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Observed platelet ice distributions in Antarctic sea ice: An index for ocean-ice shelf heat flux

Geophysical Research Letters (2015)

We synthesized platelet ice observations to construct a continent‐wide map of the winter presence of Ice Shelf Water (ISW) at the ocean surface.

The observations demonstrate that, in some regions of coastal Antarctica, supercooled ISW drives a negative oceanic heat flux of −30 Wm−2 that persists for several months during winter, significantly affecting sea ice thickness. In other regions, particularly where the thinning of ice shelves is believed to be greatest, platelet ice is not observed.

This, along with historical data spanning the past century, indicates that any change in the volume of ISW is less than the uncertainties in the measurements.

RESEARCH PROJECTS THIS RESOURCE IS FROM

Antarctic sea ice