The time lapse formation of snowflakes, recorded with a macro lens by Vyacheslav Ivanov. Music: Aphex Twin – Avril 14th. Via Colossal: “Ivanov confirms from his home in St. Petersburg that the video is indeed genuine (non digital) and was filmed through a microscope with a lot of effort and patience.”
The ice crystal(s) in snowflakes owe their six-fold rotational symmetry to the hydrogen bonds in water molecules. As water freezes, water molecules bound to other water molecules crystallize into a hexagonal structure, where each point on the hexagon is an oxygen atom and each side of the hexagon is a hydrogen bonded to an oxygen.
As freezing continues, more water molecules are added to this microscopic six-sided structure, causing it to grow in size into the six-sided macroscopic structure that we recognize as snow flakes.