Fronts & Air Masses
Shevena Edwards & Imani Rowell
What is an air mass ?
An air mass is an extremely large body of air whose properties of temperature and moisture content (humidity), at any given altitude, are fairly similar in any horizontal direction. Air masses can cover large (hundreds of miles) areas. Air masses can control the weather for a relatively long time period: from a period of days, to months.
What are the types of air masses and what are their characteristics ?
There are 4 general air mass classifications categorized according to the source region: polar, tropical, continental and marine.Polar latitudes (P) - located poleward of 60 degrees north and south. This is cold.Tropical latitudes (T) - located within about 25 degrees of the equator. This is cool.Marine (m) - located over the oceans. This humid.Continental (c) - located over large land masses, dry. This is dry. Air masses can be combined. Example : Marine Tropical(mT) which is located over the oceans and is cold & cool. Continental Tropical(cT) which is dry & cool the same time. Marine Polar(mP) which is very cold. Continential Polar(cP) which is cold but cool.
We can then make combinations of the above to describe various types of air masses. cP continental polar cold, dry, stable cT continental tropical hot, dry, stable air aloft, unstable surface air mP maritime polar cool, moist, and unstable mT maritime tropical warm, moist, usually unstable
"Weather Wiz Kids Weather Information for Kids." Weather Wiz Kids Weather Information for Kids. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2013."Weather Fronts." Weather Fronts. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2013