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Measuring Snow/Ice Temperatures in the Arctic (Image 1)


Researcher records snow/ice interface temperatures out on frozen surface of Elson Lagoon,Alaska

Julienne Stroeve of the National Snow and Ice Data Center at the University of Colorado, Boulder, records snow/ice interface temperatures out on the frozen surface of Elson Lagoon in Barrow, Alaska. Thermometers are shown planted in the frozen surface which, during this time of year, is typically covered by ice pack about 1 meter thick and snow pack about 22 centimeters thick.

Field data collected by Stroeve's team was used to help validate models that predict the potential response of arctic ecosystems to environmental changes, and to validate satellite measurements and help identify variables that can be reliably retrieved from satellites. Because detailed field sampling of ice and snow conditions can only be conducted over limited distances, Stroeve's team also uses aircraft observations to characterize snow and ice conditions in arctic environments. (Date of Image: 2006) [Image 1 of 3 related images. See Image 2.]

Credit: Don Perovich, CRREL, Hanover, N.H.

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