Predicting Weather



How To Predict Weather

How do you predict the weather for a period of time? How do you know when the weather will change? How do meteorologists know how to predict what the weather will be like and what kinds of tools do they use to predict the weather?



Meteorologists are able to predict the changes in weather patterns by using several different tools. They use these tools to measure atmospheric conditions that occurred in the past and present, and they apply this information to create educated guesses about the future weather. Always remember that a weather forecast is an educated guess – meteorologists (and mankind, in general) cannot control the weather. The best we can do is observe the past and present atmospheric patterns and data, and apply this information to what we think will happen in the future. Meteorologists use the scientific method on a daily, even hourly, basis.

Meteorologists use many different tools for different purposes. Most people are familiar with thermometers, barometers, and anemometers for measuring temperature, air pressure, and wind speed, respectively. Meteorologists use other tools, as well. For example, weather balloons are special balloons that have a weather pack on them that measures temperature, air pressure, wind speed, and wind direction in all the layers of the troposphere.

Meteorologists also use satellites to observe cloud patterns around the world, and radar is used to measure precipitation. All of this data is then plugged into super computers, which use numerical forecast equations to create forecast models of the atmosphere. These forecast models can be both correct and incorrect, so meteorologists must be careful and determine whether they agree with the model or not. If the meteorologists disagree with the model, then they must determine a different outlook for their forecast.