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Tag: National Snow and Ice Data Center

Satellite Imagery of Arctic Sea Ice Second Lowest Extent (VIDEOS)

On September 9 scientists from NASA and the NASA-supported National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) at the University of Colorado in Boulder showed satellite data that capped summertime sea ice coverage at the second lowest ever recorded since records were first kept. Seen below marked out in yellow is the 30 year average, while the red line represents the opening of the Northwest Passage shipping lane.

Arctic Sea Ice Minimum Extent Imagery and Video

As reported yesterday the University of Colorado at Boulder’s National Snow and Ice Data Center announced that the Arctic sea ice minimum extent would come in as second lowest since recording began back in 1979. Now, NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center has provided their own series of images and videos to back up that report, showing the extent of Arctic sea ice for September 9, 2011.

The Arctic Sea Ice

“Lots of people think of the Arctic as just a flat expanse of white. This couldn’t be further from the truth. There are all sorts of cracks (leads) and mountains (ridges), similar to tectonic plates. The ice below is constantly moving via the winds and currents, and those forces acting on each piece of ice makes for a very dramatic seascape”

More Turbulent Arctic in Our Future

Scientists believe that the more severe winters suffered by the UK over the past few years are a result of disappearing ice in the Arctic sea. A reduction in sea ice, they explain, could be the reason for the colder winters, which up until recently have been insulating temperature changes in the sea from the atmosphere.