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Weather

Atmospheric Pressure And Winds

Solar energy also is directly responsible for the development of differing atmospheric pressures at various locations on the planet's surface, and the winds that result from these differences. Since the earth's surface is different in color and texture from place to place, some locations will be heated more intensely by solar radiation than others. Warm places usually heat the air above them, setting convection currents into movement that carry masses of air upward into the upper atmosphere. Those same convection currents then carry other masses of air downward from the upper atmosphere toward the earth's surface.

In regions where warm air moves upward, the atmospheric pressure tends to be low; downward air movements are associated with higher atmospheric pressures. These higher or lower atmospheric pressures can be measured by a barometer. Barometers provide information not only about current pressures but about possible future weather patterns as well.

The existence of areas with different atmospheric pressures accounts for the movement of air, which we call wind. Wind is simply the movement of air from a region of high pressure to one of lower pressure.


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Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: Verbena Family (Verbenaceae) - Tropical Hardwoods In The Verbena Family to WelfarismWeather - Solar Energy, Humidity, Clouds, And Precipitation, Atmospheric Pressure And Winds, Terrestrial Characteristics