Hail storm

Hail storm

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Credit: JIM REED/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Hail storm. Shaft of hail pouring from a severe thunderstorm. Hail is a form of precipitation made up of balls of ice. The hail forms in cumulonimbus clouds due to violent convection currents. Particles of rain or snow are drawn vertically up through the cloud, and collide with supercooled water and other particles. These collisions lead to the particles sticking together. When they become too heavy to be supported by the air currents, they fall to earth. Some hailstones can be over 10 centimetres across, and cause severe damage to property and crops. Photographed in Gillette, Wyoming, USA.

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Keywords: agricultural land, america, american, climate, cloud, cloudy, cumulonimbus, downpour, extreme, farmland, field, fields, gillett, hail, hailstorm, horizontal, meteorology, pasture, severe, shaft, storm, stormy, thunderstorm, united states, us, usa, weather, wyoming

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