A mixture of clouds in NW Taiwan

Cumulus_Altocumulus_lenticularis_Cirrus_Ming-HwaTang_MiaoliCityNWTaiwan_17Jun2014

Ming-Hwa Tang
Location: Miaoli City, Taiwan
Date: 17 June 2014

What a fun mixture of clouds over northwest Taiwan on this late spring afternoon! High above, the faint, nearly transparent clouds are Cirrus clouds made up of ice crystals. Moving down to the mid-levels are Altocumulus clouds. Note that they are slightly lens-shaped. This indicates the lenticularis variety, or more commonly referred to as Lenticular clouds. They form when relatively stable air flows over mountains, which in this case are part of the Central Mountain Range oriented N-S across this country. Heating of these mountains peaks, however, allows the sub-tropical moist air to rise to produce the shallow cumulus clouds over the high terrain. The presence of the more stable lenticular clouds aloft suggest that these cumulus clouds will be limited in vertical growth.

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