The Sciences

Who says clouds screw up observing?

Bad AstronomyBy Phil PlaitMay 30, 2007 12:37 PM

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Sometimes, clouds make an observing session better.

Holy Haleakala! Click the image for a bigger version, and read about what's going on with it on the SpaceWeather site. Speaking of this, I sat through a tremendous lightning storm here in Boulder yesterday. I had almost forgotten what they're like; in California where I lived lightning is very rare. I suspect it's because clouds in that area don't build up vast convection currents. The wind comes from over the ocean, and sweeps in over the land. I was less than 100 km from the coast, so the rain was always pretty mild. We'd get some downpours, but I think maybe only four or five thunderstorms in the six years I lived there. I grew up on the east coast, so I know thunderstorms! It's nice to be back in a place where the weather gets dramatic again. Oh -- While driving in to the coffeehouse to write this entry, I'm almost positive I saw a bald eagle flying around about 10 km from my house. Wow. Tip o' the dew shield to Larry Klaes, and Spaceweather.com.

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