If an ice cube is stored in a freezer could it evaporate given enough time? Is there a temperature below which water cannot evaporate (even just a little)?

  • $\begingroup$ For the first part, ice can sublimate at freezer temperatures, so yes, it can (and does) slowly evaporate. This is why half-eaten ice cream containers left in the freezer for several months develop mats of sublimation-deposited ice crystals on the inside of the container walls. $\endgroup$ – DumpsterDoofus May 14 '14 at 16:10

yes, this is called Sublimation.

Ice has a vapor pressure:

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Molecules will go from the solid phase to the gas phase or visa versa depending upon whether the partial pressure of water vapor in the gas phase is above or below the vapor pressure of the ice, until equillibrium is reached.

  • $\begingroup$ Cool, thank you very much. Any idea about how fast this typically occurs in a freezer? $\endgroup$ – Jamie Twells May 14 '14 at 16:24
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    $\begingroup$ It depends if you have a "frost-free" freezer or not. In the older freezers ice would accumulate on the walls of the freezer and we would have to remove it manually. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Auto-defrost If it is "frost free", then maybe a centimeter of ice would evaporate a month from my personal experience. $\endgroup$ – DavePhD May 14 '14 at 16:31

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