Ice Thickness:
Climatology

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The figure on the right presents an ice thickness climatology based on pre-1985 data. (Bourke and Garrett, 1987). In all likelyhood present-day ice thicknesses are less than these values. There is a strong spatial pattern in the ice thickness, with the thickest ice near the Canadian Archipelago and the thinnest offshore of Siberia. This illustrates that the spatial distribution of ice thickness depends on ice motion and ice residence time in the basin, as well as on thermodynamics.

 

 

  Climatology of pre-1985 sea ice thickness from submarine observations (Bourke and Garrett, 1987).
 
Results from Rothrock et al. (1999) shows changes in ice thickness comparing submarine results from the 1958 through 1976 to results from the 1990's. The results show that there was thinning at every point of comparison. The thinning average 40%, representing a decrease from about 3 m to less than 2 m.
 

Changes in ice thickness (Rothrock et al., 1999)