Frost action

Alternative definitions (4), class: vernacular (0)
Term: Frost action
Definition: The process of alternate freezing and thawing of moisture in soil, rock and other materials, and the resulting effects on materials and on structures placed on, or in, the ground. Frost action in soils describes the processes of Frost Heave that occurs in the ground during the freezing period, and Thaw Weakening that occurs as the seasonally Frozen Ground thaws. Although it normally refers to seasonal freezing and thawing processes and effects, the term Frost action has also been used to describe the long-term heaving that occurs when soils are subjected continuously to a freezing temperature over a long period of time (years). Frost action contributes to the mechanical weathering (disintegration or breakdown) of soil and rock materials, by frost wedging, Cryoturbation activity, and to the development of cryotexture and cryogenic fabric in soils.
Created 2022.03.08
Last Modified 2023.03.27
Contributed by GCW Glossary