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The handy weather answer book - Kevin Hile

Year 2009


IntroductionAcknowledgmentsWEATHER FUNDAMENTALSTERMS TO KNOWWhat is weather?What factors affect the weather?What is meteorology?What is hydrology?What, then, is hydrometeorology?What is climatology?What is bioclimatology?What is atmospheric chemistry?What is atmospheric physics?What is diffraction?What is refraction?What is an aerosol?What are evaporation and transpiration?What is convection?What is convergence?What is inversion?What is an ion?What is plasma?What is the azimuth?ORGANIZATIONSWhat is the purpose of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)?What is the National Weather Service (NWS)?What is the National Weather Center (NWC)?What is the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR)?What are the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP)?What does the American Meteorological Society (AMS) do?What is the National Severe Storms Laboratory (NSSL)?What is the World Meteorological Organization (WMO)?What is the Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC)?Is the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) involved in weather forecasting?MEASUREMENTS What is a triple point?Why are there so many discrepancies in the world records of weather?What is Universal Coordinated Time?What is an isobar?What are some other terms using the prefix "iso-" that meteorologists use?What is an ombrometer?How is snowfall measured?What is an acre-foot?How is sea water salinity measured?How is wind speed measured?What are some other types of anemometers?How is wind direction usually measured?What standard unit of measurement is used to indicate wind speed?EARLY WEATHER HISTORY What did the Greeks once speculate about the air?Who wrote the Meteorológica?What was the most important weather book to follow Meteorologica?Who first correctly wrote about the structure of snowflakes?What makes the Historia Naturalis important in the history of meteorology?Why was Hero of Alexandria an important figure in the history of meteorology?What ancient Chinese book first discussed the idea of solar winds?Which Chinese scholar first hypothesized about climate change?How was Abu 'Ali al-Hasan ibn al-Haytham important to meteorology?What is a thermoscope and who invented it?Who invented the modern thermometer?What did Sir Isaac Newton contribute to the science of meteorology?What did Benjamin Franklin contribute to the science of meteorology?Which of America's founding fathers were fascinated by meteorology?Who was named the United States's first official meteorologist?What was the Great Exhibition of 1851?What was the first organized network of meteorological observatories?Who was Cleveland Abbe?What newspaper was the first to begin publishing daily weather forecasts?Who first discussed the link between climate change and how gases in the atmosphere absorb heat?Who was Alexander Buchan?THE SEASONS When do the seasons start and end?What is the ecliptic plane?What is the difference between the ecliptic plane and Earth's equatorial plane?How does the motion of Earth around the Sun cause the seasons to occur?Is the Earth's rotation slowing down?Does the Earth's tilt ever change?What is precession?What is orbital inclination?What is the difference between perihelion and aphelion?What are solstices and when do they occur?What are equinoxes and when do they happen?Do large-scale weather patterns lead to season trends?What are the "dog days" of summer?What are halcyon days?What is Indian summer?What is a January thaw?How should one prepare when the weather forecast calls for the season's first freeze?THE ATMOSPHEREATMOSPHERE BASICS How high up does the atmosphere reach?How did Earth's atmosphere form?How is Earth's atmosphere important to life on Earth?How thick is Earth's atmosphere?Are we losing our atmosphere?Why is the sky blue?At what point does the sky turn from blue to black?Where is the horizon?How far is it possible to see through the atmosphere?What are the different scales of atmospheric motion?AIR AND AIR PRESSUREWhat is air?Is there actual salt in sea air?How much pollen is in our air?Are the gases in the atmosphere evenly distributed?How much pressure does the atmosphere exert upon us?Who introduced use of the millibar to measure air pressure?Does air pressure change as elevation rises above sea level?What is Gay-Lussac's Law and why is it important in meteorology?What is Dalton's Law?How much does the entire atmosphere weigh?Who showed that air pressure decreases as altitude increases?Is air really "thin"?What is a front?What is a dry front?What is a barometer?What is barometric pressure and what does it mean?Who invented the barometer?What is an aneroid barometer?What is a digital barometer?What is a banjo barometer?What is sea-level air pressure?How do you convert inches of mercury to millibars?What is a hectopascal?What are the most extreme barometer readings ever measured?What is a barograph?LAYERS OF THE ATMOSPHEREHow many layers does the Earth's atmosphere contain?How is the troposphere defined?Who figured out that temperatures rise in the stratosphere?What mineral were scientists surprised to see in high quantities in the stratosphere?What is the tropopause?How is the ionosphere important in the transmission of radio waves?What is an ionospheric storm?What is the mesosphere?Why is the thermosphere so hot?THE OZONE LAYER What is the ozone layer?Who discovered the ozone layer?How did Charles Fabry discover that the ozone absorbs ultraviolet light?Has there always been an ozone layer?If ozone is good for us, why do we hear about ozone alerts and "bad ozone"?What are some other effects of ultraviolet radiation?What is the mission of NASA's Aura satellite?Why is there a hole in the ozone layer?Who helped link CFCs to the destruction of the ozone layer?How was the ozone hole discovered?Is the hole in the ozone layer causing frog species extinctions?Why is there an ozone hole at the South Pole but there isn't one at the North Pole?How big is the hole in the ozone?Can the ozone hole be healed?WINDWhat is wind?Does wind have a lot of energy that could help reduce the need for fossil fuels?What does it mean when we say something is on the lee side of the wind?What are lee troughs and lee depressions?What is anemophobia?What is Buys Ballot's Law?What are trade winds?When were the phenomenon of trade winds first explained, and by whom?What are the westerlies?What is a Chinook?What is "The Doctor"?What is a harmattan?What is a katabatic wind?What are some other katabatic winds called?What is a Nor'Easter?What are Northers?What are the Santa Ana winds?What are some other named winds and where are they located?What were the fastest winds ever recorded?What is a mauka breeze?What is the jet stream?What is a Rossby wave?How was the jet stream discovered?What is the low-level jet stream?What is the arctic oscillation?What is wind shear?What is the effect of a microburst on aircraft?What causes turbulence?Why do meteorologists refer to the Reynolds number when talking about turbulence?What is an "air pocket"?How does air flow around low and high pressure systems?What is the Intertropical Convergence Zone?What is the moist tongue?What are the horse latitudes?WIND STORMS Who developed the Beaufort Scale?What are the hazards of dust storms?How far can a dust storm travel?Where do haboobs occur?What is the windiest place on Earth?Is Chicago really the "windy city?"HEAT AND COLDMEASURING TEMPERATURE How was the Fahrenheit scale developed?What is the Kelvin temperature scale?Why was the name of the Centigrade scale changed to Celsius?How do I convert Fahrenheit to Celsius or Kelvin?What is a low high temperature and a high low temperature?What chemicals are used in thermometers?What are thermographs and hygrothermographs?Does Alaska get hotter than Hawaii?Does the North Pole have the same average temperatures as the South Pole?What is a diurnal temperature range?What is a temperature inversion?What are the wet bulb and dry bulb temperatures?How is a wet bulb thermometer constructed?What types of psychrometers are there?What are cooling degree days and heating degree days and what do they have to do with air conditioning?What month is known for the most extreme changes in temperature?What is the "120 Club"?What is the "60 Below Club"?HEATWhat is a heat wave?What is the heat index?How hot can it get on the Earth's surface?How dangerous are heat waves to people?What are some of the worst summers in terms of heat-related deaths that have occurred in the United States?What is the hottest place in the United States?What are some of the most unusually hot temperatures experienced in the United States?What are some of the highest temperatures recorded?How warm can it get in Antarctica?What is a heat burst?What is heat exhaustion?What is heat stroke?How hot can the human body get and still survive?What are some other unusual events that saw a sudden increase in temperature in the United States?COLDWhat is the lowest temperature possible?Who was Paul A. Siple and how is he associated with the concept of the wind chill factor?How does the wind chill factor affect temperature?How is the wind chill calculated?Does drinking alcohol truly warm up a person's body?What is frostbite?What can I do to help relieve frostbite?What are chilblains?What is hypothermia?When adding antifreeze to a car, should you gauge the amount based on expected low temperatures or expected low wind chills?Do turtles and frogs have antifreeze in their blood?Why does my nose run when I'm cold?Can I get a cold from being out in cold weather?How can a gardener preserve unripe tomatoes before a winter frost?What methods do farmers use to protect crops from frost and sudden freezes?Why do more people die in cold waves in the American South than they do in the North?What is the coldest city in America's lower 48 states?What are some of the coldest temperatures measured in Florida?What is permafrost?Is there much permafrost in the lower 48 U.S. states?Have the Great Lakes ever been completely