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What is this weird round object on satellite over Louisiana?

November 10, 2017; 4:24 PM

UPDATE 11/11/17: Here are the loops showing the cloud from Bloomsky weather cameras:


Meteorologists and Twitter users were spooked when a long-lived, large, round object appeared on GOES-16 satellite over Louisiana today, November 10th, moving east but not changing shape:

Weird Cloud 11/10

But after some research, I found it was just a bizarre round cloud, after I spotted it on webcams. It looked like a high-atmosphere cirrus cloud that was producing virga (falling ice).

Weird Cloud 11/10

These kinds of sightings may become more frequent -- only because they weren't possible before the new, high spatial and temporal resolution (non-operational) GOES-16 satellite, launched in 2017. Here are some additional satellite scans of the cloud:

Here are a few photos from the ground that have surfaced:

The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of AccuWeather, Inc. or AccuWeather.com

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