Dieng Freezes Again at Below Zero Degrees Celsius; BRIN Explains

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – The Dieng plateau in Central Java has been frozen again with temperatures below zero degrees Celsius recently. “Dieng is freezing, the temperature at -3.5°C on Thursday, July 27, 2023. Dieng is freezing for the 7th time in 2023,” as posted in an Instagram account FestivalDiengID. The post also includes a video showing the ground covered in frozen grass.

A researcher at the Center for Climate and Atmospheric Research of the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN), Didi Satiadi, explained that it is an ice dew or frost phenomenon, a thin layer of ice on a solid surface produced from water vapor in an above-freezing atmosphere.

“This phenomenon usually occurs during cold weather at night or early in the morning when the temperature is extremely low,” Didi said via text message on Friday, July 28, 2023.

Although the tropical country of Indonesia generally has a warm climate, frost can form in the highlands under certain weather conditions. “The temperature in the highlands is usually cooler than in the lowlands because the air pressure decreases with altitude,” Didi said.

In addition, clear skies can support the formation of ice dew since radiative cooling can happen optimally. It is the process by which surface temperature loses heat by thermal radiation

The absence of the skies usually occurs during the dry season in June-July-August when the cold and dry Australian monsoon tends to reduce the clouds over Indonesia.

Moreover, when the night is relatively serene, the mixing temperature process on the earth’s surface will be minimum, so that the cold temperature tends to settle and generates ice dew.

Other weather factors in the formation of frost in the Dieng plateau are the presence of sufficient water vapor near the surface, and that the surface temperature is lower than the dewpoint temperature.

On these bases, the BRIN researcher concluded that the frost phenomenon is possible to hit regions of tropical Indonesia, including the Dieng plateau.

MARIA FRANSISCA LAHUR

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