frozen over?Has the Hudson River ever frozen over?What are some of the lowest temperatures ever recorded?What are some of the coldest temperatures ever recorded in the United States?CLOUDS AND PRECIPITATIONCLOUDSWhat is a cloud?Why do clouds float?What are supercooled droplets?What are Aitken nuclei?How are supercooled droplets used for the purpose of cloud seeding?What is the Bergeron-Findeisen mechanism?How is dry ice seeding used to increase visibility at airports?What is a cloud chamber?Who was the first person to classify clouds?What are the four major cloud groups and their types?Are there other terms for describing clouds?What are nacreous clouds?What are noctilucent clouds?What is a mare's tail?What are the cloudiest U.S. cities?What kind of cloud has been mistaken for a UFO?What is a mackerel sky?What is the Table Cloth cloud?How much of the Earth is usually covered by clouds?How do airplanes create clouds?What is a contrail?PRECIPITATION What is evapotranspiration?How does the hydrologic cycle work?What is latent heat?What is a "white-out"?What methods have been used to try to remove hazardous fog?Are there different categories of rainfall?What is the shape of a raindrop?How big can a raindrop get?How is rainfall measured?What is meant by a trace of precipitation?How can I measure how much rain falls where I live?What is the Bruckner cycle?Where does it rain the most in the United States?What place has the most rainy days every year?Where is the rainiest place on Earth?What are ombrophobia and homichiophobia?Does it rain in the Arabian Desert?Does all precipitation reach the ground?What is virga?What is the driest place on Earth?What U.S. drought has been the costliest in terms of financial damages?What was the Dust Bowl and what impact did it have on the United States?What is drizzle?What place holds the record for the least amount of rain on Earth?What city in the United States holds the record for a dry spell?What does a 40 percent chance of rain really mean?HUMIDITYWhat is humidity?What is the difference between absolute humidity and relative humidity?Can the relative humidity ever be higher than 100 percent?What is indoor humidity?What is a hygrometer?Who invented the dew point hygrometer?Is the relative humidity always 100 percent during times when it is raining or snowing?Who invented the device to measure humidity?What is the ideal relative humidity that is the most comfortable for people?What is dew?What is the dew point?What's the difference between dew point, humidity, and relative humidity?What is the difference between absolute and specific humidity?Does dew fall?Where is the most humid place on Earth?ICE, SNOW, HAIL, AND FROST How does snow form?Does water always freeze at 32°F (0°C)?Why don't lakes and ponds freeze solid in the winter?What is chionophobia?What is the difference between freezing rain, sleet, and hail?What is the difference between a frost and a hard freeze?What are glaze and rime?What is an ice storm?How is hail formed?Are hailstones always round?How large can hailstones become?What are the different size categories for hailstones?Is there such a thing as a megacryometeor?What are the "hail belts"?What are some notable record hail accumulations?What U.S. cities tend to get the most hail?Do hailstones have rings?Have hailstones ever proven to be deadly?What is clear ice?What is graupel?When does frost form?Besides rime frost, what other types of frost are there?What is the difference between snow and hail?How much water is contained in snow?Is it true that no two snowflakes are exactly the same shape?Can the form of snowflake crystals be predicted?How unhealthy is snow shoveling?Where was the most snowfall ever recorded?What is diamond dust?Who created the first artificial snowflake?Is there a classification system for snowflakes?What are the types of snowflakes as identified in the International Classification System?What are some record snowfalls over a 24-hour period in the United States?What is the record for the greatest snowfall in the United States?Has it ever snowed in Arizona?What are some other unexpected places where it has snowed in the United States?What is a heavy snow warning?What is the purpose of a snow fence?What are the 10 snowiest cities in the United States?Is it ever too cold to snow?Can you use snow to keep you warm?How warm can the weather be and yet have snowfall?What is the snow line?What are you seeing when you "see your breath"?What places experience the most annual precipitation on Earth?What is the most rainfall ever recorded within a one-day period?What places have the lowest annual precipitation on Earth?STORMY WEATHERWhat country can claim to have the worst weather?How much have disasters cost in recent years to the United States in terms of money and deaths?What is emergency response planning?How have weather-related forest fires created tragic disasters in the United States?How do some animals appear to be able to predict an oncoming storm?BLIZZARDS AND AVALANCHES What is a blizzard?How bad was the Blizzard