Stratified Arctic Clouds
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Stratified Arctic Clouds

June 12, 2003
Stratus clouds are common in the Arctic during the summer months, and are important modulators of the arctic climate. This image pair from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) was acquired on August 23, 2000, and shows a region of stratified clouds situated near the boundary of the permanent polar ice pack to the north of the Chukchi and East Siberian Seas.

Dark ocean waters and ice floes can be observed through several translucent clouds in the left-hand portion of the nadir image. These clouds are no longer translucent in the anaglyph image, which was created using data from MISR’s two most obliquely forward-viewing cameras. The cold, stable air causes the clouds to persist in stratified layers, and this layering is evident in the stereo view. Near the top center, a high-altitude cloud formation is illuminated by the Sun and casts long shadows on the underlying cloud deck.

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