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Messages - SirLurkALot

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1
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: August 12, 2019, 07:29:21 PM »


Insolation when the sun is straight overhead is 1370 W⋅m−2 .



Not sure your 1370 figure is correct.

I'll take your word for it. I just wanted to point out that a BOE in Sept is not going to suddenly heat up the planet, regardless of latent heat cushion being lost.

2
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: August 02, 2019, 08:20:16 PM »
Here's Neven's year-to-year comparison maps for Arctic sea ice on 1 August.


2019 definitely appears to be one of the worst years on this date. How bad will this melt season end up compared to previous worst years? Too early to tell?

What's really noticeable is the difference on the CAA and Greenland side of the Arctic, compared to all other years (except, perhaps, 2016). There appears to be thinner ice extending hundreds of KMs offshore where the store of MYI used to be.

3
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: August 01, 2019, 03:30:44 PM »
This piece that has detached from the pack near the New Siberian Islands is basically one very large floe that is slowly breaking up. There are some interesting bits of ice embedded in it. Some of them look like they came from a broken up ice shelf or something similar.
Close-up of part of the above. The largest piece is a little over 2 km wide. (Image is upside-down relative to Worldview.)

4
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 31, 2019, 04:26:28 PM »
I would rather read or scroll by an occasional post about blueberries in Russia, even though we don't need to infer climate or temperatures through plants in this day and age.

However, when each of the blueberries is followed by 8 (and counting) posts arguing whether it's OK to post about blueberries, that becomes the actual problem. I'd say about 90% of the offtopic posts in this thread is people arguing about whether something was offtopic or not, so perhaps let's cut down on that instead and let the occasional blueberry posts be?

5
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 30, 2019, 06:33:05 AM »
That slushy swirling ice in the ESS has really slowed things up.

That night all melt out.

But it's preventing the ESS from being a staging point to crush the CAB.
What are you talking about? The ESS has melted out faster than ever before. "Slowed things up" is still FASTER THAN EVER BEFORE so I think your verbiage here is silly and wrong. And if you have been paying attention to forecasts / actual weather, the CAB just took a bullet and it was completely independent of what is happening in the ESS (originating via North America / the CAA). So ultimately your statement here is doubly untrue.

(I don't mean to come across as antagonistic here and I genuinely enjoy your posts, this is just my opinion).

That doesn't matter.

It needs to be clear blue open water by now and it's not.

There is no chance for a big SST build up in the ESS.

And melt out is subjective.

I bet there will be swirls of ice well after the satellites say it's ice free.

And I bet SSTS don't do bleep because of it.


6
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 30, 2019, 06:28:47 AM »
So ultimately your statement here is doubly untrue.

Does that mean it's true? Jk hahaha  ;D

7
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 27, 2019, 10:09:53 AM »
I have just returned from Croatia. Thanks to everyone for the condolences. In coming days, I'll try and get things in order here on the Forum.

8
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 24, 2019, 11:58:49 PM »
The Florida noon sun would burn the ice within a few hours
I think that this conclusion is flawed. The insolation in Florida is comparable from its latitude to that in Peru, where you have Glaciers in the Cordillera Blanca. The ice of those glaciers is not melting in a speed like a meter of ice will be melted with in a few days, but is in reality much slower.

The fact that if you would put a 1x1x1m cube of ice at the beach of Miami and that ice would melt may be within a day or so, is not due to the insolation there, but because air temperature will be 30°C or more, whereas air temperature in the Arctic or on high mountains in the Andes is around 0°C, so the ice will not be melted by the air temperature at all, but only by insolation.

And that the temperature in the Arctic is only around 0°C is not due to the low insolation there, but because there is ice nearly everywhere and all heat that goes there (by insolation or convection) will go completely into melting of ice, and therefore temperature cannot rise higher, as long there is a lot of ice.

