Circumhorizontal Arc – Rainbow Halos!!

These rainbows aren’t made from raindrops…
wpid-20130914_133917.jpgFor a Circumhorizontal arc (CA) to be visible, the Sun must be at least 58 degrees high in the sky and where cirrus clouds are present. Additionally, the copious, flat, hexagonal ice-crystals that compose the cirrus cloud must be aligned horizontally to properly refract sunlight in a collectively similar manner. In principle, a CA is a type of halo. These happen a few times a year here in the Midwest. Other lower latitudes don’t get to see these at all.wpid-20130914_133913.jpgwpid-20130914_133923.jpg

25 thoughts on “Circumhorizontal Arc – Rainbow Halos!!

    • Thanks! I had never seen this phenomenon before, although my research said they were common here.
      I’d ass-u-me that you would be able to see these in your latitude, although they only happen in the summer months. I’m sure there’s a bunch of geometry that goes into this. . However, I’m no math scholar! 😮

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  1. However you (and science) describe it–it’s meteorological magic. I’m a sucker for any type of otherworldly awe, and I hereby declare rainbow arcs as definitely high on the list of breathtaking beauties.
    Lovely, lovely photos!

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  2. Oh my Gosh, well done, wow. That is pretty magnificent. I’d heard that all rainbows are actually 360 degrees but we only see part of them. To have the opportunity to see this CA is a real treat. Thank you, you really do learn something new every day.

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    • Thanks! And THEY say these are common here. .. I’ll have to pay more attention I guess. I just heard there is a solar eclipse Thursday at sunset. I’m trying to think of some high land I can get to. ..ha! High land in Illinois. . Funny! 😄 might as well get on my roof.

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      • Solar eclipse Thursday? I’ll look into that. I caught the Lunar eclipse a couple weeks ago. Working on processing some pics of it now. I got lucky I was actually up to get it. Maybe you need to find a tall parking garage, just don’t go it alone!

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