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JOINT AVIATION AUTHORITIES AIRLINE TRANSPORT PILOT'S LICENCE

Theoretical Knowledge Manual


,
\,-

050 METEOROLOGY

APPROVED

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METEOROLOGY

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter Chapter

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27

The Atmosphere Pressure Density Synoptic Charts Pressure Systems Altimetry Temperature Humidity Adiabatics & Stability Turbulence Winds Upper Winds Clouds Cloud Formation and Precipitation Thunderstorms Visibility Icing Documentation Weather Charts Air Masses Occlusions Other Depressions Global Climatology Local Winds and Weather Area Climatology Route Climatology Satellite Observations

AMENDMENT

SERVICE

An amendment service to this series is provided free of charge on the Oxford Aviation Training website at http://www.oxfordaviation.net/products/studyaids/amend.htm

First Edition: Second Impression:

May 2001 List 1to Edition 1

October 2001 - incorporating Amendment

CHAPTER ONE - THE ATMOSPHERE

Contents

Page 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 1.10 1.11 1.12 A DEFINITION OF METEOROLOGY. REASONS FOR STUDYING METEOROLOGY A DEFINITION OF THE ATMOSPHERE. THE CONSTITUENTS . (BY VOLUME). . .... 1- 1 1- 1 1-2 1 -2 1-2 1-3 1-4 I -4 1-5 (ISA) . STANDARD ATMOSPHERE. ....... 1-5 1-6 1-8 1-9

OF THE ATMOSPHERE

PROPERTIES OF THE EARTH'S ATMOSPHERE. THE STRUCTURE OF THE ATMOSPHERE THE SIGNIFICANCE OF TROPOPAUSE HEIGHT. TEMPERATURES. ATMOSPHERIC .

HAZARDS STANDARD ATMOSPHERE

THE INTERNATIONAL ISA DEVIATION.

THE ICAO INTERNATIONAL ATMOSPHERE QUESTIONS

METEOROLOGY

THE ATMOSPHERE

1.1

A DEFINITION OF METEOROLOGY "The branch of science dealing with the earth's atmosphere and the physical processes occurring in it."

1.2

REASONS FOR STUDYING METEOROLOGY a) b) c) d) e) To To To To To gain gain gain gain gain a better a better a better a better a better understanding understanding understanding understanding understanding of of of of of meteorologists' deductions. meteorologists' documentation. in-flight hazards. data and its collection. self-forecasting.

Weather is the one factor in modem aviation over which man has no control, a knowledge of meteorology will at least enable the aviator to anticipate some of the difficulties which weather may cause. Weather - influenced accidents to UK transport aircraft
Table! (ajAllaccidents Aeroplanes Rotorcraft Transport aircraft acoidents, 1975-94

20 20

• rncludes ramp and other minor grrund accidents, hence low percentage (bJ Acddenlii excluding.electedramp and other occurrences

figures.

Aeroplanes

*WI;Weather_influenced Table 2 Weather -influence accidents to transport aircraft by element of weather, 1975 -94

1-1

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METEOROLOGY

THE ATMOSPHERE

Element Visibility Icing/snow Wind and turbulence Rainlwetrunway Lighming

PercentageoftotaJ

Percentage

of total

All cases

Table 1.2. For this course a knowledge of advanced physics is not required, but a knowledge of the elementary laws of mati on, heating, cooling, condensation and evaporation will be useful. 1.3 A DEFINITION OF THE ATMOSPHERE "The spheroidal gaseous envelope surrounding a heavenly body." 1.4 THE CONSTITUENTS OF THE ATMOSPHERE Nitrogen Oxygen Plus traces of: Neon Krypton Hydrogen Nitrous Oxide Carbon Monoxide Ammonia Helium Xenon Methane Nitrogen Dioxide Sulphur Dioxide Iodine and Ozone 78.09% 20.95% (BY VOLUME) 0.93% 0.03%

Argon Carbon Dioxide

Plus water vapour and solid particles. The proportions of the constituents remain constant up to a height of at least 60 kms (except for Ozone), but by 70 kms the force of gravity, being less, causes the proportions to change. Although the trace of ozone in the atmosphere is important as a shield against ultra violet radiation, if the whole of the layer of ozone were brought down to sea level it would only be 3 mmthick. 1.5 PROPERTIES OF THE EARTH'S ATMOSPHERE

The earth's atmosphere varies vertically and horizontally in: a) b) Pressure. Temperature.

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THE ATMOSPHERE

c) d)

Density. Humidity.

The earth's aunosphere is a poor conductor. The earth's atmosphere is fluid. The earth's atmosphere supports life only at lower levels. 1.6 THE STRUCTURE OF THE ATMOSPHERE a) The Troposphcre.. rhar layer of the earth's atmosphere where temperature increase in height. ii) iii) b) consists of
%

decreases with an

of the total atmosphere in weight.

contains almost all the weather.

The Stratosphere Illay be defined as that layer above the troposphere where the temperature remains constant with an increase in height. (In fact temperature shows 11 gradual increase with hC!p'ht,especially at the top, where the temperature is zero at 50 kms. This is due to the abs~rpth)nd}lhe SUIl 's ultra violet radiation by the concentration of ozone at higher levels). The Tropopausc.. marks the boundary between the troposphere and the stratosphere and is where temperature ceases to fall with an increase in height, (Practically taken as the height where tile temperature fall is Jess tban z=C per 1,000 n.) ii) is not a continuous line - there is usually a gap at 40 degrees of latitude between the so-called polar and tropical rropopauses.
~a....\.:...;, \

c)

iii)

is nat uniform in height I) 2)


3)

it varies

with..

Latitude. Season of the year. Temperature prevailing Time of day.


on the

day.

4)

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METEOROLOGY

THE ATMOSPHERE

90'

JANUARY
70' 60'

90'

JULY
70'

Figure 1.2. The Mean Height of the Tropopause at the Greenwich Meridian 1.7 o o 1. ~,.,.,~ THE SIGNIF1CANCE OF TROPOPAUSE HEIGHT
The significance <I) b) c) d) of the tropopause height height cloud. is that it usually marks;-

the maximum the presence the presence the maximum

ofthe

of Jetsrreams. of Clear wind Air Turbulence speed (CAT).

1.8

TEMI'ERATURES
Temperature Temperature reaches in the troposphere in the lower increases from the poles increases to the equator. to the poles in summer but

stratosphere

from the equator

max temperature

in mid latitudes

in winter with height) in the troposphere is produced

The
ILo.I;!if-:"" rising

lapse

rate

(the rate of change that

of

temperature

by

air, whilst

in the stratosphere

is produced

by

solar radiation,

and is in fact reversed.

1 -4

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METEOROLOGY

THE ATMOSPHERE

1.9

ATMOSPHERIC
As aircraft

HAZARDS
altitudes of greater increase, importance so concentrations of OZONE and COSMIC

operating become

RADIATlON

to the aviator.

Above 50,000fl, normal concentrations of ozone exceed tolerable limits and air needs to be
filtered before entering the cabin. The heat ofthe compressor system will assist in the breaking

down of the ozone to an acceptable level.


Cosmic radiation is not normally . forecasting hazards and and communications high altitude to take should hazards. but necessary result in pilots receiving they hazardous, but at times of solar flare activity a lower flight

level may be necessary

. ,'T. 2,

v.~ {l\'''.

''>!.\h'''

......

Advances prompt should

in meteorological and accurate of these

information

regarding

be aware

prepared

the

it is important that re-planning action.

1.10

TI:lE iNTERNATIONAL STANDARDATMOSI)UERE


For a variety variations There 'ICAO of reasons it is necessary pressure different to establish a standard

(ISA)
~,CI ~ ~'-'_

average

atmosphere,

describing

in temperature,

and density Standard

throughout

altitude. but the one


i_11

have been several {SA', dated

Atmospheres,

genernl

usc now is the

1964 which for.-

covers

an atmosphere

from -16.400ft(-5km)

to 262,464ft.

The ISA is needed a)

the calibration

of aircraft

instruments aircraft.

b) The
a) b)

the
lCAO

design

and testing

of

ISA

is defined

as follows> of

a MSL temperature a MSL pressure density

+ 15°

Celsius, millibars, I

of 1013.25

c)
d) e)

a MSL

of 1225 grarnrnes

cubic

metre,

from-Skill, a constant an increase

lapse rare of 1.98° Celsius/lOCO of -56.5° Celsius

ft

(6.5 degs/km)

up to 36,090 kms), up to 104,987

n (11

kms),

temperature of'temperarure

up to 65,617 /1 000

n (20
deglkm),

1)

01'0.3° Celsius

ft (I

ft 32

krus)

1 -5

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METEOROLOGY

-'
13£.. 122., 112.. 102.. 90_1 80_ 70_ 60_ 50_
I

I I

:l
,

THE ATMOSPHERE

Upper

Limit

of Wright Atmosphere I

Air Development

Centre I I/,1'

JjO

000

ft I I

I I

i£. ~
"

/~

~t"top~us

1Q4,9,87ft

iT '"~'~'"I'~'~q':l' I
~ I I I I I ....

~56J'e

i 32ikl'

17ft

40

30

f--~i ~
I-56 .e- c I

:,

~.;l'(.:
OS',,/'~:

~r()Ol':"~131:6k'mOi_Qft

:
20
;~. <1'

<t

'~~"

I?~~::
:

10

I I

:""~":

::

I I

'I 1'-

Tem

erature pressure

tC
rnb

I I I ,

I I I

I I I
"

Relative

Density

Figure 1.2. The International Standard Atmosphere (ISA)

I.H

[SA DEViATION

Although meteorological observations are made in absolute figures, it is usual, when making calculations involving aircraft performance or corrections to instruments, to consider them relative to the ISA. These are known as "ISA deviations". lffor instance, the observed temperature were SoC warmer than that expected in the ISA, then the deviation would be+5°C For the temperatures below, calculate the ISA deviations;1-6

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METEOROLOGY Heighttft) [500 17,500 24,000 37,000 9,500 5,000 31,000 57,000 Temperature
(0C)

THE ATMOSPHERE ISA Temperature [SA Deviation

+28 -18 -35 -45 -5 +15 -50 -67

If the limiting deviation for your aircraft at an airfield 5,000 ft AMSL is ISA + 10, what is the maximum temp at which you can operate?

If the deviation at 3,500 ft is + 12, what is the ambient temperature?

