National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce

Melt Ponds Widespread in Arctic Sea Ice

July 16, 2013

PMEL and JISAO scientists are tracking Arctic sea ice conditions with animations of images from web cams deployed in springtime at the North Pole by the North Pole Environmental Observatory.  Images received on July 15 (seen left) reveal widespread ponds in the sea ice.  Although some melt pond formation was observed as early as June 7 on the far horizon, cloudy conditions seen in the animations may have contributed to the late widespread melt pond formation that is only now clearly visible.

For historical sea ice conditions observed by the web cams, see the sea ice transition website.