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Spectacular Photo Captures Optical Phenomena


The photo above, taken by Joshua Thomas, is of a sunrise in Red River, New Mexico. But it's not simply a beautiful photo. A number of optical illusions are captured in the image, namely a 22º halo, a sun pillar, a sun dog, infralateral arc, supralateral arc, helic arcs, sunvex parry arc, upper suncave parry arc and upper tangent arc.

After the photo was posted to Facebook by the National Weather Service in Amarillo, Texas, the National Weather Service in La Crosse, Wisconsin created the graphic below, labeling the phenomena. Visit their post of the graphic here, see this site for additional information, and click on the terms above for definitions. -Via Gizmodo


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I did look to see which site you were linking to, but must have missed that one. It used to be that Wikipedia didn't have articles for these, but as seems to be inevitable for such topics, Wikipedia grows and overtakes older pages in terms of breath and depth.

Still leaves me jealous of others, especially those that have been to Antarctica where some of these halos are a lot more common (plus it was warmer there last week). I still haven't seen anything beyond a 22 degree halo and sun dogs.
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Thanks! I came across that site when I was writing this. I linked to it for an explanation of "helic arc" in the first paragraph. I'll add another link in at the end. Thanks for your comments, they're always full of good information.
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I've found this site quite useful for learning about and identifying halos. The site has both simulation images and frequent real images, explains the situation leading to halos, and mentions how rare some of them are. It even has a small section on halos on different planets where ice other than water ice would form different crystal shapes.
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