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38 Awesome Cloud Facts for Kids

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Check out our collection of fascinating cloud facts for kids to learn a variety of interesting facts about clouds. Learn about the various kinds of clouds, how they develop, what they are composed of, clouds on other planets, and other topics related to cloud formation.

Awesome Cloud Facts Worth Learning

1. The name “cloud” derives from the Old English terms clud or clod, which refer to a hill or a pile of stone, respectively.

2. During the third century BC, Aristotle, the Greek philosopher, wrote Meteorologica, a book that contained the totality of knowledge available at the time concerning natural science, which included weather and climate.

For the first time, precipitation and the clouds from whence it fell were referred to as meteors, which derives from the Greek term meteors, which means ‘high in the sky’ and refers to the falling of meteors.

The current term meteorology, which refers to the study of clouds and weather, derives from this word.

3. Clouds are composed of water and particles (such as dust, dirt, or sea salt), which are collectively referred to as cloud condensation nuclei.

These nuclei may be found all over the place in the atmosphere. Water vapor is attracted to them, and as they rise in altitude, the vapor condenses to create liquid water or ice, resulting in the creation of small globules known as cloud droplets in the atmosphere.

Cloud droplets, which are far smaller than raindrops, are very light and accumulate as they float through the air, combining with the surrounding air to create the fluffy forms we see hanging in the sky.

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4. Clouds are most often seen in the troposphere, which is the layer of the atmosphere closest to the ground….

5. Clouds were divided into three groups by scientists for the sake of ease. High clouds may be found in the highest regions of the troposphere, where they can be found at altitudes ranging from 10,000 to 60,000 feet, depending on the geographic area.

6. Mid-level clouds, which typically exist between 6,000 and 25,000 feet above sea level, are found below that altitude. Finally, low clouds, which are those that hang at or below 6,500 feet above the Earth’s surface, are the closest to the earth.

7. High clouds are categorized as cirrus, cirrostratus, or cirrocumulus, depending on their height. Cirrus clouds are made up of ice crystals and look thin, white, and wispy.

8.  Cirrostratus clouds are white and translucent and tend to cover the whole sky, occasionally producing a halo appearance around the moon and the sun. Cirrocumulus clouds are similarly white, and they may seem sheet-like or wavy in appearance.

cloud in sky

9. Mid-level clouds are often grey in color and are classified as altostratus, altostratus, or nimbostratus depending on their location. Altocumulus clouds are densely packed with liquid water, although they do not often produce rain.

10. They are spotty and often occur in the form of ripples or rows. Altostratus clouds blanket the sky, but they are darker than cirrostratus clouds, and they may give the sun or the moon a fuzzy look. Altostratus clouds may signal the arrival of a storm.

11. Nimbostratus clouds are dense and black, and they are capable of bringing both rain and snow with them.

12. Cumulus, cumulonimbus, stratus, and stratocumulus are the four types of low clouds that are found. Cumulus clouds are large, white, and cottony in texture, and, depending on your imagination, they may resemble a bear, or any other familiar item.

13. Cumulonimbus clouds are thick and dense, and they tend to rise significantly in height. They are often associated with thunderstorms, hail, and tornadoes.

14. Stratus clouds are distinguished by their appearance as a thin grey layer in the atmosphere. Stratocumulus clouds are grey, patchy, and white in color, and have a honeycomb-like appearance. Clouds come in a variety of shapes and sizes, including the Kelvin-Helmholtz cloud, mammatus clouds, contrails, and so on. 

15. Clouds come in a variety of shapes and sizes, including the Kelvin-Helmholtz cloud, mammatus clouds, contrails, and so on.  According to astrophysics researchers who study the atmospheres of other planets, the atmosphere of Mars contains clouds that are comparable to our own.

16. On Venus, there are dense clouds of sulfur dioxide, whereas on Jupiter and Saturn, there are huge clouds of ammonia.

17. Precipitation is the term used to describe rain, snow, sleet, and hail that falls from clouds.

18. Other chemicals may also be used to create clouds.

19. No one understands why thunderstorm clouds may be green, but it has happened.

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20. Extraterrestrial clouds are almost never composed of water. The clouds of Venus are sulfur dioxide, and it smells of just-lit matches or fireworks. In known as nebulae (Latin word for “clouds,”), are composed of cosmic dust, and oxygen gas, hydrogen, and plasma.

