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Amazing Flat Rainbow Spotted Off The Coast Of Devon After Storm Francis

Amazing Flat Rainbow Spotted Off The Coast Of Devon After Storm Francis

An incredibly rare flat rainbow has been spotted in the aftermath of Storm Francis in Devon.

The super-unusual phenomenon was spotted over the sea in the borough of Torbay - Paignton Beach, to be precise - on Tuesday, after most of the country suffered through days of horrendous rain and wind.

The photos you can see were shared on the Torbay in Pictures Facebook page, and they're pretty damn beautiful, you've got to admit.

Credit: Jam Press
Credit: Jam Press
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It is thought that this particular weather feature is caused by the sun's rays glinting through the spray whipped up by the sea during strong winds.

Of course, the effect is very similar to the way that normal rainbows form. The light from the sun passes through the miniscule droplets of water in the air, refracting the light into the lovely and varied colours that can be seen in the picture.

To give an expert perspective, a spokesperson from the Met Office explained: "This looks like spray, being blown up from the sea by the strong gusty winds due to Storm Francis.

"The same principles as in a usual rainbow are then in play, so the light is being reflected, refracted and dispersed by the water droplets giving the different colours.

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"However, because it's water blown up from the sea it's flatter and not curved as when caused by water droplets/rain in the sky."

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As opposed to usual rainbows, this one stretches out completely flat across the sea, creating a blanket of overlapping colours resting on the surface of the water.

It's a bit like a similar phenomenon that was observed in Bristol in March 2017, and Paris in 2013, but on those instances, a slight curve could be seen, here there's no such thing.

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It's completely flat.

Now that the worst of the weather has passed, the Met Office has been able to end the warning for wind and rain that had been covering much of the UK.

Credit: Jam Press
Credit: Jam Press

The forecast is supposed to improve over the next few days gradually, but it'll be a few days before the winds calm down in the east of the UK as the storm thrashes out the last bits.

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Met Office forecaster Craig Snell told The Metro: "Francis has now pretty much moved off shore and it's now just a slow, gradual improvement."

Very good, and if we have to have a bit of rain to create moments of magic such as this one, then perhaps it has been worth it.

Featured Image Credit: Jam Press

Topics: Weather, UK News, Interesting, Weird

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Tom Wood

Tom Wood is a LADbible journalist and Twin Peaks enthusiast. Despite having a career in football cut short by a chronic lack of talent, he managed to obtain degrees from both the University of London and Salford. According to his French teacher, at the weekends he mostly likes to play football and go to the park with his brother. Contact Tom on [email protected]