air mass

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Related to Continental Air Mass: Polar Air Mass

air mass,

large body of air within the earth's atmosphereatmosphere
[Gr.,=sphere of air], the mixture of gases surrounding a celestial body with sufficient gravity to maintain it. Although some details about the atmospheres of other planets and satellites are known, only the earth's atmosphere has been well studied, the science of
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 in which temperature and humidity, although varying at different heights, remain similar throughout the body at any one height. Air masses form over parts of the earth's surface called source regions, which are large bodies of water or landmasses with relatively uniform topography, often ranging hundreds of thousands of square miles in area. When a body of air remains over a source region for days or weeks, it reaches an equilibrium with the surface. Radiation and convection exchanges between the surface and the air determines the air mass characteristics. Air masses formed over oceans generally contain more moisture than continental ones; air masses formed in polar latitudes are colder than those from the tropics. As an air mass moves away from its source region, it brings its particular weatherweather,
state of the atmosphere at a given time and place with regard to temperature, air pressure (see barometer), wind, humidity, cloudiness, and precipitation. The term weather
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 conditions to areas over which it travels. At the same time, its characteristic properties are slowly modified by exposure to new environments. The boundaries between air masses, called frontsfront,
in meteorology, zone of transition between adjacent air masses. If a cold air mass is advancing to replace a warmer one, their mutual boundary is termed a cold front; if the reverse, then the boundary is termed a warm front, whereas a stationary front indicates that no
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, are, typically, zones of rapid transition from cold to warm or from dry to moist air. Turbulence at the boundary often breeds low-pressure storms.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/

air mass

[′er ‚mas]
(meteorology)
An extensive body of the atmosphere which approximates horizontal homogeneity in its weather characteristics, particularly with reference to temperature and moisture distribution.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

air mass

A body of air with nearly uniform conditions of temperature and humidity at any given level.
An Illustrated Dictionary of Aviation Copyright © 2005 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved
References in periodicals archive ?
The Central Weather Bureau (CWB) has upgraded the cold front bearing down on Taiwan to a strong continental air mass with temperatures expected to dip to 11 degrees Celsius on Thursday (March 22), and coastal and open areas possibly dropping down to 10 degrees.
The current models predict something between a northeast monsoon and a continental air mass.
A strong continental air mass will bring moisture from the north and the chances of rainfall throughout Taiwan will increase.
As a cold continental air mass hit Taiwan this week, the mercury dipped to 4.7 degrees Celsius yesterday morning and the maple leaves in the Alishan Forest Recreation Area have turned a dazzling red, with the period between Chrismas Day and New Year's Day now estimated to be the peak for the fall foliage on the mountain, reported UDN.
The CWB has issued a cold surge advisory for low temperatures from late this morning and continuing into Friday morning due to the combination of a strong continental air mass that has arrived and radiative cooling.
A continental air mass that arrived in Taiwan yesterday (Dec.

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