the meteorology is a part of the atmosphere sciences and concentrates here among other things on the dynamics of the lower terrestrial atmosphere and the weather caused thereby. The today's understanding of the meteorology is from the guidance term of the physics of the atmospheres (short: Atmosphere physics) coined/shaped.

The meteorology is a subsection of physics, however in many universities also as part of the geosciences is understood and their faculties attached.

  • The climatology is an important and in the last years generally admits become subsection to thatMeteorology. In contrast to the dynamic view of the lower terrestrial atmosphere here the temporal view scales (weather - climate ) are substantially larger. From it consequences for methodology and professional experience in both fields result.
  • A further important field of the meteorology is those Observation of climate and weather-relevant procedures in the atmosphere of the soil, from air and from space and the consequences about the further process, with the weather forecast than most well-known application.

Table of contents


Etymologie of the word„Meteorology “: The word leads itself over the French météorologie of the Greek meteōrologiā, „discussion of the features of the sky “(too meteōron, „phenomenon in the sky “; see. Meteor) ago. That shows those in former times close connection to the astronomy, those the causesfor weather events and sky features attributed to the same causes, and atmosphere and celestial sphere to the same sphere assigned.

see also: History of the weather and the Wetterbeobachtung, history of the astronomy

of aspects of the meteorology

cloud sky


is thatMain focus of the meteorology directed toward largepotash towards dynamic processes within the today's terrestrial atmosphere, however in the context of a better understanding of the weather dynamics the developed model conceptions of the same are also in the same way transferable to other systems.

One counts therefore space climates also limited and/or. City climates, extraterrestrial atmospheres or atmospheres of past ages (Paläoklimatologie) to the study objects of the meteorology. These play however usually only in the research a larger role, where they serve also partly than “play meadow” for the improvement of those models, thosealso describe the present terrestrial atmosphere. One tries to train therefore by exact observations of the terrestrial atmosphere a secured data basis and at the same time to consult these data for the creation of a ever better understanding of meteorological process cycles.

classification in the fan canons and subsections


Many methods, approaches and ideas of the dynamic meteorology rise from the general fluid dynamics and find further application in oceanography, geophysics and engineering science, as well as in nearly all environmental sciences.

The meteorology is a young apart from the Wetterbeobachtung (meteorology) Science. It possesses an extraordinarily interdisciplinary requirement, unites thus a great many different sciences in itself. The scientific fields of activity, those by the meteorology used and/or. are affected, are under others:

the meteorology can be partitioned after different directions, whereby itself these however also very muchoverlap strongly.

Basic disciplines:

  • Experimental meteorology - measuring methods and - of devices of the meteorology as well as simulation and execution of experiments. As special range the satellite meteorology concerns itself with satellite measurements.
  • Theoretical meteorology - description of the atmosphere and in particular their dynamics by mathematical-physical methods.
  • Synoptic meteorology- Investigation of the weather and its changes, with its representation and forecast.
  • Atmosphere chemistry - study of chemical reactions in the terrestrial atmosphere.
  • Climatology - trend analysis of long-term changes within the atmosphere dynamics.
  • Extraterrestrial meteorology - meteorology of other heavenly bodies.

Applied ranges:

  • Weather forecast - short term ones Prognosis of the weather development.
  • Technical meteorology - effect of meteorological connections on technical ranges.
  • Agrarian - and biometeorology - influences of the weather on organisms and/or. the biosphere in the broadest sense.
  • Traffic meteorology - consultation and safety device regarding the meaning of meteorological conditionson traffic, navigation and in particular aviation (see meteorology in aviation)
  • hydraulic meteorology - study of the water circulation in the atmosphere as common discipline with the hydrology.

The compilation is here not complete. In particular the meteorology is not only occupiedwith the troposphere, thus the lowest layer of the atmosphere, but also with stratosphere and to limited extent even with mesosphere and thermosphere. Here play radiosondes, weather and environmental satellites a crucial role. The associated subrange of the meteorology is aerology and/or. Aeronomy.

data sources and data quality

the most important task and the largest problem of the meteorology as empirical science treatment exists at the same time and in particular in the evaluation and the comparison of data in the collection. InOne can manufacture difference to other natural sciences in the meteorology thereby only for a small minority of questions of controllable laboratory conditions. Meteorological data acquisition is usually attached to the basic conditions given by nature therefore, what the reproductibility of results of measurementlimits and in particular the reductionism to closed questions beantwortbare by a measurement difficult more difficult.

