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  • synoptic—1. In general, pertaining to or affording an overall view.
    In meteorology, this term has become somewhat specialized in referring to the use of meteorological data obtained simultaneously over a wide area for the purpose of presenting a comprehensive and nearly instantaneous picture of the state of the atmosphere. Thus, to a meteorologist, “synoptic” takes on the additional connotation of simultaneity. 2. A specific scale of atmospheric motion with a typical range of many hundreds of kilometers, including such phenomena as cyclones and tropical cyclones.
    Compare mesoscale.