Definitions for ice cap
This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word ice cap
icecap, ice cap(noun)
a mass of ice and snow that permanently covers a large area of land (e.g., the polar regions or a mountain peak)
a large domelike glacial mass usually at high elevation
An ice cap is an ice mass that covers less than 50 000 km² of land area. Masses of ice covering more than 50 000 km² are termed an ice sheet. Ice caps are not constrained by topographical features. By contrast, ice masses of similar size that are constrained by topographical features are known as ice fields. The dome of an ice cap is usually centred on the highest point of a massif. Ice flows away from this high point towards the ice cap's periphery. Ice caps have significant effects on the geomorphology of the area they occupy. Plastic moulding, gouging and other glacial erosional features become present upon the glacier's retreat. Many lakes, such as the Great Lakes in North America, as well as numerous valleys have been formed by glacial action over hundreds of thousands of years. On Earth, there are about 30 million km³ of total ice mass. The average temperature of an ice mass ranges between -20°C and -30°C. The core of an ice cap exhibits a constant temperature that ranges between -15°C and -20°C. A high-latitude region covered in ice, though strictly not an ice cap, are called polar ice caps; the usage of this designation is widespread in the mass media and arguably recognized by experts.
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