Types of Clouds

Clouds are mainly Cirrus, Cumulus, Nimbus and Stratus.

Cirrus :

Formed of high altitude 8000-12000 KM . Almost height upto the peak of Mount Everest . they’re thin . appear as if feather . cold . Composed of Ice Crystals /droplets.

Cumulus :

4000-7000 Km. Like plant fiber . appear as if Colley flower . May or might not produce rain. If join together chances to rain is heigh . Bigger than Cirrus clouds .

Nimbus :

Black and dark gray middle levels . Very nearer to surface of earth . Extremely dense and opaque to the rays of the sun . Sometimes the clouds so low that they appear to the touch the bottom . Nimbus clouds are shapeless masses of thick vapour .

Stratus :

Horizontal layer of clouds . but 2Km. Like dust and fog . don’t allow sunlight to pass . If it’s there the sky look darker .

Cloudy nights are warmer than clear nights because, the  clouds act as a shield and as an insulator and store up the warmth radiated by the planet and don’t permit heat to flee. Clouds act as a blanket, keeping more warmth ( radiation) near the surface of the earth.

Clouds can be classified mainly as shown below. ( High Clouds, Middle Clouds, Low Clouds )

High Clouds( Above 7000m)

Cirrus ( Ci) :

Detached clouds in the form of white, delicate filaments, or white or mostly white patches or narrow bands. These clouds have a fibrous (hair-like) appearance or a silky sheen or both.

Cirrocumulus (Cc) :

These are thin, white patch ,sheet, or layer of clouds without shading composed of very small elements in the form of grains, etc., merged or separate , and more or less regularly arranged ; most of the elements have an apparent width or less than 1 degree – approximately the width of the little finger at arms length.

Cirrostratus (Cs) :

Transparent, whitish cloud veil of fibrous or smooth appearance, totally or partially covering the sky or mackerel sky , and generally producing halo phenomena.

Middle Clouds ( 2000-7000m)


White or gray, or both white and gray, patch, sheet, or layer of clouds, generally with shading, composed of rounded masses, rolls, etc., sometimes partly fibrous or diffuse, and may or may not be merged; most of the regularly arranged small elements usually have an apparent width of between 1 degree and 5 degree- approximately the width of three fingers at arms length.


Grayish or bluish cloud sheet or layer of straited, fibrous, or uniform appearance, totally or partly covering the sky, and having parts thin enough to reveal the Sun at least vaguely, as through ground glass. The Sun is dimly visible, the altostratus clouds, however, do not show halo phenomena.

Low Clouds( Below 2000 m )


Gray cloud layer, often dark, the appearance of which is rendered diffuse by more or less continually falling rain or snow , which in most cases reaches the ground. It is thick enough throughout to bolt out the Sun. Low ragged clouds frequently occur below the layer with which they may or may not merge.


Gray or whitish , or both gray and whitish , patch-sheet or layer of clouds that almost always has dark parts, composed of tessellations, rounded masses, rolls, etc., that are non-fibrous (except for virga) and may or may not be merged.


Generally gray cloud layer with a fairly uniform base, which may give drizzle, ice prisms, or snow grains. When the Sun is visible through the cloud, its outline is clearly discernible. Stratus does not produce halo phenomena(except possibly at very low temperatures ). Sometimes stratus appears in the form of ragged patches.


Detached clouds , generally dense and with sharp outlines, developing vertically in the form of rising mounds, domes, or towers , of which the bulging upper part often resembles a cauliflower. The sunlit part of these clouds are mostly brilliant white; their bases are relatively dark and nearly horizontal. Sometimes cumulus is ragged.


Heavy and dense clouds, with considerable vertical extent, in the form of a mountain huge towers. At least part of its upper portion is usually smooth, or fibrous of striated, and nearly always flattened; this parts often spreads out in the shape of an anvil or plume. Under the base of this cloud, which is often very dark, there frequently low ragged clouds either merged with it or not. The cumulonimbus clouds give torrential rainfall. Lightning and thunder are also the common features of these clouds.

  • Cloud Seeding :

Cloud seeding could be a weather modification technique that improves a cloud’s ability to provide rain or snow by artificially adding condensation nuclei to the atmosphere, providing a base for snowflakes or raindrops to make.

After cloud seeding takes place, precipitation falls from the clouds back to the surface of the planet.This we refer as Artificial rain.

  • Rain Forests:

Rain forests experiences annual rainfall amounts of just about 400 inches. quite half world species and animals found in rainforests .

Rainforests can classified mainly as tropical rain forests and temperate rain forests which is in step with tropical and temperate region of earth.

Rainforests are characterized by a closed and continuous tree Canopy, Moisture – dependent vegetation , the presence of epiphytes and lianas and therefore the absence of wildfire.

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