Wednesday 31 May 2017

Arctic sea ice - 05/30/2017

Thanks to Harold Hensell

The Beaufort Sea is breaking up

The Beaufort Sea and the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. 05/30/2017 The Beaufort Sea Ice is breaking up. A large crack has developed from the Beaufort Sea to the Lincoln Sea. When the Arctic Ice is no longer attached to the shoreline, it technically becomes a large disintegrating iceberg. Then it is free to move and its motion is generally counterclockwise.

When it comes to the Arctic figures on sea ice extent do not really give the true picture. We end to look at volume or thickness. See how little old ice remains.

In the case of Antarctica we do not know what the thickness of the ice is because it has never been measured. Antarctic research does not have a Peter Wadhams

Northern hemisphere sea ice thickness on 24 May 2017 according to the Arctic Cap Nowcast/Forecast System (ACNFS), US Naval Research Laboratory. The details of this modelling approach are described here. Ice thickness scale (m) is shown to the right

Arctic sea ice - 05/30/2017

Daily volume: 17,944 km³ (*record* low for the date) Δ –436/day
–2041/week, –3710/month, –1031/year, –878/5year (–4.7%)
Daily extent: 11,283,701 km² (6th lowest for the date) Δ –65k/day
–377k/week, –1391k/month, +803k/year, –231k/5year (–2%)

2017 volume maximum 22,255 km³ on May 12th (*lowest*)
2017 extent maximum 13,878,287 km² on March 6th (*lowest*)
2017 extent minimum¹ 11,283,701 km² on May 30th
¹Preliminary max/min

Source: JAXA / Wipneus for May 30th 2017.

In the comments people have been calculating when we MIGHT see a total ice melt

Comments from Torsten Vidal


17,944 km³ losing 2041/week ~18 losing 2/week = 9 weeks from now. That's one week into August in my book. (Daily losses of course suggest even earlier in the summer.)

Using the last couple of days for average, we get this math puzzle:

17,944 km³ – 515/day = 17944/515 = 35 days. I.e. July 4th @ Zero km³.

This is sea ice extent for Antactica. It's anyone's guess what the thickness is

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