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Lecture 2

EESA09H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Horse Latitudes, Westerlies, Polar Regions Of Earth

Environmental Science
Course Code
Tanzina Mohsin

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EESA09 Lecture 2
Global Wind Circulation (general wind circulation around the earth)
Recall: Vertical structure of the atmosphere
Four distinct layers
Troposphere: Temperature is decreasing with height (when sun radiation comes from
atmosphere, most is absorbed on the surface so it is heated and it can penetrate and absorb the
heat (so most heated at surface so as you go up the heat is decreasing/more mixing of air)
oTropopause: Transition between tropospehere and stratosphere and temperature is
Stratosphere: Temperature increasing (all ozone molecules in stratosphere and they have
capacity to absorb heat and incoming solar radiation/ increasing temperature with height)
Mesosphere: Temperature decreasing with height (oil mix air)
Thermosphere: Temperature increasing with height (huge amount of oxygen molecules that
absorb suns radiation and run around so much cause kinetic energy to develop and get heated)
What is wind?
Movement of air in “ordered” fashion
Can we see it?
oNot directly we can see the effects of wind in dust, tree movement
oWe can feel the wind
oWe can hear the wind
What is wind?
What causes air to move?
oDifferences in air pressure, vertical or horizontal
oDifferences in pressure forms a “Pressure Gradient”
oAir tends to flow from high pressure to low pressure
oCalled a Pressure Gradient Force (that causes the air to move in the atmosphere)
When the distant between iso bars larger the pressure gradient force is weaker
When the distant between the iso bars is smaller the pressure gradient force is stronger
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