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Climatology

Vertical Motion in the Atmosphere


Turning the
atmosphere
upside down
MOVIMIENTOS VERTICALES DEL AIRE:
Los procesos que se dan en la atmósfera en los que no
existe intercambio calorífico con el exterior del sistema se
llaman adiabáticos.
En la atmósfera los ascensos y descensos de masas de
aire se producen tan rápido que no ocurre un intercambio
eficaz de calor de la masa de aire con el aire del entorno.
Procesos Adiabáticos
Para describir el comportamiento de la temperatura de una masa de aire que
asciende se utiliza el concepto de gradiente adiabático del aire (Adiabatic Lapse
Rate = ALR), su valor depende del contenido de humedad.

• Gradiente Adiabático del Aire Seco (D-ALR): Es la proporción


con que desciende la temperatura de una masa de aire
cuando se eleva y es aprox. 10oC/km.

• Gradiente Adiabático del Aire Saturado S-ALR: El descenso


de temperatura satura el aire y se produce condensación,
liberándose así calor latente que calienta al aire, que
compensa en parte el descenso de temperatura debido al D-
ALR.

Por lo tanto el D-ALR es siempre mayor que el S-ALR


El S-ALR es siempre menor que el D-ALR

S-ALR

D-ALR
Gradiente Adiabático del Aire Seco (D-ALR)

Gradiente Adiabático del Aire Saturado S-ALR

D-ALR > S-ALR


Vertical Motion
• Recap on rules of instability
• Absolute stability
• Conditional instability
• Absolute Stability
Topographically forced stable cloud
Pollution dispersion climatology
Instability or Stability?
• Compare parcel temperature (ALR) with
environment temperature (ELR)
• ELR (environmental lapse rate): Actual
measured rate of change of temperature
with height
• ALR (Adiabatic lapse rate): Rate of change
of temperature with height
ELR
GRAFICA ALTURA (m) VS TEMPERATURA (°C) DE LA
CIUDAD DE BRINDISI, APULIA, ITALIA

30000

25000

20000
ALTURA (m)

15000

10000

5000

0
-70 -60 -50 -40 -30 -20 -10 0 10 20
TEMPERATURA, °C
Rules about rising and sinking air
• Pressure decreases vertically
• As air rises, it expands because it moves
into regions of lower pressure
• As air expands, it cools……..
At a rate set by the dry adiabatic lapse rate
(for as long as no water vapor condenses)
Parcel
temperature
Pressure
decreases
decreases
upwards
upwards

ALR SURFACE
Adiabatic Lapse Rates
• Rate of change of temperature with height
assuming:
no external heating of parcel
no mixing of parcel with
surrounding air
dry air

• Dry Adiabatic Lapse Rate: 10oC/km (1oC/100m)


Instability and Stability
• Determined by comparing the temperature of a
‘parcel’ of air with its surrounding air (environmental)
temperature at a common height
ALR vs. ELR
• if parcel is warmer than its surrounding air, the parcel
will rise - the air is unstable (parcel is less dense and
therefore buoyant)
ALR < ELR
• if the parcel is cooler than its surrounding air, the
parcel will sink - the air is stable (parcel is more
dense and therefore not buoyant)
ALR > ELR
Adiabatic Lapse Rate (ALR)

vs.

Environmental Lapse Rate (ELR)

ALR < o >ELR


Relación del gradiente adiabático con la temperatura del aire

ELR

D-ALR
Vertical Motion
• Recap on rules of instability
• Absolute stability
• Conditional instability
• Absolute Stability
Topographically forced stable cloud
Pollution dispersion climatology
Dry Example
Surface Temp = 34 oC

Height

8000

7000
Absolute Stability
6000 ELR Stable Air
5000 No convection
4000 No Rain
3000 D-ALR
2000

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Parcel Temp Temperature Environ Temp


Vertical Motion
• Recap on rules of instability
• Absolute stability
• Conditional instability
• Absolute Stability
Topographically forced stable cloud
Pollution dispersion climatology
Saturated Adiabatic Lapse Rate
(SALR)
• Not a constant rate of cooling since rate of change of
temperature with height depends on latent heat release
following condensation

