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I'm loooking for a simple meteorological explanation

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posted on Jan, 2 2010 @ 12:16 AM
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Hi all,

I was just outside and it's a perfect summer day ... warm with a cool breeze, bright and sunny with blue skies from horizon to horizon.

Except for one small cloud.

No other clouds anywhere around except for this solitary individual.



Sure, it's just a cloud and no big deal ... except that it got me thinking that for something as commonplace as a cloud that each of us sees almost every day of our lives ... that personally, I really know very little about them from a meteorological point of view..

As you can see from the pic above, the cloud has a fairly well defined boundary. Yes, I know that if we got up close to the cloud that the boundary would become more and more fuzzy but from a distance, there's obviously two distinct regions separated by a boundary ... the blue sky region surrounding the cloud and the interior of the cloud.

Now in my mind, that's an obvious indicator that these 2 distinct regions must have very different properties and conditions from each other. It then occurs to me to consider that at some point in time, the cloud didn't exist and it was basically just blue skies but then something had to change or alter, resulting in the formation of the cloud.

As our resident weather expert, this simple question of mine is probably going to be easily answered by OzWeatherman but I'm just curious as to what set of circumstances could trigger the formation of just a single cloud ... why does atmospheric moisture start to condense at a particular spot and then continue condensing ... finally to stop at what becomes the clouds edge boundary ? Why doesn't the condensation just continue ? What process or conditions causes the condensation to halt ?

Simple questions I'm sure ... but one's I've never really thought about until now.
Sometimes we simply take our world and it's wonders for granted




posted on Jan, 2 2010 @ 12:44 AM
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You should read this. -

www.weatherquestions.com...



Clouds form when rising air, through expansion, cools to the point where some of the water vapor molecules "clump together" faster than they are torn apart by their thermal energy. Some of that (invisible) water vapor condenses to form (visible) cloud droplets or ice crystals


It's amazing sometimes when you just stare at the sky and see clouds being born. Awesome!!



posted on Jan, 2 2010 @ 12:46 AM
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I don't know, but I've seen the exact same thing. It happened in the summer, about 10 km from the coast, at the same time in the afternoon. One little cloud in a clear sky, then after a few minutes it disappeared.



posted on Jan, 2 2010 @ 12:53 AM
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Originally posted by grantbeed
You should read this. -

www.weatherquestions.com...



Clouds form when rising air, through expansion, cools to the point where some of the water vapor molecules "clump together" faster than they are torn apart by their thermal energy. Some of that (invisible) water vapor condenses to form (visible) cloud droplets or ice crystals


It's amazing sometimes when you just stare at the sky and see clouds being born. Awesome!!



Thanks for that


But it still makes you wonder WHY that one particular, tiny spot in the entire sky had the necessary conditions for water vapour to start condensing out into a cloud. Why weren't the same conditions available just a short distance away ? Why did the cloud reach a certain size and then stop growing ?

So many questions ... so little time !!



posted on Jan, 2 2010 @ 12:57 AM
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reply to post by tauristercus
 


I see what you mean. If I had to guess I would say that it kind of like the moment a drip falls from a tap.

The moisture builds up then somethingsd got to happen.

Or maybe i'm totally wrong. Who knows.



posted on Jan, 2 2010 @ 03:44 AM
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reply to post by tauristercus
 

G'day tauristercus

Ozweatherman is always good for this stuff.

If you send him a message, he might post in your thread.

Kind regards
Maybe...maybe not



posted on Jan, 2 2010 @ 03:49 AM
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Originally posted by Maybe...maybe not
reply to post by tauristercus
 

G'day tauristercus

Ozweatherman is always good for this stuff.

If you send him a message, he might post in your thread.

Kind regards
Maybe...maybe not


You're absolutely right that a question like this is probably right up his alley


I was expecting him to drop by but he may still be on leave/holidays as I haven't seen him post in the last week or so ... so yes, a U2U may be the way to go.

Thanks ...



posted on Jan, 2 2010 @ 04:30 AM
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The sky isn't a constant medium, for example a layer of low humidity can be sandwiched between layers of high humidity etc.

So the small cloud you saw just happened to be in a right area of ideal conditions for clouds to form. As it travels along, the conditions return to the same as the surrounding areas and it disappears.


I think that covers the simple part!


[edit on 2/1/10 by Chadwickus]



posted on Jan, 2 2010 @ 02:28 PM
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I don't have one.
But I took two photos a few seconds apart and a similar cloud
did not appear on the second photo.
I always thought it was the film.
ED:
A similar 'cloud', do you have rays going down to earth?


I have a Rex Heflin ring:



[edit on 1/2/2010 by TeslaandLyne]



posted on Jan, 2 2010 @ 06:48 PM
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I think Chadwickus answered it pretty well

You can get pockets of air where the air cools significantly enough for cloud to form momentarily, only to dissapear as soon as it appeared. This happens quite frequently over water bodies through evaporation, though its not restrcited to those areas.

Its important to note that the atmosphere is not a constant. Just because cloud forms in one spot, does not mean that cloud will form in another area.

Hope that helps a little





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