Air Lines

Air Lines

ContrailEvery time I fly I am on the lookout for other traffic in the sky. Not only am I on the lookout to make sure we don’t share the same airspace at the same time, I am looking to take cool photos. When you are traveling at 400 plus miles per hour and the airliners are traveling at over 500 miles per hour, great photos are missed in a flash, I have missed hundreds. Sometimes though, I get lucky and the traffic is flying, in generally the same direction. I really enjoy it when the atmospheric conditions are right for airplanes to create lines in the sky, otherwise known as contrails, or condensation trails. This photo was taken while flying a Embraer Phenom 100 at 40,000 feet. The airliner below us is at approximately 36,000 feet. I know everyone has seen contrails from below, this is what they look like from above. Contrails are made from super heated exhaust from the airplane, rapidly cooling and creating condensation. The condensation is then instantly frozen into tiny ice particles, which reflect the light, creating clouds we can see from the ground. Depending on the conditions, contrails can dissipate almost immediately, or stay around for hours spreading out across the sky.


Pilot Michael
Pilot Michael