A survey of Arctic snow-cover properties as related to climatic conditions
Bilello, Michael A.
Research ReportSummary: An analysis of snow-cover density, temperature, and hardness data, measured over a period of several years at five stations in Alaska and six stations in the Canadian Arctic, shows the snow cover in the Canadian Archipelago to be colder, denser, and harder than in the interior of Alaska. A series of nomographs were developed to estimate average monthly snow-cover density from mean monthly air temperature and wind velocity. The nomographs are applicable for the months November through March, for the Alaskan and Canadian area north of 62°N latitude, and for elevations below 1500 ft. A comparison of observed snow-cover densities with those derived from the nomographs indicates that the method will provide a reliable regional estimate of snow-cover density. Studies of the relation between snow-cover temperature and air temperature from November through March disclosed the snow to be on the average from 4°C to 9°C warmer than the air at the Alaskan stations and 4.5°C warmer at the Canadian Archipelago stations. An investigation of snow-cover hardness revealed regional variations similar to that for density. Measured snow hardness during the period of no melting was found to be related to densities between 0.15 and 0.36 g/cm^3.
U.S. Army Snow, Ice, and Permafrost Research Establishment.Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Snow; Snow cover; Snow surveys; Arctic regions; Alaska; Canada; Meteorology; Climatology; Climate; EPOLAR
Research report (U.S. Army Snow
Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.