These stone circles on Svalbard have been built without any human influence. Its creator is nature and its device is popping out of the ground, as discovered by an international team of researchers.
Cummis is the name given to snow needles that grow out of moist soil at very low temperatures. “If you go to the garden after a frosty night and it crunches under your feet, you’re probably running on cami,” says Bernard Hallett of the University of Washington. Together with scientists from China, Japan and the Netherlands, they examined patterns of natural stone on the Norwegian archipelago of Spitsbergen.
When and how much the corms come out of the ground depends, among other things, on the moisture in the ground and, for example, whether it is covered with stones. More snow needles grow from exposed soil than from covered soil. They push the stones that are still in the way. The stones are grouped over the years and patterns are created like these circles.
The scientists were able to reproduce the process in the laboratory. To do this, he distributed stones of different sizes evenly over the moist ground and allowed it to solidify and melt repeatedly. After 30 runs, the first recurring pattern had already formed. Stone circles with a diameter of several meters can be built for a long time.
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