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Article

Interannual and Decadal Variability of Sea Surface Temperature and Sea Ice Concentration in the Barents Sea

1
Department of Arctic Geophysics, The University Centre in Svalbard, 9171 Longyearbyen, Norway
2
Department of Oceanography, Faculty of Science, Alexandria University, Alexandria 21500, Egypt
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Giuseppe Aulicino and Peter Wadhams
Remote Sens. 2022, 14(17), 4413; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs14174413
Received: 9 August 2022 / Revised: 31 August 2022 / Accepted: 1 September 2022 / Published: 5 September 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing of the Polar Oceans)
Sea ice loss and accelerated warming in the Barents Sea have recently been one of the main concerns of climate research. In this study, we investigated the trends and possible relationships between sea surface temperature (SST), sea ice concentration (SIC), and local and large-scale atmospheric parameters over the last 39 years (1982 to 2020). We examined the interannual and long-term spatiotemporal variability of SST and SIC by performing an empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis. The SST warming rate from 1982 through 2020 was 0.35 ± 0.04 °C/decade and 0.40 ± 0.04 °C/decade in the ice-covered and ice-free regions, respectively. This climate warming had a significant impact on sea-ice conditions in the Barents Sea, such as a strong decline in the SIC (−6.52 ± 0.78%/decade) and a shortening of the sea-ice season by about −26.1 ± 7.5 days/decade, resulting in a 3.4-month longer summer ice-free period over the last 39 years. On the interannual and longer-term scales, the Barents Sea has shown strong coherent spatiotemporal variability in both SST and SIC. The temporal evolution of SST and SIC are strongly correlated, whereas the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO) influences the spatiotemporal variability of SST and SIC. The highest spatial variability (i.e., the center of action of the first EOF mode) of SST was observed over the region bounded by the northern and southern polar fronts, which are influenced by both warm Atlantic and cold Arctic waters. The largest SIC variability was found over the northeastern Barents Sea and over the Storbanken and Olga Basin. The second EOF mode revealed a dipole structure with out-of-phase variability between the ice-covered and ice-free regions for the SST and between the Svalbard and Novaya Zemlya regions for SIC. In order to investigate the processes that generate these patterns, a correlation analysis was applied to a set of oceanic (SST) and atmospheric parameters (air temperature, zonal, and meridional wind components) and climate indices. This analysis showed that SST and SIC are highly correlated with air temperature and meridional winds and with two climate indices (AMO and East Atlantic Pattern (EAP)) on an interannual time scale. The North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) only correlated with the second EOF mode of SST on a decadal time scale. View Full-Text
Keywords: Barents Sea; sea ice reduction; climate change; interannual variability; trends; wind; teleconnections; sea ice duration season Barents Sea; sea ice reduction; climate change; interannual variability; trends; wind; teleconnections; sea ice duration season
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MDPI and ACS Style

Mohamed, B.; Nilsen, F.; Skogseth, R. Interannual and Decadal Variability of Sea Surface Temperature and Sea Ice Concentration in the Barents Sea. Remote Sens. 2022, 14, 4413. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs14174413

AMA Style

Mohamed B, Nilsen F, Skogseth R. Interannual and Decadal Variability of Sea Surface Temperature and Sea Ice Concentration in the Barents Sea. Remote Sensing. 2022; 14(17):4413. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs14174413

Chicago/Turabian Style

Mohamed, Bayoumy, Frank Nilsen, and Ragnheid Skogseth. 2022. "Interannual and Decadal Variability of Sea Surface Temperature and Sea Ice Concentration in the Barents Sea" Remote Sensing 14, no. 17: 4413. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs14174413

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