Why snowflake has six angles and How to make a correct snowflake
Every Christmas holiday the windows of house and shops are decorated with snowflakes. But they have nothing in common with the real snowflakes and have no right to be called snowflakes from the physics point of view.
One local newspaper posted an article by a chemistry professor from Germany Thomas Kup, who wrote a letter reminding that in nature there are only hexagonal snowflakes.
“We, who use science and love good design must aim our strength to melt all four-, five-, and octagonal snowflakes that occur on postcards, in childrens’ books, advertising, and educate those who unwittingly generates these snowflakes and distributes them. With an open heart, I invite you all to discuss the true beauty of the science behind a mug of hot punch”, – Kup said in his letter.
Interestingly enough, the advertising banner with incorrect snowflakes, which noticed Thomas Kup, contained the inscription: “For Those Who Like Science.” After seeing this the scientist called on to fight against such lack of education.
Without hesitation, the editorial published Kup’s letter in the Nature magazine which was released on the eve of Christmas 2009. The advertising with the “wrong” snowflakes also disappeared from the official site of the magazine editorial.
So how do you create a “proper” Snowflake?
Those familiar with geometry can do it by using the protractor or compass (Not the kind that shows you where you are in reference to North but the kind from elementary school with a sharp needle point on one end and a pencil on the other.) The building of the correct Hexagon is familiar to any high school student. But you can also do that without any geometrical instruments.
Story taken from http://news.open.by/it/16589