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Environment Canada said a strong thunderstorm had manifested over Maple Ridge, stretching south over the Fraser River and moving slowly towards Fort Langley.

The agency warned of severe rain and pea-sized hail, which by 5 p. It said some areas could see rain accumulations of more than 25 millimetres in a one-hour period.

Trains were still operating but bus service was skipping the station. Lightning kills and injures Canadians every year. Remember, when thunder roars, go indoors!

The sudden storm caught many in the region off guard, with residents taking to social media to share images of hail and flash flooding, much of it in Maple Ridge.

The greatest severe weather threat in the U. But, no place in the United States is completely safe from the threat of severe weather.

A watch can cover parts of a state or several states. Warnings mean there is a serious threat to life and property to those in the path of the storm.

ACT now to find safe shelter! A warning can cover parts of counties or several counties in the path of danger. How does a thunderstorm form? Three basic ingredients are required for a thunderstorm to form: As the air rises, it transfers heat from the surface of the earth to the upper levels of the atmosphere the process of convection.

The water vapor it contains begins to cool, releases the heat, condenses and forms a cloud. The cloud eventually grows upward into areas where the temperature is below freezing.

As a storm rises into freezing air, different types of ice particles can be created from freezing liquid drops.

The ice particles can grow by condensing vapor like frost and by collecting smaller liquid drops that haven't frozen yet a state called "supercooled".

When two ice particles collide, they usually bounce off each other, but one particle can rip off a little bit of ice from the other one and grab some electric charge.

Lots of these collisions build up big regions of electric charges to cause a bolt of lightning, which creates the sound waves we hear as thunder.

The Thunderstorm Life Cycle Thunderstorms have three stages in their life cycle: Frequently, the downdrafts and associated outflows from a storm trigger new convective cells nearby, resulting in the formation of a multiple-cell thunderstorm.

Solar heating is an important factor in triggering local, isolated thunderstorms. Most such storms occur in the late afternoon and early evening, when surface temperatures are highest.

Violent weather at the ground is usually produced by organized multiple-cell storms, squall lines , or a supercell.

All of these tend to be associated with a mesoscale disturbance a weather system of intermediate size, that is, 10 to 1, km [6 to miles] in horizontal extent.

Multiple-cell storms have several updrafts and downdrafts in close proximity to one another. They occur in clusters of cells in various stages of development moving together as a group.

Within the cluster one cell dominates for a time before weakening, and then another cell repeats the cycle.

Supercell storms have one intense updraft and downdraft; they are discussed in more detail below. Sometimes the development of a mesoscale weather disturbance causes thunderstorms to develop over a region hundreds of kilometres in diameter.

Examples of such disturbances include frontal wave cyclones low-pressure systems that develop from a wave on a front separating warm and cool air masses and low-pressure troughs at upper levels of the atmosphere.

The resulting pattern of storms is called a mesoscale convective system MCS. Severe multiple-cell thunderstorms and supercell storms are frequently associated with MCSs.

Precipitation produced by these systems typically includes rainfall from convective clouds and from stratiform clouds cloud layers with a large horizontal extent.

Stratiform precipitation is primarily due to the remnants of older cells with a relatively low vertical velocity—that is, with limited convection occurring.

Thunderstorms can be triggered by a cold front that moves into moist, unstable air. Sometimes squall lines develop in the warm air mass tens to hundreds of kilometres ahead of a cold front.

The tendency of prefrontal storms to be more or less aligned parallel to the front indicates that they are initiated by atmospheric disturbances caused by the front.

In the central United States, severe thunderstorms commonly occur in the springtime, when cool westerly winds at middle levels 3, to 10, metres [10, to 33, feet] in altitude move over warm and moist surface air flowing northward from the Gulf of Mexico.

The resulting broad region of instability produces MCSs that persist for many hours or even days. In the tropics, the northeast trade winds meet the southeast trades near the Equator , and the resulting intertropical convergence zone ITCZ is characterized by air that is both moist and unstable.

Thunderstorms and MCSs appear in great abundance in the ITCZ; they play an important role in the transport of heat to upper levels of the atmosphere and to higher latitudes.

When environmental winds are favourable, the updraft and downdraft of a storm become organized and twist around and reinforce each other.

The result is a long-lived supercell storm. These storms are the most intense type of thunderstorm. In the central United States, supercells typically have a broad, intense updraft that enters from the southeast and brings moist surface air into the storm.

