News Archive

Witness the Arctic

12 December 2014
Witness the Arctic Volume 18 Number 3

The Fall 2014 issue of Witness the Arctic is now available. This issue includes information about the new SEARCH program structure and program updates; news of NSF-funded projects in Arctic natural sciences, social sciences, science education, and Polar Cyberinfrastructure; a perspective on recommendations from the Arctic Biodiversity Assessment; updates from ACADIS and USARC; profiles of two ARCUS board members; and a welcome to the five new members of the ARCUS Board of Directors.

SEARCH Town Hall at AGU

9 December 2014
SEARCH Town Hall at AGU

A Town Hall on the Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH) will be held at the AGU Fall meeting in San Francisco. The Town Hall is scheduled for Monday, 15 December 2014 at 12:30-1:30 PM PST in Moscone West, Room 2005. Members of the Arctic science, education, and policy communities are invited to attend. We encourage students and early career investigators to participate. Light refreshments will be provided.

SIPN Modeling Meeting

4 December 2014
 Distribution of individual Pan-Arctic Outlook values (August Report) for September 2014 sea ice extent compared to the observed value. Labels on the bar graph are rounded to the tenths for readability.

There will be a Sea Ice Prediction Network (SIPN) Modeling Meeting on Wednesday, 17 December from 12:30-2:00 pm during the American Geophysical Union (AGU) fall meetings. This year's meeting will focus on issues related to predicting sea ice with methods that are sensitive to initial conditions. Specifically, the goal of this meeting is to set up a common protocol for experiments to test sensitivity to initial conditions in sea ice forecasts of summer 2015. We will also discuss metrics that are responsive to stakeholder needs. The meeting is open, and all SIPN and Sea Ice Outlook participants who use initial conditions in a model are invited. The meeting will convene in the Foothill E room on the 2nd floor of the San Francisco Marriott Marquis.

Lunch will be provided to folks who RSVP by 10:00 am (AKST) Monday, 8 December. For more information or to RSVP, contact Betsy (betsy [at] arcus [dot] org).

Request for Input

25 November 2014
This image compares differences in ice-covered areas between September 17, 2014, the date of this year’s minimum, and last year’s minimum, September 13, 2013.

Request for Input: Draft Post-Season Report. The 2014 Sea Ice Outlook (SIO) Action Team invites community comment on its draft post-season report. This draft includes the main post-season analysis and discussion points. Following input, further development, and editing the SIO Action Team aims to share a final draft with the larger community during the 2014 American Geophysical Union Fall Meetings 14-19 December. Comments from the Arctic sea ice community on the analysis and discussion sections as well as suggestions on how to help improve sea-ice forecasts are welcome. Please send comments to Betsy Turner-Bogren (betsy [at] arcus [dot] org) by Wednesday, 3 December 2014. The report is online and available to be downloaded as a PDF or Microsoft Word document here.

Sea Ice Presentations at AGU

16 November 2014
Sea Ice Presentations at AGU

Going to the AGU Fall Meeting in San Francisco next month? Overwhelmed by the science program and not sure what presentations to see? We’ve got an online schedule of sea ice-related talks and posters to help!

Input Requested to AON Position Paper

10 November 2014
Input Requested to AON Position Paper

The Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH) requests input on a draft position paper on issues related to the design and implementation of an integrated Arctic Observing Network (AON). The paper represents a synthesis of discussions within SEARCH over the last year and builds on past SEARCH-AON community events and workshops. Key issues addressed in the paper include governance, network integration, and sustained funding. The deadline for input is Friday, 21 November 2014.

Input Requested to Arctic Safety Report

5 November 2014
Input Requested to Arctic Safety Report

A draft report on arctic field safety is available for comment. The draft report summarizes discussions at an NSF-sponsored workshop on Arctic Field Safety Risk Management that was convened to improve field safety practices, build communication, and reduce risk. The draft is available for comment until Tuesday, 11 November 2014.

SIPN Webinar Archive

20 October 2014
Sun bounces off of the sea ice on a clear sunny day in the Arctic. Aboard the USCGC Polar Sea icebreaker in the Beaufort Sea.

An archive of the Sea Ice Outlook: Post-Season Discussion webinar, held on 9 October 2014, is now available. The webinar, hosted by the Sea Ice Prediction Network (SIPN), focused on post-season analysis and discussion of the 2014 Sea Ice Outlook (SIO) and provided a venue for discussion of the 2014 SIO, including processes that influenced sea ice melt this year and a review of the differing approaches to predicting the sea ice minimum extent.

SIPN Webinar

2 October 2014
Sun bounces off of the sea ice on a clear sunny day in the Arctic. Aboard the USCGC Polar Sea icebreaker in the Beaufort Sea.

Registration is now available for the Sea Ice Prediction Network (SIPN) webinar, which will focus on post-season analysis and discussion of the 2014 Sea Ice Outlook (SIO). This webinar will provide a venue for discussion of the 2014 SIO, including processes that influenced sea ice melt this year and a review of the differing approaches to predicting the sea ice minimum extent. The webinar is open to all interested participants, including sea ice researchers, students, decision-makers, and others. This webinar is scheduled for Thursday, 9 October 2014 from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. AKDT. Registration is required.

SIPN Webinar

24 September 2014
Sun bounces off of the sea ice on a clear sunny day in the Arctic. Aboard the USCGC Polar Sea icebreaker in the Beaufort Sea.

