An anonymous reader writes "A new study by a team of U.S. researchers found that commercial and private jetliners may be contributing to a form of accidental cloud seeding. When an airplane flies through a cloud, its propellers cause the expansion and cooling of the air behind them which can cause water droplets to spontaneously cool and crystals to form. The aircraft sets off a chain reaction in the cloud that can continue on for hours after the plane has passed by. The researchers also discovered that this phenomenon is more common near the poles, where many of Earth's weather monitoring systems are, and it could be skewing data that research teams are gathering in those areas."
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