At What Temperature Does Water Freeze?

Author: Richard Horgan

Water freezes at a temperature of 32 degrees Fahrenheit, 0 degrees Celsius, and 273 degrees Kelvin. 

More Info: The freezing point of water is a widely known common scientific fact, mostly because it is the threshold at which rain turns into sleet, freezing rain and snow. It's also the starting point for the Celsius scale, and as such, one of the very few Fahrenheit-Celsius conversion levels that is also common knowledge. Water turns into ice when it is brought down to or below a temperature of 32 degrees Fahrenheit or zero degrees Celsius.  On the scientific, Kelvin scale, that mark is 273 degrees.

Fun Fact: How Dry Ice Works 

On the other hand, despite its name, dry ice has nothing to do with the freezing point of water.  Rather, this upside-down chemical stream, used largely for entertainment event and concert staging purposes, occurs when carbon dioxide is frozen at the temperature of -109 degrees Fahrenheit. This substance is unusual in that it bypasses the liquid stage, converting directly to and from gaseous and frozen states.

Fun Fact: Hotel Made of Ice 

One of the most unusual applications of water's freezing point is the concept of an ice hotel, wherein the structure is literally made out of frozen water rather than wood, metal and so on. The largest of these vacation destinations is the namesake Ice Hotel in Jukkasjarvi, Sweden.  The temperature is kept at the level of -5 degrees Celsius to ensure safe and reliable freezing of all water components. The 2010-2011 winter season marks the 31st year of business for this unusual establishment, which has grown to encompass more than 5,500 square feet of ice-encased space.  

Fun Fact: How Much Ice Is Consumed? 

The freezing point of water is also responsible for the most widely consumed food product in North America - packaged ice.  This multi-billion dollar U.S. industry saw a new player arrive in the mid-2000s, Ice House America, a firm that sought to cut the high distribution costs of the traditional ice factory production chain by introducing localized ice vending machines. But grocery and convenience store consumer habits die hard, and as of the summer of 2010, less than 2000 Ice House America vending machines had been sold.


Works Cited

The Encyclopedia of Earth

National Weather Service Forecast Office
Dry Ice


Expert Opinion 

Quote: "A study in the Feb. 5 Science reports that water can freeze at different temperatures depending on whether the surface it rests on is positively or negatively charged. Under certain conditions, water can even freeze as it heats up."

Source:   Science News, February 5, 2010

Quote: "It has been known for centuries that pure water, in the absence of any nucleating surface, can remain in a supercooled liquid state down to temperatures as low as -40°C."

Source:   Royal Society of Chemistry, February 4, 2010



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"At What Temperature Does Water Freeze?." Sophisticated Edge. N.p., n.d. Web. . <>.  

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