posted on May, 23 2011 @ 07:10 PM
Originally posted by logicalthinking
Wow that one is bad ass. I haven't seen one that bright. Found this explanation of them "It's due to those high, wispy clouds that are around
today. Those clouds are made of tiny ice crystals, and if the cloud is at the right angle to the sun, the crystals will refract the sunlight (much
like a prism) into the colors of the rainbow." source
The "rainbow cloud" phenomena being talked about and certainly shown in the photographs on that website shouldn't be confused with
which is what we are seeing in the OP's photograph.
The photographs in the website above are all of arcs such as the circumhorizon arc
, and possibly
some slightly less common arcs. There's even one shot there that looks a little like a sundog (parhelia), but it's hard to tell since the shot is so
Cloud iridescence is actually very common, but large swathes of bright iridescence like that shown in the photograph the OP posted are less frequently
seen. Generally iridescence can be see in the fringes of cloud, when the sun goes behind a cloud of the right type, but the colors are usually subtle.
On rare occasions where the ice crystals that make up a cloud are very uniform in size/shape/orientation, the colors and patterns become much more