Explaining and Exploiting a Winter Worry

By McKenzie, A. | Science News, December 23, 1989 | Go to article overview

Explaining and Exploiting a Winter Worry


McKenzie, A., Science News


Explaining and exploiting a winter worry

Every spring, farmers in frigid climes reap an irksome harvest of rocks in their fields. Driven up by ice and water, once-buried boulders emerge during winter with enough force to crack roads and foundations, dismaying engineers and homeowners as well.

Though researchers have proposed many theories to explain this "frost heave," the mechanism has remained unclear. Now, a physicist has come up with seven brief equations that strongly support one explanation, suggesting ways to both limit the damage and harness the underlying force.

Every frozen substance has a thin coating of melted liquid, even when the surrounding temperature is below its melting point, notes J. Gregory Dash of the University of Washington in Seattle. His calculations, described in the Dec. 22 SCIENCE, indicate that when one part of an ice chunk is colder than another, the temperature difference sets up a suction, drawing the liquid toward the colder region.

If the ice lies within a wet, spongy environment such as soil, the suction pulls in outlying liquid as well. If the ice also lies under a rock, the drawn-in water takes up enough space that it forces the rock upward to make room, Dash calculates.

The new equations apply to any pure, frozen substance and thus appear to rule out the notion that frost heave results from water's unusual habit of expanding as it freezes, Dash says. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Explaining and Exploiting a Winter Worry
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.