1. Through which city does the prime meridian run?

            Greenwich, England

  1. What are the dates of the solstices and equinoxes?

            Summer solstice: June 21 Winter solstice: December 22

Vernal equinox: March 21 Autumnal equinox: September 22

  1. Describe Earth–Sun relationships in terms of orbit, the Sun’s position, tilt and direction of Earth’s axis as it revolves around the Sun.

            Earth’s orbit around the sun is not circular, and the sun is not in the center of

the orbit. Earth is closest to the sun during January, and farthest during July, so

Earth-Sun distance does not cause the seasons, but it does affect the severity of the

winter and summer seasons. The changing orientation of Earth’s tilt relative to the

position of the sun as Earth revolves around it is the cause of the seasons. The tilt

and revolution cause all lines of latitude to receive differing amounts of solar

radiation throughout the year and the direct rays of the sun to strike at latitudes

varying from 23.5°N to 23.5°S. Tilt and revolution also cause day length to vary over

the course of the year for each line of latitude (except the equator).

  1. Does water have a low or high specific heat?


  1. What is the equation of state for an ideal gas? What are the variables?

            P = ρRdT       where P = pressure, ρ = density, Rd = the dry grass constant, and

T = temperature in Kelvins

  1. What are isobars?

            a line on a map that connects locations having the same atmospheric pressure

  1. What forces apply to winds near the surface and in the free atmosphere?

            surface: friction

free atmosphere: pressure gradient force (PGF), Coriolis effect (CE), centrifugal

                              acceleration (CA)

  1. To what depths in the ocean do Ekman spirals exist?

            100m (330ft)


  1. Do winds diverge or converge in cyclones and anticyclones in the northern and southern


            Northern hemisphere: winds converge in cyclones and are deflected to the left,

winds diverge in anticyclones and are deflected to the right. Southern hemisphere: winds

converge in cyclones and are deflected to the right, winds diverge in anticyclones and are

deflected to the left.

  1. What is the change in wind direction toward the right (in the northern hemisphere) with increasing height called?


  1. How is air directed relative to the isobars by pressure gradient?

Air is directed at some across PGF isobars at the surface, from areas of high pressure to    low. (Parallel to isobars in “free atmosphere”)

How is air directed (in the northern hemisphere) relative to wind direction by the Coriolis effect?

            Air is deflected to the right.

How is air directed for an object moving on a curved trajectory by centrifugal force?

            Air is pulled slightly back toward its initial trajectory (to the outside of the curve).

How is air affected by friction?

            Friction slows air (wind), thus affecting the speed and reducing the amount of

Deflection from both CE and CA.

  1. Pounds per square inch, inches of mercury, the Pascal, and the millibar are units associated with what atmospheric characteristic?


Correction to the textbook: A newton is not a unit of pressure (and not force per square meter). A newton (abbreviated as N) is the force required to give a mass of 1 kilogram (1 kg) an acceleration of 1 meter per second per second (1 m/sec2).

  1. The law of motion or thermodynamics governs the movement of energy inequalities from areas of higher concentration to areas of lower concentration to balance them?

            the second law of thermodynamics

  1. What are density, specific heat, sensible energy, and pressure?

            density: a physical property of matter represented by the ratio of mass to volume

specific heat: the amount of heat (energy) required to raise the temperature of a 1 g mass

by 1°C or 1 K

sensible energy: radiant energy that heats the Earth-ocean-atmosphere system rather than

evaporates water.

pressure: the amount of force exerted on a given area

  1. In what orbital positions does every latitude experience 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness?

            vernal and autumnal equinoxes

  1. Are summer temperatures near oceans, on average, warmer or colder than temperatures at locations far inland?


  1. During which season do bodies of water store energy? During which season do bodies of water slowly release energy?

            store in summer, release in winter

  1. What does leeward mean?

            downwind; the side of a topographic feature facing away from the wind

  1. Is evaporation is a cooling or heating process?


  1. For a given temperature, would the heat index usually be higher or lower in the desert of Arizona than in the Amazon rain forest?

            lower heat index in Arizona

  1. How many Navier-Stokes equations of motion are there that form the fundamentals of

numerical weather forecasting?


  1. Are strong pressure gradients associated with weaker or stronger winds?

            stronger winds

  1. What Earth process is solely responsible for the existence of the Coriolis effect?

            rotation; Earth’s angular velocity about the local vertical

  1. Describe the pressure of and circulation around cyclones and anticyclones in the northern and southern hemispheres.

            Northern hemisphere: winds converge in cyclones and are deflected to the left,

winds diverge in anticyclones and are deflected to the right. Southern hemisphere:

winds converge in cyclones and are deflected to the right, winds diverge in

anticyclones and are deflected to the left. Cyclones are areas of low pressure, and

anticyclones are areas of high pressure.

