Wind erosion of snow

Wind erosion of snow

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Credit: SIMON FRASER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Sculpted snow patterns, known as sastrugi, in the Heer Land region of Spitsbergen, the Norwegian island in the Svalbard Archipelago on the edge of the Arctic Ocean. Sastrugi takes an almost infinite variety of forms, from delicate etchings on a smooth slab of snow, to furrows & grooves up to 1 metre deep, sometimes with overhanging lips. They are formed by particles of snow, driven by high winds, scouring the surface. They usually form at temperatures of -10 to -20 degrees C or lower, when the snow particles are dry.

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Keywords: arctic, climate, cold, erosion, frozen, meteorology, norway, of snow, sastrugi, spitsbergen, weather, wind, wind erosion, winter

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