Author Archive

Recent advances in proteomics, biomarkers and biosensor technology sciences enable new approaches to understanding major biogeochemical processes. This project will examine the physicochemical reactivity of a model protein “RuBisCO” in seawater, and will quantify RuBisCO along ocean transect Line P (48°39.0′ N, 126°40.0′ W to 50°00′ N, 145°00′ W) in the North Pacific Ocean. The project will use two independent methods that complement and validate each other: immune-sensors and multiple-reaction monitoring (MRM) mass spectrometry.Intellectual Merit: Chemical analyses have shown that a significant fraction of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in the ocean is in the form of proteins. Proteins are a…

The Seattle Times reviewed the Imaging the Arctic exhibit at the Nordic Heritage Museum organized by Kristin Laidre and Maria Coryell-Martin.

This new data set is a concerted effort to collect as many observations of sea ice thickness as possible in one place with consistent formats and with clear and abundant documentation. It will allow the community to better utilize what is now a considerable body of observations from moorings, submarines, aircraft, and satellites.

PIOMAS Arctic Sea Ice Volume and excerpts from an interview with Axel Schweiger are covered in Science News. Click to  read full story

Aagaard, K. and R.A. Woodgate,’ Some thoughts on the freezing and melting of sea ice and their effects on the ocean’, Ocean Modelling, 3, 127-135, 2001.

Aagaard, K., T.J. Weingartner, S.L. Danielson, R.A. Woodgate, G.C. Johnson, and T.E. Whitledge,’ Some controls on flow and salinity in Bering Strait’, Geophys. Res. Lett., 33, L19602, doi:10.1029/2006GL026612, 2006.

Aagaard, K., R. Andersen, J. Swift, and J. Johnson,’ A large eddy in the central Arctic Ocean’, Geophys. Res. Lett., 35, L09601, doi:10.1029/2008GL033461, 2008.

AIDJEX electronic library

Alert in the Arctic: The Navy’s New Frontier. Features SIZRS, Jamie Morison, Sarah Dewey


Alley, R. B., P. U. Clark, P. Huybrechts, and I. Joughin,’ Ice-sheet and sea-level changes’, Science, 310, 456-460, 2005.

ICESat-2 is a satellite mission under development by NASA for launch in 2015.  It will make measurements of ice sheet elevations in Antarctica over a 3-5 year period, to accurately the shape of the ice sheet, and to show how the ice sheet is changing over time.  As the satellite is developed, the science definition team, made up of researchers from NASA and from several different universities, provides direction as to what scientific questions the satellite measurements must address.  APL researcher Ben Smith has joined the team to investigate how best to tailor the measurements to the characteristics of ice…

This investigation’s major goal is to develop and use models constrained by satellite and ground observations to study the controls on fast ice stream flow.

Andreas, E.L., P.S. Guest, P.O.G. Persson, C.W. Fairall, T.W. Horst, R.E. Moritz,’ Near-surface water vapor over polar sea ice is always new ice-saturation’, J. Geophys. Res., 107, 10.1029/2000JC000411, 2002.

Deeply embayed ice shelves and narrower fringing ice shelves surround much of Antarctica. Recent results indicate that these ice shelves help regulate the flow of upstream glaciers and ice streams (“ice-shelf buttressing”). This investigation focuses on determining the mass balance of Antarctica’s non-Peninsula ice shelves and on improving our knowledge of the processes that control basal melt.

The University of Washington is launching a new initiative to boost research in polar regions and prepare students for a world where melting ice is opening new opportunities — and posing new threats. Read the Seattle Times article to learn more about this new program.

The Polar Science Center’s Harry Stern contributed the essay called Sea Ice in the Western Portal of the Northwest Passage from 1778 to the Twenty-First Century in this new book by the University of Washington Press.

Ignatius Rigor and Roger Anderson deployed meteorological buoys and AXCTD probes for the International Arctic Buoy Program, August 2011.

Untersteiner, N., A.S. Thorndike, D.A. Rothrock, and K.L. Hunkins,’ AIDJEX revisited: A look back at the U.S.-Canadian Arctic Ice Dynamics Joint Experiment 1970–1978′, Arctic, 60(3), 327-336, 2007.

A new article published in Conservation Biology and featured in Science by lead author Kristin Laidre is the first to provide a comprehensive look at the current status of all Arctic marine mammal species and offer conservation recommendations.

