and thickness data product at the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) requires coincident Digital Mapping System (DMS) imagery or Continuous Airborne Mapping By Optical Translator (CAMBOT) imagery to produce. However, some of the IceBridge ATM and Land, Vegetation, and Ice Sensor (LVIS) sea-ice flights have no coincident imagery data. In particular, the IceBridge "South Basin Transect" flights just north of the Canadian Archipelago have historically been flown under darkness (nighttime) and coincident imagery data are not available. Here we apply an algorithm using ATM waveform parameters to identify leads to derive sea-ice freeboard. ATM waveforms were fitted with Gaussian curves to calculate pulse width, peak location, pulse amplitude, and signal baseline. For each waveform, centroid, skewness, kurtosis, and pulse area were also calculated. Received waveform parameters, such as pulse width, pulse amplitude, pulse area, skewness, kurtosis, and transmitted/received pulse area ratio show a coherent response to variations of geophysical features along an ATM profile. These parameters, combined with elevation, were used to identify leads to enable sea-ice freeboard calculation. A similar algorithm is applied to the LVIS data to calculate sea-ice freeboard. Arctic sea-ice freeboards for ATM and LVIS data with no coincident visual imagery are derived in this study, extending the IceBridge sea-ice record over a large portion of thick multi-year sea ice. The results are evaluated/validated by using ATM data with coincident DMS imagery and near coincident ATM and LVIS data comparison.

  6. Spatial Variability of Barrow-Area Shore-Fast Sea Ice and Its Relationships to Passive Microwave Emissivity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maslanik, J. A.; Rivas, M. Belmonte; Holmgren, J.; Gasiewski, A. J.; Heinrichs, J. F.; Stroeve, J. C.; Klein, M.; Markus, T.; Perovich, D. K.; Sonntag, J. G.; Tape, K.

    2006-01-01

    Aircraft-acquired passive microwave data, laser radar height observations, RADARSAT synthetic aperture radar imagery, and in situ measurements obtained during the AMSR-Ice03 experiment are used to investigate relationships between microwave emission and ice characteristics over several space scales. The data fusion allows delineation of the shore-fast ice and pack ice in the Barrow area, AK, into several ice classes. Results show good agreement between observed and Polarimetric Scanning Radiometer (PSR)-derived snow depths over relatively smooth ice, with larger differences over ridged and rubbled ice. The PSR results are consistent with the effects on snow depth of the spatial distribution and nature of ice roughness, ridging, and other factors such as ice age. Apparent relationships exist between ice roughness and the degree of depolarization of emission at 10,19, and 37 GHz. This depolarization .would yield overestimates of total ice concentration using polarization-based algorithms, with indications of this seen when the NT-2 algorithm is applied to the PSR data. Other characteristics of the microwave data, such as effects of grounding of sea ice and large contrast between sea ice and adjacent land, are also apparent in the PSR data. Overall, the results further demonstrate the importance of macroscale ice roughness conditions such as ridging and rubbling on snow depth and microwave emissivity.

  7. Influence of sea ice on Arctic precipitation.

    PubMed

    Kopec, Ben G; Feng, Xiahong; Michel, Fred A; Posmentier, Eric S

    2016-01-01

    Global climate is influenced by the Arctic hydrologic cycle, which is, in part, regulated by sea ice through its control on evaporation and precipitation. However, the quantitative link between precipitation and sea ice extent is poorly constrained. Here we present observational evidence for the response of precipitation to sea ice reduction and assess the sensitivity of the response. Changes in the proportion of moisture sourced from the Arctic with sea ice change in the Canadian Arctic and Greenland Sea regions over the past two decades are inferred from annually averaged deuterium excess (d-excess) measurements from six sites. Other influences on the Arctic hydrologic cycle, such as the strength of meridional transport, are assessed using the North Atlantic Oscillation index. We find that the independent, direct effect of sea ice on the increase of the percentage of Arctic sourced moisture (or Arctic moisture proportion, AMP) is 18.2 ± 4.6% and 10.8 ± 3.6%/100,000 km(2) sea ice lost for each region, respectively, corresponding to increases of 10.9 ± 2.8% and 2.7 ± 1.1%/1 °C of warming in the vapor source regions. The moisture source changes likely result in increases of precipitation and changes in energy balance, creating significant uncertainty for climate predictions. PMID:26699509

  8. Arctic Sea Ice Maximum 2011 - Duration: 61 seconds.

    NASA Video Gallery

    AMSR-E Arctic Sea Ice: September 2010 to March 2011: Scientists tracking the annual maximum extent of Arctic sea ice said that 2011 was among the lowest ice extents measured since satellites began ...

  9. Biological albedo reduction of snow and ice on glaciers in Alaska.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takeuchi, N.

    2001-12-01

    Biogenic contaminants in snow and ice and its effect on surface albedo were investigated on five glaciers in Alaska. Several species of snow algae and dark colored organic material were found in the snow and ice of all of the glaciers. The surface albedo was significantly reduced by red-colored algae (Chlamydomonas nivalis) on snow area of the glaciers, and by dark colored material (cryoconite) on ice area. The amounts of snow algae and other biogenic material were different between glaciers: larger amounts of algae and material existed on inland glacier compared to south costal glaciers of Alaska. The measured surface albedo was lower on the inland glacier than on the south costal glaciers, consistent with the amount of the biogenic material. Results suggest that the effect of biological activity on surface albedo is more significant on the inland glacier than the south costal glaciers in Alaska. >http://www.frontier.iarc.uaf.edu:8080/~nozomu/

  10. Arctic Sea Ice Thickness from Satellite Observations, Aircraft Field Campaign Measurements, and Numerical Model Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, X.; Kwok, R.; Zhang, J.; Liu, Y.; Key, J.

    2013-12-01

    Sea ice is an important indicator and effective modulator of regional and global climate change because it significantly affects the complex exchanges of momentum, heat, and mass between the sea and atmosphere. At present, there are datasets for Arctic sea ice thickness from satellite observations, aircraft field campaign measurements, numerical model simulations, and some in-situ measurements. Among satellite derived data sets, one satellite ice thickness product has been generated using NASA's Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) observations (Kwok et al., 2009), another has been produced from long-term optical (visible, near-IR, and thermal IR) imager data from NOAA Polar Orbiting Satellites (Wang et al., 2010). The approaches are completely different: the ICESat product estimates ice thickness from surface elevation; the optical imager approach estimates ice thickness by solving the surface energy budget equation. NASA's IceBridge program fills the gap between the loss of ICESat in 2010 and the launch of ICESat-2 in 2016. IceBridge employs an aircraft for altimeter and other measurements of the ice sheets and sea ice. The IceBridge Snow Radar, Digital Mapping System (DMS), Continuous Airborne Mapping By Optical Translator (CAMBOT), and Airborne Topographic Mapper (ATM) instruments can be used to estimate ice thickness with a methodology similar to that used for ICESat. Ice thickness has also been modeled with the numerical model called Pan-Arctic Ice Ocean Modeling and Assimilation System (PIOMAS) (Zhang and Rothrock, 2003). Arctic sea ice thickness estimates from these different data sources will be examined and inter-compared to evaluate their consistency and validity with in-situ measurements. Arctic sea ice thickness variations over time and space will be also investigated.

  11. Exploring the utility of quantitative network design in evaluating Arctic sea-ice thickness sampling strategies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaminski, T.; Kauker, F.; Eicken, H.; Karcher, M.

    2015-03-01

    We present a quantitative network design (QND) study of the Arctic sea ice-ocean system using a software tool that can evaluate hypothetical observational networks in a variational data assimilation system. For a demonstration, we evaluate two idealised flight transects derived from NASA's Operation IceBridge airborne ice surveys in terms of their potential to improve ten-day to five-month sea-ice forecasts. As target regions for the forecasts we select the Chukchi Sea, an area particularly relevant for maritime traffic and offshore resource exploration, as well as two areas related to the Barnett Ice Severity Index (BSI), a standard measure of shipping conditions along the Alaskan coast that is routinely issued by ice services. Our analysis quantifies the benefits of sampling upstream of the target area and of reducing the sampling uncertainty. We demonstrate how observations of sea-ice and snow thickness can constrain ice and snow variables in a target region and quantify the complementarity of combining two flight transects. We further quantify the benefit of improved atmospheric forecasts and a well-calibrated model.

  12. Exploring the utility of quantitative network design in evaluating Arctic sea ice thickness sampling strategies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaminski, T.; Kauker, F.; Eicken, H.; Karcher, M.

    2015-08-01

    We present a quantitative network design (QND) study of the Arctic sea ice-ocean system using a software tool that can evaluate hypothetical observational networks in a variational data assimilation system. For a demonstration, we evaluate two idealised flight transects derived from NASA's Operation IceBridge airborne ice surveys in terms of their potential to improve 10-day to 5-month sea ice forecasts. As target regions for the forecasts we select the Chukchi Sea, an area particularly relevant for maritime traffic and offshore resource exploration, as well as two areas related to the Barnett ice severity index (BSI), a standard measure of shipping conditions along the Alaskan coast that is routinely issued by ice services. Our analysis quantifies the benefits of sampling upstream of the target area and of reducing the sampling uncertainty. We demonstrate how observations of sea ice and snow thickness can constrain ice and snow variables in a target region and quantify the complementarity of combining two flight transects. We further quantify the benefit of improved atmospheric forecasts and a well-calibrated model.

