A stinky situation
Tue, 11/14/2023 - 2:45pm admin
Laura Wagner, contributing writer
Community members across a 100-mile radius reported a strong odor of animal excrament during the early morning hours of Thursday, Nov. 9. Reports ranged from Winona to Mountain View to West Plains and further.
Where was the smell coming from? After some digging into the stinky situation a fairly simple explanation was found -- temperature inversion.
Temperature inversion is a reversal of the normal behavior of temperature in the troposphere (the region of the atosphere nearest Earth's surface), in which a layer of cool air at the surface is overlain by a layer of warmer air. An inversion acts as a cap on the upward movement of air from the layers below.
What this means is that there is a warm layer of air just above a colder layer of air preventing it from rising. Cold air is heavier and denser than warm air so it traps elements including smoke, fog and odors.
So the next time you step outside and start to check your shoes, remember that temperature inversions affect not only the weather around us, but the air quality/smells as well.