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Lapse Rates

In Unit 1, it was shown that temperature usually decreases with altitude and that the rate at which it decreases is called the lapse rate. The lapse rate, commonly expressed in degrees Fahrenheit per 1,000 feet, gives a direct measure-ment of the atmosphere’s resistance to vertical



Figure 2-4-2.—Moisture content and temperature determines weight of air.s

motion. The degree of stability of the atmosphere may vary from layer to layer as indicated by changes of lapse rate with height. (See table 2-4-1 and fig. 2-4-3.)

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