  13. Radiative and turbulent surface heat fluxes over sea ice in the western Weddell Sea in early summer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vihma, Timo; Johansson, Milla M.; Launiainen, Jouko

    2009-04-01

    The radiative and turbulent heat fluxes between the snow-covered sea ice and the atmosphere were analyzed on the basis of observations during the Ice Station Polarstern (ISPOL) in the western Weddell Sea from 28 November 2004 to 2 January 2005. The net heat flux to the snowpack was 3 2 W m-2 (mean standard deviation; defined positive toward snow), consisting of the net shortwave radiation (52 8 W m-2), net longwave radiation (-29 4 W m-2), latent heat flux (-14 5 W m-2), and sensible heat flux (-6 5 W m-2). The snowpack receives heat at daytime while releases heat every night. Snow thinning was due to approximately equal contributions of the increase of snow density, melt, and evaporation. The surface albedo only decreased from 0.9 to 0.8. During a case of cold air advection, the sensible heat flux was even below -50 W m-2. At night, the snow surface temperature was strongly controlled by the incoming longwave radiation. The diurnal cycle in the downward solar radiation drove diurnal cycles in 14 other variables. Comparisons against observations from the Arctic sea ice in summer indicated that at ISPOL the air was colder, surface albedo was higher, and a larger portion of the absorbed solar radiation was returned to the atmosphere via turbulent heat fluxes. The limited melt allowed larger diurnal cycles. Due to regional differences in atmospheric circulation and ice conditions, the ISPOL results cannot be fully generalized for the entire Antarctic sea ice zone.

  14. Forecasting Bering Sea ice edge behavior

    SciTech Connect

    Pritchard, R.S. ); Mueller, A.C. ); Yang, Y.S. ); Hanzlick, D.J.

    1990-01-15

    A coupled ice/ocean dynamics model is developed to provide Arctic offshore operators with 5- to 7-day forecasts of ice motions, ice conditions, and ice edge motions. An adaptive grid is introduced to follow the ice edge, and the grid may move independently of the ice motion. The grid can be Lagrangian or Eulerian at different locations away from the ice edge. Ice stress is described using an elastic-plastic model with strength determined by the ice conditions. The ocean dynamics model describes time-dependent, three-dimensional behavior, including wind-driven currents and barotropic and baroclinic flows. The thermal energy budget of the ice cover is coupled to the ocean, with mass and salt interchange accompanying freezing or melting. Near the marginal ice zone (MIZ), surface winds (determined by reducing and turning the geostrophic winds) are enhanced to reflect observed behavior. The model was tested by simulating ice edge motions observed during the 1983 Marginal Ice Zone Experiment-West and during drilling of the 1983 north Aleutian shelf Continental Offshore Stratigraphic Test well. Simulations of ice edge movement in the Bering Sea compare with observed data to within about 5 km/d. The model correctly describes mixed-layer evolution in the marginal ice zone as fresh meltwater is mixed downward by turbulence. Along-edge baroclinic flows due to density gradients across the ice edge are simulated by the model, in agreement with observations. Increased ice drift speeds generate higher melt rates due to increased turbulence levels, with the result that ice edge advance is moderated in spite of higher ice drift speeds.

  15. 2011 Sea Ice Minimum - Duration: 61 seconds.

    NASA Video Gallery

    This video shows Arctic sea ice from March 7, 2011, to Sept. 9, 2011, ending with a comparison of the 30-year average minimum extent, shown in yellow, and the Northwest Passage, in red. (no audio) ...

  16. Floating ice-algal aggregates below melting arctic sea ice.

    PubMed

    Assmy, Philipp; Ehn, Jens K; Fernndez-Mndez, Mar; Hop, Haakon; Katlein, Christian; Sundfjord, Arild; Bluhm, Katrin; Daase, Malin; Engel, Anja; Fransson, Agneta; Granskog, Mats A; Hudson, Stephen R; Kristiansen, Svein; Nicolaus, Marcel; Peeken, Ilka; Renner, Angelika H H; Spreen, Gunnar; Tatarek, Agnieszka; Wiktor, Jozef

    2013-01-01

    During two consecutive cruises to the Eastern Central Arctic in late summer 2012, we observed floating algal aggregates in the melt-water layer below and between melting ice floes of first-year pack ice. The macroscopic (1-15 cm in diameter) aggregates had a mucous consistency and were dominated by typical ice-associated pennate diatoms embedded within the mucous matrix. Aggregates maintained buoyancy and accumulated just above a strong pycnocline that separated meltwater and seawater layers. We were able, for the first time, to obtain quantitative abundance and biomass estimates of these aggregates. Although their biomass and production on a square metre basis was small compared to ice-algal blooms, the floating ice-algal aggregates supported high levels of biological activity on the scale of the individual aggregate. In addition they constituted a food source for the ice-associated fauna as revealed by pigments indicative of zooplankton grazing, high abundance of naked ciliates, and ice amphipods associated with them. During the Arctic melt season, these floating aggregates likely play an important ecological role in an otherwise impoverished near-surface sea ice environment. Our findings provide important observations and measurements of a unique aggregate-based habitat during the 2012 record sea ice minimum year. PMID:24204642

  17. Floating Ice-Algal Aggregates below Melting Arctic Sea Ice

    PubMed Central

    Assmy, Philipp; Ehn, Jens K.; Fernndez-Mndez, Mar; Hop, Haakon; Katlein, Christian; Sundfjord, Arild; Bluhm, Katrin; Daase, Malin; Engel, Anja; Fransson, Agneta; Granskog, Mats A.; Hudson, Stephen R.; Kristiansen, Svein; Nicolaus, Marcel; Peeken, Ilka; Renner, Angelika H. H.; Spreen, Gunnar; Tatarek, Agnieszka; Wiktor, Jozef

    2013-01-01

    During two consecutive cruises to the Eastern Central Arctic in late summer 2012, we observed floating algal aggregates in the melt-water layer below and between melting ice floes of first-year pack ice. The macroscopic (1-15 cm in diameter) aggregates had a mucous consistency and were dominated by typical ice-associated pennate diatoms embedded within the mucous matrix. Aggregates maintained buoyancy and accumulated just above a strong pycnocline that separated meltwater and seawater layers. We were able, for the first time, to obtain quantitative abundance and biomass estimates of these aggregates. Although their biomass and production on a square metre basis was small compared to ice-algal blooms, the floating ice-algal aggregates supported high levels of biological activity on the scale of the individual aggregate. In addition they constituted a food source for the ice-associated fauna as revealed by pigments indicative of zooplankton grazing, high abundance of naked ciliates, and ice amphipods associated with them. During the Arctic melt season, these floating aggregates likely play an important ecological role in an otherwise impoverished near-surface sea ice environment. Our findings provide important observations and measurements of a unique aggregate-based habitat during the 2012 record sea ice minimum year. PMID:24204642

  18. The role of snow/ice cover in the formation of a local Himalayan circulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, Shupo; Zhou, Libo; Zou, Han; Zhang, Meigen; Li, Peng

    2013-04-01

    Observations and model simulations were conducted in a typical Himalayan valley to investigate the role of snow/ice cover in the formation of the local diurnal wind. An unusual local circulation was observed in the Himalayas with a strong down-valley flow dominant from noon to midnight, greatly differing from those in other mountainous regions. Two experiments with snow/ice cover included/excluded were performed using the Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (RAMS) to reconstruct the Himalayan circulation, and to reveal the role of snow/ice in this circulation. The results show that the wind system in the Himalayas is composed of both glacier winds driven by the snow/ice cover and classical mountain-valley winds. In particular, the glacier winds establish the distinctive feature of the Himalayan local circulation, i.e., the strong down-valley flow in the afternoon.

  19. Arctic Sea-Ice Freeboard Heights and Estimated Ice Thicknesses from ICESat: Seasonal and Interannual Variations (2003-2007)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zwally, H. J.; Yi, D.; Kwok, R.

    2007-12-01

    Sea ice freeboard heights (sea ice plus snow cover) are derived from ICESat's along-track elevation measurements made over 70 m footprints at 172 m spacings with a range precision of 2 cm. For each measurement location, an ocean reference level is selected by constructing distributions of the measured surface elevations within +- 50 km of the location and taking the average elevation of the lowest 1 percent of the elevations, which are assumed to be over open water and/or very thin ice. The method has also provided a new estimate of the ocean geoid, which has been iteratively used as the initial ocean reference level in the analysis. Snow cover estimates from both climatology and derived from ECMWF analysis are used to estimate sea-ice thicknesses from the derived sea-ice freeboards. Probability-density functions (PDF) of ice thicknesses, which are constructed on 50-km scales, show the classic patterns of thin ice, first year, multiyear ice, etc in various regions. ICESat measurements from 2003 to present have been made in the fall (Oct-Nov) and winter (Feb-Mar) and in some springs (May-Jun). The PDF's of the mean thickness in 50 km grids show typical mixtures of areas of new thin ice and areas of residual multiyear ice in fall (1.48 m mean in 2005), growth of thicker ice in winter (1.93 m mean in 2006), and continued growth and loss of thinner ice by spring (2.67 m in 2006). The mean thickness and ice volume in the fall appears to be decreasing, while the mean thickness in the winter has had significant interannual variability. In 2004, a significant decrease of thicker ice occurred in the classic region of thicker ice north of Canada and Greenland, followed by some regrowth in 2005, and then by decreases of the thicker ice in 2006 and 2007. Compared to the typical ice thickness distributions typical of the Arctic Ocean in 1980-1990's, there appears to have been a fundamental loss of much of the thicker 3 to 5 m ice in recent years.

