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Planes can trigger snowfall

Aircraft can seed clouds by flying through them

4:19pm, June 15, 2010

Under just the right conditions, aircraft can substantially boost precipitation by seeding clouds as they fly through them, a new study reveals.

Water typically freezes at 0° Celsius, but in the absence of dust or other small particles for the water to freeze around, the droplets in clouds can remain liquid at temperatures as low as -40°. In such a supercooled state, even a tiny disturbance can trigger freezing, says Andrew Heymsfield, an atmospheric scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo. Now,

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