THUNDERSTORMS and Hurricanes

THUNDERSTORMS and Hurricanes - characterized by a...

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characterized by a cumulonimbus (Cn) cloud & accompanied by lightning and THUNDERSTORMS ** a storm thunder Great instability and vertical development Relatively short duration- 1-2 hours Accompanied by strong wind gusts, heavy rain, sometimes hail, and tornadoes Requirements for Formation: * Warm, moist air: which releases latent energy when lifter to provide buoyancy and mountain lift * need continuous supply to overcome dry air & evaporation * High surface temperatures: enhances instability, air parcel warming and uplift Stages of Formation: Cumulus stage : initial build-up of cumulus clouds fueled by updrafts (up to 160 kph) of warm, moist air cooling adiabatically; droplet formation by Bergeron process Mature stage : raindrops start to fall initiating downdrafts ; process of entrainment , the influx of cool, dry surrounding air helping to fuel the downdrafts; heavy rains, lightning, thunder, and often hail during this stage Dissipating stage : downdrafts dominate; light rain; cooling with loss of warm air source & energy; storm breaks up & clouds evaporate Locations of Occurrence: can occur in many parts of the world: tropical areas, along the ITCZ; in the US, from primarily east of the Rocky Mountains with Florida being the state with the highest incidence of t-storms LIGHTNING & THUNDER
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LIGHTNING : flash of light generated by the flow of electrons between oppositely charged parts of a cloud or between the cloud and the ground What causes lightning? ** charges are separated within the cloud as the T-storm develops
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THUNDERSTORMS and Hurricanes - characterized by a...

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