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The fragmentation of ice crystals during cooling, or the ejection of small crystals during the sudden freezing of a supercooled water droplet. The process leads to a rapid increase in ice crystals at the freezing level. In addition, individual fragments acquire opposite electrical charges, and this may be part of the mechanism that creates a charge separation in cumulonimbus clouds that then become thunderstorms.

Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology.

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