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Created with Fabric.js 1.4.5 Tropical Cyclones Tropical Cyclones What causes tropical cyclone?A tropical cyclone is caused when there is a warm body of water, at least 26.5ºC, and a cluster of thunderstorms gather this warm water as energy. The heat energy combined with the rotation of the Earth gets the cyclone spinning and moving towards land. As the tropical storm moves across the water it takes on more water gaining speed and power. When the tropical storm hits land all the water it has been collecting falls to the ground in a storm, in some cases creating floods that devastate the land and peoples lives. The cyclone then dissipates due to lack of moisture. In some cases a cyclone wont hit land and it will just stay out in the ocean until it loses its power and energy. What effects do tropical cyclones have on people and places?Cyclones can cause a lot of damage. Devastating the land and peoples lives. Destroying livelihoods and costing lots of money to prepare for and to clean up afterwards. Once a cyclone hits it causes mass damage to the human environment and the strong winds of the cyclone sends debris flying. After the cyclone has swept over the land more problems occur. Flooding, probably the biggest problem, can cause still water in places where it shouldn't be, can block sewage pipes and sewage gets spilt everywhere and all this causes diseases. The diseases spread making many people sick and most of these people cant get medical help because hospitals have been destroyed. Some cyclones dont make it to land, but still can cause lots of damage out at sea such as ships being destroyed, and shipwrecks occurring which can causes many deaths. Where do tropical cyclones occur?Tropical cyclones occur in the Indian Ocean and western Pacific Ocean around Australia. Cyclones that form in the western Pacific Oceans can affect Mexico, south-east Asia, north-east Australia and the south Pacific islands. Cyclones that form in the Indian Ocean can affect India, Bangladesh, north-west Australia and some parts of east Africa and Indian Ocean islands such as Madagascar and Mauritius. When tropical cyclones occur?Tropical cyclones occur during the months of November through to April. This is because for cyclones to form there needs to be a warm area of water and these months are during the hottest part of the year when the southern hemisphere is tilted towards the sun. In the Australian region around 13 cyclones form on average per year and only a few of these make landfall. What changes tropical cyclones have undergone?It remains uncertain wether or not past changes in tropical cyclones are due to climate change or just through natural causes. However there may be some changes in future years these include the following. The frequency of tropical cyclone, this is likely to either decrease or remain unchanged due to global warming. The mean maximum speed of tropical cyclones may increase in some areas and the amount of rainfall is also likely to increase. What is the appearance of a tropical cyclone? What is a tropical cyclone?A tropical cyclone is an intense clockwise spinning storm system. It can have wind speeds that exceed 290km/h. It has a low pressure centre that is referred to as the eye and can have a diameter that can be vast in size ranging from under 10km to over 100km. What are the different categories of a cyclone?There are five different categories, category one being the least destructive to category five being severely destructive. The category a tropical cyclones is categorised in is determined by the speed of its winds. Category one winds range from 90-125 km/h. Category two winds range from 125-164 km/h. Category three winds range from 164-224km/h. Category four winds range from 225-279km/h. Category five winds are winds that exceed 280km/h. You also may have heard the terms hurricane and typhoon theses are similar to the Tropical cyclone however one of the major difference that sets them apart are where they occur. Hurricanes occurring in the Atlantic and eastern Pacific and Typhoons occurring in Southeast Asia. This maps shows the distribution of where each of these storms occur. Tropical Cyclone Yasi Tropical Cyclone Yasi began developing as a tropical low northwest of Fiji on 29th January and started tracking westward. This system quickly intensified to a cyclone category 1 to the north of Vanuatu and at 10pm, on the 30th, it was named Yasi by the Fiji Meteorological Service. Yasi continued along its westward path rapidly intensifying to a Category 2 by 10am and then later to a Category 3 by 4pm on the 31st.For the next 24 hours Yasi maintained a Category 3 intensity before upgrading to a Category 4 on the 1st of February at 7pm. During this time, Yasi had started to take to a more west southwest path and accelerated towards the tropical Queensland coast.Yasi later upgraded to a Category 5 on the 2nd of February. It then maintained this intensity and made landfall near Mission Beach, 138km south of Cairns, between 12 am and 1am, 3 Feb 2011. It continued to track across northern Queensland maintaining a strong core with damaging winds and heavy rain. Yasi finally weakened to a tropical low near Mount Isa around 10pm on 3rd February.Yasis largest rainfall totals were recorded near and to the south of the cyclone and were between 200 and 300mm in the 24 hours to 9am Thursday. This caused some flooding in the areas between Cairns and Ayr. The maximum sustained wind speeds were estimated at 205 km/hr and this caused significant wind damage between Innisfail and Townsville where the destructive core of the cyclone crossed the coast. Tully and Cardwell also suffered major damage to structures and vegetation with the eye of the cyclone passing over Dunk Island and Tully on the 2nd February around midnight. A barograph at the Tully Sugar Mill recorded a minimum pressure of 929 hPa as the eye passed over it thus suggesting wind gusts of about 285 km/h were possible. Yasi was recorded as one of the most powerful cyclones to have affected the Queensland coast since records commenced. I have included some graphs below with data that was collected by the Bureau of Meteorology about the path of cyclone Yasi and the air pressure. Bibliography (9/09/15) (9/09/15) (9/09/15) (9/09/15) (10/09/15) (11/09/15) (11/09/15) (14/09/15) (14/09/15) (16/09/15) p2 Box1 (22/09/15) This graph shows the average amount of tropical cyclones that will occur per 100 years in cyclone affected areas. Bureau of Meteorology tracking cyclone Yasis path towards the Queenslands coast. (image above) This is a chart showing the Pressure measurements taken at Clump Point (Mission Beach) between midnight 01 Feb 2011 and 6pm 03 Feb 2011. (image to above) This diagram shows a cross section of a tropical cyclone. It lables the different sections of a cyclone. The eye, being the centre is the calmest part of the storm, the eyewall, the area surrounding the eye is usually the most destructive part. The outflow cloud shield and the spiral rainbands, are the outer areas of the cyclone. (image below) This diagram shows the top view of a tropical cyclone. You can see it is a tropical cyclone because it is spinning in the clockwise direction. (image to left) This diagram shows a cross section of a tropical cyclone as well. However it shows the direction that the wind and water is going and the way the cyclone is spinning. (image to right) You can dertermine from the above chart that from 1970 to the mid 1980's there has been a decrease in tropical cyclones and has since remained nearly stable (by Clare Forsyth)
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