In the skies of Alabama raging giant waves

In the skies of Alabama raging giant waves Facts

Fig. 1. Clouds on the horizon, Birmingham, Alabama (December 16, 2011).

The morning of 16 December, a group of huge clouds in the form of the waves on the horizon outlined in Birmingham, Alabama. Combs 'wave' slowly swaying, recalling the dream surfer. The sight aroused great interest among the local people.

According to experts, the clouds are a prime example, "Kelvin-Helmholtz waves." This type of turbulence in the sky or the ocean in its infancy, when the liquid flow at a higher rate tends to the top of the flow at a slower rate, displacing the surface.

In the case of ocean waves, the air above the water is moving faster than the water itself. When the difference between the speed of the wind and water up to a certain value, the crest of the wave forms, striving forward, taking the form described by Kelvin-Helmholtz.

According to Chris Valtseka meteorologist Research Center weathering State University in Albany, NY, high-speed flow of air high in the sky can shift the upper layers of thick clouds moving slowly, forming a comb-like structure.

Most of the time difference between the wind speed and the temperature of the air in the two layers, so for fast flow only slightly shifts the top of the lower layer is slow, which can be compared with the impact of a hockey puck on ice. If the difference in wind speed is large, then there is a layer between any turbulence (the effect of Kelvin-Helmholtz waves). "Waves" in Alabama almost reached the level of turbulence, which can lead to confusion between the fast and slow air layers.

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