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Thunder In The UK

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Posted by Michael McNeil on July 21, 2002 00:51:50 UTC

Like many places certain weather events are seasonal in the UK. Notably May and July for thunderstorms.

I went to the local library today. Every fair sized one in the UK has a copy of Whitaker's Almanack. It has a section that contains an ephemeris of the moon and sun.

I am; or was, rather, expecting a thunderstorm in the UK on or about the 24th of this month. We had a sultry (by UK standards) day yesterday (19th July). I don't believe the storm will be as bad here as in (I suspect) Spain. Here is why:

During July the declination of the sun runs:

23 degrees north on the first to 18 degrees north on the thirty first.

On the 19th the sun was almost 21 degrees south at midnight.

That means the the sun was in the region of 30 below the latitude of where I studied its effect on the weather. The moon was about 75 degrees below. Although it was unpleasantly "close" and sound carried quite far (as it has all month really) there was no storm in my region.

There were thunderstorms in the UK of course; the Met Office issued weather warnings. But I am talking specifically about where I live now. (Stoke on Trent but I found most of this out when I lived in Abergele, North Wales.) They are both approximately 53 degrees north and at about 1 degree apart the weather is not dissimilar.

On the 24th, the full moon will occur at 9am. The declination of the moon will shift from 24 to 22 degrees south. Putting it at about 75 degrees below my latitude. That is an interesting angle but I don't think one of tremendous power input. If there is a wave that crests these things at 30 degree intervals; that puts us half way up on it. (Or is that half way down?)

The declination of the sun will be:

20 degrees north at midnight falling a little through the day. That puts it at the top of the node doesn't it? Nearly 30 degrees from home.

So where do I think the worst of it will be. (Assuming the force is not dissipated in a tropical storm somewhere or in a major earthquake) the worst thunder will be in southern Spain; somewhere in the region of 37 degrees north.

There could be some very bad flooding in the plain to the west of Valencia.

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