Why Do Clouds Form And Why Does It Rain
Air, even “clear air,” contains water molecules. Clouds exist in the atmosphere because of rising air. As air rises and cools the water in it can “condense out”, forming clouds. Since clouds drift over the landscape, they are one of the ways that water moves geographically around the globe in the water cycle. A common myth is that clouds form because cooler air can hold less water than warmer airbut this is not true.
As Alistair Fraser explains in his web page “Bad Meteorology“: “What appears to be cloud-free air always contains sub microscopic drops, but as evaporation exceeds condensation, the drops do not survive long after an initial chance clumping of molecules. As air is cooled, the evaporation rate decreases more rapidly than does the condensation rate with the result that there comes a temperature where the evaporation is less than the condensation and a droplet can grow into a cloud drop. When the temperature drops below the dew-point temperature, there is a net condensation and a cloud forms,” .
“Contrails” made by a high-flying airplanes, over Lake Jackson, Florida, USA
Water Vapor Evaporates Into The Air
The water or ice that make up clouds travels into the sky within air as water vapor, the gas form of water. Water vapor gets into air mainly by evaporation some of the liquid water from the ocean, lakes, and rivers turns into water vapor and travels in the air. When air rises in the atmosphere it gets cooler and is under less pressure. When air cools, its not able to hold all of the water vapor it once was. Air also cant hold as much water when air pressure drops. The vapor becomes small water droplets or ice crystals and a cloud is formed.
What Is The Difference Between Damp And Condensation
Condensation occurs when warm moisture laden air comes into direct contact with a cold surface such as a wall, window or windowsill. Compared to rising damp and penetrating damp, condensation is more prominent in the colder months of the year. The simplest explanation is that damp is caused by condensation.
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How Does Condensation Happen
Have you been wondering ‘how does condensation happen?’ We’re giving you the low-down.
How does condensation happen? Condensation is the process of water vapor turning back into liquid water. USGS explains that condensation is crucial to the water cycle because it’s how clouds are formed. But you don’t just have to look to the skies to see this natural marvel happening. The process of condensation can happen at any time of the year and it can occur inside as well as outside of your home. Whether it’s water droplets forming on your car, or on the inside of your windows or in your bathroom, condensation can be an everyday occurrence.
According to theWorld Health Organisation , an estimated 10-50% of the indoor environments where we live, work and play, are damp. So if you’re wondering how does condensation happen, what’s the difference between condensation inside and outside your windows and what can you do about it, Live Science has all the answers.
Infiltration Throughflow Percolation Groundwater Flow And Runoff
Infiltration is the movement of water into the soil. The type of soil affects the rate of infiltration. Sandy soil has a higher infiltration rate than clay soil.
Water is transferred through the soil as throughflow. Water moves through soil under the force of gravity towards rivers and streams. Some water enters rocks below the soil through percolation. Some rocks are impervious an do not let water enter e.g. granite. Permeable rocks can be porous in that they allow water to enter their pores. Other permeable rocks are pervious and water flows along joints and bedding planes .
Where water reaches impermeable bedrock below ground it flows over the surface of the rock. This is known as groundwater flow.
When the soil is saturated surface runoff occurs. Also, surface runoff can happen in semi-arid areas where the soil is baked hard. Rainfall is so intense that the soil does not have the capacity to absorb it.
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When Does Condensation Occur
Condensation occurs when warm air collides with cold surfaces, or when theres too much humidity in your home. This is especially common in winter, when your central heating system comes on in the cooler hours of the mornings and evenings.
In addition to central heating, everyday activities like cooking, showering, and drying clothes can release warm moisture into the air inside your home. When this moisture-packed warm air comes into contact with a chilly surface, it cools down quickly and releases the water, which turns into liquid droplets on the cold surface.
While condensation is rarely a problem in the summer, the amount of water in the air inside our homes is higher during the colder months. This is because we tend to have the heating turned up high and the windows closed. Thats why condensation is a bigger problem during this season, as its no longer confined to the bathroom. When the outside temperature drops, water can start to appear inside your home, especially on windows and walls.
While a bit of water might sound harmless enough, if condensation isnt dealt with immediately it can go on to encourage black mould to start growing on your walls, ceilings, and around your windows. Not only is this stuff unattractive, having a lot of it in your home can lead to certain unpleasant health issues including sinus problems, skin rashes, and even bronchitis.
