Research about Permafrost–Atmosphere Interactions

A special issue of Atmosphere (ISSN 2073-4433). This special issue belongs to the section "Biosphere/Hydrosphere/Land–Atmosphere Interactions".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 1 July 2024 | Viewed by 4083

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
State Key Laboratory of Frozen Soil Engineering, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
Interests: permafrost; land–atmosphere interaction; thermo-hydro-mechanical coupling process

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Guest Editor
Institute of Transportation, Inner Mongolia University, Hohhot 010070, China
Interests: permafrost; atmosphere; cold region engineering; heat reflective technology
Key Laboratory of Land Surface Process and Climate Change in Cold and Arid Regions of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
Interests: permafrost; atmosphere; remote sensing; climate change; radar

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Permafrost is a result of the exchange and development of material and energy between the Earth and the atmosphere. On one hand, changes in the atmosphere can lead to changes in permafrost, and on the other hand, changes in permafrost can also have an impact on the climate system. The study of the mutual feedback mechanism between permafrost and the atmosphere is crucial for understanding the global balance of nature, hydrological processes, material and energy exchange, and other related fields.

Current research has made significant advancements in using mathematical modeling tools to predict the effects of atmospheric changes on permafrost. However, there are a limited number of researchers studying the feedback mechanism of permafrost changes on the atmosphere, and even fewer studying the mutual feedback mechanism between the two. This Special Issue aims to publish research that combines these three aspects. We encourage the submission of papers that focus on new technologies and methods, as well as the application of traditional technologies in innovative ways, to study the mutual feedback mechanism between permafrost and the atmosphere. The submission content for this Special Issue can include modeling and predicting the correlation between permafrost and the atmosphere using innovative mathematical techniques, as well as new observation results obtained from ground or spatial measurement data analysis.

Dr. Ruiqiang Bai
Dr. Jiwei Wang
Dr. Xiao Jin
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • permafrost
  • land–atmosphere interaction
  • thermo-hydro-mechanical coupling process
  • cold region engineering
  • heat reflective technology
  • climate change
  • ecosystem
  • remote sensing
  • radar

