Tuesday 17 January 2012


 It has turned cold, eventually!  We've had three days now of hoar frost building up on hoar frost, so it is in places looking a touch like snow.  But what really stirred my curiosity was when going to defrost Hetty's water every morning.  Last year, when we had all that really cold weather the water would be nearly frozen solid, with only the core being liquid,  This year we have little slivers of ice, but they go right through the water container, so it looks web like when you drain the water out. 
So it got me thinking, what is that is different?  Wikipaedia was useless, it just confused me even further!  But guess who came up with a theory?  Luke!  Apparently, the best ice cream is made by rapid freezing, making small ice crystals, but if it is cooled over a longer period then you get larger crystals.  So the theory as it stands now is that last year when it was sooooo cold, really small crystals formed quickly and it became clear solid ice.  This year, with it not quite so cold (but cold enough!) the crystals are growing at a slower rate, making these large slivers. 

Who knew that emptying the chickens water could be so interesting?!


  1. Cool, I now know that when I can't answer dd's questions or find the answer with google, then I can "check Luke" for the answer ;-)

  2. What an excellent icy observation and a very scientific answer. I empty my chickens water at night as they do not drink in the dark...so I have not noticed anything like this. It has been exceptionally chilly in Worcestershire and I am taking children to the Wyre Forest for a day tomorrow...first thing we will do is gather firewood and get a fire going for warmth...I am worried I am going to freeze! :) I wonder what my ice crystals would look like!


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