How can seven snowflakes transform into 44,000 unique ones?
Every snowflake is unique. A cloud holds both ice crystals and water in an unstable mixture. When the temperature falls, the ice crystals grow at the expense of the water droplets and build snowflakes.
What each snowflake looks like depends equally on chance, temperature and the route from the cloud to the ground. Each snowflake is unique and at the end of the 1950s physicist and snow researcher Ukichiro Nakaya gave snowflakes the more poetic name of “Letters from the sky”.
The basis of this year’s greeting card from Iggesund Paperboard is seven snowflakes, which can be folded to create 44,716 different versions. During December they are sent out to Iggesund’s customers, business partners and friends around the world.
The designer of the snowflake card, Peter Dahmen, has calculated that it can be folded into 44,716 different versions. Those of us who are unwilling to dive deeply into mathematical thinking take him at his word. But if you are interested, you will find his calculation here.
For readers who are not fascinated by mathematics, Peter Dahmen describes the design process here.
And why does Iggesund Paperboard produce sophisticated Christmas cards year after year? Anna Adler, who has led the production of numerous Christmas cards over the years, explains here.
Below you can see how to assemble the card and how you can place it on your desk or hang up your favourite snowflake as a decoration.