Snow is a form of precipitation in the form of crystalline water ice, consisting of snowflakes that fall from clouds. Since snow is composed of small ice particles, it is a granular material. It has an open and therefore soft structure, unless packed by external pressure. Snowflakes come in a variety of sizes and shapes. Types which fall in the form of a ball due to melting and refreezing, rather than a flake, are known as graupel, ice pellets or snow grains. Snowfall amount and its related liquid equivalent precipitation amount are determined using a variety of different rain gauges.

The process of precipitating snow is called snowfall. Snowfall tends to form within regions of upward motion of air around a type of low-pressure system known as an extratropical cyclone. Snow can fall poleward of these systems' associated warm fronts and within their comma head precipitation patterns (called such due to the comma-like shape of the cloud and precipitation pattern around the poleward and west sides of extratropical cyclones). Where relatively warm water bodies are present, for example due to water evaporation from lakes, lake-effect snowfall becomes a concern downwind of the warm lakes within the cold cyclonic flow around the backside of extratropical cyclones. Lake-effect snowfall can be locally heavy. Thundersnow is possible within a cyclone's comma head and within lake effect precipitation bands. In mountainous areas, heavy snow is possible where upslope flow is maximized within windward sides of the terrain at elevation, if the atmosphere is cold enough.

Read more about SnowForms, Cause, Snowflakes, Types, Density, Acoustic Properties, Snowfall Measurement, Records, Snow Blindness, Relation To River Flow, Effects On Human Society, Damage, Design of Structures Considering Snow Load, Extraterrestrial Snow

Other articles related to "snow":

Snow (disambiguation) - Other Uses
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Peter Snow - Personal Life
... Snow has been married twice, and has six children from three relationships ... Matthieu, was born before his first marriage, although Snow was not aware of his exisence until he was an adult ... Snow was appointed CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) for his services to broadcasting in the 2006 Queen's New Year's Honours List ...
Rose Red
... Rose Red (German Rosenrot), or Rose-Red, is a character in the fairy tale Snow-White and Rose-Red, recorded by the Brothers Grimm ... She is the sister of Snow-White, not to be confused with Snow White ... two devoted sisters, associated with the summer as Snow-White is with the winter ...
Winter Weather Advisory
... a low pressure system produces a combination of winter weather (snow, freezing rain, or sleet) that presents a hazard, but does not meet warning criteria ... For example, any measurable snow will constitute the advisory in Florida, while up to 5 inches will do so in New England ... winter storm season, there was the Snow Advisory, specific for when snow was the only hazard expected in the advised area, the Sleet Advisory, specific for when sleet was the ...
Extraterrestrial Snow
... Very light snow is known to occur at high latitudes on Mars ... A "snow" of hydrocarbons is also theorized to occur on Saturn's moon Titan ... While there is little or no water on Venus, there is a phenomenon which is quite similar to snow ...

Famous quotes containing the word snow:

    Physical force has no value, where there is nothing else. Snow in snow-banks, fire in volcanoes and solfataras is cheap. The luxury of ice is in tropical countries, and midsummer days. The luxury of fire is, to have a little on our hearth; and of electricity, not the volleys of the charged cloud, but the manageable stream on the battery-wires. So of spirit, or energy; the rests or remains of it in the civil and moral man, are worth all the cannibals in the Pacific.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882)

    February is a suitable month for dying. Everything around is dead, the trees black and frozen so that the appearance of green shoots two months hence seems preposterous, the ground hard and cold, the snow dirty, the winter hateful, hanging on too long.
    Anna Quindlen (b. 1952)

    What is last year’s snow to me,
    Last year’s anything? The tree
    Budding yearly must forget
    How its past arose or set—
    Countee Cullen (1903–1946)