There is growing interest in learning about how weather systems are formed, what causes variations in the weather, and how to study and predict the movement of weather systems to enable accurate weather forecasting. This manual provides an easy-to-read introduction for newcomers to the subject, while providing a sufficient level of detail to prove useful to those who already have a basic understanding. The text is supported by numerous colour diagrams and photographs, including comprehensive illustration of cloud types and weather systems.
The origins of weather - basic concepts, including atmospheric layers, the significance of temperature, pressure and humidity differences. Global weather - air masses and their distribution around the globe, continental and marine weather, high- and low-pressure regions, climate zones, fronts and jet streams. Winds and ocean currents - global patterns and seasonal variations. Weather systems - development and movement of weather systems. Clouds and other phenomena - the importance of recognising and understanding cloud types in order to understand actual and forthcoming weather, identification details for cloud types and optical phenomena. Local weather - the influence of surface features on actual weather, mountain/valley weather, sea/land/lake breezes, mountain weather, coastal weather. Unusual and severe weather - weather hazards, including lightning, extreme winds, thunderstorms, waterspouts, droughts, floods, hurricanes and tornadoes. Observing the weather - techniques, weather instruments, professional observations, amateur observations, recording observations, making a forecast, photographing clouds and other phenomena.