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Chapter 7: Water and Atmospheric Moisture Notes

by: Alexandra Reshetova

Chapter 7: Water and Atmospheric Moisture Notes Geog 1112

Marketplace > Georgia State University > Geography > Geog 1112 > Chapter 7 Water and Atmospheric Moisture Notes
Alexandra Reshetova
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Hope these help!
Aneela Qureshi (P)
Class Notes
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Alexandra Reshetova on Thursday February 25, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Geog 1112 at Georgia State University taught by Aneela Qureshi (P) in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 86 views. For similar materials see INTRO TO WEATHER & CLIMATE in Geography at Georgia State University.


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Date Created: 02/25/16
Chapter 7: Water and Atmospheric Moisture Water’s Unique Properties  Three states of water occur naturally (due to Earth’s distance from the sun)  Three states of water = ice, liquid, vapor  Water = H2O  Hydrogen = positive charge  Oxygen = negative charge  Polarity result = water molecules attract each other  Hydrogen Bonding = positive side attracts negative side of molecule  Surface Tension  Capillarity = hydrogen bonding causes this; example - when you dry something with a paper towel  Meniscus = inwardly curved surface of water  Capillary Action = component of soil-moisture processes Phase Changes and Heat Exchange  Heat energy added or released = change from ice to liquid to vapor  Phase Change = change between states  Melting, Freezing = change between solid and liquid  Condensation = water vapor in the air becomes a liquid  Evaporation = liquid water becomes water vapor  Vaporization = water is at boiling temperature  Deposition = water vapor attaches directly to an ice crystal (leads to frost)  Sublimation = ice changes to water vapor directly Ice, the Solid Phase  Water Cools = goes up in density  Water cooled to greatest density = still in liquid phase  Hexagonal (6-sided) crystalline structure formed from continued cooling  Temperature goes below freezing = ice expands in volume; decreases in density Water, the Liquid Phase  Water as liquid = noncompressible fluid  Ice to water = heat energy has to increase the motion of water molecules (to tear some of the hydrogen bonds)  Ice and water = measures zero degrees; 32 degrees Fahrenheit  Latent Heat = heat energy of a phase change (hidden)  Phase change reversed = latent heat released  Latent Heat of Melting and Freezing = 80 cal/g Water Vapor, the Gas Phase  Water vapor = compressible and invisible  Molecules = move independently  Latent Heat of Vaporization = 540 calories are absorbed (liquid to vapor induced by boiling)  Latent Heat of Condensation = 540 calories are released or given up (water vapor to liquid)  Latent Heat of Sublimation = absorbs 680 cal (ice to vapor) Latent Heat Transfer Under Natural Conditions  Latent Heat of Evaporation = most important cooling process in Earth’s energy budget  Satellites = monitor water vapor in lower atmosphere  Water Vapor = absorbs infrared wavelengths (long)  Water Vapor = greenhouse gas; concentrate tied to temperature  Global temperatures go up = evaporation increases Humidity  Humidity = the amount of water vapor in the air Relative Humidity  Most common measure of humidity in weather reports  Relative Humidity = a ratio of the amount of water vapor that is actually in the air compared to the maximum water vapor possible in the air at a given temperature; varies due to changes from water vapor and temperature  Formula for calculating Relative Humidity : (Actual Water Vapor in the Air)/ (Maximum water vapor possible in the air at that temperature) x100  Warm air = increases evaporation rate from water surfaces  Cool air = increases condensation rate of water vapor onto water surfaces  Saturation Equilibrium = rates of evaporation and condensation can reach equilibrium at some point Saturation and Dew Point  Saturation = 100% relative humidity  Dew-point Temperature = the temperature at which a given sample of vapor- condensing air becomes saturated and net condensation starts to form water droplets Daily and Seasonal Relative Humidity Patterns  Temperature increases = relative humidity goes down  Relative Humidity highest = at dawn  Relative Humidity lowest = late afternoon  Rate of evaporation = varies from morning to afternoon Specialized Expressions of Humidity  Vapor Pressure and Specific Humidity = used to express humidity and relative humidity Vapor Pressure  Vapor Pressure = the share of air pressure that is made up of water-vapor molecules  Saturation vapor pressure = air that has as much water vapor as possible at a given temperature Specific Humidity  Specific Humidity = the mass of water vapor per mass of air at any specified temperature  Maximum Specific Humidity = the maximum mass of water vapor possible in a kilogram of air at any specified temperature Instruments for Measuring Humidity  Hair Hygrometer = uses the principle that human hair changes as much as 4% in length; connects a standardized bundle of human hair through a mechanism to a gauge; as hair absorbs or loses water in the air, it changes