‘Crystal flowers’ in bloom in Shanxi, N China

(People's Daily Online) 13:54, December 28, 2022

“Crystal flowers”, crystallized from sodium sulfate and magnesium sulfate in cold weather, appear on the surface of a salt lake in Yuncheng, north China’s Shanxi Province. (Photo/People’s Daily Online)

Due to the impact of lingering low temperatures, the salt lake in Yuncheng, north China’s Shanxi Province, recently presented a spectacle of “mirabilite flowers” in bloom.

These “crystal flowers” spread across the lake, forming different shapes such as pine needles and coral, and glitter in the sunlight.

Yuncheng’s salt lake is located in a section of the Yellow River where Shanxi, Shannxi and Henan provinces meet. Covering an area of 132 square kilometers, the lake is rich in substances containing sodium and calcium, such as magnesium sulfate, sodium sulfate and bloedite.

Once the temperature falls below a certain threshold in winter, molecules of magnesium sulfate and sodium sulfate in the lake will be activated to crystallize into translucent “magnesium flowers” and snow-white “mirabilite flowers” respectively, creating a stunning scene of blossoms in the cold.


(Web editor: Chang Sha, Du Mingming)


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