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The “Freshwater Switchyard” (S.Y.):
Is variability tied to the Arctic Oscillation (AO) index?

The Arctic Oscillation (AO) index describes 2 major modes of wind patterns, which drive 2 modes of sea ice circulation shown above. Our hypothesis is that this creates 2 different influences of freshwater inflow/outflow in the Switchyard region, as shown above. Our goal is to test this hypothesis.

Small Red arrows: annual mean sea ice motion from IABP
Blue streaks: Lagrangian tracer pathways forced continuously by these annual mean fields

Lower AO index:
Freshwater outflow has more Siberian river influence?

Higher AO index:
Freshwater outflow has more N. American + Pacific influence?

Polar Science Center
Applied Physics Laboratory
1013 NE 40th Street
Seattle, WA 98105

University of Washington

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 0230427.
Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the
National Science Foundation.

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