of 1888?How destructive was the Blizzard of 1996?What should you do if you are stranded in your car during a blizzard?What happens to domesticated animals during blizzards?What causes avalanches?What is the most dangerous month for avalanches?What is a sluff?How many people die in the United States because of avalanches?What is the worst avalanche disaster on record?What is the Storm of the Century?HURRICANES, MONSOONS, AND TROPICAL STORMSWhat was the Perfect Storm?What are monsoons?What is the origin of the word "monsoon"?What is an Alberta clipper?What is a Siberian express?What is a hurricane?What is a tropical storm?What is a tropical depression?What is the Coriolis effect?What part of a hurricane is most damaging?How fast do hurricanes travel?What is a storm surge?Why don't we see hurricanes in the South Atlantic Ocean?Is a polar low like an Arctic hurricane?Has there ever been a hurricane in Great Britain?Has a hurricane ever made landfall in southern California?What is the Fujiwhara effect?How fast do the strongest hurricane winds blow?What is the Saffir-Simpson hurricane scale?How do hurricanes get named?What will the names of hurricanes be through 2013?What hurricane names have been retired?How many category 5 hurricanes have there been since 1920?What was the 2008 hurricane season like?What have been the costliest hurricanes in the United States?What have been the deadliest tropical storms since 1900 in the world? What U.S. cities have been wiped out by hurricanes?Why have cyclones striking out of the Indian Ocean proven to be so deadly?What is the difference between a cyclone and a typhoon?What is an anticyclone?What is the eye of a hurricane?What are spiral bands?What is a concentric eye wall?What is the difference between a hurricane watch and a warning?What is the National Hurricane Center?How much energy can a hurricane produce?Can a hurricane be stopped?What was the "Storm that Wouldn't Die"?What was the "Great Hurricane of 1938"?What was Hurricane Katrina?How many people died as a result of the subsequent failure of the levees and flooding after Hurricane Katrina struck?Was the 2005 New Orleans disaster caused by a flood or a hurricane?FLOODSHow much rain does it take to make a flood?What causes a flood?What is a flash flood?What caused all the flooding in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina?Why do flash floods kill so many people?What are some of the worst floods in history caused by inclement weather?What was the Great Flood of 1993?What have been some of the most destructive floods in history?What is a floodplain?Why do people live in floodplains?What is a 100-year flood?What is the National Flood Insurance Program?How can I obtain a flood map of my community?What should I do in the event of a flood?TORNADOES Which is more deadly: tornadoes or lightning ?What are tornadoes?Who was the first person to seriously study tornadoes?Are all funnel clouds tornadoes?Where does the word "tornado" come from?What is a willy-willy?What causes a tornado?Are tornadoes often formed in hurricanes?What causes a tornado to dissipate?About how many tornadoes are recorded in the United States annually?What is the Fujita and Pearson Tornado Scale?What is the Enhanced Fujita Scale?How strong does a tornado have to be to be considered "significant"?How many F5 tornadoes have there been in the United States since 1970?Has there ever been an F6 tornado?Do meteorologists actually have reliable data on tornado wind speeds?What is the VORTEX project?How long a path do tornadoes typically make?What is a multiple-vortex tornado?What is the difference between subvortices and satellite tornadoes?What is more dangerous, a big tornado with a funnel spanning over a mile in diameter, or a narrow, speedy tornado?What is a rope tornado?What is a wedge tornado?What are some of the erratic behaviors of tornadoes?What is Tornado Alley?What is the most dangerous U.S. state to live in due to tornadoes?What have been the deadliest tornadoes on record in the United States?What is the average annual number of deaths in the United States caused by tornadoes?What was the deadliest tornado ever in the world?What months are the most likely times for tornadoes?Besides the 1974 tornado outbreak, what are some other serious outbreaks that have hit the United States?Are there certain times of the day when tornadoes are more likely to happen?What is a mesocyclone?What is a wall cloud?What is a beaver tail?Who are storm chasers?How is a storm chaser different from a storm spotter?What is a bear's cage?Are there ways I can anticipate a tornado?Has there ever been a tornado in Los Angeles?Do tornadoes strike in countries other than the United States and Canada?Do tornadoes always turn counterclockwise?What is the difference between a tornado watch and a warning?What should I do when a tornado approaches?Is it a good idea to open windows and doors so that air pressure is equalized inside a house?Where is the best place to hide from a tornado if I'm outdoors?Which month is the most dangerous for