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Surface energy budget on Larsen and Wilkins ice shelves in the Antarctic Peninsula: results based on reanalyses in 1989–2010

Authors: I. Välisuo; Timo Vihma; John C. King;

Surface energy budget on Larsen and Wilkins ice shelves in the Antarctic Peninsula: results based on reanalyses in 1989–2010

Abstract

Abstract. Ice shelves in the Antarctic Peninsula have significantly disintegrated during recent decades. To better understand the atmospheric contribution in the process, we have analysed the inter-annual variations in radiative and turbulent surface fluxes and weather conditions over Larsen C Ice Shelf (LCIS) and Wilkins Ice Shelf (WIS) in the Antarctic Peninsula in 1989–2010. Three atmospheric reanalyses were applied: ERA-Interim by ECMWF, Climate Forecast System Reanalysis (CFSR) by NCEP, and JRA-25/JCDAS by the Japan Meteorological Agency. In addition, in situ observations from an automatic weather station (AWS) on LCIS were applied, mainly for validation of the reanalyses. The AWS observations on LCIS did not show any significant temperature trend, and the reanalyses showed warming trends only over WIS: ERA-Interim in winter (0.23 °C yr−1) and JRA-25/JCDAS in autumn (0.13 °C yr−1). In LCIS from December through August and in WIS from March through August, the variations of surface net flux were partly explained by the combined effects of atmospheric pressure, wind and cloud fraction. The explained variance was much higher in LCIS (up to 80%) than in WIS (26–27%). Summer melting on LCIS varied between 11 and 58 cm water equivalent (w.e.), which is comparable to previous results. The mean amount of melt days per summer on LCIS was 69. The high values of melting in summer 2001–2002 presented in previous studies on the basis of simple calculations were not supported by our study. Instead, our calculations based on ERA-Interim yielded strongest melting in summer 1992–1993 on both ice shelves. On WIS the summer melting ranged between 10 and 23 cm w.e., and the peak values coincided with the largest disintegrations of the ice shelf. The amount of melt on WIS may, however, be underestimated by ERA-Interim, as previously published satellite observations suggest that it suffers from a significant bias over WIS.

Country
United Kingdom
Subjects by Vocabulary

Microsoft Academic Graph classification: Automatic weather station Climate forecast Water equivalent Ice shelf Peninsula Net flux geography geography.geographical_feature_category Cloud fraction Climatology Environmental science

Library of Congress Subject Headings: lcsh:Environmental sciences lcsh:GE1-350 lcsh:QE1-996.5 lcsh:Geology

Keywords

Earth-Surface Processes, Water Science and Technology

54 references, page 1 of 6

Atlaskin, E. and Vihma, T.: Evaluation of NWP results for wintertime nocturnal boundary-layer temperatures over Europe and Finland, Q. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 138, 1440-1451, 2012.

Barrand, N. E., Vaughan, D. G., Steiner, N., Tedesco, M., Kuipers Munneke, P., van den Broeke, M. R., and Hosking, J. S.: Trends in Antarctic Peninsula surface melting conditions from observations and regional climate modeling, J. Geophys. Res., 118, 1- 16, doi:10.1029/2012JF002559, 2013.

Bengtsson, L., Arkin, P., Berrisford, P., Bougeault, P., Folland, C. K., Gordon, C., Haines, K.,Hodges, K. I., Jones, P., Kållberg, P., Raynes, N., Simmons, A. J., Stammer, D., Thorne, P. W., Uppala, S., and Vose, R. S.: The need for a dynamical climate reanalysis, B. Am. Meteorol. Soc., 88, 495-501, 2007. [OpenAIRE]

Braun, M., Humbert, A., and Moll, A.: Changes of Wilkins Ice Shelf over the past 15 years and inferences on its stability, The Cryosphere, 3, 41-56, doi:10.5194/tc-3-41-2009, 2009.

Bromwich, D. H., Nicolas, J. P., and Monaghan, A. J.: An assessment of precipitation changes over Antarctica and the Southern Ocean since 1989 in contemporary global reanalyses, J. Climate, 1406, 1-62, 2011.

Chapman, L. W. and Walsh, J. E.: A synthesis of Antarctic temperatures, J. Climate, 20, 4096-4117, 2007.

Cheng, B., Zhang, Z., Vihma, T., Johansson, M., Bian, L., Li, Z., and Wu, H.: Model experiments on snow and ice thermodynamics in the Arctic Ocean with CHINARE 2003 data, J. Geophys. Res., 113, 1-15, 2008.

Collins, W. D., Bitz, C., Boville, B. A., Briegled, B., Dai, Y., Hack, J. J., Kiehl, J. T., Lin, S.-J., Mccaa, J. R., Rasch, P. J., Rood, R. B., Williamson, D. L., and Zhang, M.: Description of the NCAR Community Atmosphere Model (CAM2), available at: http://www.ccsm.ucar.edu/models/atm-cam/docs/cam2. 0/description/index.html (last access: 23 April 2013), 2002.

Comiso, J. C.: Variability and trends in Antarctic surface temperatures from in situ and satellite infrared measurements, J. Climate, 13, 1674-1696, 2000. [OpenAIRE]

Cook, A. J. and Vaughan, D. G.: Overview of areal changes of the ice shelves on the Antarctic Peninsula over the past 50 years, The Cryosphere, 4, 77-98, doi:10.5194/tc-4-77-2010, 2010.

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    popularity
    This indicator reflects the "current" impact/attention (the "hype") of an article in the research community at large, based on the underlying citation network.
    Top 10%
    influence
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    This indicator reflects the initial momentum of an article directly after its publication, based on the underlying citation network.
    Average
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citations
This is an alternative to the "Influence" indicator, which also reflects the overall/total impact of an article in the research community at large, based on the underlying citation network (diachronically).
BIP!Citations provided by BIP!
popularity
This indicator reflects the "current" impact/attention (the "hype") of an article in the research community at large, based on the underlying citation network.
BIP!Popularity provided by BIP!
influence
This indicator reflects the overall/total impact of an article in the research community at large, based on the underlying citation network (diachronically).
BIP!Influence provided by BIP!
impulse
This indicator reflects the initial momentum of an article directly after its publication, based on the underlying citation network.
BIP!Impulse provided by BIP!
15
Top 10%
Average
Average
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