Frost line

The frost line—also known as "frost depth" or "freezing depth"—is most commonly the depth that the groundwater in soil is expected to freeze. The frost depth depends on the climatic conditions of an area, the heat transfer properties of the soil and adjacent materials, and on nearby heat sources. For example, snow cover and asphalt insulate the ground and homes can heat the ground (see also "heat island").

Alternatively, in Arctic and Antarctic locations the freezing depth is so deep that it becomes year-round permafrost, and the term "thaw depth" is used instead. Finally, in tropical regions, frost line may refer to the vertical geographic elevation below which frost does not occur. [cite web |url= |title=Frost line |format= |work= |accessdate=2008-06-11]

"Frost front" refers to the varying position of the frost line during seasonal periods of freezing and thawing.

Building codes

Building codes sometimes take frost depth into account because of frost heaving which can damage buildings by moving its foundation. Foundations are normally built below the frost depth for this reason.

There are many ways to predict frost depth including n-Factors which relate air temperature to soil temperature.

Sample frost lines for various locations

* Minnesota, USA (2007):
** Northern counties: convert|5|ft|mcite web |url= |title=Frost Depth: Minnesota State Building Code Rules 1303.1600 |format=PDF | publisher = Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry | edition = 2007 | date = 2007-03-09 | accessdate = 2008-06-11] cite web |url= | title = The 2007 Minnesota State Building Code |format=PDF | publisher = Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry | date = 2007-10-09| accessdate = 2008-06-11]
** Southern counties: convert|3.5|ft|m


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • frost|line — «FRST LYN, FROST », noun. the maximum depth to which frost penetrates into the ground in a given locality, as measured during winter …   Useful english dictionary

  • frost line — ☆ frost line n. the limit of penetration of soil by frost * * * …   Universalium

  • frost line — ☆ frost line n. the limit of penetration of soil by frost …   English World dictionary

  • frost line — noun : the depth to which frost penetrates the soil * * * frost line noun The underground limit to the penetration of frost into the earth • • • Main Entry: ↑frost * * * n. [in sing.] the maximum depth of ground below which the soil does not… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Frost line (polymers) — The frost line is a term used in plastic film manufacturing by extrusion. It refers to the point beyond the die where the temperature of the molten plastic falls below the softening point and the diameter of the extruded plastic bubble stabilizes …   Wikipedia

  • Frost line (astrophysics) — In astronomy or planetary science, the frost line, also known as the snow line, refers to a particular distance in the solar nebula from the central protosun where it is cool enough for hydrogen compounds such as water, ammonia, and methane to… …   Wikipedia

  • Frost line (disambiguation) — In geology, the frost line is the level down to which the soil will normally freeze each winter. By an analogy, the term is introduced in other areas.*Frost line (astrophysics), a particular distance in the solar nebula from the central protosun… …   Wikipedia

  • Frost — is the solid deposition of water vapor from saturated air. It is formed when solid surfaces are cooled to below the dew point of the adjacent air. [cite web |url= causes frost.htm |title=What causes frost?… …   Wikipedia

  • Frost heaving — (or frost heave) occurs when soil expands and contracts due to freezing and thawing. This process can damage plant roots through breaking or desiccation, cause cracks in pavement, and damage the foundations of buildings, even below the frost line …   Wikipedia

  • frost — Synonyms and related words: Jack Frost, benumb, besnow, bite, bitter weather, black frost, blanch, bleach, bleak weather, bomb, bust, cap, chalk, chill, chilliness, climax, cold snap, cold wave, cold weather, coldness, consummate, coolness, crest …   Moby Thesaurus

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