TV5 chief meteorologist explains 'rainbow' clouds - WNEM TV 5

TV5 chief meteorologist explains 'rainbow' clouds

Posted: Updated:
SAGINAW, MI (WNEM) -

We've gotten a few reports this Wednesday afternoon of "rainbows in the sky" or clouds that are full of brilliant colors.

They're given the colloquial name of "fire rainbows" and they are high, wispy clouds that are made of tiny ice crystals, and if the cloud is at the right angle to the sun, the crystals will refract the sunlight (much like a prism) into the colors of the rainbow.

They are very similar to a regular rainbow-when-it's-raining, only they are a little more rare. 

These fire rainbows are rare sights in the mid-latitudes, because they can only occur when the sun is 58 degrees or higher above the horizon. For the United States in general that pretty much relegates any sightings to roughly around six weeks either side of the summer solstice.

The photos above to the right were taken Wednesday afternoon by Joe Bruessow.

Copyright 2014 WNEM (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • UPDATE: Teen not hurt in Saginaw hit-and-run

    UPDATE: Teen not hurt in Saginaw hit-and-run

    Monday, July 24 2017 6:47 AM EDT2017-07-24 10:47:22 GMT
    Source: WNEMSource: WNEM

    Saginaw Police Department said an 18-year-old was riding his bike when he was hit by a car at the intersection of Davenport and Durand. 

    More >

    Saginaw Police Department said an 18-year-old was riding his bike when he was hit by a car at the intersection of Davenport and Durand. 

    More >
  • Houston man ordered to pay child support for kid that’s not his

    Houston man ordered to pay child support for kid that’s not his

    Monday, July 24 2017 3:36 AM EDT2017-07-24 07:36:06 GMT
    Stock PhotoStock Photo

    A Texas man is fighting a court order that requires him to pay $65,000 in child support for a girl he did not biologically father.

    More >

    A Texas man is fighting a court order that requires him to pay $65,000 in child support for a girl he did not biologically father.

    More >
  • 7-Eleven stays open after van hits building

    7-Eleven stays open after van hits building

    Monday, July 24 2017 5:12 AM EDT2017-07-24 09:12:59 GMT

    Developing tonight, one local store had a rough morning after a mini-van drove right into it. It happened at the 7-11 on the corner of Columbus and South Bernie Street in Bay City.

    More >

    Developing tonight, one local store had a rough morning after a mini-van drove right into it. It happened at the 7-11 on the corner of Columbus and South Bernie Street in Bay City.

    More >
Powered by Frankly
WNEM
Powered by WorldNow CNN
All content © 2017, WNEM; Saginaw, MI. (A Meredith Corporation Station) . All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.