The updraft rises, rotates counterclockwise, and exits to the east, forming an anvil. Updraft speeds in supercell storms can exceed 40 metres feet per second and are capable of suspending hailstones as large as grapefruit.

Supercells can last two to six hours. They are the most likely storm to produce spectacular wind and hail damage as well as powerful tornadoes.

Aircraft and radar measurements show that a single thunderstorm cell extends to an altitude of 8, to 10, metres 26, to 33, feet and lasts about 30 minutes.

An isolated storm usually contains several cells in different stages of evolution and lasts about an hour. A large storm can be many tens of kilometres in diameter with a top that extends to altitudes above 18 km 10 miles , and its duration can be many hours.

The updrafts and downdrafts in isolated thunderstorms are typically between about 0. The updraft diameter may occasionally exceed 4 km 2. Closer to the ground, drafts tend to have a larger diameter and lower speeds than do drafts higher in the cloud.

Updraft speeds typically peak in the range of 5 to 10 metres 16 to 33 feet per second, and speeds exceeding 20 metres 66 feet per second are common in the upper parts of large storms.

Airplanes flying through large storms at altitudes of about 10, metres 33, feet have measured updrafts exceeding 30 metres 98 feet per second.

The strongest updrafts occur in organized storms that are many tens of kilometres in diameter, and lines or zones of such storms can extend for hundreds of kilometres.

Sometimes thunderstorms will produce intense downdrafts that create damaging winds on the ground. These downdrafts are referred to as macrobursts or microbursts , depending on their size.

A macroburst is more than 4 km 2. A microburst is smaller in dimension but produces winds as high as 75 metres per second, or km per hour feet per second, or miles per hour on the ground.

When the parent storm forms in a wet, humid environment, the microburst will be accompanied by intense rainfall at the ground. If the storm forms in a dry environment, however, the precipitation may evaporate before it reaches the ground such precipitation is referred to as virga , and the microburst will be dry.

Downbursts are a serious hazard to aircraft, especially during takeoffs and landings, because they produce large and abrupt changes in the wind speed and direction near the ground.

In general, an active cloud will rise until it loses its buoyancy. A loss of buoyancy is caused by precipitation loading when the water content of the cloud becomes heavy enough, or by the entrainment of cool, dry air, or by a combination of these processes.

Growth can also be stopped by a capping inversion, that is, a region of the atmosphere where the air temperature decreases slowly, is constant, or increases with height.

Thunderstorms typically reach altitudes above 10, metres 33, feet and sometimes more than 20, metres 66, feet. When the instability is high, the atmosphere moist, and winds favourable, thunderstorms can extend to the tropopause, that is, the boundary between the troposphere and the stratosphere.

The tropopause is characterized by air temperatures that are nearly constant or increasing with height, and it is a region of great stability.

Occasionally the momentum of an updraft carries it into the stratosphere, but after a short distance the air in the top of the updraft becomes cooler and heavier than the surrounding air, and the overshoot ceases.

The height of the tropopause varies with both latitude and season. It ranges from about 10, to 15, metres 33, to 50, feet and is higher near the Equator.

When a cumulonimbus cloud reaches a capping inversion or the tropopause, it spreads outward and forms the anvil cloud so characteristic of most thunderstorms.

The winds at anvil altitudes typically carry cloud material downwind, and sometimes there are weak cells of convection embedded in the anvil.

An airplane flying through a thunderstorm is commonly buffeted upward and downward and from side to side by turbulent drafts in a storm.

Atmospheric turbulence causes discomfort for the crew and passengers and also subjects the aircraft to undesirable stresses.

Turbulence can be quantified in various ways, but frequently a g unit, equal to the acceleration of gravity 9.

A gust of 1 g will cause severe aircraft turbulence.

