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Wave Clouds Off the Eastern Coast of Brazil

22.9S 43.2W

September 18th, 2009 Category: Clouds

Brazil - September 3rd, 2009

Brazil - September 3rd, 2009

Wave clouds leave rippled patterns in the skies off the east coast of Brazil. Near the shore, the cities of São Paulo (left) and Rio de Janeiro (right) appear as grey areas amidst the green of coastal mountains and forests.

A wave cloud is a cloud form created by atmospheric standing waves.  When there is enough moisture in the atmosphere, clouds form at the crests of these waves, but evaporate in the descending parts due to adiabatic heating. This creates the characteristic repeating cloud/clear bands.

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