Seasonal evolution of the albedo of multiyear Arctic sea ice
Article first published online: 11 OCT 2002
Copyright 2002 by the American Geophysical Union.
Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans (1978–2012)
Volume 107, Issue C10, pages SHE 20-1–SHE 20-13, October 2002
How to Cite
Seasonal evolution of the albedo of multiyear Arctic sea ice, J. Geophys. Res., 107(C10), 8044, doi:10.1029/2000JC000438, 2002., , , and ,
- Issue published online: 11 OCT 2002
- Article first published online: 11 OCT 2002
- Manuscript Accepted: 23 JUL 2001
- Manuscript Revised: 15 JAN 2001
- Manuscript Received: 16 MAY 2000
- sea ice;
- ice-albedo feedback
 As part of ice albedo feedback studies during the Surface Heat Budget of the Arctic Ocean (SHEBA) field experiment, we measured spectral and wavelength-integrated albedo on multiyear sea ice. Measurements were made every 2.5 m along a 200-m survey line from April through October. Initially, this line was completely snow covered, but as the melt season progressed, it became a mixture of bare ice and melt ponds. Observed changes in albedo were a combination of a gradual evolution due to seasonal transitions and abrupt shifts resulting from synoptic weather events. There were five distinct phases in the evolution of albedo: dry snow, melting snow, pond formation, pond evolution, and fall freeze-up. In April the surface albedo was high (0.8–0.9) and spatially uniform. By the end of July the average albedo along the line was 0.4, and there was significant spatial variability, with values ranging from 0.1 for deep, dark ponds to 0.65 for bare, white ice. There was good agreement between surface-based albedos and measurements made from the University of Washington's Convair-580 research aircraft. A comparison between net solar irradiance computed using observed albedos and a simplified model of seasonal evolution shows good agreement as long as the timing of the transitions is accurately determined.