Kw-logo-smaller

All About Snowflakes

Jan 29, 2014
No two snowflakes look the same.
Snowflake Shapes

Snow. It's not the most mysterious thing, is it? It's white, cold and if enough of it falls, you don't have to go to school. But do you even know what snowflakes are made out of? Probably not - so keep reading!

Snowflakes - Where Do They Come From?

Snowflakes come from clouds, which are really just big clusters of water vapor. This water vapor scatters and forms ice crystals or rain in the clouds, depending on the temperature. The temperature must be below zero degrees Celsius (32 degrees F) for the water to turn into ice crystals. The ice crystals also contain tiny bits of dirt that the wind has blown around the atmosphere (and it sometimes even contains dust from space). These ice crystals (also called snow crystals) cluster together to form individual snowflakes. One snowflake can be made up of anywhere between two and 200 separate snow crystals.

Snowflakes - No Two Look The Same

There are a few reasons that no two snowflakes look the same. One thing that influences the size and shape of a snowflake are temperature changes:

  • 30 degrees Fahrenheit (-1 degrees Celsius) - Snowflakes usually look like columns.
  • 27 to 23 degrees Fahrenheit (-2 to -5 degrees Celsius) - Snowflakes usually form a needle shape.
  • 23 to 18 degrees Fahrenheit (-5 to -7 degrees Celsius) - Snowflakes usually look like columns appear again.
  • 18 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit (-7 to -12 degrees Celsius) - Snowflakes are usually shaped like a plate.
  • 10 to 3 degrees Fahrenheit (-12 to -16 degrees Celsius) - Snowflakes are usually shaped like a star.

Snowflakes come in all different shapes and sizes!Snowflakes come in all different shapes and sizes!

Snowflakes - What Else Affects its Shape?

Dirt can change the appearance of a snowflake as can the snow's "flight plan". If a snow crystal spins like a top as it falls, it will usually be symmetrical when it hits the ground. If a snow crystal falls sideways, then it will end up lopsided.

Snowfakes - Flakey Snow Facts

  • An average raindrop falls 600 feet per minute while the average snowflake falls at about 11 feet per minute.
  • Algae (simple plants with no roots, stems, leaves or flowers) can live in water, soil, sand and even snow.
  • Dirty snow melts faster than clean snow. This is because the impurities (dirt particles) hold a higher temperature than the snow crystals.
Related Stories:

 

>
>

readers voted!

Comments

Lightning17

Lightning17 wrote:

LOL! Nice article this made me think of frozen so much! Btw i love frozen it wz a pr...
commented: Sat Mar 15, 2014

Alex_Roy

Alex_Roy wrote:

It remind me the movie frogen
commented: Sat Feb 01, 2014

brunostar

brunostar wrote:

why snowflakes no look like that irl :@
commented: Thu Jan 30, 2014

there are 8 more comments

Please login or register to add comments


like this article?
Sign up now to get more just like it!

latest videos

Snow-day-poll

Fave Thing To Do on a Snow Day? Vote!

  • I love making snowmen.
  • Snow is perfect for a snowball fight.
  • Snow means it's time to snowboard!
  • I hate the snow. I stay inside.

related stories

Micro_frozen-micro
Disney’s animated musical film Frozen is fun, thoughtful and beautifully-made. Check out our Kidz...
Micro_micro-fakesnow
Snow has always been a cozy feature of the holiday season. Cozy if you’re inside by the fire and ...
Micro_winter-safety-micro
Winter sports usually means slipping and sliding all over the ice and snow and that can cause som...
Micro_marshamallows-micro
They’re squishy , they’re fluffy, they’re sweet and easy to eat - but what exactly are they and h...
Micro_ice-cream-micro
It’s probably no surprise to you that July is National Ice Cream Month, in the summer an ice crea...

Random in the forums

Yashua
Yashua posted in Say Anything:
i love all planet there all mine any i am the gaurdian of the galaxies
reply less than a minute
mathwiz345
EARTH CUZ I LIVE ON THAT PLANET I GUESS
reply 40 minutes
jordand08
jordand08 posted in Say Anything:
Jupiter. 
reply about 2 hours
rue21forever3
I definitely believe i ghosts. First hand experiance
reply about 2 hours
mathwiz345
A LITTLE
reply about 2 hours

play online games

Candy-100

A great online version of the famous Candy Crush. This is the best game launched...

Big_icon_(7)

Have you ever fancied being a ranger like those fantasy characters you love so m...

Hour-of-code-tumb

Millions of Students will be doing an Hour of Code with Tynker December 8th-14th...

Big_icon_(4)

You run across the city in a car chase with the police officers.

Big_icon_(6)

The evil master kidnapped all of your friends!