Record warmth at the top of the Greenland Ice Sheet

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 9:25 PM GMT on July 18, 2012

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The coldest place in Greenland, and often the entire Northern Hemisphere, is commonly the Summit Station. Located at the top of the Greenland Ice Sheet, 10,551 feet (3216 meters) above sea level, and 415 miles (670 km) north of the Arctic Circle, Summit rarely sees temperatures that rise above the freezing mark. In the 12-year span 2000 - 2011, Summit temperatures rose above freezing only four times, according to weather records researcher Maximiliano Herrera. But remarkably, over the past week, temperatures at Summit have eclipsed the freezing mark on five days, including four days in a row from July 11 - 14. There are actually three weather stations located at the location--Summit, Summit-US, and Summit AWS. The highest reliable temperature measured at any of the three stations is now the 3.6°C (38.5°F) measured on Monday, July 16, 2012 at Summit-US. A 4.4°C reading at Summit in May, 2010 is bogus, as can be seen by looking at the adjacent station. Similarly, a 3.3°C reading from June 2004 is also bad. Records at Summit began in 1987.


Video 1. A 20-ton tractor attempting to repair a bridge washed out by the raging Watson River on July 11, 2012 in Kangerlussauaq, Greenland gets washed downstream. The driver escaped unharmed. Image taken from an article, Warm air over the ice sheet provides great drama in Greenland, at the Danish Meteorological Institute's web site.

Record heat leads to major flooding in Greenland
The record heat has triggered significant melting of Greenland's Ice Sheet. According to the Arctic Sea Ice Blog, on July 11, glacier melt water from the Russell Glacier flooded the Watson River, smashing two bridges connecting the north and south of Kangerlussuaq (Sønder Strømfjord), a small settlement in southwestern Greenland. The flow rate of 3.5 million liters/sec was almost double the previous record flow rate. The latest forecast for Summit calls for cooler conditions over the coming week, with no more above-freezing temperatures at Summit.

Another huge iceberg calves off of Greenland's Petermann Glacier
A massive ice island two times the size of Manhattan and half as thick as the Empire State Building calved off of Greenland's Petermann Glacier on Monday, July 16, 2012. According to Andreas Muenchow, associate professor of physical ocean science and engineering at the University of Delaware's College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment in his Icy Seas blog, the break-off point has been visible for at least 8 years in satellite imagery, and has been propagating at 1 km/year towards Nares Strait. The same glacier calved an iceberg twice as big back on August 4, 2010--the largest iceberg observed in the Arctic since 1962. The freshwater stored in that ice island could have kept the Delaware or Hudson rivers flowing for more than two years, or kept all U.S. public tap water flowing for 120 days. “While the size is not as spectacular as it was in 2010, the fact that it follows so closely to the 2010 event brings the glacier’s terminus to a location where it has not been for at least 150 years,” Muenchow said in a university press release. “Northwest Greenland and northeast Canada are warming more than five times faster than the rest of the world, but the observed warming is not proof that the diminishing ice shelf is caused by this, because air temperatures have little effect on this glacier; ocean temperatures do, and our ocean temperature time series are only five to eight years long — too short to establish a robust warming signal.”


Figure 1. The calving of a massive 46 square-mile iceberg two times the size of Manhattan from Greenland's Petermann Glacier on July 14 - 18, 2012, as seen using MODIS satellite imagery. Image credit: NASA.


Figure 2. Look familiar? Two years ago, a 100 square-mile ice island broke off the Petermann Glacier. It was the largest iceberg in the Arctic since 1962. Image taken by NASA's Aqua satellite on August 21, 2010. Image credit: NASA. I've constructed a 7-frame satellite animation available here that shows the calving and break-up of the Petermann Glacier ice island. The animation begins on August 5, 2010, and ends on September 21, with images spaced about 8 days apart. The images were taken by NASA's Aqua and Terra satellites.

