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Author Topic: Crystals & fractals  (Read 2822 times)
Description: A picture from nationalgeographic.com
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bib
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« on: February 15, 2010, 10:43:37 PM »

I thought the effect of scale is interesting:

You cannot realize the size of these crystals unless you compare it to a human size. It reminds me fractal zooms. I wonder if the same structures are found at microscopic scales in these crystals. That would be a neat example of fractals in nature.
full article: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/04/photogalleries/giant-crystals-cave/
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hobold
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« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2010, 01:49:17 AM »

I think at least certain types of crystallization (or crystallization under the right circumstances) are processes that produce fractals. Maybe they can be modeled as a kind of "diffusion limited aggregation", with a few small scale extra rules that forces newly aggregated molecules to snap to a grid position.
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jehovajah
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« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2010, 09:23:24 AM »

Woa! Yes, very nice! The necessary elements of fractal formation is iteration, iteration iteration. The formula for shaping and rotating and translating the basic materials has to be fractally entrained to this iterative process and in fact may distinguish the process. At the heart of any formula is aggregation and disaggregation and a null aggregation action. The abstract, mathematical operators for this are addition and division and power laws.

To form crystals this big speaks of a long and continuous process with contiguous dissolving or removal of the surrounding supportive material. I would strongly suspect glacial melt waters to have been involved and some form of ice as a supporting material.
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