Dr. Stefanie Arndt 

Alfred-Wegener-Institut, Helmholtz-Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung (AWI), Bremerhaven, GERMANY
Jul 2021 - Jun 2024
Associate Junior Fellow

Stefanie Arndt

Projekte & Publikationen


Abstract of the workshop project

Snow depth on sea ice is an Essential Climate Variable, because it dominates the energy and

momentum exchanges across the atmosphere-ice-ocean interfaces and actively contributes to

sea ice mass balance. Yet, snow depth is one of the least known and most difficult to observe

parameters of the Arctic and Antarctic sea ice cover, mainly due to its exceptionally high spatial

and temporal variability and the lack of suitable remote sensing retrieval concepts. This is

particularly true for Antarctic sea ice, as it exhibits a comparably high year-around snow load to

ice thickness ratio, resulting in a strong impact of the sea ice freeboard causing high

uncertainties in Antarctic sea ice thickness retrievals.

The workshop on “Snow depth on Antarctic sea ice: A big unknown” aims therefore to outline

and propose a processing chain to derive snow depth on Antarctic sea ice from a variety of

remotely-sensed observations. Evaluating existing and new (forthcoming) data products of snow

depth with comprehensive in-situ snow depth data will allow to propose commonly used snow

depth climatology.

Joint discussions and scientific analysis of such a snow depth dataset within a group of experts

of satellite-data interpretation, field data provider as well as numerical modelers, are expected

to result in the review of current ocean-ice-atmosphere process analyses, which is in turn likely

to lead to greatly improved numerical parameterizations in sea ice and climate models.