Aims » Proposed Activities

The aim of Micro-DICE is to advance our knowledge of the dynamic behaviour of ice, based on the philosophy that:

  • The predictive value of (geophysical) models of ice behaviour under changing conditions relies on a correct description of ice properties.
  • Grain-scale processes (microstructure) strongly influence the properties of ice, and hence,
  • better understanding of dynamic grain-scale processes in ice is needed

For this it is needed to bundle and open up resources and expertise across Europe

Bundle expertise beyond the “ice community”

Many research communities struggle with the same problems and questions: improving the material for high performance turbine blades, predicting the flow of perovskite in the lower mantle of the Earth, or forecasting the future flow rate of polar ice caps all hinge on one question: what is the role of the microstructure? This Network responds to the urgent need to bring together researchers from different communities to bundle and exchange the expertise they can offer each other.

Bundle resources

Recent progress in this research field strongly relies on new experimental and analysis techniques (EBSD, synchrotron, microstructure mapping) and improved numerical models. The increasing complexity (and cost) of these methods often outstretch the capability of individual research groups. This network intends to bring together groups to bundle resources and methods and develop new ones.

Open up resources

International and national agencies have funded a vast range of new experimental and analytical facilities. Although some are available to all researchers (e.g. ESRF), access to facilities is all too often hampered by a lack of knowledge of the rapidly increasing number and complexity of techniques. Through short/exchange visits, training workshops and a summer school, the Network will increase the awareness of in particular young researchers of the possibilities available to them.

Proposed activities

Conferences and special sessions

Grants will be announced on the Micro-Dice website for

  • One summer school aimed at young researchers to be held in 2012.
  • Workshops/short courses to bring together small groups of specialists and young researchers.
  • Travel grants for short- and exchange visits will allow foster the exchange between students and scientists within Europe


  • A special issue published resulting from the 2011 Microdynamic Modelling of Ice and related materials Meeting in Glasgow: Journal of Structural Geology special Volume Micro-Dynamics of Ice.
  • The special issue will form the base for a textbook aimed at graduate student level.
  • The Micro-DICE website is aimed to become a central communication platform for the wider community, providing links to activities, facilities, as well as
  • The Dictionary of Glaciology (DOG), a Wikipedia-inspired website where all members of the community can provide content, and
  • The Atlas of Ice Microstructures (AIM) to provide a comprehensive digital atlas of microstructures from drill cores, experiments, numerical simulations, etc.