Home » News & Blogs » My Big Fat Planet: In Essence: Science Boiled Down
Bookmark and Share
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory Blog

My Big Fat Planet: In Essence: Science Boiled Down

10 Jan 2013, 20:51 UTC
My Big Fat Planet: In Essence: Science Boiled Down
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

By Amber Jenkins

An interesting recent paper from Dr. Son Nghiem at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and colleagues finds that the bottom of the Arctic Ocean controls the pattern of sea ice thousands of feet above on the water’s surface. The seafloor topography exerts its control not only locally, in the Bering, Chukchi, Beaufort, Barents and Greenland Seas, but also spanning hundreds to thousands of miles across the Arctic Ocean.
How? The seafloor influences the distribution of cold and warm waters in the Arctic Ocean where sea ice can preferentially grow or melt. Geological features on the ocean bottom also guide how the sea ice moves, along with influence from surface winds.
Interestingly, the study also links the bottom of the Arctic Ocean with cloud patterns up in the sky. The ocean bottom affects sea ice cover, which affects the amount of vapor coming from the surface of the ocean out into the air, which in turn influences cloud cover.
The researchers, who also come from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, the Applied Physics Laboratory and the National/Naval Ice Center in the U.S., use sea ice maps taken from space with NASA’s QuickSCAT satellite, as well as measurements from ...

Latest Vodcast

Latest Podcast

Advertise PTTU

NASA Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

astronomy_pod