Alien ice on Earth

Watts Up With That?

From Eurekalert

Only two more steps to ICE NINE!~ctm

Stanford scientists discover how dense, extraterrestrial ice can form in just billionths of a second

Stanford’s School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences

Stanford researchers have for the first time captured the freezing of water, molecule-by-molecule, into a strange, dense form called ice VII (“ice seven”), found naturally in otherworldly environments, such as when icy planetary bodies collide.

In addition to helping scientists better understand those remote worlds, the findings – published online July 11 in Physical Review Letters – could reveal how water and other substances undergo transitions from liquids to solids. Learning to manipulate those transitions might open the way someday to engineering materials with exotic new properties.

“These experiments with water are the first of their kind, allowing us to witness a fundamental disorder-to-order transition in one of the most abundant molecules in the universe,” said study lead…

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