The Sciences

Weird Tube-Shaped Clouds Floating Above Australia

DiscoblogBy Allison BondAug 24, 2009 9:08 PM
morninggloryclouds_petroffw.jpg

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No one is quite sure what caused bizarre 600-mile-long tubular clouds to form above a small Australian town. But because the fluffy white rods, known as Morning Glory clouds, can move up to 35 miles per hour, they can pose a problem for airplanes flying through the area. Wired reports:

A small number of pilots and tourists travel there each year in hopes of "cloud surfing" with the mysterious phenomenon. Similar tubular shaped clouds called roll clouds appear in various places around the globe. But nobody has yet figured out what causes the Morning Glory clouds.

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Image courtesy of Mick Petroff

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