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Geography - World & Indian (Atmospheric Dynamics)

Written By STPORTAL on Sunday, March 18, 2012 | 2:56 PM


Geography - World & Indian (Atmospheric Dynamics):

Global Wind Patterns
Wind is the rough horizontal movement of air caused by uneven heating of the Earths surface. The two major influences on the atmospheric circulation are the differential heating between the equator and the poles, and the rotation of the planet (Coriolis effect). Wind will always flow from low pressure to high pressure area, although these flows will be modified by the Coriolis effect in the extratropics.

Winds can be classified either by their scale, the kinds of forces which cause them (according to the atmospheric equations of motion), or the geographic regions in which they exist.

Winds can also shape landforms, via a variety of eolian processes.

 
Prevailing winds รข€” the general circulation of the atmosphere
Prevailing winds are winds which come about as a consequence of global circulation patterns. These include
  • the Trade Winds
  • the Westerlies
  • the Polar Easterlies
  • the jet streams.

Trade Wind
The region of Earth receiving the Suns direct rays is the equator. Here, air is heated and rises, leaving low pressure areas behind. Moving to about thirty degrees north and south of the equator, the warm air from the equator begins to cool and sink. Between thirty degrees latitude and the equator,  most of the cooling sinking air moves back to the equator. The rest of the air flows toward the poles. The air movements toward the equator are called trade winds meaning "path" or "track", - warm, steady breezes that blow almost continuously. The Coriolis Effect makes the trade winds appear to be curving to the west, whether they are traveling to the equator from the south or north. The trade winds coming from the south and the north meet near the equator. These converging trade winds produce general upward winds as they are heated, so there are no steady surface winds. This area of calm is called the doldrums. Sinking air creates an area of high area called horse latitudes. Here the winds are weak.

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