Tornadoes blow debris in a tight circular pattern, whereas the air from a Beste Spielothek in Dintenhofen finden outflow pushes it muschel symbol in one direction. If surface basketballlive is sufficient, the temperatures of the lowest layers of Beste Spielothek in Petersaurach finden will rise faster than those of layers aloft, and the air will become unstable. Watching the hail and laughing hysterically with strangers. The moist air rises, and, Beste Spielothek in Villars-sur-Marly finden it does so, it cools and Beste Spielothek in Warnekow finden of the water vapor in that rising air condenses. Under the right conditions, rainfall from thunderstorms causes flash flooding, killing more people each year than hurricanes, tornadoes or lightning. Tintagel — King Arthur Country. Today it is more common to classify storms according to the characteristics of the storms themselves, and such characteristics depend largely on the meteorological environment in which the storms develop. Or something like that. Typically, if there is little wind shearthe storm will rapidly enter the dissipating stage and 'rain fußball 4 out', [8] but, if there is 3.bundesliga live change in wind speed or direction, the downdraft will be separated from the updraft, and the storm may become a supercellwhere the mature stage can sustain itself for several hours. Environment Canada said a strong thunderstorm had manifested over Maple Ridge, stretching south over the Fraser River and moving slowly towards Fort Langley. Solar heating is an important factor in triggering local, isolated thunderstorms. Supercell storms are large, usually severequasi-steady-state storms that form in an environment where wind speed or wind direction varies with height " wind shear "and they have separate downdrafts and updrafts i. Here's what you need to know. An Doubleu casino fan page tornado, the strongest category, rips buildings off their foundations and can deform large skyscrapers. Remember, when thunderstorm roars, go indoors!

Thunderstorm Video

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Hagel also is back and back again. Hier kannst du sie vorschlagen! Together with his 5 brothers " IKE ", as he was called from an early age, spent truly an exciting childhood and youth.. There are birds of course not overdone and some other creatures whose sounds are best described as howling or moaning -this is delightfully eerie. Breakout 22 Breakout Mit kurzen Unterbrechungen bis zu wenigen Minuten muss dagegen gerechnet werden, wenn bei unerwarteten Störungen oder fälligen Wartungsarbeiten auf den Ersatzsender und die Reserveantenne umgeschaltet werden muss. Flash floods are most common in densely populated urban environments, where few plants and bodies of water are present to absorb and contain the extra water. Comments on thunderstorm What made you want to look up thunderstorm? 888 ladies developing stage of a thunderstorm is marked by a cumulus cloud that is being pushed upward by a rising column of air updraft. Thunderstorm Asthma Due to Grass Pollen. Keep Exploring Britannica Education. There are aboutthunderstorms each year in the U. Updraft speeds typically peak in the range of 5 to 10 metres 16 to 33 feet Beste Spielothek in Koblach finden second, and speeds exceeding 20 metres 66 feet per bundesliga 2 fixtures are common in the upper parts of large storms. How to use a word that literally drives some people thunderstorm. The cumulus cloud soon looks like a tower called towering cumulus as the updraft continues to develop. Please send reports using BCstorm pic. Strong up to more than mph straight-line winds associated with thunderstorms knock down trees, power lines and mobile homes.

However, multicell , supercell , and squall lines represent the most common forms of thunderstorms that produce severe weather.

A mesoscale convective system MCS is a complex of thunderstorms that becomes organized on a scale larger than the individual thunderstorms but smaller than extratropical cyclones , and normally persists for several hours or more.

Most mesoscale convective systems develop overnight and continue their lifespan through the next day. Forms of MCS that develop in the tropics are found in use either the Intertropical Convergence Zone or monsoon troughs , generally within the warm season between spring and fall.

More intense systems form over land than over water. They form at high latitudes during the cold season.

The two major ways thunderstorms move are via advection of the wind and propagation along outflow boundaries towards sources of greater heat and moisture.

Many thunderstorms move with the mean wind speed through the Earth's troposphere , the lowest 8 kilometres 5. Weaker thunderstorms are steered by winds closer to the Earth's surface than stronger thunderstorms, as the weaker thunderstorms are not as tall.

Organized, long-lived thunderstorm cells and complexes move at a right angle to the direction of the vertical wind shear vector.

If the gust front, or leading edge of the outflow boundary, races ahead of the thunderstorm, its motion will accelerate in tandem.

This is more of a factor with thunderstorms with heavy precipitation HP than with thunderstorms with low precipitation LP.

When thunderstorms merge, which is most likely when numerous thunderstorms exist in proximity to each other, the motion of the stronger thunderstorm normally dictates the future motion of the merged cell.

The stronger the mean wind, the less likely other processes will be involved in storm motion. On weather radar , storms are tracked by using a prominent feature and tracking it from scan to scan.

A back-building thunderstorm, commonly referred to as a training thunderstorm , is a thunderstorm in which new development takes place on the upwind side usually the west or southwest side in the Northern Hemisphere , such that the storm seems to remain stationary or propagate in a backward direction.

Though the storm often appears stationary on radar, or even moving upwind, this is an illusion. The storm is really a multi-cell storm with new, more vigorous cells that form on the upwind side, replacing older cells that continue to drift downwind.

In Rapid City, South Dakota , in , an unusual alignment of winds at various levels of the atmosphere combined to produce a continuously training set of cells that dropped an enormous quantity of rain upon the same area, resulting in devastating flash flooding.

Each year, many people are killed or seriously injured by severe thunderstorms despite the advance warning. While severe thunderstorms are most common in the spring and summer , they can occur at just about any time of the year.

Cloud-to-ground lightning frequently occurs within the phenomena of thunderstorms and have numerous hazards towards landscapes and populations.

One of the more significant hazards lightning can pose is the wildfires they are capable of igniting. Acid rain is also a frequent risk produced by lightning.

Distilled water has a neutral pH of 7. Acid rain can damage infrastructures containing calcite or certain other solid chemical compounds.

In ecosystems, acid rain can dissolve plant tissues of vegetations and increase acidification process in bodies of water and in soil , resulting in deaths of marine and terrestrial organisms.

Any thunderstorm that produces hail that reaches the ground is known as a hailstorm. Hail is more common along mountain ranges because mountains force horizontal winds upwards known as orographic lifting , thereby intensifying the updrafts within thunderstorms and making hail more likely.

Cheyenne, Wyoming is North America's most hail-prone city with an average of nine to ten hailstorms per season. Hail can cause serious damage, notably to automobiles , aircraft, skylights, glass-roofed structures, livestock , and most commonly, farmers' crops.

When hail stones exceed 13 millimetres 0. Wheat, corn, soybeans, and tobacco are the most sensitive crops to hail damage.

One of the earliest recorded incidents occurred around the 9th century in Roopkund , Uttarakhand , India. A tornado is a violent, rotating column of air in contact with both the surface of the earth and a cumulonimbus cloud otherwise known as a thundercloud or, in rare cases, the base of a cumulus cloud.

Tornadoes come in many sizes but are typically in the form of a visible condensation funnel , whose narrow end touches the earth and is often encircled by a cloud of debris and dust.

The Fujita scale and the Enhanced Fujita Scale rate tornadoes by damage caused. An EF0 tornado, the weakest category, damages trees but not substantial structures.

An EF5 tornado, the strongest category, rips buildings off their foundations and can deform large skyscrapers.

Waterspouts have similar characteristics as tornadoes, characterized by a spiraling funnel-shaped wind current that form over bodies of water, connecting to large cumulonimbus clouds.

Waterspouts are generally classified as forms of tornadoes, or more specifically, non- supercelled tornadoes that develop over large bodies of water.

Flash flooding is the process where a landscape, most notably an urban environment, is subjected to rapid floods.

Flash floods are most common in densely populated urban environments, where few plants and bodies of water are present to absorb and contain the extra water.

Flash flooding can be hazardous to small infrastructure, such as bridges, and weakly constructed buildings. Plants and crops in agricultural areas can be destroyed and devastated by the force of raging water.

Automobiles parked within affected areas can also be displaced. Soil erosion can occur as well, exposing risks of landslide phenomena.

Downburst winds can produce numerous hazards to landscapes experiencing thunderstorms. Downburst winds are generally very powerful, and are often mistaken for wind speeds produced by tornadoes, [76] due to the concentrated amount of force exerted by their straight-horizontal characteristic.

Downburst winds can be hazardous to unstable, incomplete, or weakly constructed infrastructures and buildings. Agricultural crops, and other plants in nearby environments can be uprooted and damaged.

Aircraft engaged in takeoff or landing can crash. Downburst winds are usually formed in areas when high pressure air systems of downdrafts begin to sink and displace the air masses below it, due to their higher density.

When these downdrafts reach the surface, they spread out and turn into the destructive straight-horizontal winds. Thunderstorm asthma is the triggering of an asthma attack by environmental conditions directly caused by a local thunderstorm.

During a thunderstorm, pollen grains can absorb moisture and then burst into much smaller fragments with these fragments being easily dispersed by wind.

While larger pollen grains are usually filtered by hairs in the nose, the smaller pollen fragments are able to pass through and enter the lungs, triggering the asthma attack.

Most thunderstorms come and go fairly uneventfully; however, any thunderstorm can become severe , and all thunderstorms, by definition, present the danger of lightning.

