Arctic News

NASA Shows Arctic Sea Ice Is Losing Its Bulwark Against Warming Summers

October 31, 2016

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How Arctic Sea Ice Is Losing Its Bulwark Against Warming Summers

New research shows that the Arctic sea ice has been hit with a double whammy over the past decades: as its extent shrunk, the oldest and thickest ice has either thinned or melted away, leaving the sea ice cap more vulnerable to the warming ocean and atmosphere. “What we’ve seen over the years is that […]

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Yale Scientists Solve the Problem of Sea Ice Thickness Distribution

September 18, 2015

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Scientists Solve the Problem of Sea Ice Thickness Distribution

Using molecular concepts and treating the ice floes of the frozen seas like colliding molecules in a fluid or gas, researchers at Yale University have answered a 40-year-old question about Arctic ice thickness. Although today’s highly precise satellites do a fine job of measuring the area of sea ice, measuring the volume has always been […]

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2015 Arctic Sea Ice Maximum Annual Extent is the Lowest on Record

March 20, 2015

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2015 Arctic Sea Ice Sets New Record Winter Low

Arctic sea ice has reached its peak winter extent for the year, and new data from the NASA-supported National Snow and Ice Data Center shows that it is the lowest winter maximum on record. This short video shows the bulk of the Arctic sea ice freeze cycle from October through this year’s apparent winter maximum […]

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NASA Satellites Show Arctic Ocean is Absorbing More of the Sun’s Energy

December 18, 2014

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Satellites Measure Increase of Sun’s Energy Absorbed in the Arctic

Using data from NASA satellite instruments, astronomers have observed a marked increase in solar radiation absorbed in the Arctic since the year 2000 – a trend that aligns with the steady decrease in Arctic sea ice during the same period. While sea ice is mostly white and reflects the sun’s rays, ocean water is dark […]

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New ScienceCast Video: The Cloudy Future of Arctic Sea Ice

October 16, 2014

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The Cloudy Future of Arctic Sea Ice

A new four minute ScienceCast video explores the shrinking coverage of Arctic sea ice and how the reduction could affect worldwide weather. ScienceCasts: The Cloudy Future of Arctic Sea Ice: As climate change continues to hammer Arctic sea ice, pushing back its summertime boundaries to record-high latitudes, NASA is flying an innovative airborne mission to […]

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Arctic Melt Season is Lengthening by Several Days Each Decade

April 2, 2014

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New Study Shows Arctic Melt Season Lengthening

A new study by NSIDC and NASA researchers reveals that length of the melt season for Arctic sea ice is growing by several days each decade. The length of the melt season for Arctic sea ice is growing by several days each decade, and an earlier start to the melt season is allowing the Arctic […]

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Shallow Undersea Methane Hydrate Deposit Found in Arctic

December 10, 2012

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arctic-drilling-beaufort

In the Arctic Circle, on the continental slope off Canada in the Beaufort Sea, the shallowest known deposit of methane hydrate has been discovered. The crystalline solid is comprised of methane molecules trapped in an ice-lattice structure. The scientists presented their findings at the annual meeting of the Geophysical Union in San Francisco, California. The […]

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Carbon Locked in Arctic Permafrost Will Contribute to Global Warming

December 7, 2012

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arctic-permafrost

Fresh concerns are being expressed about the carbon locked in the Arctic’s permafrost. New studies presented at the American Geophysical Union quantify the amount of soil carbon at about 1.9 trillion metric tons, indicating that previous estimates underestimated the climate risk if this carbon is released due to warming temperatures. New laboratory experiments that are […]

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Low Arctic Snow Cover Could be Trouble for Permafrost

November 1, 2012

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permafrost-arctic

June Arctic snow cover in the Northern Hemisphere dropped by almost 18% per decade over the last 30 years. This drop in snow cover will lower the amount of sunlight reflected away from the planet, which is part of a cooling effect, and result in darker, less reflective soil being exposed to the sun’s rays. […]

