Mid-latitude cyclone

Whatis a mid-latitude cyclone?

-Themid-latitude cyclone is a synoptic scale low pressure mechanism that has cyclonic(counter-clockwise in north hemisphere) flow that is discovered in the middlelatitudes (i.e., 30�N-55�N)


o over there is a ar (tropics vs.mid-latitudes) and also size difference in between hurricane and also mid-latitude cyclone

�Typicalsize that mid-latitude cyclone = 1500-5000km in diameter

�Typicalsize of a hurricane or dry storm = 200-1000km in diameter

Here is a photo of a typical mid-latitudecyclone and hurricane. Notice the dimension difference.

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How walk the mid-latitudecyclone type (for a longer description read pages 219-228)

1.Frompolar front theory, we know that in the mid-latitudes over there is a boundary betweencold dried (cP) air to the north and warm moist (mT) air to the south

2.Alongthis boundary a counter-clockwise circulation can collection up in ~ the surface, whichacts to take heat air up from the south and also cold air down from the north. Thisis referred to as cyclogenesis.

3.Inthe facility of this circulation, over there is massive convergence (all the air ismoving in toward the facility of the circulation lot like as soon as you do a whirl-poolin a pool, all the leaves and also stuff floating roughly moves towards the center).When all that air access time the center, we have actually rising motion because it has nowhereelse to go.

4.Ifthe upper levels are favorable for cyclone development, climate there is a regionof divergence aloft over the arising Low-pressure center. This will certainly helppull the air that is converging in ~ the surface ar upward and also continue to develop thesurface cyclone. (The upper levels additionally steer the system and also make it progresseast (like us learned earlier)).

a.Ifthe top levels aren�t favorable because that cyclone development, the cyclone won�tgrow and also the mass convergence into the low at the surface will simply pile increase andfill in the Low and also it will certainly decay.

b.Referto the 2nd figure listed below for the optimal situation.

5.Ifthe upper levels space favorable, then the mid-latitude cyclone will proceed todevelop and also bring up mT waiting in the heat sector and also bring under cP air in thecold sector.

a.ThemT wait rises together it moves out ahead of the short helping to deepen the Lowpressure facility to the east and assist it move along

b.ThecP air sinks behind the system and also fills in the low on the backside alsohelping to relocate the device along

i.Itis this transport of power that both strengthens and also propagates themid-latitude cyclone!

6.Oncethe mid-latitude cyclone is completely developed, well-defined fronts appear.

7.Asthe mid-latitude cyclone get maturity, the central pressure will certainly be in ~ itslowest and also the occluded former will begin to form (as the cold front records upto the heat front).

8.Oncethe device is occluded (all the warmth air is above the cold air) the mass convergenceacts to to fill in the Low and also therefore the pressure rises in the Low and also thesystem decays.

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Evolution that a mid-latitude cyclone. Every figurefollows the description over 1-8



Theabove figures were taken indigenous www.u.arizona.edu/~korine/230/chap10_figs.htm


Diagram of flow (circulation) transparent thedepth of the troposphere


Wheredo mid-latitude cyclones typically kind (in phibìc America in winter)? (Remember that cycloneslike to construct along air mass boundaries)

-Leeside of the Rockies = Lee Cyclones

o Alberta Clippers

�FASTMOVING and also usually don�t have actually too lot precip connected with them due to the fact that theyare much from a humidity source


�IntenseLow, with strong warm wait advection in the heat sector, an extremely cold temps in thecold sector. If there is a the majority of gulf humidity to occupational with, they over there isusually sleet, freezing rain and also rain associated with the warm front, strong thunderstormsalong the southerly edge of the cold front and snow follow me the backside and also tothe NW that the short (even BLIZZARDS)

-Alongthe east Coast

o Gulf Low

�Formalong the southern coast where over there is a thermal boundary in between the warmocean and cool land. Usually have actually a the majority of precip connected with them because theyare for this reason close to the ocean

oHatterasLow and also Nor�easters (aka ��bomb�cyclones)

�Theseare the many INTENSE systems and they form along the thermal border betweenthe heat Gulf Stream and also the cold Atlantic coast. Lock can lug flooding rainsalong the coast and several feet the snow further inland together they use the oceanas a vast resource of the moisture. These additionally develop really quickly and sometimeshave pressure drops of 24mb in a solitary day. Through a push drop the thismagnitude you have the right to imagine how fast the winds are around these things.

What are their typical tracks? view diagrambelow


Precip trends (and types),winds, temperatures, fronts, upper level flow and clouds the are roughly a typicalmid-latitude cyclone in winter.