  20. ALBEDO MODELS FOR SNOW AND ICE ON A FRESHWATER LAKE. (R824801)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Abstract

    Snow and ice albedo measurements were taken over a freshwater lake in Minnesota for three months during the winter of 1996¯1997 for use in a winter lake water quality model. The mean albedo of new snow was measured as 0.83±0.028, while the...

  1. ALBEDO MODELS FOR SNOW AND ICE ON A FRESHWATER LAKE. (R824801)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Abstract

    Snow and ice albedo measurements were taken over a freshwater lake in Minnesota for three months during the winter of 19961997 for use in a winter lake water quality model. The mean albedo of new snow was measured as 0.830.028, while the...

  2. Mercury distribution and transport across the ocean-sea-ice-atmosphere interface in the Arctic Ocean.

    PubMed

    Chaulk, Amanda; Stern, Gary A; Armstrong, Debbie; Barber, David G; Wang, Feiyue

    2011-03-01

    The Arctic sea-ice environment has been undergoing dramatic changes in the past decades; to which extent this will affect the deposition, fate, and effects of chemical contaminants remains virtually unknown. Here, we report the first study on the distribution and transport of mercury (Hg) across the ocean-sea-ice-atmosphere interface in the Southern Beaufort Sea of the Arctic Ocean. Despite being sampled at different sites under various atmospheric and snow cover conditions, Hg concentrations in first-year ice cores were generally low and varied within a remarkably narrow range (0.5-4 ng L(-1)), with the highest concentration always in the surface granular ice layer which is characterized by enriched particle and brine pocket concentration. Atmospheric Hg depletion events appeared not to be an important factor in determining Hg concentrations in sea ice except for frost flowers and in the melt season when snowpack Hg leaches into the sea ice. The multiyear ice core showed a unique cyclic feature in the Hg profile with multiple peaks potentially corresponding to each ice growing/melting season. The highest Hg concentrations (up to 70 ng L(-1)) were found in sea-ice brine and decrease as the melt season progresses. As brine is the primary habitat for microbial communities responsible for sustaining the food web in the Arctic Ocean, the high and seasonally changing Hg concentrations in brine and its potential transformation may have a major impact on Hg uptake in Arctic marine ecosystems under a changing climate. PMID:21288021

  3. The impact of refreezing of melt ponds on Arctic sea ice thinning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flocco, Daniela; Feltham, Daniel; Schroeder, David; Tsamados, Michel

    2015-04-01

    While the impact of melt ponds on the albedo-feedback mechanism of Arctic sea ice is well known, their impact in suppressing winter freeze up has been less studied. At the end of summer the melt ponds, covering a large fraction of the sea ice, start freezing and get trapped between the sea ice beneath and a thin surface layer of ice. The pond water stores latent heat that is released as they freeze. Ponds trapped under a layer of refrozen ice have been observed in the Arctic and our model results, confirmed by observations, show that the latent heat stored in the ice due to their presence slows the basal sea ice growth for over a month after a sea ice lid appears on their surface. We have developed a three layer, one-dimensional model of temperature and salinity evolution to study the refreezing process and conducted sensitivity studies to examine the factors affecting melt pond refreezing, including the presence of snow on a refreezing pond. We also show some preliminary results obtained by including this new process in the CICE model and in particular, the impact that the increased pond salinity and the refrozen pond persistence have on the sea ice basal growth.

  4. Seasonal sea ice predictions for the Arctic based on assimilation of remotely sensed observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kauker, F.; Kaminski, T.; Ricker, R.; Toudal-Pedersen, L.; Dybkjaer, G.; Melsheimer, C.; Eastwood, S.; Sumata, H.; Karcher, M.; Gerdes, R.

    2015-10-01

    The recent thinning and shrinking of the Arctic sea ice cover has increased the interest in seasonal sea ice forecasts. Typical tools for such forecasts are numerical models of the coupled ocean sea ice system such as the North Atlantic/Arctic Ocean Sea Ice Model (NAOSIM). The model uses as input the initial state of the system and the atmospheric boundary condition over the forecasting period. This study investigates the potential of remotely sensed ice thickness observations in constraining the initial model state. For this purpose it employs a variational assimilation system around NAOSIM and the Alfred Wegener Institute's CryoSat-2 ice thickness product in conjunction with the University of Bremen's snow depth product and the OSI SAF ice concentration and sea surface temperature products. We investigate the skill of predictions of the summer ice conditions starting in March for three different years. Straightforward assimilation of the above combination of data streams results in slight improvements over some regions (especially in the Beaufort Sea) but degrades the over-all fit to independent observations. A considerable enhancement of forecast skill is demonstrated for a bias correction scheme for the CryoSat-2 ice thickness product that uses a spatially varying scaling factor.

  5. Melt ponds on Arctic sea ice determined from MODIS satellite data using an artificial neural network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rsel, A.; Kaleschke, L.; Birnbaum, G.

    2011-10-01

    Melt ponds on sea ice strongly reduce the surface albedo and accelerate the decay of Arctic sea ice. Due to different spectral properties of snow, ice, and water, the fractional coverage of these distinct surface types can be derived from multispectral sensors like MODIS using a spectral unmixing algorithm. The unmixing was implemented using a multilayer perceptron (MLP) to reduce computational costs. Arctic-wide melt pond fractions and sea ice concentrations are derived from the level 3 MODIS surface reflectance product. The validation of the MODIS melt pond data set was conducted with aerial photos from the MELTEX campaign 2008 in the Beaufort Sea, data sets from the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) for 2000 and 2001 from four sites spread over the entire Arctic, and with ship observations from the trans-Arctic HOTRAX cruise in 2005. The root-mean-square errors (RMSE) range from 3.8 % for the comparison with HOTRAX data, over 10.7 % for the comparison with NSIDC data, to 10.3 % and 11.4 % for the comparison with MELTEX data, with correlations coefficients ranging from R2 = 0.28 to R2 = 0.45. The mean annual cycle of the melt pond fraction for the entire Arctic shows a strong increase in June, reaching a maximum of 15 % by the end of June. The zonal mean of melt pond fractions indicates a dependence of the temporal development of melt ponds from the geographical latitude, and has its maximum in mid-July in latitudes between 80 and 88 N. Furthermore, the MODIS results are used to estimate the influence of melt ponds on retrievals of sea ice concentrations from passive microwave data. Results from a case study comparing sea ice concentrations from ASI-, NASA Team 2-, and Bootstrap-algorithms with MODIS sea ice concentrations indicate an underestimation of around 40 % for sea ice concentrations retrieved with microwave algorithms.

  6. Potential sea ice predictability and the role of stochastic sea ice strength perturbations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juricke, Stephan; Goessling, Helge F.; Jung, Thomas

    2014-12-01

    Ensemble experiments with a climate model are carried out in order to explore how incorporating a stochastic ice strength parameterization to account for model uncertainty affects estimates of potential sea ice predictability on time scales from days to seasons. The impact of this new parameterization depends strongly on the spatial scale, lead time and the hemisphere being considered: Whereas the representation of model uncertainty increases the ensemble spread of Arctic sea ice thickness predictions generated by atmospheric initial perturbations up to about 4 weeks into the forecast, rather small changes are found for longer lead times as well as integrated quantities such as total sea ice area. The regions where initial condition uncertainty generates spread in sea ice thickness on subseasonal time scales (primarily along the ice edge) differ from that of the stochastic sea ice strength parameterization (along the coast lines and in the interior of the Arctic). For the Antarctic the influence of the stochastic sea ice strength parameterization is much weaker due to the predominance of thinner first year ice. These results suggest that sea ice data assimilation and prediction on subseasonal time scales could benefit from taking model uncertainty into account, especially in the Arctic.

  7. Detection of mesoscale sea ice vortices and their use in sea ice model validation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, M.; Kambhamettu, C.; Roberts, A.; Hutchings, J.; Geiger, C.

    2008-12-01

    From 30 March to 5 April 2007 during the Sea-ice Experiment: Dynamic Nature of the Arctic (SEDNA) ice camp project in the Beaufort Sea, a high spatial resolution (400m) sea ice motion tracking system was used to detect and track a rotational feature with a ~60 km radius in the sea ice. The ice field at the time of detection contained only weak discontinuities thereby providing ideal conditions for observing this type of isotropic rotational motion. The feature propagated NNE at a rate of 10 km/day relative to the drifting ice which was also moving ~3.5 km/day direction WNW. Around 5 April, changes in wind direction and speed altered the ice motion field and the break up this rotational signal. We conduct a three-way comparison of this data with GPS drifters in the field area and with output from an ice-ocean model to ground-truth our velocity estimates against GPS buoys and test for the existence of similar gyre features in simulations, respectively. We find relatively good agreement between the buoys and remotely estimated sea ice velocity. Due to the time span of our velocity estimates based on 3-day repeat SAR imagery, we continue to decipher whether or not the observed vortices are in fact wind driven effects on the ice-ocean boundary layer, or whether we have observed the imprint of an ocean eddy on the Beaufort Sea ice cover.