The Arctic Ocean is (currently) a remarkably quiet place, as the presence of sea-ice isolates the ocean from the mixing effects of wind.  In this interdisciplinary project, we examine how the upper Arctic may change if sea-ice retreat increases.  We use observations and models to study Arctic mixed layer depths, internal wave energy, and the mixing of nutrients into the photic zone, with particular interest on  impacts on Arctic ecosystems.

The Arctic Ocean is gaining open water each summer, with some scientists predicting that the warming planet will see an Arctic Ocean that’s completely ice-free in late summer by around the middle of this century.

This project will produce authoritative SAT data sets covering the Arctic Ocean from 1901 to present, which will be used to better understand Arctic climate change.

Arthern, R. J., D. P. Winebrenner, and D. G. Vaughan,’ Antarctic Snow Accumulation Mapped Using Polarization of 4.3-cm Wavelength Microwave Emission’, J. Geophys. Res., Vol. iii, D06107, doi:10.1029/2004JD005667, 2006.

Ashworth, J, S. Coesel, A. Lee, E.V. Armbrust, M.V. Orellana, and N.S. Baliga. 2013. Genome-wide diel growth state transitions in the diatom Thalassiosira pseudonana. PNAS, 110 (18) 7518–7523; doi:10.1073/pnas.1300962110.

Ask a Scientist a question about the Polar Regions during PSW. We will try our best to answer.

Atlantic Waters (AWs) are volumetrically the largest inflow to the Arctic Ocean.  They form the major subsurface circum-arctic oceanic transport system, and are the greatest pan-arctic reservoir of oceanic heat. This project draws on a variety of observational data to study flow pathways,  fundamental properties and change in the Atlantic waters in the western Arctic.

The role and magnitude of feedback processes, such as the ice-albedo feedback cannot be observed. They must be diagnosed from validated models that include the appropriate physics. For example, observational studies, attempting to discern the effect of clouds on sea ice (e.g. Schweiger et al 2008) confront the difficulty of separating cloud variability from other changes, such as atmospheric circulation. Model experiments that can isolate the role of a specific mechanism (e.g. Bitz, 2009) are needed to test and advance our current understanding of feedbacks in the atmosphere-ice-ocean system and to ultimately improve predictive capabilities for weather and climate. The…

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Babko, O., D.A. Rothrock, and G.A. Maykut, “Role of rafting in the mechanical redistribution of sea ice thickness“, J. Geophys. Res., 107, 10.1029/1999JC000190, 2002.

Bacon, S., G. Reverdin, I.G. Rigor, and H.M. Snaith, “A freshwater jet on the east Greenland shelf“, J. Geophys. Res., 107, 10.1029/2001JC000935, 2002.

Bamber, J. L., F. Ferraccioli, I. Joughin, T. Shepherd, D. M. Rippin, M. J. Siegert, and D. G. Vaughan,’ East Antarctic ice stream tributary underlain by major sedimentary basin’, Geology, 34, 33-36, 2006

Bamber, J. L., R. B. Alley, and I. Joughin,’ Rapid response of modern day ice sheets to external forcing’, Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 257, 1-13, 2007.

Bandoro, J., S. Solomon, A. Donohoe, D. Thompson, and B. Santer, 2014: Influences of the Antarctic Ozone Hole on Southern Hemispheric Summer Climate Change. J. Climate, 27, 6245–6264.

Barry, R.G., R.G. Crane, A. Schweiger, and J. Newell, “Arctic cloudiness in spring from satellite imagery”, Journal of Climatology, 7(5), 423-451, 1987.

Barry, R.G., R.G. Crane, A. Schweiger, and J. Newell, “Arctic cloudiness in spring from satellite imagery: a response”, Journal of Climatology, 8(5), 539-540, 1988.

Baxter, I., Ding, Q., Schweiger, A., L’Heureux, M., Baxter, S., Wang, T., . . . Lu, J. (2019). How Tropical Pacific Surface Cooling Contributed to Accelerated Sea Ice Melt from 2007 to 2012 as Ice Is Thinned by Anthropogenic Forcing. Journal of Climate, 32(24), 8583-8602. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-18-0783.1

The BBC article Climate tech fixes urged for Arctic methane incorrectly identifies the University of Washington as the source for a prediction of the disappearance of sea ice in the Arctic in the next few years.

