Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
×
Home

Effects of microtopography on texture, temperature and heat flow in Arctic and sub-Arctic snow

  • Matthew Sturm (a1) and Jonathan Holmgren (a1)

Abstract

Arctic and sub-Arctic snow is deposited on ground that can have significant microrelief due to tundra hummocks and tussocks. The microrelief, a substantial fraction of the total snow depth, causes basal layers of snow (usually depth hoar) to be discontinuous. In-situ measurements made at four locations in Alaska indicate lateral temperature gradients up to 60°C m −1 exist at the snow/ground interface due to the microtopography. For all sites, the winter average range of temperature along a 1.5 m transect at the interface varied from 4°C to greater than 7°C. Heat-flux transducers placed at the tops and bases of tussocks indicated that vertical heat flow was consistently 1.4 to 2.1 times higher at the top than the base. Results of a conductive model based on tussock height are consistent with these measurements.

  • View HTML
    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

      Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

      Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

      Effects of microtopography on texture, temperature and heat flow in Arctic and sub-Arctic snow
      Available formats
      ×

      Send article to Dropbox

      To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      Effects of microtopography on texture, temperature and heat flow in Arctic and sub-Arctic snow
      Available formats
      ×

      Send article to Google Drive

      To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      Effects of microtopography on texture, temperature and heat flow in Arctic and sub-Arctic snow
      Available formats
      ×

Copyright

References

Hide All
Benninghoff, W.S. 1965 Relationships between vegetation and frost in soils. In Proceedings. Permafrost. International Conference, 11–15 November 1963 Lafayette, Indiana. Washington, DC, National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council, 913. (Publication 1287)
Benson, C.S. 1967 A reconnaissance snow survey of interior Alaska. Fairbanks, AK, University of Alaska. Geophysical Institute. (Report UAG R–190.)
Benson, C.S. 1982 Reassessment of winter precipitation on Alaska's Arctic Slope and measurements on the flux of wind blown snow. Fairbanks, AK, University of Alaska. Geophysical Institute. (Report UAG R–288.)
Benson, C.S. Sturm, M. 1993 Structure and wind transport of seasonal snow on the Arctic Slope of Alaska. Ann. Glaciol., 18, 261267.
Beschel, R.E. 1965 Hummocks and their vegetation in the High Arctic. In Proceedings. Permafrost, International Conference, 11–15 November 1963 Lafayette, Indiana. Washington, DC, National Academy of Sciences. National Research Council, 1320. (Publication 1287)
Chapin, F.S. van Cleve, K. III, Chapin, M.C. 1979 Soil temperature and nutrient cycling in the tussock growth form of Eriophorum vaginatum. J. Ecol., 67(1), 169190.
Combarnous, M.A. Bories, S.A. 1975 Hydrothermal convection in saturated porous media. Adv. Hydrosci., 10, 231307.
Desrochers, D.T. Granberg, H.B. 1988 Schefferville snow–ground interface temperatures. In Senneset, K., ed. Permafrost. Fifth International Conference. Proceedings. Volume 1. August 2–5, 1988. Trondheim, Tapir Publishers, 6772.
Gold, L.W. Lachenbruch, A.H. 1973 Thermal conditions in permafrost—a review of North American literature. In North American Contribution. Permafrost. Second International Conference, 13–28 July, 1973 Yakutsk U.S.S.R. Washington, DC, National Academy of Sciences, 325.
Granberg, H.B. 1988 On the spatial dynamics of snowcover–permafrost relationships at Schefferville. In Senneset, K., ed. Permafrost. Fifth International Conference. Proceedings. Volume 1. August 2–5, 1988. Trondheim, Tapir Publishers, 159164.
Nelson, F.E. Outcalt, S.I. Hinkel, K.M. Murray, D.F. Murray, B.M. 1988 Microtopographic thermal contrasts, northern Alaska. In Senneset, K., ed. Permafrost. Fifth International Conference. Proceedings. Volume 1. August 2–5, 1988. Trondheim, Tapir Publishers, 819823.
Nicholson, F.H. Granberg, H.B. 1973 Permafrost and snowcover relationships near Schefferville. In North American Contribution. Permafrost. Second International Conference, 13–28 July, 1973 Yakutsk U.S.S.R. Washington, DC, National Academy of Sciences, 151158.
Pruitt, W.O. Jr. 1970 Some ecological aspects of snow. In Ecology of the subarctic regions. Proceedings of the Helsinki Symposium 1966. Paris, UNESCO, 8399. (UNESCO Series Ecology and Conservation 1.)
Pruitt, W.O. Jr. 1984 Snow and living things. In Olsen, R., Hastings, R. and Geddes, F., eds. Northern ecology and resource management. Edmonton, University of Alberta Press, 5177.
Radforth, N.W. 1965 Origin and significance of organic terrain features. In Proceedings. Permafrost. International Conference, 11–15 November 1963 Lafayette, Indiana. Washington, DC, National Academy of Sciences. National Research Council, 3843. (Publication 1287)
Raup, H.M. 1965 Turf hummocks in the Mesters Vig district, northeast Greenland. In Proceedings. Permafrost International Conference, 11–15 November 1963 Lafayette, Indiana. National Academy of Sciences. National Research Council, 4350. (Publication No. 1287)
Seppala, M. 1990 Depth of snow and frost on a paisa mire, Finnish Lapland. Geogr. Ann., 72A(2), 191201.
Sturm, M. 1991 The role of thermal convection in heat and mass transfer in the subarctic snow cover. CRREL. Rep. 9119.
Sturm, M. 1992 Snow distribution and heat flow in the taiga. Arct. Alp. Res., 24(2), 145152.
Sturm, M. Johnson, J.B. 1991 Natural convection in the subarctic snow cover. J. Geophys. Res., 96(B7), 11,65711,671.
Sturm, M. Johnson, J.B. 1992 Thermal conductivity measurements of depth hoar. J. Geophys. Res., 97(B2), 21292139.
Trabant, D. Benson, C.S. 1972 Field experiments on the development of depth hoar. Geol. Soc. Am. Mem. 135, 309322.
Viereck, L.A. Dyrness, C.T. Batten, A.R. Weizlick, K.J. 1992 The Alaska vegetation classification. Portland, OR, Pacific Northwest Research Station.
Walker, D.A. Everett, K.R. Webber, P.J. Brown, J. 1980 Geobotanical atlas of the Prudhoe Bay region, Alaska. CRREL Rep. 8014.
Walker, M.D. Walker, D.A. Everett, K.R. 1989 Wetland soils and vegetation, Arctic foothills, Alaska. U.S. Department of the Interior. Fish and Wildlife Service. Biological Report 89(7).
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Annals of Glaciology
  • ISSN: 0260-3055
  • EISSN: 1727-5644
  • URL: /core/journals/annals-of-glaciology
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed