Bruce From United States of America, joined May 1999, 5025 posts, RR: 17 Posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 1908 times:
Is there anything I can do to avoid "heat haze" - or should I say air distortion caused by temperature - because this happened to me when it was below freezing too. Every single time I visit MKE on the parking garage I get tremendous heat haze on my shots - they look like they are under water!
Any settings? or tips/tricks to not get it? When I was at the MKE observation area I got heat haze on every shot taken of planes on the taxiway but those who were on final in the air were fine. It is driving me nuts!!!! A couple of times I noticed 2 identical shots taken seconds apart in the sequence one had it, and one did not which I thought was crazy.
Bruce Leibowitz - Jackson, MS (KJAN) - Canon 50D/100-400L IS lens
Qantas077 From China, joined Jan 2004, 5745 posts, RR: 49 Reply 1, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 1902 times:
its just that time of the year, not much of it down here now but in summer time its shocking! i was in San Francisco a few weeks ago and the heat haze was a disaster! i can't wait for winter to rock on each year
a true friend is someone who sees the pain in your eyes, while everyone else believes the smile on your face.
Sulman From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2004, 2028 posts, RR: 35 Reply 3, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 1895 times:
I agree, it's annoying and frustrating. The strangest thing is, there isn't really a pattern here; we've had the full range of temperatures and yet sometimes there's haze, sometimes there isn't.
What is even more irritating is the occurence of 'bad' light. You know how it is. You go out to the airport on what seems like an ordinary, pleasant summer day, and you take your shots, and on the LCD & Histogram everything seems to be okay. Then you get home and the contrast is awful, the aircraft look like shit, the images are strangely unaffected by any white balance changes you apply, editing makes virtually no difference etc etc etc...only happened twice to me but it's very frustrating.
OD720 From Lebanon, joined Feb 2003, 1919 posts, RR: 36 Reply 4, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 1888 times:
Imagine of you were shooting film or slide, that's a lot more frustrating. The digital SLRs have given photogs some room for adjustments and observe and assess the results even more rapidly.
The LCD, even though not perfect, often gives us an idea of what we're doing, right or wrong. You can clearly see an overexposed or out of focus image (amongst other things) right on the spot.
Same thing goes to heat haze. At least we're not throwing away money on rolls of films or developping.
IL76 From Netherlands, joined Jan 2004, 2235 posts, RR: 51 Reply 5, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 1872 times:
Just shoot on the edges of the day, morning and evening. Bright sunshine heats up tarmac and creates heathaze, even in winter sometimes. I just go home when I gets too bad... Avoid long lenses aswell. Like Chris said, the greater the distance between you and the aircraft, the more heathaze you get. So try to get closer, or go home. There's not much else you can do.
UA777222 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 3348 posts, RR: 13 Reply 7, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 1761 times:
Quoting Qantas077 (Reply 1): its just that time of the year, not much of it down here now but in summer time its shocking! i was in San Francisco a few weeks ago and the heat haze was a disaster! i can't wait for winter to rock on each year
You can say that again. SFO sucks for heat haze. Really wrecks some nice shots. But it's still possible. I just uploaded a bunch of shots from SFO. It's all about your location. I found a spot that you can grab an angle I've never seen at SFO before. Here She Is!
Please comment on that shot for I will try to get those angles again.
F9Widebody From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1604 posts, RR: 11 Reply 8, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 1737 times:
Quoting Qantas077 (Reply 1): i was in San Francisco a few weeks ago and the heat haze was a disaster! i can't wait for winter to rock on each year
Oh man, Just to ditto what Matt said, you are completely right. The worst Heat Haze I have ever seen. It completely destroys 75% of your shots. Soooo frustrating. It brings an entirely new element into photography.....finding angles without the haze.
Quoting UA777222 (Reply 7): You can say that again. SFO sucks for heat haze
Are you talking about the Bayfront Park spot being bad for heat distortion? You're shooting over the bay with not a lot of concrete between you and the plane.
At Milwaukee's garage, between the garage and the ramp there is a roadway going to the terminal with cars and buses, and an employee parking lot with some buses and taxis. I think that maybe the exhaust rising is also distorting the air as well as just heat from the concrete. It seems to happen mostly if there is concrete between you and the plane.
Do they get this distortion over in AMS, where there is a canal and grass between the spotters and the runway?
Bruce Leibowitz - Jackson, MS (KJAN) - Canon 50D/100-400L IS lens
IL76 From Netherlands, joined Jan 2004, 2235 posts, RR: 51 Reply 10, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 1709 times:
Quoting Bruce (Reply 9): Do they get this distortion over in AMS, where there is a canal and grass between the spotters and the runway?
Oh yes! The black tarmac of runways creates a massive heathaze on sunny days. Has nothing to do with canals and grass. In summer between 10am and 5pm is pretty much crap, unless it's windy and cloudy (with sunny spells). Mornings and evenings are the good times, when the light is much nicer anyway.
Light tarmac, as they have in some other airports, reduces heat haze a bit, but we don't have that in AMS.
UA777222 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 3348 posts, RR: 13 Reply 11, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 1702 times:
Quoting Bruce (Reply 9): Are you talking about the Bayfront Park spot being bad for heat distortion? You're shooting over the bay with not a lot of concrete between you and the plane.
No I'm talking about all of SFO. You can't get ramp shots from any spot unless it's on the ramp itself. Last I was on the ramp at SFO the heat killed a lot of my shots. Just SFO itself sucks in the summer. Here's a shot, sorry to plug don't click if you don't want to see it, that I took last winter at SFO at the park with one of the "softest" lenses produced by Canon.
SnowJ From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 207 posts, RR: 6 Reply 12, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 1597 times:
Don't feel bad dude...I lost out on a very nice pair of Danish F-16s (an AM and a BM with special markings at that) at RAF Lakenheath. Thought I bagged 'em, then put them on the computer and they were heat-hazed straight to hell! It just tends to happen when you don't want it to.
DC10Tim From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 1405 posts, RR: 16 Reply 14, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 1499 times:
OK - does anyone have any idea when heat haze is likely to occur?
I thought I had the basics sussed. Basically it's caused by a difference in temperature between the ground or whatever object and the ambient air temperature. The air around the ground or whatever is at a different temperature and obviously affected by this, whether by losing heat or gaining it. Hence the temperature difference between this "affected" air and the "normal" air causes the light to change speed and hence the wobbly line effect.
My theory was that therefore in a strong breeze, the effects of heat haze would be minimalised, as there is a constant airflow, and it doesn't have time to be affected by an object of different temperature.
I spent a couple of hours at EMA this afternoon in bright sunlight and a very strong wind and all my shots are ruined by heat haze.
Can anyone shed any light on this problem?
It doesn't seem to make sense from a Physics point of view. Am I missing something?
Thom@s From Norway, joined Oct 2000, 11949 posts, RR: 50 Reply 15, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 1471 times:
Quoting DC10Tim (Reply 14): OK - does anyone have any idea when heat haze is likely to occur?
When the sun heats up the ground would be my guess. For a while during my photography at OSL, the sun went behind a cloud, and the heat haze was reduced to almost nothing. Reappeared again when the sun came back later though.
"If guns don't kill people, people kill people - does that mean toasters don't toast toast, toast toast toast?"
Kereru From New Zealand, joined Jun 2003, 873 posts, RR: 50 Reply 16, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 1463 times:
Not forgetting APU's in the tails of some parked aircraft that spew out hot air that distorts every line of the aircraft your shooting as it passes by.
Thank goodness the winter has set in down under and most times the runway does not have that shimmering haze hanging over it now the cooler weather is here. As already mentioned once the tarmac heats up it is time to pack up and go home until later in the day if it cools down enough or just take the ground to air shots while the heat haze is around. Ah the joys of photography it makes it all the more worth while when we get the shot we really want.
DC10Tim From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 1405 posts, RR: 16 Reply 17, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 1454 times:
Quoting Thom@s (Reply 15): When the sun heats up the ground would be my guess. For a while during my photography at OSL, the sun went behind a cloud, and the heat haze was reduced to almost nothing. Reappeared again when the sun came back later though.
Interesting. What should happen is the ground or a building continue to radiate heat after the sun has gone in.
I must admit I am even more clueless as to the logic behind the phenomenon this weekend.
Quoting Kereru (Reply 16): As already mentioned once the tarmac heats up it is time to pack up and go home until later in the day if it cools down enough or just take the ground to air shots while the heat haze is around.
If it's not as bad in the evening, this suggests to me that it's because the air is at a more uniform temperature, as it's been heated all day.
I'm just trying to work out what is the best time of day or weather conditions to avoid it. Maybe someone with years of experience has noticed some trends?
Psych From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2004, 2968 posts, RR: 60 Reply 18, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 1439 times:
My understanding would be that the heat haze is caused by the relative temperature difference between the surface and the air above it. Hence, even on a cool day, if the surface is warmed up to create a relative temperature difference, the conditions would potentially be right.