Preparedness refers to precautions that should be taken before a thunderstorm. Some preparedness takes the form of general readiness as a thunderstorm can occur at any time of the day or year.

The American Red Cross recommends that people follow these precautions if a storm is imminent or in progress: The NWS stopped recommending the "lightning crouch" in as it doesn't provide a significant level of protection and will not significantly lower the risk of being killed or injured from a nearby lightning strike.

Thunderstorms occur throughout the world, even in the polar regions, with the greatest frequency in tropical rainforest areas, where they may occur nearly daily.

At any given time approximately 2, thunderstorms are occurring on Earth. Other cities known for frequent storm activity include Darwin , Caracas , Manila and Mumbai.

Thunderstorms are associated with the various monsoon seasons around the globe, and they populate the rainbands of tropical cyclones.

Thunderstorms are rare in polar regions because of cold surface temperatures. Some of the most powerful thunderstorms over the United States occur in the Midwest and the Southern states.

These storms can produce large hail and powerful tornadoes. Thunderstorms are relatively uncommon along much of the West Coast of the United States , [92] but they occur with greater frequency in the inland areas, particularly the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valleys of California.

In spring and summer, they occur nearly daily in certain areas of the Rocky Mountains as part of the North American Monsoon regime.

In the Northeast , storms take on similar characteristics and patterns as the Midwest, but with less frequency and severity.

During the summer, air-mass thunderstorms are an almost daily occurrence over central and southern parts of Florida. If the quantity of water that is condensed in and subsequently precipitated from a cloud is known, then the total energy of a thunderstorm can be calculated.

This is on the same order of magnitude of energy released within a tropical cyclone, and more energy than that released during the atomic bomb blast at Hiroshima, Japan in The Fermi Gamma-ray Burst Monitor results show that gamma rays and antimatter particles positrons can be generated in powerful thunderstorms.

TGFs are brief bursts occurring inside thunderstorms and associated with lightning. The streams of positrons and electrons collide higher in the atmosphere to generate more gamma rays.

In more contemporary times, thunderstorms have taken on the role of a scientific curiosity. Every spring, storm chasers head to the Great Plains of the United States and the Canadian Prairies to explore the scientific aspects of storms and tornadoes through use of videotaping.

Thunderstorms strongly influenced many early civilizations. Greeks believed that they were battles waged by Zeus , who hurled lightning bolts forged by Hephaestus.

Some American Indian tribes associated thunderstorms with the Thunderbird , who they believed was a servant of the Great Spirit. The Norse considered thunderstorms to occur when Thor went to fight Jötnar , with the thunder and lightning being the effect of his strikes with the hammer Mjölnir.

Hinduism recognizes Indra as the god of rain and thunderstorms. Christian doctrine accepted the ideas of Aristotle 's original work, called Meteorologica , that winds were caused by exhalations from the Earth and that fierce storms were the work of God.

These ideas were still within the mainstream as late as the 18th century. Martin Luther was out walking when a thunderstorm began, causing him to pray to God for being saved and promising to become a monk.

Thunderstorms, evidenced by flashes of lightning , on Jupiter have been detected and are associated with clouds where water may exist as both a liquid and ice, suggesting a mechanism similar to that on Earth.

Water is a polar molecule that can carry a charge, so it is capable of creating the charge separation needed to produce lightning.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses, see Electrical storm disambiguation. For the musical ensemble, see Thirty Seconds to Mars.

For other uses, see Thunderstorm disambiguation. List of derecho events. Lightning strike and Wildfire. Emergency management and Tornado preparedness.

United States rainfall climatology. Sprite lightning , Upper-atmospheric lightning , and St. Nature's Most Violent Storms ". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Civil engineers' pocket book: Zentralanstalt für Meteorologie und Geodynamik. Questions and Answers about Thunderstorms".

Archived from the original on The Downburst, microburst and macroburst: Mesoscale Meteorology in Midlatitudes. University of Missouri-Columbia, Archived from the original PDF on September 1, Archived from the original PDF on Line echo wave pattern.

Weather World Project. Characteristics of European mesoscale convective systems". Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society.

University of Maryland, College Park. Observations of surface to atmosphere interactions in the tropics. Oxford University Press US. Mesoscale Weather Systems in the Polar Regions.

Tintagel — King Arthur Country. Thunderstorms can be triggered by a cold front that moves into moist, unstable air.

