Walt Meier

Senior Research Scientist
NSIDC DAAC Scientist


PhD, University of Colorado at Boulder, 1998


Sea ice; passive microwave remote sensing; Arctic climate change; climate change

  • NSIDC NASA DAAC Scientists
  • JAXA AMSR2 Science Team
  • Sea ice climate indicators
  • Lagrangian tracking of sea ice and climate parameters

Recent Highlights and Upcoming Activities

  • Invited presenter on sea ice climate indicators at the 7th Symposium on the Impacts of an Ice-Diminishing Arctic on Naval and Marine Operations, 18-20 July 2017, Washington, DC.
  • Co-lead author for Arctic Council Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP) “Snow, Water, Ice, and Permafrost in the Arctic (SWIPA)” Assessment Follow-On Report (2014-2017)
  • Lead author on two papers on sea ice products from the JAXA AMSR2 sensor, IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing, 2017
  • Invited presenter on Arctic and Antarctic sea ice changes at the Gordon Research Conference on Polar Marine Science, 26-31 March 2017, Ventura, CA
  • Invited presenter on sea ice concentration uncertainties at Workshop on Sea Ice Remote Sensing and Modeling, 23-24 January 2017, Tokyo, Japan
  • Leader of remote sensing module in Sea Ice Summer School, 26 May – 1 June 2016, Barrow, AK.

Current Research

  • Enhancement and application of Lagrangian tracking of sea ice parcels for investigation of Arctic change
  • Development of new sea ice climate indicators to inform policymakers
  • Development and validation of operational sea ice products from AMSR2
  • Evaluation of sea ice concentration uncertainty estimates from passive microwave data
  • Near-real-time analysis of Arctic sea ice and climate conditions


  • International Glaciological Society Symposium on “Polar Ice, Polar Climate, Polar Change”, Scientific Steering Committee member, 14-19 August 2017, Boulder, CO
  • Sea Ice Prediction Network Leadership Team member 2012-present
  • Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee (IARPC), 2013-2017; co-chair of Sea Ice Collaboration Team, 2017
  • International Arctic Science Committee (IASC) Cryosphere Working Group 2011-2016, Vice Chair 2015-2016
  • Guest Editor, Remote Sensing Special Issue on Sea Ice, 2015 - 2016
  • World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) Climate and Cryosphere (CliC) Sea Ice Working Group
  • WCRP Data Advisory Committee (WDAC) 2011-2016
  • U.S. Navy Scientific Ice Expeditions (SCICEX) Science Advisory Committee Member 2013-present



Bliss, A.C., J.A. Miller, and W.N. Meier. 2017. Comparison of passive microwave-derived early melt onset records on Arctic sea ice. Remote Sensing 9: 199. doi:10.3390/rs9030199.

Comiso, J.C., W.N. Meier, and R. Gersten. 2017. Variability and trends in the Arctic sea ice cover: Results from different techniques. J. Geophys. Res. doi:10.1002/2017JC012768.

Meier, W.N., and A. Ivanoff. 2017. Intercalibration of AMSR2 NASA Team 2 algorithm sea ice concentrations with AMSR-E slow rotation data. IEEE J. Spec. Topics Appl. Earth Obs. & Rem. Sens. 10(8), doi:10.1109/JSTARS.2017.2719624.

Meier, W.N., J.S. Stewart, Y. Liu, J. Key, and J.A. Miller. 2017. An operational implementation of sea ice concentration estimates from the AMSR2 sensor. IEEE J. Sel. Topics Appl. Earth Obs. & Rem. Sens. 10(9). doi:10.1109/JSTARS.2017.2693120.


Bracegirdle, T., N. Bertler, A. Carleton, Q. Ding, C. Fogwill, J. Fyfe, H. Hellmer, A. Karpechko, K. Kusahara, E. Larour, P. Mayewski, W. Meier, L. Polvani, J. Russell, S. Stevenson, J. Turner, J. van Wessem, W. van de Berg, and I. Wainer. 2016. A multi-disciplinary perspective on climate model evaluations for Antarctica, Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc. doi:10.1175/BAMS- D-15-00108.1.

