Chapter06b - Atmospheric Stability and Cloud Formation...

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Atmospheric Stability and Cloud Formation
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RECAP Mechanical equilibrium : stable, unstable,  neutral. Adiabatic expansion/compression : no  heat exchange. Adiabatic lapse rate Dry adiabatic lapse rate ~ 10 K/km Moist adiabatic lapse rate ~ 6 K/km Remember: Dry > Moist always Environmental lapse rate. Atmospheric stability : Absolutely stable atmosphere Absolutely unstable atmosphere  Neutrally stable atmosphere Conditionally unstable atmosphere 
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Midchapter summary The air temperature in a rising parcel of  unsaturated  air decreases at the  dry adiabatic rate while the air temperature in a rising parcel of  saturated  air decreases at the  moist adiabatic  rate . The dry adiabatic rate and moist adiabatic rate of cooling are different due to the fact that  latent heat is released in a rising parcel of saturated air. In a stable atmosphere, a lifted parcel of air will be cooler (heavier) than the air surrounding 
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Chapter06b - Atmospheric Stability and Cloud Formation...

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