Modeling Surface Temperatures for Snow-Covered Roads: A Case Study for a Heated Pavement in Bærum, Norway

Heated pavements are used as an alternative to removing snow and ice mechanically and chemically. Usually a heated pavement system is automatically switched on when snowfall starts or when there is a risk of ice formation. Ideally, these systems run based on accurate predictions of surface conditions a couple of hours ahead of time, for which both weather forecasts and reliable surface temperature predictions are needed. The effective thermal conductivity of the snow layer is often described as a function of its density. However the thermal conductivity of a snow layer can vary considerably, not only for snow samples with a different density, but also for snow samples with the same density, but with a variation in the liquid water content. In this paper a physical temperature and surface condition model is described for snow-covered roads. The model is validated for an entire winter season on a heated pavement in Norway. Two different models to describe the thermal conductivity through the snow layer were compared. Results show that the thermal conductivity of the snow layer can be best described as a function of the density for snow with a low liquid water content. For snow with a high water content, the thermal conductivity can be best described as a function of the volume fractions and thermal conductivity of ice, water, and air, in which air and ice are modeled as a series system and water and air/ice in parallel.


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  • Accession Number: 01669061
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: 18-03966
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: May 16 2018 11:45AM