Ice: The Cold, Hard Facts

Video highlights from Going Deep With David Rees

Do you know 99% of the world's freshwater ice is located in just two places? Learn even more about ice and How To Make Your Own Ice Cube on Going Deep with David Rees

  • The National Ice Core Laboratory has approximately 77,000 ice samples that, if stacked end on end, would stretch for distance of about 12 miles.
  •     Climatologists can use ice cores to look back hundreds of thousands of years into the past and infer what weather events occurred, including temperature changes, precipitation totals, and even volcanic activity.
  •     Over 99% of the freshwater ice in the world is located in two places: the 5.4 million square mile ice sheet covering Antarctica and the slightly smaller (656,000 square miles) sheet on Greenland.
  •     One of the main uses for the ultrapure water David thinks he might want to make his ice out of is cleaning semiconductor material for microchip manufacturing.
  •     The American Water Works Association holds an annual “Best of the Best” taste test to determine which city has the best-tasting tap water in the country.
  •     In the 1800s, Maine’s ice industry consisted of houses like the Thompson Ice House that shipped blocks of lake ice around the world to locales as far afield as South America and China.
  •     The earliest known ice age occurred 2.3 billion years ago.
  •     According to Tibetan Buddhist history, the art of creating sand mandalas started in the 6th century BC. Mandala creation can serve a meditative purpose.
  •     In April 2014 a toddler in New Jersey destroyed the work of three Tibetan monks, mistaking a half-finished sand mandala for a playground!
  •     DNA drawn from Ötzi the Iceman, the 5,000-year old mummy discovered in an Alpine glacier, reveals that he has 19 living genetic relatives in Austria.

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