  8. Assimilating SMOS sea ice thickness into a coupled ice-ocean model using a local SEIK filter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Qinghua; Losa, Svetlana N.; Losch, Martin; Tian-Kunze, Xiangshan; Nerger, Lars; Liu, Jiping; Kaleschke, Lars; Zhang, Zhanhai

    2014-10-01

    The impact of assimilating sea ice thickness data derived from ESA's Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) satellite together with Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder (SSMIS) sea ice concentration data of the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) in a coupled sea ice-ocean model is examined. A period of 3 months from 1 November 2011 to 31 January 2012 is selected to assess the forecast skill of the assimilation system. The 24 h forecasts and longer forecasts are based on the Massachusetts Institute of Technology general circulation model (MITgcm), and the assimilation is performed by a localized Singular Evolutive Interpolated Kalman (LSEIK) filter. For comparison, the assimilation is repeated only with the SSMIS sea ice concentrations. By running two different assimilation experiments, and comparing with the unassimilated model, independent satellite-derived data, and in situ observation, it is shown that the SMOS ice thickness assimilation leads to improved thickness forecasts. With SMOS thickness data, the sea ice concentration forecasts also agree better with observations, although this improvement is smaller.

  9. An Evaluation of the Lifetime of Hydrogen Peroxide in Polar Snow and Ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hullar, T.; Anastasio, C.

    2011-12-01

    Hydrogen peroxide (HOOH), an important tropospheric oxidant, is also present in polar ice cores and surface snow. In the presence of sunlight, HOOH at or near the snow surface readily photolyzes to form the hydroxyl radical (OH). The estimated lifetime of HOOH in polar surface snow during the summer is at most several months, which should result in complete destruction of HOOH before burial beneath the photic zone. However, field observations reveal a continuous record of HOOH in polar snow. HOOH levels in ice cores can be used to understand past atmospheres, but chemical reactions of HOOH can complicate climate interpretation. Here, we examine the impacts of four processes on the net lifetime of HOOH in polar snow: 1. Chemical recycling of HOOH by reaction of OH with organics. The photolysis of HOOH on ice produces OH, which can react with organics to form peroxyl radicals, and ultimately HOOH. 2. Production of HOOH from illumination of trace species in snow. Illumination of natural ice samples and laboratory-prepared samples containing model trace species produces HOOH. 3. Photolysis of HOOH. This process in/on ice is affected by the location of HOOH, with quantum yields for HOOH loss in bulk ice lower than values measured in the quasi-liquid layer (QLL). 4. Burial by snowfall, which decreases the actinic flux and HOOH photolysis rate constant. The impact of any one of these mechanisms does not appear sufficient to explain the extended lifetime of HOOH in polar snow and ice. We are currently working to examine whether accounting for all four processes, as well as diurnal and seasonal variations in actinic flux, may sufficiently extend the net lifetime of HOOH in polar snow and ice to reconcile laboratory and field observations.

  10. The contribution of mycosporine-like amino acids, chromophoric dissolved organic matter and particles to the UV protection of sea-ice organisms in the Baltic Sea.

    PubMed

    Piiparinen, Jonna; Enberg, Sara; Rintala, Janne-Markus; Sommaruga, Ruben; Majaneva, Markus; Autio, Riitta; Vähätalo, Anssi V

    2015-05-01

    The effects of ultraviolet radiation (UVR) on the synthesis of mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs) in sea-ice communities and on the other UV-absorption properties of sea ice were studied in a three-week long in situ experiment in the Gulf of Finland, Baltic Sea in March 2011. The untreated snow-covered ice and two snow-free ice treatments, one exposed to wavelengths > 400 nm (PAR) and the other to full solar spectrum (PAR + UVR), were analysed for MAAs and absorption coefficients of dissolved (aCDOM) and particulate (ap) fractions, the latter being further divided into non-algal (anap) and algal (aph) components. Our results showed that the diatom and dinoflagellate dominated sea-ice algal community responded to UVR down to 25-30 cm depth by increasing their MAA : chlorophyll-a ratio and by extending the composition of MAA pool from shinorine and palythine to porphyra-334 and an unknown compound with absorption peaks at ca. 335 and 360 nm. MAAs were the dominant absorbing components in algae in the top 10 cm of ice, and their contribution to total absorption became even more pronounced under UVR exposure. In addition to MAAs, the high absorption by chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM) and by deposited atmospheric particles provided UV-protection for sea-ice organisms in the exposed ice. Efficient UV-protection will especially be of importance under the predicted future climate conditions with more frequent snow-free conditions. PMID:25837523

  11. Arctic and Antarctic sea ice and climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barreira, S.

    2014-12-01

    Principal Components Analysis in T-Mode Varimax rotated was performed on Antarctic and Arctic monthly sea ice concentration anomalies (SICA) fields for the period 1979-2014, in order to investigate which are the main spatial characteristics of sea ice and its relationship with atmospheric circulation. This analysis provides 5 patterns of sea ice for inter-spring period and 3 patterns for summer-autumn for Antarctica (69,2% of the total variance) and 3 different patterns for summer-autumn and 3 for winter-spring season for the Arctic Ocean (67,8% of the total variance).Each of these patterns has a positive and negative phase. We used the Monthly Polar Gridded Sea Ice Concentrations database derived from satellite information generated by NASA Team algorithm. To understand the links between the SICA and climate trends, we extracted the mean pressure and, temperature field patterns for the months with high loadings (positive or negative) of the sea ice patterns that gave distinct atmospheric structures associated with each one. For Antarctica, the first SICA spatial winter-spring pattern in positive phase shows a negative SICA centre over the Drake Passage and north region of Bellingshausen and Weddell Seas together with another negative SICA centre over the East Indian Ocean. Strong positive centres over the rest of the Atlantic and Indian Oceans basins and the Amundsen Sea are also presented. A strong negative pressure anomaly covers most of the Antarctic Continent centered over the Bellingshausen Sea accompanied by three positive pressure anomalies in middle-latitudes. During recent years, the Arctic showed persistent associations of sea-ice and climate patterns principally during summer. Our strongest summer-autumn pattern in negative phase showed a marked reduction on SICA over western Arctic, primarily linked to an overall increase in Arctic atmospheric temperature most pronounced over the Beaufort, Chukchi and East Siberian Seas, and a positive anomaly of pressure over Greenland.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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 patterns occur in the model, but with typically smaller magnitudes and with season-specific geographical and directional differences.

  13. Attribution of Recent Arctic Sea Ice Melting to Human Influence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heo, Joonghyeok; Min, Seung-Ki

    2014-05-01

    During recent three decades Arctic sea ice extent (SIE) has been decreasing with its rate accelerating. There have been, however, limited studies which have identified human influence on the Arctic sea ice using a formal detection approach. This study conducts an updated detection analysis of recent Arctic SIE during 1979-2012 by comparing observed changes with those from CMIP5 (Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5) multi-model simulations. We use the NSIDC (National Snow and Ice Data Center) sea ice index as observations. The simulated Arctic SIEs are calculated from available ensembles of CMIP5 multi-models which have been performed under natural plus anthropogenic forcing (ALL: historical combined with RCP4.5, 112 runs from 40 models), natural forcing only (NAT: historicalNat, 48 runs from 10 models) and greenhouse gas forcing only (GHG: historicalGHG, 35 runs from 9 models). Anthropogenic forcing (ANT) responses are estimated from differences between ALL and NAT. We apply an optimal fingerprinting method where observations are regressed onto model-simulated signals (multi-model means of ALL, NAT, and GHG). Here the internal variability noise is estimated from historical simulations after removing multi-model averages. The observations display decreasing trends across all months with stronger amplitude in summer than other seasons, which is reasonably reproduced by CMIP5 simulations. Results from one-signal analyses show that the ALL, ANT, and GHG signals are all detected when considering four months (Mar, Jun, Sep, and Dec) together and also from September to January when looking at individual months. Results from two-signal analyses show that ANT is separable from NAT and also that GHG is separable from other non-GHG forcings. Scaling factors of the detected ANT and GHG signals include unity, indicating that observed Arctic sea ice melting during the satellite period is largely attributable to human-induced increases in GHGs.

  14. Operation IceBridge: Sea Ice Interlude - Duration: 2 minutes, 36 seconds.

    NASA Video Gallery

    Sea ice comes in an array of shapes and sizes and has its own ephemeral beauty. Operation IceBridge studies sea ice at both poles, and also runs across interesting formations en route to other targ...

  15. Estimation of the penetration effects of the Ka-band radar signal into the Arctic sea ice snowpack.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guerreiro, Kvin; Fleury, Sara; Kouraev, Alexei; Rmy, Frdrique; Zakharova, Elena; Blumstein, Denis

    2015-04-01

    In the context of quantifying Arctic sea ice volume at global scale, altimetry provides a unique tool to estimate sea ice thickness through the freeboard method that mainly consists in evaluating the thickness of emerged sea ice. Most of the altimeters employed to retrieve sea ice thickness operate at Ku-band frequency (13.6 Ghz). Over Arctic sea ice and at this frequency, the radar signal is only slightly affected by scattering and absorbtion due to the presence of snow over the ice. Therefore, it is commonly admitted that most of the return echo comes from the ice surface. Launched in February 2013, the Saral-AltiKa mission carries a Ka-band (36.5 Ghz) altimeter that is a great opportunity to expand the study of sea ice thickness. However, unlike the Ku-band operating systems, most of the Ka-band signal does not reach the sea ice surface and is scattered by overlying snow layers. For this reason and in order to obtain the best estimate of sea ice thickness with Ka-band radar, it is crucial to evaluate the bias due to penetration of the radar signal into the snowpack at this frequency. We combine both Ku and Ka band radar observations to study the influence of radar penetration into the snow and estimate the extinction coefficient over Arctic sea ice. Our results are of the same order of magnitude of what is found in Antarctica. This research has been done in the framework of CNES TOSCA SICKays and IDEX Transversalit InHERA projects.

