>The Word of 2009 – Katabatic

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Talking with one of my professor mates the other day about Mainz 05’s new stadium, now being built slap bang in the middle of an area that has had strict planning laws to prevent disruption to the fresh flow of air that keeps the city fromdeath by asphyxiation.

“Oh, that’ll be a katabatic wind, then” he says as learnedly as an Australian geologist can.

Katabatic? Haven’t heard that before.

“Greek” he says “Gravity-feed airflow caused by pressure gradients”

Sounds a bit too glib and very much like a True Story, so I look it up.

Greek it is, a drainage wind it is too and it’s frequently found in…?

“Greenland. And Antarctica” he says.

Spot on.

“In Antarctica, you’ll have a beautiful day and as the sun goes down, the wind goes from zero to 50 knots in minutes”

I suppose he’d know.

He used to live there….

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