Quoting DC10Tim (Reply 17): If it's not as bad in the evening, this suggests to me that it's because the air is at a more uniform temperature, as it's been heated all day.
That makes sense to me Tim, because now the warm air rising from the surface is meeting already warmed air, and so the differential is not significant enough with regard to density as well as temperature. I would defer to your views on this, as I am confident you understand this a lot better than me.
Quoting IL76 (Reply 10): Mornings and evenings are the good times
Mornings are good because there is not enough of a temperature differential yet to cause warmed 'surface' air to rise.
When the air just above the ground is warmed and rises into the cooler air above, that creates differences in air density - is this not a key factor in the refraction of the light rays? Also, you would expect the air near the ground to be more dense anyway. May it not be the case that when the sun goes in the temperature differential is reduced enough such that the warm air rising into the cooler air is slowed significantly - enough to reduce the air density changes that lead to this refractory symptom?
Intuitively you would expect that this temperature/density issue would be affected by wind, the effect being to churn up and mix the different air masses and so reduce their relative differences in temperature and density. But maybe, dependent on the topography of the area, the wind effect may be almost nullified at very low levels (due to friction effects), and so this refractive problem remains.
I'm beyond my comfort level now for brain activity, so I'd better stop here in case my synapses explode .
GPHOTO From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2004, 818 posts, RR: 27 Reply 19, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 1434 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW DATABASE EDITOR
Quoting DC10Tim (Reply 17): Interesting. What should happen is the ground or a building continue to radiate heat after the sun has gone in.
There are two types of heat emmision at work.
Firstly, objects can convert the solar energy into heat that is re-radiated out very quickly - either immediately or within seconds. This mechanism quickly shuts off once the sun disappears, such as behind a cloud or becomes less intense due to position (low angles such as winter, morning, evening). Very large quantities of energy are involved here, which generate significant amounts of atmospheric disturbance. Energy is being redistributed as it is arriving.
Secondly, there is heat derived from an object that is hot from heating. This may be the same object as above that has stored some of the energy in itself and then is gradually letting it go. In this case, the disturbances produced will be smaller than above and released more gradually, like a battery. The amount of energy stored in objects such as tarmac or brickwork is relatively small compared to the amount pumped out in the first process, therefore much less heat-haze.
The third case is from things man-made objects or events such as jet exhaust, smokestacks, hot equipment or fires. This will be the hottest things around, but relatively small - so lots of heathaze near the object, but which rapidly disappears as distance from the source increases.
Heat-haze is caused by having two or more fluids of different densities present. This affects the way light travels through the medium, it's passage is distorted. Air is a fluid. Therefore, light is affected in a complex way by heat-haze as there is varying densities and levels of mixing. The result is a blurry, distorted output - natures version of overdoing NeatImage if you like.
Wind can help by rapidly mixing the different densities of air. The better the mixing, the more even the air and the less the light is distorted. It probably won't be enough of an effect to help much on a strong sunny day. It's benefit will be more notably though, if the sun pop's behind a cloud for a few minutes.
On a sunny day, a photographer trying for a plane on the tarmac will probably suffer badly from heat-haze. However, as the aircraft takes off, it will eventually rise into a zone where the air is more evenly-mixed (further from the source of heat - the ground), at this point you should be able to get a clearer shot. If the wind is blowing, you should, in theory, be able to get a shot while the aircraft is closer to the ground than if it was a still day as the air will be fully-mixed more rapidly.
The geography and structure of your airfield will also play a part. The different runway surfaces, ratio of man-man-made to natural surfaces etc. all come into play. You could try moving to a different location around the perimeter.....
This is a fairly basic description of the problem, but I hope it helps. Remember the more air you shoot through, the worse the problem will be (so get closer to the target). The closer you and the target are to the ground, the worse the problem will be (so get the plane while it is in the air, rather than on or close to the ground. You could climb to a high point, I guess....). The sunnier it is, the worse the problem will be (go out in winter, or on days with some cloud). The less wind there is, the worse the problem will be (pray for wind!).
PS Sorry, if I get a bit garbled at times, I'm a bit short of cheking and editing time. I'm supposed to be revising for an exam, not visiting A.net!
DC10Tim From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 1405 posts, RR: 16 Reply 21, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1416 times:
Ahhhhhhhhhhh thanks Jim - this all makes sense.
So it is largely the heat converted directly from the suns e.m. rays that causes heat haze, not heat being given out by a particular object?
