Environmental Science

sakamimu's version from 2016-02-15 04:37


Question Answer
isobara line connecting equal points of pressure
barometermeasures the total weight of air
mercury barometeras air pressure pushes down on the barometer, the weight makes the mercury rise
synoptic mapmeasurements taken at a certain time, consistent throughout
anti-cyclonehigh pressure system (clear skies) (clockwise winds)
cyclonelow pressure systems (storms) (counterclockwise)
fronta boundary between two bodies of air that are different temperatures
cold frontcold air is advancing (shown by triangles that point in the direction it's heading)
warm frontwarm air is advancing (shown by semicircles that point in the direction it's heading)
stationary frontneither warm nor cold air is advancing
occluded frontboth triangles and semicircles on the same side of the line. The warm air is lifted into the upper atmosphere
trougharea of low pressure at the surface but not closed (NOT A FRONT)
microscale scale1-2 meters; turbulent scale; seconds to minutes to hours
mesoscale scale20 km; thunderstorms, tornadoes, waterspouts, dust devils, breezes, Chinook wind, Santa Ana wind; minutes to hours to days
synoptic scale2000 km; hurricanes and tropical storms, weather map features, high/low pressure areas, weather fronts; days to weeks
global scale5000 km; longwaves in the westerlies; days to weeks
average pressure at surface101,325 N/m^2 (force/area)
average pressure at sea level1.01325 bars=1013.25 millibars
Ideal Gas Law (Equation of State)P=rohRT (Pressure=(density=mass/volume) constant temp)
Less dense airwarm, low pressure
More dense aircold, high pressure
low pressureconvergence, rising air, divergence
high pressuredivergence, sinking air, convergence
air parcelno exchange of air within and outside of the parcel
temperatureaverage kinetic energy
permanent gasesconstant, dry (N, O)
variable gasestrace gases (water vapor) and greenhouse gases and airborne particles
nitrogenadded by decaying plants/animals, removed by lightning, soil bacteria, ocean phytoplankton
oxygenadded by ocean phytoplankton/photosynthesis, removed by combustion, respiration (oxidation)
carbon dioxideadded by respiration and combustion, removed by photosynthesis, dissolved into ocean surface, ocean phytoplankton
unstable atmospherecold (dense) air is above and warm (less dense) is below
lapse raterate of temperature declined with height. On average 6.5 degrees (F/km)
stable atmospherewarm (less dense) air is above and cold (dense) air is below
inverted lapse rateinversion. Temp increases with height. Stable
tropospheretemp decreases with height
tropopausetop of the troposphere. Higher over equator and lower over poles
stratospherestable. temperature increases with height. Almost no water vapor, very few clouds
stratospheretemperature almost reaches that of Earth's surface
mesospheretemperature decreases with height
thermosphereair is thin but with high kinetic energy
rotationone rotation per day (360 degrees, 24 hours)
revolutionone revolution per year (365 days) elliptical
perihelionclosest point between Earth and Sun (Jan. 4)
aphelionfarthest point between Earth and Sun (July 4)
circle of illuminationthe divider between the dark and light part of Earth, not lined up with tilted axis (only on equinoxes), determines how long the day length will be (day hours)
equinox timesin between summer and winter solstices (equal times of sunlight and dark) 12 hours each, marks the transition the sunlight from northern hemisphere to southern
summer solsticeJune 21
winter solsticeDecember 21
wavelengthdistance between two peaks or two troughs
long waveswaves are longer with wavelenghts farther apart, emitted by colder objects (sun-solar energy)
reflectionredirection of radiation
albedopercentage of light that is reflected
absorptionconverts radiant energy to heat energy resulting in raising the temperature of the object
scatteringradiation is redirected in all possible directions
Rayleigh scatteringsmall scatterers (air molecules), cyan sky and red sunset
Mie scatteringlarge scatteres (clouds, pollutants), (white) clouds
transmissionradiation is not impacted by the medium
solar constantaverage solar output at Earth's distance from the sun
atmospheric windowwavelength in which there are no greenhouse gases that absorb radiation, that radiation will be emitted out to space
latent heatenergy that goes into evaporating water
sensible heatair being warmed from below by direct with atmosphere
water cloudsnet coolers because they're very reflective and have a high albedo
ice cloudsnet warmers allow more light through
net radiationincoming-outgoing
isotherma line of constant temperature, as they move from different heat capacities they bend

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