Desert Meteorology by Thomas T. Warner

By Thomas T. Warner

This accomplished quantity will fulfill all who want to know extra in regards to the climate and weather of arid lands.

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Fig. 4 shows a schematic of the large-scale horizontal winds at the surface, and the vertical structure of the north–south circulations for the Northern Hemisphere. Between the Equator and about 30◦ latitude, the horizontal low-level flow is dominated by the very regular northeasterly trade winds to the north of the Equator and 14 2 Atmospheric dynamics the southeasterly trades to the south of it. The area where the trades converge is called the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). The cross-section on the right shows that the vertical circulation is defined by the Hadley Cell, with upward motion, cloud, and rain near the Equator, and subsidence and cloudfree conditions near 30◦ latitude in the subtropics.

An illustration that both the supply and demand halves of the water balance are important is that a 40 cm annual precipitation supports only sparse vegetation in a hot climate, but permits the growth of a dense forest in a high-latitude cool climate having a much lower evaporation rate. The seasonal distribution of precipitation also has a bearing on the dryness of the climate. If most of the annual precipitation is concentrated in the warm summer months when the evaporation is greatest, the climate will be more arid than if the precipitation is distributed more evenly throughout the year.

The reverse process, evaporation, consumes energy at this rate. Basic concepts 17 Fig. 6 Schematic of different basic mechanisms that can be responsible for the development of cloud and precipitation. land cools by infrared emission to space, and the air near the ground is, in turn, cooled by the surface to its dew point. Lastly, a mixing fog can be produced when two unsaturated volumes of air, with different temperatures and vapor pressures, mix. If the resulting mixture is saturated, a fog forms.

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