The opposite of contrails

The opposite of a contrail is a “distrail”. When a jet flies through a high cloud then various factors to do with the passage of the jet are sufficient to trigger precipitation in the cloud, leaving holes or trails. The precipitation can spread outwards quite a distance.

This is a satellite image over Texas.  Holes form when the plane is climbing or descending through the cloud.  The longer trails form when a plane flies at about cloud height for a while.


(From http://www-pm.larc.nasa.gov/swiss_cheese_cloud.html)

Here’s another example from North Texas, and a picture of what these hole shaped distrails look like from below.

From: (http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/)

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