Earth Science News  





.
ICE WORLD
Resolving The Paradox Of The Antarctic Sea Ice

File image.
by Staff Writers
Atlanta GA (SPX) Aug 20, 2010
While Arctic sea ice has been diminishing in recent decades, the Antarctic sea ice extent has been increasing slightly. Researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology provide an explanation for the seeming paradox of increasing Antarctic sea ice in a warming climate.

The paper appears in the Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science the week of August 16, 2010.

"We wanted to understand this apparent paradox so that we can better understand what might happen to the Antarctic sea ice in the coming century with increased greenhouse warming," said Jiping Liu, a research scientist in Georgia Tech's School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences.

Currently, as the atmosphere warms, the hydrological cycle accelerates and there is more precipitation in the Southern Ocean surrounding Antarctica. This increased precipitation, mostly in the form of snow, stabilizes the upper ocean and insulates it from the ocean heat below.

This insulating effect reduces the amount of melting occurring below the sea ice. In addition, snow has a tendency to reflect atmospheric heat away from the sea ice, which reduces melting from above.

However, the climate models predict greenhouse gases will continue to increase in the 21st century, which will result in the sea ice melting at a faster rate from both above and below. Here's how it works. Increased warming of the atmosphere is expected to heat the upper ocean, which will increase the melting of the sea ice from below.

In addition, increased warming will also result in a reduced level of snowfall, but more rain. Because rain doesn't reflect heat back the way snow does, this will enhance the melting of the Antarctic sea ice from above.

"Our finding raises some interesting possibilities about what we might see in the future. We may see, on a time scale of decades, a switch in the Antarctic, where the sea ice extent begins to decrease," said Judith A. Curry, chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at Georgia Tech.




Share This Article With Planet Earth
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit
YahooMyWebYahooMyWeb GoogleGoogle FacebookFacebook



Related Links
Georgia Institute of Technology
Beyond the Ice Age



Tempur-Pedic Mattress Comparison

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News
ICE WORLD
Puzzle of Antarctic ice solved?
Atlanta (UPI) Aug 17, 2010
Arctic sea ice is shrinking due to climate change but the extent of Antarctic sea ice has grown slightly and U.S. researchers say they may have figured out why. Scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology have presented a possible solution to the conundrum at the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, ScienceDaily.com reported Tuesday. As the atmosphere warms, the ... read more

.
Get Our Free Newsletters Via Email
  


ICE WORLD
New Orleans police still pay for Katrina sins 5 years on

UN to meet on Pakistan aid, 4.6 million without shelter

'Terrorists' cannot be allowed to exploit floods: Pakistan

Aid begins to flow to flood-ravaged Pakistan

ICE WORLD
"Fahrenheit 451" author burns at idea of digital books

Safer Plastics That Lock In Potentially Harmful Plasticizers

Power Problem With Insat-4B

Colorado Space Grant Consortium And LockMart To Develop CubeSat

ICE WORLD
Great Barrier Reef had predecessor

Massive Coral Mortality Following Bleaching In Indonesia

Slowing Urban Sprawl, Adding Forests Curb Floods And Help Rivers

How Algae 'Enslavement' Threatens Freshwater Bodies

ICE WORLD
Resolving The Paradox Of The Antarctic Sea Ice

Indonesian Ice Field May Be Gone In A Matter Of Years

Puzzle of Antarctic ice solved?

Giant Greenland iceberg a climate 'warning sign'

ICE WORLD
Drought lowers world plant productivity

Greenhouse Gas Calculator Connects Farming Practices With Carbon Credits

Russian food prices jump amid heatwave: official

Germans To Help With New Food Zapping Process

ICE WORLD
Tropical storm Danielle forms in Atlantic

250,000 evacuated after floods in China, N.Korea

Floods raise spectre of Pakistan social unrest

Pakistanis should live away from flood areas: UN agency

ICE WORLD
South Africa's Zuma visits key partner China to boost ties

Congolese army says two arrested over Indian UN slayings

Guinea-Bissau "ashamed" of incompetent image: president

Nigerian electric rates prompt review

ICE WORLD
Growing Up Without Sibs Doesn't Hurt Social Skills

Oldest Evidence Of Stone Tool Use And Meat-Eating Among Human Ancestors

The Worst Impact Of Climate Change May Be How Humanity Reacts To It

Stone tools used by earliest 'butchers'


The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2010 - SpaceDaily. AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement