There is no need to rely on weather forecasts, as long as you raise your eyes to the sky and observe these clouds you can know whether it is going to rain or shine.
Current weather forecasts are based on complex computer simulations. These simulations use all physical equations to describe the atmosphere, including the movement of the air, the heat of the sun, the formation of clouds and rain.
Over time, improvements in forecasting have made the forecast for 5 days ahead as accurate as predicting the weather three days ago 20 years ago. But no supercomputer is needed to predict whether the weather on your head has changed in the next few hours. By observing the sky and knowing a little about the formation of clouds, we can predict whether it will rain or not.
Moreover, if you know a little bit about the cause of cloud formation – coming from the complexity of the atmosphere, you will understand why weather forecasting just a few days ago is already a challenge.
Here are 6 clouds that, if you keep an eye on them, you’ll understand the mood of the weather.
1. Cumulus (Cumulus clouds)
The clouds are formed when the air reaches the dew point (which is the temperature at which the relative humidity of the air mass reaches 100%) – at that time the air can no longer hold the steam. At this temperature, water vapor condenses to form liquid water droplets, which we often see in cloud shapes. In order for this process to occur, the atmosphere in the atmosphere is forced to rise or humid air must contact the cold surface.
On a sunny day, solar radiation heats the soil, and the soil will heat the air just above it. This hot air stream rises by convection and formation of Cumulus. These “good weather” clouds look like cotton wool. These clouds are flat and equal. At this height, the air from the ground has been cooled to the dew point. When you see the cumulative clouds, rest assured because the current weather is beautiful and not raining.
2. Cumulonimbus (Cumulonimbus clouds)
Small Cumulus clouds do not cause rain, but if you see them bigger and expand the height above the atmosphere, this is a sign that there is going to be a big rain. This very popular summer, Cumulus morning will grow into Cumulonimbus clouds in the afternoon.
Cumulonimbus is near the ground with a clear shape, but when higher, they begin to turn into thin strips. This transformation shows that the cloud is no longer made up of water droplets, but ice crystals. When strong winds blow water droplets outside the cloud, they quickly evaporate in a drier environment, causing the cloud to have sharp edges. Meanwhile, ice crystals outside the cloud evaporate more slowly, making them more fragile.
Cumulonimbus usually has a flat top. With Cumulonimbus, warm air rises due to convection and gradually cools down until it has the same temperature as the surrounding atmosphere. At this time, the air could not rise higher. Instead, they spread out, forming a characteristic shape.
This type of cloud can cause lightning and many types of extreme weather such as hail, heavy rain, wind gusts or even tornadoes.
3. Cirrus (Ti cloud)
Cirrus forms very high in the atmosphere. They are slender clouds, made up of ice crystals that fall through the atmosphere. If Cirrus is pushed by the wind horizontally at different speeds, they will have a characteristic hook shape. Only at very high latitudes does Cirrus create rain on the ground.
But if you see Cirrus starting to cover the sky, swooping lower and thicker, this is a sign that warm weather is approaching and creating a rain in the next 12 hours.
4. Stratus (Floor Cloud)
Stratus is a low cloud cover the sky. Stratus formed by mildly rising air or by a light breeze carrying humid air through a cold or sea surface. Thin cloudy Stratus, so if it seems gloomy, it may not happen rain, at most it is only a light drizzle. The stratus is identical to the fog, so if you’ve ever walked in the mountains on a foggy day, you may have gone in the clouds.
5. Lenticular (Lens cloud)
The Lenticular shows extremely complex movements of the atmosphere and may be a precursor to weather changes such as floods and storms. Lenticular clouds are smooth and lens-like, they often appear in the windy side of mountains or along high mountains. The lenticular forms when the moist air layer is pushed up and reaches a certain saturation point.
Once you pass the mountain, the air will return to the old altitude. When the air shrinks, they warm up and the cloud evaporates. But if the air rises again in the mountain, it can form another Lenticular cloud. This can create a series of clouds, stretching across a mountain range. The interaction of mountains with winds and other surfaces is one of the many details that need to be described in computer simulations to accurately predict the weather.
6. Kelvin-Helmholtz (Tsunami Cloud)
This last cloud does not help predict the weather, but this is an amazing phenomenon of nature. Kelvin-Helmholtz is also known as a tsunami cloud because it is shaped like a broken “giant” ocean wave.
Cloud Kelvin-Helmholtz formed when two layers of air collided, causing the wind to suddenly change speed, creating chaos.
Many people are skeptical that “Does the phenomenon of tsunami clouds in the sky mean a catastrophe?” However, the scientists, Kelvin-Helmholtz explained, formed when the air layer and the touch each other so the wind suddenly changes speed, creating chaos. The evaporation and condensation of water vapor from the sea when encountering the intersection of two air layers with different thickness and light will create wave effect for the clouds.
Cloud Kelvin-Helmholt is named after Lord Baron Lord Kelvin (Scotland), who, along with Hermann Helmholtz, a German physicist, studied and gave an accurate explanation of this strange phenomenon.