An open-source albedo-wand for the measurement of sea ice albedo
An open-source albedo-wand for the measurement of sea ice albedo
at : Apr 24, 2019 15:03:13  (view:308)

An open-source albedo-wand for the measurement of sea ice albedo

 

Christian Katlein 1,2

 

1 Alfred-Wegener-Institut, Helmholtz Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung, Bremerhaven, Germany;

2 Takuvik Joint International Laboratory, Université Laval and CNRS, Québec, Canada

 

Abstract

Surface Albedo is defined as the ratio of incident and reflected solar irradiance and describes

the ability of a surface to reflect, rather than absorb incident solar shortwave radiation. It is

thus a crucial parameter in the climate system, particularly in the polar oceans. Sea ice albedo

is a main driver for light transmission into the polar oceans and thus has a high impact on

ocean warming, ice melting and marine primary production. During spring and summer, sea

ice albedo can exhibit a significant spatial variability caused by meltwater accumulations on

the ice. While complex and expensive solutions for albedo measurements are already

available, we want to present a simple open-source design that allows for affordable mapping

of spatially varying surface albedo on sea ice and beyond. Our solution is based on off-the-

shelf components, such as an Arduino microcontroller integrating affordable light sensors, a

GPS unit, data recording on memory card and data display into a simple field strengthened

unit. We provide example data from two Arctic field deployments showing the capabilities

and limitations of this system.

 

Keywords

sea ice, albedo, spatial variability, mapping, GPS, open-source