Reducing Uncertainties in Snow Fence Design: Development of Methods for Estimation of Snow Drifting and the Snow Relocation Coefficient TR-760

The current measurement protocols for snowfall and snowdrift quantification and evaluation of the design of snow fence efficiency are incomplete, costly, and are practically of unknown (presumably quite low) accuracy. Most of the pitfalls of measurement approaches are related to the fact that the measurements are acquired with intrusive instruments, i.e., snow bags, snow traps, and snow boards. Data acquisition performed with these type of instruments also requires extended exposure to adverse, frigid, and windy conditions that pose a significant risk for personnel safety and health. The main objective of the present study is to assemble, test, and deploy a set of new technologies to support the design and evaluation of snow fence performance using non-intrusive measurement technologies based on imaging of the movement of the snow drift and of the accumulation of the snow at fences. Specifically, the objectives proposed for this study addresses three critical aspects of snow fence design that are needed by IDOT winter maintenance designers: (Objective 1) Estimation of local snowfall; (Objective 2) Mapping of the snow volumes accumulated at fences; (Objective 3) Estimation of snow drifting and SRC. The proposed research consists of field investigations that leverage surveying methods tested in previous studies of this research team for IDOT (Constantinescu and Muste, 2015; Tsai et al., 2017). These projects were focused on evaluation of the efficiency of various types of structural snow fences. Several observing protocols for informing the qualitative and quantitative analyses were also developed through those studies. Consequently, the outcomes of the prior research also included development of customized instruments and protocols for assessing variables used in the evaluation of the snow fence design. The tasks will be conducted at two experimental sites tested in the previous studies, i.e., Site 1: Williams on Hwy 20, and, Site 2: Shueyville on US 218.


    • English


    • Status: Active
    • Funding: $237,600.00
    • Contract Numbers:


    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Iowa Department of Transportation

      800 Lincoln Way
      Ames, IA  United States  50010
    • Managing Organizations:

      University of Iowa, Iowa City

      102 Church Street
      Iowa City, IA  United States  52242
    • Project Managers:

      Goetz, Vanessa

    • Principal Investigators:

      Markfort, Corey

    • Start Date: 20180815
    • Expected Completion Date: 20200930
    • Actual Completion Date: 0

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01682041
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Iowa Department of Transportation
    • Contract Numbers: TR-760
    • Files: RIP, STATEDOT
    • Created Date: Sep 26 2018 3:46PM