Hobbs, W.R., R. Massom, S. Stammerjohn, P. Reid, G. Williams, W. Meier. 2016. A review of recent changes in Southern Ocean sea ice, their drivers and forcings. Global and Planetary Change 143: 228-250. doi:10.1016/j.gloplacha.2016.06.008.


Gallaher, D., G.G. Campbell, W. Meier, J. Moses, and D. Wingo. 2015. The process of bringing dark data to light: The rescue of the early Nimbus satellite data. Geo. Res. J. 6: 124-134.

Meier, W.N., F. Fetterer, J. Scott Stewart, and S. Helfrich. 2015. How do sea ice concentrations from operational data compare with passive microwave estimates? Implications for improved model evaluations and forecasting, Ann. Glaciol. 56(69): 332-340. doi:10.3189/2015AoG69A694.

Perovich, D., W. Meier, M. Tschudi, S. Farrell, S. Gerland, and S. Hendrick. 2015. Sea Ice in Arctic Report Card 2015 http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/reportcard.

Posey, P.G., E.J. Metzger, A.J. Wallcraft, D.A. Herbert, R.A. Allard, O.M. Smedstad, M.W. Phelps, F. Fetterer, J.S. Stewart, W.N. Meier, and S.R. Helfrich. 2015. Improving Arctic sea ice edge forecasts by assimilating high horizontal resolution sea ice concentration data into the US Navy's ice forecast systems, The Cryosphere 9: 1735-1745. doi:10.5194/tc-9-1735-2015.


Bhatt, U.S., D.A. Walker, J.E. Walsh, E.C. Carmack, K.E. Frey, W.N. Meier, S.E. Moore, F-J.W. Parmentier, E. Post, V.E. Romanovsky, and W.R. Simpson. 2014. Implications of Arctic sea ice decline for the earth system. Ann. Rev. Environ. Resour. 39: 5-89. doi:10.1146/annurev-environ-122012-094357.

Eisenman, I., W.N. Meier, and J.R. Norris. 2014. A spurious jump in the satellite record: has Antarctic sea ice expansion been overestimated? The Cryosphere 8: 1289-1296. doi:10.15194/tc-8-1289-2014.

Gallaher, D., G.G. Campbell, W.N. Meier. 2014. Anomalous variability in Antarctic sea ice extents during the 1960s with the use of Nimbus data. IEEE J. Selected Topics App. Earth Obs. and Rem. Sens. 3(7): 881-887. doi:10.1109/JSTARS.2013.2264391.

Meier, W.N., G. Peng, D.J. Scott, M.H. Savoie. 2014. Verification of a new NOAA/NSIDC passive microwave sea-ice concentration climate record. Polar Research 33. doi:10.3402/polar.v33.21004.

Meier, W.N., G. Hovelsrud, B. van Oort, J. Key, K. Kovacs, C. Michel, M. Granskog, S. Gerland, D. Perovich, A.P. Makshtas, and J. Reist. 2014. Arctic sea ice in transformation: A review of recent observed changes and impacts on biology and human activity. Rev. Geophys. 41. doi:10.1002/2013RG000431.

Perovich, D., S. Gerland, S. Hendricks, W. Meier, M. Nicolaus, and M. Tschudi. 2014. Sea Ice [in Arctic Report Card 2014], http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/reportcard.


Meier, W.N., D. Gallaher, and G.G. Campbell. 2013. New estimates of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice extent during September 1964 from recovered Nimbus I satellite imagery. The Cryosphere 7: 699-705. doi:10.5194/tc-7-699-2013.

Peng, G., W.N. Meier, D.J. Scott, and M.H. Savoie. 2013. A long-term and reproducible passive microwave sea ice concentration data record for climate studies and monitoring, Earth Sys. Sci. Data 5: 311-318. doi:10.5194/essd-5-311-2013.

