by Brooks Hays
Bochum, Germany (UPI) Nov 30, 2016
Scientists believe a new sensor will enable them to conduct the first comprehensive survey of the insides of an avalanche.
"We don't know what exactly happens when an avalanche moves down a mountain, because avalanches have only ever been observed from the outside," Christoph Baer, a researcher at Ruhr-University Bochum, said in a news release.
The new radar sensor developed by Baer and his colleagues will continue to function even after being swept up by a wave of snow.
Understanding an avalanche requires an understanding of the interactions between different layers. The layers of an avalanche are defined by density. If scientists can measure the densities of different layers, they can use fluid dynamics to model the internal processes present in an avalanche.
The new sensor can measure snow density in real-time.
Researchers with the Swiss Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research have installed the sensor on a test slope in the Valais Alps. They're now waiting for the snow to fall. If an avalanche doesn't occur naturally during the coming winter season, they will generate one by detonating dynamite at the top of a ridge.
It's A White Out at TerraDaily.com
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|