Accretion (atmosphere)

Accretion (atmosphere)

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Accretion is an atmospheric science term for when an ice crystal or snowflake
Snowflake
Snowflakes are conglomerations of frozen ice crystals which fall through the Earth's atmosphere. They begin as snow crystals which develop when microscopic supercooled cloud droplets freeze. Snowflakes come in a variety of sizes and shapes. Complex shapes emerge as the flake moves through...

 hits a supercooled liquid
Liquid
Liquid is one of the three classical states of matter . Like a gas, a liquid is able to flow and take the shape of a container. Some liquids resist compression, while others can be compressed. Unlike a gas, a liquid does not disperse to fill every space of a container, and maintains a fairly...

 droplet, which then freeze together. This increases the size of the water particle. A common example of this that is visible to people is graupel.