Monday, October 15, 2012

The beauty of wind and the mind of a 7 year old

Found this at googles-data-viz-geniuses while searching for the answer my 7 year daughter asked; "Dad does wind reflect?"

While reflecting on this question (pun intended) i realized it's a great question from anyone much less a 7 year old, who I encourage to be curious about her surroundings. Sound, light, radio waves and waves on water all reflect and we can see/hear sea waves and sound waves reflect so we are comfortable in believing they do. We know radio waves reflect because of RADAR, not to mention sneaky ham radio types that bounce their signals off the moon to extend their range. but back to the question, does wind reflect?

Wind is; A current of air, especially a natural one that moves along or parallel to the ground, moving from an area of high pressure to an area of low pressure.

From my own personal experience I can't say wind "reflects" . This definition The change in direction of a wave, such as a light or sound wave, away from a boundary the wave encounters. Reflected waves remain in their original medium rather than entering the medium they encounter. According to the law of reflection, the angle of reflection of a reflected wave is equal to its angle of incidence Captures what happens. I have seen wind deflected and slowed by building up around a wing or a wall, but I can't say that it is 'reflected" I suppose the closest it comes is a microburst where the air currents hit the ground and then move up. But they are doing so because of the effect of other sources, such as very localized high pressure areas or lows and because it's being pushed against other air which forces it to take the path of least resistance.
All of this is my best guess from a brain floating in snot and being sick for a week. So if you disagree, please post why I am wrong, because I would not be surprised if i missed something.