Lunar Halo (ring around the moon)January 7th, 2012 at 10:20 pm by David Mazza under Weather
Tonight we had a good number of people calling in and emailing asking about the ring that was showing up around the moon. Simply put this is a Lunar Halo and is caused by high cirrus clouds that are moving in from the west tonight. As the light from the nearly full moon passes through the cirrus clouds, it gets scattered. The reason for the scattering is the clouds are actually made up of millions of tiny ice crystals, so when light passes through these, they act as little prisms. Since the light that is reflected off the moon is somewhat dim (compared to sunlight), the halo’s usually appear colorless. It should be noted that folklore states that rain usually is not far behind when a lunar halo is observed… and wouldn’t you know, we have rain in the forecast starting late tomorrow night. Thank you to Jessica Moore and Tami Conner for the pics.