The slipperiness of ice explained

(Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research) Everybody knows that sliding on ice or snow, is much easier than sliding on most other surfaces. But why is the ice surface slippery? Researchers from AMOLF, the University of Amsterdam and the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research in Mainz, have now shown that the slipperiness of ice is a consequence of the ease with which the topmost water molecules can roll over the ice surface.