Snow occurs when water droplets in clouds freeze, and these droplets then act as a nucleus onto which molecules of water vapor adhere, forming larger ice crystals. Once the growing snowflake is too heavy for the movement of air in the clouds to support, it falls to the ground. Snow can form in any clouds that are below freezing temperature but only does so under the right conditions.Know More
Clouds below freezing temperature do not automatically produce snowflakes. This is because water droplets do not necessarily freeze even at temperatures below zero degrees Fahrenheit. Water droplets in clouds can be supercooled because their molecules must randomly encounter each other in the right way to begin the freezing process. In clouds warmer than minus 31 degrees Fahrenheit, this requires a tiny solid particle to act as a nucleus for crystallization. Particles of clay, dust or biological substances can fill this role, as well as human-introduced nuclei such as silver nitrate or dry ice.
Individual snowflakes vary in shape by the temperature at which they formed. They alternate between flat, plate-like shapes and longer, thin shapes as temperature decreases. The nuclei on which the snowflakes formed also influences their final shape. Most snowflakes are visibly irregular.Learn more about Snow
On average, snow weighs between 7 pounds per cubic foot and 20 pounds per cubic foot, according to North Dakota State University. The discrepancies can be attributed to the physical state of the ice, its depth and the atmospheric temperature; fluffy snow is light, while compacted snow is heavier.Full Answer >
"Onion snow" refers to the last snowfall of the winter season and is said to mark the beginning of spring. It received its name because onions are planted in early spring, and the later snow fall covers them, providing small portions of beneficial moisture.Full Answer >
A snow squall is defined as an intense, heavy snowfall with strong winds and a possibility of lightning. The amount of snowfall is significant. Another term used to describe a snow squall is a whiteout.Full Answer >
Snow appears to burn because of the chemical properties of water and the physical makeup of snow. Snow is loosely packed and contains more air than water, which creates a cushion that slows down the rate at which the icy structure melts.Full Answer >