Admiring the Universe - a fine-art photographer based in Perthshire, Scotland, with interests in landscape, nature and astrophotography

Nacreous Clouds

Nacreous Clouds
There's been a lot of them seen from much of the UK the past couple of days, and today I finally got around to seeing them too. Taken on today's lunchtime stroll around the Oak Tree Walk, a beauitful colourful display of nacreous clouds.

Polar stratospheric clouds (PSCs) are winter clouds in the polar stratosphere, occurring at altitudes of 15,000–25,000 m. They are best observed during civil twilight and in winter, mainly in more northerly latitudes. One type of PSC is linked to ozone hole formation, composed of supercooled water and nitric acid droplets. Another type consists of harmless ice crystals, known as nacreous clouds. These clouds form in the extremely dry stratosphere during polar winter, with temperatures below −78 °C. They can reflect sunlight below the horizon, creating a bright appearance before dawn or after dusk. The clouds may exhibit an iridescent, pearly-white appearance due to forward scattering of sunlight and colored interference fringes.

A fairly extreme HDR was used, 9 * ±1EV, to capture all the tonal detail.


Camera: FUJIFILM X-H2 ISO: 125
Focal Length: 44.1mm (66mm-e) Aperture: f/8
Shutter Speed: 2e-05s


GPS location: 56.293595, -3.729175