We chose to focus on the Arctic because it's the area where we can make the largest impact on global temperatures. The ice in the Arctic acts like a global heat shield, reflecting heat that would otherwise warm the ocean and destabilize global weather.

With the region’s ice declining, we need to act now or we could see an icefree Arctic summer by 2030. 

Although the ice builds up during the winter, it has not been enough to compensate for the losses since 1979. The video above shows the decline in minimum sea ice extent since 1979, which is basically the amount of ice left to reflect heat during the summer.

There are three ways the Arctic reflects heat:

  1. Bright ice, which is basically a combination of ice and snow, reflecting 90% of the heat that comes its way.

  2. Bare ice reflects 50% of heat.

  3. Open ocean only reflects 6% of heat.

Our material mimics bright ice to reflect the most heat possible -- keeping more ice in the Arctic and the planet cooler for everyone.

IceExp-02.png

Because the ocean absorbs 94% of the heat that comes its way, the Arctic could become a global heater if we let its ice melt. Our team is developing a solution that reflects the most heat, so we decided to mimic bright ice with our material. That way, we can keep more ice in the Arctic during the summer and restore the region’s ice sheet to its previous size over time.


To learn even more about the impacts of Arctic ice loss, see Yale Environment360's explanation here.

To support our mission to reduce ice loss, please donate today.