  16. Using Sea Ice Age as a Proxy for Sea Ice Thickness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stroeve, J. C.; Tschudi, M. A.; Maslanik, J. A.

    2014-12-01

    Since the beginning of the modern satellite record starting in October 1978, the Arctic sea ice cover has been shrinking, with the largest changes observed at the end of the melt season in September. Through 2013, the September ice extent has declined at a rate of -14.0% dec-1, or -895,300 km2 dec-1. The seven lowest September extents in the satellite record have all occurred in the past seven years. This reduction in ice extent is accompanied by large reductions in winter ice thicknesses that are primarily explained by changes in the ocean's coverage of multiyear ice (MYI). Using the University of Colorado ice age product developed by J. Maslanik and C. Fowler, and currently produced by M. Tschudi we present recent changes in the distribution of ice age from the mid 1980s to present. The CU ice age product is based on (1) the use of ice motion to track areas of sea ice and thus estimate how long the ice survives within the Arctic, and (2) satellite imagery of sea ice concentration to determine when the ice disappears. Age is assigned on a yearly basis, with the age incremented by one year if the ice survives summer melt and stays within the Arctic domain. Age is counted from 1 to 10 years, with all ice older than 10 years assigned to the "10+" age category. The position of the ice is calculated on weekly time steps on NSIDC's 12.5-km EASE-grid. In the mid-1980s, MYI accounted for 70% of total winter ice extent, whereas by the end of 2012 it had dropped to less than 20%. This reflects not only a change in ice type, but also a general thinning of the ice pack, as older ice tends to be thicker ice. Thus, with older ice being replaced by thinner first-year ice, the ice pack is more susceptible to melting out than it was in 1980's. It has been suggested that ice age may be a useful proxy for long-term changes in ice thickness. To assess the relationship between ice age and thickness, and how this may be changing over time, we compare the ice age fields to several observational data sets on ice thickness. These comparisons reveal that while a near-linear relationship between age and thickness for ice up to 3m thick existed in earlier years, this relationship is changing.

  17. It is the North Pole: Sea ice observations at the North Pole Environmental Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perovich, D. K.; Richter-Menge, J.; Elder, B. C.; Polashenski, C.; Arbetter, T.; Brennick, O.

    2013-12-01

    In recent years the periphery of the Arctic sea ice cover has undergone significant changes, with a reduction in summer ice extent, a thinning of the ice, and a shift from multiyear to first year ice. Here we examine sea ice conditions in the Central Arctic near the North Pole using autonomous measurements of sea ice mass balance and motion made at the North Pole Environmental Observatory since 2000. The measurements include snow depth, ice thickness, surface melt, bottom melt, and ice motion. While results from 2000 to 2012 exhibit no definitive trends, there are a number of interesting findings. There is large interannual variability, with surface melting ranging from 0.02 m to 0.50 m and bottom melting from 0.10 m to 0.57 m. The years with the largest amount of surface melting were also years of record minimum ice extent; 2005, 2007, and 2012. The largest amounts of bottom melting have occurred in the past few years. For all years the end of melt season ice thickness was at least 1.2 m. Ice floes follow a predictable trajectory from the North Pole exiting out the Fram Strait. There is a tendency towards an increase in the ice floe speed averaged from April to October, ranged from a minimum of 3.06 km per day in 2001 to a maximum of 8.26 km per day in 2010.

  18. Coastal landfast sea ice decay and breakup in northern Alaska: Key processes and seasonal prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrich, Chris; Eicken, Hajo; Zhang, Jing; Krieger, Jeremy; Fukamachi, Yasushi; Ohshima, Kay I.

    2012-02-01

    Seasonal breakup of landfast sea ice consists of movement and irreversible ice detachment in response to winds or oceanic forces in the late stages of ice decay. The breakup process of landfast sea ice in the Chukchi Sea at Barrow, Alaska, was analyzed for the years 2000 through 2010 on the basis of local observations of snow and ice conditions, weather records, image sequences obtained from cameras, coastal X band marine radar, and satellite imagery. We investigated the relation of breakup to winds, tides, and nearshore current measurements from a moored acoustic Doppler current profiler. Two breakup modes are distinguished at Barrow on the basis of the degree of ice decay. Mechanical breakup due to wind and oceanic forces follows ablation and weakening of the ice. Thermal breakup is the result of ice disintegration under melt ponds, requiring little force to induce dispersion. Grounded pressure ridges are pivotal in determining the breakup mode. The timing of thermal breakup of the nearshore ice cover was found to correlate with the measured downwelling solar radiation in June and July. This linkage allows for the development of an operational forecast of landfast ice breakup. Results from forecasts during 2 years demonstrate that thermal breakup can be predicted to within a couple of days 2 weeks in advance. The cumulative shortwave energy absorbed by the ice cover provides for a measure of the state of ice decay and potential for disintegration. Discriminating between the two modes of breakup bears the potential to greatly increase forecasting skill.

  19. Sea Ice Freeboard from Altika and Comparison with Cryosat-2 and Operation Icebridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Armitage, T.

    2014-12-01

    The algorithm for estimating sea ice freeboard from satellite radar altimetry is adapted and applied to Ka-band radar altimetry data from the French-Indian SARAL/AltiKa mission. This data is compared with contemporary state-of-the-art CryoSat-2 freeboard estimates for a full sea ice growth season in both the Arctic and Antarctic. We find that in both hemispheres, AltiKa consistently ranges higher than CryoSat-2, as would be intuitively expected for an altimeter operating at a higher frequency. The difference between the freeboard estimated by the two missions changes throughout the growth season, pointing to the role of the evolving snow layer on top of the sea ice floes. The data are also compared with Operation IceBridge airborne laser altimeter data from the 2013 and 2014 campaigns and it is found that AltiKa ranges much closer to the air-snow interface than CryoSat-2. AltiKa provides a new avenue of investigation for the issue of radar altimeter penetration into the snowpack on sea ice and could provide new insights for estimates of sea ice thickness, particularly in the Antarctic where Ku-band altimeters have typically performed badly.

  20. Distinguishing snow and ice melt contributions using daily MODIS and a temperature index melt model in the Hunza River basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rittger, Karl; Brodzik, Mary J.; Racoviteanu, Adina; Barrett, Andrew; Jodha Kalsa, Siri; Armstrong, Richard

    2015-04-01

    In mountainous regions of High Asia, snow and ice both contribute to streamflow, but few in-situ observations exist that can help distinguish between the two components of melt. Our goal is to develop a melt model that can distinguish between seasonal snow and glacier ice melt at a continental scale. We use a combination of MODIS-derived data sets to distinguish three surface types at daily resolution: 1) exposed glacier ice, 2) snow over ice and 3) snow over land. We use MODICE to map glacier area and then distinguish areas of exposed ice from snow over ice using thresholds on MODIS-derived albedo or grain size products. We map snow over land using the daily MODSCAG fractional snow cover product, and use the time series of three surface types as input to a temperature index melt model. The model outputs melt volumes from exposed glacier ice, snow over ice and snow over land, respectively. To partition the glacier surface into exposed glacier ice versus snow over ice, we threshold MODIS albedo or grain size based on higher-resolution Landsat 8 imagery. During the ablation period, the high elevation mid-latitude snowpack receives intense incoming solar radiation resulting in surface albedo decreases and snow grain growth. We compare differences in modeled melt using two albedo products (Terra Daily Snow Cover algorithm (MOD10A1) and Surface Reflectance BRDF/Albedo (MCD43)) and two grain size products (MODIS Snow Covered Area and Grain Size Model (MODSCAG) and MODIS Dust Radiative Forcing in Snow (MODDRFS)). For the Hunza basin, a sub-basin of the Upper Indus basin, for the years 2001-2004, the modeled melt from exposed glacier ice accounts for: 26-44% (MOD10A1 albedo), 24-32% (MCD43 albedo), 17-28% (MODSCAG grain size) or 23-26% (MODDRFS grain size) of the combined melt from all three surface areas.

  1. EOS Aqua AMSR-E Arctic Sea-Ice Validation Program: Arctic2006 Aircraft Campaign Flight Report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cavalieri, D. J.; Markus, T.

    2006-01-01

    In March 2006, a coordinated Arctic sea-ice validation field campaign using the NASA Wallops P-3B aircraft was successfully completed. This campaign was the second Alaskan Arctic field campaign for validating the Earth Observing System (EOS) Aqua Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) sea-ice products. The first campaign was completed in March 2003. The AMSR-E, designed and built by the Japanese Space Agency for NASA, was launched May 4, 2002 on the EOS Aqua spacecraft. The AMSR-E sea-ice products to be validated include sea-ice concentration, sea-ice temperature, and snow depth on sea ice. The focus of this campaign was on the validation of snow depth on sea ice and sea-ice temperature. This flight report describes the suite of instruments flown on the P-3, the objectives of each of the six flights, the Arctic regions overflown, and the coordination among satellite, aircraft, and surface-based measurements.