What Is Relief Rainfall
Relief rainfall, also known as orographic rainfall, occurs in areas where land increases in height. It is very common on the west coast of the United Kingdom due to the prevailing weather coming from that direction.
Relief rainfall is formed when the air cools as it rises over relief features in the landscape such as hills or mountains. As the air rises, it cools, condenses and forms rain.
In the UK prevailing winds from the west lead to air rising over upland areas such as the Pennines. As the result of this rainfall totals of over 1,600 mm per year occur in the west of the UK. The downwind or leeward slope receives a small amount of rainfall in comparison.
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Condensation On Your Glass
You probably see condensation right at home every day. If you wear glasses and go from a cold, air-conditioned room to outside on a humid day, the lenses fog up as small water droplets coat the surface via condensation.
You probably see condensation right at home every day. If you wear glasses and go from a cold, air-conditioned room to outside on a humid day, the lenses fog up as small water droplets coat the surface via condensation. People buy coasters to keep condensed water from dripping off their chilled drink glass onto their coffee tables. Condensation is responsible for the water covering the inside of a window on a cold day and for the moisture on the inside of car windows, especially after people have been exhaling moist air. All of these are examples of water leaving the vapor state in the warm air and condensing into liquid as it is cools.
How Do I Deal With Condensation In My Home
The first step is to control the amount of condensation in your home. Use a classic window cleaners tool, the squeegee, to clean water droplets from windows, mirrors, and glass shower dividers whenever it starts to build up. When you’re done, use a soft towel to clean up any condensation you find on walls and other surfaces.
Once your home is nice and dry, it’s time to start looking into ways to prevent your condensation problem reoccurring. You could start by buying a dehumidifier to reduce the amount of humidity in your home. These work by pulling air through a fan and removing the vast majority of the moisture, helping to keep your surfaces dry. Invest in two or three, and place them in rooms where youve noticed the most condensation: these will most likely be your kitchen and bathroom. You could also move one into your bedroom on cold nights, as the heat from your breath can condense on the windows and walls.
It’s also a good idea to try and avoid condensation from forming on cold surfaces in the first place by making sure your home is heated evenly. Keep the thermostat at the same temperature in every room, and if theres a room in your home that you dont use often, keep the door closed. You should also try to open the windows in that room for a couple of hours each day to prevent condensation and damp from forming. Read our guide to improving your home’s ventialtion.
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What Is The Difference Between Condensation Reaction And Dehydration Synthesis
Following the elimination of water, dehydration synthesis is the process of connecting two molecules or compounds together. Two molecules are condensed and water is lost in a condensation process to produce a big molecule. This is the exact same mechanism that takes place during a dehydration synthesis.
Stay tuned with BYJUS to learn more interesting topics in Chemistry. Also, get various engaging and interactive video lessons to learn more effectively.
Which Is Best Dehumidifier For Condensation
The best dehumidifiers, in order
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Dry Adiabatic Lapse Rate
- The Dry Adiabatic Lapse Rate is the rate of fall in temperature with altitude for a parcel of dry or unsaturated air rising under adiabatic conditions.
- Unsaturated air has less than 100% relative humidity .
[Saturated air == The air that cannot hold any more moisture. Its stomach is full.
Unsaturated air == Its stomach is not full. It can accommodate some more moisture.]
- When a rising air parcel has little moisture, condensation during upliftment is low, the latent heat of condensation released is low . As a result, the fall in temperature with height is greater compared to Adiabatic Lapse Rate .
- The dry adiabatic lapse rate for the Earths atmosphere equals 8° C per kilometre.
- Dry Adiabatic Lapse rate is mainly associated with stable conditions.
Condensation In Building Construction
Condensation in building construction is an unwanted phenomenon as it may cause dampness, mold health issues, woodrot, corrosion, weakening of mortar and masonry walls, and energy penalties due to increased heat transfer. To alleviate these issues, the indoor air humidity needs to be lowered, or air ventilation in the building needs to be improved. This can be done in a number of ways, for example opening windows, turning on extractor fans, using dehumidifiers, drying clothes outside and covering pots and pans whilst cooking. Air conditioning or ventilation systems can be installed that help remove moisture from the air, and move air throughout a building. The amount of water vapor that can be stored in the air can be increased simply by increasing the temperature. However, this can be a double edged sword as most condensation in the home occurs when warm, moisture heavy air comes into contact with a cool surface. As the air is cooled, it can no longer hold as much water vapor. This leads to deposition of water on the cool surface. This is very apparent when central heating is used in combination with single glazed windows in winter.