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

20 pages, 5746 KiB  
Article
Cooling Effects of Interface Heat Control for Wide Permafrost Subgrades
by Zhiyun Liu, Haojie Xie, Benheng Deng, Jine Liu, Jianbing Chen and Fuqing Cui
Atmosphere 2024, 15(3), 299; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos15030299 - 28 Feb 2024
Viewed by 489
Abstract
Quantitative studies of the heat transfer mechanism of permafrost subgrades and its effect on the permafrost under the subgrade are crucial for the study of permafrost subgrade disposal measures; however, few studies have been conducted in this area. In the present work, by [...] Read more.
Quantitative studies of the heat transfer mechanism of permafrost subgrades and its effect on the permafrost under the subgrade are crucial for the study of permafrost subgrade disposal measures; however, few studies have been conducted in this area. In the present work, by quantitatively analyzing the permafrost subgrade heat transfer mechanism and the variations in the underlying permafrost, the preliminary parameters of the interface heat control method—such as the application period, position, and imported cold energy quantity—are determined. The cooling effects of the ideal interface heat control method for different application schemes are analyzed. Finally, by determining the optimized temporal inhomogeneous interface energy control strategy, the required inlet velocity and artificial permafrost table for a mechanical ventilation permafrost subgrade are calculated and compared. The results show that (1) the suitable cold energy application position and period are a 0.5 m interface above the subgrade bottom and the lower thaw season, respectively, and that the imported cold energy needs to vary within the subgrade service life; (2) by adopting interface heat control measures, the maximum difference between the artificial permafrost table under the subgrade and the nearby natural ground table is only 0.097 m, and the temperature of the underlying permafrost and the area of the thawing bowl are significantly reduced; and (3) the mechanical ventilation subgrade employing the cold energy importing strategy of the interface heat control parameter also achieves a protection effect for permafrost, but as the cold air inside the ventilation pipe is gradually heated, it is necessary to amplify the inlet air speed to a certain extent for a better cooling effect. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research about Permafrost–Atmosphere Interactions)
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15 pages, 17214 KiB  
Article
Giant Aufeis in the Pangong Tso Basin: Inventory of a Neglected Cryospheric Component in Eastern Ladakh and Western Tibet
by Tobias Schmitt, Dagmar Brombierstäudl, Susanne Schmidt and Marcus Nüsser
Atmosphere 2024, 15(3), 263; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos15030263 - 22 Feb 2024
Viewed by 716
Abstract
Cryosphere studies in High Mountain Asia (HMA) typically focus on glaciers, seasonal snow cover, and permafrost. As an additional and mostly overlooked cryosphere component, aufeis occurs frequently in cold-arid regions and covers extensive areas of the Trans-Himalaya and Tibetan Plateau. This largely neglected [...] Read more.
Cryosphere studies in High Mountain Asia (HMA) typically focus on glaciers, seasonal snow cover, and permafrost. As an additional and mostly overlooked cryosphere component, aufeis occurs frequently in cold-arid regions and covers extensive areas of the Trans-Himalaya and Tibetan Plateau. This largely neglected cryosphere component generally forms in winter from repeated freezing of seepage or overflow. In this article, the occurrence of aufeis fields in the endorheic Pangong Tso Basin (PTB), with a total area of 31,000 km2, is inventoried and examined. Based on a semi-automatic remote sensing approach using Sentinel-2 imagery, about 1000 aufeis fields were detected in the spring of 2019, covering a total area of approximately 86 km2 and with an average individual size of 0.08 km2, while the largest field covered an area of 14.8 km2. A striking contrast between the northern and southern portions of the PTB characterized the spatial distribution of large aufeis fields. All large (>0.5 km2) and 13 persisting aufeis fields were located along broad valleys in the northern portion. Furthermore, a multi-temporal comparison between 1994 and 2023 shows that the number of remaining aufeis fields in autumn varied between 8 and 29, with a maximum in 2019. Their total area ranged between about 0.3 km2 in 1994 and 2023 to about 1.2 km2 in 2015 and 2019. This study complements recent aufeis inventories from the Trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh and closes the gap to the Tibetan Plateau. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research about Permafrost–Atmosphere Interactions)
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14 pages, 5942 KiB  
Article
Rainfall- and Irrigation-Induced Landslide Mechanisms in Loess Slopes: An Experimental Investigation in Lanzhou, China
by Wei Liu, Ruiqiang Bai, Xinran Sun, Fang Yang, Weiji Zhai and Xing Su
Atmosphere 2024, 15(2), 162; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos15020162 - 26 Jan 2024
Viewed by 683
Abstract
To reveal the mechanism of rainfall- and irrigation-induced landslides in loess slopes within cold regions, a series of tests on loess samples subjected to different permeability durations were conducted, and the effects of rainfall on several performance indicators, including the permeability coefficient, composition, [...] Read more.