Wohlleben, T., A. Tivy, J. Stroeve, W. Meier, F. Fetterer, J. Wang, and R. Assel. 2013. Computing and representing sea ice trends: Toward a community consensus, Eos 94(40):352.


Meier, W.N., J. Stroeve, A. Barrett, and F. Fetterer. 2012. A simple approach to providing a more consistent Arctic sea ice extent timeseries from the 1950s to present. The Cryosphere 6: 1359-1368. doi:10.5194/tc-6-1359-2012.

Olsen, M.S., T.V. Callaghan, J.D. Reist, L.O. Reiersen, D. Dahl-Jensen, M.A. Granskog, B. Goodison, G.K. Hovelsrud, M. Johansson, R. Kallenborn, J. Key, A. Klepikov, W. Meier, J.E. Overland, T.D. Prowse, M. Sharp, W.F. Vincent and J. Walsh. 2011. The changing Arctic cryosphere and likely consequences: An overview. AMBIO 40(1): 111-118. doi:10.1007/s13280-011-0220-y.

Reist, J.D., T.V. Callaghan, D. Dahl-Jensen, G.K. Hovelsrud, M. Johannsson, R. Kallenborn, J.R. Key, W.N. Meier, M.S. Olsen, J. Overland, T. Prowse, L.-O. Reiersen, M. Sharp, W.F. Vincent, and J. Walsh. 2011. SWIPA Synthesis: Implications of Findings in Snow, Water, Ice and Permafrost in the Arctic (SWIPA): Climate Change and the Cryosphere, AMAP Oslo, Norway.

Stroeve, J. C., V. Kattsov, A. Barrett, M. Serreze, T. Pavlova, M. Holland, and W.N. Meier. 2012. Trends in Arctic sea ice extent from CMIP5, CMIP3 and observations. Geophys. Res. Lett. 39: L16502. doi:10.1029/2012GL052676.


Meier, W.N., S.J.S. Khalsa, and M.H. Savoie. 2011. Intersensor calibration between F-13 SSM/I and F-17 SSMIS near-real-time sea ice estimates. IEEE Trans. Geosci. Rem. Sens. 49(9): 3343-3349.

Stroeve, J.C., J. Maslanik, M.C. Serreze, I. Rigor, W. Meier, and C. Fowler. 2011. Sea ice response to an extreme negative phase of the Arctic Oscillation during winter 2009/2010. Geophys. Res. Lett. 38: L02502. doi:10.1029/2010GL045662.


Kattsov, V.M., V.E. Ryabinin, J.E. Overland, M.C. Serreze, M. Visbeck, J.E. Walsh, W. Meier, and X. Zhang. 2010. Arctic sea-ice change: a grand challenge of climate science. J. Glaciology. 56(200): 1115-1121.


Lindsay, R.W., R. Kwok, L. de Steur and W. Meier. 2008. Halo of ice deformation observed over the Maud Rise seamount. Geophys. Res. Lett. 35(15). doi:10.1029/2008GL034629.

Meier W.N., and J. Stroeve, 2008. Comparison of sea-ice extent and ice-edge location estimates from passive microwave and enhanced-resolution scatterometer data. Ann. Glaciol. 48, 65-70.


Meier, W.N., J. Stroeve, and F. Fetterer. 2007. Whither Arctic sea ice? A clear signal of decline regionally, seasonally and extending beyond the satellite record. Ann. Glaciol. 46: 428-434.

Stroeve, J.C., M.M. Holland, W.N. Meier, T. Scambos, and M. Serreze. 2007. Arctic sea ice decline: Faster than forecast. Geophys. Res. Lett. 34, L09501. doi:10.1029/2007GL029703.


Dai, M., T.E. Arbetter, and W.N. Meier. 2006. Data assimilation of sea-ice motion vectors: sensitivity to the parameterization of sea-ice strength. Ann. Glaciol. 44: 357-360.

