UBC  ATSC 201 - Meteorology of Storms

## Help

In the News & Notes link above, you will find important Tips to make the start of term easier for you.

### Excel Tutorials

Tutorial 1.  How to create a spreadsheet to calculate a table of numbers, plot them in a graph, switch which variables are plotted on the horizontal and vertical axes, and change the vertical axis to a flipped pressure scale in log coordinates with the largest pressure at the bottom of the graph.

• Printed notes with instructions (pdf file, 2.1 MB)
• HD video (mp4, 530 MB.  Could take several minutes to download, so wait before you try to play it.)
• same video, but low resolution (mp4, 150 MB) . Could take several minutes to download, so wait before you try to play it.)

Tutorial 2.  Example of plotting multiple curves on the same graph, using trig functions, and more tips for debugging your work to get the correct answer.  Shows how to calculate solar elevation angle vs local time, from Chapter 2 of Practical Meteorology.

Because this video is long and has large file sizes, I split it into two parts: (a) and (b).

1. HD video of part a (mp4, 406 MB.  Could take several minutes to download, so wait before you try to play it.)
2. HD video of part b (mp4, 338 MB.  Could take several minutes to download, so wait before you try to play it.)

And here are the same videos, but at lower resolutions:

1. low-res part a (mp4, 157 MB.  Could still take several minutes to download, so wait before you try to play it.)
2. low-res part b (mp4, 127 MB.  Wait until it fully downloads before you try to play it.)

### Tips for Debugging Excel

Here are some common mistakes that you can be on guard for:
1. incorrect units. (To help catch these errors, always write the units in an adjacent cell in Excel.)
• temperature often must be in Kelvin
• angles must be in radians
• sometimes one unit (e.g., kPa), must be converted to other units (e.g., kg/m/s2).  See Table A-2 in Appendix A of Practical Meteorology for units commonly used in meteorology. Also, page 871 in Appendix A gives tips on how to do unit conversion.
2. failure to use cell absolute addresses where needed. (where both row and column are held fixed)
• also, failure to use cell partial absolute addresses, where only the row or column are held fixed.
3. failure to select the "x-y scatter" chart when making graphs, even if you want points to be connected by lines. (Never use the "line" graph.)
Debugging method:
As was shown in the videos, if the equation in a cell is giving a bad result, click once in the cell, and then click in the formula bar.  This will cause the cells in the spreadsheet to be color coded to match the colors of terms in the formula bar.  This way, you can check to see if your formula is pointing to the correct cells.  You can fix bad cells by typing in the correct row and column ID for the cell, and adding dollar signs (\$) if needed to make it an absolute reference.

### Canvas Issues

Online Guides for Students: https://community.canvaslms.com/docs/DOC-10701

There is a drop-in Help room in Koerner Library, or you can open a ticket online or by phone.

### Key Web pages for this course

1) The overall course website is
https://www.eoas.ubc.ca/courses/atsc201/

2) From that site, if you click on the assignments tab, it takes you to
https://www.eoas.ubc.ca/courses/atsc201/A201Assignments/index.html

3) Then click on the link for the current Week.  Such as Week 1.  This takes you to the detailed schedule for the whole week:
https://www.eoas.ubc.ca/courses/atsc201/A201Assignments/A201Assignments01.html

A legend at the bottom of this page explains the abbreviations that I use for the exercises.

4) The textbook is free online.
https://www.eoas.ubc.ca/books/Practical_Meteorology/

The homework exercises are at the end of each chapter.

5) For the Warm-up Exercises on "UBC Canvas" find it at

https://canvas.ubc.ca/

This Canvas web site also has the online Discussion Board for this course, where you can ask and answer questions with your fellow classmates.

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Many students made similar mistakes in Homework 2. Some tips:

• Don't confuse Pa with kPa. for example: 30 kPa = 30,000 Pa (not equal to 30 Pa).
• Don't confuse km with m. Always check your units.
• 1 x 10^-4 is NOT equal to 0.001. It is equal to 0.0001.

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### Tips for Getting the Right Answer:

1. For any equation, find the solved example (Sample Application) in the book, and do it on your own.  It helps if you recreate the solved example on your own spreadsheet, because then you can check your spreadsheet answer with the answer in the book.  After you have debugged your spreadsheet, then ...
2. Then, for most exercises, all you need to do is change a few numbers in the spreadsheet for the exercise that was assigned.
3. But don't forget, when you do your actual exercise, carry your units along in a separate spreadsheet cell next to each number ... don't just add them at the end and hope they come out right.
4. If you got the wrong answer or units, but claim that you checked them and they were OK, then you get double marks off for that part of the problem.
5. For your Discussion or Exposition, you will need to write your own.  Do not copy the one from the textbook.