Density Stratification Effects on the Ice Lead Heat Balance and Perennial Ice Melting in the Central Arctic

P. N. Golovin and V. V. Ivanov

Analyzed are ice conditions and observational data on perennial ice melting in the Arctic basin obtained from SP-31 (1990) and SHEBA (1998) drifting stations. Considered are external and internal reasons for perennial ice melting, in particular, the so called stratification effect. It is supposed that effects of the feedback between perennial ice melting and ice-free water area heightened by the stratification effect resulted in the rapid reduction of the perennial ice area in the Canadian part of the Arctic in the 1990s.

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