Weather provides a wide variety of stimuli for our senses. The sound of thunder and gales, the smell of damp soil at the start of a summer thunderstorm are but temporary phenomena while the visual panorama of the changing sky that provides a more revealing insight into the workings of the dynamic atmosphere.
Understanding Weather shows how it is possible to understand weather and climate by combining our ability to observe weather systems from the earth's surface with visualisation from above - notably by means of satellite imagery. This fusion of human observation with the contrasting capabilities of remote sensing gives us a new perspective for exploring the three dimensional atmosphere. Remote sensing imagery and real-time weather information are now widely available through the internet, allowing the reader to relate the case studies to today's weather situation.
As with all sciences, understanding starts with careful observation. This books aims to show that it is possible to analyse global weather systems through a visual approach rather than the traditional use of mathematics and physics. After examining the interaction of atmospheric heat, moisture and motion in a non-technical style, the contrasting but complementary techniques of weather observation from 'below' and 'above' are compared. The world's climates are then surveyed with key weather features illustrated by satellite imagery, highlighting the way in which weather events may develop into atmospheric hazards.
Table of Contents
Heat and moisture in the atmosphere
The dynamic atmosphere - energy, motion and the creation of weather systems
Observing weather from the Earth's surface
Observation from space: the view from above
Climates of the mid-latitudes
Julian Mayes and Karel Hughes are both Senior Lecturers in the Department of Life Sciences, University of Roehampton, UK.
The use of satellite imagery to support the text is very good. Overall it is a very accessible text that I'm sure students will have no problem getting to grips with.
C. Holt, University College Northampton
It adopts a slightly different approach to the subject, which I found refreshing.