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Glossary Index

Avalanche Institute

 

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Grain

Also: Grain Chain, Grain Size, Grain Type

A mechanically separate ice particle in the snow-cover, often without crystalline structure. Or it may contain several crystals.

A Grain Chain is a group of grains linked by grain-to-grain bonds.

The Grain Size is the mean diameter of a single snow grain's development. This is usually recorded as an average for a layer of similar grains within the snowpack.

The Grain Type refers to snow with rounded grains (from equilibrium growth) as opposed to sharp-edged crystals (from kinetic growth). Other types include melt-freeze grain clusters and surface hoar.

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