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Title: Salinity variations in sea ice
Authors: National Science Foundation (U.S.). Office of Polar Programs
Cox, G. F. N. (Gordon F. N.)
Weeks, W. F.
Keywords: Salinity
Sea ice
Ice cover
Ice cover thickness
Publisher: Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Series/Report no.: Research report (Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (U.S.)) ; 310.
Description: Research Report
Abstract: The salinity distribution in multiyear sea ice is dependent on the ice topography and cannot be adequately represented by a single average profile. The cores collected from areas beneath surface hummocks generally showed a systematic increase in salinity with depth from 0 ‰ at tne surface to about 4 ‰ at the base. The cores collected from areas beneath surface depressions were much more saline and displayed large salinity fluctuations. Salinity observations from sea ice of varying thicknesses and ages collected at various arctic and subarctic locations revealed a strong correlation between the average salinity of the ice, 𝘚, and the ice thickness, ℎ. For salinity samples collected from cold sea ice at the end of the growth season, this relationship can be represented by two linear equations: 𝘚 = 14.24 - 19.39ℎ (ℎ≤ 0.4 m) ; 𝘚 = 7.88 - 1.59ℎ (ℎ > 0.4 m) . It is suggested that the pronounced break in slope at 0.4 m is due to a change in the dominant brine drainage mechanism from brine expulsion to gravity drainage. A linear regression for the data collected during the melt season gives 𝘚 = 1.58 + 0.18ℎ. An annual cyclic variation of the mean salinity probably exists for multiyear sea ice. The mean salinity should reach a maximum at the end of the growth season and a minimum at the end of the melt season.
Rights: Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Appears in Collections:Research Report

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