Iridescent Kelvin Helmholtz clouds

Iridescent Kelvin Helmholtz clouds

These clouds look like breaking ocean waves. It’s rare to see them iridescent!

Here is something special and very rare.

Iridescent Kelvin-Helmholtz clouds, Mutare, Zimbabwe, March 11, 2016.

Iridescent Kelvin-Helmholtz clouds, Mutare, Zimbabwe, March 11, 2016. Photo by Dr. Peter Lowenstein.

Iridescent Kelvin-Helmholtz clouds with passing swallow, Mutare, Zimbabwe

Iridescent Kelvin-Helmholtz clouds with passing swallow, Mutare, Zimbabwe Photo taken March 11, 2016 by Dr. Peter Lowenstein.

Dispersing iridescent Kelvin-Helmholtz clouds, Mutare, Zimbabwe, March

Dispersing iridescent Kelvin-Helmholtz clouds, Mutare, Zimbabwe, March 11, 2016. Photo by Dr. Peter Lowenstein.

On Friday evening (March 11, 2016), a few minutes before sunset, a thin band of Kelvin Helmholtz clouds developed above a cumulonimbus anvil and became iridescent for just three minutes before dispersing.

The first three photographs on this page, in which the iridescence is bright, were taken with a Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ60 in intelligent auto mode and x60 zoom magnification.

The distant view – at the bottom of the page – was taken a short while before. The Kelvin Helmholtz cloud band had not yet become colorful.

To see Kelvin-Helmholtz clouds is rare, for them to become iridescent is much rarer and for a swallow to fly past during the fraction of a second when a photograph is taken defies all odds and is almost miraculous!

http://earthsky.org/todays-image/iridescent-kelvin-helmholtz-clouds

Read more about Kelvin Helmholtz clouds, and see more photos
http://earthsky.org/earth/kelvin-helmholzt-clouds

Read more about cloud iridescence
http://earthsky.org/earth/i-saw-a-cloud-with-rainbow-colors-what-causes-it

RELEASE DATE: MAR 15, 2016

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