Polar Stratospheric Clouds (PSCs)


Padawan Learner
I'm afraid these cloud photos do not do justice to the colour intensity of reality (that almost neon pink is not that "neon" in the photos). This cloud phenomenon is also slowly changing both shape and colours - it's like watching the northern lights but in daytime. Shot from my house, in the skies above my village in Mid-Scandinavia, a couple of minutes ago.



Dagobah Resident
It was on my spaceweather.com newsletter lately as well:
POLAR STRATOSPHERIC CLOUDS, CONTINUED: A spectacular display of polar stratospheric clouds (PSCs) that began two days ago is still going strong around the Arctic Circle.
Polar stratospheric clouds are newsworthy because normally the stratosphere has no clouds at all. The stratosphere is arid and almost always transparent. Only when the temperature drops to a staggeringly cold -85C can sparse water molecules assemble themselves into icy stratospheric clouds. PSCs are far more rare than auroras.

Thanks for your amazing first hand pictures:-)


Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
Norwegian NRK.no today was reporting "an unusually large hole in the ozone layer appeared over the Arctic and is about to move over Norway."

Generally, the large ozone holes are known for the atmosphere over the South Pole. But now unusually cold weather over the North Pole gives a particularly large hole in the ozone layer there.

The first couple of days the hole will be mostly over northern Scandinavia. Then it will probably move inland to western Norway and cover most of the country. The hole in the ozone layer over the Arctic has been there for a few weeks. It is probably the largest we have seen in the north so far, says senior researcher Tove Svendby.

The reason why we get such a large hole in the ozone layer now has to do with the low temperatures in the stratosphere, 15-30 kilometers above the ground. Pearl clouds form up here when it is very cold, below 80 degrees Celsius. They are usually seen only in winter in polar regions.
Perletove oblaky.jpg
When the sun shines on the clouds from the underside, the sun's rays are broken in the ice crystals. This is how the beautiful mother-of-pearl effect occurs.
NASA Ozon watch photo dated March 28th 2020Ozon hole 28th March 2020.JPG


Jedi Council Member
Какие-то противоречивые данные с предыдущим сообщением. Получается, что весь озон как бы "сполз" в сторону Южного полюса.

Над Южным полюсом Земли восстановился озоновый слой

03.04.2020 - 3:30

Some conflicting data with the previous message. It turns out that all the ozone has "slid" towards the South pole.

The ozone layer has been restored over The earth's South pole
03.04.2020 - 3:30
The ozone layer over Antarctica has recovered to such an extent that most of the disturbing processes and changes in the atmosphere of the southern hemisphere have stopped.

This may have been influenced by the signing of the Montreal Protocol in 1987, an agreement to stop the production of ozone — depleting substances.

This is reported by the scientific journal Nature.

Discovered in 1985, the severe depletion of the ozone layer over Antarctica led to the shift of high air currents to the South. This caused changes in precipitation patterns and in ocean currents.

The "weather bands" that carry cold fronts have narrowed to the South pole, which has reduced precipitation in South Australia over the past thirty years.

However, 10 years after the Protocol was signed, the flow offset stopped. Scientists call the current state a pause, because the circulation of flows can resume.

The earth's ozone layer has been recovering since the early 2000s at a rate of 1-3% per year. At this rate, it will fully recover over the Northern hemisphere by 2030, and over the Southern hemisphere by 2048, and in the polar regions by 2060.

Despite the recovery of the ozone layer, abnormally high temperatures are observed in Antarctica. In mid-February, the thermometer there rose above +20 degrees.
Над Южным полюсом Земли восстановился озоновый слой


Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
Hi Yulik, it doesn't look to be conflicting those data from North hemisphere, which seems rather complementary. This comes from NASA ozone watch over Antarctica on April 4th:

Ozone hole Antarctica 4.4.2020.JPG
Notice that the scale bellow the picture is showing negative values for ozone, but to lesser degree then, what was probably observed in the recent past years.

I tried to find the original article in Nature, but I found none with relevant date. It is interesting to note what they say "The ozone layer over Antarctica has recovered to such an extent that most of the disturbing processes and changes in the atmosphere of the southern hemisphere have stopped." All these articles are attributing depletion of ozone due to industrial aerosols; However, assuming these are effects of the wave, and now that we have big hole moving over western Norway..? One recent article from Nature is from March 27 with title Rare ozone hole opens over Arctic and it's big
A vast ozone hole — probably the biggest on record in the north — has opened in the skies above the Arctic. It rivals the better-known Antarctic ozone hole that forms in the southern hemisphere each year.
Record-low ozone levels currently stretch across much of the central Arctic, covering an area about three times the size of Greenland (see ‘Arctic opening’). The hole doesn’t threaten people’s health, and will probably break apart in the coming weeks. But it is an extraordinary atmospheric phenomenon that will go down in the record books.
“From my point of view, this is the first time you can speak about a real ozone hole in the Arctic,” says Martin Dameris, an atmospheric scientist at the German Aerospace Center in Oberpfaffenhofen.
The Arctic experienced ozone depletion in 1997 and in 2011, but this year’s loss looks on track to surpass those. “We have at least as much loss as in 2011, and there are some indications that it might be more than 2011,” says Gloria Manney.
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