There's another storm brewing in the Arctic, the second this year after PAC-2013, the persistent Arctic cyclone that stayed in place for weeks on end and caused the first half of the melting season to be very slow. And also the second storm after last year's Great Arctic Cyclone, the iconic image of which is shown to the right (source: UCAR's AtmosNews).
The ice pack will probably be able to withstand the storm better than last year because there's more ice and it looks less patchy. Besides, the storm is occurring two weeks earlier, and won't match GAC-2013 in duration or magnitude. Nevertheless, this as of yet unnamed storm (a tradition we're trying to start over here on the ASIB) will probably become intense enough to leave a mark on the ice, which is why I decided to dedicate a blog post to it.
To see what we're talking about, here's the SLP map from the Danish Meteorological Institute, with the cyclone in question, getting ready for two big days:
I made this panel that shows the ECMWF weather forecast for the coming 4 days (click for a bigger version):
The cyclone will peak tomorrow, or maybe I should say bottom out, at around 980 hPa. This is still pretty low, but not as low as last year's 963 hPa, of course. On Thursday the core will still have a pressure of about 985 hPa. After that the storm fizzles out rapidly. As things currently stand the ice pack will suffer the effects of this storm for two-three days. It will be interesting to see how the stubborn ice in the Beaufort Sea holds up.
I will update the post when interesting things occur, like flash melting.
Update 1, July 24th
According to the Environment Canada MSLP Operational Analysis Charts the storm has reached a low of 977 hPa so far, and the high over Greenland is at 1031 hPa (click for a larger version):
Here's how it looks on the DMI SLP map: