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# Thunderstorms generally develop in the late afternoon or

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Manager
Joined: 29 Jul 2012
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GMAT Date: 11-18-2012
Thunderstorms generally develop in the late afternoon or  [#permalink]

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04 Oct 2012, 08:30
1
7
Question 1
00:00

based on 187 sessions

57% (03:00) correct 43% (02:45) wrong

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Question 2
00:00

based on 198 sessions

79% (01:01) correct 21% (01:33) wrong

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Question 3
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based on 192 sessions

67% (00:58) correct 33% (01:04) wrong

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Question 4
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based on 182 sessions

57% (01:25) correct 43% (01:48) wrong

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Thunderstorms generally develop in the late afternoon or evening hours, when moist, daytime air rises into the upper atmosphere as temperatures cool and denser, night-time air slides in underneath. Clouds of water droplets, generally supercooled (droplets whose temperature has fallen below 0 degrees Celsius but have not yet frozen), condense around dust particles in the air until a critical density is reached, at which point it begins to rain. Cloud-to-ground lightning occurs when a discrepancy in electric charge develops between a cloud and the earth. For reasons that are not widely agreed upon, a charge begins to build up in this mixed water and ice region. When this discrepancy reaches a certain "breakdown potential," the surge of electric charge known as lightning moves downward between the negative and positive charge centres in 50-yard sections called step leaders. Eventually, it encounters something on the ground that is a good connection, and, with the circuit complete, the charge is lowered from cloud to ground. This entire event usually takes less than half a second. It is by preventing the requisite charge polarization that scientists hope someday to discourage the creation of cloud-to-ground lightning, thereby making storms safer and easier to ―weather.‖

Many authorities adhere to a hypothesis for cloud electrification theory which emphasizes that the charging process occurs when a supercooled droplet of water collides with an ice particle of precipitation size (a hailstone)—the precipitation model. At this moment a large portion of the droplet freezes—resulting in a negative charge on the forming hailstone—while a smaller portion, still lingering in its supercooled state, dissociates itself—taking on a positive charge. The relatively heavy hailstone, responding to gravity, then begins to fall, while the extremely light supercooled droplet is carried by updrafts to higher regions of the cloud. Assuming the veracity of this account of charge separation, scientists guess that they would be able to discourage polarization by reducing the quantity of supercooled water in a cloud. To this purpose they have conducted preliminary seeding experiments, in which they have attempted to initiate the freezing of excess water by dropping large quantities of dry ice and silver iodide into potential thunderclouds, the results of which are, however, as yet inconclusive.

A more recent convection model of the polarization process is offered by Bernard Vonnegut and Charles B. Moore, who contend that the primary cause of electrical charge formation in clouds is the capture of ionized (electrically charged) gas molecules by water droplets. The ions, so the theory goes, are absorbed by the droplets and transported by updrafts and downdrafts to various portions of the cloud. Vonnegut and Moore suggest that, in order to combat the effects of this transport of ions, it would be necessary to modify the properties of ions beneath accumulating clouds. In support of this explanation of cloud polarization they conducted a series of "space charge" experiments. Suspending a high-voltage wire above nine miles of Illinois countryside, Vonnegut and Moore released large quantities of ions into the atmosphere below, forming clouds. By means of airplanes specially equipped for electrical measurements, they determined that the ions were being distributed to differing regions of the clouds.
1. Which of the following options best summarizes the author‘s main point in the passage?
A. Several recent breakthroughs have increased our understanding of the causes of lightning.
B. Charge polarization in clouds can result both from the freezing of supercooled droplets and from the modification of ion properties.
C. The standard explanation of the causes of lightning is inaccurate and should be modified.
D. Scientists are not yet agreed on either the causes of cloud-to-ground lightning or the methods of controlling it.
E. To argue in favour of one model of polarization process

