A strange looking cloud was spotted on the sky this Thursday. The mysterious cloud was shaped just like a horseshoe and it was quite unusual. This happened in Nevada, and people were instantly fascinated by this mystery.
The picture was taken by Chrisy Grimes and it was later tweeted by the National Weather Service in Elko, Nevada. The led to a debate on Twitter and most users tried to figure out and explanation for this cloud.
Obviously, the unusual cloud made many people believe that aliens were somehow involved. That is because the weird cloud appeared in front of a background of other clouds, and it clearly stood out. There were several speculations and rumors, before an explanation arrived.
What was the phenomenon
NWS Elko soon explained what this cloud was. In the tweet the explained that this cloud is one of the rarest ones ever, and it is quite difficult to spot one. The name of the cloud is horseshoe cloud, because of its shape.
They even explained how these clouds form themselves. It appears that there is an entire process and the movement of wind is involved as well. The cloud is formed either in an area of spinning air or in a vortex, and it is something similar with the formation of tornadoes or cyclones.
When the vortex is vertical, a tornado or a cyclone is formed, however, when the vortex is horizontal, the result are horseshoe clouds. According to NWS Elko, the clouds form “as the updraft pushes flattish cumulus clouds up & a horizontal vortex develops from differential updraft speeds”, then “As the vortex climbs, it’s caught in the faster horizontal winds aloft,& the middle part of the vortex catches the faster speeds with the ends being slower”