ICE Fluxes

ICE Fluxes investigates the physical processes that control the behaviour of the Arctic sea ice. Over the past three decades, the Arctic sea ice cover has changed substantially with reductions in both extent and thickness. In ICE Fluxes, we focus on understanding processes from small to larger scales that govern energy and mass fluxes between the atmosphere, snow, sea ice, and ocean.

Automatic weather station, a setup for albedo measurements, and an EM-bird hanging under a helicopter measuring sea ice thickness

Various measurements are done during a sea ice station. On this photo, you can see the automatic weather station, a setup for albedo measurements, and the EM-bird hanging under the helicopter measuring sea ice thickness. Photo: Angelika Renner / Norwegian Polar Institute

The Arctic sea ice cover is part of a complex and very dynamic physical system that includes the atmosphere (wind, sunlight, snow and rainfall, aerosols), the snow on top of the sea ice, the sea ice itself, the ocean underneath, and the biological organisms and by-products in the ice and water. We aim to improve the understanding of how the components interact and which processes control the development of the sea ice cover. This will be done through extensive field work around Svalbard, in the Barents Sea, and in Fram Strait, through modelling using simple to highly sophisticated models, and through laboratory experiments with a rotating tank.

The leader of ICE Fluxes is research scientist Arild Sundfjord.