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Radiation budget

Light sensor (spectral radiometer) under sea ice in a floating sled.
Photo: Marcel Nicolaus (AWI)

The radiation budget of sea ice dominated the sea-ice energy balance and the exchange of energy between the atmosphere and the ocean in ice-covered regions. We are focusing on solar short-wave radiation and work on quantifying the amount of sun light that is reflected back to the atmosphere (albedo), that is absorbed by snow and sea ice, ant that is transmitted into the ocean (transmittance). Depending on seasons (solar irradiance), changes in physical snow and sea-ice properties cause large changes in these fluxes and budgets.

We perform various radiation measurements during our field campaigns using Polarstern, aircrafts, and stationary measurements. Our focus are observations that aim for better descriptions of spatial variability of optical properties of snow and sea ice, since these measurements are still sparse. We are developing and applying new methods to gather high-quality and comprehensive data sets from remote regions of the Arctic and Antarctic.


 

Light sceme melt ponds, M. Nicolaus, AWI


 
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