Extraordinary weather event: Sky Punch

Impressionnant skypunch avec une irisation au milieu en Australie en 2014. © Kate Farrel Beadel

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[EN VIDÉO] Spectacular world of clouds
Look at the passing of the clouds: it comes in all forms. As meteorologists say, here we show you some that live on different “floors”.

This spectacular hole, which stretches for tens of thousands of kilometers, actually looks like a ship from another world passing through a deck. Clouds. Meteorologists are well aware of this phenomenon, which appears several times a year in photos of Internet users.

IfWorld Meteorological Organization Recognized him in him Cloud Atlas And classified Pit Since 2017, the event has been better known by other names: Sky Punch, Fallstream Hole, Hole Punch, And “trou de virga” in French. Remember what we call meteorology Virgins Rain that does not reach the ground because it evaporates when it lands. The Sky Punch Really one Evaporating cloud It has a circular shape, or clear line within the layer of clouds. Inside the hole, we could see fine cloudy whistles and the famous “Virgos”.

One Sky Punch Virgins in the video at its center. © Matthew Marley

Natural and artificial creation

This phenomenon is the result of two processes, one natural and the other artificial. When the hole is formed a Plane The cloud passes during its ascent or descent: in this particular case, the hole is rounded. If the plane passes horizontally through the cloud, the shape of the hole will be in a straight line.

The cloud is made up of droplets supercoolingThis means that the temperature is below 0 C, but these drops will be Fluids. The passage of the aircraft is disturbed, and the temperature drops very briefly, but very strongly. The droplets turn into ice crystals, which are too heavy to stay in suspension, so they eventually fall off and evaporate quickly. This is how this hole forms inside the cloud. It will enlarge in a few minutes and then disintegrate. The formation of this hole is 50 km per hour. The Skypunches Sometimes forming into groups Satellite images Can catch more than a dozen scattered in a single cloud band.

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Many Sky Punch in New York. © NOAA

From Skypunches Sometimes observed in France

The Sky Punch Thin serocomulus clouds or slightly thicker aldocumulus and stratocumulus type clouds, forming in low and dense clouds. Depending on the type of cloud it forms, its altitude can vary from 1,500 to 10,000 meters.

Sky Punch captured by NASA satellites. © NASA

It can develop anywhere in the world Season, But the most beautiful photos of this event have so far come from Australia and the American continent (USA, Canada, Mexico). Some Skypunches In recent years photography has also taken place in Europe, France and the British Isles, without being as enjoyable as on other continents.

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