WW2010
University of Illinois

Helper Menu
 
  exit helper
 
> helper page
 
  more detail

NOTE: We've guessed that you're not using a client that supports colored tables and have tried to compensate. Low graphics mode looks much better on clients that do... we recommend switching to Netscape 3.0 or Microsoft Internet Explorer.
.
Fronts
boundaries between air masses

Fronts are boundaries between air masses. Depending on the air masses involved and which way the fronts move, fronts can be either warm, cold, stationary, or occluded.

[Image: cold front (27K)]

In the case of a cold front, a colder, denser air mass lifts the warm, moist air ahead of it. As the air rises, it cools and its moisture condenses to produce clouds and precipitation. Due to the steep slope of a cold front, vigorous rising motion is often produced, leading to the development of showers and occasionally severe thunderstorms.

[Image: warm front (23K)]

In the case of a warm front, the warm, less dense air rises up and over the colder air ahead of the front. Again, the air cools as it rises and its moisture condenses to produce clouds and precipitation. Warm fronts have a gentler slope and generally move more slowly than cold fronts, so the rising motion along warm fronts is much more gradual. Precipitation that develops in advance of a surface warm front is typically steady and more widespread than precipitation associated with a cold front.


Terms for using data resources. CD-ROM available.
Credits and Acknowledgments for WW2010.
Department of Atmospheric Sciences (DAS) at
the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.