Climate & Weather

Atmospheric sciences help us understand and predict the weather. Learn about topics such as the seasons, why it snows, and how rainbows are formed.

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Weather drones can collect all types of information. But one sophisticated drone is about to launch in the U.S. and will, for the first time, share that data for research purposes.

By Stephanie Parker

Haboobs are giant walls of dust that can come seemingly out of nowhere. How are they created and are they different from sandstorms?

By Jennifer Walker-Journey

A geomagnetic storm could cause a spectacular aurora borealis Aug. 18 and 19 over parts of the continental United States, as far south as Illinois.

By Sarah Gleim

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Mammatus clouds, which are made from falling air instead of rising air, are one of the most spectacular cloud formations you'll ever see.

By Jesslyn Shields

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration suggests as many as six hurricanes could reach Category 3 or higher during the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season.

By Sarah Gleim

The year 2020 saw some of the biggest lightning flashes ever recorded by humankind, called "megaflashes." But how much bigger is a megaflash than a regular bolt of lightning?

By Carrie Tatro

They're an odd enough sight in the sky to make you do a double take. Ready for the "super cool" explanation behind hole-punch clouds?

By Allison Troutner

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The goal of a chief heat officer is a big one: to mitigate the fallout of climate change, particularly as it relates to unfair distribution of risk based on income and social status.

By Laurie L. Dove

Atmospheric rivers, also known as "Pineapple Express" storms, are key to the global water cycle, particularly in the western United States. But with a warming climate, their intensity could get much worse, and that's not good.

By Tom Corringham

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Climate Prediction Center says the 2021 Atlantic hurricane shows no signs of slowing down. In fact it may have more storms than meteorologists first predicted.

By Sarah Gleim

The balance between Earth's incoming and outgoing energy is known as its "energy budget" and the climate is determined by these energy flows. The balance is out of whack and that's not good.

By Scott Denning

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The Atlantic hurricane season is here, and forecasters have predicted a 60 percent chance of an above-normal season using all types of information to make the call. Here's how they do it.

By Kristopher Karnauskas

Iceland? The North Pole? Antarctica? There are a lot of super cold places on this planet, but which one can claim bragging rights as the coldest place on Earth?

By Mark Mancini

In 2014, scientists observed a space hurricane for the first time; they reported their findings this year. But what's a space hurricane — and do we on Earth have to worry about with them?

By Valerie Stimac

When the wind starts whipping and the weather gets wild, it's important to know the difference between a tornado watch and a tornado warning.

By Carrie Tatro

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Dusk is a beautiful time of day. So is twilight. But when does one turn into the other? And did you know there were three versions of each?

By Valerie Stimac

It might seem that the constant rushing of water over a falls would keep it from freezing, but that isn't always the case. Check out the science behind the phenomenon of the frozen waterfall.

By Mark Mancini

These intense snowstorms can come out of nowhere. They may not last long, but their rapid snowfall and whipping winds can make them disastrous.

By John Donovan

Hygrometers are used by many professionals to monitor levels of humidity in the air. So, do need one in your home?

By Cherise Threewitt

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You probably recognize these right off the bat: Andrew, Katrina, Sandy and Sally. But when and why did we start giving hurricanes names?

By John Donovan

This unusual storm called a derecho can be as frightening as a hurricane or a tornado and can travel hundreds of miles sowing destruction in its path.

By Jesslyn Shields

A single stalk of corn can create its own microclimate. But what is a microclimate, and why do they even matter?

By Mark Mancini

These annual winds blow during Southern California's dangerous dry season, whipping up wildfires that can ravage thousands of acres.

By John Donovan

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Monsoons are a regularly occurring seasonal climate feature in the tropics, where a contrast between land and ocean temperatures causes shifting winds and brings heavy rainfall.

By Patrick J. Kiger

Hurricanes can range in strength from Category 1 all the way to Category 5. Learn more about hurricane categories in this HowStuffWorks Illustrated video.