Roger's SkyPix

Mini Cloud Atlas

True Pilei and String Lenticulars

True Pilei and String Lenticulars

Yet another cloud arrangement defies the bounds of easy categorization! Flying over and between deeply convective clouds (towering cumuli and cumulonimbi), I spotted a pileus cap atop a deep tower--then another, and another. Finally came pileus-like streamers between convective clouds, and atop none (foreground). Were they pilei somehow orphaned or advected from their convective-forcing origins without losing condensation? Were they elongated lenticulars, a hybrid of the pilei and lenticulars, or neither (a cloud species unto itself)? Two factors might be crucial here: 1) the non-convectively underlain streamers were at comparable altitude, and likely in a similar thermal and humidity layer, as the true pilei, and 2) they formed a gently arching shape between towers. Those factors suggest a lenticular standing-wave process for the non-convectively associated cloud strings.

Over northern Louisiana (29 Nov 10) Looking SW