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Form drag on pressure ridges and drag coefficient in the northwestern Weddell Sea, Antarctica, in winter

  • Tan Bing (a1) (a2), Lu Peng (a1), Li Zhijun (a1) and Li Runling (a1)

Abstract

Surface elevation data for sea ice in the northwesternty - Weddell Sea, Antarctica, collected by a helicopter-borne laser altimeter during the Winter Weddell Outflow Study 2006, were used to estimate the form drag on pressure ridges and its contribution to the total wind drag, and the air-ice drag coefficient at a reference height of 10 m under neutral stability conditions (C dn(10)). This was achieved by partitioning the total wind drag into two components: form drag on pressure ridges and skin drag over rough sea-ice surfaces. The results reveal that for the compacted ice field, the contribution of form drag on pressure ridges to the total wind drag increases with increasing ridging intensity Ri (where Ri is the ratio of mean ridge height to spacing), while the contribution decreases with increasing roughness length. There is also an increasing trend in the air-ice drag coefficient C dn(10) as ridging intensity R i increases. However, as roughness length increases, C dn(10) increases at lower ridging intensities (Ri < 0.023) but decreases at lower ridging intensities (0.023 < Ri < 0.05). These opposing trends are mainly caused by the dominance of the form drag on pressure ridges and skin drag over rough ice surfaces. Generally, the form drag becomes dominant only when the ridging intensity is sufficiently large, while the skin drag is the dominant component at relatively larger ridging intensities. These results imply that a large value of C dn(10) is caused not only by the form drag on pressure ridges, but also by the skin drag over rough ice surfaces. Additionally, the estimated drag coefficients are consistent with reported measurements in the northwestern Weddell Sea, further demonstrating the feasibility of the drag partition model.

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References

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Form drag on pressure ridges and drag coefficient in the northwestern Weddell Sea, Antarctica, in winter

  • Tan Bing (a1) (a2), Lu Peng (a1), Li Zhijun (a1) and Li Runling (a1)

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