A bulk blowing snow model

Stephen J. Déry and M. K. Yau


We present in this short paper a simple and computationally efficient numerical model that depicts a column of sublimating, blowing snow. This bulk model predicts the mixing ratio of suspended snow by solving an equation that considers the diffusion, settling and sublimation of blowing snow in a time-dependent mode. The bulk model results compare very well with those of a previous spectral version of the model, while increasing its computational efficiency by a factor of about one hundred. This allows the integration of the simplified algorithm into more sophisticated mesoscale models to estimate the thermodynamic tendencies arising from blowing snow sublimation and the effects of this process to the snowcover and the atmospheric boundary layer.