9
Arctic sea ice / Re: Arctic Image of the Day
« on: July 23, 2019, 07:14:03 PM »
Baffin Bay full of scattered icebergs looks like the starry night sky. Quite beautiful.

https://i.redd.it/1zaxpynw53c31.jpg


10
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 23, 2019, 04:36:35 PM »
Quote
No this EXPLOSION OF POWER is

BEYOND NUCLEAR FISSION
BEYOND NUCLEAR FUSION
BEYOND SUPERNOVA EXPLOSION

NO THIS IS SOMEWHERE BETWEEN OG BIG BANG AND MULTIVERSE BIG BANG.
And Friv is back!  8)

11
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 22, 2019, 09:44:29 PM »
Sterks - good point. We tend to think of air temp as an absolute in and of itself not recognizing how much it is effected by the surface over which it passes be it land, water, or ice. In the same way that we see SST as an absolute value, not recognizing the effect the ice floating on it changes the recorded values. The anomaly charts for SST early in the season showed a very strong Beaufort plus anomaly that has since changed to a very strong negative when the early loss of surface ice was replaced with large broken flows exported from the CAB.

That same dynamic leads to much colder 2M air temperature readings over the ice pack and keeps the 80N temperature chart midsummer barely above 0C year after year regardless of the larger weather patterns or the condition of the ice pack.

12
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 22, 2019, 09:00:57 PM »
GFS max 2m temps for the next 10 days are 2-3C where most of the ice is located. Average temps are obviously lower. Enough to keep melt going steadily, but nothing epic as far as I can tell.

Wouldn't the ice peg the surface temperature to around that level regardless of how much melt is going on? Since melting ice absorbs heat energy from the surroundings. I think something like 850hpa temps are more indicative of the actual stress the ice experiences.

13
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 10, 2019, 10:23:19 AM »
Is anyone else having trouble accessing the breman sea ice page, keep getting the security warning popping up and the image for 2019 on the Arctic sea ice graphs is blanked out.

Must admit I am quite taken a back just how much ice has melted in recent days, maybe the SSTS on the Pacific side of the basin are making its presence felt?


14
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 09, 2019, 08:56:24 PM »
XXX-rated Pole Hole showing up on 12z EURO


15
Arctic sea ice / Re: Latest PIOMAS update (July 2019)
« on: July 08, 2019, 10:32:05 PM »
I'll have a PIOMAS update on the ASIB later today.

And here it is: PIOMAS July 2019

Conclusion: "I might be wrong, but I think that what we have seen at play during the second half of June, are the first signs of melting momentum making itself felt. I might be even more wrong, but I'm convinced that 2019 is assured of a top 3 spot when it hits the minimum in September, no matter what the weather does.

In fact, the only question on my mind right now, is: Can 2019 beat 2012? No, wait, I know it can. Allow me to rephrase. The only question on my mind right now, is: Will 2019 beat 2012?"

16
Arctic sea ice / Re: 2019 sea ice area and extent data
« on: July 08, 2019, 10:18:32 PM »
For 2019's trace to be right on the green line is actually rather spectacular!


Yes, exactly.

It's almost always below that green line, and to see it tracking it so closely is a very bad sign.

17
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 07, 2019, 02:03:24 PM »
worldview aqua modis, mclure strait to lincoln sea, jul6 with noaa bathymetry. All the fractures are sheared. click to run. (3.5MB)
Very little compressive strength shown on hycom.
edit:Added bathymetry scale

Very interesting graphics!

This may be a dumb question but does it surprise you that the cracking is taking place uniformly along a line that also spans the inlets/channels? That strikes me as interesting because the topo indicates that these function as outflows (presumably due to snow melt). Does the fact that the ice is pulling away there imply that the ice in those passages is not being shifted forward by much and does this further imply that there’s really little residual terrestrial ice/snow on the islands to melt? Or is there enough flow below the surface that the ice does not get pushed outward by meltwater behind?

18
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 07, 2019, 12:13:31 PM »
I believe it has been posted earlier, somewhere else on the forum, but one of the main indicators of the september minimum seems to be the amount of posts on this thread.

In a day we will pass 2018 total posts (70 pages), with still some three months to go, before neven closes the thread.

