Landfast ice covers large surface areas of the winter Siberian Seas. The immobile landfast ice cover inhibits divergent and convergent motion, hence dynamical sea ice growth and redistribution, decouples winter river plumes in coastal seas from the atmosphere, and positions polynyas at the landfast ice edge offshore. In spite of the potentially large effects, state-of-the-art numerical models usually do not represent landfast ice in its correct extent. A simple parametrization of landfast ice based on bathymetry and internal sea ice strength is introduced and its effects on the simulated Arctic Ocean are demonstrated. The simulations suggest that the Siberian landfast ice impacts the Arctic halocline stability through enhanced brine production in polynyas located closer to the shelf break and by redirecting river water to the Canadian Basin. These processes strengthen the halocline in the Canadian Basin, but erode its stability in the Makarov and Eurasian Basins.
AWI Organizations > Climate Sciences > Sea Ice Physics
Helmholtz Research Programs > PACES II (2014-2018) > TOPIC 3: The earth system from a polar perspective > WP 3.3: From process understanding to enabling climate prediction