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Coastal Fog South Peruvian Coast at Pisco
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Coastal Fog, South Peruvian Coast at Pisco

July 29, 2003
Coastal fog commonly drapes the Peruvian coast. This image captures complex interactions between land, sea, and atmosphere along the southern Peruvian coast. When Shuttle astronauts took the image in February of 2002, the layers of coastal fog and stratus were being progressively scoured away by brisk south to southeast winds. Remnants of the cloud deck banked against the larger, obstructing headlands like Peninsula Paracas and Isla Sangayan, giving the prominent white comma effect. Southerlies also produced ripples of internal gravity waves in the clouds offshore where warm, dry air aloft interacts with a thinning layer of cool, moist air near the sea surface on the outer edge of the remaining cloud bank.


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