Elite QandA


What causes mammatus cloud?


  1. What causes mammatus cloud?
  2. How long do mammatus clouds remain in the sky?
  3. Who discovered mammatus clouds?
  4. What do mammatus clouds look like?

What causes mammatus cloud?

Mammatus clouds are normally formed in unsettle weather and are associated with large cumulonimbus clouds or thunderstorms. Typically, turbulence within the cumulonimbus will cause mammatus to form up their shape, especially on the projecting anvil's underside because it rapidly descends to lower levels.

How long do mammatus clouds remain in the sky?

Mammatus clouds are defined as hanging protrusions, like pouches, on the undersurface of a cloud. They often occur on the edges and sloping underside of cumulonimbus and have been observed on both the upshear and downshear sided of a thunderstorm's outflow anvil and typically last around 10 minutes.

Who discovered mammatus clouds?

William Clement LeyThe distinct "lumpy" undersides are formed by cold air sinking down to form the pockets contrary to the puffs of clouds rising through the convection of warm air. These formations were first described in 1894 by William Clement Ley.

What do mammatus clouds look like?

Mammatus are most often associated with anvil clouds and also severe thunderstorms. They often extend from the base of a cumulonimbus, but may also be found under altostratus, and cirrus clouds, as well as volcanic ash clouds. Mammatus may appear as smooth, ragged or lumpy lobes and may be opaque or translucent.



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