Understanding Weather and Climate / Edition 4

Understanding Weather and Climate / Edition 4

by Edward Aguado, James E. Burt
     
 

The book emphasizes a non-mathematical understanding of physical principles as a vehicle for learning about atmospheric processes. Additionally, difficult-to-visualize topics are reinforced with a series of software tutorials presented on a CD-ROM packaged with the book. Focuses on explanation about, rather than description of, the processes that produce Earth's… See more details below

Overview

The book emphasizes a non-mathematical understanding of physical principles as a vehicle for learning about atmospheric processes. Additionally, difficult-to-visualize topics are reinforced with a series of software tutorials presented on a CD-ROM packaged with the book. Focuses on explanation about, rather than description of, the processes that produce Earth's weather and climate. Software tutorials are keyed to the following topics: Solar Geometry; Global Energy Balance; Atmospheric Moisture; Adiabatic Processes; The Coriolis Force; Atmospheric Forces and Motion; Wind and Pressure Aloft; Cyclones and Anti-Cyclones.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780131496965
Publisher:
Prentice Hall
Publication date:
05/17/2006
Edition description:
Revised
Pages:
588
Product dimensions:
9.56(w) x 10.70(h) x 0.74(d)

Table of Contents

I. ENERGY AND MASS.

1. Composition and Structure of the Atmosphere.
The Thickness of the Atmosphere. Composition of the Atmosphere. Vertical Structure of the Atmosphere. Evolution of the Atmosphere. Planetary Atmosphere.

2. Solar Radiation and the Seasons.
Energy. Radiation. The Solar Constant. The Causes of Earth's Seasons.

3. Energy Balance and Temperature.
Atmospheric Influences on Insolation. The Fate of Solar Radiation. Energy Transfer Processes between the Surface and the Atmosphere. Global Temperature Distributions. Influences on Temperature. Measurement of Temperature. Temperature Means and Ranges. Atmospheric Optics.

II. WATER IN THE ATMOSPHERE.

4. Atmospheric Moisture.
Water Vapor and Liquid Water. Indices of Water Vapor Content. Methods of Achieving Saturation. The Effects of Curvature and Solution. Cooling the Air to the Dew or Frost Point. Forms of Condensation. Formation and Dissipation of Cloud Droplets.

5. Cloud Development and Forms.
Mechanisms That Lift Air. Static Stability and the Environmental Lapse Rate. Factors Influencing the Environmental Lapse Rate. Limitations on the Lifting of Unstable Air. Extremely Stable Air: Inversions. Cloud Types. Cloud Coverage.

6. Precipitation Processes.
Growth of Cloud Droplets. Formsof Precipitation. Measuring Precipitation. Cloud Seeding. Rainbows and Other Optical Phenomena.

III. DISTRIBUTION AND MOVEMENT OF AIR.

7. Atmospheric Pressure and Wind.
The Concept of Pressure. The Equation of State. Measurement of Pressure. The Distribution of Pressure. Horizontal Pressure Gradients in the Upper Atmosphere. Forces Affecting the Speed and Direction of the Wind. Winds in the Upper Atmosphere. Near-Surface Winds. Cyclones, Anticyclones, Troughs, and Ridges. Measuring Wind.

8. Atmospheric Circulation and Pressure Distributions.
Single-Cell Model. The Three-Cell Model. Semi-Permanent Pressure Cells. The Upper Troposphere. The Oceans. Major Wind Systems. Air-Sea Interactions.

9. Air Masses and Fronts.
Formation of Air Masses. Fronts.

IV. DISTURBANCES.

10. Mid-Latitude Cyclones.
Polar Front Theory. The Life Cycle of a Mid-Latitude Cyclone. Processes of the Middle and Upper Troposphere. Surface Fronts and Upper-Level Patterns. An Example of a Mid-Latitude Cyclone. Flow Patterns and Large-Scale Weather. The Modern View—Mid-Latitude Cyclones and Conveyor Belts. Anticyclones.

11. Lightning, Thunder, and Tornadoes.
Processes of Lightning Formation. Lightning Safety. Thunderstorms: Self-Extinguishing vs. Self-Propagating. Geographic and Temporal Distribution of Thunderstorms. Tornadoes.

12. Tropical Storms and Hurricanes.
Hurricanes around the Globe. The Tropical Setting. Hurricane Characteristics. Hurricane Formation. Hurricane Movement and Dissipation. Destruction by Hurricanes. Hurricane Forecasts and Advisories.

V. HUMAN ACTIVITIES.

13. Weather Forecasting and Analysis.
Why Is Weather Forecasting Imperfect? Forecasting Methods. Types of Forecasts. Assessing Forecasts. Data Acquisition and Dissemination. Forecast Procedures and Products. Weather Maps and Images. Thermodynamic Diagrams. Chapter 13 Appendix: Numerical Forecast Models. Model Characteristics. Measures of Forecast Accuracy and Skill.

14. Human Effects: Air Pollution and Heat Islands.
Atmospheric Pollutants. Atmospheric Controls on Air Pollution. Urban Heat Islands.

VI. CURRENT, PAST AND FUTURE CLIMATES.

15. Earth's Climates.
Defining Climate. The Koeppen System. Tropical Climates. Dry Climates. Mild Mid-Latitude Climates. Severe Mid-Latitude Climates. Polar Climates.

16. Climate Changes: Past and Future.
Defining Climate Change. The Time Scales of Climate Change. Past Climates. Factors Involved in Climatic Change. Feedback Mechanisms. Methods for Determining Past Climates.

Appendix A: Unit of Measurement and Conversions.
Appendix B: The Standard Atmosphere.
Appendix C: Weather Map Symbols.
Appendix D: Weather Extremes.
Glossary.
Index.

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