Essay on Geography Notes

682 Words Feb 20th, 2013 3 Pages
February 25, 2013

Winds Aloft * Isobaric surfaces slope downward from the low latitudes to the pole * Atmosphere is warmer near the Equator, pressure gradients force pushes air poleward * Pressure gradient force increase with altitude, bringing strong winds at high altitudes * Friction increases from low latitude to high latitude * Decreases in upper atmosphere where wind speeds are high

The Geostrophic Wind * At high latitudes, a moving parcel of air is subjected to: Pressure gradient force and Coriolis forces. * When forces balance, air moves at right angles to the pressure gradient, parallel to the isobars, as the geostrophic wind * Winds that move bulk of our air mass around the planet *
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Warm air pushes poleward, while cold air is brought to the south. * Waves become stronger and more developed. Tongues of cold air are brought to the south where they occupy low pressure troughs * Tongues are pinched off, leaving pools of cold air at latitudes south of their original locations. Pools of cold air form cyclones that can persist

Ocean Circulation * Circulation pattern to the oceans driven by: * Differences in density and pressure * Coriolis Force * Pressure differences are created in the water because * Ocean is heated unequally * Warm water is less dense than cold water * Heat up water volume increases and ability to hold salt increases

Temperature layers of the ocean * Warm surface layer heated by the sun – low latitudes, middle latitudes in the summer * Warm layer mixed by wave action to a depth of up to 500 m (about 1600 ft.) with a temperature of 20 degrees to 25 degrees calcium (68 to 77 degrees F) * Below warm layer, temperatures drop rapidly in thermocline. * At base layer of very cold water extending to the deep ocean floor. Temperatures rang from 0 to 5 degrees calcium (32 to 41 degrees F) * Layering stable because the warm layer is less dense than the cold water and rests on top.

Surface Currents * Ocean Current – any persistent, dominantly horizontal flow of ocean water * Global surface ocean currents are

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