Rain and snowflakes are formed from water vapour from the heavier isotopes of H2O. Water has an atomic weight of between 18 to 22.
Not being all that knowledgeable about snow, a little reading turned up some interesting facts I thought I would share;
“What are common snowflake shapes?
Generally, six-sided hexagonal crystals are shaped in high clouds; needles or flat six-sided crystals are shaped in middle height clouds; and a wide variety of six-sided shapes are formed in low clouds. Colder temperatures produce snowflakes with sharper tips on the sides of the crystals and may lead to branching of the snowflake arms (dendrites). Snowflakes that grow under warmer conditions grow more slowly, resulting in smoother, less intricate shapes.
- 32-25° F – Thin hexagonal plates
- 25-21° F – Needles
- 21-14° F – Hollow columns
- 14-10° F – Sector plates (hexagons with indentations)
- 10-3° F – Dendrites (lacy hexagonal shapes)”
I don’t believe I am any more able to identify the temperature at which the pictured snowflake was formed. Perhaps someone could help me out? If identifying snowflake temperature is good fun, here are some more from [Alaska…http://www.andysorensen.com/Nature/Snowflakes/Alaska-Snowflake-Photos-1/2309403_oBP6E#120860351_Zvrth]
So to get to the crux of things – is snow flake biodiversity endangered by global warming?