Data Set ID:

Collaborative Research: Laboratory Studies of Isotopic Exchange in Snow, Version 1

This data set contains sublimation rate data from laboratory studies of snow. Parameters include flow rate, measured sublimation rate, and theoretical maximum sublimation rate. Data were collected in cold rooms at the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL), in Hanover, NH, during 2005 and 2006. The data were collected as part of a collaborative research project. The project aims to develop a quantitative understanding of the processes active in isotopic exchange between snow/firn and water vapor, which is important to Antarctic ice core interpretation.

Data are available via FTP in Microsoft Excel (.xls) format.

NSIDC does not archive these data.

  • Snow/Ice > SNOW/ICE
  • Atmospheric Water Vapor > Sublimation > SUBLIMATION
Data Format(s):
  • Excel
Spatial Coverage:
N: 43, 
S: 43, 
E: -72, 
W: -72
Spatial Resolution:Not SpecifiedSensor(s):HYGROMETERS
Temporal Coverage:
  • 1 January 2005 to 31 December 2006
Temporal ResolutionNot specifiedMetadata XML:View Metadata Record
Data Contributor(s):Thomas Neumann

Geographic Coverage

Please contact the data provider for the correct Data Citation for this data set.

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Detailed Data Description


Data are in Microsoft Excel (.xls) format.

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File and Directory Structure

Data are available on the FTP site in the directory. The data set consists of one Microsoft Excel spreadsheet, sub_rate_data.xls.

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File Naming Convention

The file, sub_rate_data.xls contains laboratory measurement data of snow sublimation rates.

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The data set is 32 KB.

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Spatial Coverage

Snow was collected outdoors, and processed in the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory in Hanover, New Hampshire, USA.

Southernmost Latitude: 43° N
Northernmost Latitude: 43° N
Westernmost Longitude: 72° W
Easternmost Longitude: 72° W

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Temporal Coverage

Data were collected in 2005 and 2006.

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Parameter or Variable

This data set contains snow sublimation rate data, measured under specified temperatures in a laboratory setting.

Parameter Description

Table 1. Description of Parameters in the sub_rate_data.xls File
Parameter Description
Flow rate (SLPM) Measured flow rate in standard liters per minute
Measured sublimation rate Measured sublimation rate in kilograms per second
Theoretical maximum sublimation rate Theoretical maximum sublimation rate, in kg per second
Mass-transfer coefficient Mass-transfer coefficient (meters per second) was calculated as a function of Reynolds Number.

Sample Data Record

Sublimation Rate Data
T = -5C flow rate (SLPM) 9.64E-01 1.76E+00 3.69E+00 8.12E+00
measured sublimation rate 5.12E-08 8.87E-08 1.64E-07 3.26E-07
theoretical maximum sublimation rate 5.64E-08 9.43E-08 1.82E-07 3.79E-07
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Software and Tools

Data are accessible using spreadsheet software.

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Data Acquisition and Processing

Theory of Measurements

Data consists of sublimation rate measurements at a specified, fixed temperature. Samples consisted of approximately 100-gram sieved snow samples of a specific grain radius that had dry air drawn through them at specified flow rates. Measured flow rates were compared with theoretical maximum sublimation rates to assess the degree to which equilibrium was achieved. The mass transfer coefficient was determined from the measured sublimation rates. These data are expressed as a function of Reynolds number, and are provided in the spreadsheet.

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Derivation Techniques and Algorithms

The Mass-transfer coefficient (hm) was derived as a function of Reynolds Number (Re). Calculations were done assuming all sublimation happens in approximately 4 mm of the sample thickness. Other values of hm for 1 mm and 1 cm are given in Neumann et. al., 2009.

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Sensor or Instrument Description

For details of laboratory setup and instrumentation, see Neumann et. al., 2009.

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References and Related Publications

Contacts and Acknowledgments

Dr. Thomas Neumann 
Cryospheric Sciences Branch 
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center 
Greenbelt, MD 20770 


This research was supported by National Science Foundation (NSF) Office of Polar Programs (OPP) grant number 0338008.

Document Information

Document Creation Date

4 January 2010

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