ON RATIONALIZATION OF THE SNOW CHARACTERISTIC MEASUREMENTS FOR THE ASSESSMENT OF SNOWPACK STABILITY ON A SLOPE
Interpretation of the physical and mechanical characteristic measurements of the snowpack is a base for avalanche release prediction. The spatial variability of the measured characteristics and measurement errors can affect the quality of the initial data for assessing the snowpack stability on a slope and results of this assessment. The work describes principles of rationalization for the measurements of the characteristics that influence on snow stability on a slope. The fields of these characteristics and errors of their measurements were considered as random. A few quality criteria for networks measuring snow characteristics on a slope are used. The study includes estimates of the parameters of the spatial statistical structure (variances and autocorrelation functions) for the fields of thickness, density, shear strength and temperature of snowpack on slopes in various mountain regions. Errors of methods for measuring snow characteristics were estimated. It is shown that in different landscapes, spatial patterns of the point measurements should be different. The influence of spatial measurement schemes on the quality of snowpack stability interpretation is analyzed for different parameters of spatial statistical structure of the snow characteristics and accuracy their measurements.
The use of conventional deterministic methods for interpretation of point measurements of snowpack characteristics to assess its stability on the slope can and does lead to incorrect conclusions. The way out of this situation can be the use of statistical simulation based on deterministic models of mechanical stability of snowpack, the input data for which are generated on the basis of point measurements of snow characteristics and previously obtained parameters of their spatial statistical structure. Probabilistic estimates obtained with statistical simulation reflect the uncertainty of the input information in the probabilistic conclusion about the snowpack stability.
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