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72 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
  • 3rd side (hint)

What is the name for the cloud of gas and suspended solids extending from the Earth’s surface? aka the protective bubble we live in.

The Atmosphere

What are the 5 layers that the atmosphere is subdivided into starting from the surface up to space?






What level of the atmosphere contains almost all of the clouds and precipitation?


How does the temperature generally trend in the troposphere and the stratosphere?

Temp decreases with altitude in troposphere

Temp generally increases with altitude in the stratosphere

What is the transition between the Troposphere and Stratosphere called?


What is the average vertical depth of the Troposphere?

36,000 ft but varies due to temp variations associated with latitude and season.

Ex. 65,000 at equator

20,000 at the poles

What is it called when the temp increases with altitude in the troposphere?


How far does the stratosphere extend?

From troposphere up to 31 miles above the earths surface.

What are the general characteristics of the stratosphere?

Temp increases with alt

This makes it a stable layer generally devoid of significant weather (except the tops of some thunderstorms)

What is the term for a hypothetical vertical distribution of the atmospheric temperature, pressure, and density, which is considered to be representative of the atmosphere for pressure-altimeter calibrations?

Standard Atmosphere

What is standard atmosphere used for?

Pressure Altimeter Calibrations

Aircraft Performance Calculations

Aircraft Design

Weather-related processes

What is the standard atmosphere for: Sea level pressures. Sea Level Temp. Lapse rate in Troposphere Pressure Altitude of the Tropopause

29.92 In Mur

15º C 59º F

2º C 3.5º F per 1000 ft

36,000 feet (FL360)

Pg 6

What is the term for the migrating stream of high-speed winds present at high altitudes?

Jet Streams

Pg 7

What are the two types of jet streams? And where are they usually located?

Polar - 30-60º lat

Subtropical - 20-40º Lat

PG 7

What way do Jet Streams flow?

East to West

PG 7

What are associated with boundaries between hot and cold air at high altitudes?

Jet streams

PG 7

What time of year are Jet Streams the Strongest?


Pg 7

What do Jet Streams often produce that are hazardous to Air Traffic?

Clear Air Turbulance (CAT)

Why Are jet streams important to ATC?

They can cause the ground speed to increase or decrease severely resulting in traffic management issues

PG 7

What is the term for the Gaseous form of Water?

Water Vapor

Pg 8

What is the term for the change from liquid to Gas? From Solid to gas?

Liquid to gas - Evaporation

Solid to Gas - Sublimation

What is the term for the numerical value representing the average kinetic energy of the atoms and molecules within matter?


PG 9

Which can hold more water vapor warm or cold air?


PG 9

What is the term for the maximum possible quantity of water vapor that a parcel of air can hold at any given temp and pressure?


Pg 10

If air is said to be saturated, what does that mean? What about unsaturated?

Saturated = air parcel contains all the water vapor it can hold

Unsaturated = air parcel has the capacity to hold more water vapor

Pg 10

What is the term for the temp an air parcel must be cooled at constant pressure and constant water vapor pressure to allow the water vapor in the parcel to condense into water

Dew Point

Pg 10

What is the term for the ratio, usually expressed as a percentage, of water vapor actually in the air parcel compared to the amount of water vapor the air could hold at a particular temp and pressure

Relative Humidity

PG 10

Does relative humidity indicate the actual water vapor content?

No it shows how close to saturation the air is.

Pg 10

What is the term for the difference between air parcels temp and its dew point temp?

The Dew Point Spread or Depression.

Pg 11

What happens when the dew point spread is decreased to zero?

The air becomes saturated causing condensation resulting in the formation of Dew or fog.

What is the term for the phase when vapor is changed into a liquid.


Pg 11

What is the term for the visible aggregate of minute water droplets and/or ice particles in the atmosphere above the Earths Surface?


Pg 13

When do clouds form? When do they dissipate?

The spread decreases and there is sufficient lift

Spread increases and the air is sinking

PG 14-15

Why does the air temp cool as it rises?

The air uses energy to expand and this causes it to lose heat

Why does the air temp warm when it sinks?

The surrounding atmosphere does work compressing the parcel which adds heat to the air

Pg 14 - 15

What are the three cloud forms?




Pg 16

What type of cloud is characterized at High Level clouds composed of Ice crystals, that are thin and white in appearance and contains no significant icing?


Pg 16

What type of cloud is characterized by looking like “White fluffy cotton balls” that has icing, Turbulence and other hazards?


Oh 17

What is the type of cloud that is Latin for “blanket” or “Layer” and consists of featureless low layer cover that produced wide area IFR conditions?


