Prediction of Contrail Avoidance

Contrails are condensation trailed caused by hot aircraft jets in supersaturated air. There are other causes of contrail formation, but this one is the dominant aspect. The way these contrails evolve depends on the atmospheric conditions [see technical literature on the subject], but essentially they can either disappear in a few minutes or evolve into high-altitude cirrus clouds, with potential longlasting effects on the local weather.

In Figure 1 we show an example of short-lived contrails evolving into rings and eventually disappearing. The bottom photograph instead shows the effects of air traffic congestion with atmospheric conditions tending to medium- to long-term contrail evolution.

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