Azores High

Here's why Ireland is basking in a heatwave this week

Each day will get hotter as the week goes on, and it’s because of a weather system coming from the mid-Atlantic.

weather 168_90544264 There'll be plenty enjoying the sun this week Sam Boal / Sam Boal / /

THE HEATWAVE is well and truly here, with temperatures set to range from 24 to 28 degrees across the country today and persist well into next week.

Temperatures may even reach into the 30s as the country basks in sunshine, but why is it going to be even hotter than the Azores this week?

Met Éireann meteorologist Joanna Donnelly has explained it’s actually due to a weather system coming up to Ireland from the Portuguese islands out in the mid-Atlantic.

azores The weather system is coming from the Azores. Google Maps Google Maps

She said on Twitter: “A big blocking anticyclone, moved up from the Azores so we call it the Azores high. So what’s going to happen is this anticyclone is going to allow the temperature to rise, day on day for the next week.

In an anticyclone, the air is descending from above, so that clears away any clouds. We know rising air gives us clouds, and rain, that’s what we’re used to with low pressure nearby. So this is the opposite of that. Clear skies, and the only thing rising is the temperature.

Donnelly said that this works by the sun heating the earth, and the earth heating the air, which explains why it gets cooler at night as “all that heat escapes”.

She explained: “But each day will get hotter as we start from a higher starting point each morning. There’ll only be light, variable winds, [with] practically no wind indland.”

A heatwave is defined in Ireland as five consecutive days with temperatures of over 25 degrees widely around the country.

“And for the next week, this is what we can expect here,” she said. “No rain, clear blue skies, rising temperatures.”

All that makes for a rather pleasant forecast for today, with Met Éireann forecasting an even hotter day tomorrow.

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