Published on YouTube Aug 12, 2013: This is a visualization of the Arctic Death Spiral showing the evolution of the volume of sea-ice over time from 1979 to July 2013.
Pitch of the notes are proportional to the average sea-ice volume for each month. Spectral filters are derived from the average sea-ice volume for each year. Produced using Perl and PovRay, Midi perl and Reason and Virtualdub on a cluster of Linux servers.
The rate of ice loss in the Arctic is staggering. Since 1979, the volume of Summer Arctic sea ice has declined by more than 80% and accelerating faster than scientists believed it would, or even could melt.
The first ice-free summer in the Arctic Ocean is expected to happen between 2016 and 2022.
About the data: Sea Ice Volume is calculated using the Pan-Arctic Ice Ocean Modeling and Assimilation System (PIOMAS, Zhang and Rothrock, 2003) developed at APL/PSC.
Source data for this graph is available from http://psc.apl.washington.edu