Item: Visualization of three-dimensional snow: how to use it in snow education
Title: Visualization of three-dimensional snow: how to use it in snow education
Proceedings: International Snow Science Workshop, Davos 2009, Proceedings
Authors: Martin Heggli, Matthias Jaggi, Bernd Pinzer, Stephen Steiner, Thiemo Theile, and Martin Schneebeli WSL Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research, Davos, Switzerland
Abstract: Traditionally, the shape of snow crystals is studied on a crystal screen. Therefore, snow is implicitly considered as a material composed of individual grains. However, doing this, the structural information is lost, comparable to trying to understand the significance of structure from a pile of rubble. Most mechanical and physical properties of the snow can only be explained by considering the three-dimensional (3D) architecture of the snow microstructure. We give an overview of the methods used to visualize the 3D structure of the snow, which can be easily used in a class room, as anaglyph images and animations. We will present and explain images of the major snow classes and several interfaces and weak layers. We also give an overview of current techniques which can be used to collect samples in the field and how they can be processed later using high-resolution micro-tomography (micro-CT). The imaging of layers at the scale of a few centimeters is now possible with the newly developed replica technique and fast computers. This makes the technique available to image layer transitions, as they often occur in weak layers.
Keywords: microstructure, micro-ct, serial sections, surface rendering, anaglyph, replica method
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