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Exercise: Long Answer Type
Q1. Explain about condensation in detail.
Answer: 1. Meaning: The transformation of water vapour into water is called condensation. Cause: Condensation is caused by the loss of heat.2. Sublimation: When moist air is cooled, it may reach a level when its capacity to hold water vapour ceases. Then, the excess water vapour condenses into liquid form. If it directly condenses into solid form, it is known as sublimation.3. Process: In free air, condensation results from cooling around very small particles termed as hygroscopic condensation nuclei. Particles of dust, smoke and salt from the ocean are particularly good nuclei because they absorb water. Condensation also takes place when the moist air comes in contact with some colder object and it may also take place when the temperature is close to the dew point. Condensation, therefore, depends upon the amount of cooling and the relative humidity of the air.Factors affecting condensation:-When the temperature of the air is reduced to dew point with its volume remaining constant -When both the volume and the temperature are reduced -When moisture is added to the air through evaporation.However, the most favourable condition for condensation is the decrease in air temperature. After condensation the water vapour or the moisture in the atmosphere takes form of dew, frost, fog and clouds.
Q2. Explain about fog and mist.
Condensation In Organic Chemistry
The term condensation is used to describe a wide variety of organic reactions resulting in the lengthening of the carbon skeleton of the molecule. However, it may be defined as a reaction between two or more molecules of the same or different compounds resulting in the formation of new carbon to carbon bonds with or without the elimination of simple molecules like water, alcohol, metallic halides, etc. However, the term condensation reaction has been used in organic chemistry and often includes the formation of other bonds besides carbon to carbon.
The two types of condensation reactions are
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The Major Processes In The Water Cycle
1. EvaporationEvaporation is the process of turning from a liquid to a gas. Evaporation occurs when energy from the sun hits the surface of the water/land and causes liquid to change from liquid to gas.Rates of evaporation depend on: Amount of solar energy Availability of water Humidity of the air – The more humid the air the closer to saturation point the air is so less evaporation will occur Temperature of the air Warmer air can hold more water than cold air.HumidityHumidity measures how much water vapor is in a parcel of air at any given time. Absolute humidity is the mass of water vapour in an air mass measured in grams per cubic metre . This can also be expressed in a slightly different way by talking about specific humidity, which is measured in grams per kilogram of air. Warmer air can hold more water vapour than cooler air, and this is a vital concept to understand when discussing the weather. The warmer the air gets the more and more water vapour that air can hold. This means that humidity can vary from place to place and time to time. Obviously, globally the air in the Tropics can hold much more water vapour than higher latitudes because the air is warmer throughout the year. For the UK, the air can hold more water vapour as a gas in summer than it can in cooler winter months. In addition, there are diurnal or daily variations, as temperatures rise during the day and fall at night.
The Physics Behind Condensation
Like all matter, water consists of molecules. In a vapor form, the molecules are energetic, fast moving and far apart. As the vapor encounters cooler temperatures, the molecules become slower, less energetic and closer together. When they reach an threshold energy level, the vapor changes to liquid.
You can do a pretty cool experiment to demonstrate the physics of condensation, with just a water balloon and some simple household items. As hot water vapor cools on the balloon, the loss of molecular energy changes the pressure, with a surprising result. The details of the experiment can be found in the Scientific American article in the references.
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Why Does Temperature Fall With Elevation
- When we move up a hill, we notice a fall in temperature. This fall in temperature with elevation is primarily due to two reasons.
This sort of fall in temperature with elevation is called Temperature Lapse and the rate at which it happens is called Temperature Lapse Rate or simply Lapse rate.
Condensation Near The Ground
On California’s Marin Headlands, facing away from the Golden Gate Bridge, the August heat hits the cool air from the Ocean, creating a very thick fog that tends to sit low on the ground.
Condensation also occurs at ground level, as this picture of a cloud bank in California shows. The difference between fog and clouds which form above the Earth’s surface is that rising air is not required to form fog. Fog develops when air having a relatively high humidity comes in contact with a colder surface, often the Earth’s surface, and cools to the dew point. Additional cooling leads to condensation and the growth of low-level clouds. Fog that develops when warmer air moves over a colder surface is known as advective fog. Another form of fog, known as radiative fog, develops at night when surface temperatures cool. If the air is still, the fog layer does not readily mix with the air above it, which encourages the development of shallow ground fog.
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