Posted by on May 15, 2011 in phenomena | 15 comments


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Nimbostratus clouds are dark gray with a ragged base. Rain or snow is associated with Nimbostratus clouds.

{, picture from mustang00069}

A Nimbostratus cloud is characterized by a formless cloud layer that is almost uniformly dark gray. “Nimbo” is from the Latin word “nimbus”, which denotes precipitation. It is a low to middle-level (family D1) stratiform cloud with some vertical extent that produces precipitation, developing cloud bases between the surface and 10000 ft (3000 m). This cloud typically forms from altostratus in the middle altitude range then subsides into the low altitude range during precipitation. Nimbostratus usually has a thickness of 2000 meters. In rare cases, Nimbostratus can be very thin and accompanied by a separate layer of altostratus divided by a cloudless layer. Though found worldwide, nimbostratus is found more commonly in the middle latitudes.


related mobileGRIB variables: Total Cloud Cover, Precipitation

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