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East Antarctic sea ice: observations and modelling

  • Anthony P. Worby (a1) and Xingren Wu (a1)

Abstract

The importance of monitoring sea ice for studies of global climate has been well noted for several decades. Observations have shown that sea ice exhibits large seasonal variability in extent, concentration and thickness. These changes have a significant impact on climate, and the potential nature of many of these connections has been revealed in studies with numerical models. An accurate representation of the sea-ice distribution (including ice extent, concentration and thickness) in climate models is therefore important for modelling global climate change. This work presents an overview of the observed sea-ice characteristics in the East Antarctic pack ice (60-150° E) and outlines possible improvements to the simulation of sea ice over this region by modifying the ice-thickness parameterisation in a coupled sea-ice-atmosphere model, using observational data of ice thickness and concentration. Sensitivity studies indicate that the simulation of East Antarctic sea ice can be improved by modifying both the “lead parameterisation” and “rafting scheme” to be ice-thickness dependent. The modelled results are currently out of phase with the observed data, and the addition of a multilevel ice-thickness distribution would improve the simulation significantly.

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References

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East Antarctic sea ice: observations and modelling

  • Anthony P. Worby (a1) and Xingren Wu (a1)

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