22 Degree Halo Above Kaohsiung, Taiwan

October 06, 2009


Photographer: Lungchin Hsieh
Summary Authors: Lungchin Hsieh; Jim Foster

The photo above of an exceptionally colorful 22 degree halo (22 degrees from the Sun) was taken over Kaohsiung, Taiwan on June 28, 2007. Randomly oriented, pencil-shaped ice crystals are responsible for the formation of atmospheric halos. In essence, they’re the result of the aggregated shining of myriad ice crystals most often found in cirrus type clouds. Larger crystals typically result in more colorful halos. Note that whereas the colors of a rainbow show red on the outside and blue on the inside, for halos these colors are reversed; red is on the inside – closest to the Sun. Always use caution to protect your eyes when looking at atmospheric phenomena in the direction of the Sun.