Related posts

Unprecedented May heat in Greenland; update on 2011 Greenland ice melt

Greenland update for 2010: record melting and a massive calving event

Jeff Masters

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Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:

choo choo choo
choo choo choo
choo chooo choo
woot wooooooooo.
I would respect this if it was in Latin?!
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..and there's Uncle Joe he's a moving kinda slow at the Junction.

Petticoat Junction..
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129780
Nite everyone
Special Weather Statement
SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GRAND RAPIDS MI
1125 PM EDT WED JUL 18 2012

MIZ050-056-057-064-190415-
ALLEGAN-KENT-MUSKEGON-OTTAWA-
1125 PM EDT WED JUL 18 2012

...SIGNIFICANT WEATHER ADVISORY...

AT 1125 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED
STRONG THUNDERSTORMS OVER LAKE MICHIGAN ALONG A LINE EXTENDING FROM
15 MILES WEST OF MUSKEGON TO 15 MILES WEST OF SAUGATUCK... MOVING
EAST AT 40 MPH.

WIND GUSTS GREATER THAN 40 MPH...FREQUENT CLOUD TO GROUND
LIGHTNING...BRIEF HEAVY DOWNPOURS...ARE POSSIBLE WITH THESE STORMS.

LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE...
ROOSEVELT PARK... NORTON SHORES... MUSKEGON...
GANGES... GRAND HAVEN... DOUGLAS...
GLENN... SAUGATUCK... HOLLAND STATE PARK...
FERRYSBURG... SPRING LAKE... PORT SHELDON...


PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

GUSTY WINDS MAY CAUSE SMALL OBJECTS SUCH AS TRASH BINS TO BLOW
AROUND. STAY AWAY FROM HIGH OBJECTS OUTDOORS SUCH AS TREES. SEEK
SHELTER IN A STURDY STRUCTURE UNTIL THESE STORMS HAVE PASSED.

&&

LAT...LON 4335 8642 4335 8604 4329 8602 4329 8531
4277 8531 4277 8555 4242 8555 4242 8628
4270 8621 4297 8623 4314 8629
TIME...MOT...LOC 0325Z 270DEG 34KT 4326 8652 4251 8644

$$

MEADE
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
Quoting HurricaneDean07:

enough said.
My two words. Goodnight


There continues to be widespread westerly upper level flow at the tropopause level across the Atl. Small chance for development under this regime. Maybe another sts garbage of the southeast coast which till now has been the story line with this season.

Take July to sit back and relax, and wait for August. :0)

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again, even stronger Antarctic Low, now at 921mb

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Quoting hurricane23:


Not hostile really? You have screaming westerlies blowing right through carib. Also the central atl is being held in check with plenty of dry air from frequent sal outbreaks. chances of develope are slim in my view.

I wasn't referring to the Caribbean, I agree that it is hostile. I was referring to the central and eastern Atlantic, where the only minor limiting factor is SAL. I agree that chances for development are slim.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

The environment is not hostile. The tropical wave has not developed yet because it's not time for them to, as Levi states earlier. Sea Surface Temperatures and wind shear are good for cyclogenesis, and the wave has a large moisture envelope to protect it from dry air entrainment.


Hey TropicalAnalystwx13 this answer that you did, Dr.Jeff Masters has to put in his blog for all people who are expecting Cape Verde season start in mid july, when CV season start in mid agust.

But, i understand you guys we have nearly a month without a storms and the anxiety is probably bigger because of the active start

In july the fromation of storms is very little
and when the can form they do in western carribean and GOM
and the western carribean has 1 week with strong wind shear
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Storm chasers these days..

2011-2012 winter makes a comeback lol, someone mixed up a few words.
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
Quoting hurricane23:


Not hostile really? You have screaming westerlies blowing right through carib. Also the central atl is being held in check with plenty of dry air from frequent sal outbreaks. chances of develope are slim in my view.

enough said.
My two words. Goodnight
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

The environment is not hostile. The tropical wave has not developed yet because it's not time for them to, as Levi states earlier. Sea Surface Temperatures and wind shear are good for cyclogenesis, and the wave has a large moisture envelope to protect it from dry air entrainment.


Not hostile really? You have screaming westerlies blowing right through carib. Also the central atl is being held in check with plenty of dry air from frequent sal outbreaks. chances of develope are slim in my view.
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Line developing ove lake MI, I still have a chance at storms/rain!
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
Storm chasers these days..

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Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
A cold front has cleared the area, shunting yesterday's oppressive heat well to the south. However, abundant moisture remains in place and will support scattered shower and thunderstorm activity for much of the day. Highs will be about 15 degrees cooler than yesterday and will be on the high side of normal for this time of year. Slightly cooler temperatures in the low to mid 80s can be expected on Thursday along with another chance for showers and thunderstorms. Highs will remain in the 80s through the weekend with generally quiet weather.
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
Quoting hurricane23:


Extremely hostile environment all around out there across the central and eastern atlantic. Unlikely to develope.

The environment is not hostile. The tropical wave has not developed yet because it's not time for them to, as Levi states earlier. Sea Surface Temperatures and wind shear are good for cyclogenesis, and the wave has a large moisture envelope to protect it from dry air entrainment.
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Quoting Grothar:


It will be entering an area of very dry air, however, the wind shear should be low.





likely get ripped to shreds as it reaches the carib 30-50kt westerlies running through that area. really dont see much chance for development till 1st or 2nd week of august.
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413. OCF
Ex-Fabio has been streaming over the Los Angeles area all day. Lots of visible virga, but not coming anywhere near the ground. Made for a very nice sunset. The cloud bases were much higher than Mt. Wilson and neighbors (so higher than 6,000 feet) and off to the east where there were fewer clouds higher than Baldy (10,000 feet). Radar was kind of ambiguous but it looked like more moisture (and maybe slightly lower cloud bases) went off towards Ventura and Santa Barbara. We'll see if any moisture makes it to the ground tonight. (Around here, any rain at all in July is more than we expect to have, although we did get measurable amounts last week.)
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Quoting WxGeekVA:




Extremely hostile environment all around out there across the central and eastern atlantic. Unlikely to develope.
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Quoting wxchaser97:
minus, minus, minus jk. We still have JV, Cabrera, and other great players. Does anyone think the wave will ever get a yellow circle, yes or no?


It will be entering an area of very dry air, however, the wind shear should be low.



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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:

choo choo choo
choo choo choo
choo chooo choo
woot wooooooooo.


I've always admired your command of the language. You never try to "railroad" anybody.
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Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
Quoting WxGeekVA:




Another one that bites the dust.
Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 14883
Quoting Grothar:





choo choo choo
choo choo choo
choo chooo choo
woot wooooooooo.
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Quoting Bluestorm5:


Haha, sorry for stealing 2006 World Series from you guys ;)
minus, minus, minus jk. We still have JV, Cabrera, and other great players. Does anyone think the wave will ever get a yellow circle, yes or no?
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167


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I'm checking out for a while... may check in later before I go to bed for good...
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22725
Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167
large bombs
sometimes come
in small packages
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Quoting wxchaser97:
I dont like the Cardinals, the Tigers are the best.
Tigers beat the Angels 7-2!!!


Haha, sorry for stealing 2006 World Series from you guys ;)
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area just exiting to the right of image firing off a nice show
we have another smaller region entering stage left
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Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167
The weak low that was with wave only lasted 6 hours as the 00z Surface Analysis drops it.

Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 14883
Quoting Bluestorm5:
As a diehard Cardinals fan, I HATES the Cubs ;)
I dont like the Cardinals, the Tigers are the best.
Tigers beat the Angels 7-2!!!
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7972
393. beell
...ITCZ/MONSOON TROUGH...

THE MONSOON TROUGH EXTENDS ACROSS W AFRICA TO THE COAST OF SENEGAL AT 15N17W CONTINUING TO A 1014 MB LOW AT 12N33W...AND ALONG 8N40W 9N49W. THE ITCZ BEGINS AT 9N49W CONTINUING TO 9N62W.

Maybe the only thing this wave has going for it right now; Convergence as opposed to confluence well out into the central ATL.
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Quoting stormchaser19:


Neutral, neutral,neutral
Yes Yes!!!
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Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167
Cook
Severe Thunderstorm Warning
Statement as of 9:33 PM CDT on July 18, 2012

... A Severe Thunderstorm Warning remains in effect for Cook...
southeastern lake... dupage and southern Kane counties until 1000 PM
CDT...

At 932 PM CDT... National Weather Service Doppler radar indicated a
line of severe thunderstorms capable of producing damaging winds in
excess of 60 mph. These storms were located along a line extending
from Long Grove to Des Plaines to York Center to Lisle... moving
southeast at 40 mph.

Severe thunderstorms will be near...
Riverwoods... Deerfield... Bannockburn and Lake Forest around 940 PM
CDT.
Northbrook... Highland Park... Willow Springs and Summit around 945
PM CDT.
Northfield... Winnetka... Glencoe and Stickney around 950 PM CDT.
Wilmette... Kenilworth and Wilmette Harbor around 955 PM CDT.


Lat... Lon 4190 8823 4223 8810 4226 8781 4214 8774
4208 8767 4191 8762 4190 8760 4184 8760
4176 8754 4174 8754 4162 8771 4163 8773
4169 8803 4173 8803 4173 8819 4177 8837
4187 8858
time... Mot... loc 0233z 297deg 36kt 4217 8798 4201 8791
4185 8796 4177 8807
wind... hail 60mph <.50in


Izzi
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129780
Quoting LargoFl:
..........................check out this sinkhole that opened up in this guys yard..geez....this is in Brooksville florida
Lucky thing this didn't open underneath his house... looks big enough to swallow the whole thing...

Quoting Bluestorm5:
Just a warning for future... do not challenge hurricanes just because you'll be fine from the winds or rains. Storm surge will get you HARD.

I mean, Katrina's surge DESTROYED everything up to 28 feet above the ground.

Link
Agree 100%. NOLA was hit hard, but let's face it, it is largely below sea level. By that I mean a certain amount of flooding was expected anyway. But u gotta check out the damage on the MS coast that was mainly from the surge... I mean WIPEOUT... up to IIRC 10 miles inland in some places...

Places like Tampa Bay area, pretty much any of the coastal islands along the GOM and East Coast... well, the wind is bad, but the surge'll getcha.

Quoting Grothar:


Christina Wan's and the Rainbow Palace are very good. P.F. Changs is right down the street from me though.
Thanks 4 this info; I was hoping u'd answer...

Quoting Thrawst:


Yeahhh! Today was incredible. One of the rare GREAT days so far this summer don't ya say!?
You betcha... I almost cried because I couldn't go to the beach, and I was trying to figure out how to blog outside, where I could get the sun on me for a while... lol... Sure hope tomorrow is as good, because I want a chance to get out with my camera...

Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22725
Quoting MississippiWx:
Plus this post if you can find the the mistake. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.
1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10 isnt a sentence.
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looks like death ridge rtns
greenland cools in short term
but warms in long term
heat is still on
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Quoting wxchaser97:
Hopefully nothing too bad there. Who is winning and go Tigers.

Game delayed now because of the storm. Cubs are up 5-1 in the 8th. Pretty wicked storm moved in lots of lightning, wind and heavy rain.
Member Since: September 30, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 108
Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167
Quoting 954FtLCane:

funny enough just watching the Marlins game at Wrigley field and as I started reading this it looks like the storm is moving in..... take that back it's pouring at Wrigley.
As a diehard Cardinals fan, I HATES the Cubs ;)
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Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129780
Member Since: July 21, 2011 Posts: 83 Comments: 7167
Quoting AussieStorm:
UFO. lol


And it's mothership.
beautiful condensing clouds
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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