  1. Do high diurnal temperature variations exist at higher or lower altitudes?

            lower altitudes

  1. Why is the maritime effect for San Francisco greater than it is for Washington, DC?

The maritime effect for Washington is much less than San Francisco due to the westerly direction of the prevailing winds. Washington is windward of the moderating influence of the ocean, while San Francisco is leeward (AIR AND OCEAN CIRCULATION)

  1. How does advection transfer energy or matter through a fluid?


  1. What is the average distance between the Earth and the Sun?

            149.67 million km (92.96 million miles)

  1. How does convection transfer energy or matter through a fluid?


  1. How are for the wind direction named?

            wind is named after the direction in which it originates (coming from)

  1. What is the term for the transfer of atmospheric mass from one location to another?


  1. What is the difference between heat and temperature with respect to the kinetic energy of molecules? (You’ll need some help from the internet)

All molecules contain some amount of kinetic energy, that is to say, they have some intrinsic motion. … Thus, the heat of an object is the total energy of all the molecular motion inside that object. Temperature, on the other hand, is a measure of the average heat or thermal energy of the molecules in a substance.

  1. What is the difference between revolution and rotation?

            revolution: Earth’s orbit around the sun; rotation: the spin of the Earth on its axis

  1. What is absolute zero? How close have scientists been able to approach this temperature in the laboratory?

            The theoretical temperature at which all molecular motion ceases and no internal

energy is present. Scientists were able to approach absolute zero within a few

billionths of a degree. (0 K, -273°C, -460°F)

  1. What are some units of energy or work?

            calorie, Joule, British Thermal Unit (BTU), horsepower

Which is used in the metric system?


  1. What are some units of pressure? Which is used in the metric system?

            inches of mercury (inHg), Newton (N), Pascal (Pa), millibar (mb)…Newton

is metric

  1. What are axial parallelism, axial tilt, the circle of illumination, and the plane of the ecliptic?

            Axial parallelism is the property of Earth’s axis of remaining tilted at the same

fixed angle throughout its revolution about the Sun. Axial tilt is the angle between

the vertical and Earth’s axis, which corresponds approximately to 23.5° currently

in geological history. The circle of illumination is an imaginary line, as viewed from

space, that separates the illuminated and dark halves of Earth at any given time.

The plane of the ecliptic is the imaginary plane bisecting Earth and the sun, on

which Earth and other planets revolve about the sun.

  1. What is special regarding daylight hours at the Arctic and Antarctic Circles, equator, and Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn on the days of solstices and equinoxes?

            Arctic Circle: June 21; 24 hours of sunlight, December 22; 0 hours of sunlight

Equator: 12 hours of sunlight every day of the year

Antarctic Circle: June 21; 0 hours of sunlight, December 22; 24 hours of sunlight

Tropic of Cancer: June 21; 12 hours of sunlight

Tropic of Capricorn: December 22; 12 hours of sunlight

*12 hours of daylight everywhere on March 21 and September 22

  1. What is the difference between latent energy and sensible energy?

            Latent energy is radiant energy that evaporates water in the Earth-ocean-

atmosphere system rather than heating the atmosphere or surface. Sensible

energy is radiant energy that heats the Earth-ocean-atmosphere system rather

than evaporates water.

  1. Which are the six controls of climate?

            latitude, Earth-Sun relationships, position in the continent, atmospheric and

oceanic circulation, topography, and local features

  1. Why do is urban heat islands form in cities?

            lack of vegetation, decreased evaporative cooling, waste heat from domestic and

industrial processes, and thermal properties of construction material

  1. What is orographic precipitation?

            precipitation caused by clouds formed from cool air moving uphill (windward side)

  1. What is refraction?

            the bending of light when it encounters a medium of different density

  1. What is the name of the current of warm water that circulates across the North Atlantic keeping maritime Europe warmer than regions farther inland?

            North Atlantic Drift

  1. In what latitudes do wave cyclones typically occur?

The middle latitudes (mid-latitudes, sometimes mid latitudes) are between 23°26’22” North and 66°33’39” North, and between 23°26’22” South and 66°33’39” South latitude, or, the Earth’s temperate zones between the tropics and the Arctic and Antarctic polar regions.

  1. As latitude and wind speed increase, does the Coriolis effect get stronger or weaker?


  1. According to the equation of state (ideal gas law), which factors determine the pressure of a gas?

            density, the dry gas constant, and temperature in Kelvin

  1. How would places affected by continentality experience summer and winter temperatures?

            very cold winters and fairly hot summers

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