1-7

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METEOROLOGY

1.12

THE

rcxo INTERNATIONAL

THE ATMOSPHERE

STANDARD ATMOSPHERE
Pressure Height Change

Height (kms)

Height(n)
104,987 100,000 90,000 80,000 70,000

Temp (,C)

Density(%)

(mb)
-44.7 -46.2 -49.2 -52.2 -55.2 -56.5 -56.5 -56.5 -56.5 -56.5 -44.4 -21.2 -4.8 -4.6 +5.5 +15 8.9 11.1 17.3 28.0 44.9 56.7 116.6 148.2

(permb)
1.1 1.4 2.2 3.6 5.8 7.2 15.3 19.5 103 ft 91 ft 73 ft 48 ft 37 ft 36 26.3 29.7 36.8 56.4 73.8 74.1 87.3 100

32.00 30.48 27.43 24.38 21.34 20.00 15.24 13.71 11.78 11.00 9.16 5.51 3.05 3.01 1.46 0 Note:

<" 1;,0
50,000 45,000 38,662 36·,090 30,065 18,289 10,000 9,882 4,781 0

h"'2oo
228.2 .3.9Q

••50!!
696.8

700
850 1013.25

ft

31 ft 27 ft

The above height change figures show how the pressure against height change equation is modified as altitude changes but the figures offered only relate to ISA conditions of Temperature and Pressure. We can assess changes outside these conditions by using the following formula:

......._,;

96T H=p

where

H = height change per Mb I Hpa in feet


T
=

Actual

Absolute

Temperature

at that level

P = Actual Pressure in Mb I Hpa K = 96 (the equation constant)

The 4% Rule:
The 4% rule is an extension of the above which states that when the ELR temp' is

ro-c

away from ISA a 4% height change error is generated at or through any given altitude change. e.g at Fi360 (H) = 96 x 226.5 divided by 228.2 = 95ft per Mb height change at that level which equates to 4% difference from the ISA change of 91ft.

1-8

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Atmosphere Questions 1. The international standard atmosphere assumes a lapse rate of: a) b) c) , d) 2.
-1

2°C/IOOO ft 1.5°CIlOOO ft 3°C/IOOO ft 1.98°C/IOOO ft

The tropopause is: a) b) c) d) The The The The line where the temperature no longer decreases with increase of height. layer between the tropopause and the stratosphere. layer beyond which only CI cloud occurs. line indicating clear air turbulence.

3.

One of the most important characteristics of the atmosphere is: a) 1 b) c) d) Density is constant above 10000 ft. The air is a poor conductor of heat. Temperature lapse rate is very frequently above 3°e per 1000 ft. The air is a good conductor of heat.

4.

Most of the vapour in the atmosphere is contained in the: a) b) c) d) tropopause stratosphere troposphere stratopause

5.
,j'

The captain of an aircraft needs to know the height of the Tropopause because: a) b) c) d) it normally represents the limit of weather density starts to increase there are no longer jet streams and CAT it indicates the height of the thermal wind

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METEOROLOGY

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6.

The main Ozone layer is to a) b) c) ,,'d) thermosphere troposphere mesophere stratosphere

found in the:

7.

The level in the atmosphere where the air temperature ceases to fall
known as:

with

increase in height is

a) b) c) " d) 8.
Which

The troposphere. The Stratopause. The Stratosphere. The tropopause.


statement is correct when considering the lower layers of the atmosphere:

a)
.J

the majority of the weather is contained in the stratosphere and its upper boundary is the
tropopause the majority tropopause of the weather is contained in the troposphere and its upper boundary is the

b)

c)
d)

the majorityofthe weather is contained in the tropopause and its upper boundary is the troposphere
the majority of the weather is contained in the troposphere and its upper boundary is the

stratosphere 9.
v

The atmosphere is a mixture of gasses of the following proportions: a) b) c)


d)

oxygen 21% oxygen 21% nitrogen 78% nitrogen 78%

nitrogen 78% hydrogen 78% argon 21% oxygen 21%

other gasses 1% other gasses 1% oxygen 1% hydrogen 1%

10.

In a)

the ISA the temperature is isothermal: Up to From From From 36 090 ftlll kms 36 090 ft/II kms to 65 617 ftl20 kms. 36 090 ft/l l kms to 104987 ft!32 kms. 36 090 ft!11 kms to 45 090 ftl13.75 kms.

,. b) e) d)

1 -10

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METEOROLOGY 11. The International

THE ATMOSPHERE

(leAD) Standard

Atmosphere

assumes

that the sea level atmospheric

pressure

is:
v' a) mbs and decreases with an increase in height 1013.25 mbs and increases with an increase in height 1013.25 mbs and falls to about half this value at 30000 1013.25 mbs and decreases with an increase in height up to the tropopause. Above the 1013.25 tropopause 12. At " a) it remains constant is stated to be:

b)
c)

d)

sea

level the ISA density 1225 grammes

per cubic per

metre

b)
c)

1252 grammes
1013.2

cubic metre

mb (hpA)

d) 13.

29.6 inches of mercury

Which of the following statements is most correct when describing ISA: a) b)


c) \- d)

the MSL pressure is 1013.25 mbs and the temperature is + 15°C the MSL pressure is 1013.25 mbs and the temperature is +15 C 1.98°C/1000 ft
the MSL the MSL 1.98°CII pressure pressure 000 is 1013.25 mbs and the temperature above mbs which there and the temperature 1.98°CIlOOOft up to 36090

with

a lapse rate of
rate of rate of

is +15 C with a lapse an 'inversion a lapse is +15 C with

ft ft

is frequently

is 1013.25

ft

up to 36090

14.

The following

is true for the International

Standard

Atmosphere: prevail: temperature by 6.5 + 15 C, pressure per 1013.25

a)

at mean sea level the foilowingconditions hpa, density within the tropopause the temperature will 1125 gmlm the temperature of 36090 the troposphere

J b)
c) d)
IS. Pressure

decreases

Ian

is at a height

at the tropopause with increase at30000ft 800 mb 400 mb 700 mb 300mb 200 mb 800mb 500 mb 200

is 226.5

AGL OK
and in the ISA pressure

\.e

V\~DJ-._~

of height

will

be

_'_CO_at

10000fiand

'\.,,--0

a) 'b)
c)

Increase Decrease Increase Decrease

d)

1-11

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ANSWERS

Ques 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Answer D
A B

Ques 9 10 11 12 13 14 15

Answer
A B A A

C
A

D
B B

D D
B

1-12

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CHAPTER TWO - PRESSURE

Contents

Page 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 INTRODUCTION . ATMOSPHERIC PRESSURE .. THE BAROGRAPH ISALLOBAR. TYPES
OF

2-I ........... .......................... .......................... ............................ .... ...... 2-1 2-2 2-3 2-4 2-7 2-8 ... 2 - 8 . 2-9

PRESSURE
OF

VARIATIONS

PRESSURE

PRESSURE DEFINITIONS SYNOPTIC CHARTS .

PRESSURE QUESTIONS .

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PRESSURE

2.1

INTRODUCTION Variations in pressure have long been associated with changes in the weather - the 'falling glass' usually indicating the approach of bad weather. The Handbook of Aviation Meteorology makes the statement:
f"'11\~ I.,.,,,, p",,~~<>_\<>\c ...... ~ -i:l",o ~~,< "The study of atmospheric pressure may be said to form (he foundations of the science of meteorology. "

2.2

ATMOSPHERIC

PRESSURE

Atmospheric pressure is the force per unit area exerted by the atmosphere on any surface in contact with it. If pressure is considered as the weight of a column of air of unit cross sectional area above a surface, then it can be seen from the diagram that the pressure (weight of the column above) at the upper surface will be less than that at the lower surface. Thus atmospheric pressure will decrease with an increase in height. a)

TOTAL WEIGHT OF -ATMOSPHERE ABOVE A COLUMN OF UNITCROSS_ SECTION TOTAL WEIGHT OF /ATMOSPHERE L_ABOVE

Figure 2.1. The Weight of the Atmosphere on the Surface of the Earth.

Units of Measurement. The standard unit afforce is the NEWTON (N) and an average for atmospheric pressure at sea level is 100,000 Newtons per square metre. (Pascals) This pressure is sometimes known as a BAR To measure small variations in pressure, it is convenient to divide the bar into 1000 parts and so the standard meteorological unit of pressure is the MILLIBAR (Mb). In some countries this is known as the hectopascal. Other units which are still in use are related to the height ofa column of mercury in a barometer (see below) and thus: 1000 mb
=

750.1 nun

29.53 in

100,000 N/M2 __x_x_x_ and

Note:

It is possible to convert Mbs to Inches by using the formula

1013.25 29.92

therefore if we are given (for example) IOOOMbswe may insert this into the formula and find ___!_QQQ_x_x_

1013.25 29.92

which gives us an answer of29.53In5 of mercury.

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METEOROLOGY b) Mercury Barometer. The basic instrument used for the measurement of atmospheric pressure is the mercury barometer. The atmospheric pressure is measured by the height of a column of mercury and this height can be read in terms of any of the units shown above. The USA still uses inches of mercury as their measurement of atmospheric pressure.

PRESSURE

Figure 2.2. A Mercury Barometer c) Aneroid Barometer. A more compact means of measuring atmospheric pressure is the Aneroid Barometer. It consists of a partially evacuated capsule which responds to changes in pressure by expanding and contracting, and by a system of levers, these changes of pressure being indicated by a pointer moving over a scale.

Figure 2.4. An Aneroid Barometer.

2.3

THE BAROGRAPH To enable a continuous record of pressure changes to be made, a paper covered rotating drum is substituted for the scale and the instrument then becomes a barograph. This instrument is used by the meteorologist to measure what is known as pressure tendency, the rise and fall of pressure over a period of time. Pressure tendency is an important forecasting tool.

Figure 2.5. Met Office Aneroid Barometer

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Figure 2.6. A Barograph 2.4 [SALLOBAR An isallobar is a line joining places of the same pressure tendency.
Full and dashed lines represent isobars and isallobars respectively. Unit of isaliobars:millibalS per hour.