2. It can be inferred from the information in the passage that the term "breakdown potential" as used in line 13 of the passage refers to:
A. a charge polarity sufficient to cause lightning.
B. the intensity of the lightning bolt.
C. the distance between the negatively charged earth and the positively charged cloud.
D. the duration of the lightning event
E. the point at which a cloud breaks down

3. According to points made in the passage by the author, scientists agree that lightning can occur when:
A. ions are transported by updrafts to higher regions of a thundercloud.
B. supercooled droplets collide with hailstones in clouds.
C. a difference in charge exists between a cloud and the ground.
D. dry ice is released into a potential thundercloud.
E. there is high moisture content in the atmosphere

4. Which of the following statements would be LEAST consistent with the account of cloud polarization offered by Vonnegut and Moore?
A. Charge is transported within clouds via updrafts and downdrafts.
B. Lightning is caused by a discrepancy in electric charge between a cloud and the ground.
C. Water droplets are capable of carrying an electrical charge.
D. Lightning occurs when positively and negatively charged droplets are absorbed by hailstones.
E. The main cause of electrical charge formation is the capture of ionized gas molecules

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Re: How to go trough natural science passage?  [#permalink]

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04 Oct 2012, 08:50
Attempted in 8:25 min
Got 1 wrong.
AACD

Question 2 & 3 can be answered from Para1 itself. Question 3 from Last Para. However I could not get the correct essence of the Main point though i scribbled in my note the word inconclusive (from last sentence of 2nd para).
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Re: How to go trough natural science passage?  [#permalink]

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04 Oct 2012, 09:06
SOURH7WK wrote:
Attempted in 8:25 min
Got 1 wrong.
AACD

Question 2 & 3 can be answered from Para1 itself. Question 3 from Last Para. However I could not get the correct essence of the Main point though i scribbled in my note the word inconclusive (from last sentence of 2nd para).

Can you post how did you identified main idea of passage?
i always get main point question wrong
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Re: How to go trough natural science passage?  [#permalink]

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04 Oct 2012, 09:11
1
I am not an expert. However I am sharing my Strategy.
1. Find the main idea/or purpose : Why the author is writing this?
2. How does each para support the purpose?
Biology/Physical science Passage: Read quickly what is the point of passage, Note the point of each para so that u can refer back easily.
For all type of RC question except the LEAST/EXCEPT types i use the same strategy
1. Prethink the answer choice from my own comprehension. (Without looking at options - they may distract you)
2. Eliminate all answer choice based on off topic, partially correct, out of scope, reverse relationship, unnecessary assumptions, exaggerate options etc....
3. If bogged down in 2 choice (refer back to the related content and eliminate the wrong one)

For Main idea: You have to ask yourself why author is writing this. Please pause a few seconds to comprehend a small para and ask this question. Paraphase one para in single line. Then try to connect structurally how the author has connected the details with the main point. Dont bogged down in too scientific details, just get the gist.

After reading the whole passage take 20-30 sec and answer few questions.
1. What is the pain point or purpose of this writing.
2. How each para support the main point.
3. What is the inference of this Passage.

For this particular question the Key thing was last line of 2nd para where it tells scientists were inconclusive on the result.

Then go on answering the question, but cover up the choices and answer urself first and then try to find the answer choices according to your prethinking.
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Re: Thunderstorms generally develop in the late afternoon or  [#permalink]

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28 Jun 2018, 07:06
GMATNinja , mikemcgarry , MagooshExpert . Can anyone explain Q.No1?
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Re: Thunderstorms generally develop in the late afternoon or  [#permalink]

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29 Jun 2018, 23:02
In ques 1

Why ans D is correct.
It is written in the first paragraph that there is a circuit completion which causes cloud to ground lighting.
So scientists agree on causes of cloud to ground lighting i.e circuit completion making option d partially wrong.

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Re: Thunderstorms generally develop in the late afternoon or  [#permalink]

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26 Oct 2018, 05:00

Topic and Scope

- The author describes two theories of cloud electrification and their possible impact on controlling lightning formation.

