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Air mass

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Definition of the noun air mass

What does air mass mean as a name of something?


  1. a large body of air with uniform characteristics horizontally
    • lexical domain: States - nouns denoting stable states of affairs
    • more generic terms: atmosphere / atmospheric state = the weather or climate at some place
    • more specific words:
      • high = an air mass of higher than normal pressure
      • depression / low = an air mass of lower pressure

Alternative definition of the noun air mass


  1. a widespread body of air, the properties of which can be identified as
  2. having been established while that air was situated over a particular region of the earth's surface (airmass source region) and
  3. undergoing specific modifications while in transit away from the source region. An air mass is often defined as a widespread body of air that is approximately homogeneous in its horizontal extent, particularly with reference to temperature and moisture distribution; in addition, the vertical temperature and moisture variations are approximately the same over its horizontal extent.


  1. Air mass: In meteorology, an air mass is a volume of air defined by its temperature and water vapor content. Air masses cover many hundreds or thousands of square miles, and adopt the characteristics of the surface below them. They are classified according to latitude and their continental or maritime source regions. Colder air masses are termed polar or arctic, while warmer air masses are deemed tropical. Continental and superior air masses are dry while maritime and monsoon air masses are moist. Weather fronts separate air masses with different density characteristics. Once an air mass moves away from its source region, underlying vegetation and water bodies can quickly modify its character. Classification schemes tackle an air mass' characteristics, and well as modification.
    • also known as 气团
  2. Air mass: In astronomy, air mass is the optical path length through Earth’s atmosphere for light from a celestial source. As it passes through the atmosphere, light is attenuated by scattering and absorption; the more atmosphere through which it passes, the greater the attenuation. Consequently, celestial bodies at the horizon appear less bright than when at the zenith. The attenuation, known as atmospheric extinction, is described quantitatively by the Beer–Lambert–Bouguer law.
    • also known as Airmass
  3. The air mass coefficient defines the direct optical path length through the Earth's atmosphere, expressed as a ratio relative to the path length vertically upwards, i.e. at the zenith. The air mass coefficient can be used to help characterize the solar spectrum after solar radiation has traveled through the atmosphere. The air mass coefficient is commonly used to characterize the performance of solar cells under standardized conditions, and is often referred to using the syntax "AM" followed by a number. "AM1.5" is almost universal when characterizing terrestrial power-generating panels.
    • also known as Air mass coefficient

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Air mass

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Google previewEncyclopedia of Geography Terms, Themes, and Concepts (2011)

by Reuel R. Hanks

is the coldest air mass on Earth. In fact, it is much colder than the Arctic air of the Northern Hemisphere. It is generated on the Antarctic continent, which is covered by ice sheets having surfaces frequently in excess of two ...

Google previewThe Environment Dictionary (2002)

by David Kemp

Table A-1 Air mass characteristics and sources CHARACTERISTICS Warm, very moist, potentially unstable Hot, dry, variable stability Cool, moist, variable stability Cold, dry, very stable in winter Cool, less dry, potentially unstable in summer ...

Google previewDictionary of Earth Science (2002)

by McGraw-Hill Education

{ erlı ̄t} air mass [METEOROL] An extensive body of the atmosphere which approximates hori- zontal homogeneity in its weather characteristics, particularly with reference to tem- perature and moisture distribution. { er mas} air-mass analysis ...


by McGraw-Hill Education

{ erl ̄ıt} air mass [METEOROL] An extensive body of the atmosphere which approximates horizontal homogeneity in its weather characteristics, particularly with reference to temperature and moisture distribution. { er mas } air-mass analysis ...

Google previewDictionary of Ecodesign (2010)

An Illustrated Reference by Ken Yeang, Lillian Woo

Air exchanger See: Heat recovery ventilator Air mass 1. In weather applications, an air mass ...

Google previewChildren's Illustrated Encyclopedia (2016)

by DK

Cold, moist air mass difficult calculations involved and draw charts of the weather to come. forecasters use the charts to predict the weather for the next fewdays, producing weather reports for ground. television, newspapers, shipping, and ...

Google previewThe Facts on File Dictionary of Weather and Climate (2009)

by Jacqueline Smith

continental air mass A very extensive region of air with broadly uniform properties of ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Environmental Change (2013)

Three Volume Set by John A Matthews

NP/JBE air mass An extensive body of air with nearuniform horizontal characteristics of TEMPERATURE, HUMIDITY and LAPSE RATE over a large area (generally 102–103 km2). Air masses develop over homogeneous source regions over ...

Google previewKnowledge Encyclopedia (2013)

by DK

For example, a low pressure air mass with warm air will rise up above a high pressure air mass with cold air. Any moisture carried by the warm air will condense as the air cools, forming clouds and possibly rain. _A_l_A_L Occluded front Ari ...

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air mass

Air Mass

Delps Road Park, Lehigh Township, Northampton County.

Photo credit: Nicholas_T

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Small photo of Rare snowfall in Taipei City under the influence of a strong cold air mass on a hazy winter day with view of Taipei 101 Tower in XinYi District, Keelung River thru downtown & silhouette of mountainsSmall photo of Cumulonimbus cloud during heat summer day indicating storm formation in unstable air mass (atmosphere) before cold front arrival More...

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