Researchers discovers a new type of ice named Ice-VIIt

Jay Kakade
Abstract of water

Phycisists have discovered a new type of water ice named Ice-VIIt which is not naturally observed on Earth.

t occurs when a substance is slide between two molecules arranged in cubic arrangement.

Even though water do not provide any nutrients or organic matters, it is a vital chemical for flourishing lifeforms.

Molecular arrangement of water can show significant change in different conditions.

t is not only the new phase of water known. We already know 19 types of the ice.

Some of the types of solid water are seen naturally occurring but some are seen only in laboratory.

To make it simple hailstones, ice in freezer and snow are the types of ice occur naturally.

Diamond anvil
An equipment, Diamond anvil to pressurize water ice. (Image Credit: Chris Higgins/UNLV)

This natural solid water is called as Ice-I.

When pressure is applied in various temperature, water changes its molecular arrangement.

New form of ice is discovered from such various molecular arrangements. These structures are not necessarily be stable.

Still, this phenomenon of ice can be studied to explain how water can exist in different place in this universe. Or extract different molecular structures.

Experiment to study Transitions of Ice Phases

While observing the phases of Ice-VII and Ice-X, researchers came across Ice-VII

Ice-X is created by applying enormous pressure than earth’s atmosphere, while Ice-VII by applying little pressure than Ice-X.

Physicists from University of Nevada conducted an experiment to reveal such ice phases.

In this experiment, they freeze water and used lasers to heat. This caused water to melt before freezing.

With continuous increase in the pressure periodically, physicists created Ice-VII and observed transition to Ice-X.

While transition researchers revealed a new type of phase Ice-VII

The study not only acquired Ice-VII
t, but also showed Ice-X phase can be formed at lower pressure than thought.

Ice-VII needs 3 gigapascals while Ice-VII
t occurs at 5.2 gigapascals.

Ice-X phase is hard to form. Earlier pressure of 40 to 120 gigapascals was thought. But this team observed transition at 31 gigapascal. Team state that the studying phases of water is vital. It bought up a thought that life can exist at extreme pressures too.
  • Zachary M. Grande, C. Huy Pham, Dean Smith, John H. Boisvert, Chenliang Huang, Jesse S. Smith, Nir Goldman, Jonathan L. Belof, Oliver Tschauner, Jason H. Steffen, and Ashkan Salamat. Pressure-driven symmetry transitions in dense H 2 O ice. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.105.104109
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