Meteorology Today 11th Edition
The world is an ever-changing picture of naturally occurring events. From drought and famine to devastating floods, some of the greatest challenges we face come in the form of natural disasters created by weather. Yet dealing with weather and climate is an inevitable part of our lives. Sometimes it is as small as deciding what to wear for the day or how to plan a vacation. But it can also have life-shattering consequences, especially for those who are victims of a hurricane or a tornado.
Weather has always been front-page news, but in recent years, extreme weather seems to receive an ever-increasing amount of coverage. From the record-setting tornadoes of 2011 to widespread drought in 2012 and the devastation wrought by Hurricane/Superstorm Sandy late that year, weather has enormous impact on our lives. The longer-term challenges of an evolving climate also demand our attention, whether it be rising sea levels, near-record global temperatures, intensified downpours, or the retreat of Arctic sea ice. Thanks in part to the rise of social media, more people than ever are sharing their weather-related observations, impressions, and photographs with the world at large. For these and many other reasons, interest in meteorology (the study of the atmosphere) continues to grow. One of the reasons that meteorology is such an engaging science to study is that the atmosphere is a universally accessible laboratory for everyone. Although the atmosphere will always provide challenges for us, as research and technology advance, our ability to understand and predict our atmosphere improves as well. We hope this book serves to assist you as you develop your own personal understanding and appreciation of our planet’s dynamic, spectacular atmosphere.
About This Book
Meteorology Today is written for college-level students taking an introductory course on the atmospheric environment. As was the case in previous editions, no special prerequisites are necessary. The main purpose of the text is to convey meteorological concepts in a visual and practical manner, while simultaneously providing students with a comprehensive background in basic meteorology. This eleventh edition includes up-to-date information on important topics, including climate change, ozone depletion, and El Niño. Also included are discussions of high-profile weather events, such as droughts, heat waves, tornado outbreaks, and hurricanes of recent years.
Written expressly for the student, this book emphasizes the understanding and application of meteorological principles. The text encourages watching the weather so that it becomes “alive,” allowing readers to immediately apply textbook material to the world around them. To assist with this endeavor, a color Cloud Chart appears at the end of this text. The Cloud Chart can be separated from the book and used as a learning tool any place where one chooses to observe the sky. Numerous full-color illustrations and photographs illustrate key features of the atmosphere, stimulate interest, and show how exciting the study of weather can be. After an introductory chapter on the composition, origin, and structure of the atmosphere, the book covers energy, temperature, moisture, precipitation, and winds. Next come chapters that deal with air masses and middle-latitude cyclones, followed by weather prediction and severe storms, including a newly separated and enlarged chapter devoted to tornadoes. Wrapping up the book are chapters on hurricanes, global climate, climate change, air pollution, and atmospheric optics.
This book is structured to provide maximum flexibility to instructors of atmospheric science courses, with chapters generally designed so that they can be covered in any desired order. For example, the chapter on atmospheric optics, Chapter 20, is self-contained and can be covered before or after any chapter. Instructors, then, are able to tailor this text to their particular needs.
Each chapter contains at least two Focus sections, which expand on material in the main text or explore a subject closely related to what is being discussed. Focus sections fall into one of five distinct categories: Observations, Special Topics, Environmental Issues, Advanced Topics, and Social and Economic Impacts. Some include material that is not always found in introductory meteorology textbooks, such as temperature extremes, cloud seeding, and the weather on other planets. Others help to bridge theory and practice. Focus sections new to this edition include “The Challenge of Predicting El Niño and La Niña” (Chapter 10), “The Forecast Funnel” and “The Forecast in Words and Pictures” (Chapter 13), “The Evolution of Tornado Watches and Warnings” (Chapter 15), and “Are Plant Hardiness Zones Shifting Northward?” (Chapter 17). Quantitative discussions of important equations, such as the geostrophic wind equation and the hydrostatic equation, are found in Focus sections on advanced topics. Set apart as “Weather Watch” features in each chapter is weather information that may not be commonly known, yet pertains to the topic under discussion. Designed to bring the reader into the text, most of these weather highlights relate to some interesting weather fact or astonishing event.
Each chapter incorporates other effective learning aids:
● A major topic outline begins each chapter.
● Interesting introductory pieces draw the reader naturally into the main text.
● Important terms are boldfaced, with their definitions
ap pearing in the glossary or in the text.
● Key phrases are italicized.
● English equivalents of metric units in most cases are immediately provided in parentheses.
● A brief review of the main points is placed toward the middle of most chapters.
● Each chapter ends with a summary of the main ideas.
● A list of key terms with page references follows each chapter, allowing students to review and reinforce their know1edge of key concepts.
● Questions for Review act to check how well students assimilate the material.
● Questions for Thought require students to synthesize learned concepts for deeper understanding.
● Problems and Exercises require mathematical calculations that provide a technical challenge to the student.
● References to more than 15 Concept Animations are spread throughout the chapters. These animations (several of which are new) convey an immediate appreciation of how a process works and help students visualize the more difficult concepts in meteorology. Animations can be found in MindTap, accessed through CengageBrain.com.
● At the end of each chapter are questions that relate to articles found on the Global Geoscience Watch website available on its own or via MindTap. Three appendices conclude the book.
In addition, at the end of the book, a compilation of supplementary reading material is presented, as is an extensive glossary. New to this edition are Online Appendices that allow students access to a wide variety of supplemental material, including tools for weather prediction and background on watches, warnings, and advisories. On the endsheet at the back of the book is a geophysical map of North America. The map serves as a quick reference for locating states, provinces, and geographical features, such as mountain ranges and large bodies of water.
CHaPter 1 Earth and Its Atmosphere 3
CHaPter 2 Energy: Warming Earth and the Atmosphere 31
CHaPter 3 Seasonal and Daily Temperatures 59
CHaPter 4 Atmospheric Humidity 93
CHaPter 5 Condensation: Dew, Fog, and Clouds 115
CHaPter 6 Stability and Cloud Development 145
CHaPter 7 Precipitation 169
CHaPter 8 Air Pressure and Winds 199
CHaPter 9 Wind: Small-Scale and Local Systems 229
CHaPter 10 Wind: Global Systems 265
CHaPter 11 Air Masses and Fronts 295
CHaPter 12 Middle-Latitude Cyclones 321
CHaPter 13 Weather Forecasting 347
CHaPter 14 Thunderstorms 383
CHaPter 15 Tornadoes 415
CHaPter 16 Hurricanes 439
CHaPter 17 Global Climate 471
CHaPter 18 Earth’s Changing Climate 501
CHaPter 19 Air Pollution 535
CHaPter 20 Light, Color, and Atmospheric Optics 565
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