Rainbow Dot

What is this? I saw it outside the plane window on some clouds. I have heard about rainbows shaped as a small circle, but never as a target like this one.

Update: After a grueling 31 seconds of research, I learned that these circular rainbows are apparently seen most often from planes. They are special cases of being able to see a large portion of the sky from the proper altitude. See here and here.


  1. me
    Posted January 10, 2009 at 1:56 pm | #

    Wouldn’t the shadow of the plane need to be in the center of the dot for this to be a true circular rainbow viewed from a plane?

  2. Pappa
    Posted January 10, 2009 at 9:37 pm | #

    I have seen this before from a plane. Was aware that the “bulls-eye” rainbows do occur when at altitude and you have a potential for ice crystal formations. To bad the windows on planes distort the colors.

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