Some strength features of natural snow surfaces that affect snow drifting

  • Martinelli M
  • Ozment A
  • 7


    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • 6


    Citations of this article.


The load, travel distance, and work index needed to break surface elements on 21 natural snow surfaces were measured with a motor-driven, spherical probe. The strongest and least brittle surfaces were fresh deposits of wind transported snow. The weakest surface was a new surface formed during snowfall with no sun and no wind. The most brittle surfaces were two cases of sun-softened snow that had refrozen before measurement. In new snow that had aged 6-7 1 2 h with no sun and no wind, strength increased by a factor of 2-3, work index increased 10 times, and brittleness decreased by 4-9 times. On surfaces with both erosional and depositional features, the latter were stronger, less brittle, and had work indexes 10-100 times greater than the erosional features. The strength of snow surface elements as measured with the current hardness gage corresponded closely to the forces generated by saltating snow particles. © 1985.

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document


  • M. Martinelli

  • Arnold Ozment

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free