Weather Definitions Ipsum

Word Lists: Weather Definitions

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Clear air turbulence: name given to turbulence that may occur in perfectly clear air without any visual in warning in the form of clouds. it is often found in the vicinity of the jet stream where large shears in the horizontal and vertical are found, although this turbulence is not limited just to jet stream locale. other areas where it may occur include near mountains, in closed lows aloft, and in regions of wind shear. may be referred to as cat. cumuliform: clouds composed of water droplets that exhibit vertical development. the density of the droplets often blocks sunlight, casting shadows on the earth's surface. with increasing vertical height, they are often associated with convection. bases of these clouds are generally no more than 3,000 feet above the ground, but they can develop past the troposphere in both temperate and tropical latitudes. they are classified as low clouds and include all varieties of cumulus and cumulonimbus. the opposite in type are the horizontal development of stratiform clouds. cut-off low: a closed cold core low completely removed from the primary westerly flow. cutoff lows may remain detached from the westerlies for days while exhibiting very little forward (eastward) progress. in some instances, a cutoff low may move to the west, or retrograde, opposite to the prevailing flow. it is important to note that a cutoff low is a closed low, but not all closed lows are cutoff lows. icelandic low: a semi-permanent, subpolar area of low pressure in the north atlantic ocean. because of its broad area and range of central pressure, it is an area where migratory lows tend to slow down and deepen. it is strongest during a northern hemisphere winter and early spring, centered over iceland and southern greenland, and is the dominate weather feature in the area. during the summer, it is weaker, less intense, and might divide into two parts, one west of iceland, the other over the davis strait between greenland and baffin island. then the azores or bermuda high becomes the dominate weather feature in the north atlantic. k index: the measure of thunderstorm potential based on the vertical temperature lapse rate, the moisture content of the lower atmosphere and the vertical extent of the moist layer. millibar (mb): the standard unit of measurement for atmospheric pressure used by the national weather service. one millibar is equivalent to 100 newtons per square meter. standard surface pressure is 1,013.2 millibars. muggy: a subjective term for warm and excessively humid weather. nowcast: a short-term weather forecast for expected conditions in the next few hours. ozone layer: an atmospheric layer that contains a high proportion of oxygen that exists as ozone. it acts as a filtering mechanism against incoming ultraviolet radiation. it is located between the troposphere and the stratosphere, around 9.5 to 12.5 miles (15 to 20 kilometers) above the earth's surface. runway visual range (rvr): it is the maximum distance at which the runway, or the specified lights or markers delineating it, can be seen from a position above a specified point on its center line. this value is normally determined by visibility sensors located alongside and higher than the center line of the runway. rvr is calculated from visibility, ambient light level, and runway light intensity. : : troposphere: the lowest layer of the atmosphere located between the earth's surface to approximately 11 miles (17 kilometers) into the atmosphere. characterized by clouds and weather, temperature generally decreases with increasing altitude..

