High pressure plays a role in rapid overnight cooling - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

High pressure plays a role in rapid overnight cooling

Saturday morning's high pressure plays a role in our rapid overnight cooling. Saturday morning's high pressure plays a role in our rapid overnight cooling.
What is radiational cooling? What is radiational cooling?
SOUTH MISSISSIPPI (WLOX) -

Along the Gulf Coast, Saturday morning's temperatures have been quite chilly with much of South Mississippi chilling into the 40s and even upper 30s.

What gives? What caused our temperatures to rapidly chill overnight? It's a meteorological process called "radiational cooling." Here's an explanation:

To begin to understand radiational cooling, you must first recall that Earth has a hot molten core that is releasing heat through the earth's surface all the time. That's called geothermal heat. During the daytime, this geothermal heat is barely noticeable compared to the amount of heat that is pummeling the planet from the sun. But, at night time, geothermal heat helps to keep the earth's surface (a.k.a. the ground, where us human folk live and prosper) from becoming uninhabitably cold.

Think about this heat being released, or radiated, from the ground like your own body which releases small amounts of heat from its skin. At night, when you sleep in bed, you likely throw on a blanket to keep yourself warm. That blanket traps your body's heat right next to you instead of your heat escaping and dispersing into the room.

Well, for Earth, a blanket of clouds at nighttime can accomplish the same heat trapping process. But, on nights with calm winds without any clouds, Earth's geothermal heat radiates from the ground and disperses into the atmosphere... leaving us land-dwellers quite chilly. That's radiational cooling. And it allows temperatures to fall rather quickly during nighttime hours.

High pressure systems generally promote radiational cooling since there are typically clear skies and nearly calm winds around their centers.

Just remember: dry air + clear skies + calm winds = rapidly cooling overnight temperatures!

The WLOX First Alert Weather Team will inform you of South Mississippi's temperature forecast on-air, online, and on social media sites like Facebook & Twitter.

You can like us on Facebook: Carrie Duncan WLOX MeteorologistTommy Richards.,Meteorologist Wesley Williams and Meteorologist Andrew Wilson.

Or follow us on Twitter: @carrieduncanwx@TommyWLOX@WesWilliamsII@AndrewWilsonWX

Original blog post

Copyright 2016 WLOX. All rights reserved.

  • WLOX First Alert Weather BlogsMore>>

  • Arctic Blast hits Tuesday night, pipe-bursting freezes

    Arctic Blast hits Tuesday night, pipe-bursting freezes

    Monday, January 15 2018 11:38 AM EST2018-01-15 16:38:40 GMT
    It's cold and it's going to get even colder. Expect an arctic blast to hit the Gulf Coast by midweek.It's cold and it's going to get even colder. Expect an arctic blast to hit the Gulf Coast by midweek.

    The wind chill could even get down to the lower 10s single numbers above zero due to the breezy conditions on Wednesday morning.

    More >>

    The wind chill could even get down to the lower 10s single numbers above zero due to the breezy conditions on Wednesday morning.

    More >>
  • Winter comes back Friday

    Winter comes back Friday

    Wednesday, January 10 2018 9:09 AM EST2018-01-10 14:09:10 GMT
    Winter makes a comeback on FridayWinter makes a comeback on Friday

    A warmer weather pattern for the middle of the week before winter makes a comeback on Friday. You will want to protect pets and plants.

    More >>

    A warmer weather pattern for the middle of the week before winter makes a comeback on Friday. You will want to protect pets and plants.

    More >>
  • Soaking rains and possible flooding in South MS today

    Soaking rains and possible flooding in South MS today

    Monday, January 8 2018 7:33 AM EST2018-01-08 12:33:40 GMT
    Rainfall amounts will range from about 1 to 3 inches. Thankfully, it looks like some of the heaviest activity could remain offshore.Rainfall amounts will range from about 1 to 3 inches. Thankfully, it looks like some of the heaviest activity could remain offshore.

    The work week kicks off with heavy rainfall along the Gulf Coast region. Flash flooding will be possible for low-lying locations along the coast.

    More >>

    The work week kicks off with heavy rainfall along the Gulf Coast region. Flash flooding will be possible for low-lying locations along the coast.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly