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Strange sights in the sky

Posted by on in The Sky
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It seems to be our week for spotting interesting things in the sky.  First the aurora, then the solar halo and now this weird structure.  It looks like something you would expect to see in  ‘Close Encounters’ or the ‘X files’.

This cloud formation is a rather impressive fallstreak hole (also known as hole punch cloud or cloud hole).  These are apparently fairly rare and can often be mistaken for UFOs.  The exact process of their formation is not fully understood but is believed to be caused when water droplets in the cloud start to freeze into ice crystals, sticking together and becoming heavier before finally dropping below the cloud as ‘fallstreak’.  This process is started when aircraft pass through the cloud, which causes the water to cool down enough to freeze.  The result is quite impressive.

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Tagged in: Clouds The Sky Weather