Analysis from the University of Washington, in Seattle, using ice thickness data from submarines and satellites, suggests that Septembers could be ice-free within just a few years.”

This is factually incorrect. The graph apparently comes from an unidentified online  blog posting which uses some of our data to conduct its analysis. This analysis extrapolates PIOMAS ice volume data to arrive at a date when sea ice might first disappear. This extrapolation represents the analysis and judgement of the unidentified poster of the graph. The University of Washington was not involved in this analysis. We have informed the BBC and asked for a correction.

Update: The BBC has corrected the news piece to reflect the distinction between the use of PIOMAS data and the extrapolation performed elsewhere.

Europe’s Cryosat mission is now watching the ebb and flow of Arctic sea ice with high precision….Tuesday’s release shows a complete seasonal cycle, from October 2010, when the Arctic Ocean was beginning to freeze up following the summer melt, right through to March 2011, when the sea ice was approaching peak thickness. Cryosat found the volume (area multiplied by thickness) of sea ice in the central Arctic in March 2011 to have been 14,500 cubic kilometres. This figure is very similar to that suggested by PIOMAS (Panarctic Ice Ocean Modeling and Assimilation System), an influential computer model that has been used to estimate Arctic sea ice volume

Beer, K. D., M.V. Orellana, N.S.Baliga. 2013. Modeling the Evolution of C4 Photosynthesis. Cell: 153 (7): 1427-1429, doi:10.1016/j.cell.2013.05.058

The Arctic is currently undergoing rapid and extraordinary large-scale changes related to natural resource development, marine shipping, transportation, infrastructure, and sea ice loss, and as a consequence there will be an imminent and uniform increase in anthropogenic sound. Narwhals are an important representative species for understanding both increasing noise in the Arctic and loss of sea ice, and the joint effects of these impacts on their behavior and ecology.

Bell, R. E., M. Studinger, C. A. Shuman, M. A. Fahnestock, and I. Joughin,’ Large subglacial lakes in East Antarctica at the onset of fast-flowing ice streams’, Nature, 445, 904-907, 2007.

Decription: Year-round Mooring data
Geographic Area:
Bering Strait
Time Period: 1990 to present
Parameters: CTD data from mooring servicing cruises from 1990 to present, multiple campaigns
Data Access:

The Bering Strait is the only Pacific gateway to the Arctic Ocean. Waters flowing through the strait are a key source of nutrients, heat and freshwater for the Arctic. Since 1990, APL-UW has measured the properties of this throughflow using long-term in situ moorings, supported by annual cruises. Project details, data, cruise reports and papers are available on the project web site.

The primary objective of this research is to construct a comprehensive bias-corrected sea ice thickness record and use it to better quantify and understand the dramatic changes that have been observed in the Arctic ice pack. To do this all available Arctic sea ice thickness observations will be integrated, from satellite, aircraft, and subsurface measurements, and used to identify and correct systematic errors through comparisons with a common reference. With the resultant record four science questions will be answered:• What are the systematic differences between different measurement systems for sea ice thickness?• What are the spatial patterns in the trends…

Bitz, C., P. Gent, R.A. Woodgate, A. Hall, M. Holland and R. Lindsay,’ The influence of sea-ice on ocean heat uptake in response to increasing CO2′, J. Climate, 19, 2437-2450, 2006.

Bitz, C.M., M.M. Holland, A.J. Weaver, M. Eby,’ Simulating the ice-thickness distribution in a coupled climate model’, J. Geophys. Res., 106, 2441-2463, 2001.

Bitz, C.M., J.C. Fyfe, and G.M. Flato,’ Sea ice response to wind forcing from AMTP models’, J. Climate, 15, 522-536, 2002.

Bitz, C.M., and G.H. Roe,’ An Explanation for the High Rate of Sea-ice Thinning in the Arctic Ocean’, J. Climate, 17, 3622-31, 2004.

Bitz, C.M., M.M. Holland, E. Hunke, and R.E. Moritz, “Maintenance of the sea-ice edge“, J. Climate, 18, p 2903-21, 2005.

Björk, G., J. Söderkvist, P. Winsor, A. Nikolopoulos, M. Steele, Return of the cold halocline layer to the Amundsen Basin of the Arctic Ocean: implications for the sea ice mass balance, Geophys. Res. Lett., 29(11), doi:10.1029/2001GL014157, 2002.