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I have a flat world where the parent star, a sizeably small star, travels around the world. The world is covered by a dome that provides its atmosphere and the star is outside of this. The star travels over the dome giving the world its daytime and when it travels under the belly of the world that is night, until it rises again on the sunrise side. The flat world itself also turns but slowly. It's not too dissimilar to the Discworld, really.

My question is, though, what might the weather be like? Are weather patterns really more in the control of the terrain than the nature of a star's travel?

I hope that makes sense and help would be very much appreciated. I've had the world for years but I'm finally trying to figure out the weather, including seasons.

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closed as too broad by Aify, Hohmannfan, Thucydides, Brythan, bilbo_pingouin Jul 11 '16 at 7:34

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ Firstly, does light and heat actually all come from the sun? Does it follow the inverse square law, the way radiation from real-world stars does? What is the diameter of the disc? How close to the edge of the disc is the sun when it rises? Does it travel above the disc, or stay outside it? $\endgroup$ – John Dallman Jul 10 '16 at 16:49
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    $\begingroup$ I think we need more information about the shape, transparency and heat-conductivity of your dome. If the dome's out edge is reflective at an angle, then predawn light will angle off, creating an instant sunrise when sun finally rises. Sudden shifts in light and temperature suggest violent weather. If the dome is highly heat conductive, then the dawn light will warm its entire mass quickly and rather evenly, diminishing the differences which might lead to violent weather. Maybe you should tell us what weather do you want and we'll design a dome to give it to you. $\endgroup$ – Henry Taylor Jul 10 '16 at 16:55
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    $\begingroup$ - Continued.... :) I can't say I know a lot about global (or not-so-global) mechanics so I will answer as best I can. 1 - The heat is mostly supplied by the sun, yes. Being so close to the world it obviously isn't a huge star but large enough to keep the world at a temperate temperature. 2 - Inverse square law, I assume so, for sake of ease if it is feasible. .... $\endgroup$ – Tinpot Jul 10 '16 at 17:24
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    $\begingroup$ .... - Continued again.... 3 - Diameter. Never really thought about it but something akin to slicing Earth in half might make things easier to figure. 4 - How close to the world is the sun, enough so that it doesn't frazzle the world to a crisp is the best I can think up. $\endgroup$ – Tinpot Jul 10 '16 at 17:26
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    $\begingroup$ - And lastly... 5 - The travels outside the dome, arcing the top, following the apex curve of the dome. As to your questions Henry, and thanks for them, I can only say that imagine half an Earth for shape, transparency and heat-con. As to weather, something akin to the climate of the northern hemis as predominant with the terrain, mountains, oceans etc changing certain parts accordingly.Hopefully that also made sense. I know there are a lot of numbers missing. The world also has a 28 hour day, if that helps. :D Cheers $\endgroup$ – Tinpot Jul 10 '16 at 17:27
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If the 'disk' is in a constant orientation relative to the sun, that is the sun always travels in the same arc over the dome, there would not be seasons, unless some other unnamed long-cycle phenomenon was at work. Obviously, the day-night cycle would create a weather pattern, which, if the terrain was featureless, and the distance to the sun was 'large' and consistent, would be consistently cyclic.

The thermal waves coming from each point in the disk would reach a forced cyclic behavior that would not change unless something else changed. Depending on complex thermal 3-D effects, thermal capacitances not to mention liquid vs gaseous and other non-linear effects, features of the behavior could be surprisingly strong or weak. Also leads and lags related to wave patterns should be expected. Also, interference patterns and all similar phenomena associated with wave phenomena can be expected.

Is there significant gravity associated with the disk? This is an important factor in many weather effects. Also, is the disk rotating? Rotation and gravity are crucial to the creation of hurricanes and tornatoes.

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Considering that this world is basically a giant glass building, you'd expect there is no weather, right? Wrong, one of the largest rooms belong to NASA and is where they build rockets. This building also has its own weather system, independent of the outside world. Complete with rainclouds and wind. So a giant dome world would likely be the same. The weather wouldn't be any different from Earth.

I'm on a mobile device now, so I can't provide a link. One will be added tomorrow.

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  • $\begingroup$ Brilliant and thanks. I look forward to reading your next reply. :) $\endgroup$ – Tinpot Jul 10 '16 at 17:28
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    $\begingroup$ If it is a glass dome would that not cause it to have warm winters due to the greenhouse effect? $\endgroup$ – Bellerophon Jul 10 '16 at 20:04
  • $\begingroup$ The dome is like our atmosphere. 😊 $\endgroup$ – Tinpot Jul 10 '16 at 20:23
  • $\begingroup$ @Bellerephon I assume that the dome is made of glass, but it could be any transparent material $\endgroup$ – TrEs-2b Jul 10 '16 at 20:43
  • $\begingroup$ Just an ozone dome. 😊 $\endgroup$ – Tinpot Jul 10 '16 at 20:51

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