Ice Crust

ice crust

[′īs ‚krəst]
A type of snow crust; a layer of ice, thicker than a film crust, upon a snow surface, formed by the freezing of meltwater or rainwater which has flowed onto it.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Ice Crust


a layer of ice on the surface of soil or snow cover; it forms under the influence of solar radiation, deep thaws followed by frosts, liquid precipitation, or a fog that settles during the cold season. An ice crust can damage or kill winter crops, perennial grasses, and other wintering plants and create unfavorable conditions for the pasturing of animals in regions of transhumance.

A distinction is made between ground ice crusts, in which the ice layer rests on the surface of the soil, and hanging ice crusts or frozen snow crusts, in which the ice layer is on the surface of the snow cover. Ground ice crust, which can be up to 15–20 cm thick, is the more dangerous for plants and animals. Wintering plants freeze into the ice and are killed by the low temperatures. The formation of ice around the tillering node also leads to mechanical injury in plants. Snow retention measures are carried out to prevent the harmful consequences of ice crust (under a layer of snow the crust is less dangerous for plants), or the crust is covered by humus, peat, ashes, or mineral fertilizers to accelerate melting.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
There are no direct measurements for what exists beneath Enceladus' ice crust. "No one will be able to tell if these conditions are really occurring on Enceladus," he said.
Such a bulge could have welled upward when the impact carved the initial hole in Pluto's ice crust.
The canyons and valleys on Pluto seem to have formed as the dwarf planet swelled up, rather than as it shrank, indicating that a liquid ocean most likely sits beneath the thick ice crust today, researchers said in the study.
The spacecraft's magnetometer has detected a faint particle stream coming from the moon, and images showed evidence for a possible liquid or slushy layer under its rock-hard ice crust.
Scientists believe that microbial life may exist in the dark depths of the lake despite its high pressure and constant cold - conditions similar to those expected to be found under the ice crust on Mars, Jupiter's moon Europa and Saturn's moon Enceladus.
But if you smash down on the thick-iced puddle with the hard sole of your Welly, the ice crust shatters.
"The ice crust (has) made it easier to walk on top," Ms.
However, by late February, in some regions an ice crust formed on the fields that in some cases lasted over 30 days.
But this large moon, almost certainly covered in a global ocean of water below its solid ice crust, is still one of the most fascinating of worlds, and well worth a book to itself--especially as most of the images and analysis were produced in the later stages of the Galileo mission with little attendant publicity.
The first episode of methane gas release occurred after Titan formed its dense rock core and water mantle beneath an ice crust. Ammonia, acting as an antifreeze, aided the release of methane during the first 1,000,000,000 years in Titan's history.
The previously unknown species, which he and his colleagues named Carnobacterium pleistocenum, is a good model for life-forms that he and other researchers suspect could exist in a similar suspended state in Mars' polar ice caps or in the ice crust on Europa, he adds.