Detached Warm Front

60 Minutes

Veronika Zwatz-Meise
Barbara Zeiner
Jarno Schipper

Detached Warm Front

Published: 01 January 2005

In the case of an eastward moving classical frontal system the Detached Warm Front is mostly observed within the eastern branch of a pronounced synoptic scale ridge in the height and thickness fields, accompanied by strong winds in higher levels of the troposphere (approximately at 500 hPa) which blow normal to the movement of the ridge system. A possible and often observed indication for the formation of a Detached Warm Front is a splitting of the wind field within the mid- and upper levels of the troposphere in the area of the Warm Front into a north-western and a strong southern stream. This causes the cloud field of the Detached Warm Front to move more or less rapidly southward within the eastern branch of the upper level ridge which is, in this case, very close to the high gradient zone of equivalent thickness. The original frontal system, which is situated further north, moves from west to east. Consequently the different air streams cause two WA maxima. WA maxima contribute to upward motion which is one reason for the maintenance of cloudiness.

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Filed under Keywords:

Conceptual Models, Synoptic Scale Meteorology, Warm Front