Covering up to 49% of the total land surface in midwinter in the northern hemisphere, snow is a crucial component of the cryosphere. Snow plays a key role in our environnment, with social and economical implications such as the climate change, natural hazard, tourisms, etc. How does snow behave and interact with its surrounding largely depends on its microstructure, which varies widely from light dendritic snowflakes to small rounded grains or dense melt crusts for instance. Measuring and characterizing snow is therefore essential.
Great advances have been made over the past 15 years toward more quantitative, objective characterization of snow, allowing for a better, more physical description of the processes; they came along with new measurements techniques. These improved quantification methods of the snow cover must be spread to the cryosphere scientists community, and beyond, as beneficial to many applications in this field, e.g. hydrology, climatology, avalanche forecasting or earth observation from space.
The 6th Snow Science Winter School will teach these modern techniques of snow measurements. The school consists of a field training complemented by theoretical lessons. It includes the practice with some of the state-of-the-art snow measurement techniques (specific surface area by reflection and spectroscopy, near-infrared photography, high-resolution penetrometry, micro-tomography, etc). Students will learn about how to characterize snow cover, what are the fundamental processes responsible for its evolution, and how does it interacts with the environment. For this edition, a special focus will be on snow in a changing climate, impact on human and nature.