Faculty Advisor

Neshyba, Steven

Area of Study

Science and Mathematics

Publication Date

Summer 2022


Two key questions about ice crystal dynamics, both relevant to how cirrus ice modulates Earth’s climate, have so far resisted satisfactory explanation. One is, how do smooth, faceted surfaces of these crystals remain smooth even when the overlying vapor field is inhomogeneous? And secondly, what prompts the transition from smooth faceting mesoscale roughening under certain conditions? Here we describe previous work employing a quasi-liquid mediated continuum model of ice surface dynamics, to examine answers to these questions. In particular, we describe how conclusions about uniform growth previously inferred from the one-dimensional model remain valid in two dimensions, with some interesting modifications. We also describe how the model reproduces faceted ice ablation (rather than growth) occurs. We also describe how the dynamics resembles that of stable limit cycles, resistant to high spatial frequency noise.


University of Puget Sound