Faculty of Science

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2012 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 0 (NATIONAL PRIORITY), 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Science
OfferedClayton Second semester 2012 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Dietmar Dommenget


The unit provides the opportunity for students to understand the weather and climate of the atmosphere and oceans. Topics discussed include: the characteristics of the atmosphere, radiation and the global energy balance, the greenhouse effect and climate change, the global wind distribution, Hadley circulation, mid-latitude westerlies, global heat balance, geostrophic wind, thermal wind, the oceans circulation and causes and characteristics of climate variability from seasons to ice ages.


On completion of this unit students will understand the physical basis of the weather and climate on scales ranging from 1000 km up to that of the globe. In particular, students will be able to demonstrate an understanding of the conservation of energy and momentum as applied to the Earth's climate system; weather prediction; greenhouse climate change; large-scale atmospheric and oceanic phenomena and natural climate variability from seasons to ice ages.


Examination (3 hours): 60%
Assignments and tests and support-class activities: 40%

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Dietmar Dommenget

Contact hours

Three 1-hour lectures and 2 hours of support classes per week (average)


MTH1030 or MTH1035, or equivalent. ATM2030 is also recommended.


ATM3022, ATM2022