tornadoes in the United States?What is a gustnado?What are waterspouts?What is a landspout?What are dust devils?What is a steam devil?Are there other types of tornado-like whirlwinds?ATMOSPHERIC PHENOMENALIGHTNINGWhat is lightning?How does lightning work?Does lightning come from ice?Does lightning only occur during thunderstorms?Does it have to be raining for there to be lightning?Has lightning ever happened during a snow storm?What are the chances that I will be struck by lightning?Am I safe from lightning if I hide indoors?How does a lightning rod work?Is static electricity similar to lightning?If I stand next to a tall object, will I be safe from lightning?How hot is lightning?How bright is lightning?How fast does lightning travel?How wide is a lightning bolt?How many volts are in lightning?How long is a lightning strokeHow do you calculate how far away a lightning bolt is?Does lightning give off X-rays and radio waves?How many times does lightning strike the Earth each year?Where is lightning most likely to occur?What are keraunophobia and brontophobia?How much energy does one bolt of lightning contain?Do people frequently die from lightning strokes?What is one strange warning sign that lightning may be about to strike?What did NASA and the U.S. military discover about triggered lightning?How many people are killed in the United States by lightning?Does lightning ever strike twice in the same place?Can a lightning stroke cause you to burst into flames?Can lightning travel through the ground?Why does lightning flicker?How did lightning cost New York City a billion dollars?What is a fulgurite?What are some benefits of lightning?Is it true that being hit by lightning can have health benefits?What are the different types of lightning?What are the two forms of cloud-to-ground lightning?What are some cloud-to-space forms of lightning that are not considered to be true lightning?Who first photographed a sprite?When are you most likely to see sprites and blue jets?THUNDER AND THUNDERSTORMSWhat causes thunder?What is a thunderstorm?What are the stages of a thunderstorm?How loud is thunder?What are the requirements for a storm to be considered a severe thunderstorm?How tall can thunderstorm clouds be?At any one time, how many thunderstorms are occurring?What is the speed of sound?How far away can thunder be heard?What is Saint Elmo's fire?How do meteorologists classify thunderstorms?What is an "indoor thunderstorm"?Are there other ways that thunderstorms can be described?When do thunderstorms occur?What is a derecho?RAINBOWS AND OTHER COLORFUL PHENOMENAWhat is the solar spectrum?What is a rainbow?What is the order of the colors in a rainbow?Who discovered how rainbows form?Why do you sometimes see double rainbows?Why is it impossible to find a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow?Do rainbows ever appear by moonlight?Is there such a thing as a monochromatic rainbow?What Mie scattering?How is Mie scattering different from Rayleigh scattering?What is a bishop's ring?What is irisation?When does the green flash phenomenon occur?What are Sun dogs and Moon dogs?If a parhelion is a Sun dog, what is an anthelion?What are coronas and anticoronas?How is a corona different from a halo?What is a Sun pillar?What is a crepuscular ray?What is a mirage?What is a superior mirage?What military battle was cancelled because of a mirage?What is an aurora?What is the difference between the Aurora Borealis and the Aurora Australis?Where are aurorae seen?How often does an aurora appear?Is the best time to see an aurora during the winter?Can you see the aurorae during the day?What is airglow?GEOGRAPHY, OCEANOGRAPHY, AND WEATHERWhy is it important to understand geography in relation to the weather?PLATE TECTONICSWho initially proposed the idea of moving continents?So, what is the modern theory of plate tectonics?What physical evidence shows that the continents move?Who contributed to early work in plate tectonics?What did the continents look like in the past?What is continentality?What is seafloor spreading?How was seafloor spreading discovered?How fast does the seafloor spread?RAIN, ICE, AND GEOGRAPHY Why is it wetter on one side of a mountain range?What is a rain shadow?Why is Greenland called green when it is mostly covered in ice?Which continents have the highest and lowest average elevations on the planet?How much ice is there covering Antarctica and Greenland?Where does it snow on the equator?VOLCANOESWhat are the two major characteristics of volcanic eruptions?What major gases do volcanoes emit?Did volcanoes play a role in creating Earth's atmosphere?Can volcanic eruptions affect the global climate?Who first theorized that there was a link between volcanoes and climate?How many active volcanoes are there?What is a fumarole?What is tephra?What is a phreatic eruption?How much volcanic activity occurs underwater?What are black smokers?What caused a temporary but dramatic change in climate in 1816 called the Year without a Summer?What happened when Mt. St. Helens erupted?What two volcanic