Time-lapse photography of clouds and other phenomena in the sky

Martin Setvak

Gallery 2015

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My "timelapsing" gear consists of two older Ricoh GX100 cameras and one Ricoh GXR camera with its APS-C A16 (24-85mm) zoom unit.  Comments on why I use these cameras can be found in the Introduction to time-lapse photography page, and my typical settings and additional comments on timelapsing with Ricoh cameras are hereAll the times given below are in UTC (GMT).

2015-04-25   08:35 - 09:00 UTC  (0h 25m)
Ricoh GXR-A16,  interval 2 seconds, speed 60x

20150425_0835-0900utc_Daliborka_1600x1080.mp4  (27 MB)

Solar ice halo above Prague Castle. Bright upper ice halo tangent arc, above a much dimmer 22° halo (see also this strongly enhanced image). Captured above Daliborka (one of the towers of Prague Castle) from Jelení příkop, Praha, Czech Republic. Processed from DNG files.

2015-04-29   03:41 - 04:28 UTC  (0h 47m)   HD 1080
Ricoh GXR-A16,  interval 5 seconds, speed 150x

20150429_0341-0428utc_Praha_1920x1080.mp4  (45 MB)

Sunrise above Praha.  Only for several days each year (in spring and autumn) it is possible to capture this scenery, the Sun ascending up the sky in vicinity of Prague's Old Town towers. Captured from slopes of Petřín Hill, above Újezd, Praha, Czech Republic. Processed from DNG files.

2015-05-10   12:25 - 13:15 UTC  (0h 50m)   HD 1080
Ricoh GXR-A16,  interval 5 seconds, speed 150x

20150510_1225-1315utc_Mila_R0069215_1920x1080.mp4  (45 MB)

Wave clouds and shallow convection above České Středohoří (Böhmisches Mittelgebirge). Captured from hill Milá (510 m a.s.l.), Most district, western Bohemia, Czech Republic. Processed from DNG files.

2015-05-13   07:50 - 09:20 UTC  (1h 30m)   HD 1080
Ricoh GXR-A16,  interval 2 seconds, speed 60x

20150513_0750-0920utc_Radar-Brdy_1920x1080.mp4  (195 MB, 1920x1080, H.264 / MPEG-4)

Radar BRDY.   After 15 years of operations, CHMI replaced its old weather radar Brdy by a new one.  The series in its first part captures lifting of the radar antenna and its mount, in the second part lifting of the radar dome, ultimately covering the radar itself.
2015-05-28   07:10 - 08:15 UTC  (1h 05m)
Ricoh GXR-A16,  interval 5 seconds, speed 150x

20150528_0710-0815utc_Taipei_1600x1080.mp4   (59 MB)

Wave clouds above Taipei.  The dominant building in this sequence is 508 m high Taipei 101, which definitely is worth a tour if you happen to visit the town. Probably the best view of this skyscraper and downtown of Taiwan's capital is from a nearby Elephant Mountain (Xiang Shan), with its steep trails and several viewpoints, from where this sequence was taken. Processed from DNG files.

2015-06-14   18:36 - 19:06 UTC  (0h 30m)
Ricoh GXR-A16,  interval 2 seconds, speed 60x

20150614_1836-1906utc_Praha-Kacerov_1800x1080.mp4  (66 MB)

Shelf cloud and turbulent cloud base of a weak convective storm. Captured from Kačerov, Prague, Czech Republic, southward view.

2015-07-10  18:45 - 21:30 UTC  (2h 45m)   HD 1080
Ricoh GXR-A16,  interval 5 seconds, speed 150x

20150710_1845-2130utc_NLC-Okrouhlik_1920x1080.mp4  (76 MB,  processed and added here on 2017-12-18)

NLC (noctilucent clouds)  captured from slopes of Okrouhlík, Central Bohemia, Czech Rep. NW view (over Praha). Concatenated from four sequences: 18:45-19:20 UTC (sunset), 20:10-20:30 UTC (weaker NLC very high above horizon, up to the very top of the images), 20:33-21:01 UTC (moved slightly eastward) and 21:07-21:30 UTC (moved back again and slightly zoomed in). High clouds in the first part drifted southward shortly after sunset, and the sky was completely clear aftrwards, as also can be seen in a loop of MSG images (with dots indicating place and time of the sequences - the cyan one stands for for the part till sunset, the red one for the three parts with NLC).

