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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Desert Skies and Parhelic Phenomena

The desert sky was particularly favorable to forming ice crystals today. I could tell this in Be'er-Sheva where the con trails of the F16s flying training missions were more prominent than I've seen before.

F16 con trails above Be'er-Sheva (Click for full size images.)

On the way home later, toward sunset, cirrus ice clouds had formed high in the sky, and as the sun sank into the desert hills sun dogs sprang up on either side. These ice clouds may have even been formed from the con trails I saw earlier in the day, as prevailing winds pushed them southwest.

Sun dogs form on either side of the sun. There are many interesting parhelic (next to the sun) phenomena that ice crystals can cause. Read more about them here.

As sunset progressed a magnificent sun pillar was added to the sun dogs, completing the sunset scene with the most parhelic phenomena I have seen in a single sunset.

A sun pillar, complete with sun dogs, pierces the Negev sky like an ingot of molten steel.

Panoramic view of sunset with sun pillar and sun dogs.

As the sun continued setting the parhelic phenomena dissolved into a sunset of liquid gold, like a Hawaiian volcano had been loosed in the desert.

The sun sets behind the radar domes of the Israeli Air Force near Mitzpe Ramon.


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1 comment:

  1. Ira, sorry, those are chemtrail clouds.... I know you don't want to believe we are being sprayed with fake clouds, but it's happening all over the world. You are a smart guy, WAKE UP!!! Use your very smart brain to investigate this phenomena without a bias going in...



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