Card Set Information
How are winds created?
What drive surface ocean currents and waves?
What assumptions can be made about thermal equilibrium relative to the input and output of heat on Earth?
They are equal.
What seasons cause the sun to be directly overhead at the equator and cause equal day/night periods?
Vernal(Spring) equinox (3/21)
Autumnal (fall) equinox (9/23)
Which seasonal solstice cause the shortest day of the year in the Northern hemisphere?
Winter solstice (12/22)
Overhead Tropic of Capricorn
Which seasonal solstice cause the longest day of the year in the Northern hemisphere?
Summer Solstice (6/21)
Overhead Tropic of Cancer
Characteristics of unequal solar heating:
Low latitudes receive more solar radiation
High latitudes receive less solar radiation
What is the result of the angle of incidence of solar rays per area?
Greater the angle, solar energy spread over more area.
Equatorial regions = more heat
Polar regions = less heat
% incident radiation reflected back into space
Affected by angle of sun - more angle, more radiation reflected
what types of surfaces are directly affected by the properties of Albedo?
Snow/ice reflects more
Water surface absorbs more
Land absorbs most
What is the most abundant gas in our atmosphere?
In what direction does the Earth rotate?
From west to east
How is the wind direction indicated?
By determining where the directions winds are blowing FROM.
Describe the behavior of air in the atmosphere.
Air (wind) always moves from regions of high pressure to low.
(High ---> Low)
Cool dense air, higher surface pressure.
Warm less dense air, lower surface pressure.
Describe the process of cloud formation.
Ascending air cools as it expands. Cooler air holds less water, so water vapor condenses into clouds.
Descending air warms as it compresses and clouds evaporate.
Describe the behaviors of cold air and warm air.
Warm air rises
Cold air falls
Cold air holds more moisture than warm air (T/F)
When happens when air cools?
Moisture condenses and forms clouds/precipitation
Rotational velocity increases approaching equator (T/F)
Circulation cells as air changes density due to:
Changes in air temp.
Changes in water vapor content
Name the 3 main circulation cells and their relative coordinates:
Hadley Cells (0 to 30 N and S)
Ferrel Cells (30 to 60 N and S)
Polar Cells (60 to 90 N and S)
Where is the wind split?
At the top of the troposphere.
What are two characteristics of the Horse latitudes?
High pressure ridge
Wind only blows in two cardinal directions, which two?
North and South
What are the characteristics of tradewinds and in what direction is it deflected?
Returns to Equator
What are the characteristics of the Westerlies and in what direction is it deflected?
In Global atmospheric circulation, where are there zones of High pressure?
In Global atmospheric circulation, where are there zones of low pressure?
What makes the nature of winds more complex?
Distribution of continents and ocean
Differences in heat capacity between continents and ocean
Conditions of atmosphere at particular time and place.
Long-term average of weather
Describe the behavior of Northern hemisphere winds
Moves in a counterclockwise (cyclonic) around a low pressure region
Describe the behavior of Southern hemisphere winds
Moves in a clockwise (anticyclonic) around a low pressure region
What causes coastal winds?
solar heating and different heat capacities of land and water.
: Ocean ---> Land
: Land heats air -> rises -> draws cooler ocean air onto coast
: Land ---> Ocean
: warmer ocean water rises, draws cooler land air over coast
Properties of Monsoons
Arabic for seasonal
Winds change direction seasonably causing extreme dry and wet season
Occurs in Eastern and SEA, North America
How are hurricanes caused by?
Release of energy (latent heat of condensation)
Describe the latent heat of condensation when while it is forming a hurricane.
Low pressure system breaks off equatorial low-pressure belt
Surface winds feed moisture into storm
Strong winds, torrential rain outside eye
Describe the process of surface winds feeding moisture into a storm
As water vapor condenses, heat released warms air
Rising warm air draws in more moist air -> fueling cyclone
Large rotating masses of low pressure with calm "eye" (< 25 mph winds)
What affects the movement of hurricanes at low latitudes?
Trade winds (moves it west)
If curve towards right in North hemisphere -> cooler water, influenced by westerlies.
If a hurricane were in the Northern hemisphere, what winds are it influenced by and what types of water would the hurricane encounter?
influenced by westerlies
What are hurricanes classified by?
Maximum sustained wind speed.
What is the difference between a tropical storm and a hurricane?
Maximum sustained wind speed
Tropical storm = 39 to 73 MPH winds
Hurricane = Above 74 MPH winds
What scale is used to measure the intensity of hurricanes?
The Saffir-Simpson Scale
What part of a the hurricane does the most destruction?
What are the damaging properties of hurricanes?
Flooding from torrential rains