Strange clouds that pretend to be waves breaking the ocean have caused the astonishment of the neighbors of Lake Mountain Smith, in Virginia (United States). The phenomenon registration was shared on Facebook and went viral.
The image, shared by Amy Christie Hunter, was sent to the local weather station, which explained that these are “tsunami clouds”, which are “exceptional” and that do not usually present a “defined” aspect.
These clouds are rarely formed during windy and unstable days, but when the conditions are right the natural phenomenon known as Kelvin-Helmholtz Waves occurs.
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It is an effect that occurs when two layers of air in the atmosphere move at different speeds, which is known as shearing.
When the upper zone has a higher velocity than the air of the lower level, wavy forms similar to those of waves may appear in the upper part.
For its part, the National Weather Service defined the event viral on Facebook as “vertical waves in the air associated with the variation of wind speed in statically stable regions.”
In simple words, it is a phenomenon that usually occurs when the layers of the atmosphere have different wind speeds.
If the temperature and humidity are appropriate, phenomena similar to what is seen in the publication of Facebook.