./ / / .-

-v ,

......
'\
\

Isallobaric low

-=4;
I

./

I I

Figure 2.7. An Isallobar Chart

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PRESSURE

2.5

TYPES OF PRESSURE a) QFE. The atmospheric pressure read from a barometer the aerodrome pressure, otherwise known as QFE. on an airfield will give

Figure 2.8. QFE. b) QFF. This is the barometric pressure at the surface (QFE) reduced to MSL using the observed temperature at the surface (this therefore assumes an isothermallayer from MSL to the surface). QFF accounts for the effect that temperature has on a pressure reading. From Figure 2.8 it can be seen that although the pressure at the airfield was 980 mb/hPa, if the airfield was taken to Mean Sea Level, the pressure would be greater, but an account rnust also be made of the effect that temperature has had on the pressure. This allows us to accurately draw surface pressure charts. The correction to be made to the surface pressure will depend on the height of the surface (or airfield) AMSL and the temperature prevailing at the time. The range of QFF so far recorded, low pressure to high pressure, is from 856 to 1083 mb, but meteorologically the range is taken from 950 to 1050 mb. c) QNH. This is the barometric pressure at the airfield (QFE), reduced to MSL using the ISA temperature at the airfield. This will provide a pressure which does not account for any temperature deviation away from ISA. The correction 1'0 be made to the surface pressure will depend solely upon the height of the airfield AMSL In order to get QNH and QFF from a barometric reading at a surface we must use a formulae which will be shown on the next page. It is not necessary to know the formulae as such, but it is vital to know the difference that the temperature deviation will have when being asked to analyse QNH and QFF.

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PRESSURE

The correction M (in hPa/mb), to be added or subtracted to the barometric pressure is given by: M~p(10m_1) Where'"
=

18429.1 + 67.531 + O.003h and


p = barometer level pressure in hPa/mb t = the observed temperature at station level in °C (for QFF correction use observed temperature, for QNH correction use [SA temperature) h = the height of the station, in metres, above the level at which the corrected pressure is required i.e. above or below mean sea level for QFF and QNH, official aerodrome elevation for QFE and touchdown zone elevation for runway QFE. Note that h will be negative if below sea level.

Example I: I) What is the difference between QFF and QNH given: Station pressure = 1020 hPa Station height = SOm BELOW msl Temperature = 30° C Station BELOW sea level, temperature WARMER than ISA. a) Calculate QFF using the formulae on the previous page

M = -5.6 hPa The correction to be applied is: Station pressure 1020 - 5.6 b) M
=
=

QFF 1014.4 hPa

Calculate QNH using the formulae on the previous page -5.9 hPa

The correction to be applied is Station pressure 1020 - 5.9


=

QNH 1014.1 hPa

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Example 2: I) What is the difference between QFF and QNH given: Station pressure = 920 hPa Station height = 300m ABOVE msl Temperature = _20 C
0

Station ABOVE sea level, temperature COLDER than ISA. a) Calculate QFF using the formulae on the previous page

M =41.2 hPa The correction 10 be applied is: Station pressure 920 + 41.2 b)
=

QfF 961.2 hPa

Calculate QNH using the formulae on the previous page

M = 36.9 hPa

The correction to be applied is: Station pressure 920 + 36.9 SUMMARY Stations ABOVE MSL a) HOTTER than [SA b) COLDER than ISA Stations BELOW MSL a) HOTTER than ISA
b) COLDER than (SA
=

QNH 956.9 hPa

QFF<QNH QFF>QNH QFF>QNH QFF< QNH

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2.6

VARIA TIONS OF PRESSURE a) Height. Although pressure will decrease with an increase in height, density will also decrease and therefore the reduction in weight of air above a surface will not vary linearly. In the ISA, a reduction in pressure of I mb would give a height difference of: 27 feet at MSL 36 feet at tO,OOO ft 73 teet at 30,000 ft b)

See Figure 1.3.

Diurnal Variation. There is a change in pressure during the day which although small (about I mb) in temperate latitudes, can be as much as 3 mb in the tropics and would need to be taken into account when considering pressure tendency as an indication of changing weather. The variation is shown in Figure 2.10.

THE DIURNAL VARIATION IN TEMPERATE LATITUDES IS LESS THAN 1mb ~

MEAN PRESSURE RECORDED PRESSURE


Figure 2.10. Diurnal Variation.

The variation is difficult to explain, but is probably due to a natural oscillation of the atmosphere having a period of about 12 hours, this oscillation being maintained by the 24 hour variation of temperature.

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2.7

PRESSURE QFE

DEFINITIONS The value of pressure, for a particular aerodrome and time, corrected to the official elevation. The value of pressure reduced to MSL in accordance with isothermal conditions. The value of pressure, for a particular aerodrome and time, corrected to the MSL in accordance with the ICAO standard. QNH A forecast, valid for one hour, of the lowest QNH expected in any part of the Altimeter Setting Region (ASR). The height indicated on landing at an airfield when the altimeter subscale is set to tOI3 mb or 29.92 ins. A line joining places of the same atmospheric pressure (usually MSL pressure QFF). A line joining places of the same pressure tendency. CHARTS

QFF

QNH

FORECAST (RPS) QNE

ISOBAR

ISALLOBAR 2.8 SYNOPTIC

Isobars on normal synoptic charts are Mean Sea Level Isobars (QFF) and are normally drawn for every even whole millibar, (i.e. 1000, 1002, etc.). Figure 2.11. illustrates the isobars on a synoptic chart. On larger area maps the spacing may be expanded to 4 or more millibars but this will be stated on the chart.

Figure 2.11. Isobars on a Synoptic Chart.

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Pressure Questions I. The barometric Pressure at the airfield datum point is known as;
0)

b)

v c)
d) 2.

QNE QNH QFE Standard Pressure

The instrument that gives a continuous printed reading and record of the atmospheric pressure is: a) b) c) " d) barometer hygrometer anemograph barograph

3.

The pressure of the atmosphere: a) b) c) d) decreases decreases decreases decreases at at at at an increasing rate as height increases a constant rate as height increases a decreasing rate as height increases a constant rate up to the tropopause and then remains constant

oJ

4.

When considering the actual tropopause which statement is correct: a) b) c) d) it is low over the poles and high over the equator it is high over the poles and low over the equator it is the same height of36090 ft all over the world It is at a constant altitude of 26000'

5.

Atmospheric pressure may be defined as: a) b) ~ c) d) the weight of the atmosphere exerted on any surface with which it is in contact the weight of the atmosphere at standard sea level the force per unit area exerted by the atmosphere on any surface with which it is in contact a pressure exerted by the atmosphere of 1013.2 mbs

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6.

The QFF is the atmospheric pressure: a) b) at the place where the reading is taken corrected for temperature difference from standard and adjusted to MSL assuming standard atmospheric conditions exist at a place where the reading is taken corrected to MSL taking into account the prevailing temperature conditions as measured by a barometer at the aerodrome reference point.

-J c)
d) 7.

With 1013.25 mb set on the altimeter sub scale with an aircraft stationary on the airfield the altimeter will read: " a) b) c) d) QNE QNH QFE QFF

8.

The aircraft altimeter will read zero at aerodrome level with which pressure setting set on the altimeter sub scale: a) b) c) d) QFF QNH QNE QFE

9.

You are passed an altimeter setting of '29.53' You would then set your altimeter subscale to: a) b) "c) d) QFF 1013 1000 QFE

10.

The aerodrome QFE is: a) b) c)


J'

d)

the reading on the altimeter on an aerodrome when the aerodrome barometric pressure is set on the sub scale the reading on the altimeter on touchdown at an aerodrome when 1013.2 is set on the sub scale the reading on the altimeter on an aerodrome when the sea level barometric pressure is set on the sub scale the aerodrome barometric pressure.

METEOROLOGY !

PRESSURE

1.

When an altimeter sub scale is set to the aerodrome QFE, the altimeter reads: a) b) c) d) the elevation of the aerodrome at the aerodrome reference point zero at the aerodrome reference point the pressure altitude et the aerodrome reference point the appropriate altitude of the aircraft

12.

The aerodrome QNH is the aerodrome barometric pressure: a) b) c) d) corrected to mean sea level assuming standard atmospheric conditions exist corrected to mean sea level, assuming isothermal conditions exist corrected for temperature and adjusted to MSL assuming standard atmosphere conditions exist corrected to MSL using ambient temperature.

13.

A line drawn on a chart joining places having the same barometric pressure at the same level and at the same time is :
a)

b) c) , d) 14.

an isotherrn an isallobar a contour an isobar

An isobar on a meteorological chart joins all places having the same: a) { b)


c)

d) 15.

QFE QFF QNH QNE

Pressure will~~--~-~--·-~with increase of height and will be about=- ---~~-~~- 10000 f1 and ~~~~~~~~~ at ~at 30000 ft. a)
b)

c)
d)

Increase Decrease increase Decrease

800 700 200 500

mb mb mb mb

400 300 800 200

mb mb mb mb

16.

An airfield in England is 100m above sea level, QFF is 1030hPa, temperature at the surface is ~15°C. What is the valueofQNH? ..\ a) b) c) d) Impossible to determine Less than I030hPa Same as QFF More than lOJOhPa

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ANSWERS

Ques
I

Answer C D C A C C
A

Ques 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16

Answer C D B A D B B B

2 3 4 5 6 7 8

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CHAPTER THREE - DENSITY

Contents

Page 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 INTRODUCTION EFFECT OF CHANGES OF PRESSURE ON DENSITY EFFECT OF CHANGE OF TEMPERATURE A SIMPLE MATHEMATICAL TREATMENT ON DENSITY 3- I .3I

3- I ... 3 - 2 .3-2 -2 3-3 3-5

EFFECT OF CHANGE OF ALTITUDE ON DENSITY EFFECT OF CHANGE OF LATITUDE ON DENSITY EFFECT OF CHANGES IN DENSITY ON AIRCRAFT OPERATIONS.

DENSITY QUESTIONS

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METEOROLOGY

DENSITY

3.1

INTRODUCTION Density may be defined as mass per unit volume and may be expressed as: a) b) c) Grammes per cubic metre. A percentage of the standard surface density - relative density. The altitude in the standard atmosphere 10 which the observed - density altitude. OF PRESSURE ON DENSITY density corresponds

3.2

EFFECT OF CHANGES

As pressure in a container of unit volume is increased, the mass of air will be increased and therefore the density will rise. Likewise, if the pressure is reduced, the mass of air will decrease and so will the density

(rho)

density

We can therefore say that: DENSITY IS DIRECTLY PROPORTIONAL TO PRESSURE.

In the atmosphere density can be decreased by raising the volume of air 10 a greater height since we know that pressure decreases with an increase in altitude. Similarly, density can be increased by lowering the volume of air to a lower height. 3.3 EFFECT OF CHANGE DENSITY OF TEMPERATURE ON

If a volume of air is heated it will expand and the mass of air contained in unit volume will be less. Thus density will decrease with an increase in temperarurc and we can say: DENSITY IS INVERSELY PROPORTIONAL TO TEMPERATURE.

