Weather Definitions Ipsum

Word Lists: Weather Definitions

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Broken: the amount of sky cover for a cloud layer between 5/8ths and 7/8ths, based on the summation layer amount for that layer. cold high: a high pressure system that has its coldest temperatures at or near the center of circulation, and horizontally, is thermally barotropic. it is shallow in nature, as circulation decreases with height. associated with cold arctic air, it is usually stationary. also known as a cold core high. contrast with a warm high. colorado low: a low pressure disturbance that forms in the lee of the rocky mountains, usually in southeastern colorado. confluence: a rate at which wind flow comes together along an axis oriented normal to the flow in question. the opposite of diffluence. dew: condensation in the form of small water drops that forms on grass and other small objects near the ground when the temperature has fallen to the dew point, generally during the nighttime hours. flood plain: level land that may be submerged by flood waters. fog bank: a fairly well-defined mass of fog observed in the distance. most commonly seen at sea, over a lake, or along coastal areas. gale: on the beaufort wind scale, a wind with speeds from 28 to 55 knots (32 to 63 miles per hour). for marine interests, it can be categorized as a moderate gale (28 to 33 knots), a fresh gale (34 to 40 knots), a strong gale (41 to 47 knots), or a whole gale (48 to 55 knots). in 1964, the world meteorological organization defined the categories as near gale (28 to 33 knots), gale (34 to 40 knots), strong gale (41 to 47 knots), and storm (48 to 55 knots). hydrologic cycle: often called the water cycle, it is the vertical and horizontal transport of water in all its states between the earth, the atmosphere, and the seas. marginal visual flight rules (mvfr): refers to the general weather conditions pilots can expect at the surface. mvfr means minimum or marginal visual flight rules. mvfr criteria means a ceiling between 1,000 and 3,000 feet and/or 3 to 5 miles visibility. nautical mile: a unit of length used in marine navigation that is equal to a minute of arc of a great circle on a sphere. one international nautical mile is equivalent to 1,852 meters or 1.151 statue miles. pilot report: a report of in-flight weather by an aircraft pilot or crew member. often referred to as a pirep. polar front: a semi-continuous, semi-permanent boundary between polar air masses and tropical air masses. an integral part of an early meteorological theory known as the polar front theory. relative humidity: a type of humidity that considers the ratio of the actual vapor pressure of the air to the saturation vapor pressure. it is usually expressed in percentage. roll cloud: a relatively rare, low-level, horizontal, tube-shaped cloud. although they are associated with a thunderstorm, they are completely detached from the base of the cumulonimbus cloud. smoke: small particles produced by combustion that are suspended in the air. a transition to haze may occur when the smoke particles have traveled great distance (25 to 100 miles or more), and when the larger particles have settled out. the remaining particles become widely scattered through the atmosphere. it is reported as "fu" in an observation and on the metar. subtropical air: an air mass that forms over the subtropical region. the air is typically warm with a high moisture content due to the low evaporative process. thermometer: an instrument used for measuring temperature. the different scales used in meteorology are celsius, fahrenheit, and kelvin or absolute. thunderstorm: produced by a cumulonimbus cloud, it is a microscale event of relatively short duration characterized by thunder, lightning, gusty surface winds, turbulence, hail, icing, precipitation, moderate to extreme up and downdrafts, and under the most severe conditions, tornadoes. tsunami: an ocean wave with a long period that is formed by an underwater earthquake or landslide, or volcanic eruption. it may travel unnoticed across the ocean for thousands of miles from its point of origin and builds up to great heights over shallower water. also known as a seismic sea wave, and incorrectly, as a tidal wave. undercast: in aviation, it is an opaque cloud layer viewed from an observation point above the layer. from the ground, it would be considered an overcast. university corporation for atmospheric research (ucar): a non-profit university membership consortium which carries out programs to benefit atmospheric, oceanic, and related sciences around the globe. among other activities, ucar operates the national center for atmospheric research (ncar) with national science foundation sponsorship. : for further information, contact ucar, located in boulder, colorado. vertical visibility: the distance an observer can see vertically into an undefined ceiling, or the height corresponding to the top of a ceiling light projector beam, or the height at which a ceiling balloon disappears during the presence of an indefinite ceiling..
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