University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Scott Polar Research Institute - Physical Sciences Seminar > Sea Ice Research at Finnish Meteorological Institute – from Ice Charts to Climate Studies

Sea Ice Research at Finnish Meteorological Institute – from Ice Charts to Climate Studies

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Every Finnish harbor gets ice blocked even during a mild winter. Thus understanding sea ice is extremely important and there is a call for high quality sea ice research. The sea ice research group at Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) conducts research on remote sensing and forecast models for sea ice, and develops charting methods and ice forecasts. Our core objective is to produce reliable and user relevant information on sea ice. The end users range from those involved in winter navigation and offshore activities to policymakers and the general public in ice-covered sea regions.

For ice charting, we use earth observation data obtained from current EO satellites as well as develop new methods for future satellites. I will present some of our currently operational products, such as Baltic Sea ice charts and forecasts. I will also introduce novel sea ice thickness retrieval methods combining data from satellite synthetic aperture radar, passive microwave and optical sensors and ice models. I will also give a short overview of model development concerning sea ice dynamics – particularly from the viewpoint of ice compression felt by a ship navigating through ice.

FMI is also involved in reanalysis of long satellite data series. As part of the European Space Agency’s Climate Change Initiative we will reprocess the radar altimeter measurements from ERS -1, ERS -2 and EnviSAT satellites. We will build an “Essential Climate Variable” product of sea ice thickness covering the Arctic and spanning the winters 1993 – 2012. I will present the algorithms used in altimeter sea ice thickness retrieval, introduce our prototype sea ice thickness processor and finally seek answers to some open questions concerning the sea ice thickness retrieval.

This talk is part of the Scott Polar Research Institute - Physical Sciences Seminar series.

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