What is wind? Palm trees blowing during a storm. (Thinkstock)
What is wind?
Lexile

You asked us, what exactly is wind and how does it get blown around?
 
Wind is a major player here on Earth. It sculpts landscapes, brings rain and uproots trees along with lives.
 
So what's behind this invisible force that can tickle a cheek one second, and topple a building the next?
 
Good question. Wind is just air moving around. And air is just a bunch of dancing molecules. Gravity pulls down on the molecules. The closer they get to the Earth's surface, the more tightly packed they become.
 
Air that's under high pressure like that naturally flows to areas of low pressure. The bigger the difference in pressure, the faster the air flows. And that, my fellow geeks, is wind.
 
But what causes one area to be higher pressure than another? The sun. It heats the Earth's surface unevenly, creating areas with warmer air, which rises, and cooler air that then rushes in.
 
All of these air movements happen at both local and global scales. And of course, it's all a lot more complicated than all of this, making wind and weather a little bit unpredictable.
 
Which is why I never leave home without my trusty cape.

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
How can wind both uproot a tree and someone's life?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (166)
  • Eric0221-YYCA
    4/07/2016 - 09:34 p.m.

    The people might have been able to feel the air blowing on them but they had been thinking on how does the invisible air can be able to fly around all over the earth and blow into someone else's face. The wind can be able to blow naturally when it goes under high air pressure which would be going into low air pressure which the wind can be able to carry air molecules which would be blown into someone's face. The air can be uneven when the sun hits the surface of the earth which can be able to change things with the wind that would be able to change the speed of the wind. People might have been able to feel the wind on their face everyday but they don't know how the invisible force can be moved throughout the whole air.
    Critical Thinking Question: How can wind both uproot a tree and someone's life?
    Answer: I know that a wind can both uproot a tree and someone's life because when the sun unevenly hits the surface, the wind are forced through the hotter air from the cooler air which can be able to create a hurricane that can be able to uproot a tree and lift up someone during a hurricane.

  • ben0424-yyca-byo
    4/07/2016 - 09:49 p.m.

    This is something I haven't pondered about before. Wind is just air molecules moving around, but I hadn't wondered about how it moves. Molecules do move, but having the power to knock down buildings, isn't the normal type of molecule movement. After reading this, I understood it a bit more. This is something that might be able to be controlled when we find cold fusion.
    Critical Thinking Question Answer: Wind can both uproot a tree and someone's life because, wind might blow someone to be in a dangerous position and lose their life. It can also uproot a tree, if the wind is strong enough.

  • kenleyl-612-
    4/08/2016 - 08:51 a.m.

    Wind can uproot a tree and someones life because wind is a bunch of molecules that are pulled by the earth's gravity. So when molecules pull together the hot and cold mixes together and make the weather for us really bad.

  • jackm-
    4/08/2016 - 11:03 a.m.

    Wind is a powerful force and that is why I chose this article i wanted to find out what causes it . It was cool seeing the molecules move around and create pressure to make wind.

  • ryanh-ver
    4/08/2016 - 01:02 p.m.

    Since wind is a ton of molecules that are in the air and due to how compact they are they move faster what molecules are the main ones in there?

  • noahk-ver
    4/08/2016 - 01:03 p.m.

    I am pretty skinny, so sometimes when its windy, it can be hard to stay on my feet.

  • liliyas-ver
    4/08/2016 - 01:04 p.m.

    When the molecules are more closely packed the wind is stronger than when they are not.

  • marisola-Orv
    4/08/2016 - 01:12 p.m.

    It's very interesting that wind is just molecules. That are tightly pushed together. When coming closer and closer to the earth wind can be so strong. It can pull things up with it and throw it half a yards away.Wind can be dangerous too it can kill someone by sucking them in up in the air.

  • gallimya0-dil
    4/08/2016 - 01:43 p.m.

    The tree can fall down on someone.

  • graceb-612-
    4/08/2016 - 02:24 p.m.

    Wind can uproot a tree because well, it depends on how strong it is so when it is stronger it can do that. Like I said before it all depends on how strong the wind is in that time frame so if wind can be so strong that it can take a tree, wind can be so strong it can pick up a person.

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