Earth  ID: 3481

Minimum Sea Ice Comparison: 2005, 2007 and the 1979-2007 Average for Science On a Sphere (SOS)

Sea ice is frozen seawater floating on the surface of the ocean. Some sea ice is semi-permanent, persisting from year to year, and some is seasonal, melting and refreezing from season to season. The sea ice cover reaches its minimum extent at the end of each summer and the remaining ice is called the perennial ice cover. The 2007 Arctic summer sea ice reached the lowest extent of perennial ice cover on record - nearly 25% less than the previous low set in 2005. The area of the perennial ice has been steadily decreasing since the satellite record began in 1979, at a rate of about 10% per decade. But the 2007 minimum, reached on September 14, is far below the previous record made in 2005 and is about 38% lower than the climatological average. Such a dramatic loss has implications for ecology, climate and industry. A full global version of this animation was developed for a Science On a Sphere exhibit. The animation is shown on a plane with a geographic (lat/lon) projection, but has been rotated 90 degrees so that the Arctic is in the center of the image. The animation compares the difference between the perennial sea ice minimum extent on September 21, 2005 and September 14, 2007. Both years are compared with the 1979-2007 average minimum sea ice.

Visualization Credits

Cindy Starr (GST): Lead Visualizer
Greg Shirah (NASA/GSFC): Animator
Josefino Comiso (NASA/GSFC): Scientist
Please give credit for this item to:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio
The Blue Marble data is courtesy of Reto Stockli (NASA/GSFC).

Short URL to share this page:
https://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/3481

Data Used:
Comiso's September Minimum Sea Ice Concentration
Data Compilation - NASA/GSFC - 2005-09-21, 2007-09-14, 1979-2007 Average
DMSP/SSM/I
2005-09-21, 2007-09-14, 1979-2007 Average
Defense Meteorological Satellite Program Special Sensor Microwave Imager
Note: While we identify the data sets used in these visualizations, we do not store any further details nor the data sets themselves on our site.

This item is part of this series:
Science On a Sphere

Keywords:
DLESE >> Cryology
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Cryosphere
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Cryosphere >> Sea Ice
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Cryosphere >> Snow/Ice
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Oceans >> Sea Ice
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Cryosphere >> Sea Ice >> Ice Extent
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Cryosphere >> Sea Ice >> Sea Ice Concentration
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Cryosphere >> Snow/Ice >> Ice Extent
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Hydrosphere >> Snow/Ice >> Ice Extent
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Oceans >> Sea Ice >> Ice Extent
SVS >> Science On a Sphere
SVS >> For Educators
SVS >> SOS
NASA Science >> Earth

GCMD keywords can be found on the Internet with the following citation: Olsen, L.M., G. Major, K. Shein, J. Scialdone, S. Ritz, T. Stevens, M. Morahan, A. Aleman, R. Vogel, S. Leicester, H. Weir, M. Meaux, S. Grebas, C.Solomon, M. Holland, T. Northcutt, R. A. Restrepo, R. Bilodeau, 2013. NASA/Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Earth Science Keywords. Version 8.0.0.0.0