eruptions had the biggest impacts on the climate in the twentieth century?What is the Ring of Fire?OCEANOGRAPHY AND WEATHER What is oceanography?How much water is there on Earth?How much water is in the world's oceans?What is a hydrometer?How much water evaporates from the world's oceans?How much drinkable freshwater is there on Earth?What is Arctic sea smoke?What are growlers?Do oceans get more rain than land?What is lake effect snow?What is the thermocline?At what temperature does sea water freeze?OCEAN CURRENTS What are ocean currents?What is an Ekman spiral?How do ocean currents affect weather?Do ocean currents affect coastal weather?What are the fastest currents in the world's oceans?Which ocean currents are the slowest?What is the average temperature of the world's oceans?What are the major surface and subsurface currents in the oceans?What causes deep ocean currents to flow around the world?How does the Gulf Stream affect the weather of the British Isles and Scandinavia?What is El Niño?How does El Niño occur?What is La Niña?What years have been El Niño years versus La Niña years since 1950?What is an ENSO-neutral year?What are atmospheric teleconnections?WEATHER IN SPACEDo other planets in our solar system experience weather?Is there weather outside the solar system?THE MOONWhat is syzygy?What is the difference between a lunar eclipse and a solar eclipse?What is a blue moon?What are tides?How do tides work?How often do ocean tides occur on Earth?Do lakes have tides?Can tides influence weather?THE SUN Why is the Sun essential for weather?How can a solar eclipse influence the weather?How much of the Sun's energy is radiated back into space by the Earth?What is a blue Sun?Does the Sun have an atmosphere?How much time does it take for sunlight to reach the Earth?What is the solar spectrum?Why is infrared light from the Sun important?How is the time set for the beginning of sunrise and sunset?What is a pyranometer?What is a Campbell-Stokes recorder?What type of pyranometer does the National Weather Service use?Does the Sun emit a constant amount of energy?What U.S. cities receive the most sunlight annually?What is a person's circadian rhythm?Are some people allergic to the Sun?What is the sunburn index?What else does too much Sun do to one's skin?Why is the sunniest place on Earth also the coldest?Can people's moods be affected by sunlight?What is albedo?How much sunlight is reflected by snow?SUNSPOTS AND SOLAR ACTIVITYWhat is a sunspot?Who first discovered sunspots?How big do sunspots get?Is there a sunspot cycle?What is the Maunder Minimum?What are some other sunspot minimums and maximums?What is the Wolf Number?What happens to the Sun every 22 years?What is a solar prominence?What is a coronal mass ejection?What is a solar flare?What is solar wind?What is a geomagnetic storm?How fast does the solar wind travel?How far does the solar wind travel?How do sunspots affect weather?What has recent sunspot activity been doing?Is it possible to forecast space weather?Who managed to calculate cosmic ray activity on Earth dating back over 11,000 years?THE MAGNETIC FIELD What is Earth's magnetic field?How did people discover that Earth has a magnetic field?Why is Earth's magnetic field important to life on Earth?What role did Walter Maurice Elsasser play in discovering the magnetic field?How does the magnetosphere help animal behavior on Earth?How strong is Earth's magnetic field?Does Earth's magnetic field ever change?What will happen when Earth's magnetic field flips upside down?Do any other objects in the solar system have magnetic fields that flip upside down?VAN ALLEN BELTS What are the Van Allen belts?How were the Van Allen belts discovered?Do other objects in the solar system have Van Allen belts?NEUTRINOSWhat is a neutrino?How was the existence of neutrinos proven?If neutrinos are so elusive, how do scientists observe them striking Earth?Where are the neutrinos coming from?Have neutrinos ever been shown to have hit Earth from somewhere other than the Sun?COSMIC RAYSWhat are cosmic rays?Who first discovered cosmic rays?How were cosmic rays shown to be charged particles?Where do cosmic rays come from?What is a meteorite?What is a meteor?METEORS, METEORITES, ASTEROIDS, AND COMETSWhere do meteors and meteorites come from?What is a meteor shower?What is a bolide?Are falling meteors and meteorites dangerous?What is the largest known meteorite to strike Earth in the past 100,000 years?What is the largest known meteorite to strike Earth in the past 100 million years?What is an asteroid?What are near-Earth objects and are they dangerous?Has an asteroid ever hit Earth?What is a comet?What do some people fear will occur in December 2012?From where do comets originate?What would happen if a large comet or asteroid impact occurred?Can smaller asteroids and comets affect the weather?HUMANITY AND THE WEATHERHUMANITY'S IMPACT Has the weather ever been responsible for killing a U.S. president?What are the consequences in the United States when there is an unusually cool summer?Is Earth's atmosphere