Saturday, August 20, 2016

2016 signature characteristic: Sea ice floes not moving very fast

   JAXA latest 44,840 km2 apparently daily drop of August 20,  did not come as a surprise, a new GAC seen here elegant and spinning a storm,  lets call it GAC2,  is relishing the temperature contrasts between open water and sea ice air.  This NOAA satellite capture,  4 hours apart from the first frame (1450-1856UTC),  shows an intense see-through cyclone,  see-through because it was  largely over sea ice while dragging extremely slowly a lot of loose floes readily available, you can notice the largest ones barely moving by placing your mouse cursor over them.  This has been a main feature of 2016 season,  the Gyre current has been stubbornly opposite to the winds often,  even very strong winds.  But there is a daily movement at variance with winds and other geophysical motion vectors nevertheless, largely captured on JAXA maps featured almost daily here.  Today,  North of Beaufort open water is getting more sea ice, not broken up the same way as with GAC1.   Therefore the extent rate slow down,  a signal from a weather circulation variation,  what comes next is another huge drop.WDAugust 21,2016

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