Glossary of Physical Geography 2

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the short term condition of the atmosphere
the scientific study of the atmosphere
air mass
specific conditions of humidity, stability, and cloud coverage within a homogenous air mass
classifications of air masses
convergent lifting
airflow conflicts that can force the air upward
convectional lifting
air passing over warm surfaces gain boyancy
orographuc lifting
passage over a topographic barrier
chinook winds
word for warm wing flowing down the leeward sides of mountains
rain shadow
area of a mountain (leeward) blocked from the same moisture as the windward size
cold front
an air mass comprised of colder weather and higher winds
warm front
an air mass comprised of warmer weathe
squall line
right before a front, this air mass causes widely changeing wind patterns and levels of precipitaion
midlatitude cyclone
also known as a wave cyclone, a low pressure systems that moves accross a contient moving air masses into conflicts
the birth of low pressure circulation
occluded front
when a cold front overtakes a warm front in the maturing cyclone
stationary front
developes between conflicting air masses where air flows verticle to the fronts on the side
storm tracks
guided by the jet streams of the upper troposhere along seasonal shifting
severe ice storms cause sleet, layers of ice that covers roads and power lines etc.
electrical discarges in the atmosphere
sonic bangs produced by rapid expansions of air after intense heating from lightning
ice pelets formed when rain in blown through cumulonimbus clouds
spinnign cyclonic column rising to the mid troposphere
funnel clouds
dark grey clouds that can form tornados
formed when funnel clouds hit the earth's surface
occurs when a tornado forms over water
tropical cyclone
when large tropical air masses with low pressure centers form along the easterly troughs, can lead to hurricanes
a tropical cyclone with the right central pressure and wind speed exceeds 74mph forms this violent storm
water molecules making their way to the earth's surface from within over a period of billions of years
worldwide changes in sea level
glacio-eustatic factors
glaciers and ice sheets what change the worldwide sea levels
phase change
a state from one change to another
the change from solid to vapor
latent heat
energy required in the process of water changing states and this heat or energy is hidden in the ice or vapor
latent heat of vaporation
it takes 540 calories of energy to transform 1 gram of water to water vapor
latent heat of condensation
when water vapor returns to water 540 calories of energy is relased per 1 gram
latent heat of sublimation
the energy is exchanged when water turns from ice to vapor
the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere
relative humidity
the percentage of humidity compared to the maximum capasity the same air mass could hold
when air can hold temperature when the relative humidity is 100%
dew-point temperature
the temperature at which the air reaches stauration
vapor pressure
the portion of atmospheric pressure that is produced by water vapor
specific humidity
the mass of water vapor in grams per mass of air in kilograms at any specific temperature
hair hygrometer and the sling psychrometer
instraments that measure the relative humidity and the actual humidity content of the air
the tendency of an air parcel with water vapor to either remain in the same place or to change vertical position
the warming and cooling rates for a parcel of expanding or compressing air
the moist adiabatic rate(mar)
the average rate at which saturated rising air cools by expansion or decending air warms by compression
3.3 degrees f per 1000 feet
the dry adiabatic rate(dar)
the rate at which dry air cools by expansion when rising and air warms while asending by compression (used when the relative humidity is less than 100%)
5.5 degress f for every 1000 feet
an acumilation of tiny water droplets and ice crystals suspended in the air
mositure droplets
formed when the saturated air and the cloud-condensation nuclei lead to condensation
low flat clouds in layers ranging from 6500ft in the middle latitudes
low puffy clouds in heaps ranging from 6500ft in the middle latitudes
when stratus clouds yeild precipitation
lumpy greyish low level clouds near the end of the day
middle level clouds
clouds at high altitudes primarily composed of ice crystals
a giant cumulus cloud that are associated with thunder, lightening, wind gusts, up drafts or down drafts, heavy rain, and hail
radiation fog
when the surface chills the air directly above it to the dew point temperature
advection fog
air migrates to conditions that can lead to saturation
evapration fog
or steam fog, can occur over water
upslope fog
mosit air is forced to higher elevations
valley fog
cool dense air settles in low lying areas

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