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The Tilt of the Earth's Axis and Cold Temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere

1. Explain why we experience colder temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere in January, even though the entire Earth is closest to the sun at this time of year?

2. What is the only form of energy transfer between the Sun and the Earth? Why is this the only form of energy transfer possible between these two members of the solar system?

3. Continental and marine influence can be seen by comparing the climographs for cities at similar latitudes but varying distances from the oceans. In the table below are two sets of U.S cities. In each set one is coastal and the other is far inland but both are at about the same latitude north. Go to this website RSS climographs. Open the data for each of the cities and fill in the table with the requested information. (You can look up latitude, longitude and distance to nearest ocean for each city on any site you like. Google Earth is a good one that can get you all the answers and give you a good geographic perspective.) INCLUDE UNITS IN EVERY ANSWER!!! Remember that *F and F* have somewhat different meanings and uses.

City and state Bismarck, North Dakota Quillayute, Washington Springfield, Missouri Norfolk, Virginia
Latitude and longitude
Distance to nearest ocean in miles
Highest monthly average high
Lowest monthly average high
Range of monthly average highs
Lowest monthly average low
Highest monthly average low
Range of monthly average lows
Annual average temperature range~
Is this location an example of a marine or a continental climate?
~ computed as highest average high minus lowest average low

4. Which of the cities listed in question 3 would you most like to live in? Why???

5. Consider the land sea breeze situations.
a. Describe a land-sea breeze during the daytime. A diagram may be a useful way to illustrate your answer but is not required.
b. Describe a land-sea breeze at night. A diagram may be a useful way to illustrate your answer but is not required.

6. Consider the concept of albedo.
a. Define albedo?
b. How is the Earth’s albedo important to its overall climate?
c. List 3 land surfaces that have a high albedo.
d. List 3 land surfaces that have a low albedo.

7. What is a microclimate? Describe an example of a microclimate and what it would be like to spend time within that microclimate.

8. Consider the weather map on page 25 of your text. Note that it if for the same time and day as the satellite image in figure 1-1. Answer the following questions in relation to this map and the figure 1-1 satellite image.
a. What pieces of information that are found on a typical station model are not found on the station models on this map?
b. What is the windiest location reported on the map?

The Tilt of the Earth's Axis and Cold Temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere

1. Cold temperatures are experienced in Northern hemisphere because of the axis of the earth which is tilted. In winter, the rays of the sun hit the Earth at a low angle and they spread everywhere limiting the amount of energy reaching the earth’s surface.

When the axis of the earth is tilted, it causes shorter days and longer nights and therefore when this happens, the earth’s surface does not warm up and thus remain cold.

2. The main source of energy to the earth is the sun; it provides light to earth and also warmth. The only form which this energy is transferred is through radiation which involves transfer of energy through visible light (Snedden, 2006)

Because radiation involve the transmission of thermal energy as waves and it’s done through the matter of empty space to the earth, it makes radiation the only form of heat transfer between sun and earth. 

Question 4.

City and state

Bismarck, North Dakota

Quillayute, Washington

Springfield, Missouri

Norfolk, Virginia

Latitude and longitude


46.7825

&

-100.757


47.9375

&
-124.555


37.2397

&

-93.3897


36.9033

&

-76.1922

Distance to nearest ocean in miles

8,691mi

9,207mi

8,663mi

7,794mi

Highest monthly average high

85°F

69°F

89°F

87°F

Lowest monthly average high


23°F

46°F

43°F

48°F

Range of monthly average highs

23-85°F

46-69°F

43-89°F

48-87°F

Lowest monthly average low

2°F


35°F

22°F

33°F

Highest monthly average low

57°F

51°F

68°F

72°F

Range of monthly average lows

2-57°F

35-51°F

22-68°F

33-72°F

Annual average temperature range~


42.8°F

49.3°F


56.15°F


60.05°F

Is this location an example of a marine or a continental climate?

Continental

Humid Continental

Humid Continental

Humid Continental& maritime

4. Norfolk, Virginia -because of its mild climatic conditions as compared to other areas in the United States and it receives warm summers and sufficient amount of rainfall not much to cause floods thus excellent for farming. It has favorable seasons and temperatures. Has a variety of vegetation and grasses as they are able to survive in such climatic conditions. The available vegetation supports many animals.

Springfield, Missouri- it has a humid climate which is gentle with no dry season. Summers are hot but winters are mild with rainfall. Has a refreshing climatic condition that brings exciting experiences in every season.

5. When land is heated during the day, it quickly absorbs heat and the temperature will increase than that of the land hence change in air temperature which results in movement of air from the cool area towards the land which is now hot, hence creating a sea breeze (Oliver, 2005). 

Winds that flow from the sea to the land are called sea breeze. That’s the reason why waters are cold at daytime.


Describe a land-sea breeze at night

this is the vice versa of what happens at daytime, the land loses heat faster than water and therefore at night all the heat which was absorbed during the day is lost, therefore the temperature on the land is cooler whereas that on the sea is hot. The cool air then flows from land to the sea creating a land breeze (Oliver, 2005). 

The Sun as the Main Source of Energy for the Earth

6. Winds flowing from the land to the sea are called a land breeze. That explains the reason why sea waters are warm at night.

Albedo is the gauge of reflectivity of a surface. It’s the portion of the shortwave radiation reflected from earth back to the sky. The surface of land occupied by ice/snow has a high albedo and therefore whole or most of the sunlight that hit it reflects back (Philander, 2008).

Water is a good absorbent of light and less reflective cause more radiation to be absorbed and therefore less light is reflected back.

Earth’s albedo has a cooling result. Its principle is applied to buildings in hot areas in that buildings are painted with white colors especially on the outside because when the light hits white surfaces there are high levels of reflection hence keep the buildings cool inside.

Earth’s surface has features with different colors which includes white patches of ice and snow (Singh, et.al, 2011), dark oceans and forests/vegetation and each feature has an effect on the temperature of the earth in that they help in cooling and warming of the earth’s surface. Reflective surfaces like ice and snow help in cooling the earth, while dark areas like oceans absorb a lot of heat hence warms the earth surface.

Clouds also help in cooling and at the same time in warming the earth surface. White clouds reflect light hence cooling effect is felt, dense clouds which might be carrying water vapor in the condensed state helps in warming because they absorb and maintain heat.

Earth’s albedo has also caused an impact on global warming (Philander, 2008), in that there are decreased white surfaces, therefore, there is less light being reflected hence earth warming.

  1. List 3 land surfaces that have a high albedo.
  • Ice and  snow
  • Glaciers
  • deserts
  1. List 3 land surfaces that have a low albedo
  • Water
  • Forests
  • Grasslands

7. Microclimate is a smaller region in the climate precinct that has own unique climate. It applies to areas of terrestrial and those with glaciers, but can also refer to oceans and other water body surfaces. Examples of microclimate include near water bodies, in heavy urban areas where bricks reflect sun’s energy, slopes.

Living in a microclimate region especially near a water body like oceans is good because there is cool climate and temperatures are favorable due to the presence of land-sea breezes. General climate is dry, warm and with good sunshine and therefore there is vegetation.

8. Weather symbols (Bolc, 1984). 

Cold front

Warm front

Stationary front

Occluded front 

Reference list

Bolc, L. (1984). Natural language communication with pictorial information systems. Berlin: Springer.

Oliver, J. E. (2005). Encyclopedia of world climatology. Dordrecht: Springer.

Philander, S. G. (2008). Encyclopedia of global warming and climate change: 1. Los Angeles [u.a.: SAGE

Singh, V. P., Singh, P., & Haritashya, U. K. (2011). Encyclopedia of snow, ice, and glaciers. Dordrecht: Springer.

Snedden, R. (2006). Energy transfer. Chicago, Ill: Heinemann Library.

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My Assignment Help. (2020). Cold Temperatures And Climate: Understanding The Reasons And Effects. Retrieved from https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/geog-120-meteorology-for-the-transmission-of-thermal-energy.

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