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Pancakes Anyone?

"Frazil" is the name given to ice crystals that form in very cold water that is moving around too much to let the ice form into a sheet that would become surface or pack ice.

Once the frazil ice (also called "lolly ice" or "slush") has formed on the sea's surface, water movement caused by winds or currents can herd it into globs or shapes.

"Pancake ice" (picture) is the name given to free floating and mainly circular pieces of ice that form when that surface slush accumulates into floating pads. Further freezing solidifies their tops and they take their roundish shape.

The "pancakes" can be up to 3 meters / 10 feet across, and up to 10 cm / 4 inches thick. Collisions as they float about lead to the raised rims, either from the edges getting bashed up from bonking each other, or from the slush that gets splashed onto the edges and freezes to gradually form a rim.

These are different than ice floes, which are the free floating pieces of the broken pack ice.

Would you like a little syrup with that?

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Arctic Library ARCTIC LIBRARY & GLOSSARY: Check this section for an index of the rest of the things you really need to know about the Arctic.
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Links to related sites. ARCTIC LINKS: Even more information! Links to sites related to the Arctic and "Iceberg: the Story of the Throps and the Squallhoots".
A Guide to Arctic Sunrise and Sunset GUIDE TO ARCTIC SUNRISE & SUNSET: How much sunlight or darkness is there in the Arctic on each day of the year?

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