Storm expected to be another blow to Gulf Coast businesses

A weekend that was supposed to be filled with celebrations of Juneteenth and Father's Day has turned dreary in coastal Louisiana and Mississippi, where an unpredictable tropical weather system has brought wind, heavy rain ...

Tropical weather lashes Gulf Coast with brisk winds, rain

High winds and heavy rains buffeted coastal Louisiana and Mississippi on Friday as a disorganized and unpredictable tropical weather system churned through the Gulf of Mexico, forcing cancellation of Juneteenth celebrations ...

Amsterdam is a model for what tourism should look like after COVID

When COVID hit the Netherlands in 2020, Amsterdam emptied of visitors overnight. Long-term residents, inured to the permanent noise and litter and tourists peeing in the streets, welcomed the newfound tranquility. The pandemic, ...

Scientists expose the cold heart of landfalling hurricanes

Hurricanes are powerful weather events born in the open sea. Fueled by moisture from the warm ocean, hurricanes can intensify in strength, move vast distances across the water, and ultimately unleash their destruction upon ...

Shelter from the storm: The social landscape of pets in disasters

Most researchers can draw a line from their current field of study to something in their past that first lit the spark—an engineer who had a knack for fixing things, an economics professor who was always good with numbers.

Study of Harvey flooding aids in quantifying climate change

How much do the effects of climate change contribute to extreme weather events? It's hard to say—the variables involved are plentiful, each event is unique, and we can only do so much to investigate what didn't happen. ...

Underwater ancient cypress forest offers clues to the past

When saber-toothed tigers, woolly mammoths and giant sloths roamed North America during the last Ice Age about 18,000 to 80,000 years ago, the Gulf Coast's climate was only slightly cooler, more similar to regions to the ...

Louisiana coast still hurting from storms, bracing for more

Scores of people in coastal Louisiana are still living in campers on dirt mounds or next to cement slabs where their houses once stood. Unresolved insurance claims and a shortage of supply and labor are stymieing building ...

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Tropical cyclone

A tropical cyclone is a storm system characterized by a large low-pressure center and numerous thunderstorms that produce strong winds and heavy rain. Tropical cyclones feed on heat released when moist air rises, resulting in condensation of water vapor contained in the moist air. They are fueled by a different heat mechanism than other cyclonic windstorms such as nor'easters, European windstorms, and polar lows, leading to their classification as "warm core" storm systems. Tropical cyclones originate in the doldrums near the equator, about 10° away from it.

The term "tropical" refers to both the geographic origin of these systems, which form almost exclusively in tropical regions of the globe, and their formation in maritime tropical air masses. The term "cyclone" refers to such storms' cyclonic nature, with counterclockwise rotation in the Northern Hemisphere and clockwise rotation in the Southern Hemisphere. Depending on its location and strength, a tropical cyclone is referred to by names such as hurricane, typhoon, tropical storm, cyclonic storm, tropical depression, and simply cyclone.

While tropical cyclones can produce extremely powerful winds and torrential rain, they are also able to produce high waves and damaging storm surge as well as spawning tornadoes. They develop over large bodies of warm water, and lose their strength if they move over land. This is why coastal regions can receive significant damage from a tropical cyclone, while inland regions are relatively safe from receiving strong winds. Heavy rains, however, can produce significant flooding inland, and storm surges can produce extensive coastal flooding up to 40 kilometres (25 mi) from the coastline. Although their effects on human populations can be devastating, tropical cyclones can also relieve drought conditions. They also carry heat and energy away from the tropics and transport it toward temperate latitudes, which makes them an important part of the global atmospheric circulation mechanism. As a result, tropical cyclones help to maintain equilibrium in the Earth's troposphere, and to maintain a relatively stable and warm temperature worldwide.

Many tropical cyclones develop when the atmospheric conditions around a weak disturbance in the atmosphere are favorable. The background environment is modulated by climatological cycles and patterns such as the Madden-Julian oscillation, El Niño-Southern Oscillation, and the Atlantic Multi-Decadal Mode. Others form when other types of cyclones acquire tropical characteristics. Tropical systems are then moved by steering winds in the troposphere; if the conditions remain favorable, the tropical disturbance intensifies, and can even develop an eye. On the other end of the spectrum, if the conditions around the system deteriorate or the tropical cyclone makes landfall, the system weakens and eventually dissipates. It is not possible to artificially induce the dissipation of these systems with current technology.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA