Lenticular and Cumulus Duo

September 09, 2004


Provided and copyright by: Jason Shafer, University of Utah
Summary authors & editors: Jason Shafer

This intriguing photo was taken around sunset in October of 2003 from Salt Lake City, Utah, looking south towards the Wasatch Mountains. It was taken shortly after a storm system moved through the area and shows a lenticular cloud, which appears to be directly on top of a cumulus cloud. Both of these clouds were presumably caused by air moving upward near the mountains. This cloud configuration is unique because it shows two distinct stability layers. The cumulus (humilis) cloud is convective in origin (small vertical development), while the lenticular cloud is associated with stable or laminar flow over the mountains.

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