Strange Antarctica weather anomalies baffle scientists

Antarctica space weather anomalies: NLC missing, record ozone hole, polar vortex
Antarctica space weather anomalies: NLC missing, record ozone hole, polar vortex. Picture: ESA

Antarctica isn’t just a weird and mysterious icy continent… And in 2020, the continent is currently recording some of the strangest and weirdest weather anomalies ever observed.

For example, noctilucent clouds (NLCs) are completely missing. According to atmospheric scientists, the clouds normally appear around Nov. 21st.

And this year, the night shining clouds might not appear until mid-December. Very unusual!

antarctica weather anomalies
Strange weather phenomena in Antarctica: no noctilucent clouds, high winds and extreme polar vortex. Space Weather

But the absence of NLCs is just one of the curious weather phenomena currently underway on Earth’s southernmost continent. Here’s a list of others:

  • The Antarctic ozone hole is open, and the biggest it’s ever been in December.
  • East-west winds at 60 degrees South are blowing at record speed in the stratosphere.

So why are Noctilucent Clouds so late in 2020? Scientists believe it is linked to La Nina phenomenon that has strengthened in October and which affects large-scale circulation in the atmosphere.

antarctica weather anomalies, antarctica weather anomalies 2020
The ozone hole (left) and stratospheric winds (right) are both setting records for this time of year. Current conditions are circled in yellow. Space Weather

What are noctilucent clouds?

NLCs are Earth’s highest clouds. The eerie electric-blue structures form at the edge of space when water crystallizes around meteor dust 83 km above Earth’s surface.

Noctilucent clouds are typically visible from November to February in the south, and May to August in the north, but their appearance over Antarctica in 2020 is now seriously overdue.

2020 blows the scale away… I can’t wait to see what happens next. More space and Antarctica news on Strange Sounds and Steve Quayle.

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  1. Every time I see an article by I always read it and the comments too, some of the people commenting are just as strange as the articles are.

    Must have been something to Operation High, Jump why else would the govt. have sent 5000 troops to Antarctica right after fighting World War II, it didn’t make any sense to do that not knowing what the outcome could be. Too much money lost and too many service personnel lost, too many ships and planes lost all just for the heck of it. NO, they knew something unexplained was happening down there

  2. The Haldron CERN collider, a few years back,that borders France and Switzerland had strange effect, that’s was published on their website. When’s CERN reaches 13 tea of power. It produced an effect similar to solar flare hitting ionosphere. It produces colder air at North Pole. If same experiment is being done South Pole. It would probably cause same effect at South Pole.

    • A while back, I read an article about Admiral Byrd. It was describing an encounter with multiple UFO while he was exploring Antarctica.

      Not sure of the veracity.

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