To reveal the mechanism of rainfall- and irrigation-induced landslides in loess slopes within cold regions, a series of tests on loess samples subjected to different permeability durations were conducted, and the effects of rainfall on several performance indicators, including the permeability coefficient, composition, microstructure, soil–water characteristic curve, and the shear strength of the loess, were investigated. The results show that the permeability coefficient of the loess decreased by 68% after permeability testing. With increased permeability duration, there is a marked decrease in total dissolved solids, sand particles, and clay particles, contrasted with an increase in silt particles. This dynamic alters the original soil structure and impacts the soil–water characteristic curve of the loess. Additionally, rainwater infiltration heightens the effective saturation of the loess, in turn diminishing the shear strength of the loess as effective saturation increases. This reduction in shear strength is further intensified with extended infiltration time (or rainfall duration). A landslide is triggered once the shear strength diminishes to the level of the geostatic stress of the loess slope, and the influence of the rainfall-induced loss of soil shear strength should be taken into account during slope stability analysis. This study enhances the understanding of the initiation mechanisms of rainfall-induced landslides in loess slopes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research about Permafrost–Atmosphere Interactions)
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18 pages, 9104 KiB  
Article
Numerical Simulation of Heat Transfer of Porous Rock Layers in Cold Sandy Regions
by Kaichi Qiu, Yong Huang, Fenglei Han, Qiuju Yang, Wenbing Yu, Lu Cheng and Hang Cao
Atmosphere 2023, 14(12), 1812; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos14121812 - 11 Dec 2023
Viewed by 650
Abstract
The heat transfer characteristics of porous rock layers (PRLs) have significant seasonal differences. This feature has been used to protect the permafrost subgrade under highways and railways from degeneration. However, in cold sandy environments, the transformation law of heat transfer characteristics of PRLs [...] Read more.
The heat transfer characteristics of porous rock layers (PRLs) have significant seasonal differences. This feature has been used to protect the permafrost subgrade under highways and railways from degeneration. However, in cold sandy environments, the transformation law of heat transfer characteristics of PRLs on account of climate warming and aeolian sand filling needs to be solved. This work developed a coupled heat transfer model for the soil–PRL system aimed at analyzing the convective heat transfer process and mechanism of a closed PRL. Furthermore, the impact of climate warming and sand filling on the cooling performance of the PRL under different mean annual air temperatures (MAATs) of −3.5, −4.5, and −5.5 °C was quantified. The numerical results indicated that the natural convection of the closed PRL occurred only in winter, and the effective convective height of the rock layer decreased with the sand-filling thickness. As the thickness of sand filling increased, the critical temperature difference for the occurrence of natural convection increased, accompanied by decreases in the Rayleigh number, the duration, and intensity of natural convection. When the sand-filling thickness exceeded 80 cm, natural convection would not occur in the PRL. Under a warming scenario of 0.052 °C·a−1, the cooling performance of the PRL could offset the adverse impact of climate warming and raise the permafrost table in the first 20 years. Moreover, the closed PRL can be more effective in permafrost regions with colder MAATs. For cold sandy permafrost zones, sand-control measures should be taken to maintain the long-term cooling performance of the PRL. This study is of great significance in guiding porous rock embankment design and road maintenance along the Qinghai–Tibetan Railway. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research about Permafrost–Atmosphere Interactions)
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17 pages, 7532 KiB  
Article
Experimental and Numerical Investigation on the Damage Mechanism of a Loess–Mudstone Tunnel in Cold Regions
by Dongrui Wang, Xueyi Zhao, Chenghu Qiu, Xin Guo, Yaohui Du, Xianhan Li, Yue Gao and Junjie Xuan
Atmosphere 2023, 14(9), 1391; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos14091391 - 03 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 862
Abstract
To address loess–mudstone tunnel damage resulting from mudstone swelling induced by water absorption in cold regions, model experiments and numerical simulations were employed to study the tunnel surrounding rock pressure distribution and the stress characteristics of support structures during mudstone swelling at the [...] Read more.
To address loess–mudstone tunnel damage resulting from mudstone swelling induced by water absorption in cold regions, model experiments and numerical simulations were employed to study the tunnel surrounding rock pressure distribution and the stress characteristics of support structures during mudstone swelling at the tunnel base. The findings reveal that the base uplift of the tunnel leads to a rapid stress increase on the arch, and the self-supporting of the interface is insufficient, causing uneven stress distribution on the tunnel. The stress peak value at the bottom of the outer arch is 30.8% of that at the inner side. The internal force of the tunnel lining at the arch crown is the largest. The compressive stress appears at the arch feet, while the tensile stress appears at the outer side of the lining. The bending moments of the inverted arch are larger than those of the arch shoulders and arch crown. The left arch shoulder and arch bottom are primarily subjected to negative bending moments, and the maximum values are about −500 kN·m and −400 kN·m, respectively. The left side of the inverted arch is first to crack, and two main cracks then appeared at the left and right arch shoulders, respectively. The formation and development of the longitudinal cracks in the arch induced by water absorption cause the inverted arch bulge failure. This study helps understand the damage mechanism of the loess–mudstone tunnel in cold regions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research about Permafrost–Atmosphere Interactions)
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