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Understanding Wind Direction 

From an Oceanographer’s Point of View Scientists use both numbers and letters on a compass to measure wind direction. On the compass below the letter N stands for North, S stands for South, E stands for East, and W stands for West. In order to be more specific, the letters NE are used for Northeast, SE for southeast, SW for Southwest and NW for Northwest.  
You can also see that the compass is divided into 360
degrees around the circle. The North position equals zero,and the degrees
increase as you move around the compass clockwise until you reach 360
degrees back at the North position.


1. The COOLroom reports that the direction the wind is
coming from is 50 degrees. This measurement is less than 180 degrees, so
we need to add 180 degrees to determine the direction that the wind is
moving towards. If we do the math, 50 + 180 = 230 degrees. This means that the wind is moving towards 230 degrees, which is approximately Southwest on the compass. 

2. The COOLroom reports that the direction the wind is
coming from is 300 degrees. This measurement is more than 180 degrees, so
we need to subtract 180 degrees to determine the direction that the wind
is moving towards. If we do the math, 300  180 = 120 degrees. This means that the wind is moving towards 120 degrees, which is between East and Southeast on the compass. 

Are you confused? Just remember that the graphed wind
direction is calculated in the COOLroom by adding or subtracting 180
degrees to the measured wind direction. If the measured wind direction is
180 degrees or less, add 180 degrees to the measurement. If the measured
wind direction is 180 degrees or more, subtract 180 degrees from the
measurement. http://www.coolclassroom.org/pdfs/understandingwinddirection.pdf 
