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Glossary

There are currently 29 names in this directory
CALM
Atmospheric conditions devoid of wind or any other air motion. In oceanic terms, it is the apparent absence of motion of the water surface when there is no wind or swell.

CALM
Absence of apparent motion of wind. This condition is reported when smoke is observed to rise vertically, or the surface of the sea is smooth and mirror-like.

CALORIE
In meteorology, it is the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one (1) gram of water one (1) degree Celsius. It is a unit of heat energy.

CAT'S PAW
A slight and local breeze, which shows itself by rippling the surface sea.

CEILING
The height above the ground of the base of the lowest layer of clouds, when at least 60 percent of the sky is covered by clouds.

CENTIGRADE / CELSIUS
A thermometric scale on which 0° denotes the freezing point and 100° the boiling point water, both under standard atmospheric pressure.

CIRCULATION
General circulation is the flow of air of large, semi-permanent weather systems, while secondary circulation is the flow of air of more temporary weather systems.

CLIMATE
The average weather and its long term variability over a particular place and time (say a month, a season, a year or several years)

CLIMATE VARIABILITY
Refers to the fluctuations / variations of climate observed since the instrumental period (i.e., 1860 to present). These fluctuations are due to natural causes and to human activities.

CLIMATOLOGY
The scientific study of climate.

CLOUD
A visible aggregate of minute water and/or ice particles in the atmosphere above the earth's surface.

CLOUD BANNER
A cloud streaming off from the mountain peak, resembling a banner.

CLOUD-BURST
A sudden and extremely heavy downpour of rain; especially in mountain regions.

COL
The point of intersection of trough and ridge in the pressure pattern of a weather map. A neck of relatively low pressure between two anticyclones; also called a saddle.

COLD FRONT
The forward edge of an advancing cold air mass which is displacing warmer air in its path.

COLD WAVE
A rapid and marked fall of temperature during the cold season of the year over a short period of time.

COMET
A relatively small, at times active, object whose ices can vaporize in sunlight forming an atmosphere (coma) of dust and gas and, sometimes, a tail of dust and/or gas.

CONDENSATION
The change of a substance from vapor to liquid, usually caused by a decrease in temperature of the substance; the opposite of evaporation.

CONDENSATION NUCLEI
Small particles in the air around which water vapor condenses.

CONDUCTION
The transfer of heat by molecular action within a substance or when two substances are in direct contact.

CONTINENTAL AIR MASS
An air mass that forms over land. it is usually dry, but may be cold or warm.

CONTINENTAL CLIMATE
The type of climate characteristic of the interior of a continent. Compared to maritime climate, it has a large annual and daily range of temperature.

CONTRAIL
A cloud-like stream in cold, clear air formed behind the engines of an airplane.

CONVECTION
It is often used to indicate the vertical movement of warm air, as opposed to advection.

CONVERGENCE
The condition that exists when the distribution of winds within a given area is such that there is a net horizontal inflow of air into the area. The removal of the resulting excess is accomplished by an upward movement of air; consequently areas of convergent winds are regions favorable to the occurrence of precipitation.

CORIOLIS EFFECT
The curving motion of an moving object, such as air, caused by the rotation of the earth. In the northern hemisphere moving objects deflect to the right and in the southern hemisphere deflect to the left.

CORONA
A set of one or more colored rings, concentrically surrounding the disk of the sun, moon or other luminary when veiled by a thin cloud.

CUMULIFORM
A general term applied to all clouds having dome-shaped upper surfaces which exhibit protuberances, bases of such clouds being generally horizontal. Cumuliform clouds are characteristically distinct and separated from one another by clear spaces.

CYCLONE
A low pressure system in which winds spin inward in a counterclockwise direction in the northern hemisphere.


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