You know the old saying that “no two snowflakes are alike“? Well it may be possible for two snowflakes to be alike after all. There’s a fascinating article in LiveScience that details how this may be possible.
For anyone who studies probability, this seems reasonable, given that the article mentions that 10^24 snowflakes fall in any given year. The article also contains a photo gallery of fascinating snowflake pictures like the one shown above.
From the article: “A typical snow crystal weighs roughly one millionth of a gram. This means a cubic foot of snow can contain roughly one billion crystals … It is probably safe to say that the possible number of snow crystal shapes exceeds the estimated number of atoms in the known universe.”
Kenneth Libbrecht, a professor of physics at California Institute of Technology runs a website devoted entirely to Snow Crystals at www.snowcrystals.com which is also visually impressive.
Here’s an interesting graphic on the formation of Snow Crystals: