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Article:Snow
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The process of precipitating snow is called '''snowfall'''. Snowfall tends to form within regions of upward motion of air around a type of [[low-pressure system]] known as an [[extratropical cyclone]]. Snow can fall poleward of these systems' associated [[warm front]]s and within their comma head precipitation patterns (called such due to the comma-like shape of the cloud and precipitation pattern around the poleward and west sides of extratropical cyclones). Where relatively warm water bodies are present, for example because of water evaporation from lakes, [[lake-effect snow]]fall becomes a concern downwind of the warm lakes within the cold cyclonic flow around the backside of extratropical cyclones. Lake-effect snowfall can be heavy locally. [[Thundersnow]] is possible within a cyclone's comma head and within lake effect precipitation bands. In mountainous areas, heavy snow is possible where upslope flow is maximized within [[windward]] sides of the terrain at elevation, if the atmosphere is cold enough. Snowfall amount and its related liquid equivalent precipitation amount are measured using a variety of different [[rain gauge]]s.
 
The process of precipitating snow is called '''snowfall'''. Snowfall tends to form within regions of upward motion of air around a type of [[low-pressure system]] known as an [[extratropical cyclone]]. Snow can fall poleward of these systems' associated [[warm front]]s and within their comma head precipitation patterns (called such due to the comma-like shape of the cloud and precipitation pattern around the poleward and west sides of extratropical cyclones). Where relatively warm water bodies are present, for example because of water evaporation from lakes, [[lake-effect snow]]fall becomes a concern downwind of the warm lakes within the cold cyclonic flow around the backside of extratropical cyclones. Lake-effect snowfall can be heavy locally. [[Thundersnow]] is possible within a cyclone's comma head and within lake effect precipitation bands. In mountainous areas, heavy snow is possible where upslope flow is maximized within [[windward]] sides of the terrain at elevation, if the atmosphere is cold enough. Snowfall amount and its related liquid equivalent precipitation amount are measured using a variety of different [[rain gauge]]s.
   
==Forms==
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Snow is bad and really cold
[[File:Snow Clouds in Korea.jpg|thumb|Satellite photo of lake-effect snow bands near the [[Korean Peninsula]]]]
 
Once on the ground, snow can be categorized as powdery when light and fluffy, fresh when recent but heavier, granular when it begins the cycle of melting and refreezing, and eventually [[ice]] once it comes down, after multiple melting and refreezing cycles, into a dense mass called [[snow pack]]. When powdery, snow moves with the [[wind]] from the location where it originally landed, forming deposits called [[snowdrift]]s that may have a depth of several meters. After attaching itself to hillsides, blown snow can evolve into a snow slab—an [[avalanche]] hazard on steep slopes. The existence of a snowpack keeps temperatures lower than they would be otherwise, as the whiteness of the snow reflects most sunlight, and any absorbed heat goes into melting the snow rather than increasing its temperature. The water equivalent of snowfall is measured to monitor how much liquid is available to flood [[river]]s from [[meltwater]] that will occur during the following [[spring (season)|spring]]. Snow cover can protect crops from extreme cold. If snowfall stays on the ground for a series of years uninterrupted, the snowpack develops into a mass of ice called [[glacier]]. Fresh snow absorbs sound, lowering ambient noise over a [[landscape]] because the trapped air between snowflakes attenuates vibration. These acoustic qualities quickly minimize and reverse, once a layer of [[freezing rain]] falls on top of snow cover. Walking across snowfall produces a squeaking sound at low temperatures.
 
   
<!--Not sure where this para belongs-->The energy balance of the snowpack itself is dictated by several heat exchange processes. The snowpack absorbs solar shortwave radiation that is partially blocked by cloud cover and reflected by snow surface. A long-wave heat exchange takes place between the snowpack and its surrounding environment that includes overlying air mass, tree cover and clouds. Heat exchange takes place by [[convection]] between the snowpack and the overlaying air mass, and it is governed by the temperature gradient and wind speed. Moisture exchange between the snowpack and the overlying air mass is accompanied by latent heat transfer that is influenced by vapor pressure gradient and air wind. Rain on snow can add significant amounts of thermal energy to the snowpack. A generally insignificant heat exchange takes place by [[Heat conduction|conduction]] between the snowpack and the ground. The small temperature change from before to after a snowfall is a result of the heat transfer between the snowpack and the air.<ref>{{Cite journal|url=http://www.scientificjournals.org/journals2007/articles/1118.pdf|journal=Journal of Engineering, Computing and Architecture|issn=1934-7197|volume=1|issue=1|year=2007|title=Development of an Energy-budget Snowmelt Updating Model for Incorporating Feedback from Snow Course Survey Measurements|author=Hamed Assaf}}</ref> As snow degrades, its surface can develop characteristic ablation textures such as [[Suncup (snow)|suncups]] or [[penitentes]].
 
   
The term ''[[Snow-storm|snow storm]]'' can describe a heavy snowfall, while a ''[[blizzard]]'' involves snow and wind, obscuring visibility. ''Snow shower'' is a term for an intermittent snowfall, while ''[[snow flurry|flurry]]'' is used for very light, brief snowfalls. Snow can fall more than a meter at a time during a single storm in flat areas, and meters at a time in rugged terrain, such as [[mountain]]s. When snow falls in significant quantities, travel by foot, car, airplane and other means becomes severely restricted, but other methods of mobility become possible, such as the use of [[snowmobile]]s, [[snowshoe]]s and [[ski]]s. When heavy snow occurs early in the [[fall]] (or, on rarer occasions, late in the [[spring (season)|spring]]), significant damage can occur to trees still in leaf. Areas with significant snow each year can store the winter snow within an [[ice house (building)|ice house]], which can be used to cool structures during the following [[summer]]. A variation on snow has been observed on [[Venus]], though composed of metallic compounds and occurring at a substantially higher temperature.{{Citation needed|date=November 2011}}
 
   
 
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