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Indeed Robert ! How about Gigatonnes?? "Overall, our results show that the 2006–2016 Antarctica average integrated blowing snow sublimation is about 393 ± 196 Gt yr−1, which is considerably larger than previous model-derived estimates. " "Blowing snow sublimation and transport over Antarctica from 11 years of CALIPSO observations (PDF Download Available). Available from: [accessed Mar 13 2018]." Note figure 4 sublimation below -30 C. "For the same time period, our computed CALIPSO based average blowing snow sublimation is about 50 mm yr−1. This means that on average, over one-third of the snow that falls over Antarctica is lost to sublimation through the blowing snow process. " In a practical sense the greater the winds the more snow sublimates....
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on PIOMAS March 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
There is some sublimation below -20 C John: Abstract In the Arctic, the simplest way to describe the winter surface moisture budget (in the absence of any net horizontal transport) is: snow-water-equivalent depth on the ground (D) equals precipitation (P) minus sublimation (S). D, P and S are the most fundamental components of the winter arctic hydrologic cycle and understanding them is essential to understanding arctic moisture-related processes. Unfortunately, accurate solid-precipitation (P) measurements have proven nearly impossible to achieve in the Arctic, "..... "Resolving these is essential to closing local, regional, and pan-Arctic moisture budgets because some studies indicate sublimation may be as much as 50% of the total winter precipitation and 35% of the annual precipitation. This paper summarizes and analyzes the existing literature describing arctic sublimation." It is a difficult thing to measure, because of topographical features, winds, and near constant Ice crystal precipitation. An average temperature of -18.7 C in Mongolia may give .1 mm (water equivalent) a day as another paper reported.
Toggle Commented Mar 8, 2018 on Talk about unprecedented at Arctic Sea Ice
Neven You may say is close to the maximum?? I read it is a bit risky.. At any rate it is starting very bad for sea ice... P-Maker I suggest to call the name of vortices within the Polar Vortex vortice x of x. If there are 4 vortices within, the coldest most significant one is v 1 of 4, the smallest warmest one v 4 of 4. Is a Borg inspired assimilation thing so there is no choice but to be part of the collective! :) Hi Jim, Hope you had a chance to measure top of snow temperatures versus surface temperature... I am working out on the actual physics of T***=< Ts is very mysterious and fun.
Toggle Commented Mar 5, 2018 on Talk about unprecedented at Arctic Sea Ice
Not a bad idea P-Maker!
Toggle Commented Mar 4, 2018 on Talk about unprecedented at Arctic Sea Ice
Thanks Phillip, From the stand point of my little essay, I am glad it is all clear for you. Not everyone explains the machinations of the Polar Vortex well. Mass confusion starts when someone explains that the Polar Vortex caused this or that cold spell. But it is not necessarily the case in most instances. It is usually one of the many vortices within the Polar Vortex which causes havoc. I like sub-vortices, but vortices already implies the prefix "sub". I principally like to deal with one smaller vortex within the Polar Vortex in particular, the one doing the freezing damage. On most occasions TV presenters mix the entire Polar Vortex often with one of its vortices gone rogue Southwards . I suggest the word vortice identifying a single one from a collection of vortices, which implies it is part of a larger Vortex system. Sub-vortex is not as elegant and a tad confusing.
Toggle Commented Mar 4, 2018 on Talk about unprecedented at Arctic Sea Ice
It is not only wild in the Arctic, ENSO is appearing to turn towards El-Nino, while we still await for a deep cold La-Nina like what happened after super El-Nino 1998:
Toggle Commented Mar 2, 2018 on Talk about unprecedented at Arctic Sea Ice
The Guardian is at it again: Good journalism has no bounds with that paper. I must do a very rare complaint about the strictures of the English language, it is usually easy, but the Polar Vortex has vortices within, if I start explaining that these vortices can't be written vortice, but vortex, it is difficult, because the Polar Vortex has several smaller vortex within? Sounds incredulous. So I defy the dictionary to come up with something more elegant than a singular vortice ..... At any rate, the explanation of Polar Vortex has been difficult ever since it was made popular about 3 years ago. The best way to explain it is with current weather. Again the thorough Guardian covers it live... The current Polar Vortex has at least 4 vortices within. The main big vortices are to be found in the Canadian Arctic and Siberia, however the newish "vortice" hovering over Finland is of great interest, because it is single handily pushing a large Norwegian High towards Northern Quebec. Extraordinary. "The beast from the east" as they call it , key word, from the "East ", is perhaps a monster given the mild European winter so far. Current winter vortices are made smaller basically by the over all shrinking of the Polar Vortex.At locations where warm air meets these vortices exists the jet stream, so between Greenland and Norway there is warm air, therefore the jet stream heads towards the Southwest pushing this high along its unusual course. Smaller vortices will cause all kinds of weird winter weather. But the Guardian explained that segment pretty well.
