Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Day 130 - Complex Clouds part 3

Hi all today's Day 130 and I have being doing a short series on clouds, today's main focus will be a special type of cloud called Lenticular Clouds.

Lenticular cloud above North York Moors
Thanks to Ben Spires for letting me use this fab photo

Anyway, let's get straight on with the facts:

  • Lenticular clouds have a very noticeable shape. They basically just look like a floating, white dish in the sky.
  • Because of their shape, they have been found as the cause for some apparent U.F.O sightings. That's one thing we can rule out.
  • There are several different types of Lenticular cloud, all of which are linked with the main types of cloud.
  • Stratocumulus Lenticular Clouds, Altocumulus Lenticular Clouds and Cirrocumulus Lenticular Cloud form depending on how high up in the sky they are found.
  • All of them form when moist air is pushed upwards when travelling over a mountain and condenses to form a cloud which is sometimes turned into a wavy pattern.
  • They look like they aren't moving, like they are frozen in time, but that is not the case  - the moist air always supplies the side with the wind on it as water evaporates on the far side. Sometimes they can look like they hover for days until the weather changes.
  • Identifying Lenticular Clouds is easy because if you see a big white thing in the sky that looks like a U.F.O, especially if there is a mountain/hill nearby, then it is probably a Lenticular Cloud.
  • They are usually very lonely clouds as, most of the time, they form where there is a perfectly blue sky.
  • Pilots of aeroplanes usually tend to avoid Lenticular Clouds as there are severe up-drafts (mountain waves) which result in severe turbulence of the aircraft's engines. It also means that you are probably flying quite close to a mountain...
  • They are often photographer's favourite sights and they are mesmerizing to watch. You can see it in the picture to the right and above.
Here are some links to some more information:

Hope you enjoyed,


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