Cold front

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Cold front is where a cold air mass is replacing warm air mass at some location.
Cold front is where a cold air mass is replacing warm air mass at some location.
The symbol of a cold front: a blue line with triangles pointing in the direction of travel
The symbol of a cold front: a blue line with triangles pointing in the direction of travel

Cold front is where a cold air mass is replacing warm air mass at some location. Because the frontal surface (boundary between the cold and warm air) is steep, air is pushed up rapidly creating cumulus-type clouds. Precipitation along a cold front is usually intense but short in duration. (See also: Warm front.)

The cooler, denser air wedges under the less-dense warmer air, lifting it. This upward motion causes lowered pressure along the cold front and can cause the formation of a narrow line of showers and thunderstorms when enough moisture is present.

On weather maps, the surface position of the cold front is marked with the symbol of a blue line of triangles/spikes (pips) pointing in the direction of travel.

A cold front's location is at the leading edge of the temperature drop off, which in an isotherm analysis would show up as the leading edge of the isotherm gradient, and it normally lies within a sharp surface trough. Cold fronts can move up to twice as fast as warm fronts and can produce sharper changes in weather. Since cold air is denser than warm air, it rapidly replaces the warm air preceding the boundary.

Cold fronts are usually associated with an area of low pressure.


[edit] Reference:

  • See Wikipedia Cold front [1]

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