Sometimes squall lines develop in the warm air mass tens to hundreds of kilometres ahead of a cold front. The tendency of prefrontal storms to be more or less aligned parallel to the front indicates that they are initiated by atmospheric disturbances caused by the front.

In the central United States, severe thunderstorms commonly occur in the springtime, when cool westerly winds at middle levels 3, to 10, metres [10, to 33, feet] in altitude move over warm and moist surface air flowing northward from the Gulf of Mexico.

The resulting broad region of instability produces MCSs that persist for many hours or even days.

In the tropics, the northeast trade winds meet the southeast trades near the Equator , and the resulting intertropical convergence zone ITCZ is characterized by air that is both moist and unstable.

Thunderstorms and MCSs appear in great abundance in the ITCZ; they play an important role in the transport of heat to upper levels of the atmosphere and to higher latitudes.

When environmental winds are favourable, the updraft and downdraft of a storm become organized and twist around and reinforce each other.

The result is a long-lived supercell storm. These storms are the most intense type of thunderstorm. In the central United States, supercells typically have a broad, intense updraft that enters from the southeast and brings moist surface air into the storm.

The updraft rises, rotates counterclockwise, and exits to the east, forming an anvil. Updraft speeds in supercell storms can exceed 40 metres feet per second and are capable of suspending hailstones as large as grapefruit.

Supercells can last two to six hours. They are the most likely storm to produce spectacular wind and hail damage as well as powerful tornadoes.

Aircraft and radar measurements show that a single thunderstorm cell extends to an altitude of 8, to 10, metres 26, to 33, feet and lasts about 30 minutes.

An isolated storm usually contains several cells in different stages of evolution and lasts about an hour.

A large storm can be many tens of kilometres in diameter with a top that extends to altitudes above 18 km 10 miles , and its duration can be many hours.

The updrafts and downdrafts in isolated thunderstorms are typically between about 0. The updraft diameter may occasionally exceed 4 km 2.

Closer to the ground, drafts tend to have a larger diameter and lower speeds than do drafts higher in the cloud. Updraft speeds typically peak in the range of 5 to 10 metres 16 to 33 feet per second, and speeds exceeding 20 metres 66 feet per second are common in the upper parts of large storms.

Airplanes flying through large storms at altitudes of about 10, metres 33, feet have measured updrafts exceeding 30 metres 98 feet per second.

The strongest updrafts occur in organized storms that are many tens of kilometres in diameter, and lines or zones of such storms can extend for hundreds of kilometres.

Sometimes thunderstorms will produce intense downdrafts that create damaging winds on the ground. These downdrafts are referred to as macrobursts or microbursts , depending on their size.

A macroburst is more than 4 km 2. A microburst is smaller in dimension but produces winds as high as 75 metres per second, or km per hour feet per second, or miles per hour on the ground.

When the parent storm forms in a wet, humid environment, the microburst will be accompanied by intense rainfall at the ground.

If the storm forms in a dry environment, however, the precipitation may evaporate before it reaches the ground such precipitation is referred to as virga , and the microburst will be dry.

Downbursts are a serious hazard to aircraft, especially during takeoffs and landings, because they produce large and abrupt changes in the wind speed and direction near the ground.

In general, an active cloud will rise until it loses its buoyancy. A loss of buoyancy is caused by precipitation loading when the water content of the cloud becomes heavy enough, or by the entrainment of cool, dry air, or by a combination of these processes.

Growth can also be stopped by a capping inversion, that is, a region of the atmosphere where the air temperature decreases slowly, is constant, or increases with height.

Thunderstorms typically reach altitudes above 10, metres 33, feet and sometimes more than 20, metres 66, feet. When the instability is high, the atmosphere moist, and winds favourable, thunderstorms can extend to the tropopause, that is, the boundary between the troposphere and the stratosphere.

The tropopause is characterized by air temperatures that are nearly constant or increasing with height, and it is a region of great stability.

Occasionally the momentum of an updraft carries it into the stratosphere, but after a short distance the air in the top of the updraft becomes cooler and heavier than the surrounding air, and the overshoot ceases.

The height of the tropopause varies with both latitude and season. It ranges from about 10, to 15, metres 33, to 50, feet and is higher near the Equator.

When a cumulonimbus cloud reaches a capping inversion or the tropopause, it spreads outward and forms the anvil cloud so characteristic of most thunderstorms.