21. Fogbows are a real phenomenon, and they’re more common than you would think. They are generally colorless.

22. There is a group called the Cloud Appreciation Society, which has more than 40,000 members.

23. A clear blue sky with no clouds may be referred to as cloudless, or if you want to sound intelligent, you could refer to it as enubilous.

24. Known as ‘cloud suck’, the base of cumulus clouds may be a hazardous location for paragliders and hand gliders, especially when thermal updrafts add to the phenomenon.

25. A cumulonimbus cloud pulled up paraglider Eva Winierska-Cielewicz in February 2007, propelling her at a speed of 45 miles per hour to a height of 9,946 meters (32,600 feet), which was close to the altitude of an aircraft.

26. Because of hypoxia, she lost consciousness for almost an hour before miraculously regaining consciousness and safely landing her paraglider.

Given the freezing temperatures at that height (about -50 degrees Celsius), she was coated in ice and had bruises all over her body from the hit of hailstones in the cloud when she somehow made it to the ground. 

27. Pareidolia is the term used to describe the psychological phenomena of perceiving things in clouds.

28. According to NASA’s Earth Observatory, approximately 67 percent of the Earth’s surface is covered by clouds at any one moment on a daily basis.

29. The noctilucent cloud, which is uncommon yet magnificent, has the distinction of being the highest cloud. They hover at a height of about 60,000 meters or 200,000 feet. They are too faint to be seen during the day.

cloud facts

30. At twilight, sunlight from beyond the horizon lights them (no, revealing their faint ghostly outlines, which become apparent as the sun sinks lower in the sky.

31. Dandruff which floats in the atmosphere contributes to the formation of clouds. Water requires a surface in order to transform from a vapor to a liquid, and aerosols (small particles floating in gas) such as pollen, dandruff, algae, fur, and bacteria are especially effective at collecting moisture from the atmosphere.

32. If you look closely at the clouds near the sun, you will see a sudden scattering of colors jumbled together, similar to the light reflecting off of an oily sheen on a pool of water.

This is referred to as “iridescence,” and it is a very uncommon occurrence. iridescence in clouds occurs when sunlight diffracts across water droplets or ice crystals in extremely thin clouds, creating a rainbow effect.

33. A stack of nacreous clouds, that is essentially a whole sky full of iridescent clouds, is an even more uncommon sight to see. Nacreous clouds are technically referred to as “polar stratospheric clouds” because they form in the stratosphere (tens of thousands of feet above the altitude of commercial jets) and are most frequently observed near the poles due to the extreme cold temperatures required for their formation.

34. An umbrella-like thin, flat cloud that covers an area miles around is one of the most stunning sights to see in the sky during a thunderstorm.

This is referred to as an anvil cloud, and it happens when the updraft of a thunderstorm reaches the tropopause, which is typically the point at which air becomes neutrally buoyant and can no longer rise on its own weight.

As if it were a ceiling, the air strikes this layer and spreads out in all directions, creating this stunning feature.

35. Most thunderstorms are unremarkable, but a small proportion of them may become so powerful that they rage for hours and cause unspeakable devastation.

These storms, which are referred to as supercells, are distinguished by a spinning updraft that acts as an engine, propelling them forward. Supercells are renowned for their amazing visual appearance, which is in addition to their massive hail and catastrophic tornadoes.

The spinning updraft of a supercell is the most visually arresting feature of the storm, which appears as a column that extends from the horizon to the sky.

36. Another occurrence that is mistaken for a cirrus cloud is known as “virga,” which is precipitation that evaporates before it reaches the ground. In addition to being beautiful to look at, virga is a good indicator that the lower and intermediate layers of the sky are too dry for rain or snow to fall.

37. Cumulus clouds (also known as fair weather clouds) may weigh more than a million pounds on average, and a powerful thunderstorm can pack billions of pounds of water into an exceedingly small area of the sky at a time. Despite this, the whole weight seems to be easily floating in the air.

38. Clouds are white due to the reflection of sunlight off their surfaces. Gray clouds grow so densely packed with water that they are unable to reflect light anymore. Cloud masses cast shadows on the ground, which may make the clouds seem grey in color.

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