Item: Snow profiling at weissfluhjoch
Title: Snow profiling at weissfluhjoch
Proceedings: International Snow Science Workshop, Davos 2009, Proceedings
Authors: Roland Meister, WSL Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research SLF, Davos, Switzerland
Abstract: Systematic snow and avalanche research in Switzerland started shortly after 1932, when the Swiss snow and avalanche commission was founded and the cable-way from Davos to Weissfluhjoch/ Parsenn was built. The researchers went out in the surroundings to examine the snow pack. They also documented avalanche accidents and verified the warning procedures. A short overview is given to the methods, techniques and results of snow profiling at that famous place and else were. The story is described thru the decades. Swiss military alpine services adapted snow profiling methods and gauges. They became orderly ones, also abroad. The civil network for avalanche warning was refined and time profiles were designed for snow cover evolution at the stations. In the late 1970ies, stability checks as Rutschblock test came back from military to the institute. Acceptable practices in snow cover examinations and site selection involve thinking in the power of ten, following the measurements error propagation and taking into account temporal and spatial variations of the snow cover. It is explained, why digging snow pits is not superfluous until our days, beside the consideration of electronic gauges and model outputs. Depending on the application, different types of snow profiles are necessary, say scientific ones and quick pits for field evaluation.
Keywords: weissfluhjoch research station, snow metamorphism, swiss ramsonde, avalanche formation, pattern recognition, avalanche warning
Digital Abstract Not Available