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(image credit: Cuerling)
Another strange hole in the cloud, reported from Mobile, Alabama USA, Dec. 2003 (and covered by BBC News):
(images credit: Joel Knain and Weatherlings)
Photo taken in Melbourne, Australia in 2003:
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.
(image credit: Neil Johnson(The Tampa Tribune) and Gwen Swinburne)
These “cloud holes” can look like the footprints of some celestial being (UFO enthusiasts rejoice!) or can be amazingly round, like this pair observed in Gallatin, Tennessee by Wayne Carter:
(image credit: Wayne Carter)
NASA takes satellite images of this phenomenon
NASA Terra satellite equipped with the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) has captured these images over Acadiana area in southern Louisiana – a splattering of round holes actually stretched over several states: Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas. Some were elongated, some appeared to have smaller clouds inside them.
Cloud Vortices: another “holey” sky phenomena
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.
(image credit: NASA)
More Incredible and Fascinating Clouds
…that make our sky worthy to look at from time to time (those who only look at the computer monitor, take note). Here is an extremely strong thunderstorm cloud that brewed over northwest Calgary:
(images credit: D’Arcy Norman)
Another supercell cloud in Alberta skies, this time over Edmonton:
(image credit: Greg)
(image credit: Cloud Appreciation Society)
Another cloud “wave”, similar to the one over South Dakota Badlands (see here):
(image credit: Barry Slade)
Roll clouds… get into a small plane and start “surfing” them! -
(image credit: Russell White)
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