What happens when air masses meet
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What happens when air masses meet?. What is an air mass?. Large volume of air with uniform temperature and humidity readings Gets its characteristics from where it forms Continental : forms over land (dry) Maritime : forms over water (moist) Tropical : forms near equator (warm)

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What is an air mass
What is an air mass?

  • Large volume of air with uniform temperature and humidity readings

  • Gets its characteristics from where it forms

  • Continental: forms over land (dry)

  • Maritime: forms over water (moist)

  • Tropical: forms near equator (warm)

  • Polar: forms nearer poles (cold)


Continental Air Masses

Tropical (cT)

Polar (cP)


Maritime Air Masses

Tropical (mT)

Polar (mP)


What happens when different air masses meet

What happens when different air masses meet?

Boundary between two different air masses is a:

FRONT


Types of fronts
Types of Fronts

  • Cold Front

  • Warm Front

  • Stationary Front

  • Occluded Front




Cold front
Cold Front

  • Cold air moves in, replaces warm air

  • Cold air is more dense than warm air

  • Cold air pushes warm air up

  • Tall clouds form (cumulus and cumulonimbus)


  • Clouds are right along the front

  • Precipitation is brief, but heavy (thunderstorms)

  • Band of precipitation 75 miles around front

    (about 50 miles ahead and 25 miles behind)



  • Air pressure is lowest at front

  • After front passes: colder air mass

    temperature drops

    skies clear

    pressure increases

  • Cold fronts move faster than warm fronts

    (about 30 mph)



Warm air moving into cold

Warm air moving into cold

Predictions?



What happens with a warm front
What happens with a warm front?

  • Warm air mass advances and replaces cold air mass

  • Warm air is less dense than cold

  • Warm air rides above the colder air


Warm front
Warm Front





As the front passes
As the front passes: period (several hours or days)

  • Temperature increases

  • Skies clear

  • Pressure increases


Weather map symbol1
Weather map symbol period (several hours or days)


Fronts boundary that separates 2 air masses with different temperatures
Fronts – boundary that separates period (several hours or days)2 air masses with different temperatures


Clouds: altostratus period (several hours or days)

Warm front


Cold Front period (several hours or days)


HINT: sudden burst of intense rain over a small area period (several hours or days)

Cold Front


HINT: this is a squall line period (several hours or days)

Cold front


Stratus clouds: period (several hours or days)

warm front


Clouds on Monday period (several hours or days)

Clouds on Tuesday

Warm front


Another squall line: COLD FRONT period (several hours or days)

Robin Brueckner 2004


HINT: low gray clouds, long period of light snow period (several hours or days)

WARM FRONT!!!!!!!!


Cold Front period (several hours or days)


Cold front period (several hours or days)

Sharp break between air masses


Stationary Front period (several hours or days)


Stationary front
Stationary Front period (several hours or days)

  • A stationary front occurs when the air masses on either side of the front are not moving toward each other.


Stationary front1
Stationary Front period (several hours or days)

  • Neither air mass pushes into the other

  • Generally causes unsettled conditions

    • Rain, clouds, etc…

  • Flooding may occur if front does not pass


Occluded front warm air mass gets caught between 2 colder air masses and is forced aloft
OCCLUDED FRONT period (several hours or days)Warm air mass gets caught between 2 colder air masses and is forced aloft


Formation of an Occluded Front period (several hours or days)


Occluded front
Occluded Front period (several hours or days)

  • A cold air mass catches up to another cold air mass

  • Warm air is ‘squeezed’ out in the middle

  • Causes precipitation


Important vocabulary
Important Vocabulary period (several hours or days)

  • Air mass

    • (cT, cP, mT, mP, cA)

  • Front

  • Warm front

  • Cold front

  • Occluded front

  • Stationary front


Winds spiral clockwise out of the High and counterclockwise into the LowFronts are low pressure – lousy weatherAfter the front passes – happy weather


Weather in a high
Weather in a High into the Low

  • Clockwise Rotation

  • Bright, Clear

  • Happy Weather



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