from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Alternative form of polynya.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. The open sea supposed to surround the north pole.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. An open or unfrozen place in the midst of the ice of a river or lake or in the ocean: a word used in English only by navigators in arctic seas.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
"polynia" - an area of open water surrounded by ice.
Before the formation of the iceberg, the Mertz Peninsula provided the right conditions for a polynia - an expanse of open water surrounded by sea-ice - to exist.
He added that as well as providing a feeding site for the region's wildlife, the polynia also was a key production site of "bottom water"; very cold, dense water that sinks to the ocean floor.
He added that the new iceberg had shortened the length of the Mertz Glacier Tongue, which could result in pack ice entering the area and disrupting the polynia.
When the sea freezes inside a polynia, it leaves unusually salty water which sinks to the bottom of the ocean.
By opening up the polynia, the loss of the ice tongue could affect this process.
The open water within the polynia provides favourable conditions for the growth of algae, which help to support an ecosystem that includes emperor penguins and seals.
_polynia_ -- as he calls vast expanses of water -- north of Siberia, the outskirts of which he had reached, the same in fact as that already sighted by Leontjew in 1764, and Hedenstroem in 1810.
Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.