what gives different types of clouds their shape?

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what gives different types of clouds their shape?

In: Chemistry

4 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

There are a few important points.

Temperature is very important. Hot air will rise very quickly, create what we call “thermals” – also known as updrafts. This hot air can then condense when its a lot higher than colder air. Hot air often also carries a lot of water, and so hot air water can produce towering clouds that seem to be “compacted”. Cold air forms low-sitting clouds that may be more stretched out as there is a bit more time to separate the water.

Pressure is very important. Low pressure can create “harder” (instead of fluffier) clouds which are more centralised and compact. High pressure can create very high-in-the-sky clouds which are fluffy/wispy.

“Wind” is related to pressure and temperature usually, but forgetting this, of course wind can move clouds around, potentially winds can separate large clouds into a few smaller clouds.

Of course, because wind, temperature, pressure and “the amount of water in the air” are related (they all affect each other), very generally we have a picture of 2 types of clouds – those which form on calm, sunny, high pressure days (high, spread out, white, fluffy/wispy, unlikely to rain). And those which form on windy, wet, low pressure days (lower, much more dense, often grey/black, occasionally with thunder).

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