I am certain of a new minimum.
Huh.. 2019 not even in the top three, can't even say "I coulda been a contender" (yet).

https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php?action=stats
Replies
2019 - 3,439        2015 - 4,869

Views
2019 - 317,842    2015 - 1,632,921
The more terrible and unexpected for the world will be the harsh reality.
Tomorrow's National Enquirer front page

The End of the World is Nigh

Record Postings on ASIF  2019 melting Season Thread !!!

Emergency Meeting of UN Security Council Today !!!

19
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 07, 2019, 11:25:59 AM »
The expression "East of the pole" tripped me up for a short while.
Trips me up all the time.
I keep on having to think ,
- If I cross the Bering Strait from Russia to Alaska then on the way in one step I move from 180 East to 180 West." and
- When a Russian says "Go East, Young Man" and an American says "Go West, Young Man" they point in the same direction.

Wind direction is the easiest to get wrong.


20
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 07, 2019, 10:32:01 AM »
I believe it has been posted earlier, somewhere else on the forum, but one of the main indicators of the september minimum seems to be the amount of posts on this thread.

In a day we will pass 2018 total posts (70 pages), with still some three months to go, before neven closes the thread.

I am certain of a new minimum.

21
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 07, 2019, 09:05:18 AM »
Anyone else sees the teddy bear in the OSI SAF ice drift map?

22
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 07, 2019, 08:54:15 AM »
July 2-6.

2018.
Strong Beaufort dispersion, bad for the ice, as also seen in the OSI SAF ice drift map. this is ice that will surely melt until the minimum, in warm waters and a southerly location.
In addition, some kind of circular motion is drawing ice from the western CAB into the Laptev, and onwards to the Fram. This also is not helpful.

23
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 07, 2019, 01:19:39 AM »
   ^^ How does one accumulate wind ? I assume it's outside the body ? .. b.c.

24
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 06, 2019, 06:27:36 PM »
Those rhomboid shaped floes is where PIOMASS sees thick, MYI, some of the thickest ice left in the CAB.
Given the location of much of that thicker ice, and given the fact that there has been much clockwise rotation of the main pack towards the Atlantic, it would follow that ice has been piling up on the poleward side of these islands for some time.   

I therefore cannot help wondering whether the extra thickness on the poleward sides of these islands is at least partly caused by extensive ice ridging in these areas thickening the ice rather than by MYI somehow occurring in relative isolation in these three areas.

25
Arctic sea ice / Re: Latest PIOMAS update (July 2019)
« on: July 06, 2019, 07:59:25 AM »
Thickness map, comparisons with previous years and their diff's.

You certainly want to click these to read the very small fonts (and even then...).

26
Arctic sea ice / Re: Latest PIOMAS update (July 2019)
« on: July 06, 2019, 07:27:02 AM »
Updated volume and volume-anomaly graphs.

Click for larger pictures, helps reading the tiny fonts.

27
Arctic sea ice / Re: Latest PIOMAS update (July 2019)
« on: July 06, 2019, 07:17:04 AM »
PIOMAS has updated the gridded thickness data (not the 'official' volume data yet).

Volume on 30th June was 12.05 [1000 km3], lowest value for the day of the year.

Let's animate.

28
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 03, 2019, 09:23:38 AM »
Also do my eyes deceive me or does bbr's (post #3150) Hycom gif show significant melting at the pole, and possible future formation of a large hole in the center of the pack

This is a real disaster.

29
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: July 03, 2019, 02:30:28 AM »
You know, if the world is ending due to impending BOE and all, I guess one positive would be that all the grammar nazis will also be dead.  8)

30
Arctic sea ice / Re: 2019 sea ice area and extent data
« on: July 02, 2019, 07:49:35 AM »
Not having easy access to earlier year figures other than the graphs shown today, I'm wondering if the final distribution of most years is similar with 90+% of the final ice total residing in these 3 or 4 locations. (CAB, Beaufort, CAA, ESS).
Take a look also at https://sites.google.com/site/arctischepinguin/home/amsr2/grf/amsr2-area-regional.png?attredirects=0 for the hi-res area graphs of the last few years.
The Greenland Sea always participates in the minimum (2018 was very low, most years are at 100k-200k).
Other seas such as the Laptev and rarely the Barents can participate in the minimum in a given year. It depends on transport patterns and heat concentrations. 2012 was the only year that took both Beaufort, ESS and Laptev to essentially zero, and the CAA to <50k.