The most important fundamental values are:

Anordnung der Wetterdaten
Arrangement of the meteorological data

these sizes in different standard formats, for example the Meteorological aviation routine Weather report are collected, or according to certain samples classifies, as for example the Beaufort's scale or the indication giving of a weather chart. Some data become daily toocertain clock times raised, the Mannheimer hours. They are seized by a multiplicity of meteorological measuring instruments, whereby following enumerating lists only the most important examples out these varieties:

Wetterkarte mit Stationsdaten
Weather chart with station data

From the multiplicity of measuring instruments, the kind of the measured variables and the goal of their use, numerous problems result. There is for example no really satisfying measuring method for the quantitative collection of the precipitation. This is particularly in the form of fog, Rope, snow and hail only badly and usually also only with a separate measuring instrument, thus in addition, with different measuring errors to seize for each kind of precipitation individually. Only by suitable and location-specific Korrekturfaktoren as well as a high measurer driving leaves itselfthis problem adjust, which raises however inevitably also the question about the comparability of the values of different measuring stations. Problematic here also heavy rain events are, the statistically proven diverson of precipitation particles by the measuring instrument and also the question about the transferability thatPrecipitation values on the environment of the measuring point, particularly with strongly minted topographic height nunterschieden.

Also all other sizes are with something similar, if also so strong problems afflicted, for example long time did not know the vertical component of the wind velocity is not correctly seizedand also today the measurement of vertical gradients is very complex still. One is also usually limited therefore to soil measurements, whereby depending upon measured variable standardized Bodenabstände are used from usually two or ten meters. To note it applies here that a particularmeteorological measurement is almost insignificant and the weather dynamics in larger space scales only by a multiplicity about measurements to be understood and prognosticated can. These measurements must be however comparable for this, why the standardization and standardisation of measuring instruments and measuring procedure an extraordinaryRole in the meteorology plays, however due to various practical problems to be also only conditionally converted can. One speaks therefore also of measuring nets and the mechanism of Wetterstationen. These obey usually the VDI - guideline 3786 or other, partlyworld-wide by the World Meteorological Organization standardized guidelines.

To a spatial comparability of the data, which is necessary for the weather forecast, comes however also a temporal comparability, which plays a crucial role among other things for climatic prognoses. Becomes the development of the measuring instruments andso that the measuring accuracy with the analysis of partly very old data it does not consider then these data are scientifically almost worthless, why world-wide often became outdated and are still very far common since decades unchanged measuring instruments. Also this is a question of cost, because itto use the most modern and thus most expensive measuring instruments there this is not always here meaningful only for individual countries and/or. Institutes are payable. Besides each change of the Messapparatur is linked with a change of the data quality, which with longer and very muchvaluable series of measurements from many decades to few centuries easily too wrongly postulated and/or. interpreted trends to lead can. One thus often does in favor of the comparability without a higher accuracy. In the case of a global heating up of few degrees Celsius are these muchold data usually little helpfully, since already their measuring error usually exceeds the effect of these possible changes of temperature. A large part of the arguments of so-called „Klimaskeptikern “be based on this partial disputed data situation, exist however also different natural Climatic archives with substantially more exact data over very long periods.

Thus the necessity results to analyze under location-specific, personnel and instrumentation factors, measuring data critically and arrange these correctly. In the meteorology here the spatial data analysis stands in the foreground,in the otherwise closely used climatology however the temporal data analysis (time series analysis) plays the main role.

radiation measurement

the production of physical dimension from measurements within different ranges of the electromagnetic spectrum is a challenge, only with largesucceeds to technical expenditure as well as by employment of models.


satellite measurement an important aid for Meteoroligists, particularly , for the satellite meteorology nowadays the satellites, in particular the meteorological satellites and environmental satellite. One differentiates here geostationary satellites, ina height of 36000 km and satellites, which circle the earth on LEOs so mentioned (Low Earth orbit, are stationarily over the earth embodied) in 400 to 800 km. Due to the wide collection of measuring data, leave themselves with satellitesglobal connections seize and with it finally also understand. In order to be able to work with satellite datas, knowledge handing far is necessary in the data processing. Satellite datas can be used as basis for the climatology to improve over their models and a comprehensive andto make possible even data acquisition. Ever more frequently such data are used in order to receive realizations over regions, which are not accessible to other measuring method. An example are here precipitation estimations or wind velocity regulations over the oceans. There one does not have a close measuring netfor the order and long time was dependent on wide data extrapolations, what leads today still to the fact that with strongly maritime coined/shaped weather conditions, for example at the west coast of North America, substantially smaller forecast qualities can be achieved than with continentally determined weather conditions. Everythingsatellite-based data acquisitions on the ocean do not come here out ship - or buoy measurements, and/or islands isolated by measuring stations on. Knowledge to weather conditions over the oceans can lead therefore to an improvement of the total forecasts of precipitation events on coasts.This is straight for the countries, like India, concerned by the monsoon, (life) important information.

models and Simulationen

particularly in the climatology (climatic model), in addition, in the meteorology (numeric weather forecast) and remote sensing play Models an outstanding role. They win their meaning by different factors:

