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Glossary of Permafrost and Related Ground Ice Terms



Introduction PDF (116 KB)

Definitions HTML (235 KB)  |  PDF (284 KB)

Illustrations PDF (1.5 MB)

Chinese Terms PDF (272 KB)

French Terms PDF

German Terms PDF

Icelandic Terms PDF

English Terms PDF (236 KB)

Italian Terms PDF

Norwegian Terms PDF

Polish Terms PDF

Romanian Terms PDF

Russian Terms PDF (132 KB)

Spanish Terms PDF

Swedish Terms PDF

Turkish Terms PDF

References HTML  |  PDF

Errata since 1998 Version PDF


During the 5th International Permafrost Conference, held in Trondheim (Norway) in August 1988, the Council of the International Permafrost Association (IPA) authorized the establishment of a Terminology Working Group with the mandate "to develop a set of internationally accepted permafrost terms for use in engineering and science, with equivalents in various languages, and to disseminate and encourage the use of such terminology."

The Terminology Working Group was established in the fall of 1988, with members from Argentina, Canada, China, Finland, France, Germany, the USA, and the (former) USSR. Members from Italy, Norway and Sweden were added later. The Canadian Glossary of Permafrost and Related Ground-Ice Terms (Permafrost Subcommittee, Associate Committee on Geotechnical Research, National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa, Technical Memorandum No. 142, 156 p., 1988) formed the basis for a new version of the Glossary compiled by the Terminology Working Group.

The resulting glossary was published in hard copy: International Permafrost Association. 1998. Multi-Language Glossary of Permafrost and Related Ground-Ice Terms, Version 2.0. R. O. van Everdingen, Ed. University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada. Terms in Chinese, English, French, German, Icelandic, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Spanish and Swedish were included. An electronic version of the English version of the 1998 Glossary without illustrations was published on the CAPS Version 1.0 CD-ROM and a slightly revised English version was published on CAPS Version 2.0 in 2003. A Turkish glossary was provided by Dr. Onur Çalişkan, Ankara University in 2013. (Please see the introduction (PDF) by Dr. van Everdingen for more information on the contents and process of creating the glossary.)

The full, illustrated, multi-language version of the glossary is now available here. The references and English definitions are available in HTML and PDF formats. The introduction, illustrations, and multi-language terms are available only in PDF format.

Please cite this version of the glossary as follows:

van Everdingen, Robert, ed. 1998 revised May 2005. Multi-language glossary of permafrost and related ground-ice terms. Boulder, CO: National Snow and Ice Data Center.