What is Moisture?
Definition of Moisture
Moisture is presence of water in the air. Water is a combination of two molecules of hydrogen and one molecule of oxygen. This bond is so strong that even after billions of years, it will remain intact.
Facts and Importance of Moisture
- 70% of the Earth is covered with water. Moisture or water in the form of gas is a crucial and necessary element in our Earth’s atmosphere.
- Moisture is everywhere. It causes humidity, making us feel sticky and hot.
- It creates clouds due to which rainfalls occur and also hail storms and sleets which make driving impossible. The presence of excessive moisture can result in severe damage by triggering strong storms like Hurricane Katrina; which uprooted houses and had cars flying.
- In deserts, plants wither up due to minimal presence of moisture in the air. In rain forests, moisture content is high; leading to intensive growth of vegetation.
- Moisture is a form of water vapor. Water through the process of evaporation gets absorbed as moisture in the air. Imagine feeling hot and sweating; your body emits water molecules which are absorbed in the air as moisture and during that process a small amount of heat is gathered from your body making you feel cool. But there is a limit to how much moisture the atmospheric air can hold. After a while, the air gets crammed with moisture resulting in the air being saturated. When it is windy, the air expands and can take in more moisture. Thus we always love windy days, as the moisture makes us feel cool.
- Humidity is defined as the amount of moisture in the air. When we say a city like Kolkata has 80% humidity, we mean that the air contains 80% moisture.
What is Condensation?
Condensation or the conversion of moisture from gas to liquid takes places. The water droplets get accumulated on leaves and window sills and on the grass that you walk over on morning walks. The temperature at which this occurs is called dew point.
The moisture in the air gets stored in white and airy clouds floating in the sky. Often we look at the clouds, like from an airplane; and wonder whether it looks like a giraffe or maybe a bunny chasing another bunny.
Different forms of Moisture
Fog is another form of a cloud which is moisture gathered lower in the atmosphere. Fog causes low visibility delaying flights and sometimes driving to mountainous regions.
Snow is the formation of water vapor directly into solid state. We play with snow, make snowmen or throw snow balls at each other as it is light and soft. Sleet is the liquid form of snow. Freezing rain is caused due to the atmosphere being cold. We usually observe the droplets frozen on street lamps /electrical wires.
Did you know:
On any given day, 50% of the Earth’s sky is covered with clouds.