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5/27/2016

UKDivers.netWeatherWinds

Friday,May27,2016

UKDivers.net
Thissitecontainsawealthof
informationrelatingtothe
manyaspectsofscubadiving
intheUK.

LatestNews

Winds
Windsaffectdivinginmanyways,understandingtheweatherandpredictingits
effectsmakesforsaferdiving.

FeaturedArticle

SurfaceWind

"Canyoupredictthe
depthofwaterover
awreckatagiven
time?Howfastwill
thecurrentbe
running?Andin
whichdirection?"

Winddirectionisalwaysgivenfromwhereitiscomingfrom.Surfacewinddiffers
cloudlevelwindsbecausesurfacefrictionpreventsanexactbalancebetweenthe
pressuregradientandCoriolisforce.Asaresultthewindnearthesurfaceis
sloweddownandblowsatanangleacrosstheisobarstowardsthelowpressure.
Thegreaterthesurfacefriction,themoreitisslowedandthelargertheangle.

WeatherandTides

Oversea15degreesbackedfromgradientwind15%to30%lighter
Overland30to40degreesbackedfromgradientwind50%ormorelighter

Somanyquestions,
fortheanswersread
thearticleontides.

Windtravelingovertheseacauseswaves,thedistancetraveledoverthesea
influencesthesizeofthewave,thisdistanceiscalledtheFetch.

Glossary

[readmore>>]

Stability&Instability
ABCDEFG
HIJKLMN
OPQRSTU
VWXYZ#

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Stabilityistheeasewithwhichtheairaloftcangetdowntothesurfacebringingits
windtoreplacetheairwhichhasbeenslowedbyfriction.Thewordsstableand
unstableareusedtodescribehowbuoyanttheairis,thatishoweasilyitrises.Air
thatiswarmedwhenthelandsurfaceisheatedbythesunbecomesbuoyant
(unstable)andrises.Airwhichiscooled,oftenatnightovercoldground,becomes
stableandresistsanyattempttomakeitturnover.Unstableairiscontinually
turningsothatthewindaloft,thegradientwind,isbroughtdowningusts.Instable
airthereislittleinteractionwiththegradientwind/airhigherupsotheairnear
thegroundmaystopmovingaltogether.

RelatedArticles
Thissectionincludes:
ShippingForecast
InshoreForecast
Meteorology
WeatherForecasts
Winds
Clouds
CoriolisEffect
WeatherSystems

Anairmassisonlyconsideredunstablewhenonlyasmallamountofheatingat
theearth'ssurfacecausestheairtorisetoconsiderableheights.

Stability&Instabilityonaclearsunnyday/night
Overlandthereisamarked24hour(diurnal)variationinwindstrength.Thesun
heatsthelandandtheairclosetoitcausingittobecomeincreasinglyunstableas
itrisesandisreplacedbycolderairfromaloft.Thewindincreasesbecausetheair
aloftismovingwiththepressuregradientwind.
Asthesungoesdownthetemperaturefallsandthewinddecreases.Afterdusk,if
thereislittleornocloud,thegroundcoolsrapidlyandthecoolstheairnearit
makingitstable,sothewindquicklydiesaway.
Avariationinwindspeedmayalsooccuratseaalthoughthisisusuallymaskedby
othervariationssuchaswatertemperatureasthetidesmoveandalsoatestuary
mouths.

Stability&Instabilityonacloudyday/night
Ifthelowcloudpersistsdayandnighttheseatemperaturewillstayconstantas
thereisnosuntowarmitupandnoclearskytoallowittocoolyetthetopofthe
cloudwillwarmupbydayandcooldownbynight.Thecolderthecloudtopand
thegreaterthetemperaturedropwithheight,themoreunstabletheairandthe
strongerthewind.Thewarmerthecloudtopandthesmallerthetemperaturedrop
withheight,themorestabletheairandthelighterthewind.
Henceunderacloudysky,thewindwillbestrongestintheearlyhoursandlightest
intheafternoonsolongasthepressuregradientisnotchanging.

AirMasses
Anairmassissimplyalargevolumeofairoffairlyuniformcharacter.Airmasses
arenamedaccordingtowheretheycomefromi.e.Arctic,Polar,Tropicaletc.If
theyoriginateoveracontinenttheyareContinentalandiftheyoriginateovera
seatheyareMaritime.Thenamesmaybelinkedtogiveamorepreciselocation
suchasPolarContinentalandTropicalMaritime.Theirorigindeterminestheir
characterairfromacontinentisdryandairfromtheseaisrelativelywet,
tropicalishotandarcticiscold.
ThemassesaffectingUKare:Arctic(Siberia),PolarContinental(Scandinavia),
TropicalContinental(Mediterranean),TropicalMaritime(AtlanticOcean)andPolar
Maritime(Greenland).

WindStates
Windspeed,describedintermsoftheBeaufortScale.Thisscaleisonlyarough
guideandreflectsaveragespeeds,gustsuptothenextforceshouldbe
anticipated.Seaconditionsaregenerallymoreseverenearertoland.

SeaState

http://www.ukdivers.net/meteorology/winds.htm

Description

Wave

WaveHeight

Calm

Glassy

0m

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5/27/2016

UKDivers.netWeatherWinds
Calm

Rippled

0m0.1m

Smooth

0.1m0.5m

Slight

0.5m1.25m

Moderate

1.25m2.5m

Rough

2.5m4m

VeryRough

4m6m

High

6m9m

VeryHigh

9m14m

Phenomenal

>14m

Force

SeaConditions

Force0
Calm.
Windless
than1
knot.

Force1
Light.
Winds13
knots,
lightairs,
ripples

Force2
Light
Breeze.
Winds4
6knots,
small
wavelets.

Force3
Gentle
Breeze.
Winds7
10knots,
crests
beginto
break.

Force4
Moderate
breeze.
winds11

http://www.ukdivers.net/meteorology/winds.htm

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UKDivers.netWeatherWinds
16knots,
waves
becoming
larger,
frequent
white
horses.
BSAC
limitfor
diving.

Force5
Fresh
breeze.
Winds
1721
knots,
moderate
waves,
many
white
horses,
some
spray.

Force6
Strong
breeze.
Winds
2227
knots,
large
waves,
extensive
white
horses.

Force7
Near
gale.
Winds
2833
knots,
sea
heaps
up,
waves
breaking,
white
foam
blownin
streaks.

Force8
Gale.
Winds
3440
knots,
moderate
high
waves,
crests
break
into
spindrift,
white
foam.

Force9
Strong
gale.

http://www.ukdivers.net/meteorology/winds.htm

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UKDivers.netWeatherWinds
Winds
4147
knots,
high
waves,
crests
topple
spray
affects
visibility.

Force10
Storm.
Winds
4855
knots,
veryhigh
breaking
waves,
dense
foam
streaks.

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PagelastupdatedonOctober16,2007
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