December 11, 2017 at 3:17 pm #246222
December 11, 2017 at 10:01 pm #246322
When you have particularly good primary and secondary bows, always pay close attention to Alexander’s Dark Band, the area between the two, to see whether there are any traces of the fifth order bow. This will more than likely manifest as a green or green/blue colouration. Try increasing saturation, boosting the levels a touch and applying a little usm. It was first photographed a few years ago by Harald Edens in New Mexico but only a handful of times since then,
Perhaps you could be one of the privileged few to join the higher order bow club?!
December 12, 2017 at 4:52 am #246387
Wow, Hans, how extraordinary! Twin rainbows and fifth order are new to me, so thank you both for this! Here’s just a pretty bit of halo to share in gratitude…
December 12, 2017 at 10:58 am #246434
And another 22. This image was stacked (35 images) to improve signal to noise ratio. There is a faint 46 but this isn’t really visible on this iteration.
December 13, 2017 at 10:36 am #246957
Ha, nice arcs Keelin and Alec.
@Alec: the 5th order rainbow will be on my list from now one. I checked some older pictures (just two) of a double rainbow with Alexander’s Dark Band and to my disappointment (?) and not to my surprise it did not show up. I had to try, but I think one must be very lucky butto spot the phenomenon.
Sometimes the 22 degrees halo does not appear, but only its longhorns.
Upper Tangent Arc
December 13, 2017 at 9:25 pm #247193
Hans, that’s a beautiful sunvex UTA. Although an extremely common halo, these gull winged arcs are amongst my favourites.
Very often, what you see is not always what there is possible to see in any given display. Many other halos may be present but remain sub-visual. Can I share with you a very powerful processing technique which is widely used by members of the halo community? It is both powerful and extremely simple to use. The technique is called “blue minus red processing” or more commonly “b-r processing”. It was developed in France by Nicholas Rossetto and perfected by his fellow countryman, Nicholas Lefaudeux who is probably the world’s leading halo expert. Lefaudeux has explained the technique in great detail and far more succinctly than I ever could on his own website opticsaround here,
If possible, when photographing halos, always try to shoot in raw format as this will give you the maximum amount of data to play with at the processing stage. At the conversion stage, convert to 16 bit rather than 8 bit as this again will also maximise available data. The following is an example taken from Lefaudeux’s site. As you can see b-r processing has clearly revealed not only the Parry but also the middle or circular Lowitz arc. The helic arc is also present in the colour version but this is knocked out when b-r is applied because it is a predominantly white halo. Other techniques must be used to reveal that particular arc. Image copyright Nicholas Lefaudeux.
So, Hans, you can now see what you may be missing! I hope this is of some use to you and others who may occasionally photograph the odd halo.
December 14, 2017 at 8:23 am #247345
Thank you Alec for the french connection. Merci Bien. J’ai quelque chose d’étudier. It is indeed useful for everyone who tries to capture halos. It turns out that I am not well enough equipped. I use Photoshop Elements or Lightroom. To my surprise they both don’t offer the function of a channel mixer.
I do emphasize the existence of halos when necessary by adding contrast and then pumping up the saturation. Here-under an example of one of the rare occasions I spotted a lot of arcs together.
22 degrees, sundogs, parhelic (parts) ,UTA, Parry, supralateral (I suppose), CZA.
December 14, 2017 at 9:49 am #247358
Hans, there are several free pieces of software that come equipped with a channel mixer, Gimp being probably the most well known.
A rough and ready rule is that the supralateral always touches the cza and the 46 is always separated from it. In your example, though it is difficult to ascertain for sure because of the low resolution display image, I think there might be Lowitz present. There seems to be a lower Lowitz at least on the left hand parhelion.
December 14, 2017 at 11:10 am #247369
Thanks for the help Alec. Nice rule for the supralateral and 46.
Just installed GIMP and this was what I got for the same picture.
I guess I have to exercise a bit with the possibilities of GIMP. The Parry is not that clear at first try. Maybe it is because I only have a JPG version (unfortunately). For the lower Lowitz I think the picture is not good enough to distinguish, but I would be happy if so. I once spotted a well distinguishable upper Lowitz. Just have to be alert when the conditions seem favorable.
