British and Austrian scientists unravel the secret of hexagons in salt marshes

Irregular hexagons can be observed on salt marshes. These geometric shapes are formed as a result of the process of mixing water and salt and heating.

The liquid on the surface of the lake is heated by the sun, it evaporates, as a result of which the salt content on land increases. This leads to an increase in the density of the solution, resulting in the formation of hexagonal shapes. Salt marshes are covered with a crust of dried salt, which cracks and splits into irregular hexagonal fragments of approximately the same size, from one to two meters in diameter.

These salt marsh hexagons were spotted by scientists from the UK and Austria, who published their results in the journal Physical Review X. As the salt concentration increases, the solution becomes denser and tends to settle. Conversely, a less concentrated and less dense liquid rises to the surface from below.

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