Assessment of ice particle growth processes at dye-3, Greenland

Randolph D. Borys, Deborah Del Vecchio, Jean Luc Jaffrezo, Cliff I. Davidson, David L. Mitchell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


As part of the DGASP program on the Greenland Ice Sheet, an investigation was conducted into the nature of ice particle formation processes that result in the formation of snow. Ice particle habits were determined using Formvar replicas of falling snow crystals. From these measurements an assessment of the primary growth process and altitude of formation was made. Results indicate that the scavenging of cloud water by falling ice particles, growth by accretion or riming, rarely occurs. However, when riming does occur, it is usually associated with warmer air masses from the south. The occurrence of riming was also observed to be dependent on the season, with a greater frequency occurring during warmer months. It was estimated that ice particle riming contributes less than 5% of the average annual water mass, but up to 30% of the deposition of some chemical species, deposited to the Greenland Ice Sheet at Dye 3. Ice particle habits indicate that they originate at higher altitudes above the ice cap in summer than in winter. Variations in the magnitude of ice particle riming, the elevation of origin of ice particles, the meteorology and the season of the year are all essential when interpreting snow chemistry and comparing snow and aerosol chemistry at Dye 3.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2815-2822
Number of pages8
JournalAtmospheric Environment Part A, General Topics
Issue number17-18
StatePublished - Dec 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Greenland
  • riming
  • snow chemistry
  • snow formation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution


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