85th AMS Annual Meeting

Wednesday, 12 January 2005
Assimilation of Observed Sea Ice Motion in Models: Error Analysis
Todd E. Arbetter, NSIDC/CIRES/Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO; and W. N. Meier
On daily timescales, observations indicate the motion of sea ice is largely dependent on atmospheric forcing vis--vis surface winds. In stand-alone sea ice models, atmospheric forcing are typically derived from large-scale atmospheric analyses (e.g., ECMWF, NCEP). Comparison of observed Arctic sea ice motion charts with sea level pressure fields from the reanalyses suggest that the centers of circulation in the atmospheric fields may be displaced by up to hundreds of kilometers, owing to coarser resolution and a dearth of observations in the central Arctic. By use of Optimal Interpolatoion, model-derived sea ice motions are blended with observed sea ice motions in the course of a model simulation in order to improve upon the quality of the simulation. However, there are limitations due to incompatibilities between the several components of the system (model, forcing, observations) and these must be acknowledged and overcome. Here we explore issues of ice motion error analysis in order to improve the quality of the ice motion vector product ingested into the model.

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