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18.3[1] 18.3[1] Presentation Transcript

  • Cloud Types and Precipitation
  • Clouds
    • Clouds among the most striking and noticeable effects of the atmosphere and its weather.
    • Clouds are a form of condensation best described as visible mixtures of tiny droplets of water or tiny crystals of ice.
    • Clouds show what’s going on in the atmosphere.
  • Types of Clouds
    • Clouds are classified on the basis of their form and height.
    • The three basic forms are cirrus, cumulus, and stratus.
      • All other clouds reflect one of these three basic forms or are combinations or modifications of them.
  • Cirrus- (a curl of hair)
    • These clouds are high, white, and thin, and they occur as patches or like sheets.
      • Also known as “wispy.”
  • Cumulus-(a pile)
    • These clouds consist of rounded individual cloud masses.
    • They normally have a flat base and the appearance of towers and often have a cauliflower structure.
  • Stratus-(a layer)
    • Clouds are best described as sheets or layers that cover the sky.
  • High Clouds
    • Cirrus, cirrostratus. cirrocumulus
    • These clouds are not considered precipitation makers.
    • May warn of approaching stormy weather.
  • Middle Clouds
    • Clouds that appear in the middle range from about 2000-6000 meters.
      • Altocumulus and altostratus
  • Low Clouds
    • Stratus, stratocumulus, and nimbostratus.
      • The stratus clouds are like a uniform, a fog like layer of clouds that frequently cover much of the sky.
    • “ Nimbus” means “rainy cloud” and “stratus” means “to cover with a layer.”
      • These clouds are known as precipitation makers.
  • Fog
    • Physically there is not difference between a fog and a cloud but their appearance and structure are the same.
    • Their difference is the method and place of formation.
    • Most fogs are the result of radiation cooling or the movement of air over a cold surface.
    • Fog is defined as a cloud with its base at or very near the ground.
  • How Precipitation Forms
    • Cloud droplets are very tiny, averaging less than 20 micrometers in diameter.
    • Because of their small size, the rate at which cloud droplets fall is incredibly slow.
    • For precipitation to form, cloud droplets must grow in volume by roughly one million times.
  • Cold Cloud Precipitation
    • The Bergeron process- a theory that relates the formation of precipitation to super cooled clouds, freezing nuclei, and the different levels of ice and liquid water.
    • Supercooled- the condition of water droplets that remain the liquid state at temperatures well below 0 degrees Celsius
    • Supersaturated- the condition of air that is more highly concentrated than is normally possible under given temperature and pressure conditions; when describing humidity it refers to a relative humidity that is greater than 100 percent.
  • Forms of Precipitation
    • The type of precipitation that reaches Earth’s surface depends on the temperature profile in the lowest few kilometers of the atmosphere.