First-year land-fast Antarctic sea ice as an archive of ice shelf meltwater fluxes
Cold Regions Science and Technology (2015)
Ocean δ18O values near the McMurdo Ice Shelf were reconstructed using observational data from McMurdo Sound, Antarctica, by combining a recently revised version of an isotope fractionation model with an established thermodynamic sea ice model.
We found that the range of sea ice effective fractionation coefficients derived for oxygen-18 was + 1.84 ‰ to + 2.21 ‰. The method is an improvement on previous approaches; uncertainty in reconstructed δ18O was ± 0.2 ‰.
However, the method is of limited utility to detect ice shelf melt due to reconstruction uncertainty. The heat flux parameterisation requirement means that the method cannot be entirely retrospective.