What does adding the prefix “nimbo” or the suffix “nimbus” mean?

The clouds are raining.

Pg 16

What is the term for air in motion relative to the surface?


Pg 17

What component of wind is usually less important but plays a big role on cloud formation and dissipation and precipitation

Vertical component

What is the term for a Maximum of atmospheric pressure that is also known as an Anticyclone?

High Weather Effect

What are the characteristics of a high weather event?

Air Floe diverges around a High in a clockwise motion and sinks.

the sinking air compresses and warms causing the clouds to dissipate.

Pg 18

What is the term for a minimum of atmospheric pressure that is also known as a cyclone?

Low Weather Effect.

What are the characteristics of a Low Weather event?

Air flow converges around a low in a counterclockwise motion and rises.

This causes the air to expand and cool resulting in the dew point spread to lower making clouds form

What are the temperature properties used for Air mass classification? And where are they located?

Arctic (A) - over ice

Polar (P) - over high lat

Tropical (T) - over low lat (equator0

What are the Moisture Properties used for Air Mass Classification? And where are they located?

Continental (c) - over land

Maritime (m) - over water

Pg 20

What happens when a Cold air Mass moves over a warm surface area?

Unstable Air Which is associated with: Turbulence, Good Vis, and Cumuliform clouds and showers

What happens when a Warm Air front passes over a cool surface area?

Produced Stable Air resulting in: Smooth Air, Poor Visibility, and Stratiform Clouds, fog, drizzle

Pg 23

What is the term for a boundary or transition zone between two air masses of different density and thus different temperatures


Pg 24

What are the 4 Frontal Types? And what do they do?

Cold Front - Cold Replaces Warm

Warm Front - Warm rep Cold

Stationary Front - Neither is stronger enough to move the other

Occluded Front - Composite of two fronts as a cold overtakes a warm or stationary

Pg 24

How are Fronts Detectable at the surface?

Significant Temp differences

Winds come together

Pressure typically increases as the front approached and decreases as the front passes

Pg 25

What are the characteristic of a Cold front?

Steep Slope and air is forced upward abruptly

Narrow band of cumulus clouds, showers, and thunderstorms

Good Visibility and turbulence

What are the characteristics of a Warm Front?

Gentle slopes so air rises gradually

Widespread layered or stratiform clouds and precipitation

Poor Visibility, smooth air and steady precipitation

PG 26

What are the characteristic of Occluded Fronts?

Combines the effects of both cold and warm front. Clouds and precipitation can occur both ahead of, and i the areas of frontal lift of an occluded front

Usually clouds and prolonged precipitation

Pg 27

What is the term for water particles that fall from the atmosphere and reach the ground?


What are the three ingredients to form precipitation?

Water Vapor, Lift, and Growth Process

Pg 30

What are the primary sources of water vapor in the US?

Atlantic, Pacific, Gulf, Great Lakes

Pg 31

What causes lift for precipitation?

Converging wings around surface Lows and Fronts

Pg 30

What is the term for what allows water particles to grow large and heavy enough to fall as precipitation?

Growth Process

Pg 30

What are the types of Precipitation?

Snow, Ice Pellets (Sleet), Freezing Rain, and Rain

Pg 31-34

What type of Precipitation results when the temp remains below freezing throughout the entire depth or the atmosphere?

Snow (SN)

Pg 31

What type of Precipitation results when there is a shallow layer aloft with above freezing temps, with a deep layer of below freezing air based at the surface?

Ice Pellets (PL)

Pg 32

What are the diameter to classify as Ice Pellets?

At or Below .2 in it 5 mm

Pg 32

What type of Precipitation results from a deep layer aloft with above freezing temp with a shallow layer of below freezing air at the surface?

Freezing rain (FZRA)

Pg 33

What type of Precipitation result when there is a deep layer of above freezing air based at the surface?

Rain (RA)

Pg 34

What Agency is the national weather service under?

the Department of Commerce (DOC)


National Oceanic and Atmospheric Admin (NOAA)

Pg 38

What are the NSW three offices discussed? And how many are there?

Meteorological Watch Offices (MWO) - 8

Weather Forecast Office (WFO) - 122

Center Weather Service Units (CWSUs) - in each ARTCC

Pg 37

What aviation weather products do the MWO and WFO issue?


PG 37

What info does the CWSU provide to the centers?

Weather impact on their mission, equipment outages, and repairs, and staffing.

Pg 38

What information does the CWSU issue?

Center Weather Advisories (CWAs) and Meteorological Impact Statements (MIS)

Pg 38