When schools break up for the holidays, and you're a parent or caregiver wondering how you're going to get through the next several weeks. :-) How about setting your child(ren) a challenge - to keep a weather log for a continuous 14-day period. Depending on their age and sophistication, you could make the log shorter or longer, and easier or harder. Here are some suggestions...
I recently passed through Auckland International Airport, and paid special attention to the various displays about Jean Batten. You may have seen her Percival Gull aircraft beautifully on display high up in the international terminal heading, as below. There is also a statue of her just outside the international terminal building.
Relative humidity does not measure mugginess.
The news in late November 2009 made much of the presence of icebergs heading north out of the Southern Ocean. There is an impressive photo of one of the icebergs here. The story got me thinking again about the amazing properties of water, so I will continue the thread of a previous post by focusing on ice.
As we approach summer in NZ, the Sun gets higher in the sky and increasingly warms the Earth and the air around us. In the early 1600s Galileo Galilei explained that the Earth goes around the Sun, but there's no reason why we can't discuss the apparent movement of the Sun across the sky, as you see it from a frame of reference fixed to the Earth. Let's do that, and investigate the different ways that the Sun drives our seasons.
As I indicated at the end of the recent post about surface tension, I've started a new thread about the amazing properties of water. This time I'll write about saturation, what it is and what it isn't. The reason I included the bit about "what it isn't" is that a close friend once asked what saturation actually was - they thought that if the air were "saturated" it was like walking through a swimming pool. Not an unreasonable deduction based on our everyday meaning of "saturation".
We've just had some very strong winds over NZ, so I'm writing this short post to give some background to it. First of all, check out these peak northwesterly wind speeds from the morning of Wednesday 4 November:
mean wind (including gusts and lulls) strongest gust South West Cape (Stewart Island) 143 km/h183 km/hCastlepoint (Wairarapa coast)109 km/h161 km/hPuysegur Point (bottom of Fiordland)100 km/h144 km/h
Water is an amazing substance. It has many properties that have a big impact on our lives and, I think, are quite useful for us to know about. One of these is the property of surface tension, which water shares with other less prevalent liquids. So what is surface tension? Wikipedia describes it as being caused by "the attraction between the liquid's molecules" which acts at the surface of the liquid to "diminish the surface area".