Arctic Sea News

Resourceful: Norwegian AUV and oceanographic researchers work in sync. Photo Credit: Professor Martin Ludvigsen, NTNU AMOS

The “Disruption” in AUV Trends

. King among these is payload, from which market disruption is just waiting to happen. Changing payloads of artificial intelligence, management software, and researcher resourcefulness now combine with entrepreneurial technologists to inject uncertainty into AUV market forecasts.On a stormy night in an arctic sea, waves of salt water slosh against the hull of a light, unmanned surface vessel. A sleek, yellow “torpedo” is robotically hoisted into the water by the robot davits. As the AUV swims off into the darkness and submerges, a tube rights itself and launches a rocket packing a satellite

Small remnants of thicker, multiyear ice float with thinner, seasonal ice in the Beaufort Sea on Sept. 30, 2016. Credit: NASA/GSFC/Alek Petty

Arctic Sea Ice is Youngest and Thinnest Now

to weather and wind, so ice thickness is now more variable, rather than dominated by the effect of global warming, according to NASA's Earth Science News Team.Working from a combination of satellite records and declassified submarine sonar data, NASA scientists have constructed a 60-year record of Arctic sea ice thickness. Right now, Arctic sea ice is the youngest and thinnest its been since we started keeping records.More than 70 percent of Arctic sea ice is now seasonal, which means it grows in the winter and melts in the summer, but doesn't last from year to year. This seasonal ice melts faster

Soundnine XTP Sensors Deployed on Polar Buoy

measure the Upper layer Temperature of the Polar Oceans. The buoy was deployed in northern Hudson bay on June 14, 2018 by Canadian research icebreaker CCGS Amundsen. It transmits real-time temperature and conductivity data to 25 meters deep, enabling scientists to measure the rate of surface warming as Arctic sea ice increasingly thins and retreats each summer.Pacific Gyre Inc. integrated Soundnine’s inductive modem and seven XTP sensors into a modified drifting buoy. The XTP sensors are accurate to 0.005 deg. C; 10 to 20 times more accurate than temperature sensors on previous UpTempO buoys. The

(Source: NOAA Climate.gov, Data: Mark Tschudi)

Old Sea Ice is Disappearing from the Arctic Ocean

Sea ice grows throughout the fall and winter, and melts throughout the spring and summer. But not all Arctic sea ice melts; some portion of the ice survives at least one melt season, persisting throughout the summer months. This ice is usually thicker and more resistant to melt than ice that's less than a year old, and therefore more likely than first-year ice to survive the coming melt season. As Arctic sea ice often reaches its maximum extent around late February or early March (around the ninth week of the calendar year) that's a good time to measure multiyear versus first-year ice.In the

(Illustration by Natalie Renier, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

Atlantic Ocean Circulation at Weakest Point in 1,600 Years

12th issue of Nature.Lead author Dr. David Thornalley, a senior lecturer at University College London and WHOI adjunct, believes that as the North Atlantic began to warm near the end of the Little Ice Age, freshwater disrupted the system, called the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC). Arctic sea ice, and ice sheets and glaciers surrounding the Arctic began to melt, forming a huge natural tap of fresh water that gushed into the North Atlantic. This huge influx of freshwater diluted the surface seawater, making it lighter and less able to sink deep, slowing down the AMOC system.To investigate

© André Gilden / Adobe Stock

Melting Sea Ice: A Canary in the Coal Mine

The rapid loss of Arctic sea ice is a sentinel. Most of us will never venture into the Arctic, but it can and does provide us with a forewarning of impacts coming to our parts of the Earth – and some of the most significant impacts will directly affect the maritime industry.   In earlier times, coal miners were sometimes overcome by the buildup of odorless carbon monoxide gas. Some died as a consequence. Eventually it was realized that canaries were more susceptible to the gas than were humans. They would collapse in the presence of lower concentrations of carbon monoxide than the level

Photo credit: Arctic Council Secretariat / Linnea Nordström

Arctic Council Meeting Stirs Hidden Tensions

sea ice melts due to global warming, sea lanes open, but ice can rapidly freeze over. This makes passage perilous for ships, so icebreakers are important assets.   An annual assessment of worldwide threats released on Thursday by Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats said competition over Arctic sea routes and resources will include countries already active in the region - but also some others that are not.   The report did not mention China's interest in the Arctic, but the country is making moves. It became an observer member of the Arctic Council in 2013. And in April, news broke

Photo: NOAA

Arctic Ice Sets New Record Low for Winter

, U.S. and European scientists said on Wednesday.   Sea ice around the North Pole expands to its biggest extent of the year in February or March after a deep freeze in the winter polar darkness and shrinks to the smallest of the year in September, at the end of the brief Arctic summer.   Arctic sea ice appears to have reached its annual maximum extent on March 7, the lowest maximum in the 38-year satellite record, according to the Colorado-based U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center.   On that date, the ice covered 14.42 million square kilometres (5.57 million square miles),97,000

© Andreas Altenburger / Adobe Stock

Arctic Sea Ice May Vanish Even If World Achieves Climate Goal

Arctic sea ice may vanish in summers this century even if governments achieve a core target for limiting global warming set by almost 200 nations in 2015, scientists said on Monday.   Arctic sea ice has been shrinking steadily in recent decades, damaging the livelihoods of indigenous peoples and wildlife such as polar bears while opening the region to more shipping and oil and gas exploration.   Under the 2015 Paris Agreement, governments set a goal of limiting the rise in average world temperatures to well below 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial times, with an

Photo: © staphy / Adove Stock

Arctic and Antarctic Sea Ice at Record Low in January

air temperature because they can go up for a variety of reasons. A better guide was the temperature of oceans, or "integrated ocean heat content". "And that in fact is relentlessly going up and up and up,” he said. There have been at least three periods this winter when Arctic sea ice has retreated, when it should have been expanding. Satellite records for polar sea ice go back 38 years. This January, Arctic sea ice averaged 13.38 million square km. The previous record low was just a year ago, in January 2016, when there was 260,000 square km more ice - bigger than the

Photo: National Snow and Ice Data Center

The Big Melt in World Ocean Ice Record

southern hemisphere was at record low levels for the month of January 2017.   Last month set a record for the lowest sea-ice extent for the month, falling below the record set last year, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), a Colorado-based research outfit.    Arctic sea ice this January averaged 5.17 million square miles, the lowest for the month in the 38-year sea ice record.     "Greenhouse gases emitted through human activities and the resulting increase in global mean temperatures are the most likely underlying cause of the sea ice decline

© sichkarenko_com / Adobe Stock

Polar Sea Ice the Size of India Vanishes in Record Heat

is an ocean ringed by land and Antarctica is a vast land mass surrounded by water.   Ice around Antarctica, retreating with a summer thaw, is the smallest for early December at 11.22 million square kilometers (4.33 million square miles), beating a record from 1982, NSIDC data show.   Arctic sea ice, expanding in winter, is at a record low of 10.25 million square kilometers (3.96 million square miles), below a 2006 record.   Anders Levermann, a professor at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, said the low polar sea ice pointed to man-made warming. "It's an extraordina

(Image: U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center)

Arctic Sea Ice Retreat Pinned to Individuals' Emissions -Study

tonne of carbon dioxide emitted to the atmosphere meant on average the loss of three square metres of ice in September, when the ice reaches a minimum extent before expanding in winter.   That made it possible to "grasp the contribution of personal carbon dioxide emissions to the loss of Arctic sea ice," scientists at Germany's Max Planck Institute for Meteorology and the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center wrote in the journal Science.   Each passenger taking a return flight from New York to Europe, or driving a gasoline car 4,000 kms, would emit about a tonne of carbon dioxide

U.S. Navy photo by John F. Williams

Will Naval Operations Heat up in the Arctic?

within its Arctic and Global Prediction Program-Marginal Ice Zone and Waves and Sea State. Additional research involved the program's Canada Basin Acoustic Propagation Experiment (CANAPE) initiative.   Scientists measured the strength and intensity of waves and swells moving through the weakened Arctic sea ice. The accumulated data will be used to develop more accurate computer models and prediction methods to forecast ice, ocean, and weather conditions.   CANAPE researchers used sophisticated oceanographic and acoustic sensors to gauge temperature, salinity, ice, and ambient noise conditions

Average sea surface temperature measured by satellites using thermal emission sensors, which produce global data adjusted after comparison with ship and buoy data, and sea ice concentration derived from NSIDC near-real-time data for August 7, 2016. Also shown are drifting buoy temperatures at the ocean surface (colored circles); gray circles indicate that temperature data from the buoys are not available. (Credit: M. Steele, Polar Science Center/University of Washington)

Arctic Sea Ice Melt Continues

As of August 14, Arctic sea ice extent is tracking third lowest in the satellite record, according to the National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC). The southern route through the Northwest Passage appears to be largely free of ice. Despite a rather diffuse ice cover in the Chukchi Sea, it is unlikely that Arctic sea ice extent this September will fall below the record minimum set in 2012.   Overview of conditions As of August 14, Arctic sea ice extent was 5.61 million square kilometers, the third lowest extent in the satellite record for this date and slightly below the two standard deviation

Photo: Alfred-Wegener-Institut/Stefan Hendricks

Halls of Higher Learning

; and the Helmholtz Alliance “Robotic Exploration of extreme Environments.” With a focus on long-term observations, the AWI carry the responsibility for collecting and maintaining high-quality observation data for the global research community, including the long-term measurement of Arctic sea ice thickness. It also develops, maintains and operates high-value research infrastructure, including research vessels, polar stations, aircraft, laboratories, and observatories to facilitate field research, including the Antarctic Research Station “Neumayer-Station III” and research

Algae. Pic: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Ice algae: The Engine of Life in the Central Arctic Ocean

for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) showed that not only animals that live directly under the ice thrive on carbon produced by so-called ice algae.    Even species that mostly live at greater depth depend to a large extent on carbon from these algae. This also means that the decline of the Arctic sea ice may have far-reaching consequences for the entire food web of the Arctic Ocean. Their results have been published online now in the journal Limnology & Oceanography.   The summer sea ice in the Arctic is diminishing at a rapid pace and with it the habitat of ice algae. The consequences

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