  2. Massive phytoplankton blooms under Arctic sea ice.

    PubMed

    Arrigo, Kevin R; Perovich, Donald K; Pickart, Robert S; Brown, Zachary W; van Dijken, Gert L; Lowry, Kate E; Mills, Matthew M; Palmer, Molly A; Balch, William M; Bahr, Frank; Bates, Nicholas R; Benitez-Nelson, Claudia; Bowler, Bruce; Brownlee, Emily; Ehn, Jens K; Frey, Karen E; Garley, Rebecca; Laney, Samuel R; Lubelczyk, Laura; Mathis, Jeremy; Matsuoka, Atsushi; Mitchell, B Greg; Moore, G W K; Ortega-Retuerta, Eva; Pal, Sharmila; Polashenski, Chris M; Reynolds, Rick A; Schieber, Brian; Sosik, Heidi M; Stephens, Michael; Swift, James H

    2012-06-15

    Phytoplankton blooms over Arctic Ocean continental shelves are thought to be restricted to waters free of sea ice. Here, we document a massive phytoplankton bloom beneath fully consolidated pack ice far from the ice edge in the Chukchi Sea, where light transmission has increased in recent decades because of thinning ice cover and proliferation of melt ponds. The bloom was characterized by high diatom biomass and rates of growth and primary production. Evidence suggests that under-ice phytoplankton blooms may be more widespread over nutrient-rich Arctic continental shelves and that satellite-based estimates of annual primary production in these waters may be underestimated by up to 10-fold. PMID:22678359

  3. NASA Team 2 Sea Ice Concentration Algorithm Retrieval Uncertainty

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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 +/-3%. We also examined the daily IC variability, which is dominated by sea ice drift and ice formation/melt. Daily IC variability is the highest, year round, in the MIZ (often up to 20%, locally 30%). The temporal and spatial distributions of the retrieval uncertainties and the daily IC variability is expected to be useful for algorithm intercomparisons, climate trend assessments, and possibly IC assimilation in models.

  4. Low-frequency variability in the arctic atmosphere, sea ice, and upper-ocean climate system

    SciTech Connect

    Bitz, C.M.; Battisti, D.S.; Moritz, R.E.; Beesley, J.A.

    1996-02-01

    The low-frequency natural variability of the arctic climate system is modeled using a single-column, energy balance model of the atmosphere, sea ice, and upper-ocean system. Variability in the system is induced by forcing with realistic, random perturbations in the atmospheric energy transport and cloudiness. The model predicts that the volume of perennial sea ice varies predominantly on decadal timescales, while other arctic climate variables vary mostly on intraannual and interannual timescales. The variance of the simulated sea ice volume is most sensitive to perturbations of the atmospheric forcing in late spring, at the onset of melt. The variance of the simulated sea ice volume is most sensitive to perturbations of the atmospheric forcing in the late spring, at the onset of melt. The variance of sea ice volume increases with the mean sea ice thickness and with the number of layers resolved in the sea ice model. This suggests that much of the simulated variance develops when the surface temperature decouples from the sea ice interior during the late spring, when melting snow abruptly exposes the sea ice surface and decreases the surface albedo. The minimum model requirements to simulate the natural variability in the arctic climate are identified. The implications of the low-frequency, natural variability in sea ice volume for detecting a climate change are discussed. Finally, calculations suggest that the variability in the thermodynamic forcing of the polar cap could lead to a freshening in North Atlantic that is comparable to the freshening associated with the Great Salinity Anomaly. 28 refs., 14 figs., 5 tabs.

  5. PHYSICS UPDATE: Observation of snow crystals using a chamber cooled by dry ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kagawa, S.; Kakehi, M.; Ito, F.; Kagawa, K.

    1999-01-01

    It is shown that microscopic observation of natural snow crystals is possible even at relatively high atmospheric temperature, around 0 °C. For this purpose, a partial cooling method was employed. That is, a snow crystal was placed in a chamber cooled by dry ice, which prevented frost production. By using this simple method, snow crystals can be observed in winter (where snow is available). This type of observational experiment is very successful in exciting students' interest in the beauty of natural forms.

  6. Autonomous observations of the spatial variability and temporal evolution of Arctic sea ice mass balance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perovich, D. K.; Richter-Menge, J.; Elder, B. C.; Polashenski, C.; LaRoche, D.

    2011-12-01

    Observations indicate that the Arctic sea ice cover is undergoing significant decreases in both its thickness and areal extent. The sea ice mass balance provides insights into understanding these changes by attributing them to variations in ice growth, melt season length, snow depth, surface melt, and bottom ablation and thus relating them to atmospheric and ocean forcing. As part of an Arctic Observing Network, we have routinely deployed ice mass balance buoys (IMB) at multiple locations to autonomously monitor the sea ice cover since 2000. Results show considerable spatial variability across the Arctic in a given year. In general, the largest amount of melting has been observed in the Beaufort Sea, while the smallest is observed in ice north of the Canadian Archipelago. There is also interannual variability at a particular location. For example, buoys deployed at the North Pole show year to year values of surface ice melt ranging from 0 to 55 cm. There has been major thinning of ice in the Beaufort Sea primarily due to increases in bottom melting. At the end of summer, peak ocean heat fluxes to the ice in this region have exceeded 100 Watts per square meter.

  7. How does sea ice influence the isotopic composition of Arctic precipitation?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faber, Anne-Katrine; Vinther, Bo; Sjolte, Jesper; Anker Pedersen, Rasmus

    2015-04-01

    Stable water isotope records from Greenland ice cores have been used extensively to reconstruct regional past climate variations. Measurements of vapor and snow samples on the Greenland ice sheet have shown that the isotopic composition of precipitation is an integrated signal of several regional climate variables rather than a unique proxy for local changes in temperature. In order to improve our knowledge of past climate changes an improved understanding of the regional climate variations on the isotope signal is essential. Here we investigate the influence of variations in sea ice cover on the isotopic composition of precipitation in present-day Arctic. We use the model isoCAM3, an isotope-equipped version of the National Center for Atmospheric Research Community Atmosphere Model version 3. Four simulations and one control simulation are performed with prescribed SSTs and sea ice using ERA-Interim data. Each of the four runs simulates the atmospheric and isotopic response to Arctic oceanic conditions for selected years within the satellite era (1979-2013). Results show that the isotopic composition of Arctic precipitation is sensitive to changes in sea ice extent, with reduced ice extent causing more enriched isotopes and vice versa. Results also show that different configurations of sea ice cover yield different distributions of the isotopic response. However, the effects of the sea ice anomalies on the modeled isotope ratios in precipitation over the Greenland ice sheet are negligible.

  8. Real-Time Observations of Optical Properties of Arctic Sea Ice with an Autonomous System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, C.; Gerland, S.; Nicolaus, M.; Granskog, M. A.; Hudson, S. R.; Perovich, D. K.; Karlsen, T. I.; Fossan, K.

    2012-12-01

    The recent drastic changes in the Arctic sea ice cover have altered the interaction of solar radiation and sea ice. To improve our understanding of this interaction, a Spectral Radiation Buoy (SRB) for measuring sea ice optical properties was developed, based on a system used during the last International Polar Year at the drift of "Tara" across the Arctic Ocean. A first version of the SRB was deployed on drifting ice in the high Arctic in April 2012. It includes three Satlantic spectral radiometers (two in air, one under ice), covering the wavelength range from 347 nm to 804 nm with 3.3 nm spectral resolution, a bio-shutter to protect the under-ice radiometer, a data logger to handle and store collected data, and an Iridium satellite modem to transfer data in real-time. The under-ice radiometer is mounted on an adjustable under-ice arm, and the other instruments are mounted on a triangular frame frozen into the ice. The SRB measures simultaneously, autonomously and continuously the spectral fluxes of incident and reflected solar radiation, as well as under-ice irradiance, water temperature and water pressure every hour. So far, between mid April and early August 2012, the system has drifted about 600 km, from the starting position near the North Pole towards the Fram Strait. The data collected during this deployment, so far, already demonstrate that this system is suitable for autonomous and long-term observations over and under sea ice in harsh conditions. Along with the SRB, commercially available Ice Mass Balance buoys (IMB) were deployed on the same ice floe. In the vicinity of the site, manned baseline measurements of snow and sea ice physical properties have been carried out during the SRB deployment. The combined datasets allow description of the evolution of the ice floe during seasonal melt. With snow melt, the spectral surface albedo decreased and the transmittance through the snow and ice increased after mid-April, especially when melt ponds started to develop in July.

