Click on the desired item for more information.
The Website lists Weather Studies products generally by data
table below gives a brief overview of the data types.
|Maps and text displaying surface weather data (e.g.
fronts, pressure, data
from across individual states)
||Maps displaying radar information (e.g. radar,
radar and fronts)
||Current and archived visible, infrared, and water
|Upper Air -
||Maps and text displaying upper air weather data
(e.g. Stüve, 500
|Watches, Warnings, Advisories and Forecasts -
||Severe weather alerts and maps of future weather
conditions over the next
||Blank maps for plotting use, station locations,
- How to Start a Weather Studies Assignment
The following steps summarize the weekly routine you should follow to
the Weather Studies course (in addition to attending the
meetings when they occur).
- As time permits, maintain an informal daily watch on
weather (a) to follow
the development and progress of major weather systems and features, and
relate your local weather to the broad-scale weather picture. This
watch can be
conducted in a number of ways including calling up the Daily Weather
Summary and other maps and images, and viewing quality
- Read the chapter in textbook on which the week’s study is
- Complete investigations A and B in the Investigations Manual.
- Complete the Current Weather Studies, posted on the course page every Monday.
Each of the different learning files is described below.
- Daily Weather Summary
The Daily Weather Summary is an overview describing the weather pattern across the United States and the location of major weather systems. The summaries of a particular week remain active links for the entire
week till late Sunday evening.
- Weekly Weather and Climate News
The Weekly Weather and Climate News contains links to the latest weather and
climate news items. Posted Monday morning and available until Sunday, it will remained posted under "Last Week's News" as well as in the Archives.
- Supplemental Information
In addition to the Daily Summary, files of supplemental information are
frequently provided that expand on a point or add
background information. These files are also moved to the Archives section after they are
removed from the homepage.
- Current Weather Studies
Since weather is most exciting in real time, the Current Weather Studies File is designed to build upon (in near
in the course assignments of the textbook. These files are available starting
noontime (Eastern Time) on Mondays.
- Supplemental Information ... In Greater Depth
In addition to the Daily Summary, Dr. Edward Hopkins will often provide
additional file of supplemental information that expands on a point of
summary material or adds background information on meteorological
the Supplemental Information file.
Several miscellaneous materials are available. Blank plotting maps, meteorological
additional weather information sources, and additional notes are given here.
The following is a list of available data and map products:
- North American surface weather observations
- for approximately 200
stations, updated hourly.
- Upper air observations - updated twice
daily (these represent
atmospheric conditions above the Earth's surface at 0000Z and 1200Z
- Radar data - updated hourly (conditions
represent a national view at
35 minutes after the hour).
- Satellite data - updated hourly.
(Visible images are only delivered
during the daylight period.)
- General surface map features - including
fronts and low and high
pressure centers, updated every three hours (these features represent
conditions at 00, 03, 06, 09, 12, 15, 18, and 21Z).
- Forecast data - updated twice daily,
based on computer model output
from 00Z and 12Z data inputs.
You may have noticed that on all our
products, a time like
10Z 02 JAN 2004 is displayed. What is Z time?
In order for meteorologists to communicate about data, it is
have a global reference time for all meteorological data. This
is commonly referred to by the following names: Z time (Zulu), UTC
Coordinated Time), or GMT (Greenwich Mean Time). The value represents
zone of Greenwich, England, UK. This time will always be ahead
To convert the value to your local time, you need to know the
time of year
and how many hours different your time is from Greenwich time. For
example, a map may display a time and date of 18Z 01 JAN
time would this be locally in Chicago? First think of 18Z as "military
time" and then translate it to a clock value in either am or pm. So 18Z
becomes 6:00 pm. To adjust for the time of year, we know that Chicago
is in the
Central Standard Time zone in winter, so using the table below,
we know that Greenwich is 6 hours ahead of
Chicago. Thus for Chicago
local time, subtract 6 hours from 6:00 pm and you have 12:00
For a view of world time zones, go to