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Unfortunately, our attempt to clarify the complexity of the polar front results in too tidy a picture. The reality on any particular day is

Figure 13.10 The pattern of pressures (hPa), lows, highs and fronts south of Australia on 28 July 1963.

more complicated, as shown in Figure 13.5 and Figure 13.10. Every front is different, and few frontal disturbances develop exactly as shown in the ideal cases discussed so far. Also, emphasis on fronts is vulnerable to the weaknesses of the related air mass concept (Section 13-2), and critics point to the subjectiveness of drawing fronts on maps, so that various meteorologists sometimes have different ideas about where to draw them. There are no fronts involved in modern numerical modelling of the atmosphere on computer for weather forecasting (Chapter 15). They are replaced by bands where the horizontal gradient of temperature happens to be steep—which is the reality.

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