Below a part-image from www.seaice.dk and originating from the NOAA Polar Orbiter satellite's measurements of radiated heat, which provides pictures of the sea ice, as well as water vapor.
|December 1, 2011, part-image from www.seaice.dk and originating from NOAA Polar Orbiter|
Large red areas show up end 2011 (particularly from November 25 till December 6) off the coast of Siberia, matching up with the dates mentioned in the earlier post Abrupt release of methane in the Arctic in late 2011.
Since methane has a very high immediate greenhouse effect, the heat detected on the images could well originate from methane releases. Furthermore, one of the indirect effects of methane releases is production of water vapor, which also has a strong greenhouse effect. Therefore, the red areas could well be seen as indications of methane releases.
Matching images like this minute by minute with AIRS images of methane could give a valuable insight in the contribution of methane to warming in the Arctic.
Below is the animation. Click on Read more if you don't see it. Note that this is a 17.7 MB file. It may take some time for the animation to fully load.