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Atmospheric heat transport into the Arctic: tug-of-war between the Arctic and the tropics

Given uncertainty in the processes involved in polar amplification, elucidating the role of poleward heat and moisture transport is crucial. The Polar Amplification Model Intercomparison Project (PAMIP) permits robust separation of the effects of sea ice loss from sea surface warming under climate change. We utilise a moist isentropic circulation framework that accounts for moisture transport, condensation, and eddy transport, in order to analyze the circulation connecting the midlatitudes and the Arctic. In PAMIP's atmospheric general circulation model experiments, prescribed sea ice loss reduces poleward heat transport (PHT) by warming the air returning towards the mid-latitudes from the Arctic, while prescribed warming of the ocean surface increases PHT by strengthening the eddy mass transport at high latitudes, increasing the eddy PHT.

Event series  Brewer-Wilson Seminar Series