  • With increasing development of the measuring technique and the rising requirement at weather forecasts also the data set rises enormously. Thus a written evaluation of the data on weather charts is no longer sufficient.Simplified models and computer simulations are faster, more economical therefore and make only the extensive data evaluation possible.
  • The periods in those many effects, for example sea level fluctuations, arise are enormous high and can only with models be simulated. They are not directly observable andbesides no continuous and qualitatively sufficient series of measurements for such periods exist. Meteoroligists thus usually could accomplish no laboratory, in that them measurements and are dependent therefore in theoretical models. These must thereupon again with material observedEffects to be compared. Exceptions are for example the climatic chamber AIDA of the research center Karlsruhe and the climatic chamber at the research center Jülich.

The Design of models is likewise a challenge, like their contentwise organization. Only models, which describe nature as adequately as possible, are in research such as practice meaningfully applicable. Since such models can employ easily whole computing centres because of the complexity of the modelled system, an efficient Algorithmik, thus nature simplifying statistic acceptance, is an important point with the development of the models. Onlyin this way computing time and thus the costs can be kept visible.

In the 20's 19. Century has the mathematician Lewis Fry Richardson methods to be developed, with the help of those the enormous complexity of mathematical meteorological models be concerned could. Thisthe basis of meteorological Simulationen (simulation model) on supercomputers is today still frequent. These do not serve therefore also without reason in very many cases for the simulation the weather and/or. Climatic dynamics, whereby these their borders, despite partial gigantic size dimensions, fastreach.

Different kinds can be differentiated by atmosphere models roughly: Radiation transfer models (bspw. KOPRA), chemistry transportation models (bspw. ECHAM) and dynamic models. The trend goes however to integrated models or „to world models “, which after-draw entire nature (SIBERIA 2).

During the improvement of the qualitythe models flow, like everywhere in the physical modelling, both statistic procedures and experimental observations, new ideas etc. into the procedure. A well-known example for this is the development, which led to the realization that the change of trace masses of gasin the atmosphere (bspw.Carbon dioxide or ozone) to “unhealthy” heat development of the biosphere to lead can (bspw. Greenhouse effect, cooling of the stratosphere). Also the discovery of the ozone hole and the reinforcement of the attention of the scientists to atmosphere chemistry which is connected with itfalls into this category.

Simplest meteorological model and at the same time the first acid test for all again-developed models to the weather forecast, is the simple transmission of the current weather on the future. It applies here the simple principle of a constant weather, one takes thuson, the weather of the next daily will correspond to that of the current daily. This is called persistence prognosis. Since weather conditions are often for a long time almost equivalent lasting, this simple acceptance has already a probability of success of about 60%.


authorities, federations, companies




the USA

  • national Severe Storms Laboratory
  • national Weather service
  • Storm Prediction center
  • national Hurricane center
  • national Climatic DATA center

Great Britain

  • Royal Meteorological Society
  • Met Office - weather service of the united kingdomGB


  • Meteo France


  • European Centre for medium rank Weather Forecasts
  • EUMETSAT - European Meteorological Satellite organization




German-language text books

  • mark mountain, H. (2002): Meteorology and climatology. An introduction.(4. , updated and. extendedAufl.). Springer, Berlin.ISBN 3540429190
  • Weischet, W. (2002): Introduction to the general climatology: physical and meteorological bases. (6. , over work. Aufl.). Fount carrier, Berlin. ISBN 3443071236
  • Häckel H. (1999): Meteorology. 4. Aufl. Ulmer publishing house, Stuttgart; UTB 1338; 448 S. ISBN 3825213382
  • Zmarsly,Kuttler W., Pethe H. (2002):Meteorological-climatological basic knowledge. An introduction with exercises, tasks and solutions. Ulmer publishing house, Stuttgart; ISBN of 3825222810

German-language special books

  • tile man J., creator S. (2004): How does the weather become? Rowohlt, Reinbek. ISBN 3498063774
  • complaint J. (2002): Weather makes history.The influence of the weather on the run of history. FAZ book, Frankfurt; 236 S. ISBN 3898430979

other languages

  • Barry R. G., Chorley R. J. (2003): Atmosphere, Weather and Climate. 8th OD., Routledge, London; 536 pp. ISBN 0415271703
  • Frater H. (1999): Weatherand Climate. CD-ROM, Springer publishing house, Berlin.
  • Getting clay/tone J. R. et. aluminium (2002): Encyplopedia OF Atmospheric Sciences. San Diego, London, Academic press. ISBN of 0122270908
  • shepherds J., Day J.A. (1981): Atmosphere. Clouds, rain, snow, storms. Peterson Field Guides.Houghton Mifflin company, bad clay/tone,New York.

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