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About us

The International Cloud Atlas website has been made possible thanks to:

Task Team on the International Cloud Atlas:

Dr. Stephen COHN, Chair of task team, USA

Mr. George ANDERSON, Met Office, UK

Mr. Ernest LOVELL, Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology, Barbados

Ms. Eliane THüRIG-JENZER, MeteoSwiss, Switzerland

Mr. Jim TRICE, Met Office, UK

ICA TeamClick to zoom

Mr. Michael BRUHN, co-chair of task team, Bureau of Meteorology Training Centre, Australia

Mrs. Marinés CAMPOS, Servicio meteorológico Nacional, Argentina

Ms. Colleen RAE, South African Weather Service, South Africa

Mr. Kwong Hung TAM, Hong Kong, China

Hong Kong Observatory (HKO):

Mr. Kwong Hung TAM, Hong Kong, China

Mr. Yu Fai TONG, Hong Kong, China

Ms. Ho Man LAM, Programmer, Hong Kong, China

Mr. Ying Wa CHAN, Hong Kong, China

Mr. King Lun YAN, Programmer, Hong Kong, China

World Meteorological Organization (WMO):

Mr. Roger ATKINSON, Australia

Mrs. Isabelle RUEDI, Switzerland

Mr. Federico GALATI, Italy

Mr. Krunoslav PREMEC, Croatia


WMO is also indebted to Frank Le Blancq who provided a substantial contribution to the development of this new edition. We would also like to thank all the authors, photographers and videographers who contributed material to the this new edition of the International Cloud Atlas, as well as to all those who tested the website.

Sources of glossary terms
Glossary Sources:

International Meteorological Vocabulary (second edition), WMO-No. 182, 1992. World Meteorological Organization. Geneva. ISBN 978-92-630-2182-3. Also available online through METEOTERM
Terms sourced: accretion, agglomeration, aggregation, anvil, banner cloud, cap cloud, cloud bank, cloud street, coalescence, condensation, condensation level, condensation nucleus, condensation trail (contrail), convection, convective cloud, cumuliform, dissipation trail (distrail), downburst, dry line, entrainment, foehn wall (foehn bank), haboob (habub), ice storm, ionosphere, mesopause, mesosphere, microburst, mixed cloud, orographic cloud, polar vortex, precipitation, rain shadow, rotor cloud, sea of cloud, sleet, snowdrift, snowflake, squall, stratopause, stratosphere, thermal, tropopause, turbulence, wave cloud.

IPCC Fourth Assessment Report: Climate Change, 2007. Editor A.P.M. Baede (accessed 28 October 2016), Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Climate Change 2007 Working Group I: The Physical Science Basis, Annex I: Glossary.
Term sourced: advection

A Comprehensive Glossary of Weather Terms for Storm Spotters. NOAA Technical Memorandum NWS SR-145, NOAA/NWS/WFO Norman (accessed 28 October 2016). Retrieved from
Terms sourced: anvil crawler, anvil rollover, anvil zits, back-building thunderstorm, back-sheared anvil, barber pole, bear’s cage, beaver('s) tail, cell, cold pool, collar cloud, cumuliform anvil, debris cloud, elevated convection, flanking line, front, inflow stinger, knuckles, lapse rate, morning glory, multi-vortex tornado, orographic lift, overshooting top, rain-free base, shelf cloud, supercell, surface-based convection, tail cloud, updraft base.

Glossary of Meteorology. American Meteorological Society (accessed 28 October 2016).
Terms sourced: Bergeron-Findeisen process, black ice, cirriform, clear air turbulence (CAT), cloudburst, downslope windstorm, electrical storm, étage, evaporation, flurry (snow), foehn gap, fumulus, gravity wave, gust front, lee wave, mares’ tails, mountain wave, ozone hole, planetary boundary layer, pyrocumulus, rotors, scud, steam fog, stratiform, sublimation, supercooled, supersaturation, wind shear.

A Dictionary of Earth Sciences, 2008. Editor Michael Allaby. Oxford University Press ISBN-13: 9780199211944. Published online: 2008 DOI: 10.1093/acref/9780199211944.001.0001, eISBN: 9780191726613.

WMO Sea-Ice Nomenclature, Volumes I, II and III, 2015. WMO-No. 259, World Meteorological Organization.
Term sourced: fast ice

A Dictionary of Weather (second edition), 2008 print publication date. By Storm Dunlop, Oxford University Press, ISBN-13: 9780199541447, published online 2008, current online version 2008 eISBN: 9780191726903.
Term sourced: pile d’assiettes

Advanced Warning Operations Course (AWOC), National Weather Service Warning Decision Training Division, AWOC FY14 Student Guide, Severe Track (accessed 28 October 2016).
Term sourced: quasi-linear convective system (QLCS)

Guide to Meteorological Instruments and Methods of Observation WMO-No. 8, 2010 (accessed 28 October 2016), World Meteorological Organization.
Term sourced: relative humidity

Collins English Dictionary – Complete & Unabridged, 10th edition. Retrieved 1 October 2016 from website
Term sourced: superposed

National Weather Service Glossary (accessed 28 October 2016)
Terms sourced: foehn, graupel, vortex

Other related links

Overview of the new cloud classifications | Flickr album

International Cloud Atlas on WMO E-Library | World Meteorological Day 2017 ("Understanding the Clouds")

Some initial Clouds animations.

Multimedia corner

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