Spring Quarter 2017
ARCTIC 401: Introduction to Arctic Climate System
Instructor: Kent Moore, 2016-17 UW Fulbright Visiting Chair in Arctic Studies
TTH 9:30-11:20 | CMU 228 | SNL 10467
*Core course for UW Arctic Studies Minor
The Arctic has seen dramatic changes over the past several decades, most notably in the retreat of its seasonal sea ice cover and the concomitant loss of multi-year sea ice. In addition, there exist a number of positive feedback mechanisms that are the result of the tight coupling between the atmosphere, the land surface and ocean in the region that suggest that anthropogenic climate change will be amplified at high northern latitudes. There is also increasing evidence that changes in the Arctic climate have a dramatic impact on the mid-latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere.
This course will provide students with an overview of the Arctic’s current and past physical characteristics and climatic features. Following this introduction, a detailed investigation of the atmospheric heat, moisture and energy budgets will be undertaken with an emphasis on the role that dynamical systems play in these budgets as well as in the interactions between the ocean, land surface, atmosphere and sea ice cover. With this foundation, the results of global climate models will be used to discuss the future predicted climate state of the region. Satellite remote sensing data, field project data, reanalysis fields and climate model output will be used throughout the course to illustrate key physical processes.
Professor Kent Moore has a Ph.D. in Geophysical Fluid Dynamics from Princeton University. He is currently 2016-17 UW Canada Visiting Fulbright in Arctic Studies and a Professor of Physics at the University of Toronto. Professor Moore’s research interests include: theoretical geophysical fluid dynamics, mesoscale meteorology, polar meteorology, high latitude air-seaice interactions, physical oceanography, paleoclimatology and high altitude physiology. Professor Moore has published over 150 research papers in the high quality peer-reviewed literature.