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instability


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Atmospheric condition in which displaced air tends to maintain its movement away from its original level. This occurs, for example, when rising air cools at the moist adiabatic lapse rate while a greater environmental lapse rate allows the air parcel to remain warmer than surrounding air (or even increases the temperature difference) so that continual buoyancy prevails. See also conditional instability; potential instability; and stability.

Subjects: Earth Sciences and Geography.


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