Why does ice float?

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When water freezes the molecules form a crystalline matrix that is less dense than the liquid. Because the ice matrix is less dense than the water, it floats.

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Ice floats because it is about 9% less dense than liquid water. In other words, ice takes up about 9% more space than water, so a liter of ice weighs less than liter water. The heavier water displaces the lighter ice, so ice floats to the top.

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