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3.4

A SIMPLE MATHEMATICAL

TREATMENT

The Fundamental Gas Equation (Boyles + Charles Laws) says that PV RT 1 (where R = gas constant)

but

V
RT p

~
and Where
R T

RT
Pressure Gas constant Temperature Density

Note: R for water vapour is 1.6 x that for dry air. Therefore: p for water vapour is less than for dry air and so p for moist air must be less than p for dry air 3.5 EFFECT OF CHANGE OF AL TlTUDE ON DENSITY Although raising and thus expanding the volume of air will decrease its density due to the reducuon of pressure, at the same time the temperature will decrease and therefore the density should increase, the one effect cancelling out the other. In fact, there is a greater reduction in pressure as height increases and the overall effect is for the density to decrease with an increase of height. (p
=

100% at sea level, 50% at 20,000', 25% at 40,000' and 10% at 60,000')

Density will change by 1% for a 3 degree change in temperature or a 10mb change in pressure. 3.6 EFFECT OF CHANGE OF LATITUDE ON DENSITY a) b) c) at the surface density increases with an increase in latitude. at about 26,000 ft density remains constant with an increase in latitude. above 26,000 ft density decreases with an increase in latitude. (Maximum deviation from standard occurs at about 50,000 ft.)

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Figure 3.1. The Effect of Latitude on Density. Thus aircraft with poor performance at low levels will perform better above the tropopause at the equator than at the poles. 3.7 EFFECT a) b) OF CHANGES IN DENSITY ON AIRCRAFT OPERATIONS

Accuracy of aircraft instruments - Mach meters, ASIs. Aircraft and engine performance - low density will reduce lift, increase take off run, reduce maximum take off weight.

Where L

Lift Coefficient of Lift Density

TAS Wing area

3-3

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Airfields affected would be: i) ii) c)


High Denver

Nairobi
Khartoum

Saana Singapore

Hot

Bahrain

Humidity generally has a small effect on density (humidity reduces density), but must be taken into account at moist tropical airfields, e.g. Bahrain, Singapore.

Figure 3.2. An Illustration of Pressure Decrease with Height in Airmasses with Different Temperatures and therefore Different Densities

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Density Questions Consider the following statements relative to Air Density and select the one which is correct a) b) c) d) Because air density increases with decrease of temperature, air density must increase with increase of height in the International Standard Atmosphere (ISA). At any given surface temperature the air density will be greater in anticyclonic conditions than it will be when the MSL pressure is lower. Air density increases with increase of relative humidity. The effect of change of temperature on the air density is much greaterthan the effect of change of atmospheric pressure.

2.

The tropopause in mid latitudes is: a) b) c) d) Lower Lower Lower Lower in in in in summer with a lower temperature. winter with a higher temperature. summer with a higher temperature. winter with a lower temperature.

3.

Generally as altitude increases: a) b) c) d) temperature temperature, temperature temperature decreases and density increases pressure and density decreases and pressure increase and density decreases decreases and pressure density increases

4.

ln the troposphere: a) b) c) d) over cold air, the pressure is higher at upper levels than at similar levels over warm air over cold air, the pressure is lower at upper levels than at similar levels over warm air over warm air, the pressure is lower at upper levels than at similar levels over warm air the upper level pressure depends solely on the relative humidity below

5.

Density at the surface will be low when: a) b) c) d) Pressure Pressure Pressure Pressure is is is is high and temperature high and temperature low and temperature low and temperature is high. is low. is low. is high.

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DENSITY

Qucs
I

Answer B B B B D

2
]

4 5

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CHAPTER FOUR - SYNOPTIC CHARTS

Contents

Page 4. I 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 DEFINITION OBSERVATIONS. TIMING. PLOTTING DECODE. ANALYSIS PROGNOSTIC CHARTS EXERCISES .... ...... 4-I 4-I 4-2 4-2 .4-3 4-5 .4- 8 4-9

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METEOROLOGY 4. I DEFINITION

SYNOPTIC CHARTS

Synoptic Meteorology is defined as being concerned with a description of current weather represented on geographical charts and applied especially to the forecasting of future weather. 4.2 OBSERV AnONS Weather forecasting has always depended upon accurate observation of rhe weather prevailing and the availability of that information to all forecasters. Observations made at observing stations, will be encoded in a universally recognised numerical code (the SYNOP CODE), sent to a cenrral communication centre (in the UK the National Meteorological Centre (NMC), Bracknelf) and then re-transmitted to all interested parries in bulletin form. Figure 4.1. is an example of coded observations from London/Heathrow. You will not be required to decode such a message, but it is shown for information purposes.

0.,..--,

{:>

BLOCK NO (UK) STATION NO (LHR) ~

.9""

CLOUD COVER WIND VELOCITY (290/15) VISIBILTY PRESENT WEATHER PAST WEATHER ~ 1777 MSL PRESSURE DRY BULB PRESSURE

AMOUNT TYPE & LOW CLOUD ~ TYPE OF MEDIUM CLOUD 176'.,..


TYPE OF HIGH CI 01 JD

DEW POINT TEMP PRESSURE TENDENCY

009.
i:>7,j'

RAINFALL ~ MAX OR MIN TEMP 17-:;. AMOUNT TYPE & HEIGHT OF LOWEST CLOUD cI'~

0'""

AMOUNT TYPE & HEIGHT cl'6'ul OF SECOND CLOUD LAYER ~

Figure 4.1. Heathrow Weather

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METEOROLOGY 4.3 TIMING 'Main'


0900,

SYNOPTIC CHARTS

observations are made at 0000, 0600,1200


1500 and 2100 UTe.

and 1800 UTe: 'intermediate'

at 0300,

4. 4

PLOTTING The information fix each observing station is plotted in a standard format of numbers and symbols around the station on a geographical chart. Examples of a blank synoptic chart (Figure 4.2) and a station plot (Figure 4.3) are shown:

Figure 4.2. Synoptic Chart.

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DECODE A full decode of the numbers and symbols follow:

FORM OF HIGH CLOUD (DensefromCuAnvil) FORM OF MEDIUM CLOUD (Formed from spreading CuI \ ---'/ ~IGHT )/ AND AMOUNT OF MEDIUM CLOUD (6/8 at 12,000 ft) MSL PRESSURE (1012.4 mba) IN LAST 3 HRS

AIR

14.( /
124

/
/

I.....

PRESSURE

CHANGE

(1.5mbs) CH~~~~~~I~;SHANGE (1.5mb.)

15'{+-

/
AMOUNT OF LOWEST CLOUD (518)

./

5/15

.......... ~ FORM OF LOW CLOUD (LargeCu)

"<,

HEIGHT OF LOWEST (1,500tt)

CLOUD

Figure 4.4. Station Circle Decode.

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:1:

~ III ~
; IIi
:11

IT!

~f j Ii

II

Figure 4.5 The Station Circle Decode

METEOROLOGY

SYNOPTIC

CHARTS

!fthere are no symbols in the past weather position then it rneans that observed weather was not significant. Past weather can have double symbol (WI W2) eg Rain showers in the past 6 hours OR a double precipitation symbol as distinct from a single symbol: Rain showers throughout the past 6 hours. Rain in the past 6 hours. Rain throughout the past 6 hours (NOTE: not slight continuous rain).

2.

\l

3.

lf past weather has a double character but using different symbols e.g.

,
4.

0'

then the first symbol is the dominant characteristic. above would be respectively:

Hence the decode for the two examples

*•

Rain during the past 6 hours with some drizzle: Snow during the past 6 hours with some rain. Past weather is in the past 6 hours for synoptic times: 0000, 0600,1200,1800 z.

Past weather is in the past 3 hours for synoptic times: 0300, 0900, 1500,2100 z. Past weather reports for any other times refer to weather in the past hour. 4.6 ANALYSIS a) Isobars Once the data has been plotted on the chart, the meteorologist will draw in the isobars, using the plotted values ofQFF, usually for even whole numbers on a chart ofthis size. Charts covering a greater area, like the North Atlantic, may space the isobars every four or even eight millibars. Fronts. The positioning of fronts on the chart will require a little marc skill and a knowledge of the weather changes to be expected at frontal passage. It is common nowadays for this plotting procedure 10 be completely computerised and the resulting charts to be despatched by Fax. Figure 4.6. is an example of a completed (analysed) surface chart.

b)

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T,"" __ Figure 4.6. Analysed Chart.

1200 _611L __

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Z N
N

U t-

METEOROLOGY

SYNOPTIC

CHARTS

4. 8

EXERCISES We use a number of these synoptic charts in practical exercises in this course and you will need to be able to deduce the observed weather from the plotted station circles. A simple exercise using such a chart is appended to this chapter (Chart 85.3). It covers MSL pressure, pressure tendency and isobar values. More detailed exercises will follow later. STAnON CIRCLE DECODE EXERCISE (CHART 85/3)

What is the pressure and pressure tendency at the stations listed below and what is the value of the isobar to the south of each station? I. 2. 3.
4.

5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

48N SON 56N 47Y2N 53Y2N 51N 56Y2N 54N


5SV,N

05W 06W 04Y2W )W 13Y,W 15W 07W lOW 07Y2W

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CHARTS

ANSWERS PRESSURE 1004 1000 994 1006 996 1002 992 990 992 PRESSURE TENDENCY 1.4 Fal1!Slight rise 0.2 Slight fall/rise 0.1 Slight rise/fall 1.2 FaHlSlighl rise 0.0 Slight rise/fall 0.8 Fall/Slight rise 0.4 Fall/slight rise 0.8 Fall 0.4 Fall/steady

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CHAPTER FIVE - PRESSURE SYSTEMS

Contents

Page 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 5.8 5.9 5.10 5.11 5.12 5.13 5.14 5.15 5.16 INTRODUCTION DEPRESSIONS. DEPRESSION WEATHER ANTICYCLONES ANTICYCLONIC TROUGHS TROUGH WEATHER RIDGES RIDGE WEATHER. A RIDGE BETWEEN TWO LOWS COLS. COL WEATHER. .5.5-8 .5 - 8 WEATHER. 55-I 5-2 5-2 .5 - 4 .5 - 5 5-6 -7

. .. .. .. . .. ..

........ .......

5-8 5- 10 5 - II 5-11 5 - 12 5 - 13

PRESSURE SYSTEMS MOVEMENT. TERMINOLOGY BUYS BALLOT'S LA W. PRESSURE GRADIENT. PRESSURE SYSTEMS QUESTIONS.