• Amount of condensation depends on the moisture content


of the air

• On average the SALR = 6oC/km


Instability Vs Stability: Role of Water

Height

8000

7000

6000

5000

4000

3000

2000

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Temperature
Dry Air

Height

8000

7000 Environmental Lapse Rate


6000

5000

4000

3000

2000

1000
Dry Adiabatic
Lapse Rate
0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Temperature
Dry Example
Surface Temp = 34 oC
Surface Dew Point = 0 oC
Height

8000

7000

6000

5000

4000

3000

2000

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Temperature
Dry Example
Surface Temp = 34 oC
Surface Dew Point = 0 oC
Height

8000

7000

6000

5000

4000

3000

2000

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Temperature
Dry Example
Surface Temp = 34 oC
Surface Dew Point = 0 oC
Height

8000

7000

6000

5000

4000

3000

2000

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Parcel Environ
Temp Temperature Temp
Dry Example
Surface Temp = 34 oC
Surface Dew Point = 0 oC
Height

8000

7000
Stable Air
6000
No convection
5000 No Rain
4000

3000

2000

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Parcel Environ
Temp Temperature Temp
Wet Example
Surface Temp = 34 oC
Surface Dew Point = 29 oC
Height

8000

7000

6000

5000

4000
Dew Point
3000

2000

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Temperature
Wet Example
Surface Temp = 34 oC
Surface Dew Point = 29 oC
Height

8000

7000
Saturated Adiabatic
Lapse Rate
6000

5000

4000

3000

2000

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Temperature
Wet Example
Surface Temp = 34 oC
Surface Dew Point = 29 oC
Height

8000

7000

6000

5000

4000

3000

2000

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Parcel
Environ Temperature Temp
Temp
Wet Example
Surface Temp = 34 oC
Surface Dew Point = 29 oC
Height

8000

7000

6000
Unstable Air
Convection
5000
Rain
4000

3000

2000

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Parcel
Environ Temperature Temp
Temp
Wet Example: Conditional Instability

Height

8000

7000

Unstable Air
6000
Convection
Rain
5000

4000 Level
of
3000
free
2000 convection

1000

0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40
Condensation
Level

Temperature
Features of Conditionally
Unstable Air
• Lifting Condensation Level (LCL)
close to the surface in moist air
far above the surface in dry air

• Level of Free Convection (LFC)


instability is unlikely to be released if
this is a long way above the surface

• Degree of instability
determined by the difference in temperature
between the parcel and the environment in the
region of maximum instability
Wet Example
Surface Temp = 34 oC
Surface Dew Point = 29 oC
Height

8000

7000

6000

degree of instability
5000

4000

3000

LFC
2000

1000

CL
0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40

Temperature
Vertical Motion
• Recap on rules of instability
• Absolute stability
• Conditional instability
• Absolute Stability
Topographically forced stable cloud
Pollution dispersion climatology
Absolute Stability

??
Absolute Stability
Absolute Stability
Environmental lapse rate

Z Dry adiabatic lapse rate

Temperature
Environmental lapse rate
1

Z Dry adiabatic lapse rate

Temperature
Environmental lapse rate
1

Z 2 Dry adiabatic lapse rate

Temperature
Environmental lapse rate
1

Z 2 Dry adiabatic lapse rate

Temperature
Environmental lapse rate
1

3
4
Z 2 Dry adiabatic lapse rate

Temperature
Environmental lapse rate
1

3 5
4
Z 2 Dry adiabatic lapse rate

Temperature
Absolute Stability

1
3

4
2
Absolute Stability
Absolute Stability

Air hotter and drier on


leeward side
Vertical Motion
• Recap on rules of instability
• Absolute stability
• Conditional instability
• Absolute Stability
Topographically forced stable cloud
Pollution dispersion climatology
H
E
I
G Subsidence
H Inversion
T

TEMPERATURE
H
E Subsidence Inversion
I
G
H
T

Surface Radiation Inversion

TEMPERATURE
INVERSIONES

Temperatura
de inversión
INVERSIONES

Inversión de
superficie
H
E
I
G
H
T

Early Morning

TEMPERATURE
H
E
I
G Daytime
H
T

Early Morning

TEMPERATURE
ALR < ELR

ALR > ELR

ALR > ELR

Línea continua: ELR


ALR > ELR

ALR > ELR

ALR > ELR

Linea continua: ELR