Atmospheric and Oceanographic Sciences Library, Volume 41, by Josefino Comiso

By Josefino Comiso


Only a couple of centuries in the past, we knew little or no approximately our planet Earth. The Earth was once thought of flat by way of many even though it was once postulated by means of a couple of like Aristotle that it truly is round in accordance with observations that incorporated the examine of lunar eclipses. a lot later, Christopher Columbus effectively sailed to the West to find the hot international and Ferdinand Magellan’s send circumnavigated the globe to end up as soon as and for all that the Earth is certainly a sphere. around the world navigation and explorations that made it transparent that the Earth is very large and really very unlikely to review completely via foot or by means of water. the appearance of air go back and forth made it much more straightforward to do exploratory reports and enabled the mapping of the limits of continents and the oceans. yet plane insurance used to be constrained and it used to be no longer till the satellite tv for pc period that complete cov- erage of the Earth’s floor turned available.

Many of the early satellites have been study satellites and that intended partly the improvement of engineering dimension platforms without yes purposes in brain. The Nimbus-5 Electrically Scanning Microwave Radiometer (ESMR) was once a vintage for instance. The sensor used to be equipped with the concept it can be worthy for meteorological examine and particularly rainfall stories over the oceans, yet good fortune during this quarter of analysis used to be very constrained. It became out that some of the most fascinating functions of this sensor was once within the learn of the ocean ice disguise because the emissivi- ties of frozen and liquid sea water grew to become out to be very assorted. for hundreds of years, the ocean ice conceal was once simply considered as part of the frozen North (or South) and no-one troubled to review it other than the few curious scientists and explorers who felt that it should be very important because it is so mammoth. in the course of the chilly struggle, the army did loads of study at the topic yet such reports have been often categorized as the ice lined Arctic Ocean used to be a part of a strategic struggle and was once a terrific position for a good armed nuclear submarine to move with out being detected. It used to be quickly learned that the ocean ice conceal and the polar oceans are very important entities to review, not only for army but in addition for fiscal, environmental, and climatic reasons.

ESMR was once one of the first sensors to photo and represent the total polar areas every day. It used to be the 1st sensor to bare the real quantity and distribu- tion of the worldwide sea ice conceal in addition to its seasonal variability. facts from ESMR ended in many unforeseen discoveries, together with the lifestyles of an strangely huge iciness Polynya (unfrozen floor water in the ice pack) within the Weddell Sea within the Nineteen Seventies, the scale and patience of that is counter intuitive and nonetheless an issue of clinical inquiry as much as this present day. we now have come far due to the fact that ESMR. Many sensors even more complicated than ESMR were introduced offering us with huge, immense services for learning the advanced techniques happening within the polar areas and the range of a number of the parameters which are being measured by way of satellite tv for pc sensors. satellite tv for pc information at the moment are able to offering a close historical past of the evolution of our planet over the last 3 many years together with that of the polar regions.

