托福听力背景知识——冰山

所属专题:托福听力  来源:互联网    要点:托福听力  
编辑点评: 冰山对我们地球环境的稳定有着重要作用。这篇托福听力背景主要介绍冰山的相关知识,包括冰山的形成原因和性质。读完这篇文章,相信你再遇到关于冰山的听力题目时就不会紧张了。

这篇托听力背景知识主要介绍冰山(glaciers),包括冰山的形成原因和性质等。

Glaciers exist where, over a period of years, snow remains after summer's end. They exist in environments of high and low precipitation and in many temperature regimes; they are found on all the continents except Australia and they span the globe from high altitudes in equatorial regions to the polar ice caps. There is a delicate balance between climatic factors that allows snow to remain beyond its season.

Scientists and skiers alike can note that within a few days of falling, snowflakes have noticeably begun to change. The snowflakes are compressed under the weight of the overlying snowpack. Individual crystal near the melting point have slick liquid edges allowing them to glide along other crystal planes and to readjust the space between them. Where the crystals touch they bond together, squeezing the air between them to the surface or into bubbles. During summer we might see the crystal metamorphosis occur more rapidly because of water percolation between the crystals. By summer's end the result is firn -- a compacted snow with the appearance of wet sugar, but with a hardness that makes it resistant to all but the most dedicated snow shovelers. Several years are usually required for the snow to settle and to season into the substance we call glacier ice.

We can best determine the health of a glacier by looking at its mass balance. Each year glaciers yield either a net profit of new snow, a net loss of snow and ice, or their mass may remain in equilibrium. Scientists divide each glacier into upper and lower sections termed the accumulation area, where snowfall exceeds melting during a year, and the ablation area, where melting exceeds snowfall. An equilibrium line, where mass accumulation equals mass loss, separates these areas. You can see it as the boundary between the winter's snow and the older snow or ice surface. Its altitude changes annually with the glacier's mass balance. To find mass balance, scientists measure the area of each region and observe amounts of accumulation and ablation relative to preset stakes. After density measurements are made they may calculate how much water has been added or lost to the glacier.

After a series of positive mass balance years, the glacier may respond to the increased thickness by making a glacial advance downvalley. A series of negative years may cause a glacial retreat, meaning that the terminus is melting faster than the ice is moving downvalley.

Glaciers have been likened to mighty rivers of ice. Although they move many times more slowly, glaciers have equivalent changes in flow rate and often form falls of fast-moving ice above slow-moving ice pools. Glaciers flow faster down their centers than at ice margins, and more quickly at the surface than at the bed.

How fast a glacier moves is mostly dependent on the thickness of the ice, and on the angle of its surface slope. Glacier speeds vary when changes are made in this geometry. They respond to excessively high seasonal snow accumulations by generating bulges of thicker ice that may move downvalley many times faster than the glacier's normal velocity.

>>点击查看托福听力专题,阅读更多相关文章!

最新2022托福听力信息由沪江留学网提供。

请输入错误的描述和修改建议,建议采纳后可获得50沪元。

错误的描述:

修改的建议: