Light micrograph of snow crystal

Light micrograph of snow crystal

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Credit: CLAUDE NURIDSANY & MARIE PERENNOU/ SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Light micrograph of a snow crystal showing hexagonal centre (0.2mm across) from which 6 branches form as the crystal grows. Each crystal is made up from water molecules, arranged with 2 hydrogen atoms making an angle of 105 degrees with 1 oxygen atom. The fixed shape of the water molecule means they can assume a stable crystal arrangement only when arranged as a 6-branched figure. Despite essential hexagonal similarity no two snowflakes are identical because their growth is influenced by temperature, humidity, air currents etc. & these conditions are never identical. Magnification: x60 (35mm size).

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Keywords: climate, cold, crystal, frozen, meteorology, snow, snow crystal, snowflake, weather, winter

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