Buys Ballot's law


Buys Ballot's law

      the relation of wind direction with the horizontal pressure distribution named for the Dutch meteorologist C.H.D. Buys Ballot (Buys Ballot, Christophorus), who first stated it in 1857. He derived the law empirically, unaware that it already had been deduced theoretically by the U.S. meteorologist William Ferrel (Ferrel, William), whose priority Buys Ballot later acknowledged. The relationship states that in the Northern Hemisphere a person who stands facing away from the wind has high pressure on the right and low pressure on the left; in the Southern Hemisphere, the reverse would be true.

      Theoretically, the relationship states that the angle between the wind and the pressure gradient is a right angle. This is almost exactly true in the free atmosphere, but not near the surface. Near the ground, the angle is usually less than 90° because of friction between the air and the surface and the turning of the wind toward areas of lower atmospheric pressure at the same altitude. Because of the weakness of the Coriolis effect (produced by the Earth's rotation) in equatorial regions, the law is not applicable there.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Buys Ballot's law — In meteorology, Buys Ballot s law may be expressed as follows: In the Northern Hemisphere, stand with your back to the wind; the low pressure area will be on your left. This is because wind travels counterclockwise around low pressure zones in… …   Wikipedia

  • Buys-Ballot's law — /buys beuh lots /, Meteorol. the law stating that if one stands with one s back to the wind, in the Northern Hemisphere the atmospheric pressure will be lower on one s left and in the Southern Hemisphere it will be lower on one s right:… …   Universalium

  • Buys-Ballot's law — /buys beuh lots /, Meteorol. the law stating that if one stands with one s back to the wind, in the Northern Hemisphere the atmospheric pressure will be lower on one s left and in the Southern Hemisphere it will be lower on one s right:… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Buys Ballot’s Law — The law states that if an observer stands with his back to the wind, then the lower pressure will be on his left in the Northern Hemisphere, and on the right in the Southern Hemisphere. The law is named after Christoph Hendrik Diedrik Buys Ballot …   Aviation dictionary

  • Buys Ballot's Law — /bis bəˈlɒts lɔ/ (say bees buh lots law), /bɔɪs/ (say boys) noun the principle that in the Northern Hemisphere atmospheric pressure is higher on the left when facing into the wind; in the Southern Hemisphere it is higher on the right. {named… …   Australian English dictionary

  • buys ballot's law — ˈbīsbəˈläts , ˈbȯis noun Usage: usually capitalized both Bs Etymology: after C.H.D. Buys Ballot died 1890 Dutch meteorologist : a law in meteorology: when the observer has his back to the wind the lower barometric pressure is to his left in the… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Buys Ballot’s law — if someone in Northern Hemisphere stands with back to wind, atmospheric pressure will be lower to his left hand than to his right, and the reverse in Southern Hemisphere …   Eponyms, nicknames, and geographical games

  • Buys Ballot, Christophorus — ▪ Dutch meteorologist born October 10, 1817, Kloetinge, Neth. died February 3, 1890, Utrecht       Dutch meteorologist particularly remembered for his observation in 1857 that the wind tends to blow at right angles to the atmospheric pressure… …   Universalium

  • BUYS BALLOT, Christophorus Henricus Diederlcus — (1817–1890)    Chemist and physicist. After studying mathematics and physics at Utrecht University, Buys Ballot became a lecturer in geology and mineralogy. In 1847, he was appointed professor of mathematics at the same university, and in 1867,… …   Historical Dictionary of the Netherlands

  • Buys Ballot , Christoph Hendrik Diederik — (1817–1890) Dutch meteorologist Buys Ballot was the son of a minister from Kloetinge in the Netherlands. He was educated at the University of Utrecht, obtaining his PhD in 1844, and became professor of mathematics in 1847 and professor of physics …   Scientists


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