Thanks for the link Oren. I wish those hi-res maps didn't have so many lines on them, but they do tell a good story about range of outcomes.

If we look at yesterday's area loss, 58k of it came from last year's Final Four of CAB, CAA, ESS, Beaufort. A string of days like thst would bode poorly for the season minimum.


31
Arctic sea ice / Re: 2019 sea ice area and extent data
« on: July 02, 2019, 06:45:05 AM »
It is now a very close race. The difference between five different years is smaller than average daily extent changes. So the position of 2019 in the table may vary by two, three places every day.

32
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 28, 2019, 11:53:44 PM »
I've been following this forum quietly since about 2012. This year is starting to get pretty scary. The activity on this thread is massive compared to the slow years. We're in for a ride here, there is no way around it, the ice just looks terrible.

33
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 28, 2019, 11:54:54 AM »
All of a sudden, everybody rushes for the exit door

34
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 27, 2019, 05:08:19 PM »
It fascinating to observe the role of wind in the Arctic ice story.

Without the benefit of much atmospheric heat, the wind and warm water have turned the Beaufort gyre into rubble. Meanwhile the Kara cyclone has played a big role in the poleward push of the Laptev.

What the wind has on tap in the coming days is no less interesting.

As mentioned previously, the Pacific Ocean wind is lined up to push through the Bering Strait where a 20-25 knot wind should be pushing a small surge through.

The winds inside the Arctic will be pushing that surge toward the ESS and there is an open water path along  the coast which should flood the ESS coastline and press on the ice separating the ESS from the Laptev.

Meanwhile, you've got steady winds blowing from the Laptev toward Fram, highlighted by 30 knot winds along the NE coast of Greenland.  Fram export s/b turbocharged in the coming week.

The 2019 season is using all of her weapons in it's arsenal. Very resourceful.

35
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 27, 2019, 08:56:12 AM »
The discoloration of ice in early summer in the Chukchi is an annual thing, I've posted about it previously and nobody seems to have an explanation. Sometimes the discoloration is striated, i.e. there are bands of different colors following the edge of the ice...

Growth of algae, mostly on the undersurface of the ice, may well be the cause of dirty ice you have been seeing each year in early summer in the Chukchi Sea.

The photo -- and others in the article -- are from June 2009 in the Chukchi.

"This was not dirt, but massive blooms of sea ice algae, such as the aptly named ice diatom Nitzschia frigida."

The algae grow when the ice is just thin enough for the sunlight to penetrate.

The author, Dr. Bruce Marcot, speculates that warming of the Arctic may lead to more of this algae growth, potentially enhancing the melting of the ice.

36
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 27, 2019, 05:08:51 AM »
Wow

My guesses for 9/1 and 9/20

You can see how all the FYI is about to blink out in everything peripheral to the CAB. The rogue chunks of second year ice in between stand no chance at survival once that occurs.

The areas that appear to be ready to disappear very quickly expanded dramatically yday. A comparison with 2012 shows similarly-shaded bits of ice that year were prone to melt and dispersal within the following 30-45 days.

We must consider that 2012's GAC may have also been the RESULT of so much ice melting at once. The melting of ice gives off tremendous energy. Maybe it would have happened anyways but maybe it occurred precisely because the year was so bad. We have seen GAC-y events in years since as well, earlier and earlier in the summer.

So, we shall see what 2019 holds, but if momentum is any indicator I see no reason why we don't follow in 2012's footsteps with a GAC event, but this year it will probably be earlier in the season due to the greater insolation already absorbed across much of the Arctic Basin.

I am puzzled by these statements.  The melting of ice is an endothermic process. 

37
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 26, 2019, 04:01:38 PM »
Area and extent are imperfect indicators, but at least can be directly and fairly reliably measured, unlike, say, volume. Area and extent numbers and maps from the various outfits that produce them (NOAA, uni Bremen, Jaxa ...) stay in general agreement while what volume maps exist are much more idiosyncratic.

