Arctic Sea Ice Forecast 2020- Almost exactly predicted the Northern Sea Route opening date-
Relating program : Climate Prediction, Arctic Sea Ice Information Office
In the Arctic Challenge for Sustainability II (ArCS II) project, the Arctic Sea Ice Forecast is provided by the collaboration between Climate Prediction program (Hasumi Group, University of Tokyo) and the Arctic Sea Ice Information Office *.
In the first report of the forecast released on May 22, we predicted that the Northern Sea Route will open on August 1. Now the actual opening date was verified by the satellite observation as August 2, only one day apart from the prediction.
A table below summarizes the opening date of the route by the prediction and observation. Difference between them falls almost within one-week range. It is the standard days for passing through the Northeastern Sea Route without sea ice.
|Year (date of the first report )||Forecast||Observation|
|2015 (Announced on May 28)||August 24||August 16|
|2016 (Announced on May 25)||August 25||August 31|
|2017 (Announced on May 19)||August 20||August 23|
|2018 (Announced on May 17)||August 15||August 15|
|2019 (Announced on May 16)||August 15||August 9|
|2020 (Announced on May 22)||August 1||August 2|
The opening date of the route is determined by the sea ice concentration observed by AMSR2 (microwave radiometer mounted on the GCOM-W satellite), based on the standard that “a vessel can sail through without entering the sea area of over 15% sea ice concentration”.
*The Arctic Sea Ice Information Office has been established as a part of ArCS II project. The Arctic Sea Ice Information Office, collaborating with ADS team, will perform an important role for disseminating and exchanging information that is more suitable for practical use.
Noriaki Kimura (University of Tokyo / Researcher of Climate Prediction program)