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Welcome to Meteorology 10
Professor Jeff Gawrych
De Anza College
Meterology Definition
• The science that deals with the phenomena
of the atmosphere, especially weather and
weather conditions
Part of the Geosciences
- Atmospheric science
- Atmospheric chemistry/physics
- Climatology/Paleoclimatology
- Biometeorology
•study of the ocean and its
Environmental Science
•Studies origin, history, and
structure of the earth.
Similar in many ways to
- A large factor in many area of
meteorology. E.g. Land use
What is Weather/Climate?
• Weather: The atmospheric conditions at a
particular place and time
– E.g. It’s currently 80º with a relative humidity of 40%
– Today’s high temeprature was 50º
• Climate: The time-averaged conditions at a
particular location
– San Francisco is prone to summertime fog
– It hardly ever rains in San Jose during the summertime
– The average high temeprature in January is 52.9º
Part of a bigger system
Atmosphere: this course
Hydrosphere: Oceans/lakes/rivers
Cryosphere: Ice caps
Lithosphere: Solid ground/rock
Biosphere: All living things including plants
and animals
385 ppm in 2007
Concept of a Balance
• The weather serves to keep earth in a heat balance.
Pure and simple.
• Without it, the poles would be much colder and the
tropics much warmer
• Maintains earth’s heat balance along with the oceans
• Earth tries to achieve balance, but never fully does.
This is VERY GOOD for me as a meteorologist.
Who cares?
– We must always be able to answer this question.
• Why we care about the atmosphere?
– we live with it and it sustains life
» not all planets have atmosphere meaning:
» there’s no life (air to breathe)
» temperatures are usually too hot or too cold
– Affects our day-to day activites
» What to wear. Stay in or go out.
– Affects business
» Flight delays/crop forecasts/weather shutdowns
What do meteorologists do?
• Study the sun and its phenomena: physicists
• Study climate history of earth
• Use math in numerical models to aid research and
practical tools, like forecast models
• Work in the solar and wind energy fields
• Air pollution--A big issue everywhere now.
• Study planetary atmospheres, like Mars
• Forecasting (air, sea, business, land use, building
• Teach, por supuesto!
Course Outline
• Our study of the atmopshere will focus on
weather forecasting: predicting future
weather events
• We will learn the meteorlogical tools to
effectively observe,diagnose and predict
future weather events