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Sea ice growth rates near ice shelves

, : Sea ice growth rates near ice shelves.

Are influenced by ocean-ice shelf interactions. Sea ice growth rates and ocean observations from McMurdo Sound, Antarctica in 1999 and 2 are presented in this paper. Growth rates measurements were made for an individual platelet crystal through video camera observations. It was found that the crystal grew in discontinuous, episodic bursts at rates of the order of 1-6 ms-1. Sea water .15m beneath the lower ice surface was measured to be supercooled by .1K. Indications are that supercooling was continuous over the period of episodic platelet ice crystal growth and the growth bursts are attributed to the influence of variable currents. Growth rates for bulk sea ice (i.e., columnar and incorporated platelet ice) and heat fluxes were derived from ice temperature measurements. The growth rates for bulk sea ice were found to be of the order of 1-7 ms-1, an order of magnitude less than the rates for the individual platelet ice crystal. The residual of the energy balance suggested that a negative oceanic heat flux (i.e., heat transport down into the ocean) occurred, in addition to conduction of heat up into the atmosphere. Both salinity-based growth rate models and an oxygen isotope-based growth rate model (Eicken, 1998) were found to under-predict growth rates compared to those derived from ice temperature measurements. In addition, inverting the growth rates predicted by the models and integrating over the depth of the core failed to accurately predict the date of initial sea ice formation. Modifications are proposed to the models for sea ice formation occurring near ice shelves, where platelet ice formation is likely. Differences between bulk and individual platelet ice crystal growth rates are discussed with reference to heat fluxes, oceanic flows and the Eicken (1998) model. Platelet ice crystal growth rates of the order of 1-6 ms-1 measured with video camera. Platelet growth episodic; attributed to variable currents in supercooled water. Bulk sea ice growth rates an order of magnitude less than for platelet crystals. Residual of energy balance suggests that a negative oceanic heat flux occurred. Eicken (1998) isotope-based model underestimates growth rates unless modified.


DOI: 10.1016/j.coldregions.2012.06.005

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