Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Cloud Vortices: The “holey” sky phenomena:Punch Hole Clouds And Other Rarely Seen Cloud Formations

These “cloud holes” can look like the footprints of some celestial being (UFO enthusiasts rejoice!)

…makes our sky worthy to look at from time to time (those who only look at the computer monitor, take note).

Theodore von Karman’s “Cloud Vortices” are something else, again: they form when the wind encounters a barrier - such as the Aleutian islands, in this case - and the flowing eddies of cloud create a weird pattern. The image you see below was photographed from the International Space Station, and the animation shows the double row of vortices, which rotate opposite from each other.

It seems both rising and sinking air currents can create the same effect. Sometimes a very stable, uniform layer of high-altitude clouds can get “punched though” by a pocket of cold air, which sinks toward the ground - creating the circular hole formation.

1 comment:

katharina said...

Incredible! I've never seen such a beautiful sky!