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METEOROLOGY

PRESSURE

SYSTEMS

5.1

INTRODUCTION Isobars can form patterns, which when they are recognized, can help us forecast the weather. These patterns are called pressure distribution systems They include: a) b) c) d) e) f) Depressions, or lows. Anticyclones, or highs. Troughs. Ridges. Ccls. Secondary depressions (See Chapter 22)

.,,"

5.2

DEPRESSIONS A depression is a region of comparatively low pressure shown by more or less circular and concentric isobars surrounding the centre, where pressure is lowest. A depression is sometimes called a low or a cyclone. There are two types of depression, frontal and non-frontal. A depression is a region of converging and rising air as shown in Figure 5.2. Surface winds blow anticlockwise around a low (in the northern hemisphere) and across the isobars towards the centre. ,,"L' '-' ,,1'

Figure 5.1. A Depression in the Northern Hemisphere.

DIVERGENCE

>

-:7

ASCENT

..c...:..L...L.""",;,c_=C£..e...L...L.~.L.CL..L;,.c.J

Fig 5.2. Vertical Cross Section.

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5.3

DEPRESSION Cloud Precipitation

WEATHER 8/8 extending to tropopause and with a low base Can be continuous thundcrstonns. light to moderate and also heavy showers and

Visibility Temperature Winds

Poor in precipitation, otherwise good due to ascending air. Mild. Winds arc usually strong- the deeper the depression and the closer the isobars, the stronger the wind.

5.4

ANTICYCLONES An anticyclone or high is a region of relatively high pressure shown by more or less circular isobars similar to a depression but with higher pressure at the centre. Isobars are more widely spaced than with depressions. There are three types of anticyclone, warm, cold and temporary cold. They are regions of diverging and descending air. Surface winds blow clockwise in the N0I1hem Hemisphere and across the isobars away from the centre.

Figure 5.3 An Anticyclone in the Northern Hemisphere.

5-2

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SYSTEMS

Warm Anticyclones Wann anticyclones are caused by an excess of air at high level. The descending air will be heated by compression and surface temperatures will rise as a result. Warm anticyclones normally occur in lower latitudes. Cold Anticyclones These are caused by high density and low surface temperatures. As a result, cold anticyclones occur in Polar and high latitudes and are more seasonal (Winter) than warm anticyclones.

Figure 5.4. Vertical Cross Section.

Temporary

Cold Anticyclones

-,
50 N

A temporary cold anticyclone is produced in the cold air between depressions on the polar front. When eventually the cold air terminates the series of lows, the cold anticyclone may be of some size though not of great depth. Over the sea, and over the land in Summer, such an anticyclone will last only a few days to be replaced by the subsequent polar frontal depression.

Figure 5.5 A Temporary Cold Anticyclone.

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Blocking Anticyclones Warm anticyclones, which are often an extension of high pressure areas developed in the subtropical regions, may hold up or divert the normal west-east passage of polar front depressions and persist for several days. The diagram shows how the usual west-east flow becomes more north-south, or meridional as the effect of the extension of the Azores High affects the air flow. There is a decided tendency for blocking highs to persist in certain geographic areas such as 10 to 20W over the North Atlantic. The air within the systems is subsiding down from high levels and this means that extensive sheets of Stratus or Strata cumulus may develop but there will be little vertical extent. It is worth noting that a warm anticyclone, in the South, may join up with a cold anticyclone from the North to create this meridional flow.

Figure 5.3a. High from Azores to Scandinavia.

5.5

ANTICYCLONIC Cloud Precipitation Visibility Temperature Winds

WEATHER

None except on the edge of the anticyclone. None. Generally poorer than with a depression. Autumn/Winter - fog early morning and night. Summer - haze is possible, otherwise good. Dependent on type. Light.

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5.6

TROUGHS Troughs of [ow pressure are indicated by isobars extending outwards from an area of low pressure so that the pressure is lower in the trough than on either side.

Figure 5.6. A Trough of Low Pressure.

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METEOROLOGY 5.7 TROUGH WEATHER

PRESSURE

SYSTEMS

Cloud

Non-frontal:

Great vertical development of cloud - CU and CB.

frontal: The cloud will depend on whether cold air is overtaking warm, when the cloud tends to be as above, or ifwann air is overtaking cold, in which case the cloud is likely to have much Jess vertical development. Precipitation Showers, thunderstorms, hail, with non frontal orcold front; continuous drizzle, light or moderate rain with warm frontal trough. Fair except in showers, though at a warm frontal trough visibility will be poor in continuous rain. Moderate with gusts and squalls.

Vlsiblllty

Winds

@CrownCopyright

Figure 5.7. A Frontal Trough Extending from the North

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5.8

RIDGES Ridges of high pressure are indicated by isobars extending outwards from an anticyclone and always rounded, never V-shaped as seen in a trough. They arc also sometimes referred to as 'wedges'.

Figure 5.8. A Ridge of High Pressure.

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5.9

RIDGE WEATHER Ridge weather is similar to anticyclonic weather.

5.10

A RIDGE BETWEEN TWO LOWS A ridge often brings a period of good weather between two depressions

5.11

eOLS Cols are regions of almost level pressure between two highs and two lows. stagnation. This is illustrated in Figure 5.9.
It

is an area of

5.12

eOL WEATHER Col weather is normally settled, but is dependent on changing pressure. In autumn and winter co Is produce poor visibility and fog, whilst in summer thunderstorms are common. Figure 5.10 is an example of a weather forecast for a day when a col influenced the weather over the U.K.

5-8

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GENERAL SITUATION: Eastern counties of Englal1d and Scotland will be cloudy and misty at first with some showers. coast il sllould brighten up, although there is still a chan ~y~. The rest ctthe UK will become very ?£Od spells of sunshine. although a scattering of ~~areexpectedfrom late-.-momlngonwards

~~~;:~,D~cre::~ ~UI~;~i:d 1~~V:f1::o~~t ~a~;;~~


CHAN ISLES, LONDON. SE ENGLAND. CENT S ENG·LAND, SW wind. Max 73-79f. {23-26c} MIDLANDS, CENT N ENGLAND, NW ENGLAND, WALES, LAKE OIST, IOM~ N IRELAND: Warm and humid with sunny spells. A40% chartceof~ryshowers_ Lighlal1dv8nablewinds. Max 73-79f. (23-26c) oullater.

~:v~~~~.
;P~I~~~~~ Alight

~~~~~nf~ wind.

~~t~I~~~!~U~a~I~~~~~ Max 66-72f. (19-22c)

north-easterly

NE ENGLAND, SE SCOTLAND, EDINBURGH, DUNDEE, CENTRAL HIGHLANDS, ABERDEEN, MDRAY FIRTH, NE SCOTLAND: Showers at first. SUnr'iy spells and~aw"yfrom the coastlater oo. Alight,~ariablewir'ld. MaK64-7Of. (23-26c) SW SCOTLAND, NW SCOTLAND_._GLASGDW, ARGYLL: Warm

L..!!!!!!!!~~~_lf..:~::.J~"'!:~::.J

sunshine end a growing risk of ~~_ south-easterlywind. Max 70-751. (21-24c) ORKNEY, SHETLAND: ~y__!gg easterly wind. Max61c(16f) and low cloud.

A light south to

A light southVisibility'

~!!!I!!
rv-..../ '~._.o,

IIlodt drdu: r~ffJj in·C rFin br(Kk~ts). ArfI)WJ:: whi $pffdinmph. hUl.Vr~1rrmilJlbtvs(incJ.ntnbt~lI)

S_J±_DRTH S~ht north-easterly wind. 'Showers_ bioderate or cssr with !QgJ.'!atches. Slight seas DOVER STRAIT, ENGLISH CHANNEL, n~i~~i~~s~:;~~~. ST GEORGE'S