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Record Arctic Snow Melt Might Be Prolonging American Drought

October 2, 2012

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hudson-bay-snow-melt

While it may seem that melting arctic snow isn’t as dramatic as the record ice melt that’s occurred this year, the loss of arctic snow potentially has profound consequences for weather patterns, especially in the USA. Across the Arctic, snow melted earlier and more completely than in recorded history. Similar to the way ice loss […]

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DARPA Program Takes Advantage of Floating Icebergs

September 24, 2012

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arctic-ice-drifting

If the Arctic continues to melt, there could be more military and commercial activity in this environment. DARPA is working on an all-seeing network of sensors that will track what is happening in the Arctic all year long. This network will include sensors placed on icebergs. DARPA wants to leverage icebergs for electromagnetic and acoustic […]

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Arctic Sea Ice Set for a Record Breaking Melt

August 23, 2012

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arctic-sea-ice-minimum-nasa-2011

Following a season of unstable conditions this summer, the Arctic ice cap will have a record-breaking melt. This has been reported by the National Snow and Ice Data Center. The numbers have been coming in and scientists have been looking at them with a sense of amazement. If the melt were to stop today, it […]

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Arctic Biologist Alexander Semenov’s Striking Underwater Arctic Sea Life Photos

July 11, 2012

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Leucothea-sp

The White Sea Biological Station sits at latitude 66° N, just on the cusp of the Arctic Circle, and on the shores of the White Sea, a lone arctic biologist explores the depths of the waters, photographing stunning pictures of arctic life. The only way to get there is by boat in summer and by […]

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First Direct Observation of an Under-Ice Algal Bloom in the Arctic

June 13, 2012

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biologists find massive algal blooms under Arctic sea ice

During a NASA-sponsored ICESCAPE expedition, scientists found a massive algal bloom under the Arctic sea ice. Once thought impossible, this marks the first direct observation of an under-ice bloom. Scientists also noted that the Algal cells were doubling more than once a day and that the appearance of under-ice blooms may signal shifts in the […]

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Melting Arctic Ice May Lead to Severe Weather Changes

June 6, 2012

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dramatic melt-off of Arctic sea ice due to climate change

A newly published study from Cornell University scientists suggests that the melting of Arctic sea ice due to climate change can lead to increased odds of severe winter weather outbreaks in the Northern Hemisphere’s middle latitudes. The dramatic melt-off of Arctic sea ice due to climate change is hitting closer to home than millions of […]

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Circumpolar Rivers are a Major Source of Mercury in the Arctic Ocean

May 24, 2012

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study finds circumpolar rivers source of mercury in the Arctic

A new study from environmental scientists suggests that the mercury concentration in the Arctic Ocean is being fueled by both an atmospheric source, which was previously recognized, and by the flow of circumpolar rivers. Environmental scientists at Harvard have discovered that the Arctic accumulation of mercury, a toxic element, is caused both by atmospheric forces […]

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Cryosat Mission Took Detailed Data of Polar Ice Caps

April 24, 2012

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cryosat-esa-ice-floe-arctic-circle

The ESA’s Cryosat mission has been watching the Arctic sea ice with a high degree of precision ever since it was launched in 2010 to monitor the changes in thickness and shape of polar ice. It’s taken two years for scientists to tackle the amount of data that Cryosat generated. They reported an unprecedented view […]

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Increased Methane Gas Levels Found Over Cracks in Arctic Sea Ice

April 24, 2012

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airborne study measured greenhouse gas methane coming from cracks in Arctic sea ice

As scientists continue to research and monitor greenhouse gas emissions, a new source of methane gas has appeared from cracks in Arctic sea ice. Conducted as part of the HIAPER Pole-to-Pole Observations (HIPPO) airborne campaign, this study was published in Nature Geoscience and describes how the team found increased levels of methane gas while flying […]

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