On the question of accumulation of ice-melt water south of the ice in the Chukchi Sea.
Handlers, Robert Glenn
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The processes controlling the distribution of melt water from the retreating ice edge in summer in the Chukchi Sea were examined in order to provide evidence of the flow regime. Current and salinity data from the National Oceanographic Data Center (NODC) files and from four MIZPAC cruises were utilized in this work. An increase in melt-water content towards the ice in the approximately 30 km wide icemelt zone as well as an abrupt salinity decrease were observed. This effect was presumed to be due to scattering of ice from a diffuse ice margin accompanied by melting. North of the ice edge the fresh-water content was greater 2 than that of southerly water by an amount (150-200 gm/cm ) equivalent to the thickness of the ice cover. These findings together with an independent comparison of transport times and ice satellite data produce good evidence that the current flows faster than the ice retreats during summer in the eastern half of the Chukchi Sea.
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