CHAN,

~~~~. S~7ti%~~r Slightsaas.

~~a!~:te~~~c~:r

OUTLOOK: Unsettled in the north-west; weather in the south--east

a good deal of fioe. warm

I~~~~~~f-}~~~r,~ t
"/gil Ii 14'1/1 drift nul hul mglrs K 0 #Ie JlQw _vr'l'Ig. lAw V i$ utmost SW-fjOlf(lry '!'ltl lAw X wifJ de_<tewp at if riml qNiCkly tMl'K-ardsl..(. .... Wit ltiJfdly mo'llll1l

POLLEN: A moderate count in the south, but high in the north end west away from coasts (Pollen forecast from the National Asthma Campaign.)

<7""

Figure 5.10. Col Weather.

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5.13

PRESSURE SYSTEMS MOVEMENT Weather patterns (pressure systems) vary across the globe. They are mobile in high latitudes while slow moving in equatorial latitudes. Patterns of isobars which indicate weather will retain (heir general shape while moving, but change their numerical value. Movement of the systems is the key to accurate forecasting. The following figures show the movement of weather over a period of four successive days.

Figure 5.11. Maintenance of Shape.

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5.14

TERMINOLOGY Depressions will fill up or decay as pressure rises. Depressions Depressions Anticyclones Anticyclones Anticyclones
will

deepen as pressure falls.

move rapidly. their average lifetime is 14 days. will build up as pressure rises will weaken or collapse as pressure falls. are very slow moving, they can last for a lengthy period, up to 6 months.

Cols last a few days only and are then absorbed into other systems. Changes of shape and intensity are slight in tropical regions where pressure is generally low, but in temperate and polar latitudes changes are much more varied and rapid. 5.15 BUYS BALLOT'S LAW In the 19th century the Dutch meteorologist Buys Ballot produced a law based on the observation of wind direction and pressure systems. Buys Ballot's Law states that..
[f an observer stands with his back to the wind, the [ower pressure is on his left in the northern hemisphere, and on his right in the southern hemisphere.

A corollary of this law is that if you are experiencing starboard drift in the northern hemisphere you are heading towards [ow pressure. This is illustrated in Figure 5.12.

I~IILOW:_~,. n ~r / ~/6...
••

~: "i ~!
:J:, !

ES~URE lfi

~~==£IGH
Figure 5.12. A Corollary

PRESSURE
of Buys Ballot's Law.

.+

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5.16

PRESSURE

GRADIENT

The pressure gradient is the difference in pressure between consecutive isobars divided by the distance between them, this is illustrated in Figure 5.13. Note. The greater the pressure change fOT a given distance the faster the wind velocity

Figure 5.13. Pressure Gradient.

Air tries to move from high to low pressure and this will generate a pressure gradient force which develops into the wind velocity that we feel. This will be discussed in full in chapter 11.

rr_."rBGr~dl .. 'fr.mAto P,••

0 0

102mb. IoZmb.

'n'lII mllH. orO.D2mblml '"~O", ......


,a."'rillmI

u,. Gradi.. , from c,.

Figure 5.14. Why Speed Depends on Gradient.

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PRESSURE

SYSTEMS

Pressure Systems Questions A trough of low pressure is generally associated with: a) b) c) d) 2. convergence causing increased cloud and precipitation divergence causing increased cloud and precipitation subsidence causing increased cloud and precipitation subsidence causing decreased cloud a':ld precipitation

A ridge of high pressure is generally associated with: a) b) c) d) convergence causing increased cloud and precipitation divergence causing increased cloud and precipitation divergence causing cloud to break up and rnore precipitation divergence and subsidence causing clear skies and good weather

3.

A small low established within the circulation of another [ow is called a) b) c) d) a trough a col an anticyclone a secondary depression pressure between two lows and two highs is called:

4.

An area ofindetenninate a) b)
c)

d) 5.

a a a a

trough ridge col saddle

A trough of low pressure is: a) b) c) d) a small low established within the circulation of another low an extension or elongation ofa low pressure system alongan axis on each side of which pressure Increases a centre of pressure surrounded on all sides by higher pressure an area where the pressure is lower than anywhere else in the area

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6.

If in the southern hemisphere an aircraft in flight at 2000 ft is experiencing starboard drift, the aircraft is flying towards: a) b) c) d) an area of high pressure an area of low pressure a warm front a depression

7.

ln the Southern Hemisphere, the surface winds at Bl; and C2 would be respectively: a) b) c) d) clockwise across the isobars away from the centre: and anti-clockwise across towards the centre. Anti-clockwise across the isobars towards the centre: and clockwise across away from the centre. Anti-clockwise across the isobars away from the centre: and clockwise isobars towards the centre. Clockwise across the isobars towards the centre: and Anti-clockwise across away from the centre. the isobars the isobars across the the isobars

8.

Subsidence in an anticyclone produces: a) b) c) d) saturated air and an inversion dry air and an inversion isothermal dry and stable air increased pressure at the surface

9.

With an anticyclone over the UK the expected weather is: a) b) c) d) Thunderstorms in summer, fog in winter. Stratus in summer with drizzle, CU and snow in winter. Clem skies or fair weather CU in summer, fog in winter Clear skies in summer with haze, cold frontal weather in winter.

Refer to appendix A and answer questions IOta 14 10. The pressure systems at A2; 8 I; 82; 83; and C2 are respectively: a) b) c) d) Depression; Anticyclone; Col; Ridge; and Trough. Ridge: Anticyclone; Col; Trough; and Depression. Trough; Depression; Col; Ridge; and Anticyclone. Ridge: Depression; Col; Trough; and Anticyclone.

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11.

Two important weather factors at 82 will be: a) b) c) d) Frontal weather in winter, fog in summer, Clear conditions in summer, thunderstorms in winter. Thunderstorms in summer, fog in winter. Fog in summer, thunderstorms in winter.

12.

Haze in summer and radiation fog in winter can be expected at: a) b) c) d) C2 83 B! 82

13.

In the non-frontal pressure system at B3, the expected weather a) b) e) d) ST SC with drizzle or light precipitation. Clear skies with moderate winds. CU CB with showers. Light winds and haze with an inversion

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ANSWERS

Ques I 2 3 4 5 6
7

Answer A D D C 8 A D

Ques 8 9 10 II 12 13

Answer D C D C
A

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CHAPTER SIX - ALTIMETRY

Contents

Page

6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4

THE ALTIMETER ALTIMETER SETTTNGS . TERM INOLOGY ALTIMETER ERRORS ALTIMETRY QUESTIONS

.6.6-3

6-5 6-5 ... 6 -7 6.6-8 .......

6.5 6.6 6.7 6.8 6.9

TERRAIN CLEARANCE. MINIMUM FLIGHT LEVEL TRANSITION ALTITUDE. TRANSITION LEVEL TRANSITION LAYER. ALTIMETRY QUESTIONS.

....

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6. I

THE ALTIMETER An altimeter is an instrument which measures pressure and causes a needle to move across a dial. The dial is calibrated in feet rather than pressure as we know that pressure decreases as altitude increases. The instrument is calibrated in accordance with the ICAO International Standard Atmosphere so that all altimeters will read the same altitude for the same pressure. (See previous notes on the need for the ISA). In addition, altimeters have a means of adjusting the needle setting to take changes in the surface atmospheric pressure into account. Figure 6.1. shows how the altimeter reading will change with a change in pressure. In Figure 6.2. section A, the pressure at the airfield, which is at sea level, is 1010 mb. The altimeter reads zcro feet. In section B, the pressure at the airfield has fallen to 1000 mb and t he altimeter, rather than showing a decrease in pressure, shows increase in height. Figure 6.1. A Simple Altimeter.

B
~MSl

Figure 6.2. The Altimeter Responding to Changes in Pressure.

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a)

When flying at a constant indicated altitude, outside air pressure must remain the same. To achieve this we must fly along a pressure level. However, when we fly to an area of lower pressure, these pressure lines will dip, consequently our true altitude will decrease. Conversely when flying into a region of higher pressure, the pressure lines will rise and our true altitude will increase.

HIGH TO LOW, LOOK 0l1T BElOWI

Figure 6.3

HIGHER PRESSURE; TRUE ALTITUDE> INDICATED ALTITUDE LOWER PRESSURE; TRVE AL TITVDE < INDICATED AL T1TVDE

b)

Varying temperatures within the atmosphere have significant effects on the pressure and the shape of the pressure lines. Cold air will tend to compact and lower pressure lines whilst warm air will expand and raise pressure lines. Using Figure 6.4 you can see that when flying to a colder area at a constant indicated altitude your true altitude decreases. Conversely, when flying into warmer region your true altitude will increase.

Figure 6.4

COLDER THAN ISA; TRVE ALTITUDE < INDICATED AL T1TVDE WARMER THAN ISA; TRUE ALTITUDE> INDICATED ALTITUDE c) There is a need to be able to reset the altimeter to take account of the fall in pressure. Consequently, if the altimeter is reset when the pressure changes, the altimeter will read correctly. We may, by altering the altimeter subscale setting, set QFE, QNH or SPS for use when we fly to ensure more accurate readings.

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METEOROLOGY 6.2 ALTIMETER QFE SETTINGS

ALTIMETRY

Airfield pressure, With this pressure set on the altimeter, the instrument will read zero on the ground, or the height of the aircraft above the airfield

Figure 6.5. Airfield Pressure - QFE,

QNH
This is the airfield pressure converted to MSL in accordance with the ICAO (SA. The altimeter will then read the height ofthe airfield above MSL, or the aircraft's height AMSL.

Figure 6.6. Mean Sea Level Pressure - QNH. Forecast QNH The lowest altimeter will pressure will altimeter will forecast QNH within an area. forecast for one hour ahead. The be in error, but as the setting is the lowest forecast, the actual always be higher, or at least equal to the forecast QNH, and the read low (or safe) or the correct altitude.

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Figure 6.7. Altimeter Setting Regions.


FO UK 70 FOQNH VALIDITY PERIOD 0070K 07011 13020 19998 25014 01992 08011 14015 20004 02995 09011 15017 21981 03003 10014 16987 22987 04007 110[4 17998 23001 05001 12019 189K9 24011 R.P_S
RUilON

EGRR

1100600

NUMBER

Note:

The Cotswold area where Kidlington is situated is No.1S on the above decode table.

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SPS

(Standard Pressure Setting) If the standard pressure of 1013 mb is set on the altimeter, the instrument will read what is known as pressure altitude height in the Standard Atmosphere. This is the altimeter setting used when flying above the transition altitude.

6.3

TERMINOLOGY Altitude Height Vertical distance above mean sea level. Vertical distance of a level or point measured from a specific height above a surface. Height when the datum is MSL. Surface of constant atmospheric pressure measured from the 1013.25 datum used for vertical separation by specified pressure intervals (usually 500 or 1,000 ft). Flight Level is measured in hundreds of feet.
e.g.,

datum, e.g.

Elevation Flight Level

FL 350 ~ 35,000 FT.

Figure 6.9 Altimetry Terminology. 6. 4 ALTIMETER ERRORS They are:

Apart from instrument errors, there are two errors of interest meteorologically. a)

Barometric Error - Errors caused by setting a pressure on the subscale other than the correct one.

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INDICATED

HEIGHT 4.000 FT

TRUE HEIGHT

3,850 FT

SUBSCALE SETTING 1010

TRUE MSL PRESSURE

1005 mb

