Cumulonimbogenitus Clouds

There are plenty of cloud formations to discover in the sky, one of which is cumulonimbogenitus clouds. The term may sound unfamiliar but its occurrence is certainly not. Find out how this cloud type develops, how it looks like and what kind of weather system it brings.

Cumulonimbogenitus clouds are clouds that form when cumulonimbus clouds spread out. This cloud is also referred to as altocumulus cumulogenitus which develop due to temperature inversion resulting to horizontal expansion. Cumulonimbogenitus may exhibit an anvil shape but it lacks frosty appearance of anvil clouds. Furthermore, cumulonimbogenitus clouds may also develop from other cloud types.

Classification of Cumulonimbogenitus Clouds

There are several types of cumulonimbogenitus clouds appearing in different cloud genera.

  • Cirrus Spissatus Cumulonimbogenitus

This cloud arises as a result of blown out anvil or thunderhead. You may find it difficult to differentiate a cirrus spissatus cumulonimbogenitus from a cirrus spissatus, but this variety of cirrus cloud consists of leftovers from dispersing anvils of cumulonimbus capillatus clouds. Also, it may be so dense that it covers the sun partially or completely, thus, appearing grayish in color.

  • Altostratus Cumulonimbogenitus

If the base of a cumulonimbogenitus cloud is in mid-level atmosphere, it is called altostratus cumulonimbogenitus. This cloud appears as a smooth cloud layer spreading all over the sky which is the remnant of dense anvil clouds from cumulonimbus capillatus incus. 

  • Cirrostratus Cumulonimbogenitus

If the cumulonimbogenitus is more widespread and thicker than a streak or band of cumulonimbus, it takes the form of cirrostratus cumulonimbogenitus.

  • Altocumulus Cumulonimbogenitus

This form of cumulonimbogenitus develops due to dissipating cumulonimbus clouds.

  • Stratocumulus Cumulonimbogenitus

Stratocumulus Cumulonimbogenitus develops as a result of the horizontal expansion of cumulus congestus upon reaching the temperature inversion atmospheric level which is at the tropopause.

At What Height is Cumulonimbogenitus Clouds Found?

Cumulonimbogenitus belongs to the cloud group with vertical development; hence, it is found at elevations from 6,500 feet to 20,000 feet or even higher depending on how strong the convective forces are due to surface heating from the ground. Since this cloud is associated with cumulonimbus clouds, weather phenomena like heavy rainfall, hail, snow, lightning and tornado can be expected.

How are Cumulonimbogenitus Clouds Formed?

These clouds form due to the horizontal expansion of cumulonimbus clouds. This occurs when the rising warm air reaches an altitude wherein the surrounding air is warmer thus preventing the rising warm air to move up any further. Instead, it spreads out and flattens forming an anvil shape. The direction of this cloud points to the wind movement of the storm.

What do Cumulonimbogenitus Clouds Look Like?

The appearance of cumulonimbogenitus depends on the cloud level it appears. If it appears in mid-atmospheric level, cumulonimbogenitus may display a smooth layer of cloud that spreads out across the sky. If it develops at high elevations, it may appear in patches and thin layers. However, it may also be so dense and widespread that it could completely or partly cover the sun. It may closely resemble an anvil cloud but with the absence of the glacial characteristic of a real anvil cloud.

How common are Cumulonimbogenitus Clouds?

These clouds are generally widespread all over the world, but their most frequent occurrence is noted at middle latitude regions where warm and moist air bumps with cool and dry air causing severe thunderstorms.

When you see cumulonimbus clouds that have spread out, it is now called as cumulonimbogenitus clouds.

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