Ice
April 15, 2012 4:39 PM   Subscribe

Ice
posted by jjray (33 comments total) 47 users marked this as a favorite

 
There are at least sixteen known crystal phases of ice...

...and residents of Houston don't know how to drive on ANY of them.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 4:41 PM on April 15, 2012 [7 favorites]


Also: Inevitable Vonnegut reference in 3 ... 2 ...
posted by ZenMasterThis at 4:42 PM on April 15, 2012 [8 favorites]


I heard Eskimos got words for all of them.
posted by Sing Or Swim at 4:43 PM on April 15, 2012


MML: A John Baez blog post about the crystal structure of ice, and its many phases.
posted by zamboni at 4:46 PM on April 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


Is there is a way to make water magnetic that doesn't take as long as 100 years and doesn't need a z-machine?
(Because my z-machine is currently in the shop getting some repair work done)
posted by -harlequin- at 4:47 PM on April 15, 2012


Inevitable rap name reference in 3... 2...
posted by oneswellfoop at 4:47 PM on April 15, 2012


(Because my z-machine is currently in the shop getting some repair work done)

Playing too much Zork on it?
posted by TwelveTwo at 4:55 PM on April 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


Thing referenced in -1...-2...-3...
posted by munchingzombie at 4:55 PM on April 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


OK, I am only getting a bit of this, but what I am getting is making me a bit giddy. Hurrah for Science!
posted by GenjiandProust at 4:56 PM on April 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: if you don’t love math, this might be a good place to stop reading.
posted by hippybear at 5:04 PM on April 15, 2012 [5 favorites]


YES ICE EVERYONE NEEDS ICE ALL THE TIME GET MORE ICE NOW.
posted by vrakatar at 5:07 PM on April 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


A most strange biography of Kathleen Lonsdale
Science traditionally was largely a male preserve, but today things are different.
…Harry kept his wife short of money, and, overall, the family was poorly off.
…She was happy in the local school where she learned to count using yellow balls.
…Kathleen became a Quaker during her time at Leeds and she became convinced that war is a totally evil thing.
…She had to do heavy work, cleaning and scrubbing the prison officers’ quarters. She collapsed after one heavy duty.
…Kathleen talked to her fellow prisoners about their lives and many of them were kind to her.
(This article first appeared in The Irish Times, December 13, 2001.)
posted by unliteral at 5:13 PM on April 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ice
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:13 PM on April 15, 2012


Inevitable Gob Bluth Reference
posted by holdkris99 at 5:16 PM on April 15, 2012


Oh man, this is a fantastic article. Clear and interesting and detailed and holy shit. Thanks for sharing.
posted by nebulawindphone at 5:17 PM on April 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


From the previous articles links: Dysnomia

Great post, I now have a new site to check frequently.
posted by holdkris99 at 5:25 PM on April 15, 2012


Way to suck all the fun out of it, John Baez.
posted by tumid dahlia at 5:35 PM on April 15, 2012


I thought I knew the answer to this, but I guess I wasn't asking the right Why? question: "Why ice floats on water is an unresolved question."
posted by Knappster at 5:38 PM on April 15, 2012


That's actually been answered.
posted by RollingGreens at 5:50 PM on April 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


Water is awesome.

The chemical and nuclear qualities of water and carbon is the basis of life on earth. There's been a lot of postulations on the existence of life based on other basic elements replacing/supplementing CHON (carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen), but really, a ton of why life works on Earth is the oddball chemical qualities of H2O.
posted by porpoise at 6:53 PM on April 15, 2012


Ice: It doesn't belong in drinks.
posted by Soupisgoodfood at 7:18 PM on April 15, 2012


Anyone see that ICE FINGER OF DOOM on Frozen Planet?

That thing gave me nightmares, man.
posted by Trurl at 9:18 PM on April 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ooh. This was my favorite part of Ice Physics class. I'm surprised he didn't mention Ice VII, which consists of "two interpenetrating lattices of ice Ic" (see bottom of that page.) Ice VI is similar. I like to think of it as what happens if you squish a couple of ice cubes together SO HARD that they end up superimposed on each other, occupying the same space. (Also, Ice IV is apparently considered by many in the know to be the "most beautiful" crystal structure of ice.)

I did my term project on the possibility that high-pressure ice might exist on the surface of some icy bodies in the solar system (like Europa or Enceladus) due to the pressure generated by asteroid impacts. The extreme cold on these planets "quenches" the high-pressure ice and could allow it to remain stable even at low pressures. (Here's the presentation if you're interested, although it's short on written commentary.)

I was quite delighted to discover, while doing research for this presentation, that the food industry has actually investigated the possibility of using high-pressure ice (II and V, if I recall correctly) to preserve the texture of foods like tofu and carrots that tend to go spongy/mushy when frozen. Ice II and V are denser than water, you see, so they don't expand and damage the cell structure like Ice Ih does. The problem, of course, is that you have to maintain the food at several hundred megapascals of pressure while thawing it in order to take advantage of the effect.

Ice is amazing.
posted by fermion at 10:38 PM on April 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ice is nice!!!!


(slides down hallway...)
posted by PROD_TPSL at 11:00 PM on April 15, 2012


Cool.
posted by Xany at 6:01 AM on April 16, 2012


On a semi-related note, if you're boiling eggs in the Rocky Mountains, leave em on for a few extra minutes.
posted by Phredward at 6:03 AM on April 16, 2012


This is a really fantastic blog. Thanks for the link!
posted by odinsdream at 7:43 AM on April 16, 2012


Ice Ice Baby
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:57 AM on April 16, 2012


Ice is also nice, and would suffice.

But especially nice, I thought, was the discussion of the extra entropy due to the great multitude of (geometrically) permissible possible arrangements of hydrogen atoms in ordinary ice (which Baez calls iceh).

And interesting in this context that Knappster mentions that "Why ice floats on water is an unresolved question."

I wonder if you could argue that greater spacing than you'd expect between the lattice of oxygen atoms in iceh (i.e., ice floats) is driven by that extra entropy, because if the oxygen atoms were closer, electrostatic repulsions between the polarized hydrogen atoms would make some of that multitude of arrangements of hydrogen atoms too energetically expensive, and therefore less probable, thereby decreasing the entropy-- which, as we all know, tends not to happen.
posted by jamjam at 8:00 AM on April 16, 2012


Is there is a way to make water magnetic that doesn't take as long as 100 years and doesn't need a z-machine?

Are you thinking of making 100 year old magnetic ice cream? Sign me up for two scoops.
posted by BurnChao at 10:33 AM on April 16, 2012


Also, Ice IV is apparently considered by many in the know to be the "most beautiful" crystal structure of ice.

In the sense that it's pretty to look at with your eyes? Or in the sense that it's pretty to think about with your brain?
posted by nebulawindphone at 1:28 PM on April 16, 2012


For a very short time, it uses a power of 290 terawatts. That’s 80 times the world’s total electrical power output!

My natural reference point for this would be 240,000 flux capacitors.
posted by klausman at 2:36 PM on April 16, 2012 [2 favorites]


Nebulawindphone, I think it's the former--perhaps because of the way the hydrogen bonds interconnect through the rings in the crystal structure. I don't know if the crystals themselves are pretty on a macro scale (given the high pressures involved, they're probably hard to grow in such a way that they could be photographed.)
posted by fermion at 11:12 AM on April 17, 2012


« Older Photographs of workers in the back of pickup truck...  |  Virtual Lighting Studio.... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments