Daily record lows are possible Tuesday morning in Chicago, Detroit, and Dayton, Ohio, among other locations. This daily record cold will spread to the Deep South, while lingering in the Great Lakes and Ohio Valley Wednesday morning, possibly including Mobile, Ala. and Lake Charles, La.
Of course, that’s just the actual air temperature. Wind chills will be dangerously low at times early Monday and Tuesday. In the upper Mississippi Valley, northern Plains and western Great Lakes, wind chills will likely dip into the 30s and 40s below zero. Some spots near the Canadian border may even see 50s below zero.
For budding meteorologists, this isn’t another Polar Vortex. Instead, it’s an Alberta Clipper. From our close reading of the phenomenon, it appears we can blame Canada.
The smog has become so thick in Beijing that the city’s natural light-starved masses have begun flocking to huge digital commercial television screens across the city to observe virtual sunrises.
The futuristic screens installed in the Chinese capital usually advertize tourist destinations, but as the season’s first wave of extremely dangerous smog hit - residents donned air masks and left their homes to watch the only place where the sun would hail over the horizon that morning.
Filed under: The future has arrived.
UPDATE 1/20/14: The above is, in part, apparently untrue.
The truth: As TechInAsiareports, the smog is real but the fabled publicly-orchestrated virtual sunrise is not.
The sunrise was part of a 24/7, seven-days-a-week ad for tourism in the Shangdong province that runs continuously no matter how much smog is flowing into Beijing that day. This particular animation is less than 10 seconds of the ad; the photographer in question just took a lucky snapshot.
You might think that boiling water would be harder to instantly freeze than a pot of cold water. In fact, Holthaus tried cold water immediately afterward, and it stayed in liquid form. It’s the gradient between the hot water and the freezing air that makes the trick work, climatologist Mark Seeley explained in a 2011 LiveScience explainer on the phenomenon. The boiling water has relatively low viscosity, so when you throw it into the air, it breaks into tiny droplets that vaporize almost instantly due to their high ratio of surface area to volume. But cold air can’t hold much water vapor, so it quickly clings to tiny sodium or calcium particles and crystallizes.
Australia Adds New Weather Map Colors to Accommodate Extreme Heat
With temperatures reaching near-record levels and forest fires raging, Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology has added pink and deep purple to its heat index to extend its temperature range past 50 degrees celsius (122 fahrenheit).
The range now extends to 54 degrees [129.2 fahrenheit] – well above the all-time record temperature of 50.7 degrees reached on January 2, 1960 at Oodnadatta Airport in South Australia – and, perhaps worringly, the forecast outlook is starting to deploy the new colours.
"The scale has just been increased today and I would anticipate it is because the forecast coming from the bureau’s model is showing temperatures in excess of 50 degrees," David Jones, head of the bureau’s climate monitoring and prediction unit, said.
While recent days have seen Australian temperature maps displaying maximums ranging from 40 degrees to 48 degrees - depicted in the colour scheme as burnt orange to black – both Sunday and Monday are now showing regions likely to hit 50 degrees or more, coloured purple.
As the SMH points out: “Australia’s first six days of 2013 were all among the hottest 20 days on record in terms of average maximums, with January 7 and today likely to add to the list of peaks. That would make it four of the top 10 in a little over a week.”
Meantime, there’s rash of wildfires breaking out (map) with some small towns being “warned that it is too late to try to flee the incoming flames,” according to the Telegraph. In 2009, 173 people in Australia died during one particular period of wildfires.
The video shows the progression of the May 24 storms moving from Arkansas, Illinois and Missouri into Mississippi, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee and Indiana. The May 24 event killed people in Kansas, Arkansas and Oklahoma, according to the Associated Press. The National Weather Service reported that several twisters touched down in Oklahoma City and some of its suburbs.