changing?What is weather modification?What is inadvertent weather modification?Who first theorized that human activities were causing climate change?Why are trees and other vegetation important to the weather and climate?What is the current extent of deforestation?GENERAL POLLUTION FACTS How is pollution related to weather?What is long range transport?What major energy source is considered to be the cleanest?What is an urban heat island?What is an urban ice slab?What is light pollution?What is odor pollution?AIR POLLUTIONWhat is air pollution?What is smog?What is a photochemical grid model?How much carbon monoxide is produced in the United States by cars?Is carbon dioxide pollution a problem?What is a brown cloud?What are pollution hot spots?What are the most polluted cities in the world in terms of air quality?What are some disturbing statistics regarding air pollution in Egypt?How much air pollution does the United States produce?Why is air pollution in China such a huge problem?What are the sources of air pollution?How much pollution is generated by airplanes?Does air pollution reach as far as the North Pole?What are some natural sources of air pollution?Are there any circumstances where air pollution could be beneficial?Can weather actually make pollution worse?How much does air pollution damage crops in the United States?What was the air quality like in nineteenth-century London?What are TSPs?What are VOCs?What is carbon monoxide?What is sulfur dioxide?What are some other significant air pollutants?What is the Air Quality Index?What is a smog alert?How is asthma related to air pollution levels?What is the Clean Air Act?What are the National Ambient Air Quality Standards?Who created the first anti-air pollution law in Western history?What caused the Bhopal disaster?How much pollution is caused by smoking tobacco?Is air pollution destroying our architectural history?How do factory farms contribute to air pollution?What did the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently say about power plant emissions?WATER POLLUTIONWhat is acid rain?Who first described the phenomenon of acid rain?What key event brought the issue of acid rain to prominence?What is the National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program (NAPAP)?How clean is rain water?What is the difference between normal rain pH and acid rain pH?Does rain come in any other colors or is it always clear?What is eutrophication?What is a London killer fog?What is acid fog?How have dams affected the planet's water cycle in a significant way?Does irrigation of farmland affect the climate?RADIATIONWhat is nuclear winter?We haven't had a nuclear war (yet), so what sources are creating radiation pollution?What is radon?What was the world's worst nuclear disaster?What happened at Three Mile Island?CLIMATE CHANGECLIMATE BASICSWhat is the difference between climate and weather?How are different types of climates classified?What was Hermann Flohn's contribution to climatology?What are microclimates?What do butterflies have to do with chaos theory?What is the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC)?Is our climate changing?What is paleoclimatology?Who is considered one of the most important pioneers in the study of climate change?What is the Milankovic Cycle?Who else formed theories that ice ages occur in cycles?Why does the Earth's orbit change from circular to elliptical over time?What is a nuclear winter?How did Mikhail Ivanovich Budyko calculate the temperature of Earth's climate?Where can I find reliable climate statistics online?ICE AGESWhat is an ice age?Who first proposed the idea of ice ages?What causes ice ages?What were the major glacial ice ages over time?What were the glacial and interglacial periods in the last Ice Age?How did the last Ice Age begin and end?What are major and minor ice age periods?How much of the Earth was covered in ice during the various ice ages?What was the "Little Ice Age"?Will there be an ice age in the future?GLOBAL WARMINGWhat is the greenhouse effect?Who first formed the theory about the greenhouse effect?Is the greenhouse effect a good thing for life on Earth, or bad for the environment?What is global warming?What is the global average temperature?What gases and chemicals are considered to have the greatest effect on global warming?Is carbon dioxide the most harmful global warming gas?Who first hypothesized that the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere had something to do with climate change?Does all carbon dioxide released as pollution remain in the atmosphere?How much carbon dioxide is being produced by cars and industrial emissions in the United States?How much carbon dioxide am I producing when I drive my car or truck?Which country produces the most greenhouse gas?How many people will find themselves in flooded coastal regions should global warming melt the ice caps?Is there a connection between global warming and geology?What is the evidence supporting global warming?Is global warming causing the world's glaciers to melt?What is the ICESat mission?What are the consequences when glaciers melt?How did abrupt climate changes in the past come to be called Dansgaard-Oeschger events?Does global warming increase the incidence of diseases?What is the effect of global warming and climate change on average temperatures?Do we have any evidence of global warming in the past?What is the Kyoto Protocol?Why did the United States refuse to sign the Kyoto Protocol?How does the United States compare with China and Russia on energy use and production?What could happen if permafrost melts permanently because of global warming?What countries are threatened the most from rising sea levels, and may cease to exist in the twenty-first century?Is global warming causing an increase in severe hurricanes?What changes in plant and bird behavior are indicating global warming?How much land disappears when the sea level rises?Will water supplies be threatened by global warming?Is global warming causing deserts to expand?What important power source doesn't cause global warming?Are wind farms a good way to solve the energy crisis and global warming?Do wind farms affect the weather?Is global warming irreversible?Do all scientists agree that global warming is caused by human beings?Hey, wait a minute, weren't scientists warning us of an impending ice age back in the 1970s?Do other scientists believe we may be heading for an ice age?I heard that some glaciers in Alaska are growing, not shrinking. Is this true?What petition have thousands of scientists signed that says that global warming is not caused by people?What was the weather like in China in 2008?Wasn't 2008 one of the coolest years for the United States?What has the National Climatic Data Center reported about average temperatures in 2008?MODERN METEOROLOGYFORECASTING When did modern weather forecasting begin?When was the first official storm warning issued in the United States?What are cooperative weather observers?Who came up with the idea for volunteer weather observers?How do meteorologists predict weather using changes in air pressure?Is there a difference between The Farmer's Almanac and The Old Farmer's Almanac?Can weather be predicted from the stripes on a wooly-bear caterpillar?Are there trees that predict the weather and tell time?Is a halo around the Sun or Moon a sign of rain or snow approaching?When did the first weather map appear in a newspaper?When did maps displaying cold and warm fronts first get published in the United States?What is the difference between a National Weather Service advisory, statement, watch, and warning?What is the Storm Prediction Center (SPC)?How do meteorologists come up with percentages predicting the weather?What do meteorologists mean when they talk about POP?Is there a difference between a forecast of partly sunny or partly cloudy skies?What is NOAA Weather Radio?What is aviation forecasting?What is marine forecasting?What is agricultural forecasting?What is industrial forecasting?What is fire weather forecasting?What is transportation forecasting?Can meteorologists predict tornadoes?Can you see a tornado using Doppler radar?Who were the first people to successfully forecast a tornado?What is numerical weather prediction?Who first proposed the approach of numerical weather prediction?What happened in the 1940s and 1950s that gave hope to the science of numerical weather prediction?RADARWhat is radar?When did radar finally catch on, and who gets the credit?Who should be credited with inventing weather radar?What is Doppler radar?What replaced the WSR-57s?What is the Doppler effect?How do radars use the Doppler effect to measure the weather?What do the colors shown on television radars indicate?What is a hook echo?Has Doppler radar made tornado forecasting better?What is a Pulse-Doppler radar?What is lidar?What is sodar?What is a Profiler?What is a radiosonde?SATELLITESHow were the first high altitude photographs of clouds taken?What was the first satellite used for monitoring the weather?What remarkable observation did science fiction author Arthur C. Clarke make?What are the different types of satellites used today?What is POES?What is a GOES?What other countries also have weather satellites in orbit?How did the KALPANA-1 get its name?What measurements do weather satellites provide us?What is the Landsat Program?CAREERS IN METEOROLOGY What is a meteorologist?Is meteorology considered a good career?What are the different specialties within or related to meteorology?How do I know if meteorology is for me?Where can I get an education in meteorology?What kinds of courses should I take at the university level?What is a Certified Consulting Meteorologist (CCM)?What is a state climatologist?How do I find financial aid to study meteorology?How much do meteorologists earn?Who hires meteorologists?How hard is it to become a meteorologist who is a radio or television broadcaster?Why do environmental firms hire meteorologists?To what professional societies and organizations should a meteorologist belong?
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