Toggle Commented Feb 28, 2018 on Talk about unprecedented at Arctic Sea Ice
Neven, "That high pressure system really is very high, which means that there are open skies over the Siberian side of the Arctic, which means ice gets to thicken better than it would under overcast skies." Not necessarily so, although this is standard meteorology 101, the continuous influx of moisture by the Pacific and Atlantic has been doing some very strange horizon effects: In fact saturating the Arctic with a continuous vapor spread may have similar consequences than when cloudy, there has been very little respite from moisture influx without giving a large area a chance to really dry the atmosphere above the Arctic Ocean....
Toggle Commented Feb 27, 2018 on Talk about unprecedented at Arctic Sea Ice
preceding post a follow up for latest post. "talk about precedented"
If True, rain in Spain and Moroccan Sahara....
That caught my eye too Neven, But there is a lot going on, unprecedented would be what 2 models forecast the GFS and ECMWF:: I have never seen this, and I don't remember ever seeing something remotely like this, a large High coming from Norway settling to Northern Quebec. when it is usually a Cyclone moving from Northern Quebec to Norway! Supremely interesting. By the way the CAA Cold Temperature North Pole vortice is going bye bye. Leaving some parts of Russia as the only cold spots, this I can explain, but a High reverse tracking the Cyclone North Atlantic alley causing central Russia to be very cold ? Remains to be seen....
Toggle Commented Feb 27, 2018 on Talk about unprecedented at Arctic Sea Ice Today's example shows CAA coastal sea ice is in tatters, it does not have the gravitas to vanish out tidal of cyclonic footprints in a matter of days. It is also a terrible year to go to the North Pole by way of land...
Washington Post has probably one of the best weather climate team in the media world: Spot on article, highlighting coming weekend above 0 C weather at the North Pole. There is no doubt that winter time represents more clearly Arctic trends with respect to the future of sea ice. The summer greater melts have been marred by persistent static cyclones hovering over the gyre area spanning weeks, expansive clouds from these saved a vaster yearly onslaught ever since 2012. It is a last ditch natural balancing act because broken sea ice and open water usually is foggy, not exactly inviting for anticyclones. However, current Arctic long night less accretion is exactly like a record breaking September minima. There is lesser sea ice to melt from maxima onwards. The Maxima matters more these days.
Toggle Commented Feb 22, 2018 on PIOMAS February 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
Well this winters coldest zone took shape by mid November 2017: The CAA CTNP (Cold Temperature North Pole) was indeed dominating for most of winter 2017-2018, with occasional oscillations with rival Northeast Siberia; Todays article explains the consequence of this recent pattern really taking shape during the last 5 years: Once upon a time, 30 years ago, there was very thick wide spanning Arctic Ocean sea ice, which shaped a radically different but long lasting global circulation system. Now this Ocean may be considered a heat source in an amplification feedback death spiral for Arctic ice.
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2018 on PIOMAS February 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
Cheers Jim The main Svalbard climate driver for the last 2 weeks has been a dominance in CAA as the Cold Temperature North Pole of the Northern Hemisphere, especially recently NE Siberia has collapsed in further cooling, at least for now. There has not been a good strong warm enough Cyclone maintaining a long dragged out position near CAA to dent this circulation picture. One must remind the position of stratospheric polar vortex completely in synch with the tropospheric polar vortex. All models seem to implicate an exact scene to now at least for a week, not favoring sea ice extent spreading, of which yesterday's drop of -36,291 km2 is one of the most severe one since 2006 for this time of the year. But the race drop is between 2018 and 2017, of which 2018 has the warmer weather, at least on the Eurasia and Alaskan side.
Toggle Commented Feb 7, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
Hi Susan 600 mb temperatures charts would be ideal because they would closely represent the average temperature of the troposphere. I like more available 700 mb charts which is close to 600 and represents the circulation of the lower atmosphere more than 500 mb. So we look here: North Japan southern Russia border at 700 mb (only today or next few days, 31 January) has -30 C , strait north of north east Russia -9 to -10 C in East Siberia. Different Ocean East Coast same result.
Toggle Commented Jan 31, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
I looked at 3 model long term forecasts CMC, ECEDM and GFS. From what I have studied CMC seems more realistic with recent trends, if so a very early sea ice Maxima is possible. There is no change in circulation scenarios, warm air keeps coming up directly to the Arctic Ocean from both Pacific and Atlantic. Winter build up process is being continuously disrupted. With a massive oscillating warm to cold on one side of the North Pole in synch cold to warm on the other side by-continental circulation system working like clockwork.
Toggle Commented Jan 30, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
This is remarkably mild, some people may not think so, but these are unfamiliar temperatures , especially for those use to -40 C or colder for a month.... At present CAA side is building a winter zone once again, a target for soon to devastate warm cyclone.
Toggle Commented Jan 30, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
Hi John, That is apparently correct, CAA cold zone is building up. Central Archipelago forecast calls for seasonal weather in 3 days.
Toggle Commented Jan 27, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
It is a very good idea to judge the depth in strength of the Arctic Polar Vortex by coldest vortices within.. . without further a do January 25 2018 Only one Vortice at our below -30 C , in Alaska of all places, -31 C at center, Alaska was warmest area till now. January 26 2017 3 vortices, it was considered a warm winter at least at that time, With 3 vortices: Franz Joseph -36 C, Ellesmere -33 C North Central Russia -31 C 2016 January 28 Russia's coldest was -27 , Ungava Nunavik Northern Quebec had a -35 C 700 mb vortice. Strong El-Nino was still raging: 2015 Close to same date, 2 vortices: North Central Russia -35 C LaGrande Nunavik -35 C , the later became a famous vortice/vortex which made the name "Polar Vortex" popular. 2014 2 vortices -33C Kamchatka Peninsula, Inukjuaq Nunavik Quebec -31 C. So we are indeed in the presence of a warmest winter. Not even heat from the strongest El=Nino in history exceeds this winter. Even though La-Nina is on : Known for less clouds and favoring cooling worldwide. This is what it looks like:
Toggle Commented Jan 26, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice And the warming continues, winter 2017-18 is remarkably warmer than when there was a raging super strong El-Nino of a few years ago. I describe here the current main features using actual measurements. I must note, in the past I compared model results with measurements and sometimes they disagrred in one region or another. So I stick to actual Upper Air Radiosonde data. .
Toggle Commented Jan 25, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
We are faced with a radical circulation change as I write. Once rarer, now common, Cold air vortices within the Arctic Polar Vortex disappear quickly and reform slowly:
Toggle Commented Jan 21, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
Jim, That has been a good example of what I observed on many occasions, the smaller vortices within the Polar vortex tend to be extremely colder. When one wobbles down South from the Arctic for instance, it often becomes colder than the Arctic in origin center of the same vortice. Fascinating.
Toggle Commented Jan 19, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
Jim. Not being the first time at all that a massive cyclone system lingers or moves slowly upwards on the East coast of Greenland, but the most impressive aspect was the demolition, vaporization of CAA vortex, a vortice I rather like to write, of 2 main winter 2018 vortices within the Arctic Polar vortex, the other NE Siberia was just rebuilt. What is left of the CAA coldest center is about Disko Island on the central west coast of Greenland. To all, remember, the heat came from the Greenland sea, went South of the North Pole bent towards the South blasting the CAA with warmth in effect circumnavigating North Greenland overcoming the coldest cell in the world in a matter of days. This is news.
Toggle Commented Jan 17, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice
Either during , sea ice melting or freezing season, it would be invaluable to know when snow on top of sea ice is melting. There is a way while using either mass or ordinary weather buoys, a certainty if you like: a surface temperature reading of +0.2 C with overcast sky having low or mid layer clouds. I know this is not a rule for all sky conditions, the sun causes havoc to top mass buoy thermistors (or any thermistor thermometer) when above 5 degrees elevation. However, cloudy conditions above the Arctic Ocean are usually the long day norm. If you study a DMI above 80 graph, the average temperature for all summer seasons barely wanders above +0.5 C. Which is a definite description of sea ice with snow on top. But DMI 80, is a model, which is not as good as a correct temperature reading. Since sea ice weather buoys easily outnumber mass buoys, we can easily know when the snow is melting while using IR and visual satellite pictures identifying cloud locations. So +.2 C surface readings guaranties melting snow, the beginning of the melt ponds proper. As far as when sun is present +0.2 is a very conservative reasonable rule (to be improved) , only when it is above 5 degrees elevation, at the North Pole any date after April 2 till before September 10. Confirming the presence of melting snow should be a great asset.
Toggle Commented Jan 15, 2018 on PIOMAS January 2018 at Arctic Sea Ice