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Lord Soth

I highly suspect that the sudden reversal in cryosphere today results are due to he draining of melt ponds, and the spreading of ice instead of compaction due to wind patterns, and the timing of the breakup of areas of consolidated ice.

The ice is gettng thinner every day, and the timing of the breakup of large areas of consolidated ice, will determine those large drops. At first he breakup of consolidated ice will have a negative impact as it spreads out, but in the end it guarantees the destruction of the once consolidated ice, due to increased surface area subject to melt and the ability for that ice to move into warmer waters.

Kevin McKinney

Wow--big upwards revision for the 3rd.

Right now, WRT to predictions, I'm shutting up & watching what happens!

fredt34

I can't help remembering this sentence from Prof. Wadhams about Wieslaw Maslowski's models in december 2007 (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/7139797.stm): "There will be even more opening up, even more absorption and even more melting. In the end, it will just melt away quite suddenly. It might not be as early as 2013 but it will be soon, much earlier than 2040."

BTW, Maslowki is in charge of the PIPS3 model (http://www.oc.nps.edu/~pips3/) - the very one that Goddard uses to desperately try to "prove" arctic ice volume doesn't decline. What an irony!

Gili1

Both the Topaz and PIPS2 models claim the only large area with thick ice left is in the East Siberian Sea. This fits well with MODIS images of that area, and is quite different from recent years.

-Gili

Account Deleted

The Canadian Archipelago seems to be very much a case of the ice breaking up and spreading out over a greater area. The latest MODIS image shows a network of cracks in the ice of the Melville sound and much of the ice elsewhere is highly fragmented.

The condition in the archipelago still appear to be be quite warm (10+ degress C)according to the Uni of Cologne isotherm map, Whereas the condition near the Laptev sea appear to be almost tropical (20+ degrees C).

andrewt

More fractures opening up in the Melville Sound ice:
http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/subsets/?subset=Arctic_r04c02.2010184.terra.1km
Looks like it may breakup in the next few days

Account Deleted

In the 250 m resolution image the fracture seem to extend thru most of that Sounds sea ice - so I think you are right - as soon as some of these slabs move away - the rest of the cracks will open up.

Neven

Another relatively low melt reported.

Andrewt, I have updated the McClure Strait animation. With all the heavy cracking going on in the eastern of the ice bridge I perhaps should have called the animation 'Melville Sound'. ;-)

Account Deleted

The other area showing lots of breaking up in the latest MODIS image is the area around the new Siberian islands

Account Deleted

It appears that the 20+ degree temps are having an affect http://www.meteo.uni-koeln.de/meteo.php?show=En_We_We

Neven

The other area showing lots of breaking up in the latest MODIS image is the area around the new Siberian islands

Sepilok, I've been wanting to make animations of Siberian regions as well, but it has constantly been so cloudy over there.

Account Deleted

Hi Neven,
Todays and yesterdays image of the area around the Lyakhovsky island are fairly clear. They show how quickly things can change - yesterday a bit chunk of ice, todays a network of cracks. Some of the bays on the coast have lost about 50% of their ice cover in the last 24 hrs
yesterdays: http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/subsets/?subset=Arctic_r05c05.2010184.terra.500m
todays: http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/subsets/?subset=Arctic_r05c05.2010185.terra.500m

Neven

You're right, Sepilok. Unfortunately those MODIS images are still not good enough for an animation. I also have to admit that I really don't know my way on the Siberian side of the Arctic! But it was the same for the Canadian Archipelago a few weeks ago and things have gotten clearer after much map gazing.

Neven

CT sea ice area has gone down again.

And another huge 27K revision by IJIS.

Nick Barnes

Looking at the NWP today on Aqua, I predict that MODIS will show open water all the way from Baffin Bay to the Bering Strait, by this time next week (2010-07-11). There will be lots of big floes, but distinct open water between them.

Neven

So fast? Is that possible? That should make for some spectacular images...

How long for the ice floes to be transported out or melted?

Neven

Ah yes, I see what you mean. Huge cracks showing.

Nick Barnes

I think the floes will take several more weeks to be exported or to melt in place. But more than half of the remaining ice bridge is showing really clear cracks, which I expect to widen and spread in the next few days. So all I'm saying is that wide cracks, at least, will extend along the whole of the channel by next Sunday. The more open water there is, the more swell can build up, which I believe drives a lot of melting and breakup.
I see that Resolute Bay is clearing.

Neven

Nick, do you know at what point the direct route of the NWP can be declared 'open'? When it's completely or largely ice-free, or when the ice bridge breaks up all the way through like it possibly will the coming week? If there is no more ice attached from one shore to the other, I would guess the NWP direct route is theoretically 'open', that is navigable.

If I have time tomorrow morning I will make a new NWP animation with the 250m MODIS images. A bit more work, but the extra detail will be enough reward, I believe.

Steve Bloom

What's interesting about the western archipelago is that the thick ice which is normally present just to its north isn't there this year. That implies a potential for much greater clearing in that region.

Also of note, comparing PIPS 2.0 2010 versus 2007 maps for today, in addition to the already-noted differences, 2007 appears to have on the order of 50% more 2 meter or thinner ice. It seems reasonable to expect that this thinner ice is much more vulnerable to both heat and wind.

In addition, that big area of 3-5 meter thick ice that's keeping the ESS from melting out as 2007 did should go fairly quickly given how far south it is.

Steve Bloom

Re the NWP, I think "open" is generally taken to mean open for safe navigation by non-ice-hardened vessels. Given hazards from mobile ice, I think that amounts to mostly ice-free.

Artful Dodger

The Cdn Coast Guard considers waters open when Ice Area falls below 50% in the navigable channel (not fast ice). Recall that in 2007 the NWP was not open until late August.

Artful Dodger

Nevin said: "I've been wanting to make animations of Siberian regions as well, but it has constantly been so cloudy over there"

Notice that Noiv's YouTube Arctic Sea Ice Melting animations are cloudless:

http://www.youtube.com/user/noiv

I suspect he's using the MODIS Band 367 image as a mask to remove cloud from the TrueColor images.

You may wish to contact him to learn more about the technique he's using. Awesome work on the blog, Nevin.

Kevin McKinney

Hoping all the American readers enjoyed the holiday today!

Sizeable decline today on IJIS--if it survives revisions, which hasn't happened often lately. (Nearly 90k.)

dorlomin

John Cook has a new ice article up
http://www.skepticalscience.com/Factors-Contributing-to-Decline-in-Arctic-Ice.html

Neven

Thanks for the tip, Artful Dodger! I'm not sure if noiv's trick would work as well for more detailed GIF animations, but I'll be sure to ask him if my newest NWP animation becomes too big and I'm forced to make a video. Perhaps I should start making animations of the entire Arctic as well. This has become even more interesting now with the reversal of the Beaufort Gyre and the slowing melt rate,

Thanks for that link, dorlomin. I'll mention it in the next SIE update, later today.

Nick Barnes

I would tend to be quite conservative in using the word "open" for the NWP. I'm expecting it to reach a condition, in the next week or so, in which one of the great 19th century expeditions could have found a way through. But that's hardly "open, which suggests "open for shipping": we're some way away from that. There's a great picture somewhere, released by NSIDC I think: a MODIS view from the west along the deepwater channel in late August or early September: no ice in sight. That's "open".

Nick Barnes

The Vilkitsky Strait is also clearing out this week.

Neven

Thanks, Nick. Like I said, I don't know much about the geography of the Siberian side of the Arctic. Now I know about Vilkitsky Strait and Bolshevik Island, a name that is more appropriate for an island in the Arctic than in the Caribbean.

Vilkitsky Strait would make for a great animation if it wasn't so cloudy! Perhaps I can find a few good images.

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