Rain is liquid water in the form of droplets that have condensed from atmospheric water vapor and then precipitated—that is, become heavy enough to fall under gravity. Rain is a major component of the water cycle and is responsible for depositing most of the fresh water on the Earth. It provides suitable conditions for many types of ecosystem, as well as water for hydroelectric power plants and crop irrigation.
The major cause of rain production is moisture moving along three-dimensional zones of temperature and moisture contrasts known as weather fronts. If enough moisture and upward motion is present, precipitation falls from convective clouds (those with strong upward vertical motion) such as cumulonimbus (thunder clouds) which can organize into narrow rainbands. In mountainous areas, heavy precipitation is possible where upslope flow is maximized within windward sides of the terrain at elevation which forces moist air to condense and fall out as rainfall along the sides of mountains. On the leeward side of mountains, desert climates can exist due to the dry air caused by downslope flow which causes heating and drying of the air mass. The movement of the monsoon trough, or intertropical convergence zone, brings rainy seasons to savannah climes.
The urban heat island effect leads to increased rainfall, both in amounts and intensity, downwind of cities. Global warming is also causing changes in the precipitation pattern globally, including wetter conditions across eastern North America and drier conditions in the tropics. Antarctica is the driest continent. The globally averaged annual precipitation over land is 715 millimetres (28.1 in), but over the whole Earth is it much higher at 990 millimetres (39 in). Climate classification systems such as the Köppen climate classification system use average annual rainfall to help differentiate between differing climate regimes. Rainfall is measured using rain gauges. Rainfall amounts can be estimated by weather radar.
Rain is also known or suspected on other planets, where it may be composed of methane, neon, sulfuric acid or even iron rather than water.
Other articles related to "rain":
... Rain's fourth album, Rain's World, was released in Korea on October 14, 2006 ... Also, Rain was nominated for and won Best New Actor at the 43rd Baeksang Awards ...
... I was and a little tiny boy, With hey, ho, the wind and the rain, A foolish thing was but a toy, For the rain it raineth every day ... I came to man's estate, With hey, ho, the wind and the rain, 'Gainst knaves and thieves men shut their gate, For the rain, it raineth every day ... But when I came, alas! to wive, With hey, ho, the wind and the rain, By swaggering could I never thrive, For the rain, it raineth every day ...
... (born June 25, 1982), better known by his stage name Rain, is a South Korean Singer, Dancer, Actor, Model and designer ... Rain's musical career includes seven albums (six Korean, one Japanese), 19 singles, 3 World 8 Asia tour and 15 Million + all album sales ... In 2004, Rain won the KBS Excellence in Acting award for his role in the drama Full House ...
... Rain spent most of his childhood living with his parents and younger sister, Jung Hanna, near Yonsei University ... Rain initially had a difficult time balancing dance and academics and received low grades during the beginning of junior high because of his frequent ... Rain again found he could not focus on both dance and his studies in acting he was truant on several occasions ...
... On Titan, Saturn's largest moon, infrequent methane rain is thought to carve the moon's numerous surface channels ... There is likely to be rain of various compositions in the upper atmospheres of the gas giants, as well as precipitation of liquid neon in the deep atmospheres ... in the constellation Sagittarius is hypothesized to have iron rain ...
Famous quotes containing the word rain:
“And yet the sun pardons our voices still,
And berries in the hedge
Through all the nights of rain have come to the full,
And death seems like long hills, a range
We ride each day towards, and never reach.”
—Philip Larkin (19221986)
“The mouth of the drowned dog. After long rain the land
Was sodden as the bed of an ancient lake,
Treed with iron and birdless.”
—Ted Hughes (b. 1930)
“Nature confounds her summer distinctions at this season. The heavens seem to be nearer the earth. The elements are less reserved and distinct. Water turns to ice, rain to snow. The day is but a Scandinavian night. The winter is an arctic summer.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)