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10 March 2011

Archival Gold: National Snow and Ice Data Center Photo Gallery

Most of our snow has been rained into nonexistence in the past few days, but as a last hurrah before spring takes hold, I thought I’d feature photos of very cold and snowy places. The National Snow and Ice Data Center is a part of the University of Colorado at Boulder, and they have a fantastic collection of photos of glaciers, iceburgs, ice sheets, sea ice, snow, Arctic/Antarctic expeditions, and other chilly subjects. Although not a government institution, the NSIDC does allow free use of properly credited photos in their gallery.


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7 December 2010

Let it snow! But maybe not on that volcano…

In honor of the snow (finally) reaching the north of Buffalo, I thought I’d write a post about volcanoes with chilly tops – i.e., ones covered in snow or glaciers. Although we tend to think of volcanoes as ‘hot’ geologic features, it’s fairly common for a volcano to be snow- or glacier-topped. More so for stratovolcanoes (like Rainier in the Cascades, or Fuji in Japan, or pretty much any volcano in Alaska), but it can happen at shield volcanoes too (such as Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa in Hawaii


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13 April 2010

Volcano Vocab #2: Jökulhlaup

Today’s obscure volcanologically-related word is jökulhlaup (“yer-kul-hloyp”, “YO-kel-yawp” and “yo-kul-h-loip” in varying pronunciations), which is an Icelandic word for glacial outburst floods, both of water and lahars, formed when a subglacial eruption occurs. The water for these floods is formed when heat from those eruptions melts glacial ice, forming lakes that eventually become unstable enough to break through channels in the base of the glacier and flow out from underneath …


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