Ice and snow thickness variability and change in the high Arctic Ocean observed by in-situ measurements

In April 2017 we collected unique, extensive in-situ data of sea ice and snow thickness. At ten sampling sites, located under a CryoSat-2 overpass, between Ellesmere Island and 87.1°N mean and modal total ice thicknesses ranged between 2 to 3.4 m and 1.8 to 2.9 m respectively. Coincident snow thicknesses ranged between 0.3 to 0.47 m (mean), and 0.1 to 0.5 m (mode). The profile spanned the complete multiyear ice zone in the Lincoln Sea, into the first-year ice zone further north. Complementary snow thickness measurements near the North Pole showed a mean thickness of 0.31 m. Compared with scarce measurements from other years, multiyear ice was up to 0.75 m thinner than in 2004, but not significantly different from 2011 and 2014. We found excellent agreement with a commonly used snow climatology and with published long-term ice thinning rates. There was reasonable agreement with CryoSat-2 thickness retrievals


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Authors: Haas, Christian, Beckers, Justin, King, Josh, Silis, Arvids, Stroeve, Julienne, Wilkinson, Jeremy, Notenboom, Bernice, Schweiger, Axel, Hendricks, Stefan

On this site: Jeremy Wilkinson
28 October, 2017
Geophysical Research Letters / 44
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