Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2022-13
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2022-13
 
01 Mar 2022
01 Mar 2022
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal OS.

Hydrography and circulation in the vicinity of the central Getz Ice Shelf: two years of mooring observations

Vår Dundas1, Elin Darelius1, Kjersti Daae1, Nadine Steiger1, Yoshihiro Nakayama2, and Tae-Wan Kim3 Vår Dundas et al.
  • 1Geophysical Institute, University of Bergen and the Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, Norway
  • 2Institute of Low Temperature Science, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan
  • 3Korea Polar Research Institute, Incheon, South Korea

Abstract. Ice shelves in the Amundsen Sea are thinning rapidly as ocean currents bring warm water into the cavities beneath the floating ice. While the reported melt rates for the Getz ice shelf are comparatively low for the region, its size makes it one of the largest freshwater sources around Antarctica, with potential consequences for e.g. bottom water formation downstream. Here, we use two year long mooring records (2016–2018) and 16 year long regional model simulations to describe, for the first time, the hydrography and circulation in the vicinity of the ice front between Siple and Carney Island. We find that, throughout the mooring record, temperatures in the trough remain below 0.15 °C, more than 1 °C lower than in the neighboring Siple and Dotson Trough, and we observe a mean current (0.03 m s-1) directed towards the ice front. The variability in the heat transport towards the ice front appears to be governed by wind stress over the Amundsen Sea Polynya region, potentially through interactions with the coastal current, although this hypothesis could not be confirmed by the numerical model. The model simulations suggest that the heat content in the trough during the observed period was lower than normal, due to anomalously low summertime sea ice concentration and weak winds.

Vår Dundas et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on os-2022-13', Anonymous Referee #1, 04 Apr 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Vår Dundas, 22 Apr 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on os-2022-13', Anonymous Referee #2, 04 May 2022
  • EC1: 'Comment on os-2022-13', Karen J. Heywood, 20 May 2022

Vår Dundas et al.

Video supplement

Movie S1 V. Dundas, E. Darelius, K. Daae, N. Steiger, Y. Nakayama, T. W. Kim https://doi.org/10.5446/56380

Vår Dundas et al.

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Short summary
Ice shelves in the Amundsen Sea are thinning rapidly as ocean currents bring warm water into cavities beneath the floating ice. We use two year long mooring records and 16 year long model simulations to describe the hydrography and circulation near the ice front east of Siple Island (Getz ice shelf) and find that temperatures here are lower than at neighboring ice fronts and that the transport of heat towards the cavity is governed by wind stress over the Amundsen Sea Polynya region.