One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
(of a wind) caused by local downward motion of cool air.
- ‘As a result of katabatic winds, temperatures in valleys and low lying areas can be significantly lower…’
- ‘The most extreme type of katabatic wind is found in the Antarctic where cold gusts of wind surge across the polar ice caps.’
- ‘The huts must stand up to the monster katabatic winds that reach up to 300 kph.’
- ‘The most famous katabatic wind in Europe is the Mistral, which blows down the Rhône valley in southern France and out into the Mediterranean.’
- ‘This was the katabatic wind rolling down off the polar plateau, picking up speed from the slow gravitational forces that pulled it downwards over the vast expanses of ice.’
Late 19th century: from Greek katabatikos, from katabainein ‘go down’.
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