National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce


FY 1985

Regional meteorology of the Bering Sea during MIZEX-West: February and March 1983

Wilson, J.G., A.L. Comiskey, R.W. Lindsay, and V.L. Long

ERL Special Report, NTIS: PB85-173599, 115 pp (1984)

The Marginal Ice Zone Experiment (MIZEX) West was conducted in the eastern Bering Sea during February and March 1983. During the experiment surface and upper-air meteorological observations were taken from two ships, the NOAA Ship DISCOVERER and Coast Guard Cutter WESTWIND. The meteorology of the region for this period is illustrated with fields of sea level pressure, surface air temperature (computed from the 1000–850 mb thickness), and surface winds. These fields are derived from a mesoscale hand drawn analysis that was digitized on a 6 × 5 polar stereographic grid and processed through the computer routines in METLIB. The weather during this period was predominantly characterized by storms crossing the North Pacific Ocean along the Aleutian Island chain resulting in northeasterly winds of 10 to 20 kts and temperatures of –10°C to –15°C in the eastern Bering Sea. Under these meteorological conditions, the ice edge advected to the south and west. The upper-air soundings generally showed a well-defined, well-mixed, marine boundary layer ranging between 100 and 900 m depth. The atmospheric boundary layer seaward of the ice edge under conditions of off-ice winds deepened by a factor of 1.6, 170 km downwind of the ice edge.

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