Satelllite Imagery: Basic Cloud Elements and Geometry

"Great fleas have little fleas upon their backs to bite 'em,
And little fleas have lesser fleas, and so ad infinitum.
And the great fleas themselves, in turn, have greater fleas to go on,
While these again have greater still, and greater still, and so on." Jonathan Swift

"...Big whirls have little whirls that feed on their velocity,
and little whirls have lesser whirls and so on to viscosity...." Lewis F. Richardson

Synoptic Scale Cloud Designation Description (see Conway, p. 68)
Element The smallest cloud or portion of cloud that can be resolved by a remote sensing device or other instrument, in this image 1/2 km.
Streets Elements lined up but are not connected, less than or equal to 1o latitude wide
Line Elements lined up and connected, less than or equal to 1o latitude wide. A cloud band is a wider cloud line.
Finger Multiple lines > 1o latitude wide connected at angle to larger cloud feature, usually extending to the warm air side. Note: you can also see these at the mesoscale. At this scale, the sizes are redefined. For example, that cloud line (seen in the last image) is really referred to as an inflow "band".
Band Width > 1o latitude, with length to widgh ratio > 4/1
Shield Width to length ratio < 4/1 and > 1/4 (circular, polygonal or ellipitcal)