IEM Daily Feature
Tuesday, 13 September 2022

2022 Precipitable Water

Posted: 13 Sep 2022 05:30 AM

This past weekend's moist airmass was swept out of the state via a cold front, which ushered in much drier air to start off this week. One measure of this change can be found by the precipitable water value derived from sounding profiles. This value is a measure of the water depth within a column of atmosphere if all water was changed to a liquid form. This value has many useful forecasting applications and is a direct measure of how humid the atmosphere is. The featured chart presents the climatology and 2022 computed precipitable water values for Minneapolis. The tail end of the 2022 values show the rapid drop in this metric with values well above the 75th percentile being related by values below the 25th percentile. This chart also shows the IEM computed monthly max and minimum values. This chart is also a nice illustration as to why it is difficult to get significant heavy rainfall events during the cold season due to having much less available water in the atmosphere available to make rain!

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