What causes big fluffy clouds?
On a sunny day, the sun's radiation heats the land, which in turn heats the air just above it. This warmed air rises by convection and forms Cumulus. These “fair weather” clouds look like cotton wool. If you look at a sky filled with cumulus, you may notice they have flat bases, which all lie at the same level.
Generally detached clouds, they look like white fluffy cotton balls. They show vertical motion or thermal uplift of air taking place in the atmosphere. They are usually dense in appearance with sharp outlines.
Water from the earth's surface moves into the air by EVAPORATION and becomes WATER VAPOR. Clouds are formed when rising air is cooled and the water vapor condenses on particles in the air and forms tiny water droplets.
Colder clouds are higher in the atmosphere while warmer ones are closer to the surface. Also, warmer clouds can hold more water vapor than colder clouds, making it possible for clouds closer to the surface to become thicker and bigger than higher clouds.
Clouds are created when water vapor, an invisible gas, turns into liquid water droplets. These water droplets form on tiny particles, like dust, that are floating in the air.
Stratocumulus Clouds. Stratocumulus clouds like these are often associated with rain or other types of precipitation. They are fluffy and relatively low to the ground. Clouds are visible accumulations of tiny water droplets or ice crystals in the Earth's atmosphere.
Cumulus clouds are big clouds. They can look like huge puffs of cotton.
When the water vapor meets the cold air found high in the sky, the gas condenses to liquid and forms cumulus clouds. While these fluffy-white clouds look like soft pillows of cotton, they are actually composed of small water droplets.
Cumulus is Latin for "heap" or "pile," and these clouds form and look like just that: a heaping pile of billowing white fluffiness! These are what we call fair-weather clouds that make for some neat shapes as they drift by.
Clouds appear when there is too much water vapour for the air to hold. The water vapour (gas) then condenses to form tiny water droplets (liquid), and it is the water that makes the cloud visible. These droplets are so small that they stay suspended in the air.
Does high pressure cause clouds to form?
In an anticyclone (high pressure) the winds tend to be light and blow in a clockwise direction (in the northern hemisphere). Also, the air is descending, which reduces the formation of cloud and leads to light winds and settled weather conditions.
Low-pressure areas are places where the atmosphere is relatively thin. Winds blow inward toward these areas. This causes air to rise, producing clouds and condensation.
This is because light gets absorbed versus being scattered, which means less light getting through. That is, a cloud gets thicker and denser as it gathers more water droplets and ice crystals — the thicker it gets, the more light it scatters, resulting in less light penetrating all the way through.
Clouds are composed primarily of small water droplets and, if it's cold enough, ice crystals. The vast majority of clouds you see contain droplets and/or crystals that are too small to have any appreciable fall velocity. So the particles continue to float with the surrounding air.
Cumulonimbus clouds are the kings of all clouds, rising from low altitudes to more than 60,000 feet (20,000 meters) above ground level.
Clouds form when the invisible water vapor in the air condenses into visible water droplets or ice crystals. For this to happen, the parcel of air must be saturated, i.e. unable to hold all the water it contains in vapor form, so it starts to condense into a liquid or solid form.
A cloud is a mass of water drops or ice crystals suspended in the atmosphere. Clouds form when water condenses in the sky. The condensation lets us see the water vapor. There are many different types of clouds.
A cloud is made of water drops or ice crystals floating in the sky. There are many kinds of clouds. Clouds are an important part of Earth's weather.
The wall cloud is your best identifier that a tornado is possible. This cloud is a compact, lowering of the cloud, where the updraft and inflow of a storm are located. There is a lot of movement here and when they are rotating wall clouds, funnel clouds and tornadoes can descend from them.
Altocumulus are the classic cotton ball clouds. These puffy, white clouds are the most common mid-level clouds and sometimes signal that a storm is on the way. Cirrostratus clouds are spread across the entire sky and almost seem transparent. This wispy cloud formation signals that there is warm weather ahead.
What does it mean when clouds are moving fast?
The higher up you go in the sky, the faster the clouds move. This is because the wind is faster at higher heights above the surface. We sometimes get clouds that can travel huge distances, and cross the oceans. These clouds are following a particularly strong wind, called the jet stream.
Cirrocumulus clouds are fairly rare and fun for enthusiasts to discover. They are commonly called "popcorn" clouds because they look like thin white popped kernels floating high in the sky.
Cirrus: Like their name (which is Latin for "curl of hair") suggests, cirrus are thin, white, wispy strands of clouds that streaks across the sky and are also known as mares' tails.
Altocumulus: Gray or white layers or patches of solid clouds with rounded shapes, and they often appear as fluffy ripples. They are made of liquid water, but they don't often produce rain. Weather prediction: Fair and pleasant!
As it warms up, the water turns into a vapor and teeny, tiny water droplets start to float up into the air. This process is called 'evaporation'. Then, the whole water cycle process starts all over again! So, if we could eat or drink them, clouds would taste like water.
Now our puzzle is complete: clouds are made up of tiny droplets of water, which are hardly affected by gravity, embedded in moist air, which is lighter than dry air. And they're surrounded by tiny warm blankets of air, which lift them up towards the sky.
Stratus clouds are nondescript, thick, blanket-like clouds that form low in the sky. Think of the last gray, overcast day when it didn't rain… those were probably stratus clouds. (Fog is just a ground-level stratus cloud.)
When I see clouds, they often appear to be flat on the bottom and fluffy on top. Why is that? You are referring to cumulus clouds, the most common daytime clouds in the summer sky.
Cumulus humilis is the quintessential Cumulus – flat-bottomed and puffy like cotton (they look like cartoon Simpsons clouds). They are found scattered randomly through the sky in separate little piles, and they are said to indicate “fair weather,” meaning no precipitation and moderate temperatures.
They are so thick that they often blot out the sunlight. Cumulus clouds look like fluffy, white cotton balls in the sky. They are beautiful in sunsets, and their varying sizes and shapes can make them fun to observe! Stratus cloud often look like thin, white sheets covering the whole sky.
What is it called when clouds get too heavy?
Precipitation is the process in which clouds get heavy due to accumulation of water droplets in the sky caused by condensation. This heaviness in clouds then leads to rainfall.
When warm air rises from the ground, it carries water vapor with it. When the water vapor meets the cold air found high in the sky, the gas condenses to liquid and forms cumulus clouds. While these fluffy-white clouds look like soft pillows of cotton, they are actually composed of small water droplets.
Clouds appear when there is too much water vapour for the air to hold. The water vapour (gas) then condenses to form tiny water droplets (liquid), and it is the water that makes the cloud visible.
Noctilucent clouds - the rarest clouds in the world - have glowed like shimmering cobwebs in the sky over the San Francisco Bay Area, US and experts think they were likely the result of a rocket launch.
Nacreous clouds are some of the rarest clouds on the planet. They are a form of polar stratospheric cloud, which is a main culprit in chemical destruction of the ozone layer.
Nimbus is an ancient Latin word meaning “rain storm.” Rain or nimbus clouds tend to appear dark gray because their depth and/or density of large water droplets obscures sunlight. Depending on temperature, nimbus clouds may precipitate hail or snow instead of liquid rain.
Fog is a cloud that touches the ground.
Once droplets grow into drops and fall to Earth as rain, it will continue to rain as long as conditions in the atmosphere keep causing water vapor to condense into liquid water and grow into drops heavy enough to fall as rain.
A cumulonimbus cloud. (NOAA) Description: These towering cousins of the fair-weather cumulus cloud are quite possibly the most common sight during severe weather.