Friday, November 28, 2014

More unsettled science

The journal article below reveals that estimates of Antarctic ice were way out.  The sea ice should be shrinking according to the famous Warmist "models" but it is in fact expanding.  And now we know that it is not only expanding in area but also thickening in size.  Pesky!  So it will be more resistant to global warming than predicted, if such warming ever eventuates.  The findings are from what they found when they sent a robot sub under the ice.

An explanation of "deformed" ice:  "These thick, craggy floes likely wouldn't exist without the fierce winds that circle Antarctica from west to east, the researchers said. Winter storms bash up the ice, freezing and reforming the rubble into new, thicker ice. "It must have been crunched up a tremendous amount and [the floes] piled up on top of each other," Maksym said"

A telling comment from one of the researchers:  ""If we don't know how much ice is there is, we can't validate the models we use to understand the global climate," Maksym told Live Science. "It looks like there are significant areas of thick ice that are probably not accounted for."

Thick and deformed Antarctic sea ice mapped with autonomous underwater vehicles

G. Williams et al.


Satellites have documented trends in Antarctic sea-ice extent and its variability for decades, but estimating sea-ice thickness in the Antarctic from remote sensing data remains challenging. In situ observations needed for validation of remote sensing data and sea-ice models are limited; most have been restricted to a few point measurements on selected ice floes, or to visual shipboard estimates. Here we present three-dimensional (3D) floe-scale maps of sea-ice draft for ten floes, compiled from two springtime expeditions by an autonomous underwater vehicle to the near-coastal regions of the Weddell, Bellingshausen, and Wilkes Land sectors of Antarctica. Mean drafts range from 1.4 to 5.5 m, with maxima up to 16 m. We also find that, on average, 76% of the ice volume is deformed ice. Our surveys indicate that the floes are much thicker and more deformed than reported by most drilling and ship-based measurements of Antarctic sea ice. We suggest that thick ice in the near-coastal and interior pack may be under-represented in existing in situ assessments of Antarctic sea ice and hence, on average, Antarctic sea ice may be thicker than previously thought.


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

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