Hail

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Faerie (October 26, 2012, 15:23:15 PM):
I was unfortunate enough to be caught in the freaky hail storm that hit Gauteng's eastern suburbs last Saturday. My car took some damage but not as much as some of my neighbours (I moved it damn quickly into the garage), its in for repairs already.

My next door neighbour lost every single window on the one side of her house and her car's windscreen was also smashed along with a portion of the dashboard. The insurance companies are up in arms and Dial Direct claims to have received 3200 claims in the space of 12 hours after the event. PG Glass and the like claims to have ran out of windows and windscreens by Tuesday afternoon.

Fun stuff.

The freakyness is the size of the stones. The size of the palm of my hand and I cannot close my fist around it.

Go looky here for some images:

http://www.news24.com/Multimedia/South-Africa/Hail-hits-Joburg-20121022

I read somewhere that the temperature measured in the clouds reached -50 C, although that sounds a bit excessive to me.
Brian (October 26, 2012, 16:04:20 PM):
dunno hey! It gets lekker cold up there...-40C usual for Boeing flights at 6000m odd but those hail stones were unreal...mebbe Mefiante can tell us why they were so large?
Mefiante (October 26, 2012, 16:38:48 PM):
In certain meteorological circumstances called a “supercell”, the updraft that can cause ordinary hailstones to form has a strong rotational component as well (a bit like a tornado), and this radically increases the weather cell’s ability to raise the forming hailstones and keep them aloft. As a result, the residence time of the hailstones in the weather cell increases, and therefore the time available for their growth by accretion also increases, producing much larger hailstones.

Basically, it’s stronger updraft winds in a weather cell’s upper regions keeping the hail up there for longer so that it gets bigger.

'Luthon64
Tweefo (October 26, 2012, 17:16:18 PM):
On one of my jumps we exited the plane (a C130 so it was a high jump) in hail. Don't know how big the stones were but my goggles got knocked off my face, we were in the hail for a short time, then it turned to rain, and by the time we had to pull there were no drops. We landed in sunshine. We must have been going down faster than the drops because we were hit in our faces. (maybe the drops were going up to form the hail higher up or was it hail that melted to form rain in warmer, lower altitude?) On another (a dare) rain jump (this was only about 12 seconds freefall) my terminal velocity was only slightly faster than the raindrops. Granted, on that jump I was only at full speed for a few seconds.
Rigil Kent (October 26, 2012, 17:29:30 PM):
You're lucky you weren't caught up in one of 'em supercells, causing you to oscillate vertically for several minutes and acquiring layer upon layer of frost, just to finally drop as a giant nylon icicle through Faerie's windshield. Brrrr.

Rigil

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