Saturday 25 July 2015

The Arctic Ice - 07/25/2015

Along with James Hansen's latest scientific paper comes the news in Real Time

Thick Sea Ice Dislodged

24 July, 2015

As the comparison image below shows, the last bit of thick sea ice has become dislodged from its location in the Canadian Archipelago and is forecast to be floating along with the sea ice in the Arctic Ocean. The left panel shows the situation on July 19, 2015, while the right panel shows a forecast for July 31, 2015, run on July 23, 3015.

One reason for this development is of course the heavy melting that has taken place in this area. But what has made this thick sea ice move so strongly? The reason for that is that the wind has been persistently pushing this thick ice in this direction, for about one month now, as illustrated by the Naval Research Laboratory animation below. 

The Naval Research Laboratory animation below shows sea ice thickness over a 30-day timespan, including a forecast up to 31 July, 2015.

The screenshot below from 
arctic-io shows the sea ice on July 23, 2015, with an inset showing a rotated outcut from a Naval Research Laboratory ice thickness map for that date.

[ click on image to enlarge ]

Seismic activity could also have contributed to this development. As the snow and ice cover on land disappears, isostatic rebound occurs, i.e. the land moves upward. Furthermore, an earthquake with a magnitude of 3.6 on the Richter scale 
was registered in Baffin Bay on July 22, 2015. 

[ hat tip to Patrick McNulty for contributions to this post ] 

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