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Textbook: Meteorology Understanding the Atmosphere 2 nd Edition Ackerman & Knox Prof. Steve Ackerman University of Wisconsin 2009 Teaching Excellence Award American Meteorological Society your topics of interest in ATSC 2000 topics I propose we cover in this course

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Textbook:

Meteorology

Understanding the Atmosphere

2nd Edition

Ackerman & Knox

Prof. Steve Ackerman

University of Wisconsin

2009 Teaching Excellence Award

American Meteorological Society



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topics I propose we cover in this course

and of course Chapter 1) Introduction


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chapter 1: Introduction

1.1 Weather vs climate

1.2 Atmospheric composition

  • Focus on greenhouse gases

    1.3 Atmospheric structure

  • Focus on the ozone hole


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History of meteorology

  • Babylonians, Chinese: astrometeorology

  • Aristotle: “meteorologia”

  • 16th-17th century: instruments and scientific method (Descartes)

    • barometer (Torricelli, 1643, mercury)

    • thermometer (Galileo, 1592, Fahrenheit, 1714)

  • 1843: real-time data via telegraph

  • 1920’s: polar front theory (Bergen school)

  • 1940’s: upper-air observations (radiosondes)

  • 1950’s: radar

  • 1960’s: first satellites and NWP models


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Chapter 1.1: weather vs. climate

weather …our own weather server

more weather links


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Hurricane Katrina

8/28/05 17 UTC


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precipitation

topography


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January mean temperature

North America

Europe

London

Boston

Scotland in March

Off Labrador in March



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  • Weather:

    • A depiction of the state of the atmosphere at one point in time.

  • Climate:

    • A depiction of the ‘typical’ weather, based on observations taken over a period of time.


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Yesterday’s high in Laramie was 69°F

That’s 4 degrees below the average high for this time of the year.

Which one is a statement about weather, which one about climate?

Click here for the current Laramie weather forecast


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weather or climate ?

from 3-monthly to daily precip


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weather or climate ?

image source


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What is an ‘anomaly’?

  • A departure from ‘normal’.

    • Especially climate data are often shown as anomalies, e.g. a drought.



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The atmosphere, like any other fluid, behaves chaotically

Edward Lorenz, 1963: Deterministic nonperiodic flow. Journal of Atmospheric Sciences. Vol.20 : 130—141.

Edward Lorenz in Wikipedia


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“climate” is not constant!

last 150,000 years

last 1,000 years




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regional variations in long-term change: USA

US temperature trend 1941-2005



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Can we predict climate fluctuations?

  • We know that weather becomes unpredictable after ~10 days

  • So how can the CPC produce a seasonal outlook for the drought?

  • Climate anomalies tend to persist for some time, months to seasons.

  • Why ?



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El Niño has global impacts... equatorial Pacific


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El Niño has some effect on precipitation in the US. equatorial Pacific

winter precipitation anomaly

Why?


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1998 El Niño: SST & jet stream equatorial Pacific

anomalous

sea surface temperature

jet stream


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Coupled atmosphere-ocean models predict the SST out to about a year.

An El Niño is predicted for next winter …

source


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Conclusion: there is some limited guidance for the season ahead, but wrong predictions should not be a surprise.

  • That does not mean that long-term climate change is even less certain.

  • We cannot predict that July 2035 will be an ‘unusually’ warm month compared to what is typical then, but we are confident that that the 2030s will be warmer than the current decade.

  • This is based on climate model predictions that take into account changes in greenhouse gases, earth surface conditions, and clouds.


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Predicted global mean temperature change between 2000 and 2100 for 5 different CO2 emission scenarios.

source


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Both study the atmosphere 2100

Key atmospheric observations



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360 ppm 2100




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The long-term rise in CO 2100 2 levels parallels fossil fuel use.




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Pop quiz 2100

  • The Earth’s atmosphere consists mostly of:

    • a: carbon dioxide;

    • b: oxygen;

    • c: water vapor;

    • d: nitrogen.


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Discussion 2100 : our atmosphere is key to the habitability of the Earth. Are we alone in that regard, or do other planets have an atmosphere as well ?



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Pop quiz 2100

  • Compared to the Earth, both Mars and Venus:

    • a: are warmer;

    • b: have a higher surface pressure;

    • c: are closer to the Sun;

    • d: have relatively more CO2 in their atmosphere.



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radiosonde balloon 2100

satellites

real-time soundings plotted



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Pop quiz 2100

  • The lowest two layers of the atmosphere are:

    • a: thermosphere, stratosphere;

    • b: troposphere, ionosphere;

    • c: mesosphere, stratosphere;

    • d: troposphere, stratosphere.



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Aurora Australis, May ’91 2100

Space Shuttle Discovery


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O 2100 3


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“Good”: Stratospheric ozone, which screens out much of the incident UV radiation from the sun.

“Bad”: Tropospheric ozone, an anthropo-genic air pollutant , damages health and the environment.

“Good” vs. “Bad” Ozone


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Chapman cycle the incident UV radiation from the sun.textbook, p. 446-449

Formation:

  • O2 +hn 2O (l<0.25 mm - UV-c)

  • O + O2 + M  O3 + M

  • O3 +hn O + O2 (l<0.31 mm - UV-b)

  • O + O3 2 O2

Destruction:


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CFC gases destroy the “good” ozone the incident UV radiation from the sun.

Montreal protocol (1987): complete phase-out of CFC production


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UV radiation penetrating to the Earth surface the incident UV radiation from the sun.

Laramie (2.2 km)

UV-c

UV-b

UV-a

(skin cancer, eye cataracts ...)


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O the incident UV radiation from the sun.3

M


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Surface observations the incident UV radiation from the sun.


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Surface observations the incident UV radiation from the sun.

temperature (°F)

sea level pressure (mb)

weather

5

wind direction and speed

visibility (miles)

dewpoint (°F)

cloudiness

learning applet


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Weather symbols the incident UV radiation from the sun.


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Cloud cover the incident UV radiation from the sun.


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Sea level pressure the incident UV radiation from the sun.

If reported value greater than 500:

Initial 9 is missing. Place it on left, then divide by 10.

For example: 827 becomes 982.7 mb.

If reported value less than 500:

Initial 10 is missing. Place it on left, then divide by 10.

For example: 027 becomes 1002.7 mb.


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speed the incident UV radiation from the sun.

wind

1 Knot = 1.15 MPH

direction


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current surface observations the incident UV radiation from the sun.


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summary the incident UV radiation from the sun.

  • Chapter 1, intro to the atmosphere

    • weather vs climate

    • vertical structure of the atmosphere

    • atmospheric gas composition

  • Chapter 15, human influence on climate

    • climate change (p. 441-443 and p. 453-464)

      - to be revisited


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