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Title: Ice thickness observations in the North American Arctic and Subarctic for 1958-59, 1959-1960
Authors: Bilello, Michael A.
Keywords: Ice
Arctic regions
Ice thickness
Publisher: Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Series/Report no.: Special report (Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (U.S.)) ; 43 pt.1.
Description: Special Report
Introduction: Since the establishment of the Joint Arctic Weather Stations in Canada, station personnel have made a variety of additional observations such as ice thickness measurements. Prior to 1956, several methods were used to measure ice thickness. Some of these methods required that a permanent installation be placed on the ice. Because of the activity in the immediate area of the installation, surface conditions, especially snow depths, were different from those in the surrounding area. These methods also limited the observations to only one point and often the apparatus became inoperative and measurements had to be terminated for the season. Attempts to use ice chisels or dynamite (for thicker ice) were abandoned also. In the spring of 1956, the author introduced SIPRE's 1 in. ice thickness kit to the personnel at these stations. With proper precautions, this auger can drill a 1 in. hole through ice 5 to 6 ft thick in 10 to 15 min. To measure the ice thickness, a graduated tape with a short rod attached to the end is lowered into the hole. When the rod is below the ice sheet, it swings to a horizontal position. The tape is then lifted until the tilt rod stops at the undersurface of the ice, and the thickness of the ice is read directly from the tape. A separate wire attached to the end of the rod draws the rod and tape back through the hole. This procedure for ice thickness measurement was favorably received, and kits were shipped to each of the five Arctic weather stations. During 1958, correspondence was initiated with the Canadian Department of Transport, Meteorological Division, on the possibility of expanding the ice thickness network. By May 1959, 22 Canadian stations were included in the program, and by May 1960, 30 well distributed locations throughout Canada were in operation. At the start, it was planned to accumulate the ice thickness measurements until concurrent weather data would become available and an analysis of the relationships between ice growth and weather conditions could be made. However, conversation with potential users and scientific personnel indicated that the data should be made available without delay to agencies in Canada and the U. S. who may have immediate need for them. Consequently, permission was granted by the Director, Meteorological Division, Department of Transport, Canada, to publish the observed data in a series of CRREL Special Reports, which will make the actual observations on ice thickness, ice conditions, and snow depths available once every two years.
Rights: Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Appears in Collections:Special Report

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