IEM Daily Feature
Friday, 22 May 2020

Done with Gloom Soon?

Posted: 22 May 2020 04:57 AM

The recent lack of sunshine and associated chilly temperatures is starting to get old. This gloomy weather has included plenty of time with overcast skies and low cloud ceilings. The featured chart presents a histogram of overcast skies and at what level those reports occur at using period of record observations from the Ames Airport. There are caveats galore with this plot including important quirks with how the ceiling readings are reported by automated sensors. The y-axis scale is also logarithmic to better detail the low level conditions. The point of the plot is the frequency of low clouds and generally overcast conditions starts to decrease by the end of May. Warmer soil temperatures, increasing solar inputs and warming lower atmosphere all help to mix the boundary layer and relegate clouds to higher levels. The forecast has at least warmer temperatures, but still appears to keep gloomy conditions around for a few more days at least!

Voting:
Good = 15
Bad = 1
Abstain = 2

Tags:   clouds