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Ivana Fly

flugsnug 747 contrail looping (vortex crow instability)

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This video follows the connecting and breaking within a section of the vapor trail behind a Cargolux Boeing 747 flying at 35000 feet.

Quickly after forming behind each engine, the left side pair of trails merge with each other and with the clockwise-spinning (as seen from behind) left wingtip vortex, with the right pair doing the same with the anticlockwise right wingtip vortex.

After about 2 minutes, the two vortices begin to visibly interact, forming a series of separated loops, one of which is shown here - this is the "Crow Instability" (named after its discoverer).

On this occasion, the loop "disconnects" after a few seconds, going back to two mini twisters.


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