Under cover: The Southern Ocean’s connection to sea ice and ice shelves | Virtual PICO
Co-organized by BG4/CL4/CR6
Convener: Torge Martin | Co-conveners: Xylar Asay-Davis, Alice BarthelECSECS, Ralph Timmermann

The interaction between the ocean and the cryosphere in the Southern Ocean has become a major focus in climate research. Antarctic climate change has captured public attention, which has spawned a number of research questions, such as: Is Antarctic sea ice becoming more vulnerable in a changing climate? Where and when will melting of ice shelves by warm ocean waters yield a tipping point in Antarctic climate? What role do ice-related processes play in nutrient upwelling on the continental shelf and in triggering carbon export to deep waters? Recent advances in observational technology, data coverage, and modeling provide scientists with a better understanding of the mechanisms involving ice-ocean interactions in the far South. Processes on the Antarctic continental shelf have been identified as missing links between the cryosphere, the global atmosphere and the deep open ocean that need to be captured in large-scale and global model simulations.

This session calls for studies on physical and biogeochemical interactions between ice shelves, sea ice and the ocean. The ice-covered Southern Ocean and its role in the greater Antarctic climate system are of major interest. This includes work on all scales, from local to basin-scale to circumpolar. Studies based on in-situ observations and remote sensing as well as regional to global models are welcome. We particularly invite cross-disciplinary topics involving physical and biological oceanography, glaciology or biogeochemistry.