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Quantifying the Role of Atmospheric Forcing Ice Edge Retreat and Advance Including Wind-Wave Coupling

The fluxes of momentum (wind stress), sensible heat (turbulence and radiation) and latent heat (moisture and salinity), between the atmosphere and ocean have strong effects on sea state and oceanic boundary layer (OBL) physics in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas (BCS), and throughout the world ocean. Any attempt to understand sea state and the OBL needs to consider these air-ocean interactions, which include the poorly-understood pressure momentum transport over waves. A critical process needing predictive capability is how the sea ice in the BCS will behave on short time scales (for operational predictions) and in the future (for planning Navy and societal needs); understanding the role of surface fluxes is crucial for this. This proposal addresses that need with a plan to deploy state-of-the-art flux and related parameter sensors on a vessel with researchers who will be simultaneously performing oceanographic measurements. The proposed measurements include (1) direct measurements of all these important fluxes, including the pressure terms, (2) direct measurements of the sea state using laser altimetry and (3) supporting measurements of atmospheric boundary layer and cloud parameters.
Office of Naval Research