Work Package 2

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Changes of atmosphere/sea-ice/ocean interactions and their impact on the transpolar system

Changes in the Arctic climate system are strongly related to atmosphere/sea-ice/ocean inter-actions. The feedbacks between the atmosphere and the surface, such as snow and polynya-formation processes, sea-ice production and dense-water formation, represent key pro¬cesses for the ocean and the cryosphere, which are characterized by a substantial sea-so¬nal and interannual variability. Atmosphere/sea-ice/ocean interactions are forced by syn-optic weather systems and mesoscale extreme weather phenomena. In particular, the Vil-kitsky Strait region where a significant exchange between the water masses of the Kara and Laptev seas occurs, has been identified as a highly active region in terms of lead and polynya formation and, therefore, is a key region for oceanic and atmospheric exchange processes. The overall goal of the work package is to achieve a major improvement of the under¬stand¬ing and quantification of atmosphere/sea-ice/ocean processes for the climate of the past 15-30 years and for climate scenarios of the end of the 21st century with a regional focus on the Laptev Sea.