Animation of Annual Variation in Sea Ice Extent in the Northern Hemisphere
As warmer temperatures arrive in the Arctic in the springtime, the ice begins to melt and much of the ice pack breaks up. This continues throughout the summer, so the extent of the ice pack is usually at its minimum around September. Thereafter it begins growing again, repeating the annual cycle.
This animation shows seven years of this cycle, from January 2002 through December 2008.
(Note: If you cannot see the animation you may need to download the latest QuickTime player.)
- Click here to check out an interactive that allows you to compare sea ice extent at different times of the year or during different years.
- Click here to watch an animation of variations in sea ice in the Antarctic regions of the Southern Hemisphere.
- Click here to see the predictions that global climate models make about future changes in sea ice extent.
Go to the NSIDC web site to:
- View and animate single images of sea ice extent, concentration, anomalies, and trends.
- View multiple maps of various types at the same time.