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Scientific Value of Arctic Sea Ice Imagery Derived Products
Giving high priority to the dissemination of all LIDPs from the Barrow site would support a range of high-profile research projects in the coastal region at Barrow (Norton, 2001). These data will serve as an important resource for questions revolving around adaptation of coastal communities and ecosystems to climate change (see Figures 1.1, 3.1).
FIGURE 3.1 LIDP over Barrow Fiducial Site acquired on 18 June 2006. The two boxes shown in (a) are approximately 400 m to the side and are shown at a scale that approaches the limit of resolution at right. For the patch of highly deformed ice shown in (b) the approximately 1-m pixel dimensions are sufficient to partly resolve the block structure in the pressure ridges (broken ice piled to several meters thickness or more). Such deformed ice areas serve as important habitat for seals and polar bears. These deformed ice areas may help anchor the coastal landfast ice shown here, thereby creating a platform for animals and people. They can also represent a significant obstacle to subsistence hunters who construct seasonal trails on the landfast ice at Barrow. Note the contrast in the distribution of surface melt ponds in the deformed ice as opposed to flat ice shown in (c). The degree of ice deformation and its surface roughness are important in controlling the lateral extent and depth of melt ponds and hence ice albedo. SOURCE: Figure courtesy of USGS National Civil Applications Program.