UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

Melt onset over Arctic sea ice controlled by atmospheric moisture transport

Mortin, J; Svensson, G; Graversen, RG; Kapsch, M-L; Stroeve, JC; Boisvert, LN; (2016) Melt onset over Arctic sea ice controlled by atmospheric moisture transport. Geophysical Research Letters , 43 (12) pp. 6636-6642. 10.1002/2016GL069330. Green open access

[thumbnail of Published article]
Preview
Text (Published article)
Mortin_et_al Melt onset over Arctic sea ice controlled by atmospheric moisture transport VoR.pdf

Download (3MB) | Preview
[thumbnail of Supplementary information]
Preview
Text (Supplementary information)
Mortin_et_al Melt onset over Arctic sea ice controlled by atmospheric moisture transport supplementary file.pdf

Download (4MB) | Preview

Abstract

The timing of melt onset affects the surface energy uptake throughout the melt season. Yet the processes triggering melt and causing its large interannual variability are not well understood. Here we show that melt onset over Arctic sea ice is initiated by positive anomalies of water vapor, clouds, and air temperatures that increase the downwelling longwave radiation (LWD) to the surface. The earlier melt onset occurs; the stronger are these anomalies. Downwelling shortwave radiation (SWD) is smaller than usual at melt onset, indicating that melt is not triggered by SWD. When melt occurs early, an anomalously opaque atmosphere with positive LWD anomalies preconditions the surface for weeks preceding melt. In contrast, when melt begins late, clearer than usual conditions are evident prior to melt. Hence, atmospheric processes are imperative for melt onset. It is also found that spring LWD increased during recent decades, consistent with trends toward an earlier melt onset.

Type: Article
Title: Melt onset over Arctic sea ice controlled by atmospheric moisture transport
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1002/2016GL069330
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/2016GL069330
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2016 American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
Keywords: Arctic sea ice; melt onset; remote sensing; climate variability; polar meteorology
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Dept of Earth Sciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1520429
Downloads since deposit
109Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item