length, indicating relative humidity  Sling Psychrometer = contains two thermometers mounted side by side  Dry-Bulb Thermometer = records the surrounding air temperature  Wet-Bulb Thermometer = set lower in the holder, bulb is covered by a moistened cloth wick Atmospheric Stability  Parcel = a body of air that has specific temperature and humidity characteristics  Two opposing forces decide the vertical position of parcel 1. Buoyant Force 2. Gravitational Force  Stability = the tendency of an air parcel either to remain in place or to change vertical position by ascending (going up) or descending (going down)  Air parcel stable = resists displacement upward (also when disturbed tends to go back to its starting place)  Air parcel unstable = continues to go up until it reaches an altitude where the surrounding air has a density and temperature similar to its own Adiabatic Processes  Stability or instability of air parcel = depends on two temperatures 1. temperature inside 2. temperature outside  The difference between inside and outside determine stability  Ascending Parcel of Air = cool by expansion  Descending Parcel of Air = heat by compression  The cooling and heating mechanisms = adiabatic  Diabatic = occurring with an exchange of heat  Adiabatic = occurring without a loss or gain of heat; measured with one of two rates depending on moisture (DAR-Dry Adiabatic Rate and MAR-Moist Adiabatic Rate) Dry Adiabatic Rate  DAR = the rate at which dry air cools by expansion as it rises or heats by compression as it falls  Dry = air less than saturated  Average DAR = 10 degrees Celsius / 1000 m Moist Adiabatic Rate  MAR = the rate at which an ascending air parcel that is moist, or saturated, cools with expansion  Average MAR = 6 degrees Celsius / 1000 m  MAR is lower than DAR because of the latent heat of condensation  MAR is lower than DAR = in warm air  MAR and DAR are similar = in cold air Stable and Unstable Atmospheric Conditions  Temperature relations (in the atmosphere) make three conditions: 1. Unstable 2. Conditionally Stable 3. Stable  Examples of Lifting Mechanisms: mountain range, surface heating, weather fronts  The Environmental Place Rate is between DAR and MAR = conditions are not stable or unstable Clouds and Fog  Clouds can tell : moisture content, stability, and weather  Clouds form = air becomes saturated with water Cloud Formation Processes  Cloud = an aggregation of tiny moisture droplets and ice crystals that are suspended in the air; they are big enough in volume and concentration to be seen  Fog = a cloud in contact with the ground  Moisture Droplet = approximately 20 micrometers in diameter  Air parcel goes up = may cool to 100 percent relative humidity and dew point temperature  Cloud-Condensation Nuclei = microscopic particles that are present in the atmosphere all the time  Nuclei come form = soot, ash, dust, particles from burned fuel  Collision-Coalescence Process = involves falling coalescing droplets and warmer clouds  Bergeron Ice-Crystal Process = super cooled water droplets evaporate and are absorbed by ice crystals that grow in mass and fall Cloud Types and Identification  Altitude and Shape = important to cloud classification  Stratiform = flat and layered clouds with horizontal development  Cumuliform = puffy and globular clouds with vertical development  Cirroform = wispy clouds (generally quite high in altitude; made of ice crystals)  Low Clouds = Stratus, Stratocumulus, Nimbostratus  Middle Clouds = Altostratus, Altocumulus  High Clouds = Cirrus, Cirrostratus, Cirrocumulus  Vertically developed = Cumulus, Cumulonimbus  Stratus Clouds = gray, dull, featureless; when start to rain, they are called: nimbostratus  Cumulus Clouds = puffy, bright (cotton balls)  Stratocumulus Clouds = lumpy, low-level, grayish  Altocumulus Clouds = a lot of styles such as: wave patterns, patchy rows, lens-shaped  Cirrus Clouds = can indicate on oncoming storm  Cumulonimbus Clouds = thundercloud Processes That Form Fog  Fog = cloud layer on the ground (sight restricted to less than 1 km)  Presence of fog = the air temperature and the dew point temperature are almost identical at the ground level (saturated conditions)  Fog = warm (almost all fog)  Moisture droplets of fog = above freezing  Supercooled fog = moisture droplets below freezing; can be dispersed by means of artificial seeding with ice crystals Radiation  Radiation Fog = when radioactive cooling of a surface chills the air layer directly above that surface to the dew point temperature (saturated conditions)  Radiation Fog = does not occur over water but over moist ground Advection  Advection fog = when air in one place moves to another place where conditions are right for saturation  Upslope Fog = forms when moist air flows to higher elevations along a mountain or hill  Valley Fog = associated with topography; cool air is denser than warm air and it settles in low-lying areas; chilled and near the ground Evaporation  Evaporation Fog = steam fog; forms when cold air lies over the warm water of an ocean, or lake; can form as water molecules evaporate from the water surface into the cold overlying air (humidifies the air to saturation, then to condensation to make fog)


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