Maybe over the past few days the term "Precipitable Water" has come up when talking about the weather. What in the world does this really mean? EyeWitness News Chief Meteorologist Rachael Witter has answers.  

Rachael explains Precipitable Water is literally water in the atmosphere. During the summer this would be rain, during the winter this would be snow. Pretty easy right?

Rachael says "It's essentially available water in the atmosphere that can fall as precipitation. The PWAT value is typically a little higher than what actually reaches the ground (evaporation, storm setup determines what actually falls). BUT this area does have a pretty high amount of available water for these storms this weekend."

Here's the fancy definition from the American Meteorological Society:

The total atmospheric water vapor contained in a vertical column of unit cross-sectional area extending between any two specified levels, commonly expressed in terms of the height to which that water substance would stand if completely condensed and collected in a vessel of the same unit cross section."

So when you hear this term, just remember it's just WATER. If during the summer it's referring to rain, during the winter its snow.