Category Archives: Meteorology

Why are there April showers?

As we head into the second half of April, recent weather has reminded us all of the old saying, “April showers bring May flowers.” The question, of course, is why does April bring the showers? First of all, is it … Continue reading

Category: Meteorology, Seasons

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Is water always present in the atmosphere?

Evidence of the presence of water in our atmosphere is ubiquitous. Water occurs in the Earth’s atmosphere in all three of its phases — solid (snow and ice), liquid (rain and dew) and gas (invisible water vapor).

As we begin to emerge from winter and enter spring, we may begin to see more dew on the ground and on the windshields of cars in the morning. The air nearly always holds some amount of water vapor. Dew is liquid water that condenses overnight onto objects when the air that contains the water vapor cools to a sufficiently low temperature. Continue reading

Category: Meteorology, Seasons

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Why was part of the sky green on Tuesday night?

Why was part of the sky green on Tuesday night? Continue reading

Category: Meteorology, Phenomena

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When does spring begin?

Spring marks the transition from winter to summer. Meteorologists often define the three months of spring as March through May. By that definition, spring would begin on March 1.

We might also define spring as the day on which, if there is precipitation, it is more likely to be in the form of rain than snow. Continue reading

Category: Meteorology, Seasons

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How severe has this winter been?

Last year we experienced a persistently cold winter (December-January-February) that ended up being the coldest since 1979.

This year has been different. The Midwest Regional Climate Center is experimenting with what they are calling the Accumulated Winter Season Severity Index (AWSSI), which incorporates temperature, snowfall and snow depth to rate the severity of winter. Continue reading

Category: Climate, Meteorology, Seasons

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