Abstract

In this paper, a preliminary climatic description of the long-term offshore drift ice characteristics in the northern Barents Sea has been investigated from 1987 to 2016 based on the satellite ice motion datasets from NSDIC and reanalysis ice thickness datasets from NECP-CFSR and CFSv2. Both the ice velocity and thickness conditions have been studied at the three fixed locations from west to east. Annual and monthly drift ice roses indicate that the directions from WSW to SE are primarily prevailing, particularly in winter months. Besides, the annual ice speed extremums exceeding 40 cm s–1 mostly occur in the southerly directions from November to April. For the ice thickness, results reveal that it is prominently distributed in a thicker interval between 70 and 120 cm, and a thinner interval between 20 and 70 cm. The annual thickness maxima approximately range from 90 to 170 cm, primarily occurring from May to June, and demonstrate a light decreasing trend.

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