Practical Meteorology:

An Algebra-based Survey of Atmospheric Science

Copyright 2017 by  Roland Stull.

Available to use and share for free under a Creative Commons License.
(Click on chapter links below to get pdfs of individual chapters. 
See bottom of this web page for license details.)

Practical Meteorology - back cover thumbnail Practical Meteorology - spine thumbnail
Practical Meteorology - front cover thumbnail
Cover and spine photo copyright by Warren Faidley /  
Used with permission.


Stull, R., 2017: "Practical Meteorology: An Algebra-based Survey of Atmospheric Science" -version 1.02b.  Univ. of British Columbia.  938 pages.  isbn 978-0-88865-283-6 .

Front cover , back cover-v1.02b & spine
Title-v1.02b, Contents, Preface-v1.02 
Chapters (as pdf files designed for printing or viewing)
1. Atmospheric Basics -v1.02b   1-26
2. Solar & Infrared Radiation - v1.02b   27-52
3. Thermodynamics -v1.02b
4. Water Vapor - v1.02b    87-118
5. Atmos. Stability -v1.02b (& thermo diagrams)
6. Clouds - v1.02b   159-184
7. Precipitation Processes - v 1.02b
8. Satellites & Radar - v1.02b 
9. Weather Reports & Map Analysis - v1.02b
10. Atmospheric Forces & Winds - v1.02b 
11. General Circulation - v1.02b
12. Fronts & Airmasses - v1.02b
13. Extratropical Cyclones - v1.02b
14. Thunderstorm Fundamentals - v1.02b
15. Thunderstorm Hazards - v1.02b   545-602
16. Tropical Cyclones - v1.02b
17. Regional Winds - v1.02b   645-686
18. Atmospheric Boundary Layer - v1.02b 
19. Pollutant Dispersion - v1.02b   723-744
20. Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) - v1.02b   745-792
21. Natural Climate Processes - v1.02b
22. Atmospheric Optics - v1.02b   833-868
A. Scientific Tools - v1.02b
B. Constants & Conversion Factors
Index & Errata
Errata & Enhancements for PrMet - v1.02

Date:  Aug 15, 2017

...Thanks also for your update on the colorization of the figures!  Your book is an excellent resource and you are doing a great service to the weather community!
  I teach for Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University's Worldwide Campus -- our instructors and students are located all over the world.

Dr. Michelle Whisenhant
Assistant Professor
College of Arts and Sciences
Department of Mathematics, Physical & Life Sciences
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Worldwide

Date: Mon, Apr 18, 2016

Subject: Re: Stull's new meteorology text book

I have already visited his site a few weeks back and have made the decision to adopt this text for my intro to met class.  Having looked through it, I can say that the book is very well-rounded, richly and professionally illustrated, with some great supplementary (boxed) material for deeper dives.  Roland is a wonderful writer, with exceptionally clear expositions.  Props to Roland for making available this resource, in a time when text prices are escalating, and so many of them do not provide any quantitative degree of rigor.   It's a text AND an exercise manual rolled up into one!
Jeffrey B. Halverson, Ph.D.
Professor of Meteorology, Dept. Geography and Environmental Systems
Graduate Program Director
University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC)

Date: Jun 26, 2016
Subject: Re: meteorology textbook - - algebra-based

Hi Roland,
  Thank you so much for writing this textbook and for making it freely available. I am very familiar with its predecessor "Meteorology for Scientists and Engineers"…I’ve almost worn out my paper copy! I have found that these algebra-based books are useful even for more advanced students; after all, when writing numerical models we need to convert derivatives to finite differences anyway.

Kaj Williams
Asst. Research Professor
Dept. of Earth Sciences
Montana State University

Date: May 5, 2016
Subject: Re: meteorology textbook

This is an amazing resource. As an undergraduate I used (and loved) your Meteorology for Scientists and Engineers text. I currently recommend that book to all my undergraduate students as a resource. This new book looks like it will be event better!

Thank you!
~Jennifer Griswold
Assistant Professor of Meteorology
Meteorology Department, University of Hawaii

Version History and Access:

• 2011:  Meteorology for Scientists and Engineers, 3rd Edition (MSE3) was written in 2011. It is completely in black and white (with color covers). Some readers still prefer this old version.  For free access to the pdf files for each chapter in the old 2011 version of this book, click on the link here: 
Stull, R., 2011: "Meteorology for Scientists & Engineers, 3rd Edition."  Univ. of British Columbia.  938 pages. isbn 978-0-88865-178-5 .

• 2015:  Updates were made in 2015 to half of the chapters, and the book was re-titled as "Practical Meteorology: An Algebra-based Survey of Atmospheric Science" (PrMet) - version 1.00.  A few enhancements were made to PrMet in July 2016, bringing some of the chapters to version1.00b. This version is mostly in black and white, with a few color figures and color covers. For free access to this version of the whole book (35.8 MB), click on the link here:  Stull, R., 2015: "Practical Meteorology: An Algebra-based Survey of Atmospheric Science." Univ. of British Columbia.  938 pages.  isbn 978-0-88865-176-1 
 - Or, if you prefer to purchase a printed copy of this version 1.00b of PrMet, click here.
 - Errata for these old versions are here
• 2017:  In 2017, most of the figures were changed from black & white to color, and numerous minor corrections were made based on the errata accumulated over the past two years.  Updates also include info on the new weather satellites, and on the new cloud types given in the 2017 WMO Cloud Atlas.
This version is identified as Practical Meteorology: An Algebra-based Survey of Atmospheric Science (version 1.02b), with new isbn 978-0-88865-283-6 .

You can get this book free online via the links to individual chapters near the top of this web page. I hope to have all the chapters revised to version 1.02b by mid October 2017. Any chapters without a listed version number are version 1.00. Any corrections after Oct 2017 will be listed in the 2017 Errata for v1.02b.

[See a 3-slide presentation for pros and cons of an algebra-based university curriculum.]
Tips for instructors:  Most of the figures are vector graphics, so you use your laptop in class and zoom-in on any figure in the book to project on the screen.
Tips for TAs and students: Most of the "Apply" questions at the end of each chapter have a corresponding Sample Application in the body of the chapter.  So first program the Sample Application into your spreadsheet and fix it if needed until you get the correct answer. Then change a few numbers to correspond to the assigned exercise to answer the homework -- you will likely get fewer wrong answers this way.

Creative Commons License Info:
Creative Commons License
"Practical Meteorology: An Algebra-based Survey of Atmospheric Science" and "Meteorology for Scientists and Engineers, 3rd Edition" by Roland Stull are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.    Under this license, you are free to:
Share — copy, print and redistribute the material in any medium or format
Adapt — translate into another language, remix, transform, and build upon the material
Under the following terms:
Attribution — You must give appropriate credit to Roland Stull, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests that Stull endorses you or your use.
NonCommercial — You may not use the material for commercial purposes.
ShareAlike — If you translate into another language, remix, transform, or build upon the material, you must distribute your contributions under the same license as the original.
See exclusions on the back of the title page.
Last updated Oct 2017 by R. Stull