Air Masses and Fronts

Question Answer
What is an "air mass"? A hugh body of air that has similar temperature, humidity, and air pressure throughout it
Air masses are "classified" or group by what properties? Temperature and Humidity are used to classify air masses.
Tropical, or warm means? Tropical air masses are warm, air masses that form in the tropics and have low air pressure.
Polar, or cold means? Polar air masses are cold, air masses from north of 50 degrees latitude and south of 50 degrees latitude and have "high" air pressure.
Maritime, or over water means? Maritime air masses form over oceans and are humid
Continental, or over land means? Continental air masses form over land, in the middle of continents, and are dry.
What are the four major types of air masses that influence the weather in North America? Hint: Over Water and Over Land Maritime tropical, continental tropical, maritime polar, and continental polar.
What do Maritime Tropical (over water) air masses from the Gulf of Mexico? They bring warm, humid air to the Eastern US
What do Maritime Tropical (over water) air masses from the Pacific Ocean bring to the West Coast(California)? Maritime Tropical air masses from the Pacific Ocean bring: warm, humid air to the West Coast/California.
Continental Tropical(over land, humid) air masses from the Southwest bring? Continental Tropical air masses bring hot dry air to the Southern Great Plains.
Continental Polar(over land, cold) air masses from the central and northern Canada bring? Continental Polar air masses from Canada bring cold air to the central and eastern US.
Maritime Polar (over water, cold) air masses occur where? Maritime Polar air masses from the Atlantic Ocean are pushed out to sea/ocean by westerly blowing winds.
What does "prevailing westerlies" mean? Prevailing Westerly winds are winds that blow across the United States from West(California) to the East (New York)
As air masses move across the land and oceans they bump into each other. If they have different temperatures and densities, do they mix? No, they do not mix. They create a rain storm or wind storm or other storm. This is called a "front".
What are the four major types of fronts? Cold Front, Warm Front, Stationary Front, and Occluded Fronts.
What is a cold front? It is when cold air moves underneath warm air, forcing the warm air to rise.
Do cold fronts move quickly or slowly? What type of air does a cold front bring? Cold fronts move quickly. Cold fronts bring cold dry air.
When does a warm front develop? A warm front develops when warm air moves over cold air.
Do warm fronts move quickly or slowly? What type of air does a warm front bring? A warm front moves slowly. A warm front brings warm humid air.
What is a stationary front? Hint: Stand Still. A stationary front forms when cold and warm air masses meet but neither one has enough force to push the other one. They just sit there and become stationary. Don't move.
What does "occluded" mean? Occluded is when a warm air mass is cut off from the ground. It usually causes clouds and precipitation(rain or snow) to occur.
What is a swirling center of low air pressure called? Hint: Brooklyn cyc…. A swirling center o flow air pressure is called a "cyclone.
What is another name for a Cyclone? Cyclones are also called: "lows" because of the low air pressure.
Cyclones and decreasing air pressure are associated with? Cyclones and decreasing air pressure are associated with storms and precipitation.
What are "Anticyclones"? Anti-cyclones are high pressure centers of dry air
What is another name for "Anticyclones"? another name for Anti-cyclones are "highs" because of the high air pressure.
Anticyclones lead to what type of weather? Anticyclones lead to dry, clear weather.
What direction do winds spin in the Northern Hemisphere? In the Northern Hemisphere winds spin in a counter clockwise direction in a cyclone and clockwise in an "anticyclone".

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