Figure 6.10. Barometric Error. b) Temperature error - The altimeter is calibrated in accordance with the ICAO [SA. If the temperature is other than that in the lSA, the altimeter will be in error. Corrected altitude is calculated by using a navigational computer, or a correction table. HI-LO-HI will still apply. An example ofa temperature error correction is shown: TEMPERATURE ERROR CORRECTION
Any

ALTIMETER a)

Pressure altimeters are calibrated to indicate true altitude under ISA conditions. deviation from ISA will result in erroneous readings. When temperatures reading.

b)

are less than ISA an aircraft will be lower than the altimeter

c)

The error is proportional to the difference between actual and lSA temperature, and the vertical distance or the aircraft above the altimeter setting datum, i.e. height above touchdown. The error is approximately 4ft/I OOOtt for each °C of difference. To ensure adequate obstacle clearance on approach add figure in body of table to calculated DH/MDH.

d)

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ISA TEMP

HEIGHT FEET

ABOVE TOUCHDOWN

OR HEIGHT

ABOVE AERODROME

IN

DEVIATION 'C -15 -25 -35 -45 -55 -65

200 12 20 28 36 44 52

300 18 30 42 54 66 78

400 24 40 56 72 88 104

500 30 50 70 90 110 130

600 36 60 84 108 132 156

700 42 70 98 126 154 182

800 48 80 112 144 176 208

900 54 90 126 162 198 234

1000 60 100 140 180 220 260

QUESTIONS ON ALTIMETRY.

For all of the following questions assume that 1mb=27ft.

An aircraft is at an airfield with an elevation of 350 fl. The altimeter setting is 1002, but the actual QNH is 993. What is the altimeter reading? Assume that I mb = 27ft.

2.

An aircraft is on an airfield, elevation 190 ft and has an altimeter reading or70 fI with a setting of 1005. What is the actual QNH?

3.

What is the altimeter reading if the setting is 978, rho QNH 993 and the airfield elevation 770ft?

4.

The regional pressure setting is 1012, the altimeter setting is 1022 and the indicated altitude is 4100 ft. Ahead is some high ground shown on the map as being at 3700 ft. Willthe aircraft clear the high ground, and if so, by how much?

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METEOROLOGY 6.5 TERRAIN CLEARANCE

ALTIMETRY

The question above leads to another aspect of Altimetry - Terrain Clearance. Figure 6.12. explains what we need to know to determine this

TERRAIN

CLEArNCE

Figure 6.12 Terrain Clearance. 6.6 MINIMUM FLICHT LEVEL

To determine the minimum safe flight level that we can fly along a particular route, we should need to know the elevation of the highest ground/obstacle along OUf track, the minimum terrain clearance (varies with company regulations) and the QNH. Figure 6.13. shows how we should calculate MSFL.

Figure 6.13. Minimum Flight Level Calculation.

8
1012 1015 Fill in the blank following examples. Assume 1 mb
=

ALTIMETER SETTING 1010 1010 1010 1013 1013

TRUE ALTITUDE 4,060


"

ALTIMETER READING

5,000 650 560 10,500 8,500 35 125 0 0

spaces

in th

i~.

1020 999 1015 1017 1012

27ft

1027 993 1015

3,300 330 415 4,760

c
1025

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Altimetry Questions An aircraft is flying towards a mountain area falls to 989 mb mountain range will a) b) c) d) 2. 1400 ft 470 Ft 930 ft 563 n at 3000 feet indicated with the altimeter sub scale set to 1020 rub range with an elevation of 1600 feet. Ifduring the flight the QNH in the and the altimeter sub scale is not reset, the expected clearance over the be: (assume 27 feet = I rub)

When flying towards a depression at a constant indicated altitude, the true altitude will be: a) b) c) d) Lower than indicated. Higher than indicated. The same as indicated. Lower than indicated at first then the same as indicated later.

3.

The name given to the lowest forecast mean sea level pressure in an area is: a) b) c) d) QFE Regional QNH QFF QNE

4.

The Altimeter will always read a) b) c) d) With 1013setthealtitudeaboveMSL With airfield QNH set the height above the airfield datum The vertical distance above the pressure level set the correct flight level with regional QFE set.

5.

An aircraft at airfield P elevation 270 ft has the airfield QNH 1012 mbs correctly set. The altimeter setting is not changed. Later on landing at airfield Q elevation 450 ft the aircraft altimeter reads 531 fl. What is the correct QNH at airfield Q? (Assume 27 ft = 1mb) a) b) c) d) 1014.7 mbs 1009.3 mbs 1015mbs 1009 mbs

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6.

The altimeter subscale is set to 1030 mbs and the altimeter reads 4500'. What is the altitude of the aircraft? (Assume I mb = 27') a) b)
c)

QNH is 996 mbs

d) 7.

3480' 3990' 5418' 3582'

An aircraft flies over high ground 4730 metres' above rnsl. The track is 1400M and the QNH 995 mbs. The required clearance is a minimum of 1500' What is the minimum flight level in cloud? (Assume I mb=27') a)
b) c)

d)

175 195 190 215

An aircraft, flying at FL 100 at a constant RAS, flies from an area ofwann air into an area of cold air. The QNH is unchanged. How has the aircraft altitude and T AS changed? Altitude
a) b) c) TAS

d)

decreased Increased decreased Increased

increased increased decreased decreased

An aircraft flies on a track of356°M over high ground which rises to 4693 metres above msl. Drift is 10° Port and the regional QNH 993 mbs. The aircraft is required to clear this high ground by 1500'. What is the minimum quadrantal rules flight level? (Assume [ mb=27') a) b) c) d) [0 FL FL FL FL 210 205 190 185

QNH at Johannesburg is [025 hPa, elevation is [600m amsl. What is the QFE. (Assume I mb=8tn) a) b) c) d) IOOO.8'Pa 830.6 hPa 1002hPa 825 hPa

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11.

When flying from Paris (QNH 1012) to London (QNH 1015) at FL 100. You neglect to reset your altimeter but why does your true altitude remain the same throughout the flight. a) b) c) d) Paris has a higher pressure than London The air at London is warmer than Paris London is at a lower altitude than Paris The air at Paris is warmer than London

12.

An airfield in Holland is 20m below sea level, QFF is 1020 hPa, temperature at the surface is +30"C. What is the value ofQNH. a) b) c) d) impossible to determine Less than 1020 hpa Same as QFF More than 1020 hPa

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ANSWERS

Ques
I

Answers 0
A

2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
II

8 C 0 0 B C 0 0 0 B

12

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CHAPTER

SEVEN - TEMPERATURE

Contents Page

7.1 7.2 7.3


7.4

INTRODUCTION MEASUREMENT INSTRUMENTS. HEATING OF THE ATMOSPHERE TEMPERATURE LAPSE RATE INVERSIONS SURF ACE TEMPERATURE. TEMPERATURE QUESTIONS VARIATION WITH HEIGHT

.7-

7- I 7-2 7-4 7 -7 7-7 .7-7 .7 - 8 7 -18

7.5 7.6 7.7 7.8

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METEOROLOGY

TEMPERATURE

7.1

INTRODUCTION One of the important variables in the atmosphere is temperature. The study of temperature variation. both horizontally and vertically has considerable significance in the study of meteorology.

7.2

MEASUREMENT There arc three scales which may be used to measure temperature though only Celsius and Kelvin arc used in meteorology. The ligures show the melting point oficc and the boiling point ofwater (nr STP) in each scale. a) b) c) The FAHRENHEIT scale: +3210 +2 12 degrees. The CELSIUS (or Centigrade) scale: 0
10

+ 100 degrees.

The KELVIN (or Absolute) scale: +273 to +373 degrees.

Conversion factors:

(.56)

(1.8)

K = °CI

273

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TEMPERATURE

7.3

INSTRUMENTS The standard means of measurement on the ground is a mercury thermometer placed in a Stevenson Screen. Electrical resistence thermometers may be used where the Screen is nor readily accessible
to the observer.

Figure 7.1.

The Stevenson

Screen.

A Thermograph (similar in its output to a Barograph) will also be found inside the screen. The Stevenson Screen is a louvred box 4 feet (1.22m) above the ground. This screen, shown in Figure 7.1, is used worldwide.

Figure

7.2.

Thermograph.

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Upper air temperatures (Ire taken using a Radiosonde, shown in Figure 7.5, - a device transmitting continuous readings of temperature, pressure and humidity whilst being carried aloft beneath a balloon. Rate of climb is 1200 fpm and maximum ceiling between 65,000 and 115,000 n.
BALLOON

,
• 6

TEMPERATURE

t,\,
GROUND

RADAR REFLECTOR

RADIOSONDE

RADAR

Figure 7.3. A Radiosonde.

Aircraft readings, though often the only way in which atmospheric temperature may be measured over the oceans and other areas far away from meteorological stations, are notus accurate as they arc affected by compressibility and lag. The electrical thermometer will give a digital readout oftcmpcruturc and this can be automatically calibrated and transmitted on some modem aircraft.

~ ,..,~ ~

"'_"'~--=-,
, ~.._

~ ..
'C

--

.....

t;t-----_;___
.,~

/
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->./

Figure 7.4. Electrical Thermometer

7-3

METEOROLOGY 7. 4 HEATING OF TH E ATMOSPHERE The atmosphere is heated by 5 different processes: a) Solar Radiation. Radiation [TOm the sun is of Short wave-length through the atmosphere almost without heating it at all. A~ 0.151Q 4 microns (micron

TEMPERATURE

(/0..) and passes

106m)

Some solar radiation is reflected back to the upper air from cloud tops and from water surfaces on the earth. The rest of this radiation heals the earths surface. The process whereby the surface is heated by solar radiation is called insolation

Figure 7 .5, Solar Radiation. b) Terrestrial Radiation. The earth radiates heat at all times. microns, peaking <It 10 lt is absorbed and then retransmitted us heat by the water vapour and C02 in the atmosphere. This retransmission of heat to the surrounding air is the main method by which the atmosphere is heated and explains why the atmosphere reduces in temperature with an increase in height. It is heated from below hence there is a lapse rate.
It

is relatively long wave radiation A"" 4 to 80

Figure 7.6. Terrestrial Radiation.

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c)

Conduction. Air lying in contact with the earths surface by day will be heated by conduction. AI night air in contact with the earths surface will be cooled by conduction. Because of the air's poor conductivity, the air at a higher level will remain at the same temperature as during the day and an inversion will result.

Figure 7.7. Conduction. d) Convection. Air heated by conduction will be less dense and will therefore risco This will produce up currents called thermals or convection currents. These will take the warm air to the upper levels, thus helping to heat the upper atmosphere.

Figure 7.B. Convection Currents.

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e)

Condensation. As the air is lifted it will cool by adiabatic process and the water vapour in the air will condense out as visible droplets forming cloud. As this occurs latent heat will be released by the water vapour and this will heat the atmosphere.

t
Figure 7.9

WATER

VAPOUR

t ~tt

RISES

Latent Heat being released through Condensation.

Figure 7.10.

Heat Processes

in the Atmosphere.
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7.5

TEMPERATURE

VARIA TlON WITH HEIGHT

We have seen thai although our source of heat is the sun, because of the atmosphere's virtual transparency to insolation, it is in fact heated (by long wave TR) from the surface upwards. Thus as we move further and further from the surface we would expect the heating effects to diminish.
TEMPERATURE

Figure 7.11. Temperature Variation with Height 7. 6 LAPSE RATE The rate at which temperature falls with an increase in height is called the Lapse Rate. An ideal uniform atmosphere would show a constant lapse rate rather like the ISA, which is 1.98°C (2°) per 1000ft. 7.7 ISOTHERM If temperature remains constant with height it is called an isothermal layer. 7.8 INVERSIONS Where the temperature increases with an increase in height, then we have what is called an inversion. We have already seen that at night we can expect an inversion above the surface, but this can occur in many different ways. Radiation, on a night of clear skies, will also result in a temperature inversion above the surface. This is called a Radiation Inversion. When we look at cloud formation, we shall see that because of turbulence in the layer closest to the surface we can have an inversion at a height of 2 or 3 thousand feet. Quite often, at the tropopause for a few thousand feet. instead of the temp. remaining constant, it may show a slight rise