This would explain the quick disappearing when the sun goes in.
What I can't understand is why I suffered yesterday in near gail-force conditions. Sure the planes were a little way off, but the eastern end of EMA's runway is at the top of a hill, so I wouldn't expect much stagnation there.
Thanks! I'm going to need it! Got a stinking cold that is NOT conducive to revision.
Quoting DC10Tim (Reply 21): So it is largely the heat converted directly from the suns e.m. rays that causes heat haze, not heat being given out by a particular object?
Well it will be both, but yes, the level of heat being output by certain objects during direct exposure to the sun can be enormous. The effect of the stored warmth is much lower.
Think of the tiles on the space shuttle. They absorb the heat of re-entry and re-radiate it away at a DIFFERENT wavelength. They are able to do this at a rate at least as fast as what they absorb it so the backside of the tile (and therefore the shuttle) is protected. They actually store virtually nothing which is why you can pick them up straight from the oven (almost).
Objects on the ground can also emit radiation at different wavelengths to what they absorbed it as. So tarmac for example seems to be quite good at absorbing lots of solar radiation and re-emitting that radiation very quickly as heat, which heats up the air above the tarmac, which rises like plumes in a lava-lamp, which causes us lots of distortion problems with planes on runways. If it re-emitted it all as white light instead, we would have less of a heat-haze problem but would have a serious overexposure issue! I guess you wouldn't see many landings either as the pilots would be blinded. If it didn't re-emit the radiation quickly and stored it instead, it would rapidly overheat and melt.
Quoting DC10Tim (Reply 21): What I can't understand is why I suffered yesterday in near gail-force conditions. Sure the planes were a little way off, but the eastern end of EMA's runway is at the top of a hill, so I wouldn't expect much stagnation there.
The problem with wind is it doesn't tip the balance in your favour that much. It won't provide much benefit at all near the heat source (ground) anyway. You might gain the ability to shoot a few feet closer to the ground than you would have been able to if the wind wasn't there. So have less heat-haze effect after rotation or before landing, but it's really more theoretical than of practical use. You may notice it's benefits, but it will be more luck than anything.
Thinking on the fly now. Could a strong, gusting wind introduce it's own disturbances anyway? I don't know.
DC10Tim From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 1405 posts, RR: 16 Reply 23, posted (7 years 11 months 3 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 1389 times:
Thanks again Jim, you've certainly shed a lot of light on this issue.
Basically we're buggered! It's the first summer I've really been into aviation photography and I was really looking forwards to the good weather. Maybe there's a lot to be said for being at MAN on a damp February afternoon
Quoting GPHOTO (Reply 22): Thinking on the fly now. Could a strong, gusting wind introduce it's own disturbances anyway? I don't know.
This had struck me earlier. Presumably the relatively small changes in pressure have much less of an impact on the molecular spacing than the varying of temperature does. I think my experience yesterday afternoon is probably testament to this.
Basically, yes. Your only real answer is to get physically closer, rather than optically closer.
Quite often I see people drooling and wishing for longer reach lenses. Great, of course, but many don't consider the downsides. If someone's reason for getting a longer lens is to capture more distant aircraft on the ground, they may be in for a disappointment. The more air you shoot through, the better the quality of that air needs to be to produce a good image. That means as little heat-haze, dirt, flies, chemicals, flies again (seem to be an issue for me this year, must change my deodourant) as possible. If the quality of air is poor, than you are just wasting your time and possibly your money if you can't use that long lens as often as you had hoped.
At a given location on a given day, there is a maximum distance you can shoot along the ground before the environmental conditions degrade the quality of the image arriving at your camera. A longer lens won't help at all. All you can do is get closer to the subject physically, move to a location which may have a 'cleaner' line of site (less tarmac between you and subjects, perhaps), come back at a different time (morning, evening, winter, after rain - clears a lot of low level haze), etc. etc. City airports are usually worse, especially industrial ones.
Airshows are a good bet for summer photography as you can usually get sufficiently close to both static and flight lines to minimise environmental problems, even on a hot sunny day. Major airports, however, can often be more successfully shot in the cooler months of the year, if the weather allows.
In Britain, we do seem to have a problem. It's either too blinking hot, too blinking overcast or too blinking wet. And when the environment conditions are just right, you can guarantee I've got a blinking family occasion or something to go to instead.
All I can say is go with whatever the weather gives you, make the most of it, try for some interesting effects maybe?
Back to the revision, I hear the electroless nickel plating module calling (nods off).