Friday, March 25, 2011

Power of the Sun

This month's sunny and dry weather has provided a vivid illustration of the increasing power of the sunshine. The graphic at the left plots daily max and min temperatures for the Airport and Keystone Ridge thus far in March. A couple of interesting items. First, inversion strength, as quantified by the spread in overnight low temperatures has been reasonably constant. However, high temperatures have been rising faster at the Airport, with the last week or so showing the standard (i.e. dry adiabatic) decrease in temperatures with elevation. This contrasts with early in the month, when the sunshine was unable to completely break the inversion.


  1. That is an interesting look at the temperature max/min between the ridge and the airport - I didn't realise that the lower level would rise ahead of the heights so early in the spring - didn't appreciate just how much heating was going on, I suppose.

  2. Interestingly, both Friday and Saturday, which had more high clouds than recent days (tho still no thick cloud cover), and no wind to speak of, the hill to valley spread on high temperatures was much less. Close to zero today (Saturday).