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K-State Research and Extension News

Weather Wonders

Kansas State climatologist Mary Knapp offers this weekly series of short programs on weather phenomena and recent meteorological events in Kansas.  Each segment is approximately 1-minute in length.

Send comments, questions or requests for copies of past programs to ksrenews@ksu.edu.

Program Date

Segment Title and Description

Listen and Download

05-19-17HEAT LIGHTNINGAn explanation of how this weather phenomenon can erupt out of a clear blue sky.WW1 05-19
05-19-17BOW ECHO– “Bow echo” is a term that is often used by meteorologists during severe weather events. But what does it mean?WW2 05-19
05-19-17MISSING STORMS? – Sometimes the sky gives the appearance of forthcoming severe storms — but then nothing happens. A “capped inversion” is often the culprit.WW3 05-19
05-12-17WHEN TORNADOES ATTACK A look back to a day when a single Kansas city was surrounded by tornadoes.WW1 05-12
05-12-17BOLT FROM THE BLUE– Can a bolt of lightning come out of a clear blue sky? WW2 05-12
05-12-17RUSKIN HEIGHTS TORNADOA look back at the single most destructive weather event in Kansas City history.WW3 05-12
05-05-17SNOW, ICE PELLETS, HAIL - The National Weather Service has standards for the reporting of frozen precipitation. WW1 05-05
05-05-17LIGHTNING WITHOUT THUNDER– Where is the thunder? A listener has a question about silent lightning.WW2-05-05
05-05-17SUMMER BEGINS…When does summer begin? The answer depends on who you ask.WW3 05-05
04-28-17LATE SPRING COLD SNAPS - It’s uncommon to see sub-freezing temperatures during the month of May, but it has happened.WW1-04-28 
04-28-17FROST PLACEMENT - K-State climatologist Mary Knapp answers a question about frost.WW2-04-28 
04-28-17HAIL OR SLEET? – When it comes to pieces of ice falling from the sky, is it hail or sleet? It takes more than size to make that determination. WW3-04-28
04-21-17HIGHEST APRIL TEMPERATURES - April is typically thought of as a rainy month, not a hot month. However, it can get pretty warm.WW1-04-21
04-21-17UNDERSTANDING THE DEW POINT - Compared to relative humidity, dew point is frequently cited as a more accurate way of measuring the humidity and comfort of air.WW2-04-21
04-21-17KANSAS COULD STILL SEE A FREEZE - The last day for a freeze varies across Kansas. However, according to historical data, the state could still see a freeze over the next 45 days.WW3-04-21
04-14-17WATER QUALITY - Kansans have long seen the value of protecting the state’s water supply. WW1 04-14
04-14-17WEATHER SATELLITE DATA - The technology that provides weather data and forecasting is now more sophisticated than ever before. WW2 04-14
04-14-17THE MILLION DOLLAR TORNADO OF 1889 - A look back at one of the first severe storms in Kansas to do major financial damage. WW3 04-14
04-07-17TYPES OF FLOODING - Some types of flooding are directly associated with winter weather.WW1 04-07
04-07-17FLASH FLOODING - If proper precautions aren't taken, this type of flooding could prove deadly.WW2 04-07
04-07-17VIRGA - This type of precipitation is often seen but not felt.WW3 04-07
03-31-17APRIL SHOWERS, MAY FLOWERS - The increased moisture and warmer temperatures of April lead to May’s spring blooms.WW1 3-31
03-31-17PHENOLOGY – Seasonal changes lead to changes in plants which is all part of bio-climatic science.WW2 3-31
03-31-17MONITORING RAINFALL - Collecting weather records requires volunteers in many locations across Kansas.WW3 3-31
03-24-17WINTER MAY NOT BE OVER - Some of Kansas’s worst winter weather has occurred after the official start of spring.WW1 3-24
03-24-17DUST STORMS AHEAD? - The current conditions in western Kansas could lead to some troubling dust storm activity.WW2 3-24
03-24-17EQUINOX WINDS---WEATHER PREDICTOR? -  Does wind direction at the turn of the season predict the type of weather to expect in upcoming seasons?WW3 3-24
03-17-17VERNAL EQUINOX - How the path of the sun signals the beginning of spring.WW1 3-17
03-17-17TORNADO CHAMPS - Kansas does not lead the nation in terms of numbers of tornadoes.WW2 3-17
03-17-17RECORD MARCH SNOWFALL - More than 100 years ago, Kansas City received a record snowfall.WW3 3-17
03-10-17DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME - The origin of this time shift.WW1 3-10
03-10-17LONGER DAYS, MORE STORMS - More sunshine, more opportunities for storms.WW2 3-10
03-10-17THUNDERSTORM WINDS - Storm winds can be as damaging as tornadoes.WW3 3-10
03-03-17WEATHER ADVISORIES - Don't ignore those that are not called "severe."WW1 3-3
03-03-17ANIMALS ADAPTING TO WEATHER - What animals do to avoid weather extremes.WW2 3-3
03-03-17MARCH CAN STILL TURN COLD - Winter is not yet over.WW3 3-3