1.3 Air-sea fluxes in Terra Nova Bay, Antarctica from in situ aircraft measurements

Monday, 2 May 2011: 9:00 AM
Rooftop Ballroom (15th Floor) (Omni Parker House )
Shelley L. Knuth, CIRES/Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO; and J. J. Cassano

In September 2009, the first unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) were flown over Terra Nova Bay, Antarctica to collect information regarding air-sea interactions over a wintertime coastal polynya. The UAVs measured wind, temperature, pressure, and relative humidity in flights parallel to the downslope wind flow over the polynya, and in a series of vertical profiles at varying distances from the coast. During three flights on three different days, sufficient measurements were collected to calculate sensible heat, latent heat, and momentum fluxes over varying oceanic surface states, including frazil, pancake, and rafted ice, with background winds greater than 15 ms-1. During the three flights, sensible heat fluxes upwards of 600 Wm-2 were estimated near the coast, with maximum latent heat fluxes near 160 Wm-2 just downwind of the coast. The calculated accelerations due to the momentum flux divergence were on the order of 10-3 ms-2. In addition to the fluxes, changes in the overall momentum budget, including the horizontal pressure gradient force, were also calculated during the three flights. This presentation will summarize the methodology for calculating the fluxes from the UAV data, present the first ever in situ estimates of sensible heat, latent heat, and momentum fluxes and overall momentum budget estimates over Terra Nova Bay, and compare the UAV flux calculations to flux measurements taken during other field campaigns in other regions of the Antarctic, as well as to model estimates over Terra Nova Bay.
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