Awips: acronym for advanced weather interactive processing system. it is the computerized system that processes nexrad and asos data received at national weather service forecast offices. cirrocumulus: a cirriform cloud with vertical development, appearing as a thin sheet of small white puffs which give it a rippled effect. it often creates a "mackerel sky", since the ripples may look like fish scales. sometimes it is confused with altocumulus, however, it has smaller individual masses and does not cast a shadow on other elements. it is also the least common cloud type, often forming from cirrus or cirrostratus, with which it is associated in the sky. clear ice: a glossy, clear, or translucent ice formed by the relatively slow freezing of large supercooled in water droplets. the droplets spread out over an object, such as an aircraft wing's leading edge, prior to complete freezing and forms a sheet of clear ice. easterlies: usually applied to the broad patterns of persistent winds with an easterly component, such as the easterly trade winds. el niño: the cyclical warming of east pacific ocean sea water temperatures off the western coast of south america that can result in significant changes in weather patterns in the united states and elsewhere. this occurs when warm equatorial waters move in and displace the colder waters of the humbolt current, cutting off the upwelling process. hoarfrost: another name for frost. a deposit of hoarfrost occurs when air with a dew point below freezing is brought to saturation by cooling. hygrometer: an instrument that measures the water vapor content of the atmosphere. measured ceiling: a ceiling classification applied when the ceiling value has been determined by an instrument, such as a ceilometer or ceiling light, or by the known heights of unobscured portions of objects, other than natural landmarks, near the runway. minimum: the least value attained by a function, for example, temperature, pressure, or wind speed. the opposite of maximum. observation: in meteorology, the evaluation of one or more meteorological elements, such as temperature, pressure, or wind, that describe the state of the atmosphere, either at the earth's surface or aloft. an observer is one who records the evaluations of the meteorological elements. oceanography: the study of the ocean, embracing and integrating all knowledge pertaining to the ocean's physical boundaries, the chemistry and physics of sea water, and marine biology. partial obscuration: denotes that 1/8th or more of the sky, but not all of the sky, is hidden by any surface-based phenomena in the atmosphere, excluding precipitation. it often reduces horizontal visibility but not the vertical. it is reported as "x" in an observation and on the metar. plan position indicator: also known as a ppi scope, it is a radar indicator scope displaying range and azimuth of targets in polar coordinates. pressure altimeter: an aneroid barometer calibrated to indicate altitude in feet instead of units of pressure. it is read accurately only in a standard atmosphere and when the correct altimeter setting is used. storm: an individual low pressure disturbance, complete with winds, clouds, and precipitation. the name is associated with destructive or unpleasant weather. storm-scale refers to disturbances the size of individual thunderstorms. stratus: one of the three basic cloud forms (the others are cirrus and cumulus. it is also one of the two low cloud types. it is a sheetlike cloud that does not exhibit individual elements, and is, perhaps, the most common of all low clouds. thick and gray, it is seen in low, uniform layers and rarely extends higher than 5,000 feet above the earth's surface. a veil of stratus may give the sky a hazy appearance. fog may form from a stratus cloud that touches the ground. although it can produce drizzle or snow, it rarely produces heavy precipitation. clouds producing heavy precipitation may exist above a layer of stratus. 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. vapor trail: a cloudlike streamer or trail often seen behind aircraft flying in clear, cold, humid air. a vapor trail is created when the water vapor from the engine exhaust gases are added to the atmosphere. also called a contrail, for condensation trail..

Absorption: the process in which incident radiant energy is retained by a substance. the absorbed radiation is then transformed into molecular energy. altostratus: this middle cloud genus is composed of water droplets, and sometimes ice crystals, in the mid-latitudes, cloud bases are generally found between 15,000 and 20,000 feet. white to gray in color, it can create a fibrous veil or sheet, sometimes obscuring the sun or moon. it is a good indicator of precipitation, as it often precedes a storm system. virga often falls from these clouds. cold wave: a rapid fall in temperature within twenty-four hours to temperatures requiring substantially increased protection to agriculture, industry, commerce, and social activities. national weather service criteria includes the rate of temperature fall and the minimum to which it falls, depending on the region of the country and time of the in year. the weather channel uses the following criteria for a cold wave: a cold spell of two days or more with below normal temperatures in at least fifteen states, with at least five of them more than fifteen degrees below normal. deepening: used in describing the history of a low pressure system or an area of cyclonic circulation, it means a decrease in the central pressure of the system. although it usually describes the action of a pressure system on a constant pressure chart, it also means a surface low is increasing in cyclonic circulation and acquiring more energy. the opposite of filling. dropsonde: a radiosonde dropped with a parachute from an aircraft rather than lifted by a balloon to measure the atmosphere below. environment: the sum total of all the external conditions that effect an organism, community, material, or energy. graupel: a form of frozen precipitation consisting of snowflakes or ice crystals and supercooled water droplets frozen together. isohel: a line drawn through geographic points having equal duration of sunshine or another form of solar radiation during a specified time period. lenticular cloud: a cloud species which has elements resembling smooth lenses or almonds and more or less isolated. these clouds are caused by a wave wind pattern created by the mountains. they are also indicative of down-stream turbulence on the leeward side of a barrier. multiple vortex tornado: a tornado which has two or more condensation funnels or debris clouds, often rotating around a common center. perihelion: the point of the earth's orbit that is nearest to the sun. although the position is part of a 21,000 year cycle, currently it occurs around january, when the earth is about 3 million miles closer to the sun than at aphelion. this term can be applied to any other celestial body in orbit around the sun. it is the opposite of aphelion. sea ice: ice that is formed by the freezing of sea water. it forms first as small crystals, thickens into sludge, and coagulates into sheet ice, pancake ice, or ice floes of various shapes and sizes. superrefraction: greater than normal bending of light or radar beam as it passes through a zone of contrasting properties, such as atmospheric density, water vapor, or temperature. 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. whiteout: when visibility is near zero due to blizzard conditions or occurs on sunless days when clouds and surface snow seem to blend, erasing the horizon and creating a completely white vista. wind shear: the rate of wind speed or direction change with distance. vertical wind shear is the rate of change of the wind with respect to altitude. horizontal wind shear is the rate of change on a horizontal plane..
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