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The Fog: Why's It Here and When's It Leaving?

by on December 10, 2015 6:00 AM
State College, PA

These past few days have proved to be a challenge for drivers with fog taking over.

During the morning and again at night, fog makes its way into State College, and it hasn’t seemed to let up leaving many to ask the question: Why?

We reached out to our meteorologist friends at AccuWeather to get the down low on what causes this pesky and hazy fog and when we can expect things to clear up.

“We are in a pattern where the air just isn’t moving at all,” AccuWeather meteorologist Dave Samuhel said. “The surface is very cold and as you go higher up, it gets warmer. When this happens, the warm air serves as a lid and traps the fog.”

Temperatures typically drop as you get higher in altitude. When this dynamic switches and the temperatures get warmer as you get higher, this is called temperature inversion.

But how can this problem be solved?

Because the air is not moving and the fog is trapped, there is movement needed to break it up. There are stormy days expected to come soon, which will mix up the atmosphere and hopefully clear up the fog, Samuhel said. 

More good news: Temperatures are supposed to rise during the week and average in the 40s and 50s. It is also a possibility of temperatures rising to the 60s on Sunday, Samuhel said.

Jaime is a fall news intern for and a junior at Penn State.
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