What Makes Air Unstable?

Tools

By By Steve Pool

SEATTLE - Don't you love those days where it'll be sunny for 20 minutes, then you scramble for your umbrella as it pours?

Usually in the days following a good-sized storm, we get a rush of colder air moving into the upper levels of the atmosphere. That makes it easier for clouds and storms to form because when pockets of warm air rise from the ground, it'll keep rising farther since it will stay warmer longer relative to the surrounding cold air.

If the air is really unstable (read: really cold air moving in), it can create storm cells with heavy rain with frequent lightning and/or hail. These storms tend to form in the afternoon and evening after the sunshine has had a chance to warm the ground and get the process started.

Your Photos

YouNews It's a bird! It's a plane! It's a bird! It's a plane!
I was enjoying the beauty of the patchy artwork of the clouds this evening around 7:30 and watching boats cruise by on Lake Washington. Suddenly I noticed a sea plane up in the clouds and a goose in mid air. I was holding my camera and I clicked.
YouNews Seahawk Minion!!!! Seahawk Minion!!!!
We decided to create an original 12th Man Minion named Sherman to help us support our home town team.