Evelien Dekker
PhD student at MISU


Sea ice: real world versus model world


Sea ice plays an important role in the climate system because of its high albedo. Furthermore, it blocks transfer of heat, momentum and moisture between the ocean and the atmosphere. Sea ice retreat induces several feedback mechanisms that contribute to the climate sensitivity. Even though sea ice plays such a crucial role, it is still poorly represented in models and the current Arctic sea ice trend is not captured by the CMIP5 ensemble. In my first review seminar I will give an introduction in the physics of sea ice and its model representation. I will give a short introduction about sea ice in general and the main differences between in the Arctic and the Antarctic. I will show some results from the SHEBA (Surface heat and energy budget of the Arctic) field campaign in 1998 to give an idea of the observed seasonal cycle in surface fluxes and albedo changes that a sea ice model needs to deal with. The main part considers the building blocks of a sea ice model, going through Stephan 1891, Maykut and Untersteiner 1971, Thorndike 1975 and CICE/LIM, the most used sea ice models in fully coupled climate models. This will illustrate what the simple model is able to capture and what the added value of more sophisticated models is. After attending the seminar you have learned more about sea ice physics, the current status of sea ice models and overview of the future challenges in sea ice modeling.


Time and Place

Monday June 11th, 11.00
Rossbysalen C609, Arrhenius Laboratory, 6th floor