Tag Archive: Contrail Science

Hybrid Contrails, A New Classification – Contrail Science

Contrails are generally classified into two types. Exhaust contrails and aerodynamic contrails. Exhaust contrails are formed by the mixing of the hot humid exhaust of the engines with cold humid surrounding air, creating long streamers of clouds. If the conditions are right then these can persist and spread. These are the most common type of …

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How Far Away is that Contrail? – Contrail Science

When you look up in the sky and you see a contrail, how far away is it? How far away are these contrails, a mile? two miles? Would you believe they are actually 20 to 100 miles away? Contrails typically form above 30,000 feet, or around six to eight miles straight up. It’s quite hard …

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How Big is the Gap Between Contrails and Engines? – Contrail Science

Contrails are the white lines that sometimes form behind high flying aircraft. They are actually a type of cloud. The cloud forms because jet exhaust contains quite a bit of water. If the humidity is high, then the contrails can persist for a long time, like clouds do. When jet exhaust comes out of the …

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Contrail Simulations and how the winds aloft affect what you see – Contrail Science

One often gets satellite images of contrails and it’s hard to visualize what’s going on, especially with racetrack contrails drifting in the wind. So I wrote a little simulator applet to demonstrate the formation of a contrail under various conditions. I have just updated this applet to display contrail grids by default. There are just …

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