Flato, G.M. , 2003:
Chapter 9 in Mass Balance of the Cryosphere: Observations and Modelling of Contemporary and Future Changes, J. Bamber and A. Payne (eds.), Cambridge University Press, pp. 367-389.
Representing the mass balance of sea ice involves solving a coupled, non-linear set of equations describing ice motion (momentum balance), thermodynamic growth and melt (energy balance) and the transport and redistribution of ice thickness (area and volume conservation). A brief review is provided here. It is the case that approximations employed to represent many important processes, both in stand-alone ice models and in more comprehensive global climate models (e.g. the CMIP coupled OAGCMs), lead to errors or uncertainties in simulated sea-ice behaviour. Nonetheless, because of the scarcity of direct observations related to sea-ice mass balance, models provide valuable insights into the mean state of the ice cover and its historical and projected future changes.