Measuring Snow Specific Surface Area with 1.30 and 1.55 μm; Bidirectional Reflectance Factors Journal Article uri icon



  • Abstract. Snow specific surface area (SSA) is an important physical property that directly affects solar absorption of snow cover. Instrumentation to measure snow SSA is commercially available for purchase, but these instruments are costly and/or remove and destroy snow samples during data collection. To obtain rapid, repeatable, and in situ surface snow SSA measurements, we mounted infrared light emitting diodes and photodiode detectors into a 17 cm diameter black styrene dome. By flashing light emitting diodes and measuring photodiode currents, we obtain accurate 1.30 and 1.55 micron bidirectional reflectance factors (BRFs). We compare measured snow BRFs with X-ray micro computed tomography scans and Monte Carlo photon modeling to relate BRFs to snow SSA. These comparisons show an exponential relationship between snow 1.30 micron BRFs and SSA from which we calculate calibration functions to approximate snow SSA. The techniques developed here enable rapid retrieval of snow SSA by a new instrument called the Near-Infrared Emitting and Reflectance-Monitoring Dome (NERD).;

publication date

  • October 4, 2018

has restriction

  • green

Date in CU Experts

  • May 18, 2023 2:21 AM

Full Author List

  • Schneider A; Flanner M; De Roo R

author count

  • 3

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