Churning Clouds

In this extraordinary image, the Sun looks as though it's peeping out over a stormy, churning sea. In fact, the roiling waves are not made of liquid water, but are a spectacular cloud deck. We don’t typically see cloud decks from above, unless we’re in an airplane. This photo, however, was taken from a vantage point near to Gemini North, of the international Gemini Observatory, which is a Program of NSF’s NOIRLab. 

Gemini North is located near the summit of Maunakea, a dormant volcano that peaks at over 4200 meters (nearly 14,000 feet) above sea level. Gemini North’s very elevated location is perfect for astronomical observations, affording the high, dry and cold conditions that such telescopes love! It also occasionally provides astronomers and technicians with the opportunity to work above the clouds.

Credit:

International Gemini Observatory/NOIRLab/NSF/AURA/J. Chu

About the Image

Id:iotw2203a
Type:Photographic
Release date:Jan. 19, 2022, noon
Size:6016 x 3008 px

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