At the higher levels of the stratosphere, temp. will show an increase with height (in ISA from 65,617ft temperature increases at a rate of 0.3°/1 OOOft).

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In.a high pressure system, air descends at the centre. As the air descends it will be heated adiabatically (more of this later) and will be warmer than the air at a lower level. This is called a Subsidence Inversion.

lI I

m
TEMPERATURE
Figure 7.12. Inversions. 7.9 SURFACE TEMPERATURE

The surface air temperature measured in a Stevenson Screen is subject to considerable variations: Latitude Effect. Seasonal Effect, Diurnal Variation and multiple effects due to cloud and wind. a)
i)

The angular elevation of the sun. Latitude Effect. At the equator only a small area is affected by the suns rays and therefore will be subject to the greatest heat/unit area. At the poles the SUIlS fays will cover a larger area and there will be the least heat/unit area. The actual distance of polar regions from the sun is only fractionally more than that from the equator, and the effect may be ignored. Figure 7.13.

lOW

LATITUDE AREA

SMALL

The Effect of Latitude.

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ii)

. Seasonal Effect. On thep~(~~~1;~12 and 23 and Autumnal Equinoxes) the sun is directly overhead the equator and maximum heating occurs. On 21 June" ;tb~_ sun:i~.

Septe~~?'~;J\I~~:,y~rnal

TJjpic

"'0'[

C~ric-erand

overhead

the

maximum

heating will occur there. 111the Northern hemisphere the temperature will increase as the sun moves north and decrease as it moves South, reaching minimum about 23 December Figure 7.14. The Seasonal Effect. b) i) TimeofDay(Diurnal Variation).

The sun is at its highest elevation at noon, but for two to three hours after this time, the earth is receiving more solar radiation than it is giving up as terrestrial radiation (Thermal Inertia). As a result temperature is highest at about 15:00 (Tmax). From 15:00 onwards, the temperature falls continuously until a little after sunrise. The lowest temperature occurs at about 0500 (T min) C. Diurnal Variation is greatest with clear skies and little wind. DV varies with a number offactors, but in temperate latitudes is about ± 6 degrees about the mean. 0000 1200 1800 2400

ii)

iii)

JUST AFTER SUNRISE MINIMUM TEMPERATURE

,-------------------------------, !..._------------------------------, [" ,-,,-,,-,,-, -,,-,,- '-"OiU'R'NA-L"VA'RI'ATiciN-wiTH:


, --

: '" ....... DIURNAL VARIATION IN I , -,.-.,-.,-, -' -,,CLEAR.CALM CONDITION~

.. CLOUD COVER OR STRON"

L.._,_,,_._

.._ .._._ ..__

.~.I~.I? ._.. .. .. ._._.. ._.. .j .. _ _ _ _ __

Figure 7.15. Diurnal Variation.

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1.

Cloud cover by day. By day some ofthe solar radiation is reflected back by the cloud tops and T Max is reduced.

Figure 7.16. Cloud Cover by Day

Figure 7.17. Cloud Cover by Night.

2.

Cloud cover by night. By night terrestrial radiation is absorbed and radiated back to the earth's surface from the clouds. T min is increased.

Note. The so called greenhouse effect has a similar affect upon temperature as that of cloud cover by night but is generated differently in that long wave radiation fr0111 the Earth heats up the large quantities of carbon dioxide trapped in the lower levels of the atmosphere. This process continues day or night and is said to be leading to an overall increase in atmospheric temperature.

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3.

Effect of wind by day. By day wind will cause turbulent mixing of the warm air at the surface with cold air above, reducing T max. Wind will also reduce the time the air is in contact with the warm ground.

Figure 7.18. The Effect of Wind by Day. 4. Effect of wind by night. By night there will normally be an inversion above the surface and wind will cause cold air to be turbulently mixed with warm air above thus increasing T min.

Figure 7.19. The Effect of Wind by Night.

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In summary. wind on cloud cover will cause T max to be reduced and T min 10 be increased. Therefore DV will be reduced 5. DV over sea. As the Specific Heat (SH) of water is unity, compared to other substances whose SH is much less, and as the temperature rise is inversely proportional to the Specific Heat, the temperature rise and fall over the sea is srnall, generally less than 1°C. Nature of the Surface. i) Sea. The sea takes a long time to heat (and cool) and as we have seen has a very small DV. The difference in DV values between land and sea is the cause of sea breezes, The minimal DV of sea temperature is the reason why the most common form of fog, radiation fog, never fonns over the sea. When the angular elevation of the sun is low, much solar radiation is reflected back to the atmosphere.

c)

Figure 7.20. Diurnal Variation Over the Sea.

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ill

~ ~
ill

f-

'5

~ ~
»,

g>

;:?
I'-

c ro

:;;
N

ill

,..:

u:

~
CO

METEOROLOGY Ii)

TEMPERATURE Land. Bare rock, sand, dry soil, tarred roads and concrete runways attain a higher temperature by insolation than woods, lakes, grasslands and wet soil. The temperature difference between air above concrete runways and adjacent grass can be as much as 4 degrees. Higher temperature surfaces provide strong up currents called thermals or convection currents.

Figure 7.22. July Average Temperatures. In fig 7.23 we may note that the sea temperature remains "cool" in July in the Ncrtliern Hemisphere but the desert land areas of Africa and neighbouring Asia gel very warm. Air over snow covered surfaces is very cold. Some 80% of solar radiation is reflected from snow surfaces. Snow does not prevent the earth from radiating its heat. Hence surface air temperatures over snow will become colder day by day. Temperatures in Siberia can reach _72°C after 3 long cold winter. This very cold air results in high density and the development of anticyclones.

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d)

Location. i) Over Land. Air in a valley will tend to be more static than air in an exposed position. Therefore by night the air is in contact with the ground for a longer time and the air temperature is lower than on a hill. Additionally, in a valley, cold air tends to sink from the hills above at night, again causing lower temperatures. It is for these reasons that mist and fog tend to form firstly in valleys.

Figure 7.23. Location Effect.

ii)

Over Oceans. The fact that seas tend to have a very small DV of temperature has been stated above. On a wide scale this means that in winter the sea is wanner than the land and thus there is a widespread movement of air from land to sea (monsoon effect). There is an opposite tendency in summer.

Figure 7.24 Monsoon Effect in Winter

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e)

Origin of air supply. Air tends to retain its temperature and humidity for a considerable time, therefore air from high latitudes will bring lower temperatures to UK for example. A southerly wind, however, will normally provide an increase in temperature.

Figure 7.25 Origin of Air Supply

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Temperature Questions 1. The measurement of surface rcrnperature is made: a) b) c) d) 2. at at at at ground level approximately 10 metres from ground level approximately 4 feet above ground level approximately 4 metres above ground level

The purpose of a "Stevenson Screen" is to: a) b) c) d) maintain a moist atmosphere so that the wei bulb thermometer can function correctly to prevent the mercury freezing in the [ow winter temperatures protect the thermometer from wind, weather and from direct sunshine keep the wet and dry bulb thermometers away from surface extremes of temperature

lf rernperature remains constant with an increase in altitude there- is: a) b) c) d) 4. an inversion aloft uniformlapse rule an isothermal layer
an inversion

The surface of the earth is heated by: a) b) c) d) convection conduction long wave solar radiation short wave solar radiation

5.

Cloud cover will reduce diurnal variation of temperature because: a) b) c) d) incoming solar radiation is reflected back to space and outgoing terrestrial radiation is reflected back to earth incoming solar radiation is re-radiated back to space and atmospheric heating ·by convection will stop at the level of the cloud layer the cloud stops the suns rays getting through to the earth and also reduces outgoing conduction incoming solar radiation is reflected back to space and outgoing terrestrial radiation is re-radiated from the cloud layer baek to the surface

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METEOROLOGY 6. Diurnal a) variation ofthe surface temperature will: speed

TEMPERATURE

b) c)
d) Which

be unaffected by a change of wind decrease as wind speed increases increase as wind speed increases be at a minimum of the following in calm surfaces conditions is likely

to produce

a higher

than

average

diurnal

variation

of

temperature:

a)
b) c) d) 8. Most a) b)

rock or concrete water


SIlOW

vegetation accurate temperatures above ground level are obtained

by:

tephigram aircraft reports

c) d)

temperature probe radio sonde


by which energy is transferred from one body to another by contact is called:

The method

a]
b)

radiation
convection conduction

c) d)
[0.

latent heat
variation of temperature is:

The diurnal

a)
b) c) d) 11

greater over the sea than overland


less over reduced increased desert anywhere anywhere is heated areas then over as wind largely by: wave radiation surface of latent heat short wave radiation temperate of cloud increases grassland

by

the presence speed

The troposphere a) b) c) d) absorption radiation absorption conduction

of the sun's of heat from by ozone

short

from cloud the surface,

tops and the earth's convection

of the sun's

and the release

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12

An inversion is one in which: a) b) c) d) there there there there is no horizontal gradient of temperature is no change of temperature with height is an increase of temperature as height increases is a decrease of temperature as height increases

13.

The sun gives OU\ amount of energy with wavelengths. The earth gives out relatively amounts of energy with reiatively wavelengths: a) b) c) d) Large, Small, Large, Large, large, small, large, small, small, large. small, small, small. large. large. large.

14.

With a clear night sky, the temperature change with height by early morning is mostlikely
show:

to

a) b) c) d) 15.

steady lapse rare averaging 2 C per 1000 ft. A stable lapse rate I C per 1000 ft. An inversion above the surface with an isothermal layer above. An inversion [rom Ileal' the surface and a 2 C per 1000 ft lapse rate above.
A

or

Over continents and oceans, the relative temperature conditions are: a) b) c) d) Wanner in winter over land, colder in summer over sea Colder in winter over land, warmer in winter over sea. Cold in winter over land and sea, Wanner in summer over land and sea.

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ANSWERS

Quos
I 2 3 4

Answer C C
D D D

Ques 9
10 II 12 13 14 15

Answer C C
D

C
D

5 6 7 8

B
A D

D B

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CHAPTER EIGHT - HUMII)ITY

Contents

Page 8. I 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 8.8 8.9 8.10 8.11 8.12 DEFINITION OF LATENT HEA T EVAPORATION SATURATION CONDENSA TlON FREEZING MELTING SUBLIMATION HUMIDITY MEASUREMENT WET BULB TEMPERATURE . ..... . .... 8-1 8-1 8-1 .. 8-1 88-2 8-2 8-2 8-3 8-4 .8 - 4 .... 8-5 8-7

DRY-BULB AND WET-BULB HYGROMETER OR PSYCHROMETER DEWPOINT TEMPERATURE DIURNAL VARIA nON OF HUMIDITY

HUMIDITY QUESTIONS.

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