The climate has influenced the lives of all living beings on this planet. The appearance and development of life as we know it today is due to the climatic conditions existing over time on our planet. On the other hand, the weather directly affects our daily lives – often we schedule our activities also according to the weather forecast. Over time, sophisticated climatological models have been developed to allow accurate weather forecast. However, a weather prediction for more than a few days is losing its accuracy. Such a weather forecast has become even more important in the recent decades when extreme meteorological events seem to be more frequent, causing real tragedies, e.g., Hurricane Katrina in the United States.
In order to collect more precise information about weather, a huge number of weather stations record and report various parameters describing the state of the atmosphere. Based on the collected data, scientists issue weather forecasts interpreting parameters such as air humidity, cloud cover, wind direction and speed etc. Whenever the current weather is presented or forecasts are made, temperature and pressure are always reported. This shows that these physical values are very important in describing the weather, indicating the atmospheric conditions.
The reason for which the temperature and pressure are used to describe the weather is because the planet is surrounded by layers consisting of a mixture of gases (the air) in which water vapors, dust, industrial pollutants etc. can also be found. The weather is governed by the movement of these air masses. This educational package will present the relationship between these two physical quantities and how they affect the weather and how they can be used to provide weather forecasts.
By using this educational package the students will become familiar with both the concepts of meteorology and weather, but also with different databases containing meteorological information. The data manipulation will allow them to check different relations between pressure and temperature. Moreover, using simple materials, available to everyone, they will be able to build instruments for measuring temperature and pressure.