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Title: Methods for measuring snow moisture and density
Authors: Elder, Bruce C.
Shoop, Sally A. (Sally Annette)
Feyrer, Mary C.
Beal, Samuel A.
Keywords: Density
Publisher: Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Series/Report no.: Miscellaneous Paper (Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)) ; no. ERDC/CRREL MP-20-3
Abstract: The manual measurement of snow density through sample collection and liquid water content by calorimetry can be cumbersome and time consuming, while electronic methods are considerably faster. Field and laboratory experiments were conducted to compare several techniques for measuring snow density and moisture content. Two methods for the measurement of snow moisture were used in both field and laboratory settings: the Denoth meter capacitance plate and the Toikka Oy “Snow Fork” microwave resonance technique. Snow density was measured using three techniques: a direct sample measurement (rectangular snow scoop); snow fork; and, in the lab setting, the Bruker Sky-Scan 1173 Micro CT – X-ray scanner using image analysis techniques. Results show that the snow fork densities are generally reliable in dry snow but become inaccurate (low) in wet snow. Density from direct sampling was on average 0.037 g/cc greater than the snow fork density. Densities measured by the Micro-CT were inaccurate once the snow began to melt, primarily due to sample collection and processing technique. For moisture measurements, we found the Snow Fork to be a reliable tool for measuring the moisture content and density of snow. The Denoth moisture values are on average 0.054% by volume higher than the snow fork moisture. All Denoths tested, report similar moisture values, which was encouraging as these devices are over 20 years old and there is no other source for calibration.
Description: Miscellaneous Paper
Gov't Doc #: ERDC/CRREL MP-20-3
Rights: Approved for Public Release; Distribution is Unlimited
Size: 15 pages / 630.03 kB
Types of Materials: PDF/A
Appears in Collections:Miscellaneous Paper

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