Boundary-layer modification in wintertime cold-air outbreaks from the Arctic sea ice
During the field experiment ARKTIS 1993 ten cases of boundary-layer modification in wintertime cold-air outbreaks from the Arctic sea ice in the Spitsbergen region were observed by aircraft over a distance ranging from about 50 km over the ice to about 300 km over the water. The modification depends decisively on the initial conditions over the ice, the boundary conditions at the bottom and top of the boundary layer and on the conditions of the large-scale flow. The modification of the bulk boundary-layer characteristics in relation to these conditions is presented.
Besides the air-sea temperature contrast, the most important role for the boundary-layer modification is played by the stability on top of the boundary layer and by the divergence of the large-scale flow. According to the high variability of these conditions the observed boundary-layer modifications were very variable ranging from 100 to 300 m thick boundary layers with air temperatures between -32 and -22 °C over the ice to thicknesses between 900 and 2200 m and air temperatures between -15 and -5 °C after 300 km fetch over the open water. In most cases the large-scale flow was anticyclonic and divergent over the ice and changed to cyclonic and convergent over the water and an ice-sea breeze was superimposed on it.
The sensible and latent heat fluxes are the dominant terms in the surface energy budget over the open water and ranged between 200 and 700 W m-2 whereas the net longwave radiation is the dominating term over the ice with the heat fluxes only about 10 W m-2.
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