651-4077-00L  Quantification and Modeling of the Cryosphere: Dynamic Processes (University of Zurich)

SemesterAutumn Semester 2023
LecturersUniversity lecturers
Periodicityyearly recurring course
Language of instructionEnglish
CommentNo enrolment to this course at ETH Zurich. Book the corresponding module directly at UZH as an incoming student.
UZH Module Code: GEO815

Mind the enrolment deadlines at UZH:


651-4077-00 VQuantification and Modeling of the Cryosphere: Dynamic Processes (University of Zurich)
**Course at University of Zurich**
1 hrsUniversity lecturers

Catalogue data

AbstractThis course introduces quantitative approaches and models to processes of the cryosphere in high mountain areas. The main focus are dynamic and thermal processes related to glaciers and permafrost. During the course, simple simple mathematical and numerical models will be used to investigate ground temperature profiles as well as glacier evolution and dynamics in relation to climate.
ObjectiveThis course combines lectures providing the background on the physical processes and methods with computer practicals in which quantitative methods are applied to glaciers and permafrost processes. These lectures and practicals run as 2-hour blocks per week and are combined with group and individual excercises. Topics indicative for the content of this course are:

- Heat flow processes in the ground and in glaciers, and their solution with numerical models.

- Glacier dynamics and evolution in relation to climate change.

- Simple and reduced mathematical models for glaciers flow.

- Numerical models for glacier dynamics.
ContentFor the modeling and project parts of the course, programs written in the Python programming language are used. Prior Python or programming knowledge is not necessary, and introductory tutorials are given.

The course starts with lectures introducing the basic concepts of the different topics. The main focus lies on extensive computer practicals in which the related quantitative methods and models are applied and explored. Extensive group work on a topic of choice, using the quantitative models, will give a deep understanding how computer models are used in applied science.

Performance assessment

Performance assessment information (valid until the course unit is held again)
Performance assessment as a semester course
ECTS credits3 credits
Typegraded semester performance
Language of examinationEnglish
RepetitionRepetition only possible after re-enrolling for the course unit.
Additional information on mode of examinationAnmeldemodalitäten, Datum und Ort dieser Leistungskontrolle werden ausschliesslich von der UZH festgelegt.

Learning materials

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Only public learning materials are listed.


No information on groups available.


There are no additional restrictions for the registration.

Offered in

Atmospheric and Climate Science MasterMinor in Physical GlaciologyWInformation
Earth Sciences MasterQuaternary Geology and GeomorphologyW+Information
Earth Sciences MasterGlaciology: Courses of ChoiceWInformation
MAS in Sustainable Water ResourcesElective CoursesWInformation
Environmental Sciences MasterMinor in Physical GlaciologyWInformation