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Clouds : classification
Genera species Subspecies

Special forms

Stratocumuli ( lat. Stratus or sternere "to expand, spread out, cover with a layer" and cumulus "accumulation"; abbreviation : Sc ), in general stratocumuli , are heap layer clouds without fibers and arise similar to cumulus clouds , but with different air layers and stronger winds . This sometimes makes it difficult to distinguish it from the altocumulus . Stratocumulus clouds are especially common in the subtropics and cover 20% of the deep sea . They have a cooling effect on the earth's surface. The stratocumuli are the most common clouds in Central Europe and they indicate a fairly stable layering . Most of the time, the sky can be seen through the stratocumulus layer. Stratocumulus clouds often have a gray underside because the water droplets absorb a relatively large amount of light.

By definition, a cloud is called a stratocumulus when most of the cloud parts appear wider than 5 degrees (when viewed from more than 30 degrees to the horizon), and an altocumulus when it is between 1 and 5 degrees wide - a maximum of about 3 fingers wide when outstretched Hand.

The stratocumulus differs from the cumulus in that the underside has grown together - cumulus clouds are always "solitary" - or that the upper side is either flat or, if domes are visible, they grow from the same cloud base.

Special types of Stratocumulus are stratiformis , lenticularis and castellanus as well as the subspecies translucidus , perlucidus , opacus , duplicatus , undulatus , radiatus and lacunosus . For special forms, accompanying and mother clouds, see the article cloud .


The cloud genus formerly known as Cumulostratus was renamed Stratocumulus in 1840 by Ludwig Friedrich Kämtz with the consent of Luke Howard and included in the internationally valid cloud classification.

Web links

Commons : Stratocumulus  - album with pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Stratocumulus - Duden
  2. ^ Tapio Schneider, Colleen M. Kaul, Kyle G. Pressel: Possible climate transitions from breakup of stratocumulus decks under greenhouse warming. In: Nature Geoscience. 12, 2019, p. 163, doi : 10.1038 / s41561-019-0310-1 .