Record low Antarctic sea ice cover in February 2022
On 25 February 2022 Antarctic sea ice extent (SIE) dropped to a satellite-era record low level of 1.92 × 106 km2, 0.92 × 106 km2 below the long-term mean. The area of sea ice was also at a record low level of 1.24 × 106 km2. Although no individual sector was at a record low, at the minimum there were negative sea ice anomalies in all sectors of the Southern Ocean, with the largest in the Ross (contributing 46%) and Weddell Seas (26%). The Amundsen Sea Low had a record low depth in October/November 2021, with a series of very deep depressions giving strong offshore winds. These accelerated ice loss during the melt season, creating a 1.00 × 106 km2 coastal polynya in the Ross Sea. In the northern Weddell Sea, westerly winds of record strength led to ice export from the region.
Authors: Turner, John ORCID record for John Turner, Holmes, Caroline ORCID record for Caroline Holmes, Caton Harrison, Thomas ORCID record for Thomas Caton Harrison, Phillips, Tony ORCID record for Tony Phillips, Jena, Babula, Reeves-Francois, Tylei, Fogt, Ryan, Thomas, Elizabeth R. ORCID record for Elizabeth R. Thomas, Bajish, C.C.