Humans have been challenged by cold since the beginning of recorded history. Napoleon's army's attack on Russia was halted because of the subzero temperatures.
In Cold Blood (02:17)
Human bodies shut down to preserve heat after the core temperature drops below 86 degrees. Unlike cold blooded species, mammals are able to generate their own heat and are not forced to rely on the sun for energy.
Changed by Clothes (02:20)
The first humans to venture from Africa into Europe invented the needle to make clothing to stay warm. The use of clothing caused a decrease in vitamin D. Human in colder climates evolved to have lighter skin, which blocked less of the sun's rays.
Chemistry of Cold (01:51)
Cold can change the chemical properties of elements, like tin that was used for buttons for soldiers in Napoleon's army. The buttons turned to a powdery substance and failed.
Cold and Development (03:06)
In cold climates, early civilizations adapted and became nomadic warriors and herders. In warmer climates, people built vast cities and civilizations, which were vulnerable to attacks from warrior cultures.
Breaking the Ice (04:06)
In the 1800s, Frederick Tudor became a rich businessman by cutting ice out of New England ponds and selling it in warmer climates. In modern times, the majority of the world lives in places were ice does not form.
Cold and Society (01:34)
Tudor's ice trading changed society and eventually led to the development of refrigeration. Advancements like refrigeration and air conditioning allowed for larger buildings and cities to be built.
Fire and Ice (03:00)
The cooling down of the Big Bang allowed for the development of the universe. The temperature eventually got cold enough and allowed liquid water to form.
Credits: Below Zero (00:31)
Credits: Below Zero
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