eCite Digital Repository

The sea ice dynamics of Terra Nova Bay and Ross Ice Shelf Polynyas during a spring and winter simulaton


Petrelli, P and Bindoff, NL and Bergamasco, A, The sea ice dynamics of Terra Nova Bay and Ross Ice Shelf Polynyas during a spring and winter simulaton, Journal of Geophysical Research, 113, (C09003) pp. 1-16. ISSN 0148-0227 (2008) [Refereed Article]

Restricted - Request a copy

Copyright Statement

Copyright © 2008 American Geophysical Union

Official URL:

DOI: doi:10.1029/2006JC004048


The Terra Nova Bay (TNB) and Ross Ice Shelf (RIS) polynyas are simulated using a coupled atmosphere–sea ice model in winter 2002 and summer 2000. The atmospheric component of the model is compared with Automatic Weather Stations (AWS) data and shows a significantly increased skill over the ECMWF atmospheric variables. During winter, the sea ice production in TNB is largely determined by katabatic winds. We estimate the monthly production rate to be 8.7 km3/month of sea ice during winter. In early summer (November), the katabatics are weaker and the sea ice production is more influenced by the synoptic wind. The net sea ice production is weaker during November at 1.2 km3/month. The summer production is characterized by a diurnal cycle of melt and sea ice formation. For small coastal polynyas, like TNB, it is important to resolve all the glacier valleys accurately. Increasing the model resolution by a factor of five leads to a doubling of the sea ice formation during winter simulations due to the point intensity of the katabatics winds. For open coastal polynyas, like RIS polynya, sea ice production is largely controlled by synoptic winds and resolution is less important. The RIS polynya production is 61.3 km3 during winter and 19.1 km3 during November. These results are comparable to RIS polynya observations. Although the TNB polynya has a smaller winter sea ice production, the sea ice rate of growth per unit area is 1.6 times that of the RIS polynya.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Polynyas , sea ice production , Terra Nova Bay
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Oceanography
Research Field:Physical oceanography
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the earth sciences
UTAS Author:Petrelli, P (Dr Paola Petrelli)
UTAS Author:Bindoff, NL (Professor Nathan Bindoff)
ID Code:55406
Year Published:2008
Web of Science® Times Cited:32
Deposited By:IASOS
Deposited On:2009-03-10
Last Modified:2009-06-10

Repository Staff Only: item control page