Glacial shortcut of Arctic sea-ice transport


Contact
Michael.Staerz [ at ] awi.de

Abstract

Due to the lack of data, the extent, thickness and drift patterns of sea ice and icebergs in the glacial Arctic remains poorly constrained. Earlier studies are contradictory proposing either a cessation of the marine cryosphere or an ice drift system operating like present-day. Here we examine the marine Arctic cryosphere during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) using a high-resolution, regional ocean-sea ice model. Whereas modern sea ice in the western Arctic Basin can circulate in the Beaufort Gyre for decades, our model studies present an extreme shortcut of glacial ice drift. In more detail, our results show a clockwise sea-ice drift in the western Arctic Basin that merges into a direct trans-Arctic path towards Fram Strait. This is consistent with dated ice plow marks on the seafloor, which show the orientation of iceberg drift in this direction. Also ice-transported iron-oxide grains deposited in Fram Strait, can be matched by their chemical composition to similar grains found in potential sources from the entire circum-Arctic. The model results indicate that the pattern of Arctic sea-ice drift during the LGM is established by wind fields and seems to be a general feature of the glacial ocean. Our model results do not indicate a cessation in ice drift during the LGM.



Item Type
Article
Authors
Divisions
Programs
Peer revision
ISI/Scopus peer-reviewed
Publication Status
Published
Eprint ID
31338
DOI 10.1016/j.epsl.2012.09.033

Cite as
Stärz, M. , Gong, X. , Stein, R. , Darby, D. A. , Kauker, F. and Lohmann, G. (2012): Glacial shortcut of Arctic sea-ice transport , Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 357-35 , pp. 257-267 . doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2012.09.033


Download
[img]
Preview
PDF
staerz_et_al_2012-2.pdf

Download (7MB) | Preview
Cite this document as:

Share


Citation

Research Platforms
N/A

Campaigns


Actions
Edit Item Edit Item