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NASA captured mysterious holes in cloud formations resembling UFOs

Added Mon, 04/03/2024
Дата публикации
Mon, 04/03/2024

Vacuum clouds, also known as leaky or autumn holes, have long been striking the imagination of sky watchers around the world. These mesmerizing cloud formations, characterized by large round holes and a thin plume inside, have sparked speculation about their origin, including theories about UFOs and extraterrestrial activity. However, the true explanation for these mesmerizing cloud holes is earthly and quite scientific.

An impressive example of aquarium clouds was seen over the Gulf of Mexico near the west coast of Florida on January 30, 2024. The image taken by NASA's Terra satellite is a stunning view from above, demonstrating the natural beauty and complexity of these cloud formations.

The intrigue associated with vacuum clouds has been the subject of scientific debate since the 1940s, and various hypotheses have been put forward over the decades. However, the final explanation was given only after a comprehensive study conducted by scientists from the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) and their colleagues.

Their research, published in 2010 and 2011, showed that these cloud formations are caused by airplanes, dispelling more fantastic theories. Altocumulus clouds, which are medium-level clouds consisting of supercooled liquid water droplets, play a crucial role in the formation of cavum clouds.

Hypothermia occurs when water droplets remain liquid even at temperatures below the normal freezing point of water. This phenomenon is relatively common in the Earth's atmosphere, especially in altocumulus clouds. These clouds cover approximately 8% of the Earth's surface at any given time and consist mainly of supercooled droplets.

Cumulus cloud formation begins when aircraft disrupt these subtle atmospheric conditions. When airplanes pass through these clouds, the air around their wings and propellers undergoes adiabatic expansion, which leads to further cooling of the water droplets. This cooling causes the supercooled droplets to freeze, triggering a chain reaction in which ice crystals form and grow, eventually becoming heavy enough to fall.

The shape and size of clouds depend on various factors, including the angle at which the planes intersect the cloud layer. At sharp angles, small round cavum clouds are formed, and at small angles, elongated "channel clouds" decorated with Virginia trails. In addition, factors such as the thickness of the cloud layer, air temperature and horizontal wind shear also play a role in the formation of these cloud holes.

A study led by UCAR has shown that aircraft of various types, from large passenger jet to turboprop, are capable of creating vacuum and channel clouds. Considering that more than a thousand flights arrive daily at airports such as Miami International, there are all possibilities in the sky for the formation of these fascinating cloud structures.

Thus, the mesmerizing spectacle of aquarium clouds today is evidence of the fascinating interaction of natural atmospheric conditions and human aviation activities. Thanks to the diligent efforts of scientists and researchers, we have unraveled the secrets of these unearthly cloud formations, revealing the complex processes that give rise to their beauty.

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