The Measurement of Snow Properties for Mobility Applications: The Unfrozen Water Content,
MICHIGAN TECHNOLOGICAL UNIV HOUGHTON KEWEENAW RESEARCH CENTER
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The free water content of snow has been used in over-snow vehicle mobility studies only in a documentary manner. The free water content of snow is indicated by the terms dry, moist, wet, very wet, or slush. Throughout the range of conditions, the variation of free water obviously has a significant effect of the snow strength parameters used in vehicle performance evaluation. During a testing program this past winter 1983-1984 at the Keweenaw Research Center, which involved vehicles attempting to negotiate snow obstacles, free water content was measured and included as snow characterization data along with density, grain size, and snow temperature. Of particular interest to this paper was the difference in test results of two snow obstacles having the same classification of the two types of snow used to form the obstacles was measured, by calorimetry, to be 16 and 26.