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Weird water phase “ice-VII” can grow as fast as 1,000 miles per hour

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posted on Oct, 24 2018 @ 12:15 PM
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So i've always heard of different types of ice and know intense pressure does weird things to matter but this is pretty cool and kind of scary. While i'm not too worried about the scenario they describe happening it does make me wonder if they've been thinking of ways to weaponize it. I dunno I just picture a big cloud like a hailstorm that freezes all the water in your body on contact. Thankfully this is probably ridiculous.

arstechnica.com...

physicsbuzz.physicscentral.com...

link to paper


Kurt Vonnegut's 1963 novel Cat's Cradle introduced the world to so-called "Ice Nine," a fictional form of water that freezes at room temperature. If it so much as touches a drop of regular water, that will freeze, too, and so on, spreading so rapidly that it freezes everything that comes into contact with it.

Fortunately for Earth, Ice-Nine doesn't exist. But there is an exotic form of ice dubbed "ice VII" that physicists can create in the laboratory. It's harmless in terrestrial conditions. But on an ocean world like Jupiter's moon, Europa, it could behave just like Ice-Nine under the right conditions, freezing an entire world within hours—with some key implications for the possibility of finding life on distant exoplanets.

It's the shape formed by the water molecules that determine which phase of ice you get. That ice in your glass of whiskey is technically ice Ih—"h" for hexagon, since that's the shape that all the oxygen atoms line up in during freezing. But in theory, there should be at least 17 different crystalline phases of water—which one you get depends on the pressure and temperature of any given environment.

Ice Ih will turn into ice-II if you apply enough pressure, with oxygen atoms arranged in a rhomboid shape. Keep increasing the pressure and you'll get ice-III, ice-IV, ice-V, ice-VI and so on. Some form of ice is theoretically possible even at crazy-high temperatures of hundreds of degrees Celsius, provided the pressure is high enough.

Ice-VII's oxygen atoms are arranged in a cubic shape, something that only occurs at pressures more than 10,000 times that on Earth's surface. It's created in the lab by zapping thin samples of water sandwiched between plates with high-intensity shock waves or laser pulses. In 2017, Stanford University physicists captured the formation of ice VII (in just six nanoseconds) on film for the very first time.

Our work shows that ice-VII forms in a very unusual way—by popping into existence in tiny clusters of about 100 molecules and then growing extremely fast, at over 1,000 miles per hour," co-author Jonathan Belof told Physics Buzz. These might just be the kinds of conditions that exist on so-called "ocean worlds": bodies that, like Earth, have an abundance of water. "Water on the ocean worlds, under bombardment from other planetary bodies such as meteors or comets, undergoes intense changes for which life might not survive," he says.

The shock waves from those explosions would be sufficient to compress any water to just the right high pressure to make it freeze into ice-VII at sufficient depths (several hundreds of kilometers). And if that ice-VII spreads rapidly to the surface, it could spell doom for any life on said exoplanet. "Our aim is to find out as much as possible about [ice-VII] so that we can figure out if these planets really can support life, and what the limits of habitability might be," says Belof.



edit on 24/10/2018 by dug88 because: (no reason given)




posted on Oct, 24 2018 @ 12:31 PM
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a reply to: dug88



Despite being made up of solid, hot rock under unimaginable pressure, the mantle still has water within it. This comes in a variety of different forms, with some water molecules being mixed in with other minerals. Only now are scientists beginning to fully understand just how much water is being held more than 600 kilometers (370 miles) under our feet.

One form that the water takes under such pressures is a crystalline structure known as ice VII. We’ve known that ice VII exists deep within the Earth, and it has even been created in the lab. But for obvious reasons, it has proven impossible to find a naturally occurring sample of ice VII at the surface. That is, until now.

Researchers found that some diamonds collected from mines in southern Africa and China contained samples of ice VII, reporting their discovery in Science. This makes them the first-known naturally occurring examples of ice VII ever discovered, but what is more, they tell us that there must be liquid water floating around even under such extreme pressure and heat.

IFLscience.com, March 9, 2018 - Ice VII Trapped In Diamonds Is First Direct Evidence That Liquid Water Exists 600 Kilometers Underground.

It was found to exist on earth earlier this year. It is trapped in diamonds that as they are formed push hydrogen and oxygen into ice VII form. The good thing is these are small amounts and to get to the ice VII you have to melt the diamond which means ice VII is no longer in that shape.

If the calculations are correct, there is equal amounts of ice VII trapped in diamonds as the water in the earth's oceans (same source).

The Vonnegut tale is also inspiration to the Satriani song of the same name on Surfing With the Alien!



posted on Oct, 24 2018 @ 12:47 PM
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originally posted by: TEOTWAWKIAIFF
a reply to: dug88



Despite being made up of solid, hot rock under unimaginable pressure, the mantle still has water within it. This comes in a variety of different forms, with some water molecules being mixed in with other minerals. Only now are scientists beginning to fully understand just how much water is being held more than 600 kilometers (370 miles) under our feet.

One form that the water takes under such pressures is a crystalline structure known as ice VII. We’ve known that ice VII exists deep within the Earth, and it has even been created in the lab. But for obvious reasons, it has proven impossible to find a naturally occurring sample of ice VII at the surface. That is, until now.

Researchers found that some diamonds collected from mines in southern Africa and China contained samples of ice VII, reporting their discovery in Science. This makes them the first-known naturally occurring examples of ice VII ever discovered, but what is more, they tell us that there must be liquid water floating around even under such extreme pressure and heat.

IFLscience.com, March 9, 2018 - Ice VII Trapped In Diamonds Is First Direct Evidence That Liquid Water Exists 600 Kilometers Underground.

It was found to exist on earth earlier this year. It is trapped in diamonds that as they are formed push hydrogen and oxygen into ice VII form. The good thing is these are small amounts and to get to the ice VII you have to melt the diamond which means ice VII is no longer in that shape.

If the calculations are correct, there is equal amounts of ice VII trapped in diamonds as the water in the earth's oceans (same source).

The Vonnegut tale is also inspiration to the Satriani song of the same name on Surfing With the Alien!


Oh cool i've always liked satriani but I didn't know that.



posted on Oct, 24 2018 @ 12:57 PM
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a reply to: dug88

I read an article a couple years back about some scientists smashing water into a solid making ice that could burn the skin right off your hand at touch it was really hot. Not sure how long it would stay in solid form.



posted on Oct, 24 2018 @ 02:01 PM
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You've been watching "Geo-storm".



posted on Oct, 24 2018 @ 02:02 PM
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a reply to: dug88

I remember reading about form of water I think they found it at the bottom of the ocean somewhere that wasn't really ice, but the pressure it was under compacted it's molecules so much that it was practically a solid.

I don't think it was the same thing as the previous post that would burn you.




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