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Propagating Atmospheric Patterns Associated with Sea Ice Motion through the Fram Strait

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  • 1 Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah
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Abstract

A novel analysis method involving phase-shifted complex Hilbert empirical orthogonal functions (HEOFs) was used to examine how variations in predominant propagating patterns of Arctic surface wind influence daily Fram Strait sea ice export F during extended winter (October–April), a primary control on Arctic sea ice volume. Northwesterly winds favorable to F were provided by poleward-moving anticyclones upstream over the Canadian Arctic associated with the leading HEOF of wind and also by eastward-moving cyclones downstream over the Barents Sea associated with the second HEOF of wind. A suite of spatial and statistical analyses indicated that the aggregate of the two propagating patterns largely explains a sea level pressure pattern analyzed in several prior studies as a standing wave oriented east–west across the strait.

Corresponding author address: Courtenay Strong, University of Utah, 135 S, 1460 E, Rm. 819 (WBB), Salt Lake City, UT 84112-0110. E-mail: court.strong@utah.edu

Abstract

A novel analysis method involving phase-shifted complex Hilbert empirical orthogonal functions (HEOFs) was used to examine how variations in predominant propagating patterns of Arctic surface wind influence daily Fram Strait sea ice export F during extended winter (October–April), a primary control on Arctic sea ice volume. Northwesterly winds favorable to F were provided by poleward-moving anticyclones upstream over the Canadian Arctic associated with the leading HEOF of wind and also by eastward-moving cyclones downstream over the Barents Sea associated with the second HEOF of wind. A suite of spatial and statistical analyses indicated that the aggregate of the two propagating patterns largely explains a sea level pressure pattern analyzed in several prior studies as a standing wave oriented east–west across the strait.

Corresponding author address: Courtenay Strong, University of Utah, 135 S, 1460 E, Rm. 819 (WBB), Salt Lake City, UT 84112-0110. E-mail: court.strong@utah.edu
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