The studies of the mechanics of the drifting sea ice field deformations by means of strain meters, tilt meters and other contact instruments allowed one to reveal a number of physical-mechanical effects (stress release, self-oscillation, "slow" waves), which reflect many processes, occurring in the atmosphere and the ocean. The examples, illustrating the relation of the ice cover dynamics and mechanics with cyclones, are presented. A hypothesis of the generation of large-scale self-oscillating processes in the Arctic Ocean is suggested.


The ice cover of the seas and the oceans appears to be a sensitive element, reflecting many processes, occurring in the atmosphere and the ocean. Ice deformations, induced by the forces of a hydrometeorologycal character allow one to investigate the behavior of the ice massif as a solid medium with the properties of a viscous-elastic body. Variations in the surface atmospheric pressure field, oceanic currents, as well as the effects of tidal water motion change the concentration of sea ice, leading to compacting in the ice cover. The results of the field studies in the Arctic show, that in most cases the divergence of ice at a medium-scale polygon correlates with the one over larger areas (Bushuyev et al., 1967). Medium-scale deformations of the ice cover and deformations of the ice fields can be a good indicator of a large-scale deformation; a wind-driven compression can travel through the ice fields over distances up to 200 km; the drift acceleration and hum mocking are shown to begin earlier than the increase of wind. The studies of the mechanics of sea ice deformation, carried out at the" North Pole " (NP) drifting station by means of strain meters, tilt meters and seismometers allowed us to classify the physical-mechanical processes in the ice fields according to the nature of their formation.

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