What are Cirrus Cloud: Define, Formation, Weathers & Types

Cirrus clouds are composed of ice crystals that originate from the freezing of supercooled water droplets. All high clouds are a type of cirrus, a common cloud that can be seen at any time of the year. Cirrus look like long, thin and wispy white streamers high in the sky, they look thin because they are made of ice crystals, not water drops. Cirrus usually occurs in fair weather. They are formed when it is high enough to be cold and freeze the water drops into ice. Cirrocumulus clouds appear as small, rounded white puffs that appear in long rows. The small ripples in the cirrocumulus clouds sometimes resemble the scales of a fish. Cirrocumulus clouds are usually seen in the winter and indicate fair, but cold weather. In tropical regions, they may indicate an approaching hurricane.

Formation of cirrus clouds:

Formation of cirrus clouds

Cirrus clouds are made up completely of ice crystals which provide their white color and form in a wide range of shapes and sizes. It can also be formed through contrails, the vapor trails left by planes as they fly through a dry upper troposphere. Giving the upper atmosphere dust it makes cirrus clouds. Cirrus clouds are made of ice particles and can cover 30% of earth’s atmosphere. This type of cloud is the most common you will see in the sky. Sometimes, cirrus clouds have the nickname ‘mare’s tails’ because the cloud formation looks like a horse tail with thin, hair-like streaks of cloud stretching across the sky.

Weather of cirrus:

Weather of cirrus

Cirrus clouds are the most common of the high clouds. They are composed of ice and are thin, wispy clouds blown in high winds into long streamers. Cirrus clouds are usually white and predict fair to pleasant weather. By watching the movement of cirrus clouds you can tell from which direction weather is approaching. Cirrus is a genus of atmospheric cloud generally characterized by thin, wispy strands, giving the type its name from the Latin word cirrus, meaning a ringlet or curling lock of hair.

Types of clouds:

Types of clouds

Clouds are given different names based on their shape and their height in the sky. Some clouds are near the ground. Others are almost as high as jet planes fly. Some are puffy like cotton. Others are grey and uniform. The highest clouds in the atmosphere are cirrocumulus, cirrus, and cirrostratus. Cumulonimbus clouds can also grow to be very high. Mid-level clouds include altocumulus and altostratus. The lowest clouds in the atmosphere are stratus, cumulus, and stratocumulus.

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