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Influence of Meltwater Input on the Skill of Decadal Forecast of Sea Ice in the Southern Ocean : Volume 8, Issue 4 (09/07/2014)

By Zunz, V.

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Book Id: WPLBN0004023057
Format Type: PDF Article :
File Size: Pages 40
Reproduction Date: 2015

Title: Influence of Meltwater Input on the Skill of Decadal Forecast of Sea Ice in the Southern Ocean : Volume 8, Issue 4 (09/07/2014)  
Author: Zunz, V.
Volume: Vol. 8, Issue 4
Language: English
Subject: Science, Cryosphere, Discussions
Collections: Periodicals: Journal and Magazine Collection, Copernicus GmbH
Publication Date:
Publisher: Copernicus Gmbh, Göttingen, Germany
Member Page: Copernicus Publications


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Goosse, H., & Zunz, V. (2014). Influence of Meltwater Input on the Skill of Decadal Forecast of Sea Ice in the Southern Ocean : Volume 8, Issue 4 (09/07/2014). Retrieved from

Description: Université catholique de Louvain, Earth and Life Institute, Georges Lemaître Centre for Earth and Climate Research, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium. Recent studies have investigated the potential link between the freshwater input derived from the melting of the Antarctic ice sheet and the observed recent increase in sea ice extent in the Southern Ocean. In this study, we assess the impact of an additional freshwater flux on the trend in sea ice extent and concentration in a simulation with data assimilation, spanning the period 1850–2009, as well as in retrospective forecasts (hindcasts) initialised in 1980. In a simulation with data assimilation, including an additional freshwater flux that follows an autoregressive process improves the reconstruction of the trend in ice extent and concentration between 1980 and 2009. This is partly due to a better representation of the freshwater cycle in the Southern Ocean, but the additional flux could also compensate for some model deficiencies. In addition, it modifies the simulated mean state of the sea ice. A hindcast initialised from this shifted state has to be forced by an additional freshwater flux with an amplitude similar to the one included in the simulation with data assimilation in order to avoid a model drift. This points out the importance of the experimental design that has to be consistent between the simulation used to compute the initial state and the hindcast initialised from this initial state. The hindcast including this constant additional freshwater flux provides trends in sea ice extent and concentration that are in satisfying agreement with satellite observations. This thus constitutes encouraging results for sea ice predictions in the Southern Ocean. In our simulation, the positive trend in ice extent over the last 30 years is largely determined by the state of the system in the late 1970's. No increase in meltwater flux from Antarctica is required.

Influence of meltwater input on the skill of decadal forecast of sea ice in the Southern Ocean

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