High latitude coupled sea-ice-air thermodynamics
Swick, William A.
Garwood, Roland W.
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Presently ice extent forecast models such as the U.S. Navy Polar Ice Prediction System (PIPS) neglect or treat small-scale thermodynamic processes and entrainment unrealistically. Incorporating better algorithms that include more complete physics of the mixed layer dynamics will allow for improved prediction of ice thickness and distribution, open water boundaries, polynyas, and deep-water formation in the polar seas. A one-dimensional mixed layer turbulent kinetic energy (TKE) budget model based on Garwood's NPS mixed layer model for deep convection (Garwood, 1991) was written in MATLAB. The model consisted of a system of ten equations derived by vertically integrating the budgets for heat, momentum, salinity, and turbulent kinetic energy between the sea-ice-air interface and the base of the turbulent mixed layer. The NPS mixed layer model was tested using atmospheric forcing and ocean profiles collected at the Surface Heat Budget of the Arctic Ocean Experiment (SHEBA) site. Sensitivity studies using ocean profiles of the Greenland Sea were also conducted to address thermodynamics and ocean profiles that enhance thermohaline circulation. Findings and results as well as recommendations for further study are addressed to extend the relationships determined from small 1-D scales to the larger 3-D scales suitable for improvements to current ice models.
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