Abstract artwork of convection in the atmosphere

Abstract artwork of convection in the atmosphere

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Credit: SALLY BENSUSEN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Atmospheric convection. Abstract artwork of the Earth's atmosphere which compares it to a pot of boiling water on a stove. The main method of heat transfer in both cases is convection, the transport of heat by the physical movement of the air or water. In the atmosphere, the ground is heated by the Sun. The ground in turn warms the air near the surface, making it expand and become less dense. This buoyant gas rises (red arrows) until its density is the same as the air around it. When this gas cools, the water vapour in it condenses to form clouds. Cool air (blue arrows) is dense and sinks towards the ground where it picks up more heat, and the process begins again.

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Keywords: abstract, atmosphere, boiling water, cloud and convection, cloud formation, convection, earth atmospher, earth atmosphere, earth science, earth's, sciences

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