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Diagnosing the influence of diabatic processes on the explosive deepening of extratropical cyclones

Fink, A. H., Pohle, S., Pinto, J. G. and Knippertz, P. (2012) Diagnosing the influence of diabatic processes on the explosive deepening of extratropical cyclones. Geophysical Research Letters, 39 (7). L07803. ISSN 0094-8276

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To link to this article DOI: 10.1029/2012GL051025


A novel version of the classical surface pressure tendency equation (PTE) is applied to ERA-Interim reanalysis data to quantitatively assess the contribution of diabatic processes to the deepening of extratropical cyclones relative to effects of temperature advection and vertical motions. The five cyclone cases selected, Lothar and Martin in December 1999, Kyrill in January 2007, Klaus in January 2009, and Xynthia in February 2010, all showed explosive deepening and brought considerable damage to parts of Europe. For Xynthia, Klaus and Lothar diabatic processes contribute more to the observed surface pressure fall than horizontal temperature advection during their respective explosive deepening phases, while Kyrill and Martin appear to be more baroclinically driven storms. The powerful new diagnostic tool presented here can easily be applied to large numbers of cyclones and will help to better understand the role of diabatic processes in future changes in extratropical storminess.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:No Reading authors. Back catalogue items
Faculty of Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:32744
Uncontrolled Keywords:diabatic processes; explosive cyclogenesis; extratropical cyclones
Publisher:American Geophysical Union

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