What Are Clouds Made Of


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** What Are Clouds Made Of **

by Tega Jessa on September 8, 2010

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What Are Clouds Made Of

Earth limb with clouds

When we think of clouds we think of those white cotton ball masses in the
air. What we don’t really think about is what are clouds made of. We all
know about the water cycle in some form. We know that clouds are created
from the water that evaporates from various lakes, rivers, and oceans. We
also know that at some time this evaporated water becomes rain and starts
the cycle all over again. However there are important questions about
clouds we overlook. First, how are clouds visible if water vapor is
normally supposed to be invisible like air or at least dissipate quickly
after the first gush of steam? Second, why do clouds last so long in their
different forms? Finally, what gives clouds their white or grey colors? As
you can see there is a lot we take for granted in our understanding of
clouds and how they are formed.

We know that clouds are made of water vapor, what we don’t know or at
least forget is the important role that condensation plays in making clouds
visible. For the most part water vapor is invisible. This is proven by the
fact that the air we breathe regularly has some water vapor as part of its
composition. However we don’t see it since its apart of the air.
Condensation is what makes water

Source: www.universetoday.com/73198/what-are-clouds-made-of/

what are clouds made of

Cloud - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


** Cloud **

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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For other uses, see Cloud (disambiguation).
Stratocumulus stratiformis cumulogenitus

In meteorology, a *cloud* is a visible mass of liquid droplets or frozen
crystals made of water or various chemicals suspended in the atmosphere
above the surface of a planetary body.^[1] These suspended particles are
also known as aerosols. Clouds in Earth's atmosphere are studied in the
cloud physics branch of meteorology. Two processes, possibly acting
together, can lead to air becoming saturated; cooling the air or adding
water vapor to the air. In general, precipitation will fall to the surface;
an exception is virga, which evaporates before reaching the surface.^[2]

The international cloud classification system is based on the fact that
clouds in their most basic forms can show free-convective upward growth
like cumulus, appear in non-convective layered sheets such as stratus, or
take the form of thin fibrous wisps, as in the case of cirrus. Prefixes are
used in connection with clouds to express variations or complexities in
these basic forms or to specify middle or high altitude ranges. These
include /strato-/ for low clouds with limited convection that form mostly
in uneven layers, /cumulo-/ for complex highly-convective storm clouds,
/nimbo-/ for thick layered clouds of some complexity that can produce
moderate to heavy precipitation, /alto-/ for middle clouds, and /cirro-/
for high clouds; the latter two of which may be of simple or moderately
complex structure. Whether or not a cloud is low, middle, or high level
depends on how far above the ground its base forms. Cloud types with
significant vertical extent can form in the low or middle altitude ranges
depending on the moisture content of the air. Clouds in the troposphere
have Latin names

Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloud

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