The Science Network
A seeded cloud
There is constantly a vast array of particles in the sky above us - ice crystals, gases from volcanic eruptions, soot from large fires. When there are particles in the air, clouds form, as these particles - dust or salt in the atmosphere - act as a ‘seed’ around which water vapour can gather. This process of gathering, forming and dissipating, is happening constantly in the skies above us.
It was during WW2 that we realised that the weather was not just something that happened around us, and to us, but that it was something we could have control over. Importantly, we realised that clouds can be ‘seeded’ directly - that if we put particles into the atmosphere: we can cause clouds to form, create downpours and storms, cultivate snow or rain.
Some claim that the cloud above us is none other than a seeded cloud. Perhaps one that has been deliberately cultivated to be impossibly large, perhaps it is a scientific process gone awry. There is a hope that this cloud will help us: reflect solar energy away from our atmosphere, cool our burning Earth. Only time will tell.