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Low clouds are formed at altitudes of below 2000 meters (6 500 feet). Even after you’ve sorted the kinds of clouds you’re looking at into the correct categories based on shape, height in the sky, and accompanying weather, you may still be struggling between a couple different cloud types. Cirrocumulus clouds are much smaller than most other types of clouds, and they are sometimes called cloudlets. The form of classification that makes the most sense and is widely accepted in the meteorological community, is the one we will focus on in this article. Stratogenitus – partial transformation of stratus. Floccus (Flo) – "Tufted": Applies to stratocumuliform (Sc flo, Ac flo, Cc flo) and high cirriform (Ci flo); indicates some mid or high-level instability. Clouds are given different names based on their shape and their height in the sky. Humilis (Hum) – "Small": Applies to cumuliform (Cu hum) with little vertical extent; indicates relatively slight airmass instability. Clouds with upward-growing vertical development usually form below 2 kilometres (6,600 ft),[5] but can be based as high as 2.5 kilometres (8,200 ft) in temperate climates, and often much higher in arid regions. Both of these clouds have a puffy shape, but stratocumulus clouds have a more flattened, thicker, and darker appearance compared to cumulus clouds, which look more like puffs of cotton. Undulatus – "Wavy": stratiform or stratocumuliform cloud displaying an undulating pattern. Stratus that touches the Earth's surface is given the common name, fog, rather than a Latin name that applies only to clouds that form and remain aloft in the troposphere. Want to know the fastest and easiest ways to convert between Fahrenheit and Celsius? You can take a look at these cloud types here and see what kind of weather they bring to you. The cumulus genus includes four species as defined by vertical size and structure. Stratus clouds are composed of thin layers of clouds covering a large area of the sky. The exception is for low clouds which are officially said to have cloud bases within the first 6,500 feet (2,000 meters) of the surface in each region. These mid-level clouds are much denser than the similar shaped Cirrostratus clouds found higher up in the atmosphere, meaning they are less transparent and don't allow shadows to be cast on the ground. Altocumulus volutus (V27) elongated, tube shaped, horizontal stratocumuliform cloud. Until next time, keep your eye on the weather! I've heard these terms for years, but never researched all the meanings. Never Miss Out On Another New And Exciting Article! Depending on the thickness of the cloud, a stratocumulus will have light to dark gray hues. Clouds get their names in two ways. This means they are less prone to being transparent and allowing sunlight through. Rachel Miller from Michigan U.S.A. on March 22, 2018: This is totally great! Starting out as a humble cumulus cloud, strong vertical air movement (updrafts) combined with enough humid air allow this type of cloud to develop. All rights reserved. Both these cloud types have similar wispy shapes, but cirrostratus clouds cover much more of the sky compared to cirrus clouds. Nimbostratus clouds form as a result of the gradual accumulation of moist area over a large area as the warm frontal system lifts the warm and moist area higher up in the atmosphere where it condenses. Apart from appearing lower in the atmosphere, they are also denser than higher-level clouds. Their color varies from light gray to white and the fibrous bands can vary widely in thickness. Ask below and we'll reply! I think I would have really loved it. Striations (informal term for WMO accessory cloud velum) – a groove or band of clouds encircling an updraft tower, indicative of rotation. 21 experts you should follow if you want to make sense of the pandemic (and a bonus). Middle clouds seldom produce any rainfall. on May 21, 2019: The pictures of the lenticular clouds are very interesting. Stratus nebulosus translucidus undulatus (V-92), Stratus nebulosus opacus undulatus (V-93). However, if enough moisture is retained at the ground level, the cloud can transform into a nimbostratus. Bands of cloud resembling cirrus located mainly in the highest of three main layers that cover Jupiter.[24]. They generally produce thunderstorms, rain or showers, and sometimes hail, strong outflow winds, and/or tornadoes at ground level. Some of the best cloud pictures involve cirrostratus clouds because the ice crystals beautifully refract light from the sun or moon producing a dazzling halo effect.

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