December 14, 2017 at 11:57 am #247376
Doing better already and much to my surprise on a picture taken at the same occasion as above, but somewhat later, an upper Lowitz appeared. You were right I now can see what I was missing. I will have to check more of my archive.
An upper Lowitz arc touching the Parry arc and crossing the UTA.
December 14, 2017 at 9:05 pm #247576
Hans, your first attempt at b-r wasn’t quite as successful as the second because you performed it on a low resolution image that had already undergone a fair amount of processing and was in all likelihood 8 bit. However, your second attempt is much better, indeed you have managed to capture a real beauty! It’s actually a Middle Lowitz arc and not an Upper Lowitz. Middle Lowitz are also sometimes referred to as circular Lowitz arcs because of their shape. The only other thing I might suggest is try using as wide an angle of lens as you have at your disposal. By zooming in so close you are probably missing a lot of sub-visual halos that might be there. Many of the halo pros use an all sky fisheye lens to capture everything in the sky at once. There can be as much going on in the anthelic region directly opposite the sun than directly around the sun itself.
December 15, 2017 at 10:17 am #247754
You are right about the first attempt, Alec. The cause of it was not the poor quality of the picture, but I subtracted red from green as suggested in the article when working with a JPG. Afterwards I tried it with the normal b-r subtraction what is advised when working with RAW. It turned out to work as well for JPG.
First question: are you sure about the middle Lowitz? How can you distinguish from an upper one?
I had a lot of fun yesterday checking some of my pictures. I once spotted an upper Lowitz in France. Les Cowley published it as an OPOD.
No lower Lowitz to see. On some pictures taken earlier that were less clear in my opinion I found the following:
Also the lower appears! I was flabbergasted.
In close up.
Third and last one:
What strikes me in this third picture is the splitting of two arcs top right of the picture. All what I can think of is the continuation of the UTA in a circumscribed arc (for the lower one) and a continuation of the Parry for the upper one. For what it is worth. Do you have an opinion on this one?
P.S.: Again you were right: I did miss things without this magic of b-r processing. Thanks a lot.
December 15, 2017 at 9:21 pm #247997
Hans, I can’t believe I have done this but inadvertently I have been leading you a merry dance. You were right the first time, it was indeed an upper Lowitz. I’ve been in such a mad rush these past few days on the run up to Christmas that my wires have become seriously crossed. I am a dolt and a total imbecile for which my sincere apologies. I could promise that “it won’t happen again”, but considering my past track record it probably will!! The following link will hopefully prove useful in trying to identify the various Lowitz components,
Earlier this year, there was a flurry of excitement when Jari Luomanen photographed a possible fourth component,
December 15, 2017 at 10:22 pm #248015
This is all quite fascinating, so thank you both for lessons and links.
“What is it you’re seeing?” a woman asked when she spotted me gazing upwards. Then came the astonished “Oh!”
December 15, 2017 at 10:56 pm #248024
Alec, you are far to harsh on yourself. You already made me very happy and with your tips I found out I was some Lowitz experiences richer than I thought I was. Christmas stress is a serious matter you must not underestimate. Something strong might help, I suggest something liquid 15 years old the least and a bit of Zen?
Anyway I studied meteoros.de and atoptics.co.uk and I am sure about the upper Lowitz and the lower one around the sundog. The middle Lowitz (im Deutsch: der kreisformige Lowitzbogen) seems to be faintly present but maybe I am over-enthousiastic now.
Still I am puzzled about the two splitting arcs top right of my last picture. Regarding your track record (yes, not the one you falsely accuse yourself of), I would be happy with your opinion on it. But please no stress on it. I wouldn’t like to be the cause of a 19th nervous breakdown.
And also thanks for the new link. It is fun reading about the quest for every detail and every observation of rare halos.
Regards from a happy Hans
December 16, 2017 at 11:32 am #248183
Mistakes like this happen when you are in such a mind-warping hurry that you only give something a cursory glance. Elementary mistake, wrapped knuckles and mine’s a pint!
Middle Lowitz definitely present; you had a good haul to bag all three components. The “splitting” of the arcs on the top right is simple to explain. It’s basically just the Parry and UTA diverging. The UTA will eventually extend to join the upwards tending LTA to produce a circumscribed halo.
The next step is to try stacking your images. Mount your camera on a tripod and take a series of images over two or three minutes. Try 20 or 30 to begin with and then stack them with freely available software such as Registax. You’ll be amazed at the additional details this technique will provide when combined with b-r.
December 16, 2017 at 11:47 am #248188
A simple 22.
December 16, 2017 at 8:15 pm #248289
Simple maybe, but very clever framing.
December 16, 2017 at 12:57 pm #248194
Thanks again Alec for the explanation about the two splitting arcs and for the new tip. Nice homework to do for me to explore stacking. Now I just have to wait for a good occasion.
And yes the former pictures were quite a haul. Almost the whole day a 22 degrees halo was present. Later a UTA came on top of it and then – while the sun lowered – I could see the Parry forming his roof together with the rising of the horns of the UTA. At the end of the show, when the Parry was almost vanished, also a CZA appeared. I think it will take years before I can spot something the like.
From rare to simple. Simple does not mean less beautiful, like you and Keelin showed.
Just an hour ago this simple sundog appeared with a rather broad fluffy parhelic tail.
December 16, 2017 at 8:42 pm #248295
I wonder what that is, Keelin, a CZA or a piece of a halo? The shot is obviously taken looking almost straight up, but where was the sun?
December 17, 2017 at 4:11 am #248372
Wish I could say, George, but I don’t know much at all about these apparitions — other than it’s been rare for me to catch one. It was late afternoon, and I believe the sun was below what’s shown. The palm tree might be misleading regarding angle, as I was in fact looking slightly up from just straight ahead. In the future, I must take notes! Maybe Alec or Hans can illuminate us?
And Hans, your 22 degrees, sundogs, parhelic (parts) ,UTA, Parry, supralateral, CZA is absolutely stunning! Thank you for launching this new forum thread where we can see and share these gems.
Alec, your simple 22 is so lovely. You shine!
Below is an image from a year ago that made my day. But again, I don’t know what to call it.
December 17, 2017 at 12:40 pm #248437
I suppose George asked about the picture Keelin posted at December 15th (reply #248015). It all depends on the height / position relative to the sun. Although that is difficult to see it looks like a 22 degrees halo. A CZA occurs at twice the distance of the 22 degrees halo near the zenith. When the halo occurred on a relative high position like George suggests, it still can’t be a CZA because has to curl upwards. That’s why a CZA is also called the smile in the sky. Keelin wrote that the halo was taken slightly up. That implies a 22 degrees halo.
On the last one you posted Keelin, I can see a faint arc curving upward at the right that is tangent to an upper part of a bow. In fact the same applies to this one as above. It all depends on the relative position to the sun. When it is at 22 degrees from the sun this must be the 22 degrees halo with an upper tangent arc. But when this was observed higher, this could have been a CZA tangent to the supralateral or 46 degrees arc. Do you remember the position Keelin?
Any other opinions on this?
P.S.: It is always fun to explain others, asking what om earth you are looking up for, what there is to see. I think we all had our moments people were surprised after pointing out and explaining. This contributes to the fun as far as I am concerned.
December 17, 2017 at 6:31 pm #248553
Thank you, Hans, that makes sense to me about the Dec 15th image being a 22˚ halo. As for the most recent one, I don’t recall at all where the sun was. Can anything be determined by the layered order of colors?
As for sharing our enthusiasm about the wonders of the sky with others, I’ll never forget the following encounter. (I hope it’s okay to post this here.)
Just as the downpour began, I dashed into a local deli. An elderly man who’d been on his way out, stood transfixed in the doorway eyeing the display of darkening clouds, his face lit in childlike glee. We shared a few moments of quiet wonder punctuated with overtones of “Wow!” as thunder rumbled.
“I’m 84”, he began, “grew up on a farm. We used to lie in the fields and see all kinds of things in the clouds! Do people do that anymore?” I smiled and told him about the Cloud Appreciation Society and its tens of thousands of members who feel doing so is a far cry from a waste of time. “You don’t say!” He shook his head in amazement. I drew out my phone to share some photos.
“You’ve still got it!”, I assured him when he quickly spotted the Pig in PJs, a complex Cumulous Rorschach. We both took a breath and then he sighed, “I love that smell, the first rain! I know there’s a word for it…. but I can’t remember what it is…” I leaned in to touch his arm and whisper, “Petrichor!”, like a secret code assuring him we’re on the same side. “That’s it! That’s it! Thank you! And the Cloud Appreciation Society, I won’t forget that!”. He made his way out, into the wet, eyes to the skies, chanting his new mantra lest it slip away like the passing storm.
December 18, 2017 at 3:05 pm #248740
That is a story to remember Keelin. This kind of experiences are to be cherished. Heartwarming.
As to the arc I will put my money on a CZA. Not because of the layering of colors, but because of the upcurling circular form it seems to have.
Next one is certainly a part of the 22 degrees halo. I was walking the fields together with some biologists (which I am not) looking for rare plants. I had to explain what they would miss when they only looked down for beauty. We concluded it will be found everywhere you will look for it.
The Complete Proof Of The Curvature Of Spacetime
Or one might see Santa’s sleigh in it. Unfortunately he must have fallen of.
December 19, 2017 at 5:18 am #248961
Thank you, Hans, and the conclusion you and your biologist friends reached could not be more true. Beauty abounds! Sometimes when we’re surprised by it, the body responds in telling ways — breathing shifts, eyebrows rise, a smile forms, and then there’s that stillness in which the ordinary moment becomes “liminal” (defined as that moment when a person has stepped across a psychological threshold out of the ordinary world of existence into a new place where they are open to experience, something undefined).
You have The Complete Proof! And if Santa has indeed fallen, he’ll have had the ride of his life through the clouds. Below, The Curve Crosses The Pond as well.
December 19, 2017 at 9:46 am #248989
Liminal. Sure! After all we must have known the sky smiled at you, Keelin.
Nice to see the curve crossed the pond.
Since the moment Alec gave the forum the push that we are now enjoying so much, I found more colored candidates in my archive and also quite some sundogs to share. Here is one.
Choreography For Ballerina With Fireball
December 20, 2017 at 10:29 pm #249538
Your Ballerina has some followers, Hans, drawn to her luminous dance.
Fans Of The Ballerina With Fireball
December 21, 2017 at 3:42 pm #249717
The ballerina appreciates the audience Keelin!
Once my nephew had a laugh with me about my appreciation of clouds. How silly can one get! But a year later and much to my surprise he started also cloudspotting. What was seeded had taken root with nice cloud-conversations and exchange of pictures as a result.
A few days ago he sent me this halo spectacle from the ski resort where he is now giving ski lessons (great to be young!). Snowcannons had filled the air with diamond dust. You can see the individual snow crystals sparkle in the sunlight. He will like it when I share this one here.
December 21, 2017 at 4:54 pm #249726
Hans, at which ski resort was this taken and did he take any more images?
December 21, 2017 at 5:24 pm #249735
Alec, the picture was taken in Kaprun, Austria.
He sent also this one. Just two. Spectacular.
December 21, 2017 at 6:52 pm #249749
Thanks, Hans. he’s a lucky guy to be working at such a beautiful location.
December 21, 2017 at 5:35 pm #249738
And now I remember he also sent me this in January of this year. He is a lucky guy.
A lower tangent arc
December 23, 2017 at 5:35 pm #250158
December 23, 2017 at 6:01 pm #250163
Hans, that looks like how I feel when I see any type of iridescence in the sky. Just little sighting yesterday had my toes all awiggle.
December 24, 2017 at 1:58 am #250260
A little treat like this makes your day. Not iridescence, for sure, the colors are organized like in a rainbow. But not convinced it is a sun dog either. Again, where was the sun (and the Earth). But in the end, does it matter?
December 23, 2017 at 6:08 pm #250165
Wonderful image Keelin. Colors lost in the blues.
Not wanting to clever about it, but both are sundogs I think. Irisdescence or sundog, the colors of both are always toes awiggling (so to speak).
December 23, 2017 at 6:14 pm #250166
Ah, yes, that would be correct! Toes and tails awagging!
December 24, 2017 at 2:36 am #250269
December 24, 2017 at 2:41 am #250270
Hans, not a sub sun?
December 24, 2017 at 1:43 pm #250336
Thanks George, but a subsun must be under the horizon and should be pure white as far as I know.
December 26, 2017 at 11:38 am #250665
Ha, the second picture I posted form my nephew with the 22 degrees halo, UTA and sundogs is today Photo Of The Day in the Cloudspotter app. Proud uncle.