2015-07-22   10:08 - 12:00 UTC  (1h 52m)   HD 1080
Ricoh GX100,  interval 10 seconds, speed 300x, polarizing filter

20150722_1008-1200utc_Libus_1920x1080.mp4  (48 MB)

Atmospheric waves above western Bohemia, Czech Republic, captured from Praha,  CHMI Observatory Libuš (westward view).  While the waves themselves, formed by a windshear at approx. 7.5 km levels, were slowly propagating northward (in the sequence to the right), the clouds "flow" through the waves eastward (towards the capture location). Motion of these waves and clouds can be nicely seen in this Meteosat-9  HRV loop (08:00-12:30 UTC, with the red dot  indicating the place from where the sequence was captured and its time range). Details of these waves are even better visible in images from polar orbiting satellites Terra (09:39 UTC, MODIS RGB143) and Metop-1 (09:58 UTC, AVHRR RGB125 and BTD B5-B4), captured by the satellites shortly before start of the timelapse sequence. Satellite data source: EUMETSAT, NOAA and CHMI, data processing and visualization: author.

2015-08-09   15:23 - 17:37 UTC  (2h 14m) 
Ricoh GX100,  interval 10 seconds, speed 300x,  IR72 filter

20150809_1523-1737utc_Praha-Kacerov_IR72_1280x720.mp4  (45 MB, updated on 2018-01-29)

Evolution of new storm cells on westward propagating outflow boundaries, generated by previous storm activity in the area. Captured from Praha  Kačerov, southward view. See also the radar loop (with a red dot indicating the place from which the sequence was captured, and its time range). The westward propagating outflow boundaries are well visible in Meteosat-9 (MSG-2) HRV loop. Both major storms of the first part of the sequence were accompanied by several overshooting tops, the lifetime of these can be followed at the upper right corner. The IR72 (near IR) filter was used to suppress the strong haze. Satellite and radar data: EUMETSAT and CHMI.
One of the important topics of recent satellite meteorology is an impact of satellite scan period and geometrical resolution (pixel size) on representativness of the acquired image data - e.g. how much of storm top evolution we miss with longer scan intervals and lower resolution (larger pixels). The most recent (or upcoming) geostationary weather satellites are capable of operating at short scan intervals, called rapid scan service, ranging typically from 1 to 5 minutes, and with higher spatial resolution - reaching 0.5 km. The simulated loops in the table below give us a hint of how much these parameters (scan period and pixel size) can affect the informative value of the image sequence. In this case, the simulations do not represent real satellite view, but sideways, ground view of the storms from above; the lower-resolution loops were calculated based on distance of these storms and view angle of the camera. See also this image composite of ground photo with radar data.
15:25 - 16:25 UTC
10 sec
1 min
2.5 min
5 min
10 min
50 m
0.5 km
1.0 km

2015-08-16   13:53 - 14:11 UTC  (0h 18m)  
Ricoh GXR-A16,  interval 5 seconds, speed 125x

20150816_1353-1411utc_Mandava_1280x720.mp4  (18 MB)

Storm outflow boundary from Mandava. Storms propagated across the Central Bohemia from east to west, see also the radar loop (with a red dot indicating the place from where the sequence was captured and its time range). Recorded from Mandava, Central Bohemia, Czech Republic, NE view. The sequence was terminated due to onset of the rain. Radar data: CHMI.

2015-11-01   07:40 - 09:00 UTC  (1h 20m)
Ricoh GXR-A16,  interval 5 seconds, speed 150x

20151101_0740-0900utc_Vltava_vyhlidka-Maj_1640x1080.mp4  (74 MB,  processed and added here on 13 Feb 2017)

Fog above Vltava River.  Early morning valley fog above Vltava River, between river dams Slapy and Štěchovice (south of Prague). Captured from a famous viewpoint Máj (in Czech "Vyhlídka Máj"), near villages Teletín and Krňany (district Benešov), Central Bohemia, Czech Republic. See also this MSG satellite HRV loop, with the red dot indicating place and time of the timelapse sequence.

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