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ATOC 181 Study Guide - Comprehensive Final Exam Guide - Earth, Water Vapor, Tropopause


Department
Atmospheric & Oceanic Sciences
Course Code
ATOC 181
Professor
Gerard Szejwach
Study Guide
Final

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ATOC 181

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ATOC 181-LESSON 1
- Textbook: Meteorology Today by Donald Ahrens et al., Nelson, 2nd Canadian Ed
- Multiple choices
Atmosphere: envelope of gases surrounding the Earth and another planet
Science: Process of asking questions about the observable world and then testing the answers to
those questions
- External world not internal conviction is the testing of scientific beliefs
Importance of the atmosphere
- We are always affected by the atmosphere, we breathe
- Many natural disasters are related to catastrophic atmospheric events
- Concern that our climate is changing
- Only a few so-called scientists are still not convinced that mankind is responsible for
global warming and the resulting impacts
Atmospheric Sciences
- study of the atmosphere, processes, interaction with other systems (e.g sun).
- Atmospheric physics, dynamics and chemistry. Climatology
- 2 major disciplines: climatology and meteorology
We get more heat from the earth surface than from the sun in average
Meteorology: state of the atmosphere at a given time and location
- day to day chage i easure like T, air P, id cloudiess, raifall ad sushie…
- rapid, sometimes unpredictable changes
- climate varies more slowly
- Variability also to be considered in climate studies (Daily and seasonal extremes)
- science that deals with the atmosphere and its phenomena and especially with weather
and weather forecasting
- the atmospheric phenomena and weather of a region
- not limited to weather forecasting
o physical meteorology/atmospheric physics: Concerned with
atmospheric structure and composition
transfer of electromagnetic radiation and acoustic waves through the
atmosphere
physical process involved in the formation of clouds and precipitation
Atmospheric electricity
A wide range of other problems closely related to physics and chemistry
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o Synoptic meteorology: description, analysis and forecasting of large scale
atmospheric motion like weather map
o Dynamic meteorology: atmospheric motion and their time evolution, uses
analytical approaches (fluid dynamics)
o The distinction between the two has almost disappeared
Atmospheric Chemistry
- study of chemistry of atmosphere
- composition of the atmosphere
- includes problems such as acid rain, ozone depletion, photochemical smog, greenhouse
gases and global warming
Climatology: combination of all these elements at a particular place, over a longer time period
(30 years)
- science that deals with climates and their phenomena
- Physical climatology: concerned with the underlying causes of climate and changes
- Climatography: formulation and presentation of climatic statistics on the global, regional,
local and microscales
- Applied climatology: Application of climatic statistics to the solution of practical problems
Normal temperature: average temp at specific location over a period of time (30 years)
Climate vs weather
- Climate is what you expect and weather is what you get
- Climate is what you expect for a given atmospheric, oceanic or environmental parameter,
at a given point and time
- Ex: air/ocean temp, precipitation, wind, insolation
- Weather is the value of that parameter at that point and time
Climate on all scales is determined by meteorological processes
No real separation between physical climatology and meteorology, especially with consideration
of climate change
Atmospheric sciences becoming less isolated from other branches of sciences: astronomy, solar
and space physics, geochemistry, oceanography, glaciology, maths, aerosol, physics and
chemistry
Knowledge within atmospheric sciences is applied inter alia to:
- forecasting of atmospheric phenomena day to day weather, hazards to aircraft, droughts,
seere stors…
- assesset of the ipact of a’s activities upon the atmospheric environment
- beneficial modification of certain selected physical processes which act on localised scales
- provision of basic atmospheric statistics needed for long-range planning purposes.
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