Scientists in the US flew directly through an extremely rare atmospheric phenomenon known as "cloud fire" – and they captured the unique "extraterrestrial" moment of the camera.
Researchers with NASA and NOAA investigated smoke produced by the Williams Flates Forest Fire in Washington, DC, when they took the opportunity to fly in the thunder of the rare "fire cloud"
These unusual, towering clouds – called pyrobyku pyroCb) or sometimes cumulonimbus flammagenitus – formed when fires raise enough heat and moisture into the atmosphere to cause a thunderstorm.
"Heat from the fire creates an upward column and under certain favorable weather conditions you can build a cloud on this plume," meteorologist David Peterson, NASA and NOAA FIREX-AQ smoke survey program, told Seattle Times .
While recent weeks have exposed the US to unusually intensified weather prone to fire and storms, pyroCb clouds like this are the inf equivalent, with the Williams Flates phenomenon for which o is considered to be the first thunderstorm storm in the continental states this year.
Because of this rarity, being able to approach and study these unusual clouds is extremely valuable to atmospheric scientists.
believed to have started from lightning strikes – it began on August 2 this year, but the FIREX-AQ team received its close plan on August 8, flying aboard NASA's DC-8 research jetliner.
At an altitude of about 9 kilometers (about 30,000 feet), scientists flew through a fiery cloud, which is when the photo above was taken. In the smokestack of smoke, the setting sun looks orange.
"The views were absolutely stunning," Peterson says on the NASA Earth Observatory blog.
"There are very few pictures of large piroCbs, especially from the air."
NO NAS did not rise through this event just to see how it looked.
The flight also gave researchers the chance to take the most detailed pyroCb sampling in history, Peterson says. These measurements will help us understand the composition and chemistry of these rare fire clouds, which could help prevent wild fires from spreading.
"The ability to measure smoke emissions from pyroCb at 25,000 feet gives us the ability to judge how smoke is transported," atmospheric chemist and FIREX-AQ researcher Rebecca Hornbrook explained to NBC News.
better to predict the impact of major fires. "