Antarctic sea-ice extents and concentrations: comparison of satellite and ship measurements from International Polar Year cruises

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Abstract:

Antarctic Sea Ice Processes and Climate (ASPeCt) ship-based ice observations, conducted during the Sea Ice Mass Balance in the Antarctic (SIMBA) and Sea Ice Physics and Ecosystem eXperiment (SIPEX) International Polar Year (IPY) cruises (September–October 2007), are used to validate remote-sensing measurements of ice extent and concentration. Observations include varied sea-ice types at and inside the ice edge of West (∼90° W) and East (∼120° E) Antarctica. Time series of Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer–Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) ice extents and US National Ice Center (NIC) ice edges were obtained for the 2007–08 periods bracketing the period these cruises were conducted. A comparison between passive microwave satellite imagery and ASPeCt observations of sea-ice concentration during two cruises was also performed. In 90° W regions, the concentrated pack ice indicated good correlation between ship observations and passive microwave estimates of the ice concentration (R 2 = 0.80). In the marginal zone of West Antarctica and over nearly the entire sea-ice zone of East Antarctica, correlation dropped to R 2 < 0.60. These findings are consistent with other studies comparing passive microwave and ship observations and further verify that the East Antarctic sea-ice zone is more marginal in character. There are significant ice-edge differences between AMSR-E and NIC between late November 2007 and early March 2008 such that the AMSR-E sea-ice extent estimate is 1–2 × 106 km2 less than the NIC estimate.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: May 1, 2011

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  • The Annals of Glaciology is a peer-reviewed, thematic journal published 2 to 4 times a year by the International Glaciological Society (IGS). Publication frequency is determined and volume/issue numbers assigned by the IGS Council on a year-to-year basis and with a lead time of 3 to 4 years. The Annals of Glaciology is included in the ISI Science Citation Index from volume 50, number 50 onwards.

    Themes can be on any aspect of the study of snow and ice. Individual members can make a suggestion for a theme for an Annals issue to the Secretary General, who will forward it to the IGS Publications Committee. The IGS Publication Committee will make a recommendation for an individual themed Annals issue, together with a potential Annals Chief Editor for that issue, to IGS Council. The IGS Council will make the decision whether to proceed, taking into account the spread of topics and the overall capacity for publication of pages in Annals.

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