Sonic Boom vs Sun Dog


Perched on top of an Atlas V rocket, on February 11 the Solar Dynamics Observatory launched into space. About a minute after leaving the Earth, the rocket did two things: it passed the speed of sound, and screamed past a sundog, a rainbow-colored optical effect in the sky caused by ice crystals. And when it did it was incredible.

Open in YouTube. Go full screen. Click the “720” button.

Pay close attention around the 1min 50sec mark.

Those ripples were caused by the shockwave of the rocket going through the cloud, which quickly dispersed. Since the cloud had ice crystals in it, the sundog got literally blown away.

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Posted via web from hellokinsella’s posterous