Journal cover Journal topic
The Cryosphere An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2018-87
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Research article
15 May 2018
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal The Cryosphere (TC).
Interannual sea ice thickness variability in the Bay of Bothnia
Iina Ronkainen1, Jonni Lehtiranta1, Mikko Lensu1, Eero Rinne1, Jari Haapala1, and Christian Haas2 1Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, 00560, Finland
2Alfred Wegener Institute , Bremerhaven, 27570, German
Abstract. While variations of Baltic Sea ice extent and fast ice thickness have been extensively studied, there is little information about the sea ice thickness distribution and its variability. In our study, we quantify the interannual variability of sea ice thickness in the Bay of Bothnia during the years 2003–2016. We use various different data sets: official ice charts, drilling data from the regular monitoring stations in the coastal fast ice zone and from helicopter- and ship-borne electromagnetic soundings. We analyze the different data sets and compare them to each other to characterize the interannual variability, to discuss the ratio of level and deformed ice, and to derive ice thickness distributions in the drift ice zone. In the fast ice zone the average ice thickness is 0.58 ± 0.13 m. Deformed ice increases the variability of ice conditions in the drift ice zone where the average ice thickness is 0.92 ± 0.33 m. In heavily ridged ice regions near the coast, mean ice thickness can be even manyfold thicker than in a pure thermodynamically grown fast ice. Drift ice exhibits larger inter-annual variability than fast ice.
Citation: Ronkainen, I., Lehtiranta, J., Lensu, M., Rinne, E., Haapala, J., and Haas, C.: Interannual sea ice thickness variability in the Bay of Bothnia, The Cryosphere Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2018-87, in review, 2018.
Iina Ronkainen et al.
Iina Ronkainen et al.
Iina Ronkainen et al.

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Short summary
We quantify the sea ice thickness variability in the Bay of Bothnia using various observational data sets. For the first time we use helicopter- and ship-borne electromagnetic soundings to study changes in drift ice of the Bay of Bothnia. Our results show that the interannual variability of ice thickness is larger in the drift ice zone than in the fast ice zone. Furthermore, mean thickness of heavily ridged ice near the coast can be several times larger than that of fast ice.
We quantify the sea ice thickness variability in the Bay of Bothnia using various observational...
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