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Lecture 14

Earth Science - Lecture 14 Notes.docx

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Earth Sciences
Sergei Basik

October 8, 2013 ATMOSTPHERE DYNAMICS: BASIC ELEMENTS Climate and Weather  Climate and weather are different  Climate is what you expect (weather for long periods of time)  Weather is what you get (conditions of atmosphere in a specific place and time)  Difference is the time frame  Six main climatic factors: o Air masses (different types of air masses; different levels of humidity) o Fronts (two air masses meet and result in an atmospheric front) o Pressure systems (low pressure and high pressure) o Wind patterns o Ocean surface currents (warm and cold currents cause specific climate on the shore) o Mountain ranges and topography (mountains can work like a wall) Hydrological Cycle  Most important for climate, weather patterns and natural disasters based on climatic factors  Cycle: 1. Evaporation 2. Precipitation 3. Groundwater 4. Sea 5. Repeat  Talking about salt water because fresh water is a very small part of the circle  Two interesting characteristics of air: o Cold air can dissolve little water vapor o Warm air can dissolve a lot of water vapor  If there is a warm air mass  can expect a lot of precipitation  If there is a cold air mass  can expect it to be dry Orographic Effect  Air mass on the leeward side of the mountain is warmer and drier  Creates deserts on this side of the mountain  Best example in North America is Calgary  Mountains work like walls Atmospheric Pressure and Weather  Atmospheric pressure: the weight of the column of air from the ground to the top of the atmosphere  When air is rising there is low pressure near the ground  When the air is sinking toward the surface there is high pressure near the ground October 8, 2013  Air
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