Snow (in just the right amounts, at just the right time) is loved
by all. But what exactly is the fluffy cold stuff, and how is made?
Today's winter tour examines the subject of snow through the eyes of
scientists, weathermen, and multimedia artists. Let it snow! Let it
snow! Let it snow!
"Is it ever too cold to snow? How big can snowflakes get? Why is
snow white?" Everything you ever wanted to know about snow (but
didn't know who to ask) is answered here by the National Snow and Ice
Data Center, affiliated with the University of Colorado. This
educational site also includes a Snow Glossary (from "ablation" to
"vapor pressure"), a Snow Fact Sheet and a feature on the history of
snow removal. The first known snow plow was pulled by horses through
the "snow-clogged streets" of Milwaukee in 1862.
Wow! Don't miss this virtual snowflake designer. Start by perusing
the gallery of saved snowflakes, and then try your hand at making
your own. The trick is to click (not drag) your scissors from point
to point. You'll know your scissors are snipping when the indicator
changes from red to green. When your masterpiece is complete, you can
download it, print it, email it to a friend, or go back to the
gallery and look for it there.
"This site is all about snow crystals and snowflakes -- what they
are, where they come from, and just how these remarkably complex and
beautiful structures are created, quite literally, out of thin air."
Best place to start on this Cal Tech site is the Snowflake Primer,
where you'll learn the answer to questions such as "Is it really true
that no two snow crystals are alike?" and "Why do snow crystals form
in such complex symmetrical shapes?"
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