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Identifying Tropical Air Masses
on a map of surface observations

Below is a map of surface observations and the leading edge of a tropical air mass surging northward into the Ohio Valley has been highlighted in red. Southerly winds behind the boundary signify the continued northward transport of warm moist air.

From these reports, we see that most stations in the tropical air mass generally exhibit relatively warmer temperatures, with higher dew point temperatures, and winds generally out of the south. Notice that on the other side of the red boundary, outside of this air mass, surface conditions are much different, which indicates the presence of an entirely different air mass.

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.