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Article Title

The effects of ice arch formation on currents in Nares Strait during the springs of 2008 and 2009

Abstract

In Nares Strait between Greenland and Ellesmere Island, ice arches hold back ice during winter and spring, preventing sea ice flux into Baffin Bay and freshwater flux (in the form of ice) into the North Atlantic. Freshwater flux influences the formation of deep water and affects the Meridional Overturning Circulation, with ramifications for global climate. We analyzed current velocity data from a moored array of ADCPs and model wind data at approximately 80.5º N to understand the effects that an ice arch at the southern end of Nares Strait had on currents in 2008, and the difference in 2009 when the southern ice arch did not form. We found much stronger currents near the surface in 2009 during the mobile ice regime. In 2008, we found small correlation with winds in spite of the landfast ice cover, and in 2009 we found correlation with winds on daily, weekly, and biweekly timescales at different depths.

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