Meteorology 341 - Fall 2022

Atmospheric Physics I

Instructor: Prof. Xiaoqing Wu, 3011 Agronomy,  294-9872 [tel]

Meeting time and place: MWF 8:50am-9:40am, G0541 Agronomy Hall

Office hours: MWF 10am - 11am

Course Objectives

This course will cover atmospheric thermodynamics and hydrostatics, with emphasis on understanding the basic concepts and physical processes. Cloud physics will be briefly introduced in the last week of the semester and further discussion will be continued in Mteor 342. Building a solid foundation in physical principles and developing self-learning and thinking skills are the goals.

Course Design

Students are expected to come to class prepared to participate actively in the learning process. As in any professional organization, absences should be justified and promptness is standard procedure. Your homework should be done with pride and submitted on time. The policy for late assignments is stated below.






Course Outline

1. Introduction

2. Basic Concepts of Thermodynamics

3. The First law

4. The Second law

5. Heterogeneous Systems

Midterm Exam

6. Moist Air

7. Hydrostatic Equilibrium

8. Hydrostatic Stability

9. Cloud Physics

Final Exam

Students Needing Disability Accommodation

Iowa State University is committed to assuring that all educational activities are free from discrimination and harassment based on disability status. All students requesting accommodations are required to meet with staff in Student Disability Resources (SDR) to establish eligibility. A Student Academic Accommodation Request (SAAR) form will be provided to eligible students. The provision of reasonable accommodations in this course will be arranged after timely delivery of the SAAR form to the instructor. Students are encouraged to deliver completed SAAR forms as early in the semester as possible. SDR, a unit in the Dean of Students Office, is located in room 1076, Student Services Building or online at Contact SDR by e-mail at or by phone at 515-294-7220 for additional information.

Public Health

If you are not feeling well, you should stay home and focus on your health. Should you miss class due to illness, it is your responsibility to work with your instructor to arrange for accommodations and to make up coursework, as consistent with the instructor’s attendance policy.

You may choose to wear a face mask and/or receive the COVID-19 vaccine and boosters, as well as other vaccines such as influenza, but those options are not required. Thielen Student Health Center will continue to provide COVID-19 vaccinations free-of-charge to students. The university will continue to offer free masks and COVID-19 test kits during the fall 2022 semester. Other wellbeing resources for students are available at:

Public health information for the campus community continues to be available on Iowa State’s public health website. All public health questions should be directed to