I haven't been making many animations this year as, unfortunately, there are only 24 hours in a day. Two weeks ago the ice arch at the southern end of Nares Strait collapsed. Even though we have seen how it works last year, the relatively clear images of the area in the past two weeks prompted me to make this animation that shows how all of the fast ice in Nares Strait quickle disintegrates after the collapse of the ice arch.
The animation starts on June 26th (day 178) and ends on July 10th (day 192):
It looks like transport from the Arctic Basin got underway 11 days after collapse of the southern ice arch, three days later than last year.
Ice transport through Nares Strait contributes to ice loss from the Arctic Basin. It it isn't quite as significant as ice transport through Fram Strait (roughly 10% at the most), but the ice that gets transported, is some of the thickest and oldest ice in the Arctic. A NASA-led study by Ron Kwok in 2010 (PDF) showed that transport in 2007 was exceptionally high:
To quantify the impact of ice arches on Arctic Ocean ice cover, the team tracked ice motion evident in the 13-year span of satellite radar images. They calculated the area of ice passing through an imaginary line, or "gate," at the entrance to Nares Strait. Then they incorporated ice thickness data from NASA's ICESat to estimate the volume lost through Nares.
They found that in 2007, Nares Strait drained the Arctic Ocean of 88,060 square kilometers (34,000 square miles) of sea ice, or a volume of 60 cubic miles. The amount was more than twice the average amount lost through Nares each year between 1997 and 2009.
Read the whole article here.
60 cubic miles is 250 cubic kilometres, so if I'm not mistaken the ice that was transported through Nares Strait in 2007 was on average 3 metres thick. No spectacular numbers, but the break-up and subsequent ice transport through Nares Strait remains a spectacular sight nevertheless.