This ebook offers introductory fabric in regards to the polar oceans, extra specifi- cally the ice lined parts and peripheral seas as saw by way of satellite tv for pc sensors. I owe loads of fabrics for this ebook from many specialists within the box a few of whom I labored with as co-investigators and collaborators. I in particular are looking to convey my gratitude to my NASA/Goddard colleagues together with, Drs. Jay Zwally, consistent with Gloersen, Claire Parkinson, Chuck McClain, Frank Carsey, Bob Bindschadler, and Don Cavalieri for a few years of collaborative stories. My old flame used to be particle physics and it was once Jay who made me observe that the research of the polar areas and weather is a crucial and a really intriguing continuation of physics learn. The encouragements and aid of Drs. Stan Wilson, Bob Thomas and extra lately, Waleed Abdalati, Seelye Martin, and Tom Wagner who controlled or manages the Cryospheric Sciences application at NASA headquarters made it attainable for me to do polar examine at GSFC through the years. i'm particularly thankful to Dr. Norbert Untersteiner and Dr. Willy Weeks for plenty of in-depth discussions in regards to the polar weather method and the difficult procedures linked to the ocean ice conceal. i've got benefited from shut collaborations with Drs. Arnold Gordon, Peter Wadhams, Stan Jacob, Steve Ackley, Manfred Lange, Neal Sullivan, Walker Smith, Koni Steffen, Rob Massom, and Ron Kwok. The writing of this booklet was once began in 2006 whereas i used to be a fellow of the japanese Society for the merchandising of technological know-how and dealing as a visitor Professor at Chiba collage, and i'm thankful to Prof. Fumihiko Nishio, who used to be my host, for his encouragements and sort hospitality. Larry inventory of SGT and Robert Gersten of Adnet/RSIS have supplied me first-class application- ming and research aid at GSFC over the last a number of years, and that i savor greatly their devoted efforts. final yet now not least, I desire to thank my spouse, Diana, my sons Glen and David and my daughter Melissa for encouragements and endurance not only in the course of the interval of ebook writing yet all through my complete occupation as a polar researcher and adventurer. many helpful reviews and proposals have been supplied by way of Drs. Arthur Cracknell of the collage of Dundee, united kingdom, Markus Thorston, Head of the NASA Cryospheric Sciences department, Lawrence Mysak of McGill college and Edward Hanna of the college of Sheffield, united kingdom. My daughter Melissa, daughter-in-law Cindy, and my spouse Diana additionally supplied a few editorial help.

While scripting this e-book, my mom, who have been a good resource of thought all my lifestyles, died on the age of a hundred years. It used to be a huge own loss for me, my brothers, and sisters however it is really good to gain that we will dwell to be centenarians and may be able to adventure an important window of our altering planet and its altering weather. Our present choice of non-stop satellite tv for pc facts is simply a couple of many years lengthy yet we've got certainly realized much from them in regards to the Earth’s environmental and weather method and individually saw the sophisticated yet very important adjustments because the release of Sputnik within the overdue Fifties. With the entire satellite tv for pc info we've and with the arrival of foreign ventures just like the international Earth commentary method of all structures (GEOSS), we are going to locate the solutions of lots of our present questions, yet even as, we are going to unquestionably locate many extra questions that must be spoke back. The advances in our knowing of the Earth’s weather engine, together with the influence of the polar oceans were tremen- dous and we glance ahead to having the ability to forecast successfully the country of our planet within the rapid and foreseeable destiny.

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Extra resources for Atmospheric and Oceanographic Sciences Library, Volume 41, Polar Oceans from Space

Example text

The Lomonosov Ridge is about 1,700 km long extending from the continental shelf off Ellesmere Islands toward the North Pole, where it continues along about 140° E meridian to the continental shelf off the New Siberian Islands. 1 Bathymetry of (a) the Arctic Ocean and surrounding regions and (b) the Southern Oceans. net further divided into the Canada and Makarov basins by the Alpha–Mendeleyev Ridge, while the Eastern part is divided into the Nansen and Amundsen basins by the Nansen–Gakkel Ridge.

For example, the presence of a topographical mount, called Maud Rise located near 65° S and 3° E in the Weddell Sea, has been shown to be strongly correlated with the formation of the Maud Rise Polynya (de Veaux et al. 1993) usually located directly above or adjacent to the mount. , the Weddell Gyre) causes the upwelling of warm water that in turn would melt the underside of the sea ice cover in the region. The presence of these mounts and small islands also causes the diversion of the direction of ocean circulation and the drift of sea ice causing the unique pattern of the current and the sea ice cover.

As this water gets circulated into the Arctic Basin, it can penetrate into and have significant influence on the intermediate and deep water. 4. The figure shows water from both Fram Strait and Barents Sea progressing initially eastward until they meet north of the Kara Sea where they follow the continental slope until Laptev Sea. At this point, a fraction of the water splits off and returns westward on a tight loop and bring the water back to the Fram Strait along the Gakkel Ridge. The rest of the water continues on along the continental slope until it approaches the Lomonosov Ridge where again a fraction of the water splits off and returns along this ridge back to the Fram Strait.

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