Introducing by popular demand (?) [click to view]:
‘Convection Cells Move Air Around’ (short video) – Windows to the Universe.
When you warm air, it rises. Cool air will sink. This process of convection can lead to flows in the atmosphere, in a manner that we can illustrate [see video] on a small scale. Warm and cool air in a fish tank rise and fall; this motion is made visible by adding fog. Ultimately, the motion leads to a convection cell, with air rising, moving to the side, falling, and moving back. This heat-driven motion of air moves heat around in the atmosphere. It is also responsible for making the wind blow.
Cue discussion by Talkshop commenters 🙂
This post arose from a discussion on another thread that seems to have started somewhere around here.
Larger version of the NASA graphic here.
Update – a newer post (2015/06/11) can now be viewed here:
Atmospheric convection – what does it mean?
[comments are now closed on this thread – see ‘Update’ above]