Thursday, January 18, 2007

Halo / Parhelic circle / what?

Anyone care to tell me which of these atmospheric optical phenomenon this is? Its looks most like one of the halos, except it splits the light up into the spectrum. Anyone with a nice definitive answer?

I've put up a large picture so you can look closely at it, note the second one slightly lower in the image, which I hadn't noticed while taking the picture and cut off. This was taken sometime mid September at the airfield.

The second is just for pleasure.


Rahul Siddharthan said...

Hm... could it be a tertiary rainbow? How easy was it to see with the naked eye?

From your photo it seems a bit small to be a tertiary rainbow (which should be bigger than the primary one), but it's hard to tell.

This site describes them, and says they've never been photographed.

Natasha Mhatre said...

I could just see the inner one, the outer one I only noticed in the picture. I'll just mail the webmaster of that site and ask him if he can identify what it is.

Rahul Siddharthan said...

Actually it's probably an ice halo... here's the 22 deg circular halo from the same site, looks very much like yours

Natasha Mhatre said...

Yes, I thought so as well, but it didn't explain the second ring. I got this reply from Les Cowley in the meanwhile, which seems about right.

"Looks like a 22 degree halo and circumscribed halo. Take a look at