December 27, 2017 at 9:55 am #250830
The Consisting Colors Of A Sundog
December 28, 2017 at 3:54 am #250958
WOW, Hans! Otherworldly!
December 28, 2017 at 12:16 pm #251012
The neighbourhood is becoming increasingly edgy. In the last twelve months, there have been: two murders; three stabbings; two cannabis farms raided; a visit from the bomb squad in relation to the storage of certain unspecified volatile materials; one illegal dangerous dog breeding enterprise shut down.
And you wonder why the need for barbed wire?
December 28, 2017 at 4:55 pm #251039
That breeding enterprise is the limit! It must have been one hell of a fireball to shut down……
December 28, 2017 at 5:08 pm #251044
I can put up with most things, but not cruelty to animals. The case has just been heard at court. The guy got sixteen weeks. Absolute travesty.
December 28, 2017 at 5:04 pm #251042
December 28, 2017 at 5:59 pm #251049
Absolutely beautiful in black and white, Alec. I do have the impression that the attempts to stop the breeding have been in vain?
December 28, 2017 at 6:18 pm #251052
They have stopped, at least for now, because the individual responsible is spending Christmas locked away at HM’s pleasure.
December 29, 2017 at 2:34 pm #251190
December 30, 2017 at 9:26 pm #251378
January 1, 2018 at 7:27 pm #251699Kristy SharkeyParticipant
I wish each post had a like button, such a great thread and these photos are stunning. Alec, thanks for the great articles and scientific details about halo phenomenon, so fascinating. I love learning from this community.
Here (near Seattle, WA) we had a nice 22 degree halo around that stunning super moon last night. With a bonus contrail piercing the moon. Better than fireworks!
January 2, 2018 at 4:31 pm #251899
I agree Kristy. Nice moonhalo. And indeed better than fireworks.
Part of the parhelic circle with a faint sundog at the left
January 2, 2018 at 5:14 pm #251904
Such beauties all, from deep and dark to light and subtle. Here is one pushed to show what the eye can’t catch unless, of course, one is dreaming…
January 3, 2018 at 11:54 am #252061
January 4, 2018 at 10:02 am #252223
There is something in my eye
January 5, 2018 at 1:39 pm #252442
January 6, 2018 at 10:59 am #252597
Some psychotropic lensflare with a part of the 22 degrees halo.
January 7, 2018 at 10:44 am #252746
January 10, 2018 at 11:27 am #253268
January 11, 2018 at 11:24 pm #253519
Lensflare and Puppy and Crows… oh my! Shall we add this to the menagerie?
January 12, 2018 at 11:23 am #253588
That’s a nice catch Keelin! Flashy.
Part of a distant rainbow
January 15, 2018 at 9:19 am #253980
January 15, 2018 at 6:05 pm #254070Kristy SharkeyParticipant
I was SO excited to see my second-ever Circumzenithal Arc yesterday. And the sky was already gorgeous.
January 16, 2018 at 1:13 am #254123
Awesome, Kristy, very nice!
January 17, 2018 at 1:03 pm #254345
January 18, 2018 at 5:45 pm #254513
Hans, what a compelling image! Is that the crow? And whose eye is overseeing all? Mystery and intrigue abound! I love it.
January 18, 2018 at 5:50 pm #254514
Caught the sun playing Hide & Seek with two sundogs a couple of days ago.
January 18, 2018 at 8:00 pm #254536
Very strange eye, the pupil is not quite in the center …
Keelin, the sun took out these two dogs for a walk and, naturally, they are checking out the tree.
January 19, 2018 at 12:40 pm #254627
I did not notice directly myself Keelin, but yes it must be the Crow.
And yes the eye is not quite in the centre George due to the use of the wide angle.
Very nice way to walk the dogs Keelin. Did you perhaps look for the CZA? The right circumstances seemed to be there, but maybe you did and there wasn’t any?
January 20, 2018 at 11:35 am #254772
No halo or rainbow, but just play of light. This one I once took with the cloudspotter app. The beams of light at different angles and their reflections are still puzzling.
