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Brinicles are hollow tubes of ice from centimeters to meters in length that form under floating sea ice in the polar oceans when dense, cold brine drains downward from sea ice to seawater close to its freezing point. When this extremely cold brine leaves the ice, it freezes the water it comes into contact with: a hollow tube of icea briniclegrowing downward around the plume of descending brine. We show that brinicles can be understood as a form of the self-assembled tubular precipitation structures termed chemical gardens, which are plantlike structures formed on placing together a soluble metal salt, often in the form of a seed crystal, and an aqueous solution of one of many anions, often silicate. On one hand, in the case of classical chemical gardens, an osmotic pressure difference across a semipermeable precipitation membrane that filters solutions by rejecting the solute leads to an inflow of water and to its …
American Chemical Society
Publication date: 
25 Jun 2013

Julyan HE Cartwright, Bruno Escribano, Diego L González, C Ignacio Sainz-Díaz, Idan Tuval

Biblio References: 
Volume: 29 Issue: 25 Pages: 7655-7660