University of Tasmania
whole_FaulknerPeterStuart1989_thesis.pdf (6.43 MB)

Environmental processes affecting the temporal and spatial variabilities of snowmelt in the Ben Lomond ski field area, Tasmania

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posted on 2023-05-26, 23:24 authored by Faulkner, PS
Studies were pursued in the snowfields of Ben Lomond in north-eastern Tasmania to establish the environmental factors affecting snowmelt. The approach through temporal and spatial analysis of ablation, was built upon a five year study of the climate which commenced in 1981. This was accompanied by an intensive measurement period in July to October, 1986. Climatic results indicated that the highest and most consistent rates of snowmelt were associated with a mean rise in the daily air temperature and a reduction in snowfall days towards the end of September. The days of strongest melt were most commonly accompanied by northwesterly winds generating regional advection. As the snowfield boundaries decreased, local advective forces enhanced heat available for melt. The three dominant terms in the energy balance over snow were, in order of importance, net radiation, sensible and latent heat. Other, terms investigated, including heat from rain, the ground and internal energy, were of minor significance in providing energy for melt. The importance of any one term was observed to depend upon the prevailing synoptic situation. The seasonal changes in the energy balance were reflected in temporal variations in snowmelt. The spatial variability in snowmelt was not adequately described by variations in the energy balance. The differences could be explained by local characteristics in groundcover and topography. Snow melted most slowly in grassed gullies lying under steep southward facing slopes above an altitude of 1500 metres. Within the study area, the rock domes and ridges which had the most easterly aspect and were below 1500 metres lost their snowcover first.


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Copyright 1987 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s). Thesis (MSc)--University of Tasmania, 1989. Bibliography: leaves 116-123

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