On Another Front
Tornadoes and thunderstorms are the violent products of larger circulations that set off a huge variety of weather—from the all-day drizzle to the blinding blizzard to even the rip-roaring hurricane. These larger circulations are part of the medium or synoptic scale and essentially account for the majority of weather that makes headlines. Air masses, fronts, and high- and low-pressure systems all make up this thing called weather.
Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Weather © 2002 by Mel Goldstein, Ph.D.. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.