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Clouds31-03-2022 11:44
duncan61
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(1729)
During Summer there are clear nights with no clouds and the temperature range between night and day can be 25.C Lately we have had cloud cover and the temperature range between night and day is only a few degrees.How does this work.How do clouds slow the flow of energy in and out?Is it just my imagination?


duncan61
31-03-2022 19:57
Into the NightProfile picture★★★★★
(18410)
duncan61 wrote:
During Summer there are clear nights with no clouds and the temperature range between night and day can be 25.C Lately we have had cloud cover and the temperature range between night and day is only a few degrees.How does this work.How do clouds slow the flow of energy in and out?Is it just my imagination?


It's actually just your imagination...in a way.

Clouds do not slow the flow of energy at all. The ocean is a huge thermal ballast. It doesn't slow energy, but because it takes so much energy to heat or cool it to change it's temperature, temperatures ranges at sea tend to remain pretty narrow. Temperature is not total thermal energy, but AVERAGE thermal energy.

Liquid water takes more heat to warm or cool it by a single degree than dry land.

If your winds come from the sea, they tend to bring moisture with it. Often clouds will form, and often as low stratus. This air is coming from the same sea that doesn't change it's temperature much.

If your winds come from over dry land, you will get all the temperature variations of dry land right along with clear skies.

This is why temperatures can have such a wide range in deserts. Daily ranges in Las Vegas, for example, from 70 deg F to 32 deg F at night is pretty common. When winds shift to bring in marine air from the nearby Pacific ocean and with it overcast skies, daily temperature ranges tend to be narrower, not as hot and not as cold.

Like a great flywheel, ocean water takes a lot of energy to get it going (or heat the water) or to get it to stop (to cool the water). The temperature is the 'speed' of the flywheel (average energy).

This whole bit about temperature and how much thermal energy it takes to change it is known as the 'thermal heat capacity', a rather poorly named term, since there is no 'capacity', just this differing amount of thermal energy it takes to raise or lower a substance by one degree.

It takes 4184 joules of energy to heat 1 kg of water by one degree C. This is defined as one calorie.

Copper takes only 385 joules of energy to heat a kg by one degree. It's still heat. It's still moving thermal energy. Nothing is slower or faster. It's just the amount of energy it takes to change a given amount of anything by one degree that's different. You might say that copper is a smaller 'thermal flywheel' than water is. It's easier to change it's 'speed' (temperature).

Hope this helps.


The Parrot Killer

Debunked in my sig. - tmiddles

Google keeps track of paranoid talk and i'm not on their list. I've been evaluated and certified. - keepit

nuclear powered ships do not require nuclear fuel. - Swan

While it is true that fossils do not burn it is also true that fossil fuels burn very well - Swan
Edited on 31-03-2022 20:12
31-03-2022 20:14
IBdaMannProfile picture★★★★★
(11759)
duncan61 wrote:During Summer there are clear nights with no clouds and the temperature range between night and day can be 25.C Lately we have had cloud cover and the temperature range between night and day is only a few degrees.How does this work.How do clouds slow the flow of energy in and out?Is it just my imagination?

Into the Night got most of it. You are looking at it entirely backwards.

You shouldn't be asking how clouds alter atmospheric conditions, you should be asking how atmospheric conditions create clouds (or prevent them from forming).

Otherwise:

1) There are weather conditions that accompany decreases in temperature that cause clouds to form.

2) There are weather conditions that accompany increases in temperature that cause clouds to form.

3) There are weather conditions that accompany decreases in temperature that prevent clouds from forming.

4) There are weather conditions that accompany increases in temperature that prevent clouds from forming.
31-03-2022 21:09
Into the NightProfile picture★★★★★
(18410)
IBdaMann wrote:
duncan61 wrote:During Summer there are clear nights with no clouds and the temperature range between night and day can be 25.C Lately we have had cloud cover and the temperature range between night and day is only a few degrees.How does this work.How do clouds slow the flow of energy in and out?Is it just my imagination?

Into the Night got most of it. You are looking at it entirely backwards.

You shouldn't be asking how clouds alter atmospheric conditions, you should be asking how atmospheric conditions create clouds (or prevent them from forming).

Otherwise:

1) There are weather conditions that accompany decreases in temperature that cause clouds to form.

2) There are weather conditions that accompany increases in temperature that cause clouds to form.

3) There are weather conditions that accompany decreases in temperature that prevent clouds from forming.

4) There are weather conditions that accompany increases in temperature that prevent clouds from forming.

Quite right. I was building a simile to make the concept of specific heat capacity a bit easier to understand, and how marine flow tends to favor conditions of moisture and clouds. It actually doesn't require a change in weather temperatures to form clouds. Just a change in temperature. This easily occurs during convection of warm air to higher altitudes, since air higher up in the troposphere is colder than air below (in general).

Anything that causes rising air can create conditions to form clouds, such as moisture laden air blowing against a mountainside and being forced upwards (why rain tends to form on one side of the mountains due to prevailing winds).

If there is enough moisture, and the air is driven up fast enough, you get thunderclouds. Once rain starts, you get conflicting up and down drafts right next to each other. Like rubbing a balloon on glass, this strips off electrons that become concentrated at the base of the cloud while lighter ice crystals stripped of some electrons move to the top of the cloud.

When the cloud gets enough of a difference of voltage built up to cross that air gap in the cloud, lightning occurs within the cloud.

The ground is also positive relative to the base of the cloud, so lightning can also strike the ground (a bigger air gap to cross and not as frequent).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NZ7BollRo4

Here you can see positive leaders extend upward from the ground as negative ones work their way down from the cloud. Then they connect, the lightning stroke itself occurs.

Pretty cool photography. A capacitor the size of the thundercloud.

Thunderstorms are self destructive. The cell only lasts for a little while as convective heating warms the upper air enough. The storm is often referred to as a 'convective activity' by the weather service. That can mean anything from a single cell to fronts filled with cells violent enough to cause tornadoes or hurricanes (or typhoons for you Pacific ocean folks).


The Parrot Killer

Debunked in my sig. - tmiddles

Google keeps track of paranoid talk and i'm not on their list. I've been evaluated and certified. - keepit

nuclear powered ships do not require nuclear fuel. - Swan

While it is true that fossils do not burn it is also true that fossil fuels burn very well - Swan
Edited on 31-03-2022 21:18
01-04-2022 02:54
duncan61
★★★★☆
(1729)
Conditions make clouds.Clouds do not make conditions .Got it




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