Micrometeorology, Weather, Climate and Society


The ‘weather, climate and society’ part of the module is designed to make you familiar with basic aspects of weather and climate in the mid-latitudes and tropics (observations, processes, analysis, weather forecasts and climate predictions), and the way operational information is used for the benefit of society. The latter includes the discussion of interfaces between forecasters and end users in economy and society. Specific applications are highlighted: the potential of wind and solar power, the cost/benefit of the use of weather information by industry, the two-way relationship between climate and society and the methods of climate impact assessment.

The ‘micrometeorology’ part of the module will provide you with an understanding of:

  1. The principles of meteorology at small scales (metres to kilometres)
  2. The meteorological processes near the earth's surface (e.g. over a range of different surfaces/environments) associated with the exchange of heat, mass and momentum
  3. The transportation and dispersion of pollutants in the atmospheric boundary layer.

By the end of the module you will be able to:

  • Analyse a synoptic weather chart and recognise the large scale weather situation.
  • Understand the nature of climatic variability and change.
  • Understand the main principles of weather forecasting and climate prediction.
  • Describe basic applications of meteorological/climatological information from an end-user and scientific perspective.
  • Understand basic concepts of atmospheric hazards risk assessment.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of meteorological processes near the earth's surface and the exchange of heat, mass and momentum between the earth’s surface and the atmosphere.
  • Transfer this knowledge to applied micrometeorological problems in different environments e.g. urban/rural climates and air quality.
  • Demonstrate knowledge on methods for analysing near-surface meteorological data: (a) to derive quantities such as heat and moisture fluxes; (b) to estimate energy budgets for a range of natural and human-made surfaces and to predict local climate; and (c) to assess the effects of micrometeorological processes upon air quality.