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The English version of our glossary is currently under construction and will be regularly updated.

Ice drift

Refers to the motion of sea ice in one main direction.

Refers to the dynamic motion of sea ice in one main direction. In the Arctic, this chiefly involves major drift systems. In the Beaufort Gyre off the north coast of Alaska, the ice circulates clockwise. It is gradually fed into the Transpolar Drift, which transports ice from the coasts of Siberia over the North Pole and into Fram Strait between Svalbard and Greenland, before it melts in the Greenland Sea. The ice in the Transpolar Drift only reaches three years of age (in contrast to four to ten years in the Beaufort Gyre) before leaving the Arctic Ocean.

Main Arctic drifting systems.