Meier, W.N., J. Stroeve, and S. Gearheard. 2006. Bridging perspectives from remote sensing and Inuit communities on changes in the sea ice cover in the Baffin Bay region. Ann. Glaciol. 44: 433-438.

Meier, W.N., and M. Dai. 2006. High-resolution sea-ice motions from AMSR-E imagery. Ann. Glaciol. 44: 352-356.

Stroeve, J.C., T. Markus, W.N. Meier, and J. Miller. 2006. Recent changes in the Arctic melt season, Ann. Glaciol., 44, 367-374.


Meier, W.N. 2005. Comparison of passive microwave ice concentration algorithm retrievals with AVHRR imagery in the Arctic peripheral seas, IEEE Trans. Geosci. Rem. Sens. 43(6), 1324-1337.

Meier, W., J. Stroeve, F. Fetterer, K. Knowles. 2005. Reductions in Arctic sea ice cover no longer limited to summer. Eos 86(36): 326. doi:10.1029/2005EO360003.

Stroeve, J. C., M. C. Serreze, F. Fetterer, T. Arbetter, W. Meier, J. Maslanik, and K. Knowles. 2005. Tracking the Arctic's shrinking ice cover: Another extreme September minimum in 2004. Geophys. Res. Lett. 32(4): L04501. doi:10.1029/2004GL021810.


Meier, W.N., M. Marquis, M. Kaminski, and R. Weaver. 2004. NASA EOS sensors demonstrate potential for multiparameter studies of Arctic sea ice. Eos 85(46): 481-489.

Van Woert, M.L., C.Z. Zou, W.N. Meier, P.D. Hovey, R.H. Preller, and P.G. Posey. 2004. Forecast verification of the Polar Ice Prediction System (PIPS) sea ice concentration fields, J. Atmos. Ocean. Tech. 21(6): 944-857.


Arbetter, T.E., A.H. Lynch, J.A. Maslanik, W.N. Meier. 2003. Effects of data assimilation of ice motion in a basin-scale sea ice model. Ice in the Environment: Proceedings of the Int'l Assoc. for Hydraulic Engineering and Research 16th Int'l Symposium on Ice 3: 186-193.

Meier, W.N., and J.A. Maslanik. 2003. Effect of environmental conditions on observed, modeled, and assimilated sea ice motion errors. J. Geophys. Res. 108(C5): 3152. doi:10.1029/2002JC001333.

Meier, W.N., T. Maksym, and M.L. Van Woert. 2003. Evaluation of Arctic operational passive microwave products: A case study in the Barents Sea during October 2001. Ice in the Environment: Proceedings of the Int'l Assoc. for Hydraulic Engineering and Research 16th Int'l Symposium on Ice 3: 213-222.


Meier, W.N., and J.A. Maslanik. 2001. Synoptic-scale ice motion case studies using assimilated motion fields. Ann. Glaciol. 33: 145-150.

Meier, W.N., and J.A. Maslanik. 2001. Improved sea ice parcel trajectories in the Arctic via data assimilation. Mar. Pollution Bull. 42(6): 506-512.

Meier, W.N., M.L. Van Woert, and C. Bertoia. 2001. Evaluation of operational SSM/I ice-concentration algorithms. Ann. Glaciol. 33: 102-108.

Van Woert, M., W.N. Meier, J.A. Beesley, and C.Z. Zhou. 2001. Satellite validation of the May 2000 sea ice concentration fields from the Polar Ice Prediction System. Can. J. Rem. Sens. 27(5): 443-456.


Meier, W.N., J.A. Maslanik, and C.W. Fowler. 2000. Error analysis and assimilation of remotely sensed ice motion within an Arctic sea ice model. J. Geophys. Res. 105(C2): 3339-3356.


Meier, W.N., J.A. Maslanik, J.R. Key, and C.W. Fowler. 1997. Multiparameter AVHRR-derived products for Arctic climate studies. Earth Interactions, 1: 1-29. doi:10.1175/1087-3562(1997)001.