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Information about Rainfall

Posted by The New N Used Link on Friday, July 12, 2013 Under: Environment

 

What is rain? where does it come from? Who created it... these questions are in a number of persons mind. I have done some research on this topic and i plan to add my environmental studies knowledge.

Rain is liquid water in the form of droplets that have condensed from atmospheric water vapor and then precipitated that is, become heavy enough to fall under gravity. Rain is a major component of the water cycle and is responsible for depositing most of the fresh water on the Earth. It provides suitable conditions for many types of ecosystem, as well as water for hydroelectric power plants and crop irrigation.

The major cause of rain production is moisture moving along three-dimensional zones of temperature and moisture contrasts known as weather fronts. 


Causes

Frontal activity -
This is a broad shield of precipitation with a relatively similar intensity and dynamic precipitation which occur as a consequence of slow ascent of air in synoptic systems (on the order of cm/s), such as in the vicinity of cold fronts and near and poleward of surface warm fronts. Similar ascent is seen around tropical cyclones outside of the eyewall, and in comma-head precipitation patterns around mid-latitude cyclones. A wide variety of weather can be found along an occluded front, with thunderstorms possible, but usually their passage is associated with a drying of the air mass. Occluded fronts usually form around mature low-pressure areas.

Convection -
Convective rain, or showery precipitation, occurs from convective clouds (e.g., cumulonimbus or cumulus congestus). It falls as showers with rapidly changing intensity. Convective precipitation falls over a certain area for a relatively short time, as convective clouds have limited horizontal extent.

Orographic effects -
Orographic precipitation occurs on the windward side of mountains and is caused by the rising air motion of a large-scale flow of moist air across the mountain ridge, resulting in adiabatic cooling and condensation. In mountainous parts of the world subjected to relatively consistent winds (for example, the trade winds), a more moist climate usually prevails on the windward side of a mountain than on the leeward or downwind side.

Human influence -
The fine particulate matter produced by car exhaust and other human sources of pollution forms cloud condensation nuclei, leads to the production of clouds and increases the likelihood of rain. As commuters and commercial traffic cause pollution to build up over the course of the week, the likelihood of rain increases: it peaks by Saturday, after five days of weekday pollution has been built up. In heavily populated areas that are near the coast, the effect can be dramatic: there is a 22% higher chance of rain on Saturdays than on Mondays.The urban heat island effect warms cities 0.6 °C (1.1 °F) to 5.6 °C (10.1 °F) above surrounding suburbs and rural areas.

In : Environment 



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