The present study gives a discussion of the water balance on a planetary scale during the IGY covering the mean and the seasonal conditions for the calendar year 1958. The study includes analyses of the amount of precipitable water, of the vertically integrated transport vector field and of the divergence of water vapor flux for all the globe. Some implications of the water vapor distribution in the atmosphere, its transport, and divergence fields are deduced which bear some importance for hydrology. The water balance based upon the various water vapor fields is examined and the inferred values obtained from the analysis of the water vapor divergence field are compared with estimates of evaporation and precipitation obtained from independent climatological sources.

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