Item: Preliminary tests and evaluation of a digital snow board
Title: Preliminary tests and evaluation of a digital snow board
Proceedings: Proceedings of the 2000 International Snow Science Workshop, October 1-6, Big Sky, Montana
Authors: Robert E. Davis and Jerry Johnson, Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory US Army Engineer Research and Development Center Hanover, New Hampshire· Fairbanks, Alaska Walter Rosenthal Mammoth Mountain Ski Patrol Mammoth Mountain Ski Area Mam
Abstract: Measurement of snowfall by automatic sensors in alpine and subalpine conditions has proven difficult. Those who require observations of snow loading have maintained regular measurement ProtoCOls using snow boards to observe the depth and density of snowfall on 24-hour and/or storm event bases. During the winter 1999-2000 we tested a prototype digital snow board that automatically senses snow fall depth and water equivalent. The system used an acoustic ranging sensor to measure snowfall depths with a resolution of about 3-5 mm up to 2 m, the maximum range allowed by the support frame. A set of three load cells measured the mass of snowfall accumulating on the active part of the board, a plate with diameter of 0.4 m within a collection area with 1 m diameter. The sensing plate had a resolution of 2.5 mm water equivalent with calibrations indicating a finer resolution. The calibration of the sensing plate and a field calibration both indicate an accuracy of about ±4 mm SWE nominal Practitioner evaluation suggested improvements that would help digging out and dumping snow off the board, including making the system lower in overall mass and adding handles.
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Keywords: snowfall, snow accumulation, snow measurements
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