Questions tagged [synoptic]

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9 votes
1 answer

In quasi-geostrophic frontogenesis, what happens if the potential vorticity is negative?

In particular, what happens if the Sawyer–Eliassen equation cannot be solved? I know that a condition for the Sawyer–Eliassen equation to have a solution is $F^2 N^2 - S^4 >0$, which means that the ...
5 votes
0 answers

Weather produced by symmetric cold core cyclones

I know that, although rare, there are symmetric cold core cyclones (with a few of them even having a shallow cold core). They encompass some occluded extratropical cyclones, some dissipating tropical ...
4 votes
0 answers

Characteristics of saddle points in stream line charts

I am trying to locate saddle points or commonly known as "col" in synoptic meteorology. This is "z" in the following figure. References Here are some of the references regarding this. a). http://www....
1 vote
0 answers

Modification of an air mass

If an air mass that exists in North America starts moving south west or south east what kind of modification will affect it and how would you characterize it in it's final state? My answer is that it ...
5 votes
0 answers

Physics based circulation models

How useful are physics based models when considering circulations at synoptic scales? Are they useful? Can we not make predictions, observe trends based on data alone? I am studying A.E.Gill's model ...
2 votes
1 answer

Cloudless sky in synop message?

SYNOP code (see has a field for describing cloud types by different levels, given as "8NCCC" (see link for further info, Cloud type ...
10 votes
2 answers

Why are frontal zones connected to low-pressure systems but not to high-pressure systems?

Frontal zones (e. g. a warm or a cold front) are connected to low-pressure systems. But why do high-pressure systems not have frontal zones?
2 votes
0 answers

Numerical methods for solving shallow-water equations with a source

What are the numerical methods used for solving shallow water equations (PDEs) with a mass source, at the synoptic scales of the atmosphere, if I have a finite east-west boundary (may be periodic wave ...
6 votes
0 answers

Forced shallow-water equation with diabatic heating as the source term

How to obtain the divergence of velocity field $\left(\nabla.\mathbf{u}\right)$ with ${Q}$ (something proportional to the diabatic heating rate) as the source term from the thermodynamic equation? ...
12 votes
1 answer

Are the "polar vortex" and "cut-off lows" over/near the Great Lakes new phenomena?

In recent years, I've heard weather reporters describe "cut-off" low pressure systems which park over Southern Ontario for days at a time. In summer months, they bring us long stretches of cool cloudy,...
12 votes
1 answer

How is the Rossby Radius used to determine that synoptic weather systems are 1000-2000km across?

In one of his presentations, Sandy MacDonald (of NOAA and ESRL) talks about the Rossby Radius of Deformation in connection with the size of synoptic weather systems: he describes how it sets the ...
9 votes
1 answer

Is there a reliable way to identify regions with negatively-correlated winds?

When examining the potential for large-scale electricity grids, and when identifying the lowest-cost ways to generate clean electricity, a recurring theme is of spreading wind generation across a wide-...
21 votes
2 answers

How do tropopause folds form and do they have any impact on synoptic scale weather?

What is the process that creates a tropopause fold? Do these features have any significant impact(s) on weather patterns or the atmosphere?
11 votes
1 answer

What are the key differences between warm and cold core cyclones?

What are the key differences between warm and cold core cyclones? What is an example of each?