One-dimensional simulation of lake and ice dynamics during winter

  • Ali Oveisy | Queen’s University, Canada.
  • Leon Boegman Queen’s University, Canada.


An ice formation model, based on the solution of the heat conduction equation across blue ice, white ice and snow cover, is integrated into the Dynamic Reservoir Simulation Model (DYRESM) to allow for one-dimensional (vertical) winter simulation of lake dynamics during periods of ice cover. This is an extension of a previous three-layer snow and ice model to include two-way coupling between the ice and the water column. The process-based ice formation is suitable for application to mid-latitude regions and includes: snowmelt due to rain; formation of white ice; and variability in snow density, snow conductivity, and ice and snow albedo. The model was validated against published observations from Harmon lake, British Columbia, and new observations from Eagle lake, Ontario. The ice thickness and water column temperature profile beneath the ice were predicted with Root Mean Square Deviations (RMSD) of 1 cm and 0.38°C, respectively, during the winter of 1990-91in Harmon lake. In Eagle lake the 2011-12 year-round water column temperature profile was predicted with an RMSD of 1.8°C. Improved prediction of under-ice lake temperature, relative to published results from simpler models, demonstrates the need for models that accurately capture ice-formation processes, including ice to water column coupling, formation of both blue and white ice layers, and process-based ice and snow parameters (density, conductivity and albedo).


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Author Biographies

Ali Oveisy, Queen’s University
Environmental Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, Department of Civil Engineering
Leon Boegman, Queen’s University
Environmental Fluid Dynamics Laboratory, Department of Civil Engineering
Original Articles
Supporting Agencies
Ontario Ministry of Environment Best in Science Program and Queen’s University
Lake ice dynamics, winter numerical modeling, winter lake observation, ice-covered lake observation, DYRESM.
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How to Cite
Oveisy A, Boegman L. One-dimensional simulation of lake and ice dynamics during winter. jlimnol [Internet]. 9Apr.2014 [cited 25Feb.2020];73(3). Available from: