Capturing Snowflakes (Hardcover)
Voyageur Press, 9780760369715, 128pp.
Publication Date: August 9, 2020
The snow may seem unvaried to the naked eye, but the microscope reveals an amazing menagerie of beautiful crystalline forms. Building on the pioneering work of Wilson Bentley (1865-1931), Libbrecht has developed techniques for capturing images of snow crystals in unprecedented detail. While wondering at the hundreds of exquisite snowflake portraits, find:
- The science behind snowflakes, including how they form on a molecular level and the complex process that guarantees each one’s uniqueness
- Field notes from Libbrecht’s photographic expeditions to the frozen north
- The taxonomy of snowflakes and examples of each type: simple plates and prisms, columns and needles, capped columns, sectored plates, stellar plates, stellar dendrites, triangular crystals, double plates, split plates, split stars, and even rare twelve-branched snowflakes
- Quotations about the wonder of snowflakes and nature from Aristotle, Henry David Thoreau, John Muir, and more
About the Author
Kenneth Libbrecht is a professor of physics at Caltech, where he studies the molecular dynamics of crystal growth, especially how ice crystals grow from water vapor, which is essentially the physics of snowflakes. He has authored several books on this topic, including The Snowflake: Winter's Secret Beauty, The Art of the Snowflake, and Ken Libbrecht's Field Guide to Snowflakes. He lives in Pasadena with his wife, Rachel Wing. They have two children.