Saturday, September 26, 2020

In other words, wind and water

  • cyclone, noun. A system of winds rotating inwards to an area of low barometric pressure, with an anticlockwise (northern hemisphere) or clockwise (southern hemisphere) circulation; a depression. 
  • derecho, noun. A large fast-moving complex of thunderstorms with powerful straight-line winds that cause widespread destruction; a widespread, long-lived wind storm.
  • downburst, noun. A strong downward wind system that emanates from a point source above and blows radially, that is, in straight lines in all directions from the point of contact at ground level.
  • funnel cloud, noun. A rotating funnel-shaped cloud forming the core of a tornado or waterspout. 
  • haboob, noun. A violent thick dust storm or sandstorm, particularly in the deserts of North Africa and Arabia or on the plains of India. (Such a dust storm can stand hundreds of feet high.)
  • hurricane, noun. A tropical storm having sustained wind speeds of at least 74 miles per hour, in particular a tropical cyclone in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, or eastern Pacific Ocean. Compare typhoon.
  • medicane, noun. Mediterranean tropical-like cyclones (typically smaller in diameter and have lower wind speeds than true tropical cyclones). Derived by combining Mediterranean with hurricane.
  • squall line, noun. A line or extended narrow region within which squalls (high wind and heavy rain) or thunderstorms occur, often several hundred miles long.
  • tempest, noun. A violent windstorm, especially one with rain, hail, or snow.
  • thunderstorm, noun. A heavy storm characterized by thunder and lightning.
  • tornado, noun. A mobile, destructive vortex of violently rotating winds having the appearance of a funnel-shaped cloud and advancing beneath a large storm system. Compare waterspout.
  • tropical storm, noun. A localized, very intense low-pressure wind system, forming over tropical oceans and with winds of hurricane force.
  • tsunami, noun. An unusually large sea wave produced by a seaquake or undersea volcanic eruption; also called tidal wave.
  • typhoon, noun. A tropical storm having sustained winds of at least 74 miles per hour, in particular a tropical cyclone in the western Pacific Ocean or northern Indian Ocean. Compare hurricane.
  • waterspout, noun. A rotating column of water and spray formed by a whirlwind occurring over the sea or other body of water. Compare tornado.
  • whirlwind, noun. A column of air moving rapidly round and round in a cylindrical or funnel shape.

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