Undergraduate Course: Atmospheric Physics (METE10002)
|School||School of Geosciences
||College||College of Science and Engineering
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate)
||Availability||Available to all students
|Summary||Atmospheric thermodynamics and dynamics are initially reviewed, then the spatial and temporal structure of the atmospheric boundary layer is studied, beginning with a dry convective layer and then considering a cloud-topped layer.
The second half of the course considers the physics of atmospheric aerosols, in particular how aerosols are involved in the formation of clouds, how aerosols and clouds interact with radiation, how aerosols affect climate, and how aerosols act as air pollutants.
Weeks 1-5: The atmospheric boundary layer: turbulence and weather
Weeks 6-10: Cloud and aerosol physics: micro-scales to global climate
Information for Visiting Students
|High Demand Course?
Course Delivery Information
|Academic year 2022/23, Available to all students (SV1)
|Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info)
Lecture Hours 16,
Seminar/Tutorial Hours 4,
Feedback/Feedforward Hours 3,
Summative Assessment Hours 2,
Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2,
Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours
|Assessment (Further Info)
|Additional Information (Assessment)
Written Exam: 80%, Course Work: 20 %, Practical Exam: 0%.
The two summative tutorial question sheets are worth 10% each. The exam involves choosing two questions from three.
Tutorial 2: 12 noon Monday Week 7. Submit online via Turnitin
Tutorial 4: 12 noon Tuesday Week 10. Submit online via Turnitin
||Students submit four sets of tutorial questions: (1) and (3) are formative; (2) and (4) are summative. Written feedback is provided for all. There is the opportunity to ask questions during or after lectures and tutorials. After the exam (usually early the following semester), students can read marked exam scripts and question the markers on any comments or the marks achieved.
||Hours & Minutes
|Main Exam Diet S1 (December)||Atmospheric Physics||2:00|
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Describe in detail the spatial and temporal variation of typical convective and stable boundary layers in terms of temperature, moisture content and winds, explain the physical processes that give rise to these structures and critically understand the nature of turbulent fluxes of heat and moisture and derive their variation with height, given temporal changes of structure in simple situations
- Determine the static and dynamic stability of atmospheric layers , discuss the sources and sinks of turbulent kinetic energy and describe the various sources of atmospheric aerosols
- Have a critical understanding of the processes (formation, growth, removal) that lead to observed aerosol size distributions in different environments, describe the physics of homogeneous and heterogeneous nucleation, understand the physics described by Kohler curves, and how aerosols can become cloud condensation nuclei and describe the physics of how cloud droplets grow by condensation and collision
- Understand how aerosols interact with solar and terrestrial radiation, understand how aerosols can modify clouds and understand the concept of radiative forcing, in the context of how aerosols affect climate, and be able to compare the anthropogenic climate forcing from aerosols with that from greenhouse gases
- Understand how aerosols act as air pollutants, and how air pollution can be modelled and make decisions where information is limited or comes from a range of sources.
|Please see current reading list for the course at: https://eu01.alma.exlibrisgroup.com/leganto/readinglist/searchlists|
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
|Additional Class Delivery Information
||2 one-hour lectures per week
|Course organiser||Dr Richard Essery
|Course secretary||Mr Johan De Klerk
Tel: (0131 6)50 7010