Chapter 7 - Weather and Climate
Surrounding Earth is a layer of air, the atmosphere, where conditions are always changing. Try your hand at predicting weather patterns by making a wind vane, a rain gauge, and a barometer.
Even during the summer months, the temperatures on Antarctica's coast range around freezing. Inland, it's even chillier. Discover the three reasons why this continent is the coldest place on Earth.
On July 4, 1999, a rare and terrifying storm swept through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northern Minnesota. What began like a standard-issue thunderstorm soon turned strange and fierce, generating green clouds and strong winds reminiscent of a tornado. In fact, the storm was a cousin of the tornado: a derecho (pronounced "de-RAY-cho"), a type of storm so infrequent and fast-moving that only in recent years have meteorologists begun to understand how to recognize and forecast it
There's a good reason why your summer attire is lighter and brighter than your winter wardrobe. This easy experiment illustrates the power of albedo in black and white.
Why is there such a dramatic temperature change between the equator and the South Pole? Explore all the angles of sunlight with a few thermometers and a heat lamp.
If the Earth turns all the way around every 24 hours, then why are some days longer than others? And why do we have winter and summer? See the answers for yourself—in a matter of seconds.
What's better than watching ice melt? Building a computer model to simulate the melting! Ice flow plays an important role in everything from deep ocean circulation patterns to global warming.
Wouldn't it be cool if you could create a rain cloud? Or call cosmic rays into view? Well, you can do both! All you need is an aquarium, a slide projector, dry ice, and a few other easy-to-get supplies.
For centuries, a massive atmospheric system has regularly altered weather patterns, fishery production and animal migrations across the North Atlantic Ocean. At last, Earth scientists and climate modelers are beginning to understand how--and when - the North Atlantic Oscillation happens.
Every language has a word for water; no living thing exists without water. It soothes the spirit and sustains the body; its beauty inspires art and music.
November 1, 2007 - May 26, 2008