Phenomena

Clouds Down Under

This satellite image of clouds over Australia was taken July 5, 2023.

This large and unusual cloud formation was captured one July morning over western Australia. Stretching over 1,000 kilometers, the clouds have interesting features at both the large and small scale. The small-scale ripples within the clouds are gravity waves triggered by the terrain below. The larger, arced features are tougher to explain, though they may also be related to gravity waves and terrain, just on a much larger scale. They also resemble fallstreak clouds where supercooled droplets evaporate from the inside of the cloud out. (Image credit: W. Liang; via NASA Earth Observatory)

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