Jun 24, 2017 | Updated: 06:02 PM EDT

The Encroaching ‘Atlantification’ of the Eastern Arctic Ocean Increases the Temperature of the Water

Apr 08, 2017 03:33 PM EDT

NASA Continues Efforts To Monitor Arctic Ice Loss With Research Flights Over Greenland and Canada
(Photo : Mario Tama/Getty Images) Sea ice is seen from NASA's Operation IceBridge research aircraft off the northwest coast on March 30, 2017 above Greenland.

The eastern part of the Arctic Ocean gains temperature and acquires the key features of the Atlantic Ocean. A group of researchers has termed it "Atlantification".

A recent survey reveals the increasing mode of temperature in the eastern part of the Arctic Ocean. The researchers have been monitoring the ocean temperatures for the last 15 years. They have measured the temperatures at different depths of the ocean and revealed the "Atlantification".

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A basic idea still exists that if a person goes deeper in the Arctic Ocean he gets warmer, Phys.org stated. Continuous inflows from the Atlantic Ocean are the key reason behind this warm feeling. A new research study proves the changing pattern of this fact and called it "Atlantification". A basic difference is present between the two oceans, but gradually that difference is escaping.

An international research team has been measuring the Arctic Ocean temperatures for the last 15 years. The team has used tethered moorings to collect the data about the ocean temperatures. The data reveal a shocking fact that the sea ice is melting not only from the upper portion but also from the lower part. That means encroaching "Atlantification" of the eastern part of the Arctic Ocean is a reality now.

The halocline layer in the Arctic Ocean works as a barrier between the salt water and fresher water. The crucial fact is warm water coming from the Atlantic Ocean is penetrating the Halocline layer, and the ice layer is melting from the below. This penetration is increasing continuously that finally results in the "Atlantification".

Arctic Ocean water is gradually losing its basic stratification feature and acquiring the characteristics of the Atlantic Ocean. But, major changes are occurring in the water due to the "Atlantification" and it takes a very short span of time. The current research regarding these major changes may explore the key reasons behind the continuous shrinking of the ice floor. The study is available in the popular journal Science.

The outcome of the research study indicates several impacts. The ice floor melts drastically due to the advent of warm air and warm water. The researchers suggest the "Atlantification" may alter the basic components of the Arctic Ocean in the future. It seems that significant changes may occur from the biogeochemical levels to the geophysical levels.

The ice floor of the Arctic Ocean maintains the cool environment in the polar regions and plays a significant role in balancing the global climate. But, the constant melting of the sea ice due to the "Atlantification" predicts the advent of new Arctic climate. Increasing global warming also plays a significant role in this regard.

Relevant precautions are necessary to save the basic features of the Arctic Ocean and the ice floor from the clutches of "Atlantification". Human civilization can survive only if the required fundamental characters of the global climate can be conserved properly. Basic features of the oceans at the polar regions serve important roles to save those characters.

 

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