Dynamical Meteorology II

Physics, Second Cycle
1 ali 2 year
Course director:
Lecturer (contact person):
Hours per week – 2. semester:

Enrollment in the master-level program after
completed BSc program in Meteorology or
If the course is selected as optional,
prerequisites are completed courses
»Introduction to meteorology« and »Dynamical
Meteorology I« or courses with equivalent
Passed problem-solving written examination
and seminar work is a prerequisite for the
theoretical part of the examination.

Content (Syllabus outline)

Definition of mesoscale processes
Boussinesq approximation
Dynamics at fronts: Semi-geostrophic
equations. Cross-frontal circulation.
Frontogenetic function. Frontogenesis and Q
vector. Sawyer-Eliassen equation. Geostrophic
Mesoscale instabilities.
Symetrical instability
Mesoscale wave motions: Non-dispersive
wave solutions. Internal gravity waves. TaylorGoldstein equation. Orographically forced
waves. Lee waves. Severe downslope storms.
Bora. Inertio-gravity waves. Kelvin-Helmholtz
instability. Topographic Rossby waves.
Mesoscale thermodynamics: Equivalent
potential temperature. Pseudo-adiabatic
processes and conditional instability. CAPE.
Development of convective cells. Entrainment
models. Vorticity and convection.
Planetary boundary layer: Reynolds
averaging. Horizontally homogeneous
turbulence. K-theory. Mixing length and mixing
layer. Models of the Ekman and Prandtl layer.
Ekman pumping. Prognostic equations for
turbulent fluxes. Similarity theory and MoninObukov length. Theoretical forms of turbulence.
Turbulent kinetic energy equation. Problem of
the closure with examples.
Fundaments of general circulation: Zonallyaveraged equations. Representation of
atmospheric variability. Lorenz energy cycle.

  1. J.R. Holton: An introduction to dynamic meteorology. Academic Press.
  2. J.E. Martin: Mid-Latitude Atmospheric Dynamics. J. Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
  3. R.B. Stull: An Introduction to Boundary Layer Meteorology, 1988, Springer.
  4. Izbrani strokovni članki / Selected classical papers
Objectives and competences

Simplification of the Navier-Stokes for the
descritpion of frontal processes and mesoscale
waves. Analytical solutions and associated
physical arguments for mesoscale oscillations
and instabilitis. Physical description and
mathematical representation of convection.
Systematic approach to the treatment of
planetary boundary layer in observations and
models. Basic concepts and mathematical
formulation of general circulation.

Intended learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding: Understanding
of the fontal dynamics, mesoscale wave
oscillations and three-dimensional turbulence.
Application of physical laws and mathematical
tools for the representation of turbulent
processes in the planetary boundary layer. Basic
understanding of the concepts and tools used
to discuss general circulation
Application: Students learn to apply physically
based thinking and mathematical tools to
describe dynamical aspects of mesoscale wave
motions and boundary-layer processes. Basic
understadning of general circulation
Reflection: The course builds systematic
understadning of atmospheric dynamics on
mesoscale and in the boundary layer. Students
are trained to recognize and analyze
atmospheric phenomea using underlying
physical laws.
Transferable skills: Simplification of complex natural problems with many dependent,
strongly non-linearly correlated variables.

Learning and teaching methods

Lectures, tutorials, discussionw, homeworks
and consultations. Application to current
weather phenomena.


oral exam (theory) A mandatory student seminar based on an article related to the course subject is a condition to attend the oral exam.
written exam (problem solving) The written exam consists of two colloquia that have equal weights in the grade or an exam.
grading: 5 (fail), 6-10 (pass) (according to the Statute of UL)

Lecturer's references
  1. Žagar, N., M. Žagar, J. Cedilnik. G. Gregoric and J. Rakovec, 2006: Validation of mesoscale lowlevel winds obtained by dynamical downscaling of ERA40 over complex terrain. Tellus, 58A, str.
  2. Žagar, N., G. Skok and J. Tribbia, 2011: Climatology of the ITCZ derived from ERA Interim
    reanalyses. J. Geophys. Res., 116, D15103, doi:10.1029/2011JD015695.
  3. Žagar, N., K. Terasaki and H. Tanaka, 2012: Impact of the vertical discretization of analysis data on
    the estimates of atmospheric inertio-gravity energy. Mon. Wea. Rev., 140, 2297-2307.
  4. Žagar, N., L. Isaksen, D. Tan and J. Tribbia, 2013: Balance properties of the short-range forecast
    errors in the ECMWF 4D-Var ensemble. Q. J. R. Meteorol. Soc., 139, 1229-1238. DOI: