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Near-term Variability and Prediction of the Antarctic Climate System (AntClimNow)

Surface radiation is crucial to determine the surface energy balance, which is fundamental for atmospheric and oceanic circulation processes and modulates a wide range of processes involving, for one, the cryosphere. Antarctica has a unique geographic position in radiation climatology: the net radiation at the Earth surface is expected to rise rapidly, and, due to the peculiar environment and temperature regime, Antarctic stations are the only ones that can provide information on the lower part of a graph representing rate of irradiance change vs. rate of temperature change.

So, if we want to have a complete understanding of this relation, we need to sustain and improve observations at high southern latitudes. With the aim to obtain a clear picture of the ongoing activities regarding surface radiation observations and elaborate strategies to better assess radiative regimes and related processes in the different areas of the continent, an online workshop and a side-meeting at the IUGG 2023 in Berlin were organised. The final and ambitious goal is the creation of an Antarctic Radiation Regional Network (ARRN).

The workshop and side-event highlighted the interest of the international community in ARRN initiative. Suggestions were made on which parameters, in addition to basic radiation components, the network should focus on; cloud observations and measurements over sea ice or ice shelves were deemed important, as well as aerosol and vertical profiles information.

Future plans have been discussed and should focus on (i) creating an accessible database for radiation data, also with the aim to provide useful climate indicators, as well as (ii) working towards an Action Group to provide the necessary framework and structure to the reference community and to the network. With respect to (ii), the aim is to make possible its discussion and decision during the next SCAR conference in Chile 2024.

Click here to read the full workshop report.

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