Various meteorological parameters (temperature, humidity, and wind) above
the surface of the earth are measured using balloons (radiosondes) twice
each day at specific locations.
The balloons are launched just before 12Z
(6 AM in Iowa) and 00Z (6 PM). Data for 6 AM reflect conditions from the
previous night; the 6 PM values represent daytime conditions.
During the fall of 1997, a narrow band of snow fell across the state
of Iowa. The data in this simulation are based on this event using the
snow and surrounding surface conditions.
We will examine the differing
effects of the various surface conditions on temperature.
You will be asked to explore and observe various environments for both
day and night conditions.
Then you will use your best judgement to tie
your own experiences into a coherent picture.
Drag the balloon in the following picture to various heights with the mouse.
The height of the balloon (in meters) will be indicated. The temperatures
corresponding to the various heights will be used to produce a vertical
profile of temperature in the accompanying graph.
Surface conditions and
time of day will change the temperature profile. Compare the different
profiles and record your general results for submission.
You may plot several
profiles concurrently to compare differences before clearing the plot.