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Weather Patterns.

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Presentation on theme: "Weather Patterns."— Presentation transcript:

1 Weather Patterns

2 ???? What are 2 types of pressure systems?
What drives weather patterns? Why is it useful to understand weather patterns? What are some examples of severe weather?

3 High Pressure System A high pressure system is a large mass of circulating air with high pressure at its center and lower pressure outside the system.

4 Low Pressure System A low-pressure system is a large mass of circulating air with low pressure at its center and higher pressure outside of the system

5 Air Masses Air Masses are large bodies of air with distinct temperature and moisture characteristics. An air mass forms when a large high pressure system lingers over an area for several days. As a high pressure system comes in contact with Earth, the air in the system takes on the temperature and moisture characteristics of the surface below it.

6 Air Mass Classification
5 main air masses impact climate across North America Air masses are classified by their temperature and moisture characteristics Continental air masses form over land Maritime masses form over water


8 Air Mass Classification
Tropical air masses form in the warm equatorial regions Polar air masses form over cold regions Arctic and Antarctic air masses form near the poles, over the coldest regions of the globe.

9 Front A weather front is a boundary between 2 air masses.
Drastic weather changes often occur at fronts. Changes in temperature, humidity, clouds, wind and precipitation are common at fronts.

10 Cold Fronts When a colder air mass moves toward a warmer air mass, a cold front forms.

11 Warm fronts A warm front forms when lighter, warmer air moves toward colder, heavier air.

12 Stationary and Occluded Fronts
Stationary fronts form when air masses stall Occluded fronts form when a fast moving cold front catches up with a slower moving warm front

13 Severe Weather Thunderstorms have warm temperatures, moisture, and rising air, which may be supplied by a low pressure system. Thunderstorms have a three-stage life cycle: the cumulus stage, the mature stage and the dissipation stage.

14 Thunderstorm Life Cycle

15 Thunderstorm Stages The cumulus stage is dominated by cloud formation and updrafts After the cumulus stage, downdrafts, which are air currents moving vertically toward the ground, begin to form.

16 Thunderstorm Stages In the mature stage, heavy winds, rain, and lightning dominate the area

17 Thunderstorm Stages In the dissipation stage, updrafts stop, winds die down, lightning ceases, and precipitation weakens.

18 Tornados A tornado is a violent, whirling column of air in contact with the ground Tornados form when thunderstorm updrafts begin to rotate Tornado Alley is the name given to the area of the central United States that experiences the most tornados

19 Tornados

20 Hurricane and Blizzard
An intense tropical storm with winds exceeding 119 km/h is a hurricane. A blizzard is a violent winter storm characterized by freezing temperature, strong winds and blowing snow

21 Hurricane

22 Severe Weather Safety The U.S. National Weather Service issues watches and warnings for different types of severe weather A watch means that severe weather is possible A warning means that severe weather is already occurring

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