Phenomena

Cloud Swirls

Two interesting sets of clouds are featured in this satellite photo of the Canary Islands and the coast of Africa. In the upper part of the picture, closed cell stratocumulus clouds cover the ocean. As the wind drives these clouds over the islands, their pattern is disturbed by mountains that force the lower layers of air up and around, forming von Karman vortices and wakes that mingle and twist the cloud patterns to the south of the islands. (Photo credit: European Space Agency; via Wired)

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