All soaring pilots scan weather patterns for convective (lifting air) activity. There is no point in trying to soar until weather conditions favor vertical speeds greater than the minimum sink rate of the soaring aircraft be it Sailplane, Hang Glider or Paraglider. Paramount to a pilot’s soaring achievement is his skill in diagnosing weather and locating lifting air.
Instability is the prominent cause of lifting air patterns. Barometric pressure is a direct measurement of that instability. Instability means nothing if there isn’t enough sun to warm the surface and begin the process of rising air.
Cumulus clouds are generally the best indication of lifting air patterns. Cumulus clouds form via atmospheric convection as air warmed by the surface begins to rise. As the air rises, the temperature drops (following the temperature gradient lapse rate), causing the relative humidity to rise. The ratio of the existing amount of water vapor in the air at a given temperature to the maximum amount that could exist at that temperature; usually expressed in percent is called relative humidity. If the lifting air reaches a certain level the relative humidity reaches one hundred percent. At this point a positive feedback ensues: since the relative humidity is 100%, water vapor condenses, releasing latent heat, warming the air and spurring further convection and the formation of a cumulus cloud.
Always checking weather forecasts ,for sun, clouds, wind, and maximum temperature can be an exhaustive task. By measuring barometric pressure, relative humidity, temperature and sunlight on any given day we can forecast the soar-ability of that day. Bindelo accelerates the process and simplifies it. By showing you only what you want to see while allowing you to compare it to the details of previous days.