What is a hydrometeor and what are the main types?


Have you ever wondered what a hydrometeor is? Here you have the answer: this phenomenon is a collection of aqueous, liquid or solid particles that fall through the atmosphere. These particles can remain suspended, be deposited on objects in the free atmosphere, or fall from the atmosphere until they reach the earth's surface.

Among the main ones we highlight rain, fog, mist or frost. Let's know the main types that there are and how they are characterized.

Hydrometeors suspended in the atmosphere

They are those that are formed by very small particles of water or ice that are suspended in the atmosphere.

  • Fog: made up of very small drops of water that can be seen with the naked eye. These drops reduce horizontal visibility to below 1km. Fog can be weak when viewed at a distance between 500 and 1000m, moderate when the distance is between 50 and 500m, and dense when visibility is less than 50m.
  • Mist: Like fog, it is made up of very small drops of water, but in this case they are microscopic. Reduces visibility between 1 and 10km with a relative humidity of 80%.

Hydrometeors that are deposited on objects in the atmosphere

They occur when water vapor in the atmosphere condenses on objects that are on the ground.

  • Frost: occurs when ice crystals are deposited on objects, with temperatures very close to 0 degrees.
  • Frost: When soil moisture freezes, a very slippery layer of ice forms, which is when we say there has been a frost.
  • Freezing fog: It occurs in areas where there is fog and the wind blows a bit. The water droplets freeze when they come into contact with the ground.

Hydrometeors falling from the atmosphere

It is what we know by the name of precipitation. They are liquid or solid particles that fall from clouds.

  • Rain: They are liquid particles of water with a diameter greater than 0,5 millimeters.
  • Snowfall: It is made up of ice crystals that fall from rain clouds.
  • Hail: This precipitation is made up of ice particles with a diameter of between 5 and 50 millimeters.

Rain on the window

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