Why are thunderstorms or hailstorms less likely to happen in the morning?

45 viewsOtherPlanetary Science

They happen in the night, and they happen in daytime. Why not in the morning? At least, why not so often?

In: Planetary Science

2 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

Thunderstorms require 3 ingredients: moisture, unstable air, and lifting action

Unstable air occurs when a parcel of air is warmer than the air above it, so it naturally wants to rise (hot air rises). How does lower level air become warmer than the air above it? The sun heats the earth’s surface, which then radiates that heat into lower level air.

As you go through the day, the surface heats up, which creates the unstable air starting early afternoon, and that can last until the night. Unstable air can exist at night because it takes time for the heat to radiate away from the surface. But in the morning, the surface has been losing that heat all night, and also not been receiving any heat from the sun for hours. So that’s why there is not unstable air in the mornings, and without unstable air, there are no thunderstorms.

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