My main idea is that we stop referring to changes in area and extent as "melting" or "freezing."  Volume measures, however imperfect, indicate melt or freeze.  Although long-term trends in area and extent measures are certainly correlated with melt/freeze, short term changes in the extent and area measures do not necessarily indicate overall melting or freezing situation. Extent can increase due to dispersion etc., even where there is overall melting. I think using the shorthand of "melt" or "freeze" with area and extent measures may be a source of confusion sometimes.

38
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 26, 2019, 03:24:50 PM »
The Arctic does tend to surprise us, as for me perhaps the biggest realisation has been how resilient the ice really is. Everything seems to be heading to total oblivion every year, but hey, then it just ends up more or less the same as last year.

But looking at the bigger picture, on average in the 2010s, about 2/3 of the annual max melts out, in other words, the annual melt is double the residual. In the 1980s it was closer to par, slightly more than half the annual maximum melted out.

The decadal average is falling by 1 million km2 each decade, so that gives us 40 years to reach 0 average extent.

To me these numbers imply that the ice is not likely to melt out this year, and that reaching a new record is going to be very difficult (average is 4,4 this decade, the record is 3,2) but reaching second place not so very difficult (4,1) and third place is really just average melt for this decade.
But the 40 year extrapolation  assumes that the melt will proceed in a linear fashion as we get closer to 0 extent.
Many predict that as the ice reduces, positive feedbacks such as lower albedo of open water compared to ice, easier export of less rigid ice masses  and changes to the jet stream mean that ice loss could accelerate and reach a tipping point which could mean 0 ice much sooner.

Agreed.  These feedbacks could easily accelerate. 

In addition, the monster threat of potential changes in Arctic surface ocean temperature (as warm salty waters pour in and threaten the thin, cold, freshwater 'lid') already has its foot in the door, and is itching to make its full entrance and melt the Arctic ice from below.  The more ice is lost in this way, the more exposed the surface waters to wind mixing of these two layers.  Then more ice is lost etc, making this is another positive feedback, potentially a gigantic one. Sometimes, with the focus on atmospheric phenomena, this factor is left backstage.

So, with that 40 year extrapolation... I see why it is made, and I can only hope that it is correct.  Like you, I have little confidence that it is.

39
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 26, 2019, 02:27:08 PM »
Focussing on "the numbers", as you put it, is an example of the streetlight effect. Area and extent are useful in sometimes indicating anomalous regions, regions where one might want to try to figure out what's happening, but nothing more. (Obviously just my opinion.)

Really it just comes down to the weather now.

Area and extent are imperfect indicators, but at least can be directly and fairly reliably measured, unlike, say, volume. Area and extent numbers and maps from the various outfits that produce them (NOAA, uni Bremen, Jaxa ...) stay in general agreement while what volume maps exist are much more idiosyncratic.

Changes in area and extent have to be read in context - time of year, weather conditions, the quantitative(eg thickness) and qualitative(eg solid pack or loose rubble, rottenness) state of the ice. JAXA flatlined because of ice export and dispersion from June12-16 (losing only 40000km2 of extent in that period) while the weather was terrible for ice and volume was clearly taking a hammering - all those deep blue meltponds, and the huge amount of wet ice that appeared around then.

These are subjective and complex judgements to make for anyone. Its easy to get (maybe over)excited by some event. especially for us interested newbies with only a few or less seasons under our belt.

+1

40
Arctic sea ice / Re: 2019 sea ice area and extent data
« on: June 26, 2019, 01:33:28 PM »
Jaxa AMSR2 Arctic sea ice volume calculated by Wipneus
I think you have just chucked a grenade into the arena.
And if PIOMAS come up with something similar next week.......

41
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 26, 2019, 12:55:15 PM »
Greenland sea ice extent dropping fast recently. Maybe due to the current stall in export, maybe due to the export being thinner, or both.
wipneus amsr2 uh, regional extent, jun25.
piomas(model), fram, jan1-jun15
From the gif, towards the end of the period,
it looks like there is a substantial drop near the south east coast of Greenland.
Could be due to  melting of already exported ice  to warming waters rather than a drop in export?

