Thermal Evolution of Fluid Permeability and Microstructure in Sea Ice

Kenneth Golden
University of Utah

Fluid flow through porous sea ice mediates a broad range of processes in the geophysics and biology of the polar oceans. Such processes are important in the role that sea ice plays in Earth's climate system, and how polar ecosystems
may respond to climate change. We'll describe recent advances in using percolation, hierarchical, and network models to predict the fluid permeability of sea ice, as well as rigorous, diffusion-based methods for bounding it. We'll also discuss X-ray CT imaging of the brine microstructure of sea ice and
connectivity analysis of graphs derived from our tomographic images. Related work on sea ice electrical properties, which are critical to remote sensing of the polar regions, will be addressed as well.

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