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Physical oceanography of polynyas
Williams, W.J.; Carmack, E.C.; Ingram, R.G. (2007). Physical oceanography of polynyas, in: Smith Jr., W.O. et al. (Ed.) Polynyas: windows to the world. Elsevier Oceanography Series, 74: pp. 55-85
In: Smith Jr., W.O.; Barber, D.G. (Ed.) (2007). Polynyas: windows to the world. Elsevier Oceanography Series, 74. Elsevier: Amsterdam. xv, 458 pp., more
In: Elsevier Oceanography Series. Elsevier: Oxford; New york; Amsterdam. ISSN 0422-9894, more

Available in Authors 
    VLIZ: Dynamical Oceanography DYN [131823]

    Physical oceanography; Polynyas; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Williams, W.J.
  • Carmack, E.C.
  • Ingram, R.G.

    Physical processes related to polynya formation are reviewed and selected examples from both the Arctic and the Antarctic seas are given. Polynyas are categorized by dividing them into mechanically and convectively forced systems, recognizing that most polynyas are formed by a confluence of two or more physical factors, and that positive feedback processes also impact formation. Polynyas strongly impact the regional oceanography. Those that are initiated by mechanical forcing from the wind, for example, may produce large quantities of ice and brine. Dense water formed in this manner can then migrate via Ekman layers, gravity currents, and eddying motions across the shelf, and drain into the deep ocean. Under scenarios of global warming, a climatologically retreating ice edge will alter the size and distribution of polynyas. In the Arctic and on the Antarctic Peninsula, the general pattern of polynyas relative to the ice edge is likely to be similar.

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