EGU General Assembly 2023
© Author(s) 2023. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

The extraordinary March 2022 East Antarctica heatwave

Jonathan Wille1,2 and the East Antarctica heatwave project*
Jonathan Wille and the East Antarctica heatwave project
  • 1Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science, ETH Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland (
  • 2Institut des Géosciences de l’Environnement, Université Grenoble Alpes, Saint Martin d’Hères, France
  • *A full list of authors appears at the end of the abstract

Between March 15-19th 2022, East Antarctica experienced an unprecedented heatwave with widespread 30-45° C temperature anomalies across the ice sheet. This record-shattering event saw numerous monthly temperature records being broken including a new all-time temperature record of -9.4 °C on March 18th at Concordia station despite March typically being a transition month to the Antarctic coreless winter. The driver for these temperature extremes was an unprecedently intense atmospheric river (AR) advecting heat and moisture deep into the Antarctic interior. The scope of the temperature records spurred a large, diverse collaborative effort to study the heatwave’s meteorological drivers, impacts, and historical climate context using an array of observations, models, and analysis techniques. 

 From these efforts, we present the following

  • Temperature observations and records
  • Meteorological drivers including tropically forced Rossby wave activity along with AR and warm conveyor belt dynamics
  • Radiative forcing impacts on surface temperatures and inversions
  • Surface mass balance impacts
  • Discussion of the AR impacts on isotope and cosmic ray measurements from Concordia station
  • AR influence on the Conger Ice Shelf disintegration
  • Event return time analysis
  • Implications on past climate reconstructions
  • Future event likelihood from IPSL-CM6 simulations
East Antarctica heatwave project:

Jonathan D. Wille, Simon Alexander, Charles Amory, Rebecca Baiman, Léonard Barthélemy, Dana M. Bergstrom, Alexis Berne, Juliette Blanchet, Deniz Bozkurt, Thomas J. Bracegirdle, Mathieu Casado, Taejin Choi, Kyle R. Clem, Francis Codron, Rajashree Datta, Stefano Di Battista, Vincent Favier, Diana Francis, Alexander D. Fraser, Elise Fourré, René D. Garreaud, Christophe Genthon, Irina V. Gorodetskaya, Victoria J. Heinrich, Sergi González-Herrero, Guillaume Hubert, Hanna Joos, Seong-Joong Kim, John C. King, Christoph Kittel, Amaelle Landais, Matthew Lazzara, Gregory H. Leonard, Jan L. Lieser, Michelle Maclennan, Brooke Medley, David Mikolajczyk, Peter Neff, Inès Ollivier, Ghislain Picard, Benjamin Pohl, Martin F. Ralph, Penny Rowe, Elisabeth Schlosser, Christine Shields, Inga J. Smith, Michael Sprenger, Luke Trusel, Danielle Udy, Tessa Vance, Etienne Vignon, Catherine Walker, Nander Wever, Xun Zou

How to cite: Wille, J. and the East Antarctica heatwave project: The extraordinary March 2022 East Antarctica heatwave, EGU General Assembly 2023, Vienna, Austria, 24–28 Apr 2023, EGU23-8107,, 2023.