Science & Technology

Sea Ice in Denmark Strait – Drifted More Than 1,000 Km (600 Miles) From the Arctic Ocean

July 2, 2020. (Click on picture for full detailed view.)

Arctic sea ice is topic to some severe journey restrictions. Penned in by main land plenty, most ice that types in the Arctic Ocean stays there for the period of its existence—sometimes one to 4 years earlier than melting. Some ice, nevertheless, escapes the Arctic Ocean by a handful of passages after which drifts south.

That’s the origin of the sea ice pictured right here. When satellites acquired these photographs in July 2020, the ice had drifted greater than 1,000 kilometers (600 miles) from the Arctic Ocean. The extensive view above, acquired on July 2 with the Average Decision Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite tv for pc, reveals sea ice hugging the coast of East Greenland. The detailed picture under, acquired July 3 with the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8, reveals ice south of the Scoresby Sound (Kangertittivaq) fjord system alongside the Denmark Strait.

July 3, 2020. (Click on picture for full detailed view.)

“The pack-ice you see in the picture is remnant ice that exited the Arctic by Fram Strait,” wrote Robert Pickart, a high-latitude oceanographer at Woods Gap Oceanographic Establishment. “It’s in the technique of melting out as it’s carried southward by the East Greenland Present.”

The Fram Strait is the main route for sea ice exiting the Arctic Ocean. This 450-kilometer (280-mile) extensive passage between Greenland and Svalbard connects the Arctic Ocean with the Greenland Sea. The East Greenland Present originates north of the Fram Strait and strikes seawater, together with some sea ice, southward towards the southern tip of Greenland.

Pickart, who was crusing on the R/V Armstrong close to the southern tip of Greenland at the time of this interview, famous that the present is unstable and tends to meander. The instability causes vortices of water, or “eddies,” to propagate offshore, which might deform the seaward fringe of the sea ice.

“This can be a graphic instance of how contemporary water—each liquid and frozen—originating from the Arctic will get transferred to the inside of the Nordic seas, which modulates the wintertime transformation of the inside water,” Pickart mentioned. “If this modifications in the future, it has implications for the world overturning circulation that helps regulate our local weather.”

NASA Earth Observatory photographs by Lauren Dauphin, utilizing Landsat information from the U.S. Geological Survey and MODIS information from NASA EOSDIS/LANCE and GIBS/Worldview.
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