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Unit 3: Weather

Weather and the Earth's atmosphere

TermDefinition
Electromagnetic Wave Can transfer electric and magnetic energy through the vacuum of space
Greenhouse Effect the trapping of heat near a planet's surface by certain gases in the planet's atmosphere
Thermal Energy the total kinetic and potential energy of all the particles of an object
Convection the transfer of thermal energy by the movement of a fluid
Conduction the transfer of thermal energy from one particle of matter to another
Radiation the transfer of energy by electromagnetic waves
Absorb to take in or soak up
Wind the horizontal movement of air from an area of high pressure to an area of lower pressure
Sea Breeze the flow of cooler air from over an ocean or lake toward land
Land Breeze the flow of air from land to a body of water`
Coriolis Effect the effect of the Earth's rotation on the direction of winds and currents
Jet Stream band of high speed winds about 10 kilometers above Earth's surface
Area extent of a surface or piece of land
Model representation of a complex process
Current A large stream of moving water that flows through the oceans
El Nino an abnormal climate event that occurs every 2 to 7 years in the Pacific Ocean, causing changes in the winds, currents, and weather patterns for 1 to 2 years and an unusual warming of the ocean's surface
El Nina the periodic cooling of ocean surface temperatures
Gradually slowly
Atmosphere the relatively thin layer of gases that form Earth's outermost layer
Air Pressure the pressure caused by the weight of a column of air pushing down on an area
Altitude elevation above sea level
Stable not likely to give way
Water Cycle the continual movement of water among Earth's atmosphere, oceans, and land surface through evaporation, condensation, and precipitation
Evaporation the process by which molecules at the surface of a liquid absorb enough energy to change to a gas
Condensation the change in state from a gas to a liquid
Dew Point the temperature at which condensation begins
Humidity the amount of water vapor in a given volume of air
Relative Humidity the percentage of water vapor in the air compared to the maximum amount of water vapor that air can contain at a particular time
Precipitation any form of water that falls from clouds and reaches Earth's surface as rain, snow, sleet, or hail
Cycle a series of events that are regularly repeated in the same order
Air Mass a huge body of air that has similar temperature, humidity, and air pressure at any given height
Front the boundary where unlike air masses meet but do not mix
Cyclone a swirling center of low air pressure
Anticyclone a high-pressure center of dry air
Prevailing existing at a particular time
Stationary not moving
Meteorologist a scientist who studies the causes of weather and tries to predict it
Synthesize to make something
Storm a violent disturbance in the atmosphere
Thunderstorm a small storm often accompanied by heavy precipitation and frequent thunder and lightning
Hurricane a tropical storm that has winds of about 119 kilometers per hour or higher
Tornado a rapid whirling, funnel-shaped cloud that reaches down to touch the Earth's surface
Storm Surge a "dome" of water that sweeps across the coast where a hurricane lands
Flood an overflowing of water in a normally dry area
Drought a long period of low precipitation
Approximate close, but not completely exact
Created by: Ms. Wright
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