January 20, 2018 at 4:01 pm #254794LaurieParticipant
Two bows (or 3)
January 20, 2018 at 5:38 pm #254804
Hans, I’ve never seen shafts of sunlight reflected like that. Fascinating!
And Laurie, what a catch — a vivid double rainbow with Alexander’s Dark Band playing along! Makes me wanna dance.
January 25, 2018 at 11:50 am #255518
Beautiful rainbows Laurie!
Part of a 22 degrees halo
January 25, 2018 at 7:29 pm #255562
Nice surprise of color there, Hans!
A Pale 22 Plays Peek-A-Boo
January 29, 2018 at 11:06 am #256206
You may call it pale Keelin, but I call it a gentle colored 22 degrees halo.
I captured this sundog at sunset once. That’s why it is rather red colored. Adjusting the levels gave a surprising result. Just for fun I share both versions.
January 30, 2018 at 2:30 am #256489
Both versions of your sundog are absolutely beautiful, Hans! In this one, the color might be as one might see ~~ if one were especially lucky.
Through The Gossamer Wing Of A Faerie
January 30, 2018 at 9:00 am #256544
It must be what your title says Keelin. Truly gossamer!
January 30, 2018 at 10:40 pm #256666
Today Blue Moon and with a faint moonhalo.
February 3, 2018 at 3:42 am #257222
Love the composition of your Blue Moon with halo shot, Hans!
Found This In The Deep Sea
February 3, 2018 at 12:23 pm #257271
Attenburough must know about this one Keelin
February 4, 2018 at 9:52 pm #257476rje623Participant
Sun halo and accompanying sun dog, as seen from Alabama, USA on February 2, 1017.
February 5, 2018 at 12:44 am #257493
Good catch Ramona. I followed you profile link into Facebook and it looks like you can delight us with some more. Have not seen you in the Forum, so welcome!
February 5, 2018 at 12:49 am #257494rje623Participant
Thank you for the warm welcome, George! I am guessing you saw my Gunter Mountain Photography page? I just went out this evening and shot 1889 photos of the sunset but I have not looked through all of them yet! I did use one as the cover photo, though. ;-) I look forward to learning names for all of the clouds, etc that I have been photographing and observing over the last few years!
February 13, 2018 at 5:20 pm #258711
A beautiful halo you’ve captured there, Ramona! Caught this one in the late afternoon.
February 19, 2018 at 8:13 pm #259646
Sunset Sundog is beautiful Keelin. I like the smooth transition of colors on the diagonal.
This one is also spotted at sunset (two days ago). In The Colour thread I saw you like it seasoned.
February 21, 2018 at 7:59 pm #259999
Thank you, Hans ~~ and what a tasty sunset shot above, seasoned just right, I’d say.
Here’s one from a couple of months ago (sans seasoning).
February 22, 2018 at 11:03 am #260078
No seasoning needed, Keelin.
Also from the archives a CZA, a bit prepared to give it a special texture.
February 26, 2018 at 3:03 am #260618
Exquisite, Hans, so delicate!
February 26, 2018 at 11:32 am #260665
Yes, very nice. Fetching Light that’s what sundogs do.
Just two days ago this halo appeared with a faint sundog in the contrail that crosses the halo exactly at sun level and 22 degrees.
February 28, 2018 at 10:17 am #260943
Next sundog might not be as nice as the sundog as in Fetching Light by Keelin, but what struck me in next picture I captured yesterday, was the red coloring of the top of the crest of the cumulonimbus by what must have been a part of the 22 degrees halo.
March 2, 2018 at 10:36 am #261249
And yesterday there was another sundog but now in combination with a fallstreak hole. Never witnessed that combination before. It is not a great picture in my opinion. I captured it with the cloudspotter app in a hurry on route and the rather small sundog was not long lived, so there was no time for an attempt to improve the picture.
March 9, 2018 at 2:22 am #262254
Extraordinary captures, Hans! Lucky for us you are quick enough to catch these fleeting doggies. In the image below, some little cloud spirit appears to be dancing above the halo.
March 9, 2018 at 6:35 am #262271MichaelParticipant
Another parhelic circle yesterday.
March 9, 2018 at 2:16 pm #262314
Very beautiful Halo Dancer Keelin! And an extraordinary parhelic Michael.
These were two very beautiful halo’s to end this Volume I with. New halo’s to come in next episode?
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