Mapping the Passage

¶1 describes the mechanism of lightning formation and notes that scientists hope to someday control it.
¶2 introduces two competing theories of cloud electrification, convection and precipitation, and describes the older theory of precipitation.
¶3 describes the convection model of cloud electrification.
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Thunderstorms generally develop in the late afternoon or  [#permalink]

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26 Oct 2018, 05:01

1)

What is the author‘s main purpose? To describe the competing theories on cloud charge and to describe how they might help to control lightning. (D) fits well
(A): Out of Scope. The author doesn‘t discuss recent breakthroughs, and only one of the theories presented has evidence described.
(B): Faulty Use of Detail. Though this is mentioned in the passage, it‘s not the main idea of the passage.
(C): Distortion. The author presents two competing theories, but doesn‘t endorse one or the other or argue that they‘re inaccurate.
(E): Out of scope. The author never states his preference for any theory.

2)

Go back to the referenced line numbers to read about breakdown potential. The passage says that lightning occurs after the ―breakdown potential‖ is reached. Only A catches this cause-and-effect relationship.
(B): Opposite. The breakdown potential is required for lightning to occur, but it‘s not a characteristic of the lightning itself.
(C): Out of Scope. The author doesn‘t mention the distance between the earth and cloud.
(D):Opposite. As with (B), this is a quality of the lightning rather than a precondition for it.
(E): Takes the meaning of ‗breakdown‘ too literally

3)

Though scientists differ on the causes of cloud electrification, you can deduce from this fact alone that they believe that cloud electrification exists. By definition, then, even the scientists who differ on the causes must both agree with (C), that there‘s a charge difference between cloud and ground.
(A): Faulty Use of Detail. While scientists who argue for the convection model in ¶3 believe this, not all scientists do.
(B): Faulty Use of Detail. This is a part of the precipitation argument in ¶2.
(D): Opposite. This is a potential way to stop lightning from forming and also a test of the precipitation hypothesis as described in ¶2.
(E): The passage doesn‘t really connect moisture content with lightning.
Strategy Point: When a Natural Science passage presents competing theories, be on the lookout for areas of agreement as well as points of difference.

4)

Review ¶3 to review the convection theory. The main tenet of the convection model is that water droplets capture ionized gas molecules which are transported in updrafts and downdrafts. With an eye to the paragraph, look for a choice that conflicts with or is not part of the theory. (D) is part of the precipitation theory described in ¶2 and doesn‘t factor into the convection theory.
(A): Opposite. This is mentioned in line 39.
(B): Opposite. This is mentioned in ¶1 and is the basis for both theories.
(C): Opposite. As described in ¶3, this must be true in order for the ionized gas particles to be transported.
(E): Opposite. This is mentioned in ¶3
Strategy Point: Proper names, italicized text, and titles can all be a useful way to quickly zero in on relevant concepts and text.
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Re: Thunderstorms generally develop in the late afternoon or  [#permalink]

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10 Mar 2019, 18:43
raveesh1203 wrote:
In ques 1

Why ans D is correct.
It is written in the first paragraph that there is a circuit completion which causes cloud to ground lighting.
So scientists agree on causes of cloud to ground lighting i.e circuit completion making option d partially wrong.

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I think answer D is correct because paragraph 1 & 2 discusses the reasons why lightning occurs and the process which the charge is built. Paragraph 1 is saying the precipitation model (drops of water becomes negatively charged) while paragraph 2 discusses, experiments and hypothesizes a different cause (the ion model, charge is due to updrafts/downdrafts, explained in the experiment). Although i didnt get this question correct ( i choose b because i was lured by the hypotheses power of paragraph 1&2), answer D is better in hindsight.
Re: Thunderstorms generally develop in the late afternoon or   [#permalink] 10 Mar 2019, 18:43
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