American Society of Civil Engineers

St. Lawrence River Freeze-Up Forecast

by Edward P. Foltyn, A.M.ASCE, (Research Hydr. Engr., U.S. Army Cold Regions Research and Engrg. Lab., Hanover, NH) and Hung Tao Shen, M.ASCE, (Prof., Dept. of Civ. and Environmental Engrg., Clarkson Univ., Potsdam, NY 13676)

Journal of Waterway, Port, Coastal and Ocean Engineering, Vol. 112, No. 4, July/August 1986, pp. 467-481, (doi:

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Document type: Journal Paper
Abstract: In this study a method for making long-range forecasts of freeze-up dates in rivers is developed. The method requires the initial water temperature at an upstream station, the long-range air temperature forecast, the predicted mean flow velocity in the river reach, and water temperature response parameters. The water temperature response parameters can be either estimated from the surface heat exchange coefficient and the average flow depth or determined empirically from recorded air and water temperature data. The method is applied to the St. Lawrence River between Kingston, Ontario, and Massena, New York, and is shown to be capable of forecasting the freeze-up data.

ASCE Subject Headings:
Flow rates
St. Lawrence River
Temperature effects
Water temperature