  9. Sea ice thickness changes and their relation to climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wadhams, Peter

    We review the current state of knowledge of sea ice thickness variability in the Arctic and Antarctic, and examine to what extent measurements made to date provide evidence for the impact of climate change. We begin by examining the statistical properties of the ice thickness distribution and the mechanisms underlying its development. The shape of the distribution and the statistics of pressure ridge keel depths, slopes, widths and spacings are discussed. We look at how the thickness distribution is measured. Methods presently in use are: submarine sonar profiling; moored upward sonars; airborne laser profilometry; airborne electromagnetic techniques; and drilling. New techniques which show promise include: sonar mounted on an AUV or neutrally buoyant floats; acoustic tomography or thermometry (thickness inference from travel time changes); and inference from a combination of microwave sensors. In relation to climate change in the Arctic, the measurements that have been most relevant to date have been submarine sonar profiles in identical parts of the Arctic Basin repeated on an interannual or interseasonal basis. These are reviewed: significant interannual changes in mean ice draft have been observed in the Canada Basin, at the North Pole, and in the region north of Greenland, while there is evidence of high stability in the Trans Polar Drift Stream between the Pole and Fram Strait. Measurements to date do not unequivocally demonstrate a trend due to climate change, although results both from the North Pole and from the Eurasian Basin do show a decline in mean thickness between measurements made during the 1970s and the 1980s. In the Antarctic useful results to date on ice thickness distribution have come mainly from drilling, which greatly limits the generality of the conclusions that can be drawn. Data are far too sparse to provide evidence for climate-related changes. Some interesting aspects of Antarctic sea ice are the fact that first-year ice is very thin (about 60 cm; that the deep snow cover causes a significant fraction of the ice to undergo flooding leading to snow-ice formation; and that pressure ridges tend to be shallow with drafts of less than 6 m. In assessing likely climate change impacts we conclude that the fast ice zone (shallow water close to shore) should show a definitive thinning in response to warming because ice thickness here is chiefly determined by air temperature. In moving pack ice the effects of dynamics and deformation are important and difficult to assess because of positive and negative feedback mechanisms. An area of special climatic importance is the Odden ice tongue in the Greenland Sea, where convection occurs in winter associated with local production of young ice, especially pancake; if ice production were to cease, we might expect convection in turn to slow down or cease, resulting in reduced oceanic absorption of anthropogenic CO2.

  10. Recent changes in Antarctic Sea Ice.

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-13

    In contrast to the Arctic, total sea ice extent (SIE) across the Southern Ocean has increased since the late 1970s, with the annual mean increasing at a rate of 186×10(3) km(2) per decade (1.5% per decade; p<0.01) for 1979-2013. However, this overall increase masks larger regional variations, most notably an increase (decrease) over the Ross (Amundsen-Bellingshausen) Sea. Sea ice variability results from changes in atmospheric and oceanic conditions, although the former is thought to be more significant, since there is a high correlation between anomalies in the ice concentration and the near-surface wind field. The Southern Ocean SIE trend is dominated by the increase in the Ross Sea sector, where the SIE is significantly correlated with the depth of the Amundsen Sea Low (ASL), which has deepened since 1979. The depth of the ASL is influenced by a number of external factors, including tropical sea surface temperatures, but the low also has a large locally driven intrinsic variability, suggesting that SIE in these areas is especially variable. Many of the current generation of coupled climate models have difficulty in simulating sea ice. However, output from the better-performing IPCC CMIP5 models suggests that the recent increase in Antarctic SIE may be within the bounds of intrinsic/internal variability. PMID:26032320

  11. Fram Strait sea ice outflow

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kwok, R.; Cunningham, G. F.; Pang, S. S.

    2004-01-01

    We summarize 24 years of ice export estimates and examine, over a 9-year record, the associated variability in the time-varying upward-looking sonar (ULS) thickness distributions of the Fram Strait. A more thorough assessment of the PMW (passive microwave) ice motion with 5 years of synthetic aperture radar (SAR)observations shows the uncertainties to be consistent with that found by Kwok and Rothrock [1999], giving greater confidence to the record of ice flux calculations.

  12. MIZMAS Forecast of Sea Ice Thickness and Drift in the Beaufort Sea Marginal Ice Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-12-01

    A significant decline of Arctic sea ice has been observed in recent years. The decline was particularly steep during summers 2007-2013, when the arctic sea ice extent decreased to the lowest levels observed in the satellite era. The summer melt back was most severe in the Pacific sector including the Beaufort Sea where increasing areas of warming open water and marginal ice zone (MIZ) have been observed. To enhance our understanding of MIZ processes, an Office of Naval Research MIZ initiative is under way, which is an integrated program of observations and numerical simulations to investigate ice-ocean-atmosphere dynamics in and around the Beaufort Sea MIZ. In early 2014, the observation team of this program deployed 4 clusters of instruments of various platforms in the Beaufort Sea in order to capture the processes that affect MIZ evolution during the ice melt season. To assist the field work, we have developed a numerical framework for 48-hour forecast of sea ice thickness and drift in and around the Beaufort Sea MIZ using the Marginal Ice Zone ice/ocean Modeling and Assimilation System (MIZMAS). MIZMAS is a variant of the Pan-arctic Ice/Ocean Modeling and Assimilation System (PIOMAS), with a high-resolution focus of the Chukchi, Beaufort, and Bering seas. The 48-hour sea ice forecast system is forced by the forecast atmospheric data from the NCEP (National Center for Environmental Prediction) Climate Forecast System version 2 (CFSv2). The CFSv2 forecast ranges from hours to months and the forecast atmospheric data are widely accessible, thus ideal for forcing our sea ice forecast over a range of time scales. The sea ice forecast system has been used to predict sea ice thickness in the Beaufort Sea MIZ 48 hours in advance, focusing on the areas around the 4 clusters. It has also been used to predict the movement of these clusters. In this presentation, we will assess MIZMAS' forecast skills by comparing available ice thickness observations and the actual cluster trajectories. We will examine ways to improve the forecast system. We will also explore the possibility to extend the forecast to a seasonal time scale.

  13. The Secret of the Svalbard Sea Ice Barrier

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    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.

  14. Modeling a variable thickness sea ice cover

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hibler, W. D., III

    1980-01-01

    A numerical model simulating a variable thickness sea ice cover over a seasonal cycle is presented. The model includes a fixed depth mixed-layer formulation with open water heat absorption and lateral melting terms, and a mechanical distribution function consistent with the physics of the ridging process. The equibrium simulation results in realistic geographical ice thickness variations of April ice along the Canadian Archipelago which exceed 7 m, and thicknesses of about 2 m along the Alaskan North Slope. Ice velocity fields were realistic in shape but 25% larger than the net ice station drift over a year; sensitivity simulations indicated a reduced average annual ice export rate of 0.04 Sv as compared to 0.09 Sv for the equilibrium simulation.

  15. Assessment of EOS Aqua AMSR-E Arctic Sea Ice Concentrations using Landsat-7 and Airborne Microwave Imagery

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cavalieri, Donald J.; Markus, Thorsten; Hall, Dorothy K.; Gasiewski, Albin J.; Klein, Marian; Ivanoff, Alvaro

    2006-01-01

    An assessment of Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) sea ice concentrations under winter conditions using ice concentrations derived from Landsat-7 Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) imagery obtained during the March 2003 Arctic sea ice validation field campaign is presented. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Environmental Technology Laboratory's Airborne Polarimetric Scanning Radiometer Measurements, which were made from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration P 3B aircraft during the campaign, were used primarily as a diagnostic tool to understand the comparative results and to suggest improvements to the AMSR-E ice concentration algorithm. Based on the AMSR-E/ETM+ comparisons, a good overall agreement with little bias (approx. 1%) for areas of first year and young sea ice was found. Areas of new ice production result in a negative bias of about 5% in the AMSR-E ice concentration retrievals, with a root mean square error of 8%. Some areas of deep snow also resulted in an underestimate of the ice concentration (approx. 10%). For all ice types combined and for the full range of ice concentrations, the bias ranged from 0% to 3%, and the rms errors ranged from 1% to 7%, depending on the region. The new-ice and deep-snow biases are expected to be reduced through an adjustment of the new-ice and ice-type C algorithm tie points.

  16. Arctic Sea Ice : Trends, Stability and Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moon, W.; Wettlaufer, J. S.

    2014-12-01

    A stochastic Arctic sea-ice model is derived and analysed in detail to interpret the recent decay and associated variability of Arctic sea-ice under changes in radiative forcing. The approach begins from a deterministic model of the heat flux balance through the air/sea/ice system, which uses observed monthly-averaged heat fluxesto drive a time evolution of sea-ice thickness. This model reproduces the observed seasonal cycle of the ice cover and it is to this that stochastic noise--representing high frequency variability--is introduced.The model takes the form of a single periodic non-autonomous stochastic ordinary differential equation. The value of such a model is that it provides a relatively simple framework to examine the role of noise in the basic nonlinear interactions at play as transitions in the state of the ice cover (e.g., from perennial to seasonal) are approached. Moreover, the stability and the noise conspire to underlie the inter annual variability and how that variability changes as one approaches the deterministic bifurcations in the system.

  17. Improving the spatial distribution of modeled Arctic sea ice thickness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Paul A.; Laxon, Seymour W.; Feltham, Daniel L.

    2005-09-01

    The spatial distribution of ice thickness/draft in the Arctic Ocean is examined using a sea ice model. A comparison of model predictions with submarine observations of sea ice draft made during cruises between 1987 and 1997 reveals that the model has the same deficiencies found in previous studies, namely ice that is too thick in the Beaufort Sea and too thin near the North Pole. We find that increasing the large scale shear strength of the sea ice leads to substantial improvements in the model's spatial distribution of sea ice thickness, and simultaneously improves the agreement between modeled and ERS-derived 1993-2001 mean winter ice thickness.

  18. Summer Sea ice in the Pacific Arctic sector from the CHINARE-2010 cruise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ackley, S. F.; Xie, H.; Lei, R.; Huang, W.; Chinare 2010 Arctic Sea Ice Group

    2010-12-01

    The Fourth Chinese National Arctic Research Expedition (CHINARE) from July 1 to Sep. 23, 2010, the last Chinese campaign in Arctic Ocean contributing to the fourth International Polar Year (IPY), conducted comprehensive scientific studies on ocean-ice-atmosphere interaction and the marine ecosystems response to climatic change in Arctic. This paper presents an overview on sea ice (ice concentration, floe size, melt pond coverage, sea ice and snow thickness) of the Pacific Arctic sector, in particular between 150W to 180W to 86N, based on: (1) underway visual observations of sea ice at half-hourly and automatic cameras recording (both side looking from the icebreaker R.V. Xuelong) every 10 to 15 seconds; (2) a downward-looking video mounted on the left side of the vessel at a height of 7 m above waterline recording overturning of ice floes; (3) on-site measurements of snow and ice thickness using drilling and electromagnetic instrument EM31 (9.8 kHz) at eight short-term (~3 hours each) and one 12-day ice stations; (4) six flights of aerial photogrammetry from helicopter, and (5) Satellite data (AMSE-E ice concentration and ENVISAT ASAR) and NIC ice charts) that extended the observations/measurements along beyond the ship track and airborne flights. In the northward leg, the largest ice concentration zone was in the area starting from ~75N (July 29), with ice concentration of 60-90% (mean ~80%), ice thickness of 1.5-2m, melt ponds of 10-50% of ice, ridged ice of 10-30% of ice, and floe size of 100s meters to kms. The 12-day ice station (from Aug 7-19), started at 86.92N/178.88W and moved a total of 175.7km, was on an ice floe over 100 km2 in size and ~2 m in mean thickness. There were two heavy and several slight snowfall events in the period (July 29 to Aug 19). Snow thickness varies from 5cm to 15 cm, and melted about 5cm during the 12-day ice camp. In the southward leg, the largest sea ice concentration zone was in the area between 87N to 80N (from August 21 to August 24). In this area, the ice concentration varied from 70-100%, melt pond varied from 20-50% of ice, ridged ice varied from 10-30% of ice, and floe size was dominated by 10s km to several kms in one or two dimensions. The overall ice thickness decreased southward from 1.8-2m to 0.6-1m. The ice type of the area is multiyear ice dominated, with small portion of first year ice. In the area from ~85N to 83.5N, we see dirty ice (brownish, rich hills and valleys, mostly multiyear ice), varying from 10-20% of ice. Similar dirty ice was only seen from 72N-75N in the northward leg (July 24-29), then not seen until the northern region. The ice situation in this cruise will be compared with that from the CHINARE-2008 cruise, in a similar area and season, so change of the two years for this sector of Arctic Ocean during the middle-later summer can be deduced.

  19. Laser Altimetry Sampling Strategies over Sea Ice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Farrell, Sinead L.; Markus, Thorsten; Kwok, Ron; Connor, Laurence

    2011-01-01

    With the conclusion of the science phase of the Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) mission in late 2009, and the planned launch of ICESat-2 in late 2015, NASA has recently established the IceBridge program to provide continuity between missions. A major goal of IceBridge is to obtain a sea-ice thickness time series via airborne surveys over the Arctic and Southern Oceans. Typically two laser altimeters, the Airborne Topographic Mapper (ATM) and the Land, Vegetation and Ice Sensor (LVIS), are utilized during IceBridge flights. Using laser altimetry simulations of conventional analogue systems such as ICESat, LVIS and ATM, with the multi-beam system proposed for ICESat-2, we investigate differences in measurements gathered at varying spatial resolutions and the impact on sea-ice freeboard. We assess the ability of each system to reproduce the elevation distributions of two seaice models and discuss potential biases in lead detection and sea-surface elevation, arising from variable footprint size and spacing. The conventional systems accurately reproduce mean freeboard over 25km length scales, while ICESat-2 offers considerable improvements over its predecessor ICESat. In particular, its dense along-track sampling of the surface will allow flexibility in the algorithmic approaches taken to optimize the signal-to-noise ratio for accurate and precise freeboard retrieval.

  20. Albedo Drop on the Greenland Ice Sheet: Relative Impacts of Wet and Dry Snow Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, J.; Polashenski, C.

    2014-12-01

    The energy balance of the Greenland Ice Sheet (GIS) is strongly impacted by changes in snow albedo. MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) observations indicate that the GIS albedo has dropped since the early part of this century. We analyze data from the MODIS products MOD10A1 for broadband snow albedo and MOD09A1 for surface spectral reflectance since 2001 to better explain the physical mechanisms driving these changes. The MODIS products are filtered, and the data is masked using microwave-derived surface melt maps to isolate albedo changes due to dry snow processes from those driven by melt impacts. Results show that the majority of recent changes in the GIS albedo - even at high elevations - are driven by snow wetting rather than dry snow processes such as grain metamorphosis and aerosol impurity deposition. The spectral signature of the smaller changes occurring within dry snow areas suggests that grain metamorphosis dominates the albedo decline in these regions.

  1. Role of ice nucleation and antifreeze activities in pathogenesis and growth of snow molds.

    PubMed

    Snider, C S; Hsiang, T; Zhao, G; Griffith, M

    2000-04-01

    ABSTRACT We examined the ability of snow molds to grow at temperatures from -5 to 30 degrees C and to influence the growth of ice through assays for ice nucleation and antifreeze activities. Isolates of Coprinus psychromorbidus (low temperature basidiomycete variant), Microdochium nivale, Typhula phacorrhiza, T. ishikariensis, T. incarnata, and T. canadensis all grew at -5 degrees C, whereas Sclerotinia borealis and S. homoeocarpa did not grow at temperatures below 4 degrees C. The highest threshold ice nucleation temperature was -7 degrees C. Because snow molds are most damaging to their hosts at temperatures above this, our results imply that the pathogenesis of these fungi is not dependent on ice nucleation activity to cause freeze-wounding of host plants. All snow molds that grew at subzero temperatures also exhibited antifreeze activity in the growth medium and in the soluble and insoluble hyphal fractions, with the exception of M. nivale and one isolate of T. canadensis. The lack of high ice nucleation activity combined with the presence of antifreeze activity in all fungal fractions indicates that snow molds can moderate their environment to inhibit or modify intra- and extracellular ice formation, which helps explain their ability to grow at subzero temperatures under snow cover. PMID:18944584

  2. The effect of sea ice on the solar energy budget in the astmosphere-sea ice-ocean system: A model study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jin, Z.; Stamnes, Knut; Weeks, W. F.; Tsay, Si-Chee

    1994-01-01

    A coupled one-dimensional multilayer and multistream radiative transfer model has been developed and applied to the study of radiative interactions in the atmosphere, sea ice, and ocean system. The consistent solution of the radiative transfer equation in this coupled system automatically takes into account the refraction and reflection at the air-ice interface and allows flexibility in choice of stream numbers. The solar radiation spectrum (0.25 micron-4.0 micron) is divided into 24 spectral bands to account adequately for gaseous absorption in the atmosphere. The effects of ice property changes, including salinity and density variations, as well as of melt ponds and snow cover variations over the ice on the solar energy distribution in the entire system have been studied quantitatively. The results show that for bare ice it is the scattering, determined by air bubbles and brine pockets, in just a few centimeters of the top layer of ice that plays the most important role in the solar energy absorption and partitioning in the entire system. Ice thickness is important to the energy distribution only when the ice is thin, while the absorption in the atmosphere is not sensitive to ice thickness exceeds about 70 cm. The presence of clouds moderates all the sensitivities of the absorptive amounts in each layer to the variations in the ice properties and ice thickness. Comparisons with observational spectral albedo values for two simple ice types are also presented.

  3. Global Sea Ice Charting at the National Ice Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clemente-Colon, P.

    2006-12-01

    The National Ice Center (NIC) is a U.S. government tri-agency operational center comprised of components from the United States Navy, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the U. S. Coast Guard (USCG). The mission of the NIC is to provide the highest quality strategic and tactical ice services tailored to meet operational requirements of U.S. national interests. This includes broad responsibilities to monitor all frozen ocean regions of the world in support of coastal and marine sea ice operations and research. Sea ice conditions are routinely monitored and mapped using satellite imagery along with ancillary model and in-situ data. Active microwave images from Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) sensors are the data of choice for NIC analysts because of their high spatial resolution (~100 m). SAR is in fact the primary data source for ice analysis when available. The high spatial resolution of available SAR data and the reliability shown by the RADARSAT- 1 mission in particular have made the use of these data critical for vessels operating in or near the ice. Limited data from the ESA Envisat Advanced SAR (ASAR) are also used in the analyses when available. Preparations for the use of the Phased Array type L-band SAR (PALSAR) aboard the soon to be launched Japanese ALOS satellite are also underway. Scatterometer backscatter imagery from QuikSCAT is also routinely used for basin-scale and circumpolar ice edge mapping. Automated algorithms for ice type and melt ponds detection as well as the synergy between these observations and the QuikSCAT wind vectors off the marginal ice zone (MIZ) are been explored. ESA Envisat Advanced SAR (ASAR) Global Monitoring Mode (GMM) mosaics of the Arctic and Antarctic regions are becoming an important tool for sea ice edge delineation too. Although SAR observations are the choice for NIC analysts to produce high spatial resolution products gear toward tactical support, passive microwave data such as those from the Special Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSM/I) provide better temporal and synoptic