PHOTOS: ‘Fire Rainbows’ Over Windsor’s Afternoon Skies
Thursday May 14th, 2015
Posted at 8:59pm
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Many Windsorites experienced a rare weather phenomenon over the city this afternoon.
Iridescent clouds, also known as cloud rainbows or fire rainbows, are a sunlight diffraction phenomenon caused by small water droplets or small ice crystals individually scattering light.
If parts of clouds have small droplets or crystals of similar size, their cumulative effect is seen as colors.
The effect is usually seen when a cumulus cloud, moving upward, pushes the air layers above it higher and higher. As the air gets pushed upwards, it cools and expands, and moisture in the cloud condenses into tiny droplets to form a ‘cap cloud.’
The droplets in the cap cloud scatter sunlight to form colors.
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