Why do tropical cyclones cause intense rainfall?

Jordyn Hudson asked a question: Why do tropical cyclones cause intense rainfall?
Asked By: Jordyn Hudson
Date created: Thu, Apr 8, 2021 10:49 PM
Date updated: Mon, Jun 27, 2022 1:58 PM


Top best answers to the question «Why do tropical cyclones cause intense rainfall»

As the air continues to rise quickly it draws more warm moist air up from above the ocean leading to strong winds. The rapidly rising warm air spirals upwards, cools, condenses and large cumulonimbus clouds form. These clouds form the eye wall of the cyclone and produce heavy rainfall.

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All tropical cyclones can produce widespread torrential rains, which cause massive flooding and trigger landslides and debris flows. Flash flooding, a rapid rise in water levels, can occur quickly due to intense rainfall over a relatively short period of time.

Cyclones are formed over oceans. They are fuelled by the warm rising air over ocean water which is why cyclones bring so much rain. Water holds heat much better than land so the warm rising air continues even at night. A cyclone which forms over land because of warm rising air is a vey rare event.

The degree of a tropical cyclone rainfall impact depends upon speed of movement, storm size, and degree of vertical wind shear. One of the most significant threats from tropical cyclones is heavy rainfall. Large, slow moving, and non-sheared tropical cyclones produce the heaviest rains.

The climate hazard posed by cyclones is further intensified by increasing risks of flooding through heavier precipitation and sea level rise as a result of climate change.

The eye-wall surrounds the eye with the strongest winds and heaviest rain and is the most destructive part of the cyclone. The strong convection in the eye-wall produces rain-bearing clouds that rise up to the ceiling of the lower-atmosphere known as the tropopause. The tropopause in the tropics is typically at 15 km altitude.

Much of the heavy rainfall associated with tropical cyclones comes from these clouds. The upward movement of air in the eyewall also causes the eye to be wider aloft than at the surface. As the air spirals upward it conserves its angular momentum, which depends on the distance from the centre of the cyclone and on the wind speed around the centre.

Tropical cyclones trigger serious rainfall and landslides. They cause serious damage to towns and villages. Also, they destroy coastal companies, such as shipyards and oil well. When these hurricanes blow far inland, human settlements are causing a lot of devastation.

Modelling studies, supported by the theory of potential intensity of tropical cyclones, find that mean intensities are projected to increase by about +5 per cent for a +2 degrees C global warming scenario, and near-storm rainfall rates to increase globally by an average of +14 per cent.

Tropical cyclones are violent storms that originate over oceans in tropical areas and move over to the coastal areas bringing about large scale destruction due to violent winds (squalls), very heavy rainfall (torrential rainfall) and storm surge. They are irregular wind movements involving closed circulation of air around a low pressure center.

The thunderstorm activity in a tropical cyclone produces intense rainfall, potentially resulting in flooding, mudslides, and landslides. Inland areas are particularly vulnerable to freshwater flooding, due to residents not preparing adequately.

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