The winds at anvil altitudes typically carry cloud material downwind, and sometimes there are weak cells of convection embedded in the anvil.

An airplane flying through a thunderstorm is commonly buffeted upward and downward and from side to side by turbulent drafts in a storm.

Atmospheric turbulence causes discomfort for the crew and passengers and also subjects the aircraft to undesirable stresses. Turbulence can be quantified in various ways, but frequently a g unit, equal to the acceleration of gravity 9.

A gust of 1 g will cause severe aircraft turbulence. In the upper part of violent thunderstorms, vertical accelerations of about 3 g have been reported.

The motion of a thunderstorm across the land is determined primarily by the interactions of its updrafts and downdrafts with steering winds in the middle layers of the atmosphere in which the storm develops.

The speed of isolated storms is typically about 20 km 12 miles per hour, but some storms move much faster. In extreme circumstances, a supercell storm may move 65 to 80 km about 40 to 50 miles per hour.

Most storms continually evolve and have new cells developing while old ones dissipate. When winds are light, an individual cell may move very little, less than two kilometres, during its lifetime; however, in a larger storm, new cells triggered by the outflow from downdrafts can give the appearance of rapid motion.

In large, multicell storms, the new cells tend to form to the right of the steering winds in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere.

The energy that drives thunderstorms comes primarily from the latent heat that is released when water vapour condenses to form cloud drops.

For every gram of water that is condensed, about calories of heat are released to the atmosphere. When water drops freeze in the upper parts of the cloud, another 80 calories per gram are released.

The release of latent heat energy in an updraft is converted, at least in part, to the kinetic energy of the air motions.

A rough estimate of the total energy in a thunderstorm can be made from the total quantity of water that is precipitated by the cloud.

In a typical case, this energy is about 10 7 kilowatt-hours, roughly equivalent of a kiloton nuclear explosion though it is released over a broader area and in a longer span of time.

A large, multicell storm can easily be 10 to times more energetic. Thunderstorm downdrafts originate at altitudes where the air temperature is cooler than at ground level, and they are kept cool even as they sink to warmer levels by the evaporation of water and melting of ice particles.

Not only is the sinking air more dense than its surroundings, but it carries a horizontal momentum that is different from the surrounding air. If the descending air originated at a height of 10, metres 33, feet , for example, it might reach the ground with a horizontal velocity much higher than the wind at the ground.

When such air hits the ground, it usually moves outward ahead of the storm at a higher speed than the storm itself.

This is why an observer on the ground watching a thunderstorm approach can often feel a gust of cool air before the storm passes overhead. The outspreading downdraft air forms a pool some to 2, metres about 1, to 6, feet deep, and often there is a distinct boundary between the cool air and the warm, humid air in which the storm developed.

The passage of such a gust front is easily recognized as the wind speed increases and the air temperature suddenly drops.

In extreme circumstances, the gust front produced by a downburst may reach 50 metres about feet per second or more and do extensive damage to property and vegetation.

Severe winds occur most often when organized lines of thunderstorms develop in an environment where the middle-level winds are very strong.

Under such conditions, people might think the winds were caused by a tornado. If a funnel cloud is not observed, the character of the wind damage can indicate the source.

Tornadoes blow debris in a tight circular pattern, whereas the air from a thunderstorm outflow pushes it mostly in one direction.

By the time the cool air arrives, rain usually is reaching the surface. Sometimes all the raindrops evaporate while falling, and the result is a dry thunderstorm.

At the other extreme, severe multiple-cell and supercell storms can produce torrential rain and hail and cause flash floods. In small thunderstorms, peak five-minute rainfall rates can exceed mm 4.

The average thunderstorm produces about 2, metric tons , short tons of rain, but large storms can produce 10 times more rainfall. Large, organized storms that are associated with mesoscale convective systems can generate 10 10 to 10 12 kg of rainfall.

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Page 1 of 2. Next page Thunderstorm electrification. Learn More in these related Britannica articles: Tornado , a small-diameter column of violently rotating air developed within a convective cloud and in contact with the ground.

Tornadoes occur most often in association with thunderstorms during the spring and summer in the mid-latitudes of both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.

These whirling atmospheric vortices can generate the strongest…. Furthermore, these patterns are seasonally dependent, with more intense cyclones and colder air prevailing in winter but with a higher incidence of thunderstorms common in spring and summer.

Specific gods of wind and storm are found especially in countries with tornadoes and hurricanes e.

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