Meteorology Definition and 13 Discussions

Meteorology is a branch of the atmospheric sciences which includes atmospheric chemistry and atmospheric physics, with a major focus on weather forecasting. The study of meteorology dates back millennia, though significant progress in meteorology did not occur until the 18th century. The 19th century saw modest progress in the field after weather observation networks were formed across broad regions. Prior attempts at prediction of weather depended on historical data. It was not until after the elucidation of the laws of physics and more particularly, the development of the computer, allowing for the automated solution of a great many equations that model the weather, in the latter half of the 20th century that significant breakthroughs in weather forecasting were achieved. An important domain of weather forecasting is marine weather forecasting as it relates to maritime and coastal safety, in which weather effects also include atmospheric interactions with large bodies of water.
Meteorological phenomena are observable weather events that are explained by the science of meteorology. Meteorological phenomena are described and quantified by the variables of Earth's atmosphere: temperature, air pressure, water vapour, mass flow, and the variations and interactions of those variables, and how they change over time. Different spatial scales are used to describe and predict weather on local, regional, and global levels.
Meteorology, climatology, atmospheric physics, and atmospheric chemistry are sub-disciplines of the atmospheric sciences. Meteorology and hydrology compose the interdisciplinary field of hydrometeorology. The interactions between Earth's atmosphere and its oceans are part of a coupled ocean-atmosphere system. Meteorology has application in many diverse fields such as the military, energy production, transport, agriculture, and construction.
The word meteorology is from the Ancient Greek μετέωρος metéōros (meteor) and -λογία -logia (-(o)logy), meaning "the study of things high in the air."

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  1. P

    Need help coming up with ideas (bachelor's thesis)

    TL;DR Summary: Need help coming up with ideas to present a current thesis in terms of qualitative and quantitative ideas. Hey! I have a problem. I have picked up on a project for which I am planning on doing my bachelor's thesis on. The guy behind the project is not a physicist, per se, as he...
  2. H

    Why are there clouds over the Intertropical Convergence Zone?

    Intertropical Tropical Zone is the zone where north-east and south-east trade winds converge. This zone usually occurs over (I don’t know if “on” should be here) the equator. In the book The Atmosphere: An Introduction to Meteorology by Lutgens and Tarbuck (13th Edition), Figure 7.9 reads I...
  3. xpell

    I What are the most energetic lightning "superbolts" ever measured?

    Hi! I would be interested in properly referenced data about the most powerful / energetic lightning bolts on Earth to get a good idea about their maximum possible order of magnitude (maybe depending on location?) Both direct measurements or indirect but well-founded estimates (e.g. satellite...
  4. Sofina

    Meteorology Physics: Apparent wind problem

    Hello everyone. Sorry for the mistakes on my English on this post and on the H/W statements (it is translated by me). I have a homework problem on Meterology Physics, about a ship's Apparent Wind , and it is about the a) question and maybe i don't know well the theory to solve this problem. (I...
  5. When the parameters of the Lorenz System (Meteorology) are chosen right

    When the parameters of the Lorenz System (Meteorology) are chosen right

    When the parameters of the Lorenz System of differential equations are chosen just right, all solutions are attracted towards a very strange-looking set: an attractor which is neither an equilibrium nor a circle.
  6. S

    Programs Meteorologists/atmospheric scientists - structure of the study

    I'm not sure if this is the correct thread, so please accept my apologies if I've posted in the wrong section. My question is for meteorologists and atmospheric scientists who did their undergraduate degree in different, but related fields, such as physics, chemistry, Earth science, etc. and...
  7. J

    Writing: Input Wanted Great Lakes Earth Map Dark brown=mountains. Light brown=uplifts. Black=Igneous provinces still visible today at their original extent with no consideration of erosion. Let us say that, in the future, some scientists...
  8. S

    I How would weather differ on a planet with a longer day?

    Hypothetical question that came up in World Building stack exchange. The question asked for what the longest reasonable day length would be. I thought that a 100 hour day: * Afternoons in what are now hot deserts would be uninhabitable. * Frost traps in more polar climates would be...
  9. G

    Courses Need Help deciding which classes to take

    Merry Christmas everyone! I have a question and I want some honest answers. So this semester I took Organic Chemistry 1 and Calculus 1. I both passed but with a D, sadly the courses won't transfer to my school I want to attend in the future (waiting for a response from the schools I applied...
  10. DrYassine

    Relationship between "Coriolis Effect" and "Gold Ratio"?

    A common claim that hurricanes and cyclones have geometrical proportions that resemble a logarithmic golden spiral. Knowing that cyclones and hurricanes rotate because of the well-known Coriolis Effect, is it possible that the Golden Ratio is just a natural manifestation of the Coriolis effect?
  11. S

    Why does the heat in the atmosphere mostly go down?

    The wiki article on the greenhouse effect ( has a top illustration which shows the flow of heat and energy (Watts per meter squared) between outer space, the atmosphere, and Earth's surface. The illustrations shows that of the 519 in the...
  12. M

    Sketch a geopotential field

    Homework Statement Hello, I need a) to Sketch φ which is the geopotential field, dependent on four variables (x,y,z,t) b) to Sketch the geopotential at 2.5 and 7.5 km altitude Homework Equations φ(x,y,z,t) = φ0(z) + c * f0 ( -y ( cos(π * (H-z)/H ) + 1 ) + 1/k * sink(x-ct)) The Attempt at a...
  13. G

    Furthering Physics education inline with current job

    Hi, I have a Degree in Pure Physics and I was recruited last year as a cadet hydrographer for a mine. Hydrography is the branch of applied sciences which deals with the measurement and description of the physical features of terrestrial water catchments, as well as with the prediction of their...