Most likely this is due to the wind aided stall in export. Without a steady supply of ice, the water warms up quickly.

42
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 26, 2019, 12:35:42 PM »
From the gif, towards the end of the period,
it looks like there is a substantial drop near the south east coast of Greenland.
Could be due to  melting of already exported ice  to warming waters rather than a drop in export?
yes, the animation doesn't include the recent drop. I've edited the post upthread.

43
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 26, 2019, 11:24:12 AM »
I remember when the Arctic used to be colder than the British Isles.

Remember when that was a ridiculous statement for someone to even imagine saying.

Now though we are getting temperatures into the 20s today most of June has been 12 to 15c (54 to 59F) whilst parts of the Arctic have been 22 or 23c (72 to 73F)

44
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 26, 2019, 10:31:49 AM »
There is continuous and incredible Fram export on all 10 days of the GFS forecast ... absolutely insane to picture the amount of ice that's gonna flow out of the Arctic, if that happens.

Curious to see how it looks on the Fram export graph that accompanies Wipneus' bi-monthly Piomas updates.

45
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 25, 2019, 11:33:01 PM »
In previous years, when some people announced a new record or even a BOE, a) they were quite adamant, b) there was a lot of push-back from various people (including myself), and most importantly c) they used lots of dodgy evidence, such as the DMI volume map or the ACNFS/HYCOM thickness maps. Most of these commenters have either disappeared, or learned from these mistakes.

This year people aren't even all that adamant, but rather say that it's still possible records will be broken. They don't get push-back from people who know how melting seasons work. And most importantly, no dodgy data is being used, and the caveats are known.

That's a big difference with 2016, 2017 and 2018. But it doesn't mean there will be a new record. It's just possible, that's all, while in 2017 and 2018 we already knew by now there was almost zero chance of records being broken. 2016 a bit later.

46
Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: June 25, 2019, 11:18:40 PM »
Hi folks,

Long time (well 3 or 4 years) lurker, throwing in my tuppence worth.

Although I graduated in Physics (focussing on Atmospheric Physics) 40 years ago, and have closely followed climate change since then, I'm no scientific expert, so I'm enormously grateful for all the info posted in the forum and I follow posts avidly on a daily basis.

My thoughts ...

1) We are all (scientists particularly) conditioned to analyse data and give them an elevated status, even when we know there are inaccuracies, caveats and relevant externalities. While sea ice extent is a great indicator of trend, it is only really useful at September minimum to show the trend - and even then conditions leading up to the annual minimum can change the final outcome appreciably.

2) Volume/thickness is key. Yet, as far as I can see, no-one seems to be able to measure it accurately (again, measurements published are useful to show trends, but otherwise, unreliable). The clear trend is that thickness is dropping, but by how much? It doesn't matter how much the extent is, but if the thickness is 1mm, it's going to all disappear in a few days, whatever has happened in similar conditions in previous years...

3) ... and I think that's what's missing from all the extent/area predictions I see on the forum. We can guess at thickness, we see the structure is changing (responsible, I believe, for ice fragility, leading to greater extent on the Atlantic side), but all of a sudden - and no-one knows when - we will see a collapse. My guess (and it's just that) is one autumn soon, the ice will break up and a lot of it flushed out of Fram/Barents. It would probably happen in the late summer when thickness is lowest, and might happen too late for all the ice to be flushed out, leading to a winter re-freeze over the whole of the Arctic, only for the job to be completed the following year.

What's clear to me is the structure of the Arctic sea ice is changing. It seems to be becoming more fragile. This will probably lead to greater extent (possibly area) before over a single year or maybe two it will all go - and we'll all be surprised as the data didn't warn us. Because nature is like that - earthquakes, lightning strikes, volcanoes, atomic quantum levels - the pressure builds, nature tries desperately to maintain the equilibrium, then it suddenly snaps, moves to a different equilibrium state and then desperately tries to maintain that.

As I say, just a few thoughts, and thanks again to all contributors to this forum. It's riveting.

S.

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