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Snowflakes, light micrograph

Snowflakes, light micrograph

C048/0148

Rights Managed

25.8 MB (1.5 MB compressed)

3551 x 2537 pixels

30.0 x 21.6 cm ⏐ 11.8 x 8.5 in (300dpi)

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Credit

KENNETH LIBBRECHT / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY KENNETH LIBBRECHT / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Snowflakes, light micrograph. Snowflakes are ice crystals that form in air that has a temperature near the freezing point of water. If the air is calm, then a symmetrical, hexagonal snowflake can form. The two main growth patterns observed are faceting and branching. When growth is fast and unstable, branching patterns create a dendritic snowflake. Slower growth allows the straight lines and hexagonal shapes of a plate snowflake. Snowflakes can display both types of growth. The type of growth also depends on temperature, which changes in a different way for each snowflake, causing the wide variation in snowflake patterns.

Release details

Model release not required. Property release not required.

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