Study Guide questions from Lutgens and Tarbuck Earth Science.



Study guide answers have to be posted by 2-1-2007. Late posting will result in a lower grade for your answer.


1. What is standard sea level pressure in Millibars? In inches of mercury? In pounds per square inch? Alexis Martin

    • 1013.2 millibars
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** 29.92 inches of mercury
    • 14.7 pounds per square inch
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2. Mercury is 13 times heavier than water. If you built a barometer using water rather than mercury, how tall would it have to be to record the standard sea level pressure (in centimeters)?Amy Walker


The height of standard sea level pressure in a water barometer that is 13 times higher then mercury is 988 cm.

3. Describe the principle of the aneroid barometer.Ben Lee

    • Answers and Comments

4. What force is responsible for generating wind?Brandon Davis

    • gradient force pressure.

5. Write a generalization relating the space of isobars to the speed of the wind. Brendon Cooke

    • Isobars that are close together mean high wind speeds. Isobars that are far apart represent low wind speeds.

6. How does the Coriolis Effect modify air movement? Cody Dunn

    • In the Northern Hemisphere, wind has an apparent deflection to the right. In the Southern Hemisphere, wind has an apparent deflection to the left.
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7. Contrast surface winds and upper-air winds in terms of speed and direction.

Courtney Wilkins

    • In a cyclone, surface winds move together and speed is lower. In a cyclone, upper air winds move apart and the speed is higher. In an anticyclone, all is opposite.
      • How does the Corolis effect differ for winds at the surface and winds at upper levels of the atmosphere? At the surface wind direction is deflected by teh C effect and surface friction. Surface friction tends to retard the amount of turn caused by the C effect. In upper level winds there is no frictional influence so the wind is free to turn till the pressure gradiant force is balanced by the C force and the wind flows parallel to the isobars. (finn)
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8. Describe the weather that usually accompanies a drop in barometric pressure and a rise in barometric pressure. Daivid Montgomery

    • Drops in barametric pressure tend to cause bad, unstable weather while rises tend to be accompanied by good, stable weather.

9. Describe the winds associated with surface cyclones and anticyclones in both the northern and southern hemisphere. Jamison Jones

    • In the northern hemisphere a surface cyclone's winds blow counterclockwise, and an anticyclone's blows clockwise.
    • In the southern hemisphere a surface cyclone's winds blow clockwise, and an anticyclone's blows counterclockwise.

10. If you live in the Northern Hemisphere and are directly west of the center of a cyclone, what most probably will be the wind direction? Jared Taylor

    • Inward(convergence)
    • Counterclockwise
      • Jared the key word here is what is the direction of the wind. In this particular case the wind would end up being from the North.This is the result of being on the back side of a cyclone.(Finn)
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o What about an anticyclone?

      • Outward(divergence)
      • Clockwise

11. The following questions relate to the global pattern of air pressure and winds:

o The trade winds diverge from which pressure zone? Jeremy Widemire

      • The trade winds diverge from the ITCZ, inter tropical convergence zone.
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o Which prevailing wind belt converges in the stormy region known as the polar front?

      • Answers and Comments

o Which pressure belt is associated with the equator?Josh Stone

      • The equatorial low pressure belt is associated with the equator.

12. What influence does upper airflow seem to have on surface pressure systems? Joshua Langham

    • Upper atmospheric pressure cause the air to travel from high areas of surface pressure to low areas of surface pressure, changing the configuration of that particular pressure sysyem.

13. Describe the monsoon circulation of India. Katie Hall

    • one side of india is very wet while the other side is very dry then the opposite occurs the rest of the year.

o Which unlikely area of the United states has a monsoon season?

      • Answers and Comments

14. What is a local wind? Kevin Coalter

    • the local winds are caused either by topographic effects or by variations in surface composition- land and water- in the immediate area
      • There is one other factor. Uneven heating of surface areas.
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o List three examples

      • There are Land breezes, Sea breezes, Valley breezes, and Mountain breezes.

15. Describe the relationship between the southern oscillation and a major El Nino event. Kevin McCary

    • Answers and Comments

16. Which global pressure system is responsible for deserts such as the Kalahari and the Sahara in Africa? Kristen Pike

    • Sub Polar High

o With which global belt are the tropical rain forests of the Amazon and the Congo basins associated?

      • Answers and Comments

17. Other than the Earth's pressure and wind belts, list two other factors that exert a significant influence on the global distribution of precipitation. Lauren Parker

    • the interiors of large land masses commonly experience decreased precipitation, the tropical region dominated by the equatorial low is the rainiest region on Earth.

18. How are global winds related to surface ocean currents? Matt Turppa

    • They both contribute to the distribution of heat.
      • Ocean currents are also generated by surface winds.
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o What is the ultimate source of energy that drives both of these circulations?

      • The un-even distribution of solar energy and heat.