SAVE THE DATE: The Sea Ice Prediction Network (SIPN) announces an open webinar focused on post-season analysis and discussion of the 2014 Sea Ice Outlook (SIO). This webinar will provide a venue for discussion of the 2014 SIO, including processes that influenced sea ice melt this year and a review of the differing approaches to predicting the sea ice minimum extent. The webinar is open to all interested participants, including sea ice researchers, students, decision-makers, and others. This webinar is scheduled for Thursday, 9 October 2014 from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. AKDT.

August Sea Ice Outlook

25 August 2014
Figure 1: Distribution of individual Pan-Arctic Outlook values (August Report) for September 2014 sea ice extent. Labels on the bar graph are rounded to the tenths for readability. Refer to the Individual Outlooks at the bottom of this report for the full details of individual submissions.

Announcing the August Sea Ice Outlook report! We received 23 pan-Arctic contributions and four regional contributions. The median Outlook value for September 2014 sea ice extent is 5.0 million square kilometers, with quartiles of 4.58 and 5.22 million square kilometers. This month's report includes comments on modeling outlooks and on regional predictions, a summary of current conditions, key statements from each Outlook, and links to view or download the full outlook contributions.

Sea Ice Outlook

5 August 2014
Sample of SIP (i.e., ensemble mean SIE) in percent for a random year from CESM1.1.

The Sea Ice Prediction Network (SIPN) announces a call for contributions to the August Sea Ice Outlook report. Please see the guidelines for submitting regional and pan-Arctic outlooks. A variety of perspectives, from advanced numerical models to qualitative perspectives from citizen scientists, are welcome.

Sea Ice Outlook

23 July 2014

Announcing the July Sea Ice Outlook report! The Sea Ice Outlook provides a venue for exploring the changing Arctic sea ice extent. It provides a transparent exercise in both scientific sea ice predictions as well as estimates from the public. For the July report, we received 28 pan-Arctic contributions and three regional contributions. The median Outlook value for September 2014 sea ice extent is 4.8 million square kilometers. The report includes a brief executive summary, comments on modeling outlooks and on regional predictions, current conditions, and the individual Outlook contributions.

July Sea Ice Outlook

23 July 2014

Announcing the July Sea Ice Outlook report! We received 28 pan-Arctic contributions and three regional contributions. The median Outlook value for September 2014 sea ice extent is 4.8 million square kilometers with quartiles of 4.4 and 5.0 million square kilometers. The report includes a brief executive summary, comments on modeling outlooks and on regional predictions, current conditions, and the individual Outlook contributions.

Report Released

21 July 2014
2013 Logistics Workshop Report

A new report is now available on Arctic Research Support and Logistics: "Increasing Arctic Accessibility Over the Next Twenty Years”. The report was based on recommendations discussed at a workshop and with input from the broader community. It includes recommendations for sustaining and expanding logistics resources, capacity building, and opportunities for improved coordination of resources. The report is available free as a PDF.

AGU Session

14 July 2014
Photo by Ute Kaden (TREC 2005), Courtesy of ARCUS

SIPN Team member Cecilia Bitz announces a call for abstracts for an AGU Session: Processes and Predictability (Session #2392). Presentations that examine the processes that govern seasonal to multidecadal polar climate variability, identify sources of polar climate predictability, and characterize uncertainty in polar climate prediction are welcome. The session seeks to connect the community of atmospheric, oceanic, and cryospheric scientists working on topics relevant to the new Polar Climate Predictability Initiative of the World Climate Research Program. It will convene during the AGU Fall Meetings in San Francisco 15-19 December 2014.

Sea Ice Outlook

1 July 2014
Sample of SIP (i.e., ensemble mean SIE) in percent for a random year from CESM1.1.

The Sea Ice Prediction Network (SIPN) announces a call for contributions to the July Sea Ice Outlook report. Please see the new guidelines for submitting pan-Arctic and regional outlooks. A variety of perspectives, from advanced numerical models to qualitative perspectives from citizen scientists, are welcome.

Sea Ice Outlook

19 June 2014
Figure 1. Distribution of individual Pan-Arctic Outlook values (June Report) for September 2014 sea ice extent (values are rounded to the tenths).

The first arctic Sea Ice Outlook report of the year has been published, and we had a record number of pan-arctic contributions! The median Outlook value for September 2014 sea ice extent is 4.7 million square kilometers. Only three outlooks this are above the 2013 observed September extent. This full report includes a brief summary, comments on modeling outlook, current conditions, key statements from all the Outlook contributions, and links to download the outlook contributions.

SIPN Team Members in the News

17 June 2014
Sun bounces off of the sea ice on a clear sunny day in the Arctic. Aboard the USCGC Polar Sea icebreaker in the Beaufort Sea.

SIPN Team members Stroeve, Hamiliton, Bitz, and Blanchard-Wrigglesworth published an analysis of the ensemble skill of the SEARCH Sea Ice Outlook 2008-2013 in predicting September Arctic sea ice extent. Their article is published in Geophysical Research Letters - 16 April 2014.

New Article on Sea Ice Predictions

16 June 2014
Median and interquartile range of July SIO predictions, compared with observed September mean sea ice extent. Image courtesy of Stroeve et al. (2014)

A new article by Larry Hamilton and others on the SIPN Team looks at the overall success of informal sea ice predictions contributed to the Sea Ice Outlook (SIO). Their article was published in Witness the Arctic - Spring 2014.