For a scientific explanation as to how they form I would suggest that water condensate from the air blankets the cold , calm , salty water and begins
to converge, forming 3D crystals, where it may not be possible with salt water on it's own. Just a hunch, but it might be much more complex than
that. Very cool and thanks for the post.
edit on 3-1-2013 by charlyv because: spelling where caught