Photos of Planes and Contrails (That you took yourself)

Crisan Radu

New Member
Today I arrived in Germany by plane. On the way we flew below a contrail and in parallel with others (probably a corridor from East to Munich)
This was the contrail above us (excuse the quality, it was dark and it focused on the window) IMG_20150308_070525.jpg

These were the other contrails
IMG_20150308_070533.jpg

And after I left Ulm, from the train I saw the intense air traffic above it. The planes were headed E-SE.
IMG_20150308_103552.jpg

P. S. Beautiful country! I took my kindle with me to read in the trains and I barely kept my eyes off the window.
 

Trailspotter

Senior Member.
An evening contrail with Venus:
IMG_3050.JPG
a few seconds later the rising contrail passed in the front of the planet:
IMG_3051.JPG
(Photos have been taken by a hand held camera some 40 minutes after the today's sunset).
 

Leifer

Senior Member.
Here is a photo I took on a Southwest flight from LA to Oakland.
You can spot the shadow of the contrail we were leaving, cast on the cloud layer below.
I was on the east-facing side of the plane, so the sun was above and to the west....about mid-day in February .

It's an interesting way of detecting the presence of a contrail coming from a commercial jet, as a passenger.

southwest_contrail_shdw.jpg
 

Trailspotter

Senior Member.
It's an interesting way of detecting the presence of a contrail coming from a commercial jet, as a passenger.

This is a good point. If the contrail is long and dense, it is also possible to see from the plane the shadow it casts on the ground. Here are some old photos from my iPhoto library:
CIMG4866.JPG
From a KLM B747 over Siberia (Irkutsk Oblast, Russia).

IMG_4416.JPG
From a UA B777 (or B767) over Greenland.

P1070350.JPG
A high-altitude cloud and its shadow. From a UA B777 over the Rockies near WY-CO border.
 
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386

Member
I've been lurking here for a few days and was just reminded of this image that I took a few years ago. It shows an example of contrails 'glowing' a flame orange colour in the evening sunlight and also shows the standard holding patterns of multiple aircraft while they were waiting for clearance. I was excited at the time about the unlikely chances of the great sunset, perfect contrail conditions, and the planes going into holding all syncing up together.

small contrails holding pattern-4149.jpg
Location: Brisbane, Australia. Dec 4, 2012.
 

Trailspotter

Senior Member.
I've been lurking here for a few days and was just reminded of this image that I took a few years ago. It shows an example of contrails 'glowing' a flame orange colour in the evening sunlight and also shows the standard holding patterns of multiple aircraft while they were waiting for clearance. I was excited at the time about the unlikely chances of the great sunset, perfect contrail conditions, and the planes going into holding all syncing up together.

small contrails holding pattern-4149.jpg
Location: Brisbane, Australia. Dec 4, 2012.
Great photo, [...]
Also, there is an old thread discussing the very same contrails:
https://www.metabunk.org/threads/unusual-trails-and-clouds-in-australia.984/#post-21339
 

Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
I just flew back from Austria this morning on a Thomson 757. I was sat right near the back (row 38 of 42) and for a while I could see the contrail forming outside my window:


Then a little while later we flew right underneath a nice persistent trail. I didn't see the plane that left this one but I will have a look on FR24 to see if I can work it out.

 
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Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
That video was filmed at 11:52 UTC today. FR24 suggests a possible candidate was this Transavia flight.

upload_2015-3-28_18-35-15.png

I was on TOM9PX (TOM4657) which had just started its descent from 38,000ft at this point and would have been a couple of thousand feet below the Transavia flight's path as it crossed it:

upload_2015-3-28_18-37-3.png


And on the same flight, as we came in to land at LGW in humid grey conditions, a clearly defined vortex was trailing from the flaps:

photo (31).JPG
 

Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
Here is a video I took of the approach and landing to Gatwick, showing the wingtip vortices. The video is a bit shaky as it was rather a bumpy approach and I was not sitting in the window seat!


(I've removed the audio as it contained personal info)
 

derwoodii

Senior Member.
I just flew back from Austria this morning on a Thomson 757. I was sat right near the back (row 38 of 42) and for a while I could see the contrail forming outside my window:


Then a little while later we flew right underneath a nice persistent trail. I didn't see the plane that left this one but I will have a look on FR24 to see if I can work it out.



this post for me seems not to have pictures appear ??? anyhoo i got the other posts after so no biggy but skiing in Austria muchy envy :)
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
The pics in @Trailblazer's post were Tinypic images, it works better if you use the forum embed code for them, like

[IMG]https://www.metabunk.org/data/MetaMirrorCache/3e29fd26755b9f20942806601bb6c364.jpg[/IMG]

 

Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
The pics in @Trailblazer's post were Tinypic images, it works better if you use the forum embed code for them, like

[IMG]https://www.metabunk.org/data/MetaMirrorCache/3e29fd26755b9f20942806601bb6c364.jpg[/IMG]

They were Tinypic videos which I embedded using the MEDIA tags. They displayed fine for me earlier but now seem to have disappeared. Is there some problem with the code?
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
They were Tinypic videos which I embedded using the MEDIA tags. They displayed fine for me earlier but now seem to have disappeared. Is there some problem with the code?

It's a mixed content error (loading the player over HTTP, needed to be HTTPS). I'll try to fix it.
 

Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
Unfortunately Tinypic does not seem to support HTTPS, sorry. I'd suggest using YouTube or Vimeo.
Tinypic was listed as one of the sites that work with that tag, but not to worry. Maybe you can delete the post with the broken links?

Trying YouTube instead:

Contrails out of the window at the back of the plane:


And flying under another trail:


I did also film a few seconds as we flew along seemingly inside a contrail parallel to our flight path, but that close up it is hard to tell. Still a nice illustration that it is nothing but cloud!

 
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Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
Air Canada flight 846 (a Boeing 777 from Toronto to Munich at 37,000ft) flying into the sun this morning.

image.jpg

Then casting a shadow as it drifted south.

image.jpg

image.jpg
 

M Bornong

Senior Member.
Late afternoon, April 1, 2015, conditions were good for persistent contrail formation. Watching a time lapse video, it is sometimes difficult for me to put the time into perspective. This sequence of photos were taken to help understand that perspective.527pm.jpg

5:27 pm Southwest Flight WN4753, Sacramento to San Diego came into view in the center of the first photo.
530pmsouthwest.jpg 530pmWN4753.jpg
5:31 pm
531pm.jpg
5:33 pm
533pm.jpg

5:37 pm, lower left hand corner, I caught a contrail shadow.
537.jpg
5:39 pm, shadow is still visible.
539.jpg
5:42 pm
542.jpg

Shortly after the last photo was taken, the contrail left by WN 4753 blended into the haze in the background.
 

Lisa P

Active Member
I have contrasted the pictures I took today to make it clearer, not very good as it is from my phone. I took them from my back balcony facing north. There are 2 main flight paths where I am, this one and one parallel but to the west. I will often see small persistent contrails that may last a half hour or so the longer and spreading ones are not as common. The trails stop I think when the jets reach around the 38000ft or a bit before I haven’t checked the radar app yet to be certain. April last year was very conducive to longer persisting and spreading trails as our weather begins to cool and before it gets too dry and it looks like this April may be the same. (near Noosa, Queensland, Australia)

Both photos 9:24am






 
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Lisa P

Active Member
This was taken on my morning walk today, I don't usually take my phone but there were already lots of contrails from the earlier flights to the north, I could see them out the door as soon as I woke up. I noticed the jet from the south before it produced the contrail and kept my eye on it because I thought as it gained altitude it may produce a contrail and I wasn’t disappointed. This is the other regular flight path that will often produce short persisting contrails.
8:17am Marcoola


Photo 8:24am

This is approx. where I spotted the plane with no contrail (on FR24 app)

Then at approx. the end of the trail. It went on much longer than the photo as it was hard to see on the phone camera.
 
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Trailspotter

Senior Member.
I will often see small persistent contrails that may last a half hour or so the longer and spreading ones are not as common. The trails stop I think when the jets reach around the 38000ft or a bit before I haven’t checked the radar app yet to be certain.
This was taken on my morning walk today, I don't usually take my phone but there were already lots of contrails from the earlier flights to the north, I could see them out the door as soon as I woke up. I noticed the jet from the south before it produced the contrail and kept my eye on it because I thought as it gained altitude it may produce a contrail and I wasn’t disappointed. This is the other regular flight path that will often produce short persisting contrails.

A short length of a persisting contrail can either be due to the planes descending/ascending through a layer of moist air or just due to a relatively small size of the pocket of moisture at cruising altitudes. The latter probably was the case at your location today:
Screen shot 2015-04-06 at 14.03.13.png
http://earth.nullschool.net/#2015/0...ive_humidity/orthographic=-212.77,-27.35,3000
 
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Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
Very springlike conditions in London today. Most contrails are rather short-lived but the higher planes are creating longer trails.

Here's Air Canada flight 85 passing over the Shard at almost 40,000ft. The horizontal lines are lens flare.

image.jpg

image.jpg
 

cloudspotter

Senior Member.
A short length of a persisting contrail can either be due to the planes descending/ascending through a layer of moist air or just due to a relatively small size of the pocket of moisture at cruising altitudes. The latter probably was the case at your location today:

Lots of trails and high haze in the sky this morning but one caught my eye as it started roughly a third of the way across the sky running parallel to another trail that stretched across the sky. I checked it on FR24 and found that it was inbound to Edinburgh and had started descending from 40000ft where the trail started.
 

TWCobra

Senior Member.
Close encounter with an Air Asia A330 on my way to Jakarta a couple of days ago. 1000 feet above us. Note you can hear the sound of the jet going over us. You couldn't hear it before RVSM airspace was introduced.

Also note the smoke rings in the vortices as the trail dissipates.

 

Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
Close encounter with an Air Asia A330 on my way to Jakarta a couple of days ago. 1000 feet above us. Note you can hear the sound of the jet going over us. You couldn't hear it before RVSM airspace was introduced.

Also note the smoke rings in the vortices as the trail dissipates.

Nice! And quite scary how fast that plane goes from being a tiny dot in the distance to passing overhead. 1000 feet doesn't seem like much margin for error!
 

TWCobra

Senior Member.
Nice! And quite scary how fast that plane goes from being a tiny dot in the distance to passing overhead. 1000 feet doesn't seem like much margin for error!

RVSM has pretty stringent requirements. When all else fail there is the TCAS system.
 

Trailspotter

Senior Member.
This Bombardier Global 6000 has been flying around for hours passing several times right above my place. I thought first that it was a RAF Sentinel R1, but no radar pod could be seen in close up photos. Nevertheless, its flying path looks rather special.
IMG_3683.JPG IMG_3681.JPG IMG_3694.JPG IMG_3658.JPG Screen shot 2015-04-14 at 14.59.58.png
EDIT:
It looks like the flight has originated from RAF Cranwell at about 9:00 UTC (10 AM BST) and landed there at about 15:15 UTC (4:15 PM BST).

EDIT (2):
I think it was Sentinel R1 after all. It flew right above my location each time I saw it, so its radar pod did not stand out against the fuselage. Unfortunately, its high altitude of about 43,000 ft (13,000 m) did not allow to get a better resolution of the aircraft details, whereas a high Sun at the time (just after 13:00 UTC) could not illuminate the pod at the bottom of the aircraft:(. Otherwise, my photos might have looked like this:rolleyes::
 
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Trailspotter

Senior Member.
This Bombardier Global 6000 has been flying around for hours passing several times right above my place. I thought first that it was a RAF Sentinel R1, but no radar pod could be seen in close up photos. Nevertheless, its flying path looks rather special.
Screen shot 2015-04-14 at 14.59.58.png
EDIT:
It looks like the flight has originated from RAF Cranwell at about 9:00 UTC (10 AM BST) and landed there at about 15:15 UTC (4:15 PM BST).
Here is another bizarre route from probably the same aircraft on March 25:

https://www.facebook.com/justflight/photos/a.416637558498.189631.15266573498/10152781064778499/
 
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Trailspotter

Senior Member.
Well if it IS a Sentinel it;s probably just practicing doing what it does.
I agree. I saw Sentinel practices before, they were flying huge racetrack patterns. The best I could do that time with my old camera is to see their general shape of Bombardier Global Express airframe. This time with a superzoom camera, I hoped to see the Raytheon modification (the radar pod), but frustratingly failed to do so despite taking a lot of pictures.

There was no spectacular racetrack contrail either. Having formed some 10,000 ft above usual commercial air traffic, the Sentinel's contrail was significantly longer than those of other planes at the time, but it lasted just a few minutes. However, the plane did produced an interesting contrail feature when she made a slight diversion from the original track:
IMG_3662.JPG
IMG_3664.JPG
Although the trail in the above photos looks curvy because of the perspective shortening, the actual curvature of this diversion was minute:
Screen shot 2015-04-15 at 08.46.13.png
 
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Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
Overhead at lunchtime, a British Airways E-190 coming in to London City from Venice (Italy, not Mick's old neighbourhood!) against a contrail/cirrus backdrop.

image.jpg
 

Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
Sunset tonight. Lufthansa Cargo flight LH8221 (Dallas - Frankfurt, MD11, reg D-ALCB, 35,000ft), about to cross the contrail of easyJet flight U27145 (Liverpool - Palma de Mallorca, A319, reg G-EZGH, climbing through approx 34,000ft).

contrails.jpg


And here's the same plane around 13 minutes earlier when it was 110 miles away, to the north of Cardiff. Good visibility today.

110miles.jpg
 
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Trailblazer

Moderator
Staff member
The unseasonably warm weather in England continues... and having lunch in the garden means more contrail spotting! This short stretch of trail was left by Jet2 flight LS832 in level flight at 33,000ft yesterday. It looks like the whole thing developed a helical twist, although that could be an optical illusion caused by the pendules simply being blown in opposing directions?

(Also spot the UFO next to the contrail in the first pic!)

image.jpg image.jpg

upload_2015-4-21_11-43-26.png
 
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Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
It looks like the whole thing developed a helical twist, although that could be an optical illusion caused by the pendules simply being blown in opposing directions?

Yes, I don't think the pendules are twisted so they are vertical. It seems like it's just left/right movement, combined with the above/below illusion you get with the additive transparency. It's an excellent example, and the regularity reminds me of a "rod" (long exposure of a brightly lit insect flapping its wings)
 

Trailspotter

Senior Member.
Spotted another aerodynamic contrail. This time it was in sunset hues and very short. In fact, it stopped and detached from the plane just as I took the first shot:
IMG_3828.JPG
IMG_3829.JPG
IMG_3830.JPG
Its short length was probably due to the plane's rapid descent (>2000 fpm) through a layer of moisture:
Screen shot 2015-04-22 at 20.38.40.png
Still, this short contrail persisted for quite a while next to the flock of flying carpets (on the top):
IMG_3831.jpg
and eventually evolved into a flying doormat:
IMG_3841.jpg
 

Spectrar Ghost

Senior Member.


I think these are three crossing distrails. There were other, smaller distrails in the same cloud layer. Interested to know if I'm right.
 
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