What is wind chill?

NOW: What is wind chill?

When frigid air takes over Michiana, we often talk about feels-like temperatures or wind chills - but how do we determine what it “feels like” outside and what is the science behind wind chill?

Our bodies are constantly radiating heat, creating a thin layer of warm air around us which helps to keep us comfortable in chilly temperatures. When winds are calm, this warm blanket of air is left undisturbed, making the wind chill essentially equal to the air temperatures.

When winds are breezy though, the warm layer around us gets mixed into the surrounding atmosphere, ripping away that warm blanket of air. In turn, our bodies try to replace the warm layer by radiating more heat, which makes us colder faster.

The number we use to define what our temperatures “feel like” comes from a long equation that factors in the air temperature and wind speed. To make it easier, the National Weather Service put together this chart to quickly determine the wind chill:

Courtesy of the National Weather Service

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