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Microbursts - Research Paper Example

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There’s another which we often tend to ignore, called microbursts or ‘cloud sneezes’. Microbursts are little but very powerful air currents that move down from the upper level of atmosphere…
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Download file to see previous pages Microbursts can cause production of high speed winds (about 100 mph or more), which last for about 5 to 20 minutes and have proven to be both damaging and destructive, especially to the airplanes.
The microbursts are formed when falling rain drops mix with dry air and are evaporated, cooling the air above it as a consequence. As per theory, when air is cooled it sinks. Rapid cooling of air causes it to accelerate towards the ground and spread out and cause the diverging of wind patterns. Heavy rain and snow are also a source of microburst formation. Two types of microbursts are found: dry microburst and wet microbursts. The main difference between them is that the dry ones are formed by virga while the wet ones are formed by wet precipitation. (Caracena, 1990)
To comprehend the concept of dry microburst, an understanding of what vigra is important. Basically, virga is that part of rain or snow that falls from the cloud but is evaporated before it reaches the ground. (Glickman, 2000) the evaporated vapor then carries out by the whole process described above. The most significant source of dry microburst are thunderstorms, which produce small amount of surface rainfall and hence, large amounts of vigra. On the other hand, wet microbursts majorly involve heavy rainfalls or snowfalls occurring at warm surfaces. (Fujita, 1985) The difference in the temperatures of the precipitation and the surface causes air currents to accelerate downwards and thus form the wet microbursts. In this case, important source is hail.
Dry microbursts occur without precipitation, they are harder to predict or foresee and thus, are a far more potential threat to aircrafts than the wet. The large magnitude and unexpected nature of a microburst has resulted in a number of air crashes throughout history, more of which have occurred while landing. We read earlier that microbursts tend to spread out in all directions once they hit the ground. During landing, a plane is flying at a low ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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