Oceans of Clouds

One of the most amazing things about fluid dynamics, in my opinion, is that the same rules apply across an incredible array of situations. The equations of motion are the same whether your fluid is water, air, or honey. Your flier can be a Cessna airplane or a fruit fly; again, the equations are the same. This is part of the reason that patterns in flows are repeated whether in the laboratory or out in nature – and it’s the reason why a timelapse of fog clouds can look just like ocean waves. Ultimately, the physics is the same; clouds just move slower than ocean waves! (Image credit: L. Leber, source; via James H.)

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