As temperatures plunged, snow and ice whipped the US state, much of Texas’ power grid collapsed, followed by its water systems. Residents huddled in frigid homes. Power has finally returned to homes in Texas post the rare winter storm, utility operations had returned to normal, but millions are reportedly struggling without safe, drinkable water. Amid the ongoing difficulties, some people seem to be in an experimental mood. Videos have taken over TikTok, and Twitter which shows netizens are burning snowball. Why? Well, some of them think that the snow in Texas is fake! Hence, in a bid to ‘prove’ that the snow is fake, they lit the snowballs on fire. But there is science behind the snowballs turning into black and not simply melting.

Texas’ weather conditions continue to create headlines worldwide. Many photos and videos surfaced online that show how residents are struggling amid the frigid weather. Among those clips, are the videos that show people burning snowballs, and if the snow is not melting, they label it as fake! Those sharing the videos claim that the season is ‘fake,’ and believe that someone else is behind it. The argument behind the burning snowball video posters belief that when heated, snow melts into water; if it’s not melting, it isn’t really snow.

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Snow Is Fake?

Snow Not Melting

Why the Snowballs Turn Black When Lit on Fire Instead of Melting?

The rumours of snow’s replacement are grossly exaggerated. There is a cold-weather science behind why the snow does not melt, when lit on fire, and turns black instead. The snow is melting! According to NBC 25, the structure of the snow and the flakes actually wicks away the water back into the snowball structure. The black colour is coming from the lighter, as the butane, lighter fluid, or solid fuel emits soot, accumulating on the snow’s surface, creating a dark patch.

If you do the same thing to clear glass, the same thing will happen; a layer of butane of lighter fluid will accumulate on the glass. Another process that could be melting the snow without visible signs is sublimation—a water cycle process where a solid goes directly to being a gas without going through the liquid phase first.

So, the snow in Texas is not fake! And what some people are claiming are basic science in an experiment that has been around for many years and it has found its way back to the limelight.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Feb 23, 2021 05:16 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website