Arctic sea ice thickness from submarine and Envisat ASAR
Nicholas Hughes(1) and Peter Wadhams(2)
Scottish Association for Marine Science,
Dunstaffnage Marine Laboratory,
Oban PA37 1QA,
(2) University of Cambridge, Wilberforce Road, Cambridge CB3 0WA, United Kingdom
In April 2004 the Royal Navy submarine HMS Tireless became the first British submarine to conduct environmental monitoring in the Arctic Ocean since 1996. As the last U.S. SCICEX cruise was in 2000 this has been the only opportunity for a civilian scientist to carry out measurement of ice draft and oceanography over a wide area of the Arctic. The route of Tireless covered a large area of the European sector of the Arctic from 5°E to 62°W. Transects were carried out from the Marginal Ice Zone (MIZ) in Fram Strait up to the North Pole and along the 85°N parallel north of Greenland. As part of work for the EC IRIS project estimation of ridge parameters from the Advanced SAR instrument on ESA’s Envisat satellite has been compared with results from the submarine. Preliminary ice draft data from 85°N shows deeper ice keels than those encountered by a submarine on the same route in 1987.