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The Temperature Contrast Essay

1. The temperature contrast between the equator and the Arctic region is greatest in the winter, because the Arctic region is furthest away from the Sun during that time.

2. (a) The one region of the world where the hypothetical isotherm pattern is actually observed is in the Southern Hemisphere, starting at approximately 30° S. (b) The hypothetical pattern is seen here, because the oceanic and atmospheric circulations in this region constantly run from west to east with the West Wind Drift. This drift directly influences the temperatures in this region, and keeps this hypothetical pattern stable.

3. (a) The influence of cool ocean currents on coastal temperatures is more pronounced in the summer. (b) Cool currents deflect isotherms equatorward, whereas warm currents deflect them poleward (Hess, 2014, p 101). Cool currents produce the greatest isothermal bends in the warm season (Hess, 2014, p 101).

4. (a) Comparing the January map with the July map, the one region of the world that exhibits a large annual temperature range is the Eurasian continental mass. (b) Enormous seasonal variations in temperature occur in the interiors of high-latitude continents, and continental areas in general experience much greater ranges than do equivalent oceanic latitudes (Hess, 2014, p 103). (c) One region of the world that exhibits a small annual temperature range is the Southeastern Asian tropics. (d) This average temperature fluctuates only slightly from season to season in the tropics, particularly over tropical oceans (Hess, 2014, p 103). The areas that are closest to the equator will experience slight temperature ranges annually because they constantly receive the vertical rays of the Sun. Exercise 17 Problems – Part II: Answers

Starting in the west, point A, the actual 16°C isotherm dips just below the hypothetical position. This could possibly be due to the Alaskan Current pushing cooler water along the coast. Going inland to North America (NA), the temperature slightly raises to 21°C. The highest temperatures also are found over the continents (Hess, 2014, p 102). The further east you go across NA, the actual 16°C isotherm starts to come down closer to the hypothetical position. Crossing the Atlantic Ocean, the temperature stays consistent and close to the hypothetical position. Once you reach Europe, and continue east, the temperature begins to rise, and that could be again be due to the large land mass and rising altitudes, such as the Himalayas and Mongolian Plateau that can reach temperatures as high as 27°C. Moving west, into eastern Russia and China, temperatures drop off dramatically; back down to 16°C as you approach the Eastern Chinese coast, where the cool Oyashio Current can impact temperatures.

1. The primary factor that explains the different temperature patterns of St. Louis and Oakland is altitude.

2. The warmest month of summer is different in St. Louis than Oakland is because of altitude. However, one can make a case for land-water contrasts as well. The maritime environment in Oakland takes longer to warm up, and keeps the bay area cooler, longer.

3. St. Louis has colder winters than Norfolk because of the land-water contrasts. Warm current from the American Southeast directly affects the temperatures in Norfolk.

4. Although both are coastal cities, compared to Oakland, Norfolk has a very “continental” temperature pattern, because of the wind pattern. In Norfolk, most of the air flows off the North American continent, which has a continental climate. In Oakland, the air masses flow off the Pacific Ocean, which has a maritime environment.

5. The primary factor that explains the difference in temperature patterns between Fairbanks and St. Louis is latitude.

6. The primary factor that explains the difference in temperature patterns between Fairbanks and Nome is land-water contrasts.

7. Lihue has a smaller annual temperature range than Oakland because it is exposed to the sun regularly, being closer to the equator. Oakland is higher in latitude and is closer to the Sun during summer, and further away during the winter. This causes Oakland to have a larger temperature range than Lihue.

8. The difference in temperature patterns between Lihue and Kilauea is altitude.

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