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Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 18, issue 9 | Copyright

Special issue: Pan-Eurasian Experiment (PEEX)

Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 6535-6542, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-18-6535-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Review article 08 May 2018

Review article | 08 May 2018

Cryosphere: a kingdom of anomalies and diversity

Vladimir Melnikov1,2,3, Viktor Gennadinik1, Markku Kulmala1,4, Hanna K. Lappalainen1,4,5, Tuukka Petäjä1,4, and Sergej Zilitinkevich1,4,5,6,7,8 Vladimir Melnikov et al.
  • 1Institute of Cryology, Tyumen State University, Tyumen, Russia
  • 2Industrial University of Tyumen, Tyumen, Russia
  • 3Earth Cryosphere Institute, Tyumen Scientific Center SB RAS, Tyumen, Russia
  • 4Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research (INAR), Physics, Faculty of Science, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
  • 5Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland
  • 6Faculty of Radio-Physics, University of Nizhny Novgorod, Nizhny Novgorod, Russia
  • 7Faculty of Geography, University of Moscow, Moscow, Russia
  • 8Institute of Geography, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia

Abstract. The cryosphere of the Earth overlaps with the atmosphere, hydrosphere and lithosphere over vast areas with temperatures below 0°C and pronounced H2O phase changes. In spite of its strong variability in space and time, the cryosphere plays the role of a global thermostat, keeping the thermal regime on the Earth within rather narrow limits, affording continuation of the conditions needed for the maintenance of life. Objects and processes related to cryosphere are very diverse, due to the following basic reasons: the anomalous thermodynamic and electromagnetic properties of H2O, the intermediate intensity of hydrogen bonds and the wide spread of cryogenic systems all over the Earth. However, these features attract insufficient attention from research communities. Cryology is usually understood as a descriptive discipline within physical geography, limited to glaciology and permafrost research. We emphasise its broad interdisciplinary landscape involving physical, chemical and biological phenomena related to the H2O phase transitions and various forms of ice. This paper aims to draw the attention of readers to the crucial importance of cryogenic anomalies, which make the Earth atmosphere and the entire Earth system very special, if not unique, objects in the universe.

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The cryosphere of the Earth overlaps with the atmosphere, hydrosphere and lithosphere over vast areas with temperatures below zero C and pronounced H2O phase changes. The cryosphere plays the role of a global thermostat; however, the processes related to the cryosphere attract insufficient attention from research communities. We call attention to crucial importance of cryogenic anomalies, which make the Earth atmosphere and the entire Earth system unique.
The cryosphere of the Earth overlaps with the atmosphere, hydrosphere and lithosphere over vast...
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