Why Is Ice Slippery?

Eliza | 02 - 06 - 2021
slippery ice

Have you ever wondered why ice is slippery? Ice is a solid substance but what makes it slippery? For several years people couldn’t find the reason behind it and it remained a mystery for years. But now there are many researches and sayings for ice being slippery. The liquid form in ice is what makes it slippery. For many years people believed that the pressure applied while walking makes it slippery. 

Because of Its Thin Layer

The outermost thin layer of ice is the reason for its slippery nature. The thin layer of water when generated by friction causes ice to be slippery. Friction creates heat when two objects slide against each other

Due to Extra Molecules

New research says that the slipperiness may be due to the extra molecules present in its outermost layer. This research says that ice is slippery because the outermost layer is not solid. The water molecules on the outermost layer have movement and it has no other molecule to keep in place. This makes the outermost layer in a liquid state even at freezing temperature.  

What Makes Ice Slippery?
  • A. Extra Ions on Its Surface
  • B. Extra Atoms on Its Surface
  • C. Extra Molecule on Its Surface
  • D. Extra Elements on Its Surface

Myth Theories

  • The pressure of our weight causes the top layer to melt 
  • Heat produced by fiction

Does Ice Have Friction

Yes, ice has friction. Recent research led by professor Daniel Bonn from Amsterdam university found that fiction on ice is more complex. This study reveals that there are two types of water molecules are at the surface of the ice

  1. Water molecules that stuck the underlying ice 
  2. Molecules that are bound by two hydrogen bonds  

The rise in temperature makes these two molecules inconverted and also the temperature changes the mobility of molecules. The researchers conclude by saying that the larger the mobility at the surface the lower the fiction. More than the thin layer of water on the ice the mobility of water molecules on the surface is more responsible for slippery. 

How Do You Make Ice Not Slippery?

  • Wear boots 
  • Use rock salt ( it melts and prevents ice formation)

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