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Aperiodvent, Day 6: Hexagonal Snowflakes

Six is the number of sides on a hexagon, and hexagonal symmetry is one of the most wintry symmetries – due to the bond angle of water when frozen into ice, all snowflakes (with some minor exceptions) have hexagonal symmetry.

This is such a well-established fact that stand-up mathematician Matt Parker has been known to get quite annoyed about people using 5-sided or 8-sided snowflakes – check the #snowfake hashtag for Matt, and other people, getting annoyed about it (I claim first blood for 2018).

If you’d like to create some beautiful (and more importantly, mathematically accurate) snowflakes, Think Maths have put together some resources around making paper snowflakes, including some folding-and-cutting challenges, and some nice ways to fold a 60 degree angle.

Share your hexagonal contributions with @Aperiodical and @ThinkMaths on Twitter, and your egregious non-hexagonal spots using the #snowfake hashtag.

This post is part of the Aperiodical’s 2018 Aperiodvent Calendar.

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