OSTIblog Articles in the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory Topic
by Kate Bannan 13 Dec, 2011 in Science Communications
With winter just around the corner, can snow be far behind?
We’ve all heard that no two snowflakes are alike, but what do we really know about them?
Snowflakes always have six sides. Their form and shape depends on temperature and moisture. Snowflake shapes fall into six main categories: plate (flat), column, stars, dendrite (lacy), needle and capped column. When it is extremely cold, snow becomes fine and powdery and the snowflakes’ design becomes simpler, usually needle or rod shaped. When the temperature is close to freezing point, snowflakes become much larger and more complex in design.