Question: What causes aircraft vapour trails?

Jets leave white trails, or contrails, in their wakes for the same reason you can sometimes see your breath. Jet engine exhaust contains carbon dioxide, oxides of sulfur and nitrogen, unburned fuel, soot and metal particles, as well as water vapor. The soot provides condensation sites for the water vapor.

What makes a Vapour trail?

contrail, also called condensation trail or vapour trail, streamer of cloud sometimes observed behind an airplane flying in clear cold humid air. A contrail forms when water vapour produced by the combustion of fuel in airplane engines condenses upon soot particles or sulfur aerosols in the planes exhaust.

What causes vapor trails from wing tips?

During very specific weather conditions you may see vapor trails form at the rear of the wingtips of jet aircraft on takeoff or landing. This phenomenon occurs due to a decrease in pressure and temperature as the wing generates lift.

Why do some planes have contrails and others don t?

Weather Whys: Why do airplane contrails form on some days but not others? Contrails form when jet exhaust emits water vapor that condenses and freezes. Contrails dont form for every airplane. The atmosphere where the plane is flying needs to have low vapor pressure and low temperature.

How long do contrails stay in the sky?

Satellites have observed clusters of contrails lasting as long as 14 hours, though most remain visible for four to six hours. The long-lived, spreading contrails are of great interest to climate scientists because they reflect sunlight and trap infrared radiation.

Why do jet planes leave white trails?

Jets leave white trails, or contrails, in their wakes for the same reason you can sometimes see your breath. The hot, humid exhaust from jet engines mixes with the atmosphere, which at high altitude is of much lower vapor pressure and temperature than the exhaust gas.

Is a jet faster than a plane?

Jet aircraft have several distinct advantages over traditional propeller planes. The largest of these advantages is that jets can travel much faster than propeller planes, up to and beyond the speed of sound. Jets can also travel at higher altitudes due to the specific needs of their propulsion systems.

Tell us about you

Find us at the office

Smack- Kinneer street no. 65, 62402 Kingston, Jamaica

